Working to pay off a debt that she had accumulated when she shot at a host in a host club, Tachibana Hotaru is asked to join Masamune, her neighbour’s (and well-known host) ToyGunGun team. With her incredible agility and aggressiveness on the field, Masamune feels that she certainly has a place on his team and could even help them move forward and win more than just a few competitions. The only problem, of course, is that Masamune has no idea that Hotaru is a girl — and thanks to his rule that he doesn’t allow girls on his team, Hotaru, of course, now has to keep her gender under wraps.
If you liked Aoharu x Kikanjuu, take a look at a few of these selections and maybe even pick up a few!
Similar Anime to Aoharu x Kikanjuu / Similar Anime to Aoharu x Machinegun
1. Ouran High School Host Club (JPN: Ouran Koukou Host Club)
- Episodes: 26
- Aired: April 2006 — September 2006
Most people have seen this anime and knows it for its frustrating almost-kiss scene between the main guy, Suou Tamaki, and the main girl, Fujioka Haruhi. Suggested by the title in itself, there is a host club within the high school that the main characters attend. The plot follows Haruhi, a student who receives a scholarship to attend Ouran Academy, and despite what people may say about her, she has no interest in how her looks are perceived by others.
Not being able to fit in, matters only become worse when she comes upon the school’s host club, filled with attractive, rich, young men who use their charm to entertain the girls specifically at their school. Not only that, but Haruhi accidentally breaks an 8-million-yen vase when she stumbles upon this club. In order to pay off her debt, she is asked to work for the host club, disguising herself as a male host herself.
The premise of the similarities between Aoharu x Kikanjuu and Ouran High School Host Club shouldn’t even be questioned all that much! Both female protagonists, although different in personality, have a seemingly impossible debt to pay to hosts. While Ouran High School Host Club is more of a shoujo, Aoharu x Kikanjuu is definitely classified as a sports anime.
Surprisingly enough, these two anime have more of a common premise than you would originally think, and it mostly stems from the fact that both female characters have the same type of characterisation!
Ouran High School Host Club Official Trailer
2. Kaichou wa Maid-sama! (Maid-sama!)
- Episodes: 26
- Aired: April 2010 — September 2010
Kaichou wa Maid-sama! is a popular shoujo anime that focuses on the life of Ayuzawa Misaki, the wonderfully protective yet vicious and ruthless student council president. Because of the declaration that her only-girls school is turning into a co-ed school, Misaki becomes significantly more protective of the student body, keeping them from harm. She works hard at keeping up an appearance for her classmates, but of course, this causes many of the boys at her school to fear her.
Although a shoujo, this anime is incredibly humorous in terms of its deliveries of punchlines and it does get a little serious, in terms of the emotions Misaki feels towards her love interest — Usui Takumi — as well as the sentiments she has for things and people she cares most about. Her biggest secret — working at a maid cafe — is something she tries desperately to keep under wraps, as her classmates’ perception of her would change if they knew!
Although varying in many different ways, Kaichou wa Maid-sama! and Aoharu x Kikanjuu share similarities in terms of the characterization of their protagonists. Both are girls who serve their school by being student council president, and want to rid of ill intentions by the guys of their schools. Although Hotaru is thought to be a boy from the start whereas Misaki wasn’t, there does come a time later where the student council president who moonlights as a maid at maid cafe must dress up as a host — you guessed it — at a host club!
Not only that, but both Misaki and Hotaru have incredible physical strength and uses those skills to their advantage to establish justice amongst their classmates.
3. Tenshi na Konamaiki (Cheeky Angel)
- Episodes: 50
- Aired: April 2002 — March 2003
This anime tells the tale of Megumi, a boy who had been turned into a girl by what he thought was a proper magic user, who was actually a genie and handed him a “special” book. Megumi-kun turns into Megumi-chan at the age of nine after wishing to be a full-grown man in a man’s body. The twist is that the genie that “granted” Megumi his wish, actually grants the wish in reverse — which is how he turned into a girl in the first place.
It’s sort of expected that she would get used to being a girl, but is clearly proven wrong when she enters high school. When she punches a boy for acts of indecency and being rude, he, of course, falls in love with her. This causes Megumi-chan to want to find the genie that handed her the special “book” in the first place.
Despite not being similar to Aoharu x Kikanjuu conventionally, Megumi and Hotaru both explore themes of gender, in terms of what they are more comfortable with. With Hotaru, when you first watch the anime, you are surprised that she turns out to be a girl and not a boy — especially since we are so used to seeing overly girly girls in anime, that we don’t consider that there’s a possibility for someone to be androgynous. This theme in itself makes both protagonists a spectacle to behold, and creates a sense of personal identity problems that they each need to come to terms with!
Any Animes Like Aoharu x Machinegun / Any Animes Like Aoharu x Kikanjuu ?
4. Kuroko no Basket (Kuroko's Basketball)
- Episodes: 25
- Aired: April 2012 — September 2012
If you have seen sports anime, you know that Kuroko no Basket is one of the more popular ones. Most people have seen it due to its premise of the Generation of Miracles, in which each member of a team has an almost superhuman advantage when they play basketball. Each and every arc of this anime is the main basketball team to be in tournaments with other schools, where they find new strength and weaknesses in their opponents and need to learn how to defeat these schools by themselves.
While the protagonists, Kuroko Tetsuya and Kagami Taiga, start out as being somewhat prodigious, you learn about different aspects of their characterization as the series goes on with more competitions and tournaments. Essentially, the anime focuses on basketball and what it takes and what it means to be a member of the Generation of Miracles, and amidst that, you also learn about tactics used by each character and what their thought processes are.
Obviously, Hotaru, Masamune, and Yukimura are part of a three-man team for their ToyGunGun tournaments. They work together to defeat opponents in different competitions to advance into even bigger competitions. Of course, the teamwork in both Kuroko no Basket and Aoharu x Kikanjuu may differ in terms of what the word “serious” may mean to you.
While each protagonist has a backstory that leads them into this type of lifestyle, it’s important to remember that these methods are very different! Kuroko and Kagami just as gifted as Hotaru is, however, Hotaru originally wanted to use her brute strength to “protect” those around her.
While the general atmosphere feels different than each other, both Kuroko no Basket and Aoharu x Kikanjuu share an element of teamwork that drives the characters of each anime to move forward together.
"Kuroko's Basketball" Blu-ray & DVD release announcement PV
- Episodes: 12
- Aired: July 2013 — September 2013
When this swimming anime first aired its almost laughable promotional video, no one thought how big a sensation it would be until the official trailer came out a few months before the summer of 2013. Telling the tale of a boy named Nanase Haruka who was in love with water and the prospect of no longer being a prodigy, this anime is one that focuses on swimming competitions and tournaments, as well as the importance of team-building, friendships, and how loving your friends plays a part and ties it all together.
Haruka started out as being bitter about swimming while still sneakily wanting to be immersed in water — something that was painful for all his friends to watch, since they knew him from before he decided to swear off water — but of course, through the help of his friends, he learns to be “free” again.
Essentially, what drives Free! and Aoharu x Kikanjuu to be similar is the concept that without friends, and without teamwork, you cannot become better than you were before. Specifically if what you are trying to improve your harmony and togetherness as a team. While Haruka and Hotaru are almost opposites in terms of what their characters are like, there is an element of slice-of-life to both anime, alongside the vigorous physical activity exhibited in both!
6. Stella Jogakuin Koutou-ka C³-bu
- Episodes: 13
- Aired: July 2013 — September 2013
Similar in just a few different areas, this anime centres Yamato Yura, a girl who enrolls at the Stella’s Women’s Academy who asked and recruited to join the airsoft team, a club in the school that also goes by the name “C³”. What this club stands for is that it’s a military survival game, which you can probably already guess what it looks like. While this anime is seemingly “moe”, that is only a tactic used by the animators to lure audience members in.
There is more depth to each character in the anime, most notably themes of wanting to become better than their previous self and wanting to become stronger. It’s a familiar theme found in most anime, however it is quite a rare one for characters who are girls in high school — which is great in so many ways! Instead of idly watching high school girls do cute things, you get to see young girls grow into better people, giving a tasteful touch to the plot!
Although the only obvious thing that these two anime have in common is that they both contain the use of guns, the nature and atmosphere of both anime can be classified as similar. Using guns in both these anime, despite having varying plots, makes the general themes of both anime to be somewhat similar. While not prominent in the anime, Aoharu x Kikanjuu does explore issues that Hotaru deals with when it comes to her personal identity, similar to how Yura does in Stella Jogakuin Koutou-ka C³-bu!
Aoharu x Kikanjuu is an anime that is unique in many different ways, but namely, because of the androgynous lead that wants to seek justice and fight evil. Of course, she is not necessarily an organic character that was made from scratch, but rather, she is an archetype of sorts — but one that is more rare than the usual archetypes you generally find in anime. She can be found in different genres of anime, which makes her a flexible character archetype!
Is there another another anime you think is similar to Aoharu x Kikanjuu? Let us know in the comments below!