Favorite Netflix Anime Discoveries of 2018
I’m always open to great Netflix anime recommendations from friends and family, but I’ve also found some random, interesting things on my own.
Violet Evergarden is, by far, the best anime series I’ve picked up this year. To be honest, I only clicked on the thumbnail because Violet looked like a prettier version of Saber from Fate/Stay Night, so I was pleasantly surprised to learn that the series is actually really nice. Well-written and beautifully animated, Violet Evergarden is a series that really tugs at the heartstrings and reminds us just how important it is to understand and express our feelings, especially to those who matter to us most.
The Ancient Magus’ Bride
Yet another lovely discovery, second only to Violet Evergarden.
Modern fairy tale, anyone? Beauty and the Beast-esque thumbnail, check. Leading lady is brought out of her depressing human life into a world of magic and wonder, check. Budding romance between rookie magus and her powerful mentor, check.
Really, though, what I love the most about The Ancient Magus’ Bride is the development of both main characters. As Chise learns more about magic and her own potential, she learns to let go of her past and move forward while also showing Elias what it means to be more human (along with all the good and bad human emotions that come with it).
91 Days popped up in my recommendations after I started watching Peaky Blinders, and I can see why – the setting is roughly the same era, though in another country (Peaky Blinders is set in England, 91 Days is set in the US). Other than the similar time setting and focus on criminal gangs, the story and overall tone of the series are vastly different… probably because of the leading men. Where Peaky Blinders‘ Tommy Shelby is driven by ambition, 91 Days‘ Angelo Lagusa is driven by a desire for revenge.
While this series IS interesting and I like the animation, the story’s pace gets a bit dragging at times. I’m only at episode 6 at the moment, and it’s the only series in this list that I didn’t end up marathoning. Let’s see if my opinion changes once I get around to finishing it.
Okay, fine. I admit it, I did rather enjoy watching Juni Taisen: Zodiac War. I had a longer blog post talking about my “morbid obsession” with it, but alas, it was one of the blog posts I lost when I let my domain and web hosting expire. The animation is decent, the violence is gratuitous, the story is rather shallow, but the series also has an interesting cast of characters that have more depth than I expected from this kind of show.
So what should I watch next? I’m still open to Netflix recommendations (not just anime!), so feel free to throw your favorite shows my way!
El Santos is a marketing & advertising professional by day and gamer/bookworm/tarot reader by night. She’s prone to sudden fits of fangirling over her varied interests: video games, fiction, art, folkore, anime, and tarot. She currently lives with her husband and 2 rescue cats.