Top 10 Action Anime of 1996
1. Rurouni Kenshin
Himura Kenshin is a vagabond with a dark past and sunny disposition. Not a ronin but a rurouni, he was never a samurai, but an assassin of utmost skill in the Meiji restoration, who in the turning point of the war simply walked away. His travels lead him to Tokyo in the 11th year of the Meiji era, where he befriends a female Kendo master, a former thief, a brawler and a doctor all with their own secrets. Together they fight off the enemies surfacing from the dark past that Kenshin cannot escape.
2. Martian Successor Nadesico
Akito doesn't want to fight. Despite a childhood spent on the anime Gekiganger 3, a Mecha show, he'd rather cook than pilot a Mecha. Fate intervenes when his home on Mars is destroyed, and he is transported instantly to the Earth, mysteriously. He has questions no one can answer fully, but follows a girl from a chance meeting in hopes to discover any. The girl, Yurika, is captain of the private battleship Nadesico, and in order to follow her, he enlists as their cook. Possessing the nanite implants that allow to control mechas, he's a handy backup pilot for the mechas of the Nadesico. He joins a crew bent on revenging Mars and composed of misfits, otakus, and ditzes. But in reality they are handpicked experts. They take their own private war back to Mars to face the harsh reality that life may not always be like a Giant Mecha Series.
3. You're Under Arrest!
Tokyo Highway Patrolwomen Natsumi and Miyuki get off to a bad start when Miyuki busts Natsumi for reckless moped driving on her way to work. Things get worse when they find out they're going to be partners!
A continuation of the OVA series, the adventures of Tokyo policewomen Natsumi and Miyuki continue in the You're Under Arrest TV series. It's back to Bokuto Precinct, where demented felons and bashful (but hunky) policemen abound, and where the cutest girl in the office... isn't a girl.
4. Angel of Legend
Angel Densetsu is a story about Seiichirou Kitano, a kind and naive boy with the heart of an angel, but the sinister looks of a devil. This causes many misunderstandings, leading people to assume that he is a villain or heroin addict, and results in a career as the head thug, or "school guardian" at his new school.
5. Tenchi Muyo! In Love
The demonic space criminal Kain has escaped from prison and destroyed the Galaxy Police headquarters. To ensure that the Jurai will not stop him, Kain travels back to 1970 to eliminate Tenchi's mother before he is even born. Now, Tenchi and the gang must travel to the past to stop him before he ceases to exist.
6. Saber Marionette J
In the distant future, since the Earth has become overpopulated, efforts to find and colonize on other planets have begun. However, one of the ships, the "Mesopotamia" malfunctions and all but 6 of its inhabitants are all killed. the remaining 6 manage to escape to a nearby planet named "Terra ll ", which is similar to Earth in many respects. However, all of them are male. Therefore, as to not let their efforts go to waste, they begin to set up 6 countries and to reproduce through cloning and genetic engineering. however, there are still no women, and to make up for it, thy create lifelike advanced female androids called "Marionettes" which do everyday chores and work. However, they are all emotionless machines. But one day, a ordinary boy named Otaru finds and awakens 3 special battle type Marionettes that have emotions due to a "Maiden Circuit" within them. It's up to him then to teach them and allow their emotions to grow, and when a nearby country threatens with world domination, it's up to to Otaru and his "human" Marionettes to protect their country.
7. Birdy the Mighty
Tsutomu, an average middle school kid busy studying for the final exams to enter high school runs into a man running from someone and gets caught up in the chase. In all the confusion he is accidentally gets killed. Luckily Birdy (an interplanetary agent) knows a way to save him, unfortunately that means joining bodies to become one. So now he is stuck with this officer and along for the ride capturing criminals and saving lives.
8. Dragon Ball Movie 4: The Path to Power
A retelling of Dragon Ball's origin with a different take on the meeting of Goku, Bulma, and Kame-Sen'nin. It also retells the Red Ribbon Army story; but this time they find Goku rather than Goku finding them.
9. Armitage III: Poly-Matrix
In the year 2046 humans are moving away from using robots and begin to trust them less and less. In this time life becomes very perilous for the beingd known as seconds. The seconds are the most recent line of robots, as far as the public knows. This is the world Detective Ross Sylibus lives in. Detective Sylibus is transferred to Mars by his request after his partner was killed by a robot. As he arrives he falls headfirst into a murder where a country singer on his flight was murdered. He steps off the plane and watches as a scene unfolds and he meets his partner, Armitage a female cop with a major attitude. A rash of murders begins when yet more women are killed. As the investigation is continued a secret is uncovered. There is another line of robots known as Thirds. More and more Thirds turn up missing, as a serial killer who is intent on wiping out all the Thirds runs rampant. Armitage in her quest to put the murderer to justice reveals a secret. She herself is a Third.
10. Mobile Suit Gundam Wing: Operation Meteor
Two video releases recapping events from the Gundam Wing TV series. Each Operation Meteor video contains an 'Odd' episode and an 'Even' episode. The 'Odd' episodes feature Heero, Trowa and Wufei, while the 'Even' episodes feature Duo and Quatre. The episodes also featured brief new footages of the characters after the final episode of the TV series.