A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Meant to entertain, not educate.
The old duel masters are encouraged to be open minded about accepting new methods and improvements to old techniques. Ray treats the creatures he summons with kindness and compassion and is treated well by the creatures in return. Bullies are clearly on the wrong side. Friends work together to solve problems.
Positive Role Models
Ray, Allie, and Gabe are loyal to each other and accept one another for who they are. They face bullies together and stand up for one another. In addition, some of the duel masters are flexible and open minded about change and are as open to learning from their young pupils as they are to guiding them. Some stereotypical characterizations, such as an older Asian character who speaks in a stereotypical Mr. Miyagi-type accent.
Violence & Scariness
Lots of bloodless fantasy violence as the practitioners of Kaijudo use their skills to summon creatures to fight both each other and the "duel masters." Creatures don't die but lose energy and are capable of being summoned again. Some of the adult characters are ruthless.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Some of the adult female characters wear form-fitting clothing and are designed with impossibly thin and curvy body types and proportions.
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Some name-calling and insults with racial elements from bullies, such as: "Probably only half a blackbelt and only half good at math."
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Products & Purchases
Part of a trading card merchandising effort. The series is based on the popular Duel Masters anime and manga franchise, which has a lot of merchandise available.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Kaijudo: Rise of the Duel Masters is an animated series based on the popular Japanese Duel Masters anime and manga franchise, both of which are tied to a trading card game and associated with toys similar to Pokemon and Yu-Gi-Oh. Expect a lot of bloodless fantasy violence, a number of ruthless adult characters, and summoned creatures that could be scary for younger viewers. There's some racial stereotyping in the series, including an older Asian character who speaks in a stereotypical Mr. Miyagi-type accent while spouting obscure wisdom. Bullying and racist language has clear negative consequences. In fact, the series has an explicit anti-bullying message, and the main characters display loyalty, friendship, and determination.
Is It Any Good?
KAIJUDO: RISE OF THE DUEL MASTERS is a reimagining of the popular Japanese anime and manga franchise Duel Masters. It follows many of the familiar conventions of similar action cartoons, including the main character's previously unrevealed talent for summoning creatures to help him battle bullies and bad guys. But despite its conventional trappings and some ethnic stereotyping, the series manages to wrap the story in positive messages about being open to change, teamwork, and the negatives of bullying. Additionally, there's some depth to the characters, such as when the kids react to their newfound talents with a believable mixture of fear and resignation.
Kaijudo: Rise of the Duel Masters is like Pokemon at its best. It has characters that viewers can care about and root for, as well as interesting creatures that are an active part of the story rather than simply tools for the human characters to use. All in all, the series is a solid entry in the trading card-game cartoon genre.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.