A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Intended to entertain, not educate.
Being a supportive team member is a big part of the series. Rai is constantly encouraged to be a team player and a part of the team. He often gets into trouble when he behaves recklessly or strikes out on his own.
Positive Role Models
The main character -- Rai -- is somewhat sympathetic because he's lost his mother, but he also yells, argues, and mocks his teammates relentlessly. His teammates work well together and help one another out.
Violence & Scariness
Lots of bloodless fantasy violence. Characters directly attack each other. Dragonoids are often shown as violent and ruthless with adult characters attacking child characters with whips, swords, and energy-based attacks. Rai loses his mother in a violent explosion and he is often shown as competitive and violent as he views combat and vengeance as more important than helping the team with more mundane chores.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
There is some attraction and tension between Rai and Sena. Characters talk about "liking" others.
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Occasional name calling including "faker" and "pipsqueek."
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Products & Purchases
The show promotes a card based battle system similar to those in the Yu-Gi-Oh! series and fans of the show will probably want to buy and collect the cards themselves. As of this review, there are no Tai Chi Chaser toys or cards sold in the United States, however, products do exist on the South Korean market and may be brought over the the United States in the future.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Tai Chi Chasers is an animated action adventure series imported from Korea and is similar to shows such as Yu-Gi-Oh! and Pokemon where characters use cards with special powers as weapons to battle each other. Unlike Yu-Gi-Oh! and Pokemon the violence in Tai Chi Chasers is not through proxies projected by their cards or pokeballs; the wielders of the cards are attacked and experience injuries directly. Although most of the violence is bloodless the Dragonoids may be scary for younger viewers. In addition, the main character Rai (Bella Hudson) is reckless, hot headed, competitive, and constantly antagonistic towards his teammates.
Is It Any Good?
Tai Chi Chasers is really an extended commercial designed to sell trading cards. While similar series have their share of hot headed protagonists Tai Chi Chasers takes the cake with annoying lead characters. Although Rai (Bella Hudson) loses his mother, his home, and his semblance of a normal life in the first episode it's hard to feel any sort of sympathy for him as he is constantly yelling and arguing with his newfound teammates and putting them down or mocking them. Rai's teammates are often helping him out, saving him, or making excuses to keep him in their group by blaming themselves, but he still continues with his admonishments.
In addition to the main character's faults, the tai chi cards themselves are uninspiring. The cards each have a special power that is initiated using a cell phone-esque "activator." Each card is listed with stats and are not much different from attack cards that one might find in a Yu-Gi-Oh or Pokemon card deck. The biggest difference in this series is the retention of the Korean names for the cards and the direct violence that is perpetrated between opponents. There are no cute pokemon or card summoned monsters to absorb attacks here. Rai and his teammates experience each attack directly. There are also moments when the cards seem to have their own motivations and provide assistance to the characters without being activated as if they had their own consciousness. Rather than being inspired, these moments often feel like a cop out designed to make the cards more appealing and marketable as the characters don't really do anything themselves to cause these miraculous things to happen.
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.