It’s no secret that I’m a fan of harem anime. As a consumer of ecchi content, there’s very few shows that can be as good with that type of content as harems. However that’s not the only reason I love those types of shows, as harems tend to be extremely cheesy, over-the-top and honestly, full of life. It’s hard to come across an extremely depressing and sad harem, at least in terms of the entirety of the show. So for me, an anime watcher who prefers the comical, lively kinds of anime, harems fit in perfectly to that mold.
So this week, it’s my Top 10 harem anime!
Okusama ga Seitokaichou! (My Wife is the Student Council President) is the only non-full episode show on this list, but what it lacks in length, it certainly makes up for it in charm and well…a lot of ecchi. Out of all the shows on this list, this is certainly the one that pushes the limits the furthest. How this show is televised in Japan is incredible to me when the show is literally the tiniest step away from being a hentai anime. But despite its constant pushing of the boundaries, the show goes beyond just that of an over-sexualized show. The characters are all very charming, the comedy is on point at times and the show just does a fantastic job of taking a traditional slice of life anime and turning it on its head, or in this case, completely bare breasts.
This is actually the first harem anime I watched in full. I’m not even sure how I came across Ichiban Ushiro no Daimaou (Demon King Daimao) in the first place, but all I know is once I started watching that show, my fate was sealed, I was forever destined to enjoy harems. With a diverse cast of characters, a badass intro song and an over-the-top magical school premise that makes the show feel like what you’d get if you took Harry Potter and turned it into an ecchi anime. And come on, if you’ve watched the show, you know just how amazing Korone is. She makes that show.
Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai (Haganai) like Okusama at #10 is another one of those shows I’m amazed was aired on television, but then again it’s Japan, so why does anything surprise me anymore? While the show doesn’t go as far in terms of visible nudity and softcore as Okusama, this show is particularly known and in some cases blacklisted by anime fans because of the couple of girls on the show that are VERY underage and are naked or damn near close at times in the show. But if you can get past that, there’s an extremely funny show to be watching. With a cast of characters that go beyond the traditional over-the-top tropes, a constant barrage of jokes, puns and smacks in the face and a disregard for all morality, Haganai ends up being an extremely entertaining show, one that I went through really fast after I started watching it.
Like Daimao, Shuffle! is an early harem anime that I came across in my early days of watching anime. While Daimao was all comedy, Shuffle! on the other hand mixed that with some extremely serious themes, particularly toward the second half of the show. All the usual harem fodder is there, lots of ecchi, a rainbow hair cast of beautiful girls, but the show also has moments where they pull away the comedy and bring in the heavy doses of serious and downright frightening material. Take Kaede for example, a girl who seems like she’s playing the role of the perfect waifu trope, when out of nowhere she can turn super-yandere because of a mental disorder that began in her childhood. The show does the impossible, being very lively at times but also able to mix in the moments of sadness, depression and downright horror.
It’s very possible that Rosario + Vampire is at #6 solely on the perfection that is Mizore’s butt in striped panties. I’m half-kidding when I say this. All I can say is if that you’re looking for panty shots galore in an anime, this is the show you want to be watching. Basically a high school for monsters with the MC being the only human there, the show is a constant barrage of over-the-top fights, followed immediately by panties and butts, usually at the same time. Throw a couple of sexy vampires, a witch, a succubus, a snow woman into the cast of characters and you’ve got yourself an entertaining harem anime, one of I’ve gone through and watched a number of times over the years.
This is a recent addition to my anime library, so it’s very possible this show wins points due to the freshness of it. However, I can’t sell this anime short on its entertainment value and downright near perfection with ecchi content. Oniichan dakedo Ai Sae Areba Kankeinai yo ne! (OniAi) is a show that people will know for teasing an incestual relationship between the MC and his sister, but the show large in part does a good job of identifying that it’s only the girl who’s interested, not to mention it doesn’t matter when they’re three other girls fighting just as hard to gain his affection (and get into his pants) and one lovely redhead in particular REALLY fights hard for it. The show is littered with great comedy, a fantastic cast of girls and some really good ecchi scenes, everything I look for in a harem anime.
Out of all the shows on this list, Jitsu wa Watashi wa (Actually, I Am) easily has the least amount of ecchi in it, but it makes that up with an incredible amount of charm and adorability. There is no show on this list that I enjoyed more from being cute and adorable than Actually, I Am. With girls like Youko, Nagisa and Mikan, there’s such a pretty cast of girls that are all very interesting, along with their quirks, since like Rosario + Vampire, all the girls in the show are either monsters or have some sort of paranormal quirk to them. The show is chalk full of comedy, has a really nice romantic story to it and does a great job of not having one girl completely overshadow another. It’s a harem anime that anyone can watch, so long as Shiho’s not trying to play the role of sexual tension.
I’ve said it a few times already here, but I can never stop saying it about this show. When I started watching the simulcast of Monster Musume no Iru Nichijou (Monster Musume), I went in with the full expectation that I was not going to like it, for multiple reasons. I figured that a show with characters of that design would just not interest me at all and while in a way that was still true, there isn’t a girl in that show beyond Smith, the only notable human girl in the entire show that I actually have an attraction to. However, all the girls in the main cast have personalities that make it damn near impossible to not like them. While the show tries its damnedest to be just as sexy as any other harem, it’s not the ecchi that kept me interested, it was the amazing attention to detail and impeccable comedic timing that the show had that really sucked me in. I went into the show thinking it would be dumb, yet I left extremely entertained. And most of all, I tell people about how smart the show was with its characters, like for example I told friends about the task force they had where the four girls were placed perfectly, the ogre as a tank, the doppelganger as a spy, the cyclops as a sniper and the zombie as the charging soldier who takes all the bullets. Someone spent time thinking about this! I was impressed!
I was suggested this show so many times, I’d read so many posts online about how good the show was. Admittedly, I went into watching Nisekoi with the usual expectations I had of a show getting a lot of praise: not much. Generally speaking when a majority of people like something in terms of anime, it’s less likely to be something I’ll give high marks to. I might still like it, but it won’t be the most amazing thing in the world to me. But Nisekoi ended up being beyond better than I thought it was ever going to be. There’s no show that I enjoyed more in terms of a harem anime for its story and its cast of characters. In a show where you usually gravitate to one girl in particular as the one you want to ship with the MC, I had three that I just couldn’t choose from, Chitoge, Kosaki and Seishirou, all three of them were fantastic characters, I couldn’t bear to see any of the three get rejected. The comedy is so damn good in this anime, when the ecchi hits, it’s done very well and timed perfectly and the opening theme of Season 1 is perhaps one of the best songs I’ve ever listened to (I think I just found my next list…). There’s almost nothing bad I can say about the show, it’s essentially 99.9% perfect.
But even though Nisekoi is as close to perfect as it is, it just can’t beat my biased opinion of my personal favourite harem anime I’ve ever watched, Infinite Stratos. I look at this show and Nisekoi the same way I look at Final Fantasy X and VI, I know FFVI is the better game, but FFX is still my personal favourite. Infinite Stratos is definitely not a better anime overall than Nisekoi, however there is just so much about Infinite Stratos that hits my personal tastes more than Nisekoi does that I just can’t help but place this show at #1 instead.
Infinite Stratos does something no other harem anime has done for me, it’s created characters that are constantly in my head, they don’t leave my thoughts for very long. Specifically Charlotte, Laura and Houki, they’re three girls that are constantly sticking in my memories as three of the prettiest anime girls I’ve ever seen on-screen. It’s not even like I saw this show early on, this show is about right smack in the middle of my anime history, it’s not something new and it’s not one of my firsts either. That’s just how memorable to show was for me. For me, this is one of the best animated harems I’ve ever watched and manages to go beyond that of just having extremely sexy girls doing extremely sexy things, they’re also capable of having some really well-designed and animated mech fights (not full mechs, like specialized suits) that I also really enjoyed. The show just isn’t about girls in skin-tight suits showing off their butts, they have some really damn good fight scenes too!
But I would be lying if I said the ecchi content wasn’t a large part in why I love the show so much. I think it also helps that there is no anime I’ve watched where the list of girls I left that show loving is larger. Because it’s not just the main cast, it’s almost the entire supporting cast as well. Teachers, students that have less than ten voice lines the entire show, hell even a certain red-haired girl who is the sister of the MC’s best friend and shows up for maybe…three episodes the entire two seasons the show has run for. So many of the characters are beautifully designed and have just enough uniqueness and charm to make themselves memorable. Hell, even the villains are a bit interesting too and I usually don’t attach to female villains much in anime.
So the show has a fantastic set of characters, some fantastic ecchi scenes and some fantastic fight scenes. It’s a show that is impossible for me to ever forget, I still remember a ton of various scenes from the show ranging from Houki and Charlotte fighting over Ichika on a couples waterslide in Season 2 and Laura “lovingly” putting Ichika in a Fujiwara Armbar while naked in Season 1. There’s so many awesome things in this show that I can’t help but love and that’s why it’s my favourite harem anime of all-time!
So thank you very much for checking out this week’s Top 10, I hope you enjoyed it! Don’t forget to leave your favourite harems in the comments below and don’t forget to share this post with all your fellow anime fans!