This one goes out to all the anime fans looking for something to watch on Halloween. There is a lot of horror themed anime out there, but we thought we could narrow it down for potential fans. Since the sheer number of anime produced is staggering, I have limited my choices to shows that debuted in the last 5 years. So for this week’s edition of Top 10 Tuesday, we are exploring horror anime of the past 5 years.
10. Mirai Nikki
This anime about a murderous game for the possition of god of time would be creepy enough as a simple life or death contest. The horror is compounded, however, by the addition of the main character’s “girlfriend” a super stalker by the name of Yuno who perfectly embodies the yandere (a cute but psychotic character that shows affection for the series protagonist) character trope. Yuno loves Yukiteru (the protagonist of the story), and she will kill anyone that gets in her way. Think of it as Battle Royale meets Fatal Attraction. Mirai Nikki is currently unavailable to stream.
09. Deadman Wonderland
In a future Tokyo which experienced a supernatural disaster, our protagonist, Ganta, finds himself framed for the horrific supernatural deaths of all of his school friends. As a result, he ends up at Deadman Wonderland a cruel prison/theme park in which the prisons must work and compete for money which they can use to buy a candy that can temporarily stave off the death of a poison they are infected with. As crazy as that is, the prison actually houses an underground arena in which “Deadmen”are forced to fight each other using their special abilities that all seem to tie back to the perpetrator of the crime Ganta was framed for. Deadman Wonderland streams on Hulu, and has aired on Cartoon Network.
08. School Live
This moe anime puts its own stamp on the zombie apocalypse genre. Initially playing itself out as a cute schoolgirl comedy, we soon begin to have doubts about the reality of what we are seeing. The first episode ends with the reveal that these girls actually the last known survivors of a zombie apocalypse, and the cheerful mood is there to protect the damaged mind of one of their own, who doesn’t acknowledge the reality of their circumstances. The horrific secrets don’t stop there, once delusion is in play, everything is questionable, after all. School Live streams on Crunchyroll and Hulu.
A sickly boy transfers into a new school, only to find that everyone in the class is ignoring one of their classmates. Curious as to why, Kōichi (the sickly boy) begins pursuing the girl. In doing so, he learns of a curse the class is suffering, and the cruel means by which the class protects itself. But if everyone in the class must ignore a girl to stave off tragedy, what has Kōichi’s curiosity caused? He is part of the class too, after all. Another streams on Crunchyroll and Hulu.
Are you a fan of the sheer dread of Attack on Titan? do you like anime in which seemingly any character can die at any moment? Do you often long for the return of Starship Troopers? If so, then Terraformars might just be the perfect anime for you. Genetically modified humans with the traits of animals and insects facing off against mutated beatles on Mars. Every episode is like an education on the creepy crawlers relevant to the events within, and the story is engaging and emotional enough to make all of the deaths carry weight. Terraformars streams on Crunchyroll.
05. Akame ga Kill
This series follows a young man who travels to his capital in order to earn money for his village as a soldier. Having been separated from his 2 friends on the way, our hero soon learns that the capitol is far from the opportunity his village had hoped for. Corruption is spread throughout this tale of revolution, and lovable characters drop like flies, in an entirely unpleasant ways. Akame ga Kill is an emotional action fantasy series with just the right amount of horror to keep you on the edge of your seat. Akame ga Kill streams on Crunchyroll and Hulu, and airs on Cartoon Network.
04. Parasyte -the maxim-
This late adaptation of a 90s era manga perfectly balances alien horror and existential numbness, as its central character finds himself host to a parasitic alien life form that failed to take his life. Shinichi, our protagonist, must learn to cooperate with this parasite, which he names Migi (Japanese for right) since it has replaced his right hand, in order to survive being targeted by other parasites, who have managed to completely take over their hosts. These other parasites instinctively see Shinichi and Migi as a threat. Parasyte -the maxim- streams on Crunchyroll and Hulu.
03. Puella Magi Madoka Magica
This deconstruction of the magical girl (think Sailor Moon) genre of anime takes a decidedly dark twist as we learn more about the cute mascot character which grants them their abilities, and the witches they destroy. A masterpiece of the medium, an overdue deconstruction of long held tropes, and, in its later episodes, a great character study, Puella Magi Madoka Magica was a happy surprise for me. I feel that anime has mastered the art of messing with our expectations, and Madoka is one of the best pieces of evidence to support that. Puella Magi Madoka Magica streams on Crunchyroll and Hulu.
02. Tokyo Ghoul
Vampires have almost always been cool, but recently zombies have elicited more fear. Tokyo Ghoul combines elements of both to be something entirely different. The ghouls, in Tokyo Ghoul must eat the flesh of humans to survive, they crave it, and can’t stomach anything else. Unlike zombies, however, ghouls are conscious, they blend into society while forever being on the outside of it. Though we quickly learn that being a ghoul is not contagious, our protagonist, Kaneki, wakes up in a hospital as one. Before coming to, Kaneki survived a ghoul attack, and received organ transplants from the ghoul who tried to eat him. Now Kaneki finds himself between 2 worlds, that of the ghouls, and that of the humans. Tokyo Ghoul streams on Hulu.
01. Attack on Titan
Attack on Titan is like a combination of The Walking Dead and Mobile Suit Gundam. Massive humanoid monsters, called titans, have pushed mankind behind equally massive walls. In order to survive, humanity has established a society within the confines of these walls, while sending out trained operatives to investigate the world beyond. As a boy, Eren and his friends survive a compromising attack on the outer walls of humanity’s last settlement. Now a young man, Eren, along with his friends, has joined the military, vowing to kill the Titans, but there is more than he knows brewing beneath the surface of this story. Attack on Titan is, simply put, one of the most popular anime of all time with western audiences, standing besides beloved series like Cowboy Bebop, Naruto, and Dragon Ball Z. The series deserves every ounce of success it has achieved. Attack on Titan streams on Hulu, Crunchyroll, and Netflix.
Do you like anime? What will you be watching this Halloween? Tell us in our comments, and stay tuned to TVEnthusiast for more coverage of all of your favorite shows.