Wanted to do a list, but wasn’t sure which I should do. I’ve been feeling the shounen itch lately so I wanted to do the top 5 best shounen series, but I realized that was too easy. So why not do the worst shounen anime. I am specifying the anime, not the manga. Sometimes the manga is far better than the anime or the anime is far better than the manga. I am sure to piss off a lot of people.. especially fans of these series.
5. Dragon Ball Z
It really shouldn’t be a surprised that DBZ made it on the list. Most of us grew up with the series and have on our nostalgia goggles when we think about it, but if you honestly look back at the series, then you’ll understand why it makes the list. Because it is plagued with filler, DBZ is really hard to sit through and most of us had it easy with two episodes a day 5 days a week. Imagine having to watch one episode a week! We would see lots of powering up week after week. Not to mention the commentary by useless characters. DBZ is a series that deserved a remake and it did get one. Dragon Ball Kai is far superior in every way. It removes the awful filler and gets to the point. To put it in perspective, DBZ took 194 episodes to make to the end of the Cell Arc, while DBK only took 97 episodes. We sat through over 33 hours of filler.
4. Black Cat
If you watch the anime as a stand alone series you might have enjoy it to a certain degree, but the unfortunate truth is that you watch an anime that is in know way as good as the manga. In fact, I don’t even understand why they even changed the series that much. The manga had long been completed before the anime, but they still changed the ending significantly and made it really bad. The manga is worth checking out if you haven’t read it because it is short and it is a great read. The characters are far better and the story lacks the typical shounen ending that the anime has. It is also a much darker series, which isn’t something the anime had.
It is no mystery that I hate Bleach. Both the manga and the anime are just awful in my opinion. I love the series when it first started, but after the Soul Society arc it just went down hill with a repetitive story structure and a complete disregard of the power levels the mangaka had originally set. It feels downright annoying to see the mangaka just tack on new stuff and change strengths of enemies and characters without any real thought to the series. Even with that said, the anime still has tons of problems with filler. They even split an arc right in the middle and added random filler that made no sense to the story. It is sad that this happened to such a promising series, but in the end it isn’t worth my time to get back into it.
2. Air Gear
Another case of a bad manga translation, however it is interesting to point out that story wise the anime actually follows the manga quite closely. What this series suffers from is an identity crisis. The anime is animated in a way that took all of the more violent and sexual stuff out of it, however, they amped up the nudity to a strange degree. It was like they wanted to make the series for kids, but also add boobs for everyone else. They took it to an extreme degree and even had to edit out the private parts, so there really isn’t an uncensored version because even the DVD releases have awful crows blocking the bottom half of the girls. Seems like steam would’ve have been a better choice. They also made the animation much more childlike too. Great! Oh is the mangaka for Air Gear and if there is one thing that he does best, then it is the absolutely wonderful artwork he has. That did not translate to the anime at all.
1. One Piece (4Kids Dub)
I really don’t have to say much, but what I will say is that One Piece is one of the best shounen series of all time and what 4Kids did to the anime was criminal. Removing everything from a stereotype black pirate, to making guns squirt guns, and completely rewriting the story. It has made many westerners shy away from the awesomeness that is One Piece. I am glad that 4Kids not only went bankrupt, but that Funimation has taken over the anime and has done the best job anyone could hope for.