Other Reference: Revy & Rock (Black Lagoon)
Dating back to 10th century BC, tobacco has existed and since then, became a great part of human civilization. Whether if it’s smoked in a pipe, or the more modern style of cigarettes and cigars. Tobacco has greatly influenced how the way society is right now. Despite the obvious risks that smokers are indulging themselves in by smoking, cigarettes and other tobacco related products have a certain spell on them for getting hooked. For some, it even became a part of their whole existence.
So here’s a List of Top 10 Anime Smoking Characters that you might have seen, in more than one occasion, have a burning cigarette in their mouths. Let’s go!
10. Franken Stein (Soul Eater)
Having an eccentric appearance, Franken Stein, or more often referred to as Dr. Franken Stein, is as unpredictable as he seems. Even though Dr. Stein usually appears to be a gentle and calm person around his students, Maka Albarn and the others are fully aware of what this doctor is capable of.
As a man of science, Dr. Stein sees everything in this world, including himself, as an experiment or test subject. It was revealed in the series that he even experimented on himself, hence the scars around his body. Dr. Stein is also a former smoker, often having a cigarette in his mouth. But it was also revealed in the series that Dr. Stein decides to quit smoking as a way to convince himself not to fall into his dark side.
9. Shizuo Heiwajima (Durarara!!)
Extremely short tempered and strong, Shizuo Heiwajima is a man not to be reckoned with. Having an incredible strength stemming from his childhood, Shizuo eventually worked his way up in life as a bartender and later, as suggested by Tom Tanaka, his personal bodyguard. The two have been partners ever since.
Shizuo is often seen in his former bartender outfit, even after he was fired from the job because Izaya Orihara framed him for an unknown crime. It is speculated that the bartending job was the only job that doesn’t send Shizuo constantly on the edge. Behind his rampageous exterior, Shizuo is also often spotted smoking his signature Blue American Spirit cigarettes. Shizuo also has a tendency to break his cigarette in half when he loses his temper.
8. Asuma Sarutobi (Naruto)
- Episodes: 220
- Aired: Oct 3, 2002 to Feb 8, 2007
As the leader of Team 10 (Shikamaru, Ino, and Chouji), Asuma Sarutobi is a skilled jonin of Konohagakure's Sarutobi clan. Despite having a laid-back demeanor, Asuma spends time getting to know his students and thus, able to draw out their abilities by his own unique way of approaching them, usually through bribery or manipulation.
Asuma is also known to be a heavy smoker, but it was revealed in the series that he would cease his habit of smoking due to certain events, one of which happens to be when his father died and when he found out that Kurenai was pregnant.
7. Souhei Saikawa (Subete ga F ni Naru: The Perfect Insider)
- Episodes: 11
- Aired: Oct 9, 2015 to Dec 18, 2015
After the mysterious death of the genius programmer Dr. Shiki Magata, who has been living in isolation at a research facility on a solitary island, Souhei Saikawa, together with Moe Nishinosono who got caught up in the middle of the case, decide to solve the mystery that has originated from the past 15 years.
Souhei Saikawa has a peculiar sense of calmness around him and doesn’t really react to Moe’s obvious infatuation towards him. Souhei also has a tendency of smoking and drinking coffee. As seen in episode 1, the ashtray was filled with cigarette butts, indicating Souhei’s obsessive smoking habits.
6. Spike Spiegel (Cowboy Bebop)
- Episodes: 26
- Aired: Apr 3, 1998 to Apr 24, 1999
Ranking in the 6th position of the list is Spike Spiegel, who is the main protagonist of the Cowboy Bebop series. Spike used to be a member of the Red Dragon Crime Syndicate until he decides to quit the Syndicate altogether and become a bounty hunter after the incident with his love, Julia. Since then, Spike journeys through space together with his crew, chasing bounties and collecting rewards.
Spike can be seen almost always having a cigarette in his mouth. Despite the poor conditions of the cigarette itself, he would still smoke it anyway, making him one cool looking chain-smoking bounty hunter of the galaxy. It was revealed in the series that he smokes Lucky Strike cigarettes and his smoking habits made him smoke regardless of smoking warnings or bad weather.
5. Ginko (Mushishi)
- Episodes: 26
- Aired: Oct 23, 2005 to Jun 19, 2006
By definition, Mushi is a form of life that can take on the characteristics of a human world such as plants, animals, etc. As a Mushi master, or Mushi-shi, Ginko travels around countryside helping other people with their issues regarding Mushi as not everyone is able to seem them because of their supernatural existence.
It was revealed in the series that Ginko’s green eye and white hair was a result of his entanglement with Mushi when he was a little kid. Since then, Ginko appears nonchalant when he travels. As a traveler, Ginko frequently smokes cigarettes everywhere he goes. It was revealed that the tobacco Ginko smokes was actually a mushi-tobacco, used to repel the mushi which are naturally drawn to him.
4. Toushirou Hijikata (Gintama)
- Episodes: 201
- Aired: Apr 4, 2006 to Mar 25, 2010
Due to his fearsome appearance, Toushirou Hijikata, the vice commander of the Shinsengumi, became well respected amongst his subordinates as he is nicknamed the ‘demonic vice-commander’, due to his reputation as a fearsome leader.
Underneath his serious exterior, Toushirou can be a bit soft at times. One such occasion is when he tends to cry after watching a movie that isn’t particularly emotional. He also has an obsession with mayonnaise, often pairing it with whatever food he eats. The most iconic of this fellow in the Gintama series is that he is a chain-smoking character. It was shown in episode 119 that when smoking was banned from Earth, Hijikata’s obsessive smoking forced him to travel to planet Hamek, where cigarettes were produced.
3. Yuuko Ichihara (xxxHOLiC)
- Episodes: 24
- Aired: Apr 7, 2006 to Sep 29, 2006
As the owner of the mysterious shop that grants people their wishes, Yuuko Ichihara’s outer appearance reeks of mystery. Often dressed in beautiful long kimonos, she lives a leisure life thanks to Watanuki Kimihiro, a part time worker for Yuuko.
She can be dead serious but also jovial at times when Watanuki brings two of her favorite things: food and sake. Yuuko Ichihara ranked No. 3 on this list because she can often be seen laying down in her long chair/bench smoking her traditional Kiseru pipe in a closed door and windowed room with thick smoke around them. After her death, Yuuko’s Kiseru pipe and smoking habits were later passed down to Watanuki.
2. Eikichi Onizuka (Great Teacher Onizuka)
- Episodes: 43
- Aired: Jun 30, 1999 to Sep 17, 2000
Blonde, ex-gangster biker, not so smart, lewd and all the other things you would least expect from a teacher. That’s Eikichi Onizuka. As per what the title says, it’s about Eikichi Onizuka’s journey of becoming the number 1 teacher. Despite the obvious lack of qualities one teacher should have, Onizuka has his own way of really getting to know his students, a rare quality that even decent teachers lack.
When paired with the notorious class, Onizuka slowly opens up the hearts of his students, making them able to accept him as their home teacher. Onizuka is also known to be a heavy smoker, despite his occupation as a teacher. It was shown in the series in episode 23, that Onizuka is known to smoke Mild Seven, a japanese brand of cigarettes.
“Eikichi Onizuka, 22 years old, Nice to meet you!”
1. Sanji (One Piece)
- Episodes: 730 - Counting
- Aired: Oct 20, 1999 to Ongoing
A known skillful cook and fighter, Black Leg Sanji or Sanji, used to work for Chef "Red Leg" Zeff of the Baratie restaurant before joining the Straw Hat Pirate Crew. As a man devoted to cooking, Sanji remains high to his principal: to never let anyone starve, regardless of them being friend or foe.
Sanji possesses a unique fighting style of only using his legs, as he claims to not want to dirty his hands because they are instruments of cooking. Another unique characteristic of Sanji is that he is a heavy smoker, often having a cigarette lighted in his mouth wherever he goes. It is speculated that Sanji learned to smoke when he was in his early days at the Baratie restaurant.
And that concludes this list of Top 10 Smoking Anime Characters! Do you know any other cool characters who haven’t turn cold turkey yet? Which character from the list is your favorite? Leave them in the comments below! Also, smoking cigarettes are very bad for the body. We do not condone smoking cigarettes despite it is the topic of this article, so be safe and responsible by making your own decision whether to start or quit smoking.