Image via Hulu
Anime, like other forms of storytelling, can have conclusions that either please or upset the viewers. Fans are always quick to call out a series that has a conclusion that feels incomplete, but there are many anime out there with endings that make the entire watch worthwhile.
These satisfying endings don’t always have to be happy ones—some are extremely sad, while others can be bittersweet—but they serve a finale that many viewers are able to make peace with. Here are 10 endings that hit us in the feels.
The thrilling anime focuses on the students of Class 3E and their endeavors to take down their super-powered teacher that is set to destroy the world. Kuro-Sensei had built his students from the worst class to become some of the smartest as well as training them to be very capable assassins. At the conclusion, protagonist Nagisa, with the help of the whole classroom, finally takes down Kuro-Sensei on his final day of middle school in a very heartwarming and fulfilling moment. We fast forward a few years and everyone has graduated and Nagisa is now a teacher. Fans were happy to see the once favored student now become a master in his own right.
The series that took us all on a trip with the best iteration of time-travel ended on a very relaxed note, much to the pleasure of the fans. The ending of Steins;Gate picks up from around the halfway point, as Okabe figures out he can send text messages to the past, allowing them to affect the present. This had dangerous consequences as he lost everyone he cared about in the process. However, due to his determination, he was able to save Kirisu, and everything turned out how fans wanted without it seeming forced on us by the writer.
Your Lie In April
One of a few emotionally stirring anime, Your Lie In April starts off as a cutesy romantic comedy-drama that seems rather generic. Viewers eventually get to overcome Kousei Arima’s mental breakdown as he gradually makes peace with the loss of his mother and begins to hear his piano once more. Unfortunately, we find out about Kaori’s illness. Although we want them to be together and for their romance to continue to blossom, happy endings don’t always hit the hardest. Yes, Your Lie In April will leave you in tears, but there’s a satisfaction that comes with it.
One of the most popular anime from the 90s, Cowboy Bebop stands the test of time with its great cast, funny jokes, exciting story, wonderful animation, and killer soundtrack. Spike is a bounty hunter in the year 2071, and he is accompanied by Jet Black, Faye Valentine, Edward and Ein. In the thrilling conclusion, Spike finally battles Vicious one last time and finishes him off. He later faces the Red Dragon Syndicate, but he is ultimately too wounded to continue and dies as well. It’s a fitting end to an anime that constantly ignores clichés and tropes and sticks to quality writing and execution.
A staple in anime romantic comedies and the slice-of-life genre, Toradora! allows viewers into what it’s like being in love with your best friend. At first, Ryuji and Taiga are just very close friends who live close to each other. They go to school together and spend their free time helping each other match-make with their respective best friends. In the final episode, Taiga gets confronted by her rival, Ami, and is forced to confess her feelings for Ryuji while Ryuji is advised by Yusaku to confess his feelings for Taiga, leaving fans with a moment that will make anyone with a heart shed a tear of joy.
Hunter x Hunter
Though set to return soon, it is hard to complain about the 2011 ending to Hunter x Hunter. The story revolves around Gon, a 12-year-old boy who enrolled in the hunter exam in order to find his father. Gon meets Killua, Leorio, and Kurapika and they go on adventures. After the events of the gripping chimera ant arc, and Gon being saved by Killua, the young boy finally meets his father and they share a heartfelt moment—one that lives in the memory of all shonen fans.
Naruto is the story of the late Fourth Hokage’s son who lives with the all-powerful, nine-tailed fox spirit inside him as he journeys to become the Hokage. After the fourth great ninja war in which he dispelled the threats of Obito, Madara, and Kaguya, he saves his future wife from another Otusuki, and the couple become parents to Boruto and Himawari. Naruto finally achieved his large dream and became the Hokage of the Hidden Leaf Village, a mission that took over 10 years of television and spawned a new generation of shonen battle lovers.
Light Yagami is a high school senior who stumbles on a book called “Death Note” that gives him the power to kill anyone by simply writing their name inside. The show offers up a moral dilemma with a classic question of, “does the end justify the means?” While some rooted for L to bring an end to Light’s godlike injustice, the death of the brilliant investigator left many shocked. Towards the end of the anime, L’s protégé, Near, cracks the case, and Light eventually gets cornered by the police department and is to be taken to prison. At the end, Light is killed by the Shinigami Ryuk, who leaves the Earth with the “Death Note” and leaves viewers with a bittersweet satisfaction of an end.
Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood
Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood follows the lives of brothers Edward and Alphonse and their quest to restore their bodies after an experiment gone wrong. At the ending of the anime and the sacrifice of their father, Edward gives up his alchemy abilities for his brother in a scene that had fans filled with joy. Winry and Edward get married and have kids, and it concludes what was a thrilling and fast-paced fan-favorite.
At the inception of Cyberpunk Edgerunners, we are greeted with David, a young, hot-headed kid who is getting bullied for being poor in school. David abandoned his education to become a Cyberpunk, and he became the greatest there was, bar Adam Smasher. The series concludes with our main character sacrificing himself for the love of his life and leaving what she needs to achieve her dream of seeing the moon. It’s emotional, romantic, and the viewers are able to make peace of David’s passing.