General list of favorite anime series of all time.

A common thing to find on many anime blogs in order to get a good idea about what the writer likes and enjoys, so I figured I might as well do it.

This is a very broad and general list, generally of shows I really liked rather than a listed collection (I’ll do that sometime in the future).

This list is in alphabetical order rather than in order of what I liked the most, and is prone to getting updated very frequently.

Assassination Classroom

A pack of crazy misfits try to take down their alien teacher, or else the world will be destroyed.

As cliche as it may sound, it works very well, and the show is filled with great character dynamics and amazingly funny character interactions.

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Baccano!

A show about a crazy cast of characters who are on a train. They have different intentions, different reasons and different ideals. As one would expect…hell breaks loose, and chaos happens.

This show is as close to Pulp Fiction as anime would get.

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Baka to Test no Shoukanjuu

A group of kids who are losers, dumb as rocks, and can’t get laid if their lives depended on it.

Hilarity ensues.

Oh, and did I mention that this show’s humor is a complete blast? Excellent for watching with friends.

Baka.to.Test.to.Shokanju.full.1421712

Chihayafuru

Not knowing what karuta is means NOTHING.

This show does what many sports anime do wrong; make us care about the characters playing the sports rather than making the sport the highlight of the show.

Also, Chihaya is adorable.

Chihayafuru.full.986770
Clannad + After Story

Has one of my favorite male leads in anime, Okazaki. His interactions and development are very well done, and his interactions with Nagisa are a joy to watch.

Also, did I mention that he’s one of the few cases where girls falling for his personality actually makes sense?

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Code Geass

Adrenaline, insanity, crazy twists, badass main leads and did I mention adrenaline?

The show that started my obsession with anime in a sense, assuming that anime on television doesn’t count.

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Cross Game

A coming of age story about lost childhood love and innocent dreams.

Very subtle character development, some of the best character dynamics I’ve seen in anime, and made me tear up a couple of times.

Highly recommended, easily one of the best character-driven shows around.

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Darker than Black (ONLY SEASON 1)

Superpowers galore, a collection of side stories about human sacrifice and idealism.

Incredibly fun to watch, very mature and an amazing soundtrack.

Oh, and season 2 and the OVAs never happened.

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Detective Conan

Nostalgia. The show hasn’t progressed in forever, but retains a lot of charm and great moments.

Amazing side characters, OK main characters. Mysteries are very inconsistent.

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Digimon Tamers

Massive nostalgia, remains my favorite Digimon season to this day (I always thought that, even when I was a kid).

Some of the best character dynamics in anime and easily one of the best coming of age stories I’ve ever watched.

Rika is the the character that made me fall in love with tsunderes.

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Durarara

A spiritual successor to Baccano. Personally, I like it more than Baccano; the pacing isn’t as chaotic, the characters are a lot more fun to watch (though the second half of the first season is considerably weaker than the rest of the show) and the soundtrack in Durarara sounds better.

That being said, it should probably stop introducing characters and continue developing the ones we already love (and hate).

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Eureka 7

A great adventure anime dealing with a wide variety of themes ranging from first love to racism to religious coexistence.

Very fun and well-written, I cannot recommend this highly enough.

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Fate (franchise)

I put Fate/Zero and Fate/Stay Night Unlimited Blade Works ONLY in this entry, with Heaven’s Feel hopefully joining in the future.

The Fate series deals with heroism, selflessness and the degree to which someone can cling onto ideals while retaining their humanity. The character dynamics and plot are very well-thought out and quirky, and the fight scenes are utterly amazing.

Yeah, I love the Fate series to hell and back.

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Fullmetal Alchemist + Brotherhood

It’s harder to find a favorite list without FMA than with it. However, this applies to both the older version and Brotherhood; Brotherhood is my preference, but I adore the risks that studio Bones went with to give us the older version, even surpassing Brotherhood in some aspects (the Homoculi are better developed in the older version).

Seriously. If you haven’t seen them, watch them. Period.

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FullMetal Panic

The show that started the whole craze with adapting light novels. Nevertheless, it has a particular charm that many similar titles lack. Very endearing cast of characters, still waiting for Sigma to be animated (I read the manga, I don’t care, I want to watch Sosuke kick ass).

Oh, and the plot is pretty decent. Still shouldn’t taken TOO seriously, but eh, whatevs.

Full.Metal.Panic!.full.1140117
Gankutsou

A retelling of one my favorite novels of all time, The Count of Monte Cristo.

Very slow beginning, but becomes very rewarding near the end. The Count’s charisma carries the show.

Also, the animation style is gorgeous. Though do turn the lights off, otherwise epilepsy is a possibility.

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Garo

A captivating show about witch hunts, demon hunters and religious influence.

There really isn’t any anime like it. Avoid spoilers and go watch this.

The second half is absolutely amazing.

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Ghibli films

They’re all worth watching at some point, this isn’t as much a recommendation as much as it’s a necessity.

Oh, and special mention to Grave of the Fireflies.

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Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex

Intelligent dialogue, amazing characters, gorgeous animation quality.

There is NOTHING like this, very thought-provoking and pretty damn interesting.

Koukaku.Kidoutai.GHOST.IN.THE.SHELL.full.1758541
Giant Killing

One of the most underrated anime series of all time, this one is a sports anime about football…told from the perspective of a professional coach.

Shows the various angles as to how a football club works, from media to training to fans.

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GTO

Hilarious and touching, Onizuka is the star of this show and you really can’t say otherwise.

The students aren’t half bad and pretty damn likeable as well.

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Gundam – Universal Century timeline

The best and most well-recieved Gundam timeline. Timeless with charming characters, interesting ideas and an amazing setting, here we have a touching, human war story told through from many characters’ points of view.

Though I’d suggest you skip ZZ, it isn’t really necessary.

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Hanasaku Iroha

A simple yet effective coming of age story about a girl moving in and working at her grandmother’s place, after her mom practically abandons her…for being an irresponsible bitch.

The character drama flows naturally and the characters are very well developed. Ohana is adorable and hilarious to watch, it’s hard to hate her character.

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Hellsing Ultimate

Vampires. Alucard. Amazing fights.

Oh, and please watch the dub. Crispin Freeman.

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Hajime no Ippo

An intense boxing anime, showing what it’s like to be a professional boxer and is filled with adrenaline and heart.

The show is as much about the sport as it is about the characters playing it.

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Hunter X Hunter

Unorthodox, amazingly built-up, very carefully written and an amazing setting.

One of the greatest (if not the greatest) shonen shows out there.

Hunter.x.Hunter.full.1338786
Hyouka

Amazing animation (arguably the best looking anime ever), great characters, amazing and extremely subtle character interactions and deals with a wide variety of themes ranging from hierarchy to growing up to averting many tropes found in mystery novels, from Sherlock Holmes to Agatha Christie’s works.

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Infinite Ryvius

A group of kids get locked in space, which turns into a show dealing with government conspiracies, family issues, coming of age and…yeah, it’s not an easy show to describe without spoilers.

There’s something in it for literally everyone, though it does have pacing problems and have a habit of being a bit too melodramatic for its own good.

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Jojo’s Bizzare Adventure

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ADRENALINE

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Kara no Kyoukai

A movie series dealing with sin, existential themes and self injury (among other themes).

Very gloomy and mature, with some absolutely amazing dialogue.

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Mawaru Penguindrum

Symbolism galore, very tightly written and amazing character interactions and dynamics.

Extremely high rewatch value. Can’t recommend this highly enough.

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Melancholy of Suzumiya Haruhi

Well, this show is quite the nostalgia-filled experience for me.

Fun character interactions, interesting concepts and most importantly, an amazing sequel in the form of the Disappearance.

Suzumiya.Haruhi.full.1494150
Monogatari franchise

Well, it’s a love it or hate it experience here, though very hard to find someone who hated absolutely EVERYTHING about this one.

Whether it’s the dialogue, visuals, witty humor or the characters, there’s something in this for everyone.

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Mushishi

Very soothing and calming to watch, beautifully animated and very simplistic in presentation and appeal.

Ginko.Mushishi.full.1798045
My teen romantic comedy is as wrong as I expected

Very witty dialogue and great character interactions, Hachiman is a great character.

Season 2 is one of the best character dramas to come out of anime, development is both subtle and realistically thought-out.

Yahari.Ore.no.Seishun.Love.Come.wa.Machigatteiru.full.1870510
Natsume Yuujinchou

Charming and soothing, but has plot continuity and and consistent character development.

Season 2 and season 4 in particular are excellent.

Natsume.Yuujinchou.full.1809353
Persona 3 (film series)

Greatest video game adaptation of all time, very atmospheric and character-driven.

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Ping Pong the animation

A show about ping pong.

Watch it.

OK, that wasn’t enough. The show is more about passion, dreams, ambitions and the characters’ love of ping pong.

Like the other sports anime on the list, it’s more about the characters playing the sport, rather than the sport itself.

Wenge.Kong.full.1734853

Princess Tutu

A deconstruction of fairy tail archetypes. Beautiful.

Saying anything more would be spoiling it.

Princess.Tutu.full.1757684
RahXephon

Symbolism galore. That aside, it has a great romance and some of the best CGI effect in anime.

No, I am not going to compare it to that one show everyone wants to compare it to. I consider it better thought out, better written and has a much better ending.

Mishima.Reika.full.973719
Rebuild of Evangelion

A better version of Evangelion, this time with the characterization more consistent, the plot more linear and the quiet scenes flowing better.

Also, yes, this includes 3.0. 3.0 was very atmospheric, capturing exactly the mood that we were supposed to feel and putting us into Shinji’s shoes properly.

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Revolutionary Girl Utena

One of the most daring anime series of all time and a must watch for anyone who supports woman’s rights.

Filled to the brim with stylish and over the top symbolism, diverse themes and a crazy animation style to support it.

Shoujo.Kakumei.Utena.full.1744627
Rurouni Kenshin

A story of a war veteran in medieval Japan, trying to redeem himself and atone for his sins.

Has an unsatisfying ending, unfortunately, so reading the manga is required to get the full experience.

Himura.Kenshin.full.1828840

Sakurasou no Pet no Kanojo

A show about dreams and ambition, with some of the most charming and loveable characters in any rom-com.

Sakurasou.no.Pet.na.Kanojo.full.1341709
Samurai Champloo

A wandering pack of misfits in what is Japan. With samurais. With…hip hop.

Very charming characters, and a very satisfying ending it has.

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School Rumble

Like Baka Test, though instead of everyone wanting to get laid, we have a love triangle that is treated in the most bizarre way possible.

Every episode is a blast, and I rewatch this show at least once a year.

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SKET Dance

A Shonen Jump show about a group of kids going around and helping people, many times making the situation…worse.

I personally like this more than Gintama. I personally found it funnier and found the characters more endearing.

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Slam Dunk

A show about basketball, with a fun cast of characters, a retarded main character and tense basketball games.

Infinitely better than Kuroko’s Basketball.

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Steins;Gate

One of the best written time travel stories of all time, with an amazing cast of characters and an amazing setting.

Also, I would like to point out that the opening is amazing.

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Tamako Love Story

I don’t like Tamako Market; hell, I dropped it.

But this movie is a very sweet and very well-done short story that stands very well on its own.

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Tatami Galaxy

Groundhog day has never been stranger.

Very character-driven and subtle, but needs a rewatch to fully understand.

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Tengen Toppa Gureen Lagann

Over the top, manly, insane, manly like heck and did I mention manly?

Jokes aside, it’s a massive tribute to retro titles from Mazinger to Gundam to Macross, and becomes really fun to watch if you can get all the references.

Also, I would love to see a Kill la Kill and Gurren Lagann crossover one day.

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Toradora

The only Rie Kugimiya tsundere role I’ve ever liked (and probably ever will) is in this show.

Development is subtle, animation decent but consistent and has one of my favorite endings to a romance show.

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Yu Yu Hakusho

Yoshihro Togashi back when he wasn’t lazy and actually capable of finishing a story properly.

It’s rather cliche, but very intense and has a fun and very well-developed cast of characters.

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