Eggs. A healthy breakfast meal as long as they’re scrambled and a pretty good mask from The Masked Singer. The word egg is also used in the trans community to refer to who someone is before transitioning. When someone transitions, they’re literally hatching from their shell to become who they truly are.
I know what you’re thinking. What does this have to do with Shugo Chara?
Shugo Chara is a 2005 manga by Peach-Pit. It was adapted into an anime in 2007. The main premise is that everyone has a Guardian Character inside of them that represents their innermost desire and who they want to become. These characters hatch from eggs.
The rest of the show is a basic monster-of-the-week mahou shoujo type thing like Sailor Moon or Cute High School Earth Defense Club LOVE! Yes, that’s a real thing. Look it up. It’s about magical boys, and it’s amazing.
With how eggs work in the series, Shugo Chara can be interpreted as reinforcing the trans narrative. If there is a female Guardian Character inside of you, but you publicly identify as a boy — well, there’s some stuff to unpack, isn’t there? Your Guardian Character is who you want to become. Maybe that’s the awakening you need. Maybe you need that awakening another way. That’s perfectly fine, too.
There is one character that had a huge impact on me and supports my theory, but I can’t discuss them without spoiling the first season. Shugo Chara came out 13 years ago. If you haven’t seen it yet, why are you reading this?
Alright, is everyone that hasn’t watched Shugo Chara gone? Good.
Let’s talk about Nadeshiko Fujisaki — or, rather, Nagihiko. Yep! That’s right. One of the main characters is genderfluid. Moving forward, I’ll refer to them as N. It seems more appropriate.
N is introduced as a boy who crossdresses. His Guardian Character, Temari, represents his desire to become a traditional Japanese dancer. Part of his training to become a dancer is being raised as a girl.
Later in the series, N hatches a second Guardian Character named Rhythm. This Character represents N’s desire to play basketball and other sports. With the introduction of Rhythm, N now has a Guardian Character that represents masculinity and one that represents femininity. This desire to become either gender is very, very important to me. It was one of the key factors in deciding to transition myself.
If you’re looking for something to watch during quarantine, all 127 episodes are on Crunchyroll and VRV. If enough people do, maybe it will finally get an English dub (and maybe that dub would be good). But considering the length of the show and when it came out, it may never be dubbed. Well, that’s not completely true. It does have an Italian and French dub, so props to Italy and France for being better than America.
I used to identify as non-binary since I never really felt comfortable in my own skin. However, the more I thought about it, the more I felt as though I was always meant to live my life as a woman. During this time, I remembered that N had a similar moral dilemma going on in their life, so I rewatched a good chunk of the show. It was just as good as I remembered. I am now in the process of transitioning and will never forget the impact Shugo Chara had on my life.