I wanted to give you my first impressions of the best shounen anime I watched from the 2017-2018 winter season. This is somewhat of a late review, so I only watched the first three episodes of each series to get through this a lot faster. And don’t worry, I will finish every episode of the 4 series I viewed and post a full review in the future. Also, I only chose 4 series that premiered as brand-new titles during 2017-2018 winter season. I made sure to choose the series that seem to be limited to 12-26 episode runs, and even if there will be additional seasons in the future, I will give you a review of those episodes as they premiere.
Here is a list of the 4 best shounen anime I viewed and gave my own ratings:
- Darling in the Franxx – 9.25/10
- Hakata Tonkotsu Ramens – 9/10
- Hakyuu Houshin Engi (Soul Hunter) – 8.5/10
- Katana Maidens ~ Toji no Miko – 8/10
I didn’t include anime that are much longer ongoing series such as The Seven Deadly Sins, Black Clover, or One Piece, because their manga counterparts won’t be ending anytime soon and these series already premiered before the recent winter season. One Piece has 836 episodes which can be very overwhelming, but a discussion will come about in the near future on how you can watch these kinds. I just wanted to let you know what’s the shortest running shounen anime to watch from the recent winter season. I also watched the first 3 episodes of the shounen series known as Beatless, and I don’t recommend watching this anime series because the creators chose style over substance and the plot does not have a clear direction, which is why it’s not on the best winter season list. You can count on me to make sure not to include series that aren’t worth your time and if a series is not as good as I thought, and I will omit it from my list.
The #1 Shounen Series
The first thing coming from my best shounen anime list is the mecha series known as Darling in the Franxx. The reason this series is number one on my list is because, well, its giant robots versus giant monsters. But seriously, Studio Trigger, A-1 Pictures, and CloverWorks really outdid themselves with the production of this series. This mecha series gives you a fresh new take on an anime male MC (i.e. main character) with some usual character anime tropes, with an awesome female co-MC, a great cast of supporting characters, a bit of romance, the symbolism and foreshadowing are placed well, and this mecha series has top-notch art and animation that meshes well with a great plot. Darling in the Franxx proves itself to be the must-see shounen series from the recent winter season.
The #2 Shounen Series
Next up from my best shounen anime list, which is another must-see series from the recent winter season called Hakata Tonkotsu Ramens. This shounen series is more of a laid-back crime genre with plenty of extreme violence that you end up forgetting about because the friendliness between a lot of the characters make it seem normal. The series has a much bigger cast than Darling in the Franxx, and the interactions between the characters reminds me a lot of the anime series known as Durarara!!. The interactions and teamwork between the two male MC’s also reminds me of another series called Cowboy Bebop, a shojo series, because of the way they investigate and hunt down certain persons of interest. I believe this series is one of the best shounen anime, but it may not be for people who have just gotten into anime yet, although, those who have dabbled in some anime should definitely give this series a viewing.
The #3 Shounen Series
The best shounen anime coming in third place from my list would have to be Hakyuu Houshin Engi (a.k.a. Soul Hunter). This is the second anime adaptation from the manga titled Houshin Engi, and this anime is 3 episodes less than the 26 anime adaptation that was released in 2001. The Hakyuu Houshin Engi world is much bigger than the world’s of the other 3 anime series from my list, and this series also has an abundance of diverse characters. The MC of this series, whose name is Taikobo, seems very similar to the MC Goku from the early Dragon Ball shounen anime series. But the difference is that Taikobo is not completely naïve and the world the MC lives in is much darker where certain characters can make one wrong move, and having to live with the harsh consequences of their actions. The plot is full of adventure and action, the art and animation is beautiful, and I recommend a viewing of this series to anyone who watches anime. Just know that I’ve only watched 3 episodes so far, so I maybe judging the series too soon.
The #4 Shounen Series
Finally, the fourth best shounen anime I would like to discuss is Katana Maidens ~ Tijo no Miko. This series has an all female cast of characters, but when these girls kick ass they mean business. The combat in this shounen series involves characters that fight mostly wielding katanas, but they generate some power within themselves to increase their strength and speed, as well as imbue their katanas with their power to prevent the blades from breaking. They also fight these wild demonic beast that terrorize certain parts of Japan, which is exactly what these girls were trained for. The plot is average so far, the art and animation is also average for your run-of-the-mill 2018 anime. The MC is a very curious girl who likes sparring with strong opponents (now does that sound familiar to an MC of another series). I still don’t completely know how I feel about this shounen anime series yet, but I am intrigued enough to keep watching the Katana Maidens.
Helpful Advice – How You Can Watch My List
The list I created of the best shounen anime series is just based on my opinion, so if you have a different list in mind from the recent winter season, please let me know. But if you like my list, then I can at least tell casual anime viewers or newbies how they can watch my list. For casual anime viewer and newbies, I recommend you watch the first 2 shounen series listed above, and the bottom 2 series on my list seem good, but don’t watch these series until I make a review of the entire seasons or at least until I catch up. Another option is that you could just watch one of the series on my list, so if that’s the case watch Darling in the Franxx if you’re into mecha shounen anime; watch Hakata Tonkotsu Ramens if you’re into crime shounen anime; watch Hakyuu Houshin Engi if you’re into adventure shounen anime; watch Katana Maidens if you’re into action shounen anime. I will watch every episode of each series from my best shounen anime list, and then update you with more posts, but I’m only going to watch one series at a time as I post my anime reviews. As I watch these series, I will let you know if they’re trash or not, especially the last two series on my list. Let me know if you have anything to say or ask in the comments section below.