Remember Tekken, the balding comedian with makeup reminiscent of KISS and a talent for turning out some truly tear-wrenching flipbook animations? Well, he’s done it again, with a ten-minute piece titled A Story about Family.
As with Tekken’s previous works, the story uses absolutely no dialog, but still manages to convey a message of familial piety which transcends cultural borders and is almost certain to evoke some tears. It’ll have you scrambling for the phone to call home and show thanks to those who have supported you throughout the years.
Tekken created A Story about Family for the 140 year anniversary of Japan’s Shinano Daily Newspaper. The clip lasts almost ten minutes long and contains a total of 1,918 pages, every last one of them hand-drawn by Tekken, himself!
The story follows a family of apple farmers: a mom, a dad, and their adoring son. The young boy idolizes his father and hopes to take part in the family business once he grows up. However, as he grows older and more rebellious, he begins to drift apart from his parents, trying to make it big in Tokyo as a musician. Meanwhile, his parents support him every step of the way, even when their son is absent, even when he is ungrateful, and especially when he begins to falter, all in spite of the struggles they are facing at the farm.
You may start to wonder if any of them will be able to stick it out and pursue their chosen lifestyles. But in the end, you’ll be struck by the awesome power of familial love, always there and always supportive. You’ll reach the end and think to yourself, “This is what a family is meant to embody.”
Japanese Internet users had some very strong reactions to the piece. Here’s a sampling of what they had to say:
As expected of Tekken. It had me crying at the end.
This struck a chord with me…The tears won’t stop. I want a family bond like that…I’d like to tell my parents, “thank you,” time and time again.
I cried in earnest. My parents can be so bothersome, but above all else they’re still an important part of my life. I value them.
I couldn’t hold it in. This really made me cry. Moving to Tokyo, quitting school, abandoning the family business, diving into a music career, facing setbacks, and feeling a parent’s love: Tekken knows my story. Amazing.
With American Thanksgiving on the near horizon and the winter holiday season following soon after that, let’s all take a moment to show a bit of gratitude to the people who have supported us through thick and thin. By watching this video, you’re sure to remember just how much you care. But maybe wait until the tears stop flowing before reaching out…
▼ A Story about Family by Tekken
▼ And here’s a short clip showing how the animation was made.
[ Read in Japanese ]