Romance is fine and dandy, but often not very appealing to male anime-watching audiences. However, you can probably guess how they got around that particular problem, right? And so, the harem was born. This genre involves typically one male surrounded by a whole gaggle of attractive females. Usually it is populated with tired old clichés and the main man helping, rescuing, and oogling his female counterparts. However, when people watch a harem anime series, they aren’t watching it for the plot.
They’re watching for that alluring, huge, shiny, lightly-blushed …Skin.
Heaven’s Lost Property
Harem Level: Microphallus
Heaven’s Lost Property is one of those shows that if you aren’t expecting full-on ecchi comedy going in, it can put you off really quickly. It is really in your face with its perverted nature, almost annoyingly so and reuses the same jokes over and over again. However, the reason it is rounding out the bottom is because of its tiny, tiny harem. There are really only three girls, and only one has even an ounce of personality while the other two are just body stereotypes it needed to check off its list.
Harem Level: “These girls will be the death of me.”
At this point, School Days is infamous for its ending, but the bizarre and brutal twists it brings over from its source material still don’t change that it is, in fact, a harem anime. You have Makoto who is perhaps the most undeserving harem king in the genre surrounded by his classmates that all, for some reason, want to get with him. Of course, things don’t end very well.
Harem Level: Boob fights
Sekirei is one of many entries into the harem sub-genre of kissing contracts, in which the main character activates special powers in a girl via kisses. In this particular series, the main character possesses a unique genetic defect that allows him to activate the powers of alien ladies called Sekirei who then can battle it out with each other for supremacy. The plot is kind of a blow off, but where this series really excels is in its battle boob physics. They are pretty mesmerizing.
The Hentai Prince and the Stony Cat
Harem Level: Questing for cute waifus
Despite its name, the Hentai Prince and the Stoney Cat isn’t as perverted as you might expect. Instead it is more like one of those “cute” harem shows rather than just going for pure sex appeal. However, its plot about a main character making a wish to be more outgoing and instead switching personalities with several of his female classmates can definitely end up in some intriguing situations.
Demon King Daimao
Harem Level: Ladies love a bad boy
In Demon King Daimao, all Akuto Sai wants to do is graduate from Constant Magick Academy and join the clergy to better the world. Unfortunately, his aptitude test tells him that he is destined to become the future Demon King. As he tries to prove he just wants to be a good guy, girls slowly start to surround him. Some girls want to destroy him, others want to exploit him. However, by the end, they all have one thing in common, they all want him.
Harem Level: Exponential Beauties
In the beginning, To Love-Ru has the trappings of an ecchi romance, but builds on until it reaches full harem status by the end. Initially, Rito Yuuki, who is afraid of girls, accidentally gropes an alien princess, which on her planet is a marriage proposal. As he tries to fight off her endless affection, he also has to content with bounty hunters, other suitors, and an ever-growing harem of the ladies around him like his crush, his teacher, and even his sister.
IS: Infinite Stratos
Harem Level: Boobs on a mech
Harems in the mecha genre aren’t wholly unheard of. In fact, they are quite common. However, Infinite Stratos takes a unique approach with it by having a world where the mechs are only able to be piloted by women, giving them higher status in the world over men. However, when 15-year-old Ichika Orimura discovers he is the only man in the world that can pilot one of these mechs, he is the object of unbound curiosity to the other women pilots around him.
Rosario + Vampire
Harem Level: Voracious meat eaters
Having a random dude thrown into an all-girls high school is well-worn territory for harems, but Rosario + Vampire is not that. Instead, it takes a less obvious approach by throwing a human into a school full of all supernatural creatures. Upon his first day, he meets a vampire that loves the smell of his blood like a baby loves cocaine, so she decides to protect him. Throughout the series, he manages to endear himself to a number of other female monsters that at first try to kill him, but then decide they love him like a succubus, witch, and an ice queen. This essentially covers all the must-have harem girl tropes.
Harem Level: Woman Monopoly
Haganai draws on the creator’s own teenage awkwardness, and it is about teenaged boy that is seen as a delinquent and thus has no friends. One day he meets a girl that talks to an imaginary friend and together they decide to form a club for people with no friends. In the complete opposite of what would likely happen in real life, the club attracts all hot, but weird, girls.
Harem Level: Best girl bait
Oh, you know the old tale. You are the heir-apparent to a Yakuza family when you are promised in marriage to the daughter of a rival gang to keep the peace and then your childhood crush comes back and wants to marry you, and suddenly everyone love you. That is basically Nisekoi, and over its long run, it has sparked many a debate over who is the best girl.
High School of the Dead
Harem Level: Boing!
Nothing brings people closer together than the zombie apocalypse, and for guys like Takashi Komuro and nerdy otaku Kouta Hirano, they are lucky enough to spend it with a whole gaggle of hot girls that fit into all the harem tropes. Of course, being in near-death situations day after day also sets up for sexy situations like a lack of clothes and abstract horniness.
Tenchi Muyo! War on Geminar
Harem Level: D. They all want the D.
Typically when someone decides to make a harem series, they spend less time on the plot and more time on the girls. However, this Tenchi Muyo spin-off pulls off both harem and plot with finesse. You are actually given believable reasons for why the women on this planet want to jump on Kenshi’s bones and you get a relatively interesting overall plot as well.
High School DxD
Harem Level: “Boobs outweigh a man’s life”
As we all do, Issei Hyoudou only wants his own personal harem. Unfortunately he dies quickly into the story. After being resurrected by a senior classmate who is also the devil, he now vows to move up the supernatural hierarchy in his school and fulfill his dream of assembling a harem. Unfortunately, he has a fatal flaw of not realizing when gorgeous women are actually into him.
Have any more good harem anime recommendations that need to be on this list? Tell us about them in the comments section below.