Top 5 Anime Characters With Wings

Tuesday's Top 5

There are plenty of anime characters out there with wings and for whatever reason they always look pretty adorable. Choosing just 5 anime characters with wings was actually kind of challenging.

Maybe I’ve just been watching too much The Rising of the Shield Hero and Filo just reminded me how much I enjoy anime characters that have wings, but I decided that counting down my top 5 anime characters with wings seemed like a great idea. How did I rank these characters? Mostly on how much I like their look with wings. It isn’t exactly deep or objective. That said, I’d love to know who your picks would be so feel free to leave me a comment below sharing your favourite winged anime character.

Honourable Mentions:

This week I’d like to mention Filo from The Rising of the Shield Hero because in her human form with her two little wings she is just too cute. But, I’m also throwing it over to Ryuk from Death Note because he is just very cool and those wings of his are scary looking.

Number 5: Holy Bell from Ah My Goddess

When Belldandy calls upon Holy Bell the viewer is treated to a really spectacular visual. This is one of the reasons that I absolutely loved Ah My Goddess despite the fairly silly plot at times and the fact that it ended up very formulaic as they repeated more or less the same drama over and over again. Still, seeing Belldandy and Holy Bell do their thing is well and truly worth it.

Belldandy and Holy Bell from Ah My Goddess - one of my top 5 anime characters with wings

Number 4: Jibril from No Game No Life

She loves books and she has beautiful wings? Wow, if Jibril wasn’t quite so crazy she’d almost be the perfect character. Seriously though, she makes an impression when she spreads those wings and descends. I absolutely loved her entrance and wished we saw more of her using her wings in the anime.


Number 3: Kurama from Kamisama Kiss

A cloud of smoke, the playing of his own theme song, and Kurama knows how to make an entrance. As a tengu who has descended the mountain to attend a human school and be a singer, he’s got some really gorgeous wings that he knows how to take advantage of.


Number 2: Tachibana from Angel Beats

This one is a bit of a cheat because despite being called an angel, Tachibana doesn’t have wings, until she uses a computer program to make some. They are nearly entirely cosmetic allowing her more to slow a descent than fly and she only really uses them once, but they are just so gorgeous. I really couldn’t leave this one off the list.


Number 1: Yue from Cardcaptor Sakura

I will admit, I totally had a crush on Yue when I was younger and seeing him with his wings was always a joy. It definitely made me squeal happily inside just having him turn up on screen and that was something that continued even with the return of Clear Card. More Yue please and let’s see more of those wings.

cardcaptor sakura yue

There’s my list for the week and as I said, I’d love to know your favourite anime characters with wings so please give them a shout out in the comments.

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

Would Bofuri work if the protagonist wasn’t a cute female character?

Feature Bofuri

I’m no stranger to discussing the appeal of cute or kawaii characters in anime (previous posts including “Just Add Cute” and “Is Being Kawaii Enough To Make You Watch an Anime?“) however today I really do just want to discuss the Winter 2020 anime Bofuri also known as “Itai no wa Iya nano de Bougyoryoku ni Kyokufuri Shitai to Omoimasu” or ” BOFURI: I Don’t Want to Get Hurt, so I’ll Max Out My Defense”.

At the time of drafting this post, we are two episodes in and what I know about Bofuri so far is that it is about a girl named Kaede who, at the invitation of a friend, decides to play a VRMMO for the first time and without knowing anything about character construction she decides she would be sensible to stack all of her stat points into defense. And that’s about it. It is perfectly delightful viewing but would it still be so delightful if the protagonist wasn’t a cute female character?


Kaede isn’t trapped in this game unable to escape.

The game isn’t glitching and trying to kill the players.

The other players aren’t trying to kill one another either in the game or in real life.

There’s no mysterious secret hidden in the game or some family legend or some angsty back story to uncover.

And there’s no one dying who has a last wish of conquering the game.

There really is zero tension or drama in the story so far. Kaede is a complete newb and because her friend is banned from playing games until after exams she starts out on her own. Happily she asks some random players for advice about where to start and then off she trots (very slowly because she has no agility points) into the forest where we learn that her build is pretty much invincible and she can literally just let things hit her until she builds up a resistance and then squish things to death with her shield.

Strong? Maple laughs in the face of danger (and then hides behind her shield).

Even soloing a dungeon isn’t a problem for our intrepid adventurer. Trapped in a boss room and out of weapons? No problem. Just eat the boss gaining skills in the process and then a very sweet new set of armour and a shield.

The second episode brought along a tournament where players tried to fight each other but again Kaede’s character build is just unbeatable but there were no claims of cheating or bitterness. Nope. One comment about the build being broken and then a lot of admiration for the new shield user who owned a whole bunch of other players.


We also finally got to see her playing the game with her friend and her friend has decided to go for an unconventional character build as well. And that’s the state of the story after two episodes.

Normally, if someone pitched a story like that to me for an anime I’d have to ask them, “What is the point?” If you’ve been following my blog for any length of time you know I’m very easily bored by anime that I don’t feel are ‘going anywhere’. I don’t mind if it is a character journey or a plot driven journey but normally I need to feel like something is going to be accomplished somewhere along the way.

Bofuri literally has nothing that would indicate there’s a greater story at play. Kaede has no goal outside of enjoying playing her new game with her friend. There’s no goal for either of them outside of playing and levelling up and having fun. While I’m sure they’ll go on quests, encounter other players, maybe join some more tournaments, there’s no end game in sight.


Neither character has some deep flaw or trauma that needs to be worked through. They are both perfectly pleasant people who seem pretty well adjusted. So character development doesn’t seem to be the goal either.

Yet despite this lack of tension, purpose, or depth of character, Bofuri is fairly delightful to watch for the sheer joy Kaede seems to have at playing the game. The characters are cute, Kaede’s reactions when she succeeds at something or even when she’s startled, are adorable, and now that her friend is playing with her we have a second personality for Kaede to bounce off of and that only added to the enjoyment of watching the anime.


All of which made me wonder if I would forgive the story for being practically non-existent and the characters for being generic and the only real thing the anime has going for it being the practically invincible gimmick due to Kaede’s own misunderstandings about how to build a character, if the anime wasn’t cute?

What if Kaede, our central character, was a surly, teenage boy who for shits and giggles decided to build a broken character to play the game. Would I be as delighted traipsing through the forest with him as he shield bashed rabbits to death? Would his eating of a boss have been an adorable epiphany moment where the character comes up with an unconventional solution or would it have been just terrifyingly gruesome?

What if Kaede was not in school but actually in her thirties or forties and a mother who decided to try a game for the first time but was relatively inept? Would the story still fly or would we want more information about why this mother suddenly decided to play a game other than her friend invited her? Would it still be relaxing to watch or would I be more judgemental about all the things the anime lacks?


It’s all just hypothetical of course because Kaede is in fact a cute, female anime character. Her character design is relatively ordinary but they’ve made some lovely choices in her clothing and the fact that she’s a shield user helps her stand out. The rest of the cast are so far pretty cute to and the whole gaming world is just nice to look at. Generic for an in-game world as depicted in an anime, but perfectly pleasant.

I really have enjoyed the first two episodes of Bofuri. I think it is great fun to watch so far and I’m looking forward to seeing what Maple and Sally get up to next inside the game. However, the question remains whether or not this anime would work without the cute factor and that’s really quite hard to answer. I’d like to think it would, but I also know that objectively there’s little else as a claim to the appeal of the anime so far.

If you’ve tried Bofuri, what do you think? Would Bofuri work if the protagonist wasn’t a cute female character?

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

Shiki Series Review – My Kind of Slow and Creepy Horror

Shiki Review

Shiki is a horror anime that came out in 2010 set in the small isolated village of Sotoba where life goes on the same way everyday despite the number of characters that seem dissatisfied with their everyday life. The story begins with the disappearance of Megumi, a girl who is desperate to leave the village and to shine in a big city one day. We soon learn of the events leading up to her disappearance and follow the villagers as they slowly become aware of the danger surrounding them.

It’s a slow burn of a story until the end where the villages understand everything and the mob arms themselves and then it does what horror anime tend to do at the end and all the carefully built up suspense kind of gets thrown out the window in a shower of blood and pretty fire. That said, the ending is conclusive, character arcs do come to a close of sorts during that climax, and for those who appreciate the slow reveal it makes this series feel genuinely like it was worth the time.

Yeah, and the creepy eye thing doesn’t get less creepy while watching.

There seem to be three views on Shiki that I have commonly encountered:

  • It’s boring and nothing happens.
  • It reignites classic horror.
  • It’s a great character piece that then throws itself under a bus for a gore filled ending.

The problem is you can’t actually disagree with any of these positions as you can see the reasoning for each. I loved Shiki. I fell in love with the characters and the community of Sotoba and the way the individual struggles play out even while the horror slowly consumes the village. I feel there’s a lot we can take from this in terms of the way we all get too involved in our own individual problems and lose sight of the bigger picture, much to our detriment and the detriment of the world at large.

Shiki is a slow burn but well worth the wait.

I also think they did a pretty good job of interweaving these stories and cutting between them so that we had a feeling of being in this village and experiencing the different perspectives of those who knew early on what was going on but were not believed and those who knew but denied what was happening, and finally those who remained in the dark until it was too late.

So here is my attempt at reviewing Shiki; examining the good and the bad and ultimately my reason why I would strongly recommend this as at least a once watch to anyone who enjoys a good horror story.

Shiki’s Characters:

Shiki has a really large cast. You have the elderly villagers who either sit gossiping at the bus stop or go about their jobs. You have the children and teens trudging to school or pursuing their individual dreams. You have the police, the council, the doctor and his nurses, the tradesmen, the priests and on and on it goes. What I love is that despite the small amount of time devoted to these characters, they seem genuine. You feel like you could go to this village and meet these people.

Natsuno shines as the teen dragged from the city by his parents. His only desire is to finish school and get into college so he can leave the village. His cold views and analysis of other characters regularly puts him on the wrong side of an argument but he is a fascinating character to watch, particularly in the latter half of the series.

shiki 2.jpg

Muroi and Ozaki as the priest and the doctor to a wonderful job of creating opposing moral views on how to deal with the invasion of the village. Both ideals are flawed and neither side is really willing to compromise leading to the very tragic events at the end of the series. It’s interesting that Ozaki seems like the voice of reason for so much of the series but by the end becomes completely consumed by violence and Muroi who tries to sit on the fence is pushed into actions against other humans even as he realises he is in the wrong.

There are also some fantastic performances by the vampires (sorry, shiki) but it’s hard to really get into those characters without giving the plot away too much and in a horror/mystery you really don’t want to know too much about where it is going. That said, one of them does get a listing on my top 5 anime characters that creep me out so if you aren’t caring about spoilers, check that out.

But if the characters are the strength of the series, they are also what ultimately bring it down. The journey you go with these characters is long and you feel you know them, so as reason is tossed aside and they become involved in increasingly violent acts it can make you uncomfortable. Characters who are set up as good or nice meet tragic ends for no other reason than to play on the audience’s emotions and barbaric characters are seemingly glorified at times.

As for the main cast members, none of them could actually be described  as the hero of the piece. They are all just deeply flawed humans acting in their own self interest. While there is a great message in that, it does leave the audience with no one to really support during the final stages of the anime as even Natsuno and Ozaki, arguably the lead characters for the kids and the adults respectively, pursue their own vendettas in the finals episodes.


Shiki’s Plot:

I’ll try to avoid too many spoilers but the set-up involves a family of vampires (obvious to the audience from the start) have moved into the village and are using its isolated nature to their advantage as they believe no one would notice if the entire village became a vampire village. One by one the humans are dying and while at first they believe it is the work of an unusually hot season and then an epidemic, some members of the village begin to suspect more is going on.

This is a slow burning story that spends a lot of time building atmosphere and doesn’t try to do jump scares or excessive violence (until the ending – then it is the definition of excessive). Creepy music, long pauses, and dialogue full of double meanings abound while actual evidence is slow coming during the first half of the series.

The doctor’s exploration of the Shiki and their nature is incredibly cold and will have you questioning his humanity while the priest’s naïve attempt at bridging the gap between humans and shiki is equally doomed to fail. The kids just want to escape and the other adults just want to continue as they always have.

shiki 3

Once it is finally established that vampires are in fact present in the town, there is a dramatic shift in both tone and pacing. Time is divided between the various human characters and the vampires and their actions. The similarities between the two sides are continually emphasised.

Humans are faced with the prospect of killing their former loved ones (re-killing?) and the vampires are faced with the thought that they will need to kill, potentially their loved ones, to live. It is here we find the horror of Shiki. The questioning of the audience about what is right in such a situation. This is far more effective than any slaughter filled horror where vampires appear and devour their prey before being taken out in a shower of blood.

That said, early on you wonder why the characters are so slow to realise what is happening. You wonder what the end game could be. You also begin to wonder why the occasional absurdity is thrown in (such as the vampire run funeral which leaves the family of the deceased speechless). These moments that break the mood and disrupt the flow are frustrating. As is the ending itself. And while I won’t spoil it for those that haven’t already read about it or watched it, it just feels like they couldn’t think of any way to satisfactorily resolve the conflict.


Shiki Other:

I’ve already kind of discussed the village and its setting. The visuals are fantastic but the whole show leans towards a dark colour palette, so with the exception of Megumi  and Chizuru’s outfits, don’t expect much in the way of colour. The opening song is suitably creepy and the time skips forward and back are quite effective for showing multiple perspectives on events, and shining new light on events that you had already seen.

The entire anime is very much about building atmosphere and it is here that Shiki excels. The isolated setting, the sleepy pacing and creeping sense of horror, and the music all work together to weave together a fairly tight viewing experience with only a few moments that really break the flow.

Shiki Verdict:

I loved Shiki. I get why other people may find it boring and may dislike the ending. But for me, it was a great journey and gave me plenty to think about, and really, I can’t think of ending that would have been satisfying because it wasn’t that kind of anime. There wasn’t ever going to be a hero to swoop in and save the day, and if one had, it would have kind of invalidated everything that came before it.

What are your thoughts on Shiki? Or, what are some horror anime that have really worked for you?

Images from: Shiki. Dir. T Amino. Daume. 2010.

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

Which Isekai Anime Is Superior At Handling Character Death?

Handle Death Feature

Between Season 1 and Season 2 of That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime something changed with how the story handles death. But is either approach superior?

Spoilers Ahead for That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime Season 2 and how it goes about handling character death.

You know, I started with a really clear impulse to write when I began this post. I’d watched a lot of season 2 of That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime and I mostly felt just a little bit annoyed at the drastic shift in the way they chose to address death in season 2 compared to their efforts in season 1 and compared to an anime like Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash. Then I let time do its magical thing and started thinking through the situation a bit more. Ultimately, I realised that while death was handled differently, the purpose was also different.

slime s2 16
Good luck. He has the protection of being a protagonist in a long running comedy anime.

Here’s where spoilers will get fairly serious for those who haven’t yet watched season 2.

Rimuru is ambushed and almost killed by Shizue’s friend who is no mood to listen to a monster. However, at the same time as Rimuru is being waylaid, his nation of monsters has come under-attack by the combined forces of a nation that is ticked off because they are losing trade and the holy church because the church doesn’t like monsters.

The motives are pretty stock-standard and poorly explored and while the balance between nations being disrupted was a theme built up over more than one episode, ultimately the story just kind of throws any complexity this plot line may have had away and goes for setting up a table of near-moustache twirling villains who are evil because they aren’t on the same side as the protagonist.

What is a little different this time around is that because Rimuru isn’t around to more or less instantly over-power these enemies (and because of some interesting choices in terms of exploring Rimuru’s choices being influenced by his former human life which are actually really well handled), the monsters actually take a number of losses including a whole bunch of background characters, one peripheral character who we knew enough to be sad over their death, and one actual main character in what is a relatively well built up revelation when Rimuru arrives back in town.

slime s2 9
Comically over-the-top bad guy and soon to be forgotten villain.

The revelation to Rimuru that his orders for the monsters not to fight humans, set out in season one, and his emotional distress at seeing the cost to those who have followed him is a poignant and really well-handled moment.

For about two seconds.

Then a minor character runs up and tells Rimuru a fairy-tale from their homeland about someone becoming a demon-lord and undoing the death of a friend.

I remember on first watching this sequence feeling like I’d just been kicked in the teeth.

Season one of Slime had shown that while for the most part this anime was laid-back Slime shenanigans with a lot of humour and bright colours and a few epic and over-the-top fight sequences thrown in to spice things up, it also could handle the meatier emotional moments.

Shizue’s death was a slow, quiet moment given the time it needed to sink in and having the right impact on Rimuru for the audience to really experience the full emotional spectrum that comes with death and remembering life. It was one of the best death sequences not for spectacle or blood splatter but just for facing the enormity and absoluteness that is death.

That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime Episode 6
I’m glad we met you too.

What season two did seemed to undermine that in almost an instant. If death could be conquered why did Shizue die? What does it matter if anyone dies if it can all just be turned back? Admittedly, there were a lot of catches to the potential resurrection and only a minor chance of success, but even that felt like it was trying to have its cake and eat it to. The story wanted us to think characters could die and wanted us to experience the emotions of parting, but also didn’t want to lose a fan-favourite character by actually consigning them to death.

How does another anime go at handling anime death?

One of my favourite isekai anime ever is Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash (I’ll wait, go watch it). While it isn’t a perfect story by any means, and reading on in the light novels it has actually done a similar thing that Slime is now doing in that the basic idea that death can’t be overturned ends up being overturned, kind of, in one instance, Grimgar set itself apart from other stories early on by giving a very real view of the danger and fear of living in a fantasy world as an adventurer where death could literally come at any moment and from the smallest of mistakes.

I really appreciated this narrative for not having super-strong and invincible characters who overcame anything. Every time they won anything it felt earned and they lost, a lot. And those losses always came with costs.


So if I were simply to look at the three, Grimgar, Slime 1 and Slime 2 at how the death itself was played out, I’d most definitely find season 2 of Slime wanting. Grimgar absolutely nailed it with the early death of a character that seemed like he should have protagonist plot armour but unfortunately it wasn’t his story. And even Slime season 1 gave us something that was quite special in a season that I was otherwise in two minds about because while there were aspects that felt like they were really amazing, a lot of season one felt like down-time.


But that makes little sense. See, after getting some time to think about my initial reaction and how I felt death had been cheapened, I thought more about the overall story and what the actual point of this particular moment was supposed to be. Slime had already done an emotional look at death and loss. We don’t need a rehash for season 2 of the same plot notes and if they’d left the scene without the other character interjecting we would have very much had a more or less same situation with different character.

slime s2 2
We do not do re-runs.

Instead, That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime season 2 (Tensura 2) chose to use character death first as a catalyst for Rimuru’s self-reflection on the fact that he is no longer a human. His human trappings had continued to drive his thinking and reasoning throughout the narrative so far and as the nation of monsters seeks to stand on its own he really did need to move on from that. This sequence most definitely put that into action.

More than that though, the character deaths served as a catalyst for Rimuru’s next actions and his decisions which deserve an entire post all on their own to discuss the morality of those choices and why it has been so interesting to see play out as it raises a number of not-very comfortable questions.

Really, it has seen Slime rise to its best yet.

slime s2 12
Everyone should underestimate you. You were useless and then thrown away in more or less an instant.

While I won’t forget that I felt annoyed that they almost instantly undermined the permanence of death I can’t help but be excited by where this has pushed the story and Rimuru’s character. So ultimately my initial question of which series did the better job of dealing with death was flawed to begin with. Death wasn’t the point here. It was merely a means to an end and while I’m drafting this I haven’t seen the end of the season, I’m really thrilled by how the final episodes of this series have unfolded so far and the possibilities being opened.

Images in this article from:

  • That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime Season 2. Dir. Y Kikuchi. 8bit. 2021.
  • That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime. Dir. Y Kikuchi. 8bit. 2019.
  • Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash. Dir. R Nakamura. A-1 Pictures. 2016.

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

Why Writing Smart Anime Characters Isn’t Easy

Smart Anime

There’s smart anime characters, and then there are geniuses who surpass all others, but it isn’t always easy getting these characters right.

Genius characters in fiction aren’t new. They’ve appeared in detective stories, fantasies, psychological dramas and so on for a long time and while we remember the Sherlock’s and Moriarty’s who seem to have gotten the balance just right, many characters and their ‘genius’ are largely overlooked and quickly forgotten by those who encounter them.

Which seems odd given even a mediocre action based character can remain pretty entertaining just so long as he hits things hard enough (and the audience cares about why he’s doing it). So why are smart characters harder to write and have work well for the audience?

Random aside, earlier this week I ran a poll on Twitter to find out who my followers thought the best smart anime character was. Despite Lelouche getting an early lead, Light came back in the end and stole victory by the skin of his teeth. Though I will point out that there were a lot of comments for Senku and then Yang Wen-Li.

Light, L and Ryuk - Death Note
There’s genius and then there’s evil genius.

The reason I most recently started thinking about this issue again is my recent viewing of Moriarty the Patriot (Yuukoku no Moriarty) where I found Moriarty was a really well written character who I quite enjoyed but the anime as a whole suffered because of the efforts made to make him appear so much smarter than everybody else. The characters Moriarty interacted with and manipulated were at times blindingly stupid or at the very least incredibly naïve.

One particular character, having already murdered someone, just accepted Moriarty’s advice about next steps without actually thinking anything through himself. And while you might argue that the character in question was distraught by the events that had unfolded, a more appropriate reaction might have been actually just stabbing Moriarty (which would have upset his overall plan enormously).

Likewise, other characters follow along with plans seemingly without ever considering their own actions and while I’m willing to accept that given the era a general lack of educational standards there’s almost nobody in the anime even acting with what one would consider an average amount of thought; and all so that Moriarty could really rise above and shine with his incredible intellect that seemingly predicted all manner of events, circumstances, and human psychology.

Sebastian Moran from Moriarty the Patriot
First rule of being a support character when there is a genius protagonist – don’t think.

Part of this probably comes about because, let’s be honest, most of the authors are not super-criminal geniuses themselves. While they have the advantage of pre-planning and controlling all the narrative variables, ultimately the ploys and plans delivered by these genius characters were concocted by someone who was probably just hoping not to trip over their own logic and tangle their narrative in a knot.

What I found particularly interesting about Moriarty the Patriot is that ultimately it uses the same device as Death Note to ensure that there is some balance in the cast (though realistically Moriarty was always going to given the literary inspiration). That is, both anime introduce a character foil to ultimately oppose them in order to provide some sense of conflict into the story, and both anime end up having a genuine friendship, or at least respect, forming between the two characters despite their oppositional moral stances.

L from Death Note
Yep, he’s a genius.

Of course, Death Note had the same issue of the vast majority of the cast (particularly all the policemen and people investigating who were not L) were pretty much unable to add 2 and 2 together consistently (though some in Death Note did at least get the occasional moment of intelligent dialogue just to ensure we didn’t write them all off as incompetent).

However, outside of the detrimental effect smart anime characters frequently have on the intelligence levels of their supporting cast, other issues emerge. Code Geass fans will know how incredible Lelouche’s ability to plan and outwit his opponent is. Why we even start off the series with a chess game won from a more or less unwinnable position within moments just to show-off how smart he is.

Of course, Lelouche is one of those characters who very quickly goes from being a driven and smart character to being a super-human who seems to have pre-cognitive abilities because a lot of what he pulls along the way in his story is just so far-fetched it defies actual belief. It’s a lot of fun, but you can’t for a moment take him seriously as an actual person because ultimately he’s a step ahead because he is and he conveniently always seems to get the information he needs at just the right moment.

Lelouch Lamperouge - Code Geass
Alright, genius and drama queen.

Okay, in fairness, things do go wrong for Lelouche at various points in the story, usually because despite being a genius he is a teenager and sometimes doesn’t quite think before he speaks or plan things quite all the way through and his opposition has some god-level intel at times as well so really let’s just throw Code Geass entirely into the realm of fantasy and call it a day.


With difficulty balancing out a cast to make your smart character seem smarter without crossing into the realms on unbelievable some writers actually go the other way (and this is where we get a whole lot of forgettable supposedly genius characters). When I reviewed Makai Ouji: Devils and Realist I kind of pointed out one of the things that really didn’t work for me about the anime; the main character being ‘brilliant’.

My main point was that the audience is told again and again, by William, teachers, other students, the anime synopsis, that William is brilliant and yet I couldn’t point to one decision or action William takes in the entire anime that actually seemed to demonstrate it.

Of course, some anime try to get around these problems and largely succeed by simply making their super-smart character really, really quirky. I’m kind of feeling Ed from Cowboy Bebop but there’s a lot of these characters who the writer seems to have balanced their abundance of brilliance in one department by making them more or less non-functioning humans in others.

Professor Stein in Soul Eater with his obsession with dissection would be another example of a character whose overall intelligence and competence is balanced out by a fairly debilitating character quirk. However, on that note I actually thought of an anime that went with the quirky genius model and kind of pulled it off.

Steins;Gate - Kurisu and Okabe pose in their lab coats.
Yep, Steins;Gate.

Probably the only reason Steins;Gate works is the majority of the core cast are brilliant in their own way, and those that aren’t genius’ all have a particular personality trait or skill set that is necessary to make the plot continue to churn along. That, and Okabe is a fairly erratic character who keeps getting pulled up short by Kurisu. Kurisu meanwhile constantly needs to be pushed out of her comfort zone by Okabe in order for things to progress.

Still, it seems that a lot of writers do have a difficult time balancing their cast when building it around a genius. Or worse, they diminish their genius character in order to make the cast dynamics work but then the core personality trait they seemed to be aiming for is more or less abandoned.

Despite the difficulties, when it is done well, these smart anime characters (or any work of fiction really) definitely leave an impression. What that means is we will probably continue to see writers play around with this particular archetype with varying degrees of success.

Before finishing I did just want to share a link to my list of top 5 smart anime characters. Realistically, Moriarty from Moriarty the Patriot deserves a spot but I just haven’t figured out where on the list he should go. But I would love to know who your favourite smart anime characters are so be sure to give them a shout out in the comments.

Images used in article:

  • Moriarty the Patriot. Dir. K Nomura. Production I.G. 2020.
  • Death Note. Dir. T. Araki. Madhouse. 2006.
  • Code Geass. G. Taniguchi. Sunrise. 2006.
  • Steins Gate. Dir. H. Hamasaki. White Fox. 2011.

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

Is Ajin Really A Commentary on the Selfish Nature of Humans?


Ajin has a lot to say about human nature and like so many anime before it does it through the not-so-subtle method of making the main characters not exactly human. However, subtle or not, it is effective and the end result is a character like Kei Nagai who is an interesting character to take a closer look at. Actually, there’s a number of characters in Ajin who would do well with some more scrutiny, but let’s start with Kei today.

Remember if you have a character you wold like to see a post on, simply fill in the quick survey here and provided I know enough about the character I’ll take a crack at writing about them. Thanks to everyone who has suggested a character and I’m sorry to those who I can’t respond to as I just don’t know enough about the suggested characters.

What if Kei Nagai had actually been a nice guy?
Kei Nagai - on phone - Ajin

Nagai’s story is pretty disastrous when you think about it. If you had to live it I am certain it would break you. The poor kid is run over in episode one and if this had been an isekai story he’d soon be meeting a god like figure, getting a power up, and suddenly becoming the lead of his very own fantasy harem. Alas, wrong genre. Nagai is fortunate in that he doesn’t die but it is amazing how nobody views it that way. He learns that he is actually one of the immortal Ajin and from that point forward he is on the run.

It works very well within the context of the story, but you have to wonder why nobody seems more upset that someone ran over a kid on the street. It is straight to tracking him down and using him as a test subject. Even his family almost immediately distance themselves from even the thought that there is a connection between them.

And again, this fits with the context. Why we get little time with Nagai before his close encounter with a vehicle, he’s cold and removed from others. Even his family find him hard to deal with. This isn’t the same as him being an active jerk or the like. Nagai is very careful to go through the motions of family life and school and his outward appearance is one of being a perfectly normal kid. Yet, when a crisis hits, there’s only one person who actually reaches out to Nagai and through Kaito we learn just how cold Nagai can really be to others.

Nagai drinking coffee - Ajin

It makes it difficult at times to sympathise with Nagai. Which is probably what was intended because if we actually felt sympathetic, some of the stuff he goes through would be fairly sickening to watch. Okay, it is pretty stomach churning anyway but with just enough emotional removal (your mileage may very).

Every decision Nagai makes is for his own benefit.

While you could probably argue that most decisions most people make are for their own benefit, not so many are quite as cold as Nagai. Even his facade of model student is so that he won’t be hassled by parents or teachers rather than any real desire to follow the expectations. His interactions with peers are sufficient to prevent him being ostracised or bullied but not enough that others actually impose upon him. In short, every interaction in Kei Nagai’s life is a calculated one and that is even before he realises he isn’t human.

Nagai after bike accident - Ajin

After the realisation, there are a couple of moments when Nagai briefly allows himself to make an emotional decision when it seems like he’s encountered Sato who seems like he understands what Nagai is going through. However, given how that ends, we don’t see Nagai doing that again. While a lot his actions in season 2 seem like they will benefit others, ultimately Nagai is concerned with self-preservation.

Was it his immortality that changed Nagai?

It might be argued that the reason Nagai was so removed from people even before he knew he was an Ajin was because he wasn’t human. Certainly when we start meeting other Ajin it becomes clear that the majority are violent or crazy or both (though whether they are like that because they are Ajin or because of the way Ajin are treated is an argument that could definitely be had).

Tosaki is a little intense - Ajin

However, when we turn our attention to the human characters in the show, such as Nagai’s family or Tosaki who is tracking the Ajin down, or even Nagai’s former classmates, what we see is an ongoing array of characters who only care about themselves and their immediate goals. Nagai’s family more or less immediately cut him loose once they realise his nature in order to be left alone with Nagai’s sister outright betraying him at one point. His classmates see his experience as a source of gossip. And Toaski treats everyone with contempt whether they are human or Ajin.

About the only decent human in the story is Kaito and he really gets the short end of the stick on so many occasions it makes you wonder why he is still trying to stand by Nagai.

Kaito and Kei - Ajin
It’s up to the audience to determine the true monsters.

As I said in the beginning, Ajin isn’t subtle. While the Ajin themselves are problematic in that some of their behaviour is clearly villainous, the monstrous actions of the authorities as they seek to control them are more concerning. When Kei is taken captive, after being set up by Sato in the form of a lesson, what is done to him is horrendous. That Kei is not the first they’ve done it to is worse.

Nagai captured by humans and experimented on - Ajin.

Like so many stories before it asks the question of whether monsters are monsters because of their nature or whether the way they are treated creates monsters. Not to mention it asks us to really look at human nature and the actions we tolerate within our societies. While the Ajin are fictitious, discrimination really isn’t.

Affiliate Link – Book
Ajin: Demi-human Vol. 1

Nagai isn’t a nice guy but his story is important.

I don’t like Nagai as a person. He’s cold and at times cruel and his vision only extends as far as his benefit is concerned. Yet, he is a fascinating character because his existence makes you question your own moral compass and guide to making decisions as well as those of people around you. As part of a cast of characters who all raise interesting questions about moral choices, Nagai works very well and it would be interesting to see how is character developed in the events after the anime ends.

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

Would You Like To Read More Posts About Characters?
  • Is Ajin Really A Commentary on the Selfish Nature of Humans?
    Kei Nagai from Ajin is one of those characters I kind of love to hate. Within his story he works beautifully but he would be a horrible person to know in real life. Today I’m taking a closer look at this student who ends up on the run after learning he isn’t exactly human.
  • Why Ririchiyo Was Doomed To Fail Alone
    Ririchiyo Shirakiin from Inu x Boku is an interesting character type. Not the usual sharp tongued tsundere, Ririchiyo falls into the Tsunshun category and regularly falls into bouts of self-loathing and second guesses herself. I definitely loved watching her character in action and I was really happy to take a bit of a closer look at her in this post.
  • Is It Belief or Convenience Driving Koizumi?
    Koizumi was something of an interesting character in amongst the zany cast of Haruhi Suzumiya. Thanks to Aria, this week I’m taking a closer look at this enigmatic character and seeing if I can figure out what makes him tick.
  • Naofumi’s Progress From Zero to Hero to Not-So-Anti-Hero
    This week I’m turning my attention to Naofumi from The Rising of the Shield Hero. As a character he’s already been criticised and mocked and I’m not jumping on that band wagon. Rather I want to look at what his character was trying to achieve, what he did achieve, and where he was found wanting.
  • Up Close with Diamond
    A shining example of a supporting character: Diamond in Land of the Lustrous is the voice of support for Phos but also deals with their own feelings of inadequacy. Here’s a closer look at Diamond from Land of the Lustrous.
  • Up Close with Liliruca Arde
    Yes, we are back to DanMachi (Is It Wrong to Try To Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon) with another … Continue reading Up Close with Liliruca Arde

Top 5 Anime Underdogs

Tuesday's Top 5

I’m not the biggest fan of the anime underdog or the standard character arc that most underdogs will get, mostly because it has been done to death. Yet every now and then a character catches my attention who seems ill suited for their dream or has a lot of baggage standing in their way and for whatever reason I’m drawn into their story.

These are my 5 favourite underdog characters in anime, but I’d love to know who your favourites are. Yes, there will be spoilers in the list below.

Who are your favourite anime underdogs?

Number 5: Hinata from Haikyuu

The short guy with the big dream. He just wants to stand on the court where his hero stood and play volleyball. He wants to be the best. Through all the training and learning, through conflicts with teammates and other teams, through gruelling matches, Hinata is the endless bundle of energy who almost always has a positive outlook and a smile.

He’s got a dream and he’s going for it and you cannot help but admire him as he goes from being quick and determined to gaining some skills, to learning and refining more skills. He’s got a whatever it takes attitude and hopefully he’ll keep heading toward where he wants to be.

Hinata is an anime underdog but he’s definitely planning to not remain an underdog for long.


Number 4: Midoriya from My Hero Academia

Another do or die character, Midoriya just wanted to be a hero like his hero, All Might. Then he got the devastating news that he had no quirk and essentially no chance of being a hero. Despite that, he didn’t give up and continued to study and admire heroes, knowledge which he ends up putting to good use.

While it might have been chance that he encountered All Might that day, being chosen to inherit One For All was due to his own bravery and desire to be a hero. Seeing him learn to use his quirk and grow as a hero has been incredibly rewarding.


Number 3: Bell from DanMachi

Here’s the small, white haired boy who couldn’t find a familia that would take him in. Raised on stories of heroes and legends by his grandfather, Bell travelled to the city specifically to join a family and become an adventurer and a hero. Fortunately for Bell he encountered Hestia and with her blessing became one of the fastest growing heroes ever.

Bell’s dreams hasn’t been achieved yet but he goes from strength to strength and even though others still look down on the little rookie, he’s not letting that stand in his way.

danmachi bell and aiz


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Live a Live – RPG Game

Number 2: Yato from Noragami

A god who is looked down upon for being poor? For having no worshippers? No shrine? Who would have thought that even the divine had a class struggle going on? Yato has very big dreams about one day having a large shrine and many who worship him but basically he just needs anyone to remember him so that he doesn’t cease to exist. His absolute happiness when he was given his own (very small) shrine was so incredibly touching and while it isn’t exactly what he’s been dreaming of, it was exactly what he needed.

Yato is kind of the exemplary anime underdog.

Number 1: Haruhiro from Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash

Summoned to another world, or something like that, but given no particular skills or powers has to suck. Particularly when you have to earn money for everything, including a spare pair of underwear, and your party can’t even handle taking down a goblin.

As Haruhiro laments, they are ordinary people. They aren’t special. So yes, Haruhiro and his group are definitely the top of my list for anime underdogs. Still, Haruhiro and his group find ways to survive and as they begin to earn money they can buy training in new skills opening up yet more possibilities. Now if they could only live long enough to use them.

grimgar e2b noscale

There’s plenty out there so let me know who your favourite underdog characters are in anime.

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

Why Ririchiyo Was Doomed To Fail Alone

horriblesubs inu x boku secret service 04 720p mkv snapshot 04 20 2012 02 03 22 04 52

Back again with another character; this time Ririchiyo Shirakiin from Inu X Boku SS. At some point I’m going to have to come back and look at some of the supporting cast from the story and certainly Miketsukami will need his own post but for today, I’m just looking at Ririchiyo as she is presented in the anime.

Remember if you have a character you wold like to see a post on, simply fill in the quick survey here and provided I know enough about the character I’ll take a crack at writing about them. Thanks to everyone who has suggested a character and I’m sorry to those who I can’t respond to as I just don’t know enough about the suggested characters.

All About Ririchiyo

We meet Ririchiyo as she is moving into Ayakashi Kan, determined to live on her own until she learned how to live with others… a contradiction in and of itself but one she was unable to see until it was explicitly pointed out to her. Ririchiyo has quite the sharp tongue and seems to intentionally drive others away however she later feels quite remorseful because of her actions. I was interested in her character after watching Inu x Boku SS and did a bit of looking around and apparently she falls into the tsunshun character type rather than tsundere largely because of her depression felt after the fact.


What makes Ririchiyo particularly interesting is that we meet her after she’s already made the decision that she needs to change. The story is one about her working toward achieving the change she’s already recognised is needed in her life. As such we see the character half-way along their journey and travel with her for a time before the anime ends and while she makes some interesting growth throughout her journey is far from over when the final episode comes to a close. Still, I am glad for the time we have with this character because while certain elements of her personality feel a little over done, she’s pretty entertaining to watch melt down internally as she second guesses something she’s just done.

I guess I should probably mention she’s also a descendent of a clan that is possessed by a yokai and can turn into her yokai form, a very pretty demon girl. She doesn’t use it all that often throughout the anime though but it is another reason for her personality as it is part of the reason for her isolated childhood.

Is Ririchyo a ‘poor little rich girl’?

Where Ririchiyo is a bit problematic is that in the flashbacks of her childhood, very little of it seems all that horrible. Admittedly, she is most definitely isolated and her parents do an outstanding job of making her feel cut off and emotionally detached, yet in comparison with so many other anime characters and tragic back-stories, Ririchiyo’s seems very ordinary. Particularly compared with other characters within this anime. Her warped and twisted personality may very well have nothing to do with social isolation and everything to do with her innate person and she uses her childhood as an excuse for all the barbs and prickles.


Certainly she suffers some bullying at school and comes to the realisation that even teachers treat her in certain ways because of her family connections. These things aren’t ‘nothing’ and would have an impact on her development. As would her parents rarely seeing her and blaming her for her younger sister feeling inferior. Yet the fact remains that Ririchiyo had people around her looking out for her and was well cared for even if she was not as emotionally supported as she might have been.

It might have been nice to see Ririchiyo come to the realisation that her childhood, while not brilliant or overly enviable, wasn’t the driving factor behind all of her choices or her personality.

Ririchiyo’s emotional battle to
connect with others

Regardless of the cause of her personality, Ririchiyo has made the clear decision that it is time to overcome it. She moved to be on her own in order to learn how to deal with others. This is a battle for her as it forces her to move outside of her comfort zone and to self-correct well established patterns of behaviour.


However, she isn’t always successful and we regularly see her cringing at herself or angry that she responded in a particular way. We also see her rehearsing interactions before they occur as she tries to get to an outcome that she desires. Her hard work is commendable even if it seems like for every step forward there’s a step back and she seems to teeter back and forth on the spot.

What is the affect of
Ririchiyo’s choices?

Ririchiyo continues to have quite the impact on the characters around her though the one we see most clearly is her impact on Miketsukami who meets her and tells her that she is the one who saved him. Ririchiyo has no memory of doing anything to save him and dismisses him, repeatedly, but ultimately gives him permission to be her secret service agent while she’s living in the apartment. This choice has a major impact on both characters as these two incredibly socially awkward people, who are trying to connect with the other in their own way and are actually kind (at least to one another), bump heads and try to work their way through basic interactions. Whether it is texting, inviting the other to drink some tea, or even a school drop off, these two have to figure everything out step by step.


There may not ever come a time when Ririchiyo isn’t a little too sharp tongued from time to time or feel anxious or socially awkward however her choice to change is what set the story in motion and it is what makes her an admirable character. She’s recognised a short coming and one that will impact upon her life if not addressed and she’s trying, in small ways, to learn how to live with others.

Affiliate Link – Book
Inu x Boku SS, Vol. 1

While Ririchiyo might be exaggerated
I related with her

As someone who is also incredibly socially awkward I kind of connected with Ririchiyo when watching this anime. I couldn’t relate to her childhood or the cause of her sharp tongue, but the feeling of needing to rehearse a conversation, of having to work up to going to talk to someone and then either getting tongue tied or tripping over my words, and of just waiting so long to formulate the response that the conversation had already moved on and so it was no longer even relevant was something I could very much recognise in my day to day life.

inu x boku uniform

I also recognised the desire to get better at social interactions. Amazingly enough, it is very hard to live in the world when you can’t speak to others because your tongue just glued itself to the roof of your mouth and you broke out in a cold sweat just because someone spoke to you. That said, even in my 30’s, I still have to give myself a mental pep-talk before speaking to someone I’ve never had a conversation with before.

While there are elements of Ririchiyo’s character that definitely carry a cringe factor and times when her behaviour seems really quite illogical, I found a real connection with her and it made me reflect on my own life and how far I’ve come through a desire to change. It does mean my experience with this character was a very personal one and I get other people see her a little differently.

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

  1. Yato – Noragami
  2. Madoka – Madoka Magica
  3. Xianming Lin – Hakata Tonkotsu Ramens
  4. Liliruca Arde – Is It Wrong To Try To Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon
  5. Itsuki – The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya

Top 5 Anime Zombie Characters

Tuesday's Top 5

There’s a lot of zombie stories around, almost too many one might argue, and yet we’ve come along way from the shuffling hordes of days past (okay there are still some shuffling hordes and they are still pretty fun, but there’s other options now in our undead characters). Here are my top 5 undead anime characters chosen because while they might be the walking dead they still have an undeniable human heart.

Yes, there will be spoilers in the list below.

Number 5: Rea from Sankarea

Rea from Sankarea

Her human life was tragic and her becoming a zombie actually wasn’t the worst thing that ever happened to her. Still, life is hard for an undead who is constantly fighting off rot as well as still having to deal with the baggage from their life. Fortunately Rea has someone standing with her as she tries to move on with her death.

Number 4: Sid from Soul Eater

soul eater sid1

A little more upbeat, Sid is a teacher as the DMWA in Soul Eater who succumbs to death off screen and returns as a zombie who at first seems like an opponent but turns out just to be still doing his job of teaching his students. Still, absolute props to Si for using his own tombstone as a weapon and despite being dead he’s still got a lot of life in him.


Number 3: Ayumi from Is This A Zombie?


Another more comical pick, Ayumi dies horribly, possibly a victim of his own curiosity or bad timing, but is brought back to life by a necromancer. Despite being dead, life goes on, and Ayumi is still making the daily trudge to school and trying to avoid too much direct sun-exposure, all the while he’s on the hunt for his killer. Things take a turn for the weirder when he also becomes a magical girl and a vampire ninja moves into his house. All things considered, Ayumi deals with everything life, and death, throws at him fairly well.

Number 2: Megumi – School Live


Alright, so this one was a major spoiler if you haven’t finished School Live but I absolutely had to include her on the list. The teacher who died defending her students, though we don’t know this early on because we see her still interacting with one of them, and has become a zombie. Yet despite that she still in her own way is working toward helping them find what they need. It is absolutely tragic and yet beautiful and is one of the reasons School Live is such an amazing anime.

Affiliate Link – Soundtrack

Number 1: Hecmatika from Sunday Without God

Sunday Without God

The arc of Sunday Without God where Ai travels to the city of the dead and meets their Princess is one of my favourites and my only real regret is that we don’t get to return to the city later and see how the characters are going. Hecmatika is unaware that she has the ability to kill the living and turn them into zombies being surrounded by the dead as she but even on learning the truth she accepts it. This one is kind of a cheat because Hecmatika herself isn’t a zombie, though everyone around her is.

I’d love to know: who are your favourite anime zombie characters?

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

Is It Belief or Convenience Driving Koizumi?


I’m going to be honest when I say that Koizumi is a character I really struggle to understand. I find him interesting in his own way but realistically there’s so much about him that seems inscrutable and I’m not sure if this is a case of information that didn’t make it into the anime adaptation or whether his character is just genuinely hard to read. That said, I’m kind of happy to revisit him and give him some more thought in this post.

Thanks this week to Aria for the wonderful character suggestion. Now there were a number of other great people who suggested characters however again a lot of these characters are ones I just don’t know well enough to do justice to. I do appreciate the suggestions though and I’m keeping them on hand should I get the chance to watch the anime in question. If you have a character you would like to see a post on feel free to suggest them through the survey below.

All About Koizumi

Koizumi is introduced into the story of Haruhi Suzumiya as the ‘mysterious transfer student’ Haruhi has been waiting for. What makes him mysterious is apparently that anyone transferring at that time of year must obviously be mysterious (it is nice that Haruhi’s demands are so easily met sometimes). However, Koizumi is not arriving and grabbing Haruhi’s attention by happenstance and it turns out he’s part of an organisation that is also watching Haruhi, much like Yuki and Mikuru.

Itsuki Koizumi - the mysterious transfer student.

It is hard though to get a read on Koizumi. A lot of what he says comes across as disingenuous and he also is a representative of an organisation which means his actions are not always his own. He makes maddeningly obscure speculations to Kyon at times and maintains a strict routine of not directly influencing Haruhi though he regularly manipulates the situation putting the responsibility on Kyon.

I will admit when watching the anime there were times I genuinely hated Koizumi. And yet there were other times when he came across as logical or sympathetic. Basically, he’s just a complex character and it is really hard to know what is really driving him sometimes because while he calls Haruhi his god, his actions are not always able to be reconciled viewing him as a follower of the divine.

Why Does Koizumi Do Everything
Haruhi Suzumiya Demands?

With the premise being such as it is, Koizumi seems almost obliged to follow along with all of Haruhi’s weird requests and demands. Essentially she is god and his job is to keep her happy. Yet behind the scenes Koizumi seems intent on manipulating that role. For instance, the Summer trip to the mysterious island with the locked room investigation was entirely orchestrated by Koizumi and his organisation in order to ‘entertain’ Haruhi and keep her from getting bored and possibly unmaking reality.

While I can see where they were coming from it seems like a weird relationship with a ‘god’ when you can run around and try to distract them from inadvertently removing you from existence.

This is what happens when you upset Haruhi. Koizumi doesn't want to see that happen.

Likewise, Koizumi works on other characters to have them entertain Haruhi, or at least ensure they don’t upset her too much. Rather than a relationship between a god and a follower it seems more like someone watching over a child prone to tantrums and it seems weird that he doesn’t divert her from some of her sillier endeavours (or at least try to).

How Does Koizumi Represent the
Most Dangerous of By-Standers?

But that’s where I find Koizumi’s character a little bit hard to take. During the filming of Haruhi’s movie she tormented Mikuru and even went as far as drugging her in one instance. When Kyon got angry because of this Koizumi’s aggravating comment was that he thought Kyon was more rational. However, no matter how you want to slice the situation, Haruhi had stepped well and truly over the line (several times in fact) and needed to be pulled up short. That Koizumi is unable or unwilling to and Yuki sits in a similar position means the it becomes Kyon’s responsibility.


Koizumi’s actions really bothered me because he knows that what Haruhi is doing is wrong and actually fairly reprehensible. Where Yuki might get a pass in this situation being not human and reasonably indifferent to the morality in the situation, Koizumi is a human who simply has some power given to him, he thinks, by Haruhi. He understands the full magnitude of what Haruhi is doing and yet he does nothing. Worse than that, he enables to the best of his ability Haruhi’s actions in almost all things to ensure that she doesn’t get upset. So not only does he not condemn her actions, his passive stance actually seems to support her decisions.

Despite Koizumi not having an active role in the situation with Mikuru, he did nothing to prevent it continuing and his actions seemed to endorse the decisions made by Haruhi. His speaking against Kyon’s actions after the fact further cement an understanding that he would have allowed that situation to continue. While overall I find Koizumi a fascinating character I really cannot get behind him in this sequence at all.

What Does Koizumi Actually
Think of Haruhi and of Kyon?

That said, it is difficult to know what Koizumi’s actual feelings are. There are times when it seems like Koizumi is more naturally drawn to Kyon and that he genuinely likes him. There are others when it seems like he sees Kyon as an interesting specimen for observation. Like with a lot of Koizumi’s actions, it is hard to read.


As for Haruhi, Koizumi regularly makes comments along the lines of finding her charming or similar. But it is hard to know whether he believes that himself or whether it is something he is working to convince himself of. Still, even in The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya, Koizumi was the one who ended up by Haruhi’s side so maybe he is naturally drawn to her.

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Is Itsuki Koizumi’s Existence
In Itself a Sad One?

I find it very hard to think about Koizumi without wondering what his life would have been like if he’d never awakened as an Esper and never had the knowledge that Haruhi Suzumiya was the one who awakened that power. What kind of person would he be, or would he exist at all, if Haruhi had never wanted to meet an esper. What I do know is that in the context of the anime, Koizumi really has no existence outside of watching over Haruhi and his dealings with Kyon and that in and of itself is a little tragic.


Then again, that is something that you can start to feel for all the characters in the reality of Haruhi Suzumiya as they are seemingly bent and twisted to her will.

If you watched The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, I’d love to know your thoughts on Itsuki Koizumi and how you feel about his character so leave us a comment below.

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

  1. Kuronuma Sawako – Kimi Ni Todoke
  2. Zen Wisteria – Snow White With The Red Hair
  3. Yuki Soleil – The Price of Smiles
  4. Emma – The Promised Neverland
  5. Reiko – Natsume Yuujinchou