Why These Anime Are Great for First-Time Anime Watchers

The medium of animation has been growing in popularity as a style for film and television. The art style provides a unique way to tell stories that live-action and CGI cannot provide. So many pieces of media have been renowned and praised for their artistic beauty. As animation continues to grow more beloved and get the recognition it deserves, the Japanese style of anime also rises in appreciation. Most people know anime as being for TV series, but there are plenty of gorgeous anime movies as well.

That being said, a lot of audience members getting into anime tend to start with the TV shows because they’re a little easier to digest in episodic pieces. But even still, there are some anime out there with more intricate and intense material in the storylines that can be a little more difficult to follow – especially for those unfamiliar with different anime genres (shounen, seinen, etc.) and aspects of Japanese culture . For those who are just testing the waters and want to get into some anime shows but aren’t sure where to start, these are a few shows that are perfect for first time watchers.

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Spy x Family is Action-Packed Wholesomeness

The adaptation of Spy x Family was one that was long awaited by fans of the manga. The show has an incredibly captivating plot centered around Loid, a European spy, who goes undercover in Japan. He needs to start a false family and so adopts an adorable child named Anya who, unknownst to him, has telepathic abilities. Yor completes the family as the mother figure, but is there with the intent of protecting her own secret identity as an assassin. Neither Loid nor Yor know each other’s secrets; the only one with any idea what’s going on is Anya, who is working hard to please her spy father and help save the world. The show is praised for its perfect blend of action, comedy, and wholesomeness, as well as for its dynamic characters. This series is perfect as a fairly casual show for those who like something fun and fast-paced.


Ouran High School Host Club is Full of Hilarious Hijinks

This anime tends to be more popular as a dubbed version (though “seasoned” anime watchers will always recommend watching with subtitles instead), as many first time watchers will be introduced to this anime and its funky voice cast. Ouran High School Host Club is a quirky romantic comedy about a scholarship student falling in with the host club at her elite aristocratic high school. The show is a constant mess of hijinks and hilarity, keeping audiences laughing and entertained. Each episode is full of tropes from Japanese manga and anime, but makes fun of itself and these aspects throughout the series. The comedy is what Ouran High School Host Club is known for, but it also has a lot of interesting commentary and storytelling aspects regarding relationships and identities. It shows a lot of dynamics between lower class characters and upper class characters, revealing both differences and similarities between them; it also explores identity and gender through the protagonist Haruhi, who dresses as a boy during her time with the host club but says she doesn’t care what people think of her as. So, even though the show seems like a simple silly show on the surface, it does have more substance to it deeper down that audiences can connect to and enjoy as first time watchers.


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Death Note is a Dark Suspenseful Story

The incredibly popular anime Death Note, which is set to get a live-action series on Netflix, is one that many anime watchers and manga readers recommend. This story has a little more substance to it and provides a challenging puzzle and moral quandary for viewers to follow along with. This anime is perfect for those who like something a little spooky and thought-provoking. Death Note follows Light, a high school student who finds a book belonging to a death god (a shinigami) which will kill the person whose name is written in it. Light takes it upon himself to anonymously start killing bad guys and criminals by using his new death note. He thinks that he is making the world a better place by killing these people, but Light quickly becomes a god-like figure himself in the eyes of the public who dub him “Kira”. As the story goes on, Light’s morals and sense of right and wrong get more and more muddled, especially as he faces off the investigator L who is set on outsmarting him and bringing him to justice. Viewers of the show are led to confront ideals of morality and society and challenge their own feelings towards it. Death Note is a heavier anime for first time viewers, but definitely worth the watch. It’s haunting and complex in all the best ways and is sure to entertain from start to finish.


Natsume Yuujinchou is Charming and Mystical

For those looking for something a little more casual with a well-incorporated supernatural element, this is the perfect story for them. Natsume Yuujinchou is a delightful anime with a soothing slice-of-life feel combined with the strangeness of a main character who can see spirits known as youkai. The titular character Natsume has a book of spirit names inherited from his grandmother, along with the gift of being able to see them. He is accompanied by nyanko-sensei, who is a powerful youkai that conceals himself in the form of a very sarcastic and very tubby little cat. This show is charming and powerful and, despite being a series that runs on the longer side, is regarded by fans as one that is always worth the watch. Natsume Yuujinchou has powerful themes and characters that will tug at the heartstrings of viewers and are sure to encourage you to watch more beautiful animes.


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My Hero Academia is Empowering and Fun

This anime is enjoyed by viewers of all ages. It’s a story of superheroes and monsters and centers around a young boy who wants nothing more than to be a hero, but unfortunately has no “quirk” that gives him powers. This show has fantastic character design and visual elements, and is enticing to watch just for the use of the anime art style alone. The heroes are fearsome and unique, as are the opponents and monsters they face. Though the show has many lead characters with incredible abilities, the show is about Izuku struggling with the fact that he doesn’t have a quirk. He is told time and time again that he can’t be a hero without one, but goes on to prove the world around him wrong by being a hero in human ways– through love and sacrifice and courage. This series might look like simple fun at first glance, but has some of the most meaningful moments in an anime series that will make audience members of any age feel empowered.

My Love Story!! is a Silly Heartfelt Series

Then there’s the often forgotten but ever-loved anime Ore Monogataria more often known as My Love Story!! This show is perfect for laughs and simple pleasures, and has a lead character who is the best written himbo that cinema has ever seen. The main character, Takeo, is a high school student that looks like he should be a professional wrestler– but beneath that fearsome shell is a soft heart that protects girls getting harassed on subways and likes to collect shells on the beach. And inside his broad head is a mostly empty brain that is oblivious to most things, except for how to care for his friends and loved ones. This anime is often praised as one with a cute love story supported by great characters who bring everything together and keep viewers invested. The writing, though very comical and full of classic tropes, is incredibly well done and realistic, making each moment in the show captivating and heartfelt. The story of Takeo falling in love with the adorably sweet Yamato is one that will steal the hearts of anyone watching, and is sure to make every viewer smile. This anime is perfect for first time watchers who want something fun and cheerful to test the waters with, and it will not disappoint.


Anime can be a complex style of animation to get into– there are definitely a lot of different shows and genres to choose from, it can get a bit overwhelming. But these series are bound to help you figure out what kind of shows you like and help get audiences more interested in watching the beloved Japanese style. There’s no shortage of stories out there, so there’s always something for everyone to enjoy.

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