Top 5 Anime Openings

Inspired by Miyagawa's post on best 5 Vocaloid Indie songs, I decided to copy-cat the idea and post the best 5 Anime openings (up to the present 2009 winter season). 

Alot of you are probably familiar with most of these openings.  That's fine, because a good opener is a good opener, period.  I judged alot of them on uniqueness, presentation, and song.  Well, not so much the song, since it's easy to have a generic opening with a catchy pop song tacked on behind it.

Cowboy Bebop

This one needs no introduction.  We all know Cowboy Bebop had the most jaw-dropping opening, back in the day!  Not only that, but to it's credit many recent anime openings have been parodied with Yoko Kanno's track running alongside it.  If that isn't memorable, I don't know what is!

Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex 2nd Gig

Another popular opening, Ghost in the Shell (like Cowboy Bebop) gets parodied a lot — a testament to its greatness.  Right from the get-go, the song pulls you in with its Russian lyrics and evokes a sense of urgency and suspense.  I especially love the scene at 0:55, showing the frailty and sense of loneliness for the main character.

N・H・Kにようこそ!

I remember when I first saw this, my mind literally asploded.  Aside from the catchy pop song from the lovable singer Nino and the group Round Table, the quirky camera angles and use of juxtaposition between scenes brought a sense of playfulness — opposite of what the real story had waiting for you.  Overall, a very clever opener!

Maria†Holic

This show came out just recently this year, and already it's gotten a lot of buzz with it's opening alone.  It almost seems as if a bunch of six-figure graphic designers came together and put it together!  It's hard taking your eyes off of it thanks to the playful colors and constant motion involved.  Nothing seems related at all!  The song's a bit weird, but it lends a bit to the wacky story.

ef – a tale of melodies 1話-7話

Most anime openings stay fairly static during their broadcast run (unless you're a long running show like Naruto), so to see the opening change gradually over the initial first seven episodes shows how much the effort the creators have put into  the series.  Everything in the show, from the opening theme to the title of the episode has some kind of deep, overall meaning.  That's a lot of work for just a 12 episode show!

Honorable mentions:

I'd be remiss if I didn't include a few other noteworthy openings.  While they didn't make the list, they certainly are amazing to watch and listen to.  They're only a minute and a half long, so it'd be a shame to miss!

Beck: Mongolian Chop Squad
Blood+ Opening #2
Naruto Opening #5

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5 Responses to “Top 5 Anime Openings”


  1. 1 Rad♂ February 18, 2009 at 9:41 pm

    Great stuff. I've always thought Cowboy Bebop was hellacious!

  2. 2 Ivysgrandkid February 19, 2009 at 12:08 am

    I'm such a ghost in the shell fan boy!

  3. 3 old-guitar February 20, 2009 at 3:21 pm

    that Maria†Holic …. is awesome!!! xDDD first i thought she looks like a character from school rumble with just a different character design.
    seem rebel :p
    anyway, i also like the opening song from GITS. it's cool

  4. 5 patapete February 23, 2009 at 7:40 pm

    Yeah, it's one of the funniest new shows I've seen this season!


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