5 Recent Anime You May Have Missed

The Spring 2020 anime season is packed with amazing shows, from big hits like Kaguya-sama and Tower of God to lesser-known but just as great titles like Appare Ranman and Woodpecker Detective’s Office. We encourage you to watch all of those shows, but if you have an abundance of free time for no particular pandemic-related reason, why not dig deeper and check out some anime that you might have missed from the past few seasons? We’ve got five fantastic recommendations for you right here!

1. Dorohedoro

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

This gritty, grimy dieselpunk-inspired fantasy show is all about a lizard-faced dude named Caiman who’s on a quest to find the sorcerer who made him that way, enlisting the help of his friend/gyoza supplier Nikaido and an assortment of other strange residents of the “Hole” he calls home. It also follows the insane trials and tribulations of a group of sorcerers who oppose the protagonists, led by a self-aggrandizing mafia boss who commissioned a film to explain his backstory to new recruits. If you’re looking for something mind-bending that’s unlike anything you’ve ever seen before, Dorohedoro is perfect for you.

2. Hoshiai no Sora (Stars Align)

  • Episodes: 12
  • Aired: October 2019 – December 2019

Stars Align starts out as a by-the-books sports anime—there’s a faltering middle school tennis team that’s only being kept alive by its way-too-enthusiastic captain, a new kid whose natural talent could save the team if only he applied himself, and a student council threatening to pull their funding if they don’t prove that they need it. Then the new kid’s abusive dad barges into his mother’s apartment to steal money they’d been hiding in the air conditioner, and you realize that this anime is actually a dark drama about the hardships of growing up in middle school. It’s not perfect, but the show’s brave exploration of tough real-world issues is something you don’t see every day.

3. Kanata no Astra (Astra Lost in Space)

  • Episodes: 12
  • Aired: July 2019 – September 2019

In the distant future, nine teenagers have just arrived on the planet McPa for an exciting camping trip when a mysterious white orb swallows them up and spews them out thousands of light-years from home. Luckily, they find an abandoned spaceship and can plot a course for their home planet, but it’ll take every ounce of their skill and cooperation to pull off. And since these kids initially get along like Z-list celebrities on a reality show, that won’t be an easy feat. Kanata no Astra’s characters are likable and well written, its story is exciting with a few big twists that are difficult to see coming, and it’s an all-around enjoyable show that not enough people watched last year. Give it a shot!

4. Given

  • Episodes: 11
  • Aired: July 2019 – September 2019

Do you like music, high school antics, and sexy anime boys who actually get to kiss each other sometimes? Well, Given has all that and more. When shy kid Mafuyu has a chance encounter with confident band leader Uenoyama, he begs him to help fix the busted guitar that Mafuyu carries around like a security blanket but doesn’t even know how to play. Uenoyama reluctantly agrees and soon discovers that the kid has an amazing singing voice, so their winding journey as bandmates and eventual boyfriends ensues. The CG hands used for music scenes can be a bit jarring, but otherwise, this is a sweet anime with a great soundtrack and fleshed-out characters who you can really get attached to.

5. Kono Oto Tomare! (Kono Oto Tomare!: Sounds of Life)

  • Episodes: 13
  • Aired: April 2019 – June 2019

Continuing on the music anime trend, here’s a show about a high school club for koto (a traditional Japanese string instrument) and the colorful cast of characters who make up its members. Chief among them is Chika, a delinquent who wants to learn more about the instrument so he can better understand his late grandfather, who made koto for a living and said that Chika would never appreciate their profoundness. Kono Oto Tomare follows a pretty standard sports/club anime formula, but its characters are so relatable and their interactions so genuine that it elevates this show from pleasantly forgettable to an underrated hidden gem.

Final Thoughts

You should also check out Smile Down the Runway for some shounen-flavored modeling drama and Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun for a motion-manga-inspired feels trip centered around school mysteries. Let us know which recent anime we missed in the comments, and thanks so much for reading!

Kanata-no-Astra dvd-405x500 5 Recent Anime You May Have Missed


Author: Mary Lee Sauder

After the hard-hitting East Coast lifestyle hit me a bit too hard, I started pursuing my passion as a writer in my cozy home state of Ohio. Aside from that, I spend my time cooking, cosplaying, collecting anime merch, and being an improv comedy actor. I also love sneaking alliterations and stupid puns into my writing, so be on the lookout for them! 😉

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