Have you ever been in a situation where a friend asks you to recommend an anime to start with, or a what to watch next, and you draw a blank? Or even blurted out so many titles that they never actually watched any of them? Well worry no more! This here is the definitive, kind of good (but only in certain circumstances) 100% biased guide used by me…
Beyond your standard options of Full Metal Alchemist or Death Note, there is a horde of other shows which might be more up their street. In this case, the first thing to do would be to ask them to be a bit more specific. Anime has a HUGE variety of genres and styles to pick from so to offer one up with no idea what they had in mind is a bit tricky. So it’s probably a pretty good idea to come up with some kind of preliminary question to ask first.
So what would this question be then? Well after a bit of looking around on the web I thought these worked pretty well: Do you want something entertaining? A classic? Or something more ambitious? If they say a classic then you have a few options open to you but my suggestion would be Cowboy Bebop. If for nothing other than being able to share that one line with them whenever you feel like it.
If they just want something entertaining things get a bit more complicated as it varies with what they are looking for (still a little vague). So another question comes in to play, what kind of fun are they looking for? Comedy or just a kind of pure fun. Pure fun gives you creative license to give them whatever you feel like (they asked for it!). Some shows you could go with in this branch, amongst my personal favourites, are Kill la Kill, FLCL and No Game No Life. All great shows in their own right as long as you don’t think too deeply about the finer points of the ‘’plot’’, but they are great fun!
Down the comedy route you have another set of choices, but for a basic recommendation here you can give them some options. Do they want romantic comedy or daily life? Rom-com wise I’d pick Oregairu because it’s funny without needing too much knowledge of anime tropes, but you could also go with Nisekoi as an alternative. And if they picked daily life, you get to give them a real treat in the form of Nichijou, or (another personal favourite) The Devil is a Part-Timer.
And finally, if they went with option C, looking for an ambitious start, you can feel free to go buck wild with your picks. I would go for something with a weird twist personally, like Evangelion or Madoka Magica, but like I said this is your get out of jail free card (Have Fun!)
And that about sums it up for now. I wrote this based on a flow chart I use when I’m recommending anime to friends so as a bit of a TL;DR here is a link so you too can pretend like your anime knowledge is organised and not just a jumble of titles and themes…