Only losers do. And me. Oh god, I'm a loser. Shut up, Jake. You're blowing your cover. I'm really fucking cool and nothing like anyone who belongs to the anime club, which, what if I somehow found out what they were watching and watched it in secret? Because anime is awesome, except when I'm around people who would judge me for watching it.
  1. Akira
    This legitimately might have scared me more than any other movie I've ever seen. The combination of that creepy ass music and the body horror and the nihilism is almost unbearable at times. On a side note, the credits say it was made by the "Akira Production Committee," which sounded like a terrifying, badass collection of really serious men in suits around a table (like the people in the movie), but I later learned is just the Japanese term for production company.
  2. Ghost in the Shell
    I had no idea what the fuck was going on, but it was really pretty. I think this might have been the only anime I actually rented at the local video store because I was usually so insecure about being seen with anime in my hand. I had a lot of problems.
  3. Cowboy Bebop
    So, so unbelievably cool. In fact, this was probably the only anime I would admit to watching at the time because nobody could deny its badassery. I still listen to the soundtrack all the time.
  4. Outlaw Star
    Really liked this until I realized it was a knockoff of Cowboy Bebop.
  5. Neon Genesis Evangelion
    Started watching in 11th grade and gave up because I didn't get the hype and thought the title was embarrassingly silly. Tried again years later and was completely blown away by the way the show's creator used genre tropes to get at something incredibly deep and universal, a tactic I've tried to use repeatedly in my own work ever since (e.g. plays about pro wrestling that are really about the fallacy of American exceptionalism). Also creeped me the fuck out.
  6. FLCL
    Incomprehensible, but I love the full-throttle commitment to surrealism. Rewatched recently and still holds up.
  7. Dragon Ball Z
    Can it be a guilty pleasure if I wasn't telling anyone I was watching any anime at all? Yes, because this show is just so profoundly dumb. I watched on TV, but I can't imagine buying a $25 dvd of four episodes of this show (a business model that was and is unfathomable to me) and getting 4 episodes of the same exact fight fought in the exact same way AND NOT GET THE END OF THE FIGHT! But I really wanted to see Frieza get his ass kicked, so I kept fucking watching.
  8. Tenchi Muyo
    I remember liking this show a whole lot. I don't remember why. Maybe I still would?