15 Best Anime With An Evil/Villain Main CharacterThis post may contain affiliate links. If you buy something we may get a small commission at no extra cost to you. (Learn more).
Sometimes you want your protagonist to be like a beacon of light, with perfect morals and nakama power levels that most mortals can’t understand.
But other times, you just want someone evil.
It keeps you on your toes. And the edge that comes with an evil MC is usually pretty hype.
So which anime are worth checking out that feature a villainous MC? We’ll be ranking some of the best in this list.
15. Code Geass
I want to get the classics out of the way first, as I honestly doubt there are a lot of people who don’t know these gems.
Code Geass is a story of rebellion. But there’s no demon lord or alien race, just a different country.
People from that country are not evil. They have hopes and dreams of their own, and do their best to protect their new home.
But one man decides to turn all of that on its head. As he, a formal royal, wants the glory of his old nation back. And wants to avenge those who were hurt during war, most notably his family.
He does pull a good guy move in the end, but man was the death toll high.
14. Death Note
Death Note hits a similar “note” in the sense that a single dude decides what’s best for his country and for the people. And he uses his newly acquired powers to get that result.
The protagonist Light is definitely a lot more insane, and puts himself way closer to God than Lelouch ever did. Even when he was offing criminals, he had no right to do so.
But when the police catches wind of his operation, that’s where all morals get thrown out the window.
Everyone in his way is in the way of justice and needs to be dealt with. There’s some kinda evil in there.
13. Akame ga Kill!
Now this show fools you into thinking that the main cast is made up of good guys. But I honestly think that no one in this show fits under the category of “good”.
I mean, for one they’re all assassins and have murdered those who oppose them.
And we have seen that their enemies are not pure evil either. They’re basically just soldiers following orders who have loving families waiting for them at home.
The entire show is a bloodbath. And I gave up on calling the main characters “good guys” quite a while ago.
12. Assassination Classroom
Pre spoiler section: at first glance, this show seems way too PG and light to have a serious evil character.
But nope. One of the main characters and the central face of she show, Koro-sensei, literally threatens the government that he’s going to blow up the moon unless they adhere to his demands.
He then teaches a group of children how to be assassins.
I mean, he taught them other things as well… but still kind of sus.
Now spoilers ahead:
Okay so he wasn’t planning on blowing up the moon. But the dude is literally one of the best assassins in the world, and probably has more skeletons in his closet than any typical “bad guy”.
This one is a bit philosophical for sure.
To boil it down, the main characters gets the choice to either get a normal life, or for his country to prosper. And he gives it no second thought and goes after what he believes is his right, even though it meant countless deaths.
Heck, he even killed quite a few soldiers to get his way, going as far as to fight his own brother.
Although I do not want to call Hyakkimaru evil, he’s so far removed from the typical good guy MC that I almost feel like he fits into this list.
10. Great Pretender
The cast of the Great Pretender features the best international group of conmen the world has ever seen.
They travel around the world targeting rich assholes and not letting up until they’ve scammed them of every last dime.
That last part might make them sound like the next Robin Hood, but they don’t give any of that money away. Rather they just buy an island, some drinks, throw a party, stuff like that.
So they might not be warlords. But I think it would be a stretch to call them the good guys.
Nanbaka takes place in Japan’s number 1 prison, and the criminals that live within.
Just think of Deadman Wonderland but no one was falsely convicted.
Even though the main four characters seem like jovial dudes who just want to play around, you have to remember that they’re in prison for a very good reason.
In fact, this is far from their first prison stint. They just happened to escape all the others.
Nico and Juugo are especially worrying, but I don’t want to spoil why.
8. Talentless Nana
Talentless Nana is a giant “Among Us” game, but the impostor is heavily outnumbered and the crewmates all have superpowers.
As you might have guessed, we follow the impostor on this ride as a young girl named Nana is tasked with killing all of her superpowered classmates.
She doesn’t have any powers herself. So she uses a combination of wit, deceit, charm, and poison to start thinning out the herd.
But the more people she kills, the more the difficulty goes up, as everyone is more careful and more hostile.
7. Blast of Tempest
Okay this one is really confusing, but I’ll try to keep it short without spoiling anything.
A dude dates his best friend’s sister in secret, which is already a bit shitty.
But then a goddess gets thrown into the mix, and a giant power tug of war commences with the two friends being left a choice on which side to pull.
And let’s just say that a lot of lying, some backstabbing, and the most detailed whodunit game begins soon after.
It might sound confusing, but give it a watch and you’ll understand where I’m coming from.
6. Hellsing Ultimate
Alucard is basically the definition of evil.
He’s an overpowered vampire dude who can massacre entire armies at will, and consistently takes on forms that even my paralysis demon fears.
He doesn’t care too much for anyone but his master. And he loves toying with his enemies as they approach death.
His enemies, by the way, are literal popes and saints. Just in case you weren’t getting the evil vibe yet.
But even then, Alucard is hands-down the most likable character in that entire show. So I’ll turn a blind eye to all the murder.
5. Terror in Resonance
Terror in Resonance follows two terrorist buddies as they plant bombs around the city and taunt the police to find them.
How do they taunt them, you might ask?
By giving away the location of the bomb through riddles.
That might sound like one giant prank or something, but they’re very much still terrorists. Regardless of how much that ending made me cry and whether I thought they were justified, a terrorist is a terrorist.
4. Elfen Lied
Elfen Lied was the first anime where I actually felt like I needed parental supervision.
The central character has a superpower, and was experimented on consistently because of it. And let’s just say that she wasn’t quite thrilled with this state of affairs.
So she used her incredibly powerful invisible tendrils to politely ask the scientist and security guards to allow her to leave.
Yeah, that’s what happened. I totally did not have nightmares after a certain graveyard scene. Totally.
3. Vinland Saga
You know how in most cases, the protagonist whose father was killed vows to get revenge and then travels the country gaining new friends and learning about themselves? Then they realize that revenge was not the answer, stuff like that?
Well the protagonist of Vinland Saga kind of screwed up the formula.
He wanted to kill his father’s murderer, but just ended up becoming his private assassin instead.
And as his assassin, he murdered dozens and dozens of completely innocent men. Just in the hopes of becoming stronger and getting revenge.
That’s quite a new way to go about it.
The protagonist of Overlord doesn’t really want to be evil. He’s just stuck with that role as he gets isekai’d into his video game where all the NPCs view him in that light.
Wanting to play the part, but also in hopes of finding other stuck players, the man just decides to take over the world.
And if that isn’t a bad guy narrative, I don’t know what is.
Although to be honest, his henchmen are far worse than he ever could be. Shalltear is one ruined tea pot away from a genocide, I can feel it.
1. The Saga of Tanya the Evil
She literally has the word “evil” in her title, and I can’t say that she hasn’t deserved it.
Although she’s technically just a soldier doing her duty, she goes about it in the worst way.
She feels no remorse whatsoever from murder. Never remembering the faces of those she has killed. And even her own subordinates aren’t safe around her.
If you’re acting up, she’ll bash your head open with a pistol and berate you with insults as you’re eating dirt. Yeah, she’s something else.