In the recent wave of anime debuting on Netflix, we have 7SEEDS, based on the award winning manga by Yumi Tamura. Climate change has been a hot topic of discussion for the last couple of decades, and not to take away from the actual legitimate concerns around it, we still need to remember that doesn’t mean anything compared to a meteor strike, which can progress at a rate that it could instantly wipe out the human race as it did to the dinosaurs. Obviously, this leads to the situation of what the plot of 7SEEDS is. Even years prior to the incident, scientists and governments around the world were already aware of the impending meteor strikes, so they put into motion a special plan to save the human race.
In the case of Japan, they have 5 groups of specifically selected young people with each group representing a season with the summer having 2 groups. As the series begins, an unspecified amount of time has passed, and all the awakened characters find themselves in a world reborn with new flora, fauna, and evolved creatures that will make survival more difficult than anticipated. For this list, we thought we should share what 7SEEDS characters fit the notion of survival of the fittest. And warning, THERE ARE GOING TO BE SPOILERS!
10. Mark Ibaraki
Kicking off our list, we thought we should explore a character who pretty much died long before the series started. Mark’s story is told through a flashback episode when Hana finds his diary at a long forgotten shelter and you what happened in the aftermath of the meteor shower. Mark was just merely a ventriloquist who did it to never forget his brother, and his talent was why he was selected to join the shelter. As to how he fits into survival of the fittest, in the end, despite being a performer, he knew he had to let the show go on so everyone could die peacefully due to an outbreak of a disease, lack of food, and after their main leader, Takashi, sacrificed himself. As an actor, he does his part to give everyone a mercy killing and eventually takes his own life. In the end, he did his best and he did it while despite telling a lie, in a way, he was still true to himself and honesty and accepting reality is a key skill for survival.
9. Semimaru Asai
When we are first introduced to Semimaru of the Summer B group, he’s the lowest form of scum. Some may wonder why he was selected to live. He came from nothing and was something of a petty criminal. Plus, he’s a perverted sexist who does nothing more than harass Natsu due to her meek nature. However, Semimaru eventually does lighten up and develops to become a better person. Despite having no practical skills, if there’s one thing that contributes to him being a survivor, it’s his street smarts, or his ability to read people. When he was given water by the former guide of the Autumn Team, he knew there was something fishy and was able to prove that the water was poisoned when he dropped it on an insect. Thanks to his quick thinking, not only did he save the lives of Natsu and Arashi, but the Autumn Team as well.
8. Kaname Mozutomo
Kaname, who prefers to be called as Mozu, is the wild card of this series (for reasons which have yet to be revealed in the anime). Like Botan, he’s a guide and had prior training and knowledge of the situation. However, compared to most of the characters, he has more of a passive presence and prefers to keep to himself. However, it doesn’t mean he’s not approachable meaning if you want to talk to him something, he’s willing to talk. If someone’s in trouble, he won’t be afraid to help them. He’s a man who takes every precaution necessary and despite his skills in survival, he also enjoys playing music as a past-time so he can contribute in a cultural sense. His unique skill set and background (which we have yet to see in anime form) is why he qualifies for this list.
From Summer A, we have Ango, one of the leading characters from that group. If anyone suffered the worst during the training, it was him. Despite not growing up under “normal” conditions and only bred to survive the post-meteor shower world, it doesn’t mean that he’s not free from knowing what friendship and family is, and this is portrayed through his relationship with Shigeru, his best friend. He does what he can to look out for him, but you see how it creates an inferiority complex with Shigeru. In their final test, you see them resolve most of their issues but an unfortunate incident during that time came down to him or Shigeru, and at a sudden notice, Shigeru’s life was sacrificed. When Ango’s introduced, he is still suffering from Shigeru’s loss.
Ango is not only just the lead within his group, but he’s also one of the most talented. However, his upbringing shows that he’s not devoid of emotion and friendship, and you see just because you train someone who was “created” for such a purpose, doesn’t mean that they’re not human, and this is what Ango represents. Just because he can survive, it doesn’t mean he knows how to live life, and his presence shows that they don’t always go hand-in-hand.
6. Botan Saotome
Botan is the guide to the Summer Team B. As a guide, she was given prior training and knowledge that the world was going to go to hell, and she was also a police officer. Thanks to her experiences and training, she’s a no-nonsense kind of person and shows no fear or hesitation. She’s a very capable leader and will always give you the truth. She’s the type of person who knows what she’s getting into and when put in a bind, she won’t act out of fear and is trying to think of a solution. If anyone can personify the recent meme of improvise, adapt, and overcome, it is certainly Botan. When Semimaru says he wanted to have sex with her as he was embracing her while taking a shower in a waterfall, she kept her cool and used reverse psychology on him by saying if she gets pregnant, then he has to take responsibility. Thanks to that suggestion, he refrained from his request. If anything, for those that want to promote abstinence only education, maybe they should come to her for help.
5. Takashi Suguruno
Like Mark, Takashi is another key character who lived prior to the start of the story. In fact, he’s one of the main administrators of the 7SEEDS project, trained the Summer A Team, and he also ran the Ryugu Shelter. As an instructor to the Summer A team, he was pretty hard on them, especially on Ango and Ryo. In a way, he was like John Kreese of the Cobra Kai by trying to instill a no mercy philosophy on Ryo during his test, and when Ryo showed mercy to Takashi, he made sure he’d pay for it later. Despite his cold nature, he was still a caring father to Hana and a loving husband. After the flooding crisis at the Ryugu Shelter in which he lost his wife, his extremist nature takes over as he lied to select residents that they were going to be transferred to a new shelter when in fact, they were being sent to their doom to be used as worm food to make up a drop in food supplies. Takashi is an example of do the ends justify the means when it comes to such instances, but in the end, he sacrificed himself for humanity to atone for his sins. The fact that he taught survival to his daughter and Summer A shows that even if he can’t survive, he can still pass on the necessary skills.
4. Takahiro Aramaki
If any character has survived the new world longer than anyone, it has to be Takahiro from the Winter Team. As it turns out, his team was awakened 15 years prior to everyone else. As crazy as it sounds, he’s supposed to be the same age as Hana and Arashi in their old world since they saw him competing in the Koushien (Japan’s national baseball tournament) on TV. What’s tragic about Takahiro is that he pretty much lost most of his team less than a year after he awakened due to malfunctions in their cryogenic chambers, and the rest were killed by the revived saber-tooth tiger. As a means to deal with his loneliness, he has raised wolves and his interactions with them have allowed him to keep most of his sanity. Due to his longer experiences, he has more familiarity with the world and thanks to him, Hana’s fungal infection was instantly cured, which is why he is qualified as a survivor.
3. Ran Shishigaki
Due to the meek nature of Izayoi, the (supposed) guide for the Autumn Team, Ran and Akio, two successful white collar workers, ended up gaining leadership and ruling their team with an iron fist. As for what Ran’s role is in terms of survival, yes, we need to work together, but she demonstrates that in the end, people probably do need leadership and Ran’s style of leadership brings that into question. Considering her background as an architect, she knew how to construct huts for the village, organize, and distribute. However, her leadership with Akio, her lover, tends to be harsh on their fellow survivors. They force them to make quotas for whatever job they’re assigned to, and prohibits them from sexual activity as they don’t want to raise children in such an environment.
On the one hand, we do see that Ran’s leadership can be harsh and counterintuitive with how she treats her fellow survivors. However, when it comes to not allowing the conception of children, some do have to wonder if such a decision is truly right. Yes, there are no guarantees that women can survive pregnancy nor can the baby survive, but on the same token, we don’t know until we try. Eventually, after her time visiting the Ryugu Shelter, she comes to mellow out and exhibits more compassion to her fellow survivors. The fact that she was able to change shows that she’s a true survivor.
2. Hana Suguruno
At number 2, we have one of the POV characters from the Spring Team, Hana, who happens to be the daughter of Takashi, one of the main administrators of the 7SEEDS project. However, Hana was never aware of the role her parents played in regards to it until she meets the Summer Team A. Of course, nepotism played a part in regards to why she was selected to survive and it doesn’t mean she has value. Ever since she was a child, her parents subliminally taught her to survive the world she lives in by frequently taking her camping and teaching her the essential skills such as rock climbing, which she specializes in. However, her main motivation is wanting to reunite with Arashi, her boyfriend. No matter what obstacle comes her way, she finds a way to overcome. When there is someone who’s in trouble, she is willing to put herself in harm’s way to help that person.
1. Arashi Aota
At number 1, we have Arashi from the Summer B team. Other than being a top high school swimmer (and a capable street fighter), he’s really a nobody just like the rest of his team. However, he shows that sometimes not all the skills in the world is enough to survive in a whole new world, but having the determination to live is the very foundation in doing so. He is rarely discouraged and doesn’t deal well with negativity. He’s the type of person who believes that everything happens for a reason, and he is driven to find Hana, his girlfriend, no matter what it takes. However, what makes him number 1 is when he, Semimaru and Natsu are taken hostage by the Autumn Team. He pleads to them that what Ran and her partner is doing isn’t right, and that everybody is equal and should work together. While his idealism may be naïve, but in a way, his idealism is by no means unrealistic because in a world that they live in, applying such principles makes perfect sense.
We have all watched other forms of media of people being stranded such as Lost, Robinson Crusoe (which is referenced in the anime), Lord of the Flies, and the Blue Lagoon. What makes 7SEEDS different is that there will be no help coming to save them. The characters have to save themselves and each other. Thankfully, they do have pre-existing equipment and shelters spread throughout the “Seven Mt. Fujis of Japan” in order to start over, and preserve their culture.