Anime has some of the most powerful characters in all of media. From Goku to Naruto to Saitama, there's no short supply of epic heroes with incredible strength and abilities. While many iconic favorites have superpowers of some kind, some are completely powerless. However, that doesn't make them any less heroic.
They may not have supernatural abilities, but these anime characters are able to use their wits, perseverance, and a little bit of kindness to save the day nonetheless. Even when things are at their worst, they don't back down and are willing to put their lives at risk to protect the ones they love, proving they're just as strong as the most powerful heroes.
10 Sokka Is The Only Non-Bender Of Team Avatar (Avatar: The Last Airbender)
Avatar: The Last Airbender is filled with many incredible heroes with unspeakable power. From masters of each element to the Avatar himself, the benders of the world are the powerhouses of each nation.
Compared to benders, Sokka seems almost helpless sometimes. Nevertheless, he always manages to hold his own in a fight and is willing to lay his life down for what he believes in. Though he starts out as the weakest link, Sokka grows in strength and skill over time and becomes just as good as his bender teammates.
9 Yui Isn't One Of The Cures (Go! Princess Pretty Cure)
In a magical girl series like Go! Princess Pretty Cure, anyone who can't transform is usually pretty useless when fighting evil. However, Yui Nanase is one of the rare exceptions to this rule. She's not a Cure, and she tends to need saving often, but she still manages to help the girls with their missions and save the day.
After discovering the Cures' identities, Yui vows to help them however she can, and she uses her knowledge to resist the enemy and help out when times are tough. Yui's just a normal girl, but she refuses to let her friends face off against danger alone.
8 Takemichi Is One Of The Weakest Of The Bunch (Tokyo Revengers)
As the protagonist of Tokyo Revengers, most would expect Takemichi Hanagaki to be the strongest gang member of them all. In reality, he's actually one of the weakest, and he regularly gets beaten by his stronger opponents. Despite this, Takemichi never backs down and never cowers before his enemies.
Takemichi is resilient and can take a punch better than anyone else, and though he may lose a fight, he still impresses his peers with his incredible endurance. His strong will and determination make him a force to be reckoned with, even if his physical strength can't compare to others.
7 Simon Is Just A Kid (Gurren Lagann)
When Simon's adventure first begins at the start of Gurren Lagann, he's just a kid who has no knowledge of the outside world. He's weak and scared, and he needs his big bro Kamina's support to get him through everything. Though he's significantly weaker than the rest of Team Dai Gurren, Simon still does his part and helps where he can.
Simon is often scared when going into battle, but he still risks his life to protect his friends and loved ones. This inner strength and determination blossoms as he gets older, allowing him to become a worthy hero in the future.
6 L Sacrifices His Life For The Sake Of Justice (Death Note)
While most heroes have some kind of superpower or ability, the closest thing L has is his incredible intellect. Throughout the first half of Death Note, he puts himself at risk, all for the sake of uncovering Kira's identity and saving Japan from a ruthless killer.
While L is stronger than he may look, he's still no match for anyone who may try to take him out. Nevertheless, he perseveres, knowing full well that he could become a target at any time. In the end, he loses his life for his cause, showing the lengths he was willing to go for the sake of justice.
5 Mytho Has Lost His Heart & His Power (Princess Tutu)
When Princess Tutu begins, not much is known about Mytho. He's a beautiful and mysterious student at Gold Crown Academy, and he always has a distant look in his eyes. Soon enough, it's revealed that he's the tragic prince of an old fairytale who's lost his heart and memories.
Mytho no longer has the strength or fighting skills he once possessed, leaving him almost completely helpless. Though he has no recollection of his past, Mytho still has a burning desire inside of him to help others, even at his own expense. Because he has no fear or understanding of danger, he constantly puts his life at risk as he attempts to save innocents in need.
4 Rock Lee Lacks Ninjutsu & Genjutsu (Naruto)
There are many incredible ninjas throughout Naruto, each with their own unique and impressive sets of powers. Unfortunately for Rock Lee, he's been given the short end of the stick in life, unable to properly use ninjutsu or genjutsu.
To make up for his shortcomings, Rock Lee immersed himself in the study of taijutsu and solely relies on his physical strength to get by. Though Rock Lee has no powers like his friends and allies, he is still ready and willing to face any danger. He'll gladly put his life on the line if it means he can protect those he loves.
3 Nagisa Is Weak & Sickly But Still Does Her Best For Her Child (Clannad)
When viewers meet Nagisa Furukawa at the start of Clannad, it's established early on that she's not in the best health. She's weak, timid, and rather sickly, often falling ill when the weather gets bad. Her illness persists throughout her life and even into her adulthood, but she never lets it stop her from doing her best. When she and Tomoya decide to have a child, she learns of the high risks that come with her pregnancy, thanks to her condition.
Nagisa knows she could die from giving birth, but she still wants to push herself and give her daughter the best life she can. Nagisa may not be an epic shonen hero, but she's an everyday hero who doesn't let her weakness stop her, even at the risk of her life.
2 Madoka Risks Her Life Even Before She Becomes A Magical Girl (Puella Magi Madoka Magica)
Throughout a majority of Puella Magi Madoka Magica, Madoka Kaname remains an ordinary girl, not yet forming a contract with Kyubey to become a magical girl like her friends. She's offered the chance to make a contract many times in the series, but remains hesitant and unsure if she can handle it.
Even when powerless, Madoka does everything she can to help and support her friends. She may not become a magical girl herself until the very end, but she goes through every trial and hardship alongside the rest of the girls, helping them any way she can, even when it risks her safety.
1 Izuku Midoriya Was Born Powerless (My Hero Academia)
Izuku Midoriya is the protagonist of My Hero Academia and one of the most promising upcoming heroes of his generation, gaining even the support of All Might himself. However, he doesn't start out this way. Despite his incredible feats as a hero, Izuku actually began as a powerless, ordinary boy.
Though Izuku had no quirk to speak of, he longed to become a hero regardless and fight for what's right. It's a dream he was willing to even risk his life to accomplish. This determination of his is exactly why All Might chooses him to pass his One For All quirk down to, proving that Izuku has been a hero all along.
NEXT: Top 10 Anime Heroes Who Earn Their Respect