8 of Studio Pierrot’s best anime

Naruto has a legacy that very, very few anime could ever reach (Image via Studio Pierrot)
Naruto has a legacy that very, very few anime could ever reach (Image via Studio Pierrot)

As far as beloved animation studios go, Studio Pierrot is unquestionably one of the best out there for creating top-tier animes. The top studio has created dozens of great anime since the 1980s, including some of the most recognizable ones like Naruto. Naturally, there is no shortage of shows that fans could consider among the best of the best.

This list will be in no particular order, but it will highlight some of the most underrated masterpieces, as well as shows that deserve their legendary reputation. The only requirement is that Studio Pierrot should have worked on it before.

A look at some of Studio Pierrot's best work so far

1) The Mysterious Cities of Gold


This show isn't something that anime fans would think of when it comes to Studio Pierrot's numerous projects. However, it's their highest-rated one on IMDb, with nearly 4,000 votes and a rating of 8.7 out of 10. Japanese fans would know it as Esteban, Child of the Sun, but global fans know it as The Mysterious Cities of Gold.

The show is essentially about a Spanish orphan known as Esteban, who looks for the Seven Cities of Gold in hopes that he will find his father. The show has some educational aspect, but it's not something one would watch in school for historical accuracy.

This show also had a reboot in 2012, but by several different companies not affiliated with the original show.

2) Great Teacher Onizuka

The ex-delinquent teacher (Image via Studio Pierrot)
The ex-delinquent teacher (Image via Studio Pierrot)

School anime usually focus on a student's perspective, so it can be surprising to see the attention on a teacher instead. Great Teacher Onizuka is about an ex-delinquent teacher whose unorthodox method of teaching makes for an amusing drama and comedy.

It's an interesting premise that doesn't get old, and the anime is only 43 episodes long. It is also nice to see a teacher go above and beyond to help their students, even if some of it is played for comedy.

3) Yona of the Dawn

It honestly deserved more seasons (Image via Studio Pierrot)
It honestly deserved more seasons (Image via Studio Pierrot)

As far as underrated anime go, Yona of the Dawn is a terrific yet underrated work that stars a strong female lead that ran from October 7, 2014, to March 24, 2015. The show is designed with a Shōjo audience in mind, with the main character, Yona, being a warrior princess who also happens to be the reincarnation of the Crimson Dragon King.

There is romance, humor, combat, and other great content in this show that make it a shame that Yona of the Dawn has been overlooked this long. Although the show is over, the manga is still going on and continues to produce new volumes. Fans of the series can only hope that it will get another season one day, as the best they got were some OVAs in 2015 and 2016.

4) Urusei Yatsura

Lum Invader is more iconic than the actual protagonist (Image via Studio Pierrot)
Lum Invader is more iconic than the actual protagonist (Image via Studio Pierrot)

Studio Pierrot was behind the first 106 episodes of this iconic 80s anime (which is returning in 2022 under David Production) and its first two films. This beloved TV show is about a rowdy boy named Ataru who accidentally tricks Lum Invader (an extraterrestrial oni) into thinking that he will marry her.

Urusei Yatsura has many romantic-comedy elements mixed with Japanese mythology that make it charming from start to finish. It's not as niche as something like The Mysterious Cities of Gold, but it isn't something that modern fans would recognize as easily compared to Naruto.

5) Tokyo Ghoul

The main protagonist of Tokyo Ghoul (Image via Studio Pierrot)
The main protagonist of Tokyo Ghoul (Image via Studio Pierrot)

With the underrated hidden gems out of the way, it's time to look at some of the more modern and recognizable shows. This dark fantasy features ghouls who must eat humans and live among their society in secret.

It is worth noting that there are a few different versions of this show, with the following anime and OVAs made by Studio Pierrot:

  • Tokyo Ghoul
  • Tokyo Ghoul √A
  • Tokyo Ghoul {Jack]
  • Tokyo Ghoul: PINTO
  • Tokyo Ghoul:re

The series is quite popular, although it should be mentioned that the show has some significant differences compared to the original manga.

6) Bleach


The smallest of the Big Three is Bleach. Although its popularity in recent years has been overtaken by new shows like My Hero Academia and Attack on Titan, there was once a time when Bleach was the talk of the town in various online forums.

The anime starts with Ichigo (the main protagonist) becoming a Soul Reaper because Rukia cannot act like one after a bout with a Hollow.

Some fans might remember its "monster of the week" formula before its story became more complicated. Its several filler arcs that weren't present in the manga are also a common talking point, but fans of the show should be pleased to know that Studio Pierrot is working on Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War.

That season is due for an October 2022 launch, which is nearly a decade after the show's original run.

7) Yu Yu Hakusho

Some of the most important characters of this iconic anime (Image via Studio Pierrot)
Some of the most important characters of this iconic anime (Image via Studio Pierrot)

Yu Yu Hakusho is a critically acclaimed manga and anime series, with Studio Pierrot working on the show. It was a huge hit in the 90s and is a show that older western fans are likely to remember due to it airing on Adult Swim and Toonami.

This show has been compared to Bleach plenty of times in the past, thanks to its plot involving multiple worlds and a grim reaper-like girl assisting a high school boy in getting some supernatural powers.

It features a young boy named Yusuke who died but was given a chance to come back to life. He succeeded, leading him to eventually become an Underworld Detective who is then tasked with finding three treasures, with the story progressing from there.

The classic 90s animation is nostalgic, and it's worth noting that its music does a lot to add to the overall atmosphere.

8) Naruto

Practically every anime fan knows of this show (Image via Studio Pierrot)
Practically every anime fan knows of this show (Image via Studio Pierrot)

Whether you love Naruto or not, there is no denying that it's the single most famous anime that Studio Pierrot has ever worked on. Its success has made it one of the most recognizable anime of all time and is often one of the first ones a casual person would think of (along with One Piece and Dragon Ball).

Most fans might know:

  • Naruto
  • Naruto: Shippuden
  • Boruto: Naruto Next Generations

There was also another spin-off known as Rock Lee & Ninja Pals, although it's more niche by comparison. Naruto is about a ninja named Naruto who eventually becomes a Hokage, and Boruto: Naruto Next Generations focuses on his son's antics.

Note: This article reflects the writer's personal views.

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Edited by Abu Amjad Khan
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