Introverts are not that rare in anime.
Some are MCs, some are secondary characters. They are characters that drive the stories and are just as seductive as their more socially inclined counterparts.
It is therefore with great pleasure that I introduce you to my favorite introverted characters in anime. No need to babble.
20. Hinako Sakuragi
Anime: Note to Hinako.
Studio Passione did not exist in my mind until I learned (pun intended) of Hinako Note, who portrays a beautiful girl who had no chance to communicate properly.
Hinako moves from the countryside to Tokyo to join her new school’s drama club. Things don’t go as planned though, as the club is having a break. She can’t go home because she’s already in a new school.
Fortunately, her owner Chiaki Hagino managed to convince her to form her own company with other residents.
Hinako has always handled animals better, but it’s time for her to find people to help her thrive.
19. Sawako Kuronuma
Anime: Kimi Ni Todok: From me to you.
I can’t believe the premiere of Kimi no Todok was over a decade ago.
It’s still one of the best Shoujo romance titles of all time – and Sawako and Shota are a great couple.
In particular, Sawako Kuronuma is a high school student who pursues a true friendship, but there’s a small problem:
She looks a bit like the iconic horror character from the Ring.
Although Sawako is a very sweet, hardworking and extraordinary friend, she didn’t have the chance to show this side of herself because she looked miserable at first.
That’s where Shota comes in.
Little by little, Sawako gains a foothold in the social sphere and reminds everyone that sometimes introverts just need the right person to enter their world at the right time.
18. Ichimatsu Matsuno
Anime: Osomatsu (Mr. Osomatsu)
You can never have too many episodes of Osomatsu.
Over three seasons, six identical siblings have fans all over the world.
Not many people will say this, but Ichimatsu Matsuno is my favorite.
The fourth brother has always been considered this antisocial (and sometimes just plain antisocial) person. And yet it was because he was struggling to maintain this popular and extroverted image of a teenager.
He likes cats more than people. And I can relate to that. Even when he tries to communicate again, he gets tired.
Like any true introvert, Ichimatsu’s energy for communication, especially with large crowds and foreigners, is too limited compared to extroverts.
17. Hinata Hyuga
It seemed like an eternity, but for Naruto fans, a dream finally came true when Naruto and Hinata officially met – and that’s what Boruto is all about.
Hinata is simply one of the most popular introverted anime of the last two decades.
From her first appearance she had evoked this feeling of shyness and softness.
I totally agree that she would be like that if it was just her choice, but it wasn’t.
Like many people, Hinata has had to deal with family problems that have affected her self-esteem.
It’s good that she found comfort and support, not only from Naruto, but also from her team, keeping her this gentle and caring woman. But someone who knows how to assert his authority skillfully.
Anime: Sketch Hidamari
Hidamari Sketch remains one of my favorite titles, mostly because of the excellent casting.
And Juno is a charming and likable character.
You see, introversion doesn’t mean you have no friends at all, it means you prefer to spend your time in silence, and if you must socialize, it’s best to do so with a few close friends.
And Juno evolves from his very shy personality, but what I like even more is that Hidamari Sketch has explored the theme of growth.
Juno is gifted in the arts, but she’s not sure where she wants to go with her career.
I’ve experienced it too, and while it’s not just a problem for introverts, it can be very stressful for them because they spend a lot of time with their own thoughts.
15. Shinichi Izumi
Anime: A parasite, at best.
The parasite is still a miracle.
The manga began in 1989 and ended in 1995. The fact that it was completely updated by Madhouse in 2014, of all people, is just breathtaking.
I thought this show was going to be another crappy, blood-filled title. – I was wrong.
Shinichi Izumi has one of the most beautiful characters ever created in an anime.
This high school student has gone from an awkward but nice guy with glasses to someone who is cool, capable, confident and ready to take on the world for his loved ones.
Some might say he cheated because the parasitic alien increased his physical abilities, but it’s hard to say he experienced this with Migi, given the horror (and the philosophical conundrums).
14. Armin Arlert
Anime: Attack on Titan.
The Shingeki no Kyojin is already over – and what an adventure!
It’s my favorite Shounen so far, and I’m not ashamed to give each season a perfect score.
Armin Arlert is phenomenal.
The development of his character is remarkable. He has always been afraid, partly because he is not physically strong or able to fight (at least compared to Mikasa and Eren).
But Armin is one of the best strategists in the entire series. I like it when people recognize each other’s strengths and weaknesses.
Armin always had potential, but his determination to help his friends (and humanity) required others to recognize his worth and help him move forward.
13. Mio Akiyama
I got a soft spot for K-On. It’s one of the series that introduced me to Kyoto animation – and it’s Naoko Yamada’s first animated film.
Like any great title, K-On has well-written characters.
Mio Akiyama is just as shy as Azusa Nakano.
But that doesn’t mean she barely talks. K he doesn’t understand that introverts aren’t always quiet.
Of course Mio doesn’t like attention. That’s why she took the bass instead of the guitar.
But when she’s in the clubroom with her few but beloved friends, she talks more and expresses herself better.
Mio is a songwriter in the band, and I’m sure introverts can see that. You often need a creative outlet for your feelings and thoughts.
12. Henri Sonohara
I love Durarara – and I certainly love Henri Sonohara. Brain’s Base has brilliantly adapted this light-hearted novel.
The design of Henri’s character is just perfect:
Short black hair, well dressed, glasses and a school uniform underline her feminine dignity.
His facial expressions are also excellent and help to express his introverted nature.
Like many of the entries on my list, Henri finds great friends who accept him for who he is. But she’s still very shy.
She had a terrible childhood and deserved all the privacy and social comfort she could get. By the way, I like revealing his secret identity.
Anime: The animals
In Legosi and Kimi Ni Todoke, Sawako Kuronuma shares the same dilemma: Appearances that ruin their chances of making friends – or at least looking cozy.
It’s a gray wolf, a carnivore.
With several anthropomorphic animals living and working together, it is understandable that some of them make Legosha.
Like the real world, his world has its share of prejudice and discrimination.
But Legosi is not that kind of person.
Unlike what he has experienced, this socially awkward wolf treats others with respect. He is empathetic and always tries to see things from the other person’s point of view.
Legosi is a fantastic character. Someone who doesn’t pour oil on the fire of society’s evil, but also someone who has to accept his or her identity(s).
10. Kaoru Nishimi
Anime: Children on the slopes
The other person I can personally identify with is Kaoru Nishimi.
And no, I’m not very good at the piano.
But I know what it’s like to move from one place to another. How you lose touch with your friends in the neighborhood and at school, and how it won’t be the same even if you stay in touch online or on the phone.
So Kaoru’s introversion seems more realistic than just for the story.
His story, from the behavior of his extended family to how the living Sentaroe becomes his friend, shows that introverts’ lives are largely shaped by others. No matter how much they usually want to be alone.
9. Mitsuya Majime
Anime: Large lane
Honestly, I prefer the live adaptation of Fune wo Amu, but the anime adaptation is also worthwhile.
It’s natural for MC Mitsuya Majime to be on my list, because the world of The Great Passage, which involves the quiet but laborious process of creating a new vocabulary (for years), fits perfectly into the world of introverts.
To say Mitsuya loves books and language would be an understatement.
He lives and breathes it so much that at first he feels very uncomfortable in public gatherings that it affects his chances of becoming a respected and worthy figure at work.
But he’s coming out of his shell.
Mitsuya is still largely reticent, but he is becoming aware of his responsibilities at work, at home, and in life.
8. Chizuru Hishiro
ReLIFE could have taken a more childish and fantastical path for this story of a world-weary young man who has the rare opportunity to go back to high school and set things right.
Fortunately, he presented with a sincere heart the difficulties of moving from youth to adulthood – and this would not have been possible without Chizuru Hishiro.
While I’m more of an An Onoya fan because An has glasses, Chizuru is a smart girl who has trouble communicating with others.
Chizuru even has trouble smiling or communicating in a relaxed way.
But then you find out more about her and the reasons for her current condition: that her current behavior was not her own choice and that there are several factors to consider.
After all, Chizuru, like everyone else, needs help.
Even though she seems to be independent.
7. Shinji Ikari
Anime: Evangelism of Neon Genesis
Some people may think that Shinji is not on that list. They’ll argue that he’s more of a depressed, broken teenager than an introvert.
But here’s the problem:
There is no mutual exclusion between depression (or any other extreme psychological, emotional, or mental condition) and introversion.
The fact that Shinji is often in a state of utter confusion, despair, anger, loneliness and self-hatred does not mean that he is not introverted.
Isn’t his habit of listening to music to drown out the world and his own thoughts a common activity for many introverts?
Moreover, people become who they are for a variety of reasons.
Sometimes the reasons are terrible: Abuse, harassment, social isolation, betrayal, years spent in a noisy and chaotic neighborhood or home.
The Gospel of Neon’s Genesis has been the subject of much praise and scholarly discussion (and memes) for decades, and Shinji’s complex and detailed life offers viewers much food for thought.
6. Shigeo Kageyama
Anime: Mob Psycho 100
Mob Psycho 100 has two excellent seasons – and I wish I could say the same for One Punch Man.
The sweet MC Shigeo Kageyama has to keep his emotions under control thanks to his psychic abilities. He doesn’t always succeed, but that’s understandable given his situation. Of course, everyone has negative feelings in one way or another.
And even when life sometimes treats him badly, Shigeo remains compassionate.
I was pleased when he became more and more comfortable expressing his opinions.
I am also very aware of how he felt when he took the stage to give his speech at the student presidential election.
I only had to speak in front of an entire class a few times, but I always left the stage regretting what I said (or didn’t say). Cheer up, Shigeo.
Anime: Tanaka is always indifferent.
I like Tanaka.
This 12-episode masterpiece was the reason I fell in love with Silver Link Studio and took the non-Biyori practice train shortly after.
Every episode makes me so jealous of Tanaka.
He can usually sleep, even at school, because his classmates notice how lazy, lethargic and sleepy he is.
He is also accompanied by a reliable (and candy-loving) best friend, Oota.
Tanaka’s adventures at school and in the community take place in a warm and everyday atmosphere.
That’s exactly the kind of guy you see for the first time – and you know immediately that he’s an introvert.
Of course, he is sometimes frustrated by sleepiness and disinterest. But occasionally he is aware of his bad habits and tries to make an effort to be more hospitable.
I know it’s impossible to live in reality like him. But that’s all the more reason for Silver Link to announce a second season.
4. Hachiman Hikigaya
Anime: My romantic teen comedy SNAFU
It’s interesting to note that the reception of Hachiman (and the series itself) can be extreme.
I saw a lot of praise for MK and the two tracks, but I also saw a lot of hate for them.
Well, I’m one of those people who enjoys the alchemist.
He’s apathetic (like the other entries on my list) and has a cynical view of youth and society in general. Of course, his teacher doesn’t take his comments lightly, so Hachiman is ordered to join the volunteer service society.
Through the anime, which has three great seasons, you see Hachiman face his long-held beliefs.
I’ve been there: creating an image of total independence and always rejecting the help of others, not being comfortable with the idea of having no friends and feeling superior for no reason.
But Hachiman eventually realizes that people matter, and that healthcare (and caring) is actually cool.
3. Tatsuhiro Satou
Anime: Welcome to NHK
Like Shinji Ikari, Tatsuhiro Satou is a character who shows how introverts can interact differently. Despite their general desire for rest and minimal social activity, their lives are shaped by several factors.
Tatsuhiro is not only an introvert, he is a NO.
He had a panic attack in college. Since then he has lived in social isolation.
You live alone in your apartment, depend on your parents’ allowance and escape the world of video games.
Tatsuhiro is cynical, narcissistic, selfish, traumatized and embarrassingly lonely.
He can do something. But he has reached a point where consciousness is no longer sufficient to free himself from his own prison.
But eventually help comes.
His path to self-improvement is anything but smooth. It’s boring, exhausting and sometimes even hopeless.
Still, there is eventually progress, albeit meager, compared to what others his age have already achieved.
Welcome to NH has broken my heart many times.
But it is also the key to my introspection and my efforts to change for the better. Bless Tatsuhiro.
2. Rei Kiriyama
Anime: Mars comes like a lion
Who knew that Sangatsu no lion would be so heartbreaking and heartbreaking?
The second season only got better – and I’m sure the third is well deserved.
Rei Kiriyama is a young professional shogi player, socially awkward, but highly skilled.
But it’s not about the sport.
Yes, you will see Rei play shogi. But March Comes In Like a Lion is an examination and exploration of pain, depression, trauma and the long healing process.
The series is full of realistic characters, all struggling with their personal problems (bringing social issues to the forefront). And it would be an understatement to say that Rei’s story won’t be one of the best in anime history.
1. Hutaru Oreki
When I think of anime introverts, the first person that comes to mind is Houtarou Oreki.
I especially think of the GIF where he’s at school, lazily chatting and looking out the window.
Kyoto Animation has mastered the art of character creation and animation, and Oreki is one of its most prominent MCs.
Like Tanaka of Tanaka-kun Always Leafless, Oreki wants nothing more than to save energy.
They seem apathetic, always asleep, but these two introverts can show their cognitive and empathic genius whenever they want.
But while Tanaka lives his normal school life, Oreki is immersed in a world of mystery (not deadly, but intriguing) by the curious Chitanda and the rest of the Classics Club.
Hyouka is one of the best series in the world. And Oreki can keep his energy now, knowing that he’s still my favorite introvert in anime.