10 Most Terrifying Anime Jump Scares

While there are many ways to scare an audience, anime tends to use intrigue and the sheer creepiness of its characters to scare viewers. Jump scares aren’t exactly common in anime, but they do occasionally make rare appearances, depending on the series.

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The success of jump scares in anime is strongly attributed to their rarity. Even in the best horror anime, there might not be a jump scare. Surprisingly, some of the best jump scares show up in anime that’s more action, suspense, or comedy, rather than horror.

ten An AI jumps for a scare (The Pet Girl Of Sakurasou)

Mashiro Shinna from The Pet Girl of Sakurasou

The lightness of Sakurasou’s Granddaughter can trick people into thinking there’s nothing about the show that can be considered scary. Sorata Kanda would say otherwise, however, as he was afraid of his chair while on the computer.

An AI named Maid appeared on his screen while he was texting and scared him so much that he flew backwards in his chair and fell to the ground. While not exactly a scary scare, it was certainly unexpected and very surprising.

9 A rock pushes the Ayano family off the road (another)

Another one revolves around a curse and the effects it has on Class 3-3 at Yomiyama North Middle School. Another one is certainly no stranger to gruesome deaths, but the death of Aya Ayano and her family was so gruesome that it hasn’t been fully shown to the public.

As they drive away from Yomiyama in an attempt to escape the curse, a boulder falls from the mountain and hits their windshield, causing them to swerve and drive through the railing and off the road. The unexpectedness of this moment actually catches the audience off guard.

8 Bluebeard pretends to let a child hostage escape (Fate/Zero)

Caster and Uryuu Fate/Zero

FateZero features seven mages who summon minions, which are legendary souls from a real historical event or mythical story. These mages summon servants to fight for the Holy Grail. Notably, not all souls summoned as servants for the Holy Grail War are heroes.

Gilles de Rais, also known as Bluebeard, is a Caster-class minion summoned by a serial killer. His master gives him a child as a gift after the invocation. Bluebeard let the child think he could break free just before Bluebeard cast a spell that tears the boy apart.

seven Shinichi makes eye contact with his teacher (Parasyte: The Maxim)

Parasite's Reiko Tamura

Parasite: The Maxim centers on a race of alien beings who have found their way to earth in order to take over human bodies and use them as their own. Appropriately called “parasites”, these extraterrestrial life forms have the ability to sense when their own kind is around.

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Shinichi and his parasite, Migi, have a unique bond, as Migi was unable to take control of Shinichi’s brain and got stuck bonding with his arm instead. Reiko Tamura, a parasite-controlled teacher, joins Shinichi’s school during the series. Migi tells Shinichi not to make eye contact with her, but Shinichi can’t resist. Once Reiko notices this, she emits a frightening aura.

6 Zombies appear in the first seconds of the first episode (Highschool Of The Dead)

Saeko leads the survivors to the High School of the Dead

Zombies, survival and violence fill the lives of teens overwhelmed by a zombie apocalypse in high school of the dead. Through all the horror caused to zombies and sometimes even humans, the show’s biggest scare comes when you least expect it.

Audiences don’t exactly expect a jump scare during the opening seconds of an anime’s first episode. Takashi begins the first episode by saying a sentence, as if it was going to lead into a longer monologue. Before he can finish his monologue, however, a zombie flashes across the screen not once, but twice.

5 The Colossal Titan appears behind Eren (Attack On Titan)

AOT Colossal Titan and Eren

Fear in The attack of the Titans usually comes from the unsettling appearance and action of the Titans. As the scouts fight for their survival and to protect the lives of everyone inside the walls, they face fearsome Titans every time they are on a mission.

Eren and the other scouts stand on the wall as Eren completes an interior monologue meant to inspire hope. Suddenly there is lightning behind his back and the Colossal Titan appears behind him. There aren’t many things that could scare the Scouts as much as an unprecedented 60-meter Titan.

4 Radio story goes from sad to scary (Gintama)

When the old man turns into a Gintama monster

Gintama is in a class of its own when it comes to comedy. The pop culture references, the breaking of the fourth wall, and the general awkwardness of the characters charm fans. As a result, Gintama isn’t big on horror or jump scares, but he tries to use one in a comedic way.

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Gintoki listens to a radio program telling the story of a dog waiting for a girl to return. The dog sits so long that it dies right after it returns. The old man who was with her tells her that the dog is not dead. When she turns around and asks where the dog is, the man turns into a monster. Gintoki’s reactions to hearing the story are priceless.

3 Sasuke prepares to attack Danzo (Naruto Shippuden)

Sasuke from Naruto Shippuden

Naruto Shippuden almost never has genuinely scary moments. Ninjas fighting for their nation or their own advantage don’t really need scary scenes, but one particular moment stands out as distinctly unsettling. During Sasuke’s fight with Danzo, Danzo takes Karin hostage and uses her as a shield.

Danzo thinks he has the upper hand and Karin thinks Sasuke will save her as Tobi watches the fight. Sasuke tells Karin not to move and she looks relieved. After a quick glimpse of Danzo, Sasuke’s face is shown again, appearing as if he’s lost all of his humanity. He looks right through Karin Danzo, as if she’s nothing more than a weak piece of armor.

2 Someone with a skull ambushes Robert and Hiraga (Vatican Miracle Examiner)

Robert and Hiraga from the Vatican Miracle Examiner

Investigating miracles and solving murder cases for the Vatican while taking on another secret organization is commonplace for Robert and Hiraga in Vatican Examiner of Miracles. The nature of their work would warrant a scare or two, and that’s exactly what they get.

While hiding behind some bushes and watching some students leading seances, the students get spooked by something and start running away. Hiraga and Robert try to follow the students before someone wearing a face mask jumps on them with a knife and stabs one of them.

1 Mother finds something suspicious (The Promised Neverland)

Isabella, the promised never-never land

The promised never-never land is no stranger to thrill and suspense. As the children of the orphanage uncover the truth about their home, they begin to plan an escape strategy. The series quickly becomes a game of cat and mouse between mother and older children.

At the end of the first episode, there is lovely background music as Norman and Emma talk about what they have discovered. Before the episode ends, the audience sees the mother holding the stuffed animal they tried to return to the girl given to demons. The look on the mother’s face, her demeanor, and the general suddenness of the cut scene is as chilling as it gets.

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