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Shows With Significant Character Development (or regression).

The description includes spoilers.
1 March Comes in like a Lion 2nd Season

March Comes in like a Lion 2nd Season

Hinata Kawamoto's decision to fight for a bullied friend pulls her into interpersonal challenges she did not imagine. 

The mental growth involved there is quite impressive. It's also nice if you could pay attention to how MC Kiriyama Rei reacts to this event.

2 Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood

I enjoyed watching the brothers overcome their trauma and move on with their lives. There were also many scenes where I felt that the bond between the brothers was being tested.

3 Arslan Senki

Arslan Senki

This was quite a nuanced show. It certainly shed some light on how human nature can't be described as either just good or bad. Take Etoile for example. She can be trusted for her words, she never decieves. But, she is unforgiving, stubborn and well...intolerant.

Perhaps that would be her downfall, unless she starts heeding Arslan's all-encompassing/forgiving attitude towards mankind. But you know what took me by surprise? I think I actually saw her changing, bit by bit.

4 Psycho-Pass


MC Tsunemori Akane learns what duty really means. I did not like the newbie Akane and her naivety, but she learns.

5 Wolf Children

Wolf Children

Hana's love of her life is a wolf. What's worse is that he's gone, and Hana has half-wolf kids she has to raise on her own.

I am not a mother myself, but this show did make me imagine the struggles I will be going through if I ever were to raise my own children.

6 Parasyte -the maxim-

Parasyte -the maxim-

I can't really tell if the change was triggered by Miggie replacing the MC’s wounds with monster meat or by the shock MC experienced from losing his mum, but the MC changes drastically, as a person. He grows stronger, but less sympathetic. 

7 Welcome to the NHK!

Welcome to the NHK!

The MC is a shut in. That in itself is not the issue though. Rather, MC's life makes it all too clear that he remains a shut in unless he starts facing reality, making productive choices and taking responsibilty for his future. 

I really liked the way MC's transition from a shut in to a non-shut in was dealt with. It came about smooth, his decisions necessitated by ordinary life events. I don't think Miyuki's tutoring played any part in the MC's transition because 1. it was all hypothetical talk and 2. the problem could only be solved by the MC making changes by himself.

8 Land of the Lustrous

Land of the Lustrous

I'm quite convinced that anyone who has watched this show would consider the protagonist Phos to be annoying at first. Phos starts as a useless, helpless, and foolish character, then ends up becoming a totally different person.

The way Phos' change is dealt with is controversial. Some may not appreciate how it is achieved through Phos' physical losses (the replacement of several limbs), although I do not see how Phos could've changed in any other way. That is because Phos was born with fragile limbs. It was impossible for Phos to become physically stronger, no matter how much Phos wished to become stronger (both physically and mentally), due to the nature of the gem she/he was made out of.

Perhaps, the message is that we are constrained, both physically and mentally, by the traits we are born with. We can become a more mature version of ourselves, but we can’t really change who we are...unless we change the trait itself.

The way Phos’ transformation happens is quite interesting, also since it resembles how patients irl behave quite differently from who they used to be, after going through a transplant surgery.

9 A Silent Voice

A Silent Voice

The now grown-up MC owns up for the offenses he did to an hearing-impaired classmate as a kid.

He struggles a lot: with not knowing how to compensate for his offenses, not knowing how to behave before his former accomplices. Not to mention, the MC himself was bullied by those accomplices, and it hurts so much for the MC because it is then that he notices the pain he had inflicted on his former victim. 

10 Run with the Wind

Run with the Wind

Kakeru used to be short-tempered, hot in the head. If he was provoked, he would resort to violence, even if that meant endangering other people's positions as a result. 

With the help of his new teammates, though, he gradually becomes aware of how his actions affect other people. He learns to control himself, for the sake of his team.

11 Mobile Suit Gundam SEED

Mobile Suit Gundam SEED

I really enjoyed the human drama in this show, and how the spotlight was shed not just on the main characters, but on the side characters as well.

The characters change in their own way, but in general, I think they all became mature and more well-rounded in the end, which is nice because they started off as kiddish characters in the first half of the show.

12 Yona of the Dawn

Yona of the Dawn

At the beginning of the story, Yona is that typical princess  whose only concern is about her curls and her future prince. Then comes the tragedy of her father’s assassination, and the character development ensues.

The outcome of her change, driven by vengeance, is astonishing. By the end of the story, she’s more fit to be a queen ruler than a mere ‘wife to a king’.

13 Aldnoah.Zero 2nd Season

Aldnoah.Zero 2nd Season

Slaine is that one character I truly felt sorry for his misfortunes. He was a victim of discrimination all his life, so he fought it by slowly working his way up. He fell in love with the princess who saved his life, so he gave his all to protect her, even waited all those years for her to wake up from her sleep. He did nothing wrong. But he lost everything in the end.

Watching Slaine work his way up from scratch and dedicate himself to the princess, only to lose it all to some random guy drove me nuts, but I really enjoyed the character development (and regression) of Slaine.

14 Berserk



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