So my son (11) who won the cosplay contest earlier this month at Anime Milwaukee got a bag of some promotional materials and such for winning. He got several show postcards including the “Dog & Scissors” postcard pictured above.
He said: “Dad, I think I want to watch this show.”
“Of course you do…but no.”
“Not appropriate for you.”
And so it goes. So many times as a parent you have to explain to the child (who often knows why fully well) why he can’t watch a show.
Many anime are geared to older kids and adults. Sifting through it all to find what he can watch is a challenge at times. However, I am a fan and so is his brother. This both helps and hinders the issue.
He will often want to watch what I, or his brother, has watched even though he knows he can’t.
Attack On Titan for example:
Just a bit to much violence and bloodshed for his age. But he knows about the show, knows what happens, still not allowed to watch it.
There are the shows I let him start without realizing where it was going and had to stop him from watching after a few episodes.
And then the shows I let him watch even though there were scenes that were going to get me in trouble.
(I can’t excuse that oversight).
This is a challenge of any parent really. Deciding what entertainment content is appropriate for your child to watch. The difference I think lies in the amount of anime that is available is wide and can be intimidating. The other is the voracity with which a young anime fan can consume content. My boys like their shows and watch a good deal of differing shows.
Besides the content viewing there is how they express their fandoms. Going to a convention, if I am not careful, will leave me broke. They love their shows and would like all associated merchandise (and lets be frank: there is some cool anime related merchandise).
And if your partner doesn’t like anime….
Well, my wife isn’t a fan. That is cool too, people like what they like. This can be a point of contention too. What you may see as being a show that is fine to watch, your partner may not having no context or experience with the genre. My son understood that Kuroko, in A Certain Scientific Railgun, was the standard pervert character that will act like a creep. He knows her behavior is inappropriate. My wife, seeing her out of context, gets very disturbed by Kuroko’s behavior. Is she wrong? Not exactly, but context is different to the regular viewer vs someone just walking by and seeing the pervert character doing something creepy.
So there are challenges with raising otakus, but that is being a parent.
By the way the wife took away his “Dog & Scissors” postcard, gave it to me and said: “He doesn’t need something like this.”
I have it now….