I love a good villain and, on that note, a good villain anime.
One of the biggest reasons I love villains is because they usually are the characters who start off the story and get things moving. They strive to change the status quo while the heroes scramble to get things back to boring normality.
I have here five anime series where the villain is the main character setting things in motion.
5. Death Note
Death Note just had to be on this list. It’s the classic series of cat and mouse where Light Yagami managed to come upon the mysterious Death Note to wipe out the world of evil but catches the attention of international police.
My favorite part of Death Note is seeing Light scheme his way in and out of situations, not caring who he has to step on to get his way. Every time Light won, I couldn’t help but laugh like Ryuk. “Episode 9” stands out because of this.
4. Talentless Nana
Talentless Nana is a lot like Death Note as it also has the same cat-and-mouse theme. The series is about a girl named Nana sent to a school on an island filled with superpowered kids known as the Talented. She is tasked with killing them all at the behest of the government.
As I’m sure you can guess, Nana has no powers. She’s talentless, so she has to outwit her targets in order to kill them. It’s really entertaining to see Nana’s schemes unfold and her prey fall victim.
3. Terror in Resonance
Terror in Resonance isn’t a super well-known anime, but it’s one I recommend for its sinister plot and characters. The show centers around two students, known as Nine and Twelve, who manage to steal a prototype nuclear bomb in a terrorist attack.
Just finished Terror in Resonance (Zankyou no Terror) and it’s a beautiful, clever, gripping, tense, emotional, heartbreaking and soul-wrenching tale. I cannot recommend it enough.
It’s 11 episodes, 20 mins long. Do yourself a favour and check it out. pic.twitter.com/Yf3sfogYvs
— Elisa Spigariol (@elliespiga) June 18, 2021
The boys then threaten to destroy Tokyo with the bomb if no one solves their riddle. As it turns out, they’re super-soldiers created by a shadow organization and the boys are trying to enact their revenge. It’s a great psychological thriller as the police scramble to arrest them in time.
Fun fact, the director is Shinichiro Watanabe, who also directed Cowboy Bebop and Samurai Champloo.
If you’re familiar with Psycho-Pass, this entry may be a weird choice. The main character, Akane Tsunemori, isn’t really a villain in the traditional way since she’s a good cop who tries her best.
But I say she’s a villain within the environment she finds herself in. In the show, there is the Sybil System, a government program that assesses how likely someone is going to commit a crime or not.
The Sybil System is an example of a big government gone amok and how insane it is to have a program arbitrarily judge people, but the citizens in that world see it as a good thing. Akane does her best to rebel despite the futility of her efforts, and because of her rebellion, I consider her to be a villain.
1. The Saga of Tanya the Evil
The Saga of Tanya the Evil is similar to Death Note in that whenever the main character would win, I couldn’t help but laugh. Tanya is such an absurd character but the juxtaposition of brutal soldier and loli is hilarious.
In case you don’t know, the series is about an office worker who dies and is reborn in another world as a baby girl. This girl grows up to be this savage army commander.
As Tanya, she uses memories and knowledge from her previous life to quickly rise through the ranks and become this insane soldier wiping out the enemy left and right. A crazed, murderous loli is a sight to behold. A second season is pending.