Shojo anime is gaining attention for its flowery, romantic plots. Still, many shojo stories have an edge that would make them the perfect candidates for the shonen genre. Although shonen series are better known for action-centric stories, these shojos have enough heart-pounding sequences to fit under the heading.
There are many similarities between certain shojo and shonen shows. These shojo anime are full of fight scenes, magic spells, and powerful villains that will allow them to fit right in with shonen titles. Shonen may be known for these elements in particular, but certain shojo have them as well.
10/10 Dark magic creates many mysteries
My Next Life as a Villain: All Routes Lead to Doom!!
My Next Life as a Villain: All Routes Lead to Doom!! is a unique isekai shojo about a girl named Katarina who lives her second life as the villain of an Otome game. While the show is largely about relationships and the question of who Katarina will end up with, it also has a fascinating magic system that would make a great backdrop.
The magic used is mostly elemental, except for the taboo Dark Magic that begins to permeate the land. Katarina and the other heroes get caught up in many dangerous situations and are now researching more about Dark Magic. This intriguing side plot would make for a great shine if the show changed its focus.
9/10 Takeo deserves to be a Shonen hero
My love story!!
Taeko Gouda is the lovable main character in My love story!!. Takeo is a great young man whose greatest desire is to fall in love and be loved in return. However, he is also incredibly strong and talented in almost everything he does. It is for this reason that Takeo would make an excellent shonen protagonist.
Furthermore, the show throws its characters into many dangerous situations. At various points in the story, there is a fire, Takeo and his girlfriend get lost in the woods, and Takeo’s mother has to rush to the hospital to have her baby. Although the exciting sequences are part of everyday life, they are also tense enough to make excellent plots. My love story!! would make a great shonen so the audience could see Taeko as the true hero he is.
8/10 The Sohma family has a penchant for fighting
The Sohmas are a cursed, dysfunctional family from the show, Fruit basket. Thirteen of the members transform into the zodiac. But what animals they become causes strife among them. The worst part is that they all have to answer to the calculating head of the family – Akito.
Due to the enmity between all the members, there are many fights, especially between Kyo and Yuki Sohma, the cat and the rat respectively. Their fights are so bombastic that they would feel at home among the fight sequences found in shonen. In addition, the magical family drama is a compelling backdrop for a dark and mysterious shonen story.
7/10 Violet used to be a soldier
Violet Evergarden is the story of a girl named Violet after she returns from a brutal war. Even though the war is over, Violet still feels uneasy about living a normal life. Because of this, Violet goes on many adventures – including dealing with people who are not happy about the outcome of the war.
This anime would make a great shine if the focus shifted more towards the dissidents and other harrowing adventures Violet encounters. The story could even start when Violet first meets Major Gilbert Bougainvillea and continue by following them on their mission. Fans know what a great soldier she used to be and many would jump at the chance to see her in action.
6/10 The sailor scouts meet many terrifying villains
The galaxy is protected from evil by the Sailor Scouts in the show, Sailor Moon. The scouts encounter many incredible entities that all have universe-ending abilities. But through strength, courage, friendship and love, the girls defeat evil and triumph.
With such a heroic premise, it’s a surprise that Sailor Moon not already considered shonen. Its dangerous villains and fantastically choreographed fight scenes are enough to pique the interest of any shonen fan. Plus, the intrigue and time-bending plots are great for a convoluted show.
5/10 Zen and Shirayuki’s adventures are action-packed
Snow white with the red hair
Prince Zen Wisteria and Shirayuki go on many wonderful adventures in Snow white with the red hair. As the prince of the land, Zen faces many opponents who want to harm the kingdom. Shirayuki also confronts many of her own ne’er-do-wells who are out to capture her for her brilliant red hair.
Although the show is primarily a romance, this is a perfect story to adapt into a shonen anime. Zen’s captivating swagger and impressive swordsmanship would make him an excellent hero. Shirayuki shouldn’t be counted out though, as she holds her own against enemies just as much as Zen. With the entire cast fighting and training side by side, the show would provide a charming ensemble story full of action and imagination.
4/10 Yona and her team are fierce warriors
Yona of the Dawn
Yona of dawn follows the titular princess on her quest to reclaim her kingdom. With the help of four Dragon Warriors with special abilities, Yona hones her skills to prepare for the ensuing battle. With many battle scenes and compelling adventures, Yona of dawn was made to be a shonen anime.
Although Yona is still learning what it takes to become a warrior, three of the Dragon Warriors and Yona’s friend Son Hak are all exceptional fighters. They take down enemies and show off their unique powers. This show is a great candidate because of its heart-pounding action, coming-of-age story, and its many twisty adventures.
3/10 Sakura Kinomoto uses magic to capture Clow cards
Card Catcher Sakura
Sakura Kinomoto is on a mission to recover the Clow cards she accidentally released Card Catcher Sakura. On her journey, Sakura encounters many obstacles on her way to reclaiming the cards. Yet, every time, Sakura wins, showing the world that elementary school students can be heroes too.
Fierce despite her age, Sakura confronts her goals with determination. Her mission and adherence to her goal would make her the perfect shonen protagonist. Not to mention that her powers and sense of style match up with many others in the shonen catalog. Sakura is a true hero, regardless of genre.
2/10 Madoka and her friends fight to survive
Puella Magi Madoka Magica
Puella Magi Madoka Magica appears to be a typical Magical Girl show on the surface, but is actually a dark tale of deception. The girls all encounter treacherous monsters and countless evils as they battle the witches born of bad energy, only to realize that they are doomed to become witches themselves.
This show would make an amazing brilliance because of the unique fight scenes and unimaginable stakes. The deaths are also extremely brutal and tragic. This anime is the classic dark-shin combination of death, fighting and betrayal despite being considered shojo.
1/10 Ash is wrapped up in illegal activity
Banana fish follows the devastated Ash Lynx as he tries to discover the meaning of the words “banana fish” in relation to his brother’s death. Ash desperately tries to break free from the controlling crime boss, Dino Golzine, to get the answers he wants.
Banana fish is the darkest shojo anime with Ash encountering countless horrific things throughout his life. The show’s gruesome premise full of organized crime violence and mystery would make it a bitingly brilliant offering. Ash’s tale is so woven with action, horror and grief that it fits more into shonen than it does shojo.
NEXT: 10 Shojo Love Interests Who Are Stronger Than Shonen Heroes