Since anime is a Japanese art form, there are a lot of people that insist upon watching it using Japanese audio with subtitles in order to view it closer to how it was originally intended. But for as long as anime has been around in the United States, there have been a number of companies built upon translating and dubbing it for American audiences. Nowadays I watch a lot of anime with subtitles, but I grew up watching anime with dubbed on Toonami and Adult Swim. If you’re new to anime, or you don’t usually give dubs a chance, here are five anime that you HAVE to watch dubbed.

5. Toradora


Opinions on the dub for Toradora seem to be pretty evenly split. But as I got deeper into romantic anime after watching Nagi-Asu: A Lull in the Sea and Golden Time last year, I decided to check out Toradora. Little did I know that it would become one of my favorite anime in the genre. Because I had the option available at the time, I opted for the dub and I was not disappointed. While some characters may occasionally seem a little out of place, the dub for the most part is pretty damn good.

It might not be number one on this list but the dub for Toradora is certainly enjoyable and I’d recommend giving it a shot.

4. Death Note


If you watched Adult Swim back in 2007, you’re probably already familiar with this one. But if you didn’t, then you’ll be pleasantly surprised to know that the dub is actually pretty good. I think it’s safe to say that most people who are familiar with the series in North America started with the dub. But as someone who sat down and watched the dub again earlier this year, I can definitely say it holds up.

3. Gurren Lagann


If you’re not familiar with Gurren Lagann, you’re probably familiar with the meme that spawned from the anime’s soundtrack. Row, row, fight the power? Yeah, that’s Gurren Lagann. But this list isn’t about the series itself. This list is about the dub, which is pretty fantastic. When I got back into anime after a long hiatus, Gurren Lagann was one of the first series that I watched at the recommendation of a friend.

As a huge fan of anime, it was odd for him to recommend that I actually watch a series dubbed. But after watching it I understood why; The dub is pretty good, especially since you might recognize some voices from the next dub.

2. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood


Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood has a lot of great things going for it. It has a brilliant soundtrack by Akira Senju, some of the best cinematography I’ve ever seen in an animation, and it’s a great series all around. But it also has a great dub. In fact, I find the dub to be so enjoyable that I won’t even venture to watch the series with subtitles. If that doesn’t tell you just how great it is, I’m not sure what will.

1. The Big O


I bet most people reading this thought Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood would be number one. When I was originally coming up with this list, I had intended for it to be that way. But I realized while I was coming up with this list that I had largely forgotten about The Big O; a series that I’ve always been fond of since I first saw it on Adult Swim. And yes, a lot of these come from Adult Swim — but back in the 00’s, Cartoon Network was killing it.

I say with great certainty that my love for The Big O doesn’t stem from nostalgia and to prove my point I present you with some of what I consider to be the best voice acting in the entire series — Michael McConnohie as Schwarzwald. Schwarzwald is a character with a lot of important, philosophical dialogue, and Michael McConnohie really pulled it off in a way that was just so memorable. He might not be the only character of note in the series but he’s sure as hell my favorite. Just have a look below!

Well that’s our list of five anime that you HAVE to watch dubbed. Agree/disagree? What are some of your favorite dubs? Let us know in the comments!

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Adam Capps

About Adam Capps

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Adam Capps is the editor of video games at BentoByte. He spends his days playing video games and his nights writing about them. He's also an avid fan of anime, manga and music.

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