For all their reach and popularity, not all anime series follow lovable, or even likable, characters. Anime thrives by providing viewers with complex, difficult personalities, but even this jaded genre can't help but give the viewers beloved anime characters everyone loves. In a world of annoying kids and truly loathsome villains, the most universally liked anime characters bask in the love of legions of fans, who rarely if ever slander their beloved faves. Their attractive qualities make them excellent candidates for anime characters who deserve spinoff series.
Sometimes villains, sometimes the good guys, each of these well-liked anime characters are developed, nuanced personalities who can't be described with just one or two attributes. Even their flaws stand to make them all the more enjoyable. What truly makes a character great is when they feel like a real person – except, of course, when they're Pikachu. As always, be warned that this list contains SPOILERS.
- Photo: Studio Pierrot
Who would Naruto Uzumaki be without his jounin instructor, Kakashi Hatake? He sure as heck wouldn't be the hokage. Kakashi teaches Naruto the basics of being a ninja. While his Ninja Academy teacher, Iruka, is the first person to treat Naruto like a child, Kakashi is the first one to treat him like a professional ninja. Kakashi expects his students to achieve great things and wield their powers with skill – just as he does. The man boasts spectacular command over his electric abilities and his sharingan – something you never expect based on his relaxed character design.
For all his seriousness, Kakashi often comes across as a jokester – the running gag about what's hidden under his face mask is a great example. His stoic personality also works for this deeply tragic character, whose unfortunate childhood would leave most people paralyzed with grief. Kakashi contains multitudes, which is part of why people like him so much.20,0041,519Do you love this character?
Maes Hughes - 'Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood'Photo: Studio Bones
While most of the characters in Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood boast pretty large followings, no one stands out like Maes Hughes and his family. In his professional life, Hughes works as a soldier, but his private life shows him in a much more sympathetic role. Hughes absolutely adores his wife and three-year-old daughter, so much so he happily shows off photos of them to anyone who will look, and spends half his time on screen talking about how happy they make him. The anime community loves any and all amazing dads, especially the ones who risk it all in the line of duty.14,7921,290Do you love this character?
Nezuko - 'Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba'Photo: ufotable
Who could possibly hate this adorable demon? Whether it's transforming into a cute baby version of herself or using her demon abilities to protect her brother from harm, Nezuko can do it all. In a world where demons completely forget their past human selves, Nezuko is able to defy all odds by retaining her human side and refusing to eat humans. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba fans all around the world can agree on one thing: protect Nezuko at all costs.8,155937Do you love this character?
Raphtalia - 'The Rising Of The Shield Hero'Photo: Kinema Citrus
The Rising Of The Shield Hero's best girl comes in the form of an adorable and wholesome half-raccoon demi-human. Raphtalia is a character that brings a smile to everyone's faces when she appears onscreen. Despite all the hardships she's endured in her life (being sold as a slave, her village being destroyed, witnessing her parents' deaths, etc.) she still manages to retain her kind heart. Even in her different stages of life, from a cute child to an independent woman, she proves to be an amazing character. We all wish we had a Raphtalia in our lives.4,210804Do you love this character?