Saddest Anime Series

July 4, 2015 - Anime series have been divided into several categories - comedic, romantic, mystery, science-fiction ... but what has caught my attention are tragedies, or animes not necessarily tragedies but emotional ones that have caused people's eyes to water.

The saddest anime series should be dependent on the content of the anime, the character backgrounds and just anything that has made them such emotional masterpieces sending people to tears.
Don't agree with the list? Vote for an existing item you think should be ranked higher or if you are a logged in, add a new item for others to vote on or create your own version of this list.

The Top Ten

1
Clannad After Story
SPOILERS! The main character's (Tomoya's) wife (Nagisa) dies giving birth to their daughter Ushio, who he then gives up to Nagisa's parents and falls into a deep depression for five years. Then, he makes up with Ushio after he decides that he wants to try his hardest to take care of her in probably the most powerful scene in anime history, and then Ushio dies months later. Is there really any question as to why this is the saddest anime ever made?
CAN I GET AN AMEN! AMEN/Amen

Ok ok ok *Breathes In* this anime is DEPRESSING

While the first series is more let say 'Aimed at a younger audience' the second series played with my heart strings... PROFESSIONALLY 0_0 lols

Eh lets start with something no one really talks about shall we: The fact that Okazaki Tomoya was showing the cold shoulder to his dad to finally realize as an adult that he himself is going though a similar phase; not to mention when seeing his dad off, he bursted into tears to what all these family drama and loneliness has caused his dad to become. he even burst into tears when Uschio (his daughter) accepted him knowing that she could have put Tomoya through the same Predicament. :'( Although this is not what highlights the anime, I thought it may be great to mention. :'(

I definitely caught the feels for many reasons which I can go on and on and on about but one thing that really got me; is how everyone just disappears in life and how life changes. you don't realize it but everyone changes from primary school (elementary) to high school and university/college onwards, who knows 10 years from now I might not even watch anime and I might look back on this comment like HELL NO laugh out loud. heck some of us may be living on the streets thinking about all those special times we spent in high school, watching anime and so on...

It really got me depressed because the 'slice of life' genre is no joke, it really emphasizes on real life situations and maybe, JUST MAYBE, reminds some of us of many misfortunes we have felt in the past. but still, I can really relate to tomoya because I'm pretty lonely myself I can see people disappearing one by one (special people as well, those I loved and so on... )

ONE THINGS FOR SURE, I have become a person, a person of more honesty, and respect and I have also become way more mature after watching such a beautifully scripted anime. CAN I GET A AMEN!
Absolutely beautiful. This anime does an amazing job at making you connect with the characters, and then to see what they go through, you can't help but to experience the pain that they are feeling. One of my favorites.
[Newest]! This anime really makes me think about life. I'm just sitting here trying not to cry
More comments about Clannad After Story

2Angel Beats!
This anime really told us "that life is worth living"... It's just kind of sad when all of them dissapear one by one because they have fullfilled the regretness they have in their real life.. And I really like the last song.. Ichiban no takaramono ~
Angel Beats is the saddest anime I've watched so far. It's beautiful, sad, hilarious, heartbreaking and the music and emotions are amazing. You just get so attached to the characters and the last episode just left me there absolutely crushed. The way he screamed Kanade in the end literally broke my heart. And I just had to watch it to the very last second to see if he disappears too. It left me in such a sad awe that I didn't even think of watching another series for a couple of days. I felt that it would ruin the moment. It leaves you sad and crush but at the same time your happy and feel kinda free and fulfilled. If you haven't seen this then you should type it in right now. It's just breath taking. Must see!
Angel Beats is the best/saddest show ever the saddest episodes were 10 and 13 but 10 is the saddest it made me tear up for days
[Newest]This anime has the best story I've seen in a while. The only problem being that after you watch it you'll never be the same, your life will seem boring and you will not be able to find anything to fill the gap
More comments about Angel Beats!

3Fullmetal Alchemist
This show is amazingly sad. "SPOILERS" Two brothers who just wanted things to be the way it was before. When they were toddlers their father left them. When they were 8 and 7 their mother dies. They take you a teacher who has lost her only child and then lost the ability to give life. After a year of training they go on to try and resurrect their mother at the ages of 11 and 10. It fails and as a result the older brother lost his leg, and the younger lost his whole body. the older brother then sacrificed his arm to tie his brothers soul to a suit of armor. The older brother gets prosthetics to set out with his brother to find a way to get their bodies back. This happens in the first 6 episodes. There's 51 eps and a movie. Imagine what happened after that."Spoiler ends"
Their mom dies, their dad leaves, their teacher's baby dies, their best friend's parents died from the same person they saved from dying... Enough said...
I've had so many emotions with this anime and when it came to the deaths it was just too much. Maes Hughes for one had me bawling because I could relate fully. Nina and Alexander had me saying please Scar don't just don't. Edward's emotions had me feeling like I was feeling them myself.
[Newest]The ending is too depressing...

4Anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day
This is one of my favorite anime's, such a masterfully developed story that shows lot's of meaning and tugs quite a bit at the heart strings. The protagonist's are all quite admirable and all have a strong, but sad background story of how they could've changed Menma's life that day showing how many regrets you can have. Emotions of characters are really shown strongly and the Opening and Ending are amazing songs! The final scene will have you crying like a little girl so be forewarned! :Make sure to bring some buckets and have tissues at the ready. Overall, this is an anime that is quite unique and amazing, can't wait for the movie this august!
The story in Anohana is too pure and emotional. A cheerful and lively girl dies before the story starts and departs in the end of the episode when finally everyone finally made-up to each other. Menma brought everyone together and before she leaves them, she hands them letters that she loved each and every one of them including she wanted to marry Jintan. Menma should've just stayed with them instead of leaving them... Then again that would make the anime happiest ending rather than sadedst ending...
I think that the story of this anime is the saddest anime ever. Can be that inicial is not too sad, but the final, is very very sad! If you don't still watch, WATCH! I recommend for everybody! And too if you don't like much, don't mind, is only 11 episodes!
[Newest]I love this movie from the first time I watch it
More comments about Anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day

5Naruto
The birth of a innocent child naruto... The death of his teacher jiyara... The death of itachi are the saddest moment in the anime
Sadness moments of Naruto's life...
The birth of naruto is just so sad and when grief starts to play I always end up crying :'(
[Newest]People die AND Neji dies
More comments about Naruto

6Elfen Lied
The anime was sad but no where near as depressing as the manga. After I finished reading the manga I sat in a corner in total shock of what happened and I just started crying.
I watched it like 4 times and still cried on the last episode so much it's so beautiful Anime in its own way, I love it! And I recommend it to every mental disorders fan!
I've seen a lot of sad anime and have experienced lots of depressing moments, specifically in Naruto where every character has a sad past. The anime wasn't even a 1/4 a sad as the manga. People I finished reading it a while ago but every time I think about I drown in tears. SPOILERS: lucy's heart-wrenching death!
[Newest]Read the manga you would definitely feel the pain! :')

7Clannad
A lot of people seem to forget about the original Clannad because the after story was so sad. But the original Clannad had a lot of tearjerking moments in it and is easily one of the greatest anime for storyline and likable characters. Also is a must see if you plan on watching Clannad Afterstory
It's not that depressing and sad compared to the after story. If you barely managed to handle this then the harder it is to handle Clannad after story. This is just the start of the feels so those who plan on watching it, prepare for the feels!
Almost every episode something sad happens and you can tell by the distinct song (Roaring Tides (Pretty Sure)) whether you liked it or not you were sad maybe not to the point of tears but close enough to ruin your day.
[Newest]Lots of problems and sad stories for each people!

8Code Geass R2
SPOILERS
Code Geass will always be my favourite anime and one of the best anime of all time. You see the main character Lelouch go through so so much, he's not doing it for himself but for his sisters wish of a gentle world. You witness him succeed and drastically fail. This anime changes your life and makes you want to change the world. Lelouch's character is so well developed and complex, there are times when you wonder if you're supporting the right side anymore. At the end of the day he was still just a boy, a boy who lost his home, betrayed by his mother, father, best friend, the company which he built from the ground and most importantly his little sister. CC also has to be one the best written characters I've ever come across who's story is also tragic.

But the thing that hit me the most was that Lelouch did and sacrificed so much but got absolutely nothing back. Only a few were on his side at the end and only a few actually realised the demons master plan for world peace until it was too late.

They say that no one mourns the wicked, so no one mourns Lelouch. He was a demon but he was better than most people on Earth.
So sad... I nearly cried in the end when Nanaly finds out that her brother had tried to create a peaceful world just as she wished. The death of Lelouch was so sad
This show had us so attached to the characters,
And to show a brilliant student who made the world hate him and resent him just so that the world would cease to fight against each other and work towards world peace. The ending was just so sad
[Newest]I cried a lot while watching zero death
More comments about Code Geass R2

9Death Note
All three main characters and other supporting characters have really sad deaths. L is killed by Rem to protect Misa (Rem dies as a result of this. ) Light's dreams are shattered and then he's killed. Misa commits suicide (although not shown) because Light is dead..
Lots of people die in this one, it's a very dark and intense story, and it'll have you hooked almost instantly. I recommend anyone watch this.
This is the saddest anime I've ever seen! Never cried as hard as I did on this one :< L's death is so emotional, because of the flashbacks he has as a child, and his look when he died.. And the way he closed his eyes.. Just... Just...
[Newest]Everyone I loved died... I just can't it's so depressing. It started out great, I understood and liked Light's goal but then in the end he just went insane killing people. And the credits didn't help, it seems that Misa committed suicide too.

10Kanon
This has got to be the most underrated show of all time. Of over 60 anime shows I've watched, this is my number one pick. I personally think Clannad and Clannad After Story is sadder, but Kanon overall has a much MUCH better story.
Most people who pick Clannad over Kanon for the saddest, probably haven't seen Kanon. It's far more depressing, even more so than Angel Beats.

calmeehan

People really need to watch this series, I personally found it more sad than Clannad.
[Newest]I like this show.

The Contenders

11Attack on Titan
Every character has a personality. And it's incredibly easy to find something to like about all of them. But the world that they live in, there's so much risk involved in simple living. Each moment could be the death of someone else we love.
This anime will literally turn you inside out and question what you have done with your life. Everything you watch from this show will just struck you. It tore me apart to the point that I was choking in amazement; I couldn't even cry. Good luck with this show.
Amazing... I am a full attack on titan fan... Their past and everything is just wow. Attack on titan may be this action and adventure anime but as you go along, learn peoples past, it makes you think about how lucky you are. How you don't have to live inside of a "cage". How you don't have to suffer the way they do. Overall it is amazing
More comments about Attack on Titan

12Sword Art Online
I balled for days after the whole series ended, The saddest anime is sao, I cried ALLOT after Kirito said sorry to Asuna about not getting her back to the real world and she tells him about how she enjoyed every Moment with Kirito, and then tells him she loves him and what I thought was their last time together.
Every episode someone dies. When Sachi dies she says slowly "Thank You. " Plus the game creator trapped 10,000 people in a game that kills you if you die in the game.
Getting stuck in a virtual world sounds great! But not this time if you log on and die in the virtual world you also die in the real world! Now some times there's tear jerking moments when you want to cry when characters die. Or you may want to punch someone because they die!
[Newest]Sword Art Online and Sword Art Online 2 are great animes. You should definitely watch it!

13Air
Although I have watched this anime time over time, My Tear still drops... I Can't even forget a little thing in this anime... If you r trying to search for an anime that make you cry 'cause it just simply sad... Don't watch this anime, But I strongly recommend you to watch this anime if you r trying to find something that make you cry 'cause it's beautiful and also leaving something in your mind after you watch... 12 episodes in this anime will make you to have a felling that you have lived in that world since long long time ago... I don't really want to be a spoiler so I just want you to know that this anime isn't interesting from the begining but if you watch it all, you will find something undentified that make you cry nonstop in the end... So, Have Fun in watching this anime or at least I hope so... And sorry about my bad English too... ^^!
I found this Kanon level depressing... I cried several times during this and the story line is so sad! I found it was a lot like Clannad with the arcs, but it was shorter and took a lot less time to get through. I would recommend it to people that can keep track as it is a lot of story in 12 episodes.
This is a very beautiful anime, it is definitely worth watching if you are a fan of clannad, angel beats and kanon, although the middle episodes don't link in very well, it is definitely worth sticking with it! A great and emotional anime
[Newest]Absolutely the BEST anime I've come across, even if it's a little short. You would love it if you like a some mystery and love. It's SO sad, I was crying like hell at the last episode

14Puella Magi Madoka Magica
The dynamic between Homura and Madoka in this series is staggering. It is quite essentially the signature highlight of the anime and one of the major reasons why it is so depressing.

It is first revealed that Homura is much akin to an ice queen with seemingly no desire to make any sort of friends at her new school (being a transfer student) but looks can be deceiving, but when it is revealed that she is a time traveler with a hardened desire to protect Madoka, her seemingly calm disposition is torn apart instantly and outlines her true nature as a once shy and frail girl.

Her previous failures to protect Madoka in alternate timelines proved costly for her once soft-spoken demeanor. Many times she had failed to protect Madoka from becoming a magical girl, and every time has she had to see her friend suffer the deadly fate that comes with her bestowed power. Being pitted endlessly against time, only because she had no other choice but to fight, for if she were to give up she too would face the same fate as the rest of the other Puella Magi.

Homura's situation is utterly pitiful. Mixed with the opening theme song of the anime, it becomes even more bittersweet. It is one of the few anime that symbolizes what it was like for fighters in the real world, such as World War II soldiers. That was the deadliest conflict in human history, and countless of lives perished either due to despair or combat, and they had to fight in the defense of their loved ones.

The depth of PM's dark themes is entirely up to the viewer to dig deep into. The more allusions (such as this WWII one, for example) and analogies they muster up, the sadder it becomes. That being said, it is without a doubt one of the saddest animes out there.
Everyone should watch this series. I showed it to my mom and she loves it. I showed it to my friend and we stayed up all night watching it.

I have some advice for anyone who wants to watch this anime. First piece of advice-never judge a character based off of first impression. So many characters do not show who they really are at first. I don't want to give any examples, as they would be spoilers, and I hate to spoil for people

Next piece of advice: take some tissues with you. Even I cried, and that means something. Enough said. You will cry, even if you're me.

Anyways, let me get to the review.

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then how many words is a series worth? Especially one like this. There are not enough words to describe this anime. Beautiful, sad, almost even heartbreaking series like this are the kind of things I enjoy no matter what. I can't seem to find any other anime like this. Perfectly executed, everything fits together. It combines the elements of horror, psychological, tragedy and maybe even action. This anime is very tragic, it can be scary at times, some parts can have action in them, and it is of course, very dramatic. I recommend this anime to any fans of the action, tragedy, psychological and/or horror genre.
It is so sad! I find it sad because you see pictures of madoka ( the main character) and the others and they look cute and you don't expect the dark turn the story takes. Another reason I find it sad is because almost every character has a sad ending ( unless you count the last movie, then the ending is different).
[Newest]Madoka magica is a very sad anime it's about the struggle of life and pain
More comments about Puella Magi Madoka Magica

15Dragon Ball Z
The only sad scene that tugged at the heart strings was Vegeta being killed by Frieza. Other than that, everyone lives again when they are wished back by the Dragon Balls.

One can assume every single main character in this series only died due to old age at the very end, otherwise they were brought back with the dragon balls.
Are you kidding me? This anime isn't sad. Everyone can be easily revived using the dragon balls...
Vegeta's death against Majin buu is inevitably one of the saddest deaths of all time. Plus when Goku died against Cell, and when everyone thought Buu killed Gohan.

16Steins;Gate
Probably the absolute biggest shock I ever got out of an anime, ever. (SPOILERS AHEAD! ) at first its a sorta happy-go-lucky series, with memes and 4chan references, but still some creepy parts. But there are no words in this world to describe how dead serious this series got about halfway through. It goes directly from soul-eater happy to Nina-Tucker's-death serious- and keeps hitting you with emotional bombshells the rest of the series before having an absolutely amazing ending.
(BIG SPOILER! )

The part that hit me the hardest was when Okabe realizes that he was the one who stabbed and killed the girl he loved- and it was caused by him going back in time trying to save her in the first place. Her looking at him and whispering "i'm so scared... I don't wanna die...I.. Don't want to die" then bleeding to death in his arms made me cry my eyes out
(SPOILERS) The scene when Mayuri gets killed by the car and Okabe has to relive her death for yet another time just killed me. And it especially hurt when he traveled back to when they were running the hack and he was just hanging his head unable to do anything. That scene really hit me hard.

Also, after Mr. Braun killed himself and the scene played of his daughter sitting alone at a table set for 2 just broke my heart. Best anime I have ever watched. Powerful emotions and an incredible story.
[Newest]This show is a roller coaster of emotions. It's cute at first, and I had time to get attached to all the characters. Then it gets intense and sad.

17Fairy Tail
Fairy Tail is by far one of the most saddest animes ever. It teaches the lessons of never giving up on your own life, living it to the fullest, and sharing it with your comrades. I cried in nearly every arc...especially the one with Erza and Jellal
I'm up to date on both the manga and anime for fairy tail... This is one you should watch. It teaches you so many life lessons. The episode where you cry for hours afterwards. Where people never give up. Practically giving your life away to save their guide members. It is amazing
Fairy Tail has made such an impact on my life! And I cried about every arc.. It's very emotional and whole hearted, this anime is too fulfilling. If you haven't watched it yet.. Than you definitely should! Fairy Tail is life!
[Newest]Yeah its kinda sad.

18Claymore
The story is sad for everyone. Most of the characters are orphans whose parents were killed by monsters.
Teresa's relationship with Clare was beautiful, and sad.

19Phantom: Requiem for the Phantom
This anime was one of the most tragic I have ever seen.. The characters were beautifully presented and you could really become attached to them. The ending was so unexpected that I couldn't even cry from the shock..
This anime made me think about the ending for weeks after finishing it! I've watched almost over 80 animes but this comes in at least my top 15. The ending was one of the most unexpected, considering how the story flows throughout
Saddest anime I ever saw, it will toy around with your feelings and then crush them at the end

20Hell Girl
Hell girl have different story because of the victims in each episode and some of their stories made me feel sad.
Every episode is a different story and in most of them, you find yourself getting attatched to the characters only for them to be deceived and thrown into Hell or some other sort of tragic happening.
The irony makes it feel sad and makes a person emotional at times.

Comments About This List

Featured Lists
Popular Lists
New Lists

Top Remixes of This List

sfitzgerrell

unknown_otaku

MottScurry

Four

ItsDaWorldOfSNuGGLEZ

see more...

Posts About This List

List Info

This list was created 2 years, 281 days ago and has been voted on over 4,000 times. This top ten list contains 187 items, has been remixed 19 times.

Updated Saturday, July 04, 2015


List Error Reporting

See an item on this list that's misspelled, duplicated, or doesn't belong? Let us know. Click here to report the error.