While anime does feature some notably good parents (take Nagisa’s parents from Clannad: After Story, for example), a good number of anime out there features cases of bad parenting here and there. In fact, horrible parents in anime are so common, they practically became one of anime’s tropes.
With Mother’s Day coming in the next couple of months, we thought it appropriate to dedicate a list to anime’s most memorable mothers. You must be warned, though, since this list contains characters that are indeed memorable, though absolutely not in a good way. In fact, if any of these mothers does exist in real life, they will probably have their children whisked away by child services.
Then again, even in the world of anime, some moms are just a bit too much. Anyway, here’s our list of the Top 10 Worst Moms in Anime!
10. Satsuki Matsumae from Hanasaku Iroha
- Episodes: 26
- Aired: April 2011 - September 2011
Talk about selfish. Satsuki is a free spirit, and that’s alright. After all, she does have a pretty good career and she even looks good for her age. There’s just one thing, though. She has a daughter, and well, she doesn’t really live the life of someone with a child. In fact, when her boyfriend got his and her finances really messed up, she decided to run away. But yep, you guessed it. She ran away without her daughter.
Her decision to run away ultimately turns her daughter’s life upside down, forcing her daughter to move in with a grandmother she did not really know, and one who treated her not as family but as a simple employee. If it wasn’t for Ohana’s resilience, she might have messed up her child really badly.
9. Hiromi Shiota from Ansatsu Kyoushitsu 2nd Season
- Episodes: 25
- Aired: January 2016 - ongoing
Sometimes, parents end up feeling disappointed about their children and whenever they do, they react in a menagerie of negative ways. For Nagisa Shiota, this turned out to be his life under the care of his mother, Hiromi. Hiromi initially wanted a daughter, so when she had a son, she decided to force him to be the daughter she wanted anyway.
Not only that, she was also pretty antagonistic towards him, shouting at him and berating him over mundane things. Her temper is not just towards her son, either, as she even has a tendency to fly into a rage when talking with other people too. Being the mother that she is, one thing is sure: No one is safe from Hiromi Shiota.
8. Asuka’s Mom in Neon Genesis Evangelion
- Episodes: 26
- Aired: October 1995 - March 1996
Ok, out of all the moms in this list, Asuka’s mom is the one who could probably get a free pass. She is, after all, clinically insane. That does not excuse her for making young Asuka’s life a living hell, though. Through the course of the series, Asuka’s memories of her mother failing to recognize her as a child haunted the young Eva pilot.
Of course, the fact that she eventually opted to commit suicide didn’t help, especially since Asuka, who was then but a small child, discovered her hanging corpse alone. Yes, among Evangelion’s characters, Asuka is one of the most messed up. Considering the mother she had, it is not much of a surprise.
7. Hayate’s Mom from Hayate the Combat Butler
- Episodes: 52
- Aired: April 2007 - March 2008
Though Hayate the Combat Butler is a rather lighthearted anime with lots of gags and jokes, it does nonetheless feature one of the worst moms in all of anime. With a severe gambling addiction, Hayate’s mom, together with his dad, ultimately forces the young boy to work in order to pay for their debts.
If that’s not enough, she even sold him (literally) and his organs to the Yakuza in order to make up for money that she and her husband owes. If that is not the worst parenting style ever, we don’t know what is. What’s particularly bad, of course, is the fact that she feels absolutely no remorse for what she did to her son.
6. Marianne Vi Britannia from Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion
- Episodes: 25
- Aired: October 2006 - July 2007
What’s particularly bad about Marianne is the fact that she is just plain out two-faced. From the outside, she acts as if she loves her children, Lelouch and Nunnally. Such love is superficial, however, as she literally considers her children simply as pawns in her and her husband’s grand plan.
Her husband was already abusive to begin with, ultimately turning her son Lelouch into a Machiavellian who is just a few steps away from being a full-on sociopath. What’s worse is that she actually condoned her husband’s abuse of her children, sincerely believing that it is all to make her children stronger. That’s just messed up.
5. Medusa Gorgon from Soul Eater
- Episodes: 51
- Aired: April 2008 - March 2009
With a name like Medusa Gorgon, it is not really much of a surprise that she would portray a horrible mother. Surprisingly, though, not even her name could prepare fans of Soul Eater to the way she treats her son, Crona. Cold and calculating, she is portrayed to be a woman who is capable of caring very little for others, even her son, whom she treats as a mere pawn.
In fact, being a scientist, she views other people as simple lab rats. Her child, Crona, was unfortunate enough to become one of her experiments, and when he allegedly “failed,” she wasted no time in discarding him. Crona is mentally unstable, and considering his upbringing under Medusa, such psychopathic tendencies are not surprising at all.
4. Mayu’s Mom from Elfen Lied
- Episodes: 13
- Aired: July 2004 - October 2004
Speaking of messed up, Mayu’s mother from Elfen Lied is really one mother who does not deserve to have any children. Already distant to her child to begin with, you could almost think that she couldn’t get any worse. She would surprise you, though, since apparently, being emotionally distant isn’t the worst that she could be.
When she married another man, her husband started raping her daughter, Mayu, who was but a small child then. When Mayu finally told her about the abuse, she did not believe her daughter. To add insult to injury, she even slapped Mayu, jealously accusing the child for allegedly stealing her man. Seriously, this anime mom is up there with the worst.
3. Akemi Hinazuki from Boku Dake ga Inai Machi
- Episodes: 12
- Aired: January 2016 - March 2016
From this intense, new thriller comes one of the worst mothers in recent anime history. Meet Akemi Hinazuki, the perfect example of a mother that must be avoided like a plague. After misfortune struck her, she decided to take out her frustrations on the person closest to her - her daughter Kayo.
Throughout poor Kayo’s life, Akemi abused her in a menagerie of ways. Kayo was but a small kid, but she already experienced numerous injuries from her own mother including a lot of bruises, instances of near suffocation, and other notable tortures. If this happened in real life, Akemi would either be in prison or sitting on death row.
2. Yuno’s Mom from Mirai Nikki
- Episodes: 26
- Aired: October 2011 - April 2012
Through the course of Mirai Nikki, viewers get both impressed and aghast at what Yuno is capable of doing. What viewers realize when watching the show if of course how messed up her parents are. Her mom is a complete control freak, who literally locks Yuno in a cage in order to keep her straight. She has one idea - to have the perfect daughter, and she will stop at nothing to get what she wants, even if it involves treating her daughter like an animal.
Eventually, karma catches up with her, as Yuno eventually kills her by placing her inside the very cage where she kept her daughter. Indeed, her upbringing is proof that ultimately, nurture beats out nature. If anyone is wondering how in the world did Yuno get so messed up, look no further than her mother.
1. Ragyo Kiryuin from Kill la Kill
- Episodes: 24
- Aired: October 2013 - March 2014
Considering that this list is dedicated to anime’s worst moms, is it any surprise that Ragyo is here? Quite possibly the worst mom ever created in fiction, Ragyo does all sorts of abuses to her own children, treating them as mere tools, inflicting intense physical abuse to them, and even sexually harassing one of her children repeatedly, ever since her daughter was just about 5 years old. Sick? that’s not all.
She also quite literally threw her newborn child down into a garbage chute simply because her alleged experiments on the infant failed. When she does come face to face with the daughter she discarded, she does something completely within her character - she literally rips off her daughter’s heart. Why? to check if she has the right person, of course. Quite literally insane to the point of being nightmare fuel, good old Ragyo tops our list today.
I must say that this is the craziest list I have ever written! What a ride! Of course, if you have any other suggestions (I’m quite sure there’s more) for notable bad moms out there, do mention them in the comments!