Studio Bones hit their 20th anniversary this year, which got me thinking about which anime of theirs is my favourite… and the answer kind of surprised me.
I have a simple way of defining my “favourite anime” as the years have gone by. It’s the anime that makes me smile the most when I think back on it. I don’t have time to rewatch much anime these days, so I can’t precisely define why certain titles have stuck with me, but if something makes me smile, it’s a good anime.
When I went to the Bones 20th anniversary exhibit and saw the key visual of all the Bones characters all in one group, I saw lots of characters from great anime represented. It reminded me that Bones has made a lot of creative and original anime over the years. Some of them, like Eureka Seven and Fullmetal Alchemist, are titles I would regard as kami anime (godly anime).
And yet out of that entire group of characters, I found my eyes lingering on Victorique and Kujo from Gosick, because theirs was the show that made me smile the most. Right then and there, I decided that Gosick was my favourite Bones anime.
To be honest, though, I’m not sure if I regard Gosick as a particularly well-written anime. I don’t actually remember the plot anymore, so I’m pretty sure it wasn’t very good. But I do still remember the characters. I even wrote a blog post about how good Victorique and Kujo are as a couple. Three years after I watched the series, their charm still sticks with me.
I also still love the OP and ED themes, and to this day I still sometimes rewatch those sequences on Youtube. The OP has a memorable art style, and the second ED in particular is rather beautiful and haunting.
I’ve seen Aoi Yuki and Takuya Eguchi in a lot of roles since watching Gosick, but I still think that show contained some of their best acting. Aoi Yuki in particular made a character who could have come across as an utterly cliched stereotype feel extremely human and relatable. Eguchi, for his part, was simply adorable. His character in Uta no Prince-sama has nothing on Gosick.
Of course, it’s one thing to say that Gosick is a good anime, and quite another to say that it’s better than all the other Bones shows, to which I can only shrug. I’ve watched a lot of anime by this point, and very few titles manage to stick with me vividly years after I’ve watched them. I may have enjoyed some of the other Bones shows more than Gosick when I first watched them (I remember being glued to Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood at the time), but Gosick makes me smile the most nowadays when I think about it. And that deserves credit in my mind.
As for why Gosick of all series stood the test of time for me, I think that the anime scene is rather starved of detective stories, which may be why the style and content of Gosick still remains memorable to this day. Even if the mysteries themselves weren’t very good, the plot gave the characters a lot of things to do, so Victorique didn’t just sit around eating cake and trying to look cute for the audience the whole time. I recall that the second half of the series was particularly dramatic and emotionally engaging.
By the way, the anime that made me smile the second most was Blast of Tempest (AKA Zetsuen no Tempest).
Which Bones anime would you describe as your favourite?
Bones has so many great characters and shows it always is really hard to choose a favourite. I’d probably go with either Noragami or Snow White With The Red Hair. They are probably my two most rewatched Bones anime at this point.
Gosick is a show I also remember very fondly, and Blast of Tempest is another favorite of mine! Snow White with the Red Hair is a show I watched on Karandi’s recommendation, and really enjoyed it as well. Bones really has done some amazing work if so many of their shows are this memorable, huh?
Gosick is one of those shows that I’ve been interested in watching, but had reservations in doing so, mostly because I heard the same criticism regarding its plotlines from other people. But on the other hand, cute romance….
As for me personally, the one Bones show that I’ve been remembering the most is probably Concrete Revolutio. Granted, I don’t watch a lot of Bones shows, and I don’t necessarily “get” everything about the show, but from its setting (alternate japan where every type of superheroes exist) to its burning ideas regarding justice and desire for a better world has always makes me fired up.
Keep it up, Bones.
Gosick is the kind of the show where, even if I didn’t always like the direction of the plot, it was always very watchable. As long as you keep your expectations in check, it’s a fun watch, so I say go for it!
Welp, watching it sometime in the future I guess.
Also hi, it’s been a while! Heard you’ve been busy working as a correspondent now, congrats!
I ignore Gosick for a very long time, but your post piqued my interest. Might check it out now….
Bones is definitely one of my favorite studio. Personally, I still believe that Rahxephon is one of the best mecha anime of all time, even after watching hundreds of them. In fact, I appreciate it even more after watching a tons of mecha anime. I Shame that it got so many unfair comparision against Evangelion. t’s not unusual for mecha anime to borrow from it predecessors (especially for gainax and trigger shows). It has excellent art (one of the few early 2000s anime that doesn’t look like crap), the music is great, and the characters are memorable. Sometimes the plot can be too convoluted for no good reason, but it’s a minor problem.
Yes!! Go watch Gosick!
I haven’t watch many Bones anime, including Gosick, but from those I have watch Concrete Revolutio: Choujin Gensou is my favourite. I loved connecting puzzles with non-linear storytelling, also it was a great way to tell and explore moral conflicts and effects of taken actions which were very often causing different result than expected and so with bearind responsibility. It was genially intertwined with Japanese post-war history.
Also I liked music and loved colourful style bases on 60’s (I guess).
To bad many viewers discarded is as simply “complete mess”
Wow, that anniversary picture really is a trip down memory lane. Concrete Revolutio, Noragami, Kekkai Sensen, Soul Eater, Captain Earth, and of course the current big hits Mob Psycho 100 and Hero Academia.
While I love HeroAca immensely, and Concrete Revolutio constantly forced me to look beneath the underneath, calling them my favorite Bones anime of all time is a bit of a stretch. Captain Earth is undoubtedly the show that got me into Gundam (and the mecha genre in general), but even I know that its latter half was lacking.
Noragami and Kekkai Sensen are probably my two favorites then, out of all the shows by Bones that I’ve seen. The relationship between Yukine, Yato, and Hiyori is really something beautiful, and the explosive world that Kekkai Sensen paints through Leonardo Watch’s eyes is something that lingers in my mind even to this day. That’s not to say that they’re Bones’ most well-done shows, but when it comes to favorites the heart trumps all.
Man, I’m really glad that a studio like Bones exists though. Looking through everything they’ve done again, it’s clear just how much they’ve affected me over the years.
I’m so happy to see so many comments from people who love Concrete Revolutio. I thought that it might be well-remembered over time, but it’s nice to see that there are people calling it their favourite!
what is first anime
i love both kyoani and studio bones
This will be my anime next season. I would love to watch