Dream (Level 21)

Have a major announcement regarding my status for the site moving forward posted in the Anime Couples Tourney thread, as well as a possible opportunity for anyone interested.
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Anime has had its fair share of ups and downs over the past ten years from when it peaked in mainstream exposure via Cartoon Network's Toonami and Adult Swim blocks to its drop in quality on a majority of newer titles relying on the usual plot elements and otaku panderings due to the economic decline. But I've had my taste of plenty of titles that caught my interest throughout this decade that I thought I'd give a quick share of before the 2000s come to an end of the top ten anime titles I enjoyed from this decade.
10. Tokyo Godfathers
I've been a big fan of Satoshi Kon's films since I first seen Perfect Blue in college and this down-to-earth look at three homeless people on a wacky adventure throughout the city of Tokyo to find a baby's parents had me both laughing at their antics and sympathizing with the personal problems that landed them in their present lifestyles. Ironically enough, the movie is set during the holiday season from Christmas Eve right into New Year's Day.
Whether you wanna call it a coming-of-age story cleverly wrapped in sexual innuendos and cultural references or a crazy comedy title that makes no sense whatsoever, FLCL was a title that I was very hooked on when I first seen it on Adult Swim in 2003. It was more manic-paced than any anime title I had seen up to that point come from Cartoon Network and Haruko Haruhara was my anime babe of choice thanks to her unpredictable behavior.
8. Higurashi no Naku Koro ni
Yes, some folks might be aware of my utter distaste of moe titles. But Higurashi's a far different creature from the comedy and dating sim predicaments I seen moe characters get placed in. Horror and mystery's the name of the game with Higurashi as this series did well at hooking me with its plot twists galore and various arcs at seeing whether or not the stories of the characters that I witnessed were truthful or a complete delusion as they went murderously insane. The use of demons, government conspiracies and secret torture chambers were nice additional touches to this unpredictable series. 
7. Kino's Journey
I've enjoyed looking into "thinking person's" anime titles since I first seen Serial Experiments Lain and Kino's Journey did well at continuing my interest of this approach to anime. The various countries and people that Kino comes across led me to think about another aspect of human living and Kino's neutral viewpoint of observing these various lifestyles made me more interested in the title as I wasn't being repeatedly preached over some direction the show wanted me to believe.
. Azumanga Daioh
This comedy title was a bucketful of laughs for me thanks to the quirky personalities of both Chiyo's circle of friends and the teachers that they interact with in school. From the spaciness of Osaka to taking a reckless ride with Yukari-sensei in the Yukari-mobile, the humor of Azumanga Daioh never got old for me. 

5. .hack//SIGN
This isn't an anime for everybody since this show likes taking its time with developments and is more dialogue-focused than action-driven. But I really enjoyed this series when I first seen it on Cartoon Network in 2003. The mystery on Tsukasa's inability to log out of the World interested me, as well as getting to become familiar with the many characters who enjoyed playing the game. And you've gotta love the soundtrack. "Obsession" is one of my personal favorite anime OP sequences. 
4. Paradise Kiss
This romance title got me interested enough for its look into the world of fashion and the impressive looking artwork and character designs. The clothing designs made for some great eye-candy considering the great amount of detail they had. The character of George Koizumi was an interesting one to figure out as I wondered throughout the show whether or not he genuinely loved Yukari, given the guy's unpredictable actions as he led the ParaKiss group in their school fashion design project. The music of the series was another favorite of mine, especially its OP "Lonely in Gorgeous" and ED "Do You Want To", sung completely in English by Scottish rock band Franz Ferdinand.
3. Koi Kaze   
I've seen my fair share of romance anime titles being focused on some sci-fi/fantasy element or focused on titles of couplings on the straight and narrow path. But you don't come across something like Koi Kaze often as it features a serious look at the increasingly incestuous relationship of high schooler Nanoka and marriage consultant Koshiro. While well written enough where I could feel for the forbidden path these two siblings were slowly getting themselves into, it did make me uncomfortable the first time I seen the series. But I've come to enjoy the series enough where it's one of my personal favorite romance titles.
2. RahXephon
While many anime fans see Eva as the definitive mecha title, I found RahXephon meeting my expectations better of a great quality mecha title. It had enough plot twists to catch my interest and characters that were easier to connect with than the psychological angstings of Evangelion's cast. The artwork and animation were high quality and fluid respectfully and the powerful soundtrack made for the best music I listened to in this decade. The series also tied up all its loose ends with plot, something that the original Eva series never did thanks to Hideaki Anno's questionable decisions in direction.
1. Monster
Now this was an anime worth every minute of my time. Monster had it all for its 70+ episodes: a large cast with plenty of depth, a building mystery focused around the main baddie's origins and the people who messed him up mentally, a hero whose moral resolve is pushed to its very limit, a haunting and dramatic soundtrack, visuals that remained consistent in detail throughout its run and a villain who does enough at playing mind games on everyone he encounters by either manipulating them to do his dirty work or driving them to insanity and death. I definitely consider this the best of the decade.
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