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Kurenai main image more screenshots
3.896 out of 5 from 4,344 votes
Rank #889


To make money, high school student Shinkurou Kurenai works for the secretive Benika as a "dispute mediator," acting to intervene in the disputes of clients – often violently. One day, Benika gives him a much different assignment: to protect Murasaki Kuhoin, a seven-year-old girl from the wealthy Kuhoin family. This turns out to be a more troublesome task than he expects, as Murasaki is spoiled, naive, and completely unaware of what life is like outside of the luxurious one she had previously. He also has no idea why Murasaki needs his protection, though he is slowly obtaining details from a well-informed classmate. Adding to his problems, Shinkurou still must continue to do his previous work for Benika and take care of his social relationships in school while protecting Murasaki, complicating his entire life. Nonetheless, as time passes, he and Murasaki grow close; however, trouble brews in the shadows as everyone - including Shinkurou - seems to be harboring secrets...

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related anime

Anime Name Type Year Relation More Info
Kurenai OVA OVA 2010 TBD

related manga

Manga Name Year Relation More Info
Kurenai (Light Novel) 2005 TBD
Kurenai 2007 TBD
Name Role
Kumi ISHII Character Design
Kou MATSUO Director
Kentarou KATAYAMA Original Manga Creator

Love it? Hate it?

Official Editorial Reviews

Title Author Score Date
Kurenai mariprosa 8/10 Jan 6, 2009

Community Reviews

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Title Author Score Date
Kurenai ForTheLoveOfLoli 10/10 Oct 14, 2013
Kurenai roriconfan 6/10 Jul 25, 2012
Kurenai Otaku108 3/10 Sep 14, 2011
List Title Username Entries Date
My top Slice of life kurai117 11 Mar 26, 2014
anime order 10th rounds YamiRin 1136 Jan 20, 2014
my favorite animes Rocco 56 Oct 27, 2013
Post Name Username Comments Date
Kurenai alexander 2 Jan 1, 10
CloudyStone rated the Kurenai anime 5/5 stars
CloudyStone watched Kurenai at 12 of 12 episodes
Fulle watched Kurenai at 12 of 12 episodes
Anamenotakenyet removed the Kurenai anime from their anime list
d3v4st4t3 watched Kurenai at 12 of 12 episodes

Recommendations if you like Kurenai

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Seirei no Moribito

Seirei no Moribito

In the feudal kingdom of Yogo, a dark secret is threatening its proud imperial family, and the Emperor intends to destroy it before it leaks out. Unfortunately this dark secret resides within his son, the young and innocent Second Prince Chagum. Enter Balsa, a wandering warrior who has sworn to save eight lives in penance for those she has taken during her violent career. Upon accepting her role as protector to Chagum, her eighth and final job, the two begin a perilous journey that tests not only their physical endurance and mental resolve, but also the tentative relationship they build along the way. Will Balsa fulfill her penance and protect Chagum as he seeks to understand the nature of his secret? Or will the Emperor's relentless assassins and other powerful enemies get them first?

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5 people agree

Both have the older person taking care of the younger person. Both have action, and caters more to the characters' growth and development.

Chagum and Murasaki are stubborn kids who come from very aristocratic families as they are thrust into a new world where they must adapt to conditions around them. Shinkuro is also a bit of a younger Balsa, and both end up having a deep caring for their wards and what's best for their ward.

Kurenai is much more slice of life set in a modern (yet different) setting, where Seirei no Moribito branches off into a fantastical direction.


Plot-wise, Kurenai and Seirei no Moribito are similar: both tell the story of a bodyguard who must protect a young child whose powerful family puts him/her in danger. But there is more that ties these titles together such as the unique dynamics between the protected child and the protector who establish a bond of friendship and dedication. With a realistic art direction these anime stray far from clichés and offer an interesting character study as well as a social comment on current Japan (in Kurenai's case) and on Feudal times (Seirei no Moribito). Fans of one are strongly advised to give the other a try.


They share a similar basic premise 'common' body guard protects noble child and their relationship develops.

In many ways they compliment each other, where Kurenai is weak; the slightly unoriginal story, undeveloped setting and lacklustre fight scenes Seirei no Moribito is stronger; the setting was more developed and story although not earth shartteringly original was more detailed and fleshed out, the fight scenes were astounding well down and good pieces of story telling in their own right.

I would argue that although not necessarily more likeable the main characters of Kurenai are more detailed and real while despite thinking Balsa one of my favourite characters she seems flatter in comparison. 


A bodyguard and his/her underage ward must undergo a personal journey together. The child must learn to become more resilient and face their oppressive family hunting after them - the adult must become reconciled with their troubled past. Kurenai and Serei no Moribito both take this concept and run with it along surprisingly similar lines despite operating in different genres. Both approach it with an even pace and with a focus on the character development while offering smatterings of sleek action. Seirei no Moribito, however, has far more space to build a stronger story, more gorgeous animation, and also more interesting secondary cast. Definitely try it next.


Both shows are about someone who becomes a surrogate parent for a child and has to protect that child. And both shows have a lot of action. If you like one you should watch the other.

Red Garden

Red Garden

Four students of the same age have nothing in common except that they attend the same elite New York City school. Kate, Rose, Clare and Rachel all belong to different cliques and hardly notice each other's existence. Then one day they gain something in common, something very important, something mysterious. They find themselves drawn together by the death of a fellow student and the secret of their own missing memories. Suddenly they are thrown into a world of hidden warfare on the city streets and are caught up in secrets which would not be believed by others. These four all have their own problems to struggle with, things that seem more important than such strange conflicts. Can they escape from this fate? The only thing they know is that despite coming from four different worlds they now have to rely on each other or die without a hope.

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With the same colorful, stylish animation, Red Garden and Kurenai are two anime that feature regular high school students who secretly double as fighters. Emotional scenes and daily activities intertwine in these anime about desperate circumstances. Be sure to check them out.


Both have great character design, and revolve around normal lives doing 'abnormal things.'They are both very character-driven stories and have this slice-of-life yet exciting feeling to them. I'm sure if you like one, you'd like the other too.


Both Red Garden and Kurenai feature a characters that are normal high school students by day but live in a dangerous world of battle at night. Both shows stories' blend normal school life type activites with the action. Showing the normal side of the characters' lives helps to develop the character and lends the fights more weight. 


Both Kurenai and Red Garden are eccentric, slow-moving shows that promise a smattering of supernatural action. I say eccentric because neither minds their characters randomly bursting into song, and though set up to be about battles and violence, actually end up being overwhelmingly about the character development in slice-of-life scenarios. They're angsty without being emo, slow while risking boring, but still managing something uniquely creative.

watch it online now!

Aishiteruze Baby

Aishiteruze Baby

Whenever Kippei is at school, he has one thing on his mind: girls. From skipping class to cheesy lines, he'll do anything it takes to reel the ladies in, though he never seems to find the right person. But the bachelor lifestyle is soon to change when young Yuzuyu enters the picture. This five-year-old cutie has been abandoned by her mother, and is to be taken care of by none other than Kippei! Unfortunately for the both of them, Kippei has no experience raising a child, so the learning curve will be quite steep...


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Aishiteruze Baby and Kurenai strictly focus on a male student who must suddenly take care of a little girl. The only real difference is that Kurenai involves darker story-telling with fantasy-like elements, and Baby is much more light and realistic. Nevertheless, if you liked one of them, then you will certainly want to take a good peek at the other.


Both about a school kid guy having to take care of a little girl.

Kurenai though is much darker, deeper and action orientated. Aishiteruze Baby is... well shojo. Both of them though aren't lolicon animes despite having a young girl protagonist.

Both seems to look at 'slice-of-life' attitude of the male lead's school life, and deals with the themes of 'loneliness'. Romance is also slotted into both animes.


If you liked one of these series then you might like the other because both serie mainly resolves around young high school students suddendly ending up taking care of young kids.  While Kurenai tends to have more action elements than Aishiteruze Baby they both tend to focus on the development of relationships between both the male lead and female lead as well as development between supporting characters.  Also each series while at times become very serious touching on some pretty deep issues that keeps the plot interesting.

Darker Than Black - Kuro no Keiyakusha

Darker Than Black - Kuro no Keiyakusha

A giant wall looms over Tokyo, shielding the city from a dangerous otherworld called the 'Hell's Gate'. Within the city, things are no less terrifying because Contractors, psychopathic killers with phenomenal powers, have started to appear. These killers are compelled to pay a price every time they use their powers, often in the form of a meaningless or painful task. As their deadly habits rack up a gruesome death toll, Kirihara Misaki and her team from the Foreign Affairs Public Security struggle to solve the cases and bring the Contractors under control. Their task is further confounded by the interference of a masked individual they title Messier Code BK201, a man with abilities that allow him to fight and defeat the Contractors. Who is this BK201? How can the Contractors be stopped permanently? And what does the appearance of the Hell's Gate mean for the people of Tokyo?

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Kurenai's appeal doesn't just lie in the relationship between the main character. From down-to-earth action that makes the series exciting, to an interesting set of characters that make you experience a wide range of emotions. These points and the way this show takes itself seriously in all its aspects, is something it shares with Darker Than Black. It might not be the first recommendation to derive from Kurenai. But it's certainly one to consider.


The artwork and action in each of these series are rather similar in pacing. Furthermore, each series has a lot of good action to it, broken up by drama or humor (although Kurenai has more drama). I think if you liked one series you'll enjoy the other.


Both series have a strict and full in medias res start. No effort is taken to explain to the watcher how the world works or other unrealistic introductions like that. Both focus on deeper philosophical issues and daily life instead of spending time on a normal plot.

Both have fantastic yet relativly simple, short and brutal fight sequences with a dark and gritty artstyle

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Hayate the Combat Butler!

Hayate the Combat Butler!

When Hayate was young, Santa appeared in a dream and told him that if he worked hard, he’d be rewarded. Thus, with an unbreakable will, the unfortunate Hayate has struggled through life holding onto that belief. In the present, his parents are lazy and unemployed, forcing Hayate to work several jobs to pay the bills. As if things couldn’t get worse, Hayate’s parents then run away, leaving him with an enormous debt and loan sharks on his tail! Naturally, the best solution to find money fast is… to kidnap someone?! A girl named Nagi is the target, but due to an unfortunate miscommunication, she believes Hayate has proposed to her and falls for him hard. After Nagi paid off his debt, Hayate must now work as her butler in order to repay her; but first, he must adapt to her wacky world!

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It seems a sort of absurd comparison, but I think that these two shows are similar in enough ways to find enjoyment in both if you like one. On one hand, Hayate is mainly a comedy and Kurenai mainly a drama, but the idea of taking care of a young naiive girl stands prevalently in both. Both Nagi in Hayate and Murasaki in Kurenai have that quality of naiivete in the same way and I think you can draw enough parallels between them to enjoy both shows.


After only watching the first two episodes I thought it was very similar to Hayate the combat butler because Hayate, who comes from trash but has amazing combat skills, has to protect the rich Nagi who needs to learn to adjust to life outside of her luxurious life. That sums up the first two eps in Kurenai. Kurenia is much darker and realistic then HTCB. Both plots seem similar.