Top Ten Saddest Anime of All Time

10. Erased

Top Ten Saddest Anime of All Time

At number 10, it's Erased. Erased is a relatable anime that focuses on self-reflection within the heart and mind. The main protagonist Satoru is depicted as a depressed 29-year-old. He doesn't open up to people and doesn't have any close friends. However, he's a good person who's prepared to go that extra mile to help people in danger. The game-changer in this series is how the main character experiences a phenomenon called revival. This typically puts the main character back in time whenever something wrong happens. Erased is a sole anime because it showcases crimes that occur around the main character as he struggles to ultimately change fate by rewriting events to stop the tragedy.



9. Anohana

Top Ten Saddest Anime of All Time

At number nine, we have Anohana. Anohana is a show about emotional high school students coming to terms with guilt and dealing with their struggles. Similar to Erased, the main character doesn't have many friends at the beginning of the series and feels like he isn't noticed by anyone even at school. He's the definition of an introvert. He used to have a ton of friends back in the day, but once his childhood friend Menma and his mum passed away, everything changed. He started slacking in school and failed all of his exams, putting him in the lowest tier schools within the area. One day he actually sees Menma in his house and thinks he's hallucinating until he starts interacting with her. This show really touches you with nostalgic feelings of the past with flashbacks of wholesome memories with everyone as kids when life was easier. This anime is great because you can see the change in group dynamics as the plot progresses when the high school students retrace their steps into their forgotten bonds of friendship.



8. Wolf Children

Top 10 Saddest Anime of All Time

At number eight, it's Wolf Children. When a werewolf man and human woman love each other very much, they make cute tiny werewolf babies. Apparently, then dad gets himself killed leaving one human parent to raise two tiny wolf monstrosities. Note we aren't calling them monstrosities because they're wolves, we're calling them that because they're babies. Poor mom is on her own with these little handfuls as they're constantly switching between their human and wolf forms. One of the children Yuki begs her mum to let her participate in school. While the other Ame is more interested in the forest and ends up taking lessons from a fox about surviving in the wild. This is a very emotional story because it shows the perspective of a mother caring for her children and watching them go their separate ways growing up. It illustrates an emphasis on building relationships and trust as they have to hide their true wolf identities from the public. While figuring out what they want to do with their lives matter there.



7. Garden of Words

Top 10 Saddest Anime of All Time

At number 7, it's The Garden of Words. The Garden of Words is a short story about 15-year-old schoolboy Takao Akizuki. He doesn't stand out much at school and has a passion for shoemaking. The anime puts a lot of emphases on soft piano melodies and it sets the tone for the setting and what's to come. One day Takao decides to skip school when it's raining and go and sit in a park. Here he meets Miss Yukino, a woman who's skipping work because of personal problems and he eventually forms a strong connection with her. Takao would always look forward to whenever it rained because they would both skip their responsibilities to hang out. The main protagonist confesses to Miss Yukino that all he wants to do is become a great shoemaker and then he promises to make her a new pair of shoes. Eventually, the rainy season comes to an end and he doesn't see her for months. Yukino's tale is a depressing one as it spurs the main protagonist's emotions to stand up for who he believes her to be.



6. Violet Evergarden

Top 10 Saddest Anime

At number 6, we have Violet Evergarden. Violet Evergarden begins with a girl named Violet who's been in the hospital for four months after the war. At first, her hands are bandaged but it's then revealed that her arms are made of adamant steel when she spills hot tea on them at her new home in the Evergarden estates. Violet is taken in by the lieutenant who shows her the ropes. Ultimately, Violet decides to become an auto memory doll who can write letters for people working in the same building. Violet doesn't feel emotions like everyone else and has trouble learning what it means to feel them. To go through the story trying to learn the ways of the world not as a tool meant for destruction but as a normal human being that can comprehend and understand feelings. It's a great anime that everyone should look into if you like great animations music and complex plots about self-expression. The music and animation are beautifully creative.



5. Your Lie in April

Top 10 Saddest Anime

At number five, we have Your Lie in April. Your Lie in April is a beautifully animated love story based around a piano-playing prodigy named Kousei Arima, he's a 14-year-old boy who's determined to make sure no one ever falls in love with him. Although he's just a middle schooler, the light in his eyes has been taken away because of his mother's death. As opposed to his friend Tsubaki, who sees a world full of colour. Tsubaki sees everything in monotone just like music scores and keyboards. Despite it being his mother's dream to raise him to be a world-class pianist, he's having a hard time coming to terms with playing after being abused by his mother and her passing. The protagonist then meets a beautiful girl named Kaori who ultimately changes his outlook on life as she challenges him to cope with the past and play music again. The Situations portrayed in this show are emotional roller coasters that illustrate how you can overcome anything if you set your mind to it. This show does an outstanding job to keep you entertained.



4. Your Name

Top Ten Saddest Anime

At number four, we have Your Name. Your Name is an endearing tale of fate and love, beautifully animated and brimming with emotion plugging details that are sure to have you laughing, crying or a solid mix of the two. The main characters are genuine and easy to fall in love with right off the bat, with their dialogue providing an atmosphere to the story and insight into the way they live their lives. The two characters centred in this complicated relationship are high schoolers Mitsuha and Taki both of whom live vastly different lives. Mitsuha serves as a dancing shrine maiden in her rural mountain town while Taki waits on tables at a bustling upscale restaurant in Tokyo. They meet each other through an odd supernatural phenomenon in which periodically when they wake up they've swapped bodies. It's not something they have control over so they do their best not to royally mess up one another's livelihoods. They even manage to make some improvements along the way. The timing couldn't have been better for their fates to cross as major events challenged them to push the limits of what they can do as individuals. This movie is definitely one that everyone should see if you enjoy watching love stories showcased creatively.



3. A Silent Voice

Top Ten Saddest Anime

At number three, we have"A Silent Voice" also known as the shape of voice. This teen drama starts off on a heavier note with lead Shoya Ishida in the edge of a bridge about to jump to his death. As he comes to his senses, we flashback and begins to relieve Shoya's elementary school days as a bully. All of which started when the class was introduced to new students Shouko a deaf girl who recently transferred but was just trying her best to live a normal life and fit in. As for the plot, we don't want to give too much away because the real story unfolds from the emotions and the actions of each individual character and the battles they fight within their selves and with their inner demons. The recurring themes of coming to terms with uncontrollable transformations formed over the years of each character's experiences and how it challenges each of their own unrelenting standards of themselves is the real story here. The film isn't afraid to make you feel emotions.



2. Grave of the Fireflies

Saddest Anime

At number two, we have the Grave of the Fireflies. Grave of the Fireflies is a studio Ghibli classic that turns away magic and fantasy to reveal the gruesome realities of the war. The story takes place during world war II and showcases the struggle of sibling Seita and Setsuko who must defend for themselves in a world of firebombs and famine from burns to beatings to psychological distress, the Grave of the Fireflies show a darker side to humanity as well as its light. Catch it during Ghibli fest if your local theatres host it and are sure to know what you're getting into with this movie. 



1. Clannad and Clannad: After Story

Saddest Anime

Finally, at number one, Clannad and Clannad: After Story. Clannad starts off with a rather depressing tone with phrases such as "I hate this town" and how it's filled with too many memories that the main protagonist would rather forget. He wonders if his boring lifestyle will ever change and then he meets a shy girl talking to herself on the way home named Nagisa Furukawa. The officer advice to go out and find her own happiness and that initial connection start there uphill journey to recruit people into the drama club they're trying to revive. From the get-go, you meet Okazaki's roommate Youhei Sunohara. Sunohara does a good job of bringing comic relief throughout all the emotional strings being pulled throughout the show, with the relationships Okazaki starts to form and with his drunken father who treats him like a stranger. Despite these family problems, the anime is actually quite wholesome because of a sense of satisfaction when continuing through the plot through his school relationships and his new friend Nagisa. If you enjoy a nice slice of life anime with a strong sense of emotional self-reflection, then I would highly recommend Clannad.

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