10 best alien anime, ranked

Screengrab via Hulu

What better way to start your anime sci-fi journey than with stories about aliens? Over the decades, more and more exciting anime have been released, with a focus on the extraterrestrial. Ranging from comedy, to action, and even alien romance, there’s no limit to the way alien anime stories present themselves. 

Here’s a fun ranking of 10 of the best anime that center around some external life force that have made some kind of contact with human life.

Kill La Kill

This anime became popular because of its unique and bizarre characters. It uses comedy, action, and fan service to aid the storyline, which means its dedicated fan base always stuck around to see what would happen next. Kill La Kill follows Ryuko Matoi, a brand new scissor-sword-wielding student at Honnoji Academy — a school that became famous for its oppressive and powerful student council, who have special uniforms that grant them powers. Ryuko, who is on a journey to find her father’s murderer, gets help from her own sentient uniform and challenges the student council, shaking up the school in the process. In this exciting anime, the special uniforms are made from an alien life form called Life Fibers. 

To Love Ru

For the romance lovers, To Love Ru is a fun mix of comedy, drama, and romance, with a whole lot of fan service thrown in as well. The story follows Rito Yuuki, an ordinary high school boy who can’t confess his feelings to his crush, Haruna. Rito’s life is suddenly thrown into chaos when he comes home and an alien-girl suddenly appears in his bathroom. Her name is Lala and she made her way to Earth because her father, the King of the planet Deviluke, has set up an arranged marriage for her. With nowhere else to go, she latches onto Rito, and begins to fall hopelessly in love with him. 

Tenchi Muyo!

This 1995 anime series blends together comedy and space opera, and does so really well. The story centers on high school student Tenchi Masaki who spends his summer breaks taking care of his family shrine. His routine is ultimately ruined when a spaceship descends from the sky and out of it emerges alien females. They all seem to get attached to Tenchi quite quickly and begin vying for his affection, while he fights off galactic forces that threaten Earth.

Space Dandy

The 2014 space action anime focuses on the life of Dandy, a fashion-loving space explorer. For every new alien species Dandy discovers, he receives a large reward. He has a robot named QT, and Meow — an alien resembling a cat — as his sidekicks. All three go on an intergalactic journey to discover new alien species, while making sure they always look so damn good.

Outlaw Star

Outlaw Star is a 1998 anime series that takes place in space and leads the main characters on a journey in search of treasure. Tough guy Gene Starwind and his partner Jim Hawkins get a strange job offer from a mysterious woman named Hilda. They are asked to find a great treasure trove called the Galactic Leyline which could grant them ultimate power. The Outlaw Star crew then sets out on a journey to complete the quest and possibly gain power beyond their imagination. However, the journey proves to be quite difficult as enemy forces give them a hard time. 

One Punch Man

One of the more popular series on this list, One Punch Man follows the dealings of melancholic superhero, Saitama. As the title implies, our protagonist is so powerful that all it takes to defeat his opponents is a single punch. Wandering around his mundane city in the hopes that a worthy enemy will eventually surface, Saitama has grown quite bored. Fulfilling his childhood dream of becoming all-powerful, and even losing all his hair due to excessive training, fighting no longer excites him. One Punch Man has been lauded by fans by taking a simple plotline and fleshing it out in numerous hilarious and fun ways.

Gantz

Gantz gives viewers a new perspective on what happens after death. Kei Kurono and his friend die in a train accident and wake up in a dimension between life and the afterlife. They were resurrected by a black sphere called Gantz and are forced to participate in a game where they hunt down and kill alien criminals. If they die during the missions, their souls disappear. In this thrilling anime series, Kei must survive till the end to see what their reward could be.

Parasyte: The Maxim

Parasyte is a chilling horror anime that opens the door to hidden identities and gruesome deaths in a world where everything seems relatively normal. Seventeen-year-old Shinichi Izumi encounters an alien lifeform that consumes humans and takes over their brains. When a parasite unsuccessfully attempts to take over Shinichi, it ends up living in his right hand. Now the teenager and the alien monster must learn to coexist with one another, while Shinichi fights to protect his loved ones from other parasites.

Gintama

Inarguably one of the funniest anime in history, Gintama is an exciting anime to get into, regardless of the hundreds of episodes it has. In this hilarious series, aliens have taken over Japan, and this puts our lead samurai Gintoki out of work. Forming a band with his assistant Shinpachi, and an alien girl Kagura, they take on odd jobs all over Japan to make ends meet. Along the way, the bizarre and eccentric trio encounter a variety of odd characters.

Dragon Ball Z

Revered as one of the greatest shounen anime classics, and one of the most popular anime releases ever, Dragon Ball Z has received endless praise for pushing anime into mainstream media. The sequel to the acclaimed Dragon Ball series, Dragon Ball Z continues the story about the alien Son Goku and his relationships with the rest of the world, and his fellow Saiyans. As the Earth encounters foe after foe, Goku and his allies must continuously step up to the plate and protect the planet, while building a family of his own.