Ryuuji Takasu is a gentle high school student with a love for housework; but in contrast to his kind nature, he has an intimidating face that often gets him labeled as a delinquent. On the other hand is Taiga Aisaka, a small, doll-like student, who is anything but a cute and fragile girl. One day, an embarrassing mistake causes the two students to cross paths. Toradora! is a romantic comedy that follows this odd duo as they embark on a quest to help each other with their respective crushes, forming an unlikely alliance in the process. Toradora is available on Netflix, Hulu, Crunchyroll, and Funimation.
- My Next Life As A Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom!
Catarina Claes, the young daughter of a noble family, one day bumps her head and regains memories of her past life as an otaku. It is then that she realizes she has been reborn into the world of the otome game Fortune Lover as the game’s villainess who, regardless of what route the player took in the original game, is doomed to be either exiled or killed. In order to avoid these routes that lead to doom, Catarina begins taking countermeasures. This, however, ends up having unexpected consequences on her relations with the other characters of the game’s world. This anime is an isekai and romantic comedy all rolled into one. My Next Life As A Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom is available on Crunchyroll.
- Kiss Him, Not Me!
Kae Serinuma is a very kind second-year high school student and a devoted otaku. A little known fact about her, though, is that she’s obsessed with BL, or Boy’s Love. A known fact about Serinuma, however, is that she’s noticeably overweight. While watching her favorite show one day, Serinuma witnesses the death of her most beloved character. Utterly depressed, she can’t muster up the energy to eat her meals, let alone attend school. After an entire week, she finally recovers. But now there’s something unusual about her—during the time she refused to leave her room, she ended up losing a large amount of weight and has somehow become strikingly beautiful! Now catching the eye of everyone who sees her, she finds herself at the center of attention of four boys she has always known at her school. Though they all wish to spend time with her, Serinuma would much rather they spend time falling in love with one another. This anime is unconventional with Serinuma’s obsession with boys’ love, but it’s entertaining. Kiss Him, Not Me is on Netflix, Cunchyroll, and Funimation.
- Ao-chan Can’t Study!
Back when she was in kindergarten, Ao Horie shared a short essay about herself, which she soon regrets, because of her father, Hanasaki Horie, who is an author of erotic novels. Ao aims to go to an elite university to finally get away from her father, but soon she meets Takumi Kijima in their first year in high school. Ao can’t think of a way to avoid Takumi and constantly thinks of them being with each other as a couple. Ao believes her father has influenced her way of thinking. This anime is funny and deveals into the mind of hormonal teenagers unlike the anime on the list. Ao-chan Can’t Study is available on Crunchyroll.
- Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions
Yūta Togashi is a boy who, during junior high school, suffered from “chūnibyō”, believing that he possessed supernatural powers and calling himself the “Dark Flame Master”, therefore alienating himself from his classmates. Finding his past embarrassing, Yūta attempts to start off high school where he does not know anyone, free from his old delusions. This proves to be difficult, however, as a delusional girl in his class, Rikka Takanashi, learns of Yūta’s past and becomes interested in him. This anime is quirky, but sweet at the same time. Love, Chunibyo, and Other Delusions is available on Crunchyroll.
- Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun
Chiyo Sakura is a cheerful high school girl who has fallen head over heels for the oblivious Umetarou Nozaki. Much to Chiyo’s confusion, when she confesses to her beloved Nozaki, he hands her an unfamiliar autograph. As it turns out, the stoic teenage boy is actually a respected shoujo mangaka, publishing under the pen name Sakiko Yumeno! A series of misunderstandings leads to Chiyo becoming one of Nozaki’s manga assistants. Throughout the hilarious events that ensue, she befriends many of her quirky schoolmates, and she strives to help Nozaki with his manga and hopes that he will eventually notice her feelings. This anime is innocent and comedic as Chiyo helps Nozaki experiment romantic situations for his manga. Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun is available on Netflix and Crunchyroll.
- My Love Story!!
Takeo Goda is a big guy with a big heart, but his looks scare off the girls he likes! It doesn’t help that ladies love his attractive best friend, Makoto Sunakawa. Though, he doesn’t resent Sunakawa for this at all, and by high school, Takeo has accepted his fate. But his kindness earns him a chance at love when he saves a girl from being harassed on the train. Takeo finds himself falling for her, and he’s sure he doesn’t stand a chance, but anything can happen, especially in a love story! This anime is a very wholesome and sweet story that can melt a heart. My Love Story is available on Hulu and Crunchyroll.
- Kaguya Sama: Love is War
At the renowned Shuchiin Academy, Miyuki Shirogane and Kaguya Shinomiya are the student body’s top representatives. Miyuki serves as the student council president and Kaguya is the vice president. They are the envy of the entire student body, regarded as the perfect couple. However, despite both having already developed feelings for the other, neither are willing to admit them. The first to confess loses, will be looked down upon, and will be considered the lesser. With their honor and pride at stake, Miyuki and Kaguya are both equally determined to be the one to emerge victorious on the battlefield of love! The rivalry between Miyuki and Kaguya make for a dramatic love story between the two characters. Kaguya-sama Love is War is on Funimation, Hulu, Netflix, and Crunchyroll.
- Wotakoi: Love is Hard for Otaku
The main characters are Narumi, an office working woman who hides her boy-love fan lifestyle, and Hirotaka, a handsome and capable company man who is a game otaku. They reunite after being childhood friends years ago. The two seem perfect for each other, but love is difficult for otaku. This anime is the most relatable for otaku and geeks in general. Wotakoi: Love is Hard for Otaku is available on Prime Video.
- Kaichou Wa Maid Sama
Misakia Ayuzawa becomes the first female student council president at a once all-boys high school, Seika High that has recently become a co-ed school. Misakia tries to make all the girls feel more welcome around the school while the boys see her as a boy hater. She secretly works part-time at a maid café in order to support her ill mom and sister by returning the huge debt their father had left them. Unfortunately, Misaki’s secret is soon discovered by Takumi Usui, a popular boy at Seika High. Instead of exposing it to the school, though, Usui keeps it for himself and even becomes a regular customer at the café because he takes a liking to Misaki finding her ‘interesting’. This anime is full of comedic moments between the main characters, and it plays on all the tropes of a maid cafe. Maid Sama can be found on Netflix and Hulu.
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Angela Zwolinski is a contributing writer at All Ages of Geek. You can follow her on Twitter @AngelaZwolinski & @angie_the_author on Instagram.