There are a lot of ways to create a dystopian society in anime. However, one of the easiest ways to create one and also make it relatable to the audience is to paint a world in which one class rules above the rest. Sometimes it feels like we are just one step away from that in our society. In these worlds, there is a one class that is painted as better than the rest for one reason or another. It is this elevation that often gives them the perceived right to treat their lessers any way they want to. If this particular vein of dystopia is your jam, then give these anime recommendations a try.
In the underground city of Lux, you are either part of one of the three gangs fighting for control or your are dirt poor, used by these gangs, and thrown away. Among all this is a prize fighter that lost a few limbs after fighting with a promoter. This leads to them being replaced by a scientist, giving him the power to finally fight against what should have been his fate.Dorohedoro
The whole city of Hole in Dorohedoro are those powerless to stand up to the magic users that live above them. The magic users come to Hole, they experiment on the weak that inhabit it, and then they leave no matter what crimes they committed. Dorohedoro is about a man immune to magic due to experimentation and determined to kill every last magic user.Gunnm
Perhaps better known as Battle Angel Alita is quintessentially this trope. The city in which Gally is found is a literal trash heap for the society above them. Everything they have is the trash of someone else and they have to build a society on that. It leads to a rough and desperate existence.Ergo Proxy
There are multiple levels of classism in Ergo Proxy. You have your typical classism in which the rich rule over the poor, but also another level in which humanity rules over their robotic companions that are mysteriously turning murderous. Finally, you later learn that there is even another level in which the domed cities live rather luxurious lives compared to anyone caught outside in the wasteland.From the New World
This series takes places far in the future after showing you that the past was very much our society today. In doing so, it immediately poses the question of what happened to society as well as what happened to normal humans? You discover several layers of classism throughout the series. The first is wondering what happens to the kids that don’t develop their psychic powers by a certain age, and there is yet another layer you discover later in the series. However, as it is a pretty big revelation, we’re not going to touch on it.Toppa Tengen Gurren Lagann
When it comes to dystopian anime series where society is ruled by one class, Gurren Lagann is probably not one you think of first. However, it is true, at least in the first half. Humanity has been pushed underground where they live meager lives. If anyone heads to the surface, they are hunted down mercilessly by those that serve the Spiral King.No. 6
After a brutal war, humanity retreated into several city-states. As you might expect, they are far from perfect. The interesting thing about this series is that it starts by focusing on a member of the elite who thinks things are pretty good. It is only later when a mysterious boy from the wasteland enters his life that he discovers that their world is, in fact, full of suffering.Guilty Crown
While Guilty Crown has a bit of a supernatural element to the battles it creates, the world is a typical dystopia. In it, a virus has ravaged humanity and it allowed a military group to seize control.. You later discover that it may in fact be that same group using the virus to keep control.Seraph of the End
This dystopia is a little different from the rest. In Seraph of the End, all the adults over a certain age were wiped out by a virus. This left only children and allowed the vampires that once stuck to the shadows to surface. They took over society and used these kids as cattle. The series features those that are willing to fight back against such an injustice.Shangri-La
After earthquakes and global warming splintered society, a select few created a closed off city of Atlas. However, humanity continued to struggle on in the dangerous jungle wasteland outside. Shangri-La tells the story of a few strugglers that decide to break into Atlas to escape their lot. However, it is not only that, but they discover that every utopia is built on a foundation of lies.Towards the Terra
This series is sort of the opposite of what we would imagine. In it, humanity was forced to leave earth and is ruled over by computers. Evolution has occurred and created a race known as Mu that are actually highly discriminated against by normal humans. Yet, these Mu have a dream of returning to earth.
Do you have more dystopian anime series where one class of society rules over another? Lets fans know in the comments section below.