Anime often gets a bad reputation among the general public. The truth is, most of our favorite childhood cartoons were anime — Pokemon, Sailor Moon, Naruto, Dragon Ball Z, Yu-Gi-Oh, etc.
If you loved any of these, want to revisit your favorite childhood shows, or just want to get into anime, here’s a list of places to start.
Boku No Hero Academia
“Boku No Hero Academia” takes place in a world where most of the population has developed super powers or “quirks” of some sort. As a result, heroes, many of which are regarded as celebrities, have been trained to fight villains and serve as heads of organizations pursuing justice and working along side the police. The story follows Deku, a boy who desperately wants to be a hero but was born “quirkless.” However, through a series of unexpected events, he acquires a quirk and shortly thereafter begins his training at the best hero training school in the world. “Boku No Hero Academia” strikes a balance between the mundane life of teenagers and their personal quarrels in contrast to serious topics of justice and righteousness. The second season is currently airing and can be found on Hulu.
“Blue Exorcist” follows the Okumuro twin brothers, half human and half demon, whose father is revealed to be Satan. Rin and Yukio Okumuro were raised by Shiro an exorcist who they consider their father. While Yukio has been training as an exorcist and is aware of his heritage, Rin is kept in the dark until Shiro’s death when the seal blocking his powers has been released. After Shiro’s death, Rin enters True Cross Academy, where his younger twin brother Yukio is his teacher, as he aims to defeat Satan. Like “Boku No Hero Academia,” “Blue Exorcist” strikes a balance between comedy and tragedy. Both shows focus on teenagers who have been thrust into a world of hardships they don’t quite understand yet, but they still manage to find the joy in it. You can watch the first season of “Blue Exorcist” on Netflix.
Little Witch Academia
“Little Witch Academia” takes place at Luna Nova Academy, a famous school for witches accessible only through lay lines by way of a broomstick. The now-series follows Akko, the only witch from a non-magical family, who struggles to find her footing with magic. Still, she perseveres, determined to follow in her childhood hero’s path, Shiny Chariot. “Little Witch Academia” focuses on friendships and the importance of forging relationships with each other while staying true to oneself. A lighthearted watch for anyone in the mood for something cheerful. “Little Witch Academia” is currently available on Netflix.
“Haikyu!!” is a sports anime that focuses on the volleyball team at Karasuno High School. The story mainly follows Kageyama and Hinata, the setter and outside hitter of the team, who initially hate each other. All the characters are wonderfully developed and the animation is spectacular, especially during the matches. While “Haikyu!!” is definitely my favorite sports anime, I’d recommend you find one that aligns with your interest— “Free!,” “Kuroko’s Basketball,” “Yuri on Ice” and a few others are also great options depending on your preference. You can find “Haikyu!!” on Hulu.
Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun
Go with me on this, I know the title sounds especially ridiculous. “Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun” is a slice-of-life anime that follows Chiyo as she confesses to her crush, Nozaki. Nozaki misinterprets her love confession as being a fan of his work as he is a popular manga writer. As a result, Chiyo gets roped into being his assistant and her love story with the oblivious Nozaki blooms from there. A feel good, funny anime with diverse cast of characters perfect for a pick me up. You can watch “Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun” on Hulu.