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14 Anime With Super Strong Plot Armor That Can Get Annoying

Updated November 18, 2020 12.4k votes 2.7k voters 81.3k views14 items

List RulesVote up the anime that features the most irritating examples of plot armor.

A common anime trope is granting characters thick layers of plot armor - meaning, no matter how many horrible and dangerous things happen to them, they'll miraculously survive, and may not even sustain any injuries.

It's not that anime plot armor is always a bad thing - without it, a lot of anime storylines would get very boring, very quickly. If everyone is too badly injured to continue fighting evil, it's kind of hard to move the plot along. That being said, plot armor can still be annoying. When you know that the protagonists are going to survive no matter what, it's hard to get invested when they experience danger. It's also just straight up unrealistic - sure, you don't want 90% of the show to take place in a hospital, but if the series is largely about warfare, there are going to be casualties - and those should occasionally include characters who are central to the plot.

What are some of the anime with the most plot armor? While plot armor can be found anywhere, it's highly concentrated in long-running shonen anime like Fairy Tail, Naruto, and Bleach. Which instance annoys you the most? 

  • The protagonist of In Another World With My Smartphone has a unique form of plot armor that allows him to instantly learn how to do anything within seconds. He also has a ton of stamina and magical abilities. These were all given to him by God as an apology for ending his life prematurely. While this is a promising concept, the end result is just a teenager who is way more powerful than he should be, getting out of dangerous situations consequence-free.

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  • Pokémon
    Photo: OLM

    Realistically speaking, the first time that Team Rocket blasted off should have been the last. Being launched into the sky by a bolt of electricity and then landing neck-first on the cold, hard, unforgiving ground would likely prove fatal. The villains aren't the only ones surviving when they probably shouldn't. Ash is electrocuted, set on fire, turned to stone, and worse over the course of the series. How does he survive? Sometimes, he's fine in the next scene, sometimes the tears of Pokémon turn out to have magical healing properties. The Pokémon themselves never risk anything serious from their battles, and all ailments can be near-instantly cleared up by a trip to the Pokémon center.

    While it makes sense for kids' shows not to show the grim repercussions of real-world injuries like those suffered by the Pokémon cast, it's not exactly a great message to completely divorce violence from its consequences 

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  • Many viewers found Aldnoah.Zero to be a poorly written series, and much of it has to do with the thick plot armor surrounding the main protagonist, Inaho. The series' Season 1 finale shocked viewers by "killing" off the two main characters. But of course, plot armor saved them in Season 2. Inaho managed to survive a headshot through the eye. Plus, he is given a special robotic eye that grants him far more powers and abilities than before. While it makes sense to keep the protagonists alive, it's not necessary to have them survive extreme situations just for shock value.

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  • There are plenty of great things about Naruto, but having the characters experience realistic consequences is not one of them. Whether it's Gaara and Rock Lee surviving a battle against the seemingly indestructible Kimimaro because Kimimaro succumbed to a totally unrelated illness in the middle of a fight, or Sasuke randomly awakening a previously nonexistent ability in the middle of a fight, these characters rely on plot armor constantly. It's not that characters can't pass away - villains usually do after they get a redeeming flashback, and important side characters lose their lives in spectacularly tragic ways - but it's always clear that the protagonists are going to make it out alive.

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