10 Most Controversial Shonen Anime Series

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Shonen anime has pushed the envelope many times, for better or for worse. Pushing the boundaries by challenging and reimagining tried and true tropes is a great way to challenge genre norms. Some shonen series, however, pressed all the wrong buttons and fired up viewers as they voiced their opinions on social media.


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Some shonen titles are controversial for going overboard with jitters, controversial protagonists, and questionable topics. Others infuriate the masses because they are contrived, overly stereotypical, and lack meaningful character development. Either way, these shonen anime series are always at the center of any fandom debate.

10/10 Rent-A-Girlfriend’s Protagonist Is Insufferable at Best and Insufferable at Worst

Harem anime series are not known to be of high quality, but fans were particularly disappointed with Rent a girlfriend. Harem sons are usually pathetic and indecisive, but Kazuya amplifies these qualities up to eleven. The story goes absolutely nowhere as he feels sorry for himself most of the time instead of trying to improve his relationship with one of the titular girlfriends.

Chizuru, Mami, Sumi, and Ruka aren’t the most interesting or well-written female characters in anime history, but they still have more substance than Kazuya. Many shonen fans agree that Kazuya is the worst protagonist in recent history.

9/10 Demon Slayer is still up for debate

Whether or not demon slayer deserves the hate he receives is debatable. It seems like most of it is a result of the bandwagon and the show hating it for its popularity. However, hating the series has become a meme in online anime spaces.

In addition to the bandwagon, there are plenty of valid reviews on demon slayer, mostly regarding its sexualized portrayal of Nezuko and her knack for killing the most interesting characters. Still, fans can’t help but wonder if demon slayer really is as bad as Twitter makes it sound.

8/10 My Hero Academia’s treatment of female characters is a recurring issue

my hero academia is one of the most popular modern shonen series. However, even the show’s most dedicated fans can’t ignore its biggest flaws. Critics argue that My Hero Academia the cast is too bloated and that the fandom has ruined the show.

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However, My Hero Academia The biggest problem is its treatment of female characters. Characters like Yaoyorozu, Froppy, and the invisible Hagakure are often oversexualized, despite being teenagers. Recently, Horikoshi drew a lot of criticism for the cover of Chapter 368, in which Hagakure was drawn naked in his first non-invisible appearance. Additionally, fans resent that more female pro-heroes have been killed off or taken out of service than their male counterparts.

7/10 JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure’s introduction of Nazis in part two didn’t sit well with viewers

Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure challenged shonen standards in more ways than one, revolutionizing the genre with its unique art style and innovative power system. However, JoJo’s is not immune to controversy.

Many of the show’s most avid fans try to forget Fight Tendency the inclusion of Nazi allies. Stroheim has been described as a hero since helping Joseph defeat Kars while singing the praises of German technology. However, since Fight Tendency is a timepiece set in Europe in the late 1930s, some argue that the inclusion of the Nazis was historically accurate.

6/10 Bleach’s Overfilling Episodes Made Manga Readers Furious

Bleach manga is a shonen combat masterpiece that showcases Tite Kubo’s genius character and world-building. However, the anime adaptation didn’t do the manga justice. The biggest problem with the Bleach anime is that it was filled with filler episodes that took up almost half of the series.

Other shonen anime titles have a few filler episodes here and there, but definitely not enough for them to become whole arcs that derail the main plot. Veteran fans of the series recommend that fans skip the anime and just pick up the manga.

5/10 Fairy Tail’s Excessive Fan Service and Predictable Character Arcs Failed to Impress Viewers

When people think of the critically acclaimed shonen, Fairy tale is certainly not the first title that comes to mind. Many fans criticize the show for being too contrived and formulaic. The power of friendship is useful in many shonen anime, but Fairy tale turns it into plot armor. Every time the heroes are rushed, fans roll their eyes as they know the power of friendship is about to save the day for the millionth time in the series.

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Fairy tale is also criticized for its excessive fanservice and over-predictability. Like most shonen novels, Fairy tale makes it pretty obvious who will be a couple at the end of the series. This results in contrived romantic plots and awkward flirting with no real relationship buildup.

4/10 Sword Art Online has a polarizing protagonist, pacing issues, and lackluster worldbuilding

Sword Art Online the most common criticisms go back to three main issues. First, Kirito is a disappointing protagonist whose role could have been given to a more exciting character. Some even claim that Kirito is Sword Art Online greatest weakness. Secondly, Sword Art Online pacing issues make the anime difficult to follow.

Sword Art OnlineThe third problem is that the rules of the game are so poorly explained that many viewers felt the world-building was barely thought out and overall lackluster. The series had the potential to become a great shonen staple, but it fell flat, eventually becoming the laughingstock of the anime community.

3/10 Some viewers felt that Attack on Titan’s historical references were too on the nose

The attack of the Titans has caused a lot of controversy since its premiere in 2013. Although IMDb ranks it as one of the greatest anime series of all time, the community really loves it or despises it. The attack of the Titans. Many criticize Mikasa’s lackluster role in the story and Eren’s bizarre evolution from hero to villain. In addition, The attack of the Titans historical references are questionable.

Callbacks to the real world are common in fiction, but some viewers felt The attack of the Titans were problematic. Forcing Eldians to wear armbands to mark their heritage was eerily true to what the Germans did to Jewish people during the Holocaust. Fans also didn’t appreciate that Pixis seemed inspired by a military general during World War II who committed atrocities against Koreans.

2/10 Future Diary is too pissed off for its own good

Just because an anime series is edgy doesn’t necessarily mean it’s terrible. tokyo ghoul, for example, is often recommended as a must-watch series for beginners, and its protagonist is King Edgelord. However, Future Diary nervousness is campy in the worst possible way.

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Future Diary the plot is disconnected and ridiculously hard to follow. Yukiteru continually disappointed fans by moping around for most of the series instead of developing a spine. Although the concept of death games almost always includes horror and controversy, Future Diary seemed to be aiming for olympics gold edgelord including all possible offensive things. Unfortunately, it didn’t translate well.

1/10 Boruto failed to recreate what made Naruto so great

As Naruto’s legacy series, fans had high expectations for Boruto. Unfortunately, it didn’t live up to the hype of the original. Boruto Uzumaki is an unlikable protagonist who spent most of his youth with a misplaced grudge against his father, Naruto. Yet he still tried to mop up his father’s Hokage status to assert his dominance over the other young ninjas.

Although Boruto has matured as a character, the series has yet to catch up. Fans hate it Boruto is oversaturated with filler episodes and that meaningful plot development is rare. The series is so underwhelming that it has become a popular meme on social media.

NEXT: The 10 Most Controversial Anime Heroes, Ranked


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