A Sequel-Blown Season or a Fresh Start? Winter 2021 Anime Recommendations

9 Min Read

R E C O M M E N D A T I O N – A N I M E

Lamia Karim, Mahdi Daiyan Sadol

The anime industry had its fair share of downfall during the infamous former year of 2020. The majority of the releases made during the previous year struggled to be anything but average; the few shows which did cause somewhat of an impact were subdued under the chaos and anxiety induced by the pandemic. 

This new year, you’re probably looking forward to starting afresh by adding the brand new titles to your watchlist. However, this season seems to be monopolised by an obscene number of sequels and all everyone’s talking about are the continuations of the old shows. This list hopes to provide a solution to the problem by clearing up the pool of follow-ups by pointing out the new titles under the table which we think are worthy of your attention.

Kemono Jihen

Genre: Shounen, Supernatural, Action

Occult detective, Kohachi Inugami, arrives at a remote village tasked to investigate incidents regarding rotting and violated animal corpses. Despite everyone’s dismay, he takes interest in a peculiar young boy Dorotabo and asks him to help him with his investigation. Later, his doubts come true as he realises Dorotabo isn’t any normal boy. He is a Kemono; a separate species that does not die in a conventional way. Which welcomes us to the world of mysterious demi-humans, the Kemonos.

Getting Tokyo Ghoul-ish vibes? This is a must watch if you’re a sucker for modern-day battle shounen.

You can watch the trailer here.


Genre: Romance, Comedy

Time for some warmth during this moody winter of 2021. We have Izumi Miyamura, a typical gloomy loner (as he appears to be), and Kiyoko Hori, another generic hotshot of her school. The moment you expect a typical high school “famous girl falls for a loner boy” trope-y romance, ‘Horimiya’ hits you hard with a whole new level of sweet and wholesomeness. Both Hori and Miyamura have their hidden sides outside of school and they get exposed to each other after a fateful encounter. After that, both the characters develop a unique relationship and share with each other all the facets of their personality which they conceal from the outside world. This heartwarming tale is sure to give you a taste which isn’t generic at all.  

You can watch the trailer here.

Wonder Egg Priority

Genre: Psychological, Drama, Fantasy

Time for the most interesting entry of this season of 2021. Ai Ohto has nothing to live for after the death of her only friend, Koito Nagase; thus she ends up following a suspicious entity and purchases something called a wonder egg. In a world formed in her dreams, Ai finds a way to resurrect her beloved Koito-chan but this demands her to embark on a journey where she must face other peoples’ demons while connecting them with her own. 

This is an out of the box anime that deals with trauma, past regrets, and inner fears of people and how the same torments vary from one to the other. In this series, the characters fighting against mental issues are depicted through high adrenaline action sequences which prove to be a unique artistic approach to conveying the motifs underlying the show. You are absolutely bound to make time for this one as it’s a must-watch ‘slice of life’ anime in its own regard.

You can watch the trailer here.

Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation

Genre: Drama, Fantasy, Isekai 

Majority of the readers, utterly repulsed by the mention of isekai, have probably scrolled down to the next title by now. Regardless of how preposterous the following statement might sound, this isekai series with all its harem undertones in fact, looks on the more promising side.

Our middle-aged NEET protagonist redefines what it means to be the main male character of an isekai show after getting reincarnated into a fantasy world whilst retaining all his memories from his disenchanting past-life. His second chance in life starts from ground zero as he works up to reconcile his traumas and shortcomings from his previous life by learning and growing with all of the other highly-individualistic characters in the show. Wrapped up in an impeccable art style and spontaneous humour, this might just overthrow your negative perception of the ever-so infamous genre of isekai. Plus, getting the taste of reincarnation through the protagonist who is literally reborn as a baby doesn’t sound like much of a bad idea.


Genre: Sports, Comedy 

One of the main reasons behind the wide appeal of sports anime lies under the relentless perseverance of the characters and the vicarious pleasure we receive from watching them reach their goals. Each year, the anime industry conveys this thrill through various sorts of sport which explains why this enjoyment rarely ever goes stale. And this time around, it’s about skateboarding!

Reki, a high-school student passionate about the sport, meets a Canadian transfer student named Langa and introduces him to the dangerous world of underground skating. Afterwards, Langa gets dragged into a race with no prior experience of skateboarding. However, what happens next changes both of their status in the world of skateboarding.

Even though the storytelling is nothing out of the ordinary, it is still an exhilarating experience to see these beautifully animated characters develop their skillset, accompanied by the stimulating skate punk-inspired OST. Definitely worthy of occupying your free time when you’re looking for something that is easy to enjoy! 

You can watch the trailer here.

Heaven’s Design Team 

Genre: Comedy, Fantasy, Slice of life, Seinen

Can’t get enough of educational episodic shows akin to Cells at Work? Heaven’s Design team has got you covered!

God has appointed a design team tasked to generate new creatures adapted to populate the earth. The series has taken this seemingly simple yet unique approach to exploring biological beings and their evolution to the ones we now share our ecosystem with. The characters in the design team are rather rigid and set into their quirks, which leaves no room for character development rather, it aids in drawing more focus on their creations which, at the end of the day, is the central focus of the story. It might be a deal-breaker for weebs who are looking to speculate complex narratives and character arcs. It is rather expected to interest the imagination and curiosity of the younger demographic and the kind of show we believe will be the perfect recipe for a cosy afternoon with the whole family. 

You can watch the trailer here.


The writers belong to TDA Editorial Team.


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