In the world of anime, the main characters' families are often critical for the plot, both in good and bad ways. In anime of any genre, a character's parents, siblings, or even grandparents may make all the difference in their lives. And more rarely, a significant character's aunt or uncle might show up, too.
Many anime parents are famous or infamous for what they do, but only once in a while will the anime series portray the parents' brothers or sisters. While not many lovable uncles appear in anime, the few who show up are often cuddly, funny, and cool during their adventures with their nieces and nephews.
10 Josuke Higashikata Is Anime's Weirdest Uncle (JoJo's Bizarre Adventure)
Among all anime uncles, JoJo's Bizarre Adventure's Stand-wielding Josuke Higashikata is almost certainly the oddest, and not because of his fierce temper about his carefully-styled hair. Josuke is the love child of the elderly Joseph Joestar and Tomoko Higashikata, meaning he is Holly Joestar's much younger half-brother.
In turn, this means Josuke is Jotaro Kujo's half-uncle through Holly, and that's just plain bizarre. Josuke is around 13 years younger than Jotaro, but against all odds, he is Jotaro's uncle. The two Joestars rarely act accordingly, though. It isn't easy to describe what exactly their relationship is.
9 Sadayoshi Komi Is Silent But Kind (Komi Can't Communicate)
Over time, Komi Can't Communicate greatly expanded upon protagonist Shoko Komi's family, with her parents and bishonen younger brother, Shosuke, being just the start. At one point, the four Komis visited the estate of the elderly Yuiko Komi, where Shoko met up with her aunt and uncle.
While Shoko's aunt Ryuko is excitable and loud like Shuko, Shoko's uncle, Sadayoshi, is quiet and kind, just like his older brother, Masayoshi. These adult brothers never exchanged a word aloud in the anime, but it became clear that they get along well.
8 The Isekai Uncle Needs To Readjust To Japanese Life (Uncle From Another World)
The recent anime series Uncle From Another World has a title that says it all. This isekai anime refreshes the admittedly stale isekai formula by having a young man's uncle be the one who goes on an otherwordly adventure in the realm of swords and sorcery.
The unnamed uncle got himself isekai'd over 17 years ago, and he got used to his life in the fantasy world. But now he's back, awakening from his coma to a Japan different from the one he remembers. He's the anime Rip Van Winkle, but at least he's got his nephew, Takafumi, to support him.
7 Yuri Briar Is An Exasperated Young Uncle (Spy X Family)
In Spy x Family, Yor Forger is now a loving stepmother and wife, and she also has a much younger brother, Yuri, who is fanatically devoted to her. On the plus side, Yuri would do anything for his big sister, but he also has his sinister side and is not good with kids.
Yuri is now a 20-year-old uncle and is not too fond of his brand-new niece, Anya Forger. He can't stand how bad Anya is at studying and thinks poorly of his brother-in-law, Loid. For Yuri, proper family is a matter of blood.
6 Toshio Kotegawa Runs A Diving Shop (Grand Blue Dreaming)
In the light-hearted seinen anime series Grand Blue Dreaming, the irresponsible protagonist Iori Kitahara has a pretty big family, from his kimono-wearing little sister, Shiori, to his cousins, Chisa and Nanako, to his cool uncle, Toshio Kotegawa. They are not, however, related by blood.
Iori's father had been adopted into the Kotegawa family, making the father the foster brother of Toshio. In a way, Toshio is Iori's foster uncle, and the two of them generally get along well. In particular, Toshio runs a diving shop on Japan's coast, and that's highly relevant to Iori's new diving hobby. His uncle has much to teach him.
5 Asuma Sarutobi Is Konohamaru's Cool Uncle (Naruto)
Few aunts or uncles appear in Naruto, aside from the twin brothers Hiashi and Hizashi Hyuga, who are uncles to each other's children. Then there's the Sarutobi family tree, which includes the elderly Hiruzen Sarutobi, Asuma, and the youthful Konohamaru.
No one knows who Konohamaru's parents are, but Naruto fans understand that the ultra-cool Asuma is the brother of either Konohamaru's mother or father. So, he is a fine uncle for his ambitious nephew and a great father figure for his three genin charges in Team 10.
4 Bumi Is A Funny Airbender Uncle (The Legend Of Korra)
In The Legend of Korra, Bumi is Aang and Katara's first child, born as a non-bender. Bumi, frustrated at lacking his brother's and sister's bending talents, joined the United Forces and became an officer, later becoming an uncle to Tenzin's sons and daughters.
Bumi is a classic "funny uncle," a wild and goofy middle-aged man who loves all his family while entertaining them with tall tales of his adventures. In Book Three, he finally gained the airbending talents of his young nieces and nephews, and he had much catching up to do.
3 Nobuhiro Mashiro Drew Gag Manga Series (Bakuman)
In Bakuman, Nobuhiro is the deceased brother of protagonist Moritaka Mashiro's father. In his youth, Moritaka loved to visit his hardworking uncle's manga studio and watch the man practice his craft for hours, a cigarette in one hand and a pen in the other. It was just Nobuhiro, his nephew, and the art during these sessions.
Nobuhiro's gag manga series, Super Hero Legend, did fairly well, but his next two series tanked, and he worked himself to death trying in vain to recreate his success with Super Hero Legend. Moritaka is determined to follow his uncle's example, but Nobuhiro is a sore topic in his family.
2 Shin Nitta Looks After His Niece, Misaki (Cardfight!! Vanguard)
Cardfight!! Vanguard's Shin Nitta is the youthful, green-haired uncle of the main character, Misaki Tokura, though, in some ways, he is also like a substitute father for her. Ten years ago, Misaki's parents tragically died, so Shin made it his duty to look after his brother's daughter. He was only in his late teens, but he gave it his best shot anyway.
Shin did a fine job with that, and he also keeps himself busy in other ways. He also manages the Card Capital store and the Card Capital 2 store and played a significant role in Team Q4's creation. Besides that, Shin fights with a Murakumo deck.
1 Iroh Is Animation's Best Uncle (Avatar: The Last Airbender)
In Avatar: The Last Airbender, Iroh is the eldest child of Fire Lord Azulon and the older brother of the fierce Ozai. For a time, Iroh was next in line to become Fire Lord, and he was also the famed Dragon of the West, the great conquerer who came close to capturing Ba Sing Se. But then he had a change of heart.
The death of Iroh's son, Lu Ten, changed him. Now, he is a semi-pacifist, sage-like figure who favors peace, unity, and cooperation over war and conquest, making him exactly the wise uncle Zuko needs him to be. However, Ozai doesn't think so highly of his "disgraced" big brother.
NEXT: 10 Wholesome Anime About Families For The Family