Last Updated: January 14, 2014
(See changelog for detailed update information.)
Anyone who’s watched enough anime has at one point googled the word or somehow otherwise found MyAnimeList, the current de facto conglomerate for anime ratings, lists, reviews, and what have you. Now, anyone who’s browsed the site long enough comes upon the following conclusion: MAL reviews are usually really really bad.
This is to be expected when the average user has the writing competence of a 5-year old (see the forums for instance), and the average reviewer doesn’t do much better than that. The two top reviews featured on the frontpage of anime titles are quite deceiving in their quality-to-helpful-ratio, and so is the “Most Helpful Reviewers” chart. What’s really bad is that both are considerably tied down by flaws in MAL’s review system (particularly the feedback), but alas, this is an article for another time.
This is a resource list of users I personally find to have quality reviews. It serves multiple purposes: to congregate locations which stem good thought, provoke contributory discussion, and encourage reviewers to place more effort into improving their analyses to the best of their abilities. In order to be listed, the general criteria is to have a decent writing style, a sane command of English grammar, and most importantly, concise yet in-depth subjective arguments backed up by strong, detailed evidence.
Rising and Upcoming
I have not examined every single MAL reviewer from the sands of time, so this is in no way comprehensive. However, this can be improved! If you have suggestions about who else should be on this (clearly prestigious) list, I’m all up for checking them out. Just drop their profile link, or a link to one of their reviews you really like, down below. Self-promotion is cool too.