Best Anime Series of All Time have been the greatest is an inherently subjective process due to the wide array of genres and styles present within this medium. Yet certain series have stood out with their innovativeness, impactful nature and lasting popularity. “Neon Genesis Evangelion” has long been celebrated for its psychological depth and genre-defying narrative, while “Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood” garners high marks for its compelling characters and intricate world-building.
“One Piece” remains a fan-favorite with its epic adventures and dynamic character development, while “Steins;Gate” stands out with its ingenious time-travel plot. “Hunter x Hunter” has long been celebrated for its exceptional storytelling and character dynamics, while Cowboy Bebop remains an unforgettable masterpiece with its mix of jazz, space opera, and gritty storytelling.
Classic anime series such as Akira and Ghost in the Shell have made indelible impressions on anime fans worldwide, shaping both the medium itself as well as global popular culture. Together with others such as ‘Ninja Scroll’ or ‘Ghost in the Shell”, these series represent an exceptional level of anime excellence and demonstrate its diverse yet lasting appeal.
How To Choose the Best Anime Series of All Time
Selecting the ideal anime series is a subjective endeavor, as tastes differ greatly between individuals. But several factors can help guide your selection process and reveal those titles which resonate with you:
Genres: Anime offers something for every genre fan out there, including action, romance, fantasy, science fiction and horror series. Discover your preferred ones or experiment with new ones to find shows that meet your interests!
Themes: Many anime explore a wide array of themes such as friendship, romance, morality or existentialism. Consider which topics resonate with you most and look into series that explore them in detail.
Art Style: Anime comes in many art styles, from the classically detailed to minimalist designs. Find one that speaks to you, such as Studio Ghibli’s vibrant colors or modern anime’s minimalist aesthetics.
Storytelling: Different anime series employ different storytelling techniques, from linear narratives to non-linear plots and character-driven stories. If you enjoy complex plots, character development, or distinctive narrative structures when selecting anime series, factor them into your decision process.
Cultural Appeal: Anime often draws on elements from Japanese culture, folklore or societal issues to tell its stories. Consider which series are drawn to explore these aspects or whether you prefer more universal themes.
Critical Acclaim: Peruse reviews, ratings, and recommendations from both fans and critics of certain anime series that have received widespread acclaim for their storytelling, animation quality, or influence on the medium.
Popularity: While popularity doesn’t always indicate quality, it can serve as an indicator of an anime’s broad appeal. Series that have attracted many followers may have good reason for being well-received by audiences.
Personal Recommendations: For tailored recommendations tailored specifically to you, reach out to friends, online communities or platforms dedicated to anime. A good recommendation could give insight into series that align with your tastes.
Production Studio: Each anime studio has their own distinct styles and strengths, such as Studio Ghibli’s artistic excellence or Madhouse/Bones’ versatility in producing content from different genres.
Longevity: Consider what anime series have endured over time with regard to both series length and number of episodes, including those that remain popular after decades have passed.
Your ideal anime series should reflect your personal preferences, whether that means revisiting a classic like “Dragon Ball Z” or discovering something brand new like “Demon Slayer.” Explore different genres and styles to gain more insight into the vast and dynamic world of anime!
Here Is List Of Best Anime Series of All Time
- Made in Abyss
- Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure
- Naruto Shippuden
- Death Note
- Attack on Titan
- Ouran High School Host Club
- Devilman Crybaby
- Demon Slayer
- Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion
- Samurai Champloo
- Yu Yu Hakusho
- Neon Genesis Evangelion
- Hunter x Hunter
- Mob Psycho 100
- Hajime no Ippo
- One Piece
- Cowboy Bebop
20 Best Anime Series of All Time
1. Made in Abyss
Made in Abyss is unique in that its narrative could only really be conveyed effectively via manga or anime, taking full advantage of this medium to craft an exciting yet heartbreaking tale filled with both despair and hope at equal points. Riko and Reg are part of an amazing world dominated by an enormous, dangerous “abyss.” Few survive their descent into its depths as ascending can have disastrous repercussions; decompression sickness could even worsen if left in its depths for too long.
Riko’s mother has gone missing, so Riko and Reg set out on an adventure to search for her and reveal the mysteries of the Abyss. However, as their quest continues it becomes ever more fantastical and macabre just like its namesake abyss itself. From its impressive creature designs and mysterious plot points to the hopeful characters that inhabit it all, Made in Abyss will keep you on edge from start to finish. Although its appearance might be cute and sweet, Made in Abyss definitely deserves its content warnings and is not suitable for everyone.
2. Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure (Best Anime Series of All Time)
As one might imagine, watching this bizarrely amazing shounen anime with generations of Joestar family members can be mind-bogglingly captivating. Although JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure began airing anime adaptation in 2012, its impactful manga has been around since 1987; hence its impactful adaptation in 2012.
Deciding which part deserved its own spot here proved difficult so we took all aspects of JoJo into consideration when selecting our winner – from action sequences and eccentric characters to iconic moments that will live on through anime culture (and memes).
3. Naruto Shippuden
Naruto is one of the three “big three” anime, given its worldwide appeal and lasting success. Packed with exciting fight sequences, hilarious comedy scenes, and dramatic drama scenes that tug at your heartstrings;
Naruto Shippuden takes an even darker and more serious tone as characters age further and face more difficult obstacles from within themselves and from without. Naruto remains one of the top shounen series even long after it has concluded! It remains one of the biggest-selling shounen titles ever!
4. Death Note
Death Note, now an iconic anime series, follows Light Yagami a teenage who gains supernatural abilities through the titular Death Note book – giving the user the power to kill anyone they choose simply by writing their name in. He uses these supernatural abilities on an international crusade with devastating results while World Class investigators try their hardest to stop him;
Eventually leading up to World Class investigation teams joining World Class investigators themselves as foes in combatting Light. Death Note has gone on to inspire several other dark protagonist shonen anime and live-action adaptations making this show one of the greatest and most influential anime of all time!
5. Attack on Titan
On this day, humanity was once again reminded of their fear for titans – Attack on Titan quickly becoming an instant classic when it first hit shelves in 2013. Eren Yeager, Mikasa Ackerman and Armin Arlert form an unbreakable trio as they join humanity’s most elite soldiers to battle massive Titans and other threats that lie outside of their cities’ boundaries.
Beginning as an ordinary shonen anime, Bleach quickly transformed into an incredible work of art that explores themes such as war, classism/racism and other heavy topics. Few can escape its profound influence – Alex Garland even credits Bleach as one of his sources of inspiration! A mixture of high-intensity action scenes with character development scenes slowing down over time along with Game of Thrones-esque deaths makes Bleach one of the greatest anime to emerge since Game of Thrones!
6. Ouran High School Host Club
Ouran High School Host Club can be hard to explain in terms of all its complexities; manga and anime fans will appreciate its unconventional take on established conventions of both mediums. You will love how its characters subvert them with every turn they take in this storyline! And if you appreciate an engaging tale, Bisco Hatori’s hilarious take on shojo subgenre will quickly engross you.
Haruhi Fujioka becomes embroiled in her school’s popular host club, where male students entertain female ones for money, accidentally breaking an expensive vase and being taken for a boy in order to become one. She quickly finds herself being forced into becoming one by being mistaken as such and forced into becoming a host. As she explores her place within the Host Club, she gradually begins to find herself and develop confidence – as well as making new friends! Ouran High School Host Club is a hilarious yet tender take on otaku culture; one of its pioneers in fujoshi comedy.
7. Devilman Crybaby (Best Anime Series of All Time)
Devilman Crybaby stands out among Netflix original programming by telling an emotional, tightly focused tale in just 10 episodes. Warning: Devilman Crybaby may make younger viewers with parents present uncomfortable due to its explicit depictions of sexual content and violence; however, in exploring what may seem offensively filthy Devilman Crybaby finds humanity.
Devilman Crybaby offers an irreverently modern take on the biblical Book of Revelation; its characters explore love, sacrifice and God’s feelings about humanity through biblical passages adapted into contemporary settings – with gorgeous animation and memorable Japanese hip hop music as backdrops – making the pain much less severe.
8. Demon Slayer
Demon Slayer has experienced remarkable popularity over the last several years and it’s no secret to those that have followed it up until now. Every episode is impressive with smooth animation that never compromises its gorgeous art, breathtaking visual effects bringing spectacular battles to life.
And an incredible soundtrack punctuating many emotional high points – not forgetting characters such as Zentisu and Inosuke’s over-the-top absurdities that will have you laughing out loud, yet still make you tear up over themes of loss and family ties that run throughout.
9. Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion
This show, first released in 2006, has endured with its two enticing elements – its alluring setting comprised of meticulous worldbuilding, and an engaging narrative featuring suspenseful twists akin to thriller fiction. The plot unfolds in an alternative timeline reminiscent of Nineteen Eighty-Four, where three superpowers exist on Earth: Holy Britannian Empire, Chinese Federation and European Union.
Before the story proper begins, the Holy Britannian Empire has already conquered Japan and stripped away both its name and freedom with massive mechs. So yes, this anime is a highly political mecha thriller with thrilling action scenes that keep the suspense going strong. Lelouch is an exiled Britannian prince living in Japan who vows to bring down his father’s empire with political subterfuge, engaging mythology and captivating characters; making this show one of the greatest mecha anime of all time.
10. Samurai Champloo
Shinichiro Watanabe’s stock was sky high following the phenomenal success of Cowboy Bebop, and his follow up film, an episodic Samurai story with hip hop influences and emotional resonance, only cemented his legacy as one of anime directing’s greatest directors.
Samurai Champloo was mostly episodic like its predecessor but each main character’s individual arcs proved captivating to watch and featured emotionally-stirring story beats and nonstop action sequences that kept audiences entranced and wanting more.
Baccano packs more story and intrigue into its 16 episodes than many anime can in twice or three times that amount. A fast-paced thrill ride, much like its iconic train journey that serves as the centerpiece of its twisty tale, it features some of anime’s most memorable psychopaths – with almost every episode unveiling another twist that completely changes your perspective – not to mention one of the finest dubs you will ever hear!
12. FLCL (Top Anime Series of All Time)
FLCL (pronounced Fooly Cooly) may be relatively brief even by anime standards, but that shouldn’t detract from its appeal as a sci-fi comedy series. FLCL stands out as being among the more bizarre and hilarious of its kind; originally centering around Naota Nandaba and Haruko Haruhara from an ordinary suburban background and their strange yet hilarious encounter.
From Naota growing giant robots from his head during its opening episode to incredible soundtrack and experimental animation style making FLCL one-of-its-own! FLCL stands as one-of-its own unique anime experience that leaves viewers with lasting memories!
13. Yu Yu Hakusho
Yusuke Urameshi, a 14-year-old teenage delinquent hit by a car and dying while trying to save a child from harm, finds that neither heaven nor hell are suitable places for him; but given a second chance at life thanks to being charged with investigating supernatural activity in Human World as Spirit World Detective with assistance from friends.
Utilizing Spirit Gun – which allows him to fire Kamehameha missiles from his fingertip – Yusuke fights hard to protect balance between Human and Demon Worlds while shooting Kamehamehas from his fingers; making this series stand alongside Dragon Ball Z as one of most influential action anime of its era!
14. Neon Genesis Evangelion
There’s a reason we still require an explanation for the ending of Neon Genesis Evangelion over two decades after its release. Hideaki Anno’s groundbreaking anime has become part of popular culture for its complex backstory; even its final two episodes remain controversial and up for debate. No one would dispute Evangelion’s continued excellence as both an elevated take on mech anime and as an intense and personal exploration of depression.
No matter the numerous sequels or remakes of Neon Genesis Evangelion movies or series, nothing compares with its groundbreaking original run, which remains beloved among fans today and serves as an example of how one person with one vision can craft art that remains relevant over generations.
15. Hunter x Hunter
Hunter x Hunter (pronounced Hunter Hunter) opens with an iconic trope: Gon, an eleven-year-old boy living on an island, embarks on his first ever journey, leaving home to go in search of his long-forgotten father who had abandoned him behind – his only clue being that his former life as a world-famous licensed Hunter is revealed as Gon takes part in the notoriously deadly examination to become one himself.
Though at first this may sound simplistic and nondescript, Hunter x Hunter proves far from it: emotional highs and lows combine perfectly with excellent character development across protagonists and antagonists alike for an engaging experience that keeps audiences coming back time after time! And unlike most shonen series it delivers incredible dramatic action too – you won’t believe just what lies within this one!
16. Mob Psycho 100
Mob Psycho 100, from One, is another entertaining comedy from original One-Punch Man creator One. This series functions both as a parody and excellent example of shonen anime, centering around Mob,
an eighth grade student who specializes in exorcising evil spirits using his supernatural powers – with those powers tied directly to emotions; should Mob lose control, it could put all humanity at risk. Mob Psycho 100’s success relies on its humor, memorable cast of characters and captivating visual style.
17. Hajime no Ippo
Hajime no Ippo (also known in the US as Fighting Spirit) is an epic adaptation of an incredible manga series. Imagine Rocky meets The Karate Kid when viewing this coming-of-age drama about bullied teenager Ippo Makunouchi who discovers an aptitude for boxing; his training and gradual rise through the boxing ranks is beautifully chronicled in this series; what really distinguishes it is its ability to showcase both sides of any given match-up; Ippo doesn’t just train to become better; rather, he strives to understand and connect with his opponents – something Rocky can’t do.
18. Monster (Best Anime Series of All Time)
Monster stands out as one of the greatest anime/manga stories ever told, yet is also notable because of how unlike everything else it is. Monster is unique because of how different it is; in an industry dominated by giant robots, superpowered heroes that shoot beams out of their hands, virtual fantasy worlds and virtual reality experiences,.
Monster provides a welcome grounding in reality – it is a dark mature thriller about an innocent man who makes decisions he believes to be right but ends up losing everything due to them; his struggle against his mistakes is vividly represented here.
19. One Piece
At nearly 20 years old, One Piece continues to engage audiences worldwide with over 1000 episodes. Being such a long running anime series with pirate adventures can make it challenging for any series to keep fans both old and new interested, but One Piece managed it thanks to Eiichiro Oda’s incredible mind – thanks to world building, characters development, hilarious adventure scenes, amazing adaptation that surpasses manga, as well as sometimes surpassing it; One Piece remains at the top of shonen anime history thanks to Oda’s vision; his vision has had such an enduring effect on viewers over its long running time period, nor is likely going anywhere soon.
20. Cowboy Bebop
Cowboy Bebop still holds up after over 20 years thanks to its timeless writing and animation style. Space Western that introduced us to Spike, Jet, Faye, Ed and Ein is still stunningly rendered, boasting a powerful story, strong characters and one of the finest anime soundtracks ever conceived. Cowboy Bebop has had an indelible mark that extends far beyond anime;
figures as diverse as Orson Scott Card, Rian Johnson and Robin Williams have lauded its influence in their respective fields of endeavor. Cowboy Bebop remains relevant thanks to its relatable story arc at its genre-bending 26 episode run. Exploration of adult themes such as loss anchor the crew’s journey across space, making it a delight to revisit time after time. Let’s jam!
Best Anime Series of All Time Pros & Cons
- Groundbreaking and psychologically complex storytelling, memorable characters, and profound themes exploring human nature and existentialism.
Exceptional world-building, compelling characters, and a well-crafted plot with a satisfying conclusion.
Epic adventure, intricate world-building, and well-developed characters with strong themes of friendship and perseverance.
Mind-bending time-travel plot, strong character development, and an emotionally impactful narrative.
Exceptional storytelling, complex characters, and a well-balanced mix of action and strategic elements.
- Ambiguous and controversial ending, which may be polarizing for some viewers.
- Some may find the initial episodes rushed in comparison to the 2003 adaptation, “Fullmetal Alchemist.”
- Daunting episode count may be intimidating for newcomers; pacing issues in certain arcs.
- Initial episodes may be slow for some viewers, requiring patience to fully appreciate the payoff.
- Episodic nature may make the overarching plot feel less defined for some viewers.
- Some may find the complex narrative challenging to follow on a first viewing.
Best Anime Series of All Time Of Features
Compelling Storytelling: The series boasts a well-crafted and engaging narrative, incorporating intriguing plot twists, character arcs, and thematic depth.
Memorable Characters: Unforgettable and well-developed characters leave a lasting impact on viewers, fostering emotional connections and investment in their journeys.
Exceptional World-Building: The anime presents a meticulously constructed and immersive world, complete with unique cultures, histories, and environments.
Unique Art Style: The series features a distinctive and visually appealing animation style that sets it apart, contributing to its overall aesthetic and atmosphere.
Innovative Themes: The anime explores innovative and thought-provoking themes, pushing the boundaries of storytelling and challenging conventional norms.
Iconic Soundtrack: An unforgettable musical score enhances the viewing experience, creating a memorable auditory landscape that complements the narrative.
Philosophical Depth: The series delves into profound philosophical concepts, prompting viewers to contemplate existential questions and societal issues.
Emotional Resonance: The anime evokes a strong emotional response through powerful storytelling, impactful character moments, and resonant themes.
Cultural Significance: The anime has made significant contributions to the anime industry and achieved recognition on a global scale, influencing subsequent works.
Influence on the Medium: The series has left a lasting impact on the anime medium, inspiring future creators and contributing to the evolution of storytelling and animation techniques.
Best Anime Series of All Time Conclusion
Conclusion Anime is a vast and varied world that spans across decades and genres. Many series have left lasting impressions on viewers all around the globe. The best anime series ever made, marked by captivating storytelling, memorable characters and innovative themes, demonstrate the depth and breadth of this art form. From the groundbreaking psychological complexity of “Neon Genesis Evangelion” to the epic adventures of “One Piece” and emotional resonance of “Demon Slayer,” each series brings something distinct.
These iconic anime have achieved iconic status due to their longstanding cultural relevance, influence on the medium and consistent quality. As the anime landscape continues to change, these timeless classics remain testaments of storytelling, animation and its power to transcend cultural barriers, leaving an everlasting mark on generations of viewers. At their core, the greatest anime series are more than simply animated entertainment but are works of art which have helped shape an artistic and cultural movement over time.