The 4 Best Anime Set in the 1950s

The 1950s are marked by recovery, in a world devastated by World War II, trudging to pull itself up and start living as before.

The anime we are going to examine are based on this, set in semi-destroyed realities and suffering the consequences of unparalleled destruction.

Japan is a striking example due to the two nuclear bombs and the harsh loss. But fear not, the air of hope is always ready to blow.

On the other hand, the few productions we are listing here aren’t definitely funny. So you are unlucky if you are looking for comedy anime here.

Rankings are based on our experience and historical accuracy.

4. Tetsujin 28

Tetsujin 28

Exactly 10 years have passed since the end of WWII, and we are in an alternate reality, where humanity has taken a Sci-Fi turn.

Dr. Kaneda, a brilliant scientist, has been working for years on a project to build a super combat robot. After several failed attempts, he succeeds in creating Tetsujin 28, his greatest invention.

In anything but coincidence, he dies shortly thereafter, and it will be up to his young son Shotaro to discover the truth behind his demise.

What he doesn’t know is that he is about to uncover a set of dangerous machinations and plots.

Needless to say, since this is a fictional future, historical accuracy is lacking. The political and conspiratorial entanglements can’t be faulted, so the vision remains respectable.

3. Rainbow


A very introspective and mature anime released in 2010 in 26 episodes.

Set in 1955, the anime follows the story of seven teenagers locked up in a reform school, who wait for the light in a succession of suffering.

Rainbow is brilliant in its execution, with a seamless flow of emotions until the very end. The story is one of its main advantages since it manages to not come across as too pushy and overdramatic.

The 1950s setting is there but you won’t really notice it that much because the entire anime is set in a prison. Nonetheless, Rainbow is a great show that blends different ideas to create a unique mix.

2. Totoro


One of the mother works of the esteemed Ghibli studio, released in 1988 entering undoubtedly on the list of the most important anime movies ever.

Satsuki and Mei are two little sisters who have just moved with their father to a small country village to be closer to their hospitalized mother.

Little Mei, exploring the surroundings of her new home, comes across a majestic camphor tree surrounded by strings of rice straw.

Inside lives Totoro, a forest spirit, who turns out to be good and friendly and befriends the girls.

The setting of Totoro is all but specified, and discussions about it have often and frequently arisen. Some say it is set in 1955, and some in 1958 given the dates on the calendars that are sporadically shown.

But what is enough for us to know is that precise year that it is, it’s set in the 1950s.

1. Furusato Japan

 Furusato Japan

Japan, spring 1956. As the country struggles to recover from the wounds of war, the attention of the elementary school in Kiba, a suburb of Tokyo, focuses on a singing competition.

The historical context is replete with references to WWII, and suffering and hard-to-heal wounds are the order of the day.

But this anime tries, as much as possible to show the silver lining and the will to restart after such a traumatic event from the eyes of children.

This show isn’t the best one of the listicle per se but it’s very suitable for the setting. Imagine what it meant to be a child during one of the hardest moments in the country.

And that’s why we undoubtely consider it as one of the best anime set in Tokyo.

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Passionate about Japanese culture for years, serial devourer of manga, anime, and videogames that have now become part of my routine. My favorite series? Goodnight Punpun and One Piece.

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