Anime is one of the most expansive forms of cartoon media, with shows and movies covering anything from fantasy worlds about to be concurred by an evil entity to unlikely friends coming together to get through real-world situations. With One Piece: Red creating box office records in Japan, more people are looking at anime as a legitimate form of entertainment in other countries, leaving parents to wonder if anime is suitable for their children.
Due to its cultural significance, there are several shows and movies made for children in the anime style, and even some made for adults can be enjoyed by kids.
10/10 Little Witch Academia
Redditor Reaper919 suggested, “Little Witch Academia, it’s pretty friendly,” when chatting about recommendations for kids who want to get into anime shows and movies. The show focuses on a witch school setting and the misadventures of the main character learning to become a witch.
The show focuses on themes of becoming one’s true self and never giving up, which gives the show a motivating feel for kids struggling with growing up and finding themselves. Common Sense Media recommends the show for kids between ages six and fourteen.
9/10 Hello Kitty
Hello Kitty and Sanrio characters are some of the most recognizable anime characters in the world, with the shows and products catering to both children and adults. The Hello Kitty and Friends show was suggested by Redditor ooReiko saying, “Hello Kitty,” in a thread for parents looking for shows outside Studio Ghibli films.
Hello Kitty has five seasons of their show on YouTube, which will provide hours of entertainment, but short enough episodes that kids won’t get bored and disinterested in the series too quickly. The series focuses on friendship and overcoming challenges which are great for younger children.
8/10 Lu Over The Wall
Mermaids are always popular when it comes to children’s media, with classics like The Little Mermaid standing the test of time. For kids who love anime and mermaids, Redditor Reddit__Dave said, “Lu Over The Wall is a fun story about a mermaid meeting kids and learning about rock and roll.”
The classic storyline is one that parents are probably familiar with and can feel comfortable exposing their kids to, but fun and new adventures that won’t get boring or feel overdone. With music being an important part of the story, there are plenty of songs for kids to dance to and sing along to.
7/10 The Castle of Cagliostro
The Castle of Cagliostro is one of many installments in the Lupin III series that has remained popular for over 50 years. Redditor johneaston1 said, “you don’t need to have seen any other Lupin III stuff to enjoy it. Also directed by Miyazaki, so it feels a lot like his Ghibli works.”
Even though there are some spooky castle scenes, nothing is scarier than most creepy animated horror movies for kids, like Scooby-Doo. The adventure and heist themes provide a fun and exciting storyline that more modern cartoons have adopted.
6/10 My Neighbor Totoro
My Neighbor Totoro has been dubbed a movie that radiates pure happiness by Reddit and comes up often when parents look for anime movies that are appropriate for children.
Redditor irunspeed said,” My Neighbor Totoro heavily recommend.” The movie has some heavier themes with the mother being ill for much of the film, but the rest of the movie is fun and focuses on the two sisters making friends with the spirits in their home and surrounding area. Totoro is an endearing character that kids and adults will come to love.
5/10 Glitter Force Doki Doki
Glitter Force Doki Doki has all the elements of girl power and kid-friendly action scenes like She-Ra and the Princess of Power that parents can feel comfortable showing their kids. The show uses a lot of Sailor Moon-like transition scenes, making any action completely non-violent.
One Redditor said, “You really can’t get much more kid friendly. I recommend…Doki Doki, If you want the dubbed versions of Smile and Doki Doki it’s on Netflix as ‘Glitter Force’.” The superhero aspect of the characters is great for several age ranges, so the whole family can enjoy the show.
4/10 The Boy and The Beast
Among recommendations for kid-friendly anime The Boy and The Beast is often mentioned, Redditor GiftoftheGeek said, “I maintain a list of kid-friendly anime… My top recommendations are The Boy and the Beast…” The show movie does include fight scenes but nothing that includes an extreme amount of violence that parents should be concerned about.
Even though The Beast is big he is by no means scary and is shown as a protector, not a villain. The unlikely relationship he and the boy form can be used to teach children about accepting people’s differences.
Pokémon may be the most well-known anime worldwide, with many parents watching the show when they were kids themselves so it often shows up on recommendations for current children. Redditor Shortfudz said, “Pokémon would be the go to answer…”
Even though the characters fight there is no gore in the show which keeps the series family-friendly, plus the cutest versions of characters like Pikachu take away from any scary scenes that may occur. The show has some educational value, especially when it comes to themes of the environmental impact of humans and caring for animals.
Even though they are not talked about as much as fantasy-based animes sports animes are a great option for parents who are trying to find suitable shows for their children to watch. Redditor Gunnman369 said, “Any reason why no one is suggesting Haikyuu!!? It’s like a shonen battle but about volleyball, so it has the hype without the battle.”
The show has intense scenes, but there is no violence and is perfect for children who are fans of play volleyball since they can relate to the characters, plus the show caters to all ages, so adults can enjoy the show too.
1/10 Kiki’s Delivery Service
Another widely known anime is Kiki’s Delivery Service, which follows the adventures of Kiki and her cat as the former learns to be a witch. Redditor thisismyanimealt said,” Most Ghibli films are perfectly fine for kids. Spirited Away, Howl’s Moving Castle, Ponyo, My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki’s Delivery Service,”
In true Studio Ghibli form, the film is heart-warming and focuses on fun and adventure versus violence and shock value. The movie is a favorite among anime fans of all ages is considered a classic in the community and is praised for its cute visuals and themes.
Next: 10 Highest Grossing Anime Films Of All Time, According To Box Office Mojo