We all know the eternal dilemma of the average adult, and that is that we don’t have time to do anything. But, if you have 20 minutes a day to spare to watch some Japanese animation, these short anime are made to not make you invest too much in a story that starts and ends in 26 chapters or less.
We also want to focus on shows that don’t have a second season or sequel, except for an OVA or movie. Here we take the time of our readers very seriously. Let’s get started!
1. Another (2012)
Genre: Horror, Mystery, Thriller, School
Kouichi Sakakibara is the new student in the school, and upon his arrival, he discovers that there is a dark and gloomy atmosphere surrounding the class. Also, he finds himself attracted to the student Mei Misaki, who is treated by her classmates as if she doesn’t exist.
2. Erased (2016)
Genre: Mystery, Supernatural, Seinen
Satoru Fujinuma has a special power that allows him to turn back time before a tragedy occurs. However, this does not prevent something terrible from happening to someone important to him.
When trying to turn back time, instead of going back 10 or 20 minutes, he finds himself 18 years ago. And trying to prevent a tragedy that happened in the past to save his future as well.
3. Violet Evergarden (2018)
Genre: Fantasy, Drama
Episodes: 13 + OVA + Movie
Violet was raised to be a weapon. When the war ends, she will have to rediscover her purpose in the memory of a few words that the man most important to her said to them.
He takes a job writing letters for clients at a company dedicated to treasuring the profession, and travels across the country uncovering great stories and learning about the people he meets.
4. Zankyou No Terror (2014)
Genres: Mystery, Thriller
Zankyou No Terror tells the story of Nine and Twelve, the two young men behind a terrorist organization called Sphinx who have just launched an attack on a nuclear plant in Japan.
The government and the police are powerless by their inability to act, until detective Kenjiro Shibazaki finds himself at the heart of the matter.
5. Paranoia Agent (2004)
Genres: Thriller, Police, Supernatural, Drama, Mystery
From the critically acclaimed Satoshi Kon comes Paranoia Agent , a series that follows the violent attacks of Shounen Bat, a criminal who plagues Musashino City.
The criminal seems impossible to catch, let alone understand, and detectives Keiichi Ikari and Mitsuhiro Maniwa begin to investigate the identity of the attacker.
Paranoia begins to grip the townspeople as rumors about children and adults spread like wildfire.
6. Sora yori mo Tooi Basho (2018)
Genres: Adventure, Comedy, Drama
Also known as A Place Further than the Universe, it follows the fantastic story of Mari Tamaki, a young woman whose desire to learn beyond her small town leads her to plan a grand journey.
And thanks to their chance meeting with Shirase Kubuchizawa, both will do everything possible to reach Antarctica, taking Hinata Miyake and Yuzuki Shiraishi with them.
7. Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun (2014)
Genres: Shoujo, Comedy, Romance
Chiyo Sakura, a high school student, is in love with her classmate Umetaro Nozaki. When she steels herself and confesses her love for him, he mistakes her for a fan of hers and gives her an autograph.
Wanting to clear up the mix-up, she tells him that she means she always wants to be with him, so he invites her over to his house and gets her to help him with some manuscripts.
Chiyo finds out that Nozaki is actually a renowned shōjo manga artist named Sakiko Yumeno, so Chiyo agrees to be his assistant in order to get closer to him.
8. Devilman Crybaby (2018)
Genres: Action, Horror, Supernatural
From the legendary Go Nagai comes this modern adaptation of a classic. Devilman tells the story of Akira Fudou, a soft-hearted boy, who when a childhood friend asks him for help discovering demons, he accepts without hesitation. In this mission, Akira becomes possessed by the demon Amon, and transforms into Devilman, gaining the power to destroy the remaining demons.
9. Ping Pong the Animation (2014)
Genres: Drama, Seinen, Sports
Despite having very different personalities, high school youths Yutaka Hoshino called Peco and Makoto Tsukimoto nicknamed Smile have been friends since childhood.
They are both talented athletes who are members of the Katase High School table tennis club. Peco is defeated by an exchange student from China, and this causes him such devastation that he stops practicing.
On the other hand, Smile’s personality prevents him from winning against Peco; but coach Jō is aware of the young man’s potential and tries to motivate him to overcome all his obstacles.
10. No Game No Life (2014)
Genres: Video Games, Adventure, Comedy, Supernatural, Ecchi, Fantasy
Siblings Sora and Shiro are the scariest team in pro-gaming , called The Blank. When they manage to beat God himself in a game of chess, they are sent to a universe where all disputes are settled with a game.
11. Highschool of the Dead (2010)
Genres: Ecchi, Action, Horror, Supernatural, Shounen
A group of students is overwhelmed by the sudden onset of the zombie apocalypse. Seeing society crumble into chaos, they must work together to survive.
12. AnoHana (2011)
Genres: Drama, Slice of Life
Six childhood friends parted after the death of one of them, Menma.
Jintan, the original leader of the group, is a recluse with no aspirations, until he starts running into the ghost of his deceased friend.
She insists that he sees her because he has an unfulfilled wish, and this leads him to reconnect with his old friends. Thus, they revive a beautiful bond and grow little by little, to help Menma fulfill her last wish.
13. Madoka Magica (2011)
Genres: Magic, Thriller, Drama
A creature called Kyubey offers Madoka and Sayaka any wish, only if they agree to become magical girls who fight witches. However, another veteran magical girl named Homura is very reluctant for them to accept the contract. What will be her reasons?
Note: We are aware that Madoka Magica has “other seasons”, but the main story about Madoka and Homura starts and ends in this one. The other series and movies are considered spin-offs and are not required to be seen to enjoy the full plot presented in this first anime.
14. FLCL (2000)
Genres: Action, Sci-Fi, Comedy, Parody, Mecha
A 12-year-old boy named Naota meets a very peculiar woman one day, who drives a Vespa and carries a huge guitar. As soon as the girl appears in his life, strange events begin to surround him.
15. Your Lie in April (2014)
Genres: Drama, Music, Romance, School, Shounen
Un prodigio del piano que perdió la habilidad para tocar luego de sufrir un evento traumático en su infancia es obligado a volver a estar en el escenario por una muchacha excéntrica con un secreto propio.
16. Kill la Kill (2013)
Géneros: Acción, Comedia, Superpoderes, Ecchi, Colegial
Una joven se aventura a una escuela de humanos con poderes sobrenaturales para descubrir la verdad tras el asesinato de su padre. Allí, se encuentra con un traje colegial que le otorga poderes especiales.
17. SK∞: The Infinity (2011)
Géneros: Comedia, Deportes
Reki, a high school student, is a fan of skating. During the nights he participates in illegal skating rinks inside a mine, a dangerous place for athletes. But having an accident that he breaks his instrument and his arm, he can no longer practice.
When he discovers that Langa Hasegawa, a new student in his class, has highly advanced skating ability, he begs her to participate in “S’s” illegal races.
18. Parasyte (2014)
Genres: Sci-Fi, Action, Horror, Drama, Seinen
It tells the story of Shinichi Izumi, who at the age of 17 is partially infected by a parasite, monsters that kill and consume humans. He must learn to coexist with the creature if he is to survive both as a Parasite and as a human, caring for his humanity in the process.
19.Ore Monogatari!! (2015)
Genres: Comedy, Romance, Shoujo
Takeo Gouda is used to being the guy that no one falls in love with. All the girls he’s liked have fallen in love with his best friend, and he’s at peace with it. Until one day he meets the sweet Rinko Yamato, and although it is difficult for him to let her go, he finds out that, for some incomprehensible reason, she likes him, not her best friend.
20. Death Parade (2015)
Genres: Mystery, Drama, Thriller
After dying, humans go to heaven or hell. But for some, at the moment of death, they arrive at Quindecim, a bar run by the mysterious Decim, who will evaluate their souls to establish whether they deserve to go to heaven or hell.
21. Loud! (2007)
Géneros: Acción, Aventura, Comedia, Historia, Misterio, Sobrenatural
A principios de la década de 1930 en Chicago, el tren transcontinental, Flying Pussyfoot, está comenzando su legendario viaje que dejará un rastro de sangre en todo el país. Al mismo tiempo, en Nueva York, el ambicioso científico Szilard y su ayudante involuntario Ennis están buscando botellas perdidas del elixir de la inmortalidad. Además, la guerra entre los grupos de la mafia está empeorando. A bordo del Advena Avis, en 1711, los alquimistas están a punto de conocer el precio de la inmortalidad.
22. Hellsing Ultimate (2006)
Géneros: Acción, Horror, Sobrenatural, Vampiros, Seinen
The Royal Protestant Knights organization is charged with protecting the nation and the queen. Integra Fairbrook Wingates Hellsing is in charge of the organization, and her men are the best soldiers. Among them is Alucard, a powerful vampire whom her family has known for hundreds of years, and Seras Victoria, Alucard’s scion, a policewoman whom she turned into a vampire.
23. Sakamichi no Apollon (2012)
Genres: Music, Drama, Josei, Romance, School
Two different students, a successful but distant academic and a rebellious but good-natured delinquent, form a friendship through their love of music.
24. Elfen Lied (2004)
Genres: Action, Horror, Supernatural, Drama, Romance, Seinen
Two college students meet a seemingly harmless girl named Lucy, unaware that she is actually a mutant serial killer with a split personality.
25. Space☆Dandy (2014)
Genres: Comedy, Sci-Fi, Space
The cosmic and comical adventures of Space Dandy, a handsome space explorer tasked with traveling the universe and discovering new alien beings.
26. Cowboy Bebop (1998)
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Drama, Sci-Fi
The suave and easygoing Spike Spiegel is balanced by his boisterous and pragmatic sidekick, Jet Black, as the pair make a living chasing down fugitives and collecting bounties.
Together with their new members, they will have to embark on exciting adventures and unravel everyone’s past. Ein, the highly intelligent and genetically modified Welsh Corgi. Femme fatale Faye Valentine, an enigmatic trickster with memory loss, and the strange boy computer genius, Edward Wong.
27. Samurai Champloo (2004)
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Historical, Samurai , Shounen
Fuu, a waitress who works at a tea house, rescues two master swordsmen, Mugen and Jin, from execution to help her find the “samurai who smells of sunflowers”.
28.Amaama to Inazuma (2016)
Genres: Comedy, Slice of Life, Seinen
Since the death of his wife, Kouhei Inuzuka has been taking care of his little daughter Tsumugi as best he can. However, with his lack of culinary knowledge and his job as a teacher, he is left relying on prepared foods from convenience stores to feed the girl.
Frustrated at his own inability to provide a fresh and nutritious meal for his daughter, Kouhei accepts an offer from his student, Kotori Iida, to dine at her family’s restaurant.
But on their first visit, the father and daughter discover that the restaurant is often closed. Kotori’s mother is away on work and Kotori often eats alone. After the student’s pleas for her, Kouhei decides to continue going to the restaurant with Tsumugi to cook and share delicious homemade food with Kotori.
29. Black Lagoon (2006)
Genres: Action, Seinen
A Japanese businessman, captured by modern-day pirates, is discharged and presumed dead by his company. Tired of corporate life, he chooses to stay with the mercenaries who kidnapped him, becoming part of his gang.
30. Great Pretender (2020)
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Mystery
Makoto Edamura hasn’t had much luck in life, and he spends his time robbing tourists. Trouble begins when his latest “victim” is a master deceiver. After being discovered in an attempted robbery, Makoto will have to get involved with Laurent Thierry, a professional swindler who offers him a competition: whoever wins, remains as the best swindler in Japan. But his first victim is the biggest mobster in Los Angeles, and Makoto is completely out of his element.
31. Banana Fish (2018)
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Mystery
Ash Lynx doesn’t know much more than his life of crime and being Dino Golzine’s pet. Of one thing he is sure: he must try to help his brother, a war veteran who lost his sanity and only stammers “Banana Fish”. After discovering that the substance behind that name may be a powerful drug, Ash plunges into a world that leads him dangerously back to where he started: Dino Golzine.
After meeting Eiji Okumura by chance, his horizons will have to broaden, and he will be convinced that it is worth fighting on.
32. Given (2019)
Genres: BL, Drama, Romance, Slice of Life
Episodes: 11 + Feature Film
Ritsuka Uenoyama has a band that needs a vocalist if they’re going to get off the ground. One day, she meets Mafuyu Sato, a boy who doesn’t seem to know anything about musical instruments, judging by the good, expensive and dire condition guitar he has.
After a lot of prodding from the boy she just met, Ritsuka ends up repairing her guitar. And the day Ritsuka discovers that Mafuyu has a prodigious voice, he asks her to join his band, on the condition that she teach him to play the guitar.
33. Kaze ga Tsuyoku Fuiteiru (2018)
Genres: Comedy, Drama, Sport
Also known as Run Like the Wind. Kakeru Kurahara used to be the az of her racing team at school. Now, she finds herself shoplifting 24 hours a day to make ends meet. One day, he has a fateful encounter with Haiji Kiyose, who watches him run, and falls in love with his ability.
Haiji offers him lodging at an inn that happens to be the home of the running team of the university they both attend, and makes him an offer. If he runs with them in a legendary race, he can get a room, and he won’t have to worry about shelter or food.
34. Arabu Kisetsu no Otome-domo yo (2019)
Genres: Comedy, Drama, Romance
Also known as O Maidens in Your Savage Season. Kazusa and Izumi have always been friends and neighbors. Since they were little they get along very well, but when they enter puberty, Izumi becomes a popular boy, and Kazusa, a rival for all the girls in the school.
During a literature club discussion, one of the girls comments on her curiosity and interest in sex, and this unleashes a wave of sensations and feelings among all the other girls that, until recently, they had ignored or simply repressed. And now, Kazusa sees Izumi as more than just a friend, but does Izumi feel the same way about her?
35. Wotaku ni Koi wa Muzukashii (2018)
Genres: Comedy, Drama, Romance
Episodes: 11 + 3 OVAs
Narumi Momose is a young woman who never let go of her love for manga, anime, video games and everything related to the geek world. However, she has lost relationships and work because of these hobbies. Now that she starts a new job, she adamantly refuses to show her true “colors” to the public.
But when on his first day, he runs into his childhood best friend in the company hallway, he panics. Hirotaka Nifuji knows all of his darkest secrets, and may put his job at risk if he lets his tongue go. They set up a place to meet after work and Narumi begs him to please not talk about her hobbies. But Hirotaka offers him something better: how about the two of them start dating instead of worrying about finding someone…normal? After all, he is a video game nut and he understands her perfectly.
Will they be the perfect couple or are these two otakus destined to fail?
36. Sonny Boy (2021)
A group of students are transported to a world full of new rules. But when they discover that only some of them have powers, a new hierarchy is created that could jeopardize their journey back to the real world.
37. Uramichi Oniisan (2021)
Genres: Comedy, Slice of Life
Uramichi is a young animator for a children’s show. His job is to say his happy dialogues, motivate the little ones, and try not to let his persistent disinterest in life get the best of him. Sarcastic, ironic, even a little rude…that’s the true personality of him. A frustrated thirty-year-old who cannot control his acid tongue in front of innocent children who are unaware of the harsh reality of life. Nothing could go wrong.
38. Vivy: Fluorite Eye’s Song (2021)
Genres: Action, Sci-Fi, Thriller
Humanity has been exterminated by the artificial intelligence that they themselves have created. In the future, a scientist clings to a relic of the past to stake it all and try to prevent this catastrophe from happening.
One hundred years in the past, robots are an integral part of society. Vivy is the first autonomous artificial intelligence, programmed with specific missions, and hers is to make her audience happy with her songs. But when a futuristic robot appears before her and begs her to help save humanity, Vivy must be part of a hundred-year journey to save humanity.
39. Odd Taxi (2021)
Genres: Suspense, Mystery
Episodes: 13 + Feature Film
A young woman disappears. What do a thief, a nurse, a police officer, a couple of comedians and a young man seeking virality have in common? Well, the taxi that everyone has been in since the girl disappeared, of course. And her eccentric and curious driver could be the key that is missing.
40. Bakuten!! (2021)
Episodes: 12 + Feature Film
Futaba Shouta has always loved sports, but to say that he has a genuine passion for baseball, which is the only one he has participated in since he was a child, would be lying. However, one day, he decides to enter a rhythmic gymnastics demonstration to kill time. What he witnesses there leads him to make an important decision: to enter the same school as the boys to join his gymnastics team. But he doesn’t know the first thing about rhythmic gymnastics…although he’s more than willing to learn.
41. Sono Bisque Doll wa Koi o Suru
Genres: Romance, Comedy
Wakana Gojo is trying to get over her childhood trauma. When he was little, he showed his fondness for hina dolls to a classmate, only to receive insults “because he liked girl things”. Since then, the boy has not known how to connect with people and he has lived his entire adolescence alone. But this is about to change when the whirlwind that is Marin Kitagawa enters his life. The girl discovers that Wakana, thanks to her work, knows how to sew, and asks her to help her create cosplays of her favorite characters. The boy knows nothing of that world, but he receives the proposal with an enthusiasm as infectious as the girl’s, and together they enter the wonderful world of cosplay.
What neither expected is that between the two an attraction so magnetic that it is almost explosive is created.