We are in a golden age of entertainment where everything to watch is available to stream online through various platforms, including anime. There are hundreds of titles to choose from for audiences and are constantly increasing with old and new shows being added to your streaming library. There are so many to pick, but we handpicked some that you should look out for and keep on your radar when choosing your next binge.
Attack on Titan
This series has grown into a movement among viewers as Attack on Titan slowly became one of the most successful anime shows in a while. Now available on Netflix and Hulu, it’s a no-brainer that it’s a must-watch for any anime fan. With its post-apocalyptic setting and high-paced action, audiences are in awe with the world of Attack on Titan. It has been a success worldwide, gaining accolades for its animation and story as everyone is invested in the mystery of these giant creatures that have humanity on the edge of extinction. As the fourth season arrives sometime this year, now is a perfect time to catch up on the series that everyone is talking about.
Winning praise last year with audiences, Dr. Stone became a breakout hit for its fresh new take on the post-apocalyptic genre. Taking place after a worldwide phenomenon where everyone is turned into stone, the series follows the adventures of a teen genius and his friends as they attempt to reboot society after emerging from their frozen state. Applying science to help restart civilization, Dr. Stone makes good use of its genre to bring a compelling story to life. Currently, on Crunchyroll and Funimation, the extent of the series grows exponentially as more characters come into the picture, making Dr. Stone one of the most fascinating new shows people are constantly raving now.
As we take a look at the older titles on our list, this one has certainly stood the test of time as one of our all-time favorites. Blending a mix of space western and neo-noir, creator Hajime Yatate takes us on a journey through space through the eyes of this ragtag team of bounty hunters and outlaws. With a beautiful score by Yoko Kanno, this show makes good use of its music that takes inspiration from classical jazz into the story. Cowboy Bebop tackles heavy themes like isolation and maturity. It has grown into such a huge following in the West, making Cowboy Bebop one of the best imports to come from Japan. It is available to stream on Hulu and Funimation, so it’s an anime to sink your teeth into for a great escape.
Dragon Ball Franchise
Another popular anime that gained a following in the West would be this fantasy martial arts series that put the anime block Toonami on the map. The Dragon Ball series has grown to be one of the biggest and successful franchises of all-time. The long-running anime has been one everyone’s must-list, so even if you haven’t seen it, you may have at least heard of the series. The series follows the journey of Goku along with his friends and family as they participate in tournaments and mostly protecting the world from extraterrestrial threats. It’s a series that is far from perfect, but it is filled with adventure, fighting, crazy transformations, and characters that grow on you. The series saw a resurgence with the latest series Dragon Ball Super, but anyone can stream the series on Hulu and Funimation to get familiar with the series before checking out the latest one.
Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure
Speaking of crazy and lovable characters, Hirohiko Araki’s anime Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure has become a staple in Japan, much like Dragon Ball as an ever-growing franchise. Dating back in the 80s, this gem from Japan only recently found an audience in the West. The series follows the multi-generational saga of the Joestar family as each chapter tackles a descendent of the clan. This gives the series brand new characters, locations, and stories for every saga. The most popular ones would be the third and fourth chapters of the franchise, which are titled Stardust Crusaders and Diamond is Unbreakable. The show has been known for its crazy characters, pompous outfits, and some pretty amazing fight scenes. It’s no wonder the Jojo fever has grown with Western audiences with crazy cosplays and merchandise for the fandom. The good thing is that anyone on Crunchyroll and Hulu can jump into any chapter just to see what all the buzz is with this outrageous and fun show.
Not a lot of people know much about the Devilman franchise and the long history it holds in Japan. Released in the early 1970s, the first iteration followed a young man who ends up fusing with a demon to fight against evil while retaining his humanity. Just like the early series, Devilman Crybaby follows the same format but in a modern setting. The new series still keeps the main plot in play as we see our main character struggle to come to terms with his new transformation as he is constantly being pulled into the darkness. Creator Masaaki Yuasa managed to bring new life into his classic story and made it into something better. With the unique animation style, this series feels more like an acid trip filled with pure violence and gore that is sure to keep your eyes glued to the screen.
Kill La Kill
Some combos shouldn’t mix well on shows, but somehow Kill La Kill made the impossible truly possible with its craziness. Taking inspiration from many popular anime genres, the series follows Ryuko, a young teen girl who joins the Honnouji Academy after her father is killed. At this special school, everyone wears these semi-clad uniforms that transforms their bodies into weapons through the use of these superpowers called “Life Fibers” that these clothes are made of. Our main heroine uses her power to take down the Headmistress of the Academy and solve the mystery of her father’s death. There is a lot of stories that the series dives into, but Kill la Kill is known for its outlandish transformations and beautiful action scenes. The show manages to blend fashion and fighting so well, which is why it’s worth checking out on Netflix or Hulu.
My Hero Academia
Continuing on the trend of school-themed shows on our list, we also add the popular series, My Hero Academia. Set in a world where people with superpowers or “Quirks” exist, this show tackles the journey of Izuku Midoriya as he follows his dreams to become a superhero like his idol All-Might, who is the number one protector in the world. Being one of the “quirkless” people without powers, his chance encounter with his idol propels both men on a path to protect society as the best heroes to the public. As audiences are obsessed with superheroes in movies and television, My Hero Academia brings in this trend to the anime spectrum with a vast array of characters both in the U.A. Academy where Izuku attends as well as the heroes and villains that have inhabited this society. The narrative of this superheroes-in-training will keep audiences young and old invested in this widely enriched world of people with superpowers trying to find their place in society.
Superheroes are certainly getting their moment now in anime, especially in the popular anime series One-Punch Man. The story follows Saitama, an all-powerful superhero who is so strong that he can knock any enemy with just one punch. With his job no longer being a challenge, Saitama has started living a carefree life while looking for someone who’s just as powerful as him. His appearance may seem to surprise many people who don’t know just how strong he is, which is what makes Saitama such an interesting character. The show balances action and humor so well that audiences are already clamoring for more tales of One-Punch Man. We also get to meet many other heroes as we look at how deep this hierarchy goes, similar to how My Hero Academia is. For those looking for a good anime to lie back and relax to, this may be worth a look.
Neon Evangelion Genesis
One of Japan’s most favorite anime of all time has always been Neon Evangelion Genesis. This series can be considered the crown jewel of Japanese animation, especially in the mecha genre. Filled with biblical references, the show can be a bit hard to follow with its deeper mythology, but it put anime on the map in the West. Following the story of Shinji Ikari, we experience the emotions he goes through as a teen with his daddy issues as well as saving the Earth against these monstrous aliens with the use of his fighting robot. After watching Evangelion, you’ll have an understanding of how so many countless anime shows have been inspired by this one alone. With so many WTF moments and interpretations of the events that transpired in this series, it would be a crime to overlook this cult classic, which can now be viewed on Netflix in the comfort of your house.