A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Viewers see that cooperation can exist among people who are more different than alike, but discord often erupts as well, even between comrades. Many of the wizards are more powerful than they appear, reminding viewers that you can't always judge a person's worth by what's on the outside. Lucy starts out coveting a place in the Fairy Tail guild for the sake of prestige and popularity, but she comes to see there's more to membership than just hanging with the cool kids. Lucy employs her sexuality to entice others, and female characters get very moony over male characters.
Positive Role Models
There's a duality to each character that makes their actions difficult to predict. Sometimes this is reflected in physical alter egos (Natsu takes on a dragon form, the grand master becomes a fearsome monster, etc.), but more often it's just present in shocking mood swings, as with Lucy. Most are prone to violence in heated matters, but some just resort to anger and yelling. On the positive side, Natsu is loyal to a fault, often facing danger to help a friend. The grand master always has wise words to share about self-reliance and following an ethical code of their own definition.
Violence & Scariness
Most disagreements are solved by fighting, and the clashes are loud and violent. Wizards also use special qualities like the ability to breathe fire to fend off their foes. Explosions, extensive falls, and lots of impact never have realistic effects. Victors often celebrate that they've gotten the better of their opponents.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Lucy's tight-fitting clothes show off her cleavage and disproportionately large breasts, and she sometimes flaunts them to influence men's behavior. Other female characters are similarly well-endowed, particularly Mirajane, who moonlights as a provocative bikini model for a popular magazine. Women go crazy over handsome guys, illustrated by heart-shaped eyes and a lot of swooning. A male character is fond of taking off his clothes, leaving him naked down to his lower abdomen. All sensitive areas are covered, but occasionally the side of his butt is visible.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
A recurring character is said to drink a lot and is often shown with one in hand or, in some cases, drinking directly from a keg. It affects her speech mostly.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Fairy Tail is a violent anime series with sexy content that's not for younger kids. Not only is main character Lucy impossibly buxom, she's also savvy enough to use her physical attributes to get what she wants (attention, a better sale price on a store item, etc.) from men. She's also obsessed with popularity, envious of those who have it, and fascinated by what society tells her is "cool," which leaves her vulnerable to potentially dangerous situations. She does eventually prove that there's more to her than just a pretty face, thanks to a positive new friendship and the chance to sharpen her skills. A main character is known for taking off his clothes at whim, showing a bare torso and the side of his butt, but sensitive areas are obscured. Animation takes the edge off the excessive clashes, but violence is often a means to an end; you'll see a lot of it, even between friendly characters. On the upside, positive qualities like loyalty and perseverance are rewarded, while self-serving and arrogant characters stand out in a negative way.
Is It Any Good?
Fairy Tail appeals to anime fans, thanks to a plot that's layered with curious characters, legends, and a story that evolves at a believable pace rather than all at once. It's more complex than most, and the characters run the gamut of personality styles, which helps keep things interesting. Both Lucy and Natsu have positive qualities that make them decent protagonists as well.
But what the show has an excess of is content that's not suited to the kids who typically seek out anime series. Violence is the norm in this genre, but Fairy Tail's is even more prevalent than its peers'. Even more noticeable is the show's rather questionable portrayal of women, whose physical attributes (busty chests, thin frames, and accentuated curves) get more attention than their abilities do, and who often have less upstanding characteristics (apparent alcoholism and a bad case of popularity envy, to name a couple) than do their male counterparts. The bottom line? Its story is well developed and will keep viewers' interest, but the mature content is better suited to teens than to kids.
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