Posted by psgels on 16 December 2012 with categories: Yearly Summaries

So, every year I start my summary with a list of my favorite OPs and EDs of the season. This year it’s a bit smaller than last year though, but that is simply because last year was simply amazing in terms of how many awesome OPs and EDs it had. This year instead stands out through its soundtracks, but there were much more generic openings and endings than usual. So therefore, I use this list to honour the ones that did go the extra mile for me and really resonated with me. Enjoy.

And in advanced I apologize for the people who read this half a year from now when half the videos are taken down…

#15: Kill Me Baby OP

The mind-numbingly guilty pleasure of the year is Kill Me Baby… this requires a bit of explanation. The thing is, that I dislike generic openings. The kind that all look the same, or the ones that use boring songs that all sound the same to me. The OPs that I really appreciate are the ones that try to be different. Even though it’s un-listenable, this OP really tried to do something else. It’s so bad on purpose, and yet it got its own charm because of this. I would not recommend listening to this one when you’re high on sugar at all though.

#14: Tsuritama OP

What also does very well with me is OPs that are based on some hidden reference that you’d only get if you’ve seen the show. It may seem like the characters are just doing some silly dance, but that dance is actually vital for something that happens later on in the series. Also, the song here is very good and cheerful, just like what the series is.

#13: Fate Zero OP

No list of best openings can be complete without an entry from Yuki Kajiura, and this year her entry comes from Fate/Zero, although I do have to say that 2012 has not been a good year for her. It’s this year where it became clear for me that I like her older stuff much more than her newer stuff that all sounds the same, but nevertheless this is one heck of a solid OP. Her vocals still work very well in bringing out emotions, and the production values are rock-solid for this opening as well. This perfectly shows the despair that the characters in this show are thrown in.

#12: Uta Koi OP

Chouyaku Hyakunin Isshu – Uta Koi OP door dm_4ff7683e84b2d

This one gets my vote for its artistry. Great images, as the creators try to stuff something like 13 different couples into just one opening (Uta Koi consisted out of many tiny stories compiled together). It all looks very traditional and despite the jerky animation and still frames, it still has a lot of eye candy and it was always fun to try and pick out all of the different characters that appeared. Not to mention, great song when it starts going.

#11: Zetman OP

I just love the song here. It’s just so catchy, and it was always fun to listen to it, not to mention how well the animation makes use of it. It’s also the kind of song that really does not get used often, making this really a unique OP that differs from the J-Pop that you usually hear used. I like this a lot here. In terms of content though, it’s fairly standard: you see the characters all make an appearance, they fight, show cool powers. Because of that it’s fairly low on this list.

#10: Mouretsu Pirates OP

When the series starts, you might wonder whether or not this is the best opening. The series is laid-back and allows its characters to play out and all. But as the show goes on, it just fits more and more and more: a very girly yet epic science fiction series that just gets more and more out of control as it goes on. This was a hint of this series’ true colours before they even appeared.

#9: Danshi Koukousei no Nichijou ED

This year there were only four EDs that really caught my attention. Most of them were just simple ballads that were just there to show the credits. Some were ambitious, but none really got to me aside from these four on a consistent weekly basis. The creators of Danshi Koukousei no Nichijou just had a wonderful idea, and just went with this weird depiction of a school play that has the most nonsensical plot. It was fun.

#8: Thermae Romae ED

DLE. Their animation is utter crap, but they do make great EDs. And with a series like Thermae Romae, it’s really easy to do something creative. This ended up as an ode to bathing, celebrating everything about taking a bath. It’s hilariously cheesy, with a lot of creativity in the visuals, and a great catchy song. It really was glorious to end this series with for the brief period that it aired.

#7: Psycho Pass OP

Psycho Pass just has a unique OP. The watered down colours with lots of black made it instantly stand out. The visuals also try to do more than just show the main cast off, and they contain a lot of symbolism about the show’s content. I also really like the vocalist here: finally something different from the same voices you hear everywhere.

#6: Shirokuma Cafe OP

Every year, there is an OP or ED that I just cannot find on a video streaming site no matter how hard I look. It’s really such a shame, because the visuals for the OP for Shirokuma Cafe just scream awesome: a polar bear riding a car that gradually turns into a rocket. It’s incredibly charming, and it’s a shame that I can’t share this as how I would have liked it. At least I managed to find the song for it, which is just one of those delightful exceptions in my dislike for J-Pop.

#5: Kamisama Hajimemashita ED

This ending is just amazing. I know that it is just a slide-show, and I normally dislike those kinds of EDs and all, but this… this just fits so incredibly well. It’s just the perfect way to end each episode. It always matches the feeling for the end of each episode of Kamisama Hajimemashita perfectly, unlike any other show I have seen do in years. It fully captured the whimsical yet genuine nature of this series.

#4: Sakamichi no Apollon OP

I picked this one so high due to how polished it is. It just feels perfect, and the visuals are particularly striking in how the whole song just builds up to the part where they start playing their instruments. With a series that has such a strong theme in music, they made perfect use for it. There are so many beautiful images in this OP that say so much about the characters. It’s both relaxing and exciting at the same time.

#3: Uchuu Kyoudai ED 2

This year, there were thee OPs/EDs that just blew me away, and stood miles above the others, and made it into my favorites. This ED is by far my favorite ED of 2012, simply because of how it nearly brings me to tears, every time I try to watch it. Space Brothers is such a beautiful and uplifting show, and this episode is all about the dream that the two lead characters had when they were children, to make it into space. It is absolutely brilliant how the rocked subtly changes into this kids’ version of what a spacecraft should look like.

#2: Lupin the Third – Mine Fujiko to Iu Onna OP

Over the past years I have watched so many anime, and therefore so many OPs and EDs. With that in mind: this was one of the most original OPs I have seen appear in something like half a decade, and possibly even more. They just completely went into different directions here from all conventions, breaking so many barriers. The way the creators portrayed the sensual nature of this series was just perfect, using the theme of the Wuthering Heights to its advantage, and I love how the vocalist isn’t really singing, but rather whispering her lyrics. This is why I love experimentation.

#1: Uchuu Kyoudai OP 1

I’m sorry! I’m really sorry! But I just can’t help it: Uchuu Kyoudai simply had both the best OP and ED this year for me. I just cannot see it any other way. But this song is by far the best I have heard this year, and the way the creators play with their visuals here to make it such an explosive show only sealed the deal for me: this just had to be my number one of the year. I’d love to e a bit more diverse, but this show just completely sold me over in every single way.

20 Responses

  1. CRT says:

    No JoJo OPs or ED? ;_;

    • psgels psgels says:

      I had this entry all written up, and then Jojo came with its new OP that indeed was very good. I’d say it’s placed somewhere between place 13 and 18.

  2. Tomtom says:

    Overall, nice choises (good songs). Hunter x hunter ending 2 should defintely be on the list though, imho.

  3. ojisan says:

    Oh, yes!
    It might be TMI, but my life changed with a new relationship during the first season of Space Brothers, and the ending theme is now in my long-term memory for good. Wow. And finally seeing the Japanese lyrics subbed only improved it, which is a very rare thing.

    Kamisama Hajimemashita, with the scratchy-film clips and well-chosen music, is a return to what Akitaro Daichi did in Fruits Basket’s ED – worked well then, does now too.

    I would’ve rated Mouretsu Pirates’ OP higher myself – I rewatched it compulsively when the show came out. Over-the-top hearts-on-fire that’s still funny. Matched the show perfectly

    NO apologies necessary for going #1 with Space Brothers. WHY can’t they just keep the ones that really work, though??

  4. Raggers says:

    While this is far from a comprehensive list, I can say that I really really liked the following:

    Robotics Notes OP/ED
    Psycho Pass OP/ED
    Sakurasou OP
    Shinsekai Yori OP/ED
    Binbougami ga OP
    Natsuyuki Rendezvous OP/ED
    Hyouka OP1
    Kuroko no Baske OP/ED
    Fate/Zero all OPs/EDs
    Sankarea OP/ED
    Uchuu Kyoudai OP1, ED2, OP3, ED3
    Natsuiro Kiseki OP/ED
    Accel World OP1, OP2

    and I can’t remember if there were any others I enjoyed (from a quick scan of my mylist). While there are a few I’d put in a “top bracket” and others in a “bottom bracket” within those I don’t really think I could sort them out into an order.

    Everyone has different tastes though – and I find my own preferences can change hourly, depending on mood. As of right now:
    Uchuu Kyoudai
    Natsuyuki Rendezvous
    Natsuiro Kiseki
    ^Whichever OP/ED/both I mentioned above for these anime is my top this year.

    @ojsan: OP3/ED3 for Space Bros are my favoutrites so far. Especially the OP – I just love the visuals that go with it.

  5. kazid1 says:

    I listeing all of your list but what a diferent tastes, for my list are:

    binbougami ga op 1
    Accel world op 2
    Sword art online op 2
    Fate zero 2 op and ed
    the ambition of oda nobunaga op
    muv luv Total eclipse ed 1 ed 2
    Kuroko’s Basketball op 2, ed 2
    magi the labyrinth of magic op 1
    Jojo ed 1

    For best i dont know meaby jojo ed for how thwy melted and the end of chapters and Kuroko op 2 that sport series was awesome also in his soundtrack.

  6. Entrav says:

    Yeaaah Uchuu Kyoudai!!! I still love the ED from Psycho-Pass, Magi’s OP is not bad as well. Thee are a few more and it seems that you have fairly different tastes compared to me :)

  7. Stars says:

    Tsuritama!! Glad to see that made it. I remember being delighted and laughing once I realised what that dance in the OP was.

    Exra thumbs up for all of Space Bro’s OP/EDs so far!

  8. Hououin Kyouma says:

    As usual, very interesting picks and I like that thing of being unusual as well. Also, sometimes it’s regretable they HAVE to encompass both aspects, visuals and music, as there are cases where one surpasses by far the other. Ok, I’ll write the songs that I’d add to this list, IMHO:
    + Haiyore! Nyaruko-san OP it’s sooo fun LOL This is definelty my guilty pleasure. +I liked Psycho Pass OP, but the ED, Namae no nai Kaibutsu is simply addictive and the reason may be that Ryo from Supercell is behind it, I always love how much emotion is in their music.
    + If here I was thinking there wasn’t gonna be a fair replacement to the 1st OP, Phi Brain OP 2 (Now or Never) is just awesome at mixing flavors and feeling fresh for the season, it’s simply amazing! Oh and exactly the same happened to Jormungand’s OPs though.
    + Shinsekai Yori ED Wareta Ringo is also really pleasurable, and I’ve read over there that the visuals contain a lot of symbolism and stuff.
    + Haha! it’s so hilarious because not only I agree with the choices for Uchuu Kyoudai, but I’d also included ED 3!! -is it too much?? And finally
    +I love the ED and I’d also give it a mention in the list, but on the other hand, this list is definelty COLD as a vampire, for not including the Fire of JOJO’s 1st OP! Sono Chi no Sadame~♪ Joooooooooooooooooooooooooooojo!!!

  9. tanukichan says:

    I’m disappointed that Shinsekai Yori ED didn’t make it to your list. One of the best EDs of the year IMO. Other than that, good choices I guess.

  10. Houlgrave says:

    Going to agree with the rest here about Shinsekai Yori’s ED: I’ll even go as far to say that it’s probably the single best ED this year, followed by Jojo (Yes’s Roundabout is one of the best songs ever written) and Space Brothers’s 2nd ED.

    That being said, I love the guitar driven OP and ED that Little Busters! has. The imagery is nothing to write home about, but they’re still catchy as hell.

  11. Kudryavka says:

    Hmm, for me I like Nisemono’s OP3 “Platinum Disco” and the ED (version 2), and also Jinrui’s OP. And I very much agree with others on Shin Sekai’s ED. Also had guilty pleasure listening to Hidamari Sketch Honeycomb’s ED.

  12. Sudachi says:

    Nice! I would definitely agree with Space Brothers OP/ED. Loved them both. A few others that really struck me:

    -Natsuiro Kiseki OP
    -Uta Koi ED
    -Sankarea ED

    Overall, I really loved the music of Persona 4, but I imagine ‘series music’ is coming up in another post!

  13. Taara535 says:

    Both Joshiraku’s ED and SSY’s ED really should be on here. Otherwise, very good list, especially your top ones.

  14. kero says:

    shinsekai ed should be there.

  15. shiho says:

    I like Uchukyoudai op and Thermae Romae ed. I watch anime a little, so I watch many kind amime and listening op and ed.

  16. aoi says:

    Shinsekai Yori’s ED really should be on here :(
    Sure, you may not like jpop, but even the animations itself… ;A;

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  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Oct 6. 2015 09:02 PM)
    One-Punch Man’s pilot was almost adapted flawlessly. It straight up uses the manga panels as it’s main storyboard, but added just enough new touches to improve the action instead of ruining it. Now let’s see how they animate the mosquitos and all the lasers for the next episode.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Oct 6. 2015 08:57 PM)
    And that’s why Madhouse is one of the few respectable studios left. I thought that they will be seriously diminished after Masao Maruyama took some of its key members and funded MAPPA, but One-Punch Man showed that they are still one of the best in the business.
  • k-off
    (Tuesday, Oct 6. 2015 08:51 PM)
    @Kaiser The anime industry isn’t advanced enough in CG to make it look good, is all it is.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Tuesday, Oct 6. 2015 05:51 PM)
    @K-off: Your not wrong, it certainly looks poor but some of the old gonzo animated stuff was far more woeful looking. Stellvia, which was done by xebec was another example of old anime cgi which was quite ugly to look at. Just as I prefer traditional effects in film I also prefer traditional animation techniques to cg.
  • k-off
    (Tuesday, Oct 6. 2015 05:42 PM)
    Lately, the use of badly integrated cgi have been making my eyes sore,from the obviously cgi background characters in Asterisk to the overly fluid mech movements in Aldnoah. I still remember the shitty cgi piano hands in Kimi no Uso.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Oct 6. 2015 12:04 AM)
    On the note of good balance between humor and drama- I think BoJack Horseman is an example of a show that executed that almost perfectly in both seasons. You are laughing one minute and amused by the hijinks and silliness and the next minute you are actually moved and shocked by the honest introspection. Too be honest BoJack is more a tragic character then a goofy one, and his struggles are deeper and more existential than they have any business being in a show with anthropomorphic animals.
  • Bam
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 11:56 PM)
    The changes in the setting actually made me more excited for season 3 then what I felt the past few weeks, since now the plot needs to move forward from the cliffhanger and hopefully this translates to more cohesion and refocusing on what mad the show great in the first place. I’m pretty sure S3 will also be a blend of episodic and arch story elements tho. Overall a few ups and downs but still a great show.
  • Bam
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 11:52 PM)
    The finale also had some of the most overall arch story elements featured in the season. Earth joining the Galactic Federation is a big deal story-wise from now on. Also the use of a cover of Johnny Cash’s “Hurt” (not the Nine Inch Nails one clearly) was a nice fitting yet surprising touch. The throwback to Mr. PB after the credits was a good idea, but felt flat in it’s actual execution.
  • Bam
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 11:49 PM)
    I thought R&M had a pretty good finale. The episode achieved what was missing from most of season 2, and that was a balance of randomness and meaningful bits. What made Rick Potion #9 and the previous season’s finale and general tone great was a sense of humor that was combined with more sincere drama and character developments; a sort of sweet melancholy.
  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 09:51 PM)
    @K-off, not having too much trouble with the interface but I still cannot create categories.

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