The 25 Best Animated Moments of All Time

Les 25 meilleurs moments d'animation de tous les temps

Whether you're a die-hard or casual anime fan, being part of this community means you've seen your share of memorable moments in anime's biggest franchises. But how many moments have you seen while watching a series that really stood out to you? Whether it's an epic transformation or the death of one of your favorite characters, there are plenty of moments from popular anime series that have been making rounds on the internet. Considering the time and effort studios put into these series, it's no surprise that these iconic moments in animation history have kept us all in suspense or brought to tears.

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That's why we've put together a list of the best moments in animation history. Naturally, there are many iconic moments in a single series, which is why the maximum number of entries per anime will be three. Also, since many of these scenes will be discussed in detail, this will serve as a spoiler warning if you haven't seen either series yet. However, given how popular some of these moments are, there's a good chance you've heard of them before. So, without further ado, let's take a look at some of the most iconic moments in anime history.

25. Death Note – Light Yagami eating the chips

It goes without saying that Death Note was for many the first real contact with the world of anime. And there's no doubt that everyone remembers Light Yagami's intense potato chip eating session. Knowing he is suspected of being Kira, Light pretends to study while writing his Death Note. He munched on a bag of chips to make sure no one noticed what he was doing. Although this seems like a completely normal and mundane thing for a teenager to do, Light's dramatic inner dialogue, in addition to the cinematic shots and music, elevated this scene to legendary status. Of course, this scene became one of the biggest memes on the Internet, and the joke is still relevant today.

24. Re:Zero – Subaru Rejects Rem


With Rem being one of the biggest waifus in the anime community, everyone was upset when Subaru outright rejected her in episode 18. Although we all understood how much he loved Emilia, it was painful for many to see him confirm this fact. Although Subaru was the one who offered Rem the chance to run away together, she refused this offer because she knew he would be unhappy as a lover. For many fans of the series, this moment was the reason they stopped watching it. At that time, Emilia did not respond to Subaru's feelings, and it is understandable that many think that Rem would have been a better choice due to the unconditional love she has for him. Naturally, this moment remains one of the most memorable in the anime, even if it leaves a bad taste in the mouth.

23. Pokémon – Ash Ketchum wins the world championship


As the protagonist of the Pokémon franchise, everyone knew that Ash's goal was to become a Pokémon master. And finally, after two decades, Ash made his dream come true in November 2022. Episode 1217 shows us Ash finally participating in the world championship, facing Leon, the strongest in the world. Eventually, Ash managed to beat Leon by having Pikachu face Leon's Charizard and defeat him. Of course, this moment made headlines, as everyone who knew the series was looking forward to this moment. It's true that many fans thought it would never happen, but Ash proved us all wrong by finally becoming a Pokémon Master. Good job, Ash and Pikachu!

22. Jujutsu Kaisen – Gojo Satoru removes his blindfold

Jujitsu kaisen

Jujutsu Kaisen gave the anime community one of the best white-haired anime characters in a long time. Although Gojo came across as a lackadaisical and stupid man, we all knew there was a reason he was never serious when fighting. Of course, many wondered what he looked like without the blindfold. Episode 7 of Season 1 gave us an iconic moment, revealing Gojo's icy blue eyes beneath his mask. Then, to make things even scarier, we got a glimpse of the absolute extent of his power, quickly realizing with Jogo that he couldn't be touched. He then used domain expansion to eliminate the villain. Naturally, this moment sparked excitement from the anime community.

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21. The Chainsaw Man – Makima Shows Her True Colors

The man with the chainsaw

As a relatively new anime, Chainsaw Man's first season featured some great villains. And even more, there were some epic moments. However, none compare to the shock everyone had when Makima was shot in the forehead on her way to an important meeting. We are treated to a gruesome image of his lifeless body and a sense of despair when Katana Man appears before Denji and the Devil Hunters. And suddenly, she appears behind her murderers on the train, alive and covered in blood, with a menacing smile. We quickly realize that her character is more complex than we thought, especially when she reveals part of her rare ability, the manipulation of force.

20. A silent voice – Shoya Ishida cries

A silent voice

Although it is an animated film and not a series, it contains one of the strongest and most memorable moments in animation history. At the end of the film, Shoya attends the school festival with her new group of friends. He opens up to the world again and sees the X's that covered everyone's faces start to fall. Of course, he starts crying with joy, and the audience cries with him. What makes this moment so moving is the realization of how much Shoya suffered because of his and his classmates' actions as a child. He finally forgives himself and realizes that he has redeemed himself. Overall, this is a fantastic movie, but the ending is one of the best so far.

19. The Seven Deadly Sins – Escanor Arrests Estarossa

The seven deadly sins

While the series has had many epic moments, few of them compare to the second episode of season 2. As the Ten Commandments prove to be a real threat to the Sins, Estarossa has gotten the better of Ban and the Holy Knights. Naturally, Escanor has no intention of letting this happen. After striking Escanor and drawing blood, Estarossa receives the shock of his life when the Lion's sin of pride sends him flying. He is followed by the Cruel Sun of Escanor, a ball of energy as hot as the sun that casts a speechless Estarossa into the lake below. The start of this fight gave goosebumps to many fans, especially when we know that Escanor's power is infinite as long as there is sunshine.

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18. Demon Slayer – Nezuko's demonic Berserk form

Demon Slayer

Also known as Awakened Form, Nezuko's transformation in Season 2 made rounds on the internet when the episode first aired. While fighting Daki, the demon of the Upper Six, Tanjiro was unfortunately at the end of his strength. However, Nezuko didn't want to let her brother die and broke free from her box to help him. Daki was quick to attack her, severing many of her limbs. Until she transformed and regenerated at a speed that shocked even Daki. Nezuko didn't hold back and made many people believe that she was about to face Daki alone. And to be honest, if she hadn't lost control, she could have been a match for the Upper Six, since we later see her stand up to a demon from the Upper Four in Season 3.

17. Bleach – Ichigo transforms into a complete Hollow


In episode 271 of Bleach, Ichigo faces Ulquiorra, one of the most anticipated moments of the entire series. Much to Orihime's surprise, the Arrancar uses a Cero Oscuras and blasts it through Ichigo's chest, appearing to kill him. However, when Orihime calls for help, Ichigo recognizes her cries somewhere deep within him and decides to stand up to save her. If he manages to get up, it is not in his human form. No, he has completely transformed into a Hollow and is using telepathy to regain his Tensa Zangetsu. So, of course, he dominates the fight, leaving Ulquiorra in a state of shock and denial, and he struggles against Ichigo's new form. Although there were some epic moments before this, everyone was waiting for Ichigo's inevitable transformation, and it did not disappoint.

16. Jojo's Bizarre Adventure – Jotaro fights DIO

Jojo's Bizarre Adventures

Until now, we all knew Jotaro as a distant and nonchalant man. Additionally, we knew that DIO's The World Stand was much more powerful than Jotaro's Star Platinum. And at the beginning of the episode, Jotaro was plotting to reveal the true power of The World. Until DIO kills Joseph and Kakyoin. The calm and serenity we have become accustomed to immediately dissipates, and Jotaro loses his composure and flies into a rage. Without holding back, he recklessly attacks DIO, proving that their positions are more equal than initially thought. Bombarding DIO with punches faster and more powerful than his Stand could handle, Jotaro defeats him.

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15. Dragon Ball Z – Goku becomes Super Saiyan for the first time

Dragon Ball Z

For a large majority of the anime community, Dragon Ball was their introduction to the genre. Many grew up watching the series, which makes certain moments even more iconic. However, nothing in the series can compare to Goku's first Super Saiyan transformation. This occurs after he attempted to eliminate Frieza using a spiritual bomb which the alien managed to deflect. As a result, Frieza kills Krillin before Goku's eyes, sending him into a rage that results in the legendary transformation into a Super Saiyan. For many, the ensuing fight is a blur, because we were too busy cheering for this epic moment. This is undoubtedly one of the most iconic moments in the history of the anime and the series.

14. Demon Slayer – Tanjiro Awakens Hinokami Kagura (Breath of the Fire God)

Demon Slayer

Episode 19 of Season 1 gave us the moment that elevated Demon Slayer to legendary status in terms of animation, music, and emotional impact. While fighting the Rank 5 demon, Rui, Tanjiro realizes that he is about to lose and that Nezuko will die. We see his life flash before his eyes before he unlocks the Hinokami Kagura and goes to decapitate Rui. While the animation is already impressive for spectators, the music and voice acting have made more than one cry. In fact, the manga's author, Koyoharu Gotouge, was in tears when he first saw the Ufotable-animated sequence. This sequence was nothing short of perfection, perfectly encapsulating the essence of the series.

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood

Although Mustang is usually cheerful, we all agreed that Envy would die at his hands after he murdered Hughes. And we almost did if Mustang hadn't sworn he didn't want to kill people anymore. However, nothing compares to the rage and pain we felt when Mustang finally got the chance to kill the homunculus. Using the Flame of Vengeance, we see him brutally burn Envy, blow after blow, with the human-hating creature screaming in agony. While it's nice to see Envy shed his smug grin, it's a little annoying that Mustang wasn't the one to kill the homunculus at the end of the day, despite the fact that he was so close to doing it.

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12. Naruto – Rock Lee drops his weight restrictions

Naruto Shippuden

Although this fight takes place early in the series, it remains one of the anime's most memorable moments. When Sand Gaara challenges Rock Lee to a fight, the latter accepts after briefly speaking to his master. At first, Gaara leads the fight, using his sand so Rock Lee can't touch him. Until Rock Lee dropped his weight restrictions after getting permission from his master. Everyone was shocked by the small crater they created in the group before Rock Lee dominated the fight with unparalleled speed. It's one of the most goosebump-inducing moments of the series, and it fully deserves its place on this list.

11. Mob Psycho 100 – Shigeo Kageyama goes 100% for the first time K9KL29kU7uWW-M&vet=12ahUKEwid3JGR6vn-AhVXmScCHQtDC9YQMygNegUIARCyAQ..i& &h=450&q=shigeo%20kageyama%20100%25%20anime&hl =en-GB&ved=2ahUKEwid3JGR6vn-AhVXmScCHQtDC9YQMygNegUIARCyAQ

Although Mob has already reached his breaking point twice, he reaches 100% in record time when his brother, Ritsu, wrongs him. After finally gaining psychic abilities in the eighth episode of the first season, Ritsu becomes power mad and begins fighting with a group of thugs. However, Mob defends him and bows at their feet before a power esper named Cadre Koyama appears to kidnap Ritsu, mistakenly thinking it is Mob. Of course, Koyama hurts Ritsu to succeed, which sends Mob into a blind rage, quickly lashing out 100% on the medium. Because he is overwhelmed by Mob's intense strength, Koyama uses a cursed spray to knock him out and escape. However, this moment was iconic in its own right, cementing many people as avid fans of the series.

10. One-Punch Man – Saitama is serious against Boros

Iconic Moments Anime History One Punch Man

One-Punch Man is one of those series where we spend an entire season anticipating a worthy fight involving the protagonist, Saitama. And the first season's big bad didn't disappoint, giving us the best action of the series. Although Saitama begins the fight with a nonchalant attitude, we are treated to an epic moment where he tells Boros that he's about to get down to business. From there, the caped bald man unleashes some of the most powerful attacks in the series, completely annihilating Boros. Of course, the end of the fight reveals that Saitama was still holding back, much to fans' dismay, but this moment has become an iconic moment in the anime.

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9. Demon Slayer – The Death of Kyojuro Rengoku

Iconic moments from Demon Slayer anime history

The Mugen Train arc still feels like the show's creators went out of their way to ruin everyone's day. While many fans are still upset about Flame Hashira's death, this moment remains one of the finest in anime history. When he encounters the rank 3 demon Akaza, Rengoku confronts him. Thanks to his determination, Rengoku managed to match the smug demon, pushing Akaza into panic. Rengoku fought epically, holding out against the demon until sunrise, despite his mortal wounds. Akaza, clearly frightened by Rengoku's strength, tore his arms off to escape. Soon after, we are treated to a beautiful and heartbreaking shot of Rengoku bidding farewell to Tanjiro, Inoskue and Zenitsu before dying, with a smile on his face. In fact, everyone was in tears with this scene.

8. Death Note – Light Yagami kills Shoko Maki

Iconic moments in Death Note anime history

One of the most disturbing moments in anime history, Light discovering the real name of Raye Penber's fiancée, is truly surreal. Using the fake name Shoko Maki, Raye's fiancée and former FBI agent, attempts to protect herself until she can reach L. However, Light has another plan in mind and uses his charismatic personality to try to make him reveal his true identity. After convincing her that he is part of L's Task Force, she reluctantly reveals his real name, Naomi Misora. Light does not hesitate to write it in his Death Note and indicate that the cause of his death was suicide. Then, as she walks away to end her life, Light reveals that he is Kira with a triumphant smile. This moment is easily ingrained in the brains of many anime fans.

7. Naruto Shippuden – Death of Jiraiya Gallant

Iconic moments from Naruto Shippuden anime history

There is no doubt that this perverted old man has managed to win the hearts of many viewers. This is why he has become one of the fans' favorite characters. However, Naruto Shippuden Episode 133 brought one of the most heartbreaking deaths in the series. While fighting Akatsuki leader Pain, he is seriously injured when Nagato uses the Six Paths of Pain to cut off Jiraiya's arm. Then he is brutally killed when Pain crushes his throat and ultimately impales him. Although his death is heartbreaking, we only really feel the weight of it when we see Naruto sitting all alone on the swing with an ice cream and no one to share it with. However, everyone's pain is slightly eased by the fact that Jiraiya's death was not in vain, as he was able to send information about Pain to Konoha.

6. Cowboy Bebop – Spike's Bang

Iconic moments in Cowboy Bebop anime history

Who doesn't love this iconic anime? There aren't many series that have achieved the popularity of Cowboy Bebop in the anime community. So it makes sense that a moment from the series would end up this high on the list. After Spike's final fight against Vicious, fans finally get a glimpse of the bounty hunter's dark past. Looking at his life in the present with one eye, the other shows the mysteries we were all curious to know. In an iconic shot, we see Spike walking down some stairs towards a group of people in the distance. He raises his finger and gives us a “bang!” before collapsing to the ground, succumbing to his injuries.

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5. Attack on Titan – Erwin Smith's speech

Iconic moments from Attack on Titan anime history

Needless to say, Erwin Smith was by far the best leader of the Survey Corps we've ever seen (and we haven't seen many). And while Attack on Titan has many iconic moments, none compare to Erwin's speech when the Scouts face the Beast Titan in Season 3. The end of his speech, “My soldiers push forward! My soldiers shout! My soldiers RAAAAAGE!” has become one of the most iconic lines in anime history. To make the scene even crazier, Erwin gets grabbed by a rebel titan, which sends his soldiers reeling. But despite his arm being torn from his body, he wants his troops to continue advancing. If you need motivation, listen to Erwin's speech to motivate yourself, because he is truly inspirational.

4. Tokyo Ghoul – Kaneki Ken's hair turns white

Iconic moments in Tokyo Ghoul anime history

While it's still criminal how messed up the series was in the later seasons, few can argue that the first season was the pinnacle of the anime. After being captured, held hostage, and repeatedly tortured by Jason, Kaneki began having visions of Rize. She then convinces him to let go and allow her to take control, resulting in one of the most iconic moments in the story. With his hair bleached, Kaneki escapes from his bonds and attacks Jason bluntly, while the credits song begins to play. In a sequence that had fans screaming at their screens, the one-eyed ghoul dominates the fight and ultimately defeats Jason. This scene has undoubtedly earned its place in the top 5 most iconic anime moments of all time.

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3. HunterxHunter – Gon Freeccs at full power

Iconic Moments in Anime History HunterxHunter

Let's be honest: the Chimera Ant arc is one of the most disturbing and brutal in all of anime. Therefore, some shocking moments appeared throughout its duration. But none compare to Gon's reaction after Neferpitou revealed Kite's lifeless body, which she was puppeteering for fun. As Kite was Gon's only connection to his father, this revelation sent the normally optimistic boy into a tizzy and pushed him to unlock his adult form. Then, in a fit of anger, he completely crushed Neferpitou in the most brutal way possible, not caring that he would not recover after tapping into such power. The animation in this sequence was terrific, the weight of the situation hitting you full force.

2. My Hero Academia – All Might's Last Stand

Iconic moments from My Hero Academia anime history

Although the series has many iconic moments, there is one that will forever be etched in the minds of anime fans everywhere. This is All Might's last fight against All for One, which we see in season 3. Thanks to the last spark of One for All, All Might managed to defeat the main antagonist of the series. However, this comes at the cost of revealing his true shrunken form to everyone. In an epic, unprecedented moment, All Might raises his hand one last time, even as the citizens see what he really looks like. Although in absolute shock, everyone cheers for him, showing that they accept him regardless of his appearance. All Might then points at the camera and silently announces to Midoriya that he is officially passing the torch. This moment, which easily takes second place, is both heartbreaking and inspiring.

1. Attack on Titan – Reiner reveals he is the Armored Titan

Iconic moments from Attack on Titan anime history

Although Attack on Titan only took two spots on this list (and let's be honest, it might have its own list of iconic moments), the reveal of Reiner and Bertolt remains iconic. Unlike many other moments on this list, what makes this reveal so epic is the fact that it happens in the background. At that point, many fans were wondering who the colossal, armored Titans were. As he returns from a mission, Hange leaves, extolling the virtues of the Titans, as usual. Reiner approaches Eren and casually reveals their true identity to him, under the horrified gaze of Bertolt, who takes everyone by surprise. Of course, Eren thinks they're joking until Reiner transforms on the wall in a moment that shocked the audience and everyone on screen. There wasn't a single person who didn't have to rewind the scene to make sure they heard correctly, it was so random. However, Ishiyama once again proves his genius when it comes to storytelling.

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What are your favorite and most memorable moments from the anime?