2022 has already been a fantastic year for anime. We highlighted some of our favorites from earlier this year, but the best is yet to come. The Fall 2022 anime season is filled to the brim with returning fan favorites and highly anticipated premieres. There’s a little something for everyone with spies, superheroes, and literal chainsaw men ready to dominate the season. Even more exciting is the return of a Shonen anime classic returning after almost a decade away.
We’ve done our best to whittle the season down into eight must-see releases that you won’t want to miss. While most of these titles can be found on Crunchyroll, there are some you’ll want to check out on Netflix and HIDIVE as well.
Spy X Family
Premiere Date: October 1st
Status: Season 2
When world peace is on the line, there’s no better agent for the job than Special Agent Twilight. This new season sees Twilight continuing his most complex challenge yet, Operation Strix, where he must pose as an everyday family man. Twilight has assembled the perfect family for his mission. He takes on the identity of Loid Forger, but he isn’t the only one with a hidden secret—his wife, Yor, is actually a world-class assassin, and his newly adopted daughter Anya is a telepath. The first season of this action/comedy was an absolute thrill ride, with the family going through rigorous tests to enter the prestigious Eden Academy. Anya must make friends with classmate Damian Desmond, but even with her telepathic abilities, making friends can be tough. Will the Forger Family figure it out and bring about peace? Whether or not this unlikely family can complete their mission doesn’t really matter, it’s just a joy to see them try.
My Hero Academia
Premiere Date: October 1
Streaming: Crunchyroll, Hulu
Status: Season 6
The newest season in the long-running and beloved Shonen superhero series is almost here. My Hero Academia Season 6 continues the story of Izuku Midoriya, a boy who dreamt of being a superhero. In a world where 80% of the population has a super-powered “quirk,” chances are that he’d at least have a chance. But born without superpowers, he must fight harder than anyone to make his dream a reality. The new season picks up after the students of U.A. High School have completed their first year, and have advanced their abilities through a work-study program with some of the greatest superheroes around. But while they’re leveling up, villain Tomura Shigaraki has seized control of the Metahuman Liberation Army and now seeks to advance his abilities by any means necessary. Midoriya is unquestionably the main protagonist of My Hero Academia, but the series has had such incredible staying power due to its beloved extended cast like the hot-headed Katsuki Bakugo, the cold and powerful Shoto Todoroki, the bubbly and determined Ochaco Uraraka, and countless more. It’s a credit to creator and illustrator K?hei Horikoshi that the series is able to juggle so many characters and make many of them fan favorites. It certainly doesn’t hurt that animation studio Bones continues to make this one of the best-looking Shonen series currently airing.
Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch from Mercury
Premiere Date: October 2
Status: New Series
As a new entry in the beloved Mobile Suit Gundam franchise, you better believe that there are going to be mechs. Animation studio Sunrise and Kiznaiver director Hiroshi Kobayashi have teamed up to tell a new story of giant robots, politics, and epic space battles. Sunrise has already released a prologue, a one-off prequel episode that sets up what audiences can expect. We’re introduced to the show’s protagonist Suletta Mercury (who goes by her birth name Ericht “Eri” Sayama in this prologue), a child celebrating her fourth birthday in an asteroid facility. Eri’s mom is the test pilot of the Gundam Lfrith, but we soon discover that Eri has more affinity to power the Gundam than her mother. Following a military coup and an attack on the asteroid base, Eri must pilot the powerful mech and, well, kill a bunch of enemies. Happy 4th birthday. It’s a riveting and violent prologue chapter, and if it’s any preview of the conflict we expect with The Witch from Mercury, it will certainly be one of this season’s must-watch anime.
Mob Psycho 100
Premiere Date: October 5
Status: Final Season
Shigeo “Mob” Kageyama might have tremendous power, but he doesn’t have strong personal skills. He’s socially awkward and perhaps a little too trusting of those around him, especially his master, Arataka Reigen. But through his growing relationships, he begins to realize that his abilities don’t make him better than anyone else, and he should cherish those bonds above all else. This final season begins right after the epic battle between Mob and the boss of The Claw, Suzuki. The result of that conflict is that a giant head of broccoli is in the center of the city and has gotten the attention of everybody. Now Mob must join his friends once again to rid the city of this giant broccoli. Beyond the stellar animation from studio Bones, Mob Psycho 100 has maintained its strong following due to its beloved star. It’s easy to associate with Mob’s desires even though his power level is astronomical.
Premiere Date: October 8
Status: New Series
In 2018, the Japanese national soccer team finished 16th in the FIFA world cup. That’s simply unacceptable, so Japan hires Ego Jinpachi to light a fire under Japan’s athletes and bring glory to the nation. He devises a plan: he’s going to take 300 of the best soccer players in the country to a state-of-the-art training facility and whittle them down until he has found the best striker. Unfortunately, the other 299 participants must give up their dreams of being professional soccer players forever. A high school student, Yoichi Isagi, is one of the boys chosen for the program and he’s determined to be the last athlete standing. BLUELOCK certainly sounds like a soccer-meets-The Hunger Games type of elimination show, and that makes it stand out ahead of other sports anime series. Whether or not it has the staying power of something like the volleyball series Haikyu!! is something I’m eager to discover.
Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War
Premiere Date: October 10
Status: New Series
Despite the tag of a new series, Bleach could almost be considered a continuing series, even if its last episode aired almost a decade ago. The anime had completed the second arc of the manga, but there was more story to tell. Fans began to wonder if that portion of the story would ever be animated. Then in March 2020, it was announced that Bleach would be returning and the manga’s final story arc, Thousand-Year Blood War, would be completed. In what is promising to be a four cour adaptation (a cour usually spans three months and consists of 12 episodes), Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War, sees the return of soul reaper Ichigo Kurosaki and his friends as they battle a new evil. Bleach was considered one of the top-tier shonen series along with titles like Naruto and One Piece. It’s well overdue to get the closure it deserves.
Premiere Date: October 12
Status: New Series
Easily the most anticipated series of the year, Chainsaw Man, has legions of fans worldwide and has been a best-seller since its inception. Luckily the series is more than just a man with chainsaws all over his body: it’s a high-octane action series with elaborate enemies, juvenile humor, and plenty of gore to spare. Chainsaw Man stars Denji, a teenager who is saddled with his dead father’s debt. Aided by his tiny devil dog with a chainsaw blade for a face, Pochita, they undertake missions to kill devils for cash with the hopes of paying off the debt. One day they are both critically injured, and to survive, they must fuse their bodies together. Now half-human/half-devil, Denji is going to take down a lot more demons in the hope that he can continue his low-maintenance lifestyle. Chainsaw Man wouldn’t be the success it is if it was only crude and gory, and luckily there’s a whole lot more to discover. With one of the premier animation studios working on it in MAPPA, and an eager fanbase, Chainsaw Man is the title that will be dominating this upcoming season.
Urusei Yatsura (2022)
Premiere Date: October 13
Status: New Series
Urusei Yatsura could be another one of those “is it really a new series?” Given that the original run of episodes ended in 1986, I’m willing to give this one the benefit of the doubt. Author and illustrator Rumiko Takahashi (Ranma ½, Inuyasha, Rin-ne) created Urusei Yatsura way back in 1978. The series is a science-fiction comedy that features the iconic character of Princess Lum, the daughter of the leader of alien invaders. These invaders want to give humanity a chance so It’s decided that a young man, Ataru Moroboshi, will challenge Lum for the fate of the planet. Ataru is able to defeat Lum in unscrupulous fashion, and he believes that’s the last he’ll hear of the alien princess. But lo and behold, she has become romantically interested in Ataru and now she’ll be part of his life forever. Takahashi has created some legendary anime series and this adaptation of Urusei Yatsura gives audiences around the world the opportunity to see where her career blossomed.
Max Covill is a freelance writer for Paste Magazine. For more anime, movie, and television news and reviews you can follow him, @mhcovill.
For all the latest TV news, reviews, lists and features, follow @Paste_TV.