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12 Dark Anime TV Shows To Watch in 2024

Explore the captivating world of anime’s darker side with our curated list of “Dark Anime TV Shows To Watch.” Dive into the shadows!

Anime can be profoundly optimistic or profoundly pessimistic, and some of the most compelling shows are those that don’t hold back from dark inclinations. A flesh wound can only go so far; an admittance of hatred or a heartbreaking betrayal can hurt infinitely more. While some anime series need to gradually reveal their wickedness, others start off gloomy and only draw viewers deeper into the shadows. There is a growing tolerance for violence and darkness in anime, pushing the genre’s mainstream limits. 

Dark anime isn’t just about blood and violence; it also mentally disturbs viewers and prompts them to consider their morals by presenting society as it is. The plots could take place anywhere, in a classroom, in a country at war, or even in someone’s head. thrillingly true! A story’s setting could truly be found anywhere, in any location you can imagine.

Dark anime forces you to reflect on all the qualities and topics that we generally try to avoid or avoid facing in daily life. These animated series help people comprehend their place in the world as well as the flaws in their morals.

1. Monster

It goes without saying that the incredibly well-known series Monster is deserving of all the acclaim. It is renowned for being so grounded in reality and for coping with difficult concepts like mortality, morality, and life with ease. Despite being lengthy, it’s worth reading because of all the fascinating and gripping aspects.

The protagonist of the tale is Dr. Tenma, who considers himself to be king of the universe after saving the life of a nine-year-old boy.  The series is filled with immoral behavior, the use of human depravity, brutality, etc. What Monster clings to are all the uncomfortable but important topics. The dark psychological suspense thriller examines how far a man will go to find redemption.

Dark Anime TV Shows To Watch

2. Blue Gender

Blue Gender observes a human race that is on its last legs as it flees from an extraterrestrial threat that has taken over Earth. Blue Gender views surviving as hopeless. As Yuji Kaido awakens from his cryogenic slumber in a new world that scarcely resembles his familiar one, he makes a fantastic audience surrogate.

Yuji is a pivotal character in this extraterrestrial war because of his special circumstance, but the narrative is dominated by death and body horror.

Best Dark Anime TV Shows To Watch

3. Now and Then, Here and There

Now and Then, Here and There is a distinctive name. It is a compelling television series that depicts contemporary living. Shuuzou, the protagonist, is a person who uses his moral values to make the most of every day living.

The creator of this series takes the notion that we all face challenges in trying to safeguard those we love and dissects it to show the contemporary realities of rape, human extortion, and child conscription. The show continues to be a character-driven dystopia that shows the shadowy sides of mankind.

Dark Anime TV Shows

4. Serial Experiments Lain

Continuous Experiments Without a doubt, the Lain series broadens the boundaries of human creativity. Lain Iwakura, a fourteen-year-old introverted girl who fears and dislikes technology, is the focus of the tale. One of the girls in Lain’s school, Chisa Yomoda, committed suicide, and a disturbing email from her is in Lina’s inbox. This is the disturbing event in the story.

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She opens the mail and is immediately sucked into an odd virtual world of communications networks, despite being a technological novice. A television series called Serial Experiments Lain investigates the ideas of reality, cyberspace, and awareness. It is a philosophical theme-based tale with clear details, carefully planned animation, and a compelling plot.

5. Aku no Hana

When you watch Aku no Hana attentively, you’ll realize there is much more to it than what initially appears to be a very generic plot.The main character of the story is a boy called Kasuga Takao who is in love with Saeki Nanako from Baudelaire’s Les Fleurs du Mal, his inspiration, and Kasuga, a girl who witnessed the crime.

The narrative explores a range of human emotions, including loneliness, deep regret, attachment to someone who frees you from the constraints of the status quo, depression, and overcoming depression brought on by persistently trying to achieve but failing to achieve something. 

Top Dark Anime TV Shows To Watch

This is so because Aku no Hana is about making your own space in a society that is already structured according to your own rules. Aku no Hana is no longer a popular anime due to the poor animation and failed effort to combine realism and minimalism. Aku no Hana, however, has a lot of symbolism and complexity thanks to the combination of a rich background and a focus on the importance of humanity.

6. Texhnolyze

Modern anime named Texhnolyze is set in the impending collapse of the artificial underground city of Lux. Ichise, a fighter who lost his hands and legs, is the main character. Texhnolyze has since taken their position. Ichise learns that the city of Lux is about to fall into chaos and conflict when he meets Rna, a young woman with precognitive abilities.  They discover that the only way to prevent his demise is through their intervention.

Dark Anime TV Show

When compared to other dark cartoons, Texthnolyze is more straightforward and raw. The dialogue in the first segment is nonexistent. You’ll be forced to consider everything around you, as well as society, living, and people in general.

7. Shinsekai Yori

The plot of Shinsekai Yori develops slowly, and there is a lot to learn even from the first few episodes. Simply put, it has the finest storytelling, making it one of the most popular shows. It tells the tale of five kids who grow up in a utopian Japanese community with strict regulations.

Some individuals in this utopian Japan, including some children, have a special ability called psychokinesis. As these kids get older, they start to wonder about everything. In Shinsekai Yori, the prejudice and commerce of humanity are effectively depicted. Based on the brutal characteristics shared by all people, it also illustrated the invisible distinction between humans and other animals.

Top Dark Anime TV Show

8. Aoi Bungaku

One of the deadliest anime series is Aoi Bungaku. It effectively redefined the psychological genre and now rules it. Six short stories from the compilation Aoi Bungaku were adapted from Japanese folktales. Each tale can be read independently and immerses the viewer in the protagonist’s point of view.

The audience feels each and every emotion and sensation that the primary character does. The plot examines the complex and erratic nature of all humans in addition to challenging the characters by putting them in morally challenging circumstances. However, aoi Bungaku, a television series that explores the complex, dark, and mature side of human nature, hasn’t achieved much fame. 

Best Dark Anime TV Show

9. Wonder Egg Priority

Many contemporary anime series have done so by deconstructing darker topics using ingrained genre cliches. One of the more effective iterations of this concept is found in Wonder Egg Priority, where the horrific monsters that Ai Ohto and her friends have to eviscerate are a literal manifestation of the trauma that consumes Ai Ohto and the rest of her friends.

It works extremely well to juxtapose the fantasy of magical girls with the grim melodrama, and the battles they fight are stunning to watch. Although Wonder Egg Priority employs metaphors, Ai is troubled by heavy ideas for a young girl from the very first episode. 

Anime TV Shows To Watch

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10. Made in Abyss

Made in Abyss is a very dark anime series that has probably disturbed more viewers than it was meant to because of the way it is animated and how it is designed. Of course, the heroine of the show, Riko, possesses this innocent optimism because she manages to maintain it despite suffering a great loss.

As they all make their way deeper into the eponymous Abyss, Riko joins forces with Reg, a robot child, and a number of other unlikely creatures. Those who undertake this quest are cursed, and each new level of the Abyss symbolizes increasingly terrifying horrors.

Dark Anime Shows To Watch

11. Higurashi No Naku Koro Ni

When They Cry, also known as Higurashi no Naku Koro ni, is the tale of a child named Keiichi Maebara who, after relocating to the tiny village of Hinamizawa, makes best friends with Rena Ryuuguu, Mion Sonozaki, Satoko Houjou, and Rika Furude. When Keiichi learns that there have been multiple murders and disappearances, which are likely related to the yearly festival held in the hamlet in honor of their god, Oyashiro, the plot takes an unexpected turn.

Dark Anime TV Show

Higurashi is the pinnacle of dark mystery anime because, despite being produced on a large scale, its details are minute and exact, and every circumstance is resolved successfully. Every character, whether good or evil, develops in such a manner that the audience inevitably begins to care about them.

12. Banana Fish

A 17-year-old kid named Ash Lynx is the boss of his gang. His sibling Griffin’s two words, “Banana Fish,” set off the mystery. From this point on, Ash and a Japanese photographer named Eiki Okumura send you on a quest to find answers and ways to escape this mess.

The first episode hooks viewers with the intense intensity of its dark theme, and just when you believe things will get better, the story wears you down and repeatedly crushes your feelings in the following episodes. The themes of sex slavery, crime, and drug dealing are all clearly depicted. 

We hope you’ve enjoyed our exploration of the captivating world of dark anime TV shows to watch. These series delve deep into the human psyche, pushing boundaries and challenging conventions. Whether you’re drawn to the shadows or seeking a darker perspective, these anime offer an unforgettable journey. So, embrace the darkness, and may your anime adventures be filled with intrigue and suspense. “Dark Anime TV Shows To Watch” is your gateway to a thrilling realm of storytelling.


FAQs for 12 Dark Anime TV Shows to Watch

Are these dark anime TV shows suitable for all age groups?

Many dark anime TV shows contain mature themes and intense scenes, making them more suitable for older teens and adults. It’s advisable to check the age rating and content warnings for each show.

Where can I watch these dark anime TV shows?

You can watch these dark anime TV shows on popular streaming platforms like Netflix, Crunchyroll, Hulu, and Funimation.

What makes dark anime TV shows different from other genres?

Dark anime TV shows often feature intense, psychological themes, complex characters, and darker storylines, setting them apart from lighter, more traditional anime genres.

We hope you liked the blog on the best dark anime TV shows to watch. Stay tuned for more recommendations and reviews on the best dark content to add to your watchlist!