10 Adult Anime TV Shows That Deserve Movies

Harley Quinn and Rick and Morty are just two of the ongoing adult animated series, and both have more seasons to come. When you look at the landscape of American animated television, there are plenty of shows that are popular enough to merit feature films.

These movies can take many forms depending on the show: reboots, sequels, or even live-action adaptations. Mind you, these latest shows have a lot to offer, fans will be sure to welcome a long build to tell new stories in a slightly different way.

The Simpsons (1989–present)

Available to stream on Disney+

Yes, The Simpsons Movie is now available. But it came out in 2007, meaning The Simpsons aired almost as much after the movie as it did during the movie’s release. It’s already overdue for a sequel that could become a reality with the Fox brand under the Disney umbrella.

In a recent interview, it was revealed that the showrunners are still discussing the future of the second film, but there is plenty of story potential to explore in the feature film format. While it was an interesting concept to bring back some plot elements from the first film, it wasn’t meant to act as a direct sequel.

Disappointment (2018-22)

Available to stream on Netflix

Disenchantment is a Netflix show from The Simpsons creator Matt Groening with a similar animation style. The series ended its run this year, but there are other concepts to explore in its fantasy landscape.

Since its first season, it has become a fantasy series with excellent world-building, interesting main and supporting characters, and twists on familiar tropes. What these creative minds can do with a film structure can be truly exciting.

Star Trek: The Lower Deck (2020-present)

Available to stream on Paramount+

Star Trek: Lower Decks has updated the popular sci-fi franchise with a unique take on what the Star Trek series could be. Focusing on the lower deck crew of a Federation starship brought to the fore a number of well-developed characters, each with unusual and often unseen roles.

Ever since the franchise’s revival on CBS All Access (now Paramount+) in 2017, the possibility of a new Star Trek movie has been discussed. It may be time for the series to bring an animated film to the big screen, and Lower Decks deserves to fill that slot.

Harley Quinn (2019-present)

Available to stream on HBO Max

DC Comics fans have long been treated to fantastic animation with a shared animated universe that boasts 30 years of stellar storytelling. Harley Quinn largely exists in its own continuity, and as a series it has delighted audiences with its quick wit, great style, and reimagining of familiar faces.

DC is no stranger to long-running animated content, and giving the show’s talent the chance to build a story from the ground up that benefits from a cinematic structure would be an incredible prospect. Interests may well be raised, but fundamentally this is a relationship show and not to be missed.

Rick and Morty (2013-present)

Available to stream on HBO Max and Hulu

Rick and Morty is here for the long haul, and several seasons have been commissioned that will continue to depict the adventures of the sci-fi grandfather and grandson duo along with the extended Smith family. It’s a show that never shies away from meta-humor and delights in tearing apart the conventions of science fiction itself.

While there was a growing sense of continuity in the final season, it’s unclear where the show is going right now. Perhaps every unresolved plot point could be wrapped up in a feature-length production that Rick and Morty fans would enjoy seeing on the big screen. The size of the franchise makes this absolutely possible.

Invincible (2021-present)

Available to stream on Prime Video

Based on a graphic novel series of the same name, it’s refreshing to see a comic book series outside of the big two that’s suitable for animation, with so much creativity and respect for the source material. Invincible has already shown what he’s capable of on the air.

While live-action performances could be in the works to sell this tale a little differently, the fact remains that this is a fantastic performance that could have benefited from an extended run time to continue building the world so effectively. Even though it’s live, perhaps Invincible should be considered to close the upcoming season.

Hit-Monkey (2021-present)

Available to stream on Hulu

Hit-Monkey status is currently pending. While the first season was well received, changes at Marvel Studios mean that nothing is confirmed when it comes to adult animation like this one. The first season was an admirable and competent attempt to bring this quirky character to life.

Marvel could certainly keep their options open if they booked this show for another series that showcases the extent of their animation department. However, perhaps the best way to revive the series is with a film that continues the concept or brings Hit-Monkey into the live-action MCU.

American Dad! (2005-present)

Available to stream on Hulu

American Dad! is one of the oldest animated shows shown here. In its entire history, it has never received a feature film to add some hilarious stories to it. The showrunner revealed that a movie was in development but was cancelled.

Obviously, there’s an audience out there for a project like this, and it’s obviously been on the studio’s mind in the past. It makes sense to push a developing film like this that helps rejuvenate the sitcom for a new audience and gives longtime fans something special.

Solar Opposites (2020-present)

Available to stream on Hulu

Solar Opposites has been compared to Rick and Morty due to the creative team behind the show, but it has featured many fantastic episodes in its own right and created a niche in the market around this unstable alien family.

The show isn’t afraid to step into any genre, using its sci-fi background to create character beats that no one would expect from a traditional sitcom. If given the opportunity to introduce a film into this universe, it would be a meta attempt to make it something truly unique; perhaps paying for the ultimate concept of Earth terraforming.

Arcane (2021-present)

Available to stream on Netflix

Arcane truly came out of nowhere, with a gorgeous animation style and emotional story that brought the League of Legends universe to audiences who never imagined what this fantastical landscape could offer.

It’s intense, epic in its narrative beats, and ultimately a perfect candidate for a visit to the big screen. Fans of the first series will know how to embrace this show in terms of scale and tonality, never leaving behind important personality-based relationships and beats. There’s a lot to balance here, and a movie would be crucial to the brand’s future in this environment.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *