Much like joining the membership of a monastery, going ‘full weeb’ is a long process. Also the requirements for entry can be pretty stringent. Usually it takes years to really get into it, but if you insist on rushing the process…
Boku no Hero Academia
Genres: Hero, Sci-Fi, Future, Social Commentary
The story of a boy who wished to become his idealized hero, given a chance to do so. I won’t spoil the rest, but I do recommend watching at least through the first 13 episodes in a row.
Genres: Gore, Dystopia, Ultraviolence, Science-run-Amok
Not much I can write without spoiling it, but if you like well-defined gore and blood-play, this is where I’d recommend you start.
GATE: And so the Defense Force Fought
Genres: Military, Isekai, Fantasy, Magi-Science, Cultural Interplay
A well balanced array of tropes and cliches, set in a fantasy world, and built around a pretty good story.
Genres: High Fantasy, Magic, Mythical Mish-Mash
A completely off balance array of ancient mythologies set in a high-fantasy world. The system of magic is more well defined than many is this genre.
Genres: Steampunk, Strategy, Humanity, David vs. Goliath, Revolution
Deeply psychological, Last Exile, and the sequel series ‘Fam the Silver Wing’, examine the nature of humanity, as well as the many forms slavery can take.
Genres: Time Travel, Persecution, Super-Powers, Meaning-of-Life
An uncharacteristically somber examination of the nature of power, in many forms.
Genres: Meteor, Android, Ecchi, Strangeness, Time
An uncharacteristically humorous examination of the nature of power. The title is a play on the way the Japanese pronounce ‘panties’.
Restaurant to Another World
Genres: Food-pron, Isekai, Fantasy, Modern, Slice-of-Life
Exactly as it says, this show is about a restaurant that connects to another world. As well as being some pretty good food pron, it explores a wide variety of fantasy settings and mentalities.
Genres: Steampunk, Alt-History, Industrial Revolution, Resistance
Literal steampunk, this one. Explores an exaggerated version of the unease with which many people experienced the industrial revolution.
Tiger Mask W
Genres: Sports, Slice-of-Life, Friendship
I said ‘sports’ but really it’s only one sport: theatrically over-done pro wrestling.
Genres: Sci-Fi, Alien, Space Magic, Pure Weirdness
Iconic in many ways, strange in more ways. This screenshot is from the last episode and I’m confident that it’s not a spoiler because without context from the rest of the series, it makes no sense. This anime BTW also has possibly the greatest soundscape of the early 2000’s.
Genres: Social Commentary, Mind Bending, Urban Dissidence
This mind-altering exploration of child homelessness, street violence, gentrification, and gang mentality has a very strange art style that wouldn’t fit in any other story.
Genres: Isekai, Game, Fantasy, Growing-Up
Not the most well-known of the ‘trapped in the game’ genre, but in my studied opinion, the most well-thought-out. The main characters’ active analysis of the nature of their predicament makes this the best for first-timers to watch.
Genres: Sci-Fi, Classic, Dystopia, Cyberpunk
The story, while excellent, is not the main reason I’ve included Akira on this list. This absolute classic features some of the best hand-drawn artwork in anime history. Every part of the screen is occupied with detail, hand drawn in a realistic cyberpunk flavor.
Isekai no Seikishi Monogatari
Genres: Isekai, Mecha, Fantasy
There are many mecha genre superfans who would scoff at this recommendation, but for someone just getting into anime, it’s an easy way in. Even I can’t fully get into the Evangelion or Gundam series’. And I would never attempt to push a new recruit into it. After you’ve watched this one, then you can decide if you want the heavy stuff.
Once you’ve watched this list in its’ entirety, you’ll know enough to make accurate judgements of your own tastes. It’s a huge wide world out there, and this list barely scratches the surface. It does manage to scratch the entire surface though. Go forth my child, and weeb out!
Long time nerd of many types and tastes, considered and often controversial opinions, and lover of debate.