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Top 10 Most Badass Anime Protagonists

VO: Ashley Bowman WRITTEN BY: Alex Crilly McKean
Things are about to get MACHO! Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we are counting down our picks for the Top 10 Most Badass Anime Protagonists. For this list, we’ll be looking at the leading men in anime that are the absolute pinnacle of manliness. Keep in mind we’ll only be including males on this list, but don’t worry, if you’re looking for epic ladies like Revy, you can check out her and others in our previous list on the Top 10 Badass Women in Anime. Furthermore, we’ll only be including characters that are the faces of their respective franchise. As such, don’t expect to see the likes of Zoro or Kamina down the line.
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Top 10 Most Badass Anime Protagonists
Things are about to get MACHO! Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we are counting down our picks for the Top 10 Most Badass Anime Protagonists.
For this list, we’ll be looking at the leading men in anime that are the absolute pinnacle of manliness. Keep in mind we’ll only be including males on this list, but don’t worry, if you’re looking for epic ladies like Revy, you can check out her and others in our previous list on the Top 10 Badass Women in Anime. Furthermore, we’ll only be including characters that are the faces of their respective franchise. As such, don’t expect to see the likes of Zoro or Kamina down the line.

#10: Ryoma Nagare

“Getter Robo” franchise (1974-2004)
With a righteous heart, a somewhat aggressive temperament and a giant freakin’ robot at his command, this veteran of the franchise may be a little on the simplistic side, but his accomplishments speak for themselves. As the pilot of the Eagle, Ryoma has put the kibosh on all manner of alien invaders over the years, though if we had to choose, his Getter Robo Armageddon incarnation is by far the most awesome of the bunch. He can even make a phrase as nonsensical as “Stoner Sunshine” sound like the most badass thing on the planet.

#9: Toyohisa Shimazu

“Drifters” (2016)
When it comes to historical warriors, you could do a lot worse than choosing the likes of Toyohisa to fight in your corner. While original fated to die during the Battle of Sekigahara, the crimson-clad samurai finds himself recruited by the mysterious Murasaki in order to save a fantasy land from some of history’s most infamous villains. With a bloody splash of an introduction, Toyohisa showed zero mercy when it came to slaughtering those who would suppress the innocent. Other than that, he’s a pretty chill guy.

#8: Yusuke Urameshi

“Yu Yu Hakusho” (1992-94)
The original shounen bad boy. While never one to hold back on the punches, after going through a minor case of death, Yusuke finds himself given a new career as a Spirit Detective, allowing him to take some of that rebellious nature and put it to good use…by blowing the crap out of demons with his bare hands. While always up to fight the good fight, Yusuke’s unyielding willpower and loyalty to his posse makes him something of a force of nature, one that no demon would want to get on the wrong side of.

#7: Alucard

“Hellsing Ultimate” (2006-12)
You can’t bring up anime killing machines without talking about the King of Vampires. In service to the Hellsing Family, the former Count now spends his days exterminating the likes of wannabe bloodsuckers, ghouls, crazy Catholics and, of course, Nazis. While his slaying is often for a good cause, Alucard is above all else a monster, one who relishes any chance to summon up a few familiars and reveal in a good ol’ massacre. The fact he’s so suave and actually has a multitude of surprisingly human layers just makes him all the more entrancing.

#6: Captain Harlock

“Captain Harlock” franchise (1978-2013)
In terms of space pirates, you won’t find a more romanticised version in all of classic anime, even if he does occasionally find himself having to run away from a whole swarm of screaming space amazons. With an abject hatred for all totalitarian regimes, a natural rebellious swagger and the classic swashbuckling look down to a tee, Harlock is a gem when it comes to star-fairing adventurers who prefers to settle problems with a laser blaster. Probably explains how his legacy was able to endure over all these years.

#5: Domon Kasshu

“Mobile Fighter G Gundam” (1994-95)
Only a beast like Domon could make a line as corny as this sound epic. As the pilot of the God Gundam, Domon and his beloved engineer Rain managed to fight their way through a series of brutal mecha battles, claiming victory with the power of his burning will and Shining Finger. Yes, it sounds lame, until you see his Gundam rip through robot heads like they were butter. He’s certainly one of the franchise’s greatest hotheads, but you can’t deny he gets results when the time calls for it.

#4: Spike Spiegel

“Cowboy Bebop” (1998-99)
There’s cool, and then there’s this space cowboy. As anime’s slickest bounty hunter, Spike and the crew of the Bebop traverse the cosmos in search of bounties, always finding themselves hurtling from one deadly scenario to the next. As a result, we’re not only treated to Spike’s infectiously cocky attitude, but also his mastery of both martial arts and marksmanship, both of which have led to some of Animes most thrilling action scenes. Who else do you know that could take out an entire syndicate headquarters with nothing more than a pistol and couple of grenades?

#3: Jotaro Kujo

“JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders” (2014-15)
Don’t get us wrong, every iteration of JoJo is awesome in their own special way. But when it comes to sheer badassery, Jotaro is in a league of his own. While he’s something of a bastard that would rather break faces than make friends, the sudden resurrection of Dio forces him into the role of an unlikely hero, onethrown into countless battles against other Stand Users. We all know deep down he’s a good lad, but rest assured, cross him and you’ll end getting a mouthful of Ora Ora Oras.

#2: Kenshiro

“Fist of the North Star” (1984-88)
Whether you know him from his insane amount of muscles, his classic catchphrase or the fact he makes heads explode by poking them, we can all agree that Kenshiro is one of the most hardcore characters to ever wander across a post-apocalyptic wasteland. One of the last masters of the deadly art of Hokuto Shinken, Kenshiro spends his days saving innocents and causing the insides of raiders to go kaboom. He’s a man of few of words, but when he does speak, you had better listen, because there’s likely chance someone is about to be reduced to a puddle of gore.
Before we reveal our number one pick, here are a few honorable mentions.
Cobra
“Cobra” series (1982-83; 2008-09; 2010)
Date Masamune
“Sengoku Basara: Samurai Kings” (2009-10)
Mugen
“Samurai Champloo” (2004-05)

#1: Guts

“Berserk” franchise (1997-)
So here’s the rundown on our main man: he was born from a corpse, been fighting on battlefields since he was a child, assisted in ending in a hundred year war, took a literal demon head on and lived to tell the tale, fought and killed one hundred men by himself in one night, ended up suffering the ultimate betrayal and was left to be torn apart be a horde of monsters. And you know what? It just pissed him off more. With a life filled with so much pain, hate and violence, most people would have just succumbed to grief a long time ago. Then again, they weren’t Guts.

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