Throughout the history of anime, there have been enormously intelligent characters. These characters have shown us that brains do triumph over brawn, and that intelligence is – more often than not – the key to solving an issue. Now, these characters appear in all shapes and sizes, both as protagonists and as antagonists, both as human and non-human. In this article, we have decided to bring you a list of the 30 smartest anime characters of all time. Note that we won’t be including omniscient characters or deities whose intelligence is ridiculously high; we’re aiming to create a relatively balanced list with characters whose intelligence is high, but in a way believable. Enjoy! In a way smart characters are also powerful characters, let’s see who is the smartest anime character of all time.
30. Maes Hughes
Franchise: Fullmetal Alchemist
Lieutenant-Colonel Maes Hughes is the best friend of Colonel Roy Mustang whom he has promised to help rise to the top. He is very “mesmerized” with Ed and Al. He is a very endearing character and strongly attached to his family since he is also a young father. Completely in love with his family, especially his daughter, he very often talks about it during serious conversations on a completely different subject, despite Mustang’s recommendations which remind him that soldiers talking about their family very often die.
Having a head start on the discovery of the occult activities of the army, he is killed by the homunculus Envy who slaughters him by taking the appearance of his wife Gracia Hughes. After his death, he was promoted two ranks to the rank of brigadier general.
29. Sebastian Michaelis
Franchise: Black Butler
He is one of the protagonists of the story, the extravagant and refined butler of the Phantomhive family. Being a demon he possesses superhuman abilities, as mentioned in the first chapters of the story, although as a butler, his duty is to serve and loyally follow Ciel due to the contract he made with him. He accompanies Ciel in the cases that the Queen entrusts to him and is willing to do everything possible to obey them. Sebastian carries in his left hand the symbol of the contract -said symbol is identical to the one that Ciel carries in his right eye.
His verbal language is very sophisticated, and he uses it to describe his service as House Phantomhive’s butler. He has a great fondness for cats. According to him, despite having lived so long, he still can’t learn to read his feelings. He considers them “fluffy” and points out that “they don’t complain about unimportant things”. In turn, he hates dogs due to their loyalty to their masters.
28. Kōshirō Izumi
He is one of the main DigiDestined of Digimon Adventure and reappears in Digimon Adventure 02. He is 9 years old and gains three more years in Digimon Adventure 02. He owns a laptop which he hardly ever leaves. Characteristically, Izzy is a gifted, true computer genius, able to do complex calculations and program analyzes with astounding ease and skill.
He has also shown on certain occasions that he has knowledge in other areas. On the other hand, his explanations are rarely clear, and he has trouble adapting his language to make it understandable to his friends.
27. Kiyotaka Ayanokoji
Franchise: Classroom of the Elite
The protagonist and the uncertain narrator of the work. He neglected his entrance exam for some reason and ends up in class D, a symbol of failure where all school scraps are assigned. Kiyotaka Ayanokōji is an unmotivated boy who is not good at communicating with others. He often fails to attempt to be friends with others in his class due to his inability to communicate.
His situation begins to change after meeting Suzune Horikita and Kikyō Kushida, two other students in his class. He promised to help Suzune reach Class A, on the condition that she doesn’t investigate him. He does indeed seem to have a dark past that he doesn’t want to talk about. Their main teacher Saeda Chabashira is also interested in the latter. His grades are average and he is aware of how he spends his points.
However, it seems that the grades are often well below his real abilities. As Manabu Horikita points out, he is aiming for a score of 50 out of 100 in all the tests during the admission exam. Moreover, Suzune quickly notices that her intellect and physique are well above average. But for some unknown reason he avoids showing off and often credits others for his merits.
26. Shin’ya Kōgami
A 28-year-old Enforcer, he was previously an inspector until his crime rate increased during an investigation. When Sasayama, the executor acting under his orders and investigating the brain of the investigation was killed, he devoted too much to finding the culprit. Hence, the Sibyl system demoted him as Enforcerof Division 1.
During the series, he discovers that the indirect responsibility for the death of Sasayama lies with Shōgo Makishima; he then does everything in his power to capture and then kill him.
25. Akane Tsunemori
A 20-year-old heroine and new inspector of Division 1, she is considered a model citizen, on the one hand for her very weak Psycho-Pass and on the other hand for her maximum score allowing her to join any position. She joins the police because no one else has scored as high as her for this position.
While others have obtained similar scores for more important functions, she considers that she alone is made for this work and that it will allow her to understand the purpose of her existence.
24. Victorique de Blois
Because she has blood from Seyrun or the people of the gray wolves, the Marquis of Blois, her father, decided to isolate her in the depths of his mansion so that one day he could use the brilliant minds that the people born there have. When she reached a certain age, she was allowed to stay at Academia Santa Margarita, on the condition that she does not leave the campus unless her father or brother allowed it.
She spends her days in the upper part of the library, which is also a greenhouse; there, Kazuya always finds her reading difficult books and/or in other languages. In addition to her sharp tongue, utter frankness, and eccentric attitude of hers; Victorique also possesses incredible detective skills. According to Grevil of Blois, Kazuya is the first person Victorique is willing to solve police cases for without expecting anything in return (or doing it just for candy).
23. Madara Uchiha
Madara is described by many as a confident and proud man, looking down on his enemies such as Ōnoki, both after his resurrection and in the past, as well as not being afraid of Mei Terumī’s jutsus.
However, sometimes, he praises the abilities of others, such as Mei’s abilities and also A’s and his Lightning Release Armor, also Gaara and Ōnoki, for their impressive defense, he also praises them for being able to put an end to his first meteorite, as well as praising Naruto, for countering his Wood Release attack.
Also, he has a habit of referring to fighting as “dance”. As an Uchiha, Madara has an extreme and cruel hatred towards the Senju Clan and Konoha, as he is a descendant of Madara’s older brother, who was not approved to have been the successor of the Sage of Six Paths. This hatred was compounded, when the town chose Hashirama Senju to be Hokage, instead of him.
22. Killua Zoldyck
Franchise: Hunter × Hunter
Killua Zoldyck is the third son of the notorious Zoldyck family of assassins. He was raised to be a professional murderer and to continue with the family inheritance since he is the one with the greatest potential among the five brothers.
However, he does not want to follow the path decided by his father, and because of this, he runs away from home and arrives at the Hunter Exam, just to hang out. Despite his good performance during the test, he failed as he killed his opponent in the final round. During the events of Greed Island, Killua manages to obtain his hunting license a year after Gon.
Franchise: Dragon Ball
Bulma is a good-looking, intelligent, but also stubborn girl, who at the beginning of the story creates the dragon radar to locate the dragon balls. She part of her, therefore, to search for her spheres, running into Goku and, impressed by the strength of the latter, convinces him to join her.
Later, after a long relationship with Yamcha, Bulma marries Vegeta, with whom she will have two children, Trunks and Bra. Throughout the series, she stands out for her technical skills and her inventions. Bulma’s character is based on both the princess from the Dragon Boy manga, and the monk Sanzang, the co-star of the story The Journey to the West.
20. Szayelaporro Granz
Szayelaporro Grantz is the Octava Espada. He is a former Adjuchas. It owns numerous fractions. His Espada theme is madness. Szayelaporro is the Espada scientist. He has the same mentality as the captain of the 12th division: a deep contempt for his Fracciónes, proven sadism, unfair fighting techniques, a certain arrogance, all his objectives justified by a scientific goal.
Also, he thinks that his goal as a scientist is to create perfection, this will clashes with that of Mayuri who affirms that perfection is not a good thing for science. Their duel will prove that. Physically, Szayelaporro is a man of average height with short, pink hair.
His mask seems to be his pair of glasses, which disappear during his Resureccion and it seems that his characteristic hole of the hollows is at the level of his genitals.
19. Satoru Gojō
Franchise: Jujutsu Kaisen
A sorcerer who works as a teacher at the Tokyo Institute of Occult Arts. He is the teacher of Itadori, Megumi and Nobara. He convinces his superiors to keep Yuji alive until he has consumed all of Sukuna’s fingers. He is a complex individual, as he is usually easygoing and playful towards people like his students and colleagues but rude to his superiors.
Although he has given himself the nickname “The Strongest,” most allies and enemies agree that he is one of the most dangerous people alive. As a result, he is widely respected and revered by sorcerers, even those of the sister school in Kyoto, and has a strong influence in the world of witchcraft.
18. Johan Liebert
Johann Liebert is the monster, his past serves as the main plot of the manga. He is called monster, the new Hitler and the devil himself. Kenzō Tenma saves him after being shot in the head. He then considers the doctor as his father. He states that he has great love for his twin sister and is loyal to her. He lived his childhood in various places and families, and bore different names.
He is skilled, very intelligent and a great manipulator and deceiver. He is shown to be very kind and compassionate with children. His dream is to be the last man to survive in the world. As for the character of Tenma, Johann has some similarities with a character from an Osamu Tezuka manga. Indeed he shares some stories with the character Michio Yuki, such as being involved in a secret military experiment, both have the ability to manipulate people, and both want to cause the end of the world.
In the last episode, he is shot in the head again. Tenma manages to save his life again, but this time he goes into a coma and is then placed in a police hospital. The last scene shows his empty bed and an open window, suggesting that he escaped from the hospital.
17. Winry Rockbell
Franchise: Fullmetal Alchemist
Her parents were doctors and had been requisitioned by the army during the Ishbal War. They treated the wounded without distinction of camp, which earned them the respect of all, including the inhabitants of Ishbal. Unfortunately, they were killed by Scar, who had just regained consciousness after receiving their treatment, gone completely mad when instead of his arm, he saw his brother’s.
Since that day, Winry has been raised by her paternal grandmother, Pinako Rockbell, a famous automail maker. Winry is passionate about mechanics and makes it clear to Ed, with the help of a wrench, that his mechanical parts must not be damaged. Despite the fact that she seems aggressive, she worries a lot for Ed and Al. Indeed, if they do not tell her much about their adventures, she realizes that they are putting themselves in danger to achieve their goal.
16. Armin Arlert
Franchise: Attack on Titan
Armin is Eren’s childhood friend who joins him in the Scouts to make a meaningful difference in the world and to fulfill his dream of seeing the outside world. When Armin was young, his parents tried to venture over the wall in a hot air balloon, but were discovered by the First Interior Squad and killed, which resulted in Armin being raised by his grandfather.
Armin’s grandfather secretly owned an illegal book with information about the world beyond the walls that Armin later found and read. Fascinated by descriptions of gigantic salt water, fire water, ice and sand fields, Armin showed it to his best friend Eren and sparked his desire to see the outside world.
15. Van Hohenheim
Franchise: Fullmetal Alchemist
Hohenheim defines himself as a monster, he appears to be immortal even though it is not explicitly said. (He is shot at point blank range and yet only his clothes are damaged). The one who leads the homunculi, calling himself Father, looks a lot like him and the first reaction is to think that they are the same person but the doubts are raised when Ed and Al find themselves in Father’s haunt and where the latter seems delighted that ‘Hohenheim is still alive and has had children.
In the penultimate chapter, we learn that Hohenheim was in fact a slave in the city of Xerxes. He was number 23. He worked in the laboratories and it was there that he met Father, who was then a Homunculus in the form of a black gaseous cluster (resembling Pride) in a vial. Father will take advantage of him and in exchange for his knowledge, he will ask Hohenheim to put him in touch with the king of Xerxes.
Father manipulated both of them to become almost omnipotent; he was later stopped thanks to Hohenheim’s help, who sacrificed his life to save his sons.
14. Kishō Arima
Franchise: Tokyo Ghoul
Protagonist of Tokyo Ghoul: JACK, Arima is the ultimate CCG investigator, the living legend, he is the most powerful of all CCG inspectors. He is recognizable by his glasses, his white hair (blue when he was a teenager) and his not very expressive temperament.
Rarely showing his emotions, he remains polite and quite smiling with his colleagues. In the face of ghouls, Arima has no compassion and eliminates them without further ado. He marked the entire history of the CCG with his unparalleled power.
Nicknamed the Angel of Death, his skills in combat and during investigations have led many inspectors, like Kōtaro Amon, to admire him. However, there are many people who are jealous of Armia’s power in battle; the older inspectors realized their own inferiority to Arima.
13. Shōgo Makishima
The main antagonist of the first season, he is a humanist, endowed with a great literary culture as well as a unique charisma, he charms and pushes people to crimes. Considered “criminally asymptomatic”: he cannot be properly assessed by a Dominator, even though he commits horrible crimes.
At the start of the series, he is content to support individuals wishing to be able to commit crimes, in order to help them hide from Sybil.
Then he works to unravel the secret of the Sibyl system and overthrow it. After inventing a helmet copying the Psycho-Pass of a “normal” close person, and thus masking that of the wearer, and having flooded the city with it to create riots and anarchy, he left to invest the Ministry of Welfare. to try to overthrow the system.
Apprehended by Tsunemori and Kōgami, Sybil, through one of his representatives, offers him to join the system, which is composed only of spirits similar to his own.
12. Senku Ishigami
The main protagonist of the series. He is highly intelligent and excels in many scientific fields, with a particular love for astronomy and space exploration. After waking up in the “Stone World”, he sets out to try to revive humanity by reinventing the technology they lost and discovering a “cure” for petrification. Although somewhat arrogant, he is actually very noble and generous, seeing science as a way to uplift all men and having unwavering faith in his friends.
11. Mayuri Kurotsuchi
He is the captain of the 12th division, responsible for the research and development of new technologies. It was Kisuke Urahara who held this position before escaping from Soul Society. Mayuri is extremely cold and inhuman. He does not hesitate to sacrifice his subordinates. His lieutenant is his daughter Nemu, an artificial being whom he made and whom he does not consider to be a human being.
When he releases his Zanpakutō, his blade transforms into a three-bladed saber whose guard is a head emitting gases allowing to block the signals emitted by the brain and therefore to paralyze the limbs, but does not however prevent the pain to get to the brain
Franchise: The Promised Neverland
Norman is one of the oldest children at the Grace Field Orphanage. He is one of three children to achieve a perfect score in the daily exams, and has an exceptional sense of analysis and unparalleled lucidity. He learns with Emma the truth about their orphanage, and strives with her to escape.
9. Spike Spiegel
Franchise: Cowboy Bebop
Spike Spiegel is a 27-year-old bounty hunter, born June 26, 2044 on Mars. He is a tall, thin young man. The major inspirations for his character are actor Yūsaku Matsuda for his charismatic physique and taciturn personality, and Bruce Lee for his fighting technique, using the same martial art, Jeet Kune Do.
He has brown and red eyes, one of which is artificial and paler than the other. He usually wears a blue tuxedo with a yellow shirt and boots inspired by Lupine III. He is a former member of the Red Dragons criminal organization.
He pretends to be dead for being with Julia, but his plan goes awry, and Spike will eventually find himself as a bounty hunter with former cop Jet Black. He will search for his beloved, but to find her, he will have to face Vicious, an old friend who has become his main enemy.
8. Sōsuke Aizen
During the Pendulum Saga, set a hundred years before the story, Aizen held the rank of lieutenant of the Fifth Division in the service of Captain Shinji Hirako, the future leader of the Vizard. Already at the time, Aizen was collaborating with Kaname Tōsen and Gin, at that time still a child but still a skilled killer: Aizen had tried to use different Shinigami for his experiments but all his guinea pigs, except the future Visored, were states of bankruptcies.
Attempting to track down Shinji and his group Aizen creates, using the soul of a Shinigami, a Hollow named White and designed specifically to hollowify the Shinigami: after his attack on Isshin Shiba and the hollowing of Masaki Kurosaki, Aizen remains on the sidelines curious to see what will happen.
7. Shin’ichi Kudō / Conan Edogawa
Franchise: Detective Conan
The story’s protagonist, Kudo was a high school detective who helped the police in criminal cases. At the story’s beginning, he discreetly overhears a private conversation between two individuals belonging to a criminal organization called “The Organization of Men in Black.” Still, he gets knocked out and swallows a poison that is supposed to kill him, but which actually shrinks him to the size of an elementary school child.
He will then go to live with Kogoro Mouri and his daughter, Ran Mouri, under the pseudonym of Conan Edogawa.
6. Light Yagami
Franchise: DEATH NOTE
He is, at the start of the series, a 17-year-old high school student, extremely brilliant although quite cold. He’s an idealist, and when he finds a Death Note on the ground, he decides to use it to rid the world of its worst criminals.
He thus wants to create a perfect world, in which he imagines himself to be the god. He thus becomes the first Kira (from the English Killer), killing, through the Death Note, hundreds of criminals, to finally become the “God” of his perfect world. A detective, L, will stand in his way to stop him.
Franchise: DEATH NOTE
His real name Nate River, N is the true successor of L, raised in an orphanage dedicated to the gifted. He is younger and has a habit of thinking while handling toys and running his fingers through his hair. He strangely sits on the chairs (a bit like his predecessor).
His goal will become to inflict defeat on Kira, more than to shut him down (in other words to unmask him in front of those he has deceived). He will thus be at the initiative of the creation of the S.P.K., a special section of the FBI responsible for tracking down Kira. His deduction has proven to be keener than that of his model (L) or Light.
4. Kisuke Urahara
Kisuke Urahara is a mysterious figure. He was exiled from Soul Society and owns a store of objects that come from it, a store that he runs thanks to two children, Jinta Hanakari and Ururu Tsumigaya, as well as a man named Tsukibashi Tessai (Former chief of Necromancers – Captain of Kido). Urahara is a longtime friend of Yoruichi.
Urahara is eternally banished from Soul Society, because he endangered it with his experiments, but also because Soul Society’s decisions about dealing with the results of his experiments are not right for him. Note that he also helped the current Vizards not to become Hollows, which is the main reason for his exile.
Later in the story, we will learn more about this character, about his past, about his powers: he is the former captain of the 12th division of Gotei 13, founder and first president of the scientific research section. Today, he is still a brilliant inventor (notably Gikais for the shinigami who come to earth). One hundred years ago, when he came to the head of his division, Hiyori was his lieutenant. He himself created and tested the technique to obtain the bankai in three days, which Ichigo is the second to master, in less than three days.
3. Lelouch Lamperouge
Franchise: Code Geass
Lelouch is the son of the 98th British Emperor Charles zi Britannia and Empress Marianne. After the death of his mother, he was sold to Japan along with his sister Nunnally. It was there that he first met Suzaku, who over time became his best friend. When Japan was finally occupied by Britain and renamed Area 11, he vowed to overthrow his father and create a peaceful world for Nunnally. He officially died with his sister in the invasion of Britain, but he is protected by the Ashford family, who have already supported his mother, Marianne.
Series: Assassination Classroom
Koro-sensei is the Head Teacher of Class 3-E at Kunugigaoka Middle School. His past is unclear, but we later learn that he was once a great assassin who had been given the title of Shinigami, which indicated his function as a powerful and formidable hitman in the whole world.
Having always lived in a slum in hyperviolence, the young Koro-sensei was consumed by an inordinate desire for power and became swollen with pride. Betrayed by his disciple (the second and current Shinigami), he was imprisoned in a research center where antimatter experiments were carried out on his body, which transformed him into a flexible creature with gigantic and mysterious powers.
Franchise: DEATH NOTE
Light’s main opponent, L is considered the best sleuth in the world, although his identity is unknown. He’s investigating the Kira case. He calls himself Ryûzaki and Hideki Ryuga. His real name remains unknown in the first 12 volumes of the manga, but his real name, L Lawliet, is revealed in the 13th volume, How to read it. His eccentric demeanor is matched only by his intelligence.