2011 Anime – Best 10 OP Themes

A bit earlier than last year, but meh. It’s December, there’s unlikely to be any new OPs until next season, so why leave everything until the end of the month? Of course, I’ll be leaving things like my favorite series of the year until then since so many good ones are still airing, and my opinions may still change.

Why do I bother with these OP/ED posts? Well, they’re more than just the first/last minute and a half of an episode for me. Anime themes make up a good 90% of the songs I listen to in general (the other 10% being a weird mix of anything from John Martyn to The Darkness), so see this as an opportunity to find out about and judge me on my taste in music. 😛 In 2010 the only info I provided aside from my own comments was the series names and links to the themes on Youtube, but this time I’ll also include song titles and artists.

10: Maria+Holic Alive (Run Run Riru Ran Ran Rara – Kobayashi Yuu)

Now if Maria+Holic was airing this season, I’d have had to wait until it finished before posting this, because the OP was prone to change without warning (oh SHAFT, you so random). Luckily, this season’s shows seem quite attached to theirs for now. 😛 As much as I loved Matsurika’s edit, and Father Kanae’s song early in the series, this stuck in my mind (and on my mp3 player) the longest.

9: No. 6 (Spell – LAMA)

Seems to be a love it or hate it song (much like the series itself), I’ve read a number of comments/reviews on the various sites I frequent from people who couldn’t stand listening to it. I find it relaxing, myself. Reminds me slightly of the Spice & Wolf II ED, another song I’m constantly playing. A bit too slow for an OP though, perhaps?

8: Dororon Enma-kun Meeramera (Tama Mera Mera Icchou Celsius! – Endoh Masaaki & Moon Riders)

Certainly one of the catchiest themes of the year, if slightly repetitive. 😛 The series itself could certainly do with a bit more love though, if its A-P page is anything to go by… very low view count, and those who have seen it clearly didn’t think much of it. Personally, I found it to be hilarious!

7: Kaiji S2 (Chase the Light! – Fear, and Loathing in Las Vegas)

An awesome OP, though having listened to the full version many times, I have to say that (in my opinion) they edited all the best bits of the song into the short TV version. A great start to every episode, certainly got me in the mood for watching and writing about the show, but as a separate song I don’t play it all that much.

6: Deadman Wonderland (One Reason – Fade)

Oh, Deadman Wonderland. I’ve heard good things about the manga, but the anime adaptation was (again, in my opinion) a poorly paced trainwreck, likely as a result of being squeezed into 12 eps. Certainly nothing there that hasn’t been done better in Mirai Nikki. However, it had pretty awesome music at least!

5: Blood-C (Spiral – DUSTZ)

…and if my taste in music hasn’t already led you to take my opinions with a pinch of salt, maybe the fact I liked Blood-C will? 😛 The series had faults, certainly, but the OP was not one of them. I love how it switches between Japanese, English and French rapidly, can’t think of many other OPs that are trilingual!

4: Denpa Onna to Seishun Otoko (Os-Uchuujin – Erio wo Kamatte-chan)

Not trolling you, this is a definite guilty pleasure. In fact, if this Top 10 was based on play count alone, this song would be #1. But my top 3 are from newer series, so I’ve had less time to listen to them. Also, I’m more likely to be a bit biased in favor of new, shiny OPs, so forgive me for that!

3: Dantalian no Shoka (Cras numquam scire – Yucca feat. Daisuke Ono)

And now for something completely different! If you can’t hear Daisuke Ono, it’s because he isn’t in the TV version, but my dissertation has taught me to make sure I give references and citations in full. 😛 Anyway, I absolutely love this song.

2: Shakugan no Shana III (Light my Fire – KOTOKO)

Let the current season favoritism begin! No prizes for guessing what my No.1 is at this point. 😛 But in all honesty, by far one of the catchiest songs of the year, and I’d be surprised if I’m not still listening to it frequently this time next year. It helps that I’m already a fan of KOTOKO from her other Shana themes.

1: Mirai Nikki (Kuusou Mesorogiwi – Yousei Teikoku)

Again, I’m already something of a fan of Yousei Teikoku from the OPs and EDs of other shows, but I have to say this is one of my favorite songs I’ve heard from the group. As with Kaiji S2’s theme, it gets me in just the right mood for the chaos that inevitably follows in every episode, and strangely also leaves me eager to start writing immediately afterwards!

Honourable Mention: Mitsudomoe Zouryouchuu (Waga Na wa Shougakusei – Takagaki Ayahi, Akesaka Satomi & Tomatsu Haruka)

That aired this year!? February feels so long ago now! This song didn’t make my Top 10 because it’s simply not the type of thing I’d listen to as a song in its own right; however, it sticks out strongly in my mind as one of the best intros to a series this year, with its humourous lyrics and fun accompanying animation sequence.

That’s all for now! Of course, I can’t do a Top 10 OPs post and then not do a Top 10 EDs post, so expect that some when in the not too distant future!


2 Responses to 2011 Anime – Best 10 OP Themes

  1. GoodbyeNavi says:

    I also enjoyed the opening of Deadman Wonderland and I agree with your #1. I know when I like an OP theme when I can watch it the whole way through and not feel tempted to fast forward which happens often with some anime. Nice list!

    • Glad to hear someone agrees with me! Not that anyone has disagreed with this list yet, but people have made fun of my taste in music in the past (especially my love of Ali Project). 😛 I understand what you mean with skipping opening themes too, there are some OPs this season I don’t even remember, because I decided quickly that I didn’t like them and have skipped them nearly every time since.

      Should have a Top 10 EDs post up in a few days, once I’ve decided for definite what songs to put in it, and in what order!

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