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Seto Kaiba: Avatar isn't anime!
Gansley: It might as well be.

Things that are done in an art style similar to, or use tropes associated with, Japanese anime. Also called anime-influenced animation, Amerime or Americanime (if it's American), Franime (for French things), or faux-anime, animesque works come from a variety of sources. Some are simply non-Japanese creators deciding to mimic the style, while others are genuine co-productions. France and Canada are especially known for cooperating with Japanese producers in this way. In Japan itself, "anime" is a broad term for anything animated (being shorthand for the loanword "animation"), so technically, all of these examples are "anime" whether or not they are classic Japanese-style anime.

Animesque art is a case of a 'full-circle' evolution, because the Japanese anime style was inspired by classical American theatrical animation of the 1930s and 1940s. For example, the big eyes of anime characters were taken straight from such works as Bambi and the old Fleischer shorts — think Betty Boop.


This style was pretty prevalent in the early 2000s due to the rise of the anime boom in media with many following the trend. Nowadays not so much now that anime is pretty commonplace, though still a design choice for some.

Note that this is about a work's art style, not its storytelling.

Compare Disneyesque. See also OEL Manga and Fanime.

Straight Examples

    open/close all folders 

  • The Metro Manners series of PSAs are live-action, but the whole concept toes the line between Affectionate Parody and wholehearted embrace of anime tropes. The videos feature a Magical Girl/Henshin Hero protagonist who fights monsters representing rude transit behavior, with lots of Gratuitous Japanese. The visual style is also very anime-inspired, with examples including Super Kind's purple hair, use of anime-style title cards in Japanese, and the use of freeze-frames with Manga Effects, such as a segment where Super Kind freezes, shocked, while white lines radiate out from her face.
  • A few advertisements from Canada also do this:
    • This Recycle Everywhere PSA features not only an animesque artstyle and animation, but also characters using superpowers that have anything to do with recycling. There's also a white-haired woman that appears to be teaching a teenager on what goes into the blue bin and what doesn't, as well as having the ability to vaporize liquids (Specifically leftover ones) with her eyes.
    • A more notable example is Welcome to the Haulerverse, an ad for the Canadian Supermarket chain No Frills. This is what happens if you make an Action Anime that consists of... shopping at a grocery... complete with over-the-top superpowers and special effects to boot.

    Animation — Asia (non-Japanese) 
  • The Chinese series Nana Moon has a brightly-colored, cutesy art style that looks much like a kodomomuke anime, and it uses several well-known anime facial expression tropes.

    Animation — Europe 
  • Fantastic Four: World's Greatest Heroes and Code Lyoko, both produced in France by MoonScoop. Code Lyoko includes a Japanese girl as one of the main characters, perhaps as a way of acknowledging its anime influences.
    • Code Lyoko uses a similar artstyle while trying to be different (notably with less exaggerated expressions than most animesque series), and was inspired by Serial Experiments Lain. The pilot, Garage Kids, is even more inspired by anime, when it comes to it's animation, plot and includes even more blatant Serial Experiments Lain influences.
    • Fantastic Four: World's Greatest Heroes's overall artstyle (characters, fights, animation, places) is also influenced by Japanese animation.
  • Miraculous Ladybug, a co-production between French studio Zagtoon and (to no surprise) Japanese studio Toei Animation. The heroine is a Chinese-French Magical Girl who relies on anime-styled transformation sequences; this also applies to Adrien Agreste (Cat Noir) and the characters who become super heroes in the subsequent seasons. It was originally even more anime-like before becoming an All-CGI Cartoon. The original trailer is often compared to Pretty Cure/Glitter Force and featured the protagonist with a huge Idiot Hero, which the anime concept was a complete success. The finalized cartoon is in CGI but still keeps a lot of its Japanese influences (for example, in some of Marinette's trains of thought, her mental images are drawn in the style of black-and-white manga).
  • The 2007 adaptation of Valérian called Time Jam: Valerian & Laureline is another.
  • The Podcats, a French series animated in Canada by the company who did Clash of the Dinosaurs and some of the effects for Underworld: Awakening.
  • Iginio Straffi's shows Winx Club and Huntik: Secrets & Seekers (from Italy) were designed in an anime style, and every character has hair highlights and eyes reminiscent of characters from (respectively) Shoujo and Shonen series. Both heavily feature transformation sequences. They don't use Limited Animation, though.
  • The Rainbow Magic movie, due to the character designs and animation style; no surprise, as it was co-produced by The Answer Studio.
  • Robotboy, which is primarily visible in the Astro Boy-esque premise of the series.
  • Spanish animated film Gisaku, going so far as not only being drawn in an animesque style, but also featuring a samurai as protagonist. In Spain.
  • Some early Mondo TV (an Italian studio) series were animated in Japan, so an anime style was unavoidable:
  • Khuda-Yana, a Spanish series by B.R.B. Internacional, looks and moves a lot like your typical anime series.
  • Angel's Friends, for the transformation sequences and magical girl motif.
  • Sophie et Virginie, for its very Japanese character designs and animation style; not surprising considering it was animated in Japan.
  • The characters of Kaeloo often use sweat drops, face faults and other anime-like things.
  • Beast Keeper
  • Ōban Star-Racers, the series was co-produced in Japan, so it isn't a surprise that it has a Japanesey feel to it.
  • The cartoon adaptation of Disney's Italian comic-book series W.I.T.C.H. produced by French studio SIP Animation also uses an anime art-style.
  • Wakfu, a France-animated series based on a video game. It's so much that some episodes are produced in Japan. All humanoid characters (those of the Eliatrope, Sadida, Cra and Iop races) have designs and proportions which are faithful to the anime style. For the remaining characters, such as the monsters, the degree of anime influence varies.
  • Jelly Jamm is primarily a Spanish-British co-production but utilizes common anime expression tropes including but not limited to; Sweat Drops, Cross-Popping Veins, an Idiot Crow, and even before that there's an episode where Gratuitous Japanese text appears. Bandai Namco of all companies is also involved in the show's production, which may have something to do with it since they're a Japanese company.

    Animation — U.S.A. 
  • My Little Pony:
    • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic is what happens if the My Little Pony franchise was rebooted using Anime Tropes. The art style adopted the distinctively big-head, tiny-mouth, wide and sparkling eyes style that anime is known for. Some anime graphical elements even found their way into the show. That said, the art style is still very westernized, in particular when it comes to the non-pony characters and animals.
    • The My Little Pony TV Specials were animated by Japanese studios, and it shows. The second one looks especially shoujo.
    • My Little Pony (G3) was often described in its heyday as an animesque take on the characters, specifically their character designs.
  • Abby Hatcher is basically a CGI kid's show but with anime elements, especially with the use of quivering puppy dog eyes and miniature mouths with curved corners, speed lines, and the chibi-styled Fuzzlies.
  • Although a Western cartoon, Avatar: The Last Airbender is anime-influenced in its art style and animationnote . Design-wise, characters have fairly large eyes, exaggerated facial expressions, and Asian-inspired outfits, as the show is rooted in Eastern mysticism and mythology. The animation utilizes Manga Effects like the Sweat Drop and Cross-Popping Veins.
    • The Sequel Series The Legend of Korra naturally carries over much of this anime influence in its own art style. The character designs, exaggerated facial expressions, and many of the outfits all retain the Anime influence of the original series. That said, it is worth noting that the animesque elements are Down Played compared to the original series, because they are now mixed with a Roaring Twenties western aesthetic for most of the environments, and some Christian elements got added to the universe’s mythology with the introduction of an ancient war between light versus dark spirits.
  • Blaze and the Monster Machines heavily borrows different styles of anime, especially facial elements. Notable in that the mouths of the trucks tend to expand rather wide when shouting or grit rather exaggeratedly when angry or straining, and as of the Art Evolution introduced in Season 3, speed lines can sometimes be used. It gets much more expressive and detailed as the series progresses.
  • The Blinkins, like many 80's cartoons, has animation by a Japanese company, though it was produced in America.
  • The Boondocks uses stylistic Watanabe-based animation, chiefly because Aaron McGruder is One of Us. Also, most of the animation studios that worked on this show are in Korea (however, Madhouse in Japan did do a bit of work on this show as well, and two of the animation studios are owned by Japanese companies Madhouse and Studio Gallop). There's an Easter Egg homage to Samurai Champloo in the the second opening. The first one is a Shout-Out to Cowboy Bebop. So, in other words, they're both shout-outs to Shinichiro Watanabe. They even devote an entire episode to both Samurai Champloo's "Baseball Blues" and Shaolin Soccer ("The Red Ball")
  • Frankenstein Jr. deserves a mention. While its art style wasn't especially anime-like, it was one of the first Western series to be inspired by anime—specifically, contemporary Super Robot works such as Gigantor.
  • She-Ra and the Princesses of Power is what would happen if you rebooted the classic She Ra show using an anime format. The art style clearly borrows from 90's Magical Girl anime (particularly the way the characters's eyes are drawn) and the works of Hayao Miyazaki and Moebius.
  • Super Robot Monkey Team Hyper Force Go, with an old-school super sentai tokusatsu flavor.
  • The classic Ben 10 series amalgamates elements from the anime style (speed lines, hair highlights, and flashy transformation sequences) with motifs and character designs from the comic book genre. The Omniverse incarnation of the franchise plays this trope more straight, with character designs that veer away from the American superhero comic book style.
  • Transformers Animated. It helps that one of the co-owners of the property is a Japanese company, and all three of its animation studios are Japanese.
  • Kappa Mikey: Everyone save the title character is drawn in a limited-animation anime style as the show is set in Japan — therefore everyone there is Japanese and must be drawn in a Japanese style, except the title character, who is American and drawn in a much simpler fashion. It pulls no punches when it comes to Facefaults and thinly veiled parodies. This is played for laughs in one scene when everyone gets a big-head facefault except Mikey, being drawn in American style. He holds his breath in an attempt to copy them, fails, then mumbles, "Show-offs".
  • Three Delivery is an anime-influenced series by Animation Collective.
  • Xiaolin Showdown uses Asian-influenced themes and window-dressing and uses visual gags commonly found in anime. The character designs, however, are distinctly western.
  • Loonatics Unleashed
  • The DCU:
    • Batman: The Animated Series has a couple of nods to The Castle of Cagliostro (and used TMS Entertainment to boot), but overall, the art style is closer to the old Fleischer cartoons. The New Batman Adventures episode "Growing Pains" in particular has a Ghibli-esque look and feel to it. A bit of research does yield that it was animated alongside some animators from Ghibli.
    • Batman Beyond borrows the setting, a futuristic city overrun by gangs, and a recurring theme of Bio-Augmentation from AKIRA.
    • Some of Justice League's action sequences are Dragon Ball-esque earth-shattering fights. The Justice League episode "Legends" also features a giant robot that is a not-too-subtle Shout-Out to EVA Unit-01. There's also the Justice League Unlimited episode "Chaos at the Earth's Core", which starts with a fight against a kaiju in Japan.
    • The Batman. With the fight scenes, use of stock footage for his suit-up sequence, and the designs for both Robin and Batgirl, it definitely takes influence from anime.
    • Batman: Gotham Knight was created by multiple anime studios, but was primarily made for an American audience, and distributed by an American company. The stories were American-made but the actual animation was directed by several famous anime directors. Each segment also uses a different animation style.
    • Bruce Timm revealed that before Justice League, the next Batman show was slated to be an anime-inspired reboot that he described as "Batman meets Power Rangers".
    • Teen Titans was heavily inspired by anime in general, and by bizarre, expressionist anime like FLCL in particular. This led it to have all the "quirks" of Japanese animation, like sweatdrops, "chibi" forms, etc. and even a title theme by J-Pop band Puffy AmiYumi. Taking it even further, all the quirky "filler" episodes have the theme sung in Japanese.
      • Teen Titans: Trouble in Tokyo, in which the Titans go to Tokyo, contains parodies and references to everything from Kodansha comics and weird Japanese commercials to Japanese art, and includes a sub-plot where Beast Boy sings the Japanese version of the theme song at a karaoke bar and gains a fanbase of Japanese schoolgirls. Even its spin-offs keep up the look; the DC Nation shorts resembled chibi omake chapters, and Teen Titans Go! is a Galaxy Angel-esque parody series that wouldn't look out of place in CoroCoro Comic.
  • Star Wars: The Clone Wars is described by its creators "like anime but in 3D", the show has clear influence in anime art style merged with the Genndy Tartakovsky style seen in Star Wars: Clone Wars.
  • Star Wars Rebels: The successor of The Clone Wars naturally implied animesque art style fusioned with a little Disney art style
  • True to the birthplace of the eponymous J-pop singers, Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi. And Janice Kawaye's role of Ami helps out, considering that she speaks fluent Japanese.
  • The Powerpuff Girls (2016) has an anime-inspired sequence in "Power of Four" where the girls transform into one big glowing Powerpuff Girl and fight a monstrous version of Him. A Japanese song plays as this occurs and a girl takes off her glasses to show off her purple "anime eyes".
  • Star Wars Resistance has an even more noticeable anime influence than its predecessors, right down to the more expressive faces and brighter color palette. It's even animated by Polygon Pictures, the Japanese studio behind shows like Knights of Sidonia, Blame! and Ajin, as well as the animated Godzilla films.
  • The Red vs. Blue: Animated pilot uses a beautiful and extremely fluid animesque style. Sadly, differences between Rooster Teeth and the group who animated it prevented them from going any further with this. Until Season 14 anyway, where it was made canon and received an extra scene at the end.
  • Trollz is this, with speed lines, animesque eyes, and the girls being magical.
  • My Life as a Teenage Robot. There's even an episode that has Jenny lose her language OS disc after a trip to Japan, leaving her only able to speak Japanese for almost its entirety. As with the AmiYumi example above, it helps that her voice actress, Janice Kawaye, is a Japanese-American who speaks Japanese fluently.
  • Zero-Context Example — what exactly makes it similar to the Japanese style?
  • Megas XLR, which combines something obstinately Japanese (the Giant Mecha genre) with something obstinately American (New Jersey and muscle cars).
  • Invader Zim is very popular among anime fans and somewhat animesque; the Megadoomer was even a miniature, squat, practically chibi-style EVA with invisibility, and an entire sequence of the Christmas Episode was a practically shot-for-shot remake of a scene from End Of Evangelion. The DVDs were even produced by a company that usually produces anime DVDs, which caused most video stores to place the show's DVDs in the "anime" section.
  • The 4Kids Entertainment cartoon Chaotic is an interesting example of this. Although the first season uses simplistic-looking flash animation, the second season changes completely, using a style that is clearly based on anime.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003) is particularly Animesque in terms of storytelling but many of the action scenes have a clear anime influence. The opening sequence even has a Shout-Out to AKIRA. This actually got more pronounced as the series went on and the "Back to the Sewer" season dropped all pretense whatsoever. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012) snuck up behind the other shows and took the Animesque cake. Then Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles got released and took the crown, with designs and action scenes that'd look right at home with some of Studio Trigger's more action heavy shows.
  • Monsuno. This can be further blurred by most of its English cast being more known for working on anime.
  • When Magic Adventures of Mumfie: There are lots of Ridiculously Cute Critters in the show, Mumfie's winking, the characters having Wide Eyes and Shrunken Irises when they are shocked in "The Amazing Scarecrow", a villain who predates shojou anime villains such as the Grim Reaper and Zakkena, and Scarecrow occasionally using an anime style of eyes when smiling or sleeping. The first and second seasons were actually animated in Canada, and the most anime-esque season, the third, was animated in Spain.
  • Though its art style is mostly western, Steven Universe takes a lot of aesthetic and thematic hints from anime. Most notably, the Crystal Gems are essentially Magical Girl Warriors, and there are plenty of references to anime throughout the show. Pearl herself looks very reminiscent of an Osamu Tezuka creation, being very tall and bendy with a pointy nose. The first half hour episode "Bismuth" adds to this by adding Eye Catchs before and after the commercials. It also has a plot disconnected from the current ongoing Story Arc, which dealt with Jasper's attempt to build a Corrupted Gem army to take revenge on "Rose" (Steven) and Amethyst's feelings of inferiority stemming from being too Unskilled, but Strong to beat Jasper in their first fight), introducing a new upgrade to the main three Gems' weapons), and introducing a unique antagonist that is introduced and defeated by the end of its running time.
  • One of the Dexter's Laboratory Cartoon Network Groovies is styled in an animesque style.
  • The Rankin/Bass Productions shows ThunderCats, SilverHawks, and TigerSharks. The opening sequences, and how much better they are than the rest of the show, are a dead giveaway. The cast is pure American comic book style, yet how they were handled make these some of the most Animesque shots in existence.
  • Thunder Cats 2011 touts its look and animation by Japan's Studio 4°C as major selling points.
  • Jem was animated by Toei Animation. It has a western art style however some Japanese things accidentally slid in, like some background extras looking animesque and a Japanese eyechart appearing (instead of an American one). The series also uses characters who naturally have abnormal hair colors, which is uncommon in American animation, and has some Magical Girl traits. The show has Eye Catches as well, which are more common in anime than American cartoons.
  • Various DiC series including Inspector Gadget, Heathcliff & the Catillac Cats and Jayce and the Wheeled Warriors. Aside from moving like '80s anime, it became especially visible in Gadget any time the characters were shaded.
  • The DiC series of Care Bears has been described as being rather animesque, and in fact it really looks like some of the children and adults are drawn in this style. (There is even an episode where a character is shown wearing a Sailor Fuku.) This was one of the examples of a co-production with Japanese animators, and there were even parts where they showed newspapers with scribbles that seem to indicate it being written like Japanese newspapers.
  • Popples: The children have randoseru backpacks, the "ViVi" magazine in "A Hair-Raising Experience" has Japanese writing on it, and Party has Wide Eyes and Shrunken Irises after very loud music is blasted into her ears by her radio at the near-end of "Pop Goes the Radio".
  • The Real Ghostbusters. The characters practically switched styles depending on whether or not they were shaded. Then you had things like Stay Puft's anime expressions in the opening, and even a Face Fault during the old promo.
  • Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts: The show's artstyle alone gives off this vibe, to say nothing of that fact that the animation is done by Studio Mir.
  • Glitch Techs features dynamic action scenes, chibis, and expressive facial features reminiscent of 2000s boom of similarly-styled Western cartoons of the trend. It helps that one of the animation studios involved is Flying Bark Productions, which also animated Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in the same style.
  • Ready Jet Go!: The characters' huge, shiny eyes and spiky hair on some of them could bring anime to mind. Also, the comic-book style transitions and montages resemble anime just a little bit. Notable that Craig Bartlett is a fan of Hayao Miyazaki.
  • Though it didn’t last beyond the Pilot episode, Constant Payne was heavily inspired by Anime in its artstyle, and Word of God listed Cowboy Bebop as an inspiration.

    Animation — Other 

  • Ur-example: Japonism. Although long before anime, back in the 1860s, Japanese Ukiyo-e prints heavily inspired Western artists of the time. Notably, Van Gogh actually painted two of Hiroshige's works.
  • The works of the British (a northern one, to be exact) design studio The Designers Republic in The '90s codified the usage of this trope in Graphic design (prominently featured on the Wipeout series). They turned it into a timeless trend, so timeless that people started copying them. Though they rarely demonstrate this trope anymore, they are still remembered and associated to Japanese-influenced design movements.

    Card Games 
  • The original card game Magi-Nation was like this, before it got bought out and had change in art style.
  • Magic: The Gathering plays this straight often (for example, Chandra, the Firebrand and Jace, Memory Adept. Double points in that there was a special edition version of their original cards drawn by a manga artist released sometime before), but it's averted in the Japan-themed Kamigawa block, which seemed to go more for an art style reminiscent of traditional Japanese art instead of anime.

    Comic Books 
  • The style of Sky Doll (especially the side material, e.g. Lacrima Christi or Space Ship) is discreetly, but definitely influenced by the manga style.
  • Adam Warren drew OEL Manga years before it became the cool thing to do — or had a name. One of his contemporaries in that sense is Lea Hernandez.
  • The title character of Empowered hangs a lampshade on this in a meta-text panel from Vol. 1, lamenting that a manga-styled superhero comic won't have it easy when most manga fans have zero interest in western style superheroes, while most superhero fans hate anything that even looks like manga.
  • X-Men was actually drawn by manga creator Kia Asamiya for a brief time in 2002. As well, the art of Joe Madureira, who drew the book from 1994 to 1997, is heavily manga-influenced.
  • The Marvel Adventures version of Power Pack by Gurihiru Studios. Like with most other Japanese artists hired to draw American comics, it is just as much an example of them matching our style even in pacing and storytelling.
  • Ditto the art of Runaways. But looks less animesque as Art Evolution goes.
  • Ninja High School was drawn and written by Ben Dunn, an admitted anime and manga addict, and pretty much spoofed and/or parodied anything and everything in the genres that it could get away with in its early days. Since then, it's settled down into an actual overarching plot, but the parody elements (as well as the art style) remain woven integrally in.
  • Gold Digger, another Antarctic Press title by Fred Perry, has an art style heavily influenced by anime/manga, but the artist himself tends to keep the proportions within the art consistent and avoids the common visual gags for the most part. Also, while references creep in from anime that Fred's seen, they're kept company by an equal number of pop culture references from the Western world as well.
  • One early example of American graphic novel influenced by manga is Wendy and Richard Pini's ElfQuest.
  • The Door Stopper It Takes a Wizard is drawn in manga-style despite not being a "Manga" in definition. (It's even placed in the manga section.)
  • Radiant could easily be mistaken for a Japanese series — it even goes on the Manga namespace on This Very Wiki. Valente notes his influence from Toriyama and Yusuke Murata's works, and it definitely shows in his art. He even refers to the series as a shonen manga by name. It's also one of the few mangaesque series to fully make the jump to its country of inspiration; Murata endorsed the series when it was translated into Japanese, and Lerche spearheaded an anime adaptation of the series airing in late 2018. Fairy Tail author Hiro Mashima commented in volume 5 that "while it looks like a Japanese manga at first glance, its slightly bitter tone feels very European."
  • James Paterson's novel series Maximum Ride was adapted into an OEL Manga.
  • Rockin Raven is very deliberately based on the manga style.
  • The art style of Dark Wraith of Shannara, Del Rey's first foray into comic publishing, was meant to emulate manga, but had Western-style panel layout.
  • The OEL adaptation of Sherrilyn Kenyon's The Dark Hunters was written by an American, drawn and lettered by Americans, reads and looks like a typical American indie comic, but is formatted in a right-to-left page format like a manga.
  • The Dreaming is a comic that is drawn in manga-style by a Chinese-Australian author named Queenie Chan. It's even published by TokyoPop, and is considered one of the first non-Japanese manga series that they published.
  • Dork Diaries looks rather animesque, but it's more to give the idea of a girl who is an artist doodling in her diary, and her drawings are actually quite detailed.
  • Batman:
  • Ape Entertainment's Scarlet Veronica seems to deliberately attempt to blur the line between western comic art and manga art. Typically resembling Thick-Line Animation, characters facefault, sweatdrop, and even go chibi as the situation requires.
  • Becky Cloonan's work in Demo draws primarily from older indie comics, but steps into anime territory for at least two issues — issue #3 ("Emmy") and issue #10 ("Damaged") both seem heavily manga-influenced. By the second series she seems to have grown fond of the style.
  • Chynna Clugston's Blue Monday. The cover of the first volume even has the lead lounging in a giant bowl of ramen!
  • Vampirella: There was a sci-fi re-imagining called "Vampi" that was done in a heavy anime style.
  • Welcome to Tranquility features an Art Shift to this style in the back-up that gives the skinny on background character Mangacide an extreme Occidental Otaku.
  • Ame-Comi Girls is a series based off the popular Anime-inspired toyline. The series stars Manga-styled redesigns of characters such as Wonder Woman and Batgirl.
  • UDON Entertainment, best known for Street Fighter and official art for most Capcom projects since 2005. Dozens of artists, most of them Canadian, all of them with clearly manga-inspired styles, the best known of them arguably being Alvin Lee, who handled the series up until Street Fighter II and is responsible for the UDON art found in the Capcom games that use it.
  • Monica's Gang:
    • There is a spin-off series focus on the teenager audience called Monica Jovem (Monica's Teen Gang). Just compare the normal and cartoony Monica and her friends with her Teen version. The Teen comics are in black and white, while Monica strips were often made with colorful tones. The comics still read left-to-right, though (complete with a last-page notice warning readers of this). Some editions even parodies famous anime like Death Note or games like the Phoenix Wright franchise and MMORPGs in general.
    • After the success of Monica's Teen Gang, another printhouse published Luluzinha Teen. Yes, it's Little Lulu for teenagers in animesque and yes, that's Tubby Tompkins kissing a Sailor Moon cosplay. For some reason, Animesque comics aimed for teenagers are getting a high popularity in Brazil.
  • Bryan Lee O'Malley's Scott Pilgrim is quite heavily influenced by manga art style. The characters have large heads with big, expressive eyes.
  • Seconds. O'Malley specifically stated he wanted to try "70s/80s manga style like Rumiko Takahashi or Izumi Matsumoto" with "bigger hair and 'cuter' figures."
  • Godzilla: Rulers of Earth, whenever it's being drawn by Matt Frank, has extremely anime-like designs, especially on the humans. Which is somewhat fitting seeing as the franchise in general is Japanese in origin.
  • Jake Wyatt's issues of Ms. Marvel, complete with really adorable Chibi expressions for Kamala.
  • Poet Anderson: The Dream Walker
  • Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics) went through a period of this from 1996 to about the mid-2000s. Cover artist Patrick "Spaz!" Spaziante was the first to go into this with James Fry and Ron Lim soon after.
  • Archie Comics had a few 'manga style' series in the early 2000s, when anime was gaining popularity in America. Fans hated the artwork however the actual writing in the Sabrina the Teenage Witch comic was praised.
  • IDW's Jem and the Holograms has a western art style however it does have some manga influences. Jerrica does a Magical Girl type spin when becoming Jem and certain artists use some manga-type expressions.
  • Erin Hunter:
    • Warrior Cats' graphic novels, despite being American in origin, are called manga, and James Barry in particular has a more animesque style than the other artists. He tends to give cats tufts on their heads, even though cats don't actually have said tufts (and in an extreme example, one had actual hair).
    • Sister series Seeker Bears also has a few OEL Manga.
  • The titles of the short-lived Culture Crash Comics from the Philippines, which includes Cat's Trail, One Day Isang Diwa, Pasig, Solstice Butterfly, and sometimes Kubori Kikiam all featured Animesque designs.
  • The Manga Classics series adapts classic literature into an OEL Manga format.
  • Witch & Wizard was adapted into two manga-style graphic novels in 2010-11.

    Comic Strips 
  • The Boondocks has been using an animesque artstyle since its newspaper comics strip days. This is because creator Aaron McGruder says that anime presents the feeling of live-action while still being animation. It also allowed him to get away with Only Six Faces by differentiating only the hairdos and skin tone of a lot of the younger characters.
  • InSecurity looks as if it came out of a manga series, from wild-looking Anime Hair, Alertness Blinks, Big Ol' Eyebrows and Visible Silence, to most other Japanese Visual Arts Tropes.
  • The newspaper strip My Cage has many of its female characters drawn in an animesque style, though everything else is pretty western. Notable for the fact that its syndicate made a big honking deal about how it will appeal to "manga fans". It appealed to people, just not the massive amounts of manga fans that they were expecting.
  • A christian comic Tract series called The Truth For Youth uses a manga style.

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animation 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The Movie version of Speed Racer was described as "the first live-action anime", and it certainly fits, with Speed clearly a Hot-Blooded hero, the mecha-like Car Fu, and even Speed Lines! A parody of Fist of the North Star also appears in the show.
  • The story of O-Ren Ishii from Kill Bill Volume One had a portion which was an anime-style cartoon homaging — of course — anime.
  • Brick is created with the same shot composition and editing an anime would have. Brendan's looks are also based off Spike Spiegel.
  • The story of Pacific Rim The film takes a great deal of cues from Super Robot Genre anime, as well as Toho Kaiju films. This was probably the idea behind the over-the-top characterization, including a hot-blooded rival.

    Live-Action TV 

    Music Videos 
  • Kirsten Dunst covered "Turning Japanese", and the music video is her in a magical girl-styled dress, dancing around Akihabara.

    Tabletop Games 


    Video Games 
  • During its development, Jet Force Gemini was inspired by several science fiction works, including the anime series Science Ninja Team Gatchaman, hence the character designs for Juno, Vela and to a lesser extent Lupus, specifically their anime-style eyes and the humans' space suits. In particular, Juno's helmet is modeled similarly to that of Ken the Eagle, while Vela's skimpy wear mimics that of Jun the Swan. At one point in the game, their suits are upgraded with Jet Pads to fly in certain places, similar to the Science Ninja Team when gliding with the Bird Style. And each time the player resumes their playthrough, the character selection has the heroes preparing to eject from their mothership into the site of action, similar to when the Gatchaman characters prepare to head into the current episode's place of conflict.
  • The Caverns Of Hammerfest contains a few animesque traits, what with the blurred-feet running animation for Igor and the little dance he might do after you idle — the latter being is a homage to Haré+Guu.
  • Dragon Age II: Elves got an overhaul to look more like their Japanese counterparts, with long pointy ears, huge eyes, smoothed-out facial features and skinny bodies, including the token Anti-Hero companion.
  • Carrie's Order Up! uses big eyes and a bright, colorful style that does an amazing job of recreating the look and feel of '90s Japanese arcade games.
  • A Hat in Time has cute character designs with large eyes, anime-style expressions, and speed lines are used frequently.
  • No Straight Roads uses a highly-stylized art style with a slight anime influence that's most obviously seen in the 2D animation cutscenes. One particularly strong case is the Virtual Idol Sayu, who is deliberately designed to be a cutesy anime Genki Girl with Idiot Hair.
  • Haven (2020), by France-based developers The Game Bakers of Furi fame, has an art style and storyline that could be straight out of a Hayao Miyazaki film (the protagonists even have Asian-sounding names), and gameplay highly inspired by Japanese RPG's such as Persona.
  • Forgotton Anne is a Danish adventure game whose style and themes are clearly inspired by Studio Ghibli films.

    Visual Novels 
  • Katawa Shoujo is a Western attempt at making a Japanese-style Visual Novel, complete with anime-style artwork. The art style is because the original art that inspired the game was Japanese. Some people saw a Japanese artist's drawings for a visual novel he'd like to see one day and decided to make it an actual visual novel. It succeeds at emulating Japanese anime/manga and Visual Novels so well that a good amount of fans were actually surprised to hear that it wasn’t made in Japan.
  • Zig-zagged with don't take it personally babe, it just ain't your story. While it is a Western-made visual novel, its background CG art and character sprites are used ready-made from a Japanese designer that specifically makes them available for amateur visual novels. On the other hand, their AmieConnect avatar pictures and event CGs are drawn by a western artist in animesque style, but with still a heavy western feel. The transition is actually slightly jarring.
  • Anything by the infamous "Winged Cloud", usually their visual novels are prefixed "Sakura".
  • Everlasting Summer was developed by Russians, was originally written in the Russian language, and is primarily set in the former Soviet Union. But both the gameplay and character design seem straight out of a Japanese visual novel.
  • Missing Stars is an English language visual novel that has animesque character designs. It is a Spiritual Successor inspired by Katawa Shoujo set in a European school. The finalized art is a bit more western than the early concept art, however it is still animesque.
  • NomnomNami's characters are usually drawn in a particular anime style. This style can be seen in Her Tears Were My Light.
  • Extracurricular Activities is a Western novel where the facial expressions and gags are anime-influenced, as well as the novel borrowing from the Harem Genre where instead of cute girls, the love interests are hulking anthropomorphic men. In early 2018, the novel switched over to a new artist where the art direction became less animesque.
  • We Know the Devil is another Western visual novel with character designs largely grounded in reality, but with clear anime influences. Most pronounced in the case of Venus, who has big round eyes.
  • Heaven Will Be Mine is made by the same team as We Know The Devil and not only has the same artist but is a Mecha series with heavy influence from Gundam. One of the main characters, Luna-Terra, is even a female Char Clone.
  • Doki Doki Literature Club! is a School Club Story with typical Japanese high school girl archetypes and a moe art style. It was developed by an American team lead by Dan Salvato, who is also a developer and pro player of Project M. Except it eventually becomes very creepy, but keeps the art style.
  • Va 11 Hall A looks like an anime visual novel that's really deep in the PC-98 aesthetic, but the game was developed in Venezuela.
  • A Summer's End — Hong Kong, 1986 is a Visual Novel developed by Studio Oracle and Bone, a team based in Canada, but it takes a lot of aesthetic cues from anime of The '80s, such as City Hunter and Kimagure Orange Road. In one post from the official site, the artist names the art of Haruhiko Mikimoto, Akemi Takada and Akihiro Yamada as some early artistic influences.

    Web Animation 
  • Many of the early BIONICLE web animations had shades of this. The character models were very faithful to the sets, but they would occasionally include things like Sweat Drops, Blush Stickers, and stylized motion-blur backgrounds for action sequences.
  • Broken Saints: This was more notorious before the Animation Bump, with the first episodes being redone in a more realistic style. However, it still had some visual influence from anime.
  • TVTome Adventures and its successor series, TOME: Terrain of Magical Expertise.
  • RWBY: The series is an interesting example of this, with everything about the series looking like a 2010s anime, complete with chibis and various animesque expressions... except that they're 3D animations, making them appear like a series made of cutscenes from a post-Oughts JRPG or a 3DCG show by Sanzigen Animation. It actually does a good job on turning those anime gimmicks 3D, and is able to mix in some Western animation tricks as well. Hilariously, when it was uploaded to Crunchyroll, some people started demanding for the "original" Japanese audio, apparently not realizing that English was the original language (though it received a legit Japanese dub later on). While most of the cast placement and angles appears to be a mix of the Machinima style and soap operas, the fight scenes show Monty Oum's signature mix of anime and Kung Fu/Wuxia choreography norms with western martial arts. It apparently did a good enough job of keeping to Japanese tropes, as the series ended up getting official manga adaptations — one by Dogs: Bullets & Carnage artist Shirow Miwa, and another as a 4-volume anthology series.
  • gen:LOCK, made by RWBY's creators, uses the same "3D animations that look like 2010's anime" schtick. However, the animation content is quite different; taking cues from Gundam, gen:LOCK is essentially a Western mecha anime with an All-Star Cast.
  • Bee and Puppycat is very obviously inspired by shoujo anime both thematically and stylistically. Bee specifically is reminiscent of Usagi in that she is a Loser Protagonist and becomes a Magical Girl who fights in space after she meets a cat (dog... thing.) Character design falls short of just being anime altogether.
  • Dreamscape: Anjren and Ahjeen are animesque in terms of expressions, oddly enough.
  • The Machinimas Brawl Universe and Smash King tend to heavily lean on the side of anime with how their episodes are filmed and edited, as they tend to use EyeCatchers, Japanese Opening/Ending themes as well as Cold Openings, and their action sequences do borrow from anime with the Effects of White/Black spikes surrounding the screen if something dramatic happens, as well as sometimes using transformations in battles.
  • TIE Fighter is a fanmade Star Wars short animated in the style of '80s anime.
  • Muffin Songs, a YouTube channel for children, uses a style reminiscent of anime for its earlier videos, as well as some Japanese Visual Arts Tropes. For example, on this video, Cinderella's face looks like it's drawn in the Puella Magi Madoka Magica art style, and she wears ribbons that are nearly identical to Haruhi Suzumiya's.

    Web Comics 
  • Kuro Shouri is inspired, both visually and in story, by anime of the 90s and 00s. It has taken some cues from Western works over time.
  • L33tStr33t Boys is about a band based on a group of Otaku, done in anime style.
  • Lily Love is Thai and not Japanese. However, it takes several aspects from Yuri Genre manga, such as the artstyle and chibis.
  • The Lounge has considerable manga influence, both in artistic style as well as the art gags and tropes common to manga.
  • Mexican artist Kanela gives M9 Girls! a definite manga look à la The Noordegraf Files, complete with chibi panels and manga annotations. The story itself is the Mad Science version of the Magical Girl genre.
  • Animesque style isn't reserved to English-language webcomics. Here's a popular French example: Maliki. With one strip directly referencing its many influences, several of them from anime.
  • Mechagical Girl Lisa ANT. Even though Ida Kirkegaard is [[Useful Notes/Denmark Danish]], the drawings are something like distorted manga-style drawings.
  • MegaTokyo is the archetypal example of this trope in the world of webcomics, even going so far as to take place in Tokyo and be a fantasy/dating sim storyline. The comic has become one gigantic deconstruction of just about every anime-sub-genre, complete with a disaffected Magical Girl who can't really use her powers the way she thinks a magical girl should (meaning, like Sailor Moon).
  • Misfile has a major manga-esque influence, with scarcely a strip going by without a super deform, chibi, or the omnipresent egregious Sweat Drop making an appearance. Even Rumisiel's T-shirt gets one of those at one point.
  • Monsterful: A Slice-of-Life Webcomics of a monster-only world that shows a moderate manga influence, but it's well balanced with western influences and completes the circle with multiple video-game and internet references from both Eastern and Western markets.
  • Mutant Ninja Turtles Gaiden, a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fan-comic, which has its human characters drawn in a manga style.
  • Nightvee: Characters have large eyes and often make anime expressions.
  • No Need for Bushido parodies elements from anime/manga set in feudal era Japan.
  • The Noordegraaf Files hits this on the head, linking this trope's page on the comic's homepage, and the creator has said in The Rant that it is drawn and colored in a Japanese paint program made for, you guessed it, making manga.
  • Overlord of Ravenfell is stylistically influenced by older CLAMP manga and Yoko Matsushita, so definitely falls in this trope.
  • Pandora's Tale uses a very cutesy anime aesthetic, especially noticeable on the Helpers.
  • In Ronin Galaxy the cover art resembles anime, and the actual pages are made to look like a manga, despite being read from left to right.
  • Roommates and its Spin-Offs, Girls Next Door and Down the Street, (the latter to a lesser extent) have a lot of manga influences. However, the Art Evolution of the first two seem to slowly diverge from this style in different directions: Roommates gets more and more realistic, while GND slowly shifts towards the style of Franco-Belgian comics.
  • Rusty and Co., besides the parody mentioned below, grew into this style with its Art Evolution, especially in the design of female characters.
  • Sandra and Woo is a mixture of this and western comic stylizations.
  • School of Mages is drawn in a manga style, and it is even read from right to left.
  • Van Von Hunter, Sokora Refugees, and Red String are manga-inspired webcomics that were eventually published by major American manga companies TokyoPop and Dark Horse. However, Sokora Refugees appears to have been taken off the 'net.
  • Zos Kias is one of those American manga series that reads right to left.

    Web Original 
  • Smash King is very anime inspired in having eye catchers, anime openings/endings, as well as very animesque battles while still maintaining a grounded world and characters.
  • Keit-Ai features animesque art in the webcomic version. Meanwhile, the fanfic and original fiction also feature a mostly Japanese setting and characters. This is to be expected of a series that originated from 4chan.
  • Certain Neopets look suspiciously like Pokémon, the PetPets even more so.
  • Despite being a text-based Shared Universe serial, Whateley Universe frequently applies anime tropes, often lampshading or deconstructing them but just as often playing them straight. This is underscored by their being a number of characters who are explicit expies of anime or video game characters either due to their mutation (e.g, Tennyo, Tif Lock, Aerys, and Tiff's brother Squalling), or because they deliberately emulate their favorite characters to an obsessive degree (e.g, Ash and AKIRA).note 
  • Along with having a manga style cover, the Superhero Web Serial Novel Gamer Girl is bursting with anime tropes, from manga-like facial expressions, to long, Shonen-esque fights, to wacky gag anime-style comedy.
  • Gaia Online features anime-style avatars and illustrations, with plenty of shout-outs to anime, manga, and Japanese games. The plot comics are even referred to as "manga". During the site's early years, the tagline was "an anime role playing community" and once featured a directory of anime-related sites.
  • Ichika Whatever has a lot of this. Especially in issue 1. In issue 1, Ichika and Himari are trying to think their perspective of Kurt Cobain is, with what would later become Himari having a light pink background, light pink is associated with good in Anime, and what would later be Ichika had a dark red background in her mind and Kurt Cobain was showing an angry anime facial expression. Complete with the bead eyes and a caption(In English) it first appeared on Facebook and may never see the light of day again, this panel was released in 2019. With the series being continued in 2020
  • The last third of the Scott the Woz episode "Anime Games", appropriately enough, has Scott being pulled over into an anime fight scene (with explosions, hand beams and giant mechas) against one Dr. Anna May, who attempts to eliminate Scott for his distaste in all things anime.


    Comic Books 
  • The Ghost Rider villain Skinbender. Er... not for the faint of heart.
  • French comic Sentai School is a spoof of many Japanese series (either anime or live-action, and mostly from the '80s) well-known in France.
  • Issue 14 of Bart Simpson's Treehouse of Horror features "Murder, He Wrote", a parody of Death Note drawn in a manga style.
  • Scott Pilgrim series bears some artistic and formatting similarities to manga style, but its short parody deserves special mention. Volume 4, "Scott Pilgrim Gets It Together", ends with a reading guide as one would find in a right-to-left book. "STOP. This is the BACK of the book. What do you think you're doing?"

    Fan Works 
  • It isn't uncommon for fan-artists fond of the Animesque style to use it even when depicting non-Japanese series.
    • Here's an example that work surprisingly well despite the extreme Art Shift: The Order of the Stick Manga Style. (Note that the fan-artist is Chinese.)
    • Another good example: Tiffany Aching if The Wee Free Men was directed by Hayao Miyazaki.
    • South Park not only parodies Anime often, but the Japanese fanbase (or those who are just fans of Japanese anime) often portray the characters as such in fanart and fanfiction, which doesn't please other parts of the fandom. Some of these artworks were actually shown in the episode "Tweek x Craig".
    • The Japanese fanbase of Happy Tree Friends also does this, although it isn't as common that people bash it.
  • Zany To The Max
    • Of the seven members of the Kat Krew, five are drawn this way. The other two are Drake the Duck and Narf the Mouse.
    • The newest member of the Warner family is Sikko Warner (Pakko, Makko, and Jot's sister), who is drawn this way as well.
    • Other characters drawn this way are Sekoila Zarner and Wacka and Wakka MaRakka.
    • In fact, Zany to the Max even features a fictional country known as Animenia, where almost all the characters are drawn this way. Since Yakko isn't drawn this way, it is unknown how he became the temporary king of Animenia in one episode.
  • Animenia is also featured in this author's Homestar Runner fanstuff (which is known as The Homestar Runner Show). The character of Slipstar Runner was created by Homeschool Winner when he visited Animenia with Homestripe and Coach B. In fact, it is revealed that Homestripe's parents are the king and queen of Animenia.
  • A Mr. Men fan series by the same author (called The Mr. Men and Little Miss Show) has Little Miss Slippery, who is drawn this way as well. Later on, Little Miss Wacky and Little Miss Camouflage, who are also drawn this way, were added into the series. In all the fan series by this author, the style is referred to as "Animeniesque", which is pronounced similar to (and is possibly also a reference to) Animaniacs.

    Films — Animation 
  • Manga, anime, and bad dubbing are affectionately parodied in the 2008 animated adaptation of Dr. Seuss's Horton Hears a Who! while Horton, an elephant, imagines he's a heroic ninja (the result looks a lot like Teen Titans).

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Spoofed in the movie Super Troopers with the really cheap-looking "Afghanistanimation" cartoons produced by the Taliban. When they find a monkey sticker on bags of marijuana, Rabbit explains that this is likely a brand used by these particular dealers, borrowed from the Afghani cartoon Johnny Chimpo, vaguely reminiscent of Anime.
    Captain: What's the significance of this John Chimpo fella?
    Foster: Uh, well, you know those really cheap Japanese cartoons? No? This is basically a cheaper Afghani knockoff. It's this monkey that basically travels around the world... uh, doing nasty things. His butler tries to keep him in line, but, uh— No.
    Rabbit: It's really funny, Cap! It's Afghanistanimation!
    German guy: Well, the butler is basically saying to Johannes Chimpo... "Don't let the Great Satan tempt you with the Western culture. You must remain true to the Taliban warlord."

  • Most Fruitful Yuki, a Show Within a Show in the movie Juno.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Episode 1 of The Hard Times of RJ Berger has an animated flashback in which Natsumi is drawn in anime form and talks in Japanese (with English subtitles).

    Video Games 

    Web Animation 
  • Homestar Runner's 20X6, featuring anime versions of the main cast, like Strong Bad as Stinkoman and Homestar as Stinkoman's sidekick 1-Up. ...And then it gets even more meta with Xeriouxly Forxe, which is a parody of this very trope, particularly edgy anime-influenced cartoons from The '90s such as SWAT Kats.
  • Angelicate Avenue, by Alli Kat Nya.
  • Girlchan in Paradise!!, by Egoraptor.

    Web Comics 

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • Perfect Hair Forever: An unavoidable consequence, of course, of being a Shōnen anime parody, complete with non sequitur fanservice. Taking it a step further than that, [adult swim] even once aired it done up like an old-style VHS (and low-quality) Fansub for the April Fools' Day weekend.
  • Gemusetto Machu Picchu is yet another [adult swim] anime parody show, mainly being a parody of sports anime, with a very surreal sense of humor and animation style. It's also more affectionate than Perfect Hair Forever and focuses on trends with a lot of animation bumps. It even has opening themes in (very poor) Japanese!
  • Robot Chicken: A puppet Stop Motion and Sketch Comedy that satirizes many Japanese Anime shows such as Sailor Moon, Pokémon, Voltron, AKIRA, Speed Racer, Dragon Ball Z, Inuyasha, Shokushu Goukan, Japanese Hentai, Ranma ½, and Final Fantasy, plus American cartoons such as Teen Titans.
  • Cow and Chicken: The Japanese in this Got Milk ad.
  • Before they were unceremoniously canceled, the last episode of Clerks: The Animated Series ended with a direct parody of out-sourced animation in general, poking fun at Korean animation studios. Any story this episode had was completely tossed out the window.
  • South Park gleefully subverts this trope on a handful of occasions.
  • Johnny Bravo once had Johnny watching "Clam League 9000", a spoof of Pokémon with a hint of Dragon Ball Z.
  • ReBoot presented a game that simultaneously spoofed both Dragon Ball Z and Pokémonat the same time.
  • One of the several The Fairly OddParents made-for-TV movies has Timmy and Vicky surfing through the dimension of television with magical remotes, creating parodies of numerous classical cartoons, two of which for anime. The first is for Speed Racer's often-joked fast voice acting in the dub. The second is another Dragon Ball Z spoof with a show titled Maho Mushi, portraying a (to Americans) violent fighting tournament and a multitude of beam attacks. The characters' designs change accordingly; Timmy now has bead eyes similar to Krillin while Vicky is dressed like Piccolo. At one point, Cosmo accidentally blasts two holes into sides of the arena. (At least he wasn't Majin...) Though the remote controlled giant mecha were still out of place.
  • Johnny Test parodied both the Pokémon anime and games a few times. The parodies were actually surprisingly accurate, including such aspects as evolution by happiness.
  • Dexter's Laboratory
    • The series is rather Animesque on its own, but that didn't stop it from doing a complete and full parody of Speed Racer — right down to the style, plot line and Motor Mouth dialogue. Except DeeDee, who didn't get the joke and was animated (largely) normally.
    • In the first series finale, "Last But Not Beast", the students at the Japanese school Dexter transfers to own a mecha. Also, the teacher there had pink hair and blue eyes.
    • In a revived season episode, the villain Hukouchou looks like an evil bishounen. Long hair, icy blue eyes, pointy ears, and so on.
  • The Phineas and Ferb special, "Summer Belongs to You", had a short musical segment that took place in Japan and caused all the characters to turn into some strange-looking anime style all while doing a parody of Caramelldansen. The singers were in Sailor Fuku too.
  • The animated MAD has a segment called "Grey's in Anime".
  • In "Batman's Strangest Cases", an episode of Batman: The Brave and the Bold, one segment is an Affectionate Parody of the '60s Batman manga by Jiro Kuwata. The sequence is in sepia tones, has extremely limited animation and out-of-synch "English dubbing", and is a gentle jab at '60s anime like Gigantor.
  • The Simpsons:
  • This concept was parodied twice in Garfield and Friends first in "Invasion of the Big Robots" where Garfield winds up in a Voltron-esque show, and in "The Clash of the Titans" where Garfield and Odie team up with the X-Men expies The Power Squad.
  • Regular Show: The episode "Brain Eraser" has Mordecai and Rigby rent a videotape of an anime series known as "Planet Starlight Chasers Excellent", which is a parody of many anime series that were popular in The '80s and The '90s. It fits in with the Retro Universe of the show itself, having blinding fight scenes and a Gratuitous Japanese theme song. The video store owner (voiced by Roger Craig Smith, who has done voices for many anime) confesses to watching it "all day, every day."
  • The recursive "American cartoon with Japanese-outsourced animation that disguises itself as American" style that was endemic in the '80s (see the "Animation-USA" tab in the "Straight Examples" section) was parodied in the Amazing World of Gumball episode "The Sweaters", which featured a high school and a couple of characters drawn entirely in this style. They even have a more washed-out color scheme as if they were ripped straight from an old VHS tape.
  • Major Lazer uses a style that makes it look as if it were an American cartoon from the '80s co-produced by Toei.
  • The final episode of the sixth Futurama season features three stories animated in a different style, including anime.
  • The The Angry Beavers episode Pass it On! has the brothers and their friends telling parts of a campfire story, each an affectionate parody of some genre of fiction. Treeflower's portion is anime in both visual style and narrative.
  • The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy: at one point in "My Peeps", Billy gets eyestrain, and Grim uses his magic to fix Billy's eyes, accidentally giving the boy precognitive powers. Grim ends up repeatedly altering Billy's sight in an effort to fix things, demonstrated by point-of-view shots through Billy's eyes as the art shifted through several different styles including an Animesque one.
  • Dr. Krieger's holographic girlfriend Mitsuko Miyazumi from Archer is clearly based on an anime girl with her big sparkling eyes, pink hair, and anime style expressions.
  • In the Mighty Mouse: The New Adventures episode "Don't Touch That Dial" Mighty Mouse encounters The Real Gagbusters, a mix between The Real Ghostbusters (which had several episodes animated in Japan) and Voltron, who are drawn and animated in a very animesque style, they want to rid the world of humor and talk like Lorenzo Music who voiced Peter Venkman in the former show.
  • The Animaniacs (2020) revival had two versions: one where the Warners are cute and chibified and a second where they are styled similar to Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann and Kill la Kill.


Several Japanese series have inverted this trope by going for a western look. Since American cartoons generally require several times the production money for their higher frame rates, there are limiting factors that keep it to surface aesthetics rather than the actual motion. The limits are easier to get around in comics and video games. If they use English, expect it to be about as good as our Japanese. Also Inverted by Japanese video games in their art style and other choices. Outside the country, some like to call them "Japanese Animation" or "Japanese Comics" to differentiate series with no "anime" traits.

  • The character designs of Japanese artist Susumu Matsushita (best known in the US for his work in Maximo: Ghosts to Glory) tend to be very Western-looking, with round eyes and cartoony proportions.
  • Pick almost any illustration produced by Gurihiru Studios from Japan. Chances are, it'll look like something out of a Pixar film. They have been commissioned for design on some of Disney's 3D output, most notably their work on Big Hero 6. They were the character designers of Sonic Unleashed, which is why the human characters of said game had such a western look to them.
  • Shigeru Mizuki. Generally, his artstyle is more cartoony/surreal than anything else.
  • Fujiko Fujio's art (both together and apart as Fujiko F and Fujiko A) tends to retain the exaggerated features, clean lines, and button-nose cuteness of western children's cartoons. This even extends to works aimed at the adult crowd (such as Laughing Salesman), but they're still seen as one of the landmark examples of manga's influence on Japan.
  • Pingu In The City, a Japanese-made reboot of Pingu is animated entirely in 3D and rendered in a way to emulate the stop-motion look of the original series, but uses some anime tropes such as a slower frame rate in some scenes and the characters do make the odd face faults.

    Anime & Manga 
  • The '70s and '80s saw many mangas inspired by contemporary American and European media, some even set in America. Space Adventure Cobra is like Barbarella meets Eagle Land, and Mad Bull 34 is Eagle Land incarnate.
  • Given its nature as a multi-vignette show for a young audience, Folktales From Japan features a wide variety of animation designs, most of which cartoony in nature and several in particular rather western. Very rarely does it actually look like anime.
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure is heavily influenced by American comics.
  • While not specifically western (indeed, it more closely resembles Chinese/Korean animation in aesthetics), Arashi no Yoru ni is still much closer to your average western animated feature than traditional anime.
  • Bambi and Her Pink Gun is so visually influenced by the aesthetics of American comics that only the onomatopoeia give it away as an original Japanese creation.
  • The anime for Excel Saga had a scene comparing tropes from anime and tropes from western animation, and as Excel demonstrated the cartoon tropes she and the other characters are animated in the style of American comics, rubber hose cartoons, and the Disney animated canon.
  • The art style of Studio Ghibli films are heavily influenced by French animated films. Heck, one of their films is a French Coproduction. Conversely, My Neighbor Totoro and Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea take more influence from American animated films rather than French animated Films.
  • The Big O is the result of Japanese animators involved with Batman: The Animated Series running with the influence. Look for the Batmobile in the backgrounds.
  • The first ending sequence to the 2003 anime version of Fullmetal Alchemist is done in Mike Mignola's style.
  • Hiroyuki Imaishi's projects tend to have this reputation.
  • King of Bandit Jing, especially the second manga series.
  • The original Lupin III manga by Monkey Punch was heavily influenced by MAD, and the art style definitely shows. The subsequent anime adaptations... not so much. They're not significantly more western-like than most other anime products.
  • One Piece. The deformations of faces pushed to the limits Looney Tunes-style are probably the most prominent factor. Not to mention Luffy's powers, which are like something taken out of a Tex Avery cartoon. It's even been speculated that its lack of similarity to the archetypal style of anime is a factor in why it hasn't caught on outside of Japan.
  • Fairy Tail has a similar art style to One Piece but then that would be a case of an anime imitating a western-influenced anime. Thanks to Art Evolution, Fairy Tail started being drawn in a style that leans much closer to the "traditional" manga/anime style. It still has some similarities to One Piece's style, but those aren't as hugely noteworthy as they used to be.
  • Space Dandy is a Genre Throwback to campy western Raygun Gothic in terms of plot, setting and music. The designs and movements of Dandy and his mostly alien cohorts are far more exaggerated akin to the western cartoony style. The series also embraces episodic Negative Continuity akin to western children's cartoons where characters end up hurt and dead, only to be okay the next episode as if nothing happened prior.
  • Soul Eater looks like the unholy child of anime and Tim Burton.
  • Super Milk Chan
  • Tiger & Bunny is made to resemble Western comic books and superhero shows.
  • Trigun's designs and especially manga incarnation are heavily influenced by McFarlane.
  • ∀ Gundam's mechanical designs by Syd Mead.
  • Usavich
  • Obscure series Montana Jones resembles a series from The Disney Afternoon such as Adventures of the Gummi Bears, TaleSpin, or Timon & Pumbaa.
  • Cowboy Bebop draws on influences from a variety of genres, many of them quite western (including The Western, appropriately enough), down to featuring one setting that is basically Planet Blaxploitation.
  • Baby Felix was produced by a Japanese studio with input from current Felix the Cat owner Don Oriolo, and is anime trying (and often failing) to look like Western Animation.
  • The character designs from Zoobles seem to be at least slightly influenced by stuff like My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic and Littlest Pet Shop (2012), which themselves are very animesque.
  • Many of Nippon Animation's works, like World Masterpiece Theater and Grimm's Fairy Tale Classics are drawn in a way that's more reminescent of Western Animation than Anime. The same applies for Around the World with Willy Fog and Dogtanian and the Three Muskehounds, though both were co-produced with a Spanish animation studio.
  • La Quinta Camera, faces in particular.
  • My Hero Academia takes a lot of inspiration from American superhero comics. All-Might in his hero-mode especially looks like someone straight out of The Silver Age of Comic Books.
  • The Osamu Tezuka short "Legend of the Forest" uses several different Western Animation styles as the decades pass, first a Winsor McCay style, then a 1930's rubber hose cartoon, a Fleischer Bros/Looney Tunes style, a Disney-esque style, a Fleischer Bros Superman style, and finally a UPA style.
  • Dawn of the Seeker, which was an actual Japanese animated movie commissioned and written by a Canadian video game studio, producing a very Western-looking anime.
  • This Pokémon short is done in the style of Golden Age cartoons.
  • Kodomomuke anime have very simplified art styles to the point where some would get mistaken for western children's cartoons due to lack of "telltale" anime traits. Many of them are adapted from Japanese children's books, which generally tend to be of the same art styles that can be found in the west.
  • Anpanman, one of the faces of anime, is about as round and cartoony as any of the kids' shows run in the late 80s early 90s. This partially has to do with it being adapted from the similarly-cartoony book series, see above.
  • The long-running series Sazae-san takes many cues from Western newspaper comics, in part due to its beginnings as a newspaper strip in the 1940s— just around the time western cartoons and comics started coming ashore.
  • Samurai Pizza Cats resembles a Golden Age Western cartoon in both artstyle and humor.

    Video Games 
  • Several Nintendo franchises have a very Western feel and design to them:
    • The Super Mario Bros. series looks like it is firmly planted in the roots of the The Golden Age of Animation in terms of design. The main characters are plumbers with large noses and moustaches who speak with a heavy Italian accent; the use of anime tropes in the series is rather rare aside from subtle graphical elements (particularly the facial expressions of characters); and the minimal audible spoken dialogue by any of the characters (in any language) is in English. Some characters take it further, Princess Daisy's dialogue in particular borrows from many different American English dialects and accents, like Valleyspeak, Southern Dixie and even Ebonics, and Wario and Waluigi are inspired by a classic American character archetype. That said, there are plenty of Japanese influences too, mainly in the form of call backs to the culture and mythology (Usually in the form of Power ups like Raccoon/Tanooki Mario and Cat Mario), and the female characters like Princess Peach have a more anime-styled motif than the male characters, and come across as a blend of western and eastern character designs, particularly in 2D art for games like the Mario & Luigi series or Super Princess Peach.
    • This was a very intentional move on Nintendo's part when creating the first Donkey Kong arcade game; the game was created because a prior arcade game of Nintendo's, Radar Scope, had flopped hard in the US despite being a bit hit in Japan. To clear out their stock of unsold Radar Scope machines, Nintendo decided to create a game that would be a surefire hit in America and convert the Radar Scope cabinets to run it. To ensure its success in America they took a lot of influence from classic American cartoons when designing the game.
    • The Legend of Zelda takes cues from many western fantasy novels and movies; with key influences being Greek mythology, the legend of King Arthur and The Lord of the Rings trilogy. However, Japanese influence became more apparent in games following The Wind Waker. They still hold many western influences and Twilight Princess was specifically based on Wild West stories. Breath Of The Wild firmly returns the series to its Western influence via its focus on exploring a land akin to European and Near East fantasy, with notable exceptions such as the Yiga Clan and Sheikah taking Asian influences, with the Sheikah warrior Impa in the prequel, Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity, fighting with a Hand Seal usage and Ninja Run that has gotten compared to Naruto. Meanwhile the Link's Awakening remake has more Japanese influences.
    • Metroid has always aimed for an American comic book look with the atmosphere from Hollywood sci-fi, though several games post-Fusion showed more Japanese influence.
    • F-Zero takes place in a comic book future. Captain Falcon himself being an homage.
    • Star Fox takes cues from Western cartoon animals and space operas. The fuzzy puppets featured in art for the first game and the puppet like mouth face flapping for dialogue in Star Fox 64 was designed to invoke Thunderbirds, though nowadays it just looks like it was animated that way due to console limitations.
    • While it firmly belongs to the JRPG genre (being a partial parody of it), the EarthBound series is also heavily influenced by old-school sci-fi, newspaper comics, and other Western media.
    • Splatoon is what would happen if you asked Nintendo to take everything that made 1990s Nickelodeon what it was, and design it into a game. The game still has a heavy Japanese influence, as the game features a pair of Idol Singers and takes place in a city based on Shibuya, Tokyo. Splatoon 2 instead has a more American influence, with Inkopolis Square taking inspiration from Times Square and featuring a DJ/rapper duo modeled after Tupac Shakur and The Notorious B.I.G..
    • Kirby stars a round pink creature with large red feet, and the scenery and characters are clearly reminiscent of cartoons such as The Smurfs. Even the main antagonist is a fat penguin in a Santa Claus-like outfit, and enemies include orange creatures wearing chef hats and wielding frying pans and large beetle-like insects with gloves and sneakers. Played straight with the anime Kirby: Right Back at Ya!, which definitely looks like an anime.
    • Code Name: S.T.E.A.M. features several characters and references from western literature and folklore. Just throw in Abraham Lincoln, some Type 1 Eagleland, a Steampunk setting, a Silver Age comic aesthetic, a Framing Device where cutscenes are played out in the panels of a comic book, and as if those elements weren't enough, a campy anthem as its theme song, you'll have a Japanese-developed game that is very Western.
    • ARMS has an art style heavily influenced by American superhero comics.
    • StarTropics and its sequel Zoda's Revenge don't hide their American influence at all, in fact, the games are so blatantly Western that the developers even went out of their way to make many references to American history and pop culture. The protagonist, Mike Jones, was named after the most common American names at the time (1990). Star Tropics' very western design was practically intended by Nintendo, as the Star Tropics games were designed to capitalize on the Western markets, and were not released in Japan.
    • The Punch-Out!! games are extremely cartoony with over-the-top cartoon caricatures of international stereotypes. The games also draw heavy influence from many Western boxing films like the Rocky series and Raging Bull.
    • Panel de Pon has an artstyle and themes that are highly influenced by Western Children's High Fantasy series like Rainbow Brite and My Little Pony.
    • While the rest of the series belongs strictly on the home front, WarioWare Gold inverts the artstyle from its predecessors, resembling more a Cartoon Network effort than a production from Japan.
    • Despite being the closest thing to a Nintendo franchise completely averting this trope, The Fire Emblem series is firmly entrenched into Western Medieval European Fantasy with minimal Japanese influence outside of the general anime art style, and the amazing technicolor hair of most of the cast. When Asian influenced peoples such as the Kingdom of Hoshido appear in Fire Emblem Fates, it's the exception instead of the rule.
  • Several of SEGA's franchises also take influence from western animation and culture.
    • Sonic the Hedgehog, done deliberately so to appeal to the Western market. The design of the Funny Animal characters take cues from Inkblot Cartoon Style, settings, especially urban ones, have a Western feel, an emphasis on techno, rap, and rock for a lot of the music throughout the series, plenty of Gratutious English in the original localization, and the general "attitude" was to appeal to the "rebellious" nature commonly associated with countries like the United States.
    • Streets of Rage is about ex-cops hunting down crime boss Mr. X and freeing the city from his wrath, while beating up hoards of enemies along the way. This all backed up by a soundtrack influenced by rave techno.
    • Golden Axe in general is influenced by classic fantasy medieval europe, however it's also influenced by the Conan the Barbarian films.
    • Alien Syndrome was influenced by the Alien films, to the point where a Xenomorph expy appears as one of the enemies.
    • Rent A Hero supposedly takes place in Japan, but the titular superhero is modeled after an American comic book hero and the digitized photograph that supposed to be representing Taro Yamada, the hero, in the intro, is clearly an American model.
    • Clockwork Knight is about a Living Toy soldier named Sir Tongara de Pepperouchau III rescuing the princess Chelsea. It uses a digitized art style comparable to popular western made games during the era like Donkey Kong Country and Mortal Kombat, and the soundtrack emphasizes genres like jazz and ragtime.
    • The artstyle for Panzer Dragoon was partially influenced by the works of French artist Jean Giraud (aka Moebius).
    • House of the Dead is basically one big Affectionate Parody of So Bad, It's Good B-grade horror movies, complete with intentionally narm-ridden dialogue and voice acting. Especially true in the case of House of the Dead: OVERKILL, with the visuals having a clear grindhouse-movie look and feel.
    • NiGHTS into Dreams... was partially influenced by European cultures and theater, with the Cirque du Soleil show Mystère being a specific influence. The sequel NiGHTS: Journey of Dreams takes it a step further by introducing a fictional version of London called Bellbridge and having a cast of British voice actors.
    • Samba de Amigo has a strong Mexican/Latin influence, right down to a good number of the songs being licensed Latin genre music.
    • Toe Jam And Earl is influenced by hip-hop culture (the titular aliens are rappers, for one), and it definitely shows in parts of the soundtrack. It also has gameplay inspired by Rogue and a lighter version of Starflight's science-fiction theme. Its concept was thought up by Greg Johnson, an American.
  • Go Go Hyper Grind is a Japanese-developed skateboarding game with American character designs by John Kricfalusi and Spumco, no less! The gameplay also features many Western cartoon cliches such as Wild Takes, Stuff Blowing Up, and characters losing their heads.
  • Viewtiful Joe is an Affectionate Parody of both comic book superheroes and Tokusatsu.
  • Capcom's old mascot Captain Commando is likewise an Affectionate Parody of American superheroes. The company has long walked a middle ground between styles, taking it to a natural conclusion.
  • Darkstalkers and its crazy cartoon violence. It looked and moved more like a cartoon than the actual American TV show.
  • Persona 5 uses an anime art style, plays like a JRPG and Visual Novel Hybrid, and even focus on issues in modern Japanese society. However, the digusies of the Phantom Thief protagonists, their Personas, and the Jazzy soundtrack take a lot of influence from classic Western Comic books and tales of magnificent vigilantes.
  • Street Fighter takes inspiration from American cartoons in many ways. The original Street Fighter had an art style reminiscent of 60s action cartoons. Street Fighter II continued this with an art style similar to 80s saturday morning cartoons.
  • While Onmyōji plays this straight in every other aspect of the game, some in-game comics (like those about the backstory of Ōtakemaru and Kujira) are drawn in a Western comic book style and read left-to-right rather than like a manga.
  • PaRappa the Rapper and its spinoff Um Jammer Lammy. Makes sense, as the series artist, Rodney Greenblat, is actually American.
  • No More Heroes and its sequel sport a mix of cel-shading and realism with western-style character designs and names. Both games do make multiple references to anime media, though.
  • The main character in Professor Layton, as well as many secondary ones, are designed in a classic French style, though other characters are designed in anime fashion.
  • The character design of Sora that Tetsuya Nomura created for the Timeless River world (based off the cartoon short Steamboat Willie and other shorts during the 1930s) in Kingdom Hearts II, which makes him resemble a cartoon character from The Silent Age of Animation (Rubber Hose Limbs and all). Just look at him.
  • The Monster Hunter series is known for this, which is ironic since the games are still more popular in Japan than in the West.
  • Capcom's Resident Evil series is influenced by Western Zombie films, Horror B-movies, and various Hollywood action films. All of the main characters are English, and the settings of the games are varied but mostly Western. The first game even went so far as to have English actors and voice acting for its live action cutscenes, even in the Japanese releases.
  • The Metal Gear series takes its influence from American Hollywood action films such as: Escape from New York, Blade Runner, and other various Western media.
  • The Castlevania series is obviously influenced and centered around the lore of Dracula and set in Gothic European settings. Most of if not all of the characters are English and Japanese influence is extremely rare outside of visual effects and artstyle, with few exceptions like Rondo of Blood and Portrait of Ruin.
  • For the Frog the Bell Tolls draws heavy inspiration from European fairy tales.
  • The arcade baseball game M.V.P., which was made by Sega, used a Franco-Belgian art style for its character design.
  • Metal Slug has a style very reminiscent of American cartoons
  • D.N.A.: Dark Native Apostle looks like something out of The Dark Age of Comic Books.
  • Dark Souls contains many elements typical of Western games such as Real Is Brown visuals, free-roaming gameplay, character customization, and minimalist story presentation. This, combined with the series debuting at a time when most Japanese games weren't getting much mainstream attention in the West, leads many people to be surprised when they find out about the series' Japanese origins. Sekiro returns to Asian influences with its Japanese setting and celebration of the local culture, but is hardly anime in design and retains the grit of the Western influenced settings.
  • Metamorphic Force may be the only Japanese-developed Beat 'em Up to look like a Western cartoon or fantasy comic yet not be based on one.
  • Kaneko's DJ Boy and its sequel B.Rap Boys are beat-em-ups heavily influenced by American hip hop and street culture of the 80s, and as such have cartoony sprites and graphic elements inspired by graffiti.
  • Light Crusader looks much more like a European Amiga game than any of Treasure's other Sega Genesis efforts. The Progressive Rock motifs help confirm this impression.

    Visual Novels 

    Web Animation 
  • The art of Inferno Cop seems to be heavily influenced by American comic books.


Video Example(s):



The opening to asdfmovie12 is done in an anime style, with all of the show's characters drawn as human anime characters and complete with music.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (4 votes)

Example of:

Main / Animesque

Media sources:

Main / Animesque