Sunday Select: 7 Non-Anime Animated Series to Write About

Although I should definitely be working on catching up to other post series on my blog, I’m here to share something new today. I’ve made an important decision for Anime Rants. Before, this site has only been about anime. But starting soon, I will also include content about cartoons that are not Japanese or East Asian in origin. Beyond cartoons, CGI series will also be included if I like them enough. Today’s post is a list of seven non-anime animated series that I plan to write about from time to time. This list is just to get me started, and will probably expand a lot in the future.

1) Arcane

This popular 2021 3D animated series is based on League of Legends. I have never played League, and given what I hear about the toxic gaming environment, I don’t plan to change that. However, even knowing nothing about League, I watched Arcane and thoroughly enjoyed it. It’s extremely well-made and the magical world is rich and interesting. There are several strong and fascinating female characters. The character psychology in general is another element of Arcane that I loved. The story starts off with two sisters in the “bad part of town,” showing their tough spirits as they survive on the streets and steal from the rich people in uptown. The story takes an unexpectedly dark turn around the third or fourth episode. I will definitely have some things to say about Arcane in the future.

2) Archer

Archer is adult cartoon that began in 2009 and currently has 13 short seasons of content (8-12 episodes per season). I began watching the early episodes way back in 2011, and I continued until about season 5 before losing interest. The show is a gritty, witty action-comedy full of colorful characters. They are all spies who go on crazy adventures to protect national security. Many of the hijinks border on absurd, so if you like a moderate dose of absurdity, you will have fun. The other main styles of comedy are dark humor and a lot of repeated gags and recurring character tropes (which I still think are hilarious). I might not have as much to say about Archer as some of these other shows, but it’s worth including as a series I have followed for many years.

3) Bojack Horseman

Diane (left, voiced by Alison Brie) and Bojack (right, voiced by Will Arnett) in Netflix’s “BoJack Horseman.” Photo courtesy of Netflix.

This Netflix original adult cartoon series premiered in 2014 and had 6 seasons. I am only just watching it now in 2023. In a universe where humanoid animals are mixed in with humans in the general population, Bojack is a horse-man who lives in Hollywood. Although he made riches and fame with his 90s TV sit-com “Horsing Around,” Bojack is now a washed up fifty-year-old with an entitled attitude and a tendency to abuse alcohol and drugs. It might not sound like much at first – and indeed the first few episodes are not great – but as the show progresses, it becomes amazing. It’s aggressively real and in-your-face about the problems and mistakes many of us go through as flawed beings. Additionally, the characters are easy to fall for, and the humor is generally okay. I will have a lot to say about this series in the near future.

4) Helluva Boss

It started as a small side project happening in the same universe as the Netflix original animation Hazbin Hotel; but quickly, Helluva Boss became a big hit in its own right. The setting is Hell: a world inhabited by demons who are generally assholes, junkies, sexual deviants, or some combination thereof. Blitzo the imp runs a small mercenary business where they earn money killing. With his wacky employees, Blitzo gets into a lot of demonic and violent trouble. Meanwhile, an owl-like demon Prince is madly in love with Blitzo, and often interferes in his affairs.

All the characters are dysfunctional as can be, and I absolutely love that. The serious character psychology is good, and it’s well balanced out by the dark, witty humor and abundance of action. I’ve been enjoying Helluva Boss for well over a year now, eagerly awaiting new episodes. You can expect some Helluva Boss content on this blog.

5) Legend of Korra

As the sequel to the widely popular and classic series Avatar: The Last Airbender, The Legend of Korra has a lot of expectation on it. On top of trying to live up to its predecessor, this show’s reception was dubious because a) the main character is an empowered female, and b) the main character is revealed to be bisexual by the end of the series. A lot of people did not like Legend of Korra, and if it’s not for you, well, that’s your loss. It’s fine. I’m only angry against the people whose reasons for disliking it are rooted in prejudice, biphobia, or misogyny. I love this show and consider it vastly underrated in the public perception. There will certainly be some Legend of Korra posts soon.

6) Owl House

Premiering in 2020 and having 3 seasons, Owl House is a fantasy series made mostly for young audiences. I haven’t seen this show yet, but I’m excited to start soon because I heard it’s very inclusive of the LGBT+ community. That being said, I also heard that Disney stopped the show, and it might have been because of the “controversy” of showing LGBT+ relationships. In other words, a bunch of right-wing snowflakes got uppity, and Disney caved. I’m not looking forward to dealing with the anger this will provoke in me. However, I’m down to have fun with the show for the three seasons that made it past the American Theocracy of Bigots.

7) She-Ra and the Princesses of Power

I watched Netflix’s She-Ra last year and absolutely loved it. It’s very roughly based on an older show called She-Ra. I watched Netflix’s new version in 2022 and found it positively delightful. While taking part in a war to subjugate a certain planet, warrior girl Adora discovers she’s on the wrong side of history. She defects and becomes a freedom fighter who tries to help liberate people being invaded. Along the way, Adora finds out she’s the wielder of immense power where she holds a magic sword and essentially becomes a magical superwoman (She-Ra). This power has been passed down through generations, but can Adora handle it and protect her new friends? The main appeal to me besides being an interesting fantasy story is the abundance of non-straight characters and prominent female roles. Catra is one of my favorite cartoon characters. I’m excited to write about this show.

Thank you for reading~

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