Depending on who you ask, Netflix is either killing the anime streaming game or killing the anime streaming game. However you may feel about it, it’s no lie that Netflix has managed to put a spotlight on anime both new and old. However, while anime gets the largest piece of the controversy pie, the fact that Netflix has quietly managed to import a number of heartfelt and interesting live-action series usually flies under the radar. They’ve imported everything from the outstanding Midnight Diner series, as well as underrated gems, such as the surreal and funny Kentaro the Sweet Tooth Salaryman. However, the newest series from Netflix may bring live-action series to the forefront of Netflix-related controversy.
Eri Sakai’s Hiyama Kentaro no Ninshin, or He’s Expecting, follows the life of salaryman Kentaro Hiyama (Takumi Saitō) and his partner, Aki Seto (Juri Ueno). Everything’s coming up roses for the pair until Kentaro has unexpected news: he’s pregnant. And while the world of He’s Expecting is one where cisgender men can become pregnant and give birth, the journey that is pregnancy will give Kentaro a run for his money, as we can see in the trailer (Japanese only) below.
It’s actually incredibly interesting to see a lot of the issues that usually come with pregnancy transposed onto a cis man. Sure, some issues make sense, such as morning sickness and unexpected leaking while you’re lactating, but it’ll definitely be worth it to see how exactly gender norms change in this situation as well as what issues would affect cis men specifically if they became able to bear children.
And it definitely poses a multitude of questions concerning the world that’s being built here and how if at all it mirrors the views around pregnancy, birth, and childrearing in Japan today. Are all men around the world able to become pregnant in this universe? Who becomes responsible for birth control in a relationship? Are cis men who become pregnant expected to become stay-at-home fathers after birth?
Sadly, the manga only has one volume, so it’s unknown if the first season will even tackle the burning questions a universe like this creates. Either way, He’s Expecting looks like quite the watch whether or not you’ve been pregnant, want to be pregnant, or were ever just curious about this exact scenario.
Source: Anime News Network