- Alien Nine. The ending of the manga shows the main characters as this, as if to soften the horror of the events that preceded it.
- Excel Saga. Almost consistent throughout the entire series, in fact, running a coach and horses through the Fourth Wall. Some of the most prevalent highlights:
- Anime Director Shinichi Watanabe (a.k.a Nabashin) and original manga author Koshi Rikudo are quickly shown to not only both portray their real selves (Nabaeshin's connection to either side is questionable at best, depending on his scene however), and yet both in-canon with the Anime's story and relation to Excel Saga's characters.
- Misaki's insistence that the director to refrain from fanservicey camera shots of her, every character tenuously slipping in and out of awareness of being in an anime and unawareness of this same fact.
- The Great Will Of The Macrocosm herself, who exists as the Director's Reset Button for fixing the story, as the gaggy nature of the show routinely results in painting the plotline into a corner. And quite possibly at least 70 more examples, besides these.
- The final episode of Galaxy Angel's final season reveals that the characters we've been watching for the past three years were in fact actors filming a comedy based upon the real Angel Brigade, suggesting a link to the far more serious video game series. ...Only for it to turn out that the so-called "real" Angels never existed except as military propaganda characters, and in typical fashion for the show, things just get stranger from there...
- FLCL used this gag more than once to great comic effect.Haruko: Those slow motion scenes are really tough, huh?
Mamimi: Yeah, you have to hold you breath until they cut.
Haruko: You can get cramps from that, you know?
Naota: What? I thought it was a special effect! You're doing the slow motion?
- And then there's the "Manga Scene," (or rather, manga scenes), the second of which ends with a discussion on whether it was really necessary to do a second time.
- Done in the anime series Pani Poni Dash!, where the scene often pulls back to show that the classroom is a set on a stage, or the "cameramen" are obviously visible, or a stagehand accidentally walks into the "shot"; the "actors" are quite professional and never let on that they notice.
- At least one shot during the "crowded bath" scene in Puni Puni Poemi clearly shows the edge of the set and camera crew beyond it. Link.
- Puni Puni Poemi basically takes this trope and smashes the non-existent fourth wall with it. Twice because the first one was a blooper.
- Subverted in Ah My Buddha. In the Bonus Episode of the second season, we begin seeing Ikkou and the girls out on what appears to be another exorcising job. Then suddenly things turn into a soundstage and the cast give comments on making the show. Right before the episode concludes, an actual spirit appears in the studio, and Joutoko-baa reveals that it was all part of an elaborate scheme to lure out the ghost haunting the studio.
- The Adventures of Mini-Goddess has an episode where the characters think they have day off, only to find that the camera's running and they need to set up something to show. Another episode has them answering viewer mail.
- After The Movie was released, the creators of Fullmetal Alchemist produced an OVA in which the "actors" portraying the various characters get together after filming to celebrate the release of the film. The characters hang several lampshades, and one gag involving Gluttony not being an actor occurred at the end.
- Bleach had an example during the omake at the end of the Amagai arc, when Ichigo suddenly returns to Hueco Mundo, is jumped by Nel, and is told by Orihime to get into his Bankai, showing him a page of the manga. While Ichigo is still baffled, Orihime tells the camera that they'll be picking up where they left off from the manga.
- The start of the Amagai arc is another example, especially since it aired in the middle of another arc, and again with the new filler, where Ulqiourra sheaths his sword in the middle of a fight, and says "let me know when I'm needed on set". Actually, the writers have lampshaded this just about every time this has happened.
- The Naruto gang has commented multiple times in their omakes after their previews on the show.
- The omake for Episode 109 features characters preparing for recording a scene, with heroes and villains including one who's dead at that point in the arc sitting together in the same room.
- The Lucky Star gang are proven to be animated actors by Lucky Channel. Their names, personalities and relationships are the same as they are in the show.
- In the "outtakes" of the first volume of Magic Kaito, the characters are shown arguing after the scene has been cut. One of the crew workers comments in disbelief that Kaito and Aoko can't even get along in real life.
- Done again in the fourth volume, with the implication that the kid who appeared in one of the volume's chapters is the same actor who also plays Conan.
- Maria-sama ga Miteru has "Maria-sama ni wa Naisho", which are chibi outakes.
- The Omake chapters of the Fushigi Yuugi DVD feature the cast going to an onsen as a reward for their hard work.
- The Pandora Hearts DVD omake are all introduced with the characters thanking the viewer for buying the DVD. Then the camera pulls back, and the characters and crew chat a bit.
- Characters in Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo often talk about being actors and complaining about how much they get paid.
- The School Rumble OVA showed Tenma and Karasuma in the recording booth.
- The Neon Genesis Evangelion music album Neon Genesis Evangelion Addition has a track entitled "After the End". This is in fact an Audio Adaptation where the Evangelion cast discuss how to make the show more popular while lampshading some criticisms of their own series. Highlights include Sentai, Motor Mouth Pen-Pen, and Hideaki Anno as Black Space God...well maybe, no official source ever confirmed it. The whole thing ends in a "sound only" version of Episode 1 where "The Beast" is sung a cappella.
- Black Butler did an OVA about this trope for the release of the sequel, which can be seen as Self-Deprecation due to the tongue-in-cheek way it pokes fun at the series. In it, minor characters from the first season return in roles as crew members, and the format of having the actors be completely different from their character is played with; while Ciel and Sebastian have essentially the same personalities as their characters (though Ciel has a cockney accent), the mute Tonchinkan are played by a cheerful and talkative actor, and the quiet Big Bad is played as a bitchy diva who doesn't want to be there. The OVA ends with a trailer to the second season, beginning with scenes that didn't happen, and ending with scenes that completely throw a wrench in the format of the series.
- In an official Yu Yu Hakusho doujinshi written by the author Yoshihiro Togashi himself, it is revealed that Yu Yu Hakusho is in fact "filmed", and several of the actors possess drastically different personalities than the characters they portray, such as Kuwabara being a very calm and serious person who wears glasses. Older Koenma and Yoko Kurama are played by the same actor. Allegedly, Togashi wanted to make this the actual ending to the series, but was shot down by his editor.
- The Black Lagoon doujin R of Blacklagoon written by Rei Hiroe himself, the doujin shows What If? the manga was actually a hit TV show and it's characters were actors. Many of the actors are very different from their manga counterparts like how the Ambiguous Gender Hansel and Gretel are actually Twin girls, most of the cast are actual Mean Characters Nice Actors (Revy doesn't like kids but her actress does, Balalaika's actress likes the Twin actresses while her character hates Hansel and Gretel.) and have different personalities compare to their characters (Benny is Nice Guy and Nazi hater but his actor is a Hollywood Badboy and is friends with one of the actors playing a Neo Nazi.)
- The featurette 10 Little Gall Force is (supposedly) a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the first two OVAs. Includes such gems as Eluza being horrified when two of the youngest cast members call her "obasan", Lufy's actress depicted as a Proper Lady (complete with chauffeur) who arrives "fashionably late", Catty nervously asking if the wires she's supposed to grab for her big scene are live and being assured they're not (for the sake of some Enforced Method Acting)...
- Haiyore! Nyarko-san featured an odd version of this in the second season: at the start of Episode 3, Nyarko keeps trying to invoke Ending Tropes, such as saying "Our battle has only just begun!", to the growing annoyance of Mahiro. After she "creates" a Framing Device of herself telling the story to her grandchildrennote , the scene cuts to show Super-Deformed Nyarko and Mahiro in a recording studio as Mahiro yells "Quit acting like this is the last episode of a TV show!" and throws his copy of the script at Nyarko's face.
- The last few pages of the Dramacon manga volumes feature some sketched comics where the author interviews her characters.
- DVD Omake for Sands of Destruction shows the characters as ordinary, modern-day Japanese teenagers who portray characters who happen to have the same names as them. The girls are Ordinary High School Students who sit around snaking on crackers, with Morte in a Sailor Fuku and apparently a side-career as a singer. The guys are all models, ranging from the professional Agan to the virtually-unknown Kyrie who was apparently picked to be named the third-best-looking man on a magazine cover (behind his fellow cast members, of course). Naja also runs a web show where he gives his costars nicknames; Kyrie complains about being named "The Whiner" because he's only whiny in the script.
- Wish, a short manga by Mia Ikumi (the same author of Tokyo Mew Mew), ends with a bonus chapter revealing that the entire series was a TV show aired within the Tokyo Mew Mew universe some time after the end of A La Mode, with the main character and her cat being played respectively by Zakuro and Ichigo.
- A blooper reel akin to Pixar runs over the end credits of Stand By Me Doraemon.
Animated Actors / Anime & Manga