the 50 saddest anime of all time

The 50 Saddest Anime of All Time


Do you want to watch sad anime that will make you cry? Look no further, because this list ranks the saddest anime of all time. These series come from a variety of genres, but they all have one thing in common: they’re all depressing as hell. Yes, we’ve included popular shows like Naruto, but don’t pretend that show doesn’t have some of the saddest moments in anime history. Films are also included, so sad anime films like 5 Centimeters Per Second and Grave of the Fireflies can be found on the list below.

While action-packed shounen animes frequently steal the show, the anime industry is more diverse than any other media medium. This variety, which ranges from terrifying horror to painfully funny comedy, is what makes the genre so appealing. Having said that, some of the best anime of all time are melancholy dramas and tragedies that excel at making their audiences cry.Here are 50 saddest anime of all time.

1. Clannad: After Story

The sequel to the critically acclaimed slice-of-life series Clannad, Clannad: After Story, begins after Tomoya Okazaki and Nagisa Furukawa graduate from high school. They go through the emotional ups and downs of growing up together. Unsure of his future path, Tomoya discovers the value of a strong work ethic and the strength of Nagisa’s support. They push forward to confront their personal problems, deepen their old relationships, and form new bonds because of the couple’s dedication and unity of purpose.

Time passes in the Illusionary World as well. As winter approaches, the Illusionary Girl and the Garbage Doll are confronted with a difficult situation that reveals the World’s true purpose.

Clannad: After Story is an impactful drama based on Key’s visual novel and produced by Kyoto Animation. It emphasises the importance of family and the struggles of adulthood.

2. Angel Beats!

Death is one of many mysteries that have baffled humanity since the dawn of time. The burning question of what happens to the soul after death, however, is quickly answered by 17-year-old Yuzuru Otonashi. He discovers the unsettling truth of the afterlife after waking up with no previous memories in a dimension between life and death.

This strange dimension, shaped like a high school, is intended to house those who died untimely deaths. Feeling wronged by God during their earthly lives, the students at the school have formed the Afterlife Battlefront, a rebellious faction determined to oppose their god-like student council president, Kanade “Angel” Tachibana. Yuri Nakamura, the group’s leader, recruits Otonashi in their fight against Angel in order to gain control of their own lives. Otonashi, however, questions the morality of their actions and goes behind enemy lines to understand the opposing side of their common fate.

3. Your Lie in April

Kousei Arima is a child prodigy known as the “Human Metronome” for his precision and perfection in playing the piano. Kousei, who is guided by a strict mother and rigorous training, dominates every competition he enters, earning the admiration of his musical peers as well as audience praise. When his mother dies unexpectedly, the resulting trauma renders him unable to hear the sound of a piano, and he never returns to the stage.

As a junior high school student, Kousei leads a quiet and unassuming life with his friends Tsubaki Sawabe and Ryouta Watari. He continues to cling to music as he struggles to come to terms with his mother’s death. His monotonous existence is turned upside down when he meets the eccentric violinist Kaori Miyazono, who hires him as her accompanist. Through a little deception, these two young musicians become closer as Kaori attempts to colourize Kousei’s world.

4. Puella Magi Madoka Magica

Madoka Kaname and Sayaka Miki are ordinary middle school girls living ordinary lives until they meet Kyuubey, a cat-like magical familiar, and Homura Akemi, a new transfer student.

Kyuubey makes an offer: he will grant any of their wishes in exchange for them becoming magical girls with enough power to fulfil their dreams. Homura Akemi, a magical girl herself, advises them not to accept the offer, claiming that not everything is as it appears.

Mahou Shoujo MadokaMagica is a story of hope, despair, and friendship that explores the difficulties of being a magical girl and the price one must pay to make a dream come true.

5. Anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day

Jinta Yadomi lives quietly as a recluse, avoiding school and instead spending his days at home playing video games. Meiko “Menma” Honma, his childhood friend, appears one hot summer day and begs him to grant a forgotten wish. He ignores her, which irritates her, but he doesn’t care. After all, Menma died many years ago.

Jinta initially believes he is hallucinating due to the summer heat, but he is later convinced that what he sees is the ghost of Menma. Jinta and his childhood friends grew apart after her untimely death, but they are brought back together as they try to rest Menma’s spirit. Will they be able to find the strength to help not only Menma, but themselves, move on after reliving their pain and guilt?

6. Tokyo Magnitude 8.0

Mirai Onozawa, a middle school student, is dissatisfied with her family’s circumstances and, in a fit of rage, wishes to tear everything apart. Unfortunately, these destructive thoughts appear to come true a few moments later in the form of a magnitude 8.0 earthquake.

When summer vacation begins, Mirai reluctantly takes her younger brother Yuuki to Odaiba, where he had hoped to visit a robot exhibition. However, while they are in the exhibition centre, a major earthquake strikes the Kanto region; helpless, both children witness the devastating power of this natural disaster as it brings the city to its knees.

They come across Mari Kusakabe, a motorcyclist and single mother who decides to help the young siblings. The group sets out on a long and difficult journey through the devastated city, hoping to return home and reunite with their families.

7. 5 Centimeters Per Second

What happens when two people fall in love but aren’t meant to be together? Takaki Toono and Akari Shinohara were childhood friends who were torn apart by circumstances beyond their control. They promise to keep in touch, and while the passage of time widens the gap between them, the chain of memories remains ever-present.

Byousoku 5 Centimeter is a romantic drama about the monotonous and harsh reality of long-distance relationships. Takaki and Akari, trapped in the past and unable to create new memories, cling to the hope of seeing each other again. They go about their daily lives half-heartedly, harming both themselves and those around them.

8. Steins;Gate

Rintarou Okabe, an eccentric scientist, has a never-ending thirst for scientific discovery. Rintarou establishes the Future Gadget Laboratory with his ditzy but well-meaning friend Mayuri Shiina and his roommate Itaru Hashida in the hopes of creating technological innovations that perplex the human psyche. Despite their lofty claims, the trio’s only notable “gadget” is a microwave with the mysterious ability to turn bananas into green goo.

However, when Rintarou decides to attend neuroscientist Kurisu Makise’s time travel conference, he encounters a series of strange events that lead him to believe that the “Phone Microwave” gadget is more than meets the eye.

Rintarou, who appears to be able to send text messages into the past using the microwave, experiments with the “time machine,” attracting the ire and attention of the mysterious organisation SERN.

Rintarou and his friends are in constant danger as a result of the novel discovery. He is fighting a battle not only to save his loved ones, but also against his deteriorating sanity, as he works to mitigate the damage his invention has caused to the timeline.

9. Grave of the Fireflies

As World War II comes to an end in 1945, Japan faces widespread devastation as a result of American bombings that destroy city after city. The story of Seita and his sister Setsuko, two Japanese children whose lives are ravaged by the brutal war, is told in Hotaru no Haka, also known as Grave of the Fireflies. They have lost their mother, father, home, and the prospect of a bright future as a result of the war.

Seita and Setsuko, orphaned and homeless, have no choice but to wander the countryside, plagued by starvation and disease. They discover that desperate circumstances can turn even the kindest of people cruel, but their youthful hope shines brightly in the face of unrelenting hardship, preventing the siblings from succumbing to an inevitable fate.

10. Chrono Crusade

The 1920s were a time of great change and upheaval in America, with monstrous demons appearing across the country. The holy organisation known as the Order of Magdalene was founded to combat this threat. The New York branch of the organisation is home to the young and reckless Sister Rosette Christopher, as well as her partner Chrno. Despite causing extensive collateral damage on their missions, the renowned team is excellent at exterminating demonic threats.

However, Rosette and Chrno are both motivated by their dark pasts. Rosette hopes to find her missing brother Joshua, who was kidnapped by the sinner and demon Aion, with whom Chrno also has a bloody history. The two of them must fight off the growing demonic threat and find its source, all while continuing to investigate Joshua’s disappearance.

11. Now and Then, Here and There

Shuuzou “Shuu” Matsutani goes about his daily life in peace. He has friends, a crush, and a kendo obsession. Shuu, depressed after losing to his kendo opponent, climbs a smokestack to watch the sunset, where he meets Lala-Ru, a quiet, blue-haired girl wearing an odd pendant. Despite her uninterested, bland responses, Shuu attempts to befriend her.

His hopes are dashed, however, when a woman and two serpentine machines appear out of nowhere with one goal in mind: to capture Lala-Ru. Shuu, being the braggart that he is, attempts to rescue his new friend from her kidnappers and is transported to a desert world unlike anything he has ever seen before.

Despite the circumstances, Shuu is only concerned with saving Lala-Ru until he is severely beaten by some soldiers. As he soon discovers, Lala-Ru has the ability to manipulate water, and her pendant is the source from which she can summon the liquid, a scarce commodity in his new environment. However, the pendant has gone missing, and Shuu is the prime suspect.

Ima, Soko ni Iru Boku is the haunting story of a dystopian world and Shuu, who must endure torture, hunger, and war’s horrors in order to save the lonely girl he discovers sitting atop a smokestack.

12. To Your Eternity

An Orb, only known as It, is cast to Earth to be observed from a distance. It is capable of changing forms from the beings whose reflections it captures, first becoming a rock and then, as the temperature rises, moss.

It doesn’t move until a wolf at death’s door passes by on a snowy day. When It assumes the animal form, It gains consciousness and begins to wander with no clear destination in mind. It soon encounters the wolf’s master—a young boy who is waiting for his tribe to return from a paradise rich in fish and fruit in the south.

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Despite his loneliness, the boy hopes that those he holds dear in his memories have not forgotten him and that he will be reunited with them one day.

The boy desires to explore new surroundings and decides to abandon his home with It in order to find the paradise using the traces left behind by his tribe. What will become of the boy, however, with a severely injured body and no sight of his elder comrades?

Fumetsu no Anata e depicts the story of an immortal being experiencing humanity and meeting various types of people in various locations throughout time.

13. One Week Friends

Yuuki Hase, sixteen, musters the courage to approach his crush and ask her if she wants to be friends. Kaori Fujimiya, the object of his affection, is a quiet and reserved girl who isolates herself from everyone and treats him with the same harsh rejection she gives everyone else.

Yuuki discovers her eating lunch on the roof where she secludes herself during break. He decides to meet with Kaori every day in the hopes of better understanding her. She begins to open up to him as they spend more time together.

However, as the week progresses, she begins to push him away once more. The reason for Kaori’s cold front is then revealed to him: at the end of the week, her memories of those close to her, excluding her family, are erased, as they are reset every Monday. As a result of an accident in middle school, Kaori, who was once popular and kind, is now unable to make friends for fear of hurting those she cares about.

Yuuki, determined to become more than one-week friends, asks her the same question every Monday: “Would you like to be friends?” Because he knows that deep down, Kaori desires it more than anything else.

14. Searching for the Full Moon

Eichi Sakurai, Mitsuki Kouyama’s friend, moved to America two years ago before she could confess her feelings to him. Though she is unable to contact him, they made a promise to pursue their respective goals: Mitsuki wants to be a professional singer, and Eichi wants to be an astronomer. She dreams of one day having her music reach him across the world with the brilliance of the full moon.

The only catch is that Mitsuki has throat cancer, which makes her voice quiet and singing difficult. Her grandmother, who despises music, insists on Mitsuki having surgery to remove the cancer, but she refuses because she fears losing her voice.

Meroko Yui and Takuto Kira, two shinigami, appear one day and inform her that she has only one year to live. Mitsuki is sparked into action by this unexpected revelation, and she decides that with Meroko and Takuto’s assistance, she will become a professional singer in the time she has left.

Full Moon wo Sagashite follows Mitsuki and her shinigami friends as they learn what it means to sing—and, eventually, what it means to live.

15. Haibane Renmei

A young Haibane—a being with a halo and small grey wings—awakens from a cocoon in the village of Old Home to a world she doesn’t understand because she has no memories of her past. Rakka is named after her dream of falling while inside the cocoon, and she quickly adapts to life in the strange town. There are strict rules for the Haibane, such as not leaving the village or going near the walls that surround it. These, combined with mysterious disappearances of their kind on their “Day of Flight,” start to worry Rakka and the others, who know almost nothing about their own kind.

Haibane Renmei tells not only Rakka’s story, but also the stories of those around her, as they live their lives with no memories of the past, trying to break free from their previous pain and eventually find salvation.

16. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood

After a horrifying alchemy experiment fails in the Elric household, brothers Edward and Alphonse are thrust into a terrifying new reality. Ignoring the alchemical principle that prohibits human transmutation, the boys attempted to resurrect their recently deceased mother. Instead, Alphonse’s body disintegrated, while Edward lost a leg and then sacrificed an arm to keep Alphonse’s soul in the physical realm by binding it to a hulking suit of armour.

Pinako Rockbell and her granddaughter Winry come to the brothers’ aid. Winry, a biomechanical engineering prodigy, makes prosthetic limbs for Edward out of “automail,” a tough, versatile metal used in robots and combat armour. After years of training, the Elric brothers set out on a journey to find the Philosopher’s Stone, a powerful gem that allows an alchemist to defy the traditional laws of Equivalent Exchange.

As Edward becomes an infamous alchemist and earns the moniker “Fullmetal,” the boys’ adventure draws them into a growing conspiracy that threatens the fate of the world.

17. Wolf Children

Hana, a dedicated college student, falls in love with a mysterious man who attends one of her classes despite not being a student. He, too, is not truly human, it turns out. He transforms on a full moon night, revealing that he is the last werewolf alive. Despite this, Hana’s love endures, and the two eventually decide to start a family.

Hana has two healthy children: Ame, born during rain, and Yuki, born during snowfall, both of whom have the ability to transform into wolves, a trait inherited from their father.

But, all too soon, the unexpected death of her lover devastates Hana’s life, leaving her to raise a strange family entirely on her own. The stress of raising her wild-natured children in a densely populated city, all while keeping their identities hidden, leads to a decision to relocate to the countryside, where she hopes Ame and Yuki can live a life free of society’s judgments. Wolf Children is a touching story about the difficulties of being a single mother in today’s harsh world.

18. Plastic Memories

Tsukasa Mizugaki, eighteen, has failed his college entrance exams, but after pulling some strings, he lands a job at the Sion Artificial Intelligence Corporation. SAI Corp is responsible for the development of “Giftias,” highly advanced androids that are nearly indistinguishable from normal humans. Giftias, on the other hand, have a maximum lifespan of 81,920 hours, or approximately nine years and four months. Tsukasa’s station, Terminal Service One, is in charge of collecting Giftias that have reached their expiration date before they lose their memories and become hostile.

Tsukasa is quickly partnered with a lovely Giftia named Isla after joining Terminal Service One. Despite her petite stature and calm demeanour, she is a Terminal Service veteran and considered the best in Giftia retrievals. But time is ticking, and Tsukasa must confront his feelings for Isla before it’s too late. Nothing lasts forever, no matter how much someone desires it.

19. Nana

Nana Komatsu, a helpless, naive 20-year-old, falls in love easily and becomes dependent and clingy to those around her. Despite her lofty ambitions of escaping her provincial roots and discovering her true calling, she ends up travelling to Tokyo for the simple reason of pursuing her current boyfriend, Shouji Endo.

Nana Osaki, on the other hand, is a proud, enigmatic punk rock vocalist from a similar rural upbringing who dreams of becoming a professional singer. She boards the same train to Tokyo as Nana Komatsu, putting her career with a fairly popular band (and her passionate romance with one of its former members) firmly behind her.

The young women with the same given name are brought together by a fateful encounter on their journey to the metropolis, sparking a chain of events that eventually leads to them sharing an apartment. As their friendship grows stronger, the two try to support each other through thick and thin, their deeply intertwined lives filled with romance, music, challenges, and heartbreaks that will eventually put their seemingly unbreakable bond to the test.

The young women with the same given name are brought together by a fateful encounter on their journey to the metropolis, sparking a chain of events that eventually leads to them sharing an apartment. As their friendship grows stronger, the two try to support each other through thick and thin, their deeply intertwined lives filled with romance, music, challenges, and heartbreaks that will eventually put their seemingly unbreakable bond to the test.

20. The Future Diary

Yukiteru Amano is a shy middle schooler who keeps a digital diary of his daily activities by writing down everything he does on his phone. Despite the fact that he has no classmates, Yukiteru is frequently seen conversing with his ostensibly imaginary friends Deus Ex Machina, the god of time and space, and Deus’ servant, Mur Mur.

Yukiteru awakens one day to find that certain events from his day have been preemptively displayed on his cellphone. While he initially dismisses it as a coincidence, he gradually realises that the incidents recorded in his phone actually occur in the near future.

Yukiteru discovers that his classmate Yuno Gasai has a similar diary after spending the day utilising this new asset.

As the two work together to defeat an unusual pursuer and return to their respective homes, Deus Ex Machina explains that they, along with ten other contestants, have been drawn into a survival game, the winner of which will become the deity’s successor. With no other choice, Yukiteru and Yuno must rely on their cellphones, now dubbed “Future Diaries,” to survive this merciless battle royale.

21. Banana Fish

Aslan Jade Callenreese, also known as Ash Lynx, was a runaway taken from the streets of New York City and raised by the mafia’s infamous godfather, Dino Golzine. Ash, now 17 and the leader of his own gang, begins looking into the mysterious “Banana Fish”—the same two words his older brother, Griffin, has muttered since his return from the Iraq War. However, his investigations are hampered when Dino sends his men after Ash at an underground bar where he hides.

Skip, Ash’s friend, introduces him to Shunichi Ibe and his assistant, Eiji Okumura, two Japanese photographers covering American street gangs. Shorter Wong, one of Ash’s allies, calls to warn him about Dino, interrupting their conversation. Dino’s men soon storm the bar and kidnap Skip and Eiji in the ensuing chaos. Now, Ash must find a way to save them and continue his investigation into Banana Fish, but will his history with the mafia stop him?

22. Your Name.

Mitsuha Miyamizu, a high school girl, wishes to live the life of a boy in Tokyo, a fantasy that contrasts sharply with her current life in the countryside. Meanwhile, Taki Tachibana, a high school student juggling a part-time job and dreams of a career in architecture, lives a busy life in the city.

Mitsuha awakens one day in a room that is not her own and finds herself living her dream life in Tokyo—but in Taki’s body! Taki, on the other hand, finds himself living Mitsuha’s life in the humble countryside. In search of an explanation for this strange phenomenon, they begin to look for one another.

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Kimi no Na wa. is centred on Mitsuha and Taki’s actions, which begin to have a dramatic impact on each other’s lives, weaving them into a fabric held together by fate and circumstance.

23. I Want To Eat Your Pancreas

The aloof protagonist: a bookworm who is deeply disconnected from the world in which he lives. He has no interest in others and is certain that no one has any interest in him. His story starts when he discovers a handwritten book titled “Living with Dying.” He quickly recognises it as the secret diary of his popular, bubbly classmate Sakura Yamauchi. She then tells him about her pancreatic disease and how she knows her time is running out.

Her terminal illness is only known to her family; even her closest friends are unaware. Despite this revelation, he has no sympathy for her plight, but caught in the currents of Sakura’s persistent buoyancy, he eventually agrees to accompany her for the rest of her days.

As the two polar opposites interact, their bond grows stronger, intertwining through their daily decisions. Her unpredictability and apparent nonchalance disrupt the protagonist’s impassive flow of life, gradually opening his heart as he discovers and embraces the true meaning of living.

24. Elfen Lied

Lucy is a “Diclonius” human, born with a short pair of horns and invisible telekinetic hands, which makes her a victim of the government’s inhumane scientific experimentation. However, when an opportunity to flee presents itself, Lucy, corrupted by confinement and torture, unleashes a torrent of bloodshed as she flees her captors.

During her breakout, she suffers a crippling head injury, which leaves her with a split personality: a harmless child with limited speech capacity. In this state, she comes across two college students, Kouta and his cousin Yuka, who unknowingly take in an injured fugitive, unaware of her murderous tendencies. This act of kindness will transform their lives, as they are soon drawn into the shadowy world of government secrecy and conspiracy.

25. True Tears

Shinichirou Nakagami was living the life that other boys his age could only dream of: living with prodigal student Hiromi Yuasa. Hiromi, on the other hand, has been depressed and cold at home since her mother passed away. While he is the object of his peers’ ignorant jealousy, rumours begin to circulate when Shinichirou meets Noe Isurugi—a girl known for cursing classmates, curses that always come true.

Noe curses Shinichirou as well, but curses create two pits, and her curse on Shinichirou returns to bite her in the form of a raccoon to her beloved chicken, Raigomaru. Despite this, she does not cry; Noe’s tears have been stolen. Noe would need the tears of another to cry again, and Shinichirou knows someone whose tears he wishes to take away.

26. Hell Girl

It is said that those seeking vengeance should dig two graves—especially those who use the Hell Correspondence website. This ominous web domain becomes accessible at midnight, and whoever enters the name of their grudge will be visited by Ai Enma, the Hell Girl. Ai explains that while she will send the target’s soul to hell, the requester will also die in hell.

That price is far too high for some; for others, where they will spend their afterlife has no bearing on their current, day-to-day hell. But one thing is certain: the Hell Girl will always be available to those seeking vengeance while stoically carrying souls into the darkness.

27. The Promised Neverland

The Grace Field House, surrounded by a forest and with a gated entrance, is inhabited by orphans who happily live together as one big family, cared for by their “Mama,” Isabella. Although they are required to take tests on a daily basis, the children are free to spend their time as they see fit, usually outside, as long as they do not venture too far from the orphanage—a rule they are expected to follow regardless. However, all good things must come to an end, as a child is adopted and sent to live with their new family every few months, never to be heard from again.

The three oldest siblings, on the other hand, have their doubts about what is going on at the orphanage, and they are about to discover the cruel fate that awaits the children at Grace Field, including the twisted nature of their beloved Mama.

28. Vampire Princess Miyu

Evil Shinma (shape-shifting monsters and vampires) roam the Earth on a mission to wreak havoc on humanity. The Chosen One is Miyu Royal Princess of the Dark—the being who must expel the Evil Shinma from the Earth. She possesses the ability to grant Humans the gift of eternal happiness, but she is trapped between two worlds, doomed to perpetual solitude and internal conflict.

Larva, once an evil Shimna and now her devoted guardian, is Miyu’s only companion. They travel together on a dark journey through the frailty of the human heart and the tragic loss of innocence. Miyu is cut off from humanity by her knowledge of what she is, and she lives an endless quest on the edge of darkness as both the hunter and the hunted.

29. Requiem from the Darkness

Yamaoka Momosuke, tired of writing riddles for children, intends to collect spooky and gruesome stories and publish them in an anthology called Hyakumonogatari (“One Hundred Tales”). While researching these ancient myths and legends, he comes across a mysterious trio known as the Ongyou. They are detectives who investigate legends in order to uncover their truths…and bring those responsible to justice. Every time Momosuke meets the Ongyou, he is forced to confront horrifying truths and wrestle with his morals, but he is seeing things he shouldn’t be seeing.

30. Ringing Bell

Chirin, a newborn lamb, and his mother live in a tranquil meadow. They are free to frolic and graze on the delicious clover leaves as long as they stay inside the fence that protects them and the rest of the flock. Their idyllic life is shattered, however, when a wolf named Wor attacks them in the middle of the night, killing Chirin’s mother.

Chirin, still struggling to come to terms with his mother’s death, swears to become a wolf himself in order to avenge her, completely unaware of the cost of this transformation.

31. She, The Ultimate Weapon

Chise is a typical high school student: small, frail, and not particularly bright. Her greatest joy is her burgeoning romance with Shuuji, a classmate and childhood friend. They both live in a small military town in Hokkaido, where high school students are preoccupied with who is dating whom and complaining about the steep climb up “Hell Hill” every morning before school.

Shuuji and his friends go to Sapporo one day to buy gifts for their girlfriends. That day, a massive air raid on Sapporo kills thousands, including one of Shuuji’s friends, and marks the start of a war. Shuuji spots Chise as she flees the carnage, though she now has steel wings and a massive gun in place of her right arm. She has been transformed against her will into the ultimate cyborg weapon, capable of levelling entire cities.

As the war approaches their hometown, Chise and Shuuji’s relationship is tested by her transformation, and they wonder whether she is still human.

32. Oseam

The animation is based on the same-named fairy tale by Jeong Chae-bong, a writer known for his innocent and heart-stirring tales, which has sold over 100,000 copies in Korea. It’s the story of two orphans, Gil-son, a five-year-old boy, and his blind sister Gam-i, who are raised by a charitable monk at a remote temple on Mt. Seorak. Gil-son, a mischievous youngster, serves as the tour guide for this hour-long journey in search of innocence. He befriends all living things and communicates with clouds, birds, and flowers because he has a pure heart. However, on a snowy day…

33. A Little Princess Sara

Sarah Crewe is a promising young girl who excels both academically and socially in her new life in London after being sent to an all-girls boarding school due to her father’s overseas job. Her world is turned upside down, however, when she is summoned to the headmistress’ office and informed of the news that no child wants to hear: her father has died.

Sarah, now an orphan, loses her student status and is forced to work as a maid at the boarding school to support herself. To make matters worse, her once-friendly peers suddenly turn against her after learning of her financial downfall. Sarah must learn to persevere and form new friendships in order to regain her dignity and identity after coming to terms with her unfortunate situation.

34. Sunday Without God

The world has been abandoned by God. As a result, neither life nor death can end, and the “dead” wander restlessly among the living. God created “gravekeepers,” mystical beings capable of putting the dead to rest through proper burial, as one last miracle before turning away forever. Ai, a cheerful but naive young girl, fills in for her late mother as the gravekeeper in her village.

One day, a man named Hampnie Hambart, who claims to be Ai’s father, arrives and kills everyone in her village. Ai decides to accompany the mysterious man on his journey after losing her village and having no plans for the future. As she travels the land, the young gravekeeper strives to fulfil her responsibilities, granting peace to the dead and assisting the living, while also learning more about the world that God has left in this tragic state.

35. Rumbling Hearts

Haruka Suzumiya, a shy high school student, confesses to Takayuki Narumi, the boy she admires, in the warmth of a golden sun. Takayuki accepts Haruka’s confession, and the two marry, with the help of mutual friends Mitsuki Hayase and Shinji Taira. Everything is fine for these friends—until tragedy strikes.

One of them is sentenced to an unenviable fate: a coma. They awaken three years later, but their unexpected reappearance in everyone’s lives threatens to test the limits of these friends’ bonds.

36. Voices of a Distant Star

Noboru Terao and Mikako Nagamine are close friends who will soon graduate from junior high school in the year 2046. However, following an alien attack on humanity, Mikako is chosen for a UN military space expedition to retaliate against the aliens. Separated, Noboru and Mikako try to communicate by sending emails to each other using their cell phones. However, as the expedition travels further away from Earth, the time it takes to transmit and receive messages increases significantly.

Hoshi no Koe is about a couple’s relationship as they try to stay connected despite growing distance between them.

37. Who’s Left Behind?

Kayoko is a young girl starting first grade in 1940. Her friends and family know she’s a bit of a crybaby. She enjoys playing with her friends and singing cute schoolyard chants, as well as having fun with her three older brothers on occasion. Her mother is expecting, so she is looking forward to being a big sister, only partially understanding the responsibilities that will entail. Meanwhile, the war effort is expanding, and it is only natural to be patriotic and support the country…

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Kayoko even contributes her favourite dolly, whose materials could be used to make explosives. As time passes, Kayoko realises how the war has impacted her life and the lives of those around her. Nothing, however, can prepare her for 1945 and the bleak times ahead. Based on the real-life experiences of original creator Kayoko Ebina during World War II during the Showa era.

38. She and Her Cat: Their Standing Points

Chobi became a young woman’s pet cat on a rainy spring day. Though he fell in love with the beautiful and kind person who took him in, he will never fully comprehend the complex world of humans. During their first year in the same apartment, Chobi and his new owner exist in their own worlds, standing alone yet close together.

39. Hal

Kurumi is a lovely young lady whose beloved boyfriend, Hal, died in a plane crash. She isolates herself in a small house, heartbroken and depressed. This soon changes when her grandfather requests the assistance of a humanoid robot named Q01.

Q01, dressed as Hal, is dispatched to Kurumi’s house in order to save her from her despair. Kurumi, despite her initial reluctance, gradually begins to open up to Hal and break free from her depression as Hal returns day after day and increases his efforts. But Hal is more than meets the eye, and these two will soon discover an unexpected truth about this human-android relationship.

40. Planetarian

It is thirty years after the Space Colonization Program’s failure. Humanity is almost extinct. A constant and lethal rain falls on the Earth. “Junkers” are men who steal goods and artefacts from civilization’s ruins. One such Junker sneaks into the most dangerous ruins of all—a “Sarcophagus City.” He discovers a pre-War planetarium in the heart of this deserted city.

41. Looking Up At The Half-Moon

Ezaki Yuuichi has been confined to a hospital after contracting hepatitis A, much to his chagrin, away from his friends and family. To relieve his boredom, he has taken to sneaking out of the hospital, usually resulting in a beating from his nurse. When he meets a girl his age who is also in the hospital, he is immediately taken by her beauty. However, Akiba Rika’s personality is not as captivating as her beauty. She is, in fact, selfish, moody, and bossy.

But as they spend more time together, they grow closer, sharing the ordinary joys and trials of a budding teenage romance, even when the future is clouded by impending tragedy—for Rika’s condition does not leave her with much time to live.

42. School-Live!

Yuki Takeya, a carefree high school junior, looks forward to the School Living Club every day. The club, which consists of the president Yuuri Wakasa, the athletic Kurumi Ebisuzawa, the mature Miki Naoki, the supervising teacher Megumi Sakura, and club dog Taroumaru, takes pride in making the most of school life. There is only one rule that all club members must follow: they must spend their entire lives on school grounds.

Gakkougurashi! follows the School Living Club’s adventures as they promote independence and self-determination during their lively time at Megurigaoka Private High School.

43. Barefoot Gen

The year is 1945, and it is summer. The war between Japan and the United States has lasted three years. Gen is a young boy living a difficult but rewarding life in the city of Hiroshima, which has been strangely spared by the bombing that has devastated almost every other Japanese city. Food is scarce, and Gen’s family is severely malnourished, putting his pregnant mother in danger. There isn’t much free time as Gen and his younger brother Shinji assist their father and mother at work and try to ensure their family’s survival during the difficult times. They have no idea what the Americans have in store for the city of Hiroshima, and their lives are about to change dramatically on August 6, 1945.

44. Re:ZERO -Starting Life in Another World-

When Subaru Natsuki walks out of the convenience store, the last thing he expects is to be ripped from his everyday life and thrust into a fantasy world. Things aren’t looking good for the befuddled teen, who is attacked by some thugs not long after his arrival. He is quickly beaten to a pulp, armed only with a bag of groceries and a now-ineffective cell phone. Fortunately, a mysterious beauty named Satella, who is on the hunt for the person who stole her insignia, comes across Subaru and saves him.

Subaru offers to assist in her search to thank the honest and kindhearted girl, and later that night, he discovers the location of what she seeks. But, unbeknownst to them, a much darker force stalks the pair from the shadows, and Subaru and Satella are brutally murdered just minutes after discovering the insignia.

However, when Subaru awakens to a familiar scene—confronted by the same gang of thugs, meeting Satella all over again—the mystery deepens as history inexplicably repeats itself.

45. Orange

Naho Takamiya’s sophomore year of high school has begun on an uneasy note. She receives a strange letter addressed to her after waking up late. The letter, however, is from herself—ten years in the future! Naho is initially sceptical of the note, but after witnessing several events described in the letter, she realises it is from her 26-year-old self.

The note states that Naho’s future life will be filled with regrets, and she hopes that her younger self will be able to correct past mistakes. The letter also warns her to keep a close eye on Kakeru Naruse, the new transfer student. Because Kakeru will not be present in the future, Naho must exercise extreme caution when making decisions involving him. With the letter as her guide, Naho now has the ability to protect Kakeru before she regrets it again.

46. Girls’ Last Tour

Only the rumble of a motorcycle breaks the cold winter silence among the desolate remains of a once-thriving city. Its riders, Chito and Yuuri, are the city’s last survivors. To pass the time while scavenging old military sites for food and parts, the two girls explore the wastelands and speculate about the old world. Chito and Yuuri both struggle with the looming loneliness, but when they have each other, sharing the burden of being two of the last humans becomes a little easier. Their dark days become a little brighter with shooting practise, new books, and snowball fights on the frozen battlefield, thanks to Yuuri’s clumsy excitement and Chito’s calm composure.

Shoujo Shuumatsu Ryokou tells the uplifting story of two girls and their quest for hope in a bleak and dying world, set against a backdrop of barren landscapes and deserted buildings.

47. Blood-C

Saya Kisaragi lives a double life as a peaceful schoolgirl by day and a fearsome monster slayer by night. She vanquishes every monster that dares to threaten her peaceful little village, armed with a ceremonial sword given to her by her father for sacred tasks. But, all too soon, Saya’s reality and everything she believes to be true are put to the test when she overhears the monsters discussing a broken covenant—something she is unaware of. Then, unexpectedly, a strange dog appears and asks her who she promised to protect the village, curious what would happen if she broke that promise.

We journey with Saya through her struggle to find a way to the truth in a village where nothing is as it seems, tormented by unexplainable visions and her world unravelling around her.

48. Penguindrum

Destiny is an ever-spinning wheel for the Takakura family, pointing passionately in their direction with equal tides of joy and sorrow before moving on to the next wishmaker. With their parents gone, twin brothers Kanba and Shouma live alone with their beloved little sister Himari, whose health is deteriorating.

Himari’s brothers take her to the aquarium to celebrate her temporary release from the hospital, where her sudden collapse brings the family’s rumoured fate to light. However, the hand of fate continues to tick faithfully forward when Himari is inexplicably revived by a penguin hat from the aquarium’s souvenir shop.

Her miraculous recovery, however, comes at a cost: there is a new entity within her body, whose condition for avoiding her fate sends the boys on a wild goose chase for the enigmatic “Penguin Drum.” In their quest, the boys must follow fate’s threads from their own shocking past and into the lives of other wishmakers vying for the Penguin Drum, all hoping to land on their chosen destiny.

49. Fate/Zero

The omnipotent Holy Grail, with the promise of granting any wish, sparked three wars in the past, each too cruel and fierce to leave a victor. Despite this, the wealthy Einzbern family is confident that the Fourth Holy Grail War will be different, because they now possess a vessel of the Holy Grail. The Einzberns hire the despised “Magus Killer” Kiritsugu Emiya solely for this reason, with marriage to their only daughter Irisviel as a binding contract.

Kiritsugu is now at the centre of a brutal survival game, pitted against six other players, each armed with an ancient familiar and driven by distinct desires and ideals. The notorious mercenary, accompanied by his own familiar, Saber, soon finds his greatest opponent in Kirei Kotomine, a priest who seeks salvation from the emptiness within himself in pursuit of Kiritsugu.

Fate/Zero, based on Gen Urobuchi’s light novel, depicts the events of the Fourth Holy Grail War—ten years before Fate/stay night. Witness a battle royale in which no one can be certain of survival.

50. Guilty Crown

sad anime

The Apocalypse Virus spread across Japan on December 24, 2029, the day colloquially known as the “Lost Christmas,” killing its citizens and plunging the country into complete chaos. In an effort to restore order, the UN dispatches the GHQ to assist with the crisis by containing the outbreak while removing all political autonomy. A decade later, the country is still under their control, unable to escape their draconian rule.

Frustrated with the state of the country, the Funeral Parlor resistance group seeks to free Japan from the GHQ. The group, led by the charismatic Gai Tsutsugami, plots to steal a vial containing the “Void Genome” in order to further their goals.

The vial ends up in the hands of internet vocalist Inori Yuzuriha, who becomes the target of the GHQ’s Anti-Bodies forces. She seeks refuge in a warehouse after having nowhere else to go, where she meets Shuu Ouma, a socially awkward high school student who is a huge fan of her music.

Shuu is drawn into the conflict the moment he saves Inori, and the Void Genome shatters in his hand, bestowing the “Power of the Kings” upon him. Shuu must now fight to liberate Japan from its cruel oppressors while learning how to control his magnificent new ability.

Next:

13 Best Sad Ending Anime That’ll Make You Sob


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