a.k.a. all of Tomino Yoshiyuki’s favorite shows.
Please be aware that this list is limited to shows which I myself have personally watched and isn’t in any particular order. Also: spoilers, duh.
Given that I started off with an image from Victory Gundam, I figure I should mention it first. While Tomino Yoshiyuki is known for killing off large parts of the casts of many of his shows, Victory Gundam seems to take this to a whole new level. This may have something to do with the fact that Tomino was apparently struggling with his heaviest bout of depression while directing the show; when Sunrise released it to boxset, the blurb he wrote for it essentially told people not to watch it.
Melody of Oblivion
In Melody of Oblivion, the entire cast didn’t die… but out of eight core cast members, six did. In the case of MoO, though, this really didn’t result in any impact, since the entire show had been pretty mediocre, and the way in which these cast members died was pretty stupid – basically, instead of bailing out of a crashing spaceship like any normal person would, they gazed passively out of the window while waiting to burn up in the atmosphere.
Additionally, a ninth cast member was demonstrated to not really have actually been alive during the show… or something like that. MoO was trying really hard to be mysterious on that point but just ended up looking stupid in that case, too.
Umineko no naku koro ni/Higurashi no naku koro ni
Everybody dies. Multiple times.
Darker than Black
In the final episodes of Darker than Black, a good chunk of the casts slips of their mortal coils, leaving about three members of the core cast alive. Another cast member is confirmed to have been dead throughout the entire show, which wasn’t clear up until that point. Its weird to say that Amber died, since she used her powers enough to have her renumeration result in her regressing to earlier than childbirth… which I suppose essentially means that she is dead.
Sadly, my favorite character, November 11, was one of the deceased. His death scene was pretty badass, though, as he had begun to smoke for his renumeration, but dropped the cigarette when he died. It then rolled into his blood and extinguished. I wish I knew why this guy doesn’t show up on any GAR lists.
This is one of those shows where I was thrilled when everyone died. I raged at Kuroshitsuji for being relentlessly mediocre… and then having a reallllly good final episode, which just exacerbated my irritation at its mediocrity. Ciel gets his soul eaten at the end, while the fates of his servants are intentionally ambiguous… although I myself am inclined toward thinking that they’ve died after the epic battle with the minions of the genderbender villain of the piece.
I do have to give kudos to the writers for the way it all ended, though – although I was quite honestly sick of the characters, they managed to make Ciel’s death moving. I also enjoyed his journey to the underworld prior to Sebastian consuming his soul; good art direction on that one.
Everybody dies… in the grossest way possible.
Thus far, I’ve confined myself to anime, but in this case I’m speaking of the manga, from which the TV series deviates quite a bit in the final stretch.
Terra e… is probably one of the most devastating manga I’ve ever read. The end is nothing short of tragic, as Earth is completely wiped out as a result of humanity’s shocking capacity for hatred and cruelty. Even the slightly positive epilogue comes across as sad, tainted as it is by the crimes of humanity as a whole. It is leagues better than the TV iteration.
Le Chevalier D’Eon
Le Chev is a bit of a weird show to use for this, because the show ultimately encompasses so much time that it’d be weird if the entire cast wasn’t dead by the end. At the same time, only one of our main characters dies a natural death… and at that point he’s been kicking around so long with his sister’s soul sharing his body that he can’t remember which is which any more.
Rose of Versailles
Well, if we’re talking about pre-Rev France, might as well mention Rose of Versailles. Half of this doesn’t even qualify as spoilers, because there are a lot of historical characters running around in this that anyone who knows even the slightest bit about the French Rev knows whose heads will (literally) roll by the end of it.
On the other hand, our resident gemale GAR, Oscar, is not based in reality. Nor is her buddy Andre. And they both die. Because they’re on the wrong side of history! Sorry, folks – if it makes you feel any better, it doesn’t really seem like anyone was on the right side of history when it comes to the French Revolution.
This list is far, far, far from a complete one – I didn’t include Space Runner Ideon, for instance, which is another one of Tomino’s kill fests.