Hello and welcome back to our blog! Today we’re coming at you with a collab blog to help get in the holiday mood. As many of our American blog viewers know, Thanksgiving was this past week, and I’m sure many of you are aware that visiting family just wasn’t advised this year. So, today we’re going to be coming at you with a blog that visits anime that’s all about family! Today we’re going to highlight some shows that show off the many different shapes, forms, and meanings of what a family is, and that’ll fill your heart with warmth even while you have to be away from your loved ones this year. Here are some of our favorite anime featuring heartwarming families.
So family is very central in this show, but it’s not exactly what one would call a….”traditional” family. I say that because it’s not like cut and dry–this is mum, pop, and kids. Which, y’know–how many anime have the traditional form of family? (Not many…that are alive anyway). But this show really encompasses family in a unique way. To begin with we have the father, my man and MC Jotaro, and his daughter Rei. There’s also Rei’s grandmother who makes occasional appearances, and Bigbird–Rei’s pet bird. To begin with, this family is missing the mother, which–well, anime. It’s still an almost complete family though…but it doesn’t always function as one. Jotaro, despite trying his very best as a father, tends to rely on Rei who is trying to act way more mature than she should. The grandmother, while there for both of them–has her own life and things that she does so she’s fairly absent as well. It’s a family that has lots of room to grow at the start…which is where Leo comes in. Leo is a self-proclaimed “Ninja” that ends up living with the family, and he really creates this dynamic within them that was absent. He begins to act like a brother and friend towards Rei, and gives her moments to be more vulnerable and act her age in a way she just isn’t able to normally.
This leads to her being able to be more open to her father Jotaro, and showcase for once the childish side to her that just wants her dad to be there. The family always cared about each other, but they cared so much that often there was no room to be vulnerable with each other, creating a surface happiness. I love how the addition of Leo to the household strengthens the bond of the family, and how despite him being completely unrelated, he helps cement their bond in a more positive and healthy way. Ugh. I could just talk circles around this show. The portrayal of family is just too darn sweet and all around heart warming. I know it’s not done airing but I cannot say enough good things about it.
Hoshiai no Sora
Taking a wildly drastic turn from Taiso, I want to talk about Hoshiai no Sora. Now, this anime is both heartwarming and also heart wrenching. Unlike Taiso which showcases a good blood-related family, this show showcases how being blood-related doesn’t mean you’re a good family. Many of the boys on the soft tennis team have terrible home lives and parents who are all nominations for the shitty parent of the year award. But they aren’t what makes family in this–no–it’s the boys themselves that make their own kind of family with each other. A lot of them don’t have support systems and one of the best things in this show is to watch as they become that to each other. Maki’s abusive dad? He’s run off by Toma who threatens him if he touches Maki again. When Tsubasa’s dad’s verbal abuse becomes physical and he hurts himself? Shingo and his dad are there for Tsubasa. Kanako who is always seen as alone? Is always welcome at Maki’s and his mom’s for dinner. Yuu whose mother disapproves of them being nonbinary? Finds support in the entirety of the soft tennis team.
And these only touch the surface. This show does an excellent job of reinforcing that family is what you make it, and your family doesn’t have to be the people who are blood-related to you. I will always say one of my favorite scenes ever in this show was just them all having a picnic together…so cute–so good. I will say though that while the soft tennis team makes for a heartwarming family, this show is NOT lighthearted per say. It’s very dramatic and we do see a lot of shitty families as well. But still, it’s super good, and the family they make together is honestly one of the best.
Darling in the Franxx
Personally this one could be argued to be more of a breakfast club situation where they are forced together because they work together. But in this case, these kids lived together and did a hell of a lot of character growth together as they grew friendships and romances. For instance, the main two protagonists Zero-Two and Hiro grew closer together as they pilot the Franxx but ultimately it came down to a giant matchmaking process. There they found similarities in feelings and motives that made their relationships stronger. Ichigo learned to let go of her feelings for Hiro to see the feelings that Goro and Ikuno had for her. But Mitsuru and Kokoro’s romance united the whole group due to their discovery of love, care and building a family. Their wedding said it all as everyone came together to decorate and celebrate. Then once Kokoro became pregnant the whole group was excited to welcome a baby into their home. Individually signing on to raise this baby together as a big family. That also doesn’t count the agriculture they built together, planting and cleaning their home and land.
They all found different types of love for each other and that gives the warm, family feeling I definitely wasn’t expecting from this kind of anime.
Where do I begin… The fact that the children raise, challenge and train each other they become a serious force together. The older kids Emma, Norman, Ray, Isabella, and Phil were more than older siblings to look up since they also tried their best to protect all the other children as well as each other. Although Norman and Ray were watching out for Emma they started to make plans that would involve all the rest of the kids. Emma was the main driving force in keeping the family together. Refusing to not let the adults win and leave anyone behind she also had the strongest connection to a majority of the kids. She was idolized as a role model but also played the role as a big sister. If it wasn’t for her motivation Norman and Ray would have awaited death. They truly kept their family alive by sure will, strategy and the love they have for each other and Emma. Although they are stuck together they also grew up together and built a family like bond way before the series had started which allows the audience to test how strong their love for one another is.
There you have it! These were just some anime that highlight family. Families that were formed, families that grew–family is what you make of it (if you couldn’t tell from some of these choices). I hope that everyone out there had a great holiday season, and I hope that even just viewing some of these, talking about them, or just chatting with your otaku friends can help us all feel just a little less alone this year.