The medium of anime is full to the brim with memorable characters that fans will remember long after they’re finished with a particular show. These characters might fall into certain tropes and cliches, but memorable moments and visually distinct character designs go a long way in helping these personalities be pretty iconic and a highlight in their respective shows.
Of course, it would be impossible to talk about certain anime without mentioning their amazing villains. It’s these antagonistic figures that pose such a major hurdle in their respective shows, and overcoming the challenges they set ends up being a riveting part of the entire experience. In fact, certain anime villains are so good at what they do that they manage to outsmart everyone and don’t really have to own up to the gravity of their crimes.
10/10 Orochimaru (Naruto)
Orochimaru is one of the most iconic villains in Naruto. This twisted member of the Sannin tried his hardest to take over the Leaf Village, killing the Third Hokage in the process.
However, over time, Orochimaru grew disinterested in taking over Konoha, and his obsession with Sasuke also waned. He was slowly accepted by the Leaf Village, which is odd given the grievous nature of his crimes.
9/10 Griffith (Berserk)
Griffith is one of the most fascinating villains in anime history. He’s a heinous individual who sacrificed everything close to him for the sole purpose of attaining a kingdom of his own.
Griffith is a mysterious individual who might be intriguing in his own right, but there’s no denying that his crimes are truly horrifying. It’s no wonder why fans want to see Guts give him exactly what he deserves… although that moment is yet to come in both the manga and anime.
8/10 Light Yagami (Death Note)
Light Yagami is an incredible villain whose incessant need to become a god of the new world makes him a really compelling character. His clashes with L are the stuff of legends and what made Death Note so popular in the first place.
Eventually, Light managed to get the better of L and got him killed after 25 amazing episodes. The appearance of Near wasn’t nearly as riveting, and Light being caught by L’s protege didn’t really hit as well as it should’ve.
7/10 Vegeta (Dragon Ball Z)
Vegeta is one of the best characters in Dragon Ball. He also has a massive body count, with his ruthlessness being especially prevalent in the first half of Dragon Ball Z.
Over time, he slowly redeems himself and becomes one of the Z Warriors who strive to protect the universe from its many threats. However, given how serious his previous offenses were, it’s easy to see why some people might feel that he got off with a slap on the wrist.
6/10 Adam Smasher (Cyberpunk: Edgerunners)
Adam Smasher is one of the biggest legends in Night City. He’s a powerful chromed-up mercenary who ends up being the final villain that David fights in an attempt to help Lucy and the others escape.
Adam Smasher makes quick work of David, with Lucy never really seeking out her revenge for logical reasons. However, players who see the game through to its end manage to fight and take out Adam Smasher once and for all.
5/10 Akaza (Demon Slayer)
Akaza is one of the members of the Upper Rank Kizuki, appearing out of nowhere during the Mugen Train arc and showing why he’s such a force to be reckoned with. Even with the Flame Hashira Kyojuro Rengoku giving it his all in this battle, he simply couldn’t best Akaza’s imposing might.
Not only did Akaza manage to kill Rengoku, but he also ran away before facing the consequences. The anime is yet to show Akaza’s true fate, and fans can only hope that proper justice is dished out against this imposing foe.
4/10 Ryomen Sukuna (Jujutsu Kaisen)
After eating one of Sukuna’s fingers, Yuji Itadori gained the ability to manifest and use cursed energy in battle. This turned him into potentially one of the most powerful Jujutsu Sorcerers out there.
However, the malevolent spirit inside him is capable of immense evil and mass destruction of the highest order. The fact that he’s made a pact with Itadori that even the latter doesn’t know about shows just how conniving Sukuna really is, and only time will tell if he has to pay for his transgressions.
3/10 Annie Leonhart (Attack On Titan)
Annie has suddenly turned into a sympathetic figure in the latest season, with Eren taking over the role of the series’ prime villain. This is odd, given how many comrades and innocents Annie killed during her time as the Female Titan.
With her crystal encasing being shattered, Annie has become a member of the group that strives to fight against Eren and prevent his genocidal plans. Whatever she’s done in the past has seemingly been forgotten.
2/10 Broly (Dragon Ball Super)
For what it’s worth, the current iteration of Broly is mainly a gentle giant who didn’t know what to do with his powers. Of course, fans still remember the initial version of this Saiyan that wasted no time in destroying anything and everything around him.
Broly is one of the most powerful Saiyans of all time, and it’s great that he’s getting the tutelage he deserves under Goku and Vegeta. Hopefully, he won’t lose control of his powers and kill innocents anytime soon.
1/10 Sasuke Uchiha (Naruto)
Sasuke Uchiha is one of the most powerful characters in Naruto and one of the most beloved ones as well. That being said, there’s no denying that his action as a rogue ninja hasn’t been punished properly at all.
The fact that he assaulted the Kages, killed one of them, and rendered another’s arm useless are serious transgressions. To see Sasuke roaming around the world without really having to pay for these crimes is definitely quite odd.
MORE: My Hero Academia: The Villains Who Had The Best Introductions, Ranked