Despite the onslaught of bad news throughout the year, 2021 was a good year for the anime community. 2021 was packed end to end with the most anticipated anime sequels, and the studios delivered on the fans' expectations.
While there was some disappointment, most sequels blew their fans away, leading them to wait eagerly for the next season, or in the case of Fruits Basket and Nomad, lament that the series had ended.
Here are ten such anime sequels, listed chronologically according to their release date.
Top ten anime sequels of 2021
This article looks at the anime sequels that went above and beyond the fan expectations to deliver the best season they could under current circumstances. These sequels do justice to both their previous seasons and the material from which they are adapted.
The article will consider anime sequels from the four 2021 seasons, winter, spring, summer, and fall. For this reason, Attack on Titan final season part 1 is considered despite having started airing in December 2020, and Demon Slayer: Entertainment District arc is not considered despite having started airing in December 2021, since it belongs to the winter 2022 season.
1) Attack on Titan Final Season Part 1
(Winter 2021, Studio: MAPPA)
The final season of Attack on Titan received mixed reviews upon release, but considering the circumstances and the tight schedule MAPPA suddenly found itself in, the animators did their best to do justice to the Marley Arc.
The more authentic characterization of Mikasa as compared to her previous Wit Studio version was particularly appreciated by manga readers. Attack on Titan Final Season Part 2 comes out on January 10, 2022, and both parts are licensed by Funimation.
2) Re: Zero Season 2 Part 2
(Winter 2021, Studio: White Fox)
Season 2 of Re: Zero was split cour production, and after Part 1 ended midway of the Everlasting Contract arc, Part 2 animated the rest of the arc. While Part 1 was dubbed a little slow by fans, Part 2 was lauded unanimously for both the animation and the pacing. Both parts of Re: Zero Season 2 are available on Netflix.
3) World Trigger
(Season 2: Winter 2021, Season 3: Fall 2021, Studio: Toei Animation)
World Trigger released seasons 2 and 3, in Winter and Fall, respectively. Season 3 continues the B-Rank Wars arc and is slated to end in January 2022. While both seasons were very well received, fans seem to love season 3 more. World Trigger is licensed by Crunchyroll.
4) That Time I Got Reincarnated As A Slime Season 2
(Part 1: Winter 2021, Part 2: Summer 2021, Studio: 8Bit)
That Time I Got Reincarnated As A Slime released its second season in split cour format this year, and while both parts were well received, the appearance of the Demon Lords of the Octagram in part 2 was especially met with excitement and praise. Both parts of That Time I Got Reincarnated as A Slime season 2 are licensed by Funimation.
5) Dr. Stone: Stone Wars
(Winter 2021, Studio: TMS Entertainment)
The second season of Dr. Stone ended with the hints of a new beginning. During Jump Festa 2022, it was announced that Dr. Stone will return with a third season in 2023, and that a special series, Dr. Stone: Ryusui, which focuses on Ryusui Nanami, will air in July 2022. Dr. Stone is licensed by Funimation.
6) Nomad: Megalo Box 2
(Spring 2021, Studio: TMS Entertainment)
Megalo Box released a sequel titled Nomad this year, which follows Joe five years after the end of season 1, now operating under the name Nomad. There is no news of another sequel as Joe’s story seems to be wrapped up in Nomad.
Nomad is licensed by Funimation and available on Netflix.
7) Moriarty the Patriot season 2
(Spring 2021, Studio: Production IG)
Moriarty the Patriot’s second season featured an anime original ending, and while the manga is ongoing, the anime might not be renewed for another season. However, the second season was unanimously well-received, and the animation and the anime original ending both received praise from the viewers.
Moriarty the Patriot is licensed by Funimation and both seasons are available on Netflix.
8) Fruits Basket: The Final Season
(Spring 2021, Studio: TMS Entertainment)
Fruits Basket aired its final season this year, and it is the highest-rated season of the year on My Anime List. The story of Tohru and the Somas came to a conclusion, Akito's character arc being particularly intriguing. While fans await any news of an anime adaptation for Fruits Basket Another, the final season was one of the highlights of the year.
Fruits Basket is licensed by Funimation and is also available on Netflix.
9) Demon Slayer: Mugen Train arc
(Fall 2021, Studio: Ufotable)
While the Mugen Train arc was already animated as a movie, the anime version added some extra scenes, and provided for a proper conclusion in Demon Slayer Season 2 episode 8, which was also the bridge between the Mugen Train arc and the Entertainment District arc.
10) JoJo’s Bizarre Adventures Part 6: Stone Ocean
(Fall 2021, Studio: David Productions)
Stone Ocean was one of the most anticipated sequels of 2021. Licensed directly by Netflix, Stone Ocean released 12 episodes simultaneously that covered up to the Savage Garden arc from the manga.
There is no news of when the rest of Part 6 will be animated, but since Daisuke Namikawa has already been cast as Anasui, who did not have a speaking role in the first 12 episodes, it can be assumed that the next episodes of Stone Ocean will be released soon.
2021 was not as sequel-heavy as previous years, but it still offered too many good sequels to compile in a single list. Both Mushoku Tensei and 86 released their first seasons in split cour format this year, and if the second part is considered a sequel, then both shows ought to be on this list.
While some of the most anticipated sequels, like Haikyuu!! Season 5, were not released this year, most of them have been announced for next year. 2022 also has a very robust lineup of great sequels, and hopefully, they will keep up the standard set by 2021.