The Biggest Anime To Watch In 2018
By Kallie Plagge on
Anime is more accessible in the West than ever. In 2017, Your Name found great success in theaters and Netflix expanded its anime library. Looking ahead to 2018, there are quite a few shows we're already excited about--and there's sure to be more to come as the year goes on.
In this gallery, we're taking a look at the most notable anime coming in 2018. While this list doesn't include every cool-looking series, it features continuing seasons of great shows, series based on acclaimed manga (and even games!), and upcoming projects from favorite studios. For more anime, check out our list of the best anime you can stream on Netflix right now and our top 10 anime of 2017.
Based on the classic 1972 horror-shonen manga, Devilman Crybaby follows Akira Fudo, who learns that the world will be taken over by demons. In order to stop them, he combines with one to become Devilman, a being with the power of a demon but the heart of a human. The original Devilman manga is known for pushing the limits of the shonen genre with its dark themes as well as its extreme violence, and appropriately, the premiere of Devilman Crybaby on Netflix in 2018 marks writer Go Nagai's 50th year as a creator. It's exciting to see how an adaptation so many years later will iterate on the renowned original, and even more exciting to see it on a huge platform like Netflix.
Premieres January 5 | Available on Netflix
Cardcaptor Sakura: Clear Card
Cardcaptor Sakura: Clear Card is a sequel to the original Cardcaptor Sakura anime, which aired from 1998 to 2000. 14-year-old Sakura enters junior high school and has a strange dream, after which all her magical cards--which she collected in the first series as an elementary schooler--are blank and therefore powerless. Cardcaptor Sakura is a beloved magical girl series known for its beautiful animation and broad appeal as a shoujo anime; seeing it revived is definitely something for fans to look forward to in 2018.
Premieres January 6 | Available on Crunchyroll (sub) and Funimation (dub)
Darling in the Franxx
Darling in the Franxx is an original sci-fi mecha series co-produced by Studio Trigger (Kill la Kill, Little Witch Academia) and A-1 Pictures (Fairy Tail, Your Lie in April). Announced at Anime Expo this year, Darling in the Franxx is set far in the future in a world where children pilot robots known as Franxx. They live in a settlement closed off from the outside world, and the whole point of their existence is to pilot Franxx and battle giant enemy lifeforms. This all sounds a bit reminiscent of Gurren Lagann; Studio Trigger was founded by former Gainax creators, so we have faith that Trigger, along with A-1 Pictures, can bring us a worthy mecha anime successor in Darling in the Franxx.
Premieres Jan 13 | Available on Crunchyroll (sub) and Funimation (dub)
The Disastrous Life of Saiki K Season 2
The original run of The Disastrous Life of Saiki K was a huge hit, and the comedy is getting a second season in 2018. Kusou Saiki has, as his name suggests, psychic powers--but all he really wants is an ordinary life without the hassle of supernatural abilities, so he secretly uses his powers to try and be as normal as possible. The results, of course, are hilarious.
Premieres Jan 16 | Available TBA
My Hero Academia Season 3
If you already miss My Hero Academia--we certainly do--don't worry! Season 3 of the hugely popular shonen series is arriving in Spring 2018, following the School Trip arc of the manga. For the uninitiated, My Hero Academia stars Izuku Midoriya, a superhero fanboy in a world where most people have some sort of power... but unfortunately, he's one of the unlucky ones who is born "quirkless." The series embodies everything that makes the shonen genre special, and if the improvement from Season 1 to Season 2 is anything to go by, Season 3 is worth getting excited about.
Premieres April | Available on Funimation, TBA
Steins;Gate 0 is based on the visual novel of the same name and is a sequel to 2009's Steins;Gate, which got an anime adaptation in 2011. It's set after the events of Steins;Gate in the Beta worldline; if you haven't watched Steins;Gate yet, absolutely do so, because this is a complex time travel situation. Essentially, 0 is an alternate ending, and it follows the eccentric mad scientist Okabe as he deals with his own personal bad ending in a particular timeline.
Premieres April | Available TBA
Auto Memory Dolls were originally created to generate voice to text, a simple function to help the visually impaired. But one company took that idea and applied it to real women who, in addition to providing the same function as the dolls, can also carry about military-related tasks. The series follows Violet Evergarden, a former soldier who becomes an Auto Memory Doll. Through her journey, she gets an intimate look at people's emotions and searches for their greater meaning. Kyoto Animation, recently known for Sound! Euphonium, is a studio well-versed in emotional anime, so we're excited to see what this next series holds.
Premieres Spring (outside of Japan) | Available on Netflix
Attack on Titan Season 3
After a long wait, the second season of Attack on Titan aired in 2017. We won't have to wait another four years for more, though; Season 3 is slated for 2018. If you haven't seen it yet, Attack on Titan is set in a world where humanity lives in fear of titans, beings that nearly destroyed human life and drove the rest of the species behind walls. Season 3 is set to adapt the Uprising Arc from the manga.
Premieres July | Available TBA
Superhuman Samurai Syber-Squad Gridman, or SSSS.Gridman for short, is another Studio Trigger anime coming in 2018. It's an adaptation of the live-action, special-effects series Gridman the Hyper Agent (which was adapted for America as Superhuman Samurai Syber-Squad). Gridman is kind of like Power Rangers in style, so if you were a fan growing up, the Gridman anime is one to look forward to.
Premieres October | Available TBA