Anime Underground

The 15 Greatest Anime Speeches of All Time 

Anna Lindwasser
Updated April 16, 2019 5.9k votes 2.1k voters 58.7k views 15 items

List Rules Vote up the anime speeches that left you laughing, crying, or totally inspired.

Not every epic anime moment is a fight scene or a confession of love. Sometimes, the greatest moments in an anime are when the characters make their voices heard. The best anime speeches can be inspiring, like when Eren Jaeger of Attack on Titan urges his comrades to fight on against the Titans, or when Sora from No Game No Life convinces the people he now governs that their strength lies in their weaknesses. But they can also reveal character, like when Death Note's L tells a group of children that he can't truly relate to other human beings, and that scares him.

Greatness doesn't even require logic - Gintoki from Gintama gets a round of applause for his rousing speech about wetting the bed after drinking too much strawberry milk. 

Koro-sensei is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The 15 Greatest Anime Speeches of All Time
Photo:  Lerche

The best parts of Assassination Classroom are the parts where you can see how effective Korosensei is as a teacher. After speaking harshly to Karma, an arrogant boy with excellent grades, he explains why he chose to do so. His reasoning is sound, and it also shows how much he's thinking about the right teaching method for each child:

I cut him down so he'll spring back up. The boy's enormously talented, there's no denying that. But he's a novice. He's not yet learned how to be worthy of that talent. He refuses to meet any challenge except on his own terms. He doesn't see the true value of competition. To a young person for whom everything comes easily, the pain of defeat can be a much needed wake-up call.

On the surface the whole concept of exams may seem arbitrary, but deep down, it's not about grades, it's about rising to the occasion. It's about tasting the rapture an triumph and disgrace of failure. They go hand in hand you see. One is meaningless without the other. To win, one has to lose! The difference between the novice and the master is that the master has failed more times than the novice has tried.

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Sora's Speech On Human Weakness - 'No Game No Life'
Sora's Speech On Human W... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The 15 Greatest Anime Speeches of All Time
Photo:  Madhouse

When Sora and Shiro take the throne, they know that they have to inspire their people - but those people have no special powers, and feel that they stand little chance against their magical enemies. By emphasizing the power that comes from weakness, Sora rallies his kingdom:

My beloved citizens... No, my fellow Imanity. We Imanity live in a world where [conflict] is forbidden. By the 10 pledges yet we lost again and again and now all we have left is Elchea, our last city.

So I ask you now: Why is this? Is it because the last king failed? Because we are the lowest ranked race? Because we can’t use magic? Because we are fated to [perish], helpless? No! In the ancient [conflict], the gods, the elves, the warbeast, all the races fought and we fought among them and survived!

Why is it that this whole continent was once ruled by humans? Is it because we are a species that specializes in [aggression]? We can’t use magic like the elves, nor are we physically strong like the warbeast nor do we have the longevity of the Flügel. Why were we able to rule this continent? Is it because we are master of [conflict]? I tell you it’s not! We fought and survived because we are weak! In every time, in every world, the strong polish their fangs while the weak polish their wisdom.

Why are we in such danger now? Because the 10 pledges have broken the fangs of the strong, they have learned to polish their wisdom. The wisdom and strategies that we the weak, once monopolized. The power to survive. The strong have gained them all! And brought us to this state!

Answer me this, everyone! Why do you bow your heads? I repeat, why do you bow your heads? We are the weak! We are the weak, just as we have always been! Yes, nothing has changed at all! The strong may imitate our weapons, but they will never master them! Because at the hearts of our weapons lies the cowardice born of almost humiliating weakness. This cowardice has given us the wisdom to escape from magic. This cowardice has given us the wisdom, born from learning, and the experience to predict the future itself!

I say for the third time, we are the weak! We are the proud weak who throughout history, who torn out the throats of those who sit back and boast out their strength!

We declare now that we are Elkia’s 205th king and queen. We hereby declare that we will live as the weak, fight as the weak, and as the weak we will destroy the strong! As we once were and as we will always be.

Accept the fact that we are the weakest race. Accept that we are the weakest race, one that can become anything, because we are born with nothing!

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L Lawliet is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The 15 Greatest Anime Speeches of All Time
Photo:  Death Note Relight/Madhouse

L Lawliet is always something of an enigma. In this surprisingly insightful speech, he tells the children of Wammy's House something deeply personal about himself:

There are many types of monsters that scare me: monsters who cause trouble without showing themselves, monsters who [take] children, monsters who devour dreams, monsters who suck blood... and then, monsters who tell nothing but lies. Lying monsters are a real nuisance: They are much more cunning than others.

They pose as humans even though they have no understanding of the human heart; they eat even though they've never experienced hunger; they study even though they have no interest in academics; they seek friendship even though they do not know how to love. If I were to encounter such monsters, I would likely be eaten by them... because in truth, I am that monster.

 

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Vegeta is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The 15 Greatest Anime Speeches of All Time
Photo:  Toei Animation

When Goku is able to go Super Saiyan before Vegeta can, Vegeta's perceived inferiority nearly crushes him. But after training himself to the absolute limit, Vegeta stops caring about how he stacks up next to his rival. Only then is he able to surpass his own limits:

Afraid not! There's more than one way to reach the goal. Yes... to each his own. My motivation was very different than Kakarot's. My motivation was to be the best. To be the greatest Saiyan alive, as I always have been... until Kakarot came into the picture that is. Kakarot's success was like a demon in my head. How could he be a Super Saiyan when I, the prince of all Saiyans, could not?

The intensity of my training was maddening. At 450 times normal gravity, a basic training game became a desperate struggle for survival. Even the simplest moves required every ounce of willpower I had. I wasn't sure how long I could sustain the effort without breaking in two. It seemed like the only thing holding my body together was my one desire... to be better than Kakarot. At times, I thought I was losing my mind. Why couldn't I obtain what Kakarot had obtained? It didn't make sense. It was infuriating and it was my fury that kept me alive.

I decided to continue my training in the solitude of space, where I would be unhindered by the distractions of the Earth, and when a violent electrical storm had erupted in the skies of the planet I was on, I welcomed it. It seemed fitting... like it was an outward manifestation of the storm that was raging inside of me. Then the meteors started coming down, but I was determined to survive and to protect my ship from destruction. It was my only way out, my only way out of the nightmarish heap of rubble. I thought I had everything under control, but then, the mother of all meteors seemed to appear out of nowhere to claim my ship and my life. Normally, it would have been child's play to blow up that rock, but after training at 450 times normal gravity for so long it took everything I had, and more! Then something just snapped, something inside of me.

"No! No more! That's it! I don't care!" I didn't care anymore. I didn't care about being better than Kakarot. I didn't care about being a Super Saiyan. I didn't care if I lived. I didn't care about anything! And then... it happened. Yes, that's how it happened... That's how I became a Super Saiyan. The sleeper has awakened. I am the prince of all Saiyans once again!
 

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