The 10 Best Man Versus Self Anime Series, Ranked

As people created narratives, the stories being told revolved around conflict. From ancient ethnic myths to modern media, plots rely on the presence of conflicting interests or goals to move a story forward, progressing character and story development. In most folktales, these conflicts are straightforward, either pitting people against each other or portraying the dispute between humanity and more powerful immortal forces, such as the gods or nature.

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But, as the narrative arts grew in complexity, the idea of ​​conflict became more nuanced. In modern conflict theory in fiction, the Man versus Self type of conflict portrays the individual himself as the main obstacle he has to overcome. Whether it’s an internal disagreement, his traumatic past, or a personality flaw, the types of situations explored in Man vs. Himself narratives are some of the most unique and thought-provoking in narrative media.

10 Mob Psycho 100’s hero has to come to terms with his emotions to control his powers

Mob Psycho 100 mob

Mob Psycho 100 is loved by its fans for the show’s explosive and unique action, hilarious character interactions, and inventive, multifaceted cast. However, the themes of the series run much deeper than those of a typical shonen action show. Mob Psycho 100 explores the psychological struggles of its teenage protagonist with incredible nuance, turning Mob’s explosive and uncontrollable supernatural powers into a metaphor for his emotional instability.

Like a typical high school student, Mob struggles to understand his emotions, fit into society, and find a place for himself in the world. Unfortunately, the boy’s feelings are closely tied to his incredible psychic abilities, causing Mob to lose control when he becomes overstimulated.

9 Cowboy Bebop depicts a man against self-conflict with a heartbreaking conclusion

cowboy bebop peak and jet

Some Man versus Self narratives explore not only the conflict a character might face with their current identity, but also the disturbing mistakes they might have made in the past. cowboy bebop he doesn’t give his audience much context for his characters’ backgrounds. However, the main themes of the series explore the inability of people to run from their past.

Spike was caught between trying to distance himself from his old life and his inability to stop looking back at the horrors of the past. Ultimately, this conflict resulted in his downfall, which is considered one of the most heartbreaking anime conclusions to this day.

8 March Comes In Like A Lion is a candid study on depression

Rei Sad in March comes like a lion

Dealing with mental health issues can be a difficult and exhausting battle for people who suffer from depression, anxiety, and other disorders. in the case of the March comes like a lion protagonist, Kiriyama Rei, depression and inner turmoil contributed to his isolation from the world, his peers, and his family.

As a genius professional shogi player, Rei has a successful career ahead of him. However, the game does not brighten the sad and lonely days of him. Rei has to overcome his fears and traumas throughout the series, learning to trust and depend on other people.

7 Perfect Blue analyzes the internal dissonance between the authentic and the performative self

perfect blue rumi

Themes of duality and the conflicting nature of human self-perception are incredibly prominent in the work of Satoshi Kon, the most iconic anime director of the 20th century.

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Its impressive physiological horror. perfect blue focuses on the identity conflict of Mima Kirigoe, a former pop idol who decided to pursue an acting career full time. Through complex metaphors, Satoshi Kon explores the dissonance Mima is experiencing between her artist identity and the more mature and grounded roles she attempts to assume while criticizing the toxicity of idol culture’s obsessive and dehumanizing elements.

6 Monogatari is nothing like a typical Harem anime series.

the monogatari series redefined the universally ignored harem genre by adding unorthodox creative, thematic, visual, and narrative elements to the plot and characters. Issues of hidden identities and infighting are very prevalent in the show, as most of the Monogatari characters struggle with some parts of who they are as people.

While each arc of the series tackles myriad unique themes, the Man versus Self conflict looms at the center of them all. All the characters in the series face conflicts between their ideal and real selves, which usually manifest in the form of oddities.

5 Neon Genesis Evangelion Protagonist Struggles With Self-Acceptance Due To Childhood Trauma

Shinji pilots the Eva in Neon Genesis Evangelion.

The legendary deconstruction of the mecha genre, Neon Genesis Evangelion, was one of the most influential anime series of the ’90s. Unlike most of its predecessors, Hideaki Anno’s masterpiece focused less on the action spectacle components and political aspects of the genre. Instead, he favors complex characterization and in-depth analysis of the internal conflicts of his cast.

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Most of the series’ psychological and philosophical themes are explored through Shinji Ikari’s struggles, his devastating search for a proper place in society, the struggles to please his demanding and distant father, and coping with opposing desires. of his developing psyche.

4 Tatami Galaxy embarks on a witty and offbeat journey through the mind of its hero

It is impossible for a person to lead a life free of mistakes or regrets. In the end, no one can always make the right decision that results in the best possible outcome. Overcoming the unavoidable fear of regretting your actions and moving on is the message behind tatami galaxyone of Masaaki Yuasa’s most respected series.

As he navigates the infinite possibilities of his “rosy college life,” the show’s unnamed protagonist realizes that an ideal life simply doesn’t exist, and the only enemy keeping him from enjoying college is his own unreasonable attitude and expectations. .

3 FLCL makes its protagonist go through severe psychological transformations

Haruko Hitting With Guitar In FLCL

FLCL is a difficult series to understand on the first watch. Its frenetic pace, non-linear narrative structure, and intricate story development make for a fun yet confusing medium. However, the iconic show has a deeper message hidden beneath its surface-level surreal antics.

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FLCL is ultimately a heartfelt and nuanced deconstruction of coming-of-age stories that questions the single concept of adulthood. The series’ compelling themes are portrayed through the eyes of its teenage protagonist, Naota, as she struggles to control her urges, loses trust in her mentors, and ultimately changes her attitude toward adolescence. .

two Kara No Kyoukai portrays a literal conflict between Shiki’s split personalities

Although it is a less well-known property of TYPE-MOON than the franchise of destinythe urban fantasy series Kara no Kyoukai it has a ton of dedicated fans and a prominent cult following. The show’s protagonist, Shiki, possesses a unique supernatural ability to see the mortality of all living and non-living objects in the form of lines.

One of the central conflicts in the series centers on the dual nature of Shiki Ryougi, whose body houses two personalities, Shiki and SHIKI. The two identities represent the male and female sides of the character, malicious and good-natured natures that reside within the main character.

1 Ping Pong: Animation Isn’t Really About Ping Pong

Ping Pong The Animation Features Intense Anime Table Tennis Action

Ping Pong: The Animation is one of the more unconventional sports anime in the medium, focusing less on the sport itself and more on its characters’ motives and internal struggles. In the narrative, a ping pong club acts as a stage that shapes its members, helping them face their own demons and make peace with who they are.

As a result, the history of Ping Pong: The Animation shapes one of the most authentic and grounded coming-of-age narratives, where the sport is simply a vantage point for the characters to realize their true potentials and desires.

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