Given Concrete Revolutio’s episodic nature and all that, it’s pretty easy to separate the individual episodes from each other (with an exception or two) for this sort of list, although the selection was a bit harder since I only didn’t love two or so episodes. It’s kind of like all those top ten lists of Bebop/Dandy episodes people churned out after finishing those series for the first time, and I’m sure people are going to be doing the same thing for Osomatsu-san in the future (assuming they haven’t already. I haven’t checked).
Whilst Revolutio is forever destined to not be as popular as any of those shows, that doesn’t mean I can’t ask the few of you who did stick with it to give me your own top ten, whether it be in the comments section or on your own blog. And I hope you guys spread the love because quite frankly, only a little more than ten thousand people on MAL acknowledging the show’s existence is just wrong.
If you can’t recall the names of the episodes, you can go to the Funimation site here. Now let’s get to this.
10. 'Devila and Devilo'
I already wrote quite a bit about this episode so I won’t go into too many details. It basically functioned as the first giant piece of foreshadowing for the second season’s final conflict, as well as told one of the best stories about racism and prejudice I’ve ever seen. And it had uncensored female nipples. Where the fuck were my uncensored nipples when I was watching your crappy Big Order adaptation, asread? Yeah, I have no idea why people thought this guest-written episode was lackluster. It did way more for its subject matter in 22 minutes than most of those stories do in one movie, let alone a series.
9. 'The Iron Couple'
If you’re like me, this is the episode that made you realize Concrete Revolutio was going to be a show worth paying attention to. The first episode was too rushed in order to really amount to more than a taste of what was to come and the second episode was fine if a bit simplistic. But the third episode of the series was when I realized the show was going to be about the Cold War and Japan’s role in it at the time, rather than just being used as a setting, Assassin’s Creed-style. Not only did the episode introduce us to Raito and give us a heartwarming tale about AI and the limits to what they’re allowed to feel and think, it actually introduced us to the concept of superheroes being used as military weapons and I went “wait, is this actually going to be another Darker than Black?”. By the time the ending fight scene of well-animated energy blew up in my face, I had realized that this Bones anime wasn’t going to be the same as previous Bones anime.
8. 'Canada Goldenrod'
I really like this one because it hits you right in the emotions whilst being fucked up in regards to how it tells its heartwarming tale. Despite the father’s desire to be a hero for his daughter, his superpowers make him look ugly, the means he uses to gain such power are illegal, and the lengths he’ll go to to keep said powers are even more illegal. It’s kind of Breaking Bad-ish, except the Walter in this case never stops caring about his family throughout the whole thing, although that doesn’t stop him from accidentally putting them in danger. Also, it was nice to see Campe return and Deus Ex Machina the whole mess away. Human-man may have been ultimately wrong, but he’s still a hero in the eyes of the children.
7. 'Iron-Mask Arrives'
Another piece of foreshadowing towards the final conflict, as well as one of the best fish-out-of-water stories I’ve ever seen period. Whether it be films like Thor or other anime like Kurumukuro, I’m usually not a fan of that trope because it’s main usage is to be for cheap jokes and just setting a conflict in modern times for no reason. But of course, Revolutio refuses to play by the rules, and turns said situation into a source of drama centered on political battles and love between enemies whilst relating a powerful message that things in the past weren’t really better than things in the present. And of course, it’s nice to see progress regarding the characters dealing with the government that wants to ban their existence directly. It’s a little hard to describe why I like this episode so much, but I wouldn’t disagree with you if you accused cat girls of being a factor in my decision.
6. 'Japan 'Beast' History Part 2'
If The Iron Couple convinced me that Concrete Revolutio was actually going to be good, the second part of the Beast History story was when I realized I had found the best anime of the year. Similar to Un-go’s initial double-episode arc, the second episode of Revolutio’s turn with the format was jam-packed with all sorts of blows against Japan’s war crimes, as well as revelations regarding how untrustworthy the Superhuman Bureau was and satirical statements regarding how the public perceived fads during that time period (and even to this day). Hell, there’s probably stuff in that episode that I missed – and I’ve watched it four times. It was an ambitious episode for sure, and the fact that it got away with all that through a plot line centered on a giant gorilla-like creature running amok just makes me love it even more.
5. 'Go Beyond the Sky and Stars'
Earth-chan is pretty popular amongst fans for her black-and-white stance on evil and inability to comprehend gray matters in complicated situations. Seeing that sort of stance challenged really does it for me for some reason, and it doesn’t hurt that her dreams of being human are genuinely heartwarming too. Not much else to say as most of the episode depends on you liking our little female Astro Boy. I certainly do, and I also feel kinda sorry for how she never catches a break in future episodes.
4. 'The Age of Giant Gods'
Seeing Jiro get bitch-slapped with the truth regarding who he is and how much bullshit his ideology actually contained guaranteed this episode a spot on this list by itself. Seeing the sweet mecha action as well as the movie itself was a bonus.
3. 'Can You Still Sing'
I have not looked at any of the reactions to Concrete Revolutio’s last episode (bar some MAL ones, but that’s MAL) so I’m not sure what the popular opinion is, but I personally loved this finale. Yes, it and the previous episode could have stood to be double the length, but not only did it manage to tie up every necessary loose end in a compelling manner, it also made me laugh regarding how it gave a big middle finger to the ending of Code Geass R2 whilst imparting some compelling thoughts on the future of superhumans (aka the merchandising, worshipping of them as literal gods, and everything else in relation to the current superhero boom) and the existence of future threats (represented as aliens from outer space. LOL). And of course, Bones really went all out with the action for this finale. Underdeveloped in places, but strong in all the required areas.
2. 'Hakko Superhuman Crash Incident/Riots in Shinjuku'
As much as I liked the series finale, I think I prefer the mid-season one because of its tighter plotting and the fact that Claude is a more interesting final villain than Satomi whilst hitting the same level of major beats that made this show so great. Also, yeah it does seem a little cheap to put two episodes on the number 2 spot, but I really can’t separate them from each other and I don’t want to give each of them their own spot as it’d be redundant. Similar to the series finale, these two episodes act as the culmination of everything that’s happened so far in a satisfactory way whilst delivering on the action, the character beats/ideologies, and the similarities to Geass that never stop being funny. Seriously, Concrete Revolutio may as well be nicknamed Code Geass: The Good Version at this point. We all knew Jiro was going to leave the Bureau, but seeing the straw that broke the camel’s back was immensely rewarding on both an emotional and a visual sense. And if the second season had sucked, it’s perfectly reasonable to assume the series ended here and a continuation doesn’t exist.
Also, Devil Kikko is cool. Too bad she never shows up again after this.
1. 'The Ones Who Look Into Space'
I don’t score things anymore because I’ve come to realize how badly numbers/letters reflect the complications of personal opinions. But when I saw the second episode of the second season, I immediately wanted to give it a 10/10. Everything about this episode clicks with me. The LGBT themes (especially during that time period). The character drama/banter. The animation. The action. The way they tied past events together to make a compelling present-day story. My only complaint is that this episode came early into the second season and nothing else that came after was able to match up to it in terms of pleasing the eyes, the heart, and the brains. It’s so good that I can’t bring myself to talk about it any further because if you watched it, you know why it’s good. And if you haven’t, what are you waiting for? Go watch this amazing episode now. In fact, watch the entirety of this amazing show right now so you can make your own top ten Concrete Revolutio episodes list. Because I’m done with mine.