There is no shortage of anime with main characters who are loud, brash, and impulsive. Even most Seinen protagonists are just older versions of the Shonen Hero. Among such protagonists, Frieren stands out thanks to her quiet, shy yet secure demeanor. Are you a fan of Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End’s quieter, more introverted protagonist and looking for a list of 10 best anime with similarly shy characters? Then keep reading!
10 Anime With Shy Protagonists Like Frieren
Mob Psycho 100
Mob Psycho 100 follows psychic middle schooler Shigeo Kageyama as its main protagonist. Nicknamed Mob for how he almost feels like a background character, Shigeo is a shy teen looking to work on himself, so he can finally confess to his childhood friend and crush, Tsubomi Takane.
Similar to Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End, Mob’s journey as a character is a purely self-developmental one. This is because despite his quiet personality, Mob is a ridiculously powerful esper easily able to overcome basically any threat the anime throws at him.
My Hero Academia
While Dark Hero Arc Deku is far from shy, My Hero Academia’s protagonist Izuku Midoriya (hero name Deku) did start off as a shy, quiet kid who was mercilessly bullied. His lack of a quirk meant that nobody believed in his dream of becoming a hero, not even his own mother.
In spite of his timid personality and inability to stand up to his bullies, Deku learnt that he “too could become a hero” after he put his life on the line to help his childhood friend and bully, Katsuki Bakugo, against a villian.
An anime about family, Clannad follows Tomoya Okazaki, a high schooler with an alcoholic single father. With a reputation as a delinquent, Tomoya has few friends and more or less keeps to himself.
This anime stands out from the others on this list as Tomoya is quite far from your typical goody-two-shoes shy main character. After a fight with his father, he moves in with love interest Nagisa Furukawa and her family. They help him reconnect with society as he reconsiders what family means to him.
An anime better known for its Yandere female lead Yuno Gasai, Future Diary follows a deadly battle royale between 12 individuals with “Future Diaries.” With such a gory premise, this anime hardly seems to be the place for a shy protagonist. And yet that’s exactly what Yukiteru “Yukki” Amano is.
A shy and reclusive middle schooler, Yukki is timid, cries easily, and often relies on love interest Yuno Gasai for protection. And while he does become more confident and cunning as the anime goes on, he certainly deserves a spot on this list.
Komi Can’t Communicate
If the title doesn’t make it obvious enough, Komi Can’t Communicate follows shy high schooler Shouko Komi who suffers from an extreme communication disorder. To make matters worse, she’s also got crippling social anxiety.
This anime takes the same self-development approach as Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End, with Shouko’s primary goal being to befriend 100 people. And any shy, introverted person knows this goal is a LOT harder than it sounds. Luckily, she’s got help in the form of classmate Hitohito Tadano.
Bungo Stray Dogs
An anime about supernatural “gifted” people, detectives, and mafia executives, Bungo Stray Dogs follows orphan Atsushi Nakajima as its main character. Kicked out of the orphanage thanks to his ability to turn into a huge white tiger, Atsushi is timid, insecure, and easily spooked.
His shy nature extends to his interactions with the series’ other characters, being easily embarrassed and frequently blushing. But despite his soft personality and good nature, Atsushi is firm in his convictions and able to stand up for himself and others when needed.
No Game No Life
No Game No Life follows a pair of Hikikomori gamer stepsiblings, Sora and Shiro, who are transported to a different reality where everything is decided through games. The younger sister Shiro is an antisocial genius, while the older brother Sora is outgoing, confident, and manipulative.
But what earns them their position on this list is their extreme codependency. As long as Sora has Shiro by his side, he’s confident and able to take on any opponent who challenges them. Separate the two and Shiro is literally unable to function, while Sora becomes a comically timid guy.
WataMote’s protagonist Kuroki Tomoko is pretty much the poster girl for socially inept, shy introverts everywhere. A painfully awkward 15-year-old who believes otome game dating experience translates into real-life popularity, Kuroki takes us on a comedic journey of friendship and second hand embarrassment.
Much like Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End, WataMote also starts with the protagonist experiencing a life-altering realization. Only in this case, the realization is Kuroki discovering her status as the “unpopular girl” via an internet definition of the term.
Yuri!!! on Ice
No one can deny that everyone’s favorite Yuri!!! on Ice protagonist, Yuri Katsuki, is the shy type. With a reputation as “the figure skater with the world’s biggest glass heart,” Yuri pretty much fits the Dandere trope of quiet and easily embarrassed to a T.
Where he manages to stand out, however, is that he’s a competitive figure skater despite his shy personality. The anime follows his journey as he trains under his idol Victor Nikiforov to re-try his hand at the Grand Prix championship, which he lost at the start of the series.
Neon Genesis Evangelion
Didn’t expect to see Neon Genesis Evangelion on this list, did you? While the anime may be best known for its philosophical themes and symbolism, there is no denying its protagonist Shinji Ikari’s shy, introverted personality.
Like Frieren, Shinji starts out as a quiet, laid-back teenager unwilling to accept the responsibility of piloting the mecha Eva-01. He eventually gives in due to his insecurity and desire for his father’s approval, but we see his introverted personality shine through in his frequent use of headphones and minimal interaction with other characters.
- This article was updated on October 17th, 2023