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6 Anime Banned in the United States

By Khushi Jain / January 15, 2022

With a wide variety of genres to choose from, anime is quickly becoming one of the most significant forms of entertainment globally, even more so recently. But since it is recognized and loved so much, a large number of people scrutinize and criticize anime.

We mean, we get why anime is screened and inspected before safe release in a particular region - while most anime is fun to watch, there are also some with some questionable concepts and themes that may lead to an anime ban in some countries. Even some anime have been banned universally due to their "not safe for work" content.

We have made a list of anime that have been banned in the United States, please note that the anime are listed in no particular order.

Transformers: Robots in Disguise

Transformers: Robots In Disguise

The first episode of Transformers: Robots in Disguise was pulled from circulation in North America. The reason? It showed Optimus Prime crashing into a skyscraper, which was quite similar to World Trade Center in America. So, due to its eerie similarities with the 9/11 incident, the American audience considered the episode unpleasant.

The studio decided that it was improper to let that episode be released unaltered, so it was remade in a better and "nicer" way so that no one was hurt. The rest of the anime made it to the American audience without issues.

Shoujo Tsubaki

Shoujo Tsubaki

Shoujo Tsubaki was not just banned in America but also worldwide, including in Japan. Here's why - the anime movie can be called one of the most horrifying, depressing, and disturbing anime ever made. The intense storyline revolves around a young girl, Midori, who loses her mother. From then on, her life only went darker and harder.

The depiction of child sexual abuse and graphicly disturbing scenes led to a global ban on Shoujo Tsubaki. It turns out some of the people were so shaken by this movie that they went as far as to destroy the copies that they owned. We can see why it is banned globally.

Paranoia Agent

Paranoia Agent

Picture this: you are casually walking down the streets, minding your own business. But suddenly, you get hit but a kid wielding a golden bat. The kid runs away on his rollerblades, and you get angry but can't do anything about it, so you go about your way. But then, it turns out you weren't the only victim of that golden bat. The frequency of attacks kept increasing, and nobody knew the real identity of the attacker. Paranoia is induced among the residents, and detectives Keiichi Ikari and Mitsuhiro Maniwa take responsibility for finding out the attacker's identity.

Paranoia Agent was banned because of its disturbing yet fascinating themes, and it was deemed unsuitable for television broadcasting in Japan. It was also banned in the United States for a short while before retelecasting the edited and censored version.

Excel Saga 

Excel Saga

The last episode of Excel Saga, "Going Too Far," went too far with the graphic violence and nudity. It was banned everywhere because of the obscenity it showed. Interestingly, the show's creators said they wanted the episode to be banned on TV. It exceeded 3 mins from the designated timeslot to be aired on national television, anyway.

The plot revolves around lord Il Palazzo, the enigmatic leader of an organization called ACROSS that aims to conquer the world. Two of his agents, Excel and Hyatt, are tasked with bringing his plan to fruition. The overall plot sounds fun and humorous, but the show would not have made it on this list if it weren't for the finale episode.

Wicked City

Wicked City

Another movie with themes like horror, sexual abuse, and violence is Wicked City. The anime dabbles with a concept of a demonic world co-existing with the human one. Two agents are deployed to ensure that the treaty succeeds and maintains peace. It has a dark plot where the female lead is sullied, and the male main character comes to her rescue.

The dark portrayal of sexual abuse and violence lead to the ban of the uncensored version. The edited version is available on DVD and streaming.

Lily Cat

Lily Cat

Lily cat was deemed unfit for children in the United States. The movie revolves around astronauts floating across space in a ship that only aged them one year in 20 years. Suddenly, the ship is attacked by a shape-shifting alien species, and the astronauts and the alien are locked in a deadly survival match. The question is, will they survive without any external help?

Lily Cat was banned in the United States because the content wasn't child-friendly. However, the edited and censored version is still available to watch on various platforms.

Let us know your thoughts down in the comments below!



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