Top 30 Drama Anime: Best Series & Movies Of All Time

By on Feb 09, 2022

Top 30 Drama Anime: Best Series & Movies Of All Time

Everyone loves good characters. And while every single anime 

has characters (obviously) sometimes they take a back seat to plot, production, or premise.

That’s not necessarily a foul thing – not at all! – as a number of my favorite anime have strong characters in exaggerated or dynamic plots.

But sometimes I need to feel the character’s emotions, relate to them in situations near home.


That’s where the loosely defined drama genre comes in! The anime on this list prioritize interpersonal reactions and melodramatic plot beats. whether or not they be romantic, introspective, or historical, we’ve got you covered.

The aim here is covering awesome dramatic anime with strong character writing, subtext, metaphors, or individual growth.

30. Hi Score Girl

Yaguchi isn’t good with people.

What he's good at is gaming.

Set throughout the 90s, highschool Girl chronicles the age of arcade gaming into the increase of the console market, telling a compelling romantic drama because it does.

When he meets Oono, a quiet rich girl with killer Street Fighter abilities, he develops a fast rivalry that gently evolves into something more.

29. Tokyo Magnitude 8.0

Mirai doesn't appreciate her family, always comparing the richer or more intimate relationships of her classmates.

One day, she and her brother find themselves separated from their parents aloof from home. When a gargantuan magnitude 8.0 earthquake shakes Japan to its knees

Mari Kusakabe, one mother, bumps into the siblings and promises to return them home.

This anime tells that journey, with twists and turns along the way, never entering into the way of a touching and realistic portrayal of environmental destruction only too familiar to Japan.

28. The Flower We Saw That Day

Jinta Yadomi and his friends went through a tragedy once they were children.

Their friend Honma died, and it affected each of them differently.

In his teenage years, Jinta suddenly starts seeing the ghost of Honma and is prompted to contact those old friends to do to assist her march on.

The Flower We Saw That Day is brief yet sweet. able to channel an enticing story at a fast pace and find a tear out of you within the process.

27. Haibane Renmei

Rokka emerges from her cocoon in an ethereal village surrounded by towering walls.

She doesn’t remember who she wont to be, nor how she got there.

Luckily, she isn’t alone. She’s welcomed by many similar people – each with little grey wings and a glowing halo.

This group of struggling souls must come to comprehend who they're, why they aren’t allowed to depart, and why they keep disappearing one by one within the enigmatic Day of Flight.

Haibane Renmei could be a short drama with engaging characters and a singular, calming atmosphere. Certainly, a novel series to test out.

26. Beck

Yukio Tanaka doesn’t know where he’s moving into life. When he meets the Ryuusuke Minami and he gets introduced to music, he suddenly realizes what he wants to try to and gets a guitar.

They start a band, BECK, and set their sights on taking the globe.

Though in fact, it’s not as simple as that.

Beck has a tremendous soundtrack – different looking on Dub/Sub – that elevates the dramatic tension permeating throughout its narrative.

I’m gonna must rewatch this one soon, because it really could be a classic.

25. Kokoro Connect

The five students of the Yamaboshi Academy Student Cultural Society are forced to know each other once they suddenly switch bodies.

And at the moment, weirder things happen.

Emotional scars, repressed memories, and private secrets bubble to the surface as each member is forced to confront themselves.

This is a singular & constantly engaging supernatural drama with strong romantic elements too.

24. Barakamon

Seishuu could be a calligrapher with lots of potentials sooner than him, were it not for his hubris and arrogance getting into the way.

One day he overhears a critic describe his work as derivative, so naturally, Seishuu punches him.

He’s sent to an island for self-reflection where he meets children, old people, and a few middle schoolers who encroach upon his life… but incidentally, soften him up within the process.

Barakamon could be a real heartwarming tearjerker.

It concentrates on the struggles of an artist, and the way relationships can change a person’s style for the higher.

23. Death Parade

Before being sentenced to eternal oblivion or reincarnation, you and one other person are taken to a quaint bar kept by an enigmatic man, with memories fuzzy and confusion at an all-time high.

Decim may be a well-mannered arbiter, there to choose where you go.

How does he do that?

Well, he judges each of you over a random game – bowling, darts, snooker – where your limits are pushed to the edge, toa reveal you’re true personality.

It’s dark, sad, and touching. The drama drives the episodic narrative, with each episode featuring one such game.

Absolutely brilliant, check this one out of course.

22. March Comes in Like a Lion

Before being sentenced to eternal oblivion or reincarnation, you and one other person are taken to a quaint bar kept by an enigmatic man, with memories fuzzy and confusion at an all-time high.

Decim may be a well-mannered arbiter, there to choose where you go.

How does he do that?

Well, he judges each of you over a random game – bowling, darts, snooker – where your limits are pushed to the edge, toa reveal you’re true personality.

It’s dark, sad, and touching. The drama drives the episodic narrative, with each episode featuring one such game.

Absolutely brilliant, check this one out of course.

21. The Tatami Galaxy

Watashi, a lonely collegian in his last year, encounters the weird-looking God of matrimony, kickstarting reflection of his educational social life up to now

He’s disappointed. Which makes it all the higher when he’s given the possibility to travel back in time to experience it all again, but differently.

With an eccentric art style and unconventional structure, Masaaki Yuasa’s hyper-stylized romantic comedy touches on the fleeting experience of youth. moreover because of the multiple outcomes of a person’s decisions, and also the importance of seizing the day.

20. The Wind Rises

Despite his myopia preventing him from ever becoming a pilot, Jirou is decided to enter the aeronautical industry.

He gets a giant break within the type of designing the Mitsubishi A6M Zero aircraft for warfare.

Torn between his aspirations of creation, and terror of the destruction that his creation will bring, Jirou must question whether his dream is definitely worth the bloody cost.

Based on a real story, Studio Ghibli’s unusual war drama combines love and fear to form a gorgeously produced package dripping with style.

Some of the set pieces are so endearing, and therefore the ultimate antiwar message is well-meaning.

19. A Country Doctor

I’m willing to bet you haven’t heard of this one.

Currently sitting at a criminally low score on MyAnimeList, a rustic Doctor seems to possess been misunderstood by plenty of its audience.

Based on a Franz Kafka story of the identical name, a rustic Doctor tells the bizarre and surreal tale of a panicked, pre-occupied doctor thrust into performance with a patient beyond saving.

The style and voice acting bring this classic to life in an exceedingly way i've got not seen before, making it perhaps the best adaptation of the work yet.

It manages to convey the near-nonsensical narrative visually, without sacrificing the Kafkaesque horror it’s known for.

Equally horrific, disturbing, thought-provoking, and confusing – yet if you dig a touch deeper, a solution is also there.

It’s only a twenty-minute movie and on YouTube, so check it out sometime!

18. Garden of Words

Takao Akizuki regularly skips lessons to sketch shoe designs during a park.

It’s here one rainy morning that he meets the enigmatic Yukari Yukino, a girl full of something unspoken.

Every time it rains, they meet there. Over time they meet up with and reliant on each other, scared of when the sun will start up and their little bubble will burst.

This short film, courtesy of the acclaimed director Makoto Shinkai, is soaked in an exceedingly production-quality you'll nevermore see in any anime.

Pencil shavings, phone lights, rain splashed trains; The Garden of Words may be a masterpiece of microcosmic storytelling, each environment getting ever closer to photorealism in its execution.

17. Mawaru Penguindrum

The young sister of the parentless Takakura family is released from the hospital but promptly collapses when her brothers take her to an aquarium to celebrate.

Shouma and Kanba are concerned when she suddenly sits duplicate, seemingly possessed by the penguin they brought from the shop.

They’re told that her soul is returned if the brothers manage to acquire a ‘Penguin Drum’ – though, after all, they’re not told what that's.

Stuffed with metaphors, this multilayered narrative relies on you reading into the subtext to receive the best experience & takeaways.

Constantly twisting, sleek, and trendy, Mawaru Penguindrum never misses a hammer in its execution of a family-focused drama that manages to bring out some tears.

16. Spice and Wolf

Kraft Lawrence maybe a traveling merchant, specializing in pelts and odd trinkets.

He builds a supply supported demand, negotiating from village to town, and making relationships along the way.

His dreams of someday opening his own shop become more achievable upon meeting Holo the Werewolf, a deity of a bygone time with a knack for economics and a desire to accompany on his journey North.

Watch as Holo attempts to reclaim her identity during a technological world now not reliant on such deities.

Spice and Wolf are poignant, with engaging characters in an exceedingly well-realized world.

15. Kids on the Slope

Kaoru Nishimi’s introverted personality shows through his piano playing – professional, precise, and ideal.

However, when he meets Sentarou Kawabuchi, he tries to emerge out of his shell. Truly inspired by his freeform jazz style on the drums.

Another Watanabe classic, now combining the musical stylings of jazz and emotional drama to inform a compelling story.

Through his music we watch Kaoru open up and find the pleasure that comes from entertaining others.

Absolutely gorgeous in production and straightforward to digest with simple storytelling.

14. Your Name

Taki Tachibana could be a busy student struggling to juggle his architectural ambitions and a part-time job.

Mitsuha Miyamizu is bored within the countryside, always intending to sleep in the rushing environment of Tokyo.

One day they come to life in one another’s bodies. And now they need to find the mysterious reason for the body swap…

Your Name is another Makoto Shinkai masterpiece along with his classic photorealistic style at a near-perfect degree by this time.

The narrative seems complex but is really an awfully rooted story of relationships and robust connections.

13. A Silent Voice

In grade school, a sweet deaf girl called Shouko joins the category.

However, the category clown Shouya selects her as an acceptable target for bullying. Months of trauma for the girl pass until she’s transferred away, subsequently making Shouya a target for scorn.

Years and years later, the suicidal and guilty Shouya continues to be haunted by his past actions when he bumps into Shouko yet again. And he dedicates himself to creating amends.

What ensures may be a sad but heartwarming series of connections, as Shouya makes friends over again and helps Shoujo along the way.

This is one of Kyoto Animation’s greatest works: a trendy movie about disability, debilitation, and private responsibility that isn’t fearful of hitting dark places.

12. Beastars

There exists an unhealthy harmony between the carnivores and herbivores of the anthropomorphic society that Legosi and Haru sleep in.

One day an alpaca from the varsity drama club is killed, causing even more tension.

Amidst this, the drama club persists with putting on an honest show. And a timid wolf falls head over paw for a rabbit with a reputation.

This incredible animation proves CGI incorporates a place within the medium, accentuating the dramatic moments with flair and elegance which will leave you speechless.

I can’t sit up for season two to work out where the drama will take us.

11. Welcome to the NHK

Hikikomori is introverting scared of the surface world, which depends upon getting by with minimal interactivity.

Tatsuhiro has been a hikikomori ever since falling by the wayside of highschool.

He’s also a paranoid junky riddled with conspiracy theories. “Welcome to the NHK” depicts his struggles re-entering into society, with the assistance of a replacement friend and a mysterious girl obsessive about ‘fixing him.’

This anime goes to very dark places and expresses the twirling psychology of our protagonist, with zany animation and bizarre music in addition.

It handles its morbid material with great portions of humor, ensuring this to be a dramedy the likes of which you’ve never seen before.

10. Ping Pong

Masaaki Yuasa’s obscure work of art follows Makoto Tsukimoto as he's employed his high the Ping Pong hierarchy.

Nicknamed ‘Smile’ for his subdued and boring personality, he initially shows little ambition – there primarily to support his supporter Yutaka (nicknamed Peco) with becoming the best player within the world – but soon discovers what he wants, and the way he’ll grasp.

The inter-high table game tournament is quickly approaching. And with it, a cast of determined professionals each with their own backstory and depth.

Despite what you’d assume, Ping Pong may be a hype dramatic sports story about passion and determination.

It comes with an esoteric style that escalates its potential into something truly great.

9. Whisper of the Heart

Shizuku Tsukishima likes to read and write, often found checking books out from the library. She notices that a lot of these books were taken from a boy the identical age as her.

This ends up meeting Seiji Amasawa, a confident maker with large drams of honing his craft abroad.

This inspires Shizuku but also leaves her insecure of the aimless path she’s been walking.

In response, she decides to place her foot down and finish the primary draft of her novel regardless of what. If only to prove she will roll in the hay.

Inspiring for both children and adults, Whisper of the center expresses that innate desire we all hold. It puts into words the passions we follow, and also the struggles attributed to achieving your goals.

8. Clannad

The first season of Clannad could be a melancholic slice of a story about the lonely Tomoya, whose self-destructive and abusive relationship together with his father has resulted in delinquency and depression.

Until he meets a woman called Nagisa. She’s plagued by severe sickness and dreams of re-opening the school’s drama club.

Tomoya feels compelled to help her with this, and subsequently meets more people that let him into their lives, giving him purpose and companionship where before there was little.

Clannad: After Story is about after their school years. It handles strong, emotional topics of fatherhood and loss.

One of the foremost impactful melodrama anime to own ever been made, Clannad may leave you a sobbing hysterical mess by the tip.

Complete with a stellar dream-like soundtrack and a moving narrative structure, it’s probably the simplest Kyoto Animation adaptation, elevating the first Key visual novel to supply an animated journey through love and lovesickness.

7. Nana

The two Nana’s are entirely different.

One may be a rock music singer haunted by her past, the opposite may be a quirky overly optimistic woman.

When they meet unintentionally on a train and later find yourself renting the identical flat together, they become closer and closer.

Their lives collide, bringing with it smiles, heartbreaks, and changes that will never be undone.

This anime dives into the lives of our main characters without reserve, addressing all kinds of dramatic and heavy subjects.

The funny and endearing protagonists tackle various topics including job seeking, rent payments, drug abuse, and pregnancy. Check this one out, you won’t regret it.

6. Toradora

The thuggish appearance of Ryuuji doesn’t match his soft and delicate soul.

Similarly, the tiny and delicate physique of Taiga doesn’t match her aggressive and volatile soul.

At first, they don’t get along. But soon they realize that they'll not be able to cope without each other.

Featuring love triangle upon love triangle, bound up in a very colorful and wholesome bow, Toradora! is one in every of the cutest romance dramas out there.

The character growth and dialogue are strong points here, with everybody feeling likable and sympathetic.

It ends satisfyingly, making this a robust single watch with no bells or whistles.

And it really doesn’t look 12 years old, to be honest.

5. Aku no Hana

This is visiting be a troublesome one to sell.

When Studio Zexcs was given the task of adapting Oshimi’s psychological drama, they made a controversial decision.

They chose a rotoscope style with the art drawn overtop. They essentially had real actors and actresses perform the anime, then drew over it.

The results are entirely supported by taste. But if you provide it an attempt, you’ll discover a skin-crawling psychological thriller based around inner guilt, decadence, lies, and bullying.

Kasuga loves reading – Baudelaire’s Les Fleurs du Mal – and is riddled by a way of shame after stealing his crush’s gym uniform.

Unfortunately, the school’s bully’ saw him a couple. and he or she won't let him forget.

I really, actually need a season two of this.

The manga is one among my favorites, and that i even have the flower tattooed on my arm. i like to recommend this one for its unusual presentation and disturbing content, altogether with a stellar dramatic flair.

4. Monster

We meet a renowned neurosurgeon, engaged to the lead director, and revered by his peers.

Dr. Kenzou Tenma is on his thanks to the highest of the hospital hierarchy.

That is, until in the future while performing lifesaving surgery on a young boy, he’s told to change patients to the mayor.

He refuses.

His life is straight away ruined, his career ambitions capped, his fiancé gone.

Nine depressing years pass until Dr. Tenma discovers that the boy he saved could be a liquidator with a twisted goal.

Studio Madhouse’s dark psychological thriller drama goes to places no other anime ever has. after I think about mature anime, I feel of Monster for its dark and deep storytelling, and muted pseudo-realistic art style.

This is a must-watch for any mystery-thriller fans out there, for sure.

3. Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu

After serving a jail sentence, Yotarou decides to alter his life around.

He seeks out the tutelage of Yakumo, and requests he teaches him Rakugo – an ancient Japanese performance art, where the actor must play all the parts, by himself, and stay consistent and entertaining.

Yotarou seems eager. This sets Yakumo’s mind back to an earlier time when he himself was learning Rakugo.

The first season follows Yakumo’s story; the second season follows Yotarou’s.

Gripping and rooted in realism, Rakugo tells a story about storytelling.

This series has a number of the foremost fleshed-out character writing in anime as a full. It explores the dark and lightweight equally and paints a desirable tale of a standard kind, and therefore the love held by people who practice it.

2. Grave of the Fireflies

As controversial an announcement, this might be, I feel Grave of the Fireflies is that the most vital film created by Studio Ghibli.

Most of their works target the ethics of war, and also the fallout of devastation.

But this movie doesn't skirt around the subject.

Grave of the Fireflies is about at the conclusion of the Second war as Japan suffers from the 2 nuclear bombs detonated over their country.

We follow Seita and Setsuko; a young boy and even younger sister, trying to survive in an inhospitable environment surrounded by similarly scarred people.

The realistic consequences of battle are unforgettable; genuinely horrific.

And this movie is predicated on the 1967 story by Akiyuki Nosaka, together with numerous firsthand accounts of the atrocities.

Grave of the Fireflies refuses to show from the cruel truths of life.

1. Legend of the Galactic Heroes

150 years of stalemating ends when Wen-Li & Reinhard von Lohengramm meet in combat for the primary time.

Behind them is that the diplomatic democracy of the Free Planets Alliance, and also the aristocratic dictatorship of the Galactic Empire.

And within those opposing forces are over 300 voiced actors(most of any anime) each with depth and growth.

Legend of the Galactic Heroes is one of the best pieces of animated media produced.

Though it's slow and dialogue-heavy, it tells a grand story complete with documentary episodes and a decade-spanning narrative culminating in an exceedingly glorious conclusion.

PreviousTop 25 Fantasy Anime Series: Ranking The Best Of All Time
NextWhat Is The Best Gift for Anime Lovers? 40 Terrific Choices

Related articles

0 comment

Leave a comment