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Many see anime just as Japanese cartoons. But it can be so much more than that for some people. From everything from the art style, the story, to the way the characters phrase their dialogue, can be so different than what we in America are used to. Americans are used to Family Guy and Big Mouth, which mainly just go for laughs and minimally plot-driven narratives. While anime goes for something deeper, bringing in the audience with emotion and real-life problems with some exaggerations to entice the audience. Here are some anime series that are great for beginners if you are interested in getting started!

1. Erased 

Erased is a 12 episode series following the life of 29-year-old Satoru Fujinuma, a detached manga artist. (manga is a Japanese comic book, a lot of anime are based on mangas). He finds himself with the ability to be able to go back in time a few minutes before an accident occurs, and he uses this time to correct the mistake that causes it. He calls this mysterious phenomenon "Revival". However, when he is wrongfully accused of murdering someone close to him, Satoru is sent back to the past once again, but this time to 1988, 18 years in the past. Soon, he realizes that the murder may be connected to the abduction and killing of one of his classmates, Kayo Hinazuki, that took place when he was a child. This is his chance to make things right. This anime follows Satoru in his mission to uncover what truly transpired 18 years ago and prevent the death of his classmate while protecting those he cares about in the present.

This anime is great for a beginner that is interested in a show that keeps them on the edge of their seat. An amazing thriller that constantly keeps you guessing what's true and what isn't, and shows the audience that having different perspectives in life keeps one ahead of others. This show is available on Netflix and Hulu. 

2. Dr.Stone

Dr.Stone is a new anime that was just released in the summer of 2019. It follows the life of Taiju Ooki and Senkuu. One day in school as Taiju is beginning to confess his love to fellow classmate and friend Yuzuriha Ogawa, a bright green light strikes the Earth and petrifies mankind around the world. The light proceeds to turn everyone into stone. Several millennia later, Taiju awakens to find the modern world completely nonexistent, as nature has flourished in the years humanity stood still. Among a stone world of statues, Taiju encounters one other living human: his science-loving friend Senkuu, who has been active for a few months. Taiju then learns of Senkuu's mastermind plan. To complete a full revival of modern civilization with science. Taiju's brawn and Senkuu's brains combine to forge a formidable partnership, and they quickly uncover a method to revive those petrified. However, Senkuu's plan is in jeopardy by the challenges of others that have awakened and don't believe in the world that he wishes to create, rather a world dominated by the strong. All the while, the reason for the petrification still goes unknown.

This anime so far of this article being written is at its 24 episodes and is great for people who enjoy learning how things can be made. A post-apocalyptic anime that really gets the audience thinking. This anime is currently available to watch on Crunchyroll.

3. My Hero Academia

My Hero Academia is a relatively new anime that was just released in 2017 and is still ongoing. It follows the life of Izuku Midoriya, A teenager who lives in a world where superpowers, or as they are called "Quirks" are very common in about 80% of the world's population. Sadly, Izukyu is one of the few in the world that wasn't born with a quirk. But that doesn’t stop him from working towards his goal of being the number one hero, like his favorite Pro-Hero, All Might. And with the help of his friends and even his enemies, this anime tells the story of how Izukyu becomes the world's best hero. 

This anime is currently on its fourth season, currently waiting for its fifth season to be released sometime in 2021. It's a great anime for beginners as the characters are teenagers and go through common obstacles that anyone can relate to superpowers or not. It's available on Hulu and Crunchyroll.


4. Deathnote

Death Note is a well-known anime that is already done releasing new seasons. It aired from October 2006 to finally finish in June 2007. It follows the life of high school student and prodigy Light Yagami. One day he's in school and notices a notebook fall from the sky. Later he goes up and picks up the notebook that has the title "Deathnote" on the cover. In the notebooks first few pages, it lists the rules that the notebook plays by, the most notable rule, "The human whose name is written in this note shall die." Later on, Light discovers that the book belongs to Ryuk, a shinigami (also known as a god of death) and that he was bored by the shinigami lifestyle and interested in seeing how a human would use a Death Note, so he dropped one into the human realm. The anime continues to follow how Light uses the notebook to deliver the world his sense of justice and how he evades capture from the police. 


This anime is already completed and is well known among the anime community, with one of the highest approval ratings. It's a fantastic depiction of a game of cat and mouse is unrivaled from any other anime. The whole series is available to binge-watch on Netflix and on Hulu.

5. Haikyu!! 

Haikyuu!! is an older anime. Initially premiering in 2014, but gaining much more popularity in late 2020, with its addition to Netflix. The anime follows the life of small-statured teenager Shouyou Hinata, as he is inspired after watching a volleyball ace nicknamed "Little Giant" in action at his middle school. As the team makes it to a tournament, they are swiftly crushed by "The King of the Court'', Tobio Kageyama. Hinata vows to surpass Kageyama, and soon after graduating from middle school, he joins Karasuno High School's volleyball team, only to see that his rival, Kageyama, is now his teammate. Due to Hinata's height, he overcomes many obstacles to be able to prove to everyone and to himself that he is worth being on the court.

This anime is a great sports anime that tackles overcoming obstacles in life, sportsmanship, leadership, and team effort. It has a great following in the anime community due to its high caliber character development, the audience experiences first hand what it's like to be on a volleyball team.You can watch this on Netflix, Hulu, and Crunchyroll. 

6. Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood

Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood is one of the older animes on this list. Premiering in April 2009, ending a year later in April 2010. The series follows two brothers, Edward and Alphonse Elric that live in a world that follows the rule of Alchemy. Alchemy being the rule "In order for something to be obtained, something of equal value must be lost". They can exchange one property and make it into something different. Unfortunately, they lose their mother, and they attempt to bring her back using alchemy. The ritual goes wrong and the brothers are punished due to breaking the rules. The only way to fix their mistake is to find the mysterious Philosopher's Stone. On their quest to find the Philosopher's stone, they meet allies and enemies that help them grow into better people. 

This anime is the closest thing to "magic" on this list. This anime is great for beginners because it brings a greatly driven plot and sucks in the audience so they may want to find out what happens to the brothers. By making the brothers relatable, it creates a bond between the character and the audience. Just make sure to add "Brotherhood" to the end of the title. There are two Fullmetal Alchemists available on Netflix and Hulu, but the one without Brotherhood isn't as powerful as the former.

Hello there! I am Yalines Medrano and I am a Forensic Science major at Lasell University with the class of 2024. I am from Peabody, Massachusetts and I love to read, watch anime, and hang out with friends! I am so excited to be involved in HER Campus!
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