After about two years of availability, HBO Max has built up a solid catalog of TV anime for subscribers. Several of the major competing streaming services are collecting anime libraries — whether through third-party collaborations or originals — as the genre has become more entrenched in the international mainstream than ever before.
HBO Max’s collection is incredibly diverse, ranging from time-tested classics to modern hits. All of these shows manage to rank on the highest levels of anime rating aggregator My Anime List, so audiences should be hard-pressed to find something to suit their tastes.
ten Puella Magi Madoka Magica (8.36)
On its surface, Puella Magi Madoka Magica looks like what audiences would expect from a “magic girl” anime. However, as much of an open secret as it is all these years later, this anime is still praised and famous for its sudden, subversive dark turn. The main cast of the story is made up of college girls who are given the opportunity to become magical girls themselves.
But another magical girl strongly urges them to refuse, leading to a dark spiraling story that deconstructs her characters and her namesake anime genre. In terms of quality and relevance to fans, magic madoka is one of the most durable modern series.
9 Towards your eternity (8.39)
This might not be the most talked about anime among recently aired shonen giants, but To your eternity is a commendable series with a grounded and introspective premise and protagonist. The main character is an orb initially known as “It”, which can take many unique forms.
Beginning unemotionally, the orb eventually takes the form of an abandoned village boy and his white wolf companion. To your eternity is an emotional and sometimes dark anime that will satisfy fans looking for a deeply personal story.
8 Mob Psycho 100 (8.48)
Although the ONE writer is best known for his satirical superhero action series One-punch man, Mob Psycho 100 is another great story with an equally great anime adaptation. Mob Psycho 100 focuses on a more grounded framework compared to OPMbut still has plenty of great midrange-focused supernatural action sequences.
However, its greatest strength is arguably its genuinely emotional coming-of-age narrative and the addition of tasteful comedic elements. Season 1 sets the world in order while exploring themes of repressed emotions, managing self-expectations, and children’s social struggles in the most emotionally tumultuous parts of their lives.
7 The Promised Neverland (8.55)
Unfortunately, the more recent second season of The promised never-never land fall flat. However, the former still poses a refreshing and appealing shakeup to the shonen formula.
The promised never-never land features an orphanage where the main cast of characters live until they come of age, but they begin to unravel a much more sinister mystery surrounding it as the story progresses. It was one of the best anime of 2019, and although the second season has gone down in quality, the manga is over for those who fancy continuing the story.
6 Death Note (8.63)
Death threat is now considered a modern anime classic, with the series being one of the most recognizable to mainstream audiences. To date, the series boasts one of Shonen Jump Magazine’s most iconic and intelligent protagonists in the form of Light Yagami.
This dark series follows the dangerous vigilante as he becomes increasingly deranged in pursuit of his version of a crime-free society, as well as the godlike powers granted by the titular Death Note and his shinigami partner Ryuk. In addition to thought-provoking societal issues, the series raises, Death threat is also a gripping battle of wits and detective prowess.
5 Your Lie in April (8.67)
For something more slice of life, Your lie in April is among the best that HBO Max has to offer. This animated adaptation received strong critical acclaim in particular, thanks to its handling of the story and the quality of the animation.
Your lie in April centers on a young man named Kousei who lost his will to play the piano after his mother passed away. However, a talented violinist enters her life and inspires her to play and hear the sound of her music again. It’s a touching romance for those looking for a sweet, down-to-earth story.
4 Jujutsu Kaisen (8.69)
On paper, Jujutsu Kaisen may not sound like an entirely convincing shonen, but the execution has proven its good ratings to many fans. He has many of the attributes that can make shonen feel mundane, but he demonstrates them in a way that’s effective, creative, and doesn’t overstay their welcome.
Jujutsu Kaisen has incredibly likable characters, an exciting tokyo ghoul-as a setting for horror inspirations, and takes the best things like naruto and Bleach while letting go of the baggage that held them back in their final days. the excellent Jujutsu Kaisen 0 The prequel film comes at a perfect time for new fans to dive into this grotesquely stylish world on HBO Max.
3 Mob Psycho 100 II (8.81)
As well received as Season 1 was, Season 2 of Mob Psycho 100 has managed to garner a level of recognition that puts it neck and neck with other of the best anime adaptations to date. Season 2 follows a young Mob who has grown a lot, as he no longer takes everything his boss, Reigen Arataka, says at face value.
However, accompanying this emotional maturity involves increasingly demanding (and dangerous) situations that test one’s character growth and control of one’s powers. Mob Psycho 100 Season 2 retains and improves on its balance of heartfelt, emotionally resonant storytelling with comedic timing, with the upcoming Season 3 being one of the most anticipated anime of 2022.
2 Hunter X Hunter (9.04)
Regarding the long shonen series, Hunter X Hunter often comes across as one of the best. Unfortunately, this makes it all the more painful, in a way, that the manga seems to be in a perpetual state of hiatus. Nonetheless, the 2011 remake anime series begins and ends on satisfying notes. This combines for a sprawling and immersive globetrotting fantasy odyssey akin to A piece.
Hunter X Hunter follows (mostly) Gon and Killua as they travel the world as hunters, where they engage and do battle with a wide variety of colorful enemies ranging from the dark Phantom Troupe to the fearsome Chimera Ants. For those who are in it for the long haul, Hunter X Hunter offers a rich level of lore and world-building.
1 Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood (9.14)
This is the second anime adaptation of the film by Hiromu Arakawa. Fullmetal Alchemist manga, and while the original was solid in its respective terms, fraternity stands as one of the greatest anime series to date. The story follows Edward and Alphonse Elric working as state-sanctioned alchemists after they were orphaned – and the latter’s soul bound in armor when they attempted the dark art of alchemy of resurrection.
The resulting story is an exciting and sometimes heartbreaking tale set in a steampunk fantasy world, and it’s a shonen that most of us still can’t quite measure up to. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is also one of the most beginner-friendly anime for newcomers.
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