3 Animes That Could Break Into the Mainstream

Michael B. Jordan has recently released his collaboration with Coach that heavily features Naruto. Yes, the anime.

As amazing as that is, Jordan isn’t the only one who’s been inspired from a popular anime. 

On October 6, Israel Adesanya aka the Last Stylebender fought for the undisputed UFC Middleweight Championship at the Marvel Stadium in Melbourne, Australia. There are two things to note here: 1. Marvel has become so popular that a stadium is named after them and 2. The Last Stylebender takes his nickname from Avatar: The Last Airbender. What a time to be alive.

Not that anime isn’t widely known since pop culture includes just as many Pokemon and Dragonball Z references as anything else. But for anime to be associated with global brands such as Coach and the UFC, you can’t help but feel that the culture is shifting. It also makes us wonder which anime will be brought into the mainstream next. 

Here are three guesses: 

3. Cowboy Bebop

With John Cho starring as Spike Spiegel in the live action adaptation, it’s hard not to see Cowboy Bebop breaking into the public eye in a big way. However, I also can’t blame you for setting your expectations low since anime live action adaptations don’t have a great track record. From Dragonball to Death Note to Ghost In the Shell, live action anime movies don’t tend to fare well as their source material.

But Cowboy Bebop holds a lot of promise because it has the benefit of being a series. Since most animes start out as episodic series, one would assume that a live action series would’ve been the natural transition, but let’s not dwell on the past. The truth is that “Cowboy Bebop” will have all the advantages of a longer run time and let’s hope that can equate to a quality show.

2. One Punch Man

The way my friend’s kid brother pitched One Punch Man to me was that there was an invincible superhero, who dispatched all villains with one punch. How? By following a simple, but effective calisthenic program of 100 push-ups, 100 sit-ups, 100 squats, and a 10 km run every day. Not that I’m a paragon of physical health, but I had enough fitness knowledge to know that this was nonsense.

Then I saw the excitement in my friend’s kid brother and realized how if I was his age, I wouldn’t just watch that show religiously; I would follow the One Punch Man workout program. One Punch Man seems to have that rare mythological aura around it and although the premise is a bit ridiculous, it has crossover appeal. Just search One Punch Man workout on YouTube and you’ll see that it’s possible the wider public may very well take on that challenge.

1. Monster

There’s something to be said about material that reflects our times and Monster definitely has a lot to say about our current political landscape. In short, Monster is about a master surgeon, who chooses to save a child’s life in a harrowing surgery only to find out years later that that same child has become a serial killer. The premise doesn’t reflect our time exactly, but philosophically it asks us to take responsibility for our actions even when it wasn’t intentional. 

The current president was voted into office and many of his supporters probably thought it for the best. But countless people have been negatively impacted by this presidency. In Monster, the surgeon vows to make things right and learns much more about his serial killer patient, but he presses on. Time will tell if America will take responsibility, but like Monster illustrates, we still have a lot to learn and a lot to make right.

What animes do you think will burst onto the mainstream? Let us know in the comments.

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