bleach Upcoming Action Anime of 2022 & 2023

20 Best Shounen Anime of All Time

The shounen genre has been the greatest thing that has happened to television since the invention of anime. With the explosion of anime on television, it’s hard to find a person who hasn’t been exposed to the genre. Shounen anime are the gateway drug to anime and are often the first shows that introduce newcomers to the world of anime.

Shounen anime are action-packed, funny, and exciting, often some of the best anime out there. If you are searching for the best shounen anime, then we bring you our top 20 picks for the best shounen anime of all time.

Here are the 20 all time best shounen anime

Shounen anime are the ones that are the most talked about and the ones that have the biggest impact on the industry. They are the anime that have defined the medium and changed it for the better.

Going into this, I knew I wanted to rank the best shounen anime of all time based on how great their action, animation, story, pacing, and overall impact on the audience, which I felt was the most important factor. So, I have narrowed my list down to the top 20 and put the anime in order based on that.

20. Noragami

Noragami

We start off with something modern. Noragami is what I’d call short and sweet and it’s one of my favorite anime in early 2014. It has a lovable cast of characters set in an urban setting that heavily intersects with the spiritual. It was quite the hit back in the day.

Not mainstream popular but Yato, Hiyori, and Yukine’s antics endeared them enough to get the show a sequel. It’s an urban fantasy action show that places surprisingly heavy emphasis on character development.

We really get to feel for the characters and grow attached to them as they go through their interpersonal drama that heavily characterizes most of the series. The characters are very fleshed out from Yato to Hiyori to side characters like Bishamon. This thing sorely needed another sequel and is mainly why it’s rated at only number 20.

Especially after the way Aragoto ended. It’s one of the curious cases wherein the season one ending had more closure, so it makes me think that if it just ended up being a one-and-done anime, I would have been perfectly fine with it but the stopping point for season two changed my mind.

IMDB(7.9)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 2(25 Ep.)



19. Dragon Ball Z

Dragon Ball Z Hindi dubbed anime

Dragon Ball as a franchise needs little explanation. Even if you’re someone new to the whole anime thing, there would surely be an anime boomer out there telling you about how great the exploits of Goku and his pals were back in the day.

It’s just a testament to how big of an influence the series had in shaping the childhoods of 90s kids. If you’re going to let me have a biased opinion, I love it.

It’s got a lot of cool moments and fights you never forget. But I have it just at number 19 because taking those fights away and you have a shounen that’s somewhat barebones.

Especially compared to a lot of the more modern shows. It’s not aged very well in my opinion even compared to the 2000s shounen but that’s what super is for, to keep the show up to speed with the modern era.

IMDB(8.8)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 798 Ep.


18. Claymore

shounen anime

Here’s a niche title for the number 18th rank Claymore. I legitimately wonder how many people have watched claymore in 2022, not a lot I assume. Even back in its day, it was quite the niche title even as it’s a product of shounen jump.

It takes place in a medieval land plagued by shape-shifting demons called Youma and the ones standing in their way are female warriors who are also part of Youma called Claymores by the public. It’s a show that I enjoyed and I think a lot of people would like it.

It has an interesting premise, strong characters like the claymores who have their share of action scenes to shine in, and a lot of great fighting too. However, I take points away from the anime because of how it seems so unfinished as an adaptation. The production values haven’t aged too well either.

IMDB(8.0)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 1(26 Ep.)


17. Black Clover

anime power awakening moments of 2021

Here’s something most of you are familiar with. I feel that the mystique in Black Clover has a lot to do with its world and magic system. Watching a battle shounen with such a particular edge with its characters, its spells, and the overall way it handles its fights is always interesting.

It’s very immersive when the ball gets rolling, and while the production quality has been inconsistent due to its long run of nature, it hits the mark when it comes to moments that matter. I personally admire Black Clover and his fans.

The anime is the subject of much criticism early on in its run, but the fans have stuck with it and got rewarded with one of the better new generation and immersive shounen long runners.

It’s the true embodiment of a journey that pays off. Ironically, a meta parallel to arsenal’s underdog story from laughingstock to hero.

IMDB(8.3)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 1(170 Ep.)


16. Dororo

action fantasy anime with OP MC

Dororo isn’t a new series. In fact, if we take everything I’ve talked about so far, Dororo is the oldest series. Its first anime dates back to the end of the 1960s. It’s also one of Osamu’s famous works, which is why it got a modernized version.

Among the modern remakes of old titles such as Bim, it’s the one that ended up being the best for me. The story of Hyakkimaru fighting demons and fighting his humanity through the journey has been beautifully captured in the modern version.

Crisp fighting scenes, pretty visuals that capture the essence of the rural Sengoku era, many emotional moments, and a story that keeps you wanting more. I didn’t hear much noise on Dororo when it first aired, and I think many people missed out on a great 2019 show. Then again, it’s a show that had the first Kaguya Sama, Quince, and Shield Hero in it.

IMDB(8.3)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 1(24 Ep.)


15. World Trigger

World Trigger Sci-Fi Anime

World Trigger is in a weird spot. It started out with its first season right in the first half of the 2010s and it was barely talked about. Some blame the approach in the adaptation, while others blame the art. I think the show is underrated and it takes a while to rev up.

Thankfully, we did get our sequel last year and it’s where the series starts to show its metal with many high-octane fights filled with exciting moments and epic animation. A contrast from the middling first season.

A true example of a show getting better as it goes on, both in terms of presentation and plot. Also, let’s not forget the world-building and the ability to make us feel attached to the characters and development.

World Trigger needed over 70 episodes to get to this point which is why I’d usually recommend someone to read the manga when it comes to this series. Well, at least for the first few arcs.

IMDB(7.6)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 3(99 Ep.)


14. My Hero Academia

Mentors in Anime All Might - My Hero Academia anime

My Hero Academia is probably the closest we can get to a modern equivalent to the classic 2000 shounen archetype. Underdog hero in a bright idealistic world with a setting that appeals mostly to the younger demographic. It feels like the stock’s shounen but given the plot developments we’ve had so far, I’d say it also has a lot to offer to older fans.

I like the creativity on display with the powers and how it also goes out of the way to give the villains some shine. The show also has several compelling characters that develop as the story progresses.

From a critical standpoint, it may not be the best shounen out there but there’s no denying its influence and that’s why it’s right here at number 14.

IMDB(8.4)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 5 (113 Ep.)


13. Demon Slayer

Visually Stunning Action Anime

Speaking of cultural influence, Demon Slayer is 13th on my list. By far, the show that gave the most impact in the past couple of years in the anime world is Demon Slayer. It just blew up in a way that’s unprecedented since the days of Attack on Titan season one. That’s just how big it got and it mostly did it on the heels of eye-opening animation and art.

There’s a signature flair to how the art was done for the series and I’m not just talking about the Rui fight. The attacks, the character presentation, and even the backgrounds all contribute so much to the story’s appeal.

The plot’s simple and I stand by what I said that it’s no 10 out of 10 masterpiece. However, it’s still a damn good shounen to watch and introduce to your pals. It’s also quite dark and violent for a shounen title and I bet that helps improve its popularity.

IMDB(8.7)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 2(37 Ep.)


12. Rurouni Kenshin

Hiko Seijuro (Rurouni Kenshin) Strongest Anime Swordsmen

Another timeless classic Rurouni Kenshin feels different for its time. Instead of having a spitfire of energy, we have an introverted pacifist for a protagonist. Seeking redemption, Kenshin embodies a kind of inner strength that we rarely saw, emphasizing the protagonists of the 90s. That alone makes the title notable in its heyday.

There’s also the lack of focus on superpowers that have become synonymous with the popular shounen titles instead of delving more into character drama and buildup. But that’s not to say that the fights aren’t good. It also has some of the best samurai fights that the 90s could give us.

Those things really gave Rurouni Kenshin a unique edge over its peers. It was one of my favorites amongst the classics with the Shishio Arc being at the peak of its popularity.

It’s got a unique approach that helped it reach heights, but unfortunately, anime filler hell cut its momentum short. This is a show that could have benefited from the throttled releases that My Hero Academia does.

IMDB(8.3)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 1(94 Ep.)


11. Magi

action fantasy anime with OP MC

From ancient Japan, we take to the Arabian desert for Magi. Interestingly, that statement only really holds true for select parts of this fantastic adventure.

Magi starts off giving us a new take on the whole Arabian night theme but with anime powers akin to something like Bleach. We then go on a trip that takes us through the various corners of the world, a world that mirrors parts of the real world, like ancient Rome, China, or the Indian islands.

For all the fantastical elements, Magi feels like a shounen that hits closer to home. The main appeal is the powers and the adventure for me, but it’s also got its chance to show off its metal in other aspects that we rarely see get this much focus in shounen such as politics and philosophy. Not to say that the anime is too deep for you because it talks about politics.

At the end of it all, it’s mainly just a bright idealistic shounen that’s mainly about the trip. The riders Alibaba and Aladdin learn more about the world and grow through their interactions with people from all backgrounds. It’s a definite recommendation for me.

IMDB(7.8)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 3(63 Ep.)



10. Bleach

bleach Upcoming Action Anime of 2022 & 2023

I know it’s not impossible to talk about Bleach without mentioning the 2000s and the big three, so I’ll talk about what sets it apart from the other two. If you’re asking me why I love Bleach so much and why some people like it the best amongst the hits shounen of the 2000s, I’d say that it’s the one that seems the most mature in its presentation.

The characters feel like they’re part of our world more and as teens looking to break into adulthood. People especially connected with the characters’ struggles, whereas the worlds of something like Naruto felt a little bit distant. Bleach is a very influential title that helps spurn in a new generation of anime fans in the day.

It’s also got some of the best aesthetics from the Shinigami to the Hollows Quincy and Arrancar. The designs are top-notch, all coming with a flavor that’s uniquely theirs. That’s not to mention the powers and how full of stakes the early fights seem.

Sure, the series has flaws and it’s almost worn out its welcome by the time the Fullbring Arc came around, but there’s a reason that there’s a clamor for more Bleach and quite some buzz for the upcoming sequel. One that’s been a decade in the making.

IMDB(8.2)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 1(366 Ep.)


09. Yu Yu Hakusho

shounen anime

Urban fantasy setting, a ragtag group of comrades that fight and have adventures in the spiritual realm, and a protagonist who gets involved in the spirit realm thanks to contact with the supernatural.

Yeah, it’s easy to see why people call Bleach a spiritual successor to Yu Yu Hakusho. The two are the same in many ways, yet they are quite different. Yu Yu Hakusho does have a lot of merits. The fighting feels well-constructed and has outstanding humor and depth for what people could easily pass off as your everyday supernatural battle shounen.

It may not have the same level Bleach has in flashiness, stylishness, and the complicatedness of the fights and powers later in the story, but Yu Yu Hakusho feels just as rounded as a series.

It has arcs that feel simpler but philosophical and just as engaging and enjoyable. If you like one of the two, then chances are you also like the other.

IMDB(8.5)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 112 Ep.


08. Naruto

Naruto Itachi UchihaAnime Betrayals

We moved to eighth place, where the second member of the jump big three is. It seems to me that among the anime fans of the 2000s, there’s no title as influential to them becoming aware of the medium as Naruto. It was big back in the day.

Back when there wasn’t much internet access and online communities to grow. It felt like the flagship title of that era and for a good reason too. What’s not to like about Naruto, assuming you’re clueless about the medium. It’s got a plucky underdog story, a unique take on the concept of ninjas for its time, some very nice life lessons to be learned, and even though broader, more idealistic than realistic.

It’s no surprise that the show has influenced a whole generation of fans. As for me, I found myself captivated by the interesting world and the growth of our protagonist.

Following the orange jumpsuit era, Naruto’s journey into the world’s greatest hero by the time the story ends is an ode to the journey that we all take growing up. The way Naruto the series presents it is very satisfying.

IMDB(8.4)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 2(720 Ep.)


07. Jujutsu Kaisen

Jujutsu Kaisen

If there’s an embodiment of style in the world of battle shounen the same way Bleach was in its day, it’s got to be Jujutsu Kaisen. The series just screams edgy and cool, and there’s no better way to show that than to have some of the best fight sequences in modern shounen. It’s got a lot of moments to remember thanks to the superb production quality and we can tell that MAPPA gave their all with this.

It’s a very fun experience watching Jujutsu Kaisen overall, like Demon Slayer. I call this a middle-of-the-road show that’s infinitely elevated my production quality but it’s got a lot of great moments to remember it for.

Almost everything Gojou does, a lot of the fights in the Kyoto Goodwill Arc, the main character’s personal highlights like Megumi’s moment in the last few episodes. It’s a show that’s very accessible for everyone and there’s a lot to like.

IMDB(8.6)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 1(24 Ep.)


06. One Piece

Luffy VS Katakuri best fights in One Piece

One Piece is a show that represents endless possibilities. Just as it has a setting tailor-made for the series to go on indefinitely, One Piece is the action shounen that is made to be full of surprises.

There’s just so much that can be done in the world of One Piece, and through several arcs and adventures that Luffy and the group have gone through, I found myself cherishing many of them. Those excited cheers of triumph in the heat of epic battles, those dramatic moments that pull both mind and the characters’ hearts, and the sheer anticipation of what comes next, I’ll never forget them.

Watching it all can be daunting, but I promise that the journey is worth it. When you get to the key moments, make sure to let it all sink in and be amazed at how powerful a title that looks so cartoony can be in touching the hearts of millions of people in the world and trust me, if this was a manga list it would have been a lot higher.

Unfortunately, like some other long-running anime on this list, it suffers from inconsistent animation and pacing issues due to the addition of canon fillers. That’s why I recommend you watch the One Pace version which will save up a lot of your time.

IMDB(8.9)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 1026 Ep(Ongoing)


05. Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure

teachers in anime Lisa Lisa - JoJo's Bizarre Adventure

Jojo is an anime that’s been helped by the internet. The series has become ubiquitous with meme culture and the internet side of the anime fandom. Without that help, I doubt the franchise would have exploded the way it did, but I am very thankful.

Because of all the craziness and the over-the-top elements in it, Jojo is a well-thought-out battle shounen. The way the seasons connect with each other and take us through generations of characters is something that amazed me when I first stumbled upon it. It’s also the poster child for wild, dumb, and fun in the world of anime.

Almost nothing indicates that the series takes itself seriously but it’s what makes it special and allows it to deliver some of the most memorable moments in anime, such as the Seven-Page Muda amongst others.

IMDB(8.4)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 152 Ep.


04. Gintama

Utsuro (Gintama)

Gintama is the master of multiple genres. Fans love it for its very intense and dramatic moments but they also love how it can go all in on the comedic and parody aspects. I say that’s the big appeal of Gintama. It’s a propensity in switching gears and giving you the best of the two ends of the spectrum, all without inducing mood whiplash.

One moment you’ll be laughing along with Gintoki and the gang, and the next moment you’ll be at the edge of your seat while watching an extremely gripping segment helped by great sound and art direction, one that’s evolved over the years.

It also helps the Gintama has some of my favorite villains, side characters, and actions. Bonus points for finishing the story in one of the best possible ways. A banger of a movie featuring some of the most epic fights the series has to offer.

On another note, it’s not an anime I’d recommend to someone who’s new to the world of anime. As it’s got a lot of references and parodies of other anime that a newcomer might not be familiar with.

IMDB(8.7)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 10(367 Ep.)


03. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood

King Bradley (Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood) Strongest Anime Swordsmen

The honor of being the third best shounen anime goes to Fullmetal Alchemist. Here’s another classic for you. Fullmetal Alchemist has been recommended to death by people. It’s just that good.

It’s a series rife with action but also filled with a lot of storylines that make you ponder. It’s quite the profound shounen and that deals a lot with morality and the like all while packaging the whole thing excellently in an exciting series full of epic fights and adventures.

It didn’t quite penetrate the normie consciousness at the same level as the bigger battle shounen anime did. That’s more to do with the fact that this is a show that’s not as easy to consume.

Things move a slow burn at times, much to the benefit of its themes and messages. That’s certainly why this show is still getting recommended by people this 2022 compared to many of the more popcorn entertainment peers. In terms of writing and thematic meaning shounen anime, it’s hard to trump Fullmetal Alchemist.

IMDB(9.1)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 1(64 Ep.)


02. Attack on Titan

anime power awakening moments of 2021

Yeah, I know what you’re thinking Attack on Titan. At first glance looks nothing like a shounen manga turned anime. Even after watching it and seeing the violence, the convoluted plot lines, the depth of characterization of relationships, as well as the social commentaries, you wouldn’t think that it’s something that belongs with the likes of a fairy tale.

But it is indeed published in a shounen magazine and that’s beautiful. It’s something like Death Note in that the heaviness of the subject matter creates a fake out.

Overall, Attack on Titan is worth the hype. It starts off catching everyone’s attention by giving us a thrilling setup of humans fighting for survival, one that’s devoid of the usual shounen plot armor or other usual tropes, giving us something that looks so unique in the world of anime for its time back in 2013.

Then once it’s gone our attention, it starts talking to us. Showing us the depth of humanity’s derangement and a lot of other social problems we face, all while not letting go of the action. As some of the epic moments in the later seasons, like Levi’s fights or the cinematic clash at the end of season three.

IMDB(9.0)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 86 Ep.


01. Hunter X Hunter

shounen anime Hunter X Hunter

Finally, at number one we have Hunter X Hunter as the best shounen anime of all time. There are many ways to express why this is my favorite shounen anime and why I think it deserves recognition for being one of the best ones out there.

Many people lure Hunter X Hunter for his generalist appeal and lack of reliance on shounen tropes. It’s not subversive in your face as Attack on Titan tribes can be, but it doesn’t need to be.

It shreds the standard shounen fear while integrating some dark and mature moments that truly showcase the medium’s power. Despite having the appearance of a simplistic shounen for young people, it gets rather unorthodox in its approach to battle, powerups, and character arcs. People eventually realize there’s more to this show than appearances first suggest.

Truly a masterpiece in the realm of shounen storytelling. Hunter X Hunter deserves all the acclaim it’s been getting. The memes about the manga’s hiatus have overshadowed the actual content at times.

However, the fact that people still eagerly await the series even after two decades proves how much it touched the hearts of millions worldwide.

IMDB(9.0)

Dubbed – Yes

Season – 1(148 Ep.)


Also, Check Out

10 Most Anticipated Upcoming Action Anime of 2022 & 2023

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