Ashida Mana is Japan’s Xiao Xiao Bin. Undoubtedly, the girl is adorably cute so no wonder she’s the latest toast of the town. But apparently no more according to this translation of an article that came out recently.
Mana-chan… er, I mean, Ashida-san is turning eight this year. Imagine that, only eight years old and yet she has achieved more than what normal kids her age have: a career as an actress and singer and CM queen. For a child her age, that can be too overwhelming and she needs adults to guide her and make sure that she grows up with her feet on the ground.
So if it’s true that she has become quite a young diva, insisting that people address her as Ashida-san instead of Mana-chan–which suits her more because well, she’s still a child and wouldn’t it be awkward if her seniors call her Ashida-san in such a stringent society as Japan that gives emphasis on seniority–then that’s just sad. And it reflects not really on her but on the adults that surround her. Because truth be told, a normal seven-year-old can only care about childlike things more than worry about how people call her, so her attitude is clearly an influence of the people around her.
But that certainly won’t include Jun-kun (photo below from her appearance in Himitsu no Arashi-chan) because Domyouji won’t allow kids to be snootier than him.
Nor will that be KimuTaku’s influence (photo below from SMAP x SMAP). Mana-chan, I mean, Ashida-san appeared with KimuTaku in his Antarctic drama, and I don’t think KimuTaku–who has two daughters himself–would tolerate such diva attitude if Mana-chan were his child.
There’s one thing that bothers me about the article. The comparison to Honda Miyu (another child actress). Of course it can’t be avoided in the entertainment industry where rivalries thrive and people can even make careers out of them, but these are kids for chrissakes! Adults should know better than pit them against each other, we don’t want them to grow up insecure, do we now?
I found this compilation of some of Mana-chan’s CMs.
She’s really cute, no doubt about it. So I hope she grows up to be a pretty, nice girl.
Well, who knows, sometimes we have to stumble in life so that we can get up, brush ourselves and learn our lessons.
Maybe Mana-chan just needs to experience it early on in life. And she will learn, just as the people around her, that fame is fleeting but attitude makes a lasting impression.
So please Ashida-san, stay as the adorable Mana-chan as long as you can.
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