In general, an anime hero’s death is supposed to be heroic or poignant. Oftentimes, one will give their lives in order to complete a mission, save their loved ones, or go down for the sake of the greater good. However, there are a shocking number of instances where a hero died selfishly.
Whether to placate their greed or slake their own ego, these characters’ deaths were so appallingly self-centered that they were ultimately uninspiring or even unnecessary. They also make audiences question if they can even be considered good people at all.
10/10 Escanor Died To Prove He Was Still Worth Something
Seven Deadly Sins
Escanor is commonly considered the most powerful hero in Seven Deadly Sins. However, when his strength was stripped from him near the final battle against the Demon King, he felt insecure about his lot in life. In his base state, he struggled to defeat a single common demon.
Despite Meliodas and the other Sins already getting the upper hand against the Demon King, Escanor seized Sunshine back from Mael for one final stand. He didn’t care that his support wasn’t needed – Escanor simply died to prove that he still had value.
9/10 Caesar Died Due To His Overconfidence
JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure
Despite being one of the most tragic moments in JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure, there was nothing noble about Caesar’s death. He got impatient to fight the Pillar Men and was overconfident in his skills, which compelled him to rush an enemy stronghold without help.
Caesar performed surprisingly well considering how much Wamuu outmatched him. Still, he failed to accomplish a single thing before being killed in battle. Wamuu gave his antidote to Joseph out of pity and to honor Caesar’s fighting spirit, misplaced as it might have been.
8/10 Ymir Technically Died As A Traitor
Attack On Titan
At first, Attack On Titan‘s Ymir agreed to follow the Warriors back to Marley so that when Paradis fell, Historia would be spared. However, she quickly realized Paradis’ ability to fight back when they recovered Eren from Reiner and Bertholdt.
All the same, she did not reconsider her path and willingly let herself be sacrificed to her enemies. This significantly increased Marley’s strength, as the Jaw Titan had now been returned safely into their possession. Ultimately, Ymir’s death was a net negative for the heroes and accomplished nothing for their cause.
7/10 Spike Died For His Own Revenge
Although Spike’s death was Cowboy Bebop‘s most heartbreaking moment, it had no heroic qualities. The syndicate was just as evil under the elders’ leadership, with Vicious unlikely to make it even more needlessly sinister.
Spike’s actions were purely vindictive and disregarded the fact that he still had the Bebop crew to live for. Faye Valentine even called him out for being a hypocrite before he left, reminding him of how he told her that the past wasn’t supposed to matter. Predictably, Spike ignored her despite the valid point she raised.
6/10 Roger Turned His Death Into A Worldwide Catastrophe
Suffering from an undisclosed sickness, One Piece‘s Gol D. Roger resigned himself to execution. While on the gallows, he professed that he left his fortune on Laugh Tale and whoever found it would be the next king of the pirates.
This was not a particularly noble action, as Roger sought to glorify himself in the final moments of his life. Worse yet, his demise caused a firestorm across the seas where pirates from all walks of life attacked each other in desperate bids for supremacy.
5/10 Nighteye Died Since He Refused To Use His Quirk
My Hero Academia
My Hero Academia‘s Nighteye had one of the most powerful Quirks in the series. However, after accidentally viewing All Might’s death, he refused to use it in order to see beyond the next five seconds. If he actually did, Nighteye would have had the restraint to avoid engaging Overhaul in single combat.
Nighteye died due to his own fear, and his cowardice could have resulted in many more casualties if Overhaul had been a more cunning foe. Regardless, Nighteye’s undoing was a reminder of the dangers associated with hero work.
4/10 Greed First Died For His Own Freedom
Greed’s first death was much more selfish than his second. After being caught going his own way by King Bradley, he was forcibly brought into Father’s presence and dipped into a pool of lava.
Completely dismantled, Greed’s essence was transferred back into Father, who then placed it into Ling Yao. Although the duo was initially standoffish to one another, they quickly became the most formidable pair in Fullmetal Alchemist. Ling Yao taught Greed the meaning of friendship, which he found to be the most valuable possession of all.
3/10 Shigechi Died A Coward
JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure
As an inherently selfish child, Shigechi would have been perfectly fine not knowing about the contents of Yoshikage Kira’s lunch bag. However, when he discovered the truth for himself, Kira hunted him across Morioh’s school as if he were an animal.
Shigechi did not actually die for truth or justice – he was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. As a result, it’s difficult to say if he was properly “redeemed” for his previous offenses against Josuke and Okuyasu regarding the lottery ticket they found together.
2/10 L Died Trying To Prove His Own Intelligence
L realized Light’s identity faster than anyone else in Death Note. However, instead of immediately seeking to prosecute, he deliberately allowed him to remain on the Japanese Task Force in order to collect information. To L, a normal victory wouldn’t suffice. He wanted irrefutable evidence of Light’s guilt beyond even what the courts might ask.
Unfortunately for the detective, he got too ambitious. Due to his obsession with proving himself smarter, Light had the time to arrange for his death using Misa Amane as a pawn. Regardless, L confirmed his suspicions with Light’s final cruel sneer.
1/10 Lelouch Made Everyone’s Life Miserable Before He Died
Lelouch had the most questionably unnecessary plan and death of any Code Geass character. He thought that Charles’ demise wasn’t enough and that in order for people to set aside their differences, they needed a universal enemy to “unite” against and defeat.
In this regard, Lelouch felt perfectly comfortable with brainwashing thousands of soldiers and sending them to their deaths. He was also equally willing to subjugate his old friends, going as far as to arrange their executions and even killing Diethard. Lelouch’s death was a grandiose blaze of glory that entailed a staggering amount of innocent suffering.
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