Saddest Anime Series

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.

The Top TenXW

1Angel 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

Angel Beats! left me sad all day when I finished the episode... I almost cried, and every time I see pictures of the ending episode I almost shed a few tears while looking at it. I hear the emotional music from the last scene in my head every time I think of it. so far, it's the best anime I have watched in my life. truly recommended. ;_;

V182 Comments
2Clannad 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?


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 ...more

This anime shows us how important our family is. No, I mean seriously. By family, I mean friends, too... - IhuntHunterzz

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.

Yes. Cried 5 episodes straight and never cried so hard in my life. You just get so attached to all the characters, along with the breathtaking soundtrack and the beautiful animation, it's so hard not to shed a tear.

V227 Comments
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"

Like it's not enough that I cried practically every two episodes, the end (last few episodes actually) had me sobbing on the carpet in a fetus position. Just thinking about fma (especially 2003 series) or listening to the openings makes me feel so sad because I remember everything that happened to Ed and Al and all the wonderful characters that ended up dead (not gonna name them because I don't wanna spoil it to anyone who hasn't watched it yet). However, this is, and always will be, my favourite anime ever. It's both funny and sad (even scary sometimes), has an amazing plot and I feel like you can empathize with every one of the characters including the "bad" ones (except Shou Tucker, seriously what is wrong with that guy).

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...

It should at least be 2

V31 Comments
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!

The characters are better than Avatar (somehow), the story is both heartbreaking and uplifting, the animation is beautiful, and the sad scenes are the most tragic things in anything I've ever seen before (book, movie, other anime, game, anything).

V162 Comments
5Elfen 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!

It's not that sad but I do agree

V49 Comments
6Death 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...

This one and Naruto (and a lot others- Beyblade! ) are here on this list because some people have never watched anything else, so please if you don't know much about anime leave judging it to people who do. Thank you.

V31 Comments

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 :'(

So sad there are so many filler. I can't stop crying as the filler keep spawning every week.

V78 Comments
8Code Geass R2

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 ...more

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

The moment I saw Lelouch die, after everything that he has been through. How could this not be the saddest thing ever?! His sacrifice for the greater god of humanity is such a huge burden for him to bear. And to think that everyone else shunned him without knowing what he had give them.. It is so cruel. In another way, it was a poetic and beautiful ending, even if it ended with his death.

In fact, Lelouch's sacrifice reminded me of Romeo and Juliet's love story, with how they can never be together as long as they are alive.. Just like Lelouch, they died so that their wish would come true. If this isn't a tragedy, then I don't know what is.

I hate it when lelouch killed his sister

V42 Comments

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

I know that Clannad Afterstory was pretty sad too, but I think that the original is much more sad. I mean, (MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD) a little girl in a coma's spirit making wedding invitations so her sister can live a happier life getting forgotten about by everyone? Even after her grand finale and the closure she got, she hasn't woken up by the end of the series. In my opinion, Fuko's story has more feels than Nagisa's, even if only by a little bit.

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!

To people how have not watched Clannad, it is amazing and there are really sad parts. People who haven't watched it don't get, but those who have watched it they feel the same way that I do.

V19 Comments

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.

This series made me cry

V17 Comments

The Newcomers

?Sword Art Online II

The best anime ever

It has the most saddest episodes ever. It had me balling like a baby!

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

Every character is loveable so when many of them die terrifying, bloody deaths, you are brought to tears

V40 Comments

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

This show is under rated, it was so sad

V22 Comments
13Puella 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 ...more

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 ...more

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).

It was so sad and quite awesome at the Same time

V32 Comments
14Future Diary

THE ABSOLUTE SADDEST ENDING EVER T^T the story builds up all this emotion between you and the two main characters and then it just destroys you. It left me empty and dead for a couple days after finishing it.

This anime is SO depressing. Every single death scene in this one makes you want to cry, and that is a lot of death scenes, considering the Hunger Games type of situation this story revolves around. This anime does a great job of making you love characters despite the things they have done in the past, and mourn for them in their final moments. I personally couldn't hold my tears on any longer by the infamous last few episodes. If you want a real tearjerker of an anime, watch Future Diary.

I will agree that this is one of the saddest anime EVER! If not the saddest, then at least in the top 5. My anime watched list is over a hundred, so when I say in the top five, I mean REALLY SAD! Though this is just my opinion, I've learned to respect the opinion of others through the watching of anime. All in all, very SAD anime. I would not suggest watching if you have a weak heart :P. Also that these particular anime, in my opinion, are better watched alone in a dark room.

You will really love the story in this anime. It's so interesting. The anime was so sad and I couldn't sleep for a few days thinking about it. Thank goodness there was an OVA. I realm recommend this anime. Don't get easily bored enjoy the anime till the last episode.

V29 Comments
15Dragon Ball Z

Are you kidding me? This anime isn't sad. Everyone can be easily revived using the dragon balls...

What kind of idiot lists Dragon Ball Z as one of the saddest anime? Fairy Tail is much sadder than DBZ! Shallow characters with no information on past whatsoever (except Vegeta, he is a well developed character). No PERMANENT deaths... Everyone can be revived using the Dragon Balls. Villains with no background as to why they became bad... DBZ is one of the best anime but doesn't deserve to be in the list. - Hellblazer94

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.

Good anime but not as sad as I thought it would be. Way to much yelling.

V15 Comments
16Sword 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!

Kirito and asuna's story is very touching

V37 Comments

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.


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.

Steins Gate is an amazing series, but sad?

V16 Comments
18Fairy 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

Sure fairytale has its ups and downs but that doesn't mean they lose hope. You can really relate life to these events that happened in this in the series, for example when Lucy looses her dad or even when natsu gets beat by someone. They never give up even when it's the end of the world they never give up and stop trying. 10/10 (plus great plot)

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

This is so clever in how it gives us entertainment while secretly feeding us amazing life lessons. One of the biggest life lessons is how natsu always helps anyone he can and never gives up on the right thing, even when he's about to be arrested. ',:3

V33 Comments
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

Indeed a great and the most tragic anime of all time with beautiful characters and wonderful storylin. One of the most underrated animes of all time. If you love serious animes with awesome plot + with saddest moments you should watch it

This one will leaved you depressed for at least a day. Fair warning.

V8 Comments

The story is sad for everyone. Most of the characters are orphans whose parents were killed by monsters.

Man those monsters always made me cry whenever they harm someone it's a great anime to watch

Teresa's relationship with Clare was beautiful, and sad.

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List StatsUpdated 24 Nov 2015

6,000 votes
217 listings
3 years, 59 days old

Top Remixes (20)

1. Puella Magi Madoka Magica
2. Clannad After Story
3. Kanon
1. Clannad After Story
2. Anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day
3. Angel Beats!
1. Phantom: Requiem for the Phantom
2. Fullmetal Alchemist
3. Fairy Tail

View All 20


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