Since there is a large difference in how long a series goes in Manga versus Anime we are going to look at the 5 longest running Anime series only; not the Mangas. What lets a series become an Anime is the Manga process. You start off as a Manga. If you are loved then you have a chance at becoming an Anime. They give you a short series if they are not sure, usually 13 episodes. If they are confident in your anime being a success then they give you a 21-24 episode series. Based on the viewers from the first season determines how long they keep it going. Some series are very popular as a manga but they don’t quite translate to the anime screen. In order to become a 100+ episode anime you have to have a golden series both in manga and anime. This series are what the future generation will grow up on and the ones I will be going over today I have been watching for 5-10 years so far. Therefor we are going to exclude anything under the 20 minute standard episode length and ignoring the ancient filler shows.
1. Case Closed/Detective Conan: 600+ episodes
This show came on when I was in in pre-school and I watched it until I was in middle school. It was translated into English early on and therefor I stopped watching when the voices were no longer familiar. To not only have such a large number of episodes but also have the majority of those episodes translated into English; the show is still popular with kids around the world.
2. One Piece: 500+ episodes
This is another that many of us grew up on although not as many here in America. I started watching the series while visiting Japan and a few years later it came out in America on Fox’s 4kids line up. It was completely different than I had remembered so I went away from the English version entirely. The Anime was meant to start off young just like the viewers it targeted and then age as the viewers age, introducing more grown up scenarios and jokes. The way they did it has kept millions coming back for more so the series continues to grow.
3. Naruto/Naruto Shippuden: 400+ episodes
Although many don’t, I combine these two series together. They are the same characters and Shippuden picks up where the original left off. There is a slight difference in the growing with the series here. Where the original Naruto was centered around him as a kid-teenager and how he was learning; the second series Shippuden is centered around him as an adult and how he hones his skills. Due to the way that the series is developed there is an unlimited possibility for new routes through the Naruto ninja driven world.
4. Bleach: 300+ episodes
Bleach is another that grows with it’s audience and another that I refuse to watch in English. They changed the plot and entire dialog in several parts of the story. In the Japanese version this series is steadily rising as the new standard along with animes like Naruto and One Piece.
5. Dragon Ball/Dragon Ball Z/Dragon Ball GT: 300+ episodes
This series has been going on for so long and has so many different spin off plots that they could have keep it going forever. Just about every episode has been translated into English and it has instant recognition even from those that don’t like anime. While I consider most of it a cartoon not an anime because of the widespread notoriety both good and bad; even fan created material–It does follow the styling of an anime and is/was very popular.
Thanks to our friends at localtv-satellite.com for serving as a reference for this blog post.