There is endless innovation and creativity in the anime industry, and each new year brings hundreds of exciting contributions to the medium of storytelling. There’s such specificity to some of the stories told in anime that it often feels like there’s a program for everyone, which also means there’s a wide range of eclectic genres that different anime embrace. Some genres are more popular than others, but there are also certain anime series that stand out regardless of their purpose.
Akira Toriyama dragonball is a totemic anime franchise that has had an undeniable influence on the evolution of shonen action series. However, dragonballThe industry’s importance to the industry doesn’t mean it’s perfect, and there are plenty of shows that offer more substantial anime packages.
ten Yu Yu Hakusho goes to the peak of his demonic party
Yu Yu Hakusho never had the same icon status as Dragon Ball Z, but the two shonen series aired at the same time in the 1990s and have a lot in common. The anime follows juvenile delinquent Yusuke Urameshi, who turns a new leaf after a tragic event leaves him with supernatural responsibilities. Yusuke and his powerful friends take on deadly demons, and the series finds its happy medium through thrilling tournament battles. At 112 episodes, Yu Yu Hakusho represents almost a third of the length of Dragon Ball Z but features an equally thrilling story with its incredible characters.
9 Gintama only produces hits, regardless of tone and genre
There is no other anime series like Gintama, a long-running shonen series that’s as hilariously funny as it is suspenseful and emotional. It’s one of the easiest examples of an anime series changing tone and genre. Nothing is forbidden in Gintama, and it somehow improves with each of its 367 episodes and shows no signs of fatigue. The Odd Jobs team of Gintoki, Kagura, and Shinpachi are iconic characters, but the entire extended cast consists of winners. Gintama is an unabashed love letter to anime, and it’s hard not to fall in love with it.
8 JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Pushes Boundaries To Heighten Her Shonen Sensitivities
Hirohiko Araki is as influential of a mangaka as dragonballby Akira Toriyama and his signature series, JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure, is one of the boldest shows of its kind. JoJo’s The ongoing story has been going on for over three decades and it has found incredible freedom with its itinerant protagonist approach to its storytelling.
Every great story saga in JoJo’s follows another member of the Joestar family. Dragon Ball Z allows Goku to mature and have children, but JoJo’s has done so much more with its expansive timeline and the way it constantly reinvents itself to stay fresh.
7 Attack On Titan pushes its characters to terrifying places
Dragon Ball Z is a satisfying comfort food from an anime series that always connects but rarely leaves its audience genuinely stunned by its storytelling and twists. The attack of the Titans immediately found an audience due to its flashy man vs. monster narrative, but remained a hit throughout its run due to its masterful foreshadowing, betrayals, and delayed narrative gains. There’s so much to unpack The attack of the Titans, be it war, politics or the fragility of humanity. However, the gradual transformation of its protagonist, Eren Jaeger, is chilling and far beyond Goku’s complexity.
6 Neon Genesis Evangelion is an emotional and existential journey to oblivion
Dragon Ball Z and Neon Genesis Evangelion are both technically animated series where the heroes try to save the planet from destroying itself, but only the latter leaves the viewer in an existential depression. Neon Genesis Evangelion has acquired success leave equal to Dragon Ball Z even though it’s only 26 episodes. This subversive take on the mecha genre and giant kaiju battles turns into a sobering meditation on grief, vanity, and what it means to be happy. The anime’s themes facilitate endless discussion, but its art direction and visuals feature stark sequences that will forever haunt audiences.
5 Cowboy Bebop Plays With Genre Procedural Storytelling To Become A Classic
Cowboy Bebop, a little like Dragon Ball Z, is another popular 1990s anime series that transcended the genre. Both of these shows talk about the over-the-top nature of anime, but in very different ways. cowboy bebop trades dragonballThe aggressive transformations and energy battles of for sci-fi love letters and playful genre homages.
Spike, Faye, Jet, Ed, and Ein make up the Bebop’s unconventional crew of bounty hunters, who cover a lot of ground in a short time. World-building and character development in cowboy bebop are outstanding, but Yoko Kanno’s anime jazz soundtrack is her secret weapon.
4 Mobile Suit Gundam’s Universal Century Series Has Significant Scope And Action
The largest Mobile Suit Gundam The franchise spans dozens of series and spinoffs that take place in contrasting timelines, but the first crop of mecha series follows an ongoing timeline set in the Universal Century. Amuro Ray’s travels as an aspiring mobile suit pilot in the original Mobile Suit Gundam are as compelling as Goku’s development as a martial artist. The unique mechs and the soldiers who pilot them all make their mark, but there’s a complex political system that gives the sci-fi series its nuance. Mobile Suit Gundam is as fundamental to anime as star wars is at the cinema.
3 Hunter X Hunter is a non-repeating Shonen action
Gon Freecss Hunter X Hunter has a lot in common with Goku, especially during the Saiyan’s youth and past adventures. Dragon Ball Z and Hunter X Hunter don’t shy away from the common shonen structures in their stories, but Gon’s adventures never feel repetitive, which it doesn’t. Dragon Ball Z Every saga in Hunter X Hunter feels distinctly different, and Gon’s growth as a hero is magnificent. Hunter X Hunter is not as ubiquitous as Dragon Ball Z, but it’s a more cohesive series as a result. It ends on a high note rather than diluting its brand.
2 Code Geass walks the thin line between hero and villain
Dragon Ball Z is an example of an anime series that thrives on its heartwarming use of genre tropes, but Code Geass is a show that actively improves as it goes against convention and moves away from its origins. Audiences never really have to worry about Goku’s mental state or his loyalty to his friends, but Code Geass’ Lelouch Lamperouge embarks on a disturbing and anything but predictable path. Code Geass is an engrossing war story with intense action and satisfying mecha warfare, but the character work hits the hardest.
1 One Piece is the current Shonen standard that has over 1000 episodes
Luffy’s A piece’s Straw Hat Pirates is one of the few anime characters to have reached a level of notoriety equal to dragonballs Goku, and there’s strong reason to think he’s become even more popular. A shonen series like A piece is infinitely indebted to dragonball, but it found its own voice and recently celebrated its 1000th episode. A piece, to like dragonball, is heavy on filler material, but it has developed a comforting pace when it comes to its handling of foreign content. A piece always turns out regular content, and its conclusion will be one of the biggest events in the industry.
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