10 best anime to watch if you like Gurren Lagann

Eureka Seven, Darling in the Franxx, Kill la Kill
Eureka Seven, Darling in the Franxx, Kill la Kill (Image via Bones, A-1 Pictures, Trigger)

Gurren Lagann is a popular mecha anime series known for its over-the-top action sequences, inspirational storytelling, and dynamic characters. The show follows Simon and Kamina, two young men living underground who discover a mecha known as Lagann. This discovery sparks a revolution against the Beastmen oppressors who have taken over the Earth's surface.

Throughout their journey, Simon grows into a reluctant hero as he and Team Dai-Gurren fight increasingly powerful enemies. The series is full of high-stakes battles, motivating speeches, comedy, and tear-jerking moments. If you loved the mix of action, emotion, and spirit in the series, here are 10 more great anime to check out next.

Disclaimer: This list is not ranked in any particular order and reflects the writer's opinions.


Top 10 must-watch anime for Gurren Lagann fans

1. Kill la Kill

Kill la Kill (Image via Trigger)
Kill la Kill (Image via Trigger)

Kill la Kill features over-the-top action and a story about a ragtag team challenging an oppressive force. The series follows rebel Ryuko Matoi as she searches for her father's killer at Honnōji Academy. To fight the student council president and uncover secrets, she acquires a special combat uniform.

With its unique animation style, destructive battles, and themes of friendship and solidarity, Kill la Kill shares Gurren Lagann's rowdy spirit. Fans of Kamina's inspirational speeches may also enjoy the motivational lines from Kill la Kill's Mako Mankanshoku.


2. Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann: Parallel Works

Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann: Parallel Works (Image via Gainax)
Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann: Parallel Works (Image via Gainax)

This series of animated short stories is set within the Gurren Lagann universe. It offers alternative settings and scenarios involving Simon, Nia, Kamina, and other characters. While the production value and runtimes are smaller compared to the original, the shorts showcase different animation styles.

They also provide some fresh perspectives on characters and relationships. Hardcore Gurren Lagann fans who want more content in that universe should give Parallel Works a look. At the very least, there are some impressive animated sequences and battles to enjoy.


3. Neon Genesis Evangelion

Neon Genesis Evangelion (Image via Gainax)
Neon Genesis Evangelion (Image via Gainax)

Although the tone is darker compared to Gurren Lagann, Neon Genesis Evangelion has some strong thematic parallels. It tells the story of teenagers piloting mechas called Evas to defend Tokyo-3 from invading celestial beings.

Protagonist Shinji Ikari is reluctant to fight at first, much like Simon. But as Shinji faces existential threats, he realizes what he is fighting for and finds his resolve. Both shows feature coming-of-age stories alongside apocalyptic stakes and mecha battles. The animation and fight choreography hold up remarkably well in Evangelion, despite its 1995 release.


4. Eureka Seven

Eureka Seven (Image via Bones)
Eureka Seven (Image via Bones)

Eureka Seven centers around the unusual pairing between aloof rebel Renton and an enigmatic girl named Eureka. Like Gurren Lagann, this series blends the mecha and coming-of-age genres effectively. Renton has plenty of relatable struggles, making mistakes and questioning his abilities frequently.

Viewers also get eye-catching mecha battles and a memorable romantic subplot. By the end of his long journey, Renton achieves substantial growth. The themes of love and finding one’s purpose resonate strongly throughout Eureka Seven’s run.


5. Darling in the Franxx

Darling in the Franxx (Image via A-1 Pictures and Trigger)
Darling in the Franxx (Image via A-1 Pictures and Trigger)

In a dystopian future, children are raised to pilot giant mechas in boy-girl pairs. The bonds between the pilots are especially important for successfully operating the Franxx units. Darling in the Franxx focuses on the developing relationship between timid pilot Hiro and his partner Zero Two.

Fans of Gurren Lagann’s action, drama, and romance should give this series a look. It features plenty of large-scale battles as Hiro gains confidence. The show also explores deeper themes about identity and human connection.


6. Puella Magi Madoka Magica

Puella Magi Madoka Magica (Image via Shaft)
Puella Magi Madoka Magica (Image via Shaft)

On the surface, Puella Magi Madoka Magica seems like a cute magical girl anime. However, it eventually subverts expectations with darker, more mature storylines. The show follows Madoka and her friend Sayaka as they obtain magical powers to fight surreal enemies called Witches. They soon discover that contracting to become a Puella Magi comes at a steep cost, though.

Like many entries on this list, Madoka Magica packs plenty of unexpected plot twists and high stakes. It goes to some especially dark, existential places compared to other similar anime. Viewers who enjoyed Gurren Lagann’s heavier dramatic moments should add Madoka Magica to their watchlist.


7. Space Runaway Ideon

Space Runaway Ideon (Image via Sunrise)
Space Runaway Ideon (Image via Sunrise)

This classic super robot mecha anime inspired aspects of Gurren Lagann’s story and aesthetics. It begins when Earthlings discover the ancient spaceship Ide and battle hostile aliens called the Buff Clan. Ideon gets quite grim as the series progresses, with numerous gruesome deaths on both sides.

However, it also demonstrates the protagonists Cosmo and Kasha's resolve to defend humanity at all costs. Fans of mechas and space opera elements should enjoy Ideon. Just be warned that the violence and drama intensify as the plot unfolds across its 39 episodes.


8. Buddy Complex

Buddy Complex (Image via Sunrise)
Buddy Complex (Image via Sunrise)

Buddy Complex has some direct similarities to Gurren Lagann. It starts with timid high schooler Aoba being thrown into the crossfire of a war. He befriends an ally from the future named Bizon and starts piloting a mech into battle. As they fight to stop an invasion, viewers see the pair’s bond strengthen.

Their symbiotic teamwork is key to mastering the powerful mech. With a comparable coming-of-age storyline and nicely animated robot fights, Buddy Complex is a mostly lighter complement to Gurren Lagann. The short 13-episode runtime also makes it fairly easy to check out.


9. Code Geass

Code Geass (Image via Sunrise)
Code Geass (Image via Sunrise)

Set in an alternate timeline, Code Geass centers around the charismatic, cunning protagonist, Lelouch Lamperouge. After acquiring the mysterious power of Geass, he leads a rebellion against the Holy Britannian Empire as Zero. Like Gurren Lagann, Code Geass delivers thrilling mecha battles alongside political intrigue.

Lelouch is not a typical hero either with his calculating, ends-justify-means approach. As the stakes heighten dramatically, he demonstrates impressive leadership qualities. Viewers looking for another eccentric protagonist leading impassioned underdogs should add Code Geass to their radar.


10. Re:CREATORS

Re:CREATORS (Image via TROYCA)
Re:CREATORS (Image via TROYCA)

At first glance, Re:CREATORS' premise seems quite meta. Various fictional characters are transported to the real world and join forces with creators or influence events somehow. However, an overarching storyline centered around a destructive war between Creations and their creators soon emerges.

Protagonist Sota joins forces with several original Creations as full-scale battles break out across Japan. With a similar apocalyptic feel and unexpected plot twists, Re:CREATORS has appeal for Gurren Lagann fans. The animation quality and orchestral soundtrack also sync up nicely with the dramatic events portrayed.


Conclusion

Whether you loved the emotional weight, exhilarating action, or inspirational themes of Gurren Lagann, this list offers some moving companions. These anime all bring fantastic animation, captivating plotlines, and relatable characters to the table.

There is a nice range here as well between lighter mecha series and darker genres like psychological thrillers. Some explore romance more while others focus on end-of-the-world scenarios. With such variety, Gurren Lagann fans can surely find another great anime to dive into next!

Edited by Tiasha
App download animated image Get the free App now