To us old-school fans of Anime and Manga, like me, it is still strange to see the amount of Manga and Anime available in mainstream book stores and online. I've been watching Anime since 1978 and until the mid-1990's, Anime and Manga were underground, and suffered from poor translations and video quality...but I was completely hooked. So much so, by the time I was in high school, I could carry on a basic conversation in Japanese. During those dark years, we got what we could take and afford, and fans were few and far between...unlike today. In the small towns in Oklahoma, where I grew up, Anime fans were few, and often I was the only one with videos to spread the gossip of Japan animation over that Disney shit. Anime has had a huge impact on my life and writing, and I thought I should share my top ten anime works. You will notice that Akira does not appear on this list. And there is a good reason for that. While I read the manga of Akira, I was never impressed with the Anime, it was just too much with annoying characters, and I think it over-hyped.
1. SPACE CRUISER YAMATO (1974)
2. ROBOTECH (1985)
3. COWBOY BEBOP (1998)
4. NINJA SCROLL (1995)
When you used to buy Manga Entertainment VHS tapes, there was rad advert opening, showing all of the cool videos Manga had for sale topped off with one of the best KMFDM songs of all time. Soon after watching this opening on my GITS tape, I ran up to Wichita and bought Ninja Scroll, because it looked so cool, and come to find out, it was. Ninja Scroll was written and directed by Yoshiaki Kawajiri, who also directed Wicked City, Demon City, and Vampire Hunter D, all of which are oddball movies in their own right. If you seen these three works, than you know Kawajiri's passion for demons and strange sex. Seriously...just watch Demon City or Wicked City. Ninja Scroll is one of his best, and it helps that the setting is Feudal Japan, one of my favorite historical periods. At one time, Ninja Scroll was the most popular anime OVA next to GITS and Akira. His weird obsession over demons, swords, sex all work in the context of the story and characters of Ninja Scroll. The only issue I have with Ninja Scroll is you better be careful who you watch this with and the semi-sequel containing the main character, which is not a good anime.
5. The Royal Space Force: WINGS OF HONNESAMISE (1987)
6. GHOST IN THE SHELL (1995)
7. BUBBLEGUN CRISIS: 2032 (1987)
8. JIN-ROH: THE WOLF BRIGADE (1999)
9. ARCADIA OF MY YOUTH (1982)
10. CAT SHIT ONE (2010)