If there is one tried and true recipe for making a likable main character, it is to make them as lazy as many of the fans watching the series, but also make them a secret badass. Sure, they can’t be assed to go save the world when their favorite show is on, but during the commercial break, they can take care of it with their super OP natural abilities. While there isn’t much room for physical character growth, on occasion this can be a good vehicle for some emotional growth OR they could just throw character growth out the window and add some flashy lights instead.
Spike Spiegel from Cowboy Bebop
Although Spike spends the majority of his time actively hunting down bounties, it’s not like he wants to or anything. If it were up to him, he’d do one really pricey bounty, then feast on meat and coast through the galaxy. Unfortunately, every time the Bebop crew gets a large bounty, something goes horribly array when it comes to collecting the reward so, like the rest of us, Spike has to work for his meat. Unlike us, though, he has badass martial arts skills to get the job done with great flair.
Itami Youji from Gate
Youji is the poster boy for us to believe in working smarter, not harder. He states ardently that he only works in the Japanese Self Defense Force to support his otaku hobbies. Despite looking like an unmotivated slob to the audience and his peers, he actually a Second Lieutenant and a Special Forces Ranger, despite finishing just barely good enough to qualify for both. Despite his lack of ambition, when it comes to real combat, his tactical mind and superior combat training show through.
Sakata Gintoki from Gintama
The whole plot of Gintama, or what audiences can understand of it, revolves around Gintoki being a rather lazy and unremarkable man right up until he is amazing. While he rises to the occasion when his friends are in danger and shows off some legendary swordsmanship, mostly he just likes gambling and reading Jump with a finger up his nose.
Saitama from One Punch Man
I was pretty conflicted putting Saitama on here. I mean, he isn’t so much lazy as he is just bored. He went through all that trouble to train his body to be a superhero, but defeating people with one strong punch is pretty boring after awhile. After enough wins, he gets bored with super hero-ing and thus ends up a pretty lazy bum about it.
Onizuka Eikichi from Great Teacher Onizuka
The only reason Onizuka became a teacher to begin with is because he saw a pretty schoolgirl ardently confess her love for her incredibly average middle-aged teacher and thought, “Yeah, I’d like some of that.” Of course, it turns out his lazy, silly, and occasionally threatening style of teaching was just the thing for a bunch of delinquents that normal teachers couldn’t handle. Still, even while teaching, the lazy ex-biker that likes to play games and lounge around flipping through girly mags shows through.
Ikta Solork from Alderamin on the Sky
Ikta likes to spend his days lying around and his nights chasing around pretty women. Of course, even the laziest among his country are drawn into conflict when war breaks out. Even though he detests war, he still ends up a pretty high ranking officer, much to the confusion of his peers. However, throughout the series, you watch his inner potential come out.
Glenn Radars from Akashic Records of a Bastard Magic Instructor
Glenn isn’t known as his alias “The Fool” for nothing. It is his attitude and lazy nature that hides everything badass about him. As an assassin and renowned magician killer, he has great combat skills. However, as a magic user, though well taught, his natural ability is somewhat lacking. However, his laziness covers all that up, which is why the honor students he teaches strongly dislike him at first.
Tsukikage Ran from Kazemakase Tsukikage Ran
Self-described beautiful woman, Ran is a legendary wandering swordswoman. However, the only thing that can match her skill with a sword is her demonic lust for sake. Instead of looking for strong opponents, she prefers to spend her time drinking. Sometimes not even her friends can keep her on task when sake is nearby, but when she does draw her sword, look out!
Asakura Yoh from Shaman King
Although Yoh spends much of his time in the series fighting, people often forget his whole reason for doing so. Yoh only wants to be the Shaman King because that would make him so powerful that he could just lounge around and do whatever. That’s right. This shounen hero has no noble motivations, he just want to be all-powerful as an excuse to be lazy. Of course, he still possesses some pretty powerful combat skills.
Ryner Lute from Legend of Legendary Heroes
Because Ryner is so naturally talented at so many different combat arts, it has lead to his own lazy nature. To most people he is sleepy and unmotivated, which makes it all the more surprising when he does do something, even if it is not even amazing, but it usually is pretty amazing anyway. Unfortunately, even lazy people can undergo a horrible trauma. In his case, it was the death of his classmates which cures his laziness a bit as he tries to make the world a more peaceful place.
Did we miss any more lazy, but badass main character? Let us know in the comments section below.