About Personal Ranks and Anime Divisions

If you want to, you can search MyAnimeList for my username and find my MAL profile. However, right now, it is horribly out of date, with many shows I’ve yet to put in there. More importantly, though, I will be changing the PS (Personal Score) sub-grading system to letter ranks, which I will now use when looking at how much I personally enjoyed a given show. For those that don’t know, I have separate “personal scores” and “review scores” for anime (and other things I review), with review scores being a measure of how much I would recommend the anime to others (there are plenty of shows I really like but hesitate to recommend).

Here’s how my “personal score” ranks are broken down.

S rank: The rank reserved for the absolute best anime of all-time, the ARIA series. Theoretically, any anime that can match ARIA in enjoyment and personal impact can go here as well, though who knows how long it will be until another such show comes along…

A+/A/A- ranks: The “A” ranks in general represent what I consider my “favorite” anime. These are the ones I will often bring up when talking about good stuff in anime or good anime in general, as they have left significant impressions on me. They may have flaws but those flaws are significantly dwarfed by their enjoyability or their impact on me. A+ anime are the other anime that I consider among the absolute best I have seen, while A- are for anime that might not have made huge impressions on me like A/A+ anime have, or may be more flawed than in higher ranks, but are still highly memorable in smaller ways.

B+/B/B- ranks: The “B” ranks are for shows I enjoyed, though they didn’t leave as strong impressions on me. They are still shows that I consider really good and generally think of fondly, though. B+ shows may have small elements that are particularly memorable or are just generally high quality but fall a bit short of becoming a favorite, while B- shows are weaker or more heavily flawed shows that still managed to be enjoyable.

C+/C/C- ranks: These are the average shows, shows which I liked enough to finish but not enough to care too much for it when all is said and done. C+ shows may have a few aspects that I particularly liked with the rest being mostly forgettable. C- shows are usually very flawed shows that manage to be just enjoyable enough that I didn’t outright dislike it.

D rank: These are for shows that I just didn’t like overall. Not much to say here; at this point, I’m rarely going to give any show this rank as most shows I dislike would be dropped early on. There are no +/- sub-ranks for D-rank.

F rank: Reserved for those rare few shows that were just outright horrible. Almost certainly never to be given out to a new show, this rank is reserved for some of the dredge I trucked through early on in my anime fandom.

I have divided the shows that I watch or plan to watch into multiple divisions. While this mainly helps me keep better track of my backlog, for blogging purposes it also affects my end-of-season and end-of-year review posts, as I will review shows in each division separately. This is mainly due to the fairly different natures of the shows in each division, as I will explain momentarily.

Division A is the division that comprises the shows that I follow on a weekly basis or can otherwise finish not long after the season ends. For many reasons, this division will largely comprise of comedy and slice-of-life shows. Those shows are generally easier for me to follow on a weekly basis due to the relative lack of drama, and their quality is generally more consistent from week to week, so I don’t have to worry as much about a show’s quality suddenly tanking. This also allows such shows to be compared to similar shows, rather than trying to compare them to more plot-intensive shows, which is often like comparing apples to oranges.

Division B is my high-priority backlog, consisting of the handful of shows each season I most want to finish. Many of these shows are shows that I had watched a few episodes of as the season started and really liked, but I inevitably fell behind on as my schedule crowded them out. Some shows are ones I had interest in at the beginning but wanted to be sure would not end up jumping the shark later on, so once the season ends and I can confirm through various others’ opinions and general online consensus that the show stays strong throughout, I add them to this division. Shows with a sequel airing or coming up may also be put in this division in an attempt to catch up in time for the new season. Shows in this division tend to be more plot-intensive compared to those in Division A.

Division C comprises most of the rest of my backlog of shows I have some interest in. Because they are lower priority than Division B shows, it may take me a long while to get to them, though.

Division M is the Marathon division, and reserved for shows I would otherwise place in Division B or C, but for which fully catching up on would require watching more than 2 cours’ (i.e. more than 26 full-length episodes) worth of episodes. When these shows get placed on my watch schedule, I will usually watch them one season at a time, whatever its season dividers are. At some point I will probably compile a full ranking of Marathon Shows (i.e. shows with at least 3 cours of content) across my entire watch history, since the longer length of these shows make for some more interesting comparisons.

Division J is the Junior division, and comprises of shorter OVA series and low-runtime shorts. For my purposes, shows in this division will either have episodes of 5 minutes or shorter (with no compilation episodes that combine them into a longer episode), or have less than 10 full episodes of content. To elaborate, the following shows would be put in Division J:

  • A 6-episode OVA series at ~30 minutes/episode
  • A 12-episode series of half-length (~12 min) episodes
  • A 102-episode series of four-minute episodes, with no compilation episodes

Whereas the following shows would be put in Division A, B, or C:

  • A 6-episode OVA series at ~45 minutes/episode
  • A 24-episode series of half-length episodes
  • A 60-episode series of four-minute episodes, with special compilation episodes aired that combine five such episodes into effectively a full-length episode