Not every person out there has been exposed to the wonderful world of Japanese cartoons and the action-packed adventures they take you on. Everyday Japanese animes have become more popular. Unfortunately, there’s still a lot of stigmatization surrounding young adults watching anime who give out their accounts in forums on how they are thought as children. This might be surprising considering these ‘simple’ cartoons expose/denounce a lot of social stigma and share beautiful messages in multiple different situations, be it as ninjas, pirates, soul reapers, superheroes, tennis players, assassins, you name it; the possibilities are endless! Shonen Jump happens to be one of the top companies for anime and manga worldwide since the late 60’s and are still delivering strong plots and wonderful characters. The themes they usually stick with for most of their animes are friendship and victory, something we see a lot in Dragon Ball Z and, most recently, My Hero Academia.
If you’re new to anime, maybe this little list will help you choose which one to watch next!
1. My Hero Academia/ (僕のヒーローアカデミア)Boku no Hīrō Akademia
(Cover for My Hero Academia Movie poster)
Length: 3 seasons- 63 episodes
Genre: Superhero Fiction
This heartwarming anime follows the story of young Izuku Midoriya in his quest to become the world’s greatest hero, just like his idol, All Might. The problem is that our main character has no powers in a reality where 85% of the global population does ( quirks). But, after displaying pure selflessness and courage, something wonderful happens that makes him think his dreams could possibly come true. His adventures get more interesting once he enrolls in U.A. High where he makes friends as he tries to pave his way to glory. Obviously, there are twists and turns through all of this happy-sounding summary, and they can get really intense because just as there are heroes, villains lurk in the shadows. The characters, the plot, the script, the fight scenes, the animation, all of it will make your heart be warmed, it will make you cry multiple times, you’ll get giddy every time the openings start, and you’ll feel like you’re part of class 1-A. Plus ultra! The fourth season comes out around Spring 2019.
2. Bleach/ (ブリーチ) Burīchi
(Cover for Full Collection of Bleach)
Length: 16 seasons- 366 episodes
Genre: Adventure Fiction
Now, this one is a little more intense for how long it ran. But, let me tell you that the concept of this show is pretty amazing. Ichigo Kurosaki is, aside from the fact that he and his sisters can see or sense ghosts, a normal teen until one night he bumps into Rukia Kuchiki, who is a Soul Reaper or Shinigami. Yes, she’s a Soul Reaper who helps spirits, who are ready to move on, to cross over to the Soul Society. This is another anime that attracts interest because of its individuality and detail for all of its characters. Of course, Soul Reapers are not the only supernatural beings that appear in this anime, and they’re not your everyday ghouls, ghosts or demons. Always expect the unexpected with the main character; he is full of surprises and remembers, fillers can be your worst enemy.
3. One Punch-Man
(Cover of One Punch-Man manga by Yusuke Murata)
Length: 1 season- 12 episodes
Genre: Superhero Fiction
Here we have another superhero anime, but not the same as My Hero Academia. We follow an unnoticed hero called Saitama who can defeat opponents with just one punch. The thing is nobody’s quite sure of his back story or his training method, because he sure packs a punch. In his quest to be a hero and find a worthy opponent, he’s joined by the cyborg Genos in this character’s quest for vengeance. Slowly, but surely, more monsters and threats begin to jeopardize the safety of City-Z. Again, SJ does an amazing job in the animation for this specific anime. A simple animation can turn complex in the blink of an eye right when it demands it, and, of course, the fighting scenes are gems. Season 2 has been announced to come out in April 2019.
(Castlevania Soundtrack cover)
Length: 2 seasons- 12 episodes
For all of those video game lovers and vampire lovers, Netflix came up with an American anime-inspired show based off from the video game of the same name and its third installment, Dracula’s Curse. Here is a modern take on the legend of Count Dracula and its historical landmarks in this dark adventure and atmosphere. Not only that, but the soundtrack really resonates with the animation.
5. Assassination Classroom/ (暗殺教室) Ansatsu Kyōshitsu
(Poster of Assassination Classroom’s first season)
Length: 2 seasons- 25 episodes
Now, this anime surprised me, a lot. It is yet another anime with a wide cast and various layers of plots. Here we have class 3-E from Kunugigaoka Junior High School and their homeroom teacher, Koro-sensei, who happens to be an octopus-like creature that promises to destroy Earth in a year unless his students successfully annihilate him. Class 3-E goes training by the government and some government-issued assassins so they could succeed in their mission and win the bounty of ¥10 billion on these creatures that move at Mach 20, which is 20 times the speed of sound. Each lesson is more heartfelt than the last, and the action in this sci-fi anime just keeps escalating with unexpected villains and plot twists. As the end draws near, you keep wondering if the students will succeed in assassinating their teacher or whether they will find a way to save their mentor.
Anime is a completely different thing than most people believe. It’s not always pervy dudes and overly-large breasts in school uniforms, many of these animes have really good stories and dialogues. These shows would make you react just like you would shed a tear in Grey’s Anatomy or sit at the edge of your seat with an episode of How To Get Away with Murder. Otaku-ing every once in a while can sometimes do more good than wrong.
What’s your favorite anime? Or, if you have given one of these a chance, did you like it?