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Hourou Musuko Wandering Son: A show that explores the gender identification struggle

Every so often I find myself simply browsing Crunchyroll’s massive library in the hopes to find something precious, something genuine. Often times I am in the Windows Store looking at anime to buy and then one search leads to another unexpected find. This is one such find. Hourou Musuko Wandering Son is a anime that jumps into the struggles and pains of a life lived in secrecy, a life lived in clothes that suffocate you and warp you. Nitori Shuichi and Takatsuki Yoshino both understand what it feels like to be constrained by the clothes they wear, to be constrained by words of hate and sickness. While this show gets a lot right within the first few episodes, I have to watch further in order to figure out if this anime is a painting of marvelous standards or an oil painting that was a bit too runny.

This anime has had me hooked since the very first episode and while it dabbles in the day to day issues that we all face it does it in a way that can relate back to the aforementioned characters Nitori and Takatsuki. Both being individuals who want to embrace their true selves in order to soar bravely into the beautiful sky. While the anime focuses on the internal struggle that these two characters face it also explores other issues such as the struggle to identify sexual preference or cross dressing. All struggle are presented in ways that I would argue are quite realistic in the depiction of what others face. The advent of puberty and the changing of voice and body is a factor that many have to sadly face as they see a dream, a wish or a hope slowly fade. It is a scenario that I have personally seen growing up with close friends who have chased after their own ideal happiness.

The struggle to balance social norms and personal acceptance/appreciation is something that is core to this anime and one that is core to the actually struggles of the LGBTQIA community. I have yet to see or find another anime, aside Aoi Hana, to depict this sort of social struggle and the struggle of loving someone for who they truly are; not who they aren’t. The feelings of attraction to people who want to be the opposite gender of what they are now is something that is often explored on with Nitori having been targeted by a lovely girl by the name of Chiba who likes Nitori how he is, feminine and all. That is something that I feel many individuals chase after and long after. For it is this sort of acceptance that often makes or breaks a person’s pursuit of happiness. This means facing a sea of hurtful words, anguish from friends and loved ones and the inner struggle of self acceptance. Every piece of this anime screams beauty and I cannot help but become invested in this series in the hopes to see these characters achieve their wishes. 

While I have yet to finish this series it will be a series that I want to finish and give a proper review on. I can highly express that anyone who has, knows or lives with a person who is going through the struggle that these characters do; please for their sake watch this. Better yet, talk to them. Let them know you are there for them and that you will always love who they are, rather than who they aren’t. I think this anime tries to bring that theme out into the light over five years ago now and the original manga started this trend over fourteen years ago. It is amazing to see how little this anime has gotten the exposure it deserves as something that is truly beautiful and profound to behold. You can check this anime and it’s eleven episodes out over at Crunchyroll.


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6 comments

  1. Gender Bender is actually one of my favourite genre, so this really do sound interesting to me. Alas, my brain and everything about me at this moment is too filled with Yuri on Ice. Once I’m ready to respond to other series besides YOI, I’ll make sure to watch this one. Sounds very intriguing and relevant to our group. Anyway, thanks for the rec and for submitting this post to my blog carnival. Cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

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