It’s hard to believe that the fantastic tour de force that has been Oshi no Ko has ended, and even though we’ll be getting another season, right now feels very much like the aftermath of leaving a concert—lots of feverish emotions, and wishing it could continue forever. Luckily, if you want more anime like Oshi no Ko, we’ve got you covered, with a list of anime that are sure to put the stars back in your eyes! Here are the 10 best anime like Oshi no Ko!
10 Anime Like Oshi no Ko
- Classroom of the Elite
- Kageki Shoujo!!
- Heroines Run the Show: The Unpopular Girl and the Secret Task
- Death Note
- Puella Magi Madoka Magica
- No Game No Life
- Perfect Blue
- A3! Spring & Summer
- The Saga of Tanya the Evil
Originally starting life as a rhythm game, IDOLiSH7 made the leap to an anime production in 2018 with studio TROYCA. At times dramatic, emotional, and heartwarming, IDOLiSH7 follows Tsumugi Takanashi as she becomes the manager of a new male idol group at her father’s agency. Her first task? Cut four of the boys from this seven-man lineup!
Tsumugi refuses to lose any of the valuable talent and the unique charm that each of the boys brings—but winning over her father is just IDOLiSH7’s first challenge. To achieve their dreams they’ll need to do everything they can to beat TRIGGER, a three-man idol group that’s storming to the top of the fiercely competitive world of idol groups.
If you liked the idol group aspect of Oshi no Ko, you’ll find plenty more to love in IDOLiSH7.
Classroom of the Elite
Psychological manipulation is just part of daily school life at the Advanced Nurturing High School in Classroom of the Elite. On a campus with unparalleled amounts of freedom, each class is ranked against in order of merit—and only the top classes receive favorable treatment. The dumping ground of this school is Class D, where all the oddballs and unwanted students end up—including Kiyotaka Ayanokouji, a masterful manipulator with hidden motives.
In Class D, Ayanokouji meets the unsociable Suzune Horikita, a girl who wants to climb the ladder all the way to Class A, and will drag Ayanokouji along with her. But as the school term progresses, friendships turn to rivalry, and there’s no stopping what underhanded tactics students can use to get ahead. Will Horikita prevail in her climb to the top? And what dark past has compelled Ayanokouji to enter this school in the first place?
For even more manipulation and mind games than Oshi no Ko, enter the Classroom of the Elite.
The life of an idol is never guaranteed, and for Ai Narata, she finds her dream career cut short after a controversial incident with a male fan. Forced to graduate from her group, JPX48, Ai swears off interacting with a man ever again and enters the renowned all-female Kouka School of Musical and Theatrical Arts. There, she’ll learn to become an actress worthy of performing in the famous Kouka Theatre Troupe—but Ai’s aloof demeanor and her background as an idol quickly alienate her from her classmates.
Ai’s only friend is Sarasa Watanabe, a girl who wants to become an “otokoyaku”—an actress who plays traditionally male roles. Unfortunately, Sarasa’s dream of becoming a famous performer might be short-lived if she can’t overcome her inability to read the room, or understand the friction between Ai and their classmates. Succeeding here at Kouka will involve more than talent—duplicity and jealousy are a mental battle warred between these high-performing students!
If you wished Oshi no Ko showed us more rivalry between the stars, then Kageki Shoujo!! is for you!
Heroines Run the Show: The Unpopular Girl and the Secret Task
Based on the song “Heroine Tarumono!”, itself part of the Kokuhaku Jikko Iinkai: Ren’ai Series Vocaloid song project by HoneyWorks, Heroines Run the Show is a bright and colorful idol-themed anime show about friendship and ambition.
Energetic 15-year-old Hiyori Suzumi has moved from her coastal hometown to Tokyo to begin high school—but her dream of becoming a track and field runner won’t come true if she doesn’t have a place to live! Forced to find a part-time job to cover living costs, she stumbles into a manager-in-training role for LIPxLIP, an up-and-coming male idol group formed of the duo Yuujirou Someya and Aizou Shibasaki. Hiyori’s life takes a strange turn when she realizes they’re her classmates—and her quiet school life is about to come crashing down around her!
As manager-in-training, Hiyori will need to give it her all to balance her studies, her training, and the constant bickering between her two idols to make LIPxLIP the next big thing!
Perfect for fans of IDOLiSH7, Heroines Run the Show is an energetic show that’ll leave you feeling warm and fuzzy inside—a good recovery from the drama of Oshi no Ko!
If you found yourself captivated by Aqua’s darkness and his willingness to dive headfirst into manipulating others for his own end, you’ll be equally drawn to Light Yagami. Although Death Note might be an older anime on our list, it remains as intriguing as ever, and if you haven’t watched the series yet, you’re in for a treat!
17-year-old Light Yagami shares a belief with the sadistic shinigami, Ryuk—that the world is rotten. When Ryuk “accidentally” leaves his Death Note behind in the human realm, Light Yagami finds it and reads the infamous first rule of the Death Note: “the human whose name is written in this note shall die.” Bemused at what he presumes is a prank, Light writes down the name of a felon—and commits his first murder.
Quickly becoming obsessed with his newfound power over life and death, Light Yagami kills more criminals and those he deems “unfit” to live in the world. But the sudden spate of killings draws the attention of the local Chief of Police—Light’s own father—and the enigmatic genius detective known only as “L.”
With the internet now obsessed with the mysterious killer they’ve dubbed “Kira,” Light and L are drawn into a tactical game of psychological warfare, each trying to reveal the other as Light sets about creating his new world order—all while avoiding the noose circling around his own neck.
Puella Magi Madoka Magica
Sitting squarely in the bucket of “not what it looks like on the surface,” the simplest way to describe the appeal behind the apparently colorful magical-girl series, Puella Magi Madoka Magica, is to explain that the series’ writer, Gen Urobuchi, has a nickname among his fans: Gen “Urbobutcher.” Yes, the infamously dark writer of Psycho-Pass and Fate/Zero created a Sailor Moon-inspired series that’s pure nightmare fuel!
The mysterious cat-like Kyuubey offers middle-school girls an enticing proposition: he can grant a single wish, no matter how great, and in exchange, they will become magical girls with enough power to fulfill their dreams. After becoming a magical girl, however, each girl finds themselves forced to hunt monstrous witches that live in the shadows of the world—and reckon with the horrific consequences of their pact with Kyuubey.
Relentlessly dark and despairing, Puella Magi Madoka Magica is a betrayal of all your expectations (and the death of your childhood anime), with a silver lining of hope and friendship that transcends even death itself. A perfect recommendation for anyone who liked the bait-and-switch of Oshi no Ko’s marketing, and wants to endure further emotional suffering.
No Game No Life
Oshi no Ko gave us a beautiful sibling relationship that borders just a little on an attachment complex (these kids had a traumatizing upbringing after all!), and No Game No Life brings an adorable sibling power couple in the form of Sora and Shiro.
Notoriously gifted gamers skilled in everything from chess to MMORPGs, the legendary gamer team BLANK is actually two shut-in siblings who are constantly looking for the hardest puzzle to solve. When a god of games invites them to another world, Sora and Shiro set about restoring lowly humankind’s good name the only way they know how—playing the game!
With a boldly unique visual style and some laugh-out-loud comedy, No Game No Life predominately offers wholesome sibling vibes mixed with a competitive spirit in a fantasy world that throws out ecchi gags and fantastic world-building in spades.
Despite being released in 1997, Perfect Blue feels like the blueprint for what makes Oshi no Ko a gritty and hauntingly realistic take on idol culture.
J-Pop idol group CHAM! has been riding high, but one of its members, Mima Kirigoe, leaves to pursue acting. While her decision is met with a mixed response from her fans, she hopes they’ll still choose to support her. But as her new career as an actress becomes increasingly demanding, her life takes a dark turn for the worse.
With an anonymous website impersonating her life in intricate detail, and an obsessive fan stalking her, each disturbing development begins pushing Mima over the edge until she can’t tell reality from fantasy. If you liked the extremely dark moments of Oshi no Ko, then settle in for the disturbing, hauntingly good Perfect Blue.
A3! Spring & Summer
Another mobile-game-turned-anime, the original game put the player in charge of managing Mankai Company—a theatre company split into four troupes named after the seasons. A3! Spring & Summer follows this plot, as Izumi Tachibana becomes the new director for all four troupes in order to stave off the Mankai Company’s impending bankruptcy and dissolution.
With a monumental task ahead of her, Izumi begins with the ‘Spring Troupe’ where she gathers Sakuya Sakuma, an enthusiastic high school student; Masumi Usui, a boy infatuated with Izumi; Tsuzuru Minagi, an aspiring playwright; Itaru Chigasaki, a mature office worker; and Citron, a friendly foreigner. With barely any acting experience among them, Izumi will need to whip these boys into shape to restore the Mankai Company to its former glory!
Similar to the other idol- and acting-themed anime on this list, there’s mostly good vibes and friendship at the heart of A3! Spring & Summer, with a second season (aptly titled A3! Autumn and Winter) ready for bingeing!
The Saga of Tanya the Evil
Oshi no Ko has a surprising element that’s rarely seen in slice-of-life drama—reincarnation. Aqua and Ruby may have lived previous lives, but unlike most manga or anime, they aren’t sent into a fantasy world of JRPG stat windows and scantily-dressed elves. Unfortunately (and rather bizarrely), Oshi no Ko is one of the very few series to deal with reincarnation within a modern world—although we know of one very close match.
The Saga of Tanya the Evil takes place in an alternate First World War, where familiar world powers are locked in bitter, bloody battles. Onto the depressingly bleak battlefield, where bullets fly and artillery shells thunder, steps an eleven-year-old girl—the reincarnation of an atheist businessman who died after being killed by a spiteful former employee. In the moments before his death, our protagonist met ‘god’—and boldly denounced that heavenly power. In punishment, he was reborn as a small girl in a hellish alternate universe.
But Tanya won’t go down without a fight—even if it’s the whole world against her. Possessed with a single-minded lust for power, she rises in this world’s military, helped by her natural inclination for the magecraft that has propelled this World War to higher stakes. Along the way, she’ll bloody her hands and adopt the moniker “The Devil of the Rhine” as her exploits terrify enemy and ally alike.
If you want a grounded reincarnation story with a mentally unstable protagonist to boot, check out The Saga of Tanya the Evil.
These are our recommendations for the top 10 anime like Oshi no Ko! Our list is varied, depending on what aspect of Oshi no Ko you liked best, be it idols, actors, reincarnation, or single-minded protagonists. Let us know what you think down in the comments below, and thanks for reading!