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The Best Anime With Adult Protagonists

Updated April 15, 2020 28.6k votes 4.4k voters 84.9k views69 items

List RulesVote up the greatest anime following heroes who are grown ups, not children or teens.

If you are in the 18+ age group, finding an anime show that doesn't revolve around high school or the trials of adolescence can be remarkably difficult. Anime with adult protagonists might be a comparatively smaller category, but they boast some unique and compelling storylines that are far from cliché.

Every series in this list features a protagonist that is at least 18-years-old, though there is no guarantee that all of these characters act their age. (It is important to mention that Erased presents a bit of an exception to this distinction, however this won’t be detailed so as not to spoil the story.) Here you will find a collection of heroes and heroines that include, but are not limited to: university students, civil servant employees, superheroes, wayward artists, legendary warriors, and mad scientists. No matter stage you are at in life, these anime shows are worth checking out!

Be sure to check out the best Spike Spiegal quotes and the best Hellsing quotes.

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  • 1
    Cowboy Bebop
    1,612
    223

    Cowboy Bebop

    Action, Adventure

    Lead character Spike is 27-years-old.

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  • 2
    Samurai Champloo
    1,198
    183

    Samurai Champloo

    Action, Adventure
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  • 3
    Psycho Pass
    1,060
    164

    Psycho Pass

    Action, Sci-Fi

    Protagonist Akane is 21-years-old.

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  • 4
    One-Punch Man
    1,602
    328

    Lead hero, Saitama is 25-years-old.

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  • 5
    Death Parade
    795
    143

    Death Parade

    Mystery, Psychological

    Lead character Chiyuki is 21-years-old.

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  • 6
    Trigun
    642
    106

    Trigun

    Action, Sci-Fi
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  • 7
    Steins;Gate
    844
    164

    Steins;Gate

    Thriller, Sci-Fi

    Lead characters, Kuriso and Rintaro, are both 18.

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  • 8
    Bungou Stray Dogs
    808
    159

    The hero, Atsushi, is 18-years-old.

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  • 9
    Erased
    814
    166

    Erased

    Mystery, Psychological
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  • 10
    Darker Than Black
    682
    128

    Lead character Hei is 22.

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  • 11
    Hellsing
    928
    202

    Hellsing

    Action, Horror

    Helling's Alucard is physically in his 30s but is technically over six-hundred-years-old.

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  • 12
    Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex
    509
    89
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  • 13
    Berserk
    435
    71

    Berserk

    Action, Adventure

    I mean, it's Berserk.

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  • 14
    Mushishi
    558
    110
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  • 15
    Gintama
    596
    125

    Lead character, Gintoki, is said to be in his 20s by the official Gintama page.

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  • 16
    Gangsta
    555
    123

    Lead characters Worick and Nic are aged 35 and 34, respectively.

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  • 17
    ReLIFE
    436
    92
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  • 18
    Monster
    457
    103

    Protagonist Dr. Kenzo Tenma is in his late 30s.

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  • 19
    Spice and Wolf
    564
    144

    Craft Lawrence is 25. Holo is actually centuries old, even though she looks like a young girl.

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  • 20
    Barakamon
    350
    87

    Lead character, Seishi, is 23-years-old.

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  • 21
    Nana
    400
    114

    Lead character Nana is about 18 or 19-years-old.

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  • 22
    Baccano
    351
    95

    Baccono actually follows the point-of-view of many different characters, who all range in ages from young to old.

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  • 23
    Log Horizon
    399
    133

    Lead character Shiroe is 23-years-old.

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  • 24
    Drifters
    362
    116

    Lead character Shimazu is age 30.

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  • 25
    Welcome To The N.H.K.
    317
    97

    Lead character Tatsuhiro is 22-years-old.

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