Shugo Chara! (しゅごキャラ! Shugo Kyara!), also known as My Guardian Characters, is a Japanese shōjo manga series created by the manga author duo, Peach-Pit. The story centers on elementary school girl Amu Hinamori, whose popular exterior, referred to as “cool and spicy” by her classmates, contrasts with her introverted personality. When Amu wishes for the courage to be reborn as her would-be self, she is surprised to find three colorful eggs the next morning, which hatch into three Guardian Characters: Ran, Miki, and Su.
Shugo Chara! is serialized in the magazine Nakayoshi and published by Kodansha in Japan. Del Rey has licensed theEnglish language manga rights, releasing the first volume on March 27, 2007. It won the 2008 Kodansha Manga Awardfor best children’s manga.
Shugo Chara! has also been adapted into a fifty-one episode anime television series of the same title produced bySatelight under the direction of Kenji Yasuda and debuted on October 6, 2007 on TV Tokyo. On July 20, 2008, Anime News Network reported that the Shugo Chara! anime would be continued for a second year under the title Shugo Chara!! Doki—, the first episode airing on October 10, 2008; the official anime website later announced an October 4, 2008 start date.
On October 3, 2009, Shugo Chara! began featuring another series. The new program, Shugo Chara Party! containingShugo Chara!!! Dokki Doki and Shugo Chara Pucchi Puchi! follow the current anime series as its power-up. The last episode aired on March 26, 2010
The main protagonist of the story Hinamori Amu, is a female student attending Seiyo Elementary. At first glance, her classmates refer to her attitude and appearance as “cool and spicy” and rumors speculate about her personal life. However, her real personality is that of a very shy girl who has trouble showing her true personality. One night, Amu wishes for the courage to show her “would-be” self, and the next morning, she finds three brightly colored eggs — pink, blue, and green — in her bed. These eggs hatch into three Guardian Characters, or “Shugo Charas”: Ran (pink), Miki (blue), and Su (green). The Guardian Characters aid Amu in discovering who she truly is and help fulfill Amu’s dreams. Amu’s life becomes much more complex as she struggles to deal with her “would-be” selves and the Seiyo Elementary’s Guardians, who each have a Guardian Character of their own. People with Guardian Characters can “chara-nari” (character transform) or “character change”. Each transformation has special powers mainly for attacking or defending. Character changes have special powers, too, but have more practical uses. Later on, they recruit a girl named Amu as the “Joker” to search for X Eggs and X Characters, the corrupted forms of people’s dreams, so the Guardians can purify their dreams. In Japanese, the egg is shortened.
Meanwhile, the Easter Company is extracting people’s eggs in search of a special egg called the Embryo. The Embryois believed to grant any wish to the one who possesses it. However, the process creates X Eggs and X Characters.
Later on in the series, a fourth (yellow) egg named Diamond is born. Unlike Amu other Guardian Characters, she is only seen a few times in the series. Due to Amu mixed feelings before Diamond was born, she becomes an X character and is “stolen” by idol singer Utau Hoshina, who uses Diamond to character change for her concerts planned by Easter as part of their plan to get the Embryo. Later on, Diamond is purified and becomes a regular Guardian Character. She would then appear in times of heavy crisi