10 best shows like Cowboy Bebop

The long-awaited premiere of the live-action version of Cowboy Bebop arrives on Netflix on Friday, November 19. Audiences who may have grown up with the beloved anime, widely regarded as one of the best in the art form, dread and anticipate the series in equal measure. For those who haven’t seen the Cowboy Bebop anime, however, the live show may inspire them to experience the series for the first time.

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After a show, especially as excellent as Cowboy Bebop, is over, viewers tend to want to see similar content. Fortunately, Cowboy Bebop inspired dozens of series similar to the original. These anime shows promise audiences such a crazy time as Cowboy Bebop delivered.


ten Gurren Lagann

Simon does the Gainax pose

A high octane sci-fi anime with rich and complex characters, Gurren Lagann is a natural next step for those who love Cowboy Bebop. Unlike this show, however, Gurren Lagann features a giant mecha fight for humanity, which was largely driven underground prior to the start of the series. Despite its shiny plating, Gurren Lagann, As Cowboy Bebop, can be surprisingly dark, which leads to a more mature story for the audience.

9 Space dandy

Space Dandy's main crew looks curious.

Space dandy is a series that draws a lot from Cowboy Bebop. In fact, many anime viewers consider Space dandy to be its lighter counterpart. The series follows Dandy, who is an independent space hunter, through his adventures. His job is to search for undiscovered alien life forms on the edge of the known galaxy with his crew: the robot assistant QT and the cat-like alien Meow.

Rather than a serial story, Space dandy tends to vary from episode to episode, focusing on its humor and characters above all else.

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8 Trigoun

Another western inspired anime like Cowboy Bebop, Trigoun follows the legendary outlaw Vash the Stampede. Much like Spike Spiegel, Vash, aside from his creepiest aspects, is a very laid back guy. However, when he’s serious, it often has a terrifying effect on his opponents.

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Cowboy Bebop and Trigoun are contemporaries of anime, however Trigoun started out as a manga. Still, both are excellent studies of the action-oriented, Western-inspired cartoons of the late ’90s. The shows make a good double.

7 Samurai Champloo

The trio of protagonists Samurai Champloo.

Contrary to Cowboy Bebopthe futuristic decor of, Samurai Champloo goes a little more old-fashioned. Set during an alternate version of the Edo era in Japan (which lasted from 1608 to 1868), this heavily hip-hop-infused animated series follows the wandering swordsman Mugen, consisting of Ronin Jin, and Fuu, a girl in search of a samurai who “sunflower smells. “The series, despite a very different setting, is stylistically similar to Cowboy Bebop.

It makes sense because Shinichirō Watanabe, who directed Cowboy Bebop, also directs Samurai Champloo. In fact, this is Watanabe’s first series afterCowboy Bebop. Samurai Champloo is an interesting back to back watch for Cowboy Bebop for the audience to see how Watanabe’s style evolved between the two series.

6 Paranoia Agent

Paranoia Agent Satoshi Kon

While Cowboy Bebop was sometimes quite light, the series could also be dark, atmospheric and intense. Paranoia Agent takes these items to the next level entirely. The anime follows a large number of characters whose lives are affected by Shonen Bat (Bat Boy): a kid wearing a red baseball cap on inline skates who attacks people with a baseball bat. As the detectives tasked with catching him interrogate his victims, the secret lives of these victims and the truth about the mysterious Shonen Bat are slowly revealed.

Agent of paranoia, a little like Cowboy Bebop, is a more adult series. Paranoia Agent loves to play with storytelling and perspective, so don’t expect a straightforward story. A little like Cowboy Bebop, there is a mystery and character reveals that slowly unfold over time.

5 Outlaw star

Perhaps the truest contemporary of Cowboy Bebop the low, Outlaw star was produced by Sunrise (the same studio) at the same time as Cowboy Bebop. contrary to Cowboy Bebop, Outlaw star was based on a Takehiko Itō manga series. This space opera / western combination takes place during the “Towards Stars Era” where humanity understood travel faster than light.

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Outlaw star follows a motley team that searches the galaxy in search of the “galactic ley line,” a place that claims to hold immense treasure, knowledge and power. The pace of manga and anime is very different from each other. In the anime, many episodes revolve around the crew taking odd jobs in order to deal with the huge maintenance costs of their ship. Still, it’s an interesting look at the kind of anime Sunrise was doing at the time as well as how it compares to. Cowboy Bebop.

4 Bungo Stray Dogs

A kind that Cowboy Bebop outside of the space opera / Western field, embodies that of film noir. For the public drawn to this kind of story, Bungo Stray Dogs is a great anime watch. The series follows armed Detective Agency members, each with different powers, as they try to use their abilities to protect Yokohama by solving mysteries and doing side jobs for the Mafia.

Each episode follows the kind of unique format of Cowboy Bebop, which means a less serialized story and more focused on the characters who run the agency. contrary to Cowboy Bebop, there are several seasons of the anime with a fourth season announced and a spin-off TV series, Bungo stray dogs Wan!, released in 2021.

3 Violet Evergarden

Violet salutes in Violet Evergarden.

Under his sympathetic personality, Cowboy BebopThe protagonist of Spike Spiegel is a man haunted by his past. While Violet Evergarden is a sweet anime, at least on the surface, the characters in the series face their own tragedies, consequences, and regrets, just like Spike. As Spike was a prolific killer, titular Violet destroyed many bodies during her time in the war.

While Spike never has to learn more about his emotions like Violet does, both characters still face their past actions and their inner darkness quite convincingly.

2 Black lagoon

The main set of Black Lagoon marching against a sunset

Black lagoon follows a group of mercenary pirates who smuggle goods across the continent while evading law enforcement and gangs, who seek to disrupt their operations. The excellent action-oriented anime is most similar to Cowboy Bebop in the personal dynamics between the main characters. Cowboy Bebop, more than anything, is known for his fascinating characters and the way they all bonded to each other.

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Black lagoon works on a very similar character dynamics scale and also includes some dynamite action scenes that should appeal to Cowboy Bebop the viewers.

1 Psycho-Pass

Psycho-Pass Season 3

Would have Cowboy Bebop work just as well without the strength of Spike Spiegel as the protagonist? The real answer is probably not. Psycho-Pass is also an animated series with an incredibly well-written male role, Shinya Kogami. As the series takes place in a dystopian cyberpunk setting that operates by the rules of Minority report, it’s Kogami’s story that remains a huge draw.

Much like Spike’s past, details are slowly unveiled and revealed to the public as the episodes go by, making it a very compelling tale overall.

NEXT: 10 Sci-Fi Movies To Watch If You Love Cowboy Bebop

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