All Key anime are similar in the sense that they make me want to die at least once every handful of episodes. With the exception of the magnificent catastrophe that is Little Busters, Key anime are all successful to even the most cynical of cynics. All drama is manipulative, and Maeda Jun has mastered the art almost perfectly. Wheter or not you have a little voice in the back of your head saying that what´s happening is bullshit, chances are the characters are going through something so cruel even your ice cold heart can´t take it. Whatever it is, here´s my own personal Key anime ranking and why, mixed with the conclusion that Jun Maeda actually wanted to become a baseball player.
6. Little Busters
Little Busters hurt my heart, soul and brain. Before this, I lived in innocent bliss thinking everything adapted by anything Key would hit the spot without a doubt and no questions asked, in fact, Little Busters concept sounded kind-of-sort-of cool, so without much thought I watched the first episode. Frankly, I found it boring as shit. But it´s okay, because I learned that Key anime tend to start cute and slow just to develop to be a feast of tears and stress. Unfortunately the tears and stress don´t appear in Little Busters until, well, the second season apparently.
I´m not going to pretend I actually watched the second season, because I didn´t. Hell I´m not even gonna pretend I finished the first season because I didn´t. Take my irrelevant words with a grain of salt, though I´m pretty sure I´m with the majority here.
5. Air TV
Air was an experience. I distinctly remember watching it when I just got into anime and at first, I didn´t like it – until three years later when I decided to try again. I loved it. It´s extremely peaceful and has a retro feeling to it that todays anime spectrum lacks. It´s not too energetic or busy, it´s just tranquile and sad. Sometimes you just need tranquility and sadness.
Anyways, because of the ultimate lack of impact and its short runtime compared to all the other shows on this list I have it here, on the sixth spot, but don´t think I dislike Air TV, because I actually really friggin´ like it.
But Selena, this is currently airing, what do you know.
You´re right. What do I know. Let´s keep it here for now though, I have a feeling it´ll be deserving of the fifth spot because God damn it, if it doesn´t remind me of Angel Beats, minus the whole death thing. Unless episode 6 got the ball rolling. In that case we might be fucked.
3. Kanon 2006
Finally, the first anime on this list to actually reduce me to tears. I was mad sick when I marathoned this show though, so don´t take my words too seriously. All I really remember is it feeling like it´s the sketch of what Clannad was going to eventually be, a really obnoxious girl with a bag who made me cry and something about snow. I´m sure it was very dramatic and oldschool though, so I think you should definitely watch this.
Death Note was my first ever anime, after that I watched Sailor Moon, Black Butler, Clannad, Haruhi Suzumiya and then Angel Beats. I watched it thrice in three years. I still think that, despite the wave of hatred this show gets, Angel Beats is amazing at what it does – and what it does is bring heartwarming scenes just to get utterly and completely destroyed by tragedy. I cried twice, once over the computer room scene and then on the very last moment of the last episode. Would I watch it again? I don´t think so. I´ll keep the fun memories.
1. Clannad +Clannad AS
I too have fallen to the claws of the magic of Clannad, I have no doubt in my mind that I would´ve enjoyed it a lot less if I watched it later than when I did. I was 13, I think, and it wrecked me. I thought it was the best thing ever and to this day it´s still in my top ten anime of all time, and to this day I still go back to some episodes whenever I´m feeling sad just to feel even sadder. Clannad is fantastic, Clannad After Story is a story we won´t ever get again, these 50 episodes are entirely worth it.
Strangely enough I didn´t cry as much with the actual finale than I did with the brother and sister arc, it just kind of hit home – which is exactly why I like Clannad. It goes through the entire lifetime of the characters, so depending at what age you´re watching it, you´ll find something you can kind of relate to, wheter or not Clannad is a very dramatic yet mind bogglingly innocent way of painting the picture of life, the fact that no other anime has even tried to do what Clannad has done is something to, if nothing else, recognize. Unless you´re Nana.