Every anime fan has, at least once, thought about escaping into one of the many, many, many, anime worlds out there. And for all the rosy, robust, and relaxing realms we wouldn’t think twice about diving into, there are an equal number of nerve-racking, spine-chilling, and blood-curdling ones that suddenly make our worst nightmares all the more palatable.
Whether it’s losing civilisation, modernity, intelligent society, all your loved ones, and, worst of all, indoor-plumbing like in Dr. Stone, or having to spend all your time filing paperwork for insurance claims, paying hospital bills, and enjoying financial ruin (and this is the best-case scenario) à la One Punch Man; there are an infinite number of nightmarish worlds out there. So we decided to compile a list, here we have our Top 5 anime worlds you couldn’t pay us to visit!
!! Spoilers Ahead!!
5. Jujutsu Kaisen (TV)
One word — Curses. Curses eat people, they torture people, they kill people and at the very least, they scare the hell out of them with their own special blends of sadistic creepiness, and the world of Jujutsu Kaisen is chock-full of them. The jujutsu sorcerers can barely keep up with the sheer volume of new curses creeping around in the shadows every day, and while they do take down the ones they come across (60-40 odds, in our opinion), they’re more like a quick fix in the face of a much bigger problem. It’s a pretty hopeless situation when the solution isn’t even a speck in the face of the problem, huh? Not to mention, this thankless job does, more often than not, mean inevitable, awful death.
And forget being a sorcerer, we have zero desire to pay a visit as your average mob character too, what with curses slowly draining unsuspecting victims’ vitality, luring them into curse wombs, disfiguring their souls/bodies, and dragging them into innate domains (Malevolent Shrine is so unforgettable in all its boney, bloody glory). Yeah, hard pass on this one.
4. Shadows House
The gaslighting starts early in this one. In the world of Shadows House, everything seems just fine. There’s the shadows family, made up of enigmatic aristocratic Shadows, characterised by their sooty, black forms, and ash-related abilities. Then we have the Living Dolls who serve their Shadow-masters with all the determination and devotion they can muster. Sounds peachy? Nope, because the Shadows are actually otherworldly beings who wipe people’s memories, plant beliefs of dehumanised existences, that gaslight them, for their own personal gain.
They convince children that they aren’t humans; rather, they’re “Living Dolls” whose entire purpose is to ensure the success and happiness of their respective masters. And if that wasn’t bad enough, it seems like the Shadows will eventually invade their Living Dolls (major Body Snatchers vibes) and erase their consciousnesses to take over their forms. We don’t know about you guys, but we’re happy keeping our consciousness intact, so we’re noping out of this one too.
3. Youjo Senki (Saga of Tanya the Evil)
Never-ending World War 3, except the soldiers can use combat magic to destroy you. The world of Saga of Tanya the Evil is literally the definition of a lose-lose situation. In this world, we have the impressive meritocracy, the Empire, whose expansionist policies have been rankling the surrounding nations. This, coupled with their efficient and effective military might, makes them quite a contender in warfare, and thus the surrounding nations have chosen to go to war against them. Basically, it’s a world war, so if you pay a visit, you’d either be in the Empire which all surrounding nations want to destroy or you're in one of the surrounding countries that can't seem to hold a candle against the Empire’s aerial mages (the combat magic we mentioned). Talk about being stuck between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea. If the deep blue sea was also full of war-mongering devils.
And if that wasn’t bad enough, this universe is ruled at the whim of a particularly vindictive deity (just ask Tanya) whose petty and fickle choices really give us a whole new perspective on the capriciousness of divine will. Honestly, these reasons are just icing on the cake, all we need to say is this: Who wants to visit a worldwide war zone?
2. Shingeki no Kyojin (Attack on Titan)
If the monstrous reality of becoming titan lunch wasn't bad enough, there's also the behind-the-scenes, world-ending scheming, the elitist class system that affects survival chances of the common man, and the secret titans (and their secret agenda) that blend in with the population. We don’t think there’s a single soul who would want to mosey on down to Paradis Island (don’t get us started on the irony) or Marley for that matter. Regardless of where you end up, there’s no winning in this world—winning being surviving, and if we were to visit, the best we could hope for would probably be a painless death.
Life outside the wall is non-viable for us lowly humans, and life inside the wall isn’t much better once the Titans manage to make it in. The death toll, the displacement, and (repeated) disasters, all make for a very bleak existence. Impending painful death all around whether by Titan, or starvation, or a combination of the two— that’s all we have to look forward to in this world, so we’re going to “nope” out of here really quickly, because while impending death is bad enough, who in their right mind would risk being digested?
1. Devilman: Crybaby
The end of days has often been described with fire, brimstone, and the complete annihilation of the world as we know it. Devilman: Crybaby doesn’t disappoint, Satan is bringing about the apocalypse with all that and human-eating, people-possessing demons. Quite literally hell on earth, the top spot for an anime world we would never in a million years visit is the one of Devilman: Crybaby. Demonic possession, genocide, the breakdown of society into panicked, senseless violence, and the downfall of humanity! Need we say more? Visiting this world is like setting yourself up for a gruesome, horrific demise. There’s no way we’re visiting this one. No chance in hell (literally).
And that’s a wrap on our list (but probably not on the nightmares it’ll cause). While we know we’re far from MC material, these are worlds we wouldn’t even want to be mob characters in. From flesh-eating ghouls who indiscriminately prey on people (Tokyo Ghoul), to a disease that causes spontaneous human combustion (Fire Force), anime worlds can be perilous, precarious, and downright petrifying. We’d much rather sail through a slow-paced slice-of-life, or frolic and relive our youth in a stress-free school setting.
So which anime worlds would you steer clear of? Would you ever consider visiting any on our list? Do you have far more fearsome ones in mind that you think we should check out? Let us know in the comments below!