My kids watch a lot of Netflix. I hate it for several reasons, one of which being my youngest falls in love with certain shows and will watch them over and over again. Every now and again however my oldest will discover a new show and upon finding this one I was pleasantly surprised.
In recent years there has been a lot of talk about Afrofuturism and seeing POC (people of color) and other minorities in sci-fiction and fantasy set in the future. As a kid, I remember watching She-Ra, He-Man, Silver Hawks, etc. and casually wondering why my skin tone was not often represented. Today there is a growing amount of diversity in the shows, my kids watch, but Kipo flips everything on its head and doesn’t make a big deal about it.
The fact that the titular character is lavender (though her father is black) and the two human compatriots she picks up along they way are brown skinned is not addressed. They are all simply humans attempting to survive and exist in a post-apocalyptic world where animals have become anthropomorphized, e.g. riding motorcycles, doing aerobics, wearing suits, playing music, among other cool things. Most notably though, almost all of the sentient “beasts” or attempting to capture the humans to turn them into “pets”.
The first season of the show over 10 days each shown in an episode, with the interspersion of flashbacks to give history background, and a weightiness to the characters that is often missing in kids television. You get to love these characters as much as they grow to love one another. In all honestly due to my kids’s tendency to binge shows, I missed several episodes of the show, but still felt like the character development done was fantastic and want to go back to watch each episode from the beginning.
Another cool aspect of the show is that one of the brown characters is also LGBT and it also is not a big deal. At one point when meeting a cute boys he is obviously infatuated as we here the music of love and the feathered edges of the screen as he looks at him, but it’s just one kid crushing on another. It was played in the same way as when Marinette pines for Adrian in Miraculous Ladybug.
This is a lovely show and I truly enjoyed what I saw of it. I definlty plan on going back and watching every episode and look forward to a season two. I highly recommend.