10 anime characters who did the right thing (and regretted it)
In the anime, it is generally expected that doing what is right or “moral” will often pay favorable dividends. For example, a hero’s choice to show mercy against an evildoer will later see that same villain join their side (whether temporarily or not).
However, there have been many instances where a character has gravely regretted their actions, no matter how righteous the act might have been. By identifying them we get a better insight into their psyche and understand what part of their charity has gone wrong. In addition, it becomes easier to understand the reason for their grief.
ten Midoriya was right to keep All Might a secret but later told Bakugo anyway (My Hero Academia)
After being humiliated during their first training exercise against each other at UA, Bakugo was livid. He believed that Midoriya was deliberately trying to hide his quirk and had played with him throughout their childhood.
At first, Midoriya was responsibly inclined to keep All Might’s secret as he had promised. However, it didn’t take long for him to crack down and tell Bakugo that he was One For All’s successor. Ironically, his rival didn’t believe him when he first heard the truth.
9 Eren regretted turning around to fight Annie in the forest (Attack on Titan)
After Levi’s team was all but wiped out, Eren’s conscience weighed heavily on him. When the Female Titan manifested a second time, he refused to run away and instead fought against her directly.
He would almost instantly regret that decision. Annie’s superior combat skills, coupled with her hardening abilities, made combat extremely quick and one-sided. Eren would later be reprimanded for his recklessness, especially since he had Levi’s leg broken in order to save him.
8 Meliodas regretted killing Fraudrin (Seven Deadly Sins)
After being killed by Estarossa, Meliodas became more sensitive to his demonic nature. During the battle for Liones against the Ten Commandments, he encountered Fraudrin a second time – the same villain who was responsible for much of his grief and suffering.
Even after he surrendered, the captain disintegrated him with a single punch. His comrades were horrified by this ruthless behavior, and even Ban postulated that it was different from the Captain’s usually hospitable nature. Meliodas would later express his own regrets, although letting Fraudrin live would have been extremely risky for the heroes’ efforts.
7 Ace’s attempt to stop Blackbeard puts Luffy in even more danger (One Piece)
After an arduous search, Ace finally stumbled upon Blackbeard. The traitor told his former companion that he was interested in capturing Monkey D. Luffy so that he could become an honorary warlord.
Enraged by Blackbeard’s intentions, Ace attacked him in an attempt to protect his brother. After being overpowered, he would ironically put Luffy in even greater danger, as his brother was forced to brave the rigors of Impel Down and Marineford in order to save him.
6 L gave light to the presumption of innocence even though he knew he was Kira (Death Note)
Ever since he invited him to the task force, L had a strong premonition that Light was the Kira killer they were looking for. During the months they spent together, he confirmed that his hunch was true.
Despite this, he never took drastic or unscrupulous steps to take down Light for good. This was for two reasons; not only did he consider his rival a friend, but he understood that his current evidence was insufficient. In his final moments, L was validated on everything he had come to believe but took no action.
5 Kirito honored Heathcliff’s terms and paid the price later (Sword Art Online)
Kirito fought Heathcliff for the right to take Asuma from his guild. As he failed in their duel, he was obligated to join his opponent’s organization and did so voluntarily even though he suspected foul play.
Despite his righteous demeanor, Kirito would soon regret ever having agreed to serve him. It was later revealed that the Guild Master was actually the original architect behind Aincrad and the man who subjected hundreds of thousands of players to his twisted game.
4 Sasuke spared Naruto in the Valley of the End (Naruto)
Although Naruto and Sasuke were tied in the fight in the Valley of the End, the latter was finally able to gain the upper hand and defeat his rival regardless of Kurama’s influence. He understood that killing him would cause the emotional turmoil needed to evolve his sharigan.
However, the rogue ninja refused to do so and instead walked away. Sasuke would later state on several occasions that he regretted his mercy, especially during subsequent encounters with Naruto himself.
3 Silva Zoldyck was disappointed with Killua’s actions after he gave her freedom (Hunter X Hunter)
After repeated displays of defiance, Killua faced his father directly and told him that he was not interested in the family calling. To her surprise, Silva was understanding and allowed her son to choose his own path. He suspected that with a little time Killua would come back and see his point of view.
However, it almost immediately turned out to be wrong. The young boy quickly robbed Alluka of the possession of the family, which had been one of his greatest assets until then.
2 George Joestar took on Dio as an orphan but was ultimately murdered by him (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure)
After being saved by Dario, George vowed to repay the Brando family in any way he could. Once he was orphaned, Dio was escorted to Joestar Mansion and was to be raised there as a son.
Despite the kindness George showed to his mansion’s new guest, the boy would ultimately turn out to be his downfall. Not only did he torment Jonathan throughout his childhood, but he actively poisoned his foster parent when he was already gravely ill.
1 All for one regret giving more quirks to his brother (My Hero Academia)
During his rise to notoriety, All For One took pity on his “oddly free” brother and figured that if he gave him power, he would be more sympathetic to his goals. As a result, he granted her one of his many abilities – a mistake that would inevitably be his downfall.
In reality, All For One’s brother had his own power called “One For All”. It stored and improved quirks as they passed between users. Over the years, it has become increasingly difficult for the villain to defeat his brother’s successors before his fall to Kamino.
NEXT: My Hero Academia: 10 Ways All For One Is The Most Terrifying Anime Villain Alive
5 best opening arcs in Shonen Anime (& 5 worst)
About the Author