For wrestling fans, there’s no better anime out there.
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The similarities between wrestling and anime are startling. Large, heroic characters, villains capable of the most heinous deeds, and wacky battle scenes are the hallmarks of this film. In addition to all of this, characters are able to switch between being good and evil with considerably greater ease than is realistic. As a result, it should come as no surprise that a number of wrestling-themed anime programs have appeared over the years.
There are a lot of great wrestling anime out there, some of which have contributed to the history of the sport, and some of which draw inspiration from Japanese wrestling culture.
1. ABARENBOU RIKISHI!! MATSUTAROU
Abarenbou Rikishi, a mid-2010s series about a young man named Matsutarou Sakaguchi, following his adventures. Compared to the traditional sports series protagonist, he’s a lot more sluggish and careless when we first meet him. Except for sumo wrestling and being powerful, he’s not really good at anything. Even though this series is very different from what most people are used to, the art style and character’s story might nevertheless entice certain viewers.
2. I WANNA BE THE STRONGEST IN THE WORLD
This is a story about a young woman who becomes a wrestler after starting out as an idol. However, unlike other series of this type, the protagonist doesn’t ascend fast through the ranks, easily defeating his or her opponents. Not at all. Even after gaining experience, the protagonist continues to lose. There is a lot of fan service in this series, but the voice acting is so bad that you’ll have to turn the sound down to see it.
Everything about Keijo screams “anime.” It entails a brawl between ladies on stilts over the water, with the goal of knocking one another off their stilts. It’s understandable if you’re thinking this is an excuse to spout as much fan service as possible.
The show, on the other hand, takes this idea very seriously. The matches unfold in the same way as any other sporting event, with suspense developing and a variety of combat methods to offer each participant an advantage. If you can get beyond the fanservice, this series has a lot to offer wrestling and action lovers.
4. PLASTIC MODEL WRESTLING SANSHIRO
Miniature robots known as “Plawren” are capable of fighting with their juvenile mates in this series’ setting. Sanshiro Sugata is the protagonist of this story, who makes his own custom model called Juohmaru to compete in matches. If you’ve ever wondered what would happen if Gundam Build Fighters and wrestling collided, this is your chance.
5. HINOMARU SUMO
The story revolves around a young man named Hinomaru Ushio who aspires to be a professional wrestler, but he’s underweight. He can only hope to become the strongest sumo wrestler in high school if he can become the High School Yokozuna. However, he needs to start his school’s sumo club from scratch, which means he has more work than he expected.
6. TIGER MASK
Tiger Mask is one of the oldest anime shows ever made. Naoto Date, a young man who was a heel wrestler in America, became a good guy after hearing a child claim they wanted to grow up to be a heel just like him in the show’s plot line. A organization known as the Tigers’ Den groomed children to become evil wrestlers, and Naoto finds himself up against them. Against this organization and its head, Naoto fights.
7. JUSHIN LIGER
One of Japan’s most illustrious wrestlers, Jushin Thunder Liger, is well-known to long-time wrestling fans. The wrestler, a 35-year veteran of the junior heavyweight division, derived his gimmick from an anime with the same name.
Jushin Liger, the titular character, is a young man named Ken Taiga who acquires a powerful suit of armor in order to safeguard the Earth from an organization known as Dragonite.
8. ULTIMATE MUSCLE
When Kinnikuman first appeared on Fox Box in the early 2000s, it was dubbed Ultimate Muscle. King Suguru’s son Mantarou Kinniku is the focus of this story. DMP, a gang that threatens the Earth, forces Mantarou into a fight. Even though he doesn’t want to fight them, when he runs into his dad’s old trainer, he finds himself drawn into a war and on a mission to save the planet.
9. KEMONO MICHI: RISE UP
Definitely, someone was looking for an isekai anime about a wrestler. Genzo Shibata is the protagonist of Kemono Michi, in which a princess seeks Genzo’s assistance in battling the monsters that are invading her country. In order to get out of this situation, he suplexes the princess and takes on the character of a beast hunter in order to find as many “monsters” as possible, make friends with them, and eventually open a pet business.
10. TIGER MASK W
In some ways, Tiger Mask W is a continuation of the Tiger Mask saga. This time, the focus is on Naoto Azuma, who dons the Tiger Mask and begins training to face off against the Tiger’s Lair in the next chapter. To become Tiger the Dark and the master of Tiger’s Lair, Takuma, his companion, must compete. This series has a unique link to New Japan Pro Wrestling, which makes it stand out from the rest of the list. Even the main character gets a helping hand from some of the company’s most famous faces.