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As the birthplace of modern anime culture, Japan has more than its fair share of hardcore anime fans, or otaku. But what starts someone out on the potential path to wall-to-wall DVD box sets, shelves of figures, and a bed full of love pillows? An online survey asks Japanese people to reveal the series that showed them the light.

Japanese site My Navi decided to ask their readers which series first got them into watching anime. First, readers were asked whether or not they liked anime, inspiring 871 people to submit a response. The 389 people who answered that they did like anime were then asked to name the series they credited as getting them hooked on the medium.

Of course, many had discovered their love of anime when they were very young. Popular anime have a big influence on kids, sometimes becoming the start of a life-long obsession with all things animated! Here are the top 10 answers.


1. Dragonball – 48 people

I always watched this as a kid. I’d be so excited to see it each week. (33, male)

I started watching this after my friends got me reading the manga in Weekly Shonen Jump (34, male)

It was really interesting. I’d watched a lot of other kids anime shows, but it was Dragonball that really got me hooked, and after that I started watching lots of different anime. (32, male)


2. Sailor Moon – 40 people

I got into anime after watching Sailor Moon when I was little. (30, female)

The characters were all really cute and I had a lot of fun watching it. I was always playing make-believe at Sailor Moon. (28, female)

I watched “Goldfish Warning!” before Sailor Moon, but it was Sailor Moon that I really got into. It was definitely the anime I had the most toys from. (32, female)


3. Doraemon – 36 people

I’ve always watched anime since I was little, so I don’t really know what got me hooked, but the first was probably Doraemon. (33, male)

I started watching lots of anime after I went to see the Doraemon movie. (29, female)

My brothers all watched Doraemon, so I ended up watching it every week too, and that’s probably what started me watching anime. (30, female)


4. Gundam Series – 31

I became a fan of mecha anime after watching repeats of the original Gundam series. (34, male)

I got into anime after watching Gundam SEED in middle school. (24, female)


5. Neon Genesis Evangelion – 20 people

I was never really addicted to anime, but after watching Eva I couldn’t get enough. It was amazing. (32, male)

I watched it with my kids because they really liked it, and somehow I ended up getting sucked into it too. (49, female)


6. Slam Dunk – 18 people

I liked the manga, so when it was made into an anime I watched it. After that I started watching the anime for other Shonen Jump manga too. (30, female)


7. The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya – 17 people

My friend introduced it to me. After watching the first episode I was hooked. (25, male)


8. YuYu Hakusho – 14 people

I watched it as a child and fell in love with the characters. (31, female)


9. K-On! – 13 people

I didn’t like it at first, but after watching a few episodes I started watching it properly and that was that. (40, male)


10. ONE PIECE – 10 people

I started watching it with my kids, and then before I knew it I was looking forward to it every week. After that I started watching other anime too. (36, male)

Some of the top responses such as Dragonball, Sailor Moon, and Doraemon, are shows that are popular not just in Japan, but across the world. Take a look at some other series that might be less familiar to non-Japanese:

  • Mahou no Tenshi Creamy Mami
  • Fist of the North Star
  • Super Dimension Fortress Macross
  • The Tatami Galaxy
  • Ranma 1/2
  • Maison Ikkoku
  • Montana Jones
  • Planetes
  • Marmalade Boy

I wonder what the answers might be if the same question were asked again in 10 year’s time. Which anime series are making a lasting impression on today’s kids? And what about our dear readers? What series got you into anime?

Source: Nico Nico News
Images: WiredMyAnimeList