The 2022 fall anime season has ended. With 2022 debut shows like Chainsaw Man, Blue Lock, and Spy x Family, we were spoiled for choice this season. Established series like My Hero Academia were also still going strong, and Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War took the long-running brand to a new level of animation. With this many excellent shows, it’s difficult for any viewer to pick which ones to binge or catch up on. Lucky for you, the writers of Couch Soup are here to share what they think are the best shows from this 2022 fall anime season.
Thomas: Do you like sports anime? Do you like soccer (or futbol/football)? If you answered yes, then Blue Lock is for you. This new soccer anime is doing everything to be the best sports anime in recent years (including Haikyuu!!). The animation is top-notch, with an intriguing story and characters you can root for (and some you despise). You’ll be there for the highs and lows. The friendship and betrayals. You’ll be on a soccer rollercoaster from the very first episode.
What makes this different from most other sports anime is how the games are visualised: seeing the characters give in to their ego and pull off feats that will leave you wondering if it’s possible in real life. If you’re looking for your next sports anime obsession, check out Blue Lock. The first 12 episodes are out now, but that’s only half of the first season with more coming out in the Winter 2023 season.
Thomas: One of the standouts from early 2022 was Spy x Family. For many, it was their favourite new show of the Spring 2022 season. And now in the Fall 2022 season, we’ve got the second half of the first season. Everything people loved from the first half is here with some fun additions. The family dynamic is still a highlight, especially with all the new shenanigans. My favorite character, Yuri, is also back and is just as unhinged (which is always a good laugh). New additions Bond and Fiona also make a lasting impression.
The story is also just as crazy as its characters. You’ll go from a terrorist plot using bomb dogs, to an underground tennis match filled with cheap tricks. You’ll also see Yor learn to cook. You never know what to expect, and that’s what makes it great. All 25 episodes are available now, and I can’t recommend Spy x Family enough. With a second season and a movie on the way, there’s never been a better time to start this excellent series.
Thomas: If you’ve seen anything anime related for the past year, you know about Chainsaw Man. Chainsaw Man has been one of the most anticipated series in recent years with every trailer, teaser image and casting sending everyone into a frenzy. We finally got to see this series in the fall season, and it did not disappoint. Everything from the animation, story, music, and voice acting was top-notch. They even got 12 separate artists to make ending songs for each episode, which is unheard of (and $$$!). Little things like this made the series feel even more special.
The characters are all a joy to watch. You have the naïve Denji, the overly serious Aki, the blood-loving Power, and, my favorite, the terrified Kobeni. You’re bound to get attached to one of these characters as they are all so well-written. The story will keep you on the edge of your seat. You’ll be left confused and shocked at the end of every episode both from what just happened and how those 24 minutes seemed to go by in a second. All 12 episodes of Chainsaw Man are available to watch right now. So do yourself a favor and check out this excellent series.
Stef: I already gushed about what a visual masterpiece Bleach: TYBW is. A few episodes took that up a notch with the use of stylistic samurai film music and imagery during certain sequences, particularly the flashback to the epic battle between the Quincies and the Soul Reapers 1000 years ago. This samurai aesthetic was a perfect artistic choice for the tone of the battle and the overall setting of the Soul Society.
My favorite thing about this season has a singular title: “Everything But The Rain.” That’s the title of a series of chapters in the manga that moved me incredibly back when I read them in 2013. It’s the story of two sets of parents tied together by threads of fate, and it ends with the full explanation of the burdens that their sons now carry. The episodes that captured those chapters were even better than I could have imagined. Even on repeated watches, I’m grabbing tissues when Ichigo’s father, Isshin, says of his mother, “Masaki was like the sun… I was just happy to be spun around by her.” What a breathtaking interpretation of this sequence from director Tomohisa Taguchi!
We end this first segment of the series with the reforging of Ichigo’s zanpakuto, Zangetsu. It gives us the full explanation of his sword’s true form and nature. Even after learning everything about Zangetsu, though, Ichigo still makes his own decision about what Zangetsu is to him. It’s always been Ichigo’s nature to forge his own unique path. It was a joy seeing the beautiful image of his reforged dual zanpakuto, which fuses together his four natures (human, Soul Reaper, Hollow, and Quincy).
And now I’m experiencing it all again as the English dubs are now coming out on Hulu each week. It’s so exciting to hear Johnny Yong Bosch, Derek Stephen Prince, and so many other familiar voices acting out their beloved roles in these beautiful new scenes!
My Hero Academia, perhaps the biggest name in anime right now, just wrapped up the first half of Season 6, and Couch Soup Member Tahu weighed in on this one, too.
Tahu: I gotta say that this season really is way darker and more brutal than the other seasons. We have seen a lot more injuries and deaths from both Heroes and Villains this season, and I know it’s just going to continue to get darker as the season goes on. My favorite moment in this season definitely has to be “Dabi’s Dance” and the shocking reveal about Dabi’s origin. Even though many of us fans had already sussed out the truth or read the manga, it still was so emotional and powerful to see it on the screen animated! On the other hand, The scene that frustrated me the most was when Best Jeanist captured Dabi mid-flight right before Dabi strikes Endeavor—I was actually rooting for Dabi in this scene! I am looking forward to what the future holds for Deku. Something big is right around the corner; secrets are going to be spilled and choices are going to be made. Deku’s future is about to be changed forever, and that goes for all of UA Class 1-A.
Stef: Tahu and I have gushed together at how phenomenal this season has been in the anime. Knowing the story in the manga is no substitute for seeing how the artists and director link together each frame with compelling action. The voice casts have stepped it up a notch, too, with a special shout out to English dub actor Luci Christian for her versatile work with Ochaco this season. Tahu and I have a friendly rivalry when it comes to Dabi now because he burned my boy Hawks, and that was so hard to watch! The phoenix will rise again! And I can’t give my thoughts here without my personal favorite moment so far in S6: Bakugo’s atonement in E122 and letting his heart take the lead to protect Midoriya. The words and images were perfect, and I still find myself grabbing tissues when I rewatch that episode.
Tip for finding all these shows: Availability for these shows may depend on your geographic region. We’ve provided places you can find it in the U.S. and Australia. If you’re elsewhere, see if they’re also available to you on other services like Netflix, or use a VPN to change your region.
These are just a few of the amazing shows that came out or kept going this past anime season. There were so many to choose from, and it was hard to narrow it down. What a great problem to have!
What anime series have you been watching the last few months? Have you checked out the new ones from 2022? Any other recommendations for us going into Winter 2023? Drop us a comment!