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Parents' Guide to


By Joyce Slaton, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 17+

Beautiful but questionable anime series has sex, violence.

TV Netflix Anime 2020
Beastars Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.

Community Reviews

age 14+

Based on 12 parent reviews

age 15+

unique, heartfelt, mature topics/scenes

The first anime season was light on sexual content but the second season includes a stripper's explicit movements to entice the crowd with spread legs and drooling (literally) crowd. No more genitalia are shown that you would see at the beach, it is the way the woman moves that is problematic for youngsters. The bloodiness also increases with a scene of accidental dismemberment and another of one student devouring another. Being eaten wasn't explicit but it's obvious. This short arc has an interesting message. The first season showed a young girl being forced to show her body in preparation to being eaten (she is saved by our hero). The arc that follows is a good example of relationship development That said, it's nothing a mature teen can't handle. All the violence, blood, etc. is a reasonable part of the storyline. It isn't random acts of gore; the scenes stop short of true gore. Pieces of butchered meat in street stalls, small puddles of blood, and bones are shown. No rending, no entrails, etc. As our hero develops his understanding of how carnivores and herbivores can coexist peacefully, he learns about himself as part of society.
age 15+

Great Opportunity for Starting Conversations with your Teen

Wow this animated drama has a LOT to digest. Set in an upper school these anthropomorphic characters face numerous moral dilemmas encompassing internal as well as community & societal conflicts. They do a nice job illustrating how characters’ decisions can be influenced by biological fight/flight reactions, peer pressure, shame, discrimination/racism, sexism, popularity, attraction, power, greed, jealousy, generosity, kindness, and empathy. Right alongside this its made clear how their actions and decisions are mitigated through self-control…or lack thereof. The conflicts are multi-factorial and complex providing many opportunities for parental/moral guidance in reference to what the characters are experiencing. There are some that may not be apparent to a young viewer and taking them in at face-value may send the wrong message. Highly recommend watching this one WITH your teenager and paying attention. The pay off is the opportunity to offer guidance on subjects that you may not otherwise get a chance to weigh in on.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (12 ):
Kids say (70 ):

Luminous and enchanting, this series takes anime world-building to new, noirish heights -- and it's definitely not for kids, revolving as it does around barely leashed lusts both sexual and sensory. When we meet him, Legoshi is just about at the end of his rope, control-wise: "Hated and feared, that's the story of my life," he says. As we learn in a voice-over, he's spent his whole life trying to deny his appetites, keeping his head down and going along to get along. Even in Cherryton's drama club, he sticks to backstage work and spends his energy supporting Louis (Griffin Puatu), the red deer rich-kid who gets all the best roles and the admiration of the girls at school. But when he has a fateful encounter with Haru, his long-quashed hunger for blood and flesh comes roaring to the surface in a beautiful sequence that visualizes his carnivorous impulses as a spark that lights up his neural pathways like a wick of a stick of dynamite.

Even scarier for Haru and Cherryton's other herbivorous students, Legoshi's craving for meat is echoed in their world's society. Eating meat is a serious affront to morality -- and yet a Black Market exists outside the school, where carnivores can surreptitiously buy meat sourced from hospitals and funeral parlors. Meanwhile, Haru is drawn to this dangerous boy, whose interest sparks her own, though she interprets his fascination with her as sexual, like most of the other male classmates who notice her. It's a dark, creepy, and yet compelling direction, but the heavy vibe is lightened up with glowing visuals in the sophisticated color palette of a Wes Anderson movie, and cliffhanger endings in each episode that practically beg for a binge. Just don't watch with young or sensitive viewers who see talking animals and think they're in for something sweet and light, because Beastars' complicated messages about sex and violence require a decidedly mature sensibility.

TV Details

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