Everyone will agree that being a teenager is a trying time. Going to school is an exciting adventure, a chance for personal growth, and a promise of a brighter future for them. Fighting monsters, holding down a job, and keeping up with schoolwork while dealing with the supernatural may be challenging at any age. These courageous 16-year-olds made it happen, though. To keep us motivated, here are the top ten anime characters aged 16 years or younger.
1. Tohru Honda – Fruits Basket 1st Season
The new Fruits Basket introduced a whole new audience to the innocent and charming Soma family and their enigmatic misfortune. Tohru is wonderful in every way: she is devoted and steadfast, with a strong sense of conviction, and an endless supply of patience. Maybe she has already experienced enough trauma that her classmates changing into animals doesn’t seem strange enough to make her want to leave school. But none of that comes close to the destructive relationships within their own family. A lot of 16-year-olds don’t have Tohru’s ability to take life as it comes.
2. Ai Mizuno – Zombieland Saga (Zombie Land Saga)
The stresses and challenges of adolescence are universal, but few teenagers have to face them while also being a zombie. Ai, now a zombie, keeps on living (?) but doesn’t get much older than 16 years old. Trying to accept being a zombie while simultaneously being the town hero sounds like a lot to take in! She has some background knowledge from her human days, but that is no substitute for the actual experience of being a zombie performer. Ai is continually pushing herself, even if it means working herself to the point of exhaustion.
3. Yuu Nishinoya – Haikyuu
It would be very difficult to find a male in Haikyuu. that isn’t completely endearing yet Yuu has been a fan favourite since the show’s first episode. The flashier personalities can’t compare to his athleticism and dependability, and he’s only 16 years old. You’d think someone with his kind of enthusiasm would lose themselves in their feelings like Kageyama or Ryuunosuke, but instead he maintains his composure to provide invaluable guidance. Yuu is a 16-year-old who is always there for you, even when circumstances seem overwhelming. He can act his age and provide the support you need.
4. Tsukasa Yuzaki – Tonikaku Kawaii (TONIKAWA: Over the Moon For You)
A wedding vow is a solemn commitment that should not be taken lightly. Tsukasa appears to be eager and ready for marriage at the youthful age of 16. You’d never know she was just 16 years old based on how capable and mature she is. Until, of course, the subject of her shyly blushing over her husband’s kisses comes up. Tsukasa isn’t your typical 16-year-old, and it’s not only because she’s a fantastic homemaker. She also has some amazing abilities that she keeps under wraps and only hints at. She’s a wonderful young lady for many reasons, not the least of which being her ability to understand old manuscripts and heal remarkably quickly.
5. Izuku Midoriya – Boku no Hero Academia 4th Season (My Hero Academia 4th Season)
Turning sixteen didn’t make aspiring hero Midoriya (Deku) Izuku feel more in charge of his life; he’s been through a lot in his short time as a want tobe hero. Season 4 finds Deku not only older, but also wiser and more assured. The amazing tale and universally likeable characters in Boku no Hero Academia have made it a smash hit with audiences of all ages. Deku has a chance to become the hero he always dreamed of being now that he must face a new foe in order to safeguard a young girl.
6. Shinpachi Shimura – Gintama
Shinpachi, now 16 years old, has it figured out after practising for a while. The eldest of three siblings, Shinpachi has a lot on his plate between obeying his sister’s wishes, calming Gin’s explosive anger, and controlling Kagura’s destructive impulses. Shinpachi, although living among samurai and aliens, is nonetheless an approachable teenager. He has to answer to his older sister, worships an idol he can’t afford, and is underpaid for the hours he puts in at his job. What makes Gintama so fantastic is that no matter how long it runs, you can never know what will happen next. His dogged resolve and cunning allow him to hold his own against some wild opponents and, often, his own teammates, despite the fact that he possesses neither tremendous strength nor special fighting powers. Let’s give it up for Shinpachi, who always gives it his all.
7. Kohaku – Dr. Stone
Kohaku, who is both stunning and strong, is one of Senku’s most reliable allies in restoring the world to its former grandeur. After the majority of the population was turned to stone, science took on the appearance of magic. Kohaku is naturally cautious around new people, but Senku’s enthusiasm and dedication to research have piqued his interest. They have both learned the need of delaying gratification in order to receive a greater reward later on, a lesson that is not always taught to humans. Despite spending her entire existence in a backwards town, Kohaku has proven to be trustworthy, bright, and unexpectedly open to new ideas and technology.
8. Eren Yeager – Shingeki no Kyojin Season 3 (Attack on Titan Season 3)
Eren’s tale hasn’t improved much since we first met him when he was 15, and everybody who has been keeping up with it knows that. By season 3, he and his people learn that Titans aren’t always their biggest threat. Eren, at the tender age of 16, has more problems than any 16-year-old should have to cope with, what with the emotional and physical toll that his regular, hazardous encounters with titans have taken on him.
I mean, if we had to go through what Eren did, a lot of us probably would have just given up. His parents, who were brutally slain, his estranged father, his fallen buddies, and the untrustworthy superiors who would experiment on him before they killed him. His youth is no defence against being exploited and persecuted, and he is compelled to mature prematurely. Instead of moping about his precarious situation, he uses his resentment and anger as fuel for a fierce determination to safeguard what little he still has.
9. Zenitsu Agatsuma – Kimetsu no Yaiba (Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba)
To be sure, Zenitsu isn’t the youngest demon slayer around, but he may be the one who acts the youngest. Even though he’s only 16, he has to face and vanquish evils that would make an adult man cry. We can’t say that we blame him for desiring a normal life with a wife and no demons. Not many 16-year-olds can handle the kind of dedication required to fight bad creatures, let alone the inherent dangers of such a career. In Zenitsu’s mind, it would be too soon if he never saw another demon again because he was so full of self-loathing and guilt over his own weakness and timidity.
When it comes to Zenitsu, not even he has the whole picture. He can use his keen sense of smell and lightning-fast reflexes to stay one step ahead of any threats and escape safely. However, when he loses consciousness, he becomes an even more formidable warrior. In fact, when Zenitsu is so shaken up by his fears that he blacks out, he becomes an amazing force to be reckoned with based solely on his muscle memory and instincts. Sleeping is sometimes joked about as a 16-year-finest-old’s skill; Zenitsu, however, takes it to an even new level.
10. Touka Kirishima – Tokyo Ghoul
It’s understandable if a child who experiences loss at a young age develops anger and abandonment difficulties. It’s inspiring to meet someone who’s polite and competent despite realising they’re struggling with suffering. Touka’s whole existence has been filled with persecution, and it was this that ultimately led to the deaths of her parents. Even though she can’t stand seeing ghouls mistreated, she really wants humans and ghouls to live together.
Touka is a teenager, and teenagers are notorious for their short fuse. Though she is extremely responsible and fair-minded, she has her limits. On top of her extraordinary situation as a ghoul being chased by the government, she is plagued by the common teenage worries of not fitting in and being abandoned by the people she cares about. Touka is our go-to 16-year-old protagonist because she is beautiful, strong, and fully human despite her many flaws. I hope she keeps that happy disposition forever!
Perhaps you can relate to the difficulties that other people your age face and would enjoy reading about them in fiction. Perhaps you have come to value the tender years and the maturation they bring. It’s fascinating to watch the wide variety of personalities present among 16-year-olds and how much they share with one another while still maintaining their own identities. These eleven teenagers prove that greatness can emerge at any age because they all share a passion for justice and a willingness to fight for it.