Best Anime of the 2010s
|Voting Style:||Open||Point System:||7 Point|
|Updated:||4 months ago||Status:||Debating Period|
|Viewed:||255 times||Debate No:||95830|
I am interested in this topic. I will be arguing that Hunter x Hunter (2011) is not the "best" anime of this decade, and will attempt to offer a series of alternatives that would be better suited for this position.
Before we begin, however, I would like to give my opponent this opportunity to define, in their own terms, what "best" means. To my knowledge, I am assuming the textbook definition, "of the most excellent, effective, or desireable type or quality," is appropriate, but feel free to change it if you wish.
I will be debating the textbook definition. :)
As my opponent has essentially forfeited Round 2, I will now begin my counterargument.
There are many metrics by which we can judge one show to be "better" than another, as well as being considered the "best" of the last several years. I will demonstrate that by virtually every one of these viable metrics, Hunter X Hunter (2011) cannot be considered to be the best anime of the last decade. I will be looking at the following list of criteria: Animation, Story, Soundtrack, and Public Perception/Popularity.
Hunter X Hunter (2011) was animated by Madhouse studios, and given its length, it's hard to argue the show doesn't present some well animated scenes. A few in particular being the fights between Meruem and Netero, Gon and Hisoka, and Kurapika and Uvogin. However, you can easily find better animated shows not just in general, but by the very same animation studio.
For example, One Punch Man had less than 10% the number of episodes as Hunter X Hunter (2011), and an even stronger team of animators brought in to work on the project. Because of this, the quality of animation is undoubtedly going to be superior to an anime with over 100 episode. There will inevitably be a drop in animation quality somewhere along the way with a series that runs that long. However, One Punch Man, being only 1 season and 11 episodes, always presents itself in the highest animation quality possible. The most notable scene in particular being the final fight between Saitama and Boros.
Some other anime with better/more unique and standout animation techniques of the last few years include Mob Psycho 100, Ping Pong the Animation, and virtually anything by Kyoto Animation (Free!, Kyoukai no Kanata, Euphonium, etc.).
Hunter X Hunter (2011) presents a somewhat predictable shonen story of a main character fighting bad guys, with some small changes in the traditional format thrown in once in a while. However, as this show is designed to appeal to a wide audience, anyone wanting to watch this show for actual substance in its story is going to be disappointed. There are plenty other shows in the last several years that present a more complex and rich story. One of note being Ping Pong the Animation.
I am going to reference this show quite a bit, as I believe it is the actual best anime of the last decade. Upon first glance, it's easy to assume it's another sports anime, but upon its conclusion, you realize you were in for much more than just high school students playing table tennis. It's a masterfully-crafted coming-of-age story with an insanely-unique art style, wonderful soundtrack, beautifully written characters, and a great overall message. There are no antagonists in this show, and arguably also no true single protagonist, but that's what makes it so appealing. You can assume the role of protagonist to any one of the five major characters, and get a unique message from the show because of it. The story is also quite unpredictable, with the series taking many interesting turns in its 11-episodes.
Some other anime with a better story include Mushishi: Zoku Shou, The Tatami Galaxy, Steins;Gate, and Shinsekai Yori.
While I do enjoy Hunter X Hunter (2011) as it is an easy show to marathon without having to think too hard, its soundtrack is easily one of its worst points. Most of the tracks outside of major fight sequences are incredibly dull and repetetive. There are plenty others shows to look to in the last decade for a better soundtrack. Your Lie in April being one of them, considering the show revolves around a boy playing the piano and girl playing the violin.
Hunter x Hunter (2011) also reuses the same song over and over for its openings. I think it's hard to consider the "best" anime of this decade to take such a lazy approach to its opening sequences. There are plenty of other shows with better openings, like Ping Pong the Animation for instance.
4. Public Perception/Popularity:
While Hunter X Hunter (2011) is certainly popular, it is hard to argue it's the most popular anime of the 2010s. Attack on Titan and One Punch Man are both easily seen as being more popular, though I can understand that not being a good reason to say an anime is "better" than another. So let's look at another way to measure an anime's potential for being the "best".
I also notice you are currently in a debate with someone over whether "Rick and Morty" is the best cartoon of all time. Your opponent presented "The Simpsons" as an alternative, and to quote your own statement:
"If we're talking ratings, then Rick and Morty wins 7 times over, The Simpsons has a high rating of 8.8 on IMDb [...] but Rick and Morty absolutely crushes The Simpsons with a extremely high rating of 9.3 on IMDb, making it the highest rating animated show on IMDb..."
Hunter X Hunter (2011) currently has an IMDb rating of 8.9, not bad in its own right. But there is one anime currently with a higher rating: One Punch Man, with a score of 9.1, making IT the highest rated anime on IMDb. So by your own logic, OPM must be better than HxH, yes?
In summation, there are a number of alternatives to consider for "best" anime of the last decade, each of which with better qualities (in one way or another) to Hunter X Hunter (2011). I wish my opponent the best of luck in trying to refute my, and his own, arguments. Thank you.
Ehhh, new to this website, sorry.
No, it would not make it better by my own logic. If we're talking about ratings, then I think we all want the more reliable source for ratings, right? You got that information from IMDb, where Hunter x Hunter (2011) has 18,000 votes and One Punch Man has 34,000 votes. On MyAnimeList, One Punch Man has over 337,000 votes, while Hunter x Hunter (2011) has over 221,000 votes. Now would you choose the one with only 34,000 votes or the one with 337,000 votes? Exactly, you would want to choose the more reliable one. On MyAnimeList, Hunter x Hunter (2011) beats One Punch Man 3 times over, since Hunter x Hunter (2011) is ranked 6 and One Punch Man is ranked 19.
I will be using the following criteria: Animation, Story, Sound, and Characters.
While One Punch Man does have some very well animated scenes, HxH also has extraordinary art and animation. It amazes me how a long-running series like HxH delivers consistent top tier quality animation episode after episode, especially during the fights. The series does a great job of capturing facial expressions and everything from the lighting, shading and colors adjust perfectly depending on the mood of the scene or the tone of the arc. Personally, I think it fits the show perfectly. It adds to the charm of the series by complementing its sense of adventure, uplifting atmosphere and unique appeal as a shonen that looks simple but is actually remarkably deep. Spanning 148 episodes everything from the animation quality, direction, background, setting design, character and mechanical design, shot composition, flow, color design, and digital processing. Now I don't really think it's fair to compare the strongest of each category to only one anime. But for animation, you definitely have to take in account how many episodes there are.
Now a story of finding one's father is simple, it is the path that is taken towards this end that makes the series truly special. HxH is made up of several arcs that are all extremely well-written, which brings me to the best part of the series, the writing. Hunter x Hunter (2011) boasts one of the finest writing in the world of animation; the depth and flow of the story, enthralling characterizations, superlative dialogue and impressive world-building are all crafted into a fascinating tale that can absorb viewers into lengthy marathons. The amount of variety that is packed into HxH's story is also very impressive. HxH successfully dabbles in several genres in six story arcs tackling survival, fighting tournaments, crime thriller, virtual realities, war and politics. Not only that, the series is also able to undergo significant tonal shifts with ease (light to dark and vice versa). Sometimes, these shifts in tone occur after an arc ends though other times, it even occurs mid-arc. Another thing about HxH is that its arcs are connected with one another, with each arc naturally following the one before it. This creates a natural transition that highlights what the series really is, a journey. As for pacing and development, they are excellent. For the most part, HxH is very well paced. The series does a fantastic job at keeping its viewers engaged, time will fly by as you watch most episodes and you'll find yourself breezing through the show. Excluding two recap episodes, HxH has no filler episodes. Due to this, story progression is great with the plot moving forward with each episode. However, what sets the series apart from other battle anime is its unorthodoxy and unpredictability. Shonen tropes and storytelling methods are undermined throughout the series. The main character for example, Gon, fails more than he succeeds. Power-ups based on emotion or willpower are non-existent and fighting in the series is radically different from other battle anime. The main protagonist is not the main focus of every arc either. At certain points in the series, you could even say that Gon has taken a supporting role, especially during the later portions of the CA arc where he isn't given as much focus due to the grand scope of the story. The standard battle anime formula of "lose-train-win" is also undermined. Although there is training, it does not always translate to a victory, nor does it propel the protagonists over or to the same level as their main adversaries in terms of strength. Basically, there are a lot of scenes and story developments that you won"t see coming because they defy conventional shonen storytelling or are unpredictable in their own right. The appearance and writing of the series also create an effect of cognitive dissonance, the simplistic look of the show mentally conflicts with the brilliance and unorthodoxy of its writing. As new viewers delve deeper into HxH, they realize that there is much more to the show than its cover art and synopsis suggest. Expectations of the series being immature, simple or generic are progressively overturned as the show reveals its surprising underbelly.
As for sound, HxH has a line of great soundtracks that started off decent but got better as the series progressed. For some of the weaker soundtracks, the voice acting in this series ABSOLUTELY makes up for it. It would be hard to find better voice performances in all of anime, all expressing complex voice acting skills, especially those of Gon, Killua and Hisoka whose voice actors do a perfect job of capturing their characters.
Although HxH's primary strength lies in its writing, its characters come extremely close. HxH has a huge cast of characters. They have quirks, dreams, inner demons, world views and overall, really likable personalities. To top it off, not one of the characters follow generic character archetypes. If there's one thing I want to emphasize in the character department it would be the series main villains. When it comes to characters, this is where the show shines the brightest. HxH villains are extremely well-written. Not only are their characterizations independently impressive, they are also distinct from one another; no two villains are the same. This distinctness does not only apply within the series but outside of it. You won't find another Hisoka, Chrollo or Meruem in any other anime. This is what makes HxH villains so compelling, in addition to having really impressive characterizations, they are also original, all HxH villains do have one thing in common. Each villain strikes fear into audience, the series does a great job of establishing the level of danger these characters bring to the story and our protagonists.
Public Perception/Popularity has nothing to do with the quality of the show.
In conclusion, my opponent has chosen the strongest anime for each category, which isn't right at all, we are not talking collectively, we are talking about one singular anime. It's like you are creating your own anime, getting what you like best from the past six years, getting some from One Punch Man, getting some from Ping Pong The Animation making the perfect anime comparing it to only one anime.
Before I begin my argument, I would like to point out my opponent plagiarized a portion of his Round 3 speech, ripping (line for line) the text found on HxH's MyAnimeList page (as well as some of the user's comments) found here: https://myanimelist.net...
I feel this inaccurately represents Pro's opinion as he is simply taking an analysis of the show elsewhere, and pawning it off as his own.
On to the rebuttal!
"On MyAnimeList, Hunter x Hunter (2011) beats One Punch Man 3 times over, since Hunter x Hunter (2011) is ranked 6 and One Punch Man is ranked 19."
Fair enough, let's go with that. Again, by your own logic, this means HxH is clearly not the best anime of the decade, as there are multiple shows from the 2010s that beat it in rating and popularity. Steins;Gate, for example, has nearly double the number of ratings, and a higher overall rating of 9.17 compared to HxH's rating of 9.14. Does this not mean Steins;Gate is better?
"But for animation, you definitely have to take in account how many episodes there are."
Again, you are contradicting yourself. To quote you in your other thread:
"Now, I don't think run time has anything to do with the quality of the show [...] In my opinion, quality trumps quantity."
You yourself state that the amount of episodes a show has is in no way indicative of its quality. Therefore, the fact HxH has over 140 episodes contributes nothing to your argument.
I believe my argument still stands that there are other anime in the last decade with better stories. Considering the majority of Pro's points are plagiarized, I feel no need to rebut them.
Your opinion that HxH has the best voice acting is highly debatable, especially considering each of the actors you pointed out have likely worked on a ton other shows. Hisoka's voice actor for example, Daisuke Namikawa, was the voice of Masanosuke Akitsu in "House of Five Leaves," which I would also argue has a deeper, more rich story (and also came out this decade).
Again, this is heavily plagiarized. No need for me to rebut this.
However, I would like to say that Gon's character is extremely one-dimensional, with his only objectives basically boiling down to "fighting for my friends" and "fighting to find my dad". Compared to the cast of Ping Pong the Animation, it's easy to see its characters and their development to be incredibly more deep and fleshed out. The goals and objectives for each character in Ping Pong are diverse, meaningful, relatable, applicable to areas outside of its subject matter (ping pong), and they make sense.
"In conclusion, my opponent has chosen the strongest anime for each category, which isn't right at all, we are not talking collectively, we are talking about one singular anime."
I agree, WE are talking about one singular anime. Which is why I found it so strange you decided to use other people's conversations and not your own. Also, I was simply stating that there is a better show in every category no matter how you decide to judge HxH. Again, if I were to give an overall impression, I would say there are multiple shows STILL better than HxH, Ping Pong just being one of them. I urge you to watch it and see for yourself.
Given Pro's many plagiarized points, it is impossible to see his actual argument. Vote Con.
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