Did your personal favorite make it into the top ten?

Since its founding in 1981, Kyoto Animation has become a powerhouse studio in the realm of Japanese animation. Though the studio suffered immense tragedy in 2019 due to an arson attack, it has since rebuilt itself, releasing a new film feature and reviving theatrical screenings of every movie it has ever made.

With the studio’s most recent release, Violet Evergarden the Movie, which serves as a sequel to Violet Evergarden: Eternity and the Auto Memories Doll, a new survey was conducted to determine what were the top ten fan favorites of Kyoto Animation’s wide range of productions, encompassing nearly 40 years of animated series, films, and shorts.

The survey was held by Voice Note, a Japanese survey service, and gathered opinions from 200 Japanese men and women. Age-wise, participants ranged from individuals in their teens to folks who were in their forties.

Without further ado, here are the results of the new survey:

10. Lucky Star
9. Clannad: After Story
8. Nichijou
7. Full Metal Panic!
6. Free!

5. Sound! Euphonium

Combining the anxieties of adolescence with one gal’s journey through band camp, Sound! Euphonium is relatable to anyone regardless if they’ve ever picked up a musical instrument or not. Individuals who were in marching band in high school will admire the show’s attention to detail, and generals fans of anime will enjoy the depictions of everyday life for members of Kitauji High School’s concert band club. A lovely blend of drama and the slice-of-life genre, Sound! Euphonium‘s place in the top five is well-deserved.

4. Hyouka

Set to the dreamy backdrop of the fictional city of Kamiyama, based off Gifu prefecture’s Takayama City, Hyouka is both a coming-of-age story and a steadily paced entry of the mystery genre. Viewers of Hyouka follow the perspective of Hotaro Oreki, who upon his sister’s request, joins his high school’s Classic Literature Club to prevent its abolishment while solving mysteries around the school. While the mysteries that the club solves together don’t involve grand themes like saving the world from a huge calamity, the straightforward and thoughtful storytelling makes the series a worthwhile watch in the eyes of fans.

3. Violet Evergarden

Named after its protagonist, Violet Evergarden is a story about an ex-child soldier who becomes an Auto Memory Doll, essentially working as a ghost writer for individuals who wish to express their emotions as eloquently as possible, but have trouble doing so alone. As Violet meets and works with more clients, her understanding of the world around her grows, which is a highlight of the series for many fans. Besides her emotional journey, viewers have also lavished heavy praise on the gorgeous visuals and beautiful soundtrack of this production.

2. K-On!

Considered a cornerstone of the moe genre — anime that features innocent, pure, and cute girls — K-On! is a relaxing slice-of-life series focused on five members of a high school “popular music” club: Yui, Mio, Ritsu, Tsumugi, and Azusa. With catchy tunes that get easily stuck into the viewer’s head, K-On!‘s sizable appeal point is watching these gals goof around as they try to navigate the academic and social rigors of high school, themes that many will find much common ground with.

1. The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya

Produced from a light novel series that has over 20 million copies in print since 2003, The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya‘s spot as the top fan favorite is no surprise given its popularity. This series follows the everyday antics of Haruhi Suzumiya, an eccentric teenage girl who has reality warping powers, but does not know this herself, as well as her cohort’s attempts to keep her entertained without tipping her off about her supernatural abilities. The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya has inspired a multitude of homages and spoof videos on the Japanese version of YouTube, NicoNico Douga, and its broadcasting schedule was even part of a solution to an unsolved mathematical problem from 1993.

The survey results show a wide breadth of work from Kyoto Animation’s sprouting years to their more recent, popular productions. Hopefully, your favorite was among the ten in the list. If these rankings got you in the mood to learn more about which anime have caught the hearts of netizens, check out this survey for Japanese people’s top 20 favorite anime opening themes!

Source: Futabanet Manga Plus via Otakomu
Top image: YouTube/KyoaniChannel
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