Anime Series Like Darker Than Black

After the appearance of the Heaven and Hell Gates, then rose the Contractors, individuals that gave up their humanity for supernatural powers. In Section 4 of Japan around the Hell Gate, Chief Misaki finds herself constantly at odds with a Contractor named Hei, a man who takes missions from the ruthless underground Syndicate that slowly peel away the layers covering a threat to all Contractors.

While it looks like typical edgelord fare, there is some depth beneath the surface in Darker Than Black that, despite an unsatisfying ending, leads to a intriguing show. If you are looking for more anime recommendations like Darker Than Black, then look no further.




For Fans of Supernatural Powers

Hamatora

In this world, a small number of people have manifested the power to create small miracles. In Yokohama, two miracle users create a detective agency and use their powers to help people. However, one day they realize that the jobs they are receiving have a series of strange connections to a serial killer that their police friend is searching for.

While not really the same in tone, both of these shows focus on people with powers and end up using them in different respects. Some help people, some help organizations, some even help themselves. However, they craft a nice array of users in both shows that makes you want to keep watching.



Mekakucity Actors

After spilling soda on his keyboard and not being able to get a replacement online because of the Obon festival, Shintarou Kisaragi leaves his home for the first time in two years. However, he gets caught in a hostage situation where he is rescued by a group of teenagers with eye powers. Afterwards, he is forced to join up with them where he discovers that their abilities seem to be like pieces of a puzzle waiting to be put together.

Both of these shows feature an array of characters that all have special powers, but builds their shows on various mysteries and levels of intrigue instead of being just straight up action in its plot. This leads to some slower moments, but pays off later when the mystery reaches its climax.



Tiger and Bunny

In Stern Bild City, those who use their special powers for either good or evil are called NEXT, and heroes are regularly featured on TV catching the bad guys, getting paid for their entertainment. The hero known as Wild Tiger has been putting on less thrilling performances lately due to his inability to cooperate with other heroes, but when he teams up with his by-the-books new partner he nicknames Bunny, his luck might just turn around.

Both shows essentially take a time where humanity develops powers and shows the different paths it could take. In Darker Than Black, those with powers are outsiders while in Tiger and Bunny, they have basically a spotlight shone on them. It leads to stories that are very different in tone, but on the same spectrum.

For Fans of Cities With Secrets

Durarara

Tokyo’s downtown district of Ikebukuro is awash in strange rumors, everything from colorless color gangs to a headless rider roaming town populate the rumors. For Mikado Ryuugamine who just moved there from Tokyo, he is but one witness to the district’s slew of strange events.

Both shows present cities that are absolutely full of intrigue. While Darker Than Black focuses on the overall plot of the show, Durarara gets its plot from the many interconnected stories that are taking place in this not-quite-normal city.



Blood Blockade Battlefront

Vampires, fishmen, supersonic monkeys – they are all normal residents living alongside humans in Hellsalem’s Lot, formerly known as New York City. When a gate between Earth and the Beyond popped up there three years ago, old NYC became dominated by monsters and now Libra, a secret organization, is tasked with keeping it in order. However, for main character Leonardo Watch, he is no one special, just a hobbyist photographer. However, when he obtains the All-Seeing Eyes of the Gods, he finds himself recruited into Libra.

Both Darker Than Black and Blood Blockade Battlefront feature cities that have a special twist to them. Because of this twist, there are a bunch of people with powers running rampant and doing whatever they want. To keep this in check, of course there are those with powers that try to do so.



Gungrave

Brandon Heat and Harry MacDowel grew up on the streets together and both turned to crime in order to get by. However, when their activities are noticed by the eyes of the expansive Millennion mafia syndicate, the pair find themselves brought under their wings and rising through the ranks. Things go well until one fateful day that changes it all. Years later, Brandon Heat is brought back from the dead to fight Millennion and its new leader, Harry MacDowel.

While Darker Than Black delves into a much more complex story, both anime series follow characters that work for a sort of criminal organization. While Gungrave ends up more of a traditional mafia story with a supernatural twist, Darker Than Black is more criminal and less mafia.

For Fans of Noir Settings

Psycho-Pass

In the 22nd century, the justice system has changed. The Sibyl System now determines the threat level of each citizen by examining their mental state for criminal intent. This has become known as their Psycho-Pass. Once criminal intent has been identified, Inspectors like Akane Tsunemori, are in charge of subjugating them. However, this tough job is not without dangers. This is why Inspectors are paired with Enforcers, like Shinya Kougami, latent criminals with just the right amount of psychopathy to keep other criminals in their place.

Both shows feature visually dark palettes that match the dark nature of the world. In both shows, you follow characters that work for certain organizations, but may not turn out who you expect them to be.



Phantom: Requiem of the Phantom

America is rife with assassinations, with a mysterious company called Inferno behind many of them. One day, a Japanese tourist witnesses one of these killings, and is chased down. They are captured and brainwashed into a puppet with no memories that now works as an assassin with Inferno’s human weapon, Phantom.

Both show have that sort of edgy feel to them as they are about people that, for the most part, kill people. Both shows delve deep into a dark and sometimes needlessly complex plot featuring characters with code names and sometimes not as much personality as you’d hope.



Witch Hunter Robin

The world is filled with witches living low key among the population. With powers like ESP, mind control, and telekinesis, they are fiercely powerful. While many go undetected, the STN-J is responsible for capturing witches alive and turning them in for study in order to learn why they become witches in the first place. In order to aid in their investigation and replace the member they just lost, a witch named Robin from Italy is sent to aid them, much to the chagrin on the normal humans on the squad.

Both have that sort of visually dark atmosphere to them where the vast majority of characters are grim and the story only gets more dark. Furthermore, Witch Hunter Robin and Darker Than Black are also tied together by the same kind of plot. Both shows feature the main characters working for some kind of organization which turns out to be different than you expect.

Do you have more recommendations like Darker Than Black? Let fans know in the comments section below.


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