By Cheyenne Ewulu
Hello, and welcome to Funimation Flashback, the series where I, Cheyenne, revisit some of my favorite anime titles from my childhood. So that means the late ’90s through the early ’00s.
And as always, you know the drill! Before we get into today’s topic, be sure to follow Funimation everywhere for more anime content just like this.
In today’s episode, we’re going to be talking about an anime that is so close to my weeb heart. You might say, “But Cheyenne, you’ve said that about every other anime you’ve talked about in the last 100 episodes.”
Yeah, okay, and I’m saying it AGAIN. One does not simply love just ONE anime, okay? This week, we’re going to be taking it back to the 19th century with the exorcists of the shounen classic, D.Gray-man.
D.Gray-man takes place in an alternate 19th century. It tells the story of a young Allen Walker, an exorcist who has been cursed with the power to see evil demons with his left eye and at the same time blessed with the power to slay them with his arm. With the power of “Innocence,” Allen and the rest of the Black Order go on a mission to take down an evil man known as the Millennium Earl and his army of Akuma.
RELATED: The Legacy of D.Gray-man
“Innocence, ACTIVATE!” Now, I know Allen’s left eye is supposed to be seen as “cursed,” but I’ve always thought Allen had a really dope power! I mean, I imagine being able to see the souls bound to the Akuma you fight is somewhat traumatizing. Definitely a big yikes. BUT. I will say it’s definitely way more than my eyes can do. All my left eye does is twitch when I’m stressed.
D.Gray-man is one of the best shounen titles, period. It features a fantastic crew of main characters, all with unique abilities and lovable personalities. This is an anime where I can confidentially say—there was not one main character that I disliked. That is super-rare for me with shounen titles.
The characters are all so cool, I could imagine myself fighting evil alongside with them and then going out for margaritas right after. Imagine kicking butt with the likes of Lenalee, Allen or even Lavi. I’ll just come out and say it—LAVI IS BEST BOY. What? You were all thinking it.
This is another anime that has a seriously dark story line. It’s one of the things that attracted me to it many years ago. Throughout the series, you see Allen and the gang struggling to defeat these evil beings called Akuma. Now, the term Akuma itself is actually something that has a very deep and rich history in Japanese folklore.
Traditionally, Akuma refers to a demon, but in the show the term is used to describe the creations of the super human known as the Millennium Earl. It’s the exorcist’s job to put these souls to rest for good. You learn a lot about the backstories of some of these Akuma, and boy are they SAD.
Side note: Along with the main villains called the Noah, who are also very complex beings created by the Millennium Earl, the Earl plans to eliminate all of humanity.
This anime is definitely not your typical “good vs. evil” show. In fact, I would go as far as to say this anime has some of the most well-thought-out characters and one of the most unique story lines in shounen history. Yeah, that may be a bold claim, but I said what I said. And I will die on that hill. Just don’t ask the Earl to bring me back, please. The action in this show is phenomenal, and it really checks off all the boxes on what makes a perfect shounen anime.
There are tons of anime about exorcism out there, but none really hold a candle to the greatness that is D.Gray-man. I know you miss kicking it with Allen and the squad, so you might as well roll on over to the Funimation app and give it another watch.
That concludes this week’s episode of Funimation Flashback! D.Gray-man fans, let us know who your favorite character from the series is! I mean, I know you’re all going to say Lavi, but I still want to act surprised…
And, as always, if you haven’t already, please be sure to follow Funimation on all of their social media channels. And I will see you all on the next one!