Honesty is often considered a virtue. Unfortunately, some anime characters don’t see it that way. Some of the most devious anime villains have a natural talent for deceiving and manipulating others to achieve their own goals. However, perhaps surprisingly, it’s not always the villain who is dishonest – even some anime heroes have a tragic affinity for breaking a promise.
While heroes are usually assumed to be the most virtuous, anime has a way of teaching viewers that things aren’t always that simple. There are a few anime characters that just can’t be trusted to keep their word, whether it’s due to a purely selfish disposition, evil intent, or just plain absence.
10/10 Faye cannot be trusted or trusted
IN Cowboy Bebop, Faye has a way of only doing things when it suits her. She certainly has it in her to help others, but that will usually only happen when helping others also happens to be in her own interest.
Because Faye has always had to fend for herself, she uses whatever is in her power to manipulate her way to success – even if it means making promises she doesn’t intend to keep. As time went on, Faye finally loosened up on Jet and Spike. But gaining their trust was not easy after she had already broken it several times before.
9/10 Frieza takes advantage of Goku’s kind-hearted nature
IN Dragon Ball Z, Frieza faced a decisive loss against the newly transformed Super Saiyan Goku. In an underhanded attempt to trick the legendary Super Saiyan, Frieza convinced him that he could change and that Goku should let him live. When the latter turns his back, Frieza tries to blind him, only to anger Goku even more.
Later, in Dragon Ball SuperFrieza acts selfish and dishonest once again when he tells Goku that he will not kill if he is revived to join Universe 7 in the Tournament of Power. But not even moments after being brought back from Hell, Frieza unnecessarily kills many enemies before trapping Goku in a dark ball of energy.
8/10 Lelouch’s ends don’t always justify his means
Through the events of Code Geass, Lelouch is fooling all the people around him. He acts like a regular student by day, only moonlighting as Zero, the revolutionary, political terrorist and enemy of the status quo.
Lelouch lies about many things throughout Code Geass, but one of the worst is the desire to protect his sister, Euphemia. Although his use of his Geass on her was accidental, the method by which he disposed of her and took advantage of her death to further his cause was nothing short of ruthless.
7/10 Meowth is the only Pokémon with the ability to lie
Meowth is unique to others Pokémon in a number of ways, most of which have to do with the fact that he can talk. This ability to speak gives him a personality all his own and also reveals another distinct part of his nature that differs from most other Pokémon: he is inherently a bad guy.
Using his unique human cognitive abilities to lie and deceive Ash and his Pokémon, Meowth constantly takes an active part in Team Rocket’s most devious schemes. His most successful stunts often consist of convincing Ash and his party that he is on their side, only to later turn on them in an attempt to help Jessie and James steal Pikachu.
6/10 Big Mom wanted to have her cake and eat it too
Big Mom is one of One Piece’s most powerful and cunning pirates. But she is also extremely clever and ruthless in her methods and will stop at nothing to gain additional power.
While Big Mom originally told Sanji that she would let the Straw Hats live if he married her daughter, Pudding, this turned out to be a ruse. In reality, if her plan had gone as she intended, she would have killed both Sanji and the entire Vinsmoke family in the process. All Big Mom really wanted was to get her hands on Judge’s cloning technology; The wine smokes were only obstacles to her true goal.
5/10 Orochimaru will do whatever it takes to gain power
IN Naruto, Orochimaru was one of the Three Legendary Sannin, an enemy of the shinobi world at large and Sasuke’s mentor. Orochimaru led Sasuke to believe that Orochimaru really took him under his wing to teach him how to gain greater power.
In reality, Orichamaru’s intention was much more selfish: he wanted to take over Sasuke’s body as his own. Orochimaru recognized the great abilities Sasuke possessed as an Uchiha, and since his own body was beginning to wither, he decided to take over Sasuke’s body to prolong his own life.
4/10 Eren wanted to save his friends, but he just failed them
Attack on Titan
In some ways, Attack on Titans Eren did exactly what he always said he would. In other ways, he did a complete 360 and betrayed all his friends that he grew up with and even his own family.
On the bright side, Eren always intended to protect his friends, no matter the cost. While he certainly continued to make that his driving motivation until the very end, the way he did it was against everything he and the rest of the Scouts always stood for.
3/10 Rachel has no problem lying to the top
Tower of God
Tower of God Rachel is known as one of the worst anime cheaters of all time. Her entire personality and motivations are despicable in every way, without really any endearing or positive qualities. While some villains in anime will at least have a reasonable motivation for their terrible deeds, Rachel has none other than her own selfish desire to see the stars.
To achieve her goal, Rachel has absolutely no problem manipulating, using and trashing anyone who gets in her way. In the end, all Rachel had to do was latch onto Bam on her way to the top; the rest is history.
2/10 Withered Sprout’s words mean even less to him than his pride
One Punch Man
Withered Sprout is a weak looking monster i One Punch Man which looks like a small bean sprout. In the one-shot special “Disaster level,” Withered Sprout used his appearance to his advantage, pretending to be a weak and anxious being to throw off the heroes.
Withered Sprout used his cunning tactics of deception to take out several heroes in the past until Saitama finally approached him. Since Saitama tends to take most enemies he encounters lightly at first, he was easily tricked by Sprout and frozen by his ability to touch the ice. Of course, it was only a small inconvenience for Saitama, and one punch was all it took to turn the withered sprout into a vegetable.
1/10 Lys manipulates others to further his twisted schemes
Light Yagami from Death note is known for his skill in manipulating those around him to do his bidding or leading investigators off his trail. One of Light’s most infamous tactics is convincing others to join him on his quest as Kira, then killing them later to preserve the secrecy of his identity.
Perhaps Light’s most malicious use of this move was on Misa, who he convinced was his girlfriend. In reality, Light was only using her to further his plans as Kira, knowing that her status as a Death Note holder would come in handy for him in the future. In the end, it is implied that Misa dies after being wrapped up in Light’s diabolical plans, leaving her an empty shell of her former self, filled with psychological trauma that she can’t even remember.
NEXT: 10 Isekai Villains Who Didn’t Deserve To Win (But Did)