5 Visually Stunning Anime of Winter 2020

Winter 2020 came and went in good form, with some really interesting new titles and some highly anticipated returning titles that captivated our interest over the past three months. Now that we’re into the Spring season, most titles have wrapped up, ushering in the next wave of anime due to hit the waves this year. What can we say about anime in 2020 so far? The stuff is absolutely gorgeous, with stunning visuals and interesting animation styles that peacocked across our screens. Now that the season has ended, we thought it’d be great to look back on five of the most visually appealing anime of Winter 2020–feast your eyes on these!

5. Eizouken ni wa Te wo Dasu na! (Keep Your Hands Off Eizouken!)

  • Episodes: 12
  • Aired: January 2020 – March 2020

Asakusa Midori is a young girl who has always had her attention captivated by the world of animation. Finding solace and adventure in drawing unique and intricate landscapes, Midori is always buried deep within the pages of her sketchbook. When Midori and her childhood friend, Kanamori Sayaka, help model and fellow high school student Misuzaki Tsubame out of an obligation she has, a friendship forms. Midori and Tsubame share a burning passion for animation, with the former’s talent for landscapes and backgrounds being mirrored by the latter’s ability to capture human form in her drawings. Sayaka sees their meeting as an opportunity to get rich, so she suggests that Midori and Tsubame start a covert anime club at their school and get working on creating animation of their own.

Eizouken, an anime that can definitely be considered a 2020 gem. This love letter to animation brings amazing and imaginative uses of the medium to bring this story to life. We can relate to the characters’ love for animation as anime fans; however, Eizouken is beautiful in how it chooses to explore the medium from different perspectives, especially visually. Asakusa Midori’s vivid imagination takes the viewer on visually stimulating adventures that show off the studio Science SARU’s ability.

4. Dorohedoro

  • Episodes: 12
  • Aired: January 2020 – March 2020

Sorcerers are individuals who possess inexplicable powers. Their impact is brutally obvious in the rundown district known as Hole. Here, the Sorcerers run amok with their supernatural abilities, which usually results in fatal conclusions for the downtrodden residents of Hole. Despite the halls of Hole’s only hospital teeming with the mutilated bodies of victims of Sorcerers, some of the residents are strong enough to fight back. Lizard-headed Caiman is suffering from amnesia and plagued by nightmares. Accompanied by his friend Nikaidou, owner of Hungry Bug restaurant, Caiman is on a journey to track down the Sorcerer responsible for his strange appearance, as well as find out his true identity.

With a CGI approach to its animation, Dorohedoro stands out for many reasons. The world of Dorohedoro is dark and filled with horror elements, violence, gore, yet all these dark elements are contrasted by a genuine, somewhat ridiculous sense of humour. This is especially apparent with its character designs, designs that are varied and eccentric, with masks for various characters that give them a unique but strikingly macabre appearance.

3. Somali to Mori no Kamisama (Somali and the Forest Spirit)

  • Episodes: 12
  • Aired: January 2020 – March 2020

In a fantasy world where human beings have been driven to extinction by the various other races, a golem given the role of guardian of the forest finds a lone human girl in shackles and rags. In this world, golems live for a maximum of 1000 years, and this one has just over a year before the end, so he plans on finding Somali’s parents before time runs out.

One of the more understated titles of Winter 2020, Somali and the Forest Spirit is a fantasy slice of life that brings uniqueness and cuteness but also a world that is interesting and even a little dark. Story elements aside, Somali and the Forest Spirit boasts really good visuals, from character designs to the best part: backgrounds. Fully immersed in the fantasy setting of the story, the art is elevated by vibrant colours that might speak to a certain childishness found in Somali and the Forest Spirit.


  • Episodes: 13
  • Aired: January 2020 – March 2020

The police have gained possession of an incredible piece of technology. The Mizuhanome System allows people to access the “Id”, a materialisation of a criminal’s unconscious. They use this in the cases of serial murderers in order to use the criminal’s own mind against them, using the brilliant detective Narihisago “Sakaido” Akhito as their proxy in these strange abstract realms. Having killed someone himself, Sakaido is the police’s agent in these matters; however, things aren’t quite as he expects them to be in each case.

Given its premise suspended in the abstract realm that is the human mind, ID:INVADED has stunning visual impact. Strange shapes and colours decorate the scattered inner worlds that Sakaido explores using the Mizuhanome System and this enables the show to explore stellar visual aspects, backdrops and landscapes explored by characters of appealing design.

1. Jibaku Shounen Hanako-kun (Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun)

  • Episodes: 12
  • Aired: January 2020 – March 2020

At Kamone Academy, every student has heard about the “Seven Mysteries”, seven legends about the various parts of the school grounds. Be that as it may, none of these legends are as infamous as that of Hanako-san, a fabled ghost to be haunting the third stall of the second-floor girl’s bathroom in the old school building. Rumour has it if one is able to summon Hanako-san, they will be granted any wish! Desperate to have a wish granted and have her crush notice her, Yashiro Nene heads over to the bathroom. When Hanako appears to her, Nene finds her life changed forever as she is forever embroiled in the world of the supernatural.

We’ve talked about this one before–Hanako-kun is, in the writer’s opinion, “the most beautiful show that’ll come out of 2020”. So far, he’d like to think he’s right. With vibrant colours, great character designs, and an interesting layout that’s reminiscent of motion comics, Hanako-kun’s art and animation find themselves in a league of their own this year. Hanako-kun has brilliant shots at every turn and the nature of the animation allows the audience to take in heavy doses of visual beauty while using minimal movement to still give the show the feeling of living, breathing anime.

Final Thoughts

So far, anime in 2020 has been really pretty and the level of artistry we’ve been blessed with this year is the kind that can create excitement and remind us why we enjoy our favourite medium in the first place.

Are there other anime from this past season that are visually stunning? Which was your favourite? Drop a comment below and let us know your thoughts!

Eizouken-ni-wa-Te-wo-Dasu-na-Wallpaper-3-700x394 5 Visually Stunning Anime of Winter 2020


Author: Hoshi-kun

I’m South African, harbouring an obsession for anything remotely related to Japan, mostly anime, of course. I draw sometimes. Some people call me Naledi, it’s my real name, or something like that. People think I’m stoic because I don’t smile often (I do sometimes). I like languages. Hoshi-kun and Naledi are the same side of the same coin.

Previous Articles

Top 5 Anime by Hoshi-kun