The world of parenthood is a magical, beautiful and often challenging place. It has its highs and its lows, similar to the world of anime. Of course, that’s without the magical outfit changes. Wouldn’t that make getting ready in the morning so much easier?
As a single parent to a 11-year-old son, I sometimes use anime as a way to connect with him. Anime is something we mutually enjoy and is a great medium to discuss subjects without the pressure of feeling too serious. The aim of A Mom’s Guide to Anime is to use anime to help you navigate the world of parenthood.
This month’s focus: Responsibility and good eggs. My son is in the self-discovery part of puberty now. He’s trying to define his identity and how he sees himself contributing to society. During this stage, children tend to become more aware of their surroundings and the behavior of their peers. Depending on their environment, they can be influenced by it.
Of course, in a perfect world, we’d only surround our kids with positive influences! Yet, even in our imperfect world, there are plenty of good eggs out there—positive and responsible role models for them to look up to.
But kids aren’t huge fans of lectures. In the words of my 11-year-old, “Can I just play Attack on Titan 2 in peace!?” Well I’m SORRY for trying to love you and bestow words of wisdom!
But this is A Mom’s Guide to Anime, which means that when parenting isn’t working out, I turn to anime to help! This month, we’re talking about the good eggs in anime—characters you’d want your kids to be friends with! As always, remember you are the parent, and you know your kids best!
Ai Ohto from WONDER EGG PRIORITY
TW: This series includes depiction and discussion of self-harm and suicide.
WONDER EGG PRIORITY, the breakout hit of the Spring 2021 season of anime, is a great series! Don’t let the name fool you…you need to watch it (especially as a parent!). But for the sake of argument here, we can focus on the show’s lead, Ai Ohto.
Her life isn’t easy. She’s dealt with bullying (due to her heterochromia) and is an introvert—at one point she stops attending school. But when she finds a Wonder Egg and her life changes, she comes out of her shell! Heh, eggshell.
But what’s great about Ai is that she is very real. When we’re young, we often find ourselves figuring out our purpose and what makes us special. The responsibility of protecting the girls inside the Wonder Eggs has given her the opportunity to find inner strength and self-love. She’s also adorable and sweet as an egg tart!
From Ai, your kids can learn that even when bad things happen to you, it doesn’t have to define you.
Watch WONDER EGG PRIORITY on Funimation!
The half-demon princesses of Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon
For this one, we’re focusing on the trio of Towa, Setsuna and Moroha—three very good eggs of Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon! The mom in me just wants to hug them. They have had to endure a lot. You know, like how Towa and Setsuna were separated from each other by time and space!
The three girls don’t have relationships with their biological parents, and have partially had to raise themselves. And though their traumatic experiences have affected them, they remain well-adjusted.
Even the stoic-seeming Setsuna has a kind and selfless heart. And when the three of them work together? They get the job done and have a good time. Kids can learn from these three that just because you have to grow up and be responsible, it doesn’t mean you can’t have fun.
Watch Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon on Funimation!
Natsume from DECA-DENCE
Let’s be honest. We all know the best good egg is Pipe. But hey, Natsume is not far behind when it comes to being a great anime role model!
Like many on this list, Natsume didn’t have it easy. She lost her father and her right arm to a Gadoll (monstrous kaiju) attack, and from there set out to make her dream come true: Join The Power and fight the Gadoll.
Of course, life threw a wrench in her plans, and she ends up as a maintenance worker. Initially disappointed, Natsume applied her dedication as a warrior to her work, never letting go of her dream. Life is unpredictable!
Things aren’t always going to go your way, but that doesn’t mean you have to give up. Natsume can teach kids that when they’re growing up, you can find fulfillment in the things you put your all into! And you can have two dreams, or even five! Only you can limit yourself, so don’t.
Watch DECA-DENCE on Funimation!
Ikuto Tsumura from Smile Down the Runway
Talk about a good egg! Ikuto Tsumura might be in the running for best anime son, and he knows a lot about what it means to be responsible.
As the eldest and only son in his family, he became the primary caretaker for his four younger sisters and ailing mother. He handles most of the housework, makes clothes for his sister, works a part-time job, is part of the fashion club as a full-time student AND is an aspiring fashion designer. Phew. Oh! And he is only 17!
That is a lot for just about anyone to have to manage, and yet Ikuto somehow manages to balance it all with a smile. Yes, there are times where he doesn’t smile—times when he cries and doubts himself. And it might seem strange to say, but that’s a great thing.
Some of the most reliable people allow themselves to feel sad, tired and angry. Emotions are normal! It’s how you express them that matters most. So let your kids know it’s OK to feel! You’re not a bad egg just because you feel sad. Listen to Ikuto!
Watch Smile Down the Runway on Funimation!
The trillions of cells in the Cells at Work! series
Be honest, how many of you knew this was coming! Of course I had to find a way to include the hardworking cells of the Cells at Work! series. There are trillions of good eggs doing their very best to keep the human body going. And you KNOW how cute the Platelets are.
But what’s really influential here is how the cells work together in their bustling body society. They understand their roles are equally important to things functioning properly, and they take pride in that.
As I mentioned earlier, my son is trying to figure out what his role is. What can he contribute? What does he want to contribute? Those are big questions, but they’re important. These cells can teach your kids that no matter how big or small, your role is important. It’s necessary.
And that’s just like in real life. We all have our place and passion, and what we all do is important. Having these conversation with your children can help them think about ways they can be responsible, now and in the future.
Watch the Cells at Work! series on Funimation!
And that’s it for another month of A Mom’s Guide to Anime! Which of these good responsible eggs is your favorite? Share this post and let us know! And stay tuned to Funimation for the latest on all things anime, this season and beyond.