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10 of the best anime series for teens

Anime is all the rage among teens — here are the shows they love!

Anime

/ˈanɪmeɪ,ˈanɪmə/

a style of Japanese film and television animation, typically aimed at adults as well as children.

Within Japan, anime is the term used to describe any form of animation, whether produced nationally or internationally. Anime is so popular today that you could find one for literally any topic, theme or age profile. From friendship and romance to science fiction and action thrillers to murder mysteries, there’s an anime series for everything. 

Fair warning: Anime is not created to appease a younger age group in any way, which means that not everything that looks age-appropriate will actually be age-appropriate for teens. 

For those new to the genre, let’s get into 10 of the most popular anime series for teenagers, in no particular order: 

1) Fullmetal Alchemist 

Japanese title: 鋼の錬金術師

Genre: Adventure | Dark Fantasy

IMDb rating: 8.5/10

What’s it about: Fullmetal Alchemist has been loosely adapted from a manga series of the same name. The series follows the story of two brothers, Edward and Alphonse Elric, who are on the hunt for the philosopher’s stone after a failed alchemical ritual that leaves them with severely damaged bodies. It comprises a total of 51 episodes and even a second series called Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood.

2) Naruto 

Japanese title: ナルト

Genre: Adventure | Fantasy Comedy

IMDb rating: 8.3/10

What’s it about: This is another manga-adapted series that tells the story of Naruto Uzumaki, a young mischievous ninja who seeks recognition from his peers. He also dreams of becoming the Hokage or the leader of his village. Between 2002 to 2007, the series broadcasted about 220 episodes in Japan. The sequel, Naruto: Shippuden, includes 500 more episodes.

3) Attack on Titan

Japanese title: 進撃の巨人

Genre: Action | Dark Fantasy | Post Apocalyptic 

IMDb rating: 9/10

What’s it about: Set in a post-apocalyptic world where the remains of humanity live behind walls that protect them from the Titans, Attack on Titan follows the journey of the protagonist (Eren Jaeger) and his friends in their fight against the giant Titans. The friends join the Survey Corps after the Colossal Titan breaches the wall of their hometown, destroys the city and kills Eren’s mother. It currently includes 75 episodes with the second part of the final season set to air in January 2022.

4) Yu Yu Hakusho

Japanese title: 幽☆遊☆白書

Genre: Adventure | Martial Arts

IMDb rating: 8.4/10

What’s it about: Written and illustrated by Yoshihiro Togashi, the series narrates the story of Yusuke Urameshi, a 14-year old who finds himself dead following a car crash while attempting to save a child’s life. After realizing he was never meant to die, the Spirit World resurrects him as a Spirit Detective and he’s tasked to investigate various cases involving demons and apparitions in the human world. This series won the Animage Anime Grand Prix prize for best anime in 1994 and 1995.

5) Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba

Japanese title: 鬼滅の刃

Genre: Adventure | Dark Fantasy

IMDb rating: 8/7/10

What’s it about: This 26-episode series details the story of Tanjiro Kamado, a teenager who strives to become a demon slayer after his family was slaughtered and his younger sister Nezuko is slowly being turned into a demon. Tanjiro promises to avenge his family and cure his sister. In 2020, the Demon Slayer franchise generated an estimated annual sales revenue of ¥1 trillion ($8.75 billion), becoming one of the highest-grossing media franchises of all time.

6) Cowboy Bebop

Japanese title: カウボーイビバップ

Genre: Space Western | Neo-Noir

IMDb rating: 8.9/10

What’s it about: This science fiction television series comprises 26 episodes set in the year 2071. It follows the lives of a traveling bounty hunting crew in their spaceship called the Bebop. It includes several futuristic misadventures of the easygoing bounty hunter and his friends. Cowboy Bebop has been credited with helping introduce anime to a new wave of Western viewers in the early 2000s.

7) Death Note 

Japanese title: N/A

Genre: Mystery | Psychological Thriller

IMDb rating: 9/10

What’s it about: A Japanese manga series written by Tsugumi Ohba and illustrated by Takeshi Obata, this story is about Light Yagami, a teen genius who discovers a mysterious notebook, titled the ‘Death Note’. He discovers it belonged to the Shinigami Ryuk and grants the user the supernatural ability to kill anyone whose name is written in its pages. He then goes on a secret crusade to eliminate criminals from the world.

8) Haikyuu!!

Japanese title: ハイキュー!!

Genre: Comedy | Coming of Age

IMDb rating: 8.7/10

What’s it about: Shōyō Hinata is a young boy who is determined to become a great volleyball player one day, despite his short build. He joins his school’s volleyball club – only to realize that he’s its sole member, forcing him to spend the next two years trying to convince other students to help him practice. The series currently includes 85 episodes and four seasons.

9) One Punch Man: Wanpanman

Japanese title: ワンパンマン

Genre: Action | Comedy

IMDb rating: 8.8/10

What’s it about: Meet Saitama: a superhero who can defeat any opponent with a single punch. With all the strength he has, Saitama soon grows bored and seeks to find a worthy opponent to come at par with his powers. As of April 2020, the manga remake of One Punch Man had sold over 30 million copies.

10) Black Clover

Japanese title: ブラッククローバー

Genre: Adventure | Fantasy

IMDb rating: 8.3/10

What’s it about: This 170-episode series has been written and illustrated by Yūki Tabata and follows the story of Asta and Yuno who were abandoned together at the same church. Both boys live in a magical realm where they, as children, promise to compete against each other to see who would become the next Emperor Magus. 

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