If you don’t know where to watch Kotaro Lives Alone, we can help.

As it so happens, the Kotaro Lives Alone anime is a Netflix original series, so the legal streaming options are limited.

However, there are other legal ways to enjoy Kotaro’s adventures. We can recommend several ways to watch (and read) Kotaro Lives Alone.

Kotaro Lives Alone Basics

Kotaro Lives Alone at Netflix, Mami Tsumura, Shogakukan / Kotaro Lives Alone Project

Kotaro Lives Alone is a cute, but bittersweet, anime series featuring a kindergartener. 

As the title implies, Kotaro does indeed live by himself in an apartment building. Exactly how Kotaro ended up in this situation is a puzzle which slowly gets solved as the series progresses. Without revealing too much, underneath all of the cuteness is a dark and traumatic backstory.

Still, Kotaro is so adorably self-sufficient that the series is more heartwarming than sad.  Parts of Kotaro Lives Alone bear a passing resemblance to the Japanese reality show Old Enough! (which is also available at Netflix).

The series also contains plenty of cute and funny moments. And while Kotaro may live by himself, the other apartment dwellers create a sort of surrogate family.

Kotaro Lives Alone History

Kotaro Lives Alone at Netflix, Mami Tsumura, Shogakukan / Kotaro Lives Alone Project

Mami Tsumura started the Kotaro Lives Alone manga in 2015. Nine volumes have been produced as of 2022. 

In 2021, TV Asahi broadcast a live-action drama adaptation of the manga. That was followed by the ten-episode online anime series in 2022. 

Netflix has not announced a second season of the series. Indeed, the conclusion to the first season would seem to leave little room for a sequel. However, the manga has not ended. 

List of Places to Watch Kotaro Lives Alone

  1. Netflix
  2. Roku
  3. Amazon Japan (live-action)
  4. ZenPlus (manga)
  5. Suruga-ya (live-action Blu-ray) 

Note: The above listed places are all legal, licensed options. You will find no pirate sites here.

1. Netflix

Kotaro Lives Alone at Netflix

If you want to stream the Kotaro Lives Alone anime series online, Netflix is your only legal option. The series is a Netflix original, so you shouldn’t have any trouble finding it in a lot of places.

In Japan, Netflix also has the live-action version of the series with English subtitles. If you are in a location where Netflix doesn’t have Kotaro Lives Alone, a VPN may help.

How to Watch Kotaro Lives Alone on Netflix Anywhere in the World

This method works on both desktop PCs and mobile phones or tablets.

  1. Purchase (or start a free trial) of a VPN. I can confirm that NordVPN works for this purpose.
  2. In the settings, choose Japan as your location.
  3. Fire up the VPN and wait for it to do its magic
  4. Once you’re connected, navigate to Netflix (browser or app)
  5. Search “Kotaro Lives Alone” in the Netflix search bar and you should see the anime pop up.

NordVPN banner (Nord VPN)

Enjoy! Please note that if your Netflix library doesn’t update to reflect the country you selected in your VPN, you may have to clear the Netflix cache first and try again.

To do this on mobile, go to settings -> apps -> Netflix -> clear cache. To do this on PC, you have to clear the cache in your web browser.

I’ve had no trouble using this method and I still use NordVPN to watch anime from various Netflix country libraries daily.


  • A large library of anime and non-anime content
  • In some places (Japan, for example), you can find the live-action version
  • A ton of language options for the anime


  • The live-action version is geo-locked

Language options: Japanese with subtitles in  English, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Arabic, Brazilian Portuguese, Croatian, Czech, Danish, European Spanish, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Korean, Malay, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Swedish, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian, and Vietnamese.

Also dubbed in English, French, Spanish, German, Brazilian Portuguese, European Spanish, Italian, and Thai.

Price: Basic with ads, $6.99/ month. Basic: $9.99/ month. Standard: $15.49/ month. Premium: $19.99.

Watch Kotaro Lives Alone on Netflix.

2. Roku

Kotaro Lives Alone at Roku

If you have a Roku device — such as a Roku TV, or one of Roku’s many streaming players — you can watch Kotaro Lives Alone on it. Of course, you’ll be indirectly watching through Netflix. But it is a slightly different way to watch the series.

To watch Netflix on Roku, you have to buy a Roku streaming device, and create a free Roku account. You then have to add Netflix onto your device.


  • A lot of streaming channels on one device (if you pay for them)
  • Roku Channel includes some free content


  • Requires the extra step of buying Roku
  • Some content and channels are geo-locked
  • Devices are not designed to work with a VPN  

Language options: Same as Netflix

Price: Ranges from $29.99 for the Roku Express box with remote; to $1,189.99 for the 75” Roku TV. Netflix comes separately.

Watch Kotaro Lives Alone on Roku.

3. Amazon Prime Video Japan

Kotaro Lives Alone (live-action) at Amazon Prime Video, Japan

Amazon Prime Video in Japan has the live-action Kotaro Lives Alone series. Unlike with Netflix, the episodes are untranslated.

Also, the episodes are available to rent, rather than streaming. You don’t need a Japanese address to open an account, but you will need a Japanese form of payment (which requires a Japanese billing address).


  • A lot of anime content available


  • Only in Japanese
  • Japanese payment 

Language: Japanese, with no subtitles

Price: 165 yen per episode; 880 yen for a season.

Watch Kotaro Lives Alone (live-action) at Amazon Japan.

4. ZenPlus

Kotaro Lives Alone (manga) at ZenPlus

Online retailer ZenPlus currently has several volumes of the manga version of Kotaro Lives Alone. The tankobon (manga books) are in Japanese, but nobody seems to have officially licensed the manga in English yet.

If you just want a free sample of the manga, Shogakukan’s Big Comic Bros. website has some parts of manga available to browse for free. But if you want more than just a sample, you should buy the manga books.


  • Read the manga which was adapted into the anime
  • Includes stories not included in the anime


  • Only in Japanese
  • Available while supplies last

Language: Japanese

Price: $3.87 or $4.65, depending on the volume.
Buy Kotaro Lives Alone (manga) at ZenPlus.

5. Suruga-ya

Kotaro Lives Alone (live-action, Blu-ray) at Suruga-ya

Japanese mail-order website Suruga-ya has a Blu-ray box set of the live-action series. The company ships internationally, and accepts PayPal for payment.

The United States is in the same Blu-ray region as Japan. But Europeans will need a Japanese region Blu-ray player. The discs are in Japanese.


  • Get a permanent copy of the series


  • Only in Japanese
  • Region locked

Langauge: Japanese

Price: $105.79

Buy Kotaro Lives Alone (live-action Blu-ray) at Suruga-ya.


Kotaro Lives Alone manga

You can buy the original Kotaro Lives Alone manga from Japan via our partner ZenPlus or on Amazon Japan. 

Please note that the manga is currently not available in English; it is only available in Japanese. I recommend the manga for those who are beginner Japanese readers. Since the story is a slice-of-life story, it’ll feature useful words and phrases often used in daily Japanese.

Final Note

Kotaro Lives Alone at Netflix, Mami Tsumura, Shogakukan / Kotaro Lives Alone Project

As you can see, the options for streaming, renting, or buying this series are limited. I hope this article helps you figure out where to find Kotaro Lives Alone in your area.

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