Welcome to Anime Rants! Every Wednesday, I’ll be giving examples of anime characters of each MBTI type. That is, until I’ve covered all 16 personalities. This time, I’m focusing on INFPs. I know a lot about them, having been one myself in the past, and having a number of INFP friends.
INFPs are among the rarest types, though not quite as rare as INFJs. Because of this, they are often misunderstood and misjudged. In fiction, INFP characters are fairly common because they make entertaining lead characters (Anne Shirley from Anne of Green Gables is one example). In anime in particular, there is a strange phenomenon where male INFP characters are disliked or hated by the vocal majority of fans; meanwhile, INFP female characters are seen positively as cute, creative, and fragile. This bugs me a lot, but there are exceptions.
Alphonse Elric (FMA: Brotherhood)
INFPs are the most idealistic of all the types. They also seek to find beauty and meaning in everything, are very accepting, and tend to be strong optimists. an INFP can be shy or quiet, but still friendly. They love harmony and want everyone to get along, so when good order crumbles, they get upset easily. Though usually laidback and flexible, an INFP won’t react well to their values or beliefs being challenged. The most important things to INFPs are creativity, peace, beauty, and doing the right thing in accordance with their personal values.
Now, with all the types, there are those who are stable and reasonably comfortable with things (assertive variant) and ones who are emotionally or mentally unstable and having major problems (turbulent variant). I’ve included some of both, assetive and turbulent INFPs, on this list.
Chiyuki (Death Parade)
An INFP who is close to being an INTP because of the way she uses logic in place of personal values sometimes. Chiyuki was included mostly because I wanted to show that not all INFPs are hopelessly sentimental all the time. That being said, though, Chiyuki is also a turbulent variant who gave into her emotions after a tragedy and became suicidal.
Crona (Soul Eater)
A textbook INFP who was turbulent type for a while before slowly becoming stable thanks to being accepted and treated well by others. Even aferward, Crona is still melancholy, but after all they’ve been through, it’s amazing they can be as positive-thinking as they are.
Isla (Plastic Memories)
A highly introverted and private INFP character. Isla is kind, loving, and spiritual, but not very expressive. It takes a while to really get to know what she’s like.
Kaneki Ken (Tokyo Ghoul)
Poor Kaneki. His life is a tale of (pointless) tragedy. He’s a turbulent type who understandably lost his mind after becoming a ghoul and then being tortured for days by another (pointlessly evil) ghoul. I agree Kaneki’s story arc isn’t very likeable, but I strongly disagree that his personality is at fault, or that he brought tragedy on himself. When he was happy, Kaneki had strong morals, and loved books, coffee shops, and hanging out with his best friend.
Nozomu Itoshiki (Sayonara Zetsubou-sensei)
A turbulent variant, Nozumu is known as Zetsubou-sensei (Mr. Despair), partly as pun on the kanji in his name, and partly because he’s despaired at life. He has suicidal ideation, always wanting to die. He attempts suicide often, but doesn’t go all the way. Sayonara Zetsubou-Sensei is a show best deacribed as “Suicidal Teacher rants at mentally unstable high-school girls.” It’s fucked up, but it’s one of the funniest shows I’ve ever seen in my life.
Rakka (Haibane Renmei)
A smart, deeply loving, idealistic, and sensitive INFP who wants harmony and needs to find the deeper meaning in her existence. Like many INFPs, she’s a bit ditsy and hella cute.
Rena Ryuugu (Higurashi no Naku Koro ni)
When she’s mentally unstable, as she often is in Higurashi, Rena is frightening, and will resort to threats, violence, and underhanded means to get her way. When she’s stable, she’s adorable. Quiet but friendly, excitable about the things she loves, optimistic, thoughtful, humble, accepting, and perceptive of others’ feelings, with strong morals and a need for harmony.
Rinko Yamato (Ore Monogatari!)
Popular and beloved by many fans, Rinko is a good example of a is mentally stable and happy INFP. Unique in the way she thinks and what she likes, she’s also incredibly kind, idealistic, and optimistic. Almost too good to bear, Rinko is so sweet she’ll give you cavities.
Shigeo “Mob” Kageyama (Mob Psycho 100)
There are pockets of the fandom that dislike Mob and only watch the show for the other characters like Reigen, but in general, he’s a popular character. Another case of a healthy INFP, Mob is genuine, forgiving, kind, thoughtful, quiet, a little spacey, and serious about his values. He always looks on the bright side.
Shinichi Izumi (Parasyte)
Since he’s one of my top five favorite male anime characters, I could talk about Shinichi forever. To avoid that, I’ll be extremely brief. Shinichi is an INFP with many of the same traits of the others on this list. Perhaps more than the others, though, he values his ideals and seeks meaning.
Shinji Ikari (NGE)
Look, it’s everyone’s favorite character! 😁 Shinji is a turbulent variant INFP famous for getting on viewers’ nerves. Due to his negative upbringing and the severe trauma he just keeps collecting throughout the show, Shinji is extremely unstable.
Takashi Nastume (Natsume Yuujinchou)
Natsume is a male INFP protagonist that I adore. Among those who love Natsume Yuujinchou, he’s a beloved character. However, most vocal viewers I see online seem to despise Nastume. They always complain that he’s too quiet, humble, girly, or “weak.” Personally, I think those people are guys lashing out because they don’t know how to handle a guy character who is so freaking cute, unique, and thoughtful. I’d better stop here before I write 3-5 paragraphs about Natsume’s wonderful and relatable personality.
Yukiteru Amano (Mirai Nikki)
And here is perhaps the most widely and intensely hated anime male protagonist. Even as someone who understands and empathizes with him, I don’t think Yuki is in any way admirable, and I don’t think he really tried his best in most cases. Even before the trauma he goes through in the survival game, Yuki was a turbulent type due to severe anxiety disorders. I can’t hate him even when I try because I’m still like him in so many ways.
These are also INFP anime characters: Atsushi from Bungou Stray Dogs, Toboe from Wolf’s Rain, Rikka from Chuunibyou and Other Delusions, Vincent Law from Ergo Proxy, Haruyuki Arita from Accel World, Watanuki from xxxHOLIC, Bertholdt from Attack on Titan, Kokutou Mikiya from Kara no Kyoukai, Nunnally from Code Geass, Myuuto from Princess Tutu, Menma from Ano Hana, Casshern from Casshern Sins, Madoka Kaname from Madoka Magica, Izumi from Love Stage, and Katsuhira from Kiznaiver.
Thanks so much for reading; you made my day! Take care, and come back to visit soon!
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(All images were found by searching the web and I don’t own any of them.)