I am one of those people who would rather watch YouTube than TV. The amazing thing about YouTube is the ability for people from all around the world to create content. Yet due to YouTube’s advertising algorithms you probably never see content from other countries. Even if you watch lots of videos about Japan it’s rare that a Japanese YouTube channel will appear unless you search for it. So here’s my list of some of the best Japanese YouTube Channels. Do you have any of your own or other suggestions? Let everyone know on the JTalkOnline Facebook Page!
A quick note: These channels are Japanese channels made by Japanese people for Japanese people. This often means there’s no English. They’re not made to teach you Japanese. They’re made to be entertaining. I personally think this is a great thing for Japanese learners as it pushes your listening and reading and teaches you a lot about Japanese culture and language. You can also interact in the comments in Japanese to improve even more!
He is one of the most Japanese YouTubers out there and you can see why after watching his videos. He mostly talks about random things but the way he does it is hilarious. His comedic timing and facial expressions are fantastic. The editing, comedic Japanese subtitles, timing and music choices are also fantastic.
His videos often don’t have English subtitles (subs are made by fans), which I think is great because you’re forced to hone your listening skills. Especially as he talks very quickly. There are visual triggers and comedic Japanese subtitles to help tell you what’s going on. And there are some videos that have Japanese subtitles if you want to improve your reading too.
Kikakin TV is very similar to Hajime as he talks and makes skits which are hilarious. His editing and timing are fantastic, but he talks a lot slower than Hajime.
He’s absolutely hilarious and perfect for N3 level Japanese speakers. He talks about all kinds of random
AND he has a gaming channel called HikakinGames! He plays games like Minecraft and a mobile game called Monsuto. And he often plays with other people which is a great way to see Japanese people interact and how Japanese conversations flow.
He also has a channel just called Hikakin which is all about Japanese Music.
Comedic talk show by a guy that loves games and music. He doesn’t talk as much as Hajime and Hikakin but his videos are very similar in style where he talks about something random like brain jelly or slime balls. He loves games so often he’ll reference games like Dragon Quest and use gaming language when he’s commenting on something.
Again, he doesn’t have English subtitles nor does he have Japanese comedic subtitles, but there are auto-generated Japanese subtitles.
MaesaquTV is a channel all about manga! Maesaqu recommends Japanese manga in Japanese.
He explains the plot for manga and the characters. He also talks about what manga he’s bought and how much he’s spent in a month.
His Japanese is conversational BUT polite. Really great if you love manga.
Kinoshita Yuka is a wizard. It’s the only way to explain how she can eat so much food and stay so tiny!!!
Her channel is all about her making or buying a ridiculous amount of food and eating it. (It’s actually a type of channel called Mukbang from South Korea) But she doesn’t just eat the food, she talks about it too and the combination of music makes her videos cute and funny. She also has English subtitles on all her videos but try to avoid them if you want to practice Japanese!
This channel isn’t much for a challenge for learning Japanese but it’s fun.
Max Murai is a gaming channel unlike any I’ve seen in the West. This is run by an employee of AppBank who write about games and products for Android and Apple. They have a number of YouTube channels but this one’s one of the best.
It focuses on the mobile gaming side where Max plays games like PokemonGO, Monsuto, and Puzzles and Dragons, often with other people. This is great if you love mobile games but is also a great way to see Japanese people interacting in more formal Japanese as they are technically in a working environment.
There’s no flashy editing or commentary, but that’s not a bad thing as you can see natural conversations, comments and reactions.
This is another gaming channel run by a group of people who play games together. They play all kinds of games like Minecraft, Mario, RPGs and mobile games. They introduce new games and provide criticisms.
The interesting thing about this channel is that the presenters don’t show their faces and if they do they wear masks. It makes it a lot more difficult to understand what’s being said because you don’t have any body language to help, but that’s good because it’ll improve your listening even more.
They’re a lot of fun and the thing I like about this channel is that they feel more like a group of friends having fun and playing games.
Anaji Otoja is another Japanese gaming channel that focuses more on games like Dark Souls, Dead by Daylight, Biohazard etc. So more action based games, as well as some others like Job Simulator.
The interesting thing is their criticisms are of games made in the West, not Japanese games. Normally there are a few of them sitting around while one of them plays. Although again their faces aren’t shown in their videos so you don’t get any body language to help you understand the Japanese.
Do you have any of your own or other suggestions? Let everyone know on the JTalkOnline Facebook Page!