So after three failed attempts to make the Crunchyroll Anime Awards show any more than meme fodder, Crunchyroll decided that maybe fourth time is the charm, hence the number of whiny complaints on their social media regarding why Attack on Titan Season 4 isn’t a nominee for Anime Of The Year. Seriously guys, haven’t you realized at this point that design-by-committee awards are worthless? Why do you care about this shit show for anything more than the cringe at this point?
And honestly, with the exception of the first awards show, the Hero Aca crap that admittedly led to some funny jokes, and the shows themselves being garbo, I don’t think the actual awards were that bad. I think they were fine. The nominations were decent. The non-Hero Aca/Yuri on Ice winners were deserved. Love Lost Pause’s edited livestreams of those things and I’m looking forward to when he Twitch streams this year’s fiasco. Obviously a lot of my favorite anime don’t win those awards, but I’ve learned a long time ago that my opinion does not matter when it comes to anime as a whole. I mean at the end of the day, if people just listened to me, the Japanese animation industry will go broke.
Having said that, I’ve looked at this year’s selection and I really enjoy both the categories and the nominations. I have some issues of course, but nothing is perfect, and there seems to be a good amount of variety this year, even if some underground series didn’t make it on. When you stop and think about it, who’d vote for said series even if they did make it on anyways? Because honestly, does anyone expect that dumbbell anime or Astra Lost in Space to win anything? Would anyone besides the ten people who loved Hitoribocchi and Symphogear XV give votes to them?
Carole & Tuesday, Demon Slayer, and Vinland Saga got the highest number of nominations with Sarazanmai, The Promised Neverland, and even Babylon getting some good love (although Babylon isn’t finished so I have no idea why it should even be allowed). I notice Doctor Stone and Kaguya-sama aren’t on it as much as their popularity would lead you to believe, and I’ve seen some people complain about Carole & Tuesday being over represented for a show that wasn’t that popular or that good, just like how Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress, Aggretsuko, and Megalo Box were in the past. But I say that regardless if you hate the series or not, you cannot deny that Demon Slayer and Vinland Saga have just as many nominations, there’d be more complaints about how this selection is normie-tier if just those two were running away with the nominations, and there’s a lot of misinformation going about regarding the Awards show anyways.
Remember when people thought Funimation’s Animation of the Decade meant their “Anime” of the Decade? Or people who complained about Goblin Slayer not being a candidate when it wasn’t very good and Cells of Work was missing too? I’ve seen a few comments complaining about Sword Art Online: Alicization’s ending and animation not being a choice. I mean the ending is fine although I’ve heard better LISA songs, but the animation is not amazing in that show at all. It’s better than the previous seasons, but it’s nowhere near as good as everything else that was nominated.
Bottom-line, I did vote on this event because why not? I’ll list what I picked at the end of this post if you’re curious. But I’m not taking it seriously. You guys already know what anime I liked, don’t like, or whatever from the three lists I made recently, and obviously, I don’t agree with the people who say Fruits Basket should be an anime of the year candidate over Carole and Tuesday. Sarazanmai almost has as many nominations (I think it has like one less than Carole and Tuesday/Vinland Saga/Demon Slayer). I don’t see a lot of people complaining about that. But don’t quote me on that, as there’s only so many garbage reactions I can sift through.
O Maidens is a candidate for anime of the year for Christ’s sake, and that was on my personal worst list. Do I care? No, because I know a lot of people like that show because they thought it was a really good romantic comedy about sex. Plus, there’s no way it’s going to win, even with the judges having more say this year than last. And if it does win, well maybe more people will watch the show. Not like I’ll care. I’ll have moved on to complaining about another anime by then.
That said, why is Senku’s voice actor nominated for best JP VAing performance this year? His voice acting in the last episode was godly, but for the most part, Doctor Stone’s voice acting was shit (either subbed or dubbed really). It’s like when Black Panther was nominated for a best VFX award despite the horrible CGI that ruined the final fight scene.
Bottom-line, this awards show stuff was flawed from the start just by the nature of being committee-designed. I’d rather see personal top lists along with good justifications for why you feel the way you do, preferably in long livestream format. So let’s just weather this crap out and revel in the inevitable shit show that next month will bring when they decide to host the awards in a crappy apartment this year. Seriously, do you remember how cheap the studio set was for the third iteration of this farce?
Anyways, let’s end this post by revealing what I voted for this year along with short justifications (you can vote here):
Anime of the Year – Carole & Tuesday. Because of course.
Best Protagonist – Senku from Doctor Stone. He carried that show.
Best Antagonist – Askelaad from Vinland Saga. Honestly, he was the real protagonist of that anime.
Best Boy – Mob from Mob Psycho 100 II. It was a tie between him and Tanjiro, but Mob had more development, so he got the edge.
Best Girl – Nezuko from Demon Slayer. I love Nezuko, okay? Even with her limited screentime, she’s a great character. Also the other nominations were just okay.
Best Director – Ikuhara for Sarazanmai. God the choices were all so good (although Vinland Saga’s directing wasn’t really memorable to me). But at the end of the day, Ikuhara’s crazy visual direction beats all.
Best Animation – Mob Psycho 100 II. I mean have you seen the show?
Best Character Design – Kayoko Ishikawa, Original Character Design by Miggy (Sarazanmai). I’ll be honest, the character designs for most of these were fine, but does anyone really think Carole & Tuesday’s or Kaguya-sama’s stand out? Should have put Demon Slayer on here. God the amount of creative cosplay that came from that show is insane.
Best Score – Mocky from Carole & Tuesday. It’s an anime about music. What do you expect? The others are all great though except for Doctor Stone’s.
Best Fight Scene – Tanjiro & Nezuko vs Rui from Demon Slayer. Let’s be honest, Demon Slayer’s fight scenes are the best. Really well-choreographed and animated without relying on visual explosions.
Best Couple – Reo and Mabu from Sarazanmai. Okay, the nominees for this were just shit. Dysfunctional couples all around. I might have picked Baki if I had seen it, but since I haven’t, I had to go with the one I actually saw some believable chemistry in.
Best VA Performance (JP) – Saori Hayami aka Shinobu from Demon Slayer. I think one thing people don’t give enough credit to regarding Demon Slayer is that the voice acting is amazing. Everybody just stands out with their performances to the point that I hear the character and not the actor, including Kirito’s VA when he voiced Inosuke.
Best VA Performance (EN) – Laura Bailey aka Tohru from Fruits Basket. Only dubs I watched this year were Aggretsuko and Carole & Tuesday. That said, I did hear Laura Bailey when I saw some of Fruits Basket in theater and god that woman’s voice is so good, so she gets my vote. Kyle’s Mob voice is decent, but his video game roles are better.
Best Comedy – Sarazanmai.
Because kappa butt action is consistently funnier than romantic Death Note. Honestly, I should have picked Kaguya-sama for this since it’s the only thing among the selection that I can really call a comedy. But whatever. It’s very unlikely that show won’t win this award anyways.
Best Fantasy – Attack on Titan S3. Attack on Titan really stood out as a good fantasy anime this year, guys. I can’t deny it.
Best Drama – Carole & Tuesday. People say the second half of this show sucked. I think it had some of the most moving drama to come from anime in recent times.
Best Opening Sequence –♪ Kiss Me by Nai Br.XX & Celeina Ann from Carole & Tuesday. Love the song and the visual style was great. Surprised Demon Slayer and Dororo didn’t get nominated on here. If they had, I might have voted for them instead.
Best Ending Sequence –♪ Stand by me by the peggies from Sarazanmai. The Chika dance is decent, but too meme-y for my taste. Stand By Me on the other hand was good both visually and musically. Carole & Tuesday’s ending is decent musically, but visual-wise it’s not a stand-out.