So your looking for that best anime out there? Those anime’s with the best romance, adventure, and the like? At the Hesperian, you’ll also get a unique rating process where the artistic style of the show is foremost. To make it short, you’ll find reviews on shows you can scream and shout for excitement, as I do. Also, in understanding these small points, you’ll find as you understand the show for the story-telling, the morals, and the characters depth, your love of a show will increase greatly and emotions will be more heightened as a result! At least, that’s my hope for the reader.
I rate my anime shows by the following categories:
Story, Emotional Draw, Characters, and Creativity
Story is perhaps the most important of the categories. How the story progresses, the morals it contains and teaches, and how pieces are put together at the end. Does the story move smoothly or do random events ruin the experience? If there are random events, how do they relate to each other in the story? As for morals, while cheating on your friend isn’t itself ruinous to the show, if there is not a proper sense of justice, if the character does not pay for that breach of trust correctly, then you’ve cheapened what love or the moral means. Any breach in morals will result in a susbantial penalty. Again, a character may participate in wrong doing so long as the show points out its vanity and wrongfulness. Anything else is propoganda and encouraging falsehood.
Emotional Draw is how well the show manages the emotions. When its sad, does it really feel sad? Or like one show, do I find myself laughing when a sad scene occurs? Does the comedy make me laugh? As shows progress, do the emotions change smoothly? How well can I empathize with the character? Without Emotions, even the best stories are hollow and timewasting. I therefore weight Emotions twice.
Characters are weighted once and averaged among the characters. I am somewhat selective on who I rate though. Part of this is because the rating system might be ruined if I included one minor character who was horrid, even though the others got 4.5s. If the show has enough side characters, I will sometimes group them together. Since I rate mostly the English Dubs, I rate how well the voice actually fits the show, and how well a Hero/Heroin/Villian interact with each other and the world of the story.
Creativity is also weighted once. This covers the drawing, and anything that is impressive. You don’t need to have the greatest style of drawing to score well, you just need to fit that anime world with witty, precise things to make the show that much better. In fact, since it also covers music, in a large way Creativity will have an effect on the emotional draw. Any hidden thing, like in Moon Phase where every episode had some cat ears implanted in the scenery, is very much appreciated and usually is the sign that the makers had a lot of fun making the show. In other words, how well does the show’s world draw me in?
Since Story and Emotional Draw are weighted twice, I divide the scores by 6 and that’s the score you get. If I find that the score doesn’t quite match what I thought it should have gotten, I will adjust the score but am always open to your opinions of the scoring process. Ultimately this is my thoughts on the show, and I hope that from a story-telling standpoint, you might appreciate art in its own world, free from your cultural prejudices.
What shows will I watch? Fortunately for Anime, they are seperated into many categories. From shows for kids, teens, and adults (each having 3 subcategories for guys or girls or both), and another for NA17. This in turn has its genres like romance or adventure. Thus I can avoid any stupidly mushy and pathetic stories like Maburaho. (that show made you want to repeatedly slap yourself and will never be in my reviews xD)
What’s my guidelines of the shows I’ll watch? Two stipulations:
1) Must have a proper sense of justice. This I refer solely to the moral aspect of it. If the main character is a homosexual or if he or she engages in some activity which, being an abomination, is hailed as the only and right way than I reject this said story. Fortunately, I can avoid most of this purely by the categories as most would fit under Hentai(we call it Porn in the USA), Yaoi (Gay), and Yuri (Lesbian).
2) Whatever of the body is shown, so long as it is not done for the direct purpose of sexual gratification, I have no problem with it. Of course, some shows will still get the boot depending how much they put in there. After all, fanservice (not to be confused with Ecchi, shows that center around intentionally causing you to think dirty) can get really annoying when overdone.