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Help identifying a violent Anime series from the 80s


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Hey all, I joined this forum to try and locate this anime I saw when I was a kid in the late 80s / early 90s. It was extremely violent and most likely from around that time.

When I was a kid I lived in Geneva, Switzerland from 89-92. There was a tv show that was very popular there, that looking back I am pretty sure must have been Japanese but dubbed in French (due to the animation style). Not totally sure about this but just a guess. Anyways, this is what I remember about it. It's pretty foggy since it was almost 30 years ago, but here goes.

1. It was in general very dark, and incredibly violent. The first time I turned it on randomly, I came across a scene where one character cut off another's head with an axe and it went rolling on the ground, gushing blood everywhere (the blood in the show had a dark, almost black look to it). My mother walked in the room and was horrified!

2. Prominent in the plot were poison apples, which sympathetic characters would be tricked into eating by antagonistic ones. The death resulting from it was really grotesque, their skin would go pale, pretty sure they vomited / coughed up blood, and for some reason their fingernails would bend and peel off of their fingers (this is important later).

3. There was a protagonist with long sharp fingernails. He could swipe the air, and sort of light beams / blade projectiles would travel from the tips of his fingers and cut his enemies into little pieces. At some point he is made to eat one of the aforementioned apples. His fingernails bend off like the others, and is seemingly dead, or has at least lost his power (due to his claws ripping off at all). Later in the series, however, he has a triumphant return and comes back with black holes where his fingernails once were. He swipes the air, and similarly to before his mishap, rips up the bad guys into a bunch of bloody stumps.

Any help in identifying this would be greatly appreciated! I have asked a lot of people through the years and absolutely no one has heard of it. There is a possibility it is not Japanese but I remember the animation and look of the series, and the attention to detail and general style seems very much so.

Thanks in advance!

-Z

Edited by sewer_rat
typo / rewording
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