When I think of anime, I usually think of loud cartoons that have a strange obsession with women. Anime cons seem like they are as much fun as any other geeky con, and actually make more sense to me than the shows they celebrate. Every now and then, however, somebody sends a little anime my way that completely unravels the stereotype in my head.

The first was several years ago when a person who is distinctly un-geeky gifted us Princess Mononoke with the promise that I would love the film. I think I rolled my eyes and tossed it in a drawer until somebody suggested watching it months later. Turns out, the gifter was right. Princess Mononoke is possibly one of my favorite movies. I admit that I am particularly partial to anything dealing with nature’s plight as humans do our best to destroy the planet. Even so, Princess Mononoke is particularly well done and opened my eyes to what anime can be.

I hadn’t seen any anime that really impressed since then until another very un-geeky friend recently convinced me to check out Mushi-shi. The show follows Ginko, who is a Mushi Master. Mushi are described as being nearly supernatural because they are so in tune with the essence of life. Each episode features a different Mushi wreaking havoc on some poor unsuspecting person, often a child. Ginko shows up and explains the particular type of Mushi and then saves the day. The show is quiet and lovely, and the Mushi are always interesting.

I’ve seen almost all the Mushi-shi episodes, and I need suggestions for other anime shows or movies to check out. What do you recommend? Please tell me in the comments.

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