We outline the top anime available to stream at your fingertips as well as the best places to find it all!
This is a 3rd part! Enjoy reading!
Junji Ito Collection
Available on: Crunchyroll, FunimationNow
If Yamishibaiis the tame horror anthology that you can watch before going to bed, then Junji Ito Collection is pure nightmare fuel. This is not a series that should be watched with the lights turned off or even with a large amount of shade in the room. The series adapts some of the most disturbing stories from renowned horror manga artist, Junji Ito.
Junji Ito Collection packs two sordid stories into each episode and the subject matter ranges from supernatural curses, to deranged killers, to some of the most extreme body horror you’ll ever see in an anime (can David Cronenberg please take on a live-action adaptation of “Honored Ancestors”?). Ito conjures up unbelievable ideas that are truly a rarity for horror and stories like "Greased," "Long Dreams," “Slug Girl,” and “Blood-Bubble Bushes” are all behemoths of horror.
Unfortunately, not all of the Ito stories that the anime chooses to adapt are winners, but the series’ unsettling art design still helps the weaker tales carry a strong punch. With any justice a second season of this will soon be announced to terrify anime fans well into 2019.
Jojo's Bizarre Adventure
Available on: Adult Swim, Crunchyroll, Hulu, Yahoo View!
Hirohiko Araki’s Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure is one of Japan’s most prestigious and beloved franchises. Araki began work on the Jojo series back in the ‘80s, but it’s only been in more recent years that Jojo fever has caught on in North America. The series spans the multi-generational saga of the Joestar family, with each new series/saga in the franchise tackling a new “Jojo” throughout the lineage. This allows Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure to span a huge amount of content and the series can change its goal, location, and protagonists with each new series.
The third and fourth chapters in the series, Stardust Crusaders and Diamond is Unbreakable have been the most successful and compelling stories in the ongoing Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure saga. The series all feature unforgettable characters (with even more unforgettable outfits), but also some of the most creative fight sequences you’ll come across thanks to the spirit-like “Stands” that dominate the series.
Magic powers are one thing, but the way in which some of these Stands operate will truly leave you surprised. Jojo has an uncanny ability to mix slice of life anime with breakneck action sequences and inspired serialized storytelling. The entirety of the series may be too long and intimidating for newcomers to jump in, but Diamond is Unbreakable is easily the most accessible of the seasons and an easy place to jump in for the uninitiated Jojo fans.
Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler
Available on: Netflix
Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler is the best anime about gambling that you’ll ever watch, but it’s also so much more than that. Yumeko Jabami transfers to Hyakkaou Private Academy, an institution that's full of the children of Japan's wealthiest and most influential. Accordingly, it's also become a hotbed for extreme gambling that runs a toxic underground culture at the school. The losers are turned into slaves and “house pets” of the winners and that’s just the beginning. Yumeko is special because she simply wants to gamble for the thrill and rush that it provides her, not because she seeks any financial gain or to dominate the student campus. Her unique fascination with how the school's culture works catapults her to the top of the campus, but Yumeko's proficiency at gambling isn't why this show it's great, but rather it’s how exaggerated her excitement and love for the act becomes.
Each episode sees a character gamble their entire savings and livelihood for some spontaneous wager. Yumeko is an incredibly meek and reserved girl, but she does a complete 180 whenever she gets in the vicinity of gambling and experiences tantric full body orgasms. It's not just that her entire attitude changes, but it's like she becomes a demon. Her eyes take on an evil glow, the pitch of her voice drops, and she becomes otherworldly. Yumeko’s behavior is incredible, but the way in which the show’s animation and style also loses control during these moments is incredible. Kakegurui handles something as basic as rock, paper, scissors, or a hand of poker, but also covers more extreme games, like Russian Roulette, where actual lives are on the line.
This anime turns something normal into something insane and treats gambling like it's a fight between superheroes. It embraces an absolutely demented point of view that elevates this madness to something mandatory for fans of the extreme. Just watch the show’s opening credits and tell yourself that you don’t want to see more. With a second season on the way soon, now’s the perfect time to check out this insane anime.
Kill la Kill
Available on: Netflix, Hulu
Mashing together a bunch of things that shouldn’t work, but do, based on sheer will alone, Kill la Kill is the best sort of crazy. Pulling from a lot of different anime, the series follows Ryuko, who has just transferred to the Honnouji Academy after the death of her father. At this Academy, everyone wears certain quasi-sentient uniforms that imbue them with superpowers due to the “Life Fibers” that they’re made from. Ryuko seeks to take down the Academy’s villainous headmistress, while getting vengeance for her father and finding the owner of the other half of the Scissor Blade that she wields.
That’s a lot to juggle but Kill la Kill balances it all well while also building real excitement as Ryuko slowly gets close to her end goal. The series’ animation may not be the most elegant, but that doesn’t stop it from attempting some really ambitious battle set pieces, not to mention some of the transformations that go on in this show are just bonkers. You wouldn’t think that clothing and fighting would go together so well but after Kill la Kill you’ll never want to separate the two.
Kokkoku: Moment by Moment
Available on: Amazon Prime
Kokkoku: Moment by Moment is a bleak, surreal mystery that plays with time and space in a way that feels fresh and exciting. Juri Yukawa is your typical underachieving teenager who’s failed to find her calling. Kokkoku quickly pulls the rug out from under the viewer and transforms this slice of life anime into something substantially trippier. Juri’s brother and nephew get kidnapped by a cult and Juri’s uncle reveals that their family has the power to stop time, which is exactly what they’re going to do to save them.
It’s fascinating to watch Juri learn more of the secrets about her lineage as well as her own unique powers. When Juri and her grandfather freeze time, this frozen world is called Stasis, but there are also terrible monsters that lurk in Stasis that prey on those who stay in there for too long. Kokkoku creates such a rich, fully formed story with a deep history to it, but it also initially keeps the audience in the dark to simulate the same overwhelming experience that Juri is going through. Kokkoku slowly parses out answers as Juri and her grandfather become more entwined in the world of Stasis. It’s such an engrossing story that’s so much bigger than the characters and what they’re caught up in.
Available on: Crunchyroll
Fozuko Moguro is a traveling salesman, but not just any type of ordinary salesman. He deals in human souls. Mr. Moguro views the world's population is sad, lonely individuals and he's more than willing to give them a helping hand—for a price. Mr. Moguro promises solutions to all of the problems and shortcomings of the people that he encounters, but there's always some sort of major caveat involved and there's a situation where anyone actually gets out on top. Moguro is a monkey's paw personified or he might even be Satan himself.
Even though it's obvious that every story will end in doom, the show is incredibly addictive and works as a bizarre, unusual take on the typical anthology format. It's like if The Twilight Zone was done purely as character studies and driven by ego. It's a damning portrait of humanity just as much as it is an entertaining piece of storytelling. Each episode packs two stories into one installment and this show is much more effective when it can quickly fire off morality plays. Unfortunately the original Laughing Salesman from the '90s, which has over 100 episodes, isn't streaming anywhere, but hopefully Mr. Moguro will show up at some streaming services door and make them an enticing deal that they can't refuse...
Little Witch Academia
Available on: Adult Swim, Crunchyroll, FunimationNow, Hulu
Trigger is one of those animation studios that whenever they take on a new project, it’s something that you want to put on your radar, regardless of its topic, because it’s going to end up being one of the most beautifully animated anime of the year. Little Witch Academia started off as a film (and a sequel), but the property has seen such popularity that a television series exploring the world of Luna Nova was made a priority. Little Witch Academia follows Akko Kagari, a witch superfan who is excited to be enrolling in the esteemed Luna Nova Magical Academy. Not only that, but Akko comes from a non-magical background making her enrollment at Luna Nova a bit of a double-edged sword.
A lot of this show is about celebrating the beauty (and responsibility) of magic, but there’s also much charm in the fact that Akko is not good at magic. You’re following a character that struggles to even ride a broom properly, not some pro. Akko also has a good group of varied witch friends to bounce off of with their banter being a fun aspect to the series as well. Little Witch Academia tends to avoid serialization and larger story arcs, which gives the show a nice boost of freedom where every episode is something completely different. One week can be about a dragon. Another about a renegade skeleton looking for his lost love. There’s much less urgency with this show, but it’s such a pleasant, beautiful looking anime that will sneak up on you in other ways.
Lupin the Third
Available on: Adult Swim, Crunchyroll, FunimationNow, Hulu
Imagine if James Bond decided to become a master thief and you’ve got Lupin the Third in a nutshell. Lupin III is notorious for being the world’s best thief and whether he’s working a solo mission, or has help from his distinctly talented allies, Jigen, Goemon, and Fujiko, they’re always brilliantly evading capture and blowing the minds of the authorities in the process. Lupin and his gang travel all across the world for their heists across the course of the series and Interpol Inspector Zenigata is always hot on their heels.
Lupin the Third knows how to expertly blend action, suspense, and comedy to turn each episode into a self-contained mystery while a broader storyline typically plays out in the background of each season.Lupin the Third is an anime that’s actually been running strong since the ‘70s, but Part II and Part IV have aired on Adult Swim and picked up a greater following. The same thing will likely happen with the show’s most recent addition, Part V, which takes its most modern inspiration and sees Lupin deal with many tech- and Internet-based crimes.
Available on: Adult Swim, Crunchyroll, Hulu
There need to be more boxing anime out there—plain and simple. Sports anime are a dime a dozen and they can even manage to find a way to make niche activities like fencing, ping pong, and diving exciting (although I’m still waiting for an all-out insane marbles anime). Boxing seems like an area that seems tailor-made for anime when there are so many action series that capitalize on super powered people trading blows. It’s just boxing without the ring.
Megalo Box is actually an update of the classic anime, Ashita no Joe, in honor of the series’ 50thanniversary. Megalo Box updates the ordinary boxing series with a futuristic setting and the advent that boxers fight with metallic grid-like gear on their shoulders that intensifies the battles. In true badass fashion, the series’ hero, Junk Dog (Joe), fights gear-less. The anime tells the rags to riches story as Junk Dog rises above his nobody status and slows climbs the ranks of the Megalo Boxing rankings. The boxing matches all look incredible and at thirteen episodes, this is an easy series to give a shot.
Mob Psycho 100
Available on: Adult Swim, Amazon Prime, Crunchyroll, FunimationNow, STARZ
Coming hot off the heels of his latest hit series, One-Punch Man, Mob Psycho 100 is also a strong blast of creativity courtesy of the brilliant mind of “One” (if the character animations weren’t also a dead giveaway). Operating much like his other series, Mob Psycho 100 is a frenzy of an anime that is all about shattering expectations and taking an overdone genre and making it feel fresh. Here, a totally normal boy named Mob learns that he’s an incredibly powerful Esper, meaning he wields a great deal of psychic power. Rather than doing something about these powers, Mob lives in fear of them getting out of control and instead tries to suppress his abilities and avoid the spotlight, however, trouble has a certain way of finding him and eking out his potential.
Mob Psycho 100 is a triumph for its unconventional storytelling and great cast of characters, all of which fit somewhere different on the psychic spectrum. Part of the fun here is just determining who actually has psychic powers and who is just full of themselves (and who’s just an evil ghost), but everyone is still painted in an incredibly entertaining light. Plus, much like One-Punch Man, this series offers up some of most gorgeous animation that you’re going to come across. If you’re not marveling at the action scenes or laughing your ass off at its sense of humor, then you’re for sure going to be lost in the hypnotic look of this series. This one will sneak under your skin until you don’t even realize how obsessed you are with it, plus there’s an impressive dub for the series, too.
That's it for today! Don't miss the next part!