Often in anime, characters will form exceptional relationships that transcend friendship and become an unbreakable bond. So much so, that it is almost impossible to imagine a character without his counterpart in a given series.
The bonds that some of our favorite characters form are also essential to understanding the deeper context of an anime. Without these relationships, many well-established franchises would be notably less impactful, as many anime have a way of pairing unforgettable characters. Whether or not one is familiar with some of these friendships, even avid fans of the genre might be surprised by these iconic duos in anime.
10 Jin and Mugen are two swordsmen with opposite personalities (Samurai Champloo)
First released in 2004, Samurai Champloo It is a very stylized anime with many memorable characters. The story revolves around Mugen and Jin, two friends charged with protecting Fuu in her search for the “samurai who smells like sunflowers.”
Jin and Mugen have an undeniably entertaining relationship that continually develops throughout the series. When the pair first meet, they engage in a duel with equal katana skills. Jin is calm and calculated, often struggling to maintain relationships. Mugen, his antithesis, is rude, loud, and unpredictable, proving that opposites really do attract.
9 Jessie and James always take off together (Pokémon)
Fans of Pokemon I can’t talk about the long-running franchise without mentioning Team Rocket’s iconic duo Jessie and James. After all, nothing means fellowship like developing your own signature motto.
Throughout the series, Jessie and James frequently interact in ways that evoke a close bond, though their plans are inevitably thwarted when the pair “take off again.” Jessie and James are quintessential antiheroes in Pokemon that fans can’t help but sympathize with, making the duo an enduring fan favorite.
8 Vash and Wolfwood connect through their mysterious grasses and inner demons (Trigun)
Trigun, which first aired in 1998, revolves around Vash the Stampede, which has a “double sixty billion dollar bounty” on its head. However, due to amnesia, Vash cannot recall the details of his past that lead to his reward.
On your way to May city, Vash meets Nicholas D. Wolfwood, a prolific former priest / gunman. From the moment they meet, the two share a similar connection of mysterious pasts and inner demons. Trained as an assassin, Wolfwood struggles with Vash’s “no kill” code, but the pair quickly form a unique bond and mutual appreciation.
7 Edward and Alphonse are brothers for life (Fullmetal Alchemist)
One of the most tragic and iconic duos in anime history is Edward and Alphonse from Fullmetal Alchemist. After their mother dies, the brothers attempt to revive her using alchemy. However, after the transmutation is derailed, all that remains of Alphonse is a disembodied soul. Fortunately, Edward can tie his brother’s soul to armor.
More than just siblings, the duo share an unbreakable bond that grows throughout the series. Their journey together is fraught with heartbreaking sacrifices, though the two remain decidedly optimistic as they journey together to restore their bodies.
6 Goten and Trunks are competitive and mischievous childhood friends (Dragon Ball franchise)
Goten and Trunks are the sons of two of the most powerful warriors in the world. Dragon Ball franchise, Goku and Vegeta. The pair are relentlessly competitive and share a deep bond, allowing them to perform fusion dance throughout the series.
Although they start out as coincidentally bonded childhood friends, Goten and Trunks develop a unique and almost familiar bond as they train together and continually get into mischief. Goten, coming from an educated, prim and proper family, is often the voice of reason, contrasting Trunks’ more rebellious nature.
5 Kirito and Asuna complement each other as partners in the game (Sword Art Online)
Although Kirito and Asuna eventually develop a romantic relationship in The sword is in line Their bond is deeply rooted in mutual respect for their skills and competencies.
In The sword is in line Kirito and Asuna have markedly different approaches to progressing in the game, but their methods complement each other significantly throughout the series. While Asuna’s main goal is to complete the game, Kirito has a deeper understanding of the gameplay of an MMORPG, allowing them to learn from each other and grow as partners.
4 Spike & Jet have a strong partnership based on trust and respect (Cowboy Bebop)
Spike and Jet, two main characters of Cowboy Bebop, have a lasting partnership based on trust and respect. Jet tries to maintain a stern demeanor, often condemning Spike for his reckless behavior and constant brush with death.
Despite this, however, it becomes increasingly apparent throughout the series that Jet cares greatly for his partner despite the fact that he is often forced to rescue Spike. Likewise, while Spike will never admit it to anyone, he certainly relies on Jet for support and backup during particularly harrowing missions.
3 Naruto and Sasuke had their ups and downs, but they finally figured it out (Naruto)
Naruto and Sasuke’s relationship has had its ups and downs, but the couple exhibits an unmistakable bond and association throughout the series. Although they frequently get into confrontations, they are generally portrayed as close friends in the series, especially in Naruto: Shippuden.
Sasuke and Naruto have a long history of training together, to the extent that they have both memorized each other’s fighting styles and techniques. Although Sasuke may be afraid to admit it at times, Naruto is perhaps his only real friend in the series.
2 Gohan and Piccolo form a father-son bond after Goku’s death (Dragon Ball franchise)
Gohan and Piccolo, another iconic duo from the Dragon Ball franchise, they demonstrate a surprisingly endearing father-son relationship throughout the series, which eventually becomes an unbreakable bond.
After Gohan’s father Goku is killed by Raditz at the beginning of Dragon Ball Z, Piccolo decides to take Gohan under his wing and train him to become a formidable fighter. Although Gohan is initially intimidated by the Namek warrior, the pair form a bond that lasts throughout the series.
one Ash and Pikachu have traveled the Pokémon world together (Pokémon)
Ash and Pikachu are one of the most iconic duos in anime, with a relationship that has endured countless battles and equally countless adventures. It’s almost impossible to imagine one without the other, especially considering that Pikachu was Ash’s first Pokémon in the anime adaptation.
Although Pikachu is initially reluctant to accompany Ash, he soon joins his coach, recognizing Ash’s dedication and willingness to protect those who matter to him. After the first few episodes, the pair become inseparable in Ash’s journey to become a Pokémon master.
NEXT: The 10 Most Powerful Brother / Sister Duos In Modern Anime, Ranked
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