For every anime, there is a generation that is sparked with a connection to it. For the genre being alive since the early 1970s, it has been capturing viewers and long-time fans ever since, and it continues to do so with newly-produced anime. While the newest anime still serve a great purpose in leaving people wanting more, the anime made 10, 20, or even 30 years ago are still incredible to this day.

In this list, we at CBR have reviewed the best anime that has aired since the debut of the genre. Many of these shows have been produced within the past two decades, so you’ll get some nostalgia if you were the one tuning in on a Saturday morning to watch some of these. If you’re interested in some more gritty features, check out our latest review of the best fighting anime. Nevertheless, get yourself set in to see the best anime ever made.

Editors choice

1. Death Note

9.98 / 10
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If you were given a notebook that could kill anyone in the world the moment you wrote their name in, what would you write in it? Trick question, we hope it’s no one and you would just throw the book into the trash, but that’s what Death Note’s premise is all about. The story follows Light Yagami, a teen genius who stumbles across a mysterious otherworldly notebook: the “Death Note”, which belonged to the Shinigami Ryuk and grants the user the supernatural ability to kill anyone whose name is written in its pages.
A thriller/action-based story, the series centers around Light’s subsequent attempts to use the Death Note to carry out a worldwide massacre of individuals whom he deems morally unworthy of life to change the world into a utopian society without crime, using the alias of a god-like vigilante named “Kira” and the subsequent efforts of an elite task-force of law enforcement officers, consisting of members of the Japanese police force, led by L, an enigmatic internationally detective whose past is shrouded in mystery, to apprehend him and end his reign of terror.
As short as the series may be, consisting of only 37 episodes, Death Note takes the spot of the best anime due to its hard-hitting action, fast-paced storyline, and an anime that doesn’t expand into other spin-offs to stay true to its main plot (we’re not going to discuss Netflix’s live-action adaptation), making it a one-of-a-kind anime on our list. If you’re on the hunt for something that you’d want to binge-watch within a weekend, Death Note is the perfect series to give a shot at, since it’ll make you want more and more afterwards.

Key Features
  • Light Yagami is an aspiring young man destined for success
  • A strange black notebook falls from the heavens during his class
  • Realizing that the Death Note is real, he begins his cleanse
  • With the world’s greatest detective on Light’s track, the series builds up
Specifications
  • Genre: Mystery, Psychological Thriller, Supernatural Thriller
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • Number of Seasons: 1
  • Debut Date: October 3, 2006
  • Studio: Madhouse, Nippon TV, Shueisha
Pros
  • Incredible story
  • Hard-hitting action
  • Drama-filled
Cons
  • Short series
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Hands down, one of the best anime ever created, Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is a one-of-a-kind series that really stands out from the rest of the anime known to mankind. Adapted from the manga from page to page, Brotherhood is set in a world where the dominant science is called Alchemy, which the process of transforming an object into something else using symbols is called Transmutation Circles.
The series follows two brothers, Edward and Alphonse Elric, in the fictional country of Amestris, who commit a grave taboo in trying to revive their mother back from the dead using Alchemy. As a result, Edward loses his right arm and left leg, and Alphonse loses his entire body, trapping his soul into a suit of armor. The story follows their journey as they attempt to return their bodies back to normal with the help of the legendary Philosopher's Stone. Along the way, they encounter supernatural creatures called Homunculi, and also learn shocking truths about the very nature of Alchemy in Amestris.
The entire anime is absolutely brilliant. By far one of the best series to ever watch, the themes of love, brotherhood, and courage that are portrayed are really touching, attaching you to certain characters fairly quickly. There are plenty of light moments in between so the story doesn’t get too dreary, and it builds up very steadily, not rushing through in any way. Watching this doesn’t make you feel heavy after a few episodes, nor do you feel completely bored in certain filler episodes like other anime.
This complex but interesting storyline will keep you interested through the 64 episodes available, as well as the many fight sequences that revolve around. If you’re in for nonstop action but also heart-filled moments, please enjoy Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood to your heart’s content.

Key Features
  • The 2nd series based on Fullmetal Alchemist
  • Created by Hiromy Arakawa
  • 2 brothers must go on a journey to resolve their problems
  • Contains 64 episodes filled with drama, fantasy & action
Specifications
  • Genre: Adventure, Dark Fantasy, Steampunk
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • Number of Seasons: 1
  • Debut Date: April 5, 2009
  • Studio: Bones Inc.
Pros
  • Full of fight scenes
  • Action-packed
  • Wholesome story
Cons
  • Too short for an anime
Best value

3. Naruto

9.31 / 10
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“I’m going to be Hokage one day - believe it!” is a line you must have heard before if you’re fond of anime. If not, then welcome to the world of Naruto. They’re the words repeatedly said by the shinobi Naruto Uzumaki, an iconic anime character from one of the world's most popular anime series.
Naruto began as a Japanese manga series, written by Masashi Kishimoto, and was adapted as an anime series in 2002. The series follows the adventures of Naruto Uzumaki, a young ninja of the Hidden Leaf Village, whose dream is to gain the respect and recognition of his peers and to become the village Hokage, the most powerful ninja who leads the village. Thanks to the incredible people at Madman Entertainment, 220 episodes were produced to have you on the edge of your seat at all times.
Despite being a rascal at times, Naruto’s story goes deep. Being an orphaned boy after his parents were murdered during the village’s battle with the Nine-Tailed Fox, the creature was sealed into Naruto, the only individual being capable of withstanding the beast. While the narrative is typical of a slice-of-life story about ninjas, the plot rapidly changes to showcase the evil forces at work, the changes in Naruto from being a brat to an inspirational character, and the darkness that builds within Sasuke Uchiha, who has a rather interesting backstory himself.
While this may not seem like a dark and gritty thriller, this is a well-written anime with a piece of silliness mixed into it. A cult classic much like others on this list, Naruto can please anyone who wants to start a nice, long-lasting series to watch.

Key Features
  • Adapted from the original manga written by Masashi Kishimoto
  • Follows the story of Naruto Uzumaki, an aspired ninja who wants to become the very best
  • Spans over 220 episodes & continues with its sequel, Naruto: Shippūden
  • Filled with great fighting sequences & comedic routes
Specifications
  • Genre: Adventure, Fantasy, Martial Arts
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • Number of Seasons: 1
  • Debut Date: October 3, 2002
  • Studio: Pierrot Co., Ltd.
Pros
  • Great story
  • Silly anime
  • Action-packed
Cons
  • Some fillers included
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If post-apocalyptic is tattooed on your forehead in terms of what you enjoy watching, then look no further since Attack on Titan is the show for you. Based on the manga series of the same name created by Hajime Isayama, the series is an action-fueled, dark fantasy, post-apocalyptic anime that makes you watch in terror from beginning to end.
Set in a world where humanity lives within cities surrounded by enormous walls that protect them from gigantic man-eating humanoids referred to as Titans, the story follows Eren Yeager, who vows to retake the world after a Titan brings about the destruction of his hometown and the death of his mother. Bringing revenge upon the massive foes and reclaiming the world from the Titans, Eren and his friends join the Scout Regiment, an elite group of soldiers who fight the Titans.
The anime can be split into four different blocks of content: the 2013 season and its films, the 2017 season and its film, the 2018-2019 season and its film, and the upcoming final season that has yet to be aired. While the anime has yet to be done, Attack on Titan is a series to start as soon as possible, with all of its 59 episodes and a handful of films to watch, it may take a bit of time.
An anime like Attack on Titan is rare to come across. Based in a world that doesn’t let you sleep at night, it’s a series that really keeps you up until the sun rises. So, if that’s your cup of tea, get ready for an adventure to take down these Titans.

Key Features
  • A dark fantasy anime based on the manga by Hajime Isayama
  • Set in a world where humanity lives inside cities surrounded by Titans
  • Follows Eren Yeager & his friends who plan to fight against the Titans
  • Contains 59 episodes & various compilation films
  • A final season is yet to be aired
Specifications
  • Genre: Action, Dark Fantasy, Post-Apocalyptic
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • Number of Seasons: 3
  • Debut Date: April 7, 2013
  • Studio: Wit Studio, MAPPA
Pros
  • Post-apocalyptic
  • Action-packed
  • Drama at its best
Cons
  • Extremely graphic

An anime that spans across many generations, this is the sequel to Dragon Ball from 1986. Dragon Ball Z is an anime that everyone must know of, whether it's the name itself, Goku, or the Saiyans - Dragon Ball Z is one of the greatest anime to have ever been produced.
Produced by Toei Animation and written by Akira Toriyama, Dragon Ball Z continues the adventures of Goku, who, along with his companions made in the prequel series, defend the Earth against villains ranging from aliens like Frieza, androids like Cell, and magical creatures like Majin Buu. While the original anime followed Goku from childhood to early adulthood and had its fun moments, Dragon Ball Z is a continuation of his adult life in this hard-action anime, but at the same time parallels the life of his son, Gohan, as well as the development of his rival Vegeta.
While there have been sequel series produced afterwards like Dragon Ball GT and Dragon Ball Super, Z is the core of the entire Dragon Ball universe that has a recognition like no other anime on this list. With over 150 episodes, the series has some of the most unique scenes in anime ever made, such as Goku’s transformation to becoming a Super Saiyan and the Cell Games. If you’re into anime and haven’t watched Dragon Ball Z, we won’t judge. However, if you’re just starting, this is an anime that must be seen if you enjoy some fast-paced action, even if some fight scenes last about three to four episodes at a time. It’s gripping, entertaining, and heartbreaking all at the same time, and you wish you could be a Saiyan like Goku and his friends too.

Key Features
  • Over 150 episodes spanning generations & more to watch
  • Follow the characters of Goku, Gohan & Vegeta in this hard-gripping action
  • Recognizable scenes from the anime are witnessed
  • Written by Akira Toriyama to create an opera-based action series
Specifications
  • Genre: Adventure, Fantasy, Martial Arts
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • Number of Seasons: 9
  • Debut Date: April 26, 1989
  • Studio: Toei Animation
Pros
  • Fun to watch
  • Edge-of-your-seat action
  • Incredible storyline
Cons
  • Fight scenes last way too long

What do you get when you mix ghosts and samurais together? An incredible anime like Bleach, and it does not disappoint viewers who have watched this when they were kids. An anime based on Tite Kubo’s manga of the same name, Bleach follows the adventures of Ichigo Kurosaki after he obtains the powers of a Soul Reaper - a death personification similar to the Grim Reaper - from another Soul Reaper, Rukia Kuchiki.
Ichigo’s newfound powers force him to take on the duties of defending humans from evil spirits and guiding departed souls to the afterlife. The anime adaptation includes original storylines not found in the manga with repeated appearances and stories containing these original characters. It’s a supernatural anime that really opens up another world, and it’s continuing with its awaiting final story arc, the “Thousand-Year Blood War”, that will receive an anime adaptation as well from the manga.
Bleach is a great anime for all Shonen fans. If this is your first anime to give a shot at, it’s a great gateway anime to explore more genres and series in the genre. Though it may not become your favourite anime, Bleach will definitely make you look back at how great of a storyline it contained from beginning to end.

Key Features
  • Based on Tite Kubo’s manga of the same name
  • Spans over 350 episodes that follow the story of Ichigo Kurosaki
  • 16 seasons are available with a final arc coming indefinitely
  • Follow various characters through this wild anime
Specifications
  • Genre: Adventure, Supernatural
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • Number of Seasons: 16
  • Debut Date: October 5, 2004
  • Studio: Pierrot Co., Ltd.
Pros
  • Nice soundtrack
  • Cool fight sequences
  • Exceptional storyline
Cons
  • Quite lengthy
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On paper, Cowboy Bebop reads something like John Wayne and George Lucas came up with a wild sci-fi western series. Set in 2071, Bebop imagines a dystopian future where Earth has been irrevocably damaged due to the creation of a stargate, forcing humans to evacuate the planet and create colonies across the solar system. The result is a galaxy of lawlessness, where crime lords rule and cops pay bounty hunters to handle some of the grunt work. The show ultimately features so many influences and nods to other famous works it’s almost impossible to keep track. That’s Cowboy Bebop to you.
Although it covers a wide range of genres throughout its run, Cowboy Bebop draws most heavily from sci-fi, western, and noir, and its most recurring thematic focal points include adult existential ennui, loneliness, and the difficulties of trying to escape one’s past.
Cowboy Bebop became a critical and commercial success both in Japanese and North American markets, garnering several major anime and sci-fi awards upon its release, and received unanimous praise for its style, characters, story, voice acting, animation, and soundtrack. In the years since its release, critics have hailed Cowboy Bebop as a masterpiece and frequently cite it as one of the greatest anime titles of all time. Credited with helping to introduce anime to a new wave of Western viewers in the early 2000s, Cowboy Bebop has been labelled a gateway series for the medium as a whole.

Key Features
  • Spanning over 26 episodes, follow Spike Spiegel & his crew through their adventures
  • An anime filled with praise, it’s an excellent gateway series in the genre
  • Created by Hajime Yatate in 1997
  • Soundtrack composed by Yoko Kanno
  • Considered one of the best anime of all time
Specifications
  • Genre: Neo-Noir, Space Western
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • Number of Seasons: 1
  • Debut Date: April 3, 1998
  • Studio: Sunrise Inc.
Pros
  • Fun adventure-esque anime
  • Beautiful soundtrack
  • Incredible storyline
Cons
  • Short series

Usually, anime and manga connoisseurs tell you to read the manga before watching the anime - it’s the equivalent to reading the book before watching the film or TV series. However, My Hero Academia slaps that lesson in the face, making the anime an incredible series to watch without having to read the manga.
The story follows Izuku Midoriya, a boy born without superpowers in a world where they have become commonplace, but who still dreams of becoming a hero himself. He is scouted by All Might, Japan’s greatest hero, who shares his power with Midoriya after recognizing his potential, and later helps to enroll him in a prestigious high school for heroes in training.
As the clear underdog amongst his peers, Midoriya becomes a fan-favourite, being tracked down as likable and relatable. Likewise, the rest of the characters are multilayered and each interesting in their own right - the show boasts a colorful cast of diverse and wonderfully realized characters.
Considering the studio Bones’ pedigree, it should come as no surprise that the studio behind Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood has once again knocked it out of the park. My Hero Academia is loaded with incredible action scenes that are an absolute joy to watch, thanks to the fluid animation and dynamic angles at which they are present.
My Hero Academia delivers a series of fantastic action, elevated by a heartfelt story that’s wrapped around a core cast of memorable characters. While the show is still young, the stage has been set for more to come which poses some exciting new challenges for Midoriya and the rest of the crew.

Key Features
  • A Japanese superhero anime adapted from the manga by Kohei Horikoshi
  • It follows Izuku Midoriya who wants to become a superhero
  • Spanning over 88 episodes & more to come, including various films
  • Received overwhelming praise from around the world
Specifications
  • Genre: Adventure, Fantasy, Superhero
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • Number of Seasons: 2
  • Debut Date: April 3, 2016
  • Studio: Bones Inc.
Pros
  • Drama-filled
  • Fun watch
  • Exceptional animation
Cons
  • Superhero-focused

Ah, yes. One-Punch Man. There isn’t an exact explanation of this show, but there’s so much to say about it. Created by a person simply known as ‘One’ and produced by Madhouse and J.C.Staff, the anime became an overnight viral hit and a mass cult following from across the globe.
The story chronicles the adventure of Saitama, an inconspicuous-looking, bald guy who, after struggling to find a regular job, decides to fulfill his childhood ambition and become a superhero - like any other human being. After three years of “intense” training, Saitama finds that he has become outrageously strong, being able to defeat any enemy with a single punch, making Saitama bored with the lack of challenge that his enemies pose. It’s worth mentioning that One-Punch Man is as much a satirical comedy piece as it is an action one.
Far from being a one-man show however, the supporting cast are as varied, colorful, and insane as anyone could hope for. With each of the primary cast being afforded moments of both hilarity and badass-ness, One-Punch Man is a rare example of a show in which it doesn’t matter which characters an episode elects to focus on, you know you’re in for a treat.
One-Punch Man is truly a whole meal to have when watching an anime. The second season may not have lived up to season one due to the transition of production studios, but it’s still a laugh-and-a-half to have. Enjoy this modern piece of art when you can!

Key Features
  • A hero that does his job for fun, Saitama becomes the greatest hero alive
  • Witness ridiculous fights with characters against their foes
  • 2 seasons have been released with more on the way
  • Colorful, vibrant episodes
  • Despite its paradoxical premise, you’ll watch this over & over again
Specifications
  • Genre: Action, Comedy, Superhero
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • Number of Seasons: 2
  • Debut Date: October 5, 2015
  • Studio: Madhouse, J.C.Staff
Pros
  • Eye-catching
  • Hilarious
  • Action-packed
Cons
  • 2nd season lacks quality

If you weren’t one or knew of someone who played the original trading card game, then you probably didn’t exist in 2005 and after, simply because Yu-Gi-Oh! was everything. Aside from the card game and its multiple sequel series that came out after the original story, Yu-Gi-Oh! keeps the same strong impact of the young boy getting possessed by an ancient pharaoh and becoming extremely good at card games.
Released in 1998, the plot follows the story of a boy named Yugi Motou, who solves the ancient Millenium Puzzle. Yugi awakens a gambling alter-ego known as the Pharaoh within his body that solves his conflicts through various games. It’s a series both fans of the original Japanese release and English dubbed release can enjoy. The English dub is likely a bit more popular given how much it’s contributed to the conversation around English language translations on the whole - something you rarely see in many anime that fans rather enjoy watching the English subbed versions instead.
Yu-Gi-Oh! was so great, it launched sequels, spin-offs, and a major trading card game that is still being enjoyed today. That’s something that simply can’t be said about other successors, and no matter what others try, they just won’t be able to get out from under the shadow of that gloriously spiky hair-do.
If you remember the card game, then you’ll fully enjoy Yu-Gi-Oh! from the moment Exodia comes onto the battlefield to the final goodbye. It’s time to duel, and time to watch.

Key Features
  • Created by Kazuki Takahashi
  • Original series based on the worldwide-known trading card game
  • Follow Yugi Motou & his alter-ego on his adventures to uncover his past
  • Monsters from the original card game are witnessed
  • Spanning over 220 episodes
Specifications
  • Genre: Adventure, Fantasy, Science Fiction
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • Number of Seasons: 5
  • Debut Date: April 18, 2000
  • Studio: Gallop Co., Ltd.
Pros
  • Filled with classic cards
  • Fun watch
  • Beautiful storyline
Cons
  • Extremely lengthy

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba is unarguably one of the best anime in the past year, and one of the best anime of the past decade. Swordsmen that move with the grace of dancers, savage demons imbued with horrific powers and flashes of steel that strike at the perfect moment are hallmarks of this remarkable series.

The series, based on the Weekly Shonen Jump manga of the same name, debuted simultaneously in Japan and the U.S. in April 2019 and immediately gained a legion of international fans.

Demon Slayer takes place in Japan around the time of World War I, known as the Taisho era. One fateful day, young Tanjiro Kamado returned home from a village trip to find his entire family viciously and mercilessly murdered by a demon, with only Tanjiro’s sister Nezuko left alive.

But the attack changed her, and the demon’s blood mixed with her own transformed Nezuko into a monstrous demon herself. A demon slayer came across the two and threatened to kill Nezuko, but spared her after hearing out Tanjiro’s pleas to give him a chance to try and find a way to restore Nezuko’s humanity. And that’s just the start of the story.

Altogether, it’s easy to see why Demon Slayer has captured the hearts of anime fans worldwide. With stunning swordfights and supernatural powers, high stakes, a lot of heart, and even a fair amount of humor, the 26-episode first season has everything you need for your next anime binge watch.

Key Features
  • A youth begins a quest to fight demons & save his sister after finding his family slaughtered & his sister turned into a demon
  • Offers 26 episodes & a movie that is on the way
  • Tons of hardcore action & incredible plot
Specifications
  • Genre: Adventure, dark fantasy, martial arts
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • Number of Seasons: 2
  • Debut Date: April 6, 2019
  • Studio: Adult Swim
Pros
  • Vibrant characters
  • Aesthetically cool scenes
  • Binge-worthy
Cons
  • Hard to get into at first

These days, it’s almost impossible to navigate through life without hearing about superheroes. They’re everywhere: in our TV shows, in our long-standing movie franchises, in our games and cereal boxes. People and the media love them, especially the stories by ONE, the writer behind One-Punch Man. This anime in particular returns with a ONE show, but it’s not One-Punch Man; rather, it’s the equally mesmerizing Mob Psycho 100.

Mob Psycho 100 is a little different than One-Punch Man. Whereas Saitama is almost cartoonishly apathetic, the protagonist of Mob Psycho, a middle schooler named Shigeo Kageyama, is incredibly calm. For all intents and purposes, Kageyama is your typical anime protagonist: he has a crush, several friends and even has difficulty choosing what club he wants to join. He has a normal family and a loving brother. He’s not great with his studies, but he’s not flunking either. He even, like most titular fantasy shonen protagonists, wields an incredibly powerful ability, psychokinesis. Sounds unremarkable, right?

But ONE keeps us on our toes. If One-Punch Man is a scathing look at how society can mold people into selfish and apathetic cogs in a machine, Mob Psycho 100 is an empowering and critical look at self-improvement. Kageyama has many faults, and the show isn’t afraid to point them out: he has huge amounts of social anxiety, trouble saying no to people who would want to use him for their own gain, and is saintly forgiving to a fault.

It’s moments like these, combined with the quirky charm and whimsical nature of Kageyama’s mentor, Reigen, that makes Mob Psycho 100 so emotionally powerful and fun to watch. Backed by some of BONES’ finest talent and ambition for exploring the medium, Mob Psycho 100 packs just as strong of a punch as One-Punch Man, albeit in a different way.

Key Features
  • Follow Kageyama in his everyday life as he uses his psychic powers
  • Produced by BONES, the same studio that brought My Hero Academia
  • Contains 25 episodes with more to come
Specifications
  • Genre: Occult fiction, comedy
  • Language: English
  • Number of Seasons: 2
  • Debut Date: July 12, 2016
  • Studio: Adult Swim
Pros
  • One of anime's funniest shows
  • Has a fantastic art style
  • Many uplifting moments
Cons
  • There are bottle episodes

If you’re an anime fan already, then you probably know exactly what you want to watch next from our list. Most fans out there already have it down on what to find when looking for their next catch, and some have watched so much anime that you might as well watch every single series available. If you really love anime, you don’t have a preference for choosing a series that’s right for you. Instead, you may continue to watch any anime in order to discover new and amazing ones that might be your next favorite. We at CBR offer some tips to keep in mind when reading various reviews of ours to see what fits best, so let’s go through them.

Year of Release

An anime's release date could affect the entire feel of the show. Why? Newer anime have a very vibrant quality to them, showcasing graphics and an art style that is spruced-up compared to older anime. Old anime can be poor in quality due to the limited resources used for production; they tend to be darker in terms of color and slow in speed. However, if you’re a beginner of anime, watching some of the classics may be the perfect introduction you’re looking for. Even after 30 years, Dragon Ball Z remains one of the best and still has fans on the edges of their seats on an episode dated in 1991.

You’ll be able to see the graphics of animation transform before your eyes as you gradually progress into the present. Starting with the classics and moving into the new, there’s simply more appreciation for it.

Anime Genre

Choosing the genre of an anime you would like to watch would have to be the next step. This is another important factor that can easily narrow your choices of anime to suit your viewing pleasures.

Whether it be comedy, action, drama, fantasy, and so on, you’ll definitely be able to find what you’re looking for as soon as you know what genre interests you more.

Of course, not one genre will be matched with a single anime. In fact, there really are a minimum of three genres that fit an anime description. For example, One-Punch Man is a mix of action, comedy, and a bit of drama. It’s almost impossible to find an anime that is based on a single genre, and knowing this will most likely direct you to other ones as you continue to watch more anime.

Length of the Anime

This is one that shocks people sometimes. When it comes to well-known animated series, the best have around 250 episodes in their vault. That’s not always the case for anime, where some series can have 20 to 30 episodes, while veteran ones can go up to 900 episodes in total. Thus, you should decide what you want to watch depending on the length of investment you have to prepare for. After all, you can definitely watch episode after episode or complete an entire series at your own pace. Having an equal balance in both ongoing and completed anime is a great way to consume fantastic anime.

Adventure Time!

Now that you have a better understanding of what you need to know when it comes to anime, you have a much better chance of pointing one out from our list on what you want to watch next, or completely start your endeavor on becoming an anime know-it-all.

We hope you enjoyed reading our list of the best anime. Hopefully, it provides accurate guidance as to which anime will be best-suited for you.

FAQ

Q: Is this stuff OK for my kids to watch?

It depends. Some movies, yes (for example Ponyo). Others, definitely not. Most of the anime in this list don’t really seem right for kids. However, some can be suggested. For example, an anime like Dragon Ball Z or Super are safe to watch, and another is Naruto for the most part. However, anime like Berserk! is definitely far from kid-friendly, so we suggest you read our reviews and go through what seems right for kids to watch.

Q: Is an anime of my choice OK for somebody who don’t like strong language, violence or nudity?

Again, if the movie or anime you’re wondering about has a review in this list, check the notes. They cover a great amount of what kind of objectionable material is in an anime. Regardless, these anime focus more on fighting in the first place, so there may be a subtle scene of nudity or strong language, but violence? For sure. However, the violence can also range from having no traces of blood during the fights to a full-blown red bloodbath. It depends.

Q: What’s with the huge eyes in anime?

No, it’s not some inferiority complex, and not quite all anime has the big eye style. But, most of it does, and the fact of the matter is that no one is 100% sure why. However, the first person to use that style is usually credited as Osamu Tezuka, the creator of the old Astro Boy TV series among various other very popular TV shows that became the foundation for Japan’s entire animation and comic industry. As to where Tezuka got the idea, Fred Ladd, who worked with him, has said that he said he was emulating Betty Boop, who was popular in Japan at the time. Other early US-produced animated characters that predate the anime style also have very large eyes.

Q: Why is there so much nudity even in kids shows?

First of all, Japanese attitudes about nudity are far less strict than those in the US, and it is even legal to show some nudity on TV in Japan. Since attitudes toward nudity are less strict in Japan, it’s also not entirely uncommon to see nudity in anime, including shows targeted at children, though the context is rarely erotic in those situations. There is also, of course, a significant market for anime specifically targeted at young-adult males, which feature everything from a great deal of skin to outright you-know-what. Don’t take the existence (or popularity) of this sort of anime to mean that everything with some adult themes is low-brow, because you’d be missing some very impressive cinema.

Q: Who created anime, and when?

The art form we now call “anime” doesn’t have a specific birth date, and it wasn’t exactly created by anyone. But, partly as a result of being either the first or among the first to use the big-eyed style, Tezuka Osamu is generally considered the “father” of anime. He started creating manga in 1947, which were extremely popular, and at the beginning of 1963, Tetsuwan Atomy (Astro Boy) began airing. That is generally considered the first anime-style animated production. Animation had been produced in Japan as early as 1917, but the style was generally different from what is now considered anime.

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