Numerous stories that deviate from the standard formula can be found in the Seinen sub-genre. These programs are the pinnacle of their genre.
Anime isn’t just for kids anymore. If you’ve ever wanted to see the best in Japanese animation, you’ll have to look no farther than some of the older masterpieces. In contrast to shounen and shojo, which are aimed for younger audiences, seinen takes a more serious approach to its themes and appeals to males in their early twenties and thirties.
Many of today’s best anime, including space adventures like Cowboy Bebop and rigorous moral plays like Fate/Zero, were originally drawn from seinen manga. It’s understandable that some of the subjects explored in these kinds of seinen anime may be upsetting to younger viewers. One of the best seinen anime series may be better suited for those who want mature stories.
Scott Vengel updated the article on October 24, 2021: Several intriguing new and old features have been included into the anime schedule for the Fall of 2021. Demon Slayer is a hugely successful series, so it’s no surprise that it’s being continued. My Senpai Is Annoying, Muv Luv: Alternative for Visual Novel Fans, and The Faraway Paladin are just a few examples of interesting newbies. Perhaps no better opportunity to rediscover some of the anime community’s best-known and most-loved classics is now than at any other moment. As a result, we’ll be adding some of the best seinen series that we missed to this list.
Families may not want to watch bloody seinen animes with buff, sword-wielding protagonists, but it isn’t to say that they are always bad. So says Kentaro Miura’s Berserk to some degree. The anime is thrilling for the same reasons that it isn’t for everyone, with a brutish sword-wielding protagonist and a band of mercenaries that are just as vicious.
Guts and the Band of Hawks is an entertaining tale for those who are open to it. When you know that cheap plot armor isn’t in play, the story’s gruesome, life-threatening nature makes it more meaningful. For fans of shounen anime who enjoy the action and combat scenes, Berserk is a fascinating ride.
2. Kaguya-Sama: Love Is War
A high school romantic comedy series is about as far from from Berserk as it is possible to go. Although Kaguya-Sama: Love Is War has proven to be a competent seinen series (yes, Kaguya-Sama is a seinen series.)
Shirogane and Shinomiya are both members of Shuchiin Academy’s student council and are trying to convince the other to confess to them using witty remark and psychological warfare, of course. The tale revolves around these two characters. Manga enthusiasts who want a good laugh while simultaneously exploring more mature subjects will enjoy this series.
3. Vinland Saga
As far as I’m aware, anime does not often deal with the Vikings. It’s unusual for a Japanese animated series to delve into the fascinating realm of Viking warriors. With its dark, violent combat and historical twist, the Vinland Saga illustrates why this subject is a great fit for the film.
The seinen anime follows the narrative of Thorfinn, a little boy who grows up to become a Viking warrior. Vinland Saga has a lot to do with Berserk’s battle mechanics, in my opinion. Vinland Saga, on the other hand, is better suited to history buffs.
4. March Comes In Like A Lion
It is true that March Comes In Like a Lion is not as popular as some of the other shows on this list. In spite of this, the series is notable for its investigation of dismal topics and hopefulness.
It centers on the relationship between the Koda family and reclusive professional shogi player Rei Kiriyama. In contrast to many seinen series, this one has a heartwarming plot, which is a rarity in the genre.
5. Cowboy Bebop
Cowboy Bebop is a show that few anime fans have heard of. A classic of the seinen anime media, just as Star Wars was of the film medium, was this space-dwelling sci-fi epic. Earth has been rendered uninhabitable and the crew of the spaceship Bebop are bounty hunters working to combat interspace crime.
In a nutshell, Cowboy Bebop stands out from the crowd of science fiction films. As the name suggests, the series combines elements of sci-fi and Western storytelling. It’s an excellent pick for those who desire a space adventure that’s also a little bit more grown-up than the average one.
6. Made In Abyss
For good reason, mystery is one of the most popular subgenres of seinen anime. The author can control tension and suspense significantly better than in other types of series in these types of series, which is something Made in Abyss accomplishes exceptionally well.
The Abyss follows the adventures of Riko, an orphan who develops a strange bond with a large hole in the ground near her home town. More and more seinen anime viewers will be drawn to the characters of the series as the mysteries surrounding a mysterious abyss are unraveled. This is a fantastic seinen series for those who enjoy both mystery and character growth.
A space-based adventure, like Cowboy Bebop, or a social critique are the two most common forms of sci-fi anime. In the latter category, Production I.G.’s Psycho-Pass shines. Viewers will be pleased by the series’ unique visual style and well-developed characters, which follow a group of police officers and convicts who have been turned into police officers.
Psycho-Pass is, at its core, a psychological suspense novel. You may want to check out alternative shows for those who don’t like dark atmospheres and suspense. Psycho-Pass, on the other hand, is a one-of-a-kind experience for individuals who enjoy all of these themes.
The gory imagery and intriguing plot of Parasyte have made it a cult favorite in the seinen genre. Drilling into the brain of a human, a kind of parasites, allows them to take over their entire body.
As a result, protagonist Shinichi Izumi’s parasite is trapped in his right hand, rather than being absorbed into his body. Watching Shinichi and his parasite (named Migi) endure the looming catastrophe will keep viewers glued to the screen.
9. Hellsing Ultimate
There is a whole sub-genre of fantasy anime that is dedicated to vampires. Seraph of the End and Strike the Blood, both set in the near-future, introduced vampires to a wider audience. There’s a reason why it all comes back to Hellsing Ultimate.
The tale puts the audience in the shoes of Alucard, a vampire and loyal servant of the Hellsing family, who are on the prowl for the devil. When it comes to modern seinen manga, this series is one of the most horrific to come out in recent years. Hellsing Ultimate is a game for those who didn’t receive enough violence in Berserk.
What if a person could go back in time and change anything that happened? That’s exactly what Erased, a seinen anime, is all about. The plot revolves around Satoru Fujinuma and the bizarre events that claimed the lives of both his mother and several of his closest friends when he was a child.
In what way? As his childhood self, Satoru must employ the power that brings him back 18 years in time to solve the incidents. There is a lot to be intrigued by in Erased’s mystery, from the fast-paced action to the arresting aesthetics. Erased should appeal to the vast majority of seinen moviegoers.
11. Land Of The Lustrous
In anime, it’s typical to see characters who are anthropomorphized in some way. People have been fashioned from everything from warships to animals to entire nations. Few, on the other hand, are aware of the gem-centric series. An complicated universe where human life is impossible due to Earth’s toxic atmosphere and Lunarians are on the attack has been explored in Land of the Lustrous after Phos’s story.
It’s hard to think of a better seinen anime than this one. All of this makes the series so enjoyable, and the living diamonds make the world even more fascinating. Land of the Lustrous is a series that defies easy categorization because of its unconventional visual style, distinctive characters, and strange factions.
12. Death Parade
Seinen’s more adult storylines necessitate a heavier tone. Death Parade, on the other hand, does heavy like no other show. As viewers follow Decim’s journey, the show gains notoriety for its use of symbolism and metaphor.
When a person dies, they are taken to an afterlife bar where they can bid for their souls. With its unique take on death and the afterlife, the seinen anime is able to provoke thought among its audience members.
13. Bungou Stray Dogs
Almost like Psycho-Pass, Bungou Stray Dogs follows a team of detectives in an alternate reality Yokohama set in the 1920s who have access to supernatural powers. Actually, the only element that unites these stories is their emphasis on characters who act like detectives. But Bungou Stray Dogs is an interesting option for those who didn’t enjoy Psycho-gloomy Pass’s tone.
The main appeal of Bungou Stray Dogs is its cast of colorful characters. Instead of the other way around, the tale was developed around the people. The only thing this signifies is that the series provides a deeper understanding of character development in the supernatural genre. If you’re a fan of getting attached to every single character, this series is for you.
Fate/Zero, as a member of the venerable Fate series, can hardly be dismissed as anything but seinen. It has a harsher tone than earlier Fate novels because it was published as a seinen manga, which deals with significantly more advanced philosophical subjects than a shounen anime. There are a number of reasons why people find seinen anime so appealing. Deep storylines, extensive worldbuilding, stunning visuals and sound design, and visually stunning action scenes all contribute to this anime’s uniqueness.
As a result, fans should pay attention to the series’ running sequence. On the other hand, Fate/Zero may be watched as a stand-alone. Fate/Zero, on the other hand, serves as a precursor to Fate/Stay Night for those who want to see the rest of the series.
15. Ghost In The Shell
Movies based on anime aren’t unheard of. A live-action film adaptation of a popular anime series in the West, on the other hand, is rather different. A seinen classic, Ghost in the Shell was hailed around the world for its beautiful artwork and original concept.
Focusing on the story of Motoko Kusanagi, an android designed for fighting, the Ghost In The Shell series creates one of the best narratives in the sci-fi, police genre. One can see why the series has been hailed as one of seinen’s finest with its multifaceted characters and action-packed universe.