Right there next to "anime and cartoons are the same thing" lies another statement that will instantly turn any otaku into a serial killer- "anime is for kids". Although it may be difficult for many who have grown up watching Pokémon and Yu-Gi-Oh! (the dubbed, at least) to picture anime as a source of anything except giggles and laughter, the fact remains that there are anime out there (and we refer strictly to anime here; no lewd business!) which would scar the children of this world so thoroughly and irredeemably that they have been locked away under the highest security known to mankind- a single Google search.
We've scoured the darkest recesses of the anime planet to bring you the top 5 anime which prove that Anime isn't for kids!
#4: Parasyte / Tokyo Ghoul
#3: Deadman Wonderland
#2: Attack on Titan
#1: Blood- C
Genre: Superhero, Science Fiction, Horror
Kicking things off is Inuyashiki, a 2017 anime that redefined the boundaries of what could constitute a superhero anime. The premise of the anime is rather simple- an old man (Inuyashiki Ichiro) and a teenager (Shishigami Hiro) both find their human forms replaced by highly advanced mechanical constructs which retain their human appearance.
While one of them decides to use his powers for good, the other turns downright psychopathic and goes on a murder spree of hellish proportions which would turn any kid pale. Paired with more mature themes like complicated family relationships, emotional deaths and psychological trauma, this show has the full maturity package that any child will struggle to fully grasp.
However, compared to the other entries on this list, this anime is very tame, earning it the entry level spot on our list.
This is one superhero anime that isn't fun for the whole family.
#4: Parasyte / Tokyo Ghoul
Genre: Horror, Monster Transformation, Action
Episodes: 48 (Tokyo Ghoul), 24 (Parasyte)
The 4th entry on this list is a tie between Parasyte and Tokyo Ghoul. Although both anime have very similar elements, they share significant differences to be independent productions in their own right. Let's take a look at them one by one.
Shinichi Izumi, a 17 year old student, finds his right hand invaded by an alien symbiote he calls "Migi". It is soon revealed to us that the Earth has been the target of several alien spores which have landed and released Parasytes- intelligent creatures with the power to gain full control over their human hosts. The series follows the events which unfold not only in Shinchi's life, but the greater community as a whole, as the Parasyte invasion becomes increasingly worrisome and the death count quickly reaches worrisome levels.
Set in a world where human and Ghouls coexist in a state of constant strife, Tokyo Ghoul follows the story of Kaneki Ken, a 19 year old human who finds himself developing the cannibalistic and violent characteristics of a Ghoul after a freak accident results in him being transplated with the organs of a ghoul. Much more focused on action and straight up shock value, Tokyo Ghoul delivers its story in every imaginable shade of red and holds nothing back as far as edginess is concerned.
Which one is better?
That depends entirely on the viewer, but let's be very clear here- kids definitely aren't part of this crowd. The gore in these anime can be difficult even for adults to watch and both of these entries will not shy away from making you cry.
#3: Deadman Wonderland
Genre: Action, Post-apocalyptic, Thriller
Unlike the other anime on this list so far, this one literally makes death and gore its focal point. Deadman Wonderland takes place 10 years after a major earthquake destroyed three-fourths of Tokyo and wastes little time in setting up the story. The protagonist of the show, a young lad by the name of Ganta Igarashi, finds himself in despair from the first 10 minutes of the show as a mysterious "Red Man" barges into his classroom and murders everyone inside- except Ganta. Framed for mass murder and processed under a biased legal system, the poor lad finds himself as the newest inmate in the prison known as Deadman Wonderland.
Just what makes this a Wonderland, you ask? Death, decapitation, mutilations, electrocution, acid baths, you name it- the inmates are forced to participate in well-publicized and extremely hazardous games in order to score Cast Points; prison currency which allows inmates to buy the antidote to the poison which their collars inject into their bodies. Every day is a fight to fight another day.
With only a strange albino girl as his comrade, Ganta is forced to tackle Deadman Wonderland and all that lies within. Yeah... not very kid friendly.
#2: Attack on Titan
Genre: Action, Fiction, Adventure
Episodes: 59 + Season 4
It's difficult to find anyone out there who knows what anime is but hasn't heard about this one. Then again, we are in a list that's made to prove that anime isn't for kids so it's pretty likely that most people reading this article do fall into that category, but OH MAN does this anime carry a hefty dose of blood, death and suffering. A modern masterpiece that isn't afraid to break the preconceived laws of the anime world (never attack an opponent when they're in the middle of an action sequence), Attack on Titan takes place in a world that is overrun with giant man-eating humanoid creatures (i.e Titans) with the only survivors living within 3 giant walls that protect them from certain annihilation.
Wall goes boom, Titans rush in for an all you can eat buffet and Attack on Titan is born. While this is a dramatic oversimplification of the events which unfold, the basic premise of the series is indeed rather simple... at first.
Gruesome deaths, heartbreaking storylines and just plain gore make this show shine in more than just one category. Too bad kids will be too busy screaming to appreciate most of it. Attack on Titan is one of the best anime of all time, with one of its newer episodes (at the time of writing) recently entering the IMDB hall of fame. No anime on this list better exemplifies the significant use of mature themes to concoct an absolute bloody masterpiece... except perhaps the next entry...
#1: Blood- C
Genre: Action, Horror, Blood? Blood.
Episodes: 12 bloody episodes and 1 bloody movie to top it off.
We'll get right to it; this anime was released way back in 2011 and there still hasn't been an anime that can fill more buckets of blood than this entry.
Saya Kisaragi is an ordinary girl in all respects, except for when the sun goes down and she goes out into the night to slaughter horrific creatures called the Elder Barins to protect the people in her town from being turned into monster chow. About the only part of this anime that you can show to a child is the first 39 seconds of the opening sequence... and that's about it. Seriously. Although character development isn't one of the highlights of the show, and the pacing can seem a *bit* slow at times, rest assured- when the action starts, you'll beg for it to stop. Just about every way to kill a person is explored in the 12 blood-filled episodes of the show, making this show a horrific spectacle to witness, even for the most hardened viewer.
Blood C easily claims its title as the best example to prove that anime. isn't. for. kids. Although there are other anime out there which severely test the limits of censorship (Redo of Healer, anyone?), there is no anime out there that is so bold and repetitive in its exploration of its own mature elements as Blood C. Each episode is determined to out-bleed and out-torment the last one, that by the end of it all, the viewer is left seriously grossed out and entirely prepared to wash their eyes with some Bleach.
And that just about does it for this list! What do you think? Do you have an anime that you think deserves a spot on this list? Is there a placement here that you don't agree with? Let us know! We'd love to hear what gave you some PTSD!