This was a hard one because there are much to choose from. I love to watch sad anime (and movies over all actually). There is nothing better than a good cry, all huddled up in the sofa, under a warm blanket in front of the TV, sobbing away to some beloved characters death scene. After some thoughts about what has affected me surprisingly much and in ways I didn’t think possible because of genre I come to this decision.
Winter Cicada (Fuyu no Semi): It’s a story about the forbidden love between two young men in the middle of the 1800s, when the Japanese turned from a Shogunate to Imperial rule and started to trade with the rest of the world. One man belonged to the clan who wanted the change, the other to the opposition. There was a war and they fought each other even though they loved each other.
It is a love story but also a historical depiction of that time. I am surprised that I liked it as much as I did since I have never really, before that, been a bigger fan of samurais or war or that kind of anime. I only watched it for the boys love but I am not rewatching it for that, I am rewatching it for the good story it tells. It could just as well be about a man and a woman.
So, why is it so sad? At the end of the anime, after a lot has happened, friends have betrayed friends and lovers have lost their will to live, one of the men takes his life. The other man finds him and when he does he of course breaks down and decides to end his life to, with the same knife as his lover. (And now I am crying again. I might have had an extremely emotional day today but still, this scene affects me so incredibly much. The man that is left behind sounds like a wounded animal where he lies on his lovers chest and cries.)
I can recommend this anime to anyone who likes samurais and the dynamics between what happened during that time when Japan changed in the 1800s. There is a lot about the politics and such which is pretty interesting I think. If you don’t like boys love it might be a bad choice though because the main characters are two gay men.