Anime is always growing and changing. What’s popular today may not be popular tomorrow. With the ever-changing tastes of fans and innovations in technology and animation, rising standards have made many series seem outdated in a modern climate. However, some anime manage to stand the test of time and stay relevant for years to come.
Sometimes a series will be considered a beloved classic among fans, shaping their childhoods and making them lifelong anime lovers. Other times, they’re still ongoing and have stayed fresh for modern audiences. Even with so many new and exciting series releasing each season, these anime still resonate with fans and leave a lasting impact on the medium.
10 Moomin Is Still Adored Decades Later
The Moomin franchise dates back to 1969 with the first anime series. Since then, audiences have loved the adorable, round creatures and their many friends. Moomin still has a very large and active fanbase despite being such an old series. With countless series and films, including the recent 2019 series Moominvalley, it’s become a huge franchise, bigger than anyone could have expected. Though each series is simple and more along the lines of kid’s anime, no one is too old for Moomin.
9 Pretty Cure Keeps The Classic Magical Girl Formula Alive
Magical girls have been popular for decades, especially after Sailor Moon’s debut in the ’90s. As magical girl deconstruction has increased in popularity, many have started to see the classic magical girl as an outdated relic of the past. Despite that, the Pretty Cure franchise is alive and well, with currently nineteen series under its belt. Each series is different from the last, but they all hark back to the early days of magical girls when everything is cute and upbeat. Though each series is essentially a basic magical girl plot, fans can’t seem to get enough of them. In a time when magical girls have all become dark and depressing, Pretty Cure keeps to the classics, and it works.
8 Digimon Is More Than Just A Pokémon Clone
Digimon was an instant hit in the ’90s and 2000s, seeing just as much popularity at the time as its rival, Pokémon. However, many argued that it was just a cheap clone trying to ride off Pokémon’s success, and some still think that to this day. Despite the unfair comparisons, Digimon still holds its own in a modern anime landscape. With the series now into its 10th season and many beloved films, it’s safe to say that it’s much more than just a knock-off. Digimon is one of few series that manage to stand against an anime giant like Pokémon and still remain relevant today.
7 Fans Never Grow Tired Of Dragon Ball
Dragon Ball is one of the biggest franchises in anime history. It’s considered one of the greats, and few series can ever compare to it. Though it’s been a part of anime for many decades, Dragon Ball has never lost its steam.
It’s probably more popular now than ever before, with tons of fans who are always hyped for every new series, movie, or spin-off. Even non-anime fans love the franchise, making it one of the most recognizable anime of all time. With every new installment, it seems that Dragon Ball is one series fans will never be tired of.
6 Death Note’s Popularity Has Only Increased Throughout The Years
Fans can’t talk about 2000s anime without mentioning Death Note. It’s one of the defining series of the time that still influences the anime scene today. Its popularity has gone up and down throughout the years, but to this day, Death Note is as relevant as ever. Even after the series ended, it’s maintained a steady pulse in the anime world with live-action films, a tv drama, musicals, light novels, and more. Now, with the inclusion of a spin-off manga, new fans are getting in on the hype too.
5 One Piece’s Ongoing Story Remains Popular With Fans
One Piece has been around since the late ’90s, and it’s still one of the most popular anime of all time. With over 1,000 episodes, it’s still ongoing and adored by fans of all ages. Despite being on air for so long, the series has managed to keep its audience invested with exciting arcs and many lovable characters. It’s one of anime’s Big Three and so far, nothing has knocked it from its rightful throne. It’s a daunting series for newcomers to take on, but long-time fans urge anyone to give it a try. Chances are, as long as One Piece‘s story remains unfinished, fans will keep coming back no matter how long it takes.
4 Sailor Moon Raised A Generation Of Fans
It’s hard to deny Sailor Moon’s significant impact on anime. Since its debut, it has influenced countless series and is one of the most recognizable anime worldwide. It’s been around for decades, but Sailor Moon has still reigned supreme and stayed relevant throughout the years. The original 90s adaptation was a gateway series for many old-school anime fans. And now, newer generations get to experience Usagi’s magic and charm through the Sailor Moon Crystal series. With two anime adaptations, several movies, stage plays, live-action shows, and even video games, it’s hard to picture a world where Sailor Moon isn’t an anime phenomenon.
3 Avatar: The Last Airbender Is A Timeless Masterpiece
Anyone who loves animation will agree that Avatar: The Last Airbender is one of the finest examples of genius the medium has to offer. Though it’s now almost two decades old, the series remains one of the greatest Western cartoons of all time. Long after its conclusion, fans never got over the incredible journey of Aang and his friends.
With beautiful settings, skillful animation, and amazingly well-written characters, it’s a timeless classic that audiences of any age can love. With its sequel series, The Legend of Korra, the upcoming Netflix live-action remake, and the creation of Avatar Studios, it’s clear that the Avatar franchise is here to stay, giving fans even more to love.
2 Naruto’s Legacy Still Continues
Naruto was one of the biggest anime of the 2000s, even earning a place as one of the Big Three of the time. For a while, it seemed like the series would go on forever, so when Naruto finally ended in 2014, it was a big deal. However, Naruto’s story was far from over, as many would soon realize. After the original series ended, Naruto passed the torch over to a new series, Boruto: Naruto Next Generations. While many fans complain that Boruto pales in comparison to its predecessor, many can’t help but tune in anyway. Though Boruto has taken the helm as the protagonist, fans remain loyal to Naruto, and most are more invested in his story than his son’s.
1 Pokémon Is Loved By Fans Of All Ages
If there’s one anime series with no signs of ever ending, it’s Pokémon. After its debut in the ’90s, Pokémon quickly exploded into popularity, and it hasn’t slowed down since. With a current total of 25 series and over 1,000 episodes, Pokémon has become a huge franchise over the years. It’s a series that transcends generations, finding fans of all ages and backgrounds. Based on the incredibly popular video game franchise, the series is a global success and is known by just about everyone. With both the series and the games still successful, it’s unlikely that Pokémon’s reign will come to an end any time soon.