A screenshot from Studio Ghibli's Spirited Away featuring the protagonist, Chihiro, running through a tunnel of flowers.

Best INFP “Mediator” Anime Characters

Can’t we all just get along?

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Well shucks, c’mon guys! We can’t all be big tough ENTJ “commander” types, and we can’t all be the “smartest person in the room” INTJs! But that’s okay! We all have our own special talents that make us all… well, special! So what if you can’t open a can of beans? So what if you’re a philosophy major? So what if you never learned how to read? I know that if we all just stop fighting and put our silly little heads together we can do something great! How do I know?

Because I believe in you all. That’s why.

So to celebrate all of our latent abilities, I’m putting together a special list of INFP anime characters that show that even the silliest of billies can amount to something someday if they just put their mind to it!

Gaara

(image credit: Pierrot)

Gaara was once the silliest of billies! What was his favorite silly little thing to do? Murder. That’s right! Gaara loved murdering people because people loved to try to murder him. Why? Because he had a literal sand demon inside of him, that’s why! Gaara of the Sand was definitely not a mediator type whatsoever, he was a murderator type. But all he needed was a little bit of love and self-belief from Naruto and he totally 180’d! That’s right! Gaara of the Sand went from #1 Silliest Billy to the Kage of the Village Hidden In Sand. He was the perfect little guy for the job! As Gaara matured, he used his impressive intellect to focus on new ways to help people instead of kill them horribly. He was also shown to be a compassionate and level headed leader who would lay down his life for the people that he represented. Gaara’s deep sense of isolation from his younger years also allowed him to become and extremely empathetic person, and he could sympathize with those of dubious intent. He also grew into an insanely powerful ninja and could singlehandedly turn the tide of a battle. Sometimes we have a unique talent like killing people, but we just need to learn to kill the right people to be productive members of society! You go Gaara, kill ’em all! Well, almost all of them!

Chihiro

Chihiro and No-Face travelling to Swamp Bottom via the The Sea Railway
(image credit: studio ghibli)

Chihiro had talent too! Unlike her silly billy parents, Chihiro knew that shit was about to go seriously tits up when her family stumbled into that abandoned little spirit town in the Japanese countryside. Once again, mediators are really empathetic people, and super talented at “catching a vibe”. And this town had a “turn humans into pigs and eat them” vibe! She wasn’t able to escape the clutches of the spirits because her silly billy parents couldn’t control their appetites, but using her vibe-reading skills, she was able to save them all. Seriously, this girl’s talent is all about reading the vibe! She read the vibe that the dirty ass mud spirit that entered the spirit bathhouse was actually a beautiful water spirit that just needed a little zhoozhing. She read the vibe that No Face was a Total Creeper and that she definitely shouldn’t take his nasty gold. She read the vibe that he friend Haku was actually a river dragon and reminded him of his true name. And she read the vibe when the witch Yubaba asked her to pick which pigs in a pen were once her parents. This girl honestly needs to be a bouncer at an exclusive club like Berghain because she is just that good at getting a vibe on people. Take it from me, a mediator’s high level of emotional intelligence can make it so that the vibes in any room are immaculate. You go Chihiro! Can we please come in to the club? It’s freezing outside and what we’re wearing doesn’t even qualify as clothes!

Shigeo “Mob” Kageyama

(image credit: bones)

Mob is the silliest of billies, but that’s okay! Because he’s also an insanely powerful psychic. But he only uses it to help people. It doesn’t take a Chihiro to tell you that that’s totally a mediator vibe! Mob’s kind hearted and empathic nature help him to see the best in people (maybe a little too often), and like many mediators, he remains open-minded and accepting of other people’s motivations. Even if those motivations are kinda evil! He hangs out with evil spirits, tolerates life advice from a total quack psychic (even though the guy’s advice is actually really good) and is always looking out for his loved ones! He even has the generosity of spirit (no pun intended) to forgive and befriend the spooky people and ghosts who have tried to hurt him. I guess that’s also pretty easy when you’re also an untouchable god-level psychic who could level cities with but a fraction of your power. Kind of hard for anyone to really hurt you. But they can still do it emotionally! And yet Mob forgives them. What a sweetie!

Shinji Ikari

(image credit: Gainax)

Oh boy, now here’s someone who’s really a silly billy. But through no fault of his own! Poor Shinji! He has a total bastard of a dad who uses him as a human guinea pig to pilot horrifying bio-mechanical mechs in order to fight even more horrifying extraterrestrial invaders. Without a lot of sources of joy and positivity in his life, the negative qualities of Mediators have room to fester inside of Shinji. Like many mediators, he is self-isolating and hyper critical of his own faults. The kid just can’t give himself a break! It makes sense when your own father sees you as nothing but a tool in his master plan of turning the human race into a weird god-like single consciousness. Poor Shinji is desperate to please his father, and throws himself into frankly terrifying life or death situations in order for his dear old dad to show him a shred of love or acceptance. But when Shinji is treated well, he really lights up like the little star he is! He’s sweet, empathetic, and non-judgemental to everyone he comes across. He even makes friends with a human looking extraterrestrial and mercy kills his new best friend/lover when the kid asks him to! So sweet!

Celty Sturleson

(image credit: Brain’s Base)

Celty Sturleson is not a silly billy. She’s a dullahan! What’s a dullahan? Just a terrifying headless horseman apparition from Irish folklore that runs around the countryside at night bringing death! But Celty totally isn’t like that! She wouldn’t hurt a fly! Unless that fly was into human-trafficking, then she’d totally hurt that fly with her razor sharp scythe made of shadows. Celty Sturleson is a hero and local legend in Tokyo’s Ikebukuro neighborhood, and rides around on her motorcycle saving people from all sorts of nasty criminal types. Why does she do this? Well some cynical people might say it’s because she doesn’t need to eat or sleep so she doesn’t need a job so she’s bored and needs something to do. But those people are silly billies! And not the good kind. I’d argue that like most Mediators, she’s discovered that helping people is her calling. Her empathic nature doesn’t let her sit around watching movies all day when she has the power to help people. And even though you’re not a powerful creature of Irish myth, you can help people too! Now go out there and fight some murderous crime bosses! Or help some silly billy old lady cross the street. Your calling is calling you, so pick up the phone Silly Billy!


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Author
Jack Doyle
Jack Doyle (they/them) is actually nine choirs of biblically accurate angels crammed into one pair of $10 overalls. They have been writing articles for nerds on the internet for less than a year now. They really like anime. Like... REALLY like it. Like you know those annoying little kids that will only eat hotdogs and chicken fingers? They're like that... but with anime. It's starting to get sad.