Are you looking for a list of the best shounen-ai Anime to watch? Whether you’re an experienced fan or a newcomer to this genre, this article has it all. We have compiled the 18 top shounen ai Anime that have made anime history over the past few decades.
Each selection offers something unique, from epic battles and emotional drama, to stories of love and friendship. With thorough research, we identified memorable characters and thrilling plots with entertaining storylines. Dive into this comprehensive list to find the perfect shounen ai watch that’s fit for your tastes.
No matter what kind of fan you are or how much experience you have with shounen-ai titles, there is something in this guide that will get you hooked. So what are you waiting for? Join us in exploring the best shounen-ai Anime of all time:
18. The Morose Mononokean
The Morose Mononokean is an anime series that engages viewers with its captivating execution and gripping storyline. Set in modern-day Japan, the story follows the Teen protagonist Ashiya and the mysterious creature Haruitsuki on their journey to help out Yokais (monsters).
This shounen ai. Anime captures the unique relationship between the two main characters as they work together to execute each task. Having aired its first season in 2016, fans throughout the world have praised The Morose Mononokean for its illustrations, soundtrack as well as a vivid portrayal of emotions.
Even though it might seem similar to other shounen ai animes at first glance, The Morose Mononokean stands out with its own brand of humour, catchy topics and endearing character arcs. With the second season still ongoing, it’s never too late to jump into this exciting Japanese creation and explore the strange adventures awaiting you.
17. Tight Rope
Tight Rope is a captivating Shounen Ai Anime that follows the high school romance between Ryuichi and Kohei. Despite their disparate personalities, the two quickly become good friends, eventually finding love. Through a series of ups and downs, they challenge societal norms and explore the depths of their emotions together.
What really stands out in Tight Rope is its strong narrative and breathtaking visuals, which truly captivate viewers. The illustrations show a vibrant world as Ryuichi and Kohei come to understand themselves better through the exploration of their feelings for one another.
It’s an emotionally stunning story that powerfully conveys how life can be filled with both sorrows and joys in a very heartwarming way. Tight Rope is sure to leave you mesmerized by its outstanding messages on life, love, and friendship, making it an excellent Shounen Ai Anime.
Vassalord is a shounen-ai Anime that follows the story of vampire bounty hunter Charley, who goes by the alias Vassalord. His partner, Johnny Rayflo, who is a vampire as well, helps him to complete missions assigned to him. As their partnership deepens, their relationship grows more complicated between each other.
Vassalord dives into a world of paranormal adventures, secret organizations and dangerous relationships portrayed in an expressive and alluring manner.
With its exceptional art style accompanying the captivating storyline, Vassalord provides an exciting experience as we witness Charley’s journey while trying to save Johnny from his own clashing emotions.
This Anime offers an amazing combination of comedy and romance that will surely leave its viewers wanting more! Fans will be captivated by the many mysteries and relish in the growing love and camaraderie between Charley and Johnny Rayflo, both onscreen and off-screen.
15. Tanaka Kun is always a bit agitated
Tanaka Kun is an emotionally charged anime series taking viewers on an unforgettable roller coaster of emotions. From joy to anger and laughter to tears, Tanaka Kun is always a bit agitated, as the main character encounters hilarious mishap after hilarious mishap in his chaotic life.
This popular Shounen Ai anime follows Tanaka’s daily life as he confronts themes that are rarely explored in the genre, such as student life and relationships. With its artful use of comedy and bright character designs, Tanaka Kun stands out from other shows and offers something unique for both long-time fans of Shounen Ai and newcomers alike.
Gravitation is an immensely popular shounen ai Anime that has become a classic! It follows the adventures of aspiring musician Shuichi Shindou and his band, “Bad Luck”, as they try to make it in the music industry. Along the way, they meet Eiri Yuki, an icy, famous novelist who takes an interest in Shuichi.
Gravitation offers viewers an enthralling exploration into relationships – examining love, communication, and friendship. The show also features an engaging soundtrack composed by Jun Abe that complements the action onscreen perfectly.
Packed with heart-wrenching moments, humour, and captivating romance between unlikely couples, Gravitation is without a doubt one of the best shounen-ai Anime ever created.
13. Yami no Matsue
Yami no Matsuei follows the adventures of two young boys as they attempt to break through the traditional expectations of their noble families. Set in a world of human elements, spells, and spirits, this shounen-ai Anime follows along a path that is both full of excitement and emotion.
This thrilling adventure combines thrilling action scenes with a touching storyline as the protagonists fight against laws, taboos, an underground wizard society, and powerful supernatural forces. Fans of this great series come for its heartwarming themes of friendship and courage that centre around its two main characters.
With so much conflict between opposing forces on the surface and beyond, “Yami no Matsuei” stands out among shounen ai Anime for its exciting plotlines and satisfying touches of romance as the two boys discover their true destiny together.
12. Hitorijime My Hero
Shounen Ai Anime’s “Hitorijime, My Hero” is one of the most talked-about series in recent times. It beautifully portrays young lives in a realistic, heart-warming way and is a must-watch for all anime lovers.
Set in modern-day Japan, Hitorijime My Hero tells the story of high school teacher Masahiro Setagawa whose life changed after meeting KousukeOshiba, a neighbourhood bad boy. The plot unravels as their friendship deepens, and it is heartwarming to witness as they journey together.
Their innocent yet profound love story will leave you with the hope that good will always win over troubles down the line.
With amazing scenery, a strong plot and heartfelt acting by the cast, this Anime definitely deserves a place on your hypothetical list of favourite titles. Moreover, its characters are complex and emotionally charged, quite rare when it comes to Shounen Ai productions.
11. Ling Qi
“Ling Qi” is an exciting shounen ai Anime that follows Suna, a teenage delinquent with a dark past. After his adoptive grandfather passes away, Suna meets Hua Chu – an otherworldly spirit – and embarks on a journey to find the mystical Ling Qi fruit, which has the power to grant immortality.
As they travel across the dangerous world of Xue Wu, they are joined by friends such as Abao, an ambitious hunter-killer robot, and Yue Jinzhao, Suna’s romantic rival. Bravely battling demons and monsters along their way forward, these unlikely heroes amaze us with their courage as they strive to obtain Ling Qi.
From its thrilling action sequences to its heartfelt themes of friendship, “Ling Qi” is sure to keep viewers drawn in from start to finish.
Doukyuusei (Classmates) is an iconic shounen ai Anime that has had its fans hooked since its initial release. This Anime champions LGBTQ+ relationships in school settings and serves as a much-needed representation of same-sex romance, making it visible to younger audiences.
The plot revolves around RihitoSajou, and Hikaru Kusakabe, two popular high school boys from different ends of the social spectrum. Though they have very different backgrounds, the boys become connected through music and eventually fall for each other because of their similar interests.
Full of heartfelt moments, intense conversations and romantic confessions, this Anime is sure to give you all the feels. Doukyuusei is an excellent watch if you’re looking for something short to tug at your heartstrings.
There is no denying that this Anime provides viewers with an engrossing experience overall and, as such, should not be missed by any otaku out there who is interested in exploring queer romances amidst a medley of emotions.
9. Super Lovers
Super Lovers is one of the most popular anime titles in the Shounen Ai genre. It follows the story of Ren, a Canadian boy, and Haru, his adopted brother from Japan. Ren and Haru’s journey is told through various comedic and dramatic moments as they learn to understand each other better.
Although their boundary-pushing relationship is often challenged by society, they remain bravely determined to stay together at all costs. As viewers, we follow this pair on their adventures and come to understand that love is not always bound by circumstances or traditional customs.
Super Lovers entertains its fans with a mix of heartwarming moments, funny conversations and heartfelt exploration of finding true family ties in unexpected ways. It captures hearts through its realistic storytelling and lovable characters who make us feel like our own relationships have been enriched simply by watching them.
8. Sekaiichi Hatsukoi
Sekaiichi Hatsukoi is a genre-defining shounen-ai (boy’s love) anime series that offers viewers a unique and enjoyable experience. The story follows YokozawaTakafumi, an editor at the luxurious publishing company called MarukawaShoten.
He finds his day-to-day life of editing manga cliches to be dull until he meets and eventually falls in love with one of the employees – KirishimaZenkichi. With exquisite visuals and an emotionally powerful soundtrack, this Anime captures the bonding between two star-crossed lovers.
Additionally, its brilliant cast of characters captures our attention and Kokunai Touko’s portrayal of social issues like true love, workplace anxiety, and friendship all make it intriguing for viewers.
Set in Fukuoka prefecture, Japan, SekaiichiHatsukoi is a perfect combination of drama, comedy and romance and should not be missed by anyone who loves shoujo or shounen manga stories.
Loveless is an incredibly captivating shounen ai Anime which follows the story of protagonist Ritsuka Aoyagi, who embarks on an emotional journey throughout the show. Set in a world that has forgotten emotion, destinies intertwine when Ritsuka discovers two mysterious figures: Soubi and Nisei – both with secrets that could change their lives forever.
The Anime’s storyline takes some unexpected turns as it showcases battles unlike anything seen before. Despite having immense supernatural powers, all parties involved are fully believable within this universe, demonstrating powerful realizations about life and love along the way.
Loveless is guaranteed to entertain viewers of all ages, offering gripping action scenes and a unique relationship between Ritsuka and his companions, making it one of the most popular shounen-ai titles today.
6. Love the Stage!!
Love the Stage!! It is a unique and entertaining production created by Lamentable Revolution Studio. This Anime takes the viewer into the vibrant world of theatre and behind-the-scenes drama. Through its well-developed characters, it explores the idea that ambition can sometimes lead to unfortunate consequences.
The story follows aspiring actor Taichi as he strives to reach his goal of performing in a major musical production while navigating relationships with other passionate actors. As his goals become increasingly difficult, Taichi must decide whether or not to take advantage of pitfalls along the way in order to realize his dream.
This Anime superbly portrays intense emotions, complicated yet endearing storylines, and attractive visuals around its complex themes.
5. Merman is in My Tub
Merman is in My Tub is a delightful shounen ai Anime that has cultivated a strong fan base since its release nearly a decade ago. It follows the story of Tatsumi, an adolescent boy living an average life on land until an unexpected visit of accidental teleportation from a strange, young merman alters his perception of normalcy.
As their bond grows deeper and their lives intertwine, they both grow from their newfound friendship, learning more about each other as well as themselves. A light-hearted jaunt through the supernatural, Merman in My Tub breaks barriers with its creative storytelling approach that emphasizes kindness and acceptance with heartwarming comedic moments.
This loveable shounen ai Anime, with its moving soundtrack and captivating storyline, continues to charm viewers all these years later, particularly those looking for a charming romance and coming-of-age adventure suitable for people of any age or gender.
With its thought-provoking themes, beautiful animation and immersive worldbuilding, Merman in My Tub shine as one of the finest gems among shounen ai animes.
Given is a shounen-ai anime created by Meiway Studio, which captivates viewers with a heartfelt exploration of two male characters in love. It all begins with RitsukaUenoyama, who one day bumps into the enigmatic singer and lyricist Mafuyu Sato.
As the story progresses, the couple falls deeper and deeper in love while they face their own inner torments. Overflowing with delicate emotions and a beautiful soundtrack, Given provides an alternative look into relationships outside conventional boundaries.
Particular moments featured in the show draw attention to being intimate and relatable for any kind of relationship, regardless of gender or sexuality. With its exquisite animation techniques and fascinating characters, Given has become a cult classic that never fails to make hearts flutter.
3. Shounen Maid
Shounen Maid is a Japanese anime series that follows the story of Chihiro Komiya, an orphaned child who is taken in by his long-lost maternal uncle. This uncle, MadokaTakatori, is wealthy and runs a large enterprise. Chihiro finds himself working as a cleaner and maid for his new guardian, known as a “Shonnen Maid.”
Despite being initially scared and miserable in his job, he eventually comes to understand the meaning of trust and family through the guidance of Madoka, who treats him with the utmost respect. In this Anime, we can see that even people from completely opposing households can come together in mutual understanding and trust.
Through his adventures as a “Shonnen Maid”, Chihiro learns valuable life lessons about friendship, loyalty and orderliness, which helps him on his way to growing up. This heartwarming tale has both comedic elements and strong undertones that speak of real-life issues such as abandonment and newfound love, amongst others.
2. Yuri on Ice
Yuri on Ice is the perfect shounen ai Anime for fans of figure skating, sports and love stories. It follows Yuri Katsuki, a young figure skater who is struggling to find his motivation after a disappointing loss at the Grand Prix Finale. He soon meets Victor Nikiforov, an acclaimed champion figure skater who helps Yuri in regaining his lost confidence.
The story is full of twists and turns as the two embark on an unforgettable journey together, during which they will discover something far greater than their passion for skating. Yuri on Ice expertly blends elements of romance and sports while highlighting mental health issues in an incredibly moving way.
Not only does it provide incredible visuals and soundscape, but it also leaves deep lessons about finding oneself and achieving true happiness that viewers can relate to long after its conclusion.
1. Junjou Romantica
Junjou Romantica is a shounen-ai anime that tells the story of the romantic relationships between three men. It follows the everyday happenings of its characters as they learn to balance their work and personal lives while forming strong bonds.
The main story revolves around college student Misaki Takahashi, who is blackmailed by wealthy author Akihiko Usami into becoming his “pet.” As the series progresses, two other couples also form, exploring themes such as love, homosexuality, parents and children, trust, growth and communication.
JunjouRomantica has charmingly drawn characters with personalities that grow over time as they strive to face their conflicts. This highly popular show features emotionally charged moments of joy and sorrow that pull at viewers’ heartstrings.
All in all, there are much different shounen ai Anime that come with their own unique style, love stories and characters. Whether you want to enjoy a more comical take on the genre or something deeper and darker, there’s something for everyone.
These 18 best shounen-ai Anime of all time truly have something to offer every kind of viewer. If you’re looking for an incredible viewing experience, look no further than these 18 series – they are sure to have you falling in love with each one within minutes!