Hey Hey Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, I’m back with another super special awesome OWLS Blog Tour! What’s that you say? You don’t know about OWLS? Well, for those of you new here, OWLS or Otaku Wariors for Liberty and Self-Respect is a group of bloggers, vloggers, and writers who seek to promote acceptance and equality through thoughtful community activism, with an otaku twist! Each month we decide on a theme and each member writes a post or records a video, on that theme through the lens of something from pop culture. We have been known to cover a wide range of topics, from anime and manga to video games and film, most subject matter is up for discussion so long as it fits with our monthly theme. This month’s theme is Mentor!
Throughout our lives, we might have encountered someone that we admired as a role model or has guided us in some life dilemma. This mentor could be a teacher at school, a coach, a boss or team leader at work, or a family friend. Whoever it is that person impacted your life in a positive manner. For this month’s OWLS topic, we will be writing about mentors or mentorships in anime and other pop culture media. Some topics we will be exploring include how a mentorship impacted a main character’s life, the types of mentor relationships a person could have, and/or personal stories about mentors or mentorships.
I’m just one in a long line of Blog Tour stops this month, and I highly recommend checking them all out when you have the time. Just before me was Miandro from Miandro’s Side, with his awesome post about Detroit: Become Human.
I originally planned on writing about a specific mentor/mentee relationship, but, ultimately I just couldn’t decide on a single mentor/mentorship to discuss, so, I scrapped my original idea and decided to go in a different direction. Since there really isn’t a one size fits all mentor relationship, I figured why not discuss multiple types of mentors and the benefits of their methodologies. So, I picked four anime mentors that I felt best represented each of the four core mentor archetypes (which now that I think about it seems like more work on my part).
A Challenger is someone that pushes you to reach your true potential. They give you the push it takes to really make it to the top, either through a little tough love or just plain old hard work, they are the ones that ask the tough questions, forcing you to push limits and go beyond just being average. Challengers can be ball busters, and at times their methods may seem a bit barbaric, but, the devil’s in the details and these mentors are the ones that will help you succeed.
So, when I think of a Challenger, I think of Kakashi Hatake from Naruto, while his methods were sometimes a bit unorthodox, there is no denying that he knew how to challenge his students. He pushed them to their very limits, helping them unlock their true potential not just as shinobi, but as a team. He challenges the members of Team 7 to put aside their differences and work together to achieve a common goal, and it’s because of him that they became such a powerful force for good.
A Cheerleader is a special type of mentor, rather than helping you with connections or giving you advice, this individual is a constant source of motivation and support. They give you the positive energy you need to get your dreams off the ground. So, when the chips are down and things just don’t seem to be coming together the way you want them to, a Cheerleader will give you the encouragement you need to stay the course.
Haikyuu is not without it’s fair share of mentors, but the one that stands out from the rest is none other than Takeda. Unlike many of the characters in the series, prior to becoming the faculty adviser for the Karasuno Volleyball Club, Takeda hadn’t played volleyball, so he isn’t as familiar with the sport as you’d expect. But, despite his lack of volleyball skills, he manages to keep the team motivated with his uplifting speeches and pep talks! He is integral in keeping the team pumped during matches and practices and he serves as a constant source of positive energy both on and off the court.
A Connector is someone that connects, they put you in contact with people that will help you achieve your goals. Their main role is in helping build your network and or giving you the credentials you need to get yourself in the door. This is a much more selfless role than that of the other mentor types in this post, because Connectors act as the middle man between you and others, they put they’re credibility on the line in order to give you a leg up.
Okay, so Nanbu serves a duel role as coach and motivator for JD aka Joe in the boxing anime series Megalo Box, but, his main role during the Megalonia Tournament is setting up fights for Joe. He utilizes his connections both in the underground boxing world and in the legitimate boxing world. Throughout the tournament, he pulls a lot of strings to put Joe in connection with fighters that will help him rise up the boxing ranks, even appealing to mob boss, Fujimaki and Shirato CEO, Yukiko.
An Educator is someone that teaches, they see an individual with a willingness to learn and they teach them what they need to know to succeed. While, a Coach is a combination of the Educator and the Cheerleader. They educate as well as motivate, helping their protegees through tough moments in their journey, while also being mindful of the big picture needs and wants of their charges. They help channel their raw untapped potential into something much more polished. Most lists will include either an Educator or a Coach (rarely both), but, when it really gets down to it, they are both pretty similar to one another, so I figured, why not combine them.
When I think of a character that encompasses the Coach/Educator mantle, I immediately think of All Might from My Hero Academia. He is the full package, embodying all aspects of a mentor, he teaches, motivates, connects, coaches, and challenges his students, namely, Izuku Midoriya, to be the best heroes they can be. He doesn’t force his views or ideologies on his students, instead focusing on drawing out their own unique perspectives and talents.
Right, so that’s all I have to say about that, there are still a ton of blog tour stops left in the July 2018 Tour, next up are two phenomenal bloggers, first, our newest member, Shokamoka from Shokamoka’s Blog of Wonders so definitely be on the look out for that post on the 18th!! Also if you haven’t already, please subscribe to the Official OWLS Twitter account @OWLSbloggers and the Official OWLS Blog, to stay up to date on all OWLS news and announcements!
If you are interested in becoming a member of the OWLS team, please feel free to fill out the contact form, HERE! So don’t be afraid to reach out to any of us on our blogs, on twitter, or at the contact page to learn more about us!! You just need an open mind and a willingness to have fun! Catch you guys on the flipside!