I Want To Eat Your Pancreas

Every once in a while an anime comes along with a title so random, it makes you sit up and take notice. Here are some examples…

  • Is It Wrong to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon?
  • What If the Female Manager of a High-School Baseball Team Read Peter Drucker’s ‘Management’
  • That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime
  • Ground Control to Psychoelectric Girl
  • I Can’t Understand What My Husband is Saying
  • I Couldn’t Become a Hero, So I Reluctantly Decided to Get a Job
  • A Good Librarian Like a Good Shepherd
  • Bubblegum Crisis
  • Samurai Pizza Cats

The same is true of the new animated film I Want To Eat Your Pancreas, which has such a bizarre name I was pretty much guaranteed to watch it, even if it weren’t breaking sales records after its big weekend release in movie theatres across Asia. The producers are clearly hoping that the film will repeat the smash success of Your Name, which became a huge social phenomenon.

I Want To Eat Your Pancreas is the story of a high school boy who keeps his distance from his classmates, preferring to read by himself. One day he finds the diary of a girl in his class, and discovers her terrible secret: she’s dying from an illness of the pancreas. She asks him to keep her secret from the other students, and they become friends.

The title comes from a line Sakura says to the boy:

“I want to eat your pancreas.”

“Have you suddenly been awakened to cannibalism?”

“I saw it on TV yesterday. If someone in the past had a part of their body that wasn’t well, they would eat the corresponding part of another animal. Eat liver if your liver is unwell, eat stomach if your stomach is unwell. They believed that doing so would cure their illness. That’s why I want to eat your pancreas.”

I’m convinced that one reason we’ve all embraced anime as much as we have is that it tells stories that allow us to access strong emotions which other forms of media (especially the latest Hollywood blockbuster) can’t provide. Want to be inspired to fight harder? Feel the warmth of good friends? Rejoice at love found? Taste the sting of love lost? Experience sadness and redemption? Say goodbye to a departing loved one a final time? Start your life over again? Watch a show about a war-torn mechanical typist write really sad letters?  You can always find an anime that offers a new emotional experience for you.

Should you watch I Want to Eat Your Pancreas when it’s available near you? I certainly hope you will, as it was a beautiful film, with a great story that included unexpected surprised. I hope you’ll check it out!

New Doujinshi In Sotck At J List

J-List loves to stock all the latest doujinshi from Japan’s top artists, and we added a bunch of new books to the site today, from Fate/Grand Order to Idolmaster to Kancolle and more. Browse all the new dojins now!

About the author

Peter Payne

I live in Japan and I run J-List, an anime shop famous for shimapan and Tentacle Grape. I love being able to bring Japanese culture to the world.