I thought this list would be pretty easy but then I ended up with a short list so long I couldn’t even begin to figure out where to go from there so I’ve narrowed the field. This is my choice of top 5 fight sequences that involve a blade of some description. So magic fights, gun fights, hand to hand fights, and random other weapons are being ruled out before this list even begins (though if one person in the fight is using a blade, I’ve kept it in the running even if the opponent isn’t). I’ll have to go back and do a list of fights that involve some of those at some point but that’s not today. Pretty much what I am looking for in a fight sequence is that it looks good, is entertaining, and serves some purpose in the overall story.
As always, I’d love to know what you would include on your list so please feel free to leave a comment below.
Please Note – There will be spoilers below.
Honourable mentions this week go to Angel Beats (Yurippe vs Tenshi) and Attack on Titan (pretty much any time Levi is actually fighting).
Number 5: Higurashi (Rena vs Keiichi)
For an anime about school children, Higuarshi regularly get’s quite dark. However, there aren’t all that many direct fights as the characters are more prone to acts of torture, drugging opponents, setting traps, and generally go about things in a less direct but still fairly lethal manner. That’s kind of what makes the fight between Rena and Keiichi on the rooftop of the school extraordinary. It is one of the few stand up fights of the series and is an excellent way for the first season to draw to a close. Now I’ll be the first to admit, Higurashi is not a good anime to look at. Characters are off model a lot and the animation is awkward at times. That didn’t interfere with this fight being very cool to watch as it really brought out the characters, addressed some of the ongoing questions about what was going on, and it certainly had high stakes given the situation they were in. All and all, this fight was a great mid-way point in Higurashi’s ongoing story and one I thoroughly enjoy watching.
Number 4: Sword Art Online (Kirito vs The Gleam Eyes)
As much as people like to criticise SAO, I really enjoy it and one of the fights I never get enough of is Kirito vs The Gleam Eyes. Partly its the impossible situation the characters are in. Neither Asuna nor Kirito were looking for a boss fight and it was only because the other group of morons trudged into a boss room unprepared that they get involved at all. partly its because we finally see Kirito use the dual welding skill and the sword that he had made. But a lot of the reason I like this fight is it is just fun and dramatic to watch. Okay, we know Kirito is going to win the fight from the beginning, but that does not take away from the way this sequence builds excitement and tension. Although, from a visual point of view they really do get a bit excessive with the light show at times and I’m guessing if you look at fights for actual technique this one probably won’t do much for you. Mind you, a lot of the credit has to go to the music in this scene. They really nailed it.
Number 3: Soul Eater (Maka vs Jack the Ripper)
The very first episode of Soul Eater delivers one of the best fight sequences I had ever watched (when I first saw the episode). It was the reason I fell in love with the series and Maka as a character. She’s cool, confident, and she is rocking that scythe. Anyway, if you’ve never seen this particular fight, you should check it out (it is literally all over YouTube or you know, watch the anime). Though I still love this fight, Soul Eater is full of interesting battles between characters, and some fairly interesting weapons, and really ends up being visually fascinating to watch.
Number 2: Bleach (Gin vs Hitsugaya)
Alright, you kind of had to know Bleach was showing up on this list sooner or later, and here it is. The reason for this fight over most of the others is that even though both Captains use their swords there are no bankai going on here, no over the top silly powers, just a nice simple fight between two characters, that may or may not end up involving bystanders, Gin really does fight dirty. Part of me loves this fight because Hitsugaya really has lost his cool entirely and part of me loves this fight because even though Hitsugaya has the upper hand most of the way through the fight, because he doesn’t consider that Gin will use underhanded methods, he still technically loses. It is great fun to watch and in a show filled with epic, ongoing and long winded fights, this one is short, brutal, and fairly effective (even if not quite as spectacular as some of the others).
Number 1: DanMachi (Bell vs the Minotaur)
Given the series starts with Bell getting cornered by a Minotaur, the turning point for the story and Bell as a character is when he finally is forced to take on a Minotaur single handedly in order to buy time for others to escape. Eventually other adventurers show up but by that stage Bell is pretty committed to taking the thing down by himself and what follows is one of the best fight sequences I’ve ever seen. Tiny dagger and character against very large and strong minotaur, it literally takes everything Bell has got (speed, magic, endurance, as well as a lot of tenacity) to win the fight and it is so worth it. It is one of those moments you can’t look away from. For all the silliness that DanMachi has littered through it, it is the moments like this one that really make the show shine. This sequence is cool to watch, it has a lot of memorable moments, there’s some real tension and fear for the protagonist’s safety (though you know he’ll live there’s definitely the question of how injured they’ll let him get), and the pace is fantastic. All and all, this is a fight that I love rewatching.
So that is my top 5 fights (using blades of some description). What would you have put on your list? Looking forward to your responses.
Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
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16 thoughts on “Tuesday’s Top 5: Fight Sequences”
Best fight scenes with bladed weapons? I’m sure there are a few from Rurouni Kenshin I’d put on my list since most of those are pretty great.
The handful of fights from Moribito are also all wonderfully done. The spear choreography is top-notch.
Can’t think of one in particular off the top of my head, but I do recall really enjoying the big fights in Chivalry of a Failed Knight. Might go with the last one, though, even if it was just one hit.
Then there’re the showdowns in Cowboy Bebop against Vicious. Also, Samurai Champloo is chock full of great sword fights.
Guts vs 100 soldiers in Berserk.
So many more, but I don’t know if I could narrow ’em down to just five. Great job on that.
Nice selection of anime. Yeah, narrowing fight sequences down, even after making them fights with a blade, was pretty difficult. Too many awesome fights out there.
To this day one of the best fighting scenes ever was Kenshin vs Saito. You could tell the A team was in that day when the animated it.
Jubei vs Freesia from Jubei-chan 2 was a good one as well.
Good list. Wow it’s hard to think of but I did love so many fights in Naruto. I loved goku VS freizer. And Titan eren vs Titan Reiner haha
Of those, the only one I’ve seen is SAO. But it a very cool scene, and when you watch the lead up it brings out a quality that Kirito is rarely credited for – his desire to to help and save others. (I mean he can be a bit of a self absorbed jerk, but he has a heart of gold.)
My favorite? I’d have to go with Karin’s Mankai in Ep11 of *YuYuYu*. Knowing what she was risking (permanent physical disability) – she accepted it because she finally realized how wrong she’d been about the group and it’s ideals. And then, even though she’d lost the use of her arm (in her non transformed state), she went back the battle… subsequently losing her sight and hearing.
I’ve been eyeing off that anime and wondering if it is worth trying out. I may need to move it to a higher priority on my watch list. Thanks for the suggestion.
It’s very good… and the prequel/sequel (six eps of each) series is coming out later this year.
Nice list, but my favorite will always be Taiga vs. the Student Council President from Toradora. Spoiler alert: One of the combatants gets hit in the face with a projectile shoe.
I’ll be honest I actually forgot about that fight in Bleach. Watching it I was reminded of how much fun Gin Ichimaru is as not only a fighter but a manipulator. That was one of the better fights in Bleach, with the compelling moment from Hinamori and Toshiro’s rage. It is up there with the likes of Byakuya vs Ichigo and the like.
I would probably put on my list the final scene of Luo-Lang vs Nanashi from Sword of the Stranger. The weight of that scene mixed with some of the best animation and fight choreography from Studio Bones is truly superb. That or one of the more overwhelming fights leading to a great character arc, Leaf Ninja (Asuma, Shikamaru and two others) vs Hidan and Kakuzu from Naruto Shippuden.
Gin is such a manipulator. Definitely one of my favourite Bleach fights.
And that’s the second time Sword of the Stranger has come up. I’m going to have to look into that.
This is so strange! I literally had the idea to do a “My top x fight scenes in Anime” the other day! small world haha. Though i intend to do mine as a video at some point :3
Anyway, its a great list! That Danmachi fight scene is going to be on my list too, its incredibly well animated and i re-watched it multiple times hehe. I agree with you on SAO too, it gets a lot of flack but you cant deny these amazing scenes. I’ve always loved that Maka fight sequence, but i tend to love most fights Studio Bones have a hand in!
One fight scene ill be having in my video is the final fight in “Sword of the Stranger”, if you’ve seen it? The whole film is super well animated but that finally scene is AMAZING! I don’t know if it counts for your list because its a movie, but its got blades in! 😀
I haven’t seen it but I’ll have to see if it is available anywhere to check out.
Glad you liked the list. Let me know when yours comes out.
A couple of personal faves are the fight between Kogami and Makishima in episode 22 of Psycho-Pass. The tension is ramped up to 11 and there’s some fantastic sequences (like when Makishima backflip kicks a stun grenade out of the way)
And Joseph vs. Wamuu from Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure, it’s amazing how it becomes a battle of the mind and it gets really absurd in that Jojo way. It’s a fantastic fight despite the limited animation.
I really couldn’t stand the SAO fights but that was mostly because I watched it dubbed and the guy who played Kirito was………not good, to put it politically correctly.
Well…before I am going to list my favorite scene with a blade so far….I’m going to admit something: I have only seen Sword Art Online, so the other fights I have not seen ( 🙈🙈🙈🙈 walks way in shame…..). That said, that scene with Kirito was absolutely badass. The music was spot on, and even though we know Kirito will win, it was seriously amazing to watch. Good choice indeed toegaven on the list.
Now my favorite scene with a blade (at least so far), was from an anime series that I seen pretty recently and that was Blood C. Even though the series itself wasn’t all that great, it featured some terrific fights. The one that stood a lot for me was Saya fighting the very first monster in the pilot episode in the marsh. It was bloody, it was horrible, but it was also pretty awesome at the same time. So that for me was my favorite fight sequence with a blade 😀
That fight in Blood C was pretty good (even if I didn’t think much of the rest of the anime). Nice choice.