Konnichiwa babes! Now strap yourselves in because this week we’re in Japan, where the fish is raw and the Hello Kittys are plentiful.
Here’s what you need to know about the Yamato Dynasty and the imperial family of Japan.
Pro: They’ve been at this for a really long time. Like the longest time. The current Emperor of Japan is a direct descendant of the very first Emperor, who got his guernsey on February 11 660 BC. That’s before Jesus.
Con: VERY slow on the female monarch uptake. It’s not that they haven’t had female monarchs, it’s just that those female monarchs have been stripped of all power as soon as a relevant male comes of age and is ready to have his turn. Not ideal. Things were beginning to change in 2005 when peeps realised the current Emperor probs wasn’t going to have a male heir but then his brother had a son in 2006 so everyone just kind of stopped caring and decided that this new baby would be the next in line. Bit dev for Princess Toshi.
Pro: Emperor Akihito who abdicated in 2019 is a lot of a romantic. He’s the first Japanese monarch ever to marry a commoner. When he met Michiko in 1957 on the tennis court, it was love at first sight. But the institution was not about it. So they shipped her off to Belgium. Old mate Akihito was so heartbroken he wrote the Belgian King and asked for his help. The Belgian King then did his thing and convinced the Japanese people to just let these bloody love birds be. And then they lived happily ever after. Adorable.
Con: Mrs. Emperor has suffered under the pressure and so has her daughter. Empress Masoka lives largely out of the public eye due to emotional distress. Some say because she “failed” to produce a male heir. Likewise, her daughter who should be heir to the throne but isn’t, had to be withdrawn from school as a child because she was bullied so badly.
Pro: Life is (probably) pretty lush for these royals. We know this because when Emperor Naruhito met Queen Elizabeth he couldn’t believe she had to pour her own tea and serve her own sandwiches like a goddamn animal. We can only assume this means Naruhito never touches his own food, takes his own steps or wipes his own butt. What a life.
Con: There’s basically a media blackout on this family so we’re never going to get photos of 18 year old Princess Toshi sneaking out of da club at 3am carrying her stilettos. And that friends, is a damn shame.
But don’t take our word for it, have a listen and let us know what you think!