Anime Underground

13 Anime That Will Completely Blow Your Mind 

Reda Atoui
Updated April 8, 2020 191.8k views 13 items

If you love movies like Shutter Island or Memento, then you will love these mindf*ck anime series. Are you tired of watching anime that is too predictable? Give one of these series a try and free yourself from the cookie-cutter shows that have obvious endings. From Satoshi Kon's Paranoia Agent to modern cyberpunk anime like Psycho-Pass, these anime have great plot twists that will always have you guessing what's going to happen next.

Serial Experiments Lain ... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 13 Anime That Will Completely Blow Your Mind
Photo:  Serial Experiments Lain/FUNimation

Serial Experiments Lain is a show about 14-year-old Lain Iwakura's experience with the Wired, a virtual, bizarre communication network. Lain is granted access to the Wired after she opens an email from Chisa Yomoda, a classmate who took their own life. Lain's life takes a strange turn from there, as mysterious, cryptic events begin to unfold.

Serial Experiments Lain is the type of show you'll probably need to watch twice - or 2,000 times - to fully experience its impact and keep up with what the heck is going on. The anime tackles issues such as consciousness and identity that will surely leave you scratching your head.

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Ergo Proxy is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 13 Anime That Will Completely Blow Your Mind
Photo:  Ergo Proxy/Manglobe

What happens when you essentially cram the entirety of René Descartes' work into a cyberpunk anime? You get Ergo Proxy.

Ergo Proxy tells the tale of humankind thousands of years after ecological catastrophe. The last human civilization is now doomed to live in the domed city of Romdo. In order to assist humankind in its recovery, robots called Autoreivs have been built. The problem is, those Autoreivs are starting to get infected by a mysterious disease called the Cogito Virus which makes them self-aware.

Ergo Proxy is a troubling road trip that questions the borders of identity and consciousness. Some say it's better in small doses, but let's face it- you won't be able to stop watching once you start.

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Paranoia Agent is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 13 Anime That Will Completely Blow Your Mind
Photo:  Paranoia Agent/Madhouse

Paranoia Agent is an anime by the late Satoshi Kon. If you're even somewhat familiar with his work, you'll know a mindf*ck is on the way.

Shounen Bat (or Lil' Slugger) is wreaking havoc in Musashino City. Armed with a golden baseball bat and always on rollerblades, Shounen Bat is attacking people seemingly at random - and violently. Two detectives take on the case but struggle to catch the attacker. Paranoia is starting to spread in the city, which might just be more dangerous than Shounen Bat's wild assaults.

Paranoia Agent is a vivid and ambitious show. It also will leave you utterly mind-f*cked by the end, in a good way.

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Akira
Akira is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 13 Anime That Will Completely Blow Your Mind
Photo:  Akira/TMS Entertainment

Ah, Akira. This cult anime movie influenced a whole generation of fans and creative minds alike. In 1988, an explosion caused by a boy with psychic powers led to WWIII, which wiped out the city of Tokyo. The year is now 2019. The story is set in Neo Tokyo, a frenetic city rife with extremism, violence, and all-around chaos. Shoutarou Kaneda is the leader of a group of young delinquents who are in conflict with a motorcycle crew known as the "Clowns." Kaneda's life flips upside-down when his friend, Tetsuo, gets caught up in an accident with a mysterious young boy that leads him to develop his own psychic powers.

Akira is a frantic, visceral tale that spirals down into a world of insanity. If this doesn't mindf*ck you, then nothing will.

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