From badass fighters, artists in training, and cops, all the way through to awesome marathon relay runners, we’ve got you covered!
- Best Black Anime Characters
Best Black Anime Characters
21. Andrew Gilbert Millis
Andrew Gilbert Millis is a side character in Sword Art Online who is loved and respected by SAO fans despite his little screen time.
That’s one of its biggest issues as a franchise: introducing tons of characters that rarely get screen time but serve to bolster Kirito’s ego. I like to think Agil/Andrew is an exception to that rule.
He’s an axe wielder in-game and a Cafe owner in real life with his wife, but when things go south in the world of Aincrad, he decides to give up the weapons to open up a tavern as Agil. He’s a calm and collected African-American with a cool presence that brings the party together in ways most don’t realize.
20. Karako Koshio
Karako Koshio uses her Fists of Blood martial arts fighting style to help Ganta and the crew battle their way out of Deadman Wonderland.
She’s the second-in-command of the Scar Chain under her pseudonym Game Fowl – she’s even the one who organized the prisoners’ mass escape.
Karako frightens guards and enemies alike with her violent aura that can drop into a loving smile and motherly nature when peers are around. Her design is really sleek and frosty, yet charming, perfectly exemplifying the duality of her character.
Canary isn’t a frequent character, but when you’ve got a series like Hunter x Hunter where every character is brimming with charm and inventiveness, that hardly matters.
She’s a butler to the Zoldyck estate, loyal to Killua to a flaw, and willing to do anything to protect those she’s sworn loyalty to.
She was born in Meteor City, and not much is known about her due to her birth record and identity being kept off the register. Though she doesn’t outwardly appear to have Nen abilities, she has shown predisposed proficiency for it on a number of occasions and can fend off equivalently leveled opponents without breaking a sweat.
18. Angie Yonaga
Angie is a participant of Danganronpa V3, known as the Ultimate Artist, and an incredibly eclectic individual. It’s assumed based on the numerous hints that she’s Central Eastern Polynesian.
She’s a very spiritual person, always praying and worshipping yet willing to help her friends when she can.
Due to her overwhelming devotion, she can come across as quite detached from the others, yet she finds a best friend in Himiko who admires her attitude and positive aura. Her character design is really cool, with large ocean-colored eyes and a large yellow coat bringing her skirt and bikini top outfit together.
Iris is one of my most beloved of Ash’s traveling companions in the anime and one of my favorite Gym Leaders in the game. She specializes in Dragon-Types, managing either the Opelucid Gym or being a champion of the Unova Pokémon league, depending on what game you’re playing.
Her driving goal is to be Dragon Master, and by the end of Black and White 2 she definitely seems to be on her way, with a team comprising:
Hydreigon, Druddigon, Archeops, Aggron, Lapras, Haxorus
16. Jason Ozuma
Jason Ozuma of Fighting Spirit needs little introductions, an African-American ex-soldier with formidable strength that he uses to keep his gym alive and functioning while serving as an inspiration for those who fight alongside him.
He’s a calming and lovely presence who we first see on the other side of the ring to Ippo.
Through flashbacks and exposition, he finds out he was homeless before kick-starting his boxing career out of a feeling of hopelessness.
15. Mohammad Alai Jr
Mohammad Alai Jris… Well, yes, the son of Mohammad Alai.
He’s a serious yet kindly individual who proves a formidable foe against anyone he faces in the ring.
His reflexes are close to unmatched, using rapid and undeterred footwork to startle his enemy and keep his pace and timing in synchronization. He calls this his signature Boxing Style he’s claimed to have perfected, however throughout the main series, his talents are tested to their limits.
14. Atsuko Jackson
Atsuko Jackson is from an anime that deserves way more love: Michiko to Hatchin. It embodies many of the narrative and aesthetic sensibilities seen in a Shinichiro Watanabe production but with an unmistakably representative cast comprising of POC’s and women.
She’s a cool and collected law enforcer looking for her other orphan friend, now fugitive, Michiko.
Every moment Atsuko is on the screen, she steals the scene with her confident demeanor and beautiful animation.
13. Afro Samurai
Afro Samurai is a very odd anime. It’s as Western as they come, with an ethnocentric character design and a badass protagonist voiced by THE Samuel L. Jackson.
While the plot is simple, you don’t come to Afro Samurai for the plot – you come for the style, and this anime possesses heaps.
After seeing his family slaughtered, Afro committed himself to revenge and departed on a blood-stained, visually stylish action-adventure to search for the Number One headband and murder the man who ruined his life.
12. Carole Stanley
Carole Stanley is one of two titular protagonists in Shinichiro Watanabe’s musical love letter set on Mars. The first half is where the show truly shines, with an X-Factor competition set in the future serving as a great tournament arc for us to familiarize ourselves with the main characters.
Carole is a 17-year-old who dreams to make it big as a musician, and after meeting Tuesday, she realizes that dream could be a reality.
Her down-to-earth and lower-class background immediately endears her to most viewers, made even better with her terrific voice actors (dub and sub) and wonderful vocal range.
Kuzan is a fantastic One Piece character (surprise, surprise), revealed as a Marine admiral with an introduction that firmly cemented him as a strong adversary for the protagonists.
He only got better after surrendering his role in the World Government once he realized how corrupt and authoritarian it truly is.
Every fight with him in is exciting, and his character design kicks ass; what’s not to love about Kuzan?
Despite some of the controversy surrounding Sister Krone’s depiction in The Promised Neverland, it’s hard to deny her effectiveness and presence as both ally and foe. She’s cunning, agile and stealthy, and has a horrifying contortion of a face when she’s angry.
This isn’t mentioning the way she’s a pure unit of muscle and braun.
Despite what one might think at the start, she’s more complex and layered than simply another enemy for the children to face.
9. Yoruichi Shihoin
Yoruichi is many people’s favorite Bleach character, introduced first in her black cat form before it’s revealed she’s actually a human combatant more capable than most of the main cast.
Her sharp eyes and sleek design draw people in, but her funny and badass moments are what keep them around.
She was previously the 2nd Division Captain of Gorei 3 before removing herself from their league to stay low in the Human World with Kisuke Urahara.
When I say Durarara!! has a gargantuan cast of characters, I mean it.
Ask any fan of the franchise who their favorite is, and you’re guaranteed a different response – but mine is unmistakably Simon Breshnev, a Russian Sushi expert who every person in Ikebukuro seems to know and love.
He’s hardworking and caring despite his overwhelming physical proficiency, and his huge beautiful smile always warms my heart.
7. Anthy Himemiya
Anthy Himemiya is the deuterogamist of Kunihiko Ikuhara’s innovative and inspirational masterpiece, Revolutionary Girl Utena, and is a perfect conduit for exploring gender and social issues in a medium that rarely does.
Originally, it seemed Anthy would be some damsel in distress – however, she’s anything but that.
She’s a strong and dependable character who will fight to defend her friends, but mostly herself, in this under-sung wonder of an anime.
6. Villetta Nu
Villetta Nu is an interesting character in Code Geass, being introduced in episode one as a soldier of the Royal Britannian army before converting to the other side throughout the course of the series.
Her story takes her through a complete character overhaul (to Chigusa) that even included her hiding out as a Ashford academy gym teacher.
She’s got a constantly entertaining plot with some truly shocking moments of betrayal and integral plot twists of the franchise lying on her shoulders. This isn’t even really mentioning her wonderful CLAMP art design straight out of the 00s anime.
Dutch is the backbone of Black Lagoon, a 2000s wonder-hit by Studio Madhouse set aboard a mercenary boat and following a ragtag group of convict go-getters.
First of all, he’s huge and has an awesome presence thanks to his dialogue and voice acting that perfectly matches his cool character design.
He’s military through and through, originally serving in the US navy before setting up work as a mercenary, and if it wasn’t for him, the rest of them wouldn’t have a job.
Cowboy Bebop is a brilliant show about adulthood, regret, ennui, and existentialism and comprises a group of middle-aged characters aimlessly at the end of their ropes.
This all changes when the hapless and energetic Edward joins the bounty hunting squad as a member for his ridiculous hacking skills.
He’s the softcore that holds the entire experience together, stopping the pace from stagnating or growing stale with his wacky and entertaining antics.
3. Muhammad Avdol
Muhammad Avdol is through and through awesome, using his Stand [Magician’s Red] to manipulate and control flames with a pinpoint degree of accuracy.
He’s an Egyptian who joints Joseph Joestar and the other Stardust Crusaders in traveling around the world to find and defeat the megalomaniacal vampire, DIO Brando, from harnessing enough power to control the world.
His entire objective is selfless in nature, driven by an axiological desire to do what he feels is just, to restore order to a world in turmoil. He cares for his friends and allies enough to offer his life were it to come to that.
2. Musa Kamara
Musa is in his 2nd year at Kansei University studying Science and Engineering when he meets Haiji, a runner who dreams for them all to compete in the Hakone Ekiden relay marathon as a team.
He decides to give it a shot and ends up not only competent but passionate about the sport and his new friends, alongside his education.
He’s an exchange student learning Japanese as the series progresses, and the way he blends with the group is seamless, quickly becoming one of my favorite characters in the show.
Casca is one of the three main characters of Berserk, with a story both tragic and novel. She was originally a peasant pushed to the brink by the patriarchal mountain village she lived in.
Once she’s given the opportunity to save herself by Griffith, she fends off her attackers and joins the Band of the Falcon to follow Griffith and his party as a respected unit commander.
Being a woman doesn’t matter too much to Casca, as she’s determined to prove herself outside of her sex, gender, or skin color. Therein, she’s not defined by any of them – she refuses to stand down nor act subservient, and her allegiance to men is one of the factors that cause her the most grief. I hope Casca gets a happy ending, I really do.
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