Tv shows recommendations to watch with Japanese subtitles

Hi, friends

I am looking for some tv shows recommendations to watch with Japanese subtitles. It doesn’t matter if it’s anime, drama or something else.

I found while learning English that watching TV with English subtitles really helped me improve my listening and reading skills and really made a difference in fluency.

I am now at a point where I would like to start doing the same thing with Japanese (intermediate grammar and vocab level, I have no issues with hiragana and katakana and I feel comfortable with the amount of kanji I know -I reset from level 50 before so I am reviewing a bunch of stuff-).

If this method is also useful for anyone else I would like to know which shows you have enjoyed for this purpose. I liked Little Witch Academia and Komi can’t communicate.

I think these are the key points for me:

  • Simple/every day language
  • Enough cues from the scene that even if I don’t understand what is being said I can still follow along with the story
  • Speed is slow enough for me to either understand what is being said or read the subtitles while still being challenging

Overall, I found slice of life anime is good for this but I would like to know your suggestions.


Something like Nichijou, Karakai Jouzu no Takagi-san or Mitsuboshi Colors might be good to watch. No idea if they’re easy to find with JP subs though. Maybe K-On! and Chuunibyou demo Koi ga Shitai as well. I highly recommend the latter anyway - but be aware the dialogue gets a bit less everyday in some places - mostly due to the chuunibyou aspect alluded to in the title. It’s cute as all hell though.

Hard to tell what’s easy to understand for you and what’s not, but they’re worth a try at least.


I recently watched Flying Witch, which is a nice and relatively easy show.


I recently started watching カムカムエヴリバディ and I’m having a lot of fun with it. They speak in Kansai-Ben however, so if that’s a no go I guess it’s not a good alternative.

Another one I recently started is 恋せぬふたり. Pretty sure there’s only one episode so far, but I really enjoyed it.

I haven’t watched many TV shows in Japanese so that’s basically all I’ve got, except for Kamen Rider: Gaim. But I feel like the demography for that is a bit niche, still definitely a fun watch if you’re into tokusatsu at all.

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Terrace House would be great for this!


Depending on your location, Netflix has some shows with jp closed captions. Looking at my list, I haven’t verified if they all have subtitles, but there’s:

March Comes In Like A Lion
The Disastrous Life of Saiki K.
Teasing Master Takagi

All slice of life anime with a different flavor. I know the ghibli movies are not available everywhere, but still wanted to bring them up. Carole & Tuesday is also one I have been meaning to watch.

Polar Bear Café is on crunchyroll, but they don’t do JP subs. There’s a group watching it on wanikani atm.

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Most of the shows on Viki are pretty slice of life-y since the majority of them are romance. Some have JP subs, but keep in mind it’s fansubs so expect more typos than normal. You could dabble with different series to see which ones feel most approachable to you.

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If live action is okay, I’ve found both 孤独のグルメ and 深夜食堂 to meet your criteria! 深夜食堂 is on Netflix with Japanese subtitles available which is a big plus.

I also watched ブルーピリオド (an anime) on netflix recently and while I sometimes got a bit lost when they really got into discussing art techniques etc it was definitely still a really enjoyable watch & also has JP subs :slight_smile:

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Teasing Master Takagi-san is a good one. It’s on Netflix with Japanese subtitles.

This year i’m going to go through line by line, and making sure I understand everything.


This is a good recommendation; I’ve been struggling with listening and it seems easier than most things I’ve tried. I want to mention, though, Netflix only seems to have season 2. It’s the kind of show where I doubt missing a season really makes a big difference, but I have a bit of a compulsion to start things from the beginning regardless, so if anyone happens to be like me, you’ll have to find season 1 elsewhere.

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Yeh I did notice that. Pretty annoying. I will give S1 a watch at some stage.

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I watched around 20 anime with Japanese subs over the last year. These were the easiest ones and they’re largely slice of life comedy.


I’d recommend しろくまカフェ. I’m not sure where you can find it with jpn subs, but it has so many daily life interactions, ranging from familial to business, along with various culture demonstrations that it’s really useful to watch.



I don’t know if it is a joke or not but I will look it up! :stuck_out_tongue:

It’s a very long joke, going on 9 seasons now.

Lower teenage adventure anime.
Not beginner friendly

For anyone with Japan Amazon Prime.
Dragon Quest (ダイの大冒険) has closed captioning japanese subtitles

Looking for Japanese subtitles on amazon prime is annoying


I was poking around slice of anime shows and stumbled upon その着せ替え人形は恋をする
It’s brand new and has subtitles on amazon prime.

100% recommend it
Nevermind. Episode 2 doesn’t have subtitles

Im cursed


Do you have Disney+? The content there usually has great control over audio/subtitle variances so you can listen in English and read in Japanese or vice versa. This includes Star Wars and the Simpsons, which are particularly useful since they’re long running and so many of us already know both series by heart. Hope this helps!