Big disclaimer. As of now, Inuyashiki is only available on Amazon Strike. My condolences.
How Inuyashiki is not classified as a horror anime, I’ll never know. Going into this season, I knew Inuyashiki as the “Old man whose family hates him and can transform into a robot to fight crime” anime. Seriously, whoever did the official synopsis for this show should be fired. They failed this anime immensely, and I need to right the wrong. Also, how the hell did this slip under the radar? Because this is the best horror anime to come out in years. I haven’t felt this disturbed and uncomfortable watching an anime since Satoshi Kon’s Paranoia Agent.
I don’t think I’m spoiling anything by saying Inuyashiki Ichiro is the obvious good guy. Yes, his family hates him and he contracts stomach cancer before he essentially becomes a superhero. His redemption story is absolutely heartwarming because he’s genuinely a good person. Who doesn’t love seeing the little guy defy odds and save the day?
But I’m not recommending this anime because of a redemption arc and good times. I’m recommending it because, through three episodes, Hiro Shishigami terrifies me.
Honestly, the synopsis for this show shouldn’t be a summary—it should be a question. Who would you become if you suddenly became all-powerful? And what would happen if a psychopath received those same powers? As a fan of being scared, I’ve been waiting for a villain like Hiro Shishigami for a while. His character plays on the same terror and fear you have when you walk down a dark alley at night. He isn’t flashy or excessive. He’s insanely simple. And in that way, he’s real. And more than that, you believe he’s a monster. You believe that Hiro was like this before he got these powers. But now he can take every gruesome thought he’s ever had and act on it.
This story definitely easily takes the “good versus evil” idea and dials the character traits all the way up. But it shines because it feels genuine. I cannot recommend Inuyashiki enough.
If you love being scared and want to see a really great villain, watch this anime.