1919. This is the date when US Congress passed the National Prohibition Act initiating one of the darkest periods of American history. Alcohol sale and consumption were forbidden, so people who wanted to keep drinking had to find more inventive ways to do it. In an era in which going to pubs, buying a couple of shots, and having some fun had turned into a felony, the illegal manufacturing and sale of liquor became a major business for organized crime. Mob groups scuffled in order to get their hands on informal productions of alcohol made in private homes, fueling this way a rise in gang violence that led to killings and great massacres not even the police was able to put an end to.
Who watched 91 Days knows the whole story very well, considering how carefully Shuka Studios were able to depict the American social situation in the Twenties. Set in a town symbolically named Lawless where people live in the constant fear of being punished by a restrictive government or being killed by what Italians call “La Malavita” - namely the Mob – 91 Days is not precisely Al Capone’s story, but traumatic events and the pain made-up characters such as the protagonist Angelo Lagusa and his childhood friend Corteo had to experience because of monopoly on booze are authentic and tragic.
In a story taking place in a godforsaken city where everyone loses everything (s)he holds dear there is no room left for anything but darkness, so today Honey’s Anime wants to try to list for you the top 10 unluckiest 91 Days characters! Enjoy this countdown and watch out for spoilers!
10. Fio Vanetti
In position #10 of our Unluckiest Character countdown we find Fio Vanetti, the sole female character appearing in the anime. For the ones who don’t remember her and her role in the story, Fio Vanetti is Vincent Vanetti’s daughter and Nero and Frate Vanetti’s sister. Just her origins and relatives, it’s easy to understand why Fio deserves to be on this list. But Fio’s parenthood isn’t what makes her one of the most ill-fated characters in 91 Days.
Fio is a selfless and caring character that would do anything just to make her father happy. Indeed, it’s thanks to Fio that Vanetti family was able to negotiate a truce with Don Galassia and become one of the most powerful mob groups around, having under their control not only Lawless but also Chicago. Married off by the will of her father to Don Galassia’s son, Ronald, Fio never complains about the sacrifice made for her family’s sake, even though she had to become the bride of an awful guy like Ronald Galassia.
9. Ganzo Alary
Ganzo Alary planned to beat Vincent Vanetti, unify the family, and take control of all the illegal trafficking of liquor. It is said that karma always catches up with you soon or later. This is exactly what happens to devious Ganzo after trying to get involved with revengeful Angelo Lagusa in order to use him for his own purposes.
Ganzo was one of the four people who accompanied Vincent, Nero and Vanno to wipe out Lagusa family and the one who sent Angelo an anonymous letter to reveal him the details of the night of the murder. Claiming he is on Angelo’s side, Ganzo thinks he is safe from Angelo’s homicidal rage, but he doesn’t know the poor orphan has some plans for him too. Indeed, sure that Angelo’s next step was to be killing Vincent as they had plotted out together, Ganzo receives a nasty surprise when Don Galassia is shot in his place. Stunned by the sudden change of plan, Ganzo is pointed out as a traitor by Galassia’s lackeys and killed on the spot. To insult to injury; could he be any more unlucky than this?
8. Vanno Clemente
Position #8 goes to another unfortunate character, that is Vanno Clemente. Vanno Clemente’s finest hours were short but intense, as he had the possibility of staying loyal to Nero and be deeply trusted by him until his very end. Unfortunately, he was also one of the people who ended up liking Angelo more quickly and wasn’t careful enough to stay away from him when he had the chance. In fact, Vanno was one of those perpetrators who had murdered Angelo’s family. Vanno is also the first one to be erased by Angelo’s revenge list, in the second episode of the series.
Yet, what makes Vanno a particularly doomed character is not only the fact he gets surprised and killed by Angelo, but also his one-sided love for Fio Vanetti. Indeed, Vanno has a crush on his boss’ sister since the day he has become part of Vanetti’s mob, but he couldn’t do anything to convince Nero and Vincent to not force Fio to marry Galassia’s son. First punished by heaven which made him fall in love with someone he will never have, then punished by Angelo with death, it is pretty clear that luck didn’t run that much for Vanno.
Barbero is probably the most loyal to Vanetti family and Nero in particular – who he tries to protect desperately – but he pays for this loyalty very badly when he comes to mess with Angelo. Indeed, Barbero’s misfortune doesn’t lay in having being killed by Ganzo for finding out about his and Angelo’s plan alone, but in having always been considered a bother by his boss’ son who had never paid attention to his warnings.
Indeed, Barbero didn’t trust Angelo from the very beginning and investigates about his past and relationships in order to uncover and expose him, but he is never able to prove anything. Being Nero, blinded by Angelo’s masterful act, Barbero ends up becoming troublesome in his young master’s eye, who claims he has no reason for doubting his most valuable man. In the end, Barbero is not even able to save Nero’s family when he finally finds out what Angelo is after. Distrusted by that person he wanted to protect at all costs and betrayed by the same Ganzo he was trying to save, there was no way Barbero could miss a position in our countdown.
6. Frate Vanetti
There is a terrible curse on the members of Vanetti family; in fact, they all end up suffering in one way or another. Frate Vanetti is no exception and he probably has the harshest destiny of all. Although being part of a mafia family, what Frate seeks is just peace between Vanetti family, Galassia family and, most of all, Don Orco with which relationships were ruined after Nero stole his booze. Mentally exhausted from the unremitting fighting, Frate makes a deal with Don Orco offering him Nero’s life in exchange for peace.
Unfortunately for Frate, attempts on Nero’s life fail miserably and Angelo takes advantage of the situation by ensuring that the responsibility for the death of Don Galassia’s son Ronald lays on Nero. Played off against each other, Frate and Nero come to a showdown; desperate for putting an end to the chain of deaths, Frate shoots Nero with a gun out of bullets – they had been removed by Angelo earlier – and gets shot instead by his own brother. Fallen for Angelo’s wicked trap just to end up being killed by his own brother, Frate’s bad luck is definitely a matter of fact.
5. Nero Vanetti
The first character in the hottest five position is Nero, both member of Vanetti family and direct target of Angelo’s revengeful plan. The night of the murder, Nero was part of the four who slaughtered Testa Lagusa’s family, even though back then he didn’t have the courage to fire a shot. Indeed, it is thanks to Nero that Angelo was able to escape death and survive. It can’t be said that Nero was trying to be a good guy by sparing Angelo’s life, but at least Nero showed some pity on someone who was just a kid. Unluckily for him, Angelo can’t forgive him so easily despite Nero accepting him into the family above all else.
Both Angelo and Nero are fully aware of Nero’s role as the son of a gangster and of the fact there was no choice for him than start obeying his father’s orders, but this won’t save Nero from disaster anyway. Born into a family which raised him as a man of honor and made him kill dozens of people, Nero was an unlucky target of Angelo’s wrath. Hit from behind by Angelo whom he considered a brother and to which he wanted to give a new reason to live, Nero is the only survivor of Angelo’s revenge which condemned him to an unlucky, sad, lonely life on the run.
Not the unluckiest of all but close enough, Orco deserves position #4 since his life probably ends in the worst way ever, but not by Angelo’s hand. Indeed, in the first part of the series Orco is allied with Fango and his family, and it is Fango himself – whose will is to take the Don of Orco’s place and lackeys – that gets rid of him. Well, maybe you are thinking that there is nothing new in a character from 91 Days dying, but methods mafia can think of for killing people can be quite imaginative.
Obsessed with wanting the power, Fango allies with Nero under the condition that it is him who was going to get his hands on Orco’s belongings. Nero accepts and uses Angelo to fake his own death as desired by Orco. The latter gets drugged while celebrating with his men and when he wakes up, he is in front of Fango, who kills him, cooks him into a lasagna, and then feeds him to his family! Definitely the worst case of bad luck not only in 91 Days, but probably in anime’s history!
Never hurt someone if you don’t want to be hurt as well; this is a lesson sadomasochist cowboy-like Fango was unable to learn in that brief life of his that was pretty unlucky. Being a fringe player in the booze traffics as well as in the series, Fango is always desperate for attention, so he flips allegiance anytime he thinks he can get prestige and power from it. This is what makes Fango a hateful character in the eye of people who ends up dealing with him, besides the fact he always pops up to cause troubles.
Although having been able to avoid death by the most dangerous characters many times in the course of the show, Fango makes his wrong move when he gets his hands on the secret recipe for the Lawless Heaven thanks to Corteo’s help. Scared of being reported to Nero and punished with death for betraying him, not-so-harmless Corteo hits Fango with a receiver, putting an end to his good luck but making him at least earn the honor to be in the top three of our countdown.
Speaking of bad luck, Corteo really has it rough since childhood, even before he got involved in mafia’s affairs. Indeed, Corteo was born in a very poor family, never had the chance to meet his father, and had to take care of his sick mother. Not much is known about how Corteo spent his years once Angelo left Lawless, but when they met again he had become a bootlegger who sold booze in order to save some money for college. His ingenious recipe is, in fact, what will bring Angelo back to him and cause Corteo a bunch of troubles.
Poor Corteo wants nothing to do with the mafia, but he can’t simply turn his back on Angelo who asks for his help to get close to Vanetti family. Considering Angelo as a brother, Corteo reluctantly accepts to lend a hand, becoming the witness of an endless chain of murders that drives him crazy with anger and fear. Willing to back out and save his best friend from his revengeful obsession, Corteo asks for Fango’s help to knock Nero down. But the plan fails and, after getting caught by Nero’s lackeys, he ends up getting shot by Angelo himself. The painful life of an unfortunate innocent who just seeks freedom from the past for his best friend and himself is tragic enough to be in position #2 of this chart.
1. Avilio Bruno/Angelo Lagusa
In the end, position #1 is all for the main character as well as the most doomed guy in the series – Angelo Lagusa. There are plenty of reasons for Angelo to be the king of ill fate; starting from the fact his family was slaughtered under his nose, to the fact he was forced to kill his best friend Corteo in order not to get caught by Nero. Angelo ends up also developing a sort of sympathy for one of his targets that he isn’t able to punish at the very least – although he succeeds in making his life miserable.
Since his family was murdered, still young Angelo harbors a deep grudge against the Vanettis who destroyed his life and made of him an empty shell with no other purpose than revenge. Willing to find a reason for his own existence and leave the past to the past, after watching his revenge playing out, Angelo finds out an even chillier truth. Anything about what happened couldn’t be erased from his memory and everything he did, including killing Corteo, was completely useless. Disillusioned and tired of the pain he is cursed to feel forever, Angelo silently asks Nero to give him peace on the shore he wanted to see at least once.
Life is a wonderful adventure that should be fully experienced in your own way. It should be a flood of precious memories and emotions to share with your loved ones, a chain of dear moments to think about with a happy smile on your face when you are feeling sad and abandoned. But life is too unpredictable, desperation is always around the corner ready to take everything away from you and leave you with nothing more than a sour taste in your mouth. A lesson that doomed people as Angelo, Corteo, Nero had to learn on their own skin.
And you? What do you think about our chart? Do you agree with it or do you have better recommendations? Let us know with a comment and… see you to the next article!