ONE, a manga artist under a pseudonym, has really made a name for himself with two of his best works: Mob Psycho 100 and One-Punch Man. Both of these series were adapted into anime and received wide acclaim across the board. One-Punch Man is about a superhero who can win any fight with a single punch. Mob Psycho 100 follows a middle school esper as he works for a man pretending to be one.
While One-Punch Man is more popular and has made more of a name for itself, Mob Psycho 100 is underrated and comparable, to say the least. So which one is a better anime?
Released back in 2015, One-Punch Man shot to massive popularity with its hilarious premise. Saitama, an ordinary man, trained himself to be a hero and became so strong that now he can take out enemies with a single punch, resulting in him becoming bored with everything. The anime follows him as he moves swiftly from enemy to enemy, each more fearsome and powerful than the last. Even during these massive fights, Saitama is incredibly bored. Eventually, he finds himself a protege, Genos, a cyborg who is seeking revenge for the death of his family.
What's great about this anime is the comedic spin it puts on almost every scene. Even when Saitama battles incredibly intimidating foes, he's just so bored that the battle almost becomes a total farce. All of the characters, from Genos to other heroes and rivals, take themselves seriously, so there's a huge shift whenever Saitama comes onto the scene. It goes from serious to funny in a split second. Not to mention the abundance of fantastic fight scenes between Saitama and his enemies.
Mob Psycho 100
Keeping the same level of comedy, Mob Psycho 100 is about another overpowerful character. Shigeo is an awkward, quiet middle school boy who happens to be an incredibly powerful esper, having a variety of psychic powers. His nickname, Mob, is a play on the word for "background character" in Japanese. Mob works for Reigen Arataka, a businessman pretending to be an esper and making loads of money from it. But Mob actually does most of the work.
The gimmick of the name is that throughout an episode, a meter will slowly rise from zero to 100, as Mob has strong emotions. When he reaches 100, Mob is nigh unstoppable. Like One-Punch Man, it's a comedy from the get-go. Mob doesn't realize he's being taken advantage of by Reigen, or chooses not to see it that way. A fantastic aspect of this anime is that Mob faces a lot of character development throughout Season 1 and Season 2, growing from a terribly awkward, unmotivated boy to someone who tries new things, joins in on social situations and is much more vocal.
One Punch Man VS. Mob Psycho 100 - Which Is Best?
While both anime are worthy of merit in terms of animation, style and production, Mob Psycho 100 is ultimately the better anime in terms of content. It relies on real character development to further the plot of the story, so it's equal parts that are emotionally rewarding to parts that are plain hilarious. One-Punch Man is a great premise, but can only be taken so far without any changes in the characters. If Saitama can't get any stronger, then how do his obstacles challenge him as a person? Mob Psycho 100 embodies the best of One-Punch Man with an added emotional approach. It strikes the balance between comedy and action, with some raw feeling thrown in for fun.