This is a dangerous post to make given now misunderstood it can be. But the anime deities seem to be insisting on my paying of tribute to these fabulous girls by throwing several really memorable elementary school characters at me of late. Complying, here's a list of my favourite grade schoolers (all lovely and under 13) in alphabetical order.
1. FATE TESTAROSSA (NANOHA AS)
Fate was also on my previous loli lists and will still be on it if I made a similar list 20 years later. My recent sitting of Nanoha As movie reminded me why she has a permanent spot. Besides the customary blond twin-tail, red-eyed, immeasurably kind, tragic-loli attributes that presses all my buttons, Fate's impeccable fashion sense (ultra short flair skirt with boots and body straps) only deepens my love. At nine years old, she's probably the youngest on this list.
2. HACHIKUJI MAYOI (NISEMONOGATARI)
Araragi's line in Nisemonogatari - "I'm dating Senjougahara, in love with Hanekawa but I'd marry you, Hachikuji.." took the words right out of my mouth. Well almostI'd add " .and make Sengoku my mistress " but Sengoku-classed bishoujos deserve another separate post. I still remember Bill Cosby's "Kids say the darnest things" show years back and I think Hachikuji would have been a riot on that program. Her insight on adding 'courage' to make good any statement was absolutely enlightening and is the source of my courage to make this loli list .
3. HINAMORI AMU (SHUGO CHARA)
It was a toss-up between Hinamori Amu and Kinomoto Sakura (from Cardcaptor sakura) for this spot. In the end, Amu with her numerous chara won out. Amu has an interesting blend of childlike innocence, adult empathy and teenage exuberance that draws people to her. Alright, the same can probably be said of Sakura but I think ultimately pink hair wins. XD
4. IOKAWA KARADA (ASATTE NO HOUKOU)
Asatte no what? I don't blame you. AnH doesn't have mecha, big explosions, panty shots, magical circles or moe to draw the typical anime audience. It does however, have good drama, a fantastic soundtrack and Iokawa Karada - a most memorable loli. At 12, she's probably better wife material than everyone I knew in high school.
5. KAZAHANA MASHIRO (MAI HIME)
Mashiro is the reason why I have been campaigning for a Mai HiME prequel since 2004. I'm probably part of the handful who remembers that fleeting scene in ep 25 Mai HiME of Mashiro in her miko outfit (as the Kagutsuchi user and winner of the 2nd HiME war).
6. MOCHIDA HINAKO (MYSELF, YOURSELF)
Twin-tailed, light haired eternal loli who looked the same at 20 as she was 12. Hinako is not quite one of those 'immeasurably kind but tragic' lolis that is the mainstay of this list. But her meld of tsundere and budding maturity plus her shy kiss in ep 6 wins her a spot anyway.
7. NINAMORI ERI (FLCL)
Gainax is famous for crafting sensuous bishoujos and in my opinion, Eri is one of their crowning work. I know, it's socially not well acceptable to label a 12 year old as sexy but man, I think that's Eri's overriding attribute. First Asuka (Evangelion) then Eri. I think Gainax will make lolicons of all us.
8. TAKANASHI MIU (PAPA NO IUKOTO WO KIKINASAI!)
This precocious princess will grow up to be a fine lady. High in both IQ and EQ, Miu is also not only beautiful but athletic and excels in all she does. The confidence and maturity she exudes makes her mentally older than even her sister Sora.
9. YUTA KANAMI (SCRYED)
As the loli from the oldest TV series on this list (2001), you know Kanami has staying power and will likely book a slot on such lists for the next 20 years (ala Fate Testorassa).
10. YUUKI MIKAN (TO-LOVE-RU DARKNESS)
To-love-ru Darkness is my first foray into the franchise and it's a show I have difficulty convincing my wife I am watching for the plot. It's absolute coincidence that this post's picture is Mikan who is also anchoring this list. That said, Mikan is truly very lovely and like Karada, will make great wife material. I suspect the warring factions of lolicon vs siscon will finally be united under one banner by the likes of Mikan.