Top 5 anime for Harry Potter fans and lovers of magic, witches and wizards

Harry Potter and Draco Malfoy depicted as anime characters alongside Toma and Accelerator from the anime A Certain Magical Index.
Rivals Harry Potter and Draco Malfoy are depicted as anime characters alongside rivals Toma and Accelerator from the anime A Certain Magical Index. Pic credit: @Dessa-nya(Valeria)/deviantart.com and NewType Magazine

Have you just finished watching the latest installment in the Harry Potter franchise – Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore and you still have a hankering for more magic? Anime Geek is here to help with its top picks of fantasy and magic anime filled with enough witches and wizards to fill your Harry Potter needs.

Surprisingly there are a lot of animes where the story is set in an academy where the students must learn magic, but only a few that also have the same whimsical, surreal feeling of Harry Potter and characters that you really end up caring for. Some of the anime in this list even have actual British characters from England and include English magical lore, which further aids in mirroring the unique feeling given by the Harry Potter universe.

Newt Scamander from Fantastic Beasts depicted as an anime character.
Newt Scamander from Fantastic Beasts is depicted as an anime character. Pic credit: Jeongyoon Park (artstation.com/rollingboy24)

In some of the anime, the characters are actually sorted into groups, teams, squads, or associations that they end up fighting for. This is very similar to how students were sorted into four houses at Hogwarts – Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw, and Slytherin.

The characters in these animes possess a lot of the qualities of the four houses and will be sorted in this list. Gryffindor values courage, bravery, nerve, and chivalry. Hufflepuff values hard work, patience, justice, and loyalty. Ravenclaw values intelligence, learning, wisdom, and wit. Slytherin values ambition, cunning, leadership, and resourcefulness.

5. Little Witch Academia

Akko from Little Witch Academia alongside Hermione Granger from Harry Potter depicted as an anime character.
Akko from Little Witch Academia alongside Hermione Granger depicted as an anime character from Harry Potter. Pic credit: @sei-chan88/deviantart.com and @Nukababe/deviantart.com

Little Witch Academia is a Japanese anime franchise created by Yoh Yoshinari and produced by Trigger. Between January and June 2017, the anime TV series aired in Japan. In June 2017, the anime’s first 13 episodes were made available worldwide via Netflix. In August 2017 Netflix released the remaining 12 episodes.

Just like in Harry Potter the story takes place at an academy where students learn magic. In this case, Little Witch Academia takes place at Luna Nova Magical Academy – a prestigious all-girl school for young witches. One of the biggest differences between Harry Potter and Little Witch Academia is that you don’t get to see many male wizards. (I only remember seeing one wizard when watching this series).

The story instead revolves around a cute, young girl named Atsuko “Akko” Kagiri, who definitely would have ended up in Gryffindor since she has more courage and nerve than actual magical ability. Despite the fact that she has no magical powers, Akko decides to enroll at Luna Nova having been inspired by a witch named Shiny Chariot.

At first, Akko struggles to keep up with the others due to her lack of magic, but this all changes when she finds a powerful magical relic that was left behind by Chariot and called the Shiny Rod. Due to the fact that magic is waning across the world, Luna Nova is in danger of closing since the general public views witchcraft as being outdated.

Akko’s wish is to show the world just how great magic is and follow in Chariot’s footsteps. Akko and her friends try to discover the secret to restoring the flow of magic and must defeat those who stand in their way. This one is definitely for fans of feisty brunette witches like Hermione Granger!

4. A Certain Magical Index

Index from the anime A Certain Magical Index alongside Luna Lovegood from Harry Potter depicted as an anime character.
Index from the anime A Certain Magical Index alongside Luna Lovegood from Harry Potter depicted as an anime character. Pic credit: @fanpop.com and @saintprecious/deviantart.com

A Certain Magical Index is a Japanese light novel series written by Kazuma Kamachi and illustrated by Kiyotaka Haimura. Kamachi wanted to create a story that explored the rules of magic rather than it just existing in the world. Between 2008 and 2011, two anime series adaptations (48 episodes total) were produced by J.C. Staff. Between 2018 and 2019, the third anime season aired that contained 26 episodes.

A Certain Magical Index is set in a world where sorcerers, Espers, and supernatural abilities exist. Espers are individuals, who acquired special powers via science. Gemstones are Espers, who gained their abilities at birth without the aid of science. Sorcerers are individuals, who gained their powers by mastering the power of magic in one of two ways – obtaining knowledge from different mythologies (learning spells from books) or by using mystical artifacts (artifacts that possess magical powers of their own).

The existence of sorcerers is kept secret from the general public. Due to sorcerers aligning themselves with different beliefs and Espers aligning themselves with scientific institutions. They are always in conflict and this creates a power struggle between the magic and science communities for control of the world.

In Harry Potter, the focus was on one magical school called Hogwarts. In a Certain Magical Index, the story is set in Academy City – a technologically advanced independent city-state filled with educational and research institutions to teach Espers how to control their powers. The story revolves around the hero Toma Kamijo – a student in Academy City in Tokyo, Japan, whose right hand has a mysterious power that enables him to negate any supernatural powers. Unfortunately, his power called Imagine Breaker also negates his luck much to his annoyance.

Just when Toma didn’t think his life could be more annoying, he meets a young English girl named Index, who bears a striking resemblance to Luna Lovegood in both appearance and personality, and has the intelligence that would have gotten her sorted into Ravenclaw House.

Index is a nun from Necessarius – a secret magic branch of the Church of England. Index gained her name from the fact that the Index Librorum Prohibitorum – 103, 000 forbidden magical books the Church had stored in secret locations, was implanted into her mind for safekeeping from their enemies.

Toma’s life gets a whole lot more hectic as he and Index encounter others from the secret worlds of science and magic. Toma finds himself in the middle of a conflict between the sorcerers and Espers all with different goals revolving around the secrets behind Academy City, Index, and Toma’s own special power. Toma usually throws himself into conflict in order to protect those he cares about. This is a very Gryffindor quality!

3. Soul Eater

Death the Kid with his pistols Liz and Patty alongside Fred and George from Harry Potter depicted as anime characters.
Death the Kid with his pistols, Liz and Patty alongside Fred and George Weasley from Harry Potter depicted as anime characters. Pic credit: Studio Bones and May As Well Be A Hobbit/Tumblr

Soul Eater is a fantasy Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Atsushi Ohkubo. From April 2008 to March 2009, an anime adaptation (that was fifty-one episodes long) by Bones aired in Japan on TV Tokyo. The anime series has been licensed by Funimation. Both the manga and anime series has been lauded for their unique art style and Gothic setting, which has been compared to Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas. It’s the dark, haunting feel of the series that makes it most similar to the third Harry Potter film Prisoner of Azkaban.

Like Harry Potter, there is an academy where students are learning how to control their supernatural powers called the Death Weapon Meister Academy located in the fictional Death City in Nevada, United States. The series revolves around three teams of students that are made up of a Weapon Meister and a human that is able to transform into a weapon. The goal of the students is to collect the souls of 99 evil humans and one witch (in that order or they have to start over) and make their humanoid weapon evolve into a Death Scythe that can be wielded by the academy’s headmaster Shinigami.

Although Shinigami is the personification of death, he is kind to his students and has a jovial personality and a twinkle in his eye much like Albus Dumbledore. The story revolves around the most powerful team that is made up of a girl named Maka Albarn and her scythe partner, Soul Eater. Their rivals are assassin Black Star and his partner, Tsubaki Nakatsukasa, who is able to turn into various ninja weapons, and Shinigami’s own son, Death the Kid, and his partners, the twins, Liz and Patty Thompson, who are able to turn into pistols. The twins Liz and Patty are a lot like a genderbent version of Fred and George Weasley!

If Maka were sorted into one of the Hogwarts’ houses it would have to be Ravenclaw due to her intelligence and cool-headedness. Her partner, Soul, would definitely have been sorted into Gryffindor due to his reckless courage to run into situations without thinking too much first. Due to Death the Kid’s eccentric behavior to always want things “symmetrical” he probably would have been sorted into Hufflepuff. Black Star probably would have been sorted into Slytherin due to the fact he has an “I’ll do whatever it takes” attitude.

2. The Ancient Magus’ Bride

Chise and Elias from The Ancient Magus Bride alongside Lily Evans from Harry Potter depicted as an anime character.
Chise and Elias from The Ancient Magus’ Bride alongside Lily Evans from Harry Potter depicted as an anime character. Pic credit: @magus-bride.jp and Amimochi/deviantart.com

The Ancient Magus’ Bride is a dark fantasy, Gothic romance, slice-of-life Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Kore Yamazaki. From October 2017 to March 2018, an anime TV series adaptation and a three-part OVA produced by Wit Studio aired. In September 2021, an original three-part OVA series by Studio Kafka was released.

The story begins when high school student Chise Hatori (who bears quite the resemblance to Lily Evans with her red hair and green eyes) decides to sell herself at an auction in an act of sheer desperation for trying to find a new place to call home. Chise’s father and brother abandoned their mother, who later committed suicide in front of Chise making her feel unloved and unwanted. Elias Ainsworth, a mage who dabbled in black magic and ended up losing his humanity and memories, recognized that Chise is a rare being known as Sleigh Beggy and decides to purchase her for five million pounds.

Chise is so traumatized by everything that has happened to her that Elias’ demonic appearance and his declaration that she will one day be his bride doesn’t even faze her. Elias is a seven-foot-tall humanoid with an animal skull for a head. Although, Elias does have the ability to change his appearance at will and appear fully human if he wants to.

Elias whisks Chise away to his home in Great Britain where they end up encountering several mythological creatures from English lore and legend, such as a Church grim that ends up being Chise’s familiar, a silkie, who serves a good cup of tea, and faeries. Chise names her black dog familiar Ruth and he bears a resemblance to Sirius Black’s animagus form.

Ruth from The Ancient Magus' Bride alongside Sirius Black and his animagus form from Harry Potter.
Ruth from The Ancient Magus’ Bride alongside Sirius Black and his animagus form from Harry Potter. Pic credit: @hero.fandom.com and @Blingee

Chise discovers that a Sleigh Beggy is a special magus that is able to draw magic from her surroundings and from within herself. This ability is a double-edged sword, however, and puts so much strain on their bodies that Sleigh Beggys are fated to die prematurely.

One of the main reasons Elias decided to buy her was because he wanted to try and find a way to prevent Chise’s death from happening in about three years. Chise has gained the nicknames “Robin” and “Little Bird Mage” due to her fragile state. Their supernatural friends are always gifting Chise and Elias with magical objects that will suppress her magic. Chise begins learning magic and becomes adept at sleep magic. Chise and Elias team up in order to discover the truth behind Elias’ mysterious origins, and slowly start to fall in love.

Chise probably would have been sorted into Hufflepuff due to her kind, sweet nature, the fact that she’s a very hard worker and her unfaltering loyalty towards Elias. Elias would have been sorted into Ravenclaw because it was his pursuit of knowledge that ended up getting him cursed.

The Ancient Magus’ Bride may be getting a second season or movie. You can read more about that here: The Ancient Magus’ Bride Season 2 release date: Mahoutsukai no Yome Season 2 (or movie) reportedly in work

1. Black Clover

Asta, Yuno and Noelle from Black Clover alongside Hermione, Harry and Ron from Harry Potter depicted as anime characters.
Asta, Yuno and Noelle from Black Clover alongside Hermione, Harry and Ron from Harry Potter depicted as anime characters. Pic credit: @DaniDraws and @animeyume.com

Black Clover is a fantasy Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Yuki Tabata. The story’s hero is a young boy named Asta, who was born without any magic power, which is an oddity in the world he lives in where everyone possesses at least some magical ability.

Despite his limitations, Asta dreams of one day becoming the Wizard King. In 2017, the first OVA adaptation produced by Xebec Zwei was released. From October 2017 to March 2021 an anime TV series adaptation produced by Pierrot aired in Japan on TV Tokyo. A new Black Clover film is set to premiere in 2023! It was recently revealed in the Blu-ray release of the Black Clover TV series that Ayataka Tanemura will be directing the film. Crunchyroll and Funimation have licensed the anime series.

Poster visual for the upcoming Black Clover movie.
Poster visual for the upcoming Black Clover movie. Pic credit: @bclover.jp

You can find out more about the Black Clover movie here: Black Clover movie release date in 2023 in Japan: When is the Crunchyroll USA premiere? [Trailer]

Asta was a young orphan mysteriously left to be raised in an orphanage alongside fellow orphan, Yuno. (Both Harry Potter and Voldemort were orphans with dark pasts.) While his friend Yuno is able to utilize mana in the form of magical power, Asta cannot and decides to focus on increasing his physical strength with muscle training. Yuno is a prodigy gifted with immense magical power and the talent to control wind magic.

Both Asta and Yuno have the same goal – to become the Wizard King (who has power only second to the king of Clover Kingdom) and form a rivalry that pushes them both to improve their respective skills. During a special ceremony, Yuno obtains a legendary four-leaf grimoire (magic book) that is known for only appearing to the most powerful mages. Despite Asta’s lack of magic a grimoire also appears to him. However, Asta’s grimoire is a black five-leaf book that contains elf swords and a Devil that uses rare anti-magic. After the ceremony, Asta and Yuno each join a Magic Knight squad that will aid them on their path to becoming the Wizard King.

Asta is sorted, I mean, chosen to join the Black Bulls under their leader Yami Sukehiro and alongside Asta’s love interest, Noelle Silva. The Black Bulls are similar to Slytherin House since it’s looked down upon by the other squads, and filled with powerful yet eccentric and often misunderstood individuals. Yuno gets to join the squad that is the most powerful and popular known as the Golden Dawn. Golden Dawn is very similar to Gryffindor House and is filled with talented and courageous individuals.

Asta and Yuno embark on various adventures while having to go up against an extremist group called the Eye of the Midnight Sun, whose leadership is manipulated by a Devil in avenging an injustice committed against the Elves by the Clover Kingdom at the time of its founding. It’s interesting to note that the Elves are discriminated upon in the world of Black Clover similarly to the way they are discriminated against in Harry Potter. What’s different is that the Elves act more like Dark Wizards in Black Clover.

Honorable mentions that Harry Potter fans are also sure to enjoy include:

  • Blue Exorcist (which was only left out because it’s more about demons and their magical power, rather than about witches and wizards)
  • Welcome to Demon School! Iruma! (This anime was left out because it’s more about demonic power and not witchcraft)

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