Comedy anime are some of the most entertaining shows within the medium. Their gags, scenarios, and characters create moments and jokes that are undeniably funny. Fans of anime need shows that can make them laugh, series that are capable of using humor to elevate their mood. While many fans turn to anime for its most exhilarating action shows, its most breathtaking films, or its most complex stories, comedies give fans an outlet to just have fun.
While a majority of these shows are lighthearted and wholesome, a few of them take strange approaches to comedy, venturing into absurd situations, crude humor, and darker subjects. These are series that are not scared to laugh at the parts of human existence that are unpleasant or unrefined.
10 Inferno Cop's Minimalist Approach Is Ridiculously Endearing
Studio Trigger arose in 2011, emerging from the remains of the once legendary Studio Gainax. Fans were eagerly anticipating what the new studio would do as the spiritual successor of the studio responsible for shows like Gurren Lagann, FLCL, and Neon Genesis Evangelion, but no one expected Inferno Cop.
The show uses static character models to play out its wacky story. Inferno Cop is an officer who takes the law into his own hands. His head is a skull on fire and everything he shoots explodes. The anime looks like a B action film told with cardboard cutouts, and it is perfect that way.
9 The Mean-Spirited College Hijinks In Grand Blue Dreaming Are Hilarious
College settings are not common in anime. When they do show up, the humor is often sweet, relaxed, and grounded. Grand Blue Dreaming throws all of that out of the window. It is a loud show that revels in the debauchery of college living.
The anime is full of male nudity, constant partying, characters who cannot stand each other, and friends who are more than willing to throw each other under the bus. It is irreverent, caustic, and incredibly funny. The show is full of lovable jerks.
8 Zombie Land Saga Mixes The Morbid With The Adorable
Combining the horror genre with idol anime does not sound like it could work, but Zombie Land Saga finds a way to make it very funny. Kotaro's intense fervor for the idol business contrasts against the rot and decay of his talents. Every member of Franchouchou is a girl who has died young, but Kotaro reanimates them to sing for a live audience.
The premise is already absurd, but it goes even further in its presentation. The members of Franchouchou routinely drop their heads and limbs, and without their special makeup, their appearance is ghoulish in the eyes of a normal person. However, they strive to become a successful idol group. It has no right to be as charming as it is.
7 Cromartie High School Humanizes The Experiences Of Delinquents
Delinquents in anime tend to be loud and intimidating. With a more serious premise, they can be combative presences that serve as bullies, rivals, or instigators in a story. However, Cromartie High School wants to shine a different light on them. It does not shy away from their stereotypical depiction as violent and temperamental brutes, but it's not mean-spirited and leans into it for humor.
The aspects of a delinquent that everyone is familiar with are presented as truths, so the show exaggerates itself. A delinquent school is not enough for Cromartie High School. The school has to also have Freddie Mercury, a gorilla, a luchador, and a robot named Mechazawa. Even the show's straight-man figure is full of delinquent absurdity.
6 There Is Nothing Subtle About Panty & Stocking With Garterbelt
There is no other comedy in anime that relishes its own irreverence and crudeness like Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt. Every joke is either raunchy, disgusting, or crude. The show manages to balance it out with its adorable art style and its inventive direction. The anime is immature, but it is also wildly dynamic.
While potty humor is not new to comedy anime, Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt embraces it wholeheartedly and takes it to the next level. Instead of just talking about poop, they fight a giant poop monster. It is not afraid to be literally filthy. For fans who can stomach that, this show is sinfully funny.
5 Detroit Metal City Maliciously Twists Misunderstandings
Detroit Metal City shows the misadventures of Negishi, and they are fun for all the wrong reasons. He is an ordinary mild-mannered man who dreams of creating sweet pop songs, but fate turns against him in unexpectedly cruel ways. Instead of making quaint and dainty pop songs, he becomes the hero of the underground metal scene.
He performs as Krauser II, a vile and abrasive rock star who spits and screams at everyone. As much as everything about the scene goes against his wishes and his personality, Negishi is a natural. The juxtaposition between his two personas is where the audience derives their humor from. The show laughs at Negishi's expense, and it works.
4 Humanity Has Declined Finds Hilarity After The End Of The World
All of the pastel colors and adorable designs in Humanity has Declined exist only to mask its deeply cynical sense of humor. The main character has no real passion for her job and has very little faith in humanity. Her general outlook is very jaded.
The surrounding characters consistently make very dark jokes. The fairies rejoice when talking about starvation, oppression, and subjugation. Their faces are always cute, so it is perplexing to see them joke about such dark topics. It is the blend of cutthroat negativity and adorableness that makes the show memorable.
3 Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei Is The Peak Of Pessimistic Humor
The central gimmick of Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei revolves around a teacher who sees no value in life and believes everyone around him is doomed to be miserable. While this premise does not scream comedy, Nozomu Itoshiki is an exaggerated person. He is always screaming about despair.
His students do not buy into his rhetoric. Many of them slyly make fun of him, but few of them match his pessimism with incredible positivity or equally exaggerated traits. Itoshiki is never in a position where his worldview actually matters. The whole show is about finding humor in the darkest of places.
2 The Warped Romance In Kaguya-Sama: Love Is War Is Perfect
Kaguya-sama: Love is War is the perfect anime for romance-comedy fans who overthink everything. It centers around a couple who pine for each other, but cannot admit their feelings. Instead of talking it out, they go through elaborate plans to get the other to admit their feelings first. It is just as manipulative as it is wholesome.
The anime elevates itself with how it handles the romance. It does not drag it out indefinitely to maintain the status quo of the comedy. It builds it up, allowing the comedy to take a new form. Kaguya and Shirogane still scheme behind each other's backs, but at least they develop as characters.
1 Welcome To The NHK Is Almost Too Cruel With Its Humor
Welcome to the NHK is about a hikikomori and a girl who wants to rehabilitate him. If the anime were more optimistic, this could have been a wholesome premise. However, the show repeatedly goes off the deep end. It highlights his paranoia, conspiracy theories, and social anxieties. It also pushes him down the rabbit hole. Satou gets involved in pyramid schemes, online gaming addictions, cults, and macabre meet-ups.
All of these elements are handled with a degree of comedy. There is malicious glee in how the show presents Satou's downward spiral. On top of that, it does not take the easy road by magically curing his social anxiety. However, it shows that while things can get worse, they can also improve as long as one is willing to keep pushing forwards. The journey is genuinely affecting, and the ending is surprisingly cathartic.
NEXT: 15 Comedy Anime To Watch Right Now