The current mainstream anime scene is mainly dominated by action-packed, blockbuster shounen anime/manga that is unmatched in popularity and is only sometimes cut out for all demographics. Shounen anime are great, there’s no doubt about it, BUT they are intense and slightly more on the violent side. They might not be ideal for those seeking a relaxing and laid-back anime experience. They’re also visually enhanced, loud, and complicated with their plotlines and can sometimes be tiring.
The good news is that the anime industry is about as diverse as it gets, offering various genres and sub-genres that cater to almost every age and group. It certainly doesn’t lack in the department of cute and slow anime, either. Here are the four cutest anime you’ll ever watch.
“School Babysitters,” or “Gakuen Babysitters,” is a 2009 comedy slice-of-life manga adapted into a 12-episode short anime in 2018.
The anime sets up its premise with a downer, but the overall story and characters more than makeup for the initial heartbreak. Following the tragic loss of their parents in a plane crash, Ryuichi and Kotaro Kashima find themselves orphaned and without a support system. Fortunately, they get taken in by the chairwoman of Morinomiya Academy, who gives them a place in her mansion and the academy. But in return, she asks that Ryuichi lend a hand at the academy’s daycare center—a perfect setting for the brothers, given that Kotaro is a toddler.
“School Babysitters” can be streamed on Crunchyroll.
“K-On” is a 2007 comedy musical manga adapted into a 2 season anime in 2009, followed by a movie in 2011.
It follows the story of five unlikely friends forming the cutest, most laid-back rock band ever. The five girls, Yui, Mio, Ritsu, Tsumugi, and Azusa, impulsively join their high school’s music club to prevent it from being shut down forever despite not having much experience with music. Surprisingly, they discover a robust musical compatibility with each other and spend their high school days practicing and having cake and tea in the club room.
“K-On” can be watched on Crunchyroll.
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions
“Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions” is a 2012 romance light novel turned anime adaptation initially set for a 12-episode series but later converted to a franchise with two seasons, two films, and two OVAs under its belt.
The story follows Yuta, a high school student aiming to make a fresh start by distancing himself from his embarrassing middle school days. Yuta used to suffer from delusions in middle school. He believed he was the ‘Dark Flame Master’ and was better than everyone around him. This naturally led to him being isolated from his classmates. Determined not to repeat the same mistakes in high school, he unfortunately befriends a girl with similar delusions.
“Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions” can be streamed on Crunchyroll.
“Barakamon” is a 2009 comedy slice-of-life manga adapted into a 12-episode anime in 2014, followed by a 12-episode spin-off series called Handa-kun.
It follows the protagonist, Seishu Handa, as he gets sent to a remote village to repent and work on his anger management problems after punching an elderly man for criticizing his work. Handa is a calligrapher who’s very particular about his work but cannot find his designated calligraphy style. The isolated village he’s sent to could be the solution.
“Barakamon” is available for streaming on Crunchyroll.
All four anime feature cute, bubbly characters, bright-yet-light-on-the-eyes settings, and highly calming vibes, perfect for a good, quiet day.
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