Durarara : 4 of 5

I actually heard about this anime while watching an AKB48 TV show when Mayu (who is somewhat of an otaku) mentioned it. I was curious about the series, and it didn't take me long to discover it was available to watch online via Crunchyroll, and I was able to enjoy the entire thing (some episodes on my iPad, and some on my MacBook). Durarara is a really cool anime, although it's a little strange how the plot keeps shifting direction and focus. The main characters are three students (two guys and a girl) living their lives in Ikebukuro, which is filled with gang activity and weird goings-on, such as the Headless Rider! The rider's motorcycle sounds like a horse, she wears black with a cool yellow helmet (just resting on her neck, since she's headless) that has sculpted cat ears, and can summon a scythe out of black mist. Actually, she's one of the main characters, just a kind girl who simply wants to find her head! Although at first this seems like the main plot of the show, the main storyline is about rival gangs, and slowly the strange secrets and pasts of each of the three students are revealed! There are lots of other colorful characters (a crazy-strong fighting guy who throws vending machines, a black guy who works at a Russian Sushi restaurant and speaks Japanese with a hilarious accent, plus geeky side characters who make lots of funny anime/manga references), and I loved how each episode is somewhat narrated by a different character so you get a glimpse into each of their thoughts! The animation and character designs are really cool, and the opening and closing themes are fantastic, too. Durarara is definitely an above average anime, and it was a lot of fun to watch an entire series before it's available on DVD in the US (but it will be soon). Thanks for the recommendation, Mayu!