13 Best Shounen Anime Series Of All Time

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One Piece

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One Piece anime series. Image credits.

One Piece is one of the best shounen anime of all time. The aura of this anime is unstoppable, resulting in fans worldwide who praise this masterpiece for its narratives.

The story is about Monkey D. Luffy, a young and ambitious pirate with a dream of becoming the Pirate King by finding the renowned legendary treasure called One Piece in the anime. Luffy’s journey leads him to gather a team of diverse individuals, each with their own skills and goals to fulfill. 

It excels In balancing action-packed sequences and emotional depth and is well-known for its comical scenes. The fight scenes are dynamic and fierce, showcasing the diverse range of characters’ abilities while allowing them to overcome their limits.

  • Aired: October 20, 1999 – Ongoing
  • Duration: Approximately 24 minutes per episode
  • Genre: Adventure, Action, Fantasy, Comedy
  • Age Rating: TV-14

Hunter x Hunter

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Hunter x Hunter anime series. Image credits.

Hunter x Hunter is considered one of the best shounen anime due to its unique and innovative storyline. The story follows a young boy named Gon Freecss who aspires to become a Hunter. He possesses diverse abilities and a love for adventure, leading him to seek out rare treasures, dangerous creatures, and new places.

With the support of his friends, Gon faces challenges, grows stronger, and explores a rich and complex world of hunters.

  • Aired:
    • October 16, 1999 – March 31, 2001 (Original Series)
    • October 2, 2011 – September 24, 2014 (2011 Series)
  • Duration: Approximately 23 minutes per episode
  • Genre: Adventure, Action, Fantasy
  • Age Rating: TV-14

Attack On Titan

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Attack on Titan anime series. Image credits.

Attack on Titan is one of the most aspiring and emotional shounen anime on our list. The series is set in a world where humanity is on the brink of extinction due to giant humanoid creatures called Titans that feed on humans. The last remnants of humanity reside within walled cities to protect themselves from these giant creatures.

The story revolves around Eren Yeager and his friends Mikasa and Armin as they join the squad to fight against the Titans after their hometown is destroyed and Eren’s mother is devoured by a Titan. The show offers a blend of suspense, mystery, and heart-pounding battles, and Levi Ackerman’s fights are a must-watch.

  • Aired:
    • April 7, 2013 – September 28, 2013 (Season 1)
    • April 1, 2017 – June 17, 2017 (Season 2)
    • July 23, 2018 – October 15, 2018 (Season 3 Part 1)
    • April 29, 2019 – July 1, 2019 (Season 3 Part 2)
    • December 7, 2020 – March 29, 2021 (Season 4 Part 1)
    • Fall 2023 (Season 4 Part 2)
  • Duration: Approximately 24 minutes per episode
  • Genre: Action, Dark Fantasy, Drama
  • Age Rating: TV-MA

Naruto: Shippūden

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Naruto: Shippūden anime series. Image credits.

Naruto: Shippūden is one of the most popular shounen anime due to its enthralling storytelling, well-developed characters, and intricate world-building. 

The story takes place after a time skip, where Naruto returns to his village after intense training and embarks on a journey to rescue his friend Sasuke Uchiha, who has turned rogue.

  • Aired: February 15, 2007 – March 23, 2017
  • Duration: Approximately 24 minutes per episode
  • Genre: Adventure, Action, Supernatural
  • Age Rating: TV-14

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood

The series Is a rollercoaster of emotions, filled with mysteries, tragedy, and conspiracy. The anime is set in a world where alchemy is a powerful science, and it follows the story of the Elric brothers, Edward and Alphonse, who pay a steep price for attempting to revive their mother using forbidden alchemical practices. 

During the process of performing alchemy, Edward loses an arm and a leg, while Alphonse loses his entire body. In return for saving his brother, Edward binds Alphonse’s soul to a suit of armor.

After losing everything, the brothers are determined to restore their bodies. They embark on a journey to find the Philosopher’s Stone, a legendary artifact that could enhance their alchemical abilities.

  • Aired: April 5, 2009 – July 4, 2010
  • Duration: Approximately 24 minutes per episode
  • Genre: Adventure, Fantasy, Action
  • Age Rating: TV-14

Naruto

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Naruto anime series. Image credits.

The series Is set in a world where ninja skills are predominant. The story follows Naruto Uzumaki, a spirited and orphaned young ninja with a dream of becoming the strongest and earning the respect of his village, which he never received due to his lack of ninja skills. He is mostly ignored, and even his crush, Sakura doesn’t take him seriously.

As the series progresses, it weaves a complex web of relationships as Naruto forges bonds with his teammates and friends, Sasuke and Sakura. Their growth and shared experiences create an emotional journey full of ups and downs.

  • Aired: October 3, 2002 – February 8, 2007
  • Duration: Approximately 24 minutes per episode
  • Genre: Adventure, Action, Fantasy
  • Age Rating: TV-14

Black Clover

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Black Clover anime series. Image credits.

Black Clover features one of the most hardworking main protagonists of all time. Despite lacking magical skills and being excluded from participation in events, he never allows his setbacks to distract him. Instead, he perseveres and pushes himself to the forefront until he achieves success.

The anime Is set in a world where magical abilities define one’s worth. The story revolves around Asta, a young boy born without magic in a society where possessing magical skills is mandatory, and lacking such abilities makes you an outcast.

  • Aired: October 3, 2017 – March 30, 2021
  • Duration: Approximately 24 minutes per episode
  • Genre: Action, Magic, Fantasy, Comedy
  • Age Rating: TV-14

Jujutsu Kaisen

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Jujutsu Kaisen anime series. Image credits.

Jujutsu Kaisen is a newly emerging shounen anime on the list. The anime has received appreciation for its unique storyline and characters, making it one of this era’s best newly released shounen series.

The story is set in a world where cursed spirits and supernatural phenomena dominate humanity. The story revolves around Yuji Itadori, a high school student who unknowingly becomes entwined in the dangerous world of curses.

  • Aired: October 3, 2020 – Ongoing
  • Duration: Approximately 24 minutes per episode
  • Genre: Action, Demons, Supernatural, School
  • Age Rating: TV-MA

Death Note

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Death Note anime series. Image credits.

The story revolves around Light Yagami, a brilliant and ambitious high school student who becomes bored with his regular life. Suddenly, he comes across a supernatural notebook known as the “Death Note.”

Upon learning that writing a person’s name in the Death Note causes their death, Light becomes intrigued and makes it his mission to cleanse the world of criminals, aiming to create a utopian society under his rule. As the story progresses, he adopts the moniker “Kira.” His actions catch the attention of the police, and Kira’s deeds are deemed illegal. He quickly becomes a most-wanted criminal, pursued by both the police and the renowned character “L.”

  • Aired: October 4, 2006 – June 27, 2007
  • Duration: Approximately 23 minutes per episode
  • Genre: Mystery, Psychological, Supernatural, Thriller
  • Age Rating: TV-14

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba

This shounen anime is renowned for its animation quality and engaging storyline. It is brimming with diverse characters and a power system that positions it as one of the best shounen anime to date. Fans worldwide adore the anime’s character development, and if you haven’t seen it yet, now’s a great time to start.

Set in the Taisho era of Japan, the story centers around Tanjiro Kamado, a kind-hearted boy who becomes a demon slayer after demons brutally slaughter his family. Despite losing his entire family, his sister survives the massacre, though she turns into a demon due to her injuries. 

This sets Tanjiro on a path to becoming a demon slayer in order to avenge his family and restore his sister Nezuko to her human form.

  • Aired: April 6, 2019 – September 28, 2019
  • Duration: Approximately 24 minutes per episode
  • Genre: Action, Supernatural, Historical, Demons
  • Age Rating: TV-14

Bleach

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Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War. Image credits.

Bleach is a renowned shounen anime due to its unique storyline, intricate world-building, well-developed characters, and intense battles. 

The story centers around Ichigo Kurosaki, a teenager with the ability to see ghosts. His life takes a drastic turn when he accidentally obtains the powers of a Soul Reaper, a being responsible for maintaining the balance between the human world and the afterlife.

  • Aired:
    • October 5, 2004 – March 27, 2012
    • October 24, 2022 – December 26, 2022 (Season 1) – (Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War)
    • July 17, 2023 – October 2023 (Season 2) – (Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War)
  • Duration: Approximately 24 minutes per episode
  • Genre: Action, Supernatural
  • Age Rating: TV-14

Assassination Classroom

The series is known for its unique and highly popular character, “Koro Sensei.” After watching the series, you’ll likely find yourself envious of Koro Sensei’s students, as he is portrayed as the best teacher in the anime. As a shounen anime, it garners praise for its remarkable character development and distinctive plot.

The series revolves around Class 3-E of Kunugigaoka Junior High School, a class known for its misfit students. They are assigned the seemingly absurd task of assassinating their alien-like teacher, Koro Sensei before he destroys planet Earth. 

  • Aired: January 10, 2015 – June 20, 2015
  • Duration: Approximately 23 minutes per episode
  • Genre: Action, Comedy, School
  • Age Rating: TV-14

Dr. Stone

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Dr. Stone anime series. Image credits.

The series features one of the smartest characters in the show, who is essentially obsessed with science. The show primarily revolves around scientific themes, making it quite unique and intellectually stimulating to watch, especially for a shounen anime with such an intellectual plot.

The story revolves around Senku Ishigami, a brilliant young scientist who awakens thousands of years after a mysterious phenomenon turns humanity into stone statues. 

  • Aired:
    • July 5, 2019 – December 13, 2019 (Season 1)
    • January 14, 2021 – March 25, 2021 (Season 2)
    • April 6, 2023 – May 18, 2023 (Season 3)
  • Duration: Approximately 24 minutes per episode
  • Genre: Adventure, Sci-Fi, Shounen
  • Age Rating: TV-14
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Okuha

Digital Artist

I’m a digital artist who is passionate about anime and manga art. My true artist journey pretty much started with CTRL+Z. When I experienced that and the limitless color choices and the number of tools I could use with art software, I was sold. Drawing digital anime art is the thing that makes me happy among eating cheeseburgers in between veggie meals.

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