Anime and Manga can be overwhelming to new fans, especially with all the different Japanese Terms being thrown around. Long time anime fans know the difference between Shonen and Shoujo off the top of their head, but it can be hard to keep up with it all for new fans. Some think that anime itself is a genre, however anime is a medium and is just a subcategory of animation with many genres. Anime shares genres with manga, because about 40 percent of anime is adapted from an original manga series.
With all of the classifications and names of the different types of anime and manga worldwide, we here at Comicbook want to help you make sense of it all. So here are the five basic types of anime and how to identify them:
Shonen can be translated to mean few years in English, and refers to a younger male audience. Shonen anime usually look to meet all the interests of younger males. Most of the series feature a young male protagonist. Shonen anime have some of the most popular and well known franchise as they contain a little bit of everything. There's elements of action, adventure, fighting, drama, comedy, and coming of age.
Some of the most popular/well known Shonen anime include:
- One Piece
- Attack on Titan
- Full Metal Alchemist
- Fairy Tail
- Hunter x Hunter
Seinen can be translated as young man in English, and targets the young adult or adult male viewers. Seinen anime usually have the same stories and themes as shonen, however are more sophisticated than shonen.They are more violent, sexual, satirical, or psychologically intense and therefore cater to a more mature audience. It is popular with high school teens all the way up to businessmen.
Some of the most popular/well known seinen anime include:
- One Punch Man
- Tokyo Ghoul
- Ghost in the Shell
Shoujo is the opposite of shonen, translated in English as young girl. Shoujo focuses more on the interpersonal relationship and romance in the story rather than the fighting and action. The series tend to be more dramatic, but also still include the adventure, comedy and action that are prevalent in shonen. The protagonist of the story is almost always female.
Some of the most popular/well known shoujo anime include:
- Ouran High School Host Club
- Maid Sama!
- Vampire Knight
- My Little Monster
- Natusme's Book of Friends
As shoujo is the counterpart of shonen, josei is the opposite of seinen. Seinen shows are targeted towards adult female viewers and focus more on romance than anything. They usually have a more realistic feel than shoujo and feature adult woman. There are more erotic, intense, and dark subjects than other genres. They are based around everyday normal life, but also have dramatic heavy scenes.
Some of the most popular/well known josei anime include:
- Usagi Drop
- Nodame Cantabile
- Paradise Kiss
Last but not least we have another genre that most have at least seen one show from kodomomuke. Kodomomuke means directed at children in English, and is the only genre suitable for young viewers. They usually are super cute, imaginative, and creative, as well as has a moral message. The shows usually teach children how to be considerate, behave, and follow the right path to life, while still being fun and exciting.
Some of the most popular kodomomuke anime include:
- Digimon Adventure
- Youkai Watch