10 Best Anime That Followed Naruto’s Legacy


  • Naruto‘s influence is evident in various anime series, like Black Clover, Seraph of the End, and Hell’s Paradise, which feature similar protagonists and themes.
  • Gurren Lagann shares the idea of self-confidence and perseverance found in Naruto, despite the differences in setting and story.
  • My Hero Academia and Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba draw inspiration from Naruto, with similar characters and themes of strength and protection.

As one of Shonen Jump’s Big 3, Naruto was among the most popular titles during its golden age, enthralling fans with its well-developed characters, intriguing world, and unique power system. As such, it should come as no surprise that a variety of authors were inspired by the series and ended up creating stories that are clearly reminiscent of it in some way or another.

With the original manga beginning serialization in 1999 and its anime adaptation releasing in 2002, Naruto is clearly not the first title to revolve around epic adventures following evolving protagonists. In fact, Naruto is cited to have been inspired by Dragon Ball, with Kishimoto himself acknowledging this influence. In turn, the grand story of the blonde-haired ninja and his exploits inspired many others, directly or indirectly, resulting in a plethora of shows that should feel familiar to fans of the title.

10 Black Clover (2017)

Produced by Pierrot and Based on the Manga by Yuki Tabata

Black Clover connects to Naruto due to the similarities between their protagonists. Asta is a surprisingly deep character, who resembles Naruto himself, as he too is initially at a disadvantage compared to his peers, having to work harder to be acknowledged. In spite of that, Asta, much like the beloved shinobi, maintains his ambition and optimism, aiming for the title of Wizard King against all odds. Moreover, he also seeks to reach an understanding with Liebe, the devil within his grimoire, reminiscent of Naruto’s relationship with Kurama.

Watch on Crunchyroll

9 Seraph of the End: Vampire Reign (2015)

Produced by Wit Studio and Based on the Manga by Takaya Kagami & Yamato Yamamoto

Seraph of the End Vampire Reign Cast, Featuring Mikaela, Guren, and Krul in front of building

While Seraph of the End: Vampire Reign may seem unrelated to Naruto, the similarities between the two lie just beneath the surface. Despite the differences between the ninja and vampire worlds, the characters are more comparable than one may expect. The relationship between Yuichiro and Mikaela, in particular, resembles that of Naruto and Sasuke. Both are quite close at the beginning of the story, presented as either friends or rivals, but eventually grow to join the two opposing sides of their respective ongoing conflicts. Moreover, their feelings and opinions of each other change along the way as well.

Watch on Funimation

8 Hell’s Paradise (2023)

Produced by MAPPA and Based on the Manga by Yuji Kaku

Hell's Paradise Cast looking serious and holding weapons with flowers around them

Hell’s Paradise revolves around Gabimaru “the Hollow,” a shinobi assassin who was born to kill and who earned his title by taking out his targets while displaying no emotion whatsoever. As a ninja, he possesses skills reminiscent of those in Naruto, masterfully using taijutsu, such as impossibly powerful kicks, and ninjutsu, such as creating flames, to deal with all kinds of situations. Another element that fans of Naruto will find familiar is the fantasy setting, which adds to the world’s mystery and intrigue. However, Hell’s Paradise sets itself apart by telling a completely different story that blends fantastical adventures with survival horror.

Watch on Crunchyroll

7 Gurren Lagann (2007)

Original Anime Produced by Gainax

Gurren Lagann official art featuring the three main characters standing together in front of white background

The events of Gurren Lagann take place on a post-apocalyptic futuristic Earth, where humans live underground, largely unaware of the world above. However, some people, like Simon and Kamina, dream of reaching the surface and seeing the sky that few believe in anymore. One day, while excavating, they come across a mysterious robot, which they use to defend their village from a sudden ambush, together with Yoko Littner, an unexpected ally. While the setting and the story are hardly comparable to Naruto, the two titles are connected by a surprising idea—that of self-confidence and perseverance, as illustrated by the iconic quotes “Believe it!” and “Believe in the me that believes in you!

Watch on Crunchyroll

6 Mashle: Magic and Muscles (2023)

Produced by A-1 Pictures and Based on the Manga by Hajime Komoto

Mashle's Burnedead breaking a wand

Mashle: Magic and Muscles is quite different from most other titles that were influenced by or otherwise paid homage to Naruto, given that it focuses on comedy and gag humor above all. The story follows Mash Burnedead, a boy defined by his lack of magical abilities and love for cream puffs, who lives in a world where magic is commonplace. In spite of his lack of magic, he can easily overpower nearly anyone with his pure strength alone, having devoted all of his life to strength training. Similarly to Naruto’s Rock Lee, Mash is out to prove (albeit involuntarily) that hard work can beat natural talent and even change the world.

Watch on Crunchyroll

5 Jujutsu Kaisen (2020)

Produced by MAPPA and Based on the Manga by Gege Akutami

As one of the more recent trending titles in the shonen demographic, Jujutsu Kaisen was naturally influenced by its predecessors. In terms of similarities to Naruto, perhaps the most striking one is the parallel between Jujutsu Kaisen‘s Gojo and Kakashi, who not only share extremely similar designs but also play a similar role in the story, acting as mentors to the teams they are guiding. Another common idea would be that of Sukuna, an evil being that possesses human hosts much in the way that the Kurama possesses Naruto. However, Sukuna makes no effort to understand or assist his hosts, instead causing nothing but pure chaos and unconstrained destruction.

Watch on Crunchyroll

4 Ranking of Kings (2021)

Produced by Wit Studio and Based on the Manga by Sosuke Toka

Ranking of Kings, Featuring Bojji with one hand raised in the air and Kage next to him

Ranking of Kings revolves around Bojji, a prince who can neither speak nor hear, leading everyone in his kingdom looks down on him. His life begins to change when he comes across Kage, a mysterious shadow creature who becomes his first true friend and motivates him to overcome his weaknesses. Although not identical, Bojji’s story is reminiscent of Naruto’s, as the blonde-haired ninja, too, was shunned by his village, though nothing could extinguish his dreams. Moreover, much like Kage, Sasuke is also the last surviving member of his clan. Yet while Sasuke seeks vengeance for this, Kage takes a different path.

Watch on Crunchyroll

3 Fire Force (2019)

Produced by David Production and Based on the Manga by Atsushi Ohkubo

Some of the main characters of Fire Force standing together in uniform

While Fire Force is more closely connected to Soul Eater than any other series, given that they were both created by Atsushi Ohkubo, certain aspects of the title are also likely to feel familiar to fans of Naruto. Perhaps the most salient similarity would be religion, which plays an important role in both shows, although not always an obvious one. Some of Naruto’s jutsu techniques are inspired by religion, particularly Shintoism, while Fire Force’s world is defined by the Holy Sol Temple. Moreover, Shinra is also quite similar to Naruto, relentlessly working to become a hero in spite of his tragic backstory.

Watch on Crunchyroll

2 My Hero Academia (2016)

Produced by Bones and Based on the Manga by Kohei Horikoshi

My Hero Academia: Class 1-A works together at the license exam.

It is no secret that the creator of My Hero Academia, Kohei Horikoshi, has always been a huge fan of Naruto. The iconic ninja played a significant role in his childhood and inspired him to create a story of his own eventually. Naturally, his work isn’t merely a copy of Naruto, as its originality and creativity are often cited as two of its noteworthy strengths, which allowed it to develop into one of the new generation’s most popular shonen titles. Still, one can certainly draw parallels when comparing the two. In particular, certain characters seem to mirror those of the other title, whether in terms of personality or behavior.

Watch on Crunchyroll

1 Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba (2019)

Produced by Ufotable and Based on the Manga by Koyoharu Gotouge

As admitted by Gotouge himself, Naruto was one of Demon Slayer’s main influences, along with titles like Bleach and JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure. From the story’s focus on martial arts to Tanjiro’s team dynamics as part of the Demon Slayer Corps, which are comparable to the iconic Team Seven, the similarities are hardly subtle. Even on a broader level, Tanjiro’s journey is similar to Naruto’s, as he is also training and fighting to become strong enough to protect those dear to him and prevent any threat from disrupting the peace of the world he hopes to achieve.

Watch on Crunchyroll


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button