There are a lot of anime out there and in this golden age of TV streaming, the choices have never been greater. So how do you cut through the noise and find the “Best of” for any chosen topic? Well, we’re here to help celebrate and shine a spotlight on some of the latest, greatest and unforgettable shows through the years.
For our ongoing series of articles depicting the best anime, our attention this time turns to anime with an angel theme. From deep sci-fi narratives to heartbreaking romances, there’s a good choice to whet your appetite.
Of course, if we’ve missed any of your favorites, feel free to comment below and we’ll add them!
Neon Genesis Evangelion
Neon Genesis Evangelion is a sci-fi anime that had a mission. Instead of following the trend set by other robot action series, this one chose to focus more on the psychological mindsets of its cast. It shows our characters tackling issues that aren’t different from our own. This world takes place in a futuristic setting where humans create robots called Evangelion to combat monstrous angelic aliens.
The leader of this government faction is Gendo Ikari. He forces his son Shinji to pilot Evangelion unit 01 since he’s the only one capable of using it. Unfortunately, Shinji’s not the best warrior. He’s lived a rough life because of Gendo’s negligence. Not only will Shinji need to bury the hatchet between his and his father’s poor relationship, but he has the whole world’s safety on his shoulders.
Many anime fans may find Shinji’s meek personality annoying. On the other hand, many can sympathize with Shinji due to the way he was raised and treated during his youth. The show features more cast members who experience their own set of problems too. If you’re looking for a marvelously written and character-driven work, check out Neon Genesis Evangelion.
Angel Beats is an emotionally tragic series. It features relatable characters, wonderful music, and a gripping storyline. Our tale follows Otonashi, who wakes up in a world between life and death. Eventually, he runs into a group of students who refer to themselves as the Afterlife Battlefront. Their goal is to murder their student council president Angel.
After interacting with Angel, Otonashi realizes she’s not as immoral as they claim. Therefore, Otonashi vows to establish peace between Angel and the Afterlife Battlefront. However, that’s not the only thing Otonashi will be doing in this world. He’ll get to know our characters’ lives before they arrived in this strange dimension.
Some characters harbor harsh backgrounds and saddening tales that’ll make you feel sympathetic toward them. Otonashi’s relationship with Angel will grip you. If you’re looking for a wonderful supernatural series with a great spin on the afterlife, check out Angel Beats.
Some anime series simply exist to give you a great time. Gabriel Dropout is one of those works. Our cast appears cutesy in design and gets into the most hilarious shenanigans you can imagine. This anime likes to stay safe. It doesn’t incorporate dramatic dialogue nor does it offer anything too complex that toys with your brain.
It’s a simplistic series that wants to make you smile. It follows a fallen angel named Gabriel. She wishes to study humanity to become a real angel. Unfortunately, she’s a lazy being who loves playing video games and slacking off. Thus the anime features Gabriel and her friend’s various antics that stray from their ultimate goal.
This anime depicts angels in a comical light. Demons make an appearance in the narrative but aren’t fierce or mean-spirited creatures. The demons are more profound than Gabriel and her friends and handle their responsibilities with high integrity. Nonetheless, both creatures appear cutesy and traverse a world that engulfs viewers in a cozy atmosphere.
Haibanei Renmei is a strange anime. It takes place in a mystical world where our protagonist Haibane can’t escape. Instead of seeking a way out, Haibane accepts her fate and tries to make the best of it. Haibane’s world is equally mysterious. She’ll meet many people like herself who come from suspicious backgrounds but lack any care to escape their containment.
On that note, this anime provides a unique take on purgatory and the afterlife. It takes several turns to keep you guessing and includes several plot twists that will surprise you. You’ll find yourself questioning our cast’s decisions a lot in this anime. It evokes strong feelings of dread and sorrow due to its gloomy setting and melancholic atmosphere.
This is a thought-provoking piece that wants you to ponder what’s being shown. If you’re looking for a quick psychological series to add to your catalog of anime to watch, Haibane Renmei is a worthy addition.
Kobato is a wholesome anime series. It revolves around Kobato, a girl hoping to mend people’s broken hearts. After being mended, a candy-like fragment will fill a supernatural bottle, allowing her to fulfill a wish. Once fulfilled, Kobato can travel to a particular place but must contend with a variety of people to reach it. These individuals suffer from saddening scenarios.
With her trusty pal, Ioryogi, Kobato vows to give everyone a satisfying ending. This anime features themes like romance, family, and friendship. Kobato will endure many comical situations that’ll appear cutesy to most viewers. She’s not the brightest heroine, but her heartwarming persona makes her a great character to examine throughout the series.
This anime doesn’t feature any intense action scenes. It’s mostly a chatty series with a strong emphasis on dialogue and interactions. Check out Kobato if you’re in need of a show that’ll make you comfy.
Colorful is what you expect. It’s a colorful film with excellent visuals, breathtaking animation, and a soothing OST. It’s about a corrupt spirit who resides in a suicide victim named Makoto’s body. Their tasked with discovering what the boy’s life crimes were before his death. It identifies the complicated issues humans face on a daily basis and shows why people are scared to approach them.
This anime gives an admirable take on mental health-related matters. Its cast receives excellent development and fans will adore the various interactions they share in the anime. It tackles love and responsibility with great integrity and shows how unsettling it can be living inside another person’s body. If you adore anime with great life lessons and plots surrounding the afterlife, check out Colorful.
The World God Only Knows
The World God Only Knows was a popular anime series. Many people loved it for its harem and comedy elements. It contained fun characters, beautiful animation, and highly stylized visuals despite its romantic premise. It’s these components that pushed this series to greater heights in the fandom and made it a powerhouse in the anime community in late 2010.
This story follows Keima, a video game-loving teenager. He meets a spirit who tasks him with freeing evil spirits who lay dormant inside several girls’ hearts. His talent in galge helps him excel at it. He’ll conquer many girls’ hearts using methods he’s obtained from dating sims and a harem forms around him.
From the premise alone, this isn’t a show everyone can get invested in. However, if you’re someone who loves romantic comedy series with supernatural elements, you’ll love this one.
Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt
Magical girl anime became a popular trend in the early 2010s after the release of Puella Magi Madoka Magica. Many series attempted to emulate the formula popularized by that show and failed miserably. Although Madoka Magica isn’t the first show to have a dark magical girl-themed plot, it was rare to see series add new spins on the sub-genre.
Enter Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt, an anime that parodies magical girl anime. This series follows two foul-mouthed angels named Panty and Stocking Anarchy. They’ve been exiled from heaven due to their poor habits and must work hard to regain entry. They’re monitored by a muscular male named Garterbelt, who informs them about their missions.
We examine Panty and Stocking’s lives as they fight multiple monsters using raunchy tactics. This anime isn’t for the faint of heart and has strong sexual themes. The anime’s humor varies between jokes, gags, sketches, or well-executed slapstick. If you’re looking for a new and comedic take on magical girls, consider watching Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt.
Shingeki no Bahamut: Genesis
Some anime depict mythical and anthropomorphic creatures in a charming light nowadays. A few anime, such as Shingeki No Bahamut: Genesis, focus on dragons’ terrifying aspects. The story revolves around a group of heroes who get into a battle between gods and demons. This world doesn’t force our cast to carve distant paths for themselves.
It’s a universe where they must keep a dragon from being unleashed upon the world. The anime doesn’t offer anything complex, so fans hoping for a deep storyline will find themselves disappointed with this one. However, it portrays mythical creatures in a common light. For example, dragons aren’t cuddly creatures. They’re ferocious beasts who wouldn’t mind feasting on human flesh.
The anime cast receives adequate development and has backstories that will help people sympathize with them. If you’re looking for immersion and want to see a naturalistic take on dragons, Shingeki No Bahamut: Genesis is worth watching.
Rin: Daughters of Mnemosyne
Death comes for everyone, no matter if you’re kind-hearted or mean-spirited. This is why immortality is tackled a lot in many media franchises. However, what would life look like if you were immortal? Rin: Daughters of Mnemosyne features a premise that tackles this question head-on regarding its female protagonist Rin.
She’s an immortal private investigator who has a large target on her back. She experiences many deaths but returns to life in an instant. One day, she meets Kouki, a man with strange memories of his past. Rin agrees to help Koki with his problem but gets closer to her true enemy. If she dies at this person’s hand, she won’t be returning to life.
This anime will come off as overly complicated at first. However, fans will understand everything once it concludes. The anime has breathtaking visuals and animation. The characters carry diverse personalities and backgrounds. If you’re willing to put up with a show with a mildly complex storyline, this one’s worth watching.
So, there we have it, our picks for the best anime through the years about angels!
What do you think of our picks? Do you agree? Are there any notable omissions? Let us know in the comments below!