Top 5: Most Boring Anime Protagonists

Oh boy, another feature for this site.  I’ll try to do these top X lists as regularly as possible, which I am aware is probably another empty promise of mine.  However, I take comfort in the fact that almost no one is reading these words, so it won’t really matter whether I go through with them.  Sound good?  Anyways, here we go!

Note: I understand that some of these characters may be deuteragonists or even tritagonists.  I don’t care.  Boring is boring.

Another note: This list will ruffle some feathers.  There will be characters you like on this list.  My level of care on that matter is approaching nil very quickly.  These are my opinions.  Yelling at my opinions can be done in the comments.  That is all.

#5: Mikasa Ackerman


Mikasa is smokin’ hot, I will admit.  She is much more capable than what’s-his-name Yeager in pretty much every aspect of being a leading character.  She is cool under pressure.  Too cool.  Sometimes “let’s check for a pulse”, cool.  I mean, it’s great that she really has her stuff together, but there is a time and place for emotion.  While I’m not saying that she doesn’t show emotion in the show, it is limited to moments when Eren is in immediate danger.  Even when Eren is in danger, she rarely gets interesting.  This mostly has to do with the emotional design of the character.  She has spent all of her life with emotions buried deep inside her from incidents that I shall not discuss here (spoilers, please).  Suffice it to say that I hope she develops more as a character in the future, because she is most certainly too hot to justify being on this list.

Note: Shinya Kogami was going to be at this spot, but at least he has his own resolve, purpose and mission.  She’s Eren’s glorified watchdog.

#4: Emiya Shirou


Em-dawg’s latest appearance in the Unlimited Bladeworks re-try definitely scored him points, but he remains on this list because a fundamental part of his character has not, and probably will not, change.  Emiya Shirou is a one trick pony.  He says so himself in the show.  After watching UBW, it will probably be a long time before the term “champion of justice” holds any meaning for me anymore, after hearing Shirou let it loose almost at the drop of a hat.  I get that it’s his thing to try and imitate Kiritsugu, and that deconstructing the meaning of justice and right vs. wrong is one of the deeper meanings of the UBW route…but…in order to do that, did Type/Moon really have to create a broken record for a character?  Perhaps I’m nagging just a little too much.  After all, Shirou has to be a flexible character.  Otherwise, it wouldn’t be logical for there to be more than one ending to a visual novel.  If he’s flexible, the variety of choices makes sense.  That being said, repetition is boring.  Shirou is boring.  No disrespect, Em-dawg.

#3: Ayanami Rei


Tritagonist, I know.  But honestly, does her impact on certain events even merit that distinction?  I’ll be frank, I think of Rei as a fleeting distraction, both for Shinji and for the audience.  While she has plot significance, it’s hardly her doing.  Rather, Rei is like a piece of flotsam that gets drifted ashore from the shipwreck that is NERV.  I am aware that in the manga, Shinji and Rei get much closer than in the anime.  However, that doesn’t change the fact that she is about as dull as her hair color.  She mostly exists as a vehicle by which Shinji can air his frustrations about his dad mistreating women.  See what I did there?  I called Shinji a girl.  It was subtle, but I did it.  Pretty funny, huh?  I’m so cool…

Anyways, yeah.  Rei.  Boring.  Can we move on?

#2: Fuu Kasumi


Boy oh boy, I sure got lucky.  I was so close to putting Honda Tooru on this list at this spot instead (something I would be very averse to doing), and then I remembered Fuu.  Fuu is on this list for the very reason that I, for a moment, considered Honda.  She is helpless.  Unlike most protagonists that start out helpless, Fuu remains helpless and dependent on two of the coolest characters it has been my pleasure to watch.  While I get that in order for them to shine, something else must be dull, did it have to be someone that was so integral to the premise of the show?  Although it’s not like Samurai Champloo really had a plot, to be honest.  Not that I’m complaining, I’m just saying…

Anyways, Fuu doesn’t change, develop, pick up an ability or a weapon, or even contribute to humor that well.  She’s just… there.  As a totem, to remind viewers that there is a reason for this strange trio to be around each other.  Her sole purpose is to prevent the show to end in a duel to the death between Mugen and Jin, so that it’s a 26 episode show instead of a 1 episode OVA.  While that is an extremely important role, it makes her all the more boring.

#1: Yuu Narukami


Wow, this one was really easy.  Don’t let the smile phase you, this guy has no emotions.  Why would he?  It’s you… I mean, Yuu.  Wait a sec…

You see, Persona 4 is a video game adaptation.  In the game, you name the character.  So it could literally have been any name, any character.  You make the choices, since you play as the character.  But as the anime protagonist?  Someone at the studio must have had a cheap sense of humor, because they just named him “Yuu”.  A simple joke, but it fits.  Yuu is dull, boring, and transparent, just like you are in the game when you leave the Playstation controller lying on the table.  Poorly designed visual novel adaptations make you feel as if you are watching a visual novel be played, which kind of takes away from the experience of watching an anime.  On the other hand, Yuu Narukami just makes you feel like you are wasting your time watching Persona 4, when you could be spending your time not playing the game.  Yeah, I thought the game was pretty boring too.  Oh well.  Yuu Narukami, congratulations.  You are the most boring thing since Sliced Bread: The Animation.

Thanks for reading.  I hope you enjoyed it.  Please complain about my opinions, my writing, or my haircut in the comments below.  Have a great day!

2 thoughts on “Top 5: Most Boring Anime Protagonists

  1. I agree with you on Emiya Shirou. His ideals of being a hero and justice is too….overused. I am perfectly fine with them but, BUT, I hate it when they keep repeating themselves.
    As for the other characters, bah. I really don’t know who they are.

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