When you’re watching anime, do you ever see a character and think to yourself: “Damn! You’re so dependable. I wish I had a best friend or older brother like you.”?
Good older brother types exist all around us, and I have a few myself whom I hold dear to me – my real brother, for instance, among others who aren’t immediate family. They are cool, witty and dependable. Most importantly, perhaps, they care about the welfare of their friends and family and would help them out in times of need. To find a person like this is a true gift. But while they may be hard to come by in real life, they are an archetype that crops up a lot in the anime world, and one that, frankly, is one of my favourites.
Not only are these the characters that you can really root for and invest yourself in (and creates some fantastic drama whenever there’s one on either side!), but I find them to be fantastic role models who can teach an indecisive person like myself a few things about life and morality.
So I decided to create a list of them that you guys may or may not have discovered.
Sentaro, kids on the slope
The primitive man in me can’t help but admire him for the natural gusto he has going into fights, which makes him an entertaining brother character as well as a best friend. Satoru is a loyal fried and stays true to those he is close to. Despite his best efforts in the first few episodes of kids on the slope to hive the impression that he is an irresponsible delinquent, he is also a caring older brother with the welfare of his family held close to his heart.
This guy is truly kind and has a strong personality, with a 3-dimensional character that makes him both believable and someone I as the watcher felt could confide in if I were to befriend him in real life, and someone I wanted to hang out with in real life.
Kyouhei Kadota, Durarara
Who doesn’t love this guy. He’s cool, strong and spends his time leading his own crew on the various shenanigans they go on in Ikkebukuro. He looks after his group and his strong leadership shows through the cohesion and chemistry that the group has in Durarara.
He’s one of those guys who would be a great friend but a dangerous foe. He’ll stick up for his friends and his friends stick up for him.
Unfortunately I can’t say much about his back story since this isn’t delved into much in the anime (although I still need to finish the second part onwards of the second series so who knows), but to understand how cool Kadota’s character is, you just need to see him in action. He’s the leader of my favourite group of characters in Durara, and definitely holds standards here.
Seita, Grave of the Fireflies
Whew. Now I’m done wiping the tears off my face, let me tell you a more sobering account of a great older brother in anime. A real one again this time. Seita from Grave of the Fireflies is a kind and caring older brother. The poor boy and his very young sister had nowhere to go: they were essentially parentless after their mother is fatally burned in a fire bombing from the American army, and his remaining family members had absolutely no sympathy for him and his younger sister and eventually shunned him. I’m not going to give away the story to those of you who haven’t seen it, but this guy would go to any lengths to keep his family safe.
The true tragedy that is Grave of the Fireflies is seeing a young boy who is tasked with raising and looking after his younger sister alone in extreme poverty. As the movie goes on, he makes mistakes and factors which are beyond his control back him into a corner, and I only ever felt more and more sympathy for Seita as the film progressed. But at no point does he ever give up on his younger sister or stop giving his utmost and his all to nourish her physically and comfort her in the difficult times they endure.
Grave Of the Fireflies is one of the most depressing films I have watched; yet it is heartwarming and bitersweet, and I honestly think that the realistic and truely empathetic character of Seita held much of the credit for this.
Thanks for reading; I hope you enjoyed it. Let me know down in the comments who your favourite older brother character is. This post was pretty fun to make, so I might do a similar one in future, so let me know what your favourite character archetype is and maybe I’ll do the next one on that :).
Hope you all had a good weekend. I’ll see you in the coming week.