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Is Anime More Popular Than Cartoons? (Find Out)

Anime refers to Japanese animation and as more people like to call it ‘Japanese cartoons’. Unlike the western take on cartoons, Anime is much more diverse and has depth to it. 

The main purpose of cartoons in the west is humor and satire, you’d see characters doing absolutely nonsense things just for a good laugh! Children are the major audience of cartoons.

However, cartoons like Steven Universe, Family Guy, and Adventure Time are more serious and mature. 

Anime, on the other hand, has a plethora of genres and sub-genres.

From humor to action to romance to a slice of life, Anime got it all! Apart from children’s shows, Anime has various content for all age groups and genders.

This is the reason why Anime gained so much popularity in little time. 

Demon Slayer Episode 12
Kimetsu no Yaiba is one of the highest-grossing Anime of the year 2022.

If we look at the history of Anime, it was at some point influenced by the Walt Disney fever and made good use of it.

Osamu Tezuka known as the father of Anime also took inspiration from western animation in his work to make it more relevant to the audience.

But Anime has made its name for its large doe eyes, funky hairstyles, and exaggerated facial features which makes the genre more emotional than cartoons. 

Hence you cannot deny the fact that cartoons are the mainstream form of entertainment in the west but Anime has its fair share of popularity in private circles, especially in Asian countries.

In this blog, I will discuss whether Anime is more popular than cartoons or not.

Anime vs. Cartoons: Which is more popular?

Deathnote for Halloween
Anime has gained so much popularity that the cartoon show ‘The Simpsons’ paid a tribute to the Anime Death Note for Halloween.

Cartoons frequently bounce between excessive goofiness (kid‘s shows) and mild dark humor (adult shows). Animes that can be both comical and meaningful are becoming increasingly popular.

Although It appears that American Cartoons are more dominant in mainstream media, you should know that Disney Toons is one of the only American Cartoons that are available abroad.

Other American cartoons are not sufficiently translated and are simply not distributed in other countries. 

Whereas Anime is the cocaine of the Visual Media World, it’s often discussed in private groups, it’s widely available in numerous forms (subbed and dubbed), and your first hit is always free.

Furthermore, a substantial amount of Anime is available for free viewing, not even in an unlawful manner.

Anime is also not as childishly received as cartoons in the United States. Also, based only on population density, the nations especially Asia where Anime is prevalent have a larger population pool and thus more consumers of the medium.

Taking the growing popularity of Anime into consideration many Streaming Platforms have also come forward with their Anime productions Like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon prime, etc. 

What is the difference between Anime and cartoons?

Anime is a key tool in Japan for education, magazines, marketing strategies, literature, and films. Japanese animation has a signature art style, with anatomically human characters, strikingly unique hairstyles, and large eyes. 

Whereas, cartoons are not a major mode of advertisement in the west. They have a simplistic art style and graphics.

A cartoon is an illustration that is just two dimensions and usually has a surreal or semi-realistic aesthetic. The purpose of creating cartoons is satire, caricature, or humor. 

Cartoon figures frequently have unrealistic looks, are overly simple, have exaggerated body parts or features, and lack accurate anatomical features.

The majority of cartoon characters are caricatures, which gives them a cartoonish appearance. They are made in a way that is attractive to kids but now animators are making them more mature a great example is a family guy.

However, the animation is not that detailed as compared to Anime but the dark humor is there and relatable adult problems make it a good watch

Characteristic traits vary among Anime characters. Anime is the most lifelike form of media because the characters have physical traits that are similar to those in real life and appear more realistic apart from the big hairdos. 

Anime takes itself very seriously; each episode advances the plot, the people in the story are three-dimensional, and you can see the character mature as the story progresses, and Anime stays true to the subject, with extreme attention to detail.

For example, if Anime is about tennis, the show is animated in such a way that it captures the essence of the sport.

Not only that, technical terms are taken into consideration, and you can often find similarities between the sport and the show, there may be some exaggeration for added drama and intensity, but at its core, Anime stays true to the subject.

You will also learn a lot about the theme of the Anime because Anime creators go to great lengths to match the details, in order to get you involved in the plot.

DifferencesIn AnimeIn Cartoons
OriginAnime originated in Japan.Cartoons originated in the US.
Visual AestheticThe physical features of characters are, much more exaggerated, anatomically correct, and fantastical than in cartoons. Big eyes and small mouths give a cute look.Characters can have any shape, or facial feature and bear least to no relevance to human anatomy. For example, SpongeBob.
ThemesAnime includes more violent and sexual themes and focuses more on life issues or topics related to human emotion.Cartoons tend to be funnier since they are designed to make people laugh.
The major difference between Anime and cartoon

Are cartoons better than Anime?

Hayao Miyazaki's Princess Mononoke has one of the best and most realistic animations in the Anime industry.
Hayao Miyazaki’s Princess Mononoke has one of the best and most realistic animations in the Anime industry.

Cartoons and Anime both use the same conventional production techniques, such as storyboarding, voice acting, character design, and cell production.

However, there are some differences. For instance, Anime scenes are three-dimensional as opposed to cartoons, which are typically two-dimensional.

Additionally, Anime places a lot of emphasis on the background and ambiance to enhance the story.

A tale in an Anime is never limited to humor, laughter, or repetitions of any type. However, it offers the viewer a variety of genres.

There is a genre option on any website that features Anime. You can select your preferred genres from this list, including horror, comedy, romance, and many others. just like real-life television shows and movies.

In Anime, content is crucial. More people will watch an Anime with quality content than a cartoon. The Anime series Death Note gained notoriety throughout the world for its suspenseful plot and several accolades.

Due to their changing personalities, moods, and everyday issues, Anime characters are remarkably comparable to humans. Their definition of who they are changes constantly. It varies fairly constantly.

Both real-life characters and Anime characters can experience romance. Music and tears abound in romantic encounters. The scenes are well-written and convey their feelings for one another.

All these facts stated above make Anime a better form of animated media than cartoons. 

Is Anime more popular than ever?

The particular aesthetic of Anime is distinguished by its use of vivid colors, strong facial features, and fantastical plots. It covers topics like maturing and the value of friendship, frequently with brutal violence and some sexual overtones.

Although it has been popular for many years in Japan and started to spread to the West in the 1990s, its global appeal has recently increased.

More people are watching Anime than ever before, especially abroad. According to Netflix, nearly 120 million households viewed at least one Japanese animation feature on their platform every year.

A prequel to a popular streaming TV series based on popular manga comics, Jujutsu Kaisen 0, has become a surprising box office triumph as Anime gains newfound global acclaim in theatres and on streaming services.

The Anime feature film, about a high school boy who is plagued by the ghost of his childhood sweetheart, came in second place behind The Batman in the UK box office rankings and beat out other new movies.

Jujutsu Kaisen zaero movie trailer

With distinctive characters and compelling stories, Anime challenges the status quo. As Anime frequently features magic, Japanese folktales, and superheroes, it also goes beyond reality.

It also goes beyond the typical Western films and television programs, providing fans with a library of original stories, concepts, and characters.

What percentage of animation is Anime?

Demon Slayer
Anime: Demon Slayer

Although accurate international sales data is not available, a METI report from January 2004 states that around 60% of the Anime that is aired globally is produced in Japan.

As of March 2003, twenty Japanese Anime shows were airing on American TV. More than 65 countries’ schoolchildren now prefer Pokémon to Astroboy, and 60% of all animated cartoon series are produced in Japan.


  • Anime is achieving mass appeal due to the variety in content and themes.
  • There is depth to the characters and story in Anime making it popular among the youth and kids. 
  • In Anime, content is crucial. More people will watch an Anime with quality content than a cartoon.
  • Cartoon on the other hand only targets satire and have no depth to their plot which makes them only limited to children and younger audiences. 

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