10 Anime Characters Who Can Beat Ken Kaneki

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I have a weird relationship with Kaneki.

On the one hand, his fight against Jason is one of my all-time favorites. And the reason why I cracked my knuckles for a couple of years like an edgelord.

On the other hand, everything past that point completely lost me. Even the manga couldn’t bring me back around.

So as a weird homage to a show I used to love, we’re looking into some anime characters that could whoop Kaneki’s butt.


10. Osamu Dazai

Osamu Dazai from Bungo Stray Dogs

Anime: Bungo Stray Dogs

This matchup heavily relies on the head-canon that Kaneki’s ghoul powers can be turned off.

When you think about it, his powers are very similar to Atsushi (with the healing and buffed-up attacks), so I think that it should be doable.

And if Kaneki reverts to being a normal human, he’s just beyond screwed. Sure, he does have some basic training and can throw a few punches. But there’s no way he’s besting Dazai.

We’re talking about the former all-star of the Port Mafia after all.

The way I see things going down is Kaneki throws out his Kagune, Dazai touches it and nullifies his ability. From that point on, Dazai quickly dashes toward the confused Kaneki and beats him to death.

I’ll admit that this pick is the most debatable one on this list. But hey, it’s no fun if it’s obvious.


9. Kurapika

Kurapika from Hunter x Hunter (2011)

Anime: Hunter x Hunter (2011)

Just like the previous pick, there’re a few conditions that have to be met in order for this one to work.

Namely that either Kaneki becomes a part of the Phantom Troupe, or that Kurapika places his Nen restriction against Kaneki in particular.

Also, Kurapika has to be rocking that Emperor Time buff. Because he’s pretty much fodder if he doesn’t have it activated.

Now that everything is set, we can talk about why Kaneki gets destroyed.

In terms of range, I’d actually give the win to Kurapika. Yes, Kaneki’s Kagune has a pretty decent range, but Kurapika’s chains seem to cover a much wider area.

This is relevant because it means that Kurapika can end the battle before it even begins. All he has to do is activate Chain Jail and then pierce Kaneki’s heart.

If we’re still thinking of Kaneki’s ghoul stats as an ability, Chain Jail would turn off his regen and make his death instant and unavoidable.


8. Metal Bat

Metal Bat from One Punch Man

Anime: One Punch Man

An out-of-control Kaneki turns into a giant centipede. Metal Bat has fought and faired pretty well against giant centipedes.

Need I say more? Probably.

Saying that Kaneki is durable isn’t exactly a hot take, as this man has been stabbed more times than one can count. However, “man with a bat” is somehow rather comparable all things considered.

He can’t grow back limbs, but he can be launched across half the city and shake it off like it was nothing.

And in terms of destructive power, I’d even say that he surpasses Kaneki.

As we’ve seen when he fought the centipede, even one critical hit will echo through the enemy’s entire body and destroy them from the inside out. And a full-powered swing could’ve easily killed Garou.

This is quite impressive when you consider the fact that Garou actually survived a punch from Saitama.

In terms of speed, Metal Bat wins once again, as he kept up with bullet-speed Garou. So, I think he just bests him in every category.

I also just find it hilarious. Kaneki is like the poster boy of edgy anime characters. So being beaten by a normal dude with a bad temper and a metal bat is peak humor for me.


7. Kai Chisaki

Kai Chisaki from My Hero Academia

Anime: My Hero Academia

The win condition for this fight is basically the same as for Dazai, but with a bit more substance.

For one, Chisaki doesn’t even need to reach Kaneki’s main body in order to win. As long as he manages to grab one of his Kagune for a second, he can just dissolve Kaneki’s entire body on a molecular level.

This matchup also doesn’t depend on the fact that ghoul form is a power. So I have that going for me as well.

Plus, Chisaki can even deal with Kaneki’s centipede form. All he’d have to do is touch some part of it, dissolve it, and then make a giant meat suit of his own in order to level the battlefield.

The only way I see Kaneki winning this one is if he immediately went for Chisaki’s head and somehow blitzed him. But that feels like a stretch.


6. Luck Voltia

Luck Voltia from Black Clover

Anime: Black Clover

Since one of the final fights Kaneki had been in was against Juuzou (who used electricity-type power armor), this seems like a pretty interesting matchup.

That being said, Luck scales way higher than Juuzou. In terms of speed, Luck is pretty insane. He can dodge point-blank explosions and move at a pace that’s pretty much like teleportation.

Plus Luck is packing some serious destructive power. Even when messing around, he can create giant arrows of electricity that can destroy targets from miles away.

So besides going in mele range and fighting Kaneki up-close, he can also run away and pelt Kaneki with attacks from afar.

Sure, Luck’s tenacity isn’t anywhere near Kaneki’s. But I don’t think that changes anything. Even regular humans who received training can keep up with Kaneki to some extent, so a human thunderbolt should be way out of his league.


5. Itachi Uchiha

Itachi Uchiha from Naruto: Shippuden

Anime: Naruto: Shippuden

Since Kaneki is Hot Topic’s poster child, it only made sense to have him face off against a fellow beloved edgelord.

And man does Itachi just wipe the floor with him.

When it comes to a physical battle, Kaneki doesn’t even stand a chance.

Itachi can keep up with the higher ranks of the Naruto universe, which is more or less light speed. Plus his Totsuka blade can one-shot Kaneki on impact, regardless of which form he’s in.

But that’s boring.

The way I see this fight going down is Itachi winning with a single point. It’s no secret that Kaneki’s mental health is all over the place, so a slightly morbid genjutsu would probably make him lose all hope immediately.

You could make a case for genjutsu not working on Kaneki, because of all the voices in his head, but he loses regardless. This just seems like a more brutal victory.


4. Akame

Akame from Akame ga Kill!

Anime: Akame ga Kill!

Akame is simply overpowered.

The only way you can counter her is by having stone skin and/or not possessing a soul. Kaneki’s regeneration fits neither criteria and therefore he’s as good as dead.

This is because Akame only needs a single cut in order for her blade to suck out your soul and leave your corpse behind. And Kaneki isn’t exactly known for his defensive playstyle.

Then again, would you make dodging a priority when you can just heal most damage? I know I wouldn’t.

And it isn’t even a question of whether Akame would get a strike in as she blitzes Kaneki a thousand times over in terms of speed.

Overall, this battle would be extremely quick and extremely boring. But I could totally see it happening because getting cursed just seems like something Tokyo Ghoul would introduce at some point.


3. Ban

Ban from The Seven Deadly Sins

Anime: The Seven Deadly Sins

Here I’m specifically talking about early game Ban, as post-hell Ban just seems like overkill.

In terms of tenacity, you can’t really out-scale a dude who’s literally immortal. So Ban has the edge in that department.

In terms of strength, Ban busted down a castle while just playing with Meliodas. On the other hand, it takes Kaneki going all out to even reach building-level destructive power. Another point for Ban.

So, why did I pick such a one-sided battle?

Because I’m really curious as to what would happen if Kaneki ate a piece of Ban.

Would he also be immortal now? Or would Ban’s flesh leave Kaneki’s stomach as he regenerated?

Now that I’ve planted the seed of theorizing anarchy, I can promptly give no explanation and move on.


2. Eren Yeager

Eren Yeager from Attack on Titan

Anime: Attack on Titan

Kaneki can’t really deal with huge enemies. At least not the Kaneki that we’ve seen in the anime that is. So, Eren would be a natural enemy.

Although Kaneki can pierce humans, I sincerely doubt that he could get through an entire Titan body, (especially not if he is using Hardening). Plus, attacking the nape of the neck isn’t exactly the first battle plan one would have unless they know Titan anatomy.

So Eren transforms and then squishes Kaneki into a pulp, or even eats him. Wouldn’t that be the biggest case of irony?

If he wanted to be mobile, Kaneki could use his Kagune to move around. But since this is exactly how the Scouts operate, Eren would be more than ready to counter such a strategy.

And if Kaneki goes into centipede mode, Eren goes into Founding Titan mode, and it’s a GG once more.

Just goes to show who’s the real king of the angry boy world.


1. Mahito

Mahito from Jujutsu Kaisen

Anime: Jujutsu Kaisen

Thematically, Mahito is the most similar to Kaneki. So this seemed like an appropriate final battle here.

Both have insane healing abilities, the mental stability of Kayne West, and building-level destructive force.

However, Mahito wins by default. Because physical attacks don’t mean a thing if there isn’t cursed energy to back it up.

But if we give Kaneki curse energy, then it gets a bit more complicated.

Mahito definitely has more versatility in his kit – constantly changing his form in order to excel at both close and long-range combat.

However, Kaneki’s Kagune probably does a bit more upfront damage than anything Mahito can pull out. Except for his Domain Expansion, that is.

If Mahito manages to land a Domain Expansion, Kaneki is in some deep trouble.

Sure, Mahito barely knows how to use it.

But even the slightest edge would be enough to end this battle.

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Alec P.

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