If you’re anything like me, most of your free time is spent being at home being lazy. I’ve never been one to seek knowledge or sought to learn new skills to further advance technology or humanity. Normally I’d simply fill my time by watching more anime than what is deemed healthy.
During the now hundreds of series I’ve watched, as of recent, there have been animes coming out that have an uncanny knack to teach the viewer about something. At face value simply hearing “teach” would be enough to turn me away from said animes, but instead, I find myself intrigued and thirsting for more of these shows as they both serve as entertainment and as a way to learn something new.
The first show that comes to mind in terms of being both entertaining and educational is Cells at Work! which aired in July of 2018. This anime follows two main protagonists, one being a Red Blood Cell and the other being a White Blood Cell. In the anime, each episode goes through different scenarios in which the human body’s cells work to overcome the catastrophes at hand.
Whether it be from defending from the common cold or even working to mend a cut in the body, it is portrayed in an entertaining yet fully educational and accurate manner. Where a normal educational video would discuss how the body fights off the flu, Cells at Work! LITERALLY shows how your body fights off the flu.
Cells at Work! Isn’t the only entertaining and educational anime out there either. This winter season alone has two animes which are both equally educational as they are entertaining. Science Fell in Love, So I Tried to Prove It is one of the two which is exactly what the title of the anime implies. Two college students who are in the science field have feelings for one another, and instead of simply coming to terms with this fact, they deem it necessary to prove their love through science.
Throughout the series, each episode goes through different scenarios explaining how their “experiments” lend aid in their research. During said experiments, we learn about topics like the scientific method and how it’s used in the understanding of love. Even though this is clearly a rom-com anime, it doesn’t fail to mix in educational terminology and lessons into the fold.
Finally, we have Dr. Stone. A newer addition to the shonen genre collection. Airing last year in 2019, Dr.Stone took the anime community by storm. The show follows our protagonist Senku Ishigami, a science-driven boy who is light-years beyond what is considered “average intellect”. After an unknown global disaster turns everybody into stone statues, Senku mysteriously is released from his stone prison after several thousand years. Now in a world where nature has reclaimed the planet, Senku’s goal is to bring back humanity to the modern era from scratch.
This anime brilliantly mixed together an interesting plot-concept while simultaneously providing an educational explanation on how each “new” technology is created. The journey from Senku starting off with stone tools and advancing to the construction of batteries was absolutely fascinating. It wasn’t to the point where I feel like I could create a battery by hand, but it surely wrapped my head around the basics of how it’s done in a clear and understanding manner.
No matter how entertaining and educational these animes are, I’m not personally influenced enough to dip my toe into the science field and I’m sure many share the same feeling. The science field is not one that many decide to go into. It’s intense work and takes a lot of effort to participate in, the work being so intense many may feel it isn’t even accessible to enter into. I believe shows like Dr.Stone, Cells at Work!, and even Science Fell in Love, So I tried to Prove It promote people to grow interested in things they may not have considered interesting before.
Even if just a handful of youth watching these shows are influenced to broaden their interests and take a dive into the science field, then that’s one more human seeking to further advance humanity. Maybe these shows may purely be entertainment to me, but these shows could be life-changing to others.