Top 10 Most Popular Anime Shows of All Time!

Top 10 Most Popular Anime Shows of All Time!

The Ultimate Anime Guide!

Hey there, fellow otaku! Today, we’re diving deep into the world of anime to explore the cream of the crop, the best of the best, the shows that have captured hearts and imaginations worldwide. Get ready for a journey through epic battles, complex characters, and unforgettable stories as we break down the top 10 most popular anime shows of all time!

1. Dragon Ball Z (1989-1996)

Kicking off our list is the legendary Dragon Ball Z! This action-packed shonen anime, based on Akira Toriyama’s manga, took the world by storm with its high-octane battles and lovable characters.

Plot: Following the adventures of Goku and his friends, Dragon Ball Z takes us on a wild ride as they defend Earth from increasingly powerful threats. From Saiyans to androids to intergalactic tyrants, the action never stops!

Main English Dub Cast:
– Sean Schemmel as Goku
– Christopher Sabat as Vegeta
– Sonny Strait as Krillin
– Stephanie Nadolny as Kid Gohan
Kyle Hebert as Adult Gohan

Fun Fact: The infamous “It’s over 9000!” meme originated from a mistranslation in the English dub. The original Japanese line was actually “It’s over 8000!”

2. Naruto (2002-2007) and Naruto: Shippuden (2007-2017)

Believe it! Naruto sprinted into our hearts with his ninja way and never left. This long-running series, based on Masashi Kishimoto’s manga, combines action, drama, and a hefty dose of friendship power.

Plot: Follow Naruto Uzumaki, a young ninja with dreams of becoming the Hokage (village leader). Along the way, he faces countless challenges, makes lifelong friends, and uncovers the truth about his past.

Main English Dub Cast:
– Maile Flanagan as Naruto Uzumaki
– Kate Higgins as Sakura Haruno
– Yuri Lowenthal as Sasuke Uchiha
– Dave Wittenberg as Kakashi Hatake

Fun Fact: Naruto’s signature jutsu, the Rasengan, was inspired by the destructive power of typhoons!

3. One Piece (1999-present)

Ahoy, mateys! Set sail with the Straw Hat Pirates in this epic adventure that’s been running for over two decades. Based on Eiichiro Oda’s manga, One Piece is a treasure trove of creativity and world-building.

Plot: Monkey D. Luffy and his diverse crew of pirates sail the Grand Line in search of the ultimate treasure, the One Piece. Along the way, they encounter bizarre islands, powerful enemies, and uncover a world full of mystery and wonder.

Main English Dub Cast:
– Colleen Clinkenbeard as Monkey D. Luffy
– Christopher Sabat as Roronoa Zoro
– Luci Christian as Nami
– Sonny Strait as Usopp
– Eric Vale as Sanji
D.C. Douglas as X Drake

Fun Fact: Eiichiro Oda originally planned for One Piece to run for five years. Over 20 years later, it’s still going strong!

4. Attack on Titan (2013-2023)

Prepare for a dark, intense ride with Attack on Titan. This grim masterpiece, based on Hajime Isayama’s manga, redefined the anime landscape with its shocking twists and complex narrative.

Plot: In a world where humanity lives behind walls to protect themselves from man-eating Titans, Eren Yeager and his friends join the military to fight back. As they uncover the truth about their world, they face moral dilemmas and unimaginable horrors.

Main English Dub Cast:
– Bryce Papenbrook as Eren Yeager
– Trina Nishimura as Mikasa Ackerman
– Josh Grelle as Armin Arlert
– Matthew Mercer as Levi Ackerman

Fun Fact: The iconic salute in Attack on Titan is based on a real military salute used in some countries!

5. Death Note (2006-2007)

Get ready for a battle of wits in this psychological thriller! Based on the manga by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata, Death Note keeps viewers on the edge of their seats with its intense cat-and-mouse game.

Plot: When high school student Light Yagami finds a mysterious notebook that can kill anyone whose name is written in it, he sets out to create a utopia by eliminating criminals. But can he outsmart L, the world’s greatest detective?

Main English Dub Cast:
– Brad Swaile as Light Yagami
– Alessandro Juliani as L
– Brian Drummond as Ryuk
– Shannon Chan-Kent as Misa Amane

Fun Fact: The character L’s unusual sitting position actually increases his deductive skills by 40%, according to the manga!

6. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood (2009-2010)

Alchemy: the science of understanding, deconstructing, and reconstructing matter. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, based on Hiromu Arakawa’s manga, is a perfect example of this process, weaving together action, drama, and philosophy into a masterpiece.

Plot: Brothers Edward and Alphonse Elric use alchemy in their quest to regain their bodies after a failed attempt to resurrect their mother. Their journey uncovers a nationwide conspiracy and forces them to confront the true nature of alchemy.

Main English Dub Cast:
– Vic Mignogna as Edward Elric
– Maxey Whitehead as Alphonse Elric
– Travis Willingham as Roy Mustang
– Colleen Clinkenbeard as Riza Hawkeye

Fun Fact: The philosopher’s stone, a key element in the series, is based on a real alchemical concept from medieval times!

7. My Hero Academia (2016-present)

Plus Ultra! My Hero Academia takes the superhero genre and gives it a distinctly anime twist. Based on Kohei Horikoshi’s manga, this series has captured hearts with its colorful cast and inspiring message.

Plot: In a world where 80% of the population has superpowers (called “Quirks”), Izuku Midoriya is born Quirkless. After inheriting the power of the world’s greatest hero, All Might, Izuku enters U.A. High School to train as a hero.

Main English Dub Cast:
– Justin Briner as Izuku Midoriya
– Christopher Sabat as All Might
– Clifford Chapin as Katsuki Bakugo
– Luci Christian as Ochaco Uraraka

Fun Fact: Many of the characters’ names contain puns or references to their Quirks in Japanese!

8. Neon Genesis Evangelion (1995-1996)

Get in the robot, Shinji! Neon Genesis Evangelion is a mind-bending deconstruction of the mecha genre that has sparked debates and theories for decades. Created by Hideaki Anno, this series is as psychological as it is apocalyptic.

Plot: In a post-apocalyptic world, teenager Shinji Ikari is recruited by his father to pilot a giant mecha called an Evangelion to fight mysterious beings known as Angels. As the battles intensify, the true nature of the Evangelions and the fate of humanity come into question.

Main English Dub Cast (Netflix version):
– Casey Mongillo as Shinji Ikari
– Stephanie McKeon as Asuka Langley Soryu
– Ryan Bartley as Rei Ayanami
– Carrie Keranen as Misato Katsuragi
D.C. Douglas as Keel Lorenz

Fun Fact: The series’ iconic opening theme, “A Cruel Angel’s Thesis,” was written and recorded in just two hours!

9. Pokémon (1997-present)

Gotta catch ’em all! Pokémon has become a cultural phenomenon, spanning anime, games, movies, and merchandise. Based on the games by Game Freak, the anime has been introducing new generations to the world of Pokémon for over two decades.

Plot: Follow Ash Ketchum and his partner Pikachu as they travel across various regions, catching Pokémon, battling trainers, and aiming to become a Pokémon Master. Each new series introduces new companions, Pokémon, and challenges.

Main English Dub Cast:
– Sarah Natochenny as Ash Ketchum (current)
– Ikue Otani as Pikachu
– James Carter Cathcart as James and Meowth
– Michele Knotz as Jessie
D.C. Douglas as Lysander

Fun Fact: Pikachu was designed to be the series mascot because of its broad appeal to both boys and girls!

10. Cowboy Bebop (1998-1999)

3, 2, 1, let’s jam! Cowboy Bebop is a genre-defying masterpiece that blends science fiction, film noir, and jazz into a unique and unforgettable experience. Created by Hajime Yatate, this series has left an indelible mark on anime history.

Plot: In 2071, a group of bounty hunters (called “cowboys”) aboard the spaceship Bebop chase criminals across the solar system. Each member of the crew is running from their past, and their stories unfold as they face both external threats and their own demons.

Main English Dub Cast:
Steve Blum as Spike Spiegel
– Wendee Lee as Faye Valentine
– Beau Billingslea as Jet Black
– Melissa Fahn as Edward

Fun Fact: Each episode (called a “session”) is named after a song or album, reflecting the show’s musical influences!

Wrapping Up Our Anime Adventure!

Phew! What a journey through some of the greatest anime of all time! From the action-packed worlds of Dragon Ball Z and Naruto to the philosophical depths of Neon Genesis Evangelion and Death Note, these shows have left an indelible mark on the anime landscape and pop culture as a whole.

Whether you’re a long-time fan or new to the world of anime, these series offer something for everyone. They’ve inspired countless fans, sparked endless discussions, and continue to shape the medium we love.