10 Funniest Shonen Anime Of The 2000s

Shonen anime has arguably been the most popular genre in the anime industry for several decades, but its growth since 2000 has been nothing short of astronomical. Series like Naruto and One Piece have thoroughly permeated Western pop culture, while films from the Demon Slayer and Jujutsu Kaisen franchises have put up eye-popping sales in theaters across the world.

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Despite a significant portion of shonen titles stressing power-scaling and intensity, the genre has consistently fielded some of the funniest moments in all anime. In particular, the 2000s provided the perfect landscape for the long-term success of several comedy-centric shonen anime.

10 Gintama Might Be The Best Comedy Anime Of All Time

Sunrise Studio has published some of the most seminal series in the history of anime, but arguably no title in their extensive library has been more unique than the hilariously eclectic Gintama. Based on Hideaki Sorachi’s manga of the same name, Gintama follows the exploits of samurai Gintoki Sakata as he navigates an alternative version of Edo-era Japan that is chock-full of aliens, samurai, and loads of other wacky characters.

Make no mistake — Gintama is much more comedy than drama. However, the series does a great job, especially in later seasons, of balancing the two genres, creating a laugh-out-loud, ending journey with an unforgettable cast of characters. while Gintamas all-over-the-place composition might be a bit hard to get used to at first, anime watchers that give it a chance will find it one of the funniest series of all time.

9 Hayate The Combat Butler Nails Its Absurd Premise

Fans often associate shonen anime with the characteristics held by the “Big 3” (One Piece, Narutoand Bleach — all protagonist-centric series focused on power-scaling). However, series like Hayate the Combat Butler highlight just how much depth the genre truly possesses.

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Released by SynergySP, the production company behind the Major series, Hayate the Combat Butler follows the mishaps of Hayate Ayasaki after he unintentionally enters the service of one of Japan’s wealthiest families in an attempt to avoid a run-in with the Yakuza. As ridiculous as it is endearing, this series stands out as an underappreciated gem from the mid-2000s.

8 One Piece’s Humor Has Lasted For Decades

One Piece is by far the best-selling manga/anime franchise of all time, and a huge part of its success stems from author Eiichiro Oda’s ability to consistently generate hilarious and absurd situations. Since the anime’s debut in 1999, the Straw Hat Pirates have been spreading joy throughout the anime community with their journey for the One Piece.

Monkey D. Luffy, One Piece’s main character, possesses the qualities of rubber thanks to the Devil Fruit that he consumed as a child. Although this is admittedly a curious power for a shonen protagonist, it and One Piece’s other Devil Fruit-related powers set the stage for the silly antics that fans have come to know and love.

7 Bobobo-Bo Bo-Bobo Is A Surreal Treat

Anime as a genre has never been a stranger to peculiar material; however, even the most well-versed viewers would be hard-pressed to find a series that is as odd as 2003’s Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo. A rare example of surreal comedy being heavily used in the shonen genre, Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo is somehow just as comically offbeat as its name would suggest.

Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo is a 76-episode series that follows the adventures of its titular main character as he masters the uber-powerful Fist of the Nose Hair technique and fights back against the Chrome Dome Empire. Although the show’s overwhelming amount of slapstick gags and parody scenes have proved to be a tad polarizing among audiences, it is undeniably one of the funniest titles to be released in the 2000s.

6 Fairy Tail’s Comedy Stands Out As Its Best Feature

As a result of existing in a genre dominated by monolithic franchises such as dragon ball, Narutoand One Pieceshow like Fairy Tail have received an undue amount of flack for their perceived lack of originality. However, if there’s one factor supporting Fairy Tail’s claim as one of the greatest shonen of the 2000s, it is the show’s dedication to comedy.

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Most of the aforementioned shonen giants include humorous scenes on a regular basis, but Hiro Mashima’s flagship series takes this a step further, placing comic relief near the top of its list of priorities. Natsu, Lucy, and Happy, Fairy Tail’s main characters, are nothing if not hilarious, and when thrown into the magic-filled world of Fairy Tailthey have the perfect opportunity to show off their comedic chops.

5 School Rumble Subverts Shonen Expectations

School Rumble is another title that technically classifies as shonen despite its incongruence with many of the genre’s more popular titles. The series, released in 2004 under the Studio Comet banner, focuses on its main character, Tenma Tsukamoto, as she attempts to navigate the rigors of daily life at Yagami High School.

Although Tenma’s love triangle with two of her classmate forms a loose narrative through-line, School Rumble is primarily presented episodically. This decision gives the lovable show the opportunity to bounce between perspectives, which greatly benefits the surreal comedy that it frequently employs.

4 Naruto Drew Inspiration From Anime Classics

As part of the shonen “Big 3,” Naruto defined the landscape of anime post-2000, and even though Naruto: Shippuden, its sequel series, settled into a darker tone than the original, the comedic value of the franchise never deteriorated. Author Masashi Kishimoto credits dragon ball and Goku for inspiring his description of Naruto, a statement which is made obvious when comparing the two series with one another.

Naruto’s “Sexy Jutsu,” Kakashi’s love for adult novels, and Rock Lee’s over-the-top enthusiasm are but a few of the trademark, quirky behaviors exhibited throughout Naruto that call back to its shonen predecessors. While the humor is often juvenile, it is rarely untastefully so, and given Narutos increasingly serious subject matter, its comedy is a welcome opportunity for viewers to catch their breath

3 Great Teacher Onizuka Makes High School Fun Again

Great Teacher Onizuka might be over 20 years old, but its relevance to adolescence has yet to be affected by the passage of time. Produced by Pierrot (the studio behind Black Clover, Bleachand Naruto), this series details Eikichi Onizuka’s attempt to transition from a good-for-nothing gang member to a well-intentioned high school teacher.

For a show centered around high school antics, Great Teacher Onizuka tackles some surprisingly adult themes across its 43 episodes. The dichotomy of hilarious, juvenile humor and challenging, mature themes makes for an incredibly unique experience that deserves more mention in the shonen community.

There may not be a single title in the shonen genre that has received more critical acclaim than Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood. A more faithful adaptation of its source material than its 2003 counterpart, this series seamlessly transitions between hilarity and high-stakes combat.

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As evidenced by its very first episode, Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood doesn’t shy away from exploring the horrifying aspects of Equivalent Exchange — the rules of alchemy that govern the show’s mechanism of power. However, Edward and Alphonse feel as real as any two brothers to ever appear in shonen media, and thankfully, their nuance and depth of character allow for consistent comedic reprieves that greatly add to Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood’s overall levity.

1 Reborn! Gets Better With Age

While comedy often takes a backseat to action, drama, and other genres in shonen anime, a series like 2006’s Reborn!which is centered around infant hitmen, Japanese-Italian mobster families, and parallel universes, has no choice but to be a uniquely zany and entertaining experience. Reborn! never quite reached the same level of success as its more well-known shonen contemporaries

However, the lovable series carved out an impressively dedicated fanbase, especially in its later seasons, which adopted a more traditional shonen structure. Watching Tsuna, Reborn!’s main character, slowly grow into an individual worthy of being the next head of the Vongola family is a rewarding adventure that greatly benefits from its off-the-wall humor.

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