There are many animated series where the supporting characters stole the show so much that viewers saw them as the true protagonists of the story. The same happened for these series but in a more literal sense.
Whether it was because of a twist or their actions which drastically changed the course of the story, these secondary characters moved from the background and the limelight, almost overtaking the protagonists designated as the heroes of the story. ‘anime.
WARNING: Spoilers ahead.
ten Baccano! – Isaac Dian and Miria Harvent were the only constant in the timeline
With its gargantuan distribution throughout history, Baccano! viewers and characters confused with his apparent absence of a focal hero. If anyone had to guess who the protagonist was, it would usually be the budding mobster Firo Prochainezo. As much as Firo fit the mold of the bland protagonist, he was hardly the star of his own arc.
The real stars of the story Baccano! were Isaac and Miria, the goofy thieves and comedic reliefs who inexplicably fought their way into everything from gang wars to the feud of the immortals. Without the 1700s prologue, Isaac and Miria were key characters in the anime’s main events, as their eccentric heroism saved the day on more than one occasion.
9 Durarara !! – Celty Sturluson was Ikebukuro’s true naive newcomer
Durarara !! open with high school student Mikado Ryuugamine providing the narration, implying that his experiences as a newcomer to the shady paradise of Ikebukuro would be the common thread running through the sprawling anime. In truth, Mikado was more experienced in the underground than he suggested, since he was the founder of The Dollars gang.
The real avatar of the naive audience in the anime was Celty, the Dullahan turned courier who played a key role in the city’s many crises. While Mikado only appeared when The Dollars did, Celty was all over town and pushing the story forward. Durarara !! even reached her peak when she recovered her identity and lost memories. Meanwhile, Mikado’s anxieties were resolved much earlier.
8 A Certain Magic Index – Mikoto Misaka has become the face of the franchise
Some magic clue focuses on the adventures of Toma Kamijo and Index through Academy City, a city-wide school populated by quirky characters and espers like the level 5 electromaster, Mikoto Misaka. For newcomers, Mikoto was Toma’s most obvious love interest and a recurring character, but for everyone, she’s the star of the franchise.
Mikoto started out as a supporting character in Index, but she became so popular that she got her own spin-off, A certain scientific railgun, which then eclipsed everything else. Since then, Mikoto has become the franchise’s de facto protagonist, while Toma has been relegated to a more secondary role, although his streak continues to this day.
seven The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya – Yuki Nagato was the protagonist of another reality
For most anime, Yuki stood aside in the corner of the SOS Brigade Headquarters. Sometimes Kyon even joked that she was part of the furniture in the room. Kyon and audience perceptions changed during the final film The disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya, where Yuki usurped Haruhi’s place as the central figure to change reality.
Although this world was temporary, it spread to The disappearance of Nagato Yuki-Chan, where Yuki moved beyond Kyon’s role as the protagonist of a school-life anime. Here, Haruhi studied at another school and only occasionally dropped out of the Literature Club, that version of the reality of the SOS Squad of which Yuki was president.
6 Bokurano – Jun Ushiro saw the game to its bitter end
When 15 humble children were chosen by a Higher Power to defend Earth by piloting the giant Zearth mecha, Takashi Waku took matters into his own hands and rallied his friends to their new mission. The kids trusted Waku, and he even volunteered to operate on Zearth in their first fight. But then he died in the second episode of the anime.
The horrible truth was that whoever piloted Zearth died after the fight, whether or not he won. As the group dwindled, the anime gradually focused on the Ushiro siblings, especially the abusive brother Jun. Towards the end, Jun realized how horrible he was to Kana and the others, which motivated him to pilot Zearth in his place and die while atoning for his sins. .
5 Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann – Simon took the mantle of his dead brother
At first glance, Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann was as stimulating as an action-packed anime should be. The anime was directed by Kamina, the undisputed hero who inspired both underground humans and viewers to fight for their freedom. Next to him were his friends, his sweetheart, Yoko, and his constantly underrated younger brother, Simon.
During the first few episodes, it seemed like he would lead and end the fight, but Kamina passed away before the first arc even ended. Simon then took Kamina’s place, revealing that the anime was her wartime coming-of-age story. In the remaining episodes, Simon stepped out of his brother’s shadow to become his own leader and his own person.
4 Higurashi: When they cry – Rika Furude and Satoko Hojo were more than just potential love interests
At any time Higurashi Reset the June 1983 massacre, someone from Keiichi’s group of friends would be the new central figure. Despite this revolving door, many have assumed that Keiichi Maebara is the default main character. While Keiichi was an important constant, he only had a supporting role in the story of Rika (left), the real protagonist and part of his harem.
Simply put, the Time Loops are due to Rika’s death at the hands of Takano Miyo. At one point, Rika became aware of her reincarnations and tried to break the cycle. This was then returned again in Gou, where Rika’s despised childhood friend and (possible) lover Satoko (right) was revealed to be the villain and tragic protagonist of the sequel.
3 Re: Creators – The anime was the Meteora Osterreich story to tell
Despite a massive cast, it seemed pretty obvious to viewers that regular high school student Sota Mizuhino and light novel / anime warrior Selesia Upitiria were the main characters. Both assumptions were wrong not only because Sota was slowly pushed into a supporting role and Selesia passed away, but because Meteora took control of the narrative.
Meteora was a JRPG’s exhibit NPC, and true to her nature, she kept an eye out for the Creations’ collision with reality as it happened. Her comically biased storytelling in the meta recap episode actually foreshadowed her status as a true protagonist, which was cemented by her novel, “Re: Creators,” which she wrote after choosing to stay in the human world.
2 Puella Magi Madoka Magica – Anime Was Homura Akemi’s Time Loop
Even though her name was in the title, Madoka Kaname was not Puella Magi Madoka Magicathe protagonist. You could argue that Sayaka Miki was the typical magical heroine, while Madoka was her non-magical best friend. The truth is, the silent antihero Homura was the real protagonist, as the anime could only happen through his actions.
MadokaThe big twist about the anime was that it was the nth iteration of a time loop in which Homura trapped reality. Homura did this as part of his desperate fight to save Madoka from death or worse, and that fight was the real crux of the anime. At most, Madoka was a sentient Deus Ex Machina for whom Homura and the Incubators fought tooth and nail.
1 SSSS.Gridman – Akane Shinjo needed to be saved from her inner darkness
Like any good tokusatsu story, the animated sequel to Gridman the hyper agent focused on an unpretentious child (namely Yuta Hibiki) inheriting the power from Gridman and using it for good. While Yuta and Gridman played the role of the infallible hero to perfection, the anime was not their origin story but a character study of the antagonist, Akane.
In truth, Yuta, Gridman, and their allies were little more than side characters and stepping stones to Akane’s self-realization. This explains why Yuta and Gridman were static paragons, while Akane got the most dynamic character development. The finale mostly focused on Akane, while Gridman returned to her dimension after saving her.
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