Exorcism, in the most diverse applications and interpretations, can be an interesting element in the plot of an anime.
Whether it is simply fighting an evil demon to protect the peace or even in a more philosophical key, such as having a soul pass from one world to another, it always has its appeal.
Ghosts, supernatural creatures and even demons are some of the most common elements of these shows.
And so, how could we not collect for you the best anime that make use of exorcism.
Rankings are based on our taste and experience, take them with a grain of salt.
Table of Contents
Kekkaishi is an action anime with strong comic and supernatural overtones.
It consists of 52 episodes released in 2006, with a typical animation technique of the times.
Yoshimori Sumimura is on the surface a normal fourteen-year-old boy, but he hides a secret: At night he hunts demons to exorcise them.
He is a Kekkaishi, a master of the barrier, a role that has been passed down in his family for twenty-one generations, even though he dreams of becoming a… pastry chef.
Kekkaishi is an anime that starts from a light and interesting premise but unfortunately ends up being a story with no bite and very vague. The characters are stereotypical, and the plot holds no particular twists and turns.
Good to watch without commitment, but don’t expect a masterpiece for sure.
19. Spirit Pact
Spirit Pact is a boys love anime released in 2017 in only 10 episodes, based on a web manga.
Keika You, heir to a famous family of exorcists finds himself in extreme poverty after losing both his parents.
One night at an old junkyard he comes across the mysterious and charismatic exorcist Ki Tanmoku, intent on fighting an evil spirit.
A strong friendship is born between them, which will also evolve into more.
Spirit Pact combines very well a supernatural component mixed with a very successful and satisfying romance boys love.
Recommended if you are a fan of this genre that is quite popular among ladies.
18. The Morose Mononokean
The Morose Mononokean is a school comedy with supernatural overtones, very light and enjoyable. Released in 2016, it has 13 episodes.
Ashiya spent the first 7 days of his high school life in the infirmary because of a small demon that latched onto him.
Desperate, he ends up asking for help from the owner of a small tea room called Mononokean, which carries a reputation for solving such problems.
We will follow a series of mysterious stories involving the surly owner of Mononokean as he guides the youkai, who wander this way, to the other world.
The classic demon-related problem-solving anime, with the task of making them transcend to the other world.
17. Twin Star Exorcist
Combat anime passed over in silence upon its release, yet offers a very interesting story. It was released in 2016 in 50 episodes.
Grotesque monsters known as Impurities inhabit Magano, a world parallel to our own. Exorcists purify these evil apparitions to protect people.
Prominent among them are the 2 main characters, Rokuro and Benio, called the Twin Star Exorcists since they are married and an incredible working couple.
Twin Star Exorcist, while nothing new or innovative, definitely makes one watch.
It has an animation style marked by an excellent play of light, very dark, and tending toward red and purple.
Its plot, while quite basic, also flows smoothly and doesn’t bore.
D.Gray-Man is one of the works serialized in the legendary Weekly Shonen Jump magazine but certainly not one of the best known even though it has much to offer.
The Millennium Count is an evil entity that aspires to destroy the world using Akuma, biomechanical weapons consisting of a core placed inside a human body and powered by the souls of the dead.
To defeat him, the protagonist named Allen Walker, in possession of an anti-Akuma weapon in place of his left arm, joins the Dark Order as an exorcist.
Its setting in 16th-century England mixed with fantasy and science-fiction elements is ideal if you want to watch something more oriented toward Sci-Fi with the presence of demons in it.
D.Gray-Man also offers a good dose of action and a decidedly interesting character design. All ingredients that make this anime a balanced and enjoyable experience.
Saiyuki is an anime from the early 2000s divided into 50 episodes.
Suddenly all over the world demons went mad and began attacking humans, with whom they had lived in peace and harmony until then. The cause of the madness would seem to be the attempted resurrection of the powerful demon Gyumao.
To stop the disaster, 4 adventurers are tasked to travel west to defeat him: the Buddhist monk Genjo Sanzo and the three demons Son Goku, Sha Gojyo, and Cho Hakkai.
Saiyuki sends us to a wonderful fictional setting that combines Eastern folklore with stupendous locations in ancient Japan, making this its strong point.
In addition to this, we also have excellent action scenes, unique and well-characterized characters, and beautiful design.
A solid and not-at-all dull anime, which we recommend if you want to watch something different.
14. Blue Exorcist
Captivating combat anime with a very heated and upbeat atmosphere, featuring demons and exorcisms as the main theme of the entire work.
The world consists of two parallel worlds that mirror each other. The first is the world of humans, Assiah, and the second is the realm of demons, Gehenna.
The main character, Rin, is none other than the son of Satan conceived by a human woman for the sole purpose of using him to fulfill his purposes in the human world.
But will Rin accept his father’s plans or will he prefer to go his own way and become an exorcist?
Fighting, comedy, and scenes marked by bright colors populated by well-characterized characters make this anime an excellent mix.
Although it won’t be anything groundbreaking and certainly not a masterpiece, Blue Exorcist is a good show to watch some very entertaining action and noncommittal fighting anime with elemental powers.
13. Ushio to Tora
A classic work by Kazuhiro Fujita, Ushio, and Tora tells of the adventures of young Ushio.
The boy, following an unfortunate series of events, finds himself confronted by the demon lord Tmora, pierced by a sacred spear that restricts his movements.
The young man does not succumb to the creature’s temptations and initially refuses to release it, but its aura attracts other demonic creatures nearby, forcing them into a temporary truce to eliminate them.
Tora clearly wants to kill Ushio, but the use of the sacred spear transforms the latter into a powerful samurai, capable of intimidating even the monster.
From there on, the series will focus not only on the battles but also on the relationship between the 2, painting a much less obvious reality about the origins of the demon and its spear.
Ushio to Tora is a very underrated and niche battle anime, certainly less famous than other colossal in the genre.
But we assure you that it’s quite entertaining with a deep and realistic relationship between the 2 main characters and excellent fighting scenes.
12. Demon Slayer
Tanjiro is the eldest son of a large family orphaned by his father, who leaves his home in the mountains every day to travel to the city to sell coal.
Upon returning home one evening, he discovers that his entire family has been mauled by a group of wild demons and that his beloved little sister Nezuko has herself become a demon.
Determined to find a cure that can return his sister to normal, Tanjiro will undergo grueling training to become a demon hunter, hoping to shed light on this horrible mystery.
A determined warrior driven by dispassionate love for his sister, a constant struggle for survival, and choreographed pyrotechnic confrontations.
The formula for a journey among the most sincere on the scene, surrounded by breathtaking animation among the best of the soundtracks to thrill you.
Mushishi follows the story of Ginko, a serious and composed character, and also a Mushi. This term refers to strange creatures whose origin or habits no one knows.
What is known is that coexistence with them is complicated for human beings. For this reason, there are the Mushishi, experts in the field who know how to deal with them.
Each episode will thus be devoted to a different creature, creating a succession of self-contained stories.
It must be said that the episodes are very slow, reflective, and if we want to use a misnomer, artistic.
But the anime is deliberately so, to create a fantastic atmosphere that is almost hypnotic and lulling.
10. Chrono Crusade
Chrono Crusade is set in the 1920s in New York, with America just emerging from WWI. On the way to apparent prosperity, evil lurks in the shadows in the form of hellish demons.
The Order of the Magdalene, a military organization, was founded to fight this menace. Priests and exorcist nuns are charged with fighting such demons to protect the public order and the world.
The two main characters are Chrono and Rosette, who go steady in this eternal struggle against evil. The particularity? Chrono is a devil, and Rosette is a nun.
It may seem like a simple and light-hearted anime on the surface, focused on action, but it is not at all.
Chrono Crusade hides a sad story of love and loss which will for sure captivate you.
9. Noragami Series
An action and fantasy anime with supernatural elements composed of two seasons of 12 episodes each.
The story follows the bizarre duo of Yato, a minor god, and Hiyori Iki, an average schoolgirl. One day, Hiyori saves Yato from a car accident, taking the hit instead of him.
The girl’s soul is not stable anymore and she cannot return to her body and that’s exactly when Yato will start to take advantage of this situation. In fact, the minor god had a weapon partner, who abandoned him before the accident.
If you want some romance and great action, this is the anime for you, even though the setting is nothing special, as it’s used very often in the anime medium.
But despite this, we are 200% sure when we tell you that it is an enjoyable anime that can be very balanced.
8. Natsume’s Book of Friends
An underrated slice-of-life anime with supernatural elements released in 2008 in 13 episodes, based on a shojo manga.
Natsume, like her grandmother Reiko, has the gift of being able to see spirits.
The woman used to propose a variety of challenges to them, and if they were defeated, she would take possession of their name by writing it on what she called the Book of Friends.
Now that Natsume has inherited it, a new adventure begins for him, among spirits who want revenge and others who ask him for help.
A very light-hearted and distinctive series, set in an atmospheric country setting, which deviates from the usual slice of life making the formula more interesting and innovative.
If you are tired of the usual slice-of-life anime and want something that twists the formula then you must watch it.
7. Jujutsu Kaisen
Jujutsu Kaisen is one of the modern fighting anime that is making the most success, born from the manga by Gege Akutami.
Its success is definitely due to its excellent story that runs smoothly, but without a shadow of doubt also due to the wonderful animations by Mappa, which enlightens the animation to over-the-top levels.
The protagonist is Yuji Itadori, a young boy with off-kilter physical abilities who never misses a chance to help his friends to abide by his philosophy of life.
Following an accident at his school, he will find himself a receptacle for the most powerful dark spirit ever, Sukuna, eating one of its 20 fingers. But enemies will not think twice about trying to get their hands on the boy.
Jujutsu Kaisen takes a lot of inspiration from Bleach, Naruto and even Hunter x Hunter. It’s the modern battle shonen you should watch, as it brings a lot of memories back.
6. Yu Yu Hakusho
Yu Yu Hakusho is a work by the legendary master Togashi, the same author of the very famous Hunter X Hunter series. The 1992 anime adaptation consists of 112 episodes.
The plot revolves around the adventures of Yusuke Urameshi, a young punk with a heart of gold who one day sacrifices himself to save a child from an accident.
Due to this extreme act of generosity, the Spirit King proposes to bring him back to life in exchange for him becoming the detective of the spiritual world.
The anime is a great battle classic, thanks to its beautifully directed fights and the quality of the characters, all of whom are diverse and well-characterized.
Let us not exaggerate by saying that with this work Togashi laid many of the foundations of battle shonen, with narrative techniques that are still used today.
5. Mob Psycho 100
An interesting series by Studio Bones based on the manga by ONE, the same author of One-Punch Man. The story follows Mob, an average high-school boy with tremendous esper powers.
He works as an exorcist with the con-man Reigen Arataka to control his special powers and keep them from exploding, causing possible collateral damage.
But fate will not exactly be on his side, and it will take every possible way to make him lose patience.
A perfect union between comedy and action, with a unique art style that will for sure stick with you.
We don’t exaggerate by saying that Mob Psycho 100 is one of the most unique anime right now, and should be watched for that alone.
4. Chainsaw Man
Chainsaw Man is unabashedly the media phenomenon of the moment as far as the anime and manga scene is concerned.
He is literally on everyone’s lips, and everyone knows him, especially after the long-awaited anime adaptation by Mappa, which as always has done an excellent job.
Denji is a boy who because of his father, after his death, is in debt up to his neck.
Because of this, he is forced to be a Devil Hunter, or demon hunter, to scrape together some money.
In all this he is joined by his companion and weapon Pochita, a chainsaw dog who one day, in a dangerous situation, will change his master’s life, making him the dreaded Chainsaw Man.
There are many reasons behind the incredible success of this work. It’s a dynamic and fast-paced story that will captivate you, thanks to its characters and a world-building that manages to be unique and recognizable, with every supernatural creature you can imagine, from demons to zombies and angels.
While the premises may seem too simple, the execution is perfect and this adaptation is poignant of cult movie references and crazy action.
Born at the hand of legendary master Osamu Tezuka, it has recently received a remake in 2019.
The plot revolves around Hyakkimaru, a boy with a body made of prosthetics, who fights demons. When he was a child his impoverished father sacrificed the child to demons to seek prosperity.
These demons now possess his body parts and senses, so Hyakkimaru will have to seek them out and defeat them to regain his lost body.
He will do this together with Dororo, a child that is keeping him company during the journey.
Dororo is an anime that everyone should watch, very complete and satisfying, and undoubtely one of the best anime with demons.
A solid plot accompanied by excellent animation and a soundtrack that will make the fighting even better are just the surface of this anime.
The very well-characterized and diverse characters that populate a well-realized dark fantasy-themed feudal Japanese world are the real stars of this immortal work.
A Japanese avant-garde anime with just 12 episodes that follows the adventures of a nameless character destroying Mononoke.
They are evil spirits that bind themselves to negative human emotions in order to live. Mononoke features a spectacular Japanese setting with a fantasy touch in one of the best supernatural anime.
Mononoke is actually split into 5 stories, each of which has 2 to 3 episodes. This division is interesting and doesn’t slow down the pacing of the series, but it rather reinforces it.
The Ukiyo-e style and the rich symbolism create one of the best visive experiences of the entire medium. Mononoke is more of a journey into Japanese animation and its beauty, and each story is emphasized by the style too.
1. Monogatari Series
The story deals with the events of Koyomi Araragi, a generous boy attending high school who sees his life change after meeting Kiss-shot Acerola-orion Heart-under-blade, a vampire.
The main character will save her by giving away some of his blood, and this will make the boy a vampire too.
After becoming almost human again as a result of these events, he begins to find himself in various affairs involving spirits, gods, ghosts, and even exorcists while living his private life.
Don’t be fooled by the plot, this anime is far from one of the classic stories of monsters and ghosts that must be defeated to preserve peace on earth.
Monogatari is a more unique than rare anime, almost impossible to categorize, combining so many genres and elements, including a fantastic romance with demons and spirits.