With the 2010s drawing to a close, the Crunchyroll Editorial Team got together to vote on the best anime from the past decade, from TV series to OVAs and theatrical films. These represent a variety of individual opinions, so read on for the titles our team has narrowed down to represent the Top 25 Anime of the Decade!


Attack on Titan
Released 2013
Wit Studio
Watch Now

At first, I struggled with the smoother, sleek designs of the Attack on Titan anime as I was a fan of the rougher, scratchier drawings of Hajime Isayama, but once I realized the aesthetic aspirations of Studio WIT I began to love the show. Attack on Titan quickly became my favorite series because of the endearing characters and this fascinating universe. I admire the way the anime deconstructs everything initially put in place, without ever relying on achievements that were favored by the public. It’s simply a masterpiece.     – Joan Lainé


Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba
Released 2019
ufotable
Watch Now

Watching Demon Slayer slowly gain momentum over the course of its first season before finally exploding in the latter half has been one of my greatest joys as an anime fan in 2019. From the top notch action choreography, to the understated (and sometimes not so understated) emotional moments, to the infinitely meme-able Inosuke, Demon Slayer can be a wonder to behold. And its sequel film is one of my most anticipated flicks of 2020. If you know someone that wants to get into anime or wants to re-get into anime or just needs a new anime to watch or doesn’t even like anime but is very easily persuaded, give them the gift of Demon Slayer.    – Daniel Dockery



DEVILMAN crybaby
Released 2018
Science Saru
Watch Now

When DEVILMAN crybaby was first announced, I don’t think I really understood just how big of a deal it was going to be. I wasn’t too familiar with Go Nagai nor Masaaki Yuasa’s work. I didn’t fully get the hype, the anticipation. After watching DEVILMAN crybaby, I finally got it. From adapting the full story of Nagai’s beloved manga to letting Yuasa add his unique psychedelic artistic twist, I finally was able to appreciate the prestige behind both creators and this story of gods and demons. DEVILMAN crybaby feels like a collaboration we only get once in a generation, and every aspect of it blew me away.      – Kyle Cardine


Dr. STONE
Released 2019
TMS Entertainment
Watch Now

Yes, a lot of Dr. STONE is based around its tall-haired protagonist, Senku, and the way that he schemes and creates his way into establishing a Kingdom of Science. But I challenge anyone to find a show with a more likable supporting cast. Taiju joins Black Clover’s Asta as a Very Good, Very Loud Boy, Chrome is infinitely watchable, Kohaku is so, so, so rad, and Suika, umm, excuse me, Great Detective Suika deserves, like, 19 spinoff anime. With a dynamic plot and a core theme that invites its readers to establish their own interest in science and invention, Dr. STONE is an anime that I can’t recommend enough.    – Daniel Dockery


Fate/Zero
Released 2011
ufotable
Watch Now

The Fate anime universe has grown to an exponential size over the past ten years, steadily receiving a new series in the franchise every year. The canonical stories of Nasuverse have not only received multiple adaptations, but its reach extended into other realms like mobile games, doujinshi and even culinary recipes!

Fate’s growth as a universe would not have happened without the success of Fate/Zero in 2011. Fate/Zero is definitely one of the best anime series of the past decade. This is an expensive, beautiful and smart action thriller that consolidated the glory of ufotable, Gen Urobuchi and Yuki Kajiura, and has become for the modern anime industry something similar to what The Dark Knight means for the current wave of comic book movies.     – Azaly Zeldin


Flowers of Evil
Released 2013
Zexcs
Watch Now

This series makes me actively nauseous when I watch it. I know that doesn’t seem like a terribly positive endorsement, but stick with me here. The much maligned rotoscoped animation style used for this series is ugly. It’s choppy and weird and feels deeply, deeply uncomfortable to watch. And I think that’s perfect. In a story about young people finding the existential pain lingering at the absolute bottom of their souls and enacting unspeakable cruelty on one another, having a visual style that keeps the viewer off kilter the entire time only strengthens those themes. This is a difficult series to watch, but its depictions of the awful ways people treat one another has a small, subtle beauty to it as well. Look closely and you’ll see something deeply touching about the honesty with which this series explores the worst of us.   – Cayla Coats


Hunter x Hunter
Released 2011
Madhouse
Watch Now

Yoshihiro Togashi would’ve been revered as a landmark mangaka if he’d simply stopped with the fantastic Yu Yu Hakusho. But if you thought that YYH provided a fun take on the familiar battle genre, then Hunter x Hunter will be perfect for you. This 2011 series (the second adaptation of the manga, with this incarnation following the story of the manga for its whole run) is fantastically animated, wonderfully cast, and emotionally poignant. In fact, there may not be another anime story that warrants rewatching as much as HxH, as it constantly seeks to not just reinvent the formula of shonen storytelling as provided by other works, but its own formula, too. It’s a refreshing masterpiece from one of the most talented manga writers/artists to ever live.   – Daniel Dockery


JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure
Released 2012
David Production
Watch Now

Hirohiko Araki’s tale of the Joestar clan spanning generations and eras plays out like a progressive rock album with multiple movements and suites that interconnect to form a much larger narrative about familiars called Stands being called in to do the majority of the fighting between groups of people fighting a common villain in each part. The currently running anime adaptation is very nearly pitch perfect to the long-running manga while even going as far to animate fan favorite scenes and particular spreads. The current adaptation is a must watch for many reasons but the pop music references are key to understanding just how much influence Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure takes from Araki’s exceedingly broad musical taste being interpreted as individual Stands and characters.    – Humberto Saabedra


KILL la KILL
Released 2013
Studio Trigger
Watch Now

A truly great battle anime hooks you with action and character work in the beginning, keeps up the pace throughout, and makes you slightly embarrassed to be watching from time to time. TRIGGER’s first full TV anime, KILL la KILL, did all that and more, punctuated with the fully nude double exclamation point that is the director/writer pairing of Hiroyuki Imaishi and Kazuki Nakashima. Even when it’s making me cringe, it’s just too energetic and exciting to ignore.      – Joe Luster


Lupin the 3rd: The Woman Called Fujiko Mine
Released 2012
TMS Entertainment

At its best, Lupin the 3rd is action-packed, stylish, sexy, and a little bit silly. But 2012’s Fujiko-centric series was more than that: retro, surreal, artistic, and occasionally downright terrifying. It wasn’t the first time a Lupin title had centered on the gentleman thief’s on-again, off-again love interest, but it was certainly the most laser-focused. Equal parts Twin Peaks, Gothic horror, and the trippiest story beats of Alice in Wonderland, The Woman Called Fujiko Mine challenged the typical Lupin the 3rd story concept and paved the way for both the art style and experimental nature of the franchise in the 2010s. Plus, the payoff is just amazing.     – Kara Dennison


Made in Abyss
Released 2017
Kinema Citrus
Watch Now

One of the first things that hits you when you watch Made in Abyss is just how small the characters look in the world. Reg and Riko are dwarfed by the verdant forests and towering cliffs of the Abyss. The series does a marvelous balancing act between getting us to genuinely care about our main cast and making them seem almost insignificant within a world that’s at best ambivalent towards them. While our two explorers and their eventual companion, Nanachi, are excellent characters with deeply engaging arcs, the real star of the series is the world. It is a place of extreme cruelty and violence but also of extraordinary beauty and wonder. The rather small main cast guides us on a journey through a land of almost divine solitude. It’s a journey that reminds us just how little we are in the world, and how lucky we are to get to experience it.    – Cayla Coats


Mob Psycho 100
Released 2016
Studio Bones
Watch Now

Shigeo Kageyama is called “Mob” because he looks like an indiscernible member of a crowd (or mob). Mob is a normal boy living a normal life at his normal middle school with a normal crush on a pretty classmate. Mob also has incomprehensibly powerful psychic abilities. From the same original creator as One Punch Man, Mob Psycho 100 inevitably drew comparisons to ONE’s first series, but both characters approach the concept of overpowered main characters in equally fascinating ways. Where Saitama’s ridiculous strength results in a quest for meaning in a world of meaningless boredom, Mob’s powers are a vehicle for him to become, as his mentor Reigen would say, the protagonist of his own life. With its inventive animation, expertly timed and crafted humor, and deeply moving story, Mob Psycho 100 represents the very best this medium has to offer.    – Cayla Coats


My Hero Academia
Released 2016
Studio Bones
Watch Now

Is there any series that defines the past decade of both anime and manga quite like Kohei Horikoshi’s Texas Smash hit My Hero Academia? The nice thing about this series’ popularity is that, in a rare fluke, everyone is totally right about it. Like the great shonen forefathers before it, My Hero Academia follows a winning formula, and it does so with an unforgettable cast of characters and a rogues gallery of villains that create stakes that feel genuinely high. Being into anime at the same time as peak MHA is something special, and I can’t wait to see how it all shakes out in the end.     – Joe Luster


Nichijou
Released 2011
Kyoto Animation
Watch Now

Everyone loves a relatable slice-of-life series… but these girls’ days are anything but ordinary. Nichijou appears on the surface to be a standard relatable-situations series. Once you’re past the peppy vocals of Nico Nico legend Hyadain, though, anything goes. There’s a tiny mad scientist and her clockwork robot. There’s schoolgirls suplexing each other and quoting Urashiman. There’s a guy who rides a goat. All this, paired with its charming art style, makes it impossible to look away.    – Kara Dennison


PING PONG THE ANIMATION
Released 2014
Tatsunoko Production
Watch Now

Masaaki Yuasa adapting Taiyō Matsumoto’s manga with Ping Pong the Animation combines two of the greatest creative minds in contemporary Japan. Masaaki Yuasa gives new life to the manga through the animation, which is a breathtaking achievement. The anime realizes these characters more fully than ever before, and It’s heartbreaking to see them discover themselves through sport.    – Joan Lainé


A Place Further Than the Universe
Released 2018
Madhouse
Watch Now

When this series was first announced, I was pretty skeptical because the premise seemed a little too fantastic for me. However, when I actually sat down to watch the show, I was presented with a heartfelt series about chasing dreams, learning to break out of self-imposed boundaries, and living a life full of adventure. A Place Further Than The Universe won me over with its characters and superb writing, not to mention the life-affirming lessons being imparted. I do hope we get more stories like this in the future, because this was definitely an unexpected favorite for me.    – Humberto Saabedra


Puella Magi Madoka Magica
Released 2011
Studio Shaft
Watch Now

It’s hard to remember a time before Puella Magi Madoka Magica had its remarkable cache in the anime fan community–a time before “meguca” memes and gifs of Kyubey getting blasted into swiss cheese. The series has garnered a particular reputation built up around the seemingly absurd contrast of its adorable magical girl visuals and the grim, deeply tragic plot, a reputation that has eclipsed… y’know, the actual show. But behind all of that is a series that uses its much publicized cruelty towards its characters not as cheap shock schlock, but as a vehicle to convey a story that has some really beautiful things to say about human nature, fighting destiny, and the importance of maintaining a spark of hope, especially in situations that seem to be the darkest.  – Cayla Coats


Re:ZERO -Starting Life in Another World-
Released 2016
White Fox
Watch Now

If there was one anime I didn’t expect to full-on love this decade, this might be the front runner. Re:ZERO starts off with an insanely strong hook, though, and it takes some dark twists and turns over the course of its first season. I loved this show so much that it actually inspired me to read my first light novel! For my money, though, Tappei Nagatsuki’s novels don’t hold a candle to what WHITE FOX did with the story on the small screen. There are some images in this show I won’t ever shake.        – Joe Luster


SHIROBAKO
Released 2014
P.A. Works
Watch Now

SHIROBAKO is an anime about making anime. If the aspirations of SHIROBAKO ended there, the title would still be essential viewing for all fans of the medium, but what SHIROBAKO delivers is worlds beyond the intellectual curiosity satisfaction of a Lost in La Mancha – it’s the heart and passion of hundreds of people who’ve dedicated their lives to the medium packaged into 26 episodes of small victories, happy hours with lifelong friends, miscommunications between coworkers, and making a fool of yourself in front of your heroes. Despair and hope fight for dominance in every scene, capturing the sentiments of those behind the scenes of their own animation production. To call SHIROBAKO a love letter to all anime isn’t strong enough to demonstrate the depth of passion that goes the Aoi Miyamoris of the world, but it gets pretty close.       – Miles Thomas


Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju
Released 2016
Studio Deen
Watch Now

I have to admit, after seeing the first trailer and details for this series, I was genuinely intrigued by the premise of an ex-con being sent to become the apprentice of a famous rakugo performer. I never expected such a well-crafted series regarding the trials and tribulations of rakugo performers as they struggle with the need to develop their craft, entertaining and developing a fanbase all while competing against the newcomers that threaten their established positions. While animated, the drama and intrigue would not be out of place on Western TV networks that emphasize adult drama and so-called prestige TV. If you are an older anime fan and are looking for something that is well-written and forces you to pay attention, I highly recommend this emotional rollercoaster of a series.    – Humberto Saabedra


A Silent Voice
Released 2017
Kyoto Animation
Watch Now

A Silent Voice is pretty hard to watch. The cruelty, self-hatred, and pain of the main cast is depicted with brutal honesty–conveyed through every aspect of the film including the music. But by that same token, there’s a really hopeful sense of beauty underlying everything. It’s pretty rare that any sort of media nails depictions of mental illness. The iconic blue crosses that obscure everyone’s face is a particularly powerful metaphor for Shoya’s intense social anxiety. This isn’t a perfect movie, far from it. It’s definitely over-ambitious with the amount of plot and characters it takes on (Mashiba is a pointless inclusion in the film) and the entire second act is almost a chore to get through. But the whole is much greater than the sum of its parts, here. This is a deeply human exploration of mental illness, the ways society fails people with disabilities, and the healing power of empathy–of reaching out your voice to another person, and, in turn, taking their voice into you.  – Cayla Coats


Space Dandy
Released 2014
Studio Bones
Watch Now

While the fan reactions and critical acclaim for Space Dandy aren’t nearly as universal (pun-intended) as general director Shinichiro Watanabe’s previous work on Cowboy Bebop or later work on Carole & Tuesday, Space Dandy is important because it gave director Shingo Natsume and a host of animators an entire cosmos in which they could stretch their creative muscles, resulting in a quirky work that is as visually eye-popping as its comedy is crass.     – Paul Chapman


Steins;Gate
Released 2011
White Fox
Watch Now

The animation studio White Fox has been involved with the adaptation of numerous quality series like Akame ga Kill! and Re:ZERO, but their best work might be Steins;Gate, the story of a group of people that find that they have the ability to send text messages to the past, thus altering the future, might sound like a half-baked Black Mirror episode, but it quickly becomes a thrilling tale of escaping peril while also attempting to prevent disaster. Through 24 wonderful episodes (and one additional OVA,) you’ll find yourself unable to quit a storyline that moves like clockwork, one that contains nail-biting stakes by its end. Trust me, even if you don’t think you’ll like Steins;Gate, you’ll like Steins;Gate.   – Daniel Dockery


your name.
Released 2016
CoMix Wave Films

The 2010s will be known as the era where Makoto Shinkai was relieved of the tired title of “The Next Miyazaki” and finally allowed to stand on his own The release of your name., and the worldwide phenomenon that followed, is the encapsulation of Shinkai’s incredible attention to detail, emotional storytelling, and directorial voice. Your name. is a visually breathtaking piece of art that reflects on the destruction of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami, a meditation on loss and the lost connections that follow. More than anything, I’m happy to be along for the ride of Shinaki’s rise.    – Kyle Cardine


Yuri!!! on ICE
Released 2016
MAPPA
Watch Now

Yuri Katsuki carried the hope of all Japan on his shoulders in the Figure Skating Grand Prix, but suffered a crushing defeat in the finals. He returned to his hometown in Kyushu and hid away in his family’s home, half wanting to continue skating and half wanting to retire. That was when the five-time consecutive world champion, Victor Nikiforov, suddenly showed up with his teammate, Yuri Plisetsky, a young skater starting to surpass his seniors. And so the two Yuris and the Russian champion Viktor set out to compete in a Grand Prix like none the world has ever seen!