There may be a ton of action anime out there, but the genre never gets stale. Even when new anime are inspired by older series, they’ll bring something new to the table for fans to enjoy. That doesn’t mean there aren’t a few action anime that fail to meet fans’ expectations.
However, just like there are anime that are far worse than fans expect, there are even more that fans are surprised to find are actually good. Whether it’s because of the story, characters, or animation, some action anime have managed to blow fans’ expectations out of the water.
10 Demon Slayer Blew Fans Away
Demon Slayer became a hit out of nowhere, especially since most anime fans weren’t expecting much from the series. The story has been done before and the art style is more unique when compared to other anime series.
However, fans quickly fell in love with the characters, especially Tanjiro, who is the perfect representation of a good older brother. On top of that, the animation turned out to be incredibly beautiful, blowing fans away when they first watched the series. Like any other anime, Demon Slayer has its problems, but it’s still one of the most popular modern anime series.
9 Angel Beats Is An Emotional Rollercoaster
Most fans have low expectations when they watch Angel Beats. It’s not a shonen series that’s talked about like One Piece or Bleach, so most fans go into it expecting it to be mediocre at best. However, fans who watch Angel Beats quickly realize that this anime is a much more emotional journey than they expect, which often leaves them heartbroken and in love with the series at the same time.
Angel Beats deals with death and coping with the afterlife, handling these tough subjects in an amazing way. Most importantly, it still has plenty of comedic moments. Not only does it manage to emotionally impact fans, but it also manages to charm them with humor at the same time.
8 Fairy Tail Isn’t Just Fan Service
Fairy Tail has a reputation for being mindless fan service, which completely diminishes the characters and their story. On the surface, it’s a series about friendship and overcoming the odds, but those who watch the series learn that it’s much more nuanced.
The characters are incredibly well written, especially the female characters. Lucy may not be the strongest character in her guild, but she still pushes herself to help her friends, which is something a lot of fans admire. New fans will be in for a pleasant surprise when they discover for themselves that Fairy Tail is actually really good.
7 Avatar The Last Airbender Was Made At The Right Time
It’s hard to believe anyone questioned the quality of Avatar the Last Airbender, considering how beloved the series is by anime fans everywhere. However, when the show first premiered in the early 2000s, there wasn’t any other show like it, so young fans didn’t know what to expect.
While it was apparent that it had all the qualities of a kid’s show, Avatar still had amazing world-building and characters that drew people in. By the time the series ended, Avatar cemented itself as one of the greatest series of all time, which isn’t something fans expected when the series first started airing.
6 Naruto Will Always Be The Most Beloved Shonen Series
Naruto is the first anime for many seasoned fans, but there’s a good chance that most of them almost didn’t watch it. The original trailers that aired on Cartoon Network made the series look rather silly, so those who did give it a chance went into the series with low expectations.
Even though the voice acting and the animation at the time were pretty poor, fans were still drawn in by the characters and the world. As the underdog of the story, Naruto was someone fans could relate to, and it was amazing for fans who were kids themselves to grow up with him. Considering Naruto is a must-watch for most anime fans, it’s hard to believe nowadays that anyone believed this anime would be bad.
5 Attack On Titan Became The World’s Obsession
When Attack On Titan first aired, anime-only fans weren’t sure what to expect. The story might have been unique, but the art style of the manga looked rather rough, so many people assumed it would be another flop. However, this anime surprised everyone with its polished art style and gripping story.
Even people who were never interested in anime watched this show, which helped anime become more mainstream. Each new season became an event, and fans were blown away by the series’ twists and turns. The fact that each episode ended on a cliffhanger made sure fans kept tuning in to find out what would happen next.
Nowadays, Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is on the top of every new fan’s watchlist, but that wasn’t always the case. It was a reboot of the original Fullmetal Alchemist, which was already beloved by anime fans despite having an anime-original ending. However, as a more accurate depiction of the manga, Brotherhood elevated the story and fixed all the issues present in the previous series.
Maes Hughes’s death, for example, is handled much better in Brotherhood, and Ed and Al find out about his death much sooner, which makes a lot more sense. With a much tighter story and superior animation and voice acting, Brotherhood cemented itself as one of the best shows of all time.
3 My Hero Academia Made Superheroes Great Again
My Hero Academia is a divisive series, but most can agree it’s a unique take on the superhero genre. Even though it’s one of the most popular series from the mid-2010s, many anime fans didn’t watch it because they were suffering from superhero fatigue and the premise was too similar to the Disney movie Sky High.
However, it became apparent to many fans that this wasn’t just a show about high school kids with overpowered abilities, it was also a commentary on super-powered society. Not to mention, the characters have some of the best character development in anime, especially Shoto Todoroki, who has become a fan favorite.
2 Jujutsu Kaisen Has The Best Characters
Most fans considered Jujutsu Kaisen to be a Naruto rip-off before it came out. However, that opinion changed once anime fans realized how unique the story was. From the very first episode, it’s clear that the animation was of a completely different level, especially when it came to the fight between Sukuna and Gojo at Itadori’s high school.
However, it’s not just the animation that fans stuck around for. The characters may rely on some common tropes, but for the most part, they have important goals and unique personalities. The well-written female characters in this series are also a breath of fresh air for fans. It’s hard to believe the original manga was rejected by Shonen Jump several times before it was finally released considering how amazing the anime and the manga are.
1 Boruto Surpassed Initial Expectations
Fans weren’t exactly excited for Boruto when the series was announced. They’d either lost interest due to Naruto‘s lackluster ending or they just weren’t interested in a story about Naruto’s children.
However, many fans soon realized that they were missing out by skipping this series because it added a lot of character development and depth to the world of Naruto. Characters like Sakura, who was underutilized in the original series, got far more opportunities to shine. Not to mention, fans grew to love the new set of characters, including Boruto.
NEXT: 10 Strongest Demons In Inuyasha, Ranked