Diving into the mystical world of anime, one can’t help but be intrigued by the unique narratives often revolving around supernatural beings. Among these, ghosts play a significant part, providing an unending realm of mystery, horror, sentimentality, and sometimes comedy.
This fascinating genre of ‘Anime About Ghosts’ brilliantly explores the complexities of the spirit world, often intertwining them with real-life emotions and dilemmas. Be it vengeful spirits seeking closure or friendly ghosts teaching us life lessons, these tales can be thrilling, heartwarming, and sometimes downright eerie.
This article will embark on a spectral journey through the top 30 must-watch anime that delves into these otherworldly phenomena. So, whether you’re a long-time anime lover or a curious newcomer, prepare to encounter the unseen!
Anime About Ghosts
This section delves into the enchanting realm of ‘Anime About Ghosts.’ These shows unravel various aspects of spectral existence, from the spooky to the touching. We’ll explore a diverse range of storytelling, from traditional ghost tales to innovative plots, each offering a unique take on the supernatural world.
1. Ghost Hunt
‘Ghost Hunt’ is a compelling blend of mystery, horror, and supernatural themes. The series follows high school student Mai Taniyama and her chilling adventures with the Shibuya Psychic Research team. As they investigate paranormal activities, every episode takes you into the shadowy realms of haunted houses, schools, and offices, making for an eerie and thrilling ride.
The anime does a fantastic job of blending real-life science with folklore, all while keeping the suspense alive. Each arc is a story filled with ghosts of different origins, fascinating backstories, and unexpected twists.
The character development is also noteworthy, with the initially skeptical Mai growing into a brave ghost hunter. Whether you’re a fan of horror or mystery, ‘Ghost Hunt’ is sure to keep you on the edge of your seat!
2. Tokyo Ghoul
‘Tokyo Ghoul’ presents a dark and thrilling world where ghouls – creatures who feed on human flesh – coexist with humans. The story begins with Kaneki, a human turned half-ghoul caught between the two worlds.
As he grapples with his new reality, viewers are offered a deeply psychological and emotionally intense narrative. Beyond the horror and gore, ‘Tokyo Ghoul’ explores deep themes of identity, humanity, and morality.
It provides a fresh perspective on ‘ghosts’, portraying ghouls as tormented beings torn between their monstrous needs and human emotions. Each human or ghoul character has its own complexities, making it a compelling watch for those who love character-driven stories with a supernatural twist.
3. Dusk Maiden of Amnesia
‘Dusk Maiden of Amnesia’ is a unique blend of romance, comedy, and supernatural elements. The story revolves around a high school student, Teiichi Niiya, who meets the amnesiac Ghost of a girl named Yuko Kanoe.
She’s forgotten her past, including the circumstances of her death, and seeks Teiichi’s help to uncover the truth. As they investigate, the viewers witness a haunting yet poignant love story unfold.
What’s intriguing about this anime is its ability to transition smoothly from light-hearted moments to emotional and suspenseful scenes. The depiction of Yuko as a playful and love-struck ghost, yet with a dark past adds depth to her character. If you’re looking for a ghost-themed anime with a touch of romance and comedy, ‘Dusk Maiden of Amnesia’ is a must-watch!
4. Ghost Stories
‘Ghost Stories’ offers a thrilling adventure as it follows a group of school kids who encounter various ghosts and spirits haunting their town. The original Japanese version was a typical horror series, but the English dub version makes this anime standout, which took a completely different route, turning it into a comedy! It’s a unique blend of paranormal incidents with humorous, sometimes even absurd, dialogues.
From a haunted school building to an abandoned hospital, every episode introduces a new ghost, each with a distinctive tale. ‘Ghost Stories’ is perfect for viewers seeking a fun-filled ghostly adventure with a unique blend of horror and comedy.
5. Yu Yu Hakusho
‘Yu Yu Hakusho’ follows the story of Yusuke Urameshi, a teenage delinquent who dies saving a child’s life and is given a chance to return to the living world as a ‘Spirit Detective.’ His task? To investigate supernatural activities in the human world. This anime cleverly combines action, comedy, and supernatural elements, providing a refreshing take on ghost stories.
The engaging plot, memorable characters, and their development make for a captivating watch. The battles against various spirits and demons are thrilling, while the friendships and rivalries between characters add depth to the narrative. This show isn’t just about ghosts and the afterlife; it also delves into themes of redemption, friendship, and the blurred lines between good and evil.
6. Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex
‘Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex’ is an intriguing blend of science fiction and supernatural themes, set in a world where cybernetic enhancements are the norm. The series centers on Major Motoko Kusanagi and her Public Security Section 9 team as they solve complex cyber crimes and tackle political issues.
The term ‘ghost’ here is metaphorical, referring to the consciousness or spirit residing within the cybernetic shell of a human. The anime intricately explores philosophical questions about identity, consciousness, and the merging of humanity with technology. The well-developed plot, high-tech action scenes, and deep explorations of socio-political themes make it a must-watch for fans of thought-provoking anime.
‘Noragami’ is an engaging blend of action, humor, and the supernatural. It follows Yato, a lesser-known god without a shrine, dreaming of having millions of worshippers. The story takes a turn when he crosses paths with a human girl named Hiyori, who becomes involved in the spiritual world following an accident.
Filled with both malevolent and benevolent spirits, ‘Noragami’ masterfully balances action and drama with lighter, comedic moments. The anime explores complex themes of identity, purpose, and the blurry line between good and evil, all set within a beautifully crafted world of gods and spirits.
8. Natsume’s Book of Friends
‘Natsume’s Book of Friends’ is a heartwarming tale revolving around a boy, Takashi Natsume, who can see spirits. Inherited from his grandmother, he has a book containing names of spirits she had bound to her service. The anime showcases Natsume’s journey as he seeks to free these spirits and navigate his life around the human and supernatural world.
Each episode introduces new spirits with unique stories, evoking a range of emotions from the viewer. The gentle pace, beautiful visuals, and touching narrative make this a must-watch for fans of heartwarming supernatural anime.
‘Bleach’ follows the story of Ichigo Kurosaki, a teenager who can see ghosts. His life turns when he accidentally obtains the powers of a Soul Reaper—a celestial entity dedicated to protecting the living world from evil spirits known as Hollows.
The show is a compelling mix of action, adventure, and supernatural elements, with intricate plotlines and well-developed characters. ‘Bleach’ stands out with its epic battles, a diverse range of spirits and souls, and exploration of themes like duty, friendship, and sacrifice.
10. Requiem from the Darkness
‘Requiem from the Darkness’ is a chilling horror anime set in Japan’s Edo period. The protagonist is a writer who aims to author a book of 100 ghost stories. However, his journey turns dark when he encounters the Ongyou, three mysterious beings who punish humans for their sins.
With its eerie atmosphere, thought-provoking narrative, and grotesque imagery, this anime is a dive into the darker side of the spirit world. Each episode explores human nature and morality, making it a captivating watch for those who enjoy psychological horror.
‘Another’ is a gripping horror-mystery anime that stands out for its haunting atmosphere and intense plot. The story takes place in Yomiyama North Middle School, where a chilling curse leads to a series of mysterious and gruesome deaths. Our protagonist, Kouichi Sakakibara, and a silent, enigmatic classmate named Mei Misaki attempt to uncover the truth behind the eerie happenings.
‘Another’ expertly combines supernatural elements with a thrilling whodunit narrative. The series gradually builds suspense, revealing a little at a time while keeping viewers on the edge of their seats. Its visually stunning, dark art style enhances the ominous vibe, making it a must-watch for fans of horror and suspense.
12. Hell Girl
‘Hell Girl,’ known as ‘Jigoku Shoujo’ in Japanese, presents a unique concept of vengeance in the supernatural realm. The protagonist, Ai Enma, is a ghostly figure known as the Hell Girl who grants individuals their darkest wish – exacting revenge on their tormentors by sending them straight to hell.
However, the price is steep – the avenger must also agree to spend their afterlife in hell. Each episode deals with a different story of revenge, exploring various aspects of human nature. Its haunting yet poignant narrative, stylish animation, and captivating soundtrack make ‘Hell Girl’ a fascinating exploration of vengeance and morality.
13. Ghost Slayers Ayashi
Set in the Edo period, ‘Ghost Slayers Ayashi’ is an action-packed supernatural anime. The story revolves around Yukiatsu Ryudo, a skilled exorcist who is part of the Bansha Aratamesho – a secret government organization tasked to fight Youi, monstrous beings with a spirit core.
The series blends historical elements with supernatural lore, creating a rich, atmospheric setting. Along with engaging action scenes, it offers a compelling exploration of societal issues of the period. With complex characters and a well-developed plot, ‘Ghost Slayers Ayashi’ is a must-watch for fans of historical supernatural anime.
14. Anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day
‘Anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day’ is a beautiful, poignant anime about grief, friendship, and healing. It follows a group of childhood friends who drifted apart following the death of their friend, Menma. When Menma’s Ghost appears to Jinta, the group’s former leader, it sets them on a path of reconciliation and understanding.
What sets ‘Anohana’ apart is its ability to blend emotional depth with the supernatural premise. The narrative tugs at the heartstrings as it explores the complexities of relationships and the grieving process. Its beautiful animation and moving soundtrack further enhance the emotional impact, making it a truly unforgettable anime.
15. Corpse Party: Tortured Souls
‘Corpse Party: Tortured Souls’ is a horror anime not for the faint-hearted. The plot revolves around a group of high school students who accidentally get transported to Heavenly Host Elementary School, an otherworldly realm filled with vengeful spirits of murdered children.
The series takes the viewers on a horrific journey as the characters try to survive and find their way back home. ‘Corpse Party’ is known for its explicit gore, chilling atmosphere, and suspense. It’s intricate plotlines, and well-crafted horror elements provide horror fans a terrifying yet engaging viewing experience.
16. Shinreigari: Ghost Hound
‘Shinreigari: Ghost Hound’ is an intriguing psychological-supernatural anime series that delves deep into the realm of the unconscious. Set in an isolated mountain town, the story follows three boys, each haunted by their own traumas. They begin experiencing ‘out-of-body’ states, which leads them into a hidden world filled with spirits, ghosts, and phantoms.
‘Ghost Hound’ is not your typical horror anime. It stands out for its intellectual exploration of psychology, neuroscience, and spirituality. With its intricate plot, complex characters, and eerie sound design, the series delivers an atmospheric, thought-provoking experience that will keep viewers engaged and intrigued.
‘Mushi-Shi’ is a unique anime that combines fantasy and supernatural elements to create a captivating and tranquil narrative. The story revolves around Ginko, a ‘Mushi-shi’ or Mushi master, who travels across Japan investigating Mushi – ethereal creatures that exist in countless forms and can imitate natural phenomena. Each episode showcases a standalone tale of humans interacting with these mysterious entities.
The anime stands out with its serene atmosphere, philosophical explorations, and Ginko’s empathetic character. ‘Mushi-Shi’ is less about ghostly chills and more about appreciating the symbiosis between humans and nature, making it a refreshing addition to the supernatural genre.
18. Shakugan no Shana
In ‘Shakugan no Shana’, the world is constantly threatened by beings from parallel universes called Crimson Denizens. These beings consume human life energy, leaving behind only a lifeless shell or ‘torch.’ The protagonist, Yuji Sakai, finds himself turned into such a ‘torch’ but retains his consciousness. He then meets Shana, a fiery-haired warrior known as Flame Haze, who fights the Denizens.
This anime blends action, fantasy, and supernatural elements, providing an engaging narrative and well-developed characters. Exploring existential themes through the ‘torches’ and the compelling growth of Shana and Yuji’s relationship makes it an engrossing watch for any anime lover.
19. Poltergeist Report: Yu Yu Hakusho
‘Poltergeist Report: Yu Yu Hakusho’ is a feature-length installment in the beloved ‘Yu Yu Hakusho’ franchise. The movie follows spirit detective Yusuke Urameshi and his friends facing off against powerful enemies to prevent the human and spirit worlds from colliding.
With intense action sequences, vibrant animation, and the same blend of supernatural elements that fans loved in the original series, this film provides an exciting expansion of the ‘Yu Yu Hakusho’ universe. The camaraderie between the characters and their resolve to protect their world is sure to captivate new viewers and satisfy long-time fans.
20. Ghosts at School
Known as ‘Gakkou no Kaidan’ in Japanese, ‘Ghosts at School’ is a horror-comedy anime that is sure to give you goosebumps and laughs in equal measure. The story revolves around Satsuki and Keiichirou Miyanoshita, who discover that ghosts and spirits from different Japanese legends haunt their new school.
With the help of a ghost diary left by their late mother, they exorcise these entities one by one. ‘Ghosts at School’ is fun, blending spooky adventures with humorous elements. Each episode presents a different ghostly tale, ensuring an entertaining watch for those who enjoy light-hearted supernatural tales.
21. Hell Teacher Nube
‘Hell Teacher Nube’ is a lively mix of comedy, horror, and supernatural themes. The series follows Meisuke Nueno, also known as Nube, a teacher with the unique ability to exorcise ghosts and demons. His hand possesses a powerful demon, which he uses to protect his students from supernatural threats. However, Nube isn’t your conventional exorcist.
His quirky personality and amusing interactions with his students add a touch of comedy to the otherwise supernatural-filled narrative. While each episode brings a new ghoul or mystery to solve, the underlying themes revolve around friendship, courage, and the lengths a teacher would go to safeguard his students. This unique mix of themes makes ‘Hell Teacher Nube’ an entertaining and heartwarming watch.
22. Occult Academy
Set in the year 1999, ‘Occult Academy’ is a fascinating blend of comedy, supernatural, and mystery. The series revolves around Maya, a skeptical girl who inherits her late father’s role as a school principal specializing in the occult. Alongside a time-traveler named Fumiaki, Maya embarks on a mission to prevent the apocalypse foretold by her father.
Occult Academy sets itself apart with its engaging plot, well-timed humor, and a wide array of supernatural elements. It’s an anime that’s perfect for fans who love mystery-solving, ghostly encounters, and a dash of comedic relief.
23. Ghost Hunt: The Bloodstained Labyrinth
‘Ghost Hunt: The Bloodstained Labyrinth’ is a gripping arc in the ‘Ghost Hunt’ series. It follows the team of Shibuya Psychic Research as they investigate a reportedly haunted house with a tragic history. As the team delves deeper into the mystery, they find themselves caught in a dangerous maze filled with malicious spirits.
This arc stands out for its intense atmosphere, intricate plot, and well-developed characters. With its chilling narrative and suspenseful twists, ‘The Bloodstained Labyrinth’ is a must-watch for fans of the paranormal investigation genre.
24. Tasogare Otome x Amnesia (Dusk Maiden of Amnesia)
‘Dusk Maiden of Amnesia’ is a captivating supernatural romance anime. The series revolves around Teiichi Niiya, a student who stumbles upon Yuuko Kanoe, the Ghost of a girl who has no memory of her past. Together, they start the Paranormal Investigation Club to unravel the mystery behind Yuuko’s death and amnesia.
While ‘Dusk Maiden of Amnesia’ delivers its fair share of eerie moments, it truly shines in its heartfelt exploration of Yuuko’s past and her blossoming relationship with Teiichi. Its atmospheric animation, compelling characters, and narrative that will tug at your heartstrings make it a unique addition to the supernatural genre.
25. Ghost Talker’s Daydream
‘Ghost Talker’s Daydream’ is a supernatural horror anime that follows Misaki Saiki, a professional dominatrix who can communicate with the dead. She is often called upon as a medium to help restless spirits find peace. The series perfectly balances elements of horror, drama, and comedy.
While Misaki’s investigations into the spirit world provide spine-chilling moments, her unique day job and personal life bring a touch of humor and intrigue. With its striking visuals, detailed storytelling, and Misaki’s fascinating character, ‘Ghost Talker’s Daydream’ is a series that’s sure to keep viewers hooked.
26. Blue Exorcist
‘Blue Exorcist’ is an action-packed supernatural anime that follows the story of Rin Okumura, a teenager who discovers that he is the son of Satan. Instead of taking the path of darkness, Rin becomes an exorcist to fight demons and protect the human world.
The series is filled with engaging characters, intense battle scenes, and a complex narrative exploring identity, family, and faith themes. With its vibrant animation and emotional depth, ‘Blue Exorcist’ provides a captivating journey of self-discovery and courage, making it a must-watch for fans of the supernatural genre.
27. Tokyo Majin
‘Tokyo Majin’ is a supernatural, action-packed anime that weaves together a rich tapestry of myth, magic, and martial arts. Set in modern Tokyo, the series tells the story of a group of high school students who gain mystical powers and use them to protect their city from dark forces.
The anime stands out for its mature storytelling, intricate character relationships, and atmospheric visuals. ‘Tokyo Majin’ is a thrilling ride that masterfully blends action, horror, and drama elements, providing a unique take on the supernatural genre.
28. Ghost Stories: Ghost Girls
Unfortunately, as of my knowledge cutoff in September 2021, there isn’t an anime series titled “Ghost Stories: Ghost Girls.” You might need to provide more context if you were referring to an arc or a specific episode within the Ghost Stories anime.
However, ‘Ghost Stories’ as a whole is a paranormal anime where students of Amanojaku Elementary School encounter various ghosts and spirits from Japanese folklore and work together to solve the mysteries surrounding them.
29. Hell Girl: Two Mirrors
‘Hell Girl: Two Mirrors’ is the second season of the ‘Hell Girl’ series. Continuing with the haunting theme of vengeance, this season introduces new characters and deepens the lore around Ai Enma, the Hell Girl. The series maintains its episodic format, presenting different tales of revenge, each with its own twist.
With its chilling narrative, compelling characters, and exploration of human nature, ‘Hell Girl: Two Mirrors’ keeps viewers engrossed. It’s a gripping sequel that matches up to its predecessor and adds new layers to the overarching narrative.
30. Ghost in the Shell: Arise
‘Ghost in the Shell: Arise’ reimagines the iconic Ghost in the Shell franchise. It explores the origin story of Major Motoko Kusanagi and the formation of Public Security Section 9. ‘Arise’ offers a fresh take on the complex themes of the original, delving deeper into the characters’ backgrounds and the world they inhabit.
The anime stands out for its thought-provoking narrative, intense action sequences, and breathtaking visuals. It’s an engaging exploration of the intersection of technology, humanity, and identity, making it a captivating watch for both new viewers and long-time fans of the Ghost in the Shell series.
As we’ve journeyed through this collection of the top 30 must-watch anime about ghosts, we’ve explored a diverse array of series ranging from spine-chilling horror to heartwarming supernatural tales. These shows offer a fascinating exploration of the afterlife, delving into themes of existence, vengeance, spirituality, and mystery.
Each series provides a unique take on the supernatural genre, delivering immersive narratives, compelling characters, and striking visuals. Whether you’re a fan of suspenseful thrillers, psychological dramas, or poignant romances, there’s something on this list for every anime lover. Embark on these spectral adventures and experience a thrilling fusion of the earthly and ethereal realms.