Wolverine

TV review by
Matt Springer, Common Sense Media
Wolverine TV Poster Image
Solid Marvel anime series with lots of gore, some drinking.

Parents say

age 18+
Based on 1 review

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

With the significant role that violence plays in the story, there is a strong message that violence is a satisfying and effective way to solve problems. The story's violence also seems to have few repercussions although there are positive outcomes when the hero defeats villains.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The lead character is known for his bravery and willingness to sacrifice to help others, using his fantastical healing powers and metal claws. He represents a common "quiet hero" type that may seem familiar from genres like the western and the samurai film. However, he relies exclusively on violence to solve problems.

Violence

Typical superhero battles are depicted with more detailed and graphic violence than is typical for the genre. Blood is frequently visualized on screen as are specific wounds. The lead character is frequently wounded in explicit detail but also has a healing power that enables him to recover almost instantly from those wounds. An inciting act in the storyline is the attack and kidnapping of the lead character's girlfriend.

Sex

A romantic relationship between two lead characters is at the center of the story; however, the sexual content is limited to romantic conversation and mild kissing.

Language

Words including "damn," "hell," and "son of a bitch" are used occasionally.

Consumerism

The show is based on a major Marvel Comics character who has been featured in four blockbuster movies, several other animated series, and nearly 40 years worth of comic books. There is a great deal of merchandising surrounding the franchise and all of that merchandise is advertised indirectly by the series.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

The lead character is frequently depicted drinking and smoking cigars, which are both signature behaviors.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this half-hour anime adventure series features some unexpectedly detailed violence, primarily centering on the lead character, who is frequently graphically wounded only to have his injuries heal instantly thanks to his mutant powers. Language is also strong in places ("damn," "son of a bitch"), and there is frequent indulgence in alcohol and cigars. However, the level of violence is consistent with the character's appearances in other media, so young teens and older preteens who have already been exposed to that material will not find anything out of place here.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written bychaplainbecky September 25, 2011

Disappointing, Overly violent

Was shocked and disappointed -- constant violence, killing, over and over again. The morals from the first two were not seen in this as Wolverine often seems c... Continue reading

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What's the story?

Based on the Marvel Comics character and breakout star of the blockbuster X-Men film series, WOLVERINE takes its primary inspiration from a classic comics story published in the 1980s, which defined Wolverine (also known as Logan) as a "defeated samurai" type character with a strong moral code and propensity for animalistic violence. In the anime, Logan (Milo Ventimiglia) battles valiantly as his girlfriend, Mariko Yashida, is kidnapped. A year later, he learns Mariko has been taken to Tokyo by her father Shingen, who is the head of a Japanese crime syndicate and a supplier to the global terrorist organization Advanced Idea Mechanics (AIM). Logan pursues his lost love and in doing so enters a dark criminal underworld with no recourse but to fight his way out.

Is it any good?

For fans of comics and action movies, Wolverine is a character who has reached a point of saturation. It doesn't help that he is most often depicted as the same essential collection of cliches -- strong, silent, and vicious, but with a firm code of honor. The Wolverine anime series doesn't significantly alter that formula, but in drawing from one of the character's earliest and most formative stories, it manages to present a classic version of Wolverine with just the right tone of regret and rage.

The Wolverine limited series published in 1982 by writer Chris Claremont and artist Frank Miller (who would later go on to create the media crossover hits 300 and Sin City) transformed the violent cigar-chomping, wisecracking thug into a noble warrior with a tortured, mysterious past. The anime series underplays the costumes and fantastical elements in favor of a more realistic approach; although it's not reinventing any geeky wheels, it does manage to relate its story with conviction and style.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the lead character's consumption of alcohol. Does it make alcohol seem appealing? Why or why not?

  • Do you think the characters rely too much on violence to solve problems? What are some other effective ways to solve disagreements?

TV details

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