Original works are the best kinds of anime in my opinion, especially when the story itself is something worthwhile. P.A. Works is known for having excellent original work anime and Buddy Daddies joins that illustrious list. I loved everything about Buddy Daddies and today I’m going to take the opportunity to explain why to me, Buddy Daddies, is a new favourite of mine.
In short, Buddy Daddies was about change. It’s a story of how one faithful encounter with a child named Miri changed the lives of Kazuki and Rei for the better, despite being players of the underground. Throughout the episode, you see them try to balance being a foster parent while also trying to fulfill their duties as assassins of the underground.
Many people were quick to dismiss this anime as a lesser Spy X Family, that was definitely an argument I saw when the anime first started to air. However, the more you watched the more Buddy Daddies made clear to the viewer that they were not a ‘lesser Spy X Family’ but was something entirely different.
Buddy Daddies does an excellent job at mixing the elements of Childcare, and Organized Crime. It’s balance is similar to Kumichou Musume to Sewagakari. However, crucially I thought Buddy Daddies did a way better job at developing the character dynamic and relationships.
What appealed to me the most was that the ‘child’ they had in the anime actually acted her age, Miri actually acted like a four year old. The character itself didn’t feel like they acted older than their age, Miri was there enjoying her best life. This is odd for me to say because there have been plenty of characters similar to Miri who act their age as well, but for some reason, there was something about her that felt real.
There was something about the character that felt real to me and in a way very relatable. Putting Kazuki and Rei’s job aside, both characters cannot be more opposite of one another. This only reinforces the fact that opposites attract. What I enjoyed most about these characters was that despite it only being a twelve episode anime, they have a really well thought out and planned past to them.
Kazuki’s past is what moved me the most because it felt as though he lost a lot and that Miri was his saving grace. Here you have a dude who lost his wife and possibly his unborn child all because of his line of work (whether directly or indirectly), as a result he’s been living with this grief for years because he’s unable to forgive himself. Episode seven, which is dedicated to Kazuki and the emotional pain it feels was a very touching and emotional episode to say the least.
Kazuki never had the opportunity to become a father because as that chance was taken away from him because of his line of work. So he’s living a life he’s always wanted to live through Miri.
Then we have Rei, who is the dark horse of it all. His character development was the best and most thought out in my opinion. Rei at the start of the anime and Rei at the end of the anime are two entirely different people and Miri has everything to do with that. Miri’s bright and vibrant aura, her pushing Rei to be more involved and to play with her is what changed him the most.
Miri managed to take someone who didn’t want to be involved and preferred being alone, and more importantly, someone who didn’t believe in the ability of change. Into someone who genuinely cared for someone who genuinely cared about them. When Kazuki thought that in order to protect Miri was to step out of her life due to their occupation, it was Rei who stopped that. It was him who believed that they could change and that they were the only ones who could take care of Miri.
NOT TO MENTION, we have Miri’s mother who I thought was a pretty scummy person in the beginning. Saying that she didn’t even want Miri in the first place and all that. Only to redeem herself before her untimely death. Her wanting to get back with Miri and re-develop that relationship was very admirable of her. Do I dislike that she basically imposed herself on Rei and Kazuki saying that “I’m her mother therefore she will live with me now”? No I didn’t.
However, she wanted to spend time with her daughter even though she was dying of cancer. She also protected Miri from that goon who tried to take Miri’s life along with her own. Miri’s mother wasn’t perfect, but she did what every parent would have done, which is to protect their child, even if that meant dying so that their child could live.
It’s sad in a way because ultimately Miri’s mother didn’t get to live a life she wanted, she also doesn’t get to see Miri grow up to be a wonderful person. That part for me was very emotional and very heartfelt because you could tell that at the end of Misaki’s life (Miri’s mother), that she really loved Miri and that she regretted not being involved in her life and for be selfish.
I couldn’t help but hold back tears for sure, even going back and re-watching the scene. The more emotional I get because you could feel a rush of regret come over Misaki. You can tell that if she had gone a different path, things would have been different, I’m sure she passed feeling a lot of regret and hatred for herself. Although she’s a fictional character, at that moment, Misaki felt real and it was hard not to cry.
Above all else, I love that in some way these characters were able to find closure. Kuzaki was able to move on from grief and Rei was able to finally leave that terrible family of his. These two guys, were finally able to step away from their underworld jobs and live a better much more fulfilling life as Miri’s father.
As episode twelve is also an episode where we see a teenaged Miri, I can only assume that she now knows that her mother had passed, but the details of such was never said because it is forever linked to Rei and Kazuki’s past. But it’s nice to see a happy ending to it all, to me I loved it because it was a perfect end to what was a great anime. Not to mention, that b-roll of that bulletin board where we saw pictures of Miri through the ages and all the fun she’s had through those times was just the best.
Overall, Buddy Daddies has been one of the best anime I’ve watched to-date. It had everything I wanted, great characters, excellent character development, you felt the emotion and pain. But you also felt happy, smiled and laughed.
Upon finishing the anime I rated it a 9/10, but as I write this blog and the more I think about the anime. The more perfect it becomes in my eyes. I’ll probably end up changing it to a 10/10.
Buddy Daddies was an amazing anime and I will recommend this to everyone.
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A little can go a long way! Even a dollar is enough to motivation.