The anime version of DARLING in the FRANXX debuted on January 13, 2018, and concluded on July 7 with 24 episodes. The manga by Kentaro Yabuki debuted the next day on January 14, 2018, as a promotion and is currently ongoing.
The manga's author Kentaro Yabuki announced in 2019 that from Volume 4, the manga will have major divergences from the anime, hence the long list of differences from Volume 4 onwards.
- In the anime, the opening scene consists of Zero Two narrating the Jian, which makes a cameo, and a scene of her with Hiro surrounded by Sakura trees from episode 17 is shown. In the manga, she includes the backstory to why the FRANXX units were created and what the Klaxosaurs are.
- In the anime, Hiro is alone in his first appearance, he recalls the story of the Jian and tries to tend to a wounded bird. In the manga, he is with Ichigo and tells the backstory of the parasites. His capacity test with Naomi is also shown earlier in the manga.
- In the anime, Hiro doesn’t voice his decision to stay at the last minute before almost leaving in Plantation 13. In the manga, he does.
- In the anime, Ichigo tells Hiro that Naomi survived the klaxosaur attack and is hospitalized. In the manga, Ichigo tells Kokoro instead.
- In the anime, the scene of Mitsuru and Zorome doubting Hiro piloting Strelizia is shown after breakfast. In the manga, it was before breakfast.
- Also the scene in the anime of Hiro and Zorome’s fight over whether or not Hiro actually piloted Strelizia is not shown in the manga.
- In the anime, the scene of Ichigo confronting Zero Two about Hiro and getting licked by her is shown after a drill test. In the manga, it was during Zero Two eating breakfast with the squad.
- In the anime, Miku was hesitant to join Zorome in the mock battle against Hiro and Ichigo. In the manga, she immediately volunteered.
- The scene of Hiro giving Ichigo and the other children names in the Garden is shown earlier in the manga than the anime.
- In the anime, Hiro finds Zero Two sitting and resting in the lobby. In the manga, it was Mitsuru who found Zero Two.
- In the anime, Mitsuru suggests becoming Zero Two’s official partner while piloting Strelizia with her, and she decided to test him by “letting loose a bit”. In the manga, it was in the lobby while Mitsuru was talking badly about Hiro but Zero Two quickly rejected him.
- The scene of Hiro asking Goro to apologize to Ichigo on his behalf is seen in a flashback in the manga but makes a cameo in the anime.
- In the anime, Zero Two watches Hiro train in a training unit. In the manga, it is Mitsuru.
- The scene of Zero Two showing Hiro the city is shown earlier in the manga than the anime.
- In the anime, Hiro convinces Zero Two to ride with Mitsuru. In the manga, Hiro tells Zero Two to ride with Mitsuru but changes his mind and rides with her instead.
- In the anime, Hiro shows symptoms of his illness with a fever, which Goro notices. In the manga, Hiro exhibits expressions of being in severe pain but manages to keep it a secret.
- In the anime, Zero Two announces she will be staying with the squad while jumping on a bed. In the manga, she announces this when she cuddles with Hiro in bed while he unknowingly gropes her and then jumps on Goro.
- In the anime, Kokoro finds Mitsuru in the greenhouse when she goes to water the plants. In the manga, she follows him there.
- The scene of Plantations 13 and 26 commencing kissing is more detailed in the manga and narrated by Hiro, whereas everyone gave their own explanation of what they thought ‘kissing’ meant in the anime.
- Alpha makes his first appearance earlier in the manga, where he first meets Goro and Ichigo at Mistilteinn. In the anime, he makes a brief cameo after the plantations’ kissing but he formally introduced when he first meets Hiro when Zero Two is formally enrolled into the squad after the ‘kissing’.
- In the anime, Hiro and Zero Two are at the lake when she discovers his tumor. In the manga, they are in the bathroom.
- The scene of Ichigo slapping Zero Two is shown at a lake before Goro finds Hiro’s tumor in the anime. In the manga, it was afterwards in the pistil locker room.
- In the anime, it was rain that stopped the altercation between Zero Two and Ichigo. In the manga, it was Alpha.
- In the anime, Nana tells Zero Two she will be returning to the 9's. In the manga, it was Alpha.
- The scene of 090 telling the incident with Zero Two is seen in Ichigo's flashback in the manga. In the anime, he tells everyone during a pre-battle meeting.
- In the anime, Strelizia was allowed to participate in the battle to defend the plantations’ ‘kissing’. In the manga, Strelizia was not allowed.
- In the anime, Hiro has a vision of Zero Two and Naomi while he was close to death. In the manga, he has a vision of a child Zero Two.
- In the anime, Hiro meets Dr. FRANXX when Zero Two is officially enrolled into the squad. In the manga, it is when Dr. FRANXX appears on the monitor after the battle ends.
- The Klaxosaur Princess is introduced earlier in the manga after the successful kissing, whereas she wasn’t seen until after the Gran Crevasse siege in the anime.
- In the anime, Mitsuru tells the group he found an abandoned town near the beach and shows them. In the manga, Kokoro follows him and the others find out when the two don’t come back to the beach.
- In the anime, Zorome, Miku, Ikuno, and Futoshi explore the mansion in the abandoned town and compare it to their boarding house. In the manga, it was Hiro and Goro.
- In the anime, Mitsuru saves Kokoro from getting crushed by debris after he yanks her away. In the manga, he grabs her to the ground and accidentally touches her breast.
- The scene of the squad eating at the campsite and formally welcoming Hiro and Zero Two is shown more exclusively in the anime than the manga.
- In the anime, Hiro doesn’t have flashbacks of Zero Two as a child until the squad fights klaxosaurs at the Garden and she tries to kill him. In the manga, he starts having flashbacks while exploring the abandoned city.
- The kiss scene between Ichigo and Hiro from Episode 14 is shown during the beach vacation rather than at their boarding house in the manga.
- In the manga, the 9’s hold a meeting at the Bird Nest, which doesn’t happen in the anime as the Bird Nest isn't seen until right before the battle with VIRM.
- In the manga, Kokoro reads her baby book while she remembers when Hiro asked the meaning of boy-girl differences during an assembly at the Garden, which doesn’t happen in the anime.
- In the anime, a klaxosaur spills goo all over all the squad’s units. In the manga, only Strelizia, Argentea and Chlorophytum got sprayed with goo.
- In the anime, Delphinium was captured by a klaxosaur while trying to save Argentea. In the manga, Delphinium was captured while trying to save Strelizia instead.
- The Boys versus Girls conflict never happens in the manga but is the central conflict of Episode 8 in the anime.
- In the anime, Goro admits his feelings for Ichigo and shows the hair clip to Hiro before Delphinium was absorbed. In the manga, it was afterwards.
- In the anime, Nana and Hachi learn Goro is still alive. In the manga, it was Zero Two who discovered Ichigo was still alive.
- In the manga, Delphinium goes into stampede mode while inside the klaxosaur, whereas Delphinium never goes into stampede mode in the anime.
- In the anime, Argentea rescues Delphinium after escaping from inside the klaxosaur. In the manga, it was Chlorophytum.
- Ichigo’s hair clip was lost during the rescue attempt in the anime but in the manga, it breaks in half instead.
- In the manga, Zero Two comments she needs to learn more about humans to find her long-lost darling. Whereas in the anime, she says no such thing.
- In the anime, Zero Two didn’t start calling Squad 13 by their names until after the battle of Gran Crevasse. In the manga, she starts calling them by their names much earlier.
- In the anime, Goro and Ichigo feel awkward since his confession while visiting the city. In the manga, it was at Mistiltein.
- In the anime, Zero Two dreams of all the stamen she killed the day before Kokoro and Mitsuru’s wedding. In the manga, it was after the rescue of Delphinium, and she also imagines Hiro among the dead stamen.
- In the anime, the 9's never come into direct contact with 001 and they only hear her voice during the second battle at Gran Crevasse. In the manga, they are confronted by her while neutralizing a horde of klaxosaurs near the Gran Crevasse before the first battle.
- In the anime, 001 doesn’t emerge from underground until the second battle of Gran Crevasse. In the manga, she does before the first battle of Gran Crevasse.
- In the anime, 001 forcibly links with Hiro via Strelizia to fight against VIRM. In the manga, she forcibly links with 9'δ via the 9 Model to gather intel on humanity and Zero Two’s whereabouts.
- In the anime, Hachi wasn’t suspicious of the medal ceremony. In the manga, he was suspicious because the squad is an experimental unit and something serious must have happened for Papa to have high expectations for them.
- In the anime, Zorome gets lost in the city after getting distracted by looking at the magma energy plants. In the manga, not only does Zorome get lost but so does Miku (after she ran away when he hurt her feelings and he chased after her), Zero Two and Hiro (both who went looking for them).
- In the anime, Zorome meets the Old Woman and she tells him how the adults live by receiving emotions from machines, and he talks to her about Miku’s pros and cons. In the manga, as the Old Woman doesn’t appear, all these topics are discussed between Zorome, Hiro, Miku, and Zero Two. Also, in the manga, it was Miku who listed the pros and cons of Zorome and it was Zero Two who explained the adults' way of life.
- In the anime, Alpha‘s partner, Zeta, died after the second battle at Gran Crevasse due to lack of maintenance. In the manga, she was killed due to an injury to her abdomen from a direct hit in the cockpit.
- In the anime, Epilson and Delta are killed by VIRM during the second Gran Crevasse battle and the rest of the 9’s, including Alpha, are killed in the battle against VIRM in space. In the manga, all the 9’s, except for Delta and Alpha, are killed by the klaxosaur princess.
- In the anime, it was Alpha whose final words were it was fun and to give his regards to Zero Two. In the anime, it was Gamma and Beta.
- In the anime, as the 9’s never fought the klaxosaur princess, Papa never ordered their disposal. In the manga, he does when all but Alpha and Delta perish and he deems the two survivors useless.
- In the anime, Alpha rarely shows emotion, however in the manga ,he cries over his fallen comrades.
- In the manga, as the 9’s faced pruning for their failure, it was Kokoro who persuaded Squad 13 to save them, something that doesn’t happen in the anime. In the anime, the 9’s showed nothing but contempt for Kokoro who was frightened in particular by Alpha.
- In the anime, Squad 13’s doubts about Papa and their rebellion against him doesn’t happen until Kokoro and Mitsuru’s wedding and their memories are wiped away, which makes them realize parasites are not entitled to happiness. In the manga, their doubts and rebellion against Papa don't happen until they find out the 9’s will be pruned for being useless and all children deemed weak are disposed of, prompting the squad to rescue the 9’s.
- In the manga, Hachi has numerous recollections of Nana’s past and it serves as a motivation for him to go against APE by lying to protect Squad 13, even admitting he doesn’t want to lose them. In the anime, his recollections of Nana’s past have a minimum role but it motivates him to protect the children and admits he doesn’t think it’s wrong to watch them live and prosper.
- In the anime, Nana has a repressed memory of her late partner when she argues with Kokoro over the latter’s opinion of procreation and feelings. In the manga, it occurred when she saw Kokoro protect the 9’s and beg for the adults not to give up on them.
- In the anime, Miku finds the unused room and the photo of the previous Squad 13. In the manga, it was Mitsuru.
- In the anime, Hiro’s curiosity of Naomi’s fate is minimum even when he learns she never returned to the Garden. In the manga, he feels saddened after learning she was likely thrown away and admits he regrets leaving her alone.
- In the anime, Zero Two’s horns grow bigger during a trip to the Garden and are first noticed by Hiro. In the manga, they grew while Zero Two was staying in Mistilteinn and are first noticed by Alpha.
- In the anime, Futoshi doesn't realise Kokoro and Mitsuru growing closer until the Partner Shuffle. In the manga, he and Ikuno watch Mitsuru and Kokoro's interactions, realising early on that Mitsuru is getting closer to Kokoro than she is with Futoshi.
- In the anime, Ikuno expressed no interest in Mitsuru and Kokoro's relationship prior to the Partner Shuffle. However, in the manga, she shares Futoshi's interest in watching Mitsuru and Kokoro's relationship grow.
- The meeting between Hiro and Hachi about Naomi doesn’t happen in the anime.
- Nana is replaced earlier in the manga.
- In the anime, Mitsuru never reads the baby book and never says the parasites’ knowledge is insufficient. In the manga, he does read the book and says this while talking to Kokoro.
- In the anime, Mitsuru collapses from a fever while operating Chlorophytum. In the manga, he collapses from his fever in the living room.
- In the anime, Hiro never asks Zero Two about her horns’ growth, whereas he does in the manga and vows to always be with her after she refuses to tell him why.
- In the anime, it was Nana and Hachi who treated Mitsuru’s fever, and Mitsuru was never told the probable cause for his low aptitude other than he wanted to be acknowledged, as stated by Ikuno. In the manga, it was Alpha who treated his fever, and he is told by Alpha the cause is likely the unstable mentality in his heart.
- Additionally, in the anime, Squad 13 (minus Hiro and Zero Two) discussed Mitsuru getting an Elixir Injection, whereas, in the manga, only Ikuno and Futoshi learn about Mitsuru’s injection. Mitsuru also asks them to keep it a secret from Kokoro, something that doesn't happen in the anime.
- In the anime, the risk of surviving the Elixir Injection was 15%, while in the manga, it was 1%. Ikuno also implied in the manga that Mitsuru was the sole survivor of the risky procedure.
- In the manga, Mitsuru tells Futoshi that he loves the greenhouse because the flowers help him forget his problems. In the anime, he never says this.
- In the anime, Ikuno and Ichigo are in their bedroom and it is the day before Kokoro and Mitsuru’s wedding when Ikuno confesses her love to Ichigo. In the manga, they are in the bathroom and it is prior to the partner shuffle and the Gran Crevasse battle.
- In the anime, the partner shuffle was suggested by Nana. In the manga, it was Ikuno and Futoshi who suggested it.
- In the anime, Futoshi asked Kokoro to promise to be his partner forever, which she reluctantly did shortly before the partner shuffle. In the manga, this doesn’t happen, since Futoshi and Ikuno were the ones who suggested the partner shuffle.
- In the anime, after the partner shuffle, Genista and Chlorophytum attack the klaxosaur simultaneously. In the manga, Chlorophytum attacks first, along with the rest of the squad's FRANXX and Genista is the last to attack.
- In the anime, Genista is knocked back after charging towards the klaxosaur and is about to be crushed before Chlorophytum comes to the rescue. In the manga, the klaxosaur grabs Genista and tries to crush it, causing it to temporarily deactivate.
- In the manga, Mitsuru offers to help Kokoro escape from Genista and he will self detonate to destroy the klaxosaur while apologizing for his failure as a partner. Kokoro refuses and tells him that he can rely on people and she will protect him. In the anime, Kokoro gets Mitsuru to confess the reason behind his grudge against Hiro. She also tells Mitsuru that she understands because she broke a promise with Futoshi but she still believes in him.
- In the anime, Genista’s stampede form was more consistent with a beast-like duck. In the manga, it resembled a dragon-like beast, along with having wings.
- In the anime, Mitsuru tells Kokoro about his broken promise with Hiro before he saves her from going in stampede mode. In the manga, it was after.
- In the anime, Kokoro never tells Mitsuru about her feelings for him, at least not on screen. In the manga, she confesses her feelings for him after he saves her from going in stampede mode.
- In the anime, Genista is never shown without her coat and hat, but she is in the manga.
- In the manga, this form of Genista is named "Light mode", while it has no name in the anime because it doesn't exist.
- In the anime, Genista fires a shot into the klaxosaur’s abdomen to expose the core. In the manga, it was on the klaxosaur’s back.
- In the anime, Mitsuru vows to protect Kokoro after Futoshi angrily punches him for being reckless. In the manga, he vows to protect her during the battle and there was never a violent confrontation between Mitsuru and Futoshi.
- In the anime, Kokoro cuts Mitsuru’s hair after the first Gran Crevasse battle. In the manga, it was before the Gran Crevasse battle, following the partner shuffle.
- In the anime, Mitsuru realizes his feelings for Kokoro after reconciling with Hiro. In the manga, it was before reconciling with Hiro, following the partner shuffle.
- In the anime, Hiro’s horns are revealed after the first Gran Crevasse battle. In the manga, it was prior to the Gran Crevasse battle.
DARLING in the FRANXX
|STAMEN||Hiro | Goro | Zorome | Futoshi | Mitsuru|
|PISTIL||Zero Two | Ichigo | Miku | Kokoro | Ikuno|
|OTHER||Naomi | Old Woman | 081 | 090 | 245 | 9'α | 9'β | 9'γ | 9'δ | 9'ε | 9'ζ | VIRM|
|APE||Papa | Vice Chairman | Gorilla | Marmoset | Lemur | Baboon | Tarsier|
Dr. FRANXX | Hachi | Nana
|FRANXX||Strelizia | Delphinium | Argentea | Genista | Chlorophytum | Standard | 9 Model|
|EPISODES||01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 | 08 | 09 | 10 | 11 | 12|
13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24
|CHAPTERS||01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 | 08 | 09 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20|
|MUSIC||KISS OF DEATH | Torikago | Manatsu no Setsuna | Beautiful World|
Hitori | CÅGE | Vanquish | Escape | Darling
|LOCATIONS||Cerasus | Garden | Chrysanthemum | Gran Crevasse | Cosmos|
|KEYWORD||Klaxosaur | FRANXX|