There are numerous animations produced and released all over the world every year. Here, anime, which is the Japanese term originating in Japan and especially means the animations made in Japan.
It is said that the first Japanese animation was made and released in 1917. Speaking of the earliest famous anime in Japan, Astro Boy (a.k.a. Mighty Atom) was released in 1963 as the first anime series aired on TV. Around hundreds of new anime are aired on TV and distributed to the movie streaming platforms and come to the screens every year, and the number of must-watch anime is going on increasing year by year.
The industry of anime has prospered substantially in Japan partly because the country has other Japanese pop cultures such as manga, video games and light novels. Some popular anime are adaptations of manga, video games, light novels and other media. And, anime has flourished worldwide so rapidly since anyone can access the Japanese animations with English dubs and subtitles.
Here are 30 best anime series including both the classic anime franchises and the brand new series. This greatest anime list will help beginners to find which anime to start watching with in the world or anime fans to decide the next one to try. Otherwise, check the best anime by anime freak’s standards.
This anime list focuses on TV anime series which Japanese call “anime”, so anime movies such as Studio Ghibli films or Makoto Shinkai’s animations are excluded.
It is not easy to narrow down to only 30 anime and rank them, and there are other attractive anime that are worth watching outside the best anime list, of course.
Let’s start a countdown!
Best anime on Netflix, Funimation, Crunchyroll, Hulu and more
- Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba
- Keep Your Hands Off Eizouken!!
- Your Lie in April (Shigatsu Wa Kimi No Uso)
- JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure
- Yuri!!! On Ice
- Megalo Box
- Death Note
- Mob Psycho 100
- Ping-Pong the Animation
- Cowboy Bebop
- Neon Genesis Evangelion
- My Hero Academia
- The Promised Neverland
- Lupin III S4
- Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood
- Natsume’s Book of Friends
- Samurai Champloo
- Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann
- Hunter X Hunter
- Paranoia Agent
- Legend of the Galactic Heroes
- The Tatami Galaxy
Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba
While its slick action is reminiscent of the best moments of shows like Naruto, Kimetsu no Yaiba stands out for how genuinely nail-biting it is. When his entire family is killed by demons, everything changes for Tanjiro Kamado, a young man living in Taisho-era Japan. His sister Nezuko seemingly survives, but transforms into a demon herself. Holding on to her humanity, Nezuko refrains from attacking Tanjiro, giving him hope for a cure. In order to find one, there’s nothing for it than to become a demon slayer.
The plot isn’t deep, but the sibling bond between Tanjiro and Nezuko gives the whole series a strong backbone. Tanjiro in particular is a truly likeable character, the kind of pure-hearted boy you wouldn’t expect in a largely unforgiving series. Kimetsu no Yaiba somehow manages to imbue a well-used setting with new life and boasts great production values all around, from the animation to voice acting and music.
Keep Your Hands Off Eizouken!!
First aired: 2020 | Episodes: 12
Where to watch it: Crunchyroll
Midori, Tsubame and Sayaka are three high schoolers who want to make an anime. From their first meeting to establishing a school club for their activities and getting their first creation out the door, Eizouken has it all. Surreal comedy meets the colourful, lively style of studio Science Saru to overall delightful results.
KonoSuba: God’s Blessing on this Wonderful World!
KonoSuba: God’s Blessing on this Wonderful World! (この素晴らしい世界に祝福を!) is a popular comedy Isekai anime, based on the light novel written by Natsume Akatsuki. The first season of KonoSuba was released in 2016 and the second one in 2017. The story starts after a teenager Kazuma died in an accident and was sent to another world with the goddess Aqua. The new episode was made into a movie as KonoSuba: God’s Blessing on this Wonderful World! Legend of Crimson (この素晴らしい世界に祝福を！紅伝説).
Air Dates: from 2016
Genre: Isekai, Comedy
Recommended for Anime Fans/Anime Freaks
OreGairu: My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU
My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU (やはり俺の青春ラブコメはまちがっている。) , which is also known as just OreGairu or My Youth Romantic Comedy Is Wrong, As I Expected, is a popular modern anime series with the genre of slice of life (the setting is based on dailly life). The slice-of-life anime is made into from the light novel that completed with the 17th volume in 2019. The cynical and pessimistic character Hachiman Hikigaya starts offering help and advice to other students in the school service club with two heroines: Yukino Yukinoshita and Yui Yuigahama.
The anime series is being completed with the final season My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU Fin (やはり俺の青春ラブコメはまちがっている。完) released in April, 2020.
Air Dates: from 2013
Genre: Slice of life, Romance, Comedy
Recommended for Anime Fans/Anime Freaks
The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya
The slice-of-life anime The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya (涼宮ハルヒの憂鬱) is one of the best anime after 2000s. It is initially published as a light novel in 2003, which was adapted into anime in 2006. Before releasing the anime, there had been already a large number of fans of the light novel. The first season of the anime never bored them by broadcasting the stories out of order, which were not chronological.
The anime represent the daily life of SOS Brigade which is the school club established by the main heroine Haruhi Suzumiya. But, she is not just a human…
Air Dates: 2006-2009
Genre: Sekaikei, Slice of life, Comedy, Science Fiction, Time loop
Recommended for Beginners/Anime Fans