15 Most Underrated Shounen Anime Worth WatchingThis post may contain affiliate links. If you buy something we may get a small commission at no extra cost to you. (Learn more).
I remember a few years ago when I thought I would eventually grow out of shounen.
What a fool I was.
But after watching all the classics like My Hero Academia, Attack on Titan, and Fullmetal Alchemist, I found myself needing something a bit more niche.
So I’ve compiled some of the best (and truly underrated) shounen anime for all of you that just want something different.
15. Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic
Magi was a true breath of fresh air, as it’s quite rare to find a show with a middle-eastern setting.
It has a really interesting power system with dungeons and Djinns being the main focus of the show.
The battles are pretty top-notch too. Especially when Sinbad is involved.
And there’s a plethora of waifus and husbandos to choose from.
Plus, it’s not common to be able to say that the prequel series is just as good as the original, as we get Sinbad’s origin story!
14. Blast of Tempest
This show is unlike anything I have watched before.
It’s like if you took Fairy Tail and then mashed in some Death Note.
On the surface it looks pretty plain, as two dudes set off on an adventure to find a missing girl with the help of an exiled goddess.
But boy does everything get a lot more hectic after a few episodes.
The tone shifts drastically and it becomes a battle of wits moreso than a battle of might, which is always fun to see.
13. D. Gray-Man
Here’s a show that’s rather popular, all things considered… however I think that a lot of new watchers completely miss out on it, because it came out over a decade ago.
Unlike a broader anime like Pokémon, D. Gray-Man has become a bit more obscure. Even though it’s beyond good.
It’s a long-running shounen with over 100 episodes, all featuring some great action and a rather engaging plot.
I’ll admit that it takes a bit for it to ramp up. But once it does, you’re in for a ride. Also, Millennium Earl is terrifying and has plagued my younger years.
12. Shaman King
Shaman King is another old school shounen that has faded in relevance over the years.
However, the reboot is well worth watching.
So now’s a good a time as any to bring up the original anime.
Although I prefer that older version due to nostalgia, the reboot has polished up the animation. And we will finally see the season finale!
The battles in this show are amazing, and the characters are extremely memorable too. So whichever version you choose, you’re bound to have a good time.
Shounen really has no limits when it comes to story concepts. And Beelzebub is a prime example of that.
It’s about a dude who just finds a demon overlord baby, and now has to take care of it.
An experience we’ve all lived through, no doubt.
The writing is very good. And the show had me rolling on the floor laughing on more than one occasion, so it even works as a full-blown comedy.
Of course, there’s the occasional confrontation when we get to see those sweet baby demon powers as well.
10. Hinomaru Sumo
Once again, only in shounen is something like sumo wrestling a hype train.
This anime offers an underdog story of a high school boy who has his loin cloth set on becoming the best sumo wrestler in his school & going pro.
However, he isn’t nearly as big as some of the opponents he’ll be facing.
I swear, I have never watched people push each other around with so much hype and respect as I did when I watched this show. It perfectly carries over the intensity and dedication of each match.
9. Darwin’s Game
There are a bunch of battle royale styled anime. But I think Darwin’s Game is among the better examples out there.
You have the classic system of everyone having some unique power, but this show really gets creative when it comes to everyone’s moveset.
The strongest dude can materialize weapons, and the best girl knows the position of everything in time and space, just to name a few.
The battles are very satisfying here, and the show can be very brutal at times too. Which is great for all of my fellow edge lords out there.
Although this show is not labeled as shounen, I think it has all the qualities of being one.
In fact, it’s one of the more creative and distinct anime I’ve ever watched.
Nanbaka is all about a group of friends that just can’t help but repeatedly break out of prison. So they’re sent to a Deadman Wonderland-esque maximum security prison.
And man, is the character roster interesting in there.
From the art style to the unique quirks all of the characters have, you’ll breeze through this show in a day.
Now if only there was a second season, we could finally learn what that cursed elf was up to.
7. Silver Spoon
This show is another prime example of anime making you hyped over something you probably thought was boring.
It centers around a dude who decides to enroll in an agricultural school, thinking that it would be easy and allow him to escape his worries.
And boy was he wrong!
Everyone there is like 20 power levels above him in milking, vegetable knowledge, and chicken philosophy 101.
So now he has to train and climb the ranks to become the very best, like no one ever was, etc etc.
It’s just amazing.
Baki is what JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure would have been if they had not introduced Stands into the mix.
This anime is all about a young fellow named Baki (who could’ve guessed) and his rise to the title of the strongest man.
Sure, you get your stereotypical tournament arcs and rivalries. But where Baki excels is in its ridiculousness.
Dudes in this show have literal faces on their backs because they have so many muscles.
And that’s among the tamer examples.
5. Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress
This show isn’t underrated in the terms of popularity, as much as it is underrated in terms of concept.
Everyone was quick to call it an Attack on Titan clone. And I think it deserves better than that.
Sure, there are the obvious comparisons, as the story is set in a post-apocalyptic world, inside of fortified walls with zombie-looking things wanting to eat you.
However, the steampunk style of the show & its distinctively different cast makes it feel like its own thing.
So please, go into this show without the predisposition that it’s going to be exactly like Attack on Titan, as that doesn’t do this series justice.
4. Angels of Death
Is this the most critically acclaimed and original shounen you’ll ever see? No.
But is it fun? Hell yes.
The show plays off like a monster of the week show, with the two protagonists going through a big building filled with psychopaths.
On each floor they’re greeted with someone even more twisted than the person they had just defeated. And we get to learn a new piece of information regarding the world each time.
It’s pretty fun, and mindless violence always makes for a good watch.
3. Desert Punk
Desert Punk is one of the better post-apocalyptic shows out there, since it doesn’t take itself too seriously.
The story is set in the Kanto desert. Japan has been now reduced to a pile of sand, and it stars the titular Desert Punk as he rides around causing havoc and getting that bread.
What a badass, right?
That may be true until any top plot heavy babe comes into spitting distance of him. Then he’s the typical pervy protagonist we all know and maybe love.
There are a few more nutjobs out there in that desert, too. So rest assured that you won’t get bored any time soon.
I’m going to be honest with you here:
This show is an acid trip in the best way possible.
It’s about a dude who looks like a walking bicep. And it follows his quest to(get this) obtain the best ingredients the land has to offer.
On its face that sounds too normal, right? Well it’s worth mentioning that in this world, hamburgers grow from the ground and volcanos are filled with mac and cheese.
Plus, there are plenty of monsters roaming around.
So take any semblance of common sense that you have, throw it out the window, and have an absolute blast with Toriko.
1. Moriarty the Patriot
We’ve had quite a few ridiculous shows on this list. So I thought it would be nice to end on a more serious and down to earth show.
Moriarty the Patriot is all about beating the system and changing the corrupt British government from the inside out.
The show feels like a mix of Code Geass and 91 Days. And considering both of those shows are S-tier, you’re right to have your hopes up for this anime.
And with the second season looking great, there’s no better time to get in on the fun.