The Netflix Death Metal Comedy Anime That Will Make You Turn It Up To 11

By Matthew Flynn | Published


Aggretsuko is a Japanese animated comedy series on Netflix with a hard-rocking soundtrack that is best enjoyed with the volume cranked. The show revolves around a red panda, Retsuko, who struggles with the adversity of adult life and finds an unconventional way to deal with stress— singing death metal songs at a karaoke bar. Dealing with office politics while juggling societal expectations, Aggretsuko displays a type of relatability that has garnered a massive audience.



Aggretsuko is based on a character from the Japanese entertainment powerhouse, Sanrio which is, in many ways, the epitome of cuteness in Japanese popular culture. Boasting the world-renowned Hello Kitty, one of the globe’s most successful marketing brands, Sanrio is best known for bringing adorable to life.

Aggretsuko is a surprising departure from Sanrio’s typical offerings, with its dark humor and adult themes. This unique blend has reached an audience that may not usually explore Sanrio’s works.

A Unique Style


One unique element of Aggretsuko is the way it combines elements that initially seem disparate but work together seamlessly. It interweaves vibrant animation with a mature tone, creating a deep contrast that enriches the storytelling experience and allows viewers to understand Retsuko’s struggles on a deeper level. Viewers watch as Retsuko struggles with everyday problems such as a mundane job working in accounting department, facing issues with co-workers and job insecurity, social anxiety, and romantic relationships.

Japanese Metal

Another aspect of Aggretsuko that’s intriguing is its window into the world of Japanese metal music. The use of metal as a means of expressing Retsuko’s feelings represents the popularity of the genre in Japan.

Visual Kei

Emerging in Japan in the late 1970s, Japanese metal has grown and evolved to develop its own distinct characteristics that set it apart from American metal–characteristics which allow it to pair perfectly with a show like Aggretsuko. One of its most noteworthy elements is the influence of visual kei, an aesthetic movement that marries music with extravagant visual artistry.

X Japan pioneered the visual kei movement, sold millions of records, and still resonate with fans to this day. This paved the way for Seikima-II who took the nation by storm, becoming the first Japanese metal band to top the charts with their stirring kabuki-inspired performance.

This blend of sound and spectacle has given Japanese metal bands international recognition, particularly in the West during the 2000s. This unique combination makes Japanese metal an ideal blend for an anime like Aggretsuko.

Stream It Now


Aggretsuko is an engaging series that has drawn in viewers with its innovative storytelling and one-of-a-kind amalgamation of divergent styles. It is a testament to Sanrio’s capacity to produce diverse content that appeals to a wide range of viewers. This is precisely what landed it a 100 percent approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes for its first season.

Lauded for its relatable characters, humorous take on corporate life, and profound exploration of workplace stress and societal pressures, it’s no wonder that this animated sensation has been nominated for several accolades such as the Ursa Major Awards and the Annie Awards.

Whether you have a love for heavy metal or are searching for a lighthearted but in-depth series, Aggretsuko is worth watching. It’s now streaming on Netflix.