A popular misconception among non-otakus is that since anime shows are animated, they are often referred to as cartoons. However, that is wrong. The difference between the two is large and shouldn't be clubbed together. However, with the spread of Japanese pop culture all across the globe, more and more people are investing their time in anime.
And that's where Netflix comes into the picture. There is no shortage of popular anime on this streaming platform for newcomers to watch shows for the first time. After all, Netflix is a popular choice among the general populace. On that note, this list will talk about such eight anime shows that newcomers will definitely enjoy. Some entries will be obvious to anyone who likes anime, but they will still serve as a good introduction for beginners who don't know much about this category.
Disclaimer: Anime on Netflix can vary depending on the year, meaning some options listed here might have new episodes or some seasons removed. This article was first written on August 28, 2022, so keep that in mind if any of these shows manage to get removed from Netflix.
Don't know where to start? Here are 8 great anime on Netflix worth checking out!
1) JoJo's Bizarre Adventure
It's worth mentioning that there are five different versions of this anime on Netflix, all bundled under the name of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure. They are:
- Phantom Blood/Battle Tendency (26 episodes)
- Stardust Crusaders (48 episodes)
- Diamond Is Unbreakable (39 episodes)
- Golden Wind (39 episodes)
- Stone Ocean (12 episodes, as of August 2022)
It is to be noted that Stone Ocean will get 12 more episodes later this year. Besides that, new fans should know that this series began as a manga back in 1986 and has continued to impress fans throughout the years.
The action and art styles are unique and unlike any other series on Netflix, let alone any other platform. The quirky comedy and creative combat sequences make the anime-watching a fun experience. No wonder there are so many memes about this show circulating on the internet.
Phantom Blood/Battle Tendency is the first season of this franchise. It's recommended to start from the beginning since the story makes the most sense when viewers have the context of certain events in the later seasons.
2) One Piece
Every new fan of anime should know that One Piece is one of the most famous shows in this industry. However, not every episode is available for this series on Netflix. As of now, there are 20 seasons of this franchise available, and Netflix only has 13 seasons in its catalog to date.
Nonetheless, that's a lot of time for anybody looking for an anime with over a thousand episodes to binge-watch. One Piece is a great show to recommend if one loves pirates, quirky humor, and adventure. In addition to that, there are also a few movies that are a part of this franchise. Moreover, a live-action adaptation is in the works, which is produced by Netflix and will be released soon.
The first part of Naruto, before the Naruto Shippuden series takes place, is available to watch on Netflix. It's similar to the previous two entries on this list, given this serves as a good introduction to any new anime fan. The story revolves around an aspiring ninja, Naruto Uzumaki, who goes on a big adventure to become the village Hokage eventually.
The series is extremely fun to watch because it's full of action and comedy. But it doesn't end there, as the show is populated with tear-jerking moments that will make the fans cry for sure. The titular hero is goofy, charming, and very loyal to his friends, just like a typical Shounen hero. Moreover, the series is highly recommended if anyone wishes to continue with Naruto: Shippuden and Boruto, although those are not entirely available on Netflix.
People looking for good anime for beginners on Netflix should also know that Naruto has several movies to watch on the platform as well, which are part of the original series.
4) Death Note
The previous recommendations are good but can be a bit too long for a newcomer. If that's the case, watching something short in length like Death Note is a great idea. However, this show is unlike the previous three entries as it deals with the murder mystery, mind-games, criminal psychology, etc.
If one wishes to watch a dangerous game of cat and mouse involving detectives and a notebook that can make anyone die just by writing their names, then Death Note is an excellent choice for them. It deals with much more suspense and psychological issues than the other options on this list. While it is darker in theme and tone, the plot is engaging enough to keep one on the edge of their seat.
5) Hunter x Hunter
Although the main characters' designs are rather childish, there are some dark aspects of this show that newcomers might enjoy. That being said, it isn't a dark show like Death Note. Instead, it's another well-rounded anime show that has a little bit of everything in it. The action isn't overwhelming, the comedy feels right, and the tragic parts are justified.
It also helps that the Nen Abilities are incredibly well-written, resulting in great fight sequences that doesn't feel as dull and dragging. Moreover, combine that with a list of well fleshed-out characters, and one can say that Hunter x Hunter is a great choice to recommend to any newcomer looking for new shows.
6) Demon Slayer
One of the most popular and recent series on Netflix is Demon Slayer. However, this streaming platform only has one season of the two currently released options, but that one season remains critically acclaimed and has kickstarted the show's immense popularity.
Unlike the other Shōnen animes on this list, Demon Slayer creates a setting where the viewer can understand that certain main characters are actually susceptible to death, which is not carried by the plot armor. In addition, the historical setting combined with the supernatural aura gives the show a flavorful experience that won't seem tedious or dull.
7) Neon Genesis Evangelion
Neon Genesis Evangelion is another top-tier anime on Netflix, especially for those looking for a short-term experience. While the previous examples are within the last decade, this show became a massive hit in the mid-90s, to the point that it is hailed as a cult classic. Although the animation might be a bit dated, the overall show is still phenomenal.
It excellently mixes psychological drama with traditional mecha action and sci-fi elements in a dystopic world. If the final two episodes confuse viewers, they can watch The End of Evangelion, a movie also available on Netflix.
8) Cowboy Bebop
The final recommendation is Cowboy Bebop, another old-school anime on Netflix with only one season to binge-watch. Compared to the other shows on this list, Cowboy Bebop has a more western vibe, making it a perfect option for somebody looking for something less "weeb-like."
The presentation of this anime is nearly flawless. Everything from the retro style to the catchy music is sublime. If nothing else on this list impresses a newcomer, then maybe something as noticeably different as Cowboy Bebop would.
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