Tai Chi Chasers

 
Pokemon-style action with violence, unlikeable character.

What parents need to know

Educational value

Intended to entertain, not educate.

Positive messages

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.

Sexy stuff

There is some attraction and tension between Rai and Sena. Characters talk about "liking" others.

Language

Occasional name calling including "faker" and "pipsqueek."

Consumerism

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.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

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.

What's the story?

Rai (Bella Hudson) is a normal if competitive kid who discovers that he is a Tigeroid, an ancient race from a parallel universe that is embattled with the evil Dragonoids. The two groups are searching for the one thousand lost tai chi character cards that have special powers and can be used as weapons. For example, the hwa (fire) character can be activated to produce a fireball attack. Rai teams up with a group of TAI CHI CHASERS in order to find the lost tai chi cards and become a master tai chi chaser.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

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.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about violence in children's television shows. Is the violence really necessary to the story? 

  • Families can also talk about how tai chi in real life is a martial art that is practiced for its health benefits and is completely different from how it is presented in the series. Does the series help promote the real tai chi or simply the Tai Chi Chasers card game?

  • Kids: Does watching the show make you want to buy the Tai Chi Chasers cards or toys?

TV details

This review of Tai Chi Chasers was written by

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 13 years old Written byjoness123 November 12, 2012
age 11+
 

New Shows

I think is a awesome to me because it very funny and about to try something new show for once.
What other families should know
Educational value
Too much violence
Adult Written bynduns September 18, 2012
age 6+
 

Uh...

You know, I usually like shows like this. I don't know why, I just do, but I could not get into this one. The characters are very bland and dull and not particularly likable, the plot's nothing special. Honestly, the only thing this show has going for it is quite possibly one of the most addictive English opening themes of all time. I will give it that: that theme song is awesome. Too bad the rest of the show couldn't be.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much consumerism

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