The Organization has made its decision. There isn’t enough Dr. Pepper in my fridge. And my banana’s not jelly enough. That only means one thing. Steins;Gate needs to be discussed as 2011’s best anime. El Psy Congroo.
Admittedly, I didn’t really pick up Steins;Gate
until around Thanksgiving so I didn’t get sucked into the hype right away. But never late than never, they say, right? Right. So without getting so trapped in the past and without looking too far into the future, my choice for Best Anime of 2011 is Steins;Gate
. To me, it had the best overall approach to what a masterpiece ought to be like without resorting to pretty colors, jaw-dropping action sequences and an overload of female seiyuu
. Okay, the last one is a lie but the truth of the matter is, while we’re on the topic, is that this voice cast is amazing. If you thought Hanazawa Kana
and Imai Asami
were awesome in their respective roles, then may I suggest the ultra otaku
version of Seki Tomokazu
and the Mad Scientist,
Miyano Mamoru Hououin Kyouma
For me, the idea of time traveling bids an automatic interest on my part. While Steins;Gate had an interesting beginning, it sure lagged in the development and stuttered when things got sloppy. But those were most of the early and middle episodes. What transpired when the concept of “D-Mailing” evolved into something greater clinched it for me - this was going to be about more than mere time traveling and being a mad scientist. That’s one of the perks of a twenty-four episode series; it has the time and space to redeem itself after a sluggish conceptual introduction and then dash forth with the finished product. Even with the middle-end focusing mainly on one major goal, the pace kept moving and “Okarin” never stopped despite growing numb to his failures.
That doesn’t mean that I don’t question everything that happened, or doesn’t happen. However Steins;Gate was directed, it was easy to accept. With a fair share of pretty much everything - action, comedy, romance, drama, thriller and sugarcoated with loads of sci-fi elements - it was easy to get sucked into the experiments that took place. While Okarin appears to be a very awkward individual, he is well balanced by his fellow lab members, each equipped with a different vibe to his or her respective character. Inclusion of otaku-speak with a 2ch reference in @ch is a gift because it helps relate to all the otaku watching this endeavor unfold.
The screens I provided do very little to even preview what the series is about. Hell, I think it’s impossible for me to try and put the pieces together because anything I reveal is a possible spoiler. Yes, they all tie in together and that’s the danger and charm of a time travel-based work. So while I was one of those people who skipped Steins;Gate in favor of more lively series like Nichijou or feel-good shows like Usagi Drop, a second chance proved me wrong that all the hype was worth finding out. It definitely picked up quick once you allow yourself to be acquainted with this quirky bunch of individuals, especially with Kurisu aka Assistant aka Christina aka The Zombie aka… You get the idea. (I hope.)
Best Anime of 2011: Steins;Gate
Honorable Mentions: Usagi Drop, Fate/zero, Hanasaku Iroha, Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica
Other anime picks
Agree? Disagree? Express your opinions in the comment section below!
And be sure to look out for more Best of 2011 picks. Various Pop GO staff members reveal their choices all throughout the week!