Between new Dragon Ball and One Piece movies to the hotly-anticipated Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War, the year of 2022 was a year that absolutely spoiled anime fans with its release schedule.
And while last year’s stacked list of offerings may seem like a daunting act to follow, 2023 is looking to make a name for itself with an even larger section of anime for fans to choose from.
From ecchi to shonen, this coming year has so many quality series – to the point where it was hard to narrow it down to just ten!
Nonetheless, we soldiered through, and as such would like to present our picks for the ten most anticipated anime (out of those that have been announced thus far) on our watchlist.
10. The Seven Deadly Sins: Grudge of Edinburgh Part 2 (August 2023)
Okay, we can already hear the backlash against this entry due to its art and animation, but as someone who is up-to-date with Suzuki Nakaba’s Four Knights of the Apocalypse manga, I ask you to just hear us out.
Following the reveal at the end of Part 1 that Tristan Liones’ (CV: Mikako Komatsu – Rebecca Bluegarden in Edens Zero) traveling companion is actually Lancelot (CV: Kouki Uchiyama – Itoshi Rin in Blue Lock), Part 2 will see the the pair set off to stop the evil machinations of the Chaos Staff-wielding Deathpierce (CV: Yōhei Azakami – Guel Jeturk in Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch from Mercury) and his monstrous companion Priest (CV: Kazuyuki Okitsu – Atsushi Ayami in Buddy Daddies).
Based on the events depicted thus far, we think it’s fair to speculate that the Grudge of Edinburgh Part 2 has the possibility of concluding right when Lancelot sets out to find the Four Knights of the Apocalypse.
In addition to getting to experience this amazing story, these films should be watched by any series fan because, as previously confirmed by Nakaba, the events of the two-part Seven Deadly Sins: Grudge of Edinburgh anime film are canon to the manga, taking place between Tristan Liones’ tenth birthday at the end of the Seven Deadly Sins and the start of Percival’s journey in Four Knights of the Apocalypse.
Grudge of Edinburgh concludes exclusively on Netflix this August.
9. Shangri-La Frontier (TBA)
Anime fans seeking out a series that focuses purely on ‘gaming’ part of video games and avoids all the politics, look no further than C2C’s upcoming anime adaptation of the best selling VR manga Shangri-La Frontier.
The best way to describe writer Katarina and artist Ryousuke Fuji’s series is that it takes all the focus on VRMMO gaming that fans loved about Sword Art Online but leaves all the cheesy romance and harem sub-plots at the door.
(And interestingly enough, SAO creator Reki Kawahara is a noted fan ofShangri-La Frontier).
Shangri-La Frontier centers of the story of Rakurou Hizutome (CV: Yuuma Uchida – Megumi Fushiguro in Jujutsu Kaisen) , a young man with a passion for hunting out various ‘kusoge’ video games – a Japanese slang term for titles that are terribly produced but possess some level of charm.
After conquering his latest s—-y game, Hizutome decides to change things up and take the popular, god-tier VRMMO, Shangri-La Frontier (or SLF for short) out for a spin.
Throughout his time in Shangri-La Frontier, viewers will witness how Sunraku’s time playing crappy games pays off as he fights some of the games top tier monsters.
However, rather than starting out as a complete rookie, Sunraku’s time playing crappy games pays off in the world of Shangri-La Frontier, as he soon finds himself a suitable match for some of the game’s top-tier monsters.
He’ll also spend a good amount of time traversing new lands and experiencing a number of unique scenarios, such as exploring a world of talking Vorpal bunnies alongside the adorably fluffy mage Emul (CV: Rina Hidaka – Milim Nava in That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime).
Follow the bird masked half naked twin blade wanderer Sunraku as he conquers his greatest challenge yet later this year.
8. Jujutsu Kaisen Season 2 (July 2023)
While we might hold some personal biases against studio MAPPA regarding the quality of their work, nothing can stop us from being excited for the first cour of Jujutsu Kaisen’s second season.
This summer will be cursed as the animated adaptation of Akutami Gage’s popular series – after teasing its events in the recentJujutsu Kaisen 0&film – finally tackles the original manga’s Hidden Inventory / Premature Death Arc.
Therein, fans will finally see the events of the 2006 mission which caused the once-dynamic duo of Satarou Gojo (CV: Yuuichi Nakamura – Buddha in Record of Ragnarok) and Suguru Geto (CV: Takahiro Sakurai – Diablo in That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime) to become fierce and bitter enemies.
But even more hype than finally seeing the two Jujutsu sorcerer’s backstory is the fact that this first cour will finally introduce one of the series’ most badass characters to the small screen – Toji Fushiguro, the fan-favorite Sorcer Killer.
A former member of the Zenin Clan and the father of Megumi Fushiguro, the assassin-for-hire utilizes his complete lack of cursed energy to stalk his targets and eliminate them quickly.
And when his line of work eventually puts the Jujutsu High School’s resident defender and progenitor, Master Tengen, in his sights, it falls upon the young Gojo and Geto to put a stop to his plans.
The curses fly between this trio of fighters starting July 2023.
7. The Seven Deadly Sins: Four Knights of the Apocalypse (TBA)
It’s a time for rejoicing among Seven Deadly Sins fans as not only has the franchise been liberated from the low-effort stewardship of Studio Deen, but this development comes just in time for the adaptation of the series’ next entry, Four Knights of the Apocalypse.
Taking place right after the aforementioned cinematic two-parter The Grudge of Edinburgh – roughly six years after the end of the Seven Deadly Sins manga, Four Knights of the Apocalypse follows one of the foretold knights of prophecy, the sixteen year-old Percival (CV: Shou Komura).
For the past sixteen years, Percival has been living a peaceful life with his grandfather Varghese, a former Holy Knight who has since isolated himself from the world atop the natural stone tower known as God’s Finger.
Unfortunately their peaceful life comes to an abrupt end when Ironside, the current Holy Knight of Chaos and Percival’s father, makes a sudden reappearance at his family’s doorstep seeking to kill them both.
Though Varghese falls to his son’s sword, Percival manages to survive his father’s attack.
Eventually dawning his grandfather’s Holy Knight helmet and cape, Percival sets out on an adventure to seek answers from Ironside on why he attacked his own parent and offspring
Along the way, the young knight of prophecy with winged verdant green hair will meet new friends, face chaotic enemies and learn more about the world around him – as well as his own burgeoning ability to wield heroic Hope magic.
Set to release sometime this year, Percival’s chaotic adventure has yet to receive a concrete premiere date.
6. Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War – The Separation (July 2023)
This summer, the war between the Quincy and the Shinigami resumes with the second cour of Studio Pierrot’s anime adaptation of Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War – The Separation.
At the conclusion of the first cour, Ichigo Kurosaki (CV: Masakazu Morita – Whis in the Dragon Ball series) had accepted and embraced both the Quincy and Hallow parts of himself, emerging with his newly-forged True Zanpakuto.
Meanwhile, finding their stolen Bankais returned to them, the Shinigami Captains of the Gotei 13 were left preparing to launch their counterattack against the Sternritters.
Based on The Separation trailer, when Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War‘s returns, fans can expect the next stage of the war for Soul Society to become even more intense than anything that came before.
Most excitingly, as revealed by original series mangaka Tite Kubo during Jump Festa 2023’sBleachpanel, this next cour will feature a new, anime-exclusive fight scene.
“In the second cour, there is a new battle that is not in the original work,” said Kubo (translated via DeepL). “I couldn’t draw the battle between one character and another in the original work, and the anime production team asked me if I wanted to have this character fight in this area, so I gave them the idea that I couldn’t draw, drawing and naming the character.”
The War continues in July 2023 exclusively on Hulu in the US and Disney+ internationally.
5. Yamada-kun to Lv999 no Koi wo Suru (April 2023)
Let’s be honest: who needs dating apps and mixers when there’s video games?
The perfect balance of gaming and romance, Yamada-kun to Lv999 no Koi wo Suru follows the story of Akane Kinoshita (CV: Inori Minase – Itsuki Nakano in The Quintessential Quintuplets), a young woman who recently lost her boyfriend to another woman – a woman he met playing the popular MMO Forest of the Savior.
Left with nothing but anger and sadness, Akane eventually decides to let off steam by hunting monsters in the very same game that led to the dissolution of her relationship.
One day while venting her frustrations, Akane has a chance encounter with the ‘Afro Noh’-masked professional gamer Akito Yamada (CV: Kouki Uchiyama – Shigrakai Tomura in My Hero Academia).
Though at first Akito seems to be her polar opposite, when Akane finally meets him in person at a Forest of the Savior event, she’s unable to deny the instant chemistry forming between herself and the socially awkward king of video games.
Will their romance evolve into true love?
Audiences can find out when Yamada-kun to Lv999 no Koi woSuru boots up in April 2023.
4. Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Cosmos The Movie (June 2023)
After nearly a decade, this year will see ‘Moonies’ across the cosmos will finally bearing witness to the two-part cinematic conclusion of the Sailor Senshi’s recent anime revival.
Technically serving as the fifth and final season of Sailor Moon Crystal, the upcoming Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Cosmos The Movie will adapt the classic Shadow Galactica arc – alternatively referred to as the Sailor Stars arc – of Naoko Takeuchi’s classic manga.
On the surface, the two-part film will be bittersweet, as it will see Usagi Tsukino (CV: Kotono Mitsusihi – Mei Mei in Jujutsu Kaisen) bidding farewell to Mamoru, as while the blonde-haired super heroine is set to continue living alongside her fellow Sailor Senshi as a student of Juban High, her tuxedo-clad beau is planning to travels overseas to America for school.
However, just as Mamoru is about to board his flight, he completely disappears into a flash of golden light, thus becoming the first victim of the girls’ new enemy – Sailor Galaxia (CV: Megumi Hayashibara – Ai Haibara in Detective Conan), the leader of the self-titled Shadow Galactica Empire and the most powerful Sailor Senshi in the entire universe.
Thankfully, the Usagi and her friends won’t be alone in their fight against the Sailor Guardian of Destruction, as they’ll be joined by three new allies in the Sailor Starlights.
Made up of Sailor Star Fighter (CV: Marina Inoue – Armin Alert in Attack on Titan), Sailor Star Maker (CV: Saori Hayami – Yor Forger in Spy x Family), and Sailor Star Healer (CV: Ayane Sakura – Gabi Braun in Attack on Titan), the Starlights are a trio of Sailor Senshi who arrive on Earth in search of Princess Kakyuu, who thanks to Sailor Galaxia’s conquest is now the last surviving member of her home planet’s royalty.
The first part of Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Cosmos The Movie is set to release to Japanese audiences on June 9th, with the second part following three weeks later on June 30th.
Though the film has yet to receive an overseas release announcement, here’s hoping that the film will follow in the footsteps of Sailor Moon Eternal and hit international streaming services later this year.
3. Goddess Café Terrace (April 2023)
Of all the year’s upcoming harem rom-com offerings, the one we’re absolutely the most excited for is the adaptation of Seo Kouji’s Goddess Café Terrace.
Adapted from Kouji’s manga of the same name, Goddess Café Terrace tells the story of Hayato Kasukabe (CV: Masaaki Mizunaka – Baji Keisuke in Tokyo Revengers), a recently-admitted Tokyo U student who returns to his childhood home in the wake of his grandmother’s death in order to take care of her affairs.
Expecting to simply close-up his grandmother’s old shop before heading back to the city, Hayato is surprised upon his arrival to discover that five mysterious girls claiming to be a part of ‘Grandma’s Family’ are residing inside.
Unable to bring himself to abandon the girls to the street, Hayato takes it upon himself to provide for them, in turn dedicating their attentions to restoring his grandmother’s business to its once-thriving state.
In addition to its loveable cast of girls, what sets Goddess Café Terrace apart from the average harem series is that unlike the majority of protagonists in his situation, Hayato is likeable, smart, and well-written.
Rather than presenting him as your typical ‘dead end neet with no higher aspirations in life’, Kouji presents Hayato as a man who not only knows what his goal are, but can take charge to accomplish them.
Notably, the key art and animation for the series unveiled by animation studio Tezuka Productions thus far looks incredible and impressively mimics Kouji’s own original art style – so much so that it has us wondering just how involved the mangaka is in the anime’s development.
Goddess Café Terrace opens for business in April 2023.
2. Oshi no Ko (April 2023)
A slight detour from the year’s offerings of battle shonen and isekais, Oshi no Ko is a murder-mystery with a reincarnation twist.
Based on the original manga penned by Kaguya-sama – Love is War mangaka Aka Akasaka and illustrated by Scum’s Wish artist Mengo, Oshi no Ko follows the story of Gorou, a countryside gynecologist who one day gets the patient of his dreams in the form of his favorite idol, the rising 16-year-old sensation Ai Hoshino (CV: Rie Takahashi – Megumin in KonoSuba: An Explosion on This Wonderful World!).
Asked to assist her in giving birth, Gorou’s excitement soon turns to horror when, just moments after delivering Ai’s new children, he is brutally murdered by one of the idol’s more fervent stalkers.
However, rather than passing on to the afterlife, Gorou awakens to discover that he has been reincarnated into his dream life as one of Ai’s new twins.
Meanwhile, one of his other patients, a terminally ill young woman named Sarina Tendouji, passes away that same night and is reborn as Gorou’s twin sibling.
Given the name Aqua, Gorou’s second chance at life ends up being just as short lived as his time as Ai’s doctor, as shortly after being born he and his sister bear witness to another killing – their mother’s.
Seeking to avenge his mother, Aqua/Gorou vows to enter the Japanese entertainment industry as an aspiring actor in order to seek out any clues he can as to the culprit behind Ai’s murder.
Meanwhile, Sarina – named Ruby (CV: Yurie Igoma) in her new life – dedicates herself to following in her mother’s legacy as an idol, even going so far as to form her own version of Ai’s original group, B-Komachi.
However, thanks to the fate that befell their mother, Ruby’s idol aspirations cause unease within Aqua, as the young man seeks to avoid his sister from suffering a similar fate.
The investigation into Ai’s murder begins in April 2023.
1. Rurouni Kenshin
There is no doubt in our minds that the second proper anime adaptation of Nobuhiro Watsuki’s classic Ruroni Kenshin will be the ‘Must Watch Anime of 2023’ (Heck, given its status as a ‘second attempt at adapting a manga’, it might even end up being this generation’s Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood).
Recounting the Meiji-era tale of Himura Kenshin’s (CV: Souma Saitou – Shou Utsumi in Gridman Universe) attempt to leave behind his former life as an assassin and start anew as a wandering protector of Japanese innocents, Ruroni Kenshin has already pulled ahead of many of its fellow ‘contemporary attempts at rebooting an anime’ due to the fact that Watsuki has been directly involved in every aspect of the series’ production.
From hand-selecting the series’ production team to participating in the voice recording sessions, Watsuki was determined to make sure the upcoming anime executed his vision perfectly from start to finish.
Though the series has yet to receive an official release date, its latest trailer has us chomping at the bit for it to finally get one.
Premiering during the Jump Festa 2023 Rurouni Kenshin presentation, the trailer not only teased fans with incredible clips of new footage, but also reintroduced the world to the brawler Sanosuke Sagara (CV: Taku Tashiro – Tsubasa Tanuma – Kaguya-sama – Love is War) and the aspiring samurai Yahiko Myoujin (CV: Makoto Koichi – Nurugai in Hell’s Paradise: Jigokuraku).