Kaioshin’s Top 10 Anime Openings

Might as well do one since I’m kind of tired of arguing about Code Geass for the moment.  The perfect stress reliever.  Anyway I should warn, there are a lot of mecha series on this one.  That and I can get really passionate about my favourite anime openings  Just a heads up.  Oh and Deathie, you are required to comment on this article as part of your blogging duties.  I don’t want to hear any dispute.  Okay let’s go then…..

Number 10:

Trust You Forever – G Gundam

What a way to kick off the second half of this series.  This is one of those songs I would actually dare describe as a somewhat epic in and of itself, but that only counts for the full version, and even then only when we are talking about the way it is used at the end of the series.  It also has this heroic feeling to it that also serves to highlight the comraderie between the key characters that makes it a really fitting them for the 2nd half of G Gundam.  “We’ll look honest world”.  By the way, if you listen closely it also has that synthesizer sound in the background that was only ever popular during a brief period in the early 90’s between 1991 and 1994.  If you don’t know what I’m talking about then listen to the Starlight Zone Theme from Sonic The Hedgehog as the sound is practically the entire song.  God I miss that early 90’s sound…..

Number 9:

Hohoemi No Bakudan – Yu Yu Hakusho

Man this opening is so 90’s.  Anyway, this song is the perfect example of a song so great that even when you have a series that is 110 episodes long there’s really no point in changing the music even if you change the video.  It’s that solid.  Ver 2. is better though because of the better animation quality and the somewhat epic city scape scenery in the beginning portion.  Gives it a bit of nostalgic feel I suppose.  Anyway, the music matches up great with the visuals as well.  What can I say, I even have a midi version of this on my grandparents computer all the way back in Montreal.  I took it with me one time because I needed at something to listen to when working on it during a visit.

Number 8:

The Winner – Gundam 0083 Stardust Memory

Mmmmmmm I love it when the music just matchs perfectly with the video in openings.  The music matches Kou’s footsteps as he’s running through space and then the years since the end of the One Year War scroll by as he reaches his destiniation until the year 0083 comes up.  Cut to title and then *fwoosh* the words Stardust Memory come on screen right as the song picks up.  Greatness I say.  My favourite part has to be the Earth Federation and Zeon flags fluttering in space as if crashing against it’s other.  You kind of have to be a Gundam fan to understand I guess.  Anyway, catchy song and some great visual make The Winner just that.

Number 7:

Over!: Overman King Gainer

This opening does what any opening should, gets people pumped up for the show.  It’s so old school in how much it sells the title mecha and yes characters doing the monkey yadayada.  It’s the energy that really sells it though.  Trying to figure out just what was going on in Yoshiyuki Tomino’s head as he wrote, directed and planned this opening is also a lot of fun.  It’s hard to deny that it worked though.  Look for the “Metal” Overman King Gainer in Super Robot Wars Z coming out this September.

Number 6:

Sarah – City Hunter 2

First of all, no I have no idea who Sarah is in relation to this show so don’t ask.  Anyway if Hohoemi No Bakudan is just plain 90’s then Sarah is just plan 80’s.  It also serves to showcase just how manly Ryo Saeba is.  How many…..well he can put an entire clip into the exact same hole on a practice target 50 feet away manly.  This one also gives me a bit of a nostalgic feel.  Anime could get away with being just plain cool and episodic back in the day.  Now it has to have everything nice and neat and cookie cutter simple and/or gimmicky otherwise it just won’t fly.  Sigh….halfway point break time.

Goes To Watch The Godfather Part II

Number 5:

Ai Yo Kienaide – City Hunter

I once listened to this song for 15 hours straight. No joke.  I don’t even know why I like it so much.  Maybe it’s because it practically embodies the 80’s and makes me really nostalgic for that era.  Again we see how manly Ryo Saeba is and I love the part from 0:49-0:55.  Still gets me every time.

Number 4:

Shonen Heart – Eureka Seven

Definitely the funkiest anime opening I’ve ever heard.  I can’t help but get into the beat of this one and I kind of hope it get’s into SRWZ.  Actually I can’t think of any other anime opening that even sounds like this period.  Maybe the ending to Keroro Gunsou.  Whatever, this is a valid reason for why Japanese people should be allowed to rap.  Contrary to the popular opinion that is….

Number 3:

Galient World – Panzer World Galient

There’s a story behind this one.  One day I was watching this series of videos featuring all the mecha anime openings from Tetsujin 28 to Gundam Seed, and then suddenly during one part this song came on.  From the moment the beat started up with the slowing coming on screen I was like, “whoooooooooa” and then I was hooked right until the end.  I was still kind of in a daze after it ended.  That was the first time I had ever heard EUROX’s Galient World, but certainly not the last.  The group is actually an English band hired to do the song and boy did they put in the effort.  This and the number 2 and 1 openings on the list have kind of become an experience to themselves whenever I listen to them, kind of like an E.L.O concert.  Nothing else must interfere during a listen of the full versions for me, they must embody the moment.

Number 2:

Hello Vifam! – Round Vernier Vifam

“Number 1 2 On, Number 3 4 On, Number 5 6 7 8 On” *Guitar and Title Kick In*.  Holy shit…..they turned the opening of a simple mecha series from the 80’s into a bloody rock opera.  Seriously that’s what it feels like as I am going through this, and there is pretty much no other opening like this.  Part of the novelty is it being all in English as well.  Again like with Galient World, the full version of this song is an experience in and of it’s and it takes the rock opera feel of it and multiplies it by 10.  Bloody awesome……

Number 1:

Yakusoku Wa Iranai – Vision of Escaflowne

There’s a story to this one as well.  One day I was browsing youtube looking up some anime openings and having only heard the mangled Fox Kids opening for Escaflowne I decided to look this one up.  It feels like a destiny was fulfilled that day.  I was kind of in tears by the end babbling “I didn’t know” because I had no idea how beautiful the original opening to Escaflowne was and what Fox Kids had robbed me of for all of these years.  Here I met Maaya Sakamoto and her lower register singing voice that would carry her debut role as Hitomi Kanzaki as well.  This should also put to rest the idea that I am some kind of Yoko Kanno hater as well.  No I was merely crushed when I heard the opening to Macross Frontier since I was expecting something more like Yakusoku Wa Iranai.  Even the visuals are beautiful from the graceful duel between Escaflowne and Scherezade with their capes sweeping back amidst a sunset in the background, to the Atlantians serenading Hitomi amidst a starlit background.  It’s just stunning in almost every way imaginable and will probably never be bumped off of this list.  Lastly it proves that Bishonen’s are not a detriment by nature.

26 Responses to “Kaioshin’s Top 10 Anime Openings”

  1. 1 reika September 17, 2008 at 1:50 pm

    hi, first-time comment-poster here.

    i just realised that i’ve seen none of the OP posted. shall go refurbish my anime stock.

    I skip OP most of the time after seeing it once for episode 1; either music’s not to my taste, or the animated sequence is uninteresting.

    I do remember sitting through the OP for Bakumatsu Kikansetsu Irohanihoheto by fictionjunction yuuka(that’s the OP that started my interest in yuki kajiura) most of the episodes though, and most of the things by yoko kanno (favs remain with cowboy bebop & ghost in the shell series, macross frontier was…well she ought to have used someone else for the vocals.).

    other interesting OPs for me: Gintama’s most recent one, Elfen lied, moyashimon. Touka gekkan’s OP music is good, but I’m not into the animation sequence, same for xxxholic & simoun.

  2. 2 MooN September 17, 2008 at 2:37 pm

    >.< i haven seen any of those too…

  3. 3 Enact September 17, 2008 at 2:48 pm

    “Anime could get away with being just plain cool and episodic back in the day”

    Cause back then the fanbase wasn’t a bunch of whiny bitches who feel that nothing is good enough for them and that studios have to do what they want or GTFO. Sad as that is. The fandom was more relaxed in general too. Anyway, great selections, though I gotta say, as much as I like Vifam, I just can’t get into the opening. That and Blue Comet SPT Layzner’s opening is just so much more……*manly*.

  4. 4 Darklord September 17, 2008 at 5:04 pm

    In my country there is a saying roughly translated as “The appetite comes with the eating.” It means as people “eat” more, they also want more. Anime was a scarce resource back in the old days and that’s why people were content with every precious show they got. Even shows that would be considered “average” by today’s standards were amazing at the time. Also, the more anime you watch, the higher your standards become, since well…you get used to stuff. I remember when I started watching anime I used to just enjoy the Japanese animation and that was enough for me. I enjoyed even the most cliche of stories. Now I pretty much take that as a given. You can’t help it, it’s like this with everything, not just anime.

    Regarding the emergence of the bitchy whiny fanbase, I blame it mostly on the internet. It gave people the ability to act like complete a**holes without the pressure of being held accountable for it.

  5. 5 Enact September 17, 2008 at 7:27 pm

    There is a lot of truth in that, and the intenret is probably very much the reason, besides of which that now with readily available fansubs and more shows out per season, it seems like people are entitled to anime and that the creators have to do exactly what they want in order for it to be any good (part of the “have it your way” culture we seem to have developed into, where everyone is a critic). It’s just not as fun when all most people do is whine, complain, and say how they could do better then….they probably can’t.

  6. 6 Yuki no Kurogane September 17, 2008 at 7:57 pm

    I definitely agree with the number one. Yakusoku Wa Iranai will forever be engraved in my memory as one of the best openings I have ever had the privilege of listening to (and I still have it on my mobile phone). It just mirrors perfectly Hitomi’s innocence and the epic scale of the Escaflowne story. Ah, the nostalgia….

    And yes, I also think the anime community has changed for the worse. People have just lost their appreciation for anime in general, but I am not going to count myself innocent when it comes to the crime of senselessly bad-mouthing a show. It’s just now that my eyes have been opened and that I have started to enjoy anime for what it is again. I think the best policy to approaching anime is either take it or leave it. Don’t bitch about it just because it isn’t catering to your needs (especially not when you are downloading it, FOR FREE!) and definitely don’t blame the “writing” when you can’t think of a better reason. I guess the expressional liberty that the internet provides does prove itself to be a double-edged sword, and people are taking the meaning of the phrase, Freedom of Speech, to a whole new level.

  7. 7 Kaioshin Sama September 17, 2008 at 8:09 pm

    Well I have to assume that the average anime fan you see today probably didn’t go through the 90’s era of anime in America and Canada. To put it simply, back then we were lucky to get anime on TV that wasn’t butchered and cut up into an entirely different beast then the original Japanese version. Getting characters whose names and dialogue weren’t Americanized or even a story that still made any sort of coherent sense after the massive filtering and editing it was put through was considered a blessing, but moreso then that practically unheard of.

    Nowadays people worry about whether a story is going to have a good ending, back then we were worried about whether we were actually going to see the intended ending in North America. Nowadays people are worried about good animation, back then we were worried about how just how much of the original animation was going to be heavily altered or air painted over. Nowadays people are worried about the quality of openings and BGM (I still am but that’s a different story), back then it was the single greatest blessing to have the original BGM, and getting the original Japanese opening was absolutely unheard of. It took Bandai with Gundam Wing and Inuyasha to make that possible and I also credit them with being the ones to put an end to the era of Americanized anime. I still remember my first experience with seeing an original anime opening on YTV, that being Just Communication from Gundam Wing. It was a pretty incredible experience.

    Since then I’ve been through anime series from the 70’s, 80’s. 90’s and 21st century to the point where “quality” and content has all become relative to me and pretty much impossible to easily define like some people feel it is when they make their insta-judgments on something. When I compare a show that everyone says is awful nowadays to the butcher jobs you used to see on American TV in the 90’s it all seems equally as relative.

    So yeah, as the motto goes where I work, and I think it’s a good one that applies to the anime scene right now, “If you’ve felt cheated or feel that you don’t want to take part in something anymore, just say so and walk away. Just don’t bitch about it, because we all have to go through it at one time or another and somebody has probably had it worse then you have.”

    Anyway, this isn’t the time for that, this is the time for anime openings, so if you want, feel free to post your own top ten list here folks.

  8. 8 deathkillz September 17, 2008 at 8:15 pm

    Damn Kaio, why pick on me ;_____;

    Actually, I’m no good at all with “old series” considering my lack of experience with them. I’ve only heard two of your top 10 OPs unfortunately.

    I suppose my top ten list could easily run into the hundreds because I just love music ^^

  9. 9 tskiller September 17, 2008 at 9:38 pm

    somebody likes mecha…..

  10. 10 BeInvoked September 17, 2008 at 10:01 pm

    All great choices, however considering this is coming from you I find the lack of GaoGaiGar surprising.

  11. 11 ghostlightning September 18, 2008 at 12:56 am

    awesome list… probably mine would include (no particular order except yakusoku iranai which i agree to be the best)

    lion – macross frontier
    cruel angel thesis – nge
    kimi wa suki detto sakebitai – slam dunk
    cha la head cha la – dragonball z (oh the lulz on this one)
    men of destiny – stardust memory
    daybreak’s bell – gundam 00
    driver’s high – gto
    inner universe – git:sac
    sora iwo days – ttgl

    best: yakusoku iranai – escaflowne

    honorable mention:

    motekke sera fuku – lucky star
    stray – wolf’s rain
    hemisphere – rahxephon
    fire wars – mazinkaiser ova (oh yes)
    rhythm emotion – gundam w

    my friends and i were discussing that an important part of what makes an op and its music is how it makes you EXCITED about the episode you’re about to watch. sometimes i still get swayed by the op even if i am not looking forward at all to the episode unfolding.

    kaio, you should do a list for ends as well.

  12. 12 fuka September 18, 2008 at 3:54 am

    All wonderful choices.

    I don’t know if these counts as openings as well, but I think the opening of nadesico the mission http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hslEQqY1Rrw and Gihren’s greed Ai Senshi http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iqUeDJ7St-U are really good. Anime wise my favourite is probably the opening of ayashi no ceres http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tAKBmlnJaUQ and aura battler dunbine http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=iakHx_vy-Pw

  13. 13 Kaioshin Sama September 18, 2008 at 6:13 am


    That’s the plan. Ending list is coming sometime this week. Possibly tomorrow????

  14. 14 Dio September 18, 2008 at 12:17 pm

    i have my favorite OPs/EDs.

    GaoGaiGar: King of Braves – Yuusha-Oh Tanjou!

    Shin Getter Robo Armageddon OP1 – Ima ga Sono Toki Da

    New Getter Robo – Dragon

    Shin Getter Robo Armageddon OP2 – HEATS

    Cromartie High School – Jun

    Fun & Shout – Jungle Wa Itsumo Hare Nochi Guu Deluxe Ending theme

    You’re a mecha fag, I’m a mecha fag with a taste for JAM Project. Except you write too many goddamn words sometimes and your mental state is often questionable.

  15. 15 Kaioshin Sama September 19, 2008 at 7:23 am

    @BeInvoked: In all honesty I find Yuusha Oh Tanjou kind of meh…it’s decent, but not the stuff of top 10 lists. Probably not even the stuff of top 20 lists.

    @Dio: That’s the beauty of having my own blog, I can write as much or as little as I want at any given time. Though you are probably right to question my mental state….a guy who’s preferred style of music is from the 80’s…..

  16. 17 Cat Megex September 21, 2008 at 12:56 am

    One of my favorite OPs is the one from Utawarerumono (I don’t really know why…it’s not really better than any of the others out there, and the visuals aren’t anything too special, but…).


  17. 18 Proudleaf September 21, 2008 at 11:34 pm

    Great choice with Escaflowne, it has a beautiful opening. It’s also hands down one of the best series I’ve seen too.

  18. 19 Dorne September 24, 2008 at 2:27 am

    These are definitely on my top list.

    Grand Teacher Onizuka OP 1:

    Votoms OP 1:

  19. 20 TheBigN September 25, 2008 at 4:50 pm

    You are awesome for having King Gainer Over! among the list, as well as Yakusoku wa Iranai. 😛

  20. 21 anime_nanet October 4, 2008 at 4:39 pm

    I’ve created a whole page concerning the top 10 anime openings of all time! Curiously not one of them matches yours 😉


    Check it out and leave a comment!

  21. 22 Derek November 24, 2008 at 4:10 am

    Damn straight! Vifam’s OP is kickass. I have just started to get into that show, and I am totally hooked. On the surface it’s your average mecha show, looks more or less like ZZ Gundam or Dragonar. I was totally blown away, though! It surprised me with its desperate yet uplifting story, classic science-fiction style, emphasis on realism, and strict treatment of the robots as military hardware. Even the titular Vifam is just one of a series of mass-production models, and it gets destroyed and replaced multiple times in the first few episodes (in this aspect, it’s rivaled only by Votoms among shows of its era).

  22. 23 Huggums July 24, 2009 at 3:04 am

    I feel you on Triangler. My first experience with Kanno was Cowboy Bebop. It seriously changed by life. I guess when you’ve heard her best, the stuff she’s doing now sounds kinda bland.

  23. 24 Arpeggio August 2, 2009 at 8:46 pm

    dude i have to say you have some good taste in music. the yu yu hakusho one, city hunter and escaflowne are really brilliant.

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September 2008



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