Komi Can't Communicate is one of the most anticipated manga to anime adaptations of all time and, now that it is finally here, we're struggling to fill the downtime between weekly episode releases! Komi is such a unique anime, from its playful animation and hilarious comedy to thought-provoking subtext, that it can be difficult to find anime exactly like it. However, we have selected 6 anime here that will hopefully scratch your Komi itch as the season progresses!
Similar Anime to Komi-san wa, Comyushou desu. / Similar Anime to Komi Can't Communicate
1. Koe no Katachi (A Silent Voice)
- Episodes: 1
- Aired: September 2016
A Silent Voice follows the life of Shouya Ishida. During his youth, Ishida was a relentless bully, tormenting his classmates and teachers alike. However, the person who suffered the most at the hands of Ishida's bullying was deaf classmate Shouko Nishimiya. As time progressed and Ishida matured into adulthood, he began to realize the mistakes he had made in his youth. Wanting to right these wrongs, he befriends Nishimiya after a chance encounter, and the two proceed to explore their feelings for each other. Will Ishida be able to redeem himself after such a rocky past
Quite literally, A Silent Voice is probably the most similar anime out there to Komi Can't Communicate! Both Komi and Nishimiya use their voice very little whenever they're on screen but for different reasons. Komi struggles to speak despite having the ability, whereas Nishimiya struggles to speak naturally due to her condition. Komi Can't Communicate explores the pain of being unable to interact with those around you and, while it often does this comedically, we can also see genuine moments of depression from Komi (her written blackboard confession to Tadano, for example). Similarly, Nishimiya was bullied relentlessly as a child due to her inability to communicate and this affected her into adulthood. Both Ishida and Tadano try their best to communicate with their friends either through writing or sign language. A Silent Voice and Komi Can't Communicate both try to express that, just because someone cannot speak, does not mean they have nothing to say.
A Silent Voice Trailer
2. Sakura-sou no Pet na Kanojo (The Pet Girl of Sakurasou)
- Episodes: 24
- Aired: October 2012 - March 2013
Sorata Kanda, having been forced to move out from his dormitory for harboring stray kittens, finds himself living in the eccentric Sakura dorm. Sakura dorm plays host to a wide variety of misfits deemed unfit to mingle with the rest of the student body. However, things continue to go wrong for Sorata as he becomes the surrogate carer for pet-like second-year Mashiro Shiina. Shiina, a genius aspiring mangaka, quickly befriends Sorata but makes it clear that she has no idea how to live alone without someone doting on her. Sorata, struggling to find homes for his army of cats so he can leave Sakura dorm, now must balance his mission, his studies, and Mashiro all at the same time!
Sakurasou is an anime about moving on. As the show progresses, we see each of the cast hit by reality on multiple occasions. Whether it be Sorata's failing a job interview or Misaki's rejection by Jin, this anime is not one to pull its punches when it comes time to get depressing. Much like Komi, there are comedic elements peppered with realism prevalent throughout Sakurasou and both anime do stellar jobs at balancing these aspects without it feeling too jarring. Furthermore, Mashiro and Komi also share a lot in common. Both struggle to communicate but, while characters like Komi and Nishimiya know how to communicate but cannot do so physically, Mashiro is unable to understand what she is doing wrong. This adds an even deeper layer to the difficulties she faces as, when people become angry at her for making a simple mistake, she has no empathy with which to right said wrong. Sakurasou is a similar slice-of-life romance comedy anime to Komi Can't Communicate that touches on the same difficulties faced by those with communication disorders.
The Pet Girl of Sakurasou Trailer
3. Cider no You ni Kotoba ga Wakiagaru (Words Bubble Up Like Soda Pop)
- Episodes: 1
- Aired: July 2021
Words Bubble Up Like Soda Pop follows the lives of Cherry, a young boy with crippling communication issues, and Smile, a young girl who constantly hides her face behind a mask. Both characters spend their lives hiding from those around them. Cherry can never be seen without a pair of headphones on and uses Japanese haiku poems to express the feelings he cannot utter audibly. Similarly, we come to learn that the reason Smile always wears a mask is so she can hide her large front teeth, which she is incredibly embarrassed about. Through their meeting, the two come to learn what it means to accept yourself for who you are and find people who will do the same.
To outsiders looking in, Komi's life may seem fairly untroubled. After all, her communication very rarely affects her daily life. As we see, the world bends over backward to cater to her lack of speech, concocting various scenarios to shift the fault of the awkward silence back onto themselves. However, for Komi, every day is problematic as she struggles to complete tasks many of us would not even think twice about. Similarly, those with extroverted personalities and perfect teeth could never hope to understand Cherry and Smile. Komyushou and teeth are but metaphorical surrogates for any insecurities we may have and find difficult to overcome. However, by connecting with those who care about what is lying beneath the surface, you can really start to grow. Komi is the school Madonna and has her pick of friends. However, after Tadano is kidnapped, she sternly tells Yamai that she will pick her own friends, and choose those who accept her for who she is without trying to change her.
Words Bubble Up Like Soda Pop Trailer
Any Anime Like Komi Can't Communicate / Any Anime Like Komi-san wa, Comyushou desu.?
- Episodes: 12
- Aired: July 2016 - September 2016
Sei Handa is a social pariah. At least, as far as he is concerned. In actuality, Handa is the most popular student at his school and his classmates are all incredibly impressed with his plethora of charm points. His unmatched calligraphy skill, good looks, and cool personality have left him an outcast with no friends to speak of. Handa attempts to distance himself from his peers but this only results in them doubling down and revering him even more. It seems that Handa cannot escape this "bullying" as he is praised by models, fangirls, and hikikomori alike.
Already we can see the similarities between Komi and Handa's respective situations. Komi is known as the school's Madonna and has people waiting on her hand and foot. This attention is somewhat unwanted from Komi's perspective as she does not think of herself as any more special than her peers. In fact, she sees herself as inferior due to her issues with communication. Handa is also oblivious to notions of hierarchy, seeing his classmates' adoration as bullying. Both these anime are stories of integration. While Komi desperately tries to forge any connections she can, Handa avoids social interaction to the same degree. However, both Handa and Komi quickly realize that communicating with the right people, makes all the difference when it comes to building relationships. Handa is a slightly more jaded take on the same narrative that Komi is trying to produce.
5. Isshukan Friends (One Week Friends)
- Episodes: 12
- Aired: April 2014 – June 2014
Yuuki Hase, after summoning the courage to ask his crush (Kaori Fujimiya) if she wants to be friends, is promptly shut down and sent on his way. Kaori, a quiet and reserved girl how has seemingly segregated herself from everyone else, rejects him with the same cold demeanor as she would anyone else. After bumping into Kaori atop the school's roof eating lunch by herself, Yuuki decides to meet with her every morning and attempt to crack her hardened exterior. However, we soon discover that the reason Kaori tries to not interact with others is that her memories of those closest to her (other than her family) disappear at the end of each week. (this being a side-effect of an accident she suffered in middle school). So, as each new week comes around, Yuuki asks Kaori if she would like to be friends, knowing that she wants this more than anything.
We can see with Isshukan Friends and Komi Can't Communicate that it is those who take the first step in trying to understand those who segregate themselves from society who are often rewarded the most. In Komi's case, she is reliant on those to speak to her, being unable to speak to others herself. In Kaori's case, she must wait for Yuuki to reach out, knowing that doing so herself would be selfish. The misinformation of Komyushou is touched on in both these anime. As we can see in Komi, everyone around her fabricates nonsense to justify her lack of speech and the Madonna lifestyle she must lead. Only when Tadano makes a move do we learn that she is silently suffering. Similarly, Kaori's unique situation would have remained a mystery had Yuuki not made the effort to try to befriend her. A much sadder interpretation of the theming present in Komi Can't Communicate, One Week Friends is another well-crafted look into the lives of outsiders.
One Week Friends Trailer
6. Hitoribocchi no Marumaru Seikatsu (Hitoribocchi no Marumaruseikatsu)
- Episodes: 12
- Aired: April 2019 – June 2019
Following the life of the main character Hitori Bocchi, Hitoribocchi no Marumaru Seikatsu is another exploration into the difficulties faced by those with social anxiety. After transferring to middle school, Hitori struggles to make new friends. When forced to interact with others, it is unknown whether Hitori will faint on the spot, vomit, or concoct ridiculous reasons as to why she cannot spend any more time interacting with her peers. However, in order to reconnect with her only elementary school friend, Kai Yawara, Hitori will embark on a mission to befriend everyone in her new class.
Komi and Hitori are cut from the same cloth. Like Hitori, Komi has also made it her goal in life to "make 100 friends". Clearly, the overarching plots of these anime also share similar themes of social anxiety and difficulties communicating with those around you. However, what Hitori hits on that other anime do not, is the bravery of those forced to go through life suffering from Komyushou. Hitori has decided that she will do all she can to reconnect with Kai and summons what little courage she has to make that dream a reality. Even if that means talking with the scary delinquent girl sitting in front of her. Komi also has not resigned herself to a life of silence and tries her best when given missions from Tadano and Najimi (such as ordering a coffee by herself). While other anime hit similar beats regarding the difficulties of social interaction, Hitoribocchi nails the praise we should be giving to Komyushou sufferers for striving to change.
Hitoribocchi no Marumaruseikatsu Trailer
Komi Can't Communicate is a little over halfway and we've been enjoying every moment! Komyushou is very real and, while it is overexaggerated or used for comedic effect in these anime, the messages of each of these shows must be heard if we are to create a better world for people with social anxiety. While you wait patiently for Komi Can't Communicate to conclude, be sure to check out some of our recommendations before coming back to let us know what you think!