Triple anime feature

Since the days of Dragon Ball and the first seasons of Yu-Gi-Oh! or the more recent series Madoka Magica and JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure, few anime (Japanese animated series) have created any sort of impact on the animation genre in general. However, three anime that started in the summer of 2013 have stood out, especially on forum websites and social websites like Tumblr, spawning cosplays and fandoms galore. If the summer of 2013 can be considered the renaissance of anime, then these three series—one finished, one set to end this month, and one ongoing—are its masterpieces.

DANGANRONPA: THE ANIMATION – Although this adaptation of the video game Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc (released in Japanese for the PSP and re-released in English for the PSVita) ended last September, the adaptation for the game’s sequel is set for release this June, so watching this series is essential to get a grip on the lore of the games. The protagonist, Naegi Makoto, is imprisoned along with 14 other prodigious students at the Hope’s Peak Academy high school by a gleefully twisted teddy bear named Monokuma. The only way of escaping the school is by murdering your classmates, with the added twist of never getting caught. The series’ 13 episodes follow the events of the original game with few changes, and the characters’ quirks make them all enjoyable or loathsome. If you enjoy murder mysteries and Hunger Games-style survival stories, this anime’s for you.

KILL la KILL – To the despair of its quickly growing fanbase, Kill la Kill is set to end on March 27, so there’s still some time to catch up, despite each of the 23 current episodes being around 20 minutes long. Kill la Kill revolves around Ryuko Matoi, an 18-year-old transfer student at the Honnouji Academy, as she journeys in search of Satsuki Kiryuin, head of the insanely powerful school council and accused murderer of Ryuko’s father.  Despite the silly amounts of near nudity and Tarantino-esque blood, the fast-paced animation brought to us by the creators of the Internet sensation Gurren Lagann make this hyperactive anime an extremely entertaining watch. If you liked Dragon Ball, Kill Bill, and just enjoy seeing huge fights where everyone’s a badass, give Kill la Kill your time.

SPACE DANDY – From the makers of the critically acclaimed Cowboy Bebop, Space Dandy is about, well, a “dandy guy in space,” as described by the narrator. Dandy, accompanied by the cat-like alien, Meow, and robot helper QT, travels through space (and sometimes time) on the spaceship Aloha Oe, encountering and capturing strange aliens for bounty money. At least he would be, if he and his crew weren’t complete slackers. The series, currently on its twelfth episode and ongoing, is unique in the sense that each episode isn’t necessarily connected to the last, so it’s best to watch the first episode for context and the rest at your own leisure. Since there’s barely any continuity, each episode is unique and insane in its own way: some are absolutely nonsensical while others will manage to have you drowning in tears. Space Dandy is for the weird few who’ve thought about what Johnny Bravo would be like in the Star Trek universe.