Best 10 Drama TV Anime Of 2004 You Need to Watch

They’re the best Anime that 2004 has to offer! We counts down the best anime to come out this year, including the likes of Mousou Dairinin, Tantei Gakuen Q, Kaleido Star, and more!

10: Mousou Dairinin

English: Paranoia Agent
Japanese: 妄想代理人
MAL Score: 7.68
Type: TV
Episodes: 13

Synopsis

The infamous Shounen Bat (Lil’ Slugger) is terrorizing the residents of Musashino City. Flying around on his rollerblades and beating people down with a golden baseball bat, the assailant seems impossible to catch—much less understand. His first victim, the well-known yet timid character designer Tsukiko Sagi, is suspected of orchestrating the attacks. Believed only by her anthropomorphic pink stuffed animal, Maromi, Tsukiko is just one of Shounen Bat’s many victims.

As Shounen Bat continues his relentless assault on the town, detectives Keiichi Ikari and Mitsuhiro Maniwa begin to investigate the identity of the attacker. However, more and more people fall victim to the notorious golden bat, and news of the assailant begins circulating around the town. Paranoia starts to set in as chilling rumors spread amongst adults and children alike.

Will the two detectives be able to unravel the truth behind Shounen Bat, or will the paranoia get to them first?

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9: Tantei Gakuen Q

English: Detective School Q
Japanese: 探偵学園Q
MAL Score: 7.75
Type: TV
Episodes: 45

Synopsis

Kyuu is your average boy with a knack for logic and reasoning. Desiring to become a detective, he finds out about the existence of the Dan Detective School (DDS); a famed school where students are allowed to bear arms. Together with Megu, a girl with photographic memory, the martial arts master Kinta, the genius programmer Kazuma and the mysterious Ryuu, Kyuu tackles many well planned out crimes, always seeking the truth.

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8: Kaleido Star

English: Kaleido Star
Japanese: カレイドスター
MAL Score: 7.92
Type: TV
Episodes: 51

Synopsis

The Kaleido Stage is known throughout the world for captivating audiences with its amazing acrobatics, innovative routines, and extravagant costumes and sets. It is a place for guests to believe in magic, and Sora Naegino wants nothing more than to be a part of that magic—by becoming an acrobat for the famed circus herself.

To realize her dream, she travels from Japan to California to audition for a place in the group. However, Sora learns that she needs much more than her natural talent to bring joy to the faces in the crowd. She quickly discovers just how difficult it is to be a professional performer where the stakes—and the stunts—are higher and mistakes spell danger! To put on performances worthy of the Kaleido Stage, she will need to endure rigorous training, unconventional assignments, fierce competition, and the antics of a mischievous spirit named Fool.

Can Sora reach new heights, make new friends, conquer her fears, and surpass her limits to become a Kaleido Star?

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7: Fullmetal Alchemist

English: Fullmetal Alchemist
Japanese: 鋼の錬金術師
MAL Score: 8.13
Type: TV
Episodes: 51

Synopsis

Edward Elric, a young, brilliant alchemist, has lost much in his twelve-year life: when he and his brother Alphonse try to resurrect their dead mother through the forbidden act of human transmutation, Edward loses his brother as well as two of his limbs. With his supreme alchemy skills, Edward binds Alphonse’s soul to a large suit of armor.

A year later, Edward, now promoted to the fullmetal alchemist of the state, embarks on a journey with his younger brother to obtain the Philosopher’s Stone. The fabled mythical object is rumored to be capable of amplifying an alchemist’s abilities by leaps and bounds, thus allowing them to override the fundamental law of alchemy: to gain something, an alchemist must sacrifice something of equal value. Edward hopes to draw into the military’s resources to find the fabled stone and restore his and Alphonse’s bodies to normal. However, the Elric brothers soon discover that there is more to the legendary stone than meets the eye, as they are led to the epicenter of a far darker battle than they could have ever imagined.

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6: Initial D Fourth Stage

Japanese: 頭文字〈イニシャル〉D FOURTH STAGE
MAL Score: 8.14
Type: TV
Episodes: 24

Synopsis

Takumi Fujiwara finally joins Ryousuke and Keisuke Takahashi to create “Project D.” Their goal is twofold: Ryousuke wants to develop his “High-Speed Street Racing Theory,” while Keisuke and Takumi aim at improving their driving skills by facing powerful opponents on dangerous roads. The idea of Project D is to challenge street racing teams from other prefectures to improve both their uphill and downhill records. In order to attract the attention of the best racing teams, Ryousuke creates a dedicated website to announce the future battles of Project D and post the team’s results.

The fourth season of Initial D details the hardships and successes of the members of Project D as they try to become the best street racing team outside of Gunma Prefecture.

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5: Gankutsuou

English: Gankutsuou: The Count of Monte Cristo
Japanese: 巌窟王
MAL Score: 8.16
Type: TV
Episodes: 24

Synopsis

In the year 5053, French aristocrats Viscount Albert de Morcerf and Baron Franz d’Epinay attend the festival of Carnival on the moon city of Luna. While Franz is just looking to have fun, Albert is seeking something more to fill his life—but he finds more than he bargained for in The Count of Monte Cristo, a mysterious and charming self-made nobleman who meets his gaze during an opera performance.

Through a few twists and turns, Albert befriends the Count and introduces him into French society. The Count, however, has more on his mind than just friendship; he plots to finally unleash his vengeance on those who wronged him years earlier. Gankutsuou follows Albert and the Count’s intertwined destinies and the ultimate price paid for enacting revenge.

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4: Major S1

Japanese: メジャー (第1シリーズ)
MAL Score: 8.25
Type: TV
Episodes: 26

Synopsis

Gorou Honda, a little boy obsessed with baseball, has always admired his father, Shigeharu. Wishing to follow in his father’s footsteps, Gorou dreams of becoming a professional baseball player. In turn, his son’s starry-eyed admiration encourages Shigeharu to keep persevering, despite his late wife’s death and his unsatisfying position on the second-string team Blue Ocean.

Unfortunately, an elbow injury forces Shigeharu off the team, and he falls into despair. However, after an offhand joke from his childhood friend, Shigeharu reevaluates his choices and decides to keep playing, leaving behind his prime position as pitcher and taking up the bat. Now motivated more than ever, Gorou works hard to carve his way in the Japanese Little League.

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3: Planetes

English: Planetes
Japanese: プラネテス
MAL Score: 8.29
Type: TV
Episodes: 26

Synopsis

In 2075, space travel is no longer just a dream, but an everyday reality for mankind. Advancements in science and technology have led to the colonization of the moon, the commercialization of outer space, and the formation of large space corporations. Ai Tanabe, an upbeat woman whose interests lie in the cosmos, joins Technora Corporation as a member of their Debris Section, a department dedicated to the removal of dangerous space junk between the orbits of the Earth and Moon.

However, Ai soon discovers how unappreciated her job is. As the laughingstock of Technora, the Debris Section is severely understaffed, poorly funded, and is forced to use a dilapidated spaceship nicknamed the “Toy Box” for debris retrieval. Undeterred, Ai perseveres and gradually becomes acquainted with the strange personalities that make up the Debris Section’s staff, such as the bumbling but good-natured chief clerk Philippe Myers; the mysterious and tight-lipped temp worker Edelgard Rivera; and the hotheaded and passionate Hachirouta Hoshino, who longs for a spaceship to call his own.

Planetes is an unconventional sci-fi series that portrays the vastness of space as a backdrop for the personal lives of ordinary people—people who may have been born on Earth, but whose hopes and dreams lie amongst the stars.

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2: Beck

English: Beck: Mongolian Chop Squad
Japanese: ベック
MAL Score: 8.30
Type: TV
Episodes: 26

Synopsis

Fourteen-year-old Yukio “Koyuki” Tanaka is a dispirited young boy with no goals in life. However, this all changes when Koyuki saves a strange-looking dog named Beck from being harassed by a group of local kids. The dog’s owner, 16-year-old Ryuusuke “Ray” Minami, is an emerging guitarist and the former member of a popular rock band.

After Koyuki meets Ray again in a diner, the older boy leads him to his former band’s meeting place and dazzles Koyuki with his amazing guitar skills. Slowly becoming interested in the glamour of western rock culture, Koyuki decides to start playing the guitar while helping Ray achieve his dream of leading the ultimate rock band. Together with Ray’s younger sister Maho and a few other members, the two boys launch their career into the world of rock by forming a band called BECK. Beck follows the group’s struggles and successes as they spread their fame across Japan.

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1: Monster

English: Monster
Japanese: モンスター
MAL Score: 8.80
Type: TV
Episodes: 74

Synopsis

Dr. Kenzou Tenma, an elite neurosurgeon recently engaged to his hospital director’s daughter, is well on his way to ascending the hospital hierarchy. That is until one night, a seemingly small event changes Dr. Tenma’s life forever. While preparing to perform surgery on someone, he gets a call from the hospital director telling him to switch patients and instead perform life-saving brain surgery on a famous performer. His fellow doctors, fiancée, and the hospital director applaud his accomplishment; but because of the switch, a poor immigrant worker is dead, causing Dr. Tenma to have a crisis of conscience.

So when a similar situation arises, Dr. Tenma stands his ground and chooses to perform surgery on the young boy Johan Liebert instead of the town’s mayor. Unfortunately, this choice leads to serious ramifications for Dr. Tenma—losing his social standing being one of them. However, with the mysterious death of the director and two other doctors, Dr. Tenma’s position is restored. With no evidence to convict him, he is released and goes on to attain the position of hospital director.

Nine years later when Dr. Tenma saves the life of a criminal, his past comes back to haunt him—once again, he comes face to face with the monster he operated on. He must now embark on a quest of pursuit to make amends for the havoc spread by the one he saved.

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Did YOUR favorite anime make the cut? Let us know in the comments below!

1. Monster
2. Beck
3. Planetes
4. Major S1
5. Gankutsuou
6. Initial D Fourth Stage
7. Fullmetal Alchemist
8. Kaleido Star
9. Tantei Gakuen Q
10. Mousou Dairinin

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