The first time I saw an anime was when I was 9 years old and it was one of the “Race Around the World” episodes of Speed Racer. If you’ve seen this, you’ll know it’s an arc full of emotion, tension, apprehension, and above all, sheer joy. This experience was further enhanced by the jaunty tune that was its opening theme. To this day, I must refrain from humming it when I get behind the wheel of a car. My second experience with anime was Outlaw Star and one of the Gundam series during Cartoon Network’s beginning brushes with airing anime blocks. I was uninterested in the mecha filled adventures of Gundam and the space western odyssey that was Outlaw Star and their opening themes lacked any sense of melody to my newly preteen ears.
Then one early Saturday morning, I turned on Cartoon Network and I heard the dulcet tones of a female singer, crooning of moonlight and justice. I hurried to our couch and sat, poised with cereal bowl in hand all but forgotten, as Sailor Moon graced my television for the first (and most definitely not the last) time. Jaw dropped and milk oozing from my lips, I was enraptured by Serena’s tale and silly as the lyrics seem now, they made me want to be a Sailor Scout with every inch of my being. Fighting evil by moonlight? Uh, YEAH.
Surely, I’m not alone in my appreciation for opening songs.
Surely, I’m not alone in the thought that a fantastic opening song adds to whether or not an anime is extra appealing as well as the lasting impression I get from a phenomenal credits theme, so let’s look at some facts, albeit from my own personal experiences with many anime.
Let’s begin with my most recent anime experience: Black Butler. Usually I watch my anime in its original Japanese audio but there are times when I make an exception, usually at the behest of a friend or if it sounds fucking goofy. As this anime is one I watched in English, these are the songs I heard.
While I didn’t care much for either the first or second season opening song, the closing credits was an entirely different matter. It’s a rare thing when I download a song immediately after one episode and it’s even rarer that I listen to it non stop, much to chagrin of my hubby. Here it is for your viewing pleasure:Please enter the url to a YouTube video.
Next, I’ll use Honey and Clover as an example of a very bad opening song. If you’ve had the misfortune of watching it in its entirety, you’re probably as freaked out as I am (be sure to watch to the end).Please enter the url to a YouTube video.
To erase that ghastly harmony from the innermost sanctum of your eardrums, I ask of you to turn your attention to DeathNote, an anime I credit to bringing anime back to the forefront of the teen generation a couple of years back. Catchy, easy to hum, full of sweet guitar solos, and put to badass images from the anime, this is easily one of my favorite opening themes (Note: Do not confuse this with the second, very harsh sounding opening).Please enter the url to a YouTube video.
Lastly, I bring up Dragon Ball Z. I enjoyed both the Japanese and English versions of the opening songs but in my opinion, the magic appeared in the closing theme. Old-school, utterly wonderful, and happy in that 80’s sounding tune, I don’t know how anyone could not love it.Please enter the url to a YouTube video.
OOOOOH, MIRACLE ZENTAI POWER!!!!
Do you have any favorite OST’s you’d like to share?