Top 10 Depressed Anime Characters: From Sad Backstories to Hopeful Futures


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Anime has long been a medium for exploring complex emotions and themes, and one of the most touching and powerful of these is depression. Depressed Anime Characters have become a staple of the genre, and their stories often touch our hearts who have experienced similar struggles in their lives

From tragic backstories to hopeful futures, these characters offer a window into the human experience of depression and the ways in which we can find hope and healing in even the darkest of circumstances.

Many popular anime have featured sad anime characters grappling with depression. let us analyze their struggles tragic backstories and how they got away.


Depressed Anime Characters: Top 10 List

10. Violet Evergarden (Violet Evergarden)

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Violet Evergarden is the story of a Depressed Anime Character who must navigate her way through a difficult emotional landscape. Trained as a child soldier, Violet has little experience with emotions or social interaction, and her struggle to connect with others is a central theme of the anime.

Their journey is a very touching exploration of what it means to be human, and the power of connection and empathy. The anime follows Violet as she works as a letter writer, helping others express their feelings and connect with loved ones.

Her work as an Auto Memory Doll, a profession that involves writing letters for people, Violet slowly learns to understand her own feelings and the feelings of others and begins to form relationships that give her a sense of purpose and belonging.

Her story is a powerful reminder of the importance of empathy and communication in building healthy relationships, and the way these connections can provide hope and healing to those struggling with depression.


9. Hachiman Hikigaya (My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU)

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Hachiman Hikigaya is a depressed anime character who struggles to connect with others and find meaning in his life. As a high school student, Hachiman is known for his bad outlook and lack of social skills, which he shows intentionally due to traumatic incidents in his past.

He often sees himself as an outsider and is reluctant to form close relationships with others, which only deepens his sense of isolation and despair. Throughout the series, Hachiman is forced to confront his own beliefs and assumptions about himself and the world around him.

He begins to develop a deeper understanding of human relationships. His journey is a powerful exploration of the complexities of depression and how our experiences shape our perceptions of ourselves and others.

Despite the often heavy subject matter, “My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU” is also a funny and heartwarming series that celebrates the power of friendship and personal growth. Through Hachiman’s struggles and triumphs, we see the potential for change and transformation even in the darkest of circumstances.

8. Kousei Arima (Your Lie in April)

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Kousei Arima is another sad anime character who struggles with the aftermath of a traumatic event. As a child prodigy pianist, Kousei is forced to confront his mother’s death, which has left him emotionally scarred and unable to play the piano.

He withdraws into himself, isolating himself from his friends and family, and is unable to express his emotions healthily. However, Kousei’s life changes when he meets a free-spirited violinist named Kaori, who encourages him to return to the piano and confront his fears. Through his relationship with Kaori and the power of music, Kousei begins to confront his own emotional struggles and heal from the trauma of his past.

“Your Lie in April” is a powerful and emotionally resonant anime that explores the themes of grief, loss, and healing. Kousei’s story is a reminder of how our past experiences can shape our present and future, and the importance of facing our emotions healthily.

His journey is a powerful example of the potential for growth and transformation even in the face of deep pain and trauma, and how good companions can offer hope and healing to those struggling with depression.

7. Guts (Berserk)

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Guts is a character who has suffered immensely throughout his life, both physically and emotionally. His childhood was marked by abandonment, abuse, and witnessing horrific acts of violence. As an adult, he continues to face traumatic experiences, including being forced to kill his own comrades and watching his loved ones die.

These experiences have left Guts with deep scars, both physically and emotionally. He suffers from PTSD and depression, which makes it difficult for him to trust others and form meaningful relationships. He also struggles with self-destructive tendencies, often pushing himself to his limits in battle and putting himself in danger.

Despite these challenges, Guts is determined to overcome his trauma and find a sense of purpose in life. He channels his pain into his fighting skills, using his rage and despair as fuel to become a formidable warrior. He also finds solace in the companionship of others, even if he struggles to open up to them at first.

Through his romantic interest Casca, Guts learns to trust and love again, and he begins to see a brighter future for himself beyond his trauma. Guts’ journey toward healing is not an easy one, and he experiences setbacks along the way. He must confront his past traumas and learn to forgive himself. But through it all, he remains a depressed anime character who is driven by his love for his companions and his desire to protect them from harm.

6. Shouya Ishida (A Silent Voice)

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Shouya Ishida during depression

Shouya Ishida is a character who has experienced the depths of regret and self-loathing. He was once a bully in his youth, and he targeted a deaf girl named Shouko Nishimiya, who transferred to his elementary school. He tormented her relentlessly, and his actions led to her leaving the school and him becoming ostracized by his peers.

Years later, Shouya is haunted by the guilt of his past actions. He struggles with social anxiety and depression, and he feels like he deserves to be punished for what he did to Shouko. He even contemplates suicide, as he believes that his death would be a form of atonement for his sins.

Despite his self-loathing, Shouya is an example of a depressed anime character who is determined to make amends for his past mistakes. He seeks out Shouko and tries to make amends with her, even learning sign language so that he can communicate with her better.

He also reaches out to his former classmates and tries to repair the relationships that he destroyed in the past. He learns to value the people in his life and to appreciate the small moments of happiness that he experiences. He also learns that forgiveness is a process and that it takes time and effort to earn back

5. Mitty (Made in Abyss)

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Mitty during experiment

Mitty from the anime “Made in Abyss” is another depressed anime character who experiences one of the most tragic backstories in the series. She is a young girl who, along with her best friend Nanachi, was transformed into a creature known as a “hollow.” This transformation was the result of a failed experiment conducted by a group of scientists who were trying to reach the bottom of the Abyss.

As a hollow, Mitty is unable to speak or move freely, and she is plagued by constant pain and suffering. She is forced to live in a state of continuous agony, with no hope of ever being cured or restored to her former self. Her existence is a cruel and tragic one.

Despite her circumstances, Mitty remains a depressed anime character who is capable of helping people in need. She cares deeply for her friend Nanachi, and she is willing to sacrifice herself to help Nanachi find a way to end her own suffering. A tragic point in the series was when Mitty had to kill Nanachi to end her suffering. That even made me cry.

Mitty’s story is one of tragedy and sacrifice. She endures unimaginable pain and suffering, but she never loses her humanity or her sanity. Even though her appearance is animal-like and ugly looking she is still hopeful for the future.

4. Tomoya Okazaki (Clannad)

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Tomoya Okazaki is the main character in the anime series “Clannad”. He’s a high school student who’s given up on his dreams and lost hope in life after a tragic accident that took his mother’s life and injured his arm. His relationship with his father is strained, and he feels like he’s living a meaningless life.

As the story progresses, Tomoya’s depression becomes more apparent. He becomes withdrawn and cynical, pushing away those around him. However, he’s thrown a lifeline when he meets Nagisa Furukawa, a kind and gentle girl who helps him find purpose and hope in life.

Tomoya’s relationship with Nagisa is one of the central themes of the series. Through her, he’s able to confront his past traumas and begin to heal. Their relationship is one of the most heartwarming aspects of the show, as it depicts the transformative power of love and human connection.

The other characters in the show also play a role in Tomoya’s healing journey. They help him realize that he’s not alone in his struggles and that he has people who care about him. The show is a powerful testament to the importance of community and support in battling depression. The series is about a depressed anime character undergoing a transformation. He goes from a sad anime character to someone who has found a sense of purpose and hope in life.

3. Kaneki Ken (Tokyo Ghoul)

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Now coming to our top 3 Depressed Anime Characters list on no.3, we have Kaneki Ken. He is the protagonist of the anime series “Tokyo Ghoul”. He starts off as a shy and introverted college student who loves reading books. However, after a near-death encounter with a ghoul, he undergoes a drastic transformation both physically and emotionally. He becomes a ghoul himself, which causes him to suffer from depression and despair.

Kaneki’s depression is portrayed in a raw and realistic manner in the show. How he became a ghoul and had to eat dead flesh to survive. He struggles to come to terms with his new identity as a ghoul, which causes him to become increasingly isolated and withdrawn from those around him. He faces discrimination and persecution from humans and other ghouls alike.

As the story progresses, Kaneki’s character adepts the ghoul society. He becomes more confident and self-assured, but his depression still lingers. He struggles with his dual nature as a human and a ghoul, and the show explores the themes of identity and acceptance.

Throughout the series, Kaneki’s character goes through numerous emotional breakdowns, which highlights the toll that depression can take on an individual. He is different from other depressed anime characters on the list as he turns to evil while watching lots of deaths blood and violence. This character deserves to be on the list of the top 3 depressed anime characters.

2. Itachi Uchiha (Naruto)-Sad Anime Character

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The second most Depressed Anime Character on our list is Itachi Uchiha. He is one of the most iconic characters in the “Naruto” anime series. He’s a complex character building with a tragic backstory, and his journey is a heart-touching portrayal of depression and the effects of trauma on a person. Itachi’s story is revealed gradually throughout the series.

At first, he’s portrayed as a villain who has committed unspeakable acts, including killing the entire clan and killing his own father and mother. However, as the story progresses, we learn that Itachi’s actions were motivated by a desire to protect his village from getting massacred. One of the most poignant moments in the show is when Itachi confronts his brother Sasuke and sacrifices himself as a villain in the eyes of his brother. while he was just protecting Sasuke.

As a child, Itachi was a prodigy who excelled in every aspect of life. However, his talent came at a price. He was forced to bear the weight of his family’s expectations, which caused him to become increasingly isolated and withdrawn. He also witnessed the horrors of war at a young age, which had a profound impact on his mental health.

Itachi’s depression is portrayed in a subtle yet powerful manner in the show. He’s often shown as being distant and detached, and his interactions with others are marked by a sense of sadness and resignation. He’s haunted by his past and the choices he’s made, which causes him to suffer from guilt and self-loathing.


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1. Hyakkimaru (Dororo) – Most Depressed Anime Character

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Hyakkimaru as a child

Now finally coming to our no.1 Depressed Anime Character on our list, we have Hyakkimaru, the protagonist of the anime series “Dororo,” He is born without several body parts, including limbs, eyes, nose, and skin, as his father made a pact with demons to gain power. Hyakkimaru’s father sacrificed his son’s body parts to the demons in exchange for a prosperous kingdom. He could not see, smell, or feel anything.

Hyakkimaru’s life is full of misery and struggles as he tries to reclaim his missing body parts. He goes on a journey with a young thief he met, named Dororo, hoping to defeat the demons and regain his body parts. Along the way, he faces many challenges, including physical injuries, emotional turmoil, and the reality of his existence.

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His love interest Mio is a young girl who lived in an abandoned temple with orphans who lost their parents in the war and were killed mercilessly by the soldiers for the suspicion of being a spy. This made Hyakkimaru slowly understand the harsh reality of the world. He has a strong desire to regain his body parts, which drives him to become a skilled warrior.

Despite his struggles, he remains determined to overcome the obstacles and restore his body. As the series progresses, we see him opening up to others and developing a bond with Dororo. Hyakkimaru’s journey is not just about regaining his body parts, but also about discovering the truth about humanity. He begins to question the morality of his actions and the purpose of his life.


In conclusion, depression is a recurring theme in anime, and the character’s struggles and triumphs can resonate with viewers on a personal level. The top 10 depressed anime characters mentioned above are just a few examples of the numerous characters in anime who face overwhelming challenges and setbacks.

Their journeys toward healing and finding hope can serve as a source of inspiration and encouragement for viewers who are also struggling with their own battles. These depressed anime characters’ stories highlight the importance of mental health and the need for support and understanding in difficult times.

Anime has the power to showcase the complexities of human emotions and experiences, and the representation of depression and mental health in anime is a step toward reducing stigma and raising awareness about these important issues.

Whether it’s through the heartfelt moments of Violet Evergarden or the struggles of Kaneki Ken in Tokyo Ghoul, these depressed anime characters remind us that we are not alone in our struggles and that there is always hope for a brighter future.

About Susil Praharaj

Susil, with seven years of experience in watching anime, has become something of an expert in the field. With an impressive list of anime shows under his belt, he has gained a deep understanding of the anime world. Susil is not only an avid watcher but also a manga enthusiast who enjoys reading manga and exploring fan theories. He has also created many fan theories of his own, which he’ll be sharing on the blog.

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2 thoughts on “Top 10 Depressed Anime Characters: From Sad Backstories to Hopeful Futures”

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