[2015 SEP 22]
Removing the outdated intro here to just say, hey, here’s my top 20. I initially posted this in mid 2014 but I’ll bump it up in the post order any time I make a big change since it was hiding a bajillion pages back.

[2019 SEP 17]
I’ve reworked the list! I’m now considering manga/novels alongside anime. I’m indicating which medium is what landed the series on my list by whether the anime or print columns are populated. Could be or or the other or both.
• If I’ve liked and seen the anime, Broadcast Year and Studio are populated.
• If I’ve liked and read the manga/novel past the material covered by the anime, Publication Year and Author are populated.

Updated as of 2019-06-11

Top 25 Favorite Franchises

Rank Change Title Broadcast Year Studio Publication Year Author
1 ►0 Flip Flappers 2016 Studio 3Hz
2 ►0 Mahou Shoujo Madoka★Magica 2011 Shaft
3 ►0 Sakura Trick 2014 Studio DEEN 2011 Tachi
4 ►0 Hidamari Sketch 2007 Shaft
5 ►0 Yama no Susume 2013 8-bit
6 ►0 Shoujo Shuumatsu Ryokou 2014 Tsukumizu
7 ►0 The iDOLM@STER 2011 A1 Pictures
8 ►0 Yuyushiki 2013 Kinema Citrus
9 ▲1 Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha 2005 Seven Arcs
10 ▲4 Hanayamata 2014 Madhouse 2011 Hamayumiba Sou
11 ▲4 Koufuku Graffiti 2015 Shaft 2012 Kawai Makoto
12 ►0 Sora Yori mo Tooi Basho 2018 Madhouse
13 ▼4 Aria 2005 HAL Film Maker
14 ▼1 Sora no Woto 2010 A1 Pictures
15 ▲3 Gakuen Utopia Manabi Straight! 2007 ufotable
16 ▼5 Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann 2007 Gainax
17 ▼2 Yuru Yuri 2011 Douga Koubou / TYO Animations
18 ▲7 Gakkou Gurashi 2015 Lerche 2012 Kaihou Norimitsu/Chiba Sadoru
19 NEW Shakunetsu no Takkyuu Musume 2016 Kinema Citrus 2013 Asano Yagura
20 NEW Urara Meirochou 2017 JC Staff 2014 Harikamo
21 NEW Yagate Kimi ni Naru 2018 Troyca 2015 Nakatani Nio
22 ▲2 Flying Witch 2016 JC Staff 2012 Ishizuka Chihiro
23 ▼4 Sasameki Koto 2009 AIC 2007 Ikeda Takashi
24 ▼3 Ookami to Koushinryou 2008 Imagin / Brain's Base 2006 Hasekura Isuna
25 ▼3 Mouretsu Pirates 2012 Satelight

[Entries include all relevant sequels, e.g. Idolmaster counts Cinderella Girls too, Aria is all three seasons, etc]

I don’t have a clear criteria for getting into my top series ranking, or even for the ordering. It’s just whatever I’m feeling at the moment.

46 Responses to “All-time Favorites (updated 2019-06-11)”

  1. rederoin says:

    We will never see a S2 of Sora no Woto.


    • EmperorBrandon says:

      I just got to rewatching Sora no Woto several weeks ago, and dang, it holds up so fantastically well. Love all those characters so much and how well the setting was developed. Sad that there will likely never be more too, particularly since Kanbe Mamoru had some really neat ideas with the things he didn’t get to do.

      It would be in a Top 20 list from me, no doubt. Not sure if I’ve given much thought to what exactly are the highest among my anime favorites for a few years now. I’ve added many favorites, but haven’t reflected on how I’d rank them, and it can be hard in cases where they’re not fresh on my mind. The backlog of shows I’m really wanting to watch (including stuff I want to revisit) is so daunting.

  2. rederoin says:

    Its really hard to pick a numbered list out of the god-knows-how-many anime i’ve started(1200+?).

    So I’ll just go with my 17 favourites in alphabetical order.
    -Excel saga/puni puni poemi*
    -Gunslinger girl
    -Hidamari sketch
    -Kino no tabi
    -Macross franchise
    -Kino no tabi
    -Sakura trick
    -Sketchbook: Full Color’s
    -Sora no woto
    -Strike witches
    -The Irresponsible Captain Tylor
    -Yama no Susume
    -Yuru yuri

    The rest of my 9s & 10s(too lazy, so I copy & pasted them).
    Haibane Renmei
    NHK ni Youkoso!
    Shion no Ou
    Ookami to Koushinryou
    Gyakkyou Burai Kaiji: Ultimate Survivor
    Kara no Kyoukai 5: Mujun Rasen
    Mitsudomoe Zouryouchuu!
    K-On! Movie
    Kyoukaisenjou no Horizon II
    Girls und Panzer
    Kiniro Mosaic
    Akuma no Riddle
    Sakura Trick
    Gochuumon wa Usagi Desu ka?

  3. stardf29 says:

    I am curious as to what your other ten 10/10 shows are (you can list them in alphabetical order if you want).

    Anyway, I haven’t watched as much anime, so I’ll only put down a top 15 (anything below that is a bit too volatile at the moment):

    1. Aria
    2. Clannad
    3. AnoHana
    4. Nichijou
    5. Gin no Saji
    6. Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita
    7. Mahoraba ~Heartful days~
    8. Hidamari Sketch
    9. AKB0048
    10. Haibane Renmei
    11. Gingitsune
    12. K-ON!
    13. Usagi Drop
    14. Tamayura
    15. Uchuu no Stellvia

    • something says:

      I had them in there at first but it felt like it was getting a bit long so I took it out. In alphabetical order:

      ef (just memories, really)
      Heroic Age
      Hourou Musuko
      Kanon (2006)
      Serial Experiments Lain
      Uchuu no Stellvia
      Usagi Drop

      • rederoin says:

        Out of curiosity, since I haven’t seen it, what is that makes Hourou Musuko so good?

        • something says:

          Beautiful art-style once you get used to it, very complex and believable characters, and one of the only thoughtful treatments of gender identity ever depicted in anime. Also Saori, Saori is stupidly amazing. I don’t know how the manga goes past where the anime leaves off (I’ve heard mixed reactions, I think? Maybe that was Aoi Hana) but the anime is just top tier in all respects.

  4. mosaic says:

    Top 10 (ranging from 9/10 – 7/10):

    1. Ookiku Furikabutte
    2. Ergo Proxy
    3. Texhnolyze
    4. Mushishi
    5. Yojouhan Shinwa Taikei
    6. Kimi to Boku
    7. Kuuchuu Buranko
    8. Zettai Shonen
    9. Mousou Dairinin
    9. Hachimitsu to Clover
    10. Non Non Biyori (new)

  5. Progeusz says:

    That would be hard, extremely hard… I don’t even know how I should look at it, my feelings about anime are too complicated. I guess my personal attachment overwrites the actual quality of the show. There are things I like more than other shows I rated higher. For example K-ON! movie was perfect in my opinion and I enjoy a lot of the episodes immensely but when I calmly think about the franchise, I just like it, something like Strike Witches gets more of my love even though the episodes were worse than K-ON!’s. Oh well, I’ll give it a try.

    I guess it would be:
    1) Mahou Shoujo Madoka★Magica
    2) The iDOLM@STER
    3) Saki
    These three franchises had and have huge impact on me, beside just the experience of watching them. I spent hundreds of hours on each of those three. Ordered according to anime quality and intensity of feelings though I probably spent the most time on Saki. At least over last two years. iM@S is kinda lagging behind nowadays but whenever new chapter of the manga comes out I’m reminded of its utmost perfection and incontestable love for the characters. Or whenever I see art of characters, be it fan or official.

    Later there would be
    AKB0048 (especially insanely good Next Stage and all the discussions)
    ef – a tale of memories. (have yet to watch melodies despite knowing ef for ~five years)
    Dragon Ball (Z, this love will never die)
    Jinrui wa Sutai Shimashita (the female MC truly deserving my utmost respect, someone on completely different level from any other character, not to mention the unique setting)
    Code Geass (that was a ride! I should probably rewatch it soon)
    Akagi (a shame it couldn’t have proper conclusion)
    Hoshi wo Ou Kodomo (I have some doubts because I rarely think about it but then I remember this movie induced a reaction I would never expect from myself)

    I suppose those are the ones I value the most for one reason or another. Aria should probably be there but I only watched first season.

  6. Ejc says:

    As for everyone, selecting a Top 10 or more is quite difficult.

    My Top 15 (with 9/10 or above)… as I seem to be grasping at straws by Top 15:

    *1 Clannad After Story
    *2 Bakemonogatari
    *3 Steins;Gate
    *4 Madoka Magica
    *5 GaruPan
    *6 Love Live! and Love Live! 2nd Season
    *7 K-ON! Movie
    *8 AnoHana.
    *9 Fate/Zero and Fate/Zero 2nd Season
    10 Kokoro Connect
    11 Hyouka
    12 Yuru Yuri and Yuru Yuri♪♪
    13 To Love-Ru Darkness
    14 Chu2koi!
    15 Yuyushiki

  7. Scruffy says:

    Very nice list! I always find it very hard to do that sort of thing, and I do note like you that some shows really mature on you whereas others cool off after a while. Here’s some of my list in no real order apart my 10/10 and 9/10’s

    Cross Game
    Clannad: After Story
    Ookami Kodomo no Ame to Yuki

    Kotonoha no Niwa
    Mahou Shoujo Madoka★Magica
    Toki wo Kakeru Shoujo
    Haibane Renmei
    Princess Tutu
    Suzumiya Haruhi no Shoushitsu
    Hidamari Sketch
    Byousoku 5 Centimeter
    Kara no Kyoukai
    Hotarubi no Mori e

  8. Anonymous says:

    1. Tetsujin 28th (2004)
    2. Shin Mazinger Shougeki! Z-hen (2009)
    3. Giant Robo: The Day The Earth Stood Still (1992)
    3. Hungry Heart Wild Striker (2003)
    4. Getter Robo Armageddon (1998)
    5. Legend of the Galactic Heroes (1988)
    6. Fang of the Sun Dougram (1981)
    7. Armored Trooper Votoms )1983)
    8.Brigadoon: Marin to Melan (2000)
    9. Combat Mecha Xabungle (1982)
    10. Invincible Super Man Zambot 3 (1977)

    11. Hajime no Ippo (2000)
    12. Gyakkyou Burai Kaiji: Ultimate Survivor (2005)
    13. Space Adventure Cobra (1983)
    14. Cyborg 009 (2001)
    15. Metropolis (2001)
    16. Koutetsushin Jeeg (2007)
    17. Gaiking Legend of Daikyu Maryu (2005)
    18. Terrestrial Defense Corp. Dai-Guard (1999)
    19. Saint Seiya Chapter Sanctuary (2002)
    20. Dororon Enma-kun Meeramera (2011)

  9. makotachi says:

    I dunno how exactly to list my favorites, because I dunno if I should put the ones I had most fun with at the top, or if I should list shows I thought were amazing because of direction/writing/animation and all that, but I guess I’ll just try to mix them..

    1. No. 6 (Light novel>anime though.)
    2. Free!
    3. Kuroko no Basuke
    4. Durarara!!!
    5. Madoka Magica
    6. Wandering Son
    7. Psycho-Pass
    8. Death Note
    9. Ai no Kusabi
    10. Darker than Black
    11. Nyan Koi!

    Kind of a random number, but yeah.

  10. Wandering Wastrel says:

    Top 20 was hard to come up with. (after the first seven I couldn’t really rank them anymore, so I left the rest in alphabetical order)

    1. K-On!
    2. Hyouka
    3. Mouretsu Pirates
    4. Astarotte no Omocha!
    5. A-Channel
    6. Simoun
    7. Clannad
    Dirty Pair
    Figure 17
    Girls und Panzer
    Love Live!
    Non Non Biyori
    Sailor Moon
    Soredemo Machi wa Mawatteiru
    Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuuutsu
    To Aru Kagaku no Railgun

    (yes, I actually do like Chu-bra!, damn it)

  11. something says:

    Updated for Yama no Susume, which I’ve got at #17 but the numbers are pretty arbitrary beyond 10 or so! I listed it as 2013 given that’s when the first season aired but obviously it’s the unimaginably gorgeous second season that really did it.

  12. something says:

    Been a long time, and I’m not adding anything but wanted to update the listings a bit after rewatching Idolmaster a few months ago. It goes up a few spots.

    • something says:

      Very minor update, I really felt like Imas should be in the top 10 so I increased it one more and bumped Toradora out to 11. Imas is a show that I only think more highly of as time goes by, while most shows gradually fade. And getting to know all the adorable Deremas girls just adds to the appeal.

      Also bumping this post up in the post ordering so it’s not a million pages back. I’ll probably do that whenever I update it.

  13. AholePony says:

    You really have similar tastes to me, at least as far as cute shows go. I see that im@s bump. In hindsight that series really was pretty exceptional imo. It could have been so much worse like any other game adaptation. Nice to see some Saki love ;-)

  14. kaoshin = sama says:

    so much defferent taste

    – All Gintama
    – Cowboy Bebob
    – Samurai Champloo
    – Full metal panic fumofu
    – Stein Gate
    – Love Live!
    – Spice & Wolf
    – K-on
    – One Outs
    – Bakuman
    – White Album 2
    – Yuru Yuri
    – Detroit Metal City
    – Space Dandy
    – Great Teacher Onizuka
    – Mushishi
    – Seitokai Yakuindomo
    – Slam Dunk
    – Suzumiya Haruhi no Shoushitsu
    – All Ghibli Studio

  15. 37 says:

    Hmm, I don’t have an actual list ranked by numbers but my favorites include

    Nagi no asukara
    Binbougami ga

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