6 Anime Like Bakemonogatari [Recommendations]

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Bakemonogatari is the story of Koyomi Araragi, who is experienced in dealing with the paranormal. After surviving a vampire attack, he encounters Hitagi Senjougahara and discovers her unusual secret. Determined to help her, Araragi puts himself at risk to save Hitagi from the supernatural forces that have harmed her. Koyomi later goes on to help others afflicted by powers of the supernatural. Full of witty banter and paranormal activity, Bakemonogatari creates a unique anime that is defined also by the stylistic choices of the animators. It is full of quick shots, script cut-ins, and uses live action sequences frequently throughout the anime. This creates a one of a kind atmosphere for the anime, that borders on creepy. Bakemonogatari also has strong Ecchi and Harem themes, but despite that, you see the relationship between Koyomi and the main female lead, Hitagi, grow into love.

Similar Anime to Bakemonogatari

1. Noragami

  • Episodes: 12
  • Aired: Jan 5, 2014 to Mar 23, 2014

Yato is a minor god who declares himself a “Delivery God” and answers prayers for only 5 yen. It is his dream to earn enough money to have a shrine of his own and millions of worshipers. His plans are halted when his spirit weapon partner quits and leaves him high and dry. This is when Hiyori Iki comes into his life. After saving Yato and risking her life, Hiyori’s soul is able to leave her body, leaving her occasionally in just a spirit form. Hiyori demands that Yato return her to normal, but until then, the two of them encounter other spirits and gods, both good and evil.

If you enjoyed the spirit and folklore aspects of Bakemonogatari, then check out Noragami. The conflict in both series is very influenced by folk tales and legends relating to various cultures. Both series have themes of action, drama, and comedic dialogue throughout the anime. Bakemonogatari uses dark, witty banter, while Norgami’s humor is more focused on physical comedy. Yato and Araragi are both supernatural beings who show their good nature through their desperation to save others. While the atmosphere of Noragami is not the same as Bakemonogatari, the main plot of both revolves around short arcs of defeating spirits and mythological gods to save people.

Noragami - Official Trailer


2. Kyoukai no Kanata (Beyond the Boundary)

  • Episodes: ___
  • Aired: ___

This story is set in a world where "youmu", or creatures that are the manifestation of negative human emotions, can come to life and wreak havoc. Mirai Kuriyama is the sole survivor of her spirit warrior clan, set to destroy these youmu, but she has a dark secret of her own. Her blood is cursed to harm any who come in contact with it. Because of this, she has separated herself from others. It is soon after this she meets the half “youmu”, Akihito Kanbara. She comes to build friendships thanks to him and realizes that she is not alone.

Bakemonogatari and Kyoukai no Kanata are series where the main characters are burdened with consequences of all the supernatural events and creatures around them. All of the events in both anime are similar as the main character finds himself dealing with various supernatural beings as well as struggling with his own paranormal abilities and immortality. The dialogue between the main characters reflects Bakemonogatari’s humor and style. There is also an overall mystery in both surrounding the main characters. Who are they, and what is their true nature?

Beyond The Boundary V1


3. Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuuutsu (The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya)

  • Episodes: 14
  • Aired: Apr 3, 2006 to Jul 3, 2006

Similar to Bakemonogatari, Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuuutsu follows a high school boy, Kyon, who has suddenly fallen in with the school’s mysterious but popular girl. Haruhi Suzumiya is a “normal” girl who wishes to find the extraordinary. She creates the “SOS Brigade” or club to hunt down the paranormal. What she does not know is the power she herself holds. A series of strange occurrences begin to befall Kyon showing him a side of the world that he never knew about, but one he cannot share with Haruhi or risk destroying everything.

With an uber tsundere main female character and plenty of paranormal intervention, both Bakemonogatari and The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya toy with the same tropes and themes. The main male lead is forced to deal with a tsundere girl who is bent on controlling him. With quick banter and the constant threat of the paranormal, The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya is a slightly more light-hearted version of Bakemonogatari. While Hitagi is a tsundra, or cold inside and out, Haruhi is just a tsundere.

Haruhi Suzumiya DVD PV


Any Anime Like Bakemonogatari?

4. Shinseiki Evangelion (Neon Genesis Evangelion)

  • Episodes: 26
  • Aired: Oct 4, 1995 to Mar 27, 1996

You will never find a show with more emotional angst than Neon Genesis Evangelion. Evangelion is a dramatic mecha anime that revolves around the emotional young boy, Shinji. The world is under attack by aliens known as “Angels” and the only defense against them are giant Mecha called “Eva” piloted by children. The show revolves around Shinji and him dealing with the responsibilities of this task and the trials that go along with it. It is full of interpersonal conflict and angst between the characters as we see them try to save the Earth.

If while watching Bakemonogatari you fell in love with the weird atmosphere and the cinematic style of the anime, then definitely try out Evangelion. The stylistic choices by animators are very similar between the two shows. With script being used in the middle of a shot instead of images, or quick jumps to other points in the plot, these two shows will definitely confuse you if you aren’t paying close attention. The weird vibe you get definitely defines these two anime, and they are both classics in their own right.


5. Mekakucity Actors

  • Episodes: 12
  • Aired: Apr 13, 2014 to Jun 29, 2014

We come into the story following Shintarou Kisaragi, a NEET who is going outside for the first time in years after his keyboard is destroyed. He is accompanied by his virtual companion, Ene, who began to live in his computer several years ago, after Shintarou received a mysterious email. But while on his only day out, he becomes the victim of a terrorist attack. In an attempt to escape, he pairs up with two snarky boys who agree to create a distraction while he plugs Ene into a local computer and saves the day.

Mekakucity Actors has a similar animation style to Bakemonogatari, with quick cuts and extreme color contrasts to emphasize the feelings of the characters rather than just facial expressions. Mekakucity Actors even takes it one step further with character replacements and representations instead of actual characters. It also consists of several arcs that focus on a single character and the paranormal problems that they face. So if you really enjoyed the weird mysterious style of Bakemonogatari, Mekakucity Actors will definitely keep you on your toes.

#MEKAKUCITY ACTORS #Japanese Anime


6. Fukigen na Mononokean (The Morose Mononokean)

  • Episodes: 13
  • Aired: Jun 28, 2016 to Sep 20, 2016

Ashiya has been possessed by a “yokai” and spent his first week of high school in the infirmary because of it. As the “yokai” continues to steal his energy, Ashiya seeks help from the wandering spirit tea room “Mononokean”. Ashiya meets the sullen owner of “Mononokean”, Abeno, who guides spirits back to the underworld where they belong. In exchange for Abeno’s help, Ashiya is recruited as a part-timer at the Mononokean, ending his dreams of a normal high school experience. The two of them go on to help spirits and the humans who have interacted with them.

Similar to Noragami, Fukigen na Mononokean exemplifies the folklore and spiritual aspects of Bakemonogatari. If you are interested in an anime where you can see many different kinds of “youkai” and their dealings with humans, then this is the one for you. It definitely has a more slice of life vibe to it, but the relationship between the two main characters is similar to Bakemonogatari. You have one tsundere character, and one earnest character who only wants to help. This show will put you in a good mood while keeping the same supernatural themes of Bakemonogatari.

TV anime Fukigen na Mononokean official PV 3


Bakemonogatari has gone on to have 10 more anime based on the light novels. It has become a classic and there are so many aspects of it to love. If you have somehow finished all of the Monogatari series, you will be able to find other anime based on its weirdness, supernatural themes, or tsundere characters. If you have ideas on what anime is most like Bakemonogatari, definitely let us know. Whether it's based on the whole anime, or just the creepy vibe Bakemonogatari can give you.

Devan Baird

Writer

Author: Devan Baird

I was the co-founder for the anime convention Swampcon at the University of Florida. Currently living and working in Tokyo as a writer, editor, and video editor. With my daily vlog on everyday life in Tokyo, you can see how the Japanese lifestyle can be completely different from what you expected!

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