The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya S1 (2006)

If there’s one thing that I will remember about this series, it’s the main characters voice. Despite the awfully generic art direction that makes it painfully obvious that fan-service, as far as anime is concerned, has become axiomatic for success, the main characters voice redeems all the bad you have to wade through to get to the goods. There are remnants of harem anime mixed with the typical high school setting. There’s the annoying extrovert plot-McGuffin that wants a little more excitement in her life, while all the people around her try exactly to avoid that, as she can (unknown to her) rewrite reality at whim.

And there’s the main character (the voice), who is kind of a sarcastic, very grounded high-schooler who takes it all with humor and tries his best not to get annoyed. Most of all, he’s not one of those whiny losers who often take the spotlight in animes to appeal to it’s core audience of people who think of themselves as whiny losers. He’s pretty normal overall, with the typical urges and vices of any teen, but enough self-reflection and honesty to make it fun to watch him coping with the absurdity of his situation.

Since the show covers only a few stories of a long running novel series, it doesn’t really go anywhere plotwise, it just suddenly stops without anything of the bigger plot points resolved. And the episodes jump all over the place. But despite the disjointed nature of the show, the sudden thematic changes and the lack of a real ending, it’s fun to watch.