It’s happened to me more than once, especially in manga/anime but for some reason I like the support characters a lot more than the main one. If you want to follow me I’ll takes us through a short journey of my top support characters and why I love them.

It may be that it is only one character in the series or it may be a whole support crew that complement each other and the character in ways that sometimes is not noticeable, overall I just want to give them the respect and praise they deserve.

(Hopefully I won’t put in too many spoilers)

In Rurouni Kenshin

Right… let’s hit this off with some good ones. Although I have already mentioned this in a past article specifically about Kenshin, I love the support characters in the series. Particularly Sanosuke and Yahiko. There are other characters there that are interesting, as much as these two or even Kenshin, but here I want to focus on them only.

Sagara Sanosuke, I just love his character. He is one of those that really surprised me because of his influences and how he evolves. Although many see Sano as a background character without anything but a very superficial layer of comic relief, I see a lot more. His character, has depth, he has a proper history to it, and everything that comes from it. He ran from home and joined the army as a child, he saw his idol beheaded at the hands of a treacherous government that used them, he fought his way up the streets of Tokyo and then he met Kenshin, he changed he evolved, in his personality and “power”, he grew and became Kenshin’s best and most reliable friend. But the one thing I love most about Sano is that, he doesn’t “need” to be Kenshin’s friend. His stories, standalone perfectly fine, he could have his own series if someone took the time to write them

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It’s the same with Yahiko. As the child member of the team he is there mostly as a surrogate for the young reader, but he is much more than that. Action wise he evolves to become a top swordsman by the age of 10/11 that rivals a member of the Juppongatana in the Kyoto arc and the Four Twins in the Jinchuu arc. By the age of 16 he receives Kenshin’s Sakabatou and is the instructor of Kamyia School. Basic stuff, what else does he have? Scars, loads of them, that make him an awesome character to see develop. His father was a samurai that lost his position in the Meiji era. His mother had to become a prostitute to support the family, when she got ill he had to start pickpocketing for the Yakuza to pay for the her medicines, it is at this point that he is rescued by Kenshin and Kaoru, it is then that his moulding begins. Yahiko has a great standalone story where he is a grown up and is “following” Kenshin’s steps, like with Sano, he could have his own series. My favorite feature on this character is that he never loses hearth. He never loses faith, and that makes him great.

In Sabagebu! – Survival Game Club!

Much like with Kenshin, I love Momoka Sonokawa, she is a great main character, but I do think that the she would lose so much if it wasn’t for 3 members of her support members.

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Kazue Sonokawa, Momoka’s mother is such a great character that I can’t help but love her. Although it’s a silly series and the situations are completely ridiculous most of the time, she is so nice and pleasant and at the same time insanely exaggerated that I can’t help but smile whenever I see her.

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There is also Urara Kasugano, who is an adorable little girl that is in love with Momoka, and is highly masochistic. She loves when Momoka hits her to the point of her being bloodied and/or knocked-out, she loves when she used as a shield (IN EVERY EPISODE), this girl is so strangely complex that she could be a therapist’s case study for years and years. If she was real…

And then there is Platy. Who is a platypus, doesn’t talk, but has amazing adventures and funny situations with the girls. And I just love him to bits because he is cute.

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In Naruto

And now, this gets serious. Although I stopped reading the Naruto manga series when he became an almost god like entity and was fighting Tobi and Madara, I always thought of Naruto as a one dimensional character. There is just nothing there to read. His support characters on the other hand, are excellent in my point of view. And I’m not talking about Sakura or Sasuke. I’m talking about the others, Kakashi, Asuma and Guy, Ino, Choji, Gaara, Jiraiya but particularly, Shimamaru.

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Shikamaru Nara is my favorite character in the series, I love the way he is portrayed in the series and how he develops. Shikamaru starts off as being an apathetic lazy boy, part of Team 10 in the Chunin Exams, however he is not lazy at all, he just likes a quiet life, as he says, find an average wife, have a child, grow old playing Shogi… That’s not lazy in my book.

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He is a genius, a master strategist and has some of the coolest Jutsus in the series. His relationship with his team captain Asuma, his team members Ino and Choji, and even with the other members of the rooster is cool to watch. The way he deals with the Asuma’s death, how he manages to defeat one of the most dangerous Ninja’s in “their world”, on his own, while also creating the strategy for his companions to defeat another, is amazing.

I thought I should keep it short, and open up a discussion amongst everyone. So… Who are your favorite support characters and why?

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(Don’t have to stick to anime/manga only, anything goes)