My lists are always entirely my opinion and highly subjective (which is why I’m always happy for people to comment on who they would have added to the list). This week is no exception as I look at anime that are named after a character who then turns out to be the least interesting thing about the show (in my opinion at least). As always, feel free to add your own views in the comments.
Please Note – There are spoilers below. You have been warned.
Honourable mention this week goes to Astarotte from Astarotte no Omocha.
Number 5: Akame (Akame Ga Kill)
Other than the fact that she survives until the end, why is the show named after her? Okay, first episode she pulls a very cool and scary assassination entrance and looks completely amazing and then… well then we watch her hunt for food, wring her hands over her friends and generally not ever change her facial expression. Even when Akame is dealing with her sister being part of the team hunting them down she barely bats an eye and while stoic can be a good character trait Akame doesn’t have anything to really make her interesting. You can count the things we learn about her as a person (not things she’s done but what she’s actually like) on one hand and in honesty if they’d killed Akame off I wouldn’t have cared in the slightest.
Number 4: Haruhi Suzumiya (The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya)
Haruhi suffers from an excess of personality but she’s still actually kind of boring. The characters around her are fascinating and the set up of the show is interesting, but Haruhi is just a bully who nobody ever slaps sense into. Frantically running from one thing to the next, Haruhi is bored with her own existence because she has nothing inside of her that defines her. She seeks external events to find a reason to exist and as such is always empty and that pretty much sums up who and what Haruhi is and its the driving force behind everything that happens in the show. So, Haruhi is an excellent plot point and as the force that gets Kyon moving and actually paying attention to anything (given he’s the narrator and kind of needs to pay attention) Haruhi works. As a character, she’s still number 4 on my list of most boring title characters.
Number 3: Nozaki (Gekkan Shojo Nozaki Kun)
I know I’ve said this on other people’s posts but my least favourite character in this comedy is Nozaki. He’s just so bland. And I know it is deliberate. He’s the observer of human nature. He internalizes things for use in his writing. But it means that everyone around him is vibrant and dynamic and he’s just this stagnant rock around which events revolve.
Number 2: Aria (Aria the Scarlet Ammo)
Aria, how I wish you had a personality above and beyond the cliché angry girl with trust issues. I actually really liked the concept of the world crafted in this anime and some of the side characters are quite entertaining (if you can deal with fan service and violence), but mostly I just disliked Aria and kept wanting her to stop snarling and shrieking and insisting on having everything her way and then acting like it didn’t matter one bit to her. She was an irritating character and one we’ve seen before.
Number 1: Tatsuya Shiba (The Irregular at Magic High School)
Here I’m cheating a bit because his name isn’t actually in the title but he is the irregular so I’m going with this. And while I actually really like Tatsuya and the anime, I couldn’t honestly say that he isn’t boring. Why? Because Tatsuya defines overpowered protagonist. Normally I don’t mind overpowered characters and as I said, I quite liked Tatsuya, but there is never even vague tension in this show because you know that Tatsuya will solve the problem. Even more so once you realise he can effectively undo life-threatening damage to himself or others (at a cost but not enough of a cost that it puts him out of commission or allows his enemies any chance to win). So other than taking tests for the school, Tatsuya is pretty much perfect at everything and while that makes him awesome it also makes him boring and that is why he took out the number one spot.
I will point out that when it comes to Tatsuya I’m a little bit up and down. One minute I think he’s incredibly dull the next I think he’s the most amazing person ever. Objectively I know he’s boring. Emotionally I can’t get enough of watching him in action.
That’s my list done. Who would you have put on yours?