Anime shows love to break the 4th wall and be “meta” where it counts.
When an anime is meta, it’s hilarious. And makes it relatable to an extent.
You tend to find it in comedy but it goes beyond that.
You can find it in:Supernatural Fantasy School Romance Ecchi Harem
And many types of anime genres. Comedy just happens to be one genre where it’s most common.
Let’s talk about it.
The Best Meta Anime You Need To Watch:
1. Sket Dance
Sket Dance is as Meta as it gets. Breaking the 4th wall like its hobby or some sort of running joke.
It’s an anime about 3 characters who have their own club called Sket Dance. A club dedicated to helping others and solving their problems. Even if it’s unrelated to school.
Later through the anime there’s some dark scenes that are surprising for a comedy. And even Gintama makes an appearance in a crossover episode.
2. Hyperdimension Neptunia
Hyperdimension Neptunia is adapted from a video game from the PlayStation. Not the funniest anime, but it’s pretty good.
A lot of the meta anime moments in this show is related to video games, gaming culture and other things.
Each character is a CPU and some of the jokes will only be funny if you understand the context of the subjects.
Still a decent series.
Gamers is all in the name. Anime characters who love games, some of who are dedicated Otaku’s.
The main character: Amano likes the popular, cliche blonde girl called Karen Tendou. And vice versa.
Both of them love video games.
Romantic misunderstandings, gaming references, and over the top comedy is what you can expect to see in Gamers.
As well as Meta moments.
It’s one of my favorites.
4. Ms. Vampire Who Lives In My Neighborhood
This is a slice of life/vampire type of series with comedy and obvious fantasy elements.
The main character, unlike in a violent series, buys and orders blood online from Amazon. And even drinks blood from a teacup.
She’s a 300+ year old Loli who sleeps with an anime body pillow in her coffin, and collects figurines.
You can see why this anime is so meta. The 4th wall breaks are ridiculous for an anime so short.
Monogatari is like Ms. Vampire Who Lives In My Neighbourhood. At least when it comes to breaking the 4th wall and being meta as F.
But Monogatari is a much longer series, so it’s overkill in Monogatari’s case.
With some of the most thought provoking arcs, strange characters, heavy dialogue and hidden messages, this anime is one that will make you think.
There’s nothing like Monogatari and never will be. It’s too unique.
6. Lucky Star
Lucky Star is about Otaku. The main character – Konata Izumi is the “Otaku” of the show who’s more intense than the others.
She’s lazy, but smarter than she seems. And is the main source of the anime’s comedy.
If you want something different from Kyoto Animation as far as themes, this is it. Suited to the gamer crowd of anime fans.
7. The Disastrous Life Of Saiki K
The Disastrous Life Of Saiki K is an underrated series that released in 2016. It’s like the new Gintama, without the extremes or the fan service.
And just like Gintama, Saiki K breaks the 4th wall and is meta.
The anime is about Kusuo Saiki, a teenager with psychic and OP abilities who just wants to be left alone. And introvert without anyone bothering him.
Comedy is fresh and it won’t disappoint.
8. Re:Zero – Starting Life In Another World
Re:Zero is known for its savagery, the horror, the psychological pain, stress, and the main character people hate or love.
But underneath the surface, and sometimes on the surface, it sneaks in some meta and breaks the 4th wall. Occasionally.
Sometimes it does it in a way that makes the anime funnier than it should be.
If you want an anime with a realistic protagonist, this is one of the best Isekai you’ll ever watch.
9. Didn’t I Say to Make My Abilities Average in the Next Life?!
Not the best anime title I’ve ever seen. Isekai’s have a habit of making awfully long, lazy titles like this.
Either way, the anime passes for “decent”.
Within the first episode or 2, you see a lot of meta references and 4th wall breaks right out the door.
The anime is about the main character who wants to have average abilities in her next life after dying and being reborn.
The world she’s born in though gives her the “average” of some powerful mages, so she ends up being too OP.
10. Kono Subarashii
Kono Subarashii is an anime I never warmed to at first. But eventually I started to like it the more I watched.
It’s a parody series, so nothing you see should be taken seriously.
Konosuba loves to make a running joke out of anime’s usual cliches, tropes, harem elements and more. And it’s clear from the meta subtitles and dialogue.
It’s not for everyone, but if you enjoy it, you won’t ever turn back.
Shimoneta, or in English: A Boring World Where The Concept Of Dirty Jokes Doesn’t Exist.
It’s a mouthful of a title, but the anime itself is some of the best an Ecchi series has ever known.
With the ridiculous SJW society within the anime, and the constant tip-toeing around the rules, it makes the comedy and sex humor funnier than it would be otherwise.
I wouldn’t recommend watching this without headphones.
12. How To Raise A Boring Girlfriend
How To Raise A Boring Girlfriend, or “Saekano” is all about Otaku’s, authors, Hentai artists and more.
Only one of the anime characters can be considered a “normie”, and she’s the “boring girlfriend” the title is based on.
Saekano’s 4th wall breaks and meta dialogue is so blatant and shameless you can’t help but love it.
Being a slice of life it’s relaxing to watch as well.
13. My Bride Is A Mermaid
My Bride Is A Mermaid is like Gintama, Saiki K or something similar. It loves to break the 4th wall.
This anime aired back in the early 2000’s, so it’s original and an underrated OG as far as 21st century anime comedy.
The main characters are engaged, with Sun Seto (the girl) having family ties to the Yakuza.
Misunderstandings are common here, and the comedy is so good the art is almost a science.
14. The Demon Girl Next Door
The Demon Girl Next Door is low key meta. It doesn’t show itself as often as other anime on this list.
But where it counts, it’s a good laugh. And in the first episode, truck-kun seemingly makes an appearance until you realize the anime is pulling your leg.
You get some meta in the first 5 minutes of watching as well.
Season 2 will drop in 2021!
15. Humanity Has Declined
Humanity Has Declined is self explanatory to a point.
The human population is declining, and the main character works with the United Nations to maintain and fix the issue.
There are fairies, food that talks, dark scenes and some occasional meta moments.
It’s a strange anime series, but somehow it manages to blend different elements without going off track.
16. Engaged To The Unidentified
Engaged To The Unidentified is an anime made by Doga Kobo studios. Same studio behind Umaru Chan.
With so many meta references to Loli’s and other humor, you can’t miss the meta in this show.
Aside from the questionable older sister, this is a relaxed slice of life series and one of the more “tame” comedy’s with little to no fan service.
Other “Meta” Anime:Gintama. Shirobako. Joshiraku. Anime-Gataris.