Otaku USA Magazine
This Season’s Anime Guys Seriously Deserve a Break

Isami needs a break... and so do these other anime guys!

It’s hard being an anime hero, even at the best of times. In the best-case scenario, you might need to win a relay race during your school’s sports day. At worst, the fate of the entire universe could rest on your shoulders. Sometimes, though, a hero’s greatest stress is coming from inside the house — thanks to an overeager ally.

This trio of anime characters each has more than enough to worry about on their own. But with the addition of an overenthusiastic partner, things just get a little more complicated. These guys definitely deserve a break.


Patrick Ashbatten

Patrick Ashbatten, Villainess Level 99

The spotlight may be largely on Yumiella in Villainess Level 99: I May Be the Hidden Boss But I’m Not the Demon Lord, but Patrick Ashbatten has stepped into it alongside her. This level-headed noble’s son is one of a very few classmates who’s willing to give our heroine the time of day. While his levelheadedness definitely helps the other students, he still tries to protect Yumiella… despite her being maxed out power-wise.

Like other anime guys who hang out with weird anime girls, though, Patrick’s good deeds don’t go unpunished. He quickly finds himself in the thick of Yumiella’s deadpan pro gamer antics. Funnily, he’s under more stress than he might be if she was low-level. But long-time manga and novel fans know how this one turns out.



Ken Usato, The Wrong Way to Use Healing Magic

Ken Usato was never actually meant to be part of the action in The Wrong Way to Use Healing Magic. He got caught in the isekai crossfire, accompanying his classmates on their heroic journey. But that doesn’t mean he’s powerless. He’s obtained healing magic… which makes him a target for the aggressive Rose.

As the series goes on, the head of the Rescue Team will train Usato to be super strong and super powerful. But her methods are so wild that even the kingdom’s best and brightest are terrified of her. For better or for worse, she finds Usato. And while his training is ruthless, he ends up becoming one of this season’s toughest anime guys for his trouble.


Isami Ao

Isami Ao, Bang Brave Bang Bravern!

The story of Bang Brave Bang Bravern! should be every anime guy’s dream. But Isami Ao is a grownup, and piloting a robot no longer means living like he’s in a mecha anime. Well, not to him, anyway. To his new partner, that’s exactly what it means. And his new partner is a robot straight out of a brave show.

Bravern’s enthusiasm and heroics ring hollow for Isami at best. At worst, he’s actually terrified of the ‘bot, his childlike enthusiasm, and his “phrasing.” It doesn’t help that the world is literally burning and his squad is all that stands between Earth and alien invaders. But, bit by bit, it seems that people are getting used to Bravern. And to some degree, the robot himself is beginning to understand what his beloved partner needs most right now.

Looking for something a little more vintage? Check out these series turning 20 in 2024!

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.