My Top Ten Story Arcs in Western Animation

Western Animated shows, on the whole, are fundamentally different from anime in a number of ways.

The tropes they employee, their general reputation, the style they use–it all combines to create a more lighthearted, comedic atmosphere in comparison to the Japanese medium many know and love.  This has led to a format where most Western cartoons tell their stories sporadically.  With lots of independent, unrelated stories in between, compared to anime, which continue a single plot without interruption.

However, there are times when these shows choose to focus on a single story, over the course of multiple episodes.  These are the episodes that get plot-heavy really quick–the ones that oftentimes are responsible, for creating the most high-stakes, memorable situations of a show.   And today, I’ll be talking about my top ten favorite story arcs!

I tried to stick to two criteria for this list.  First, only one story arc per series, and second, the arc has to last at least five episodes, or at least be addressed over the course of a series.   This was to rule out those hour-long specials, which are so common in Western cartoons.  That said, let’s get to it!

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My Top Ten Protagonists of Gaming!

Though a protagonist’s eyes, we experience new worlds.

Playing a video game for the first time, the main character provides a means, through which we experience the world of the game.  If the game is fun, dramatic, action-packed, the protagonist should generally reflect that.  And of course, some protagonists do this job far better than others, bringing far more to the table than most.

These protagonists are my favorites in all of gaming.  Their individual personalities, the ways in which they let the player experience the game, their general design, all combine to create memorable characters that stand as some of the best of the video game medium–at least, in my eyes.

Having said that–here’s my personal top ten protagonists of gaming!

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My Top Ten Happenings of E3!

Two weeks ago, a pretty big event in the gaming world took place.

E3, the Electronic Entertainment Expo, provided us all with a look at what the gaming world has to look forward to over the coming years.  Of course, some companies did well, some companies did bad, but regardless, the coming together of every major name in the industry bore some very, very interesting fruit.

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Some of My Favorites: Five Underrated Video Games!

Some video games have the ability to create wonderful memories, even if they aren’t exactly perceived as great.

These are the underrated games–titles that have some quality, some merit, but are perceived by many as terrible or bad.  For whatever reason, these titles end up being hated by the fanbase, or just hated in general, when I believe they deserve far better treatment than that.

Today, we’re going to talk about five of these kinds of games.  This list will be based purely on my opinion, so if we disagree, well.  I’d love to hear what your thoughts at the end of it!

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Some of My Favorites: Five Great Final Boss Battles!

Final boss battles are often what push video games into greatness.

I’m a firm believer in the idea that the ending of a story is imperative to its quality.  If the video game in question is beautifully executed up  until the end, then you just get that sour taste in your mouth, that it could have been so much better.  Luckily, many great video games are able to deliver, and some decent ones are remembered much more fondly thanks to their final bosses.

From my experience, final bosses don’t have to change the gameplay very much, but rather, they serve as the climax of the story.  They are the ultimate test of your fundamentals, a simple showdown that serves to wrap up the story in a satisfying, powerful way.

They’re the final glimpse you have of a game, the last takeaway- and boy, some of them are pretty damn good.

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My Top Ten Favorite Stories: #1

Here we are, my favorite story of all time.  Let’s go.

So, up to this point, there’s been a variety of stories that I could call my favorites.  They, at least in my eyes, are some of the best stories of their respective mediums, and have all influenced how I view, and judge stories even today.  However, no story up to this point has influenced my view of storytelling in general than my number one, which I experienced for the first time three years ago.

Suffice to say, my view on stories has changed a lot since then.

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My Top Ten Stories of All Time: 7-6

Moving down the list, we’ve got my 7th and 6th favorite stories of all time!  Displaying some of the most thematically powerful storytelling I’ve experienced in my life, we’ve got some stories that, in my mind, have very undeniable quality, yet aren’t quite the things that have touched me on a personal level.  They’re wonderful stories, that I’ve loved to analyze and enjoy, and as such, have distinguished themselves as a cut above the rest.

And well, here they are.

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Some of My Favorites: Five Most Unexpected Moments of Anime!

Unexpected moments in anime can be rather rare, but when they happen, they leave an impact.

In recent years, people have learned how stories work. We call out who wins the battle, who’s bound to die, and when the big climactic betrayal happens!  It’s been put down to a science, “tropes” that are commonly seen in a story, that can be predicted, character types, plot twists, and big revelations that aren’t exactly surprising.  Because of how many stories we’ve experienced, many of us have become rather adept at predicting the coming events, making a good surprise in an anime a very unique treat.

These unexpected moments challenge what we think we know of a genre, and can come from many places.  They take our ideas of romance, of shounen, of drama, and flip them on their head.  And of course, for different people, they vary.  That being said, I remember five distinct moments in anime that really surprised me, personally, and I’m certain that they surprised others as well.

I don’t think it needs to be said, but beware: spoilers ahead!

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My Top Ten Stories of All Time! 10-8

Stories impact people.

Stories are those things which are considered timeless, a series of events which some people consider important enough to keep on telling.  They engage us, suck us into the lives of characters that aren’t even real, and teach us lessons that transcend the ordinary, and yet find real, true application.  Stories are universal, experiences that bind us all together, and man, they’re freaking GREAT to experience.

Heyo, Aaron here, and as a bit of a celebration for the 100 post milestone, I’ll be sharing my Top Ten favorite Stories of all time.  From anime, to manga, to western animations and video games, these narratives have been the most powerful, meaningful, and just straight up interesting stories that I’ve ever experienced.  It’s a very personal list, not judged by the explicit “narrative quality” of the series, but rather, simply how meaningful they are to me.

That being said, let’s get it started.

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Some of My Favorites: Five Great Plot Twists of Video Games!

The ability of a video game to pull off a good, old-fashioned plot twist is an indicator that it’s gonna be something pretty memorable.

I mean.  Plot twists are a common thing nowdays, but oftentimes, you don’t get the best ones.  You think to yourself, “Psh, I knew that would happen,” or, “Well, what was the point of that?”  However, there are some great ones out there- and video games certainly have the potential to blow your mind with the plot twists they have.

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