With life feeling like it has taken several steps backwards, we come to find ourselves gravitating towards sources of inspiration. The anime Interviews With Monster Girls is a title that is able to stand-out due to the fact that is is an anime about feeling comfortable in one’s own skin. The girls that are shown in this animation have to come to terms with who and what they are; their families too. It is difficult for them, especially Yuki Kusakabe who fights with who she is and feels targeted because she is a snow woman. These girls all have to tackle social issues in different ways, some have it easier while others have to work around their abilities or influences.
Having a family or even a faculty member is important in tackling social issues that range from bullying or just self-isolation. Teachers Tetsuo Takahashi and Demi Teacher Sakie Satou do their best to provide their Demi-Human students an environment that is supportive and helpful for them to blossom and progress in. Even the Demi teacher Sakie Satou has to deal with her own issues from being a succubus being both under constant state watch and being mindful to not lewd the school grounds. Each character in this series is learning to tackle school life with newfound appreciation and the larger student body also has a part to play in the proper integration of our demi-human characters. The human teacher Tetsuo Takahashi is profoundly helpful if not bit awkward in helping the demi students feel at ease while also getting to study and learn about what makes them tick and how they deal with life. Figuring out that while they may appear outwardly different, they still worry about the everyday concerns and they still live lives that are normal by our standards.
An anime that tackles issues like these doesn’t always come around and often times when they do, they aren’t looked at for those reasons. It’s why I feel so strongly about this title. Not because it’s a cute show about monster girls, but rather because it tackles issues that need to be addressed. We often forget that while we see everyone as human, culture plays such a massive role in helping to determine what we see and look at as, ‘normal’ and how that translates into our lives. What we consider proper etiquette in the United States, might be considered barbaric to an Asian country like Laos or Cambodia. You never know that shaking with a right hand instead of the left hand might be seen as an insult to some. It is this difference that we seem to struggle around in day to day lives and yet, we try our best to remedy those differences through understanding and acceptance. Where we truly flounder is racial acceptance and bias; which also extends deeper into a gender separation and bias. These issues, these civil strife’s are the cause of so much tension and difference that it makes one feel backwards, it makes someone feel uncomfortable in their own skin.
While this anime is far from the perfect poster child for social issues concerning race and gender, it is at least a good step in the right direction for providing a story about four amazing female characters that do their best to live everyday normal lives, while being extraordinarily different than what society is used to. All the while they carry on day by day with support from family, teachers and friends in acceptance for who they all are: Normal girls leading an everyday high school life.
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