Last week, I gave you my favorite anime villains. So it only makes sense to turn things around and discuss my favorite heroes.
10) Naruto Uzemaki (Naruto and Naruto Shippuden) Whether you’ve given up on Naruto like me or you’re still watching, one thing is certain: Naruto is a kid you can’t keep down. Back when I actually liked the show, I loved watching Naruto beat seemingly impossible odds. Just make him the Hokage already!
9. Spike Spiegel (Cowboy Bebop) Spike is just pure unfiltered awesome. I love how he just accepts things as they are, and yet still wants to catch criminals and protect the enigmatic Julia. Whether he died at the end or not, he is still a great hero.
8. Inuyasha (Inuyasha) Stop laughing at me and saying how bad this show is. I liked Inuyasha, really! And the hero was the main reason. I liked watching him wrestle with his demonic side and embrace his humanity.
7. Alex Row (Last Exile) Alex is basically a steampunk version of Captain Harlock (who’s that? Keep reading). He fights to free the skies from the control of The Guild. You want to know the short version of why Last Exile: Fam the Silver Wing sucks? Alex is nowhere to be seen.
6. Saya (the Blood+ version) Blood+ was such a great series mainly because of its heroine is constantly struggling with her two selves. I love how she must deal with her own inner dichotomy between monster and humanity and risks her life to defend her family.
5. Captain Harlock (Space Pirate Captain Harlock) Leiji Matsumoto’s most famous character is a classic example of the anti-hero model. He is an outlaw who goes about his own methods, yet he has not completely forsaken the planet Earth and believes it is worth saving from the Mazone.
4. Major Matoko Kusanagi (Ghost in the Shell franchise) Major Matoko is downright awesome. She is a policewoman of the future who puts her life on the line for others, so by definition, she is a hero. Ghost in the Shell is quite near the top in my favorite anime of all time list, if not right at the top, and she is why.
3. Kenshin Himora (Rurouni Kenshin) Kenshin is an inspiration. I love how he wishes to atone for all the deaths he has caused by reversing the blade on his sword and attempting to solve problems without using the methods he once used as the battosai. I so wish I could review this series for you folks, but it’s out of print.
2. Vash the Stampede (Trigun) Vash is the hero of Trigun because he attempts to change others around him through his kindness. His comical persona is used to cope with the harsh reality he faces daily, and yet he attempts to change it. I find it impossible not to like this guy.
1. Edward Elric (FullMetal Alchemist, FullMetal Alchemist: Brotherhood) Why do I like this guy so much? Because he has lost so much and yet he still fights. He lost his brother and his arm in a failed attempt to resurrect his mother. Yet he still fights. He loses his independence and joins the military. Yet he still fights. That is the mark of a hero: you lose, yet you continue.
Next week: I return to my anime reviews.