Best 10 Fantasy TV Anime Of 1996 Everyone Should Watch at Least Once

They’re the best Anime that 1996 has to offer! We counts down the best anime to come out this year, including the likes of VS Knight Lamune & 40 Fire, Juuni Senshi Bakuretsu Eto Ranger, El Hazard: The Wanderers, and more!

10: VS Knight Lamune & 40 Fire

Japanese: VS騎士ラムネ&40炎
MAL Score: 6.84
Type: TV
Episodes: 26

Synopsis

Baba Lamunade is followed home by two strange peddler girls who give him a CD-rom game. After he beats “The Legend of Lamuness”, the girls come out of his computer and bring him to DokiDoki Space. He is the third descendant of the hero Lamuness who must stop Don Genosai from resurrecting the great evil Abraham. Accompanied by PQ, his advisor robot, and Parfait and Cacao, he must pilot the Kaizer Fire mecha. However, he needs another pilot, and Da Cider is chosen as the second pilot.

(Source: ANN)

Review



9: Juuni Senshi Bakuretsu Eto Ranger

Japanese: 十二戦支 爆烈エトレンジャー
MAL Score: 6.86
Type: TV
Episodes: 39

Synopsis

The Eto Rangers ride in Space-Time Transmitting Machine Kirinda to repair the Novel Worlds of Mugen. The Eto Rangers themselves are anthropomorphic animals, each representing one of the 12 Chinese zodiac animals (and The Twelve Branches in Buddhism). In Japan they are known as the Eto animals. The Novel Worlds are stories created by the human imagination, such as old folk tales as well as newer books. These living worlds play out repeatedly, and are necessary for the good of humanity. Princess Aura rules Mugen, which is an island continent hanging over an ocean from the skybound Novel Pole. The Great God Goal gives her power, but she may never leave the small palace island area. Their nemesis is the forgotten Spirit of Cats, Nyanma (real name, Chocolat), who was excluded from the choice of 12 protectors by being disqualified from the race (in actual legend there are many versions of this story). She seeks her revenge by distorting Novel Worlds with Jarei Monsters.

When a Jarei Monster goes to a Novel World they alter the story, turning it into a different version, sometimes a parody of itself. Bakumaru, the Spirit of Mice, must use the Genmakyou mirror to reveal (“Jarei Shouran!”) the evil spirit once enough clues lead to its identity. Often the Eto Rangers must play out some of the story to find out who or what it is, sometimes even taking on the role of one of the characters in the tale. After defeating the creature, Kirinda is called when Bakumaru holds up his hand with one of Aura’s 12 gems on it and calls out “Daikourin Kirinda!” Kirinda descends from a dimensional slit and purifies the evil spirit with a beam weapon, calling out “Jouka!” (Purification).

(Source: Wikipedia)

Review



8: El Hazard: The Wanderers

English: El-Hazard: The Wanderers
Japanese: 神秘の世界エルハザード
MAL Score: 6.96
Type: TV
Episodes: 26

Synopsis

High school science-whiz Makoto Mizuhara is working on his newest project in preparation for the school festival, alongside his best friend Nanami Jinnai. Nanami’s brother and Makoto’s lifelong rival, the unscrupulous student council president Katsuhiko Jinnai, is under scrutiny for mishandling the school festival planning and is convinced that Makoto is plotting to steal his position. One night, as Makoto and Nanami are taking a break with their teacher Masamichi Fujisawa, Jinnai sneaks into the science lab and sabotages Makoto’s device, which suddenly opens a portal that flings all four of them into another world!

Upon arrival, Makoto is immediately attacked by a horde of giant bug monsters. While running from them, he comes across Fujisawa and a girl named Rune Venus. After Fujisawa fights off the monsters, a group of dignitaries arrives, looking for Rune, their princess. They inform Makoto and Fujisawa that they are in a world called El-Hazard and take them back to the palace of Roshtaria, their kingdom. Though her advisors are suspicious of the newcomers, Rune decrees that they are to be treated as guests and quickly befriends Makoto. Unaware that Nanami and Jinnai are in this world as well, Makoto gets to work trying to figure out a way back to Earth.

Review









7: Elf wo Karu Mono-tachi

English: Those Who Hunt Elves
Japanese: エルフを狩るモノたち
MAL Score: 7.01
Type: TV
Episodes: 12

Synopsis

Loudmouthed martial artist Junpei Ryuzouji, elegant actress Airi Komiyama, and cheery but artillery-obsessed student Ritsuko Inoue all find themselves transported from their homeland of Japan to an unfamiliar, magical world. When the elven priestess Celcia Marieclaire casts the spell to send them home, she is interrupted, and the spell is broken into parts that scatter throughout the world. The spell fragments imprint themselves onto the skin of various elves.

The trio travels in Ritsuko’s tank, searching for elves who might carry the spell fragments so that Celcia can transfer them to her own body and make the spell whole again. As they adventure, people begin to refer to them as “Those Who Hunt Elves,” gaining a reputation as warriors that put a stop to evil-doers with their miraculous cannon, terrifying elves by stripping any that they find. Though they’re not the smartest group, they make up for it with enthusiasm and their strong determination to get back to Japan.

Review









6: Cinderella Monogatari

English: The Story of Cinderella
Japanese: シンデレラ物語
MAL Score: 7.32
Type: TV
Episodes: 26

Synopsis

Cinderella is the daughter of a wealthy duke who has remarried to provide her with a mother and sisters. When the Duke travels abroad, Cinderella discovers that her new family is anything but a family. With spoiled stepsisters and a harsh stepmother, Cindrella is forced to cook, clean and manage the household. Yet she remains cheerful, gentle and kind to her family, to her animal friends and to a mysterious boy, named Charles, who seems to have a connection with the prince of Emerald Castle. A whole new story on a classic fairytale.

When Cinderella’s cruel stepmother prevents her from attending the Royal Ball, she gets some unexpected help from the lovable mice Gus and Jaq, and from her Fairy Godmother.

(Source: ANN)

Review









5: Fushigi Yuugi

English: Mysterious Play
Japanese: ふしぎ遊戯
MAL Score: 7.63
Type: TV
Episodes: 52

Synopsis

While visiting the National Library, junior-high students Miaka Yuuki and Yui Hongo are transported into the world of a mysterious book set in ancient China, “The Universe of The Four Gods.” Miaka suddenly finds herself with the responsibility of being the priestess of Suzaku, and must find all of her celestial warriors for the purpose of summoning Suzaku for three wishes; however, the enemy nation of the god Seiryuu has manipulated Yui into becoming the priestess of Seiryuu. As enemies, the former best friends begin their long struggle to summon their respective gods and obtain their wishes…

Review









4: Tenkuu no Escaflowne

English: The Vision of Escaflowne
Japanese: 天空のエスカフローネ
MAL Score: 7.68
Type: TV
Episodes: 26

Synopsis

Hitomi Kanzaki is just an ordinary 15-year-old schoolgirl with an interest in tarot cards and fortune telling, but one night, a boy named Van Fanel suddenly appears from the sky along with a vicious dragon. Thanks to a premonition from Hitomi, Van successfully kills the dragon, but a pillar of light appears and envelopes them both. As a result, Hitomi finds herself transported to the world of Gaea, a mysterious land where the Earth hangs in the sky.

In this new land, Hitomi soon discovers that Van is a prince of the Kingdom of Fanelia, which soon falls under attack by the evil empire of Zaibach. In an attempt to fight them off, Van boards his family’s ancient guymelef Escaflowne—a mechanized battle suit—but fails to defeat them, and Fanelia ends up destroyed. Now on the run, Hitomi and Van encounter a handsome Asturian knight named Allen Schezar, whom Hitomi is shocked to find looks exactly like her crush from Earth. With some new allies on their side, Van and Hitomi fight back against the forces of Zaibach as the empire strives to revive an ancient power.

Review









3: Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon: Sailor Stars

English: Sailor Moon Sailor Stars
Japanese: 美少女戦士セーラームーン セーラースターズ
MAL Score: 7.92
Type: TV
Episodes: 34

Synopsis

Like the R Season, Sailor Stars is divided into two arcs:

The first arc (also filler) solves some conflicts from the SuperS season, and also sees the return of the Outer Senshi, Haruka, Michiru, Setsuna, and Hotaru (now reborn as a child).

The second arc is the actual plot from the manga. Usagi bids farewell to Mamoru, who is going to America to study abroad. In his place comes the Three Lights, an idol trio consisting of three boys, Seiya, Taiki, and Yaten. The new enemy is Galaxia, a woman who desires to rule the entire galaxy by collecting the Star Seeds of humans. Three new Senshi appear, the Sailor Starlights, who also intend to stop Galaxia without Sailor Moon’s help.

Review









2: Slayers Next

English: Slayers Next
Japanese: スレイヤーズNEXT
MAL Score: 8.03
Type: TV
Episodes: 26

Synopsis

In the kingdom of Xoana, Lina Inverse and Gourry Gabriev unexpectedly come across their old companions, Zelgadis Graywords and Princess Ameilia Wil Tesla Saillune. Upon their reunion, the friends end up easily foiling the King of Xoana and his daughter’s dastardly plans of world conquest.

Soon after, it is revealed that Zelgadis is in search of the world’s most valuable magical tome, the Claire Bible, hoping to discover a method to recover his human body among the many secrets sheltered within it. Despite his protests, the rest of the group decides to join in the quest after hearing of his mission. However, just when they were wondering where to start looking for the legendary book, they stumble upon a mysterious priest by the name of Xellos, who claims that he may be of some help in their pursuit.

Review









1: Dragon Ball Z

English: Dragon Ball Z
Japanese: ドラゴンボールZ
MAL Score: 8.15
Type: TV
Episodes: 291

Synopsis

Five years after winning the World Martial Arts tournament, Gokuu is now living a peaceful life with his wife and son. This changes, however, with the arrival of a mysterious enemy named Raditz who presents himself as Gokuu’s long-lost brother. He reveals that Gokuu is a warrior from the once powerful but now virtually extinct Saiyan race, whose homeworld was completely annihilated. When he was sent to Earth as a baby, Gokuu’s sole purpose was to conquer and destroy the planet; but after suffering amnesia from a head injury, his violent and savage nature changed, and instead was raised as a kind and well-mannered boy, now fighting to protect others.

With his failed attempt at forcibly recruiting Gokuu as an ally, Raditz warns Gokuu’s friends of a new threat that’s rapidly approaching Earth—one that could plunge Earth into an intergalactic conflict and cause the heavens themselves to shake. A war will be fought over the seven mystical dragon balls, and only the strongest will survive in Dragon Ball Z.

Review









Did YOUR favorite anime make the cut? Let us know in the comments below!

1. Dragon Ball Z
2. Slayers Next
3. Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon: Sailor Stars
4. Tenkuu no Escaflowne
5. Fushigi Yuugi
6. Cinderella Monogatari
7. Elf wo Karu Mono-tachi
8. El Hazard: The Wanderers
9. Juuni Senshi Bakuretsu Eto Ranger
10. VS Knight Lamune & 40 Fire

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