Lists are generally the territory of the lazy and desperate. Being both, I have decided that this post will be a list! I am sure there will be a whole lot more lists once I have the YouTube videos up and running (as much as I mention them, it’s almost a guarantee that I won’t do a single one), but for now a text list will have to do!
The opening theme of an anime means one of two things. You either become very good at fast forwarding exactly one minute and thirty seconds, or you enjoy some kick ass music, catchy music, or both. Maybe even with some awesome animation to boot!
I have rather weird tastes when it comes to music. I’ll listen to anything from classical to hard-core gangster rap, so long as the beat tickles my fancy. For most OPs, I skip them. Not because they’re bad, but because they’re just not something that gets me off, musically.
These five, listed in no particular order, are some of the best at getting me off. Musically.
Negima!? – 1000% Sparkling
Negima!? is a retelling of the Negima! Anime, only with the ludicrous increased about 1000% (which is probably the reason for the theme song). I have a real love for OPs that utilize the show’s voice actors, and most of this OP is sung by them.
There are about 6 different versions that play throughout the season, swapping around some of the characters, vocal roles, and lyrics, depending on what is happening in the show (including a wonderful chibi version for when Negi is turned into a chupacabra – I said it was ludicrous).
The animation in the OP is excellent, very minimalist, and utilizes color or black and white when needed to set the mood. The song itself is great with kickass drumming and a ton of awesome synthetics. All in all a great OP.
Gabriel Drop Out – Gabriel Drop Kick
Speaking of a song that utilizes the voice cast, this OP only uses the four main characters. The song pretty much covers all their personalities perfectly, and moves flawlessly from the ‘heavenly’ characters to the demons, and again into a smooth and sweet little diddy.
The characters often talk over each other, which frankly in Japanese can be very jarring, but it perfectly adds to the chaos of the clash in personalities. The animation is a cute as can be, which makes this a very good, catchy OP.
Excel Saga – Ai Chuuseishin
I don’t have any of Excel Saga on my hard drive, so an embedded YouTube link will have to do!
Excel Saga, one of the most ridiculous (in a good way) anime to have ever been created, has what has to be the most catchy theme song. It’s difficult to explain it, as the song itself has nothing that stands out too much, but it does manage to catch – at least as much as possible – the energy of Excel and the show.
There’s literally a line about slipping on a banana having something to do with love (I think). The OP makes it look as if the voice actors are singing the song, but it’s actually sung by a couple of other of actors in the show. It’s a weird, very meta anime, and I am sure I will be talking about it on one of my Wayback Wednesday’s!
Asobi ni Iku yo! – Now Loading: Sky
This was hard to choose because I have so many I love, but this one is just such a great song that is 100% accurate to the wider attitude of the show (even though it does have some darker moments, Asobi ni Iku yo! is in general a very fun anime). The show is set on Okinawa, and the opening credits acknowledge this with their tropical feel.
You cannot not sit through this OP, and not just because of the – ahem – characters shown in it. It’s just not possible to skip over it. I have the full song and listen to it constantly. Well, often enough.
- Shuffle! – You
- High School of the Dead – High School of the Dead
- Trinity Seven – Seven Doors
- Samurai Champaloo – Battlecry
- Black Lagoon – Red Fraction
Shimoneta – Inner Urge
Throwing a curveball here. This is not an OP, but an ending! What an ending though!
The show is worthy of a post of it’s own. It’s fucking hilarious, has a classic premise, and has some really twisted characters. The ending, which was written specifically for the show, is really untranslatable due to it’s clever use of Japanese to make really filthy anagrams. They beat is super catchy and the animation is pretty cute on its own, going from light to dark and back and forth in order to flow with the songs narrative.
This is the first ED since Shakugan no Shana that I have watched all the way through, every single time.
I highly recommend you watch this anime, but if you can’t because you’re at work or are a nun, then at least watch the ED. Shimoneta is a masterpiece.
Join us next time when I list the top five anime decals I got for my car. Spoiler – I only have four…