From a western version of Sailor Moon to the famous Power Rangers, we have had many Japanese properties reimagined for westerners. However, did you know that many western shows have been adapted for a Japanese audience? Let’s dive into four Western properties that received anime adaptations.

Monster High: Kowa-ike Girls

A still from the anime adaptation Monster High: Kowa-ike Girls, featuring the main characters standing in a room with coffins lined against the wall.

Monster High is no stranger to adaptations. With a live-action movie, webisodes, animated movies and a new show, it isn’t a surprise that Monster High also had an anime adaptation. Monster High: Kowa-ike Girls was an anime web-short series aired on the Mattel YouTube channel throughout 2014. Each episode was around three minutes long and could only be watched online. The web anime makes some changes to the characters and adds additional limitations to being a monster. 

Even though it was just a short web series, it was a full-fledged anime. It had an opening by Amorecarina with Chu-Z KAEDE as a featured artist. In every sense of the word, it was an anime. 

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Now, it is one of those internet oddities that feels like it was almost dreamt up. If you try to watch the anime now, you’ll only find low-quality reuploads and very few sites with more information on the short-run anime.

Powerpuff Girls Z

Buttercup swings her weapon while Bubbles and Blossom sit and smile in the background.

Did you know about this anime? Powerpuff Girls Z, based on the classic US cartoon The Powerpuff Girls, was a magical girl anime that aired from 2006 to 2007. It originally aired in Japan but was later translated into other languages. 

Fans of the original show will quickly realize that this anime adaptation made many changes from the original. For starters, the girls weren’t born with their powers but instead obtained them. Not only that, but now the three aren’t sisters. The completely unrelated heroes become three unlikely friends who team up to stop the many villains who attack the townspeople. There is still violence and stopping evildoers, but it is sanitized to match the magical girl anime.

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So, why didn’t we see this airing on Cartoon Network alongside other shows? If you haven’t heard of this anime, it wasn’t because you missed it airing. While there is an English translation, the show never got a US release. Fans still debate the exact reason why a US release never happened.


A still from the anime adaptation of Supernatural, featuring Dean and Sam Winchester sitting next to each other and talking.

Have you found yourself hungry for more Supernatural content since the show concluded in 2020? Now is the time. The Supernatural anime originally aired in 2011 for 22 episodes. The anime doesn’t deviate too much from the original show to change the story, but just enough to keep this series fresh. For example, this iteration had a lot more action that wouldn’t have looked as cool or been possible in the live-action version.

This adaptation covers the first two seasons of the live-action show. While it was never as popular as the source material, this version earned a lot of praise from fans.

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Cyberpunk Edgerunners

The final show on our list is the only one not from a North American property but a Polish one. It is also one you’ve probably heard of since it won anime of the year in 2022. 

Cyberpunk Edgerunners is a prequel/spinoff to the game Cyberpunk 2077. Studio Trigger collaborated with the game’s studio, CD Projekt RED, to produce the anime for Netflix. Fans of the game flocked to the show, but the anime was also a hit among general audiences.

Did you know about these animes?

Were you surprised to learn about these anime adaptations? How many of them have you seen, and are you planning on watching them now?

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Elizabeth Curtis