Our Grading System
Our ratings are based on the system not unlike what everybody saw throughout school (assuming, of course, you attended school in the US.) We tend to get a little grief from our rating system, but I think it's fair and honest. It used to be broken down by letter grade, but I have tried to further expand upon each one so there is little question what each one means.
Keep in mind too that these ratings reflect the overall quality of the anime, not the likelihood of rewatchability. Grave of the Fireflies is a fantastic movie, but rarely can I watch it. On the other hand, Ninja Scroll deserves its B letter grade, though most people would agree that it has a high rewatchability factor.
Our ratings generally run as follows:
A fabulous show that is an excellent example of its genre of anime and is worth checking out immediately. An instant classic. Really, the only difference between the two ratings is personal preference--something I personally adore will likely get the plus. On a 5 star scale, these anime would receive 5 stars.
Quite entertaining shows that, though not perfect, are very good programs you should see to broaden your scope of anime. The difference between an A- and B+ is usually due to the number of small issues the show has in sustaining plausibility, enjoyability, etc. On a 5 star scale, these anime would receive 4 stars.
Good shows with enjoyable stories that have significant but not major problems that mar the experience but do not make them unworthy. Many anime fit into this category, and these are certainly worthwhile if you've run out of top-notch shows to check out. On a 5 star scale, these anime would receive 3 stars.
Average shows that are nothing special in either genre or animation. Worth a look if the subject matter really interests you. However, these tend to have serious problems that cannot be overlooked by the average viewer. The difference between the three letter grades gives the reader an idea just how serious those problems are and how much they distract from the overall experience. On a 5 star scale, these would receive 2 stars.
Below the standards I enjoy. You may like it if your interests lie in its genre, but it is generally lacking in plot, sophistication, and animation. The difference in the letter grades denote whether or not there is anything worthy in the production whatsoever. On a 5 star scale, these would receive 1 star.
Not worth the media onto which it was recorded. Shows that fall into this area are usually either incredibly, mind-bogglingly bad (which is rare) or incredibly, mind-bogglingly offensive (which should be rare but is unfortunately not). Seriously, when I find a show worthy of an F review, it doesn't go on Ebay or Amazon, it goes into the trash because I want to spare others the agony. On a 5 star scale, any show with this moniker would receive no stars.