ohnoabear (bear) had his first taste of anime in 2000, when he watched a show with giant robots called Gundam Wing that combined gratuitous robot violence with mature storytelling and mildly hypocritical monologues on the evils of war. He didn’t start watching a lot of it until 2004, when classics like Cowboy Bebop and Neon Genesis Evangelion sold him on the power of aesthetic design to create fantastical worlds.

Somewhere in college he took a wrong turn, though, and ended up watching anime of all kinds, including dating sim adaptations and the dreaded otaku-centric romantic comedy. He didn’t take to those as well as he did to romantic dramas aimed at girls and the abstract weirdness of mindscrews, however. Even though compelling visions of futuristic worlds, tightly-written romances and mind-bending experimentation are few and far between in modern anime, he sticks around because of his morbid fascination with the otaku subculture.

Favorite shows: Tenchi Muyo!, FLCL, Full Metal Panic, Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, Honey and Clover, Kaiba

threeheadedmonkeys (3HM) first started watching anime in 1998, when his older brother got back from college carrying fansubs of Fushigi Yuugi on VHS tapes. He didn’t start to seriously follow anime until 2005, with Honey and Clover, Mai-HiME, and The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya as some of his early favorites. He is drawn to anime primarily for its use of serial storytelling, something American TV is still struggling to do right.

As would be expected from someone whose first exposure to anime was a show aimed primarily at teenage girls, 3HM’s taste in anime is fairly eclectic, both in target audience and genre. Generally, strong character development outweighs particular plot or genre requirements as a key for getting his attention. A devout Catholic, 3HM looks forward to seeing how his faith will be caricatured in at least one new show each season.

Favorite shows: Haibane Renmei, Monster, Honey and Clover, Cross Game, Welcome to the NHK, Time of Eve

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