Cover Photo By Gilbert Escorial
Cover Photo By Gilbert Escorial.

Recs with context: Step into the world of Japanese animation with these anime recommendations

Dive into the vast worlds of Japanese animation with these beginner anime recommendations.

By Renee Aguila | Tuesday, 2 May 2023

Japanese animation has grown in terms of popularity with its unique styles distinct from its Western counterpart. With anime being a diverse medium to produce imaginative stories and characters, it's no doubt the Japanese style of animation can tell impactful tales that resonate with different audiences. 


Known for its colorful graphics, vibrant stories, and wide-eyed characters, anime has become an acclaimed medium that spawned fans of the animation style and its sub-genres. From films to series, anime has created a significant impact on people all over the world, inspiring storytellers, artists, and even cosplayers. 


If you want to try getting into anime, we’ve prepared some recommendations for those new to it! 


“Spy x Family” 

In order to maintain the peace between the nations of Westalis and Ostania, a spy named “Twilight” is tasked to build a family as his cover. Twilight changes his name to Loid Forger (Takuya Eguchi) and adopts a young girl named Anya (Saori Hayami) who he doesn’t know to be a telepath. Afterward, he agrees to be in a fake marriage to Yor (Atsumi Tanezaki), who’s secretly a skilled assassin. With these three characters all having secrets to hide, viewers are in for a treat for the mayhem and wholesomeness this family has to offer in this action-packed and fun-filled series. 


This anime is great for beginners because it has the right amount of comedy, drama, romance, and adventure. Viewers will definitely be entertained by the antics of Anya who also wants to save the world just like her parents. You’ll come to appreciate the varied personalities of the characters who leave a lasting mark on you. 


Jump into the adventures of the Forger family by streaming the show here on Netflix. 


“Campfire Cooking in Another World is My Absurd Skill”

Have you heard of the term isekai? This is a common genre seen in anime in which its stories revolve around an average person from Earth being transported to or reborn in a parallel universe or a fantasy world. 


In Campfire Cooking in Another World is My Absurd Skill, audiences will follow the life of Tsuyoshi Mukouda (Yuma Uchida) who is summoned into a magical world. He has an unusual power called “Online Supermarket” that allows him to buy Japanese groceries. While he doesn’t want to pursue adventuring much like other heroes, he aims to live a simple life and make use of his power. Mukouda travels and meets with different people and creatures who have come to fall in love with his dishes.


While most isekai stories have a lot of action and adventure, this anime is a breath of fresh air that gives a chill watching experience for viewers. Additionally, you’ll definitely drool over the food Mukouda cooks since the animation is certainly on-point in terms of depicting food. While the first season had just been released in March 2023, a second season isn’t too far off from being greenlit. 


Satisfy your hunger for great food and adventure by watching the show on Netflix here. 



A classic romantic anime, “Toradora!” introduces viewers to Ryuji Takasu (Junji Majima) a high school student whose serious demeanor is more than what it seems. He has quite a gentle personality despite his intimidating looks. One day, he crosses paths with the cute and fragile-looking girl, Taiga Aisaka (Rie Kugimiya) but she’s actually quite sharp-tongued. Upon this chance encounter, the duo finds out that they have crushes on each other’s best friends. Ryuji and Taiga agree to help each other out in this new unlikely alliance. 


Becoming a favorite rom-com throughout the years, what makes this show appealing would be the characters who are all unique, likable, and relatable. Viewers will come to appreciate how they display their flaws and moments of insecurity underneath their exterior personalities. Plus, the chemistry between Taiga and Ryuji is entertaining to watch. 


Fall in love with the story of Taiga and Ryuji by watching “Toradora!” here on Netflix.


“My Hero Academia”

Set in a world where superpowers (called “Quirks”) have become the norm for citizens, Izuku Midoriya (Daiki Yamashita) is a young boy who was born without a Quirk but dreams of becoming a superhero himself. He’s then scouted by All Might (Kenta Miyake), Japan’s greatest hero, who bestows his Quirk on Midoriya. Midoriya then enrolls in a prestigious high school for superheroes in training, thus beginning his path to hero work. 


“My Hero Academia” has been one of the most popular mainstream anime series today. Its unique exploration of the impact of superpowers on society keeps viewers hooked to the show. Plus, the show features stunning action sequences and emotional character arcs that display the steady development of the show’s characters. 


Witness the heroics of Midoriya and his friends in “My Hero Academia” shown only on Netflix. 


“Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood”

In this dark fantasy series, viewers are swept into the lives of two brothers, Edward (Romi Park) and Alphonse Elric (Rie Kugimiya) who attempt to use alchemy to resurrect their deceased mother. However, their experiment doesn’t go as planned which leaves the brothers physically maimed. The brothers then make it their goal to find the Philosopher’s Stone which is believed to have the ability to restore their bodies. 


A critically-acclaimed series, “Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood,” has a well-written story, amazing animation, and emotional themes. Similar to the other anime in this list, the series has become a faithful adaptation of its original source which is its manga by Hiromu Arakawa. 


To add to that, the world-building is immense and it definitely gets viewers thinking about the moral messages this show has to offer. 


You can dive into the world of alchemy by watching “Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood” on Crunchyroll.


Last but not least is “Haikyu!!” which is a sports anime that introduce viewers to Shoyo Hinata (Ayumu Murase), a boy who’s determined to become a great volleyball player despite his small stature. Hinata then joins his school’s volleyball team and he works to improve his skills and compete at higher levels all the while heading butts with Tobio Kageyama (Kaito Ishikawa), a prodigy volleyball setter. 


One of the best sports animes out there, “Haikyu!!” has been praised for its realistic gameplay, well-rounded characters, and compelling storytelling. You’ll also be inspired by each character’s stories and perhaps even get hooked on the sport of volleyball. It’s genuinely a well-made anime that has won over several fans for its exciting plot and humor.


At the moment, you can catch Hinata and Kageyama’s volleyball journey on Crunchyroll. 


Anime certainly can offer unique stories that are as impactful and entertaining. With new anime shows being released, it’s no doubt that anime has an endless pool of stories to tell to both Japanese and international audiences. It just takes a step out of one’s comfort zone to give this animation style a shot at watching.