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TI: The Infolink Recommends [S-Z]

Welcome to the fourth and final installment of "The Infolink Recommends", a four-part collection of commentary revolving around the best in animation as written by members of the Toonami Infolink community. This guide should be helpful in finding that next "big" show we all strive to watch, or perhaps confirm the existence of a show casually mentioned by someone in the past that may have caught your attention. We've done our best in suiting this list for the newbie to the world of animation as well as those who believe they've seen everything the genre has to offer.

While not as decorated as the other sections, Part 4 finishes strong with great movies like Spirited Away and Vampire Hunter D, fan-favorite series Tenchi! and Trigun, and a few surprises that TV-only anime addicts may not have even heard of...

S - T - U - V - W - X - Y - Z


Saikano/She, The Ultimate Weapon

- Saishuu-Heiki Kanoujuu (a.k.a She, the Ultimate Weapon or SaiKano) - Brutally struggling with 08th MS Team for best anime in my mind. It's a very complete story about love, war, children, and the unholy combination of the three. The characters are very pure, yet oddly dynamic. The premise is admittedly unrealistic, but once the circumstances have been set up, the rest is perfectly resonable. Everyone learns why war == bad. It's not a happy series, but if that turns you off, you've got a lot to learn. All in all, an extremely excellent series. And it's coming to America in April! Wheee! (Force-Attuned_Krogoth)

Samurai X

- Samuria X/Rurouni Kenshin OVA 1&2 - I couldn't believe my eyes when I first saw this movie. It was, literally, breathtaking. Just beautiful. It was so realistic, and so violent. It was epic and exciting. And the love story seemed so real...and was, just, well, so beautiful. And the end? Oh man, it blew me away...I don't wanna give anything away, which is why I'm being subtle, but if you've finished the Kyoto arc in the tv series, you HAVE to watch this - it'll blow you away. (TheWorldWeKnow)

- Samurai X (OVA 1) - The dark, serious tone hovering over the four episodes was completely different from anything I'd seen prior, as I had foolhardily assumed that all anime involved "fun" adventures. The dub was stellar, and seeing the red stuff fly for the first time truly made for quite the experience. The climax caught me off-guard, and the ending felt complete, something that many animes appear to stumble on. (JJc14)

- see also: "Rurouni Kenshin"

Serial Experiments Lain/Lain

- Serial Experiments Lain - This series has such an innovative, interesting storyline. The characters are all majorly flawed...and yet, we still like most of them, and feel for most of them. Lain seems to have no personality...but she definitely outshines Rei or any other personality defficient characters in that we want her to make it through this. Oh, and the series is just very enjoyable to watch - unique animation, good music. (TheWorldWeKnow)

She, The Ultimate Weapon
- see: "Saikano"

Slayers/The Slayers

- The Slayers/Next/Try - The series evolves over time in everyway shape and form. It starts off with fairly crappy animation and so-so storylines.; in the american dub it even starts off with some not so good casting choices for actors. As the series progresses (ie. half season marks and new seasons) the animation improves drasticly and they do drop some of the VA's for ones that are much better fitting and the world rejoiced with a near perfect VA casting job. I say near perfect on acount of the choice for Xellos. But bah on him, I'm not going int it. One thing the series always had in spades was humor with not too much of it being based on the japanese culture. (Andromaton)

Sleeping Beauty

- Sleeping Beauty - Quintesential Disney. This was THE artistic movie in my opinion, it was styled completely after medieval tapestries with it's long vertinal lines and striking colors. No other animation I've seen can I say that every frame is a work of art of its own. The characters are very memorable and very classic. Speaking of memorable characters, most likely the most is also the best. Best villian that is... Maleficent. Her being just radiates power and commands respect, the artists did a fantastic job on her as did her voice actress Eleanor Audley (who also played Lady Tremaine in Cinderella). (Andromaton)

Sorcerer Hunters

- Sorcerer Hunters- Same creative team as Tylor, about a "Saiyuki/Journey to the West"-style group of "warriors" who travel around in a world ruled by magic users. They receive orders from the high-muckety-muck "Big Momma" to hunt down and eliminate magicians who misuse their powers or practice "forbidden" forms of magic. Funny, funny stuff. (Nobuyuki)

Spirited Away

- Spirited Away - Finally, an anime movie that capured a small amount of popular support in the U.S...though certainly not as much as I think we all hoped for. Nonetheless, it's an incredible film. It reminded me so much of Alice in Wonderland...but it was so much more real, and just as creative, but in an entirely different realm of reality. And it's such a sweet story! Just a beautiful piece of work. (TheWorldWeKnow)

- Spirited Away. The latest testement to Miyazaki's genious, we get another fantastic, nontraditional tale. Beautiful artwork, incredible story. (the movie theatre I saw it in even did some trick to make it feel more humid during the rainy scenes). (John_Bono_Smithy_Satchmo)

Street Fighter

- Street Fighter II: The Movie - Wow. Just wow. The style of it really works. It's a plausiblesque storyline that lets SF2 be SF2. The animation is some of the better I've seen come out of japan with good VA choices for the dub. (Andromaton)



- Tenchi Muyo! OVA's - What, did you think I wouldn't mention Tenchi? Well, while I think Samurai X is the best thing I've ever seen...Tenchi remains my favorite. The series has my absolute favorite cast of characters in any series. The animation is really cool. And the story is suprisingly complex. The complexity just adds so much depth to an otherwise just very enjoyable series. (TheWorldWeKnow)

- Tenchi Muyo! & various Kajishima multiverse series (Dual!, Photon, Tenchi Muyo! GXP, a couple of titles I can't list here)- To me the most interesting thing about Tenchi Muyo! is the backstory and the bigger picture of Jurai history and galaxy politics, not just a group of people living in an ordinary-looking house in Okayama... It's just like delving into Star Wars or Star Trek and coming to an understanding of how this story universe works and how it's put together. Unfortunately Western fans don't have readily-available access to this information. That's a shame, too. (Nobuyuki)

Tick/The Tick

- The Tick - SPOON! The Tick and Arthur save the day once again in The city. No other show has quite the eclectic characters that have been assembled for The Tick. The quirks are abundant, the jokes just don't end and thankfully neither does the action! With Heoes like The Sewer Urchin, Die Fladermaus, and American Maid and Villians such as Chairface Chipendale, The Terror and Joseph Stalin how could it go wrong?! If you enjoy the random comedy stylings of The Simpsons yet think "it just doesn't have enough fighting evil" than The Tick is for you. Remember what The Tick said, "Why do little blue me hit me with fish?" and all will be right in the world. (Andromaton)


- Trigun - More than anything, I like Trigun because of it's characters. Vash is possibly my favorite anime hero - kind, compassionate, and an awesome fighter. Meryl functions in an unusual role, in that she can't admit to herself how much she likes Vash...and there's no appearance that Vash likes her...but it's a coupling you want to see. Wolfwood is, of course, regarded almost universally as one of the great anime characters. Legato and Knives, likewise, are awesome villians. Millie's hillarious. And finally, Rem is the heart of the message in the story, and is, too, a wonderful character. (TheWorldWeKnow)

- Trigun - While the story was a bit sketchy, I couldn't help but fall in love with the characters. I saw so much of myself in Vash, and his interactions with Millie and Meryl always proved amusing. Wolfwood is perhaps the best supporting character in existence, and one can truly feel the evil within Legato. While the first half is considered filler, with such great characters, I could watch them go through anything. The emotional turn during the second half really allowed the characters to shine, and Vash's actions to save Millie and Meryl still stops my heart every time. (JJc14)


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Vampire Hunter D

- Vampire Hunter D/Bloodlust - Alot of people were pissed off that bloodlust didn't include a japanese track but it never had one since it was made for specificly american audiences. The animation in Bloodlust has got to be the BEST animation I have seen in an anime; topping anything else I've seen in the genre (It still didn't top Disney though). The storylines were fairly decent and voice acting and animation in the first one were passable. There is just something about the artistic style of it all that moves it ahead in the pack. (Andromaton)

- Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust. The only animation outside of the occasional Disney work to give Spirited away a run for it's money. Although the animation quality isn't as high, it's still the most gorgeous thing I've ever seen, animation wise. (John_Bono_Smithy_Satchmo)

Vision Of Escaflowne
-see: "Escaflowne"


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Added: April 5th 2004
Related Link: Top Ten Anime-- Or Recommendations
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