Uniting the best of cinematography, graphic art and pop music, Japanese anime is loved internationally for its variety of themes and styles, as well as its depth in exploring human emotions unseen in other animated works. On Netflix, you can find a library of the genre’s best-received productions. Scroll down to see some of our favorites!
Death Note (2006)
The 37-episode Death Note aired in 2006, following prodigy Light Yagami who discovered a notebook owned by Ryuk, the God of Death, which gave him the power to kill whoever’s name was written on the notebook. With a vision for a world without crime, the protagonist uses the power he is given to kill off high-profile criminals and eventually gets the Interpol and detective L looped into a series of what the world sees as mysterious murders. Can’t get enough? Watch the live-action series that’s also available on Netflix!
Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure (2012)
Adventure is another popular theme that recurs in anime. First appeared in the manga magazine Weekly Shōnen Jump in 1987, the iconic Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure was put on the small screen in 2012, which allows the audience to follow generations of the Joester family on a quest for their own truth, be it taking down the family enemy or eliminating a drug cartel by becoming the mafia boss. Whether you are here for the characters’ powers that transform breathing into Hamon energy, their Stands which give life and substantial form to spiritual power or simply the looks, Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure is an exemplar that showcases how a concept in the ’80s ages well into the 21st century.
Attack On Titan (2013)
If you don’t already have that one friend who just can’t stop talking about how good Attack On Titan is, here we are. Set in Eldia, a city believed to be the last human civilization, the series is led by Eren Yeager as he fights the titans, an act of revenge for his mother who was eaten by one of them, while unearthing the truth of the world.
One-Punch Man (2015)
Besides adventures and the military, comedy is also a genre that owns a bigger fan base than you might realize. And it won’t be an exaggeration to place One-Punch Man at the top tier. Following the self-made hero Saitama, the audience is invited onto the protagonist’s journey to saving people from the attacks of monsters and villains, with one single punch, as he finds friendships and battles self-doubt and a lack of motivation for being the strongest of all.
Mob Psycho 100 (2016)
If you can’t get enough of One-Punch Man‘s dry humor, you would most definitely enjoy Mob Psycho 100, created by the same manga artist One. Different from Saitama, the superpower is innate to Mob, the protagonist in this series. As Mob tops his ability every time he fights a battle, the audience gets a little deeper into his longing for living an average life and appreciation for the ordinary.
The Disastrous Life of Saiki K., again, is comedy gold that shows how out of the world anime can be. What makes the protagonist Kusuo Saiki different is his unrivalled superpower — you guessed it. Once a loner who would rather keep himself out of trouble by hiding his abilities, the main character slowly develops friendships with his schoolmates while solving every day problems he encounters with his abnormal gift.
Cells At Work! (2018)
When we say Japanese anime covers every genre there is on the market, we mean it. The 2018 production Cells At Work! personifies the anthropomorphic cells in our body and follows the red and white blood cells to work to help the human body recovers from different diseases. Both educational and entertaining, the series would be the easiest and most enjoyable way to understand our bodies.
Spy x Family (2022)
The story of Spy x Family unfolds in a make-up family consisting of a spy father, an assassin mother and a psychic daughter. Taken the world by storm last year when it first aired, the series welcomes a second season now on Netflix that continues Loid’s journey as a spy in the rival Ostania while trying to keep the family together.