What does the word emo mean? Well, simple, it is a shortened version of the word emotional. It gives a bit of an edgier feel. Initially, the term was used to describe a style of rock music, similar to punk. But recently, the word emo has received a broader context, applying to those who are quite emotional. And in the past few years, that applies to emo anime characters.
Anime series are known for their emotional characters, be it anime girls or anime boys. Today, we will take a look at many of these awesome anime characters.
We have to stress that the emo subculture does not exist in anime. It is just a term we use to describe some more emotional characters. Anime series are huge in Japanese culture.
Mikasa Ackerman – Attack on Titan
Mikasa is a fan-favorite character. She is among the most loved female anime characters of all time. Beautiful, sexy, smart, and badass. You definitely want her as your partner.
She feels deeply for Eren but rarely shows it. Mikasa devotes her mental, physical, and emotional energy to keeping him safe. That is why she rarely has time and energy to share her own feelings or troubles. Mikasa keeps them hidden, but at times they surface.
Uchiha Sasuke – Naruto
When you talk about Japanese culture and Japanese animation, you just have to mention Naruto, the popular manga series. And there, we get to know Uchiha Sasuke, an anime boy who has spent years dwelling on getting his revenge on his brother Itachi. He spends a good amount of his life seeking revenge and wallowing in hatred.
Happiness is short-lived for this character. Throughout the entire manga series, he has to deal with a lot of emotions.
L Lawliet – Death Note
L is a cute and awkward sugar addict. He is exclusively known as L. The fictional character loves his sweets. Many fans consider him the world’s most famous detective.
Brilliant, L doesn’t need anyone’s help. Yet, he appears to be lonely, making fans love to hug him. No matter how smart he is, L is proof that you can still have low confidence in yourself. He knows he is right, but still doesn’t show up the confidence and self-esteem.
His face looks like he is an evil emo boy. Sweet and charming, yet mysterious.
Touka Kirishima – Tokyo Ghoul
Touka is a main character in the horror-action anime series. The ghoul investigators have a code name “rabbit” for her. In the beginning, this emo girl is shown to be quite cold, yet displaying a lot of emotions.
Throughout the first season, she gets comfortable with Kaneki around. Yet, after he leaves, she becomes a quiet emo character.
Okazaki Tomoya – Clannad: After Story
Okazaki appears in the sequel to the Clannad anime show. The After Story follows the life of Okazaki and Furukawa Nagisa.
They are an adorable couple that proceeds from high school into marriage. They fight through every challenge and trouble along the way. But life doesn’t always get easier.
Unlike other emo anime characters on this list, Tomoya starts as one of the happiest men alive. But he becomes a tragic shell of his former self. The loss of Nagisa does that. He turns to alcohol and solitude to mourn the loss. He closes himself from everyone, even turns away his daughter Ushio.
Ulquiorra Cifer – Bleach
Ulquiorra is a fictional character and villain in the Bleach manga series and its adaptations. He is a fan-favorite character. He has no emotions until the very end. He states that he is starting to find his heart.
His aspect of death is nihilism, and that is what makes him one of the best emo characters. He hides emotions from everyone, even Ai14zen. And when he died, he said deep words that proved that he hid his emotions. A true emo boy.
Lucy – Elfen Lied
Lucy is the main protagonist in the anime series. She is a special breed of humans who have horns on their heads and invisible telekinetic hands. She had to face a lot of teasing as a child and name-calling.
Children made fun of her horns and even called her a freak. And then, when she was a bit old, she was subjected to inhumane experiments by the government. This makes her violent and makes her develop hatred toward everything human.
Lucy expresses extreme emotions or none at all. At times, the show makes you feel for Lucy. But it doesn’t hide the fact that she is a vicious killer.
Kiryuu Zero – Vampire Knight
During this anime series, students at Cross Academy are separated into Day and Night classes. And nobody knows the secret that the Night Class is full of vampires. Zero and Yuki have to keep the order, which means protecting the Day class and ensuring that humans and vampires can attend school together in peace.
Zero seems like an overprotective prefect, but he is merely dwelling in hatred for vampires. He lost his family to a vampire, so he has to hide his emotions. But they consume him.
Nana Osaki – Nana
Nana is one of two main characters in Nana, a series of life, music, and comedy. She is the boldest and coolest of the two Nana. Osaki is a rock singer and used to roll with a band as their lead singer.
When she decides to pursue her goal of becoming a famous singer, she meets Nana Komatsu. The series shows their friendship and everything they experience on the way to fame.
Otosaka Yuu – Charlotte
This emo boy might seem intelligent and charming. But he uses his ability to go into people’s minds and control their bodies to his advantage.
He is emotionally unstable from the beginning of the series. But it is not until he loses his sister that we see him go into a downward spiral of emotions. This is when he truly becomes an emo character.
Rei Ayanami – Neon Genesis Evangelion
This emo girl is one of the main female characters from Neon Genesis Evangelion. She is one of the first children. Her personality is quite enigmatic and confuses the viewers and people around her.
Rei has a lack of concrete origin story that adds to her mystery. As the series progress, we see a change in the character as she starts interacting with people and develops bonds with them. But even then, she rarely shows emotions and keeps her mysterious appearance.
Arima Kousei – Shigatsuwa Kimo no Uso
Arima has to endure the death of his mother, and he cannot start playing the piano that he used to love. His life has been monotonous as he has avoided anything in life. And then he meets Miyazono Kaori, a carefree violinist who changes his world.
During the entire anime show, this fictional character battles thoughts about his self-worth and his feelings toward his mother.
Saeko Busujima – Highschool of the Dead
She is a main character in the zombie-apocalypse anime series. Saeko is a fan-favorite character. She is super sexy and badass. And she is the reason why the main characters remain alive because she fights for their lives.
But during the entire series, Saeko rarely talks about herself or what she is going through. Towards the end of the show, anime fans finally see her opening up and reveal what she feels to Takashi Kimuro, the male main protagonist.
Crona – Soul Eater
Crona is a fictional character who doesn’t seem to have any end to emotions. She is constantly fearful, pitiful, or depressed about what happens, might happen, or will happen. But that is what makes her character in Soul Eater so emotional and relatable.
Lelouch Lamperouge – Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion
There is a difference between emo and messed-up children. But Lelouch embodies what emo is. He is just so negative about the world. He hates his parents, and isn’t that a reason enough to put him on this list? And finish our list with him?