Otaku USA Magazine
Set a Spooky Tone for Your Day with These Gothic Anime

These Gothic anime promise a fascinating dark tone

Looking for something a little spooky for your watchlist? Or maybe you just enjoy a darker, more classic vibe? There are lots of Gothic anime out there to scratch that moody itch! Classic, modern, or fully fantastical, these will give your viewing material a dose of dark elegance.

One of these shows, incidentally, is due for release in April. So once you’ve caught up to the others, you can look forward to watching the last of them as it airs!


Black Butler

Black Butler

This Victorian Gothic anime is light on historical accuracy, but heavy on style. Is there anything more on brand than Ciel Phantomhive’s “hell of a butler,” Sebastian? He’s elegant, wicked, and he sets a mean table. But he’s not the only thing about Black Butler that makes it fit the bill. Not by far.

From Ciel himself to the double act of Madam Red and Grelle Sutcliff, there’s plenty to drink in. Dark magic abounds, and everyone’s wardrobes are about as elegant as it gets. Oh, and there’s Ciel’s back story. Tragic and magic in equal parts, it fits right into the Gothic mindset.




CLAMP creates stories in a wide variety of styles, from the magical girl softness of Cardcaptor Sakura to the boyish elegance of CLAMP School Detectives. So of course they’d have a Gothic anime up their sleeve! In particular, there’s xxxHOLIC — one of a pair of interlocking series bringing together many of the circle’s previous works and characters.

Modern-day student Watanuki has the ability to see spirits, and he doesn’t especially want it. The witch Yuuko can rid him of this ability, but wants something in return: his service as her housekeeper. This job not only exposes him to more knowledge about the supernatural, but also crosses over with Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle. Together, the series unit much of CLAMP’s catalogue in an alternate shared universe.


Shadows House

Shadows House

Want something fresh? This Gothic anime isn’t even out yet, so this is as fresh as it gets!

Shadows House will be based on the manga of the same name by somato, and features two mirrored casts of characters. One, a clan of Shadows, adopts an upper-class Western way of life, but cannot engage with the world as they are faceless. To that end, a group of Living Dolls serves as their Faces, as well as taking care of the house.

The show looks both haunting and cute, and we can’t wait to see the interplay between the two similar-but-different worlds.

Which Gothic anime are haunting your playlist?

Kara Dennison

Kara Dennison is a writer, editor, and presenter with bylines at Crunchyroll, Sci-Fi Magazine, Sartorial Geek, and many others. Beyond the world of anime, she's a writer for Doctor Who expanded universe series including Iris Wildthyme and the City of the Saved, as well as an editor for the critically-acclaimed Black Archive series.