It’s been a crazy year with so many amazing anime titles. It feels like fans of every genre out there got something; from the traditional shonen crowd to the more moe scene, and even horror. At times it felt like we were living in the past with so many old titles once again being a part of the seasonal lineups. Some of the most anticipated titles finally got their adaptations in 2022 and we also saw some amazing sequels and new announcements. As the year comes to an end, the Anime Corner News team gathered once again
(totally willingly) to compile a list of our favorite titles of the year. The anime below is just our personal favorites, listed in no particular order.
Bocchi the Rock! – Bushi
Looking back on a list of shows gives me a chance to put my anime-watching journey of 2022 behind me. Romantic and comedic My Dress-Up Darling, suspense thriller Summer Time Rendering, heartwarming Spy x Family, exciting Chainsaw Man, unfinished Uncle from Another World and Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch from Mercury, and more. Among those recommended works, my Anime of the Year title goes to CloverWorks’ Bocchi the Rock! from the Autumn 2022 anime season. The anime never ceased to amaze me with its animation, plot, voice cast, and music.
Other than the path the protagonist Hitori Goto walked during the 12 episodes, Bocchi the Rock! kept me until the end with its challenging, comedic, and sometimes bizarre depictions of the character’s behaviors, for which voice actress Yoshino Aoyama showed off perfectly matched performances. An impactful one, for example, is the whole scene in her “Shonin Yokkyu Monster (Iine Kure~)” line from the fourth episode. The catchy phrase about being thirsty for attention, the transition from the real world to her imagination, and the adorable visuals in the gray world left a mark on my memory of the anime. The opening theme song “Seishun Complex” is one of my favorite opening theme songs this season to the extent that it convinced me to purchase the CD. I’d like to say thank you for the great entertainment. The anime adaptation has adapted one volume and a half, from the first volume to half of a second volume (out of a total of 5), so I’ll be looking forward to the day when a sequel comes. It was a wonderful show to conclude this year, 2022
Summer Time Rendering – Tamara
It took me quite a while to pick my favorite of the year, but I think it has to go to Summer Time Rendering. Each episode left me wanting more, the story was intriguing, the characters were decent and not your typical immature teens and the visuals were absolutely stunning. While it felt rushed at times (near the end) I don’t think that affected my opinion of it. Plus points for two cours that actually adapted the entire source material. If you love horror and mystery, definitely give STR a go.
Cyberpunk: Edgerunners – Marko
Cyberpunk: Edgerunners. As it came pretty unexpectedly, the anime caught me completely by surprise. Having never actually played the game, I was surprised by the cyberpunk setting and cyberware mechanics and enjoyed them. The animation and soundtrack were obviously great as well, and no other anime this year managed to keep me invested in the story and how it would eventually end as well as Cyberpunk.
My Hero Academia 6 – Eric
I know this might seem like an odd pick granted it’s only at the halfway mark. But this season has taken a drastic leap forward compared to previous seasons and is more than deserving of “Anime of the Year” praise. The production staff has been incredible and you will not find better voice acting anywhere in anime this year. From Oscar-worthy voice acting performances to Yuki Hayashi’s magnificent music composing, and everything in between, My Hero Academia Season 6 has been borderline perfect. I’m hoping we get to see Daichi Endo (Twice’s voice actor) voice some main roles in the near future!
Spy x Family – Carla
It’s Spy x Family for me! The weekly dose of the Forger family is what has made this year much brighter and the most elegant, if I may say so. It’s a wonderful thing to find something that can evoke so much happiness and laughter. A lot of it is really all thanks to Anya’s adorable character and the shenanigans she does. She stands in the middle of this action/romance/comedy show, and the fact that three things – espionage, assassination, and family – are thrown together is what makes the humor so unusually comical.
I admit that I had a moment of doubt when I considered looking back at some of my favorites like Ya Boy Kongming!, My Dress-Up Darling, Kaguya-sama: Love Is War, Call of the Night, or even The Case Study of Vanitas. The year has a lot of good shows to offer and I’m sure that even Bocchi the Rock also has its place at the top. As a music lover and introverted bean myself, the show was really comforting and entertaining to me. But after all of that, Spy x Family still won over my heart in the end. The premise itself is interesting and everything that follows – the art, music, comedy, and storytelling – all of it are amazingly wholesome. It is truly something to remember the year 2022 by.
Bocchi the Rock! – Ken
There are no words to describe the creativity of Bocchi the Rock. For a 4-koma manga to be adapted at this level is truly one of a kind. The characters are just a treat to enjoy especially when Bocchi’s social anxiety kicks in. Watching this show made me feel the passion and love of each staff and cast member poured out into this series. I expected it to be just another K-On wannabe, but Bocchi the Rock turned out to be something more than that, it became the pinnacle of anime adaptations.
Date a Live IV – Marvic
The most memorable anime of 2022 for me was the 4th season of Date a Live. I really enjoyed watching the anime to the point that I always rewatched each episode of the season. I love the fact that the anime took a dark turn in this season and that it will never be the again. From a harem fantasy romantic comedy, the series became serious when Kurumi and Isaac’s secrets were revealed. It made me look back to the first episode of Date a Live and I remembered that it really started with a catastrophe that killed millions of people. There I realized that DAL was really a dark anime from the start and I just forgot it because each episode from the first three seasons was always a typical romantic harem comedy scenes
My Dress-Up Darling – Teddy
In a sea of great anime that aired this year, one could wonder why a romantic comedy anime was my anime of the year. One word can be used to sum it all up: genuine. Unlike the typical romcom anime, My Dress-Up Darling brought an air of realism to teenage love, while also showing off the joys of being young and carefree while also showing responsibility and passion for their work. There is genuine emotion in the series, from Gojo being passionate about the craft of hina dolls and being very thoughtful; to Marin being passionate about her hobbies and being a very frank person. Looking back, I get emotional with how they depicted the inner struggles of teenagers, and how they braved them later on. I feel warm inside, knowing that they got each other’s back. And of course, how could we forget how intricate the explanations of the cosplay craft are in the series? Much like how the characters showed their genuine self during the series, the viewer can also feel the genuine passion that has been put into this work. In short, it’s an anime that touches you emotionally, and that’s why this is my anime of the year.
What was your favorite of the year? We hope you enjoyed reading this and we wish you a great 2023!