If you’ve just gotten a Funimation subscription, or maybe you’re mulling over the idea of acquiring one, it might be hard to decide what to watch first. Here is, in no particular order, a list of the essential Funimation anime: the ones you simply have to see.
One of Funimation’s top-selling anime, it’ll be a surprise if you haven’t seen this one already. But just in case you haven’t – jump on that train immediately! The story takes place in an alternate universe where demonic creatures are hunted and reaped by teams of human ‘meisters’, and their partners that switch between human and weapon form. The show is equal parts humour, action, and the supernatural. The three elements blend together well, so you never feel as if one is completely overtaking the other. The relationships between the characters feel real, as does the pain they suffer. You’ll be drawn into this one from the start!
Don’t let the cherry blossoms and pretty boys fool you. This anime is a comedic, often satirical look at the shojo genre. The story follows a young scholarship student attending a school filled with the rich and elite. She stumbles across the Host Club, a group of boys who want to help the girls of the school pass the time by “appreciating beauty” – by appreciating their own beauty, that is. The student finds herself mistaken for a boy due to her short hair and thin stature, and is brought in to be part of the club. Funny and heartwarming at the same time, this anime is already considered a classic. And before you enter, be warned: it will be years before you get that “Kiss, kiss, fall in love!” out of your head.
Or the oft-shortened “AssClass,” this fairly new anime deals with yellow, octopus-like alien teacher in a classroom filled with students trying to assassinate him. Not hooked yet? What if we mention that this alien teacher asked the students to try and assassinate him, because, if they don’t manage it by a certain deadline, he’ll destroy the world? Fun and filled with entertaining assassination attempts, this anime is one you may not have seen yet but should be the next on your list.
It’s only 26 episodes, but those 26 episodes will be filled with all the space-western neo-noir action you can handle. Often referred to as one of the greatest anime of all time, the series follows an exiled hitman who now works as a bounty hunter of sorts aboard the ship Bebop. The series is dark and gritty, with complex multi-faceted characters and an incredible soundtrack. By the end of it, you’ll be saying “See you space cowboy” to anyone who will listen.
Let’s face it, you’ve probably already seen FMA. You already know it’s one of the best anime of all time. You already know about the compelling characters and complex villains. You already know about the comedy and the tragedy. You already know about the world-building and beautiful animation. But no list of the essentials could be complete without at least mentioning it, and besides, who says you can’t give it a second (third, fourth?) watch?
This one comes from a personal recommendation from the author herself. One of the best anime to surface out of the mecha genre, Eureka Seven deals with underlying themes of religious persecution, corrupt militarism, government testing and love that transcends human nature, all to the backdrop of fighting in giant robots. It’s the story of a young boy whose life is changed entirely when a mecha crashes in his backyard, piloted by one of the prettiest (and strangest) girls he’s ever seen. While this anime may start out slow for some, and the mythology and world-building may take some getting used to, once this anime sinks its claws in it will never let you go. If you haven’t already seen this wonderfully crafted masterpiece, then I have only Funimation’s motto to say: You should be watching.
Laura is a Douglas College student and an avid anime aficionado. She can sleep through anything, except the latest manga chapter release. Any questions, fire off a message to firstname.lastname@example.org!