The first month of the Winter 2023 anime season has ended, and we now have a clearer look at which series are worth our time. Some have proven to be standouts that flew under the radar before their premieres. Others have failed to impress and fallen victim to the Three Episode rule, while others still have been forced to bow out due to unexpected delays. As a result, our picks for the top 10 best anime of February 2023 you should watch may surprise you.
Aggretsuko Final Season
Do we have a bit of egg on our faces after the release date for Aggretsuko’s final season was revealed to be February instead of January? Undeniably. are we any less excited for the conclusion to this series? Not in the slightest.
Between the deeper examination of the consequences to Haida’s actions and Aggretsuko’s apparent jump into politics, there’s a ton going on in this final arc that’s worth getting hyped up for. This is also to say nothing of the fact that we’ll get the chance to enjoy one more romp with the zany yet relatable cast of anthropomorphic critters that feel more grounded than a lot of other anime characters.
It’s bound to be a blast, and you’d be hard-pressed to find a better use of a few hours when the series drops in its entirety on Feb. 16.
While it might not be the action and violence-packed thrill ride that was the first season, Vinland Saga season 2 remains a solid choice for the best anime of February 2023 you should watch.
The story of Thorfinn dealing with the guilt and regret from his actions growing up has made for an excellent emotional through-line, guiding his actions as he navigates life as a slave and tries to earn his freedom. It looks like it will continue to do so too, with him meeting a variety of new characters which will serve as both friends and allies in the face of challenges to come.
The show has also been just a joy to watch in general. The calmer setting of Ketil’s farmstead, blended with the less dire and dismal storyline of Thorfinn’s path to redemption, has made the show a much more pleasant and relaxing experience than it otherwise could have been.
It very easily could end up getting even more action-packed as the series progresses though, and you won’t want to miss out on what happens when it does.
Buddy Daddies is pretty clearly the Dark Horse show of this season, and it doesn’t take long to see why.
While its character designs and premise might seem similar to Spy x Family at first glance, they end up establishing themselves as something all their own early on. The story of lifelong friends Rei and Kazuki taking in a child, and their struggles to be parents to her despite the constant challenges this presents to them and their work, is a more grounded look at the challenges of parenting than anyone might have realized.
The show is also exceptional in terms of its presentation. Between the animation quality, sound design, and writing, everything about the anime is top-notch. This remains true whether the story reaches a climactic confrontation or the trio is carrying out a much-needed shopping trip for school supplies, and is all the better for it.
Don’t Toy With Me, Miss Nagatoro! 2nd Attack
Don’t Toy With Me Miss Nagatoro! 2nd Attack is more of the same, but that’s definitely been to its strength.
While it may still offer the same bits and gags one would expect to see in the series’ first season, they’re still just as entertaining to watch play out. Senpai accidentally calling Nagatoro on her bluff, or Nagatoro finding a new way to tease Senpai about his insecurities, is still a silly and enjoyable experience no matter how many times one sees it.
With that said though, there are signs of progress toward some actual character development. Both senpai and Nagatoro are inching closer to admitting their feelings for each other, and each moment that proves this feels like a well-earned victory for all involved. We’ve little doubt that this will remain the case moving forward, and that the show will remain one to watch in the weeks to come.
My Hero Academia Season 6
Slowly but surely, My hero Academia is reaching the cream of its narrative crop.
While the show is definitely taking its time with adapting the material following the Paranormal Liberation War, this has largely been to the series’ benefit. Ample time has been given to major scenes like Toya’s backstory and the full background of the Todoroki family’s problems, resulting in a bigger emotional gut-punch for viewers. Deku’s dilemma in how to deal with Shigaraki has likewise been given the room it needs to breathe, and has set up one of the biggest conflicts in the series perfectly.
Considering this has now set up the climb toward the series’ climax — and toward some of the better battles the series has to offer before its final bout — we can’t help but say that this is a show to watch moving forward.
To be sure, Trigun Stampede has made some substantial changes to its source material. However, it’s still undeniably one of the best shows of this season.
Its 3D animation has remained a standout strength, lending a motion and flair to action sequences that can’t be found in any other show. Its storylines, meanwhile, remain enthralling whether they fully embrace the wonder of the alien planet they’re set on or hone in on the more human narratives playing out between the characters.
It’s also worth noting that the series is finally starting to fall more in line with the original source material, introducing heroes and villains that will be integral to the larger plot. key among them is Wolfwood, who provides the same charisma needed to bounce off of Vash and elevate the series to new heights.
It may not be the remake fans wanted, but one would be hard-pressed to find a more imaginative and well-executed series to follow in the coming weeks.
Tokyo Revengers Season 2
Tokyo Revengers’ second season has proven to be a solid one, not least of which because of its story.
Providing the same twists and turns one would expect to find in a story filled with time travel, murders, and teenaged gangs, this season has offered plenty of narrative meat for viewers to chew on. case in point: The conflict present between Hakkai and his older brother Taiju, as well as Takemichi’s reason for being dragged into their problems, has remained engaging and feels like it’s building to a worthwhile conclusion.
It’s animation has also been adequate for what the series aims to do, providing stable and clean artwork that never veers into being so bad that the show is unwatchable. Time will tell if this remains true once the more action-heavy segments kick in, but for now it remains a solid anime to keep up with moving through February.
Bungo Stray Dogs Season 4
There’s a lot we could point to as justification for why the fourth season of Bungo Stray Dogs is still a show worth watching moving into February.
We could point to the solid animation and action the show offers, especially given the new group of adversaries presents a host of new abilities for the Armed Detective Agency to deal with. We could also point to the narrative through lines being capitalized on, with side characters like Ranpo continuing to establish themselves as interesting and engaging to watch.
What we will point to, though, is the fact that this show is about the best example of an “anime” anime out there. It’s a bonkers roller coaster ride that smashes together tropes of the medium with a novel idea, and continues to capitalize on this fact brilliantly. Barring some catastrophic decision on the part of the show’s creators, there’s little doubt that this will remain true in the weeks to come.
Kaina of the Great Snow Sea
Kaina of the Great Snow Sea is a unique beast among the current slate of anime offerings, and not just because of its 3D animation.
Serving as a much more calm and introspective series than most, it’s been the definition of a slow-burn over the course of its first four episodes. Its brief moments of action have been accompanied by long stretches focused on the fantasy setting, and on how the people and creatures that inhabit the world interact with one another.
At the same time though, a clear conflict is beginning to emerge. Kaina has been given a task to complete in helping the young princess Liliha save her home, and following her capture by an enemy nation, it falls on him to save her.
How he will do so is still unclear, but the chance to see this play out — and to see more of the fantastical setting the show takes place in — is a major driver for making this show worth watching in the weeks to come.
It’s definitely noteworthy that Blue Lock continues to be a standout series even as its second cour charges forward.
Though its initial premise of prioritizing ego in sports might still be off-putting, it’s storylines have undeniably been engaging and novel. Each new challenge the players have to face offers a fun twist on the usual ruleset, and keeps the obstacles they need to overcome from feeling repetitive.
It’s also been interesting to see how the show switches up who is considered good or bad. The most recent arc’s twist of adding former enemies to the protagonist’s team, and their needing to adapt to each other’s playstyles in order to emerge victorious, has made for some great character interactions and kept the progression of the story feeling fresh.
it’s still anyone’s guess where the story is headed and how well it will hold up, but for now it’s a solid pick for an anime you should watch in February 2023.