The Best Anime Series of All Time TV Programs
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The Best Anime Series of All Time

List Criteria: Japanese animated TV series only

You love anime but what tops this list of the best anime series ever made? The blanket term "anime" in the US can refer to any animation originating in Japan, and specifically differentiates a few aspects of Japanese animation from more Western styles. (This includes the Japanese propensity to feature adult themes and stories in animation, as opposed to Western "cartoons" aimed primarily at children, as well as the exaggerated, fantasy-oriented and colorful style of Japanese animated visuals.) "Anime" can refer either to animated films or TV series, furthering the confusion. (Anime is often incorrectly used to refer to Japanese comic books as well. These are actually known as "manga," though many anime series are based on or inspired by popular manga.) Check out the best anime of 2014 for newer recommendations! 

Anime TV series first found popularity outside of Japan in the 1980s and have continued to find larger and larger audiences in the West. A number of anime shows originating in Japan - such as Cowboy Bebop or Dragon Ball Z - have found enthusiastic audiences for dubbed versions in English speaking countries. (Pokemon, a series inspired by Nintendo's blockbuster series of video games, has been an ongoing hit franchise in both Japan and the US.) The anime style has grown so popular in the US, it has stared to significantly influence the style and aesthetics of American animation. Shows such as Avatar: The Last Airbender, Afro Samurai and Samurai Jack have borrowed heavily from anime in terms of pacing, subject matter, and design.

This list collects the best Japanese anime TV series of all time. American series that have been influenced by anime, such as Avatar: The Last Airbender, are not included.

  • 41 ReRanks
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  1. 1
    + 1192
    - 396

    Rie Kugimiya, Nana Mizuki, Minami Takayama

    ) open
  2. 2
    + 1158
    - 589

    most listed

    ) open
  3. 3
    + 520
    - 291

    Megumi Hayashibara, Norio Wakamoto, Kōichi Yamadera

    ) open
  4. 4
    + 801
    - 482

    Rie Kugimiya, Dameon Clarke, Toru Ohkawa

    ) open
  5. 5
    + 1219
    - 598

    Mayumi Tanaka, Naoko Watanabe, Masako Nozawa

    ) open
  6. 6
    + 739
    - 523

    often listed

    ) open
  7. 7
    + 909
    - 222

    ranked low on reranks & added by maxryan3003 Attack On Titan Attack on Titan (進撃の巨人 Shingeki no Kyojin?, lit. "Advancing Giants") is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated byHajime Isayama. The series began

    ) open
  8. 8
    + 705
    - 277

    Kikuko Inoue, Jōji Nakata, Fumiko Orikasa

    ) open
  9. 9
    + 901
    - 493

    Colleen O'Shaughnessey, Junko Takeuchi, Wil Wheaton

    ) open
  10. 10
    + 726
    - 379

    Luci Christian, Brina Palencia

    ) open
  11. 11
    + 839
    - 406

    Nana Mizuki, Toshiyuki Morikawa, Kazuhiko Inoue

    ) open
  12. 12
    + 541
    - 256

    Daisuke Namikawa, Kouichi Toochika, Katsuyuki Konishi

    ) open
  13. 13
    + 629
    - 417

    Mayumi Tanaka, Masako Nozawa, Hiromi Tsuru

    ) open
  14. 14
    + 525
    - 350

    Mamiko Noto, Paul Dobson, Houko Kuwashima

    ) open
  15. 15
    + 465
    - 341

    Johnny Yong Bosch, Hiromi Tsuru, Aya Hisakawa

    ) open
  16. 16
    + 451
    - 363

    the people's #1 Megumi Hayashibara, Takehito Koyasu, Akira Ishida

    ) open
  17. 17
    + 366
    - 122

    ranked low on reranks & added by ValedPuud Tomokazu Seki, Mamoru Miyano, Yukari Tamura

    ) open
  18. 18
    + 602
    - 457

    Megumi Hayashibara, Tomokazu Seki, Shin-ichiro Miki

    ) open
  19. 19
    + 456
    - 272

    Yoshito Yasuhara, Tomo Sakurai, Mayo Suzukaze

    ) open
  20. 20
    + 422
    - 255
    ) open
  21. 21
    + 357
    - 268

    Akio Ōtsuka, Kōichi Yamadera, Atsuko Tanaka

    ) open
  22. 22
    + 423
    - 251

    Kaori Nazuka, Kouki Uchiyama, Keiji Himeno

    ) open
  23. 23
    + 400
    - 175

    Ayako Kawasumi, Takehito Koyasu, Akio Ōtsuka

    ) open
  24. 24
    + 572
    - 214

    ranked low on reranks & added by Lepticidio Yoshitsugu Matsuoka, Kōichi Yamadera, Hiroaki Hirata

    ) open
  25. 25
    + 302
    - 292

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Steve Kramer, Kari Wahlgren, Dave Mallow

    ) open
  26. 26
    + 194
    - 172

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Steven Blum, Mary Elizabeth McGlynn, Neil Kaplan

    ) open
  27. 27
    + 292
    - 134

    Jun Fukuyama, Nobuhiko Okamoto

    ) open
  28. 28
    + 294
    - 187

    Nobuyuki Hiyama, Takako Honda, Kiyoyuki Yanada

    ) open
  29. 29
    + 246
    - 101

    Junko Takeuchi, Hiroki Takahashi, Hozumi Gōda

    ) open
  30. 30
    + 326
    - 201

    Crispin Freeman, Jōji Nakata, Jason Miller

    ) open
  31. 31
    + 299
    - 265

    often listed Aya Hisakawa, Kotono Mitsuishi, Keiko Han

    ) open
  32. 32
    + 111
    - 127

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Megumi Hayashibara, Hirotaka Suzuoki, Kenichi Ogata

    ) open
  33. 33
    + 171
    - 63

    added by SensitivePsych0 Psycho-Pass

    ) open
  34. 34
    + 227
    - 103

    ranked low on reranks

    ) open
  35. 35
    + 132
    - 127

    often listed & added by Foxtrot Tomokazu Seki, Mamiko Noto, Junko Takeuchi

    ) open
  36. 36
    + 173
    - 95

    added by sophiagubbels Kikuko Inoue, Takehito Koyasu, Mamoru Miyano

    ) open
  37. 37
    + 119
    - 87

    added by Yamato19742014 Houko Kuwashima, Brian Drummond, Kiyoyuki Yanada

    ) open
  38. 38
    + 175
    - 106

    Hellsing Ultimate

    ) open
  39. 39
    + 122
    - 101

    Chiwa Saitō, Takehito Koyasu, Kappei Yamaguchi

    ) open
  40. 40
    + 224
    - 171

    Toshiyuki Morikawa, Akira Ishida, Akiko Yajima

    ) open
  41. 41
    + 146
    - 235

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Masami Kikuchi

    ) open
  42. 42
    + 262
    - 262

    Andrew Rannells, Junko Takeuchi, Megumi Ogata

    ) open
  43. 43
    + 82
    - 40

    No Game No Life

    ) open
  44. 44
    + 181
    - 176

    Nana Mizuki, Kikuko Inoue, Houko Kuwashima

    ) open
  45. 45
    + 172
    - 189

    Akira Ishida, Akiko Yajima, Hiroyuki Yoshino

    ) open
  46. 46
    + 75
    - 110

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Takehito Koyasu, Akio Ōtsuka, Akiko Yajima

    ) open
  47. 47
    + 180
    - 108

    added by kiaoncelucas High School of the Dead

    ) open
  48. 48
    + 82
    - 37

    Rie Kugimiya, Rie Tanaka, Yui Horie

    ) open
  49. 49
    + 96
    - 41

    ranked low on reranks Kill La Kill

    ) open
  50. 50
    + 98
    - 130

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Black Cat

    ) open
139 +

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