22 Best Anime Bad Boy Characters

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The bad boy. An archetype a lot of men want to be, and a lot of women allegedly fawn over (I’ve yet to prove this conclusive, unfortunately).

But be it in movies, anime series, K-pop bands, or even real life, these dudes seem to have it all.

And so what kind of dudes roll like this in the world of anime? Well, in my opinion they’re the baddest of all the boys. And here we’re going to list out some of our favorite bad boy characters in all of anime.


22. Zora Ideale

Zora Ideale from Black Clover anime

Anime: Black Clover

Although a relatively new character, Zora has definitely made a name for himself in the series.

He comes onto the scene by absolutely kicking some butt, and then proceeds to kick even more butt while also showing us a form of magic we had not seen before.

He doesn’t seem to care about anyone. He just strives for his own ideals, classic bad boy move.

And his image can only be described as something straight off of TikTok.


21. Karma Akabane

Karma Akabane in Assassination Classroom

Anime: Assassination Classroom

Among fans of the show, Karma is arguably just as iconic as the yellow blob himself.

Although he does become a bit more level headed later on, he maintains his aura of badassery and terrifies random thugs whenever given the chance.

His fight with Nagisa is probably the best example of why he’s so loved, as he shows not only overwhelming strength, but even a soft spot. Although it’s doubtful he would ever admit that part.


20. Louis

Louis from Beastars anime

Anime: Beastars

Bet you didn’t expect to see a deer on here.

Aside from accusing me of being a furry, Louis is quite the badass. Despite his position as a prey animal, he always keeps his head held high and isn’t afraid to show his dominance in front of stronger opponents.

Even while injured, he carries the lead role all the way to the end. And probably gets some major tail, pun intended.

Maybe not the most typical bad boy. But if you look at his ego closely you’ll see that he has all the attributes needed.


19. Shouto Todoroki

Shouto Todoroki Boku no Hero Academiaanime screenshot

Anime: Boku no Hero Academia

He’s as cool as ice and hot as fire, it’s basically his quirk to be a bad boy.

His daddy issues also help in keeping up that appearance.

Although he does mellow out later on in the series, in season 1 Todoroki was prime bad boy real estate.

He was overpowered, looked down on everyone, and was constantly brooding. I mean, he got jumped by like a dozen thugs and he just froze them and then gave them a lecture on how stupid they are.


18. Ryuunosuke Akutagawa

Ryuunosuke Akutagawa from Bungo Stray Dogs anime

Anime: Bungo Stray Dogs

Mister Hot Topic is quite a guy, isn’t he?

He’s usually very doom and gloom about everything, and has a worrisome level of sadism when fighting.

Like seriously man, we know you’re powerful but you need to take a chill pill.

And as the archetype usually goes, he has some issues. Mainly the approval of the one man Suicide Squad. No wonder it was gold when he got paired up with Nakajima.


17. Ryou Asuka

Ryou Asuka in Devilman Crybaby anime

Anime: Devilman Crybaby

Ryou really is just a psychotic little fellow, isn’t he?

Carrying around some pretty serious weapons, going to Satan frat parties, breaking every speed limit known to man, manipulating the masses in his pursuit of utter chaos… he truly does go against the grain of society in every way.

The only person he really cares about is Akira. And even that fact took him far too long to realize.


16. Izaya Orihara

Izaya Orihara from Durarara!!

Anime: Durarara!!

Remember when evil genius meant an old man tucked away in some laboratory, and not objectively attractive teenagers?

Izaya truly does have it all… okay except friends, everyone seems to hate him.

Because not only does he play around with thousands of people, orchestrating massive brawls and even convincing the odd girl to off herself, but he’s also really good at hand-to-hand combat.

Okay, it’s more hand-to-knife combat but my point still stands.


15. Killua Zoldyck

Killua Zoldyck in Hunter x Hunter

Anime: Hunter x Hunter (2011)

Well we’re really stepping on the boy part of bad boy with this one.

Killua just has that unfiltered edge that we all condemn, but also secretly love. He has no issues with murdering someone in cold blood and is a master in getting what he wants.

Granted, it does usually chalk up to murder or threats of murder. This is why I can only imagine what kind of a character he will be when he’s actually old enough to drink.


14. Johan Liebert

Johan Liebert from Monster anime

Anime: Monster

And now we’re really stepping on the bad part of bad boy, as Johan is arguably the morally most corrupt one on this list.

Nothing will make this man bat an eye. Not murder, not the possibility of death, nothing.

Even when he has a gun pointed to his head in a burning building he keeps his calm demeanor and even taunts his enemy silently.

His superficial charm allows him to get close to pretty much anyone. And his intelligence is high enough to make a whole country his play toy.


13. Takumi Ichinose

Takumi Ichinose from Nana anime

Anime: Nana

Takumi is just a nightmare for parents all over the world.

He always knows just what to say and do in order to gain complete control over the person he’s interested in.

He has made more power moves than one can count, and his position as a rock star only further strengthens his appeal to the unassuming fan.

I can’t say that he’s evil. He’s just damaged. And if Tumblr has taught me anything, that’s what a true bad boy should stand for.


12. Katsuki Bakugou

Katsuki Bakugou from Boku no Hero Academia

Anime: Boku no Hero Academia

If we’re talking about going against the flow then Bakugou is pretty high up there.

He proclaims war to basically everyone he meets. At one point he denied his own idol when he tried to cheer him up, and most importantly he’s extremely good at drums, somehow.

He was like a bull in a china shop initially. But once we got to see his character develop he became extremely likable, and even relatable.

Some might hate him. But I am a Bakugou stan so here he is.


11. Sasuke Uchiha

Sasuke Uchiha in Naruto: Shippuden

Anime: Naruto: Shippuden

You really have to be something to be able to nearly kill a woman and still have her fawn after you.

The worst part is that he did it to two different women, plus he did it more than once.

I feel like at that point you just get the bad boy trophy. Luckily, he does grow out of this habit. Except almost stabbing his daughter, so he doesn’t get the domestic abuser trophy just yet.

But seriously, how much raw appeal do you need to have to get away with this?


10. Shougo Makishima

Shougo Makishima from Psycho-Pass

Anime: Psycho-Pass

Makishima has quite the twisted appeal. I mean, he’s an absolute psychopath who doesn’t flinch at death itself.

He’s extremely intelligent, playing around with the entire police force as if they were children, only ever being outwitted by Kougami.

But from his perspective it was all for the greater good: the destruction of the Sybil system. He almost has a Pain vibe to him, only he’s easier on the eyes, and easier on the animation.


9. Mugen

Mugen from Samurai Champloo

Anime: Samurai Champloo

I feel like people have started to sleep on Mugen, even though he’s prime bad boy.

He will kick your ass for a bowl of rice and perform some sick acrobatics while doing it.

This guy is very irritable and almost does his best to go against the grain entirely. But that gives him some charm.

He refuses to be ordered around, or tied down for that matter. And he just wants to enjoy life all by his lonesome, which is a mentality that I think deserves some praise.


8. Levi

Levi in Attack on Titan anime

Anime: Attack on Titan

In the anime community, Levi feels like a national treasure. It’s hard to find a character as universally loved as this guy.

And it isn’t because of his outstanding morals and his nakama speeches, but rather his cut-throat mentality and badass nature.

He really cuts most of the fluff and just states things the way they are. He treats bad people in a bad way, and has the power of an entire platoon. He’s beyond reliable, and you already know that his house is always sparkling clean.


7. Naofumi Iwatani

Naofumi Iwatani from The Rising of the Shield Hero

Anime: The Rising of the Shield Hero

Life gave this man too many lemons to make lemonade. So he started squirting them into people’s eyes.

So yeah, he isn’t exactly the most cheerful of characters. And rightfully so.

He despises most of the people in power and isn’t to keen on people in general. But that has never stopped him from lending a helping hand, at an affordable price, to those in need.

Sure, he kind of made the slave trade a bit more profitable. But at least he’s keeping them happy!


6. Ken Kaneki

Ken Kaneki in Tokyo Ghoul anime

Anime: Tokyo Ghoul

Let it be known, I’m referring exclusively to the white-haired badass we all cheered for as he ate his tormentor, not Haise.

Because for that short period Kaneki was a force to be reckoned with. He was out in the streets taking names and dishing out bodies.

He’s the sole reason an entire generation of teenagers is going to have really poor finger joint health in the future. But it doesn’t matter because he was such a bad boy!


5. Kyo Sohma

Kyo Sohma from Fruits Basket anime

Anime: Fruits Basket

Kyo should honestly be the poster boy for bad boys, as he’s one of the most down to earth examples while also being extremely likable.

Sure, he hasn’t caused any genocides likes some other people on this list. But he’s no easy customer.

Because he was hurt in the past, he does his best not to get close to anyone so that they won’t get hurt and he won’t get pitied.

So he shouts, gets angry, and says things he probably shouldn’t say… but rarely (if ever) out of pure malice. He’s just a softie with a hardened and cynical exterior.


4. Itachi Uchiha

Itachi Uchiha from Naruto: Shippuden

Anime: Naruto: Shippuden

Itachi just has that bad boy aesthetic down to a tee.

For such a long time he was a complete mystery, just this all-powerful ninja who massacred his entire clan in a single night.

Even when he does initially show up, besides giving the Internet a choking meme, he doesn’t reveal much. Just adding to his overall mysterious vibe.

But then you learn about his story, realize that he’s a tragic hero and mentally probably the strongest character in the whole series, comparable only to Kakashi.

So at heart he might be a saint. But on the outside he’s a battle hardened bad boy.


3. Haru Yoshida

Haru Yoshida in My Little Monster anime

Anime: My Little Monster

If you were to judge Haru solely by his marks in school, you would probably think that he’s a genius.

And if you talked to him for a couple of minutes you would probably think he’s either stupid or hates you.

This is because my boy really has issues with communicating with people, and somehow always manages to end up in an altercation. Well that, or he makes the situation very awkward.

But it’s never because he’s evil or anything, just a tough past made it so that he doesn’t always know how to behave.

God bless tsunderes I guess, cause they can teach a man how to fish.


2. Sebastian Michaelis

Sebastian Michaelis from Black Butler anime

Anime: Black Butler

With a huge majority of the people on this list, the formula has gone as such: “he seems evil but he is actually quite nice”.

But in Sebastian’s case it’s more like “he seems quite nice but he is actually evil”.

Go figure, he is a demon after all.

He fits his role as a butler perfectly, executing every order with no delay or hesitation. Only occasionally watching his master squirm.

He has no issues with murder, manipulation, blackmail, anything. So why is he on here?

Because man, the dude is just hot and we all know it. Even though he’s literal evil, I can’t resist.


1. Lelouch Lamperouge

Lelouch Lamperouge in Code Geass anime

Anime: Code Geass

Che Guevara is probably the baddest boy in real life. So it’s no wonder that making him a teenage anime teen with super powers only amplifies his appeal.

The man waged an entire revolution for what he believed was right, leaving who knows how many corpses in his wake.

But the difference between a monster and a bad boy, besides being hot, is that Lelouch really put his money where his mouth is and was willing to commit the ultimate sacrifice for his ideals to come into fruition.


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Alec P.

A dedicated weeb and Isekai fanboy who's been stuck in Silver since 2013.