The Digimon franchise has come a long way since its inception as a Tamagotchi-like virtual toy pet. It's spawned nine anime series, seven films (or nine, depending on how you separate them), and a number of toys and video games. Needless to say, it's one of the most popular sources of children's entertainment that exists.
There are several things that make the Digimon anime series stand out next to many others. For one thing, rather than stick to one cohesive story, it has reinvented itself numerous times. This has allowed it to keep reintroducing familiar characters along with new ones in different settings, to varying degrees of success.
The other thing it has done very well over the years is to infuse a healthy dose of humor into its mix of colorful characters and intense action sequences. Though most of its jokes are geared towards people of all ages, the writers couldn't resist throwing in little gems that only the adults would get.
Here are Digimon: 15 Adult Jokes That Flew Over Every Kid's Head.
15 T.K.'s bigger than he looks
After the initial shock of being transported into an entirely new reality where a group of talking monsters tells them that they're destined to save the world together, the Digidestined kids and their new partners make each other's acquaintances fairly quickly.
T.K., the youngest and arguably most innocent member of the group, introduces himself himself after all the other kids with the line "I'm not as small as I look!"
The argument could be made that the youngster didn't know the implication he was making, but the fully adult writing and translating staff had to certainly had to have had a laugh about the whole thing. The moment was one of many which many in a first episode that cemented the first Digimon Adventure series a classic kid's cartoon.
14 Koromon won't stop kissing Tai and Kari
Digimon are playful creatures by nature, and the Koromon that Tai and Kari first encounter four years before their first adventure in the digital world is no different. Though the present Kari who narrates the film makes it clear that this is not the Koromon who would later help them save the world many times over, he proves just as excitable as his more famous cousin.
After Tai and Kari feed him and protect him from their cat, he proceeds to show his appreciation by attaching himself to Kari's face and kissing her. Tai, ever the protective brother, attempts to separate the two, only to have Koromon jump from Kari's face to Tai's. Koromon then tells the pair that they are his best friends, to which they reply that they are his only friends. This, of course, incites more kissing.
For kids, it was a cute scene between familiar characters, but as adults, we understand the implication of such an aggressive advance, and it's still weird to look back on this scene and almost impossible to see it as anything innocent.
13 The Birds and the Bees
After the Ken is defeated and ultimately decides to cast aside his Digimon Emperor persona in favor of fighting with the good guys, it is slowly revealed that he was being manipulated by other forces. One of these forces turns out to be the spidery villain Arukenimon. Among her powers, Arukenimon possesses a magical flute which allows her to control the actions of any bug-type Digimon.
During an extremely tense moment wherein Cody, Ken, and Davis are cornered and being targeted by their own brainwashed partners Stingmon and Digmon, Ken and Cody begin to devise a plan, making reference to an old story about a moth and a bat. Davis, of course, mistakes this for the story of the birds and the bees, and becomes confused.
While nobody in the episode has any time to give Davis this particular talk, you can bet that plenty of parents probably had to sit down with their kids and have that talk after the episode aired.
12 Davis wants to play strip poker
In a truly touching moment later on in the series after the Digimon Emperor has renounced his evil ways and joined the rest of the Digidestined as just plain Ken, the kids are seen in Ken's apartment for a Christmas get-together where they're playing Go Fish in his room. After some banter, Ken laughs and Kari tells Ken he has a wonderful smile and should laugh more often. This, of course, makes Davis jealous.
Ken's mom then receives a phone call from Tai who, at that very moment, is with the rest of the older Digidestined group dealing with an attack by Arukenimon and one of her control spires. While Ken's mom is on her way to give the phone to Ken, the kids are trying to decide which card game to play next. Davis, being Davis, barely gets the chance to suggest strip poker when he his mercifully cut off by the impending emergency.
Seriously. Go back and watch it.
11 Sukamon and Chuumon harrassment
A classic Mimi and Palmon moment came slightly earlier on in the first series when the pair were confronted and straight up hit on by the ice-cream looking Sukamon and his mousy partner Chuumon. Dubbed the "loser" Digimon, Palmon explains that the pair must always stay together because their brains are too small to function alone.
Though they are initially under the influence of one of Devimon's nefarious black gears, their attraction to Mimi and Palmon doesn't end once they are returned to their normal selves. Though their actually personalities turn out to be fairly lovable, they remain obvious analogies of dumb guys everywhere and most of what they say to the pair of ladies would be tantamount to sexual harassment in any real life environment. Mimi and Palmon prove to be proper role models for young girls everywhere, and spurn the pair's advances accordingly.
Chuumon eventually sacrifices himself to save Mimi's life during an attack from the evil dark masters, so it would seem that chivalry isn't dead after all, at least in the digital world.
10 All The Romance
While the latest adventures of the original Digidestined team are ever so slightly more geared towards an older audience, for the most part the dialogue is restrained and family friendly. There is, however, a running undercurrent of romance that was never quite so prevalent in any of the franchise's previous installments. This is bluntly illustrated when Izzy is visibly flustered by the gang's reunion with Mimi, who exclaims that he must be falling in love with her because of how hot she looks.
Between this, the ever-present love triangle between Sora, Matt, and Tai, the flirting between T.K. and Kari with T.K. fretting over his other "friend," the eventual reveal of Joe's girlfriend (which nobody believes he actually has), and the gossiping girl Digimon (including a quip about preferring "cheetah-y" to foxy), there's definitely a far more direct emphasis on the romantic side of story-telling than has ever been present before, and much of it is probably a little beyond the series' usual young fan base.
9 The bath house
Along with the original eight Digidestined kids, Digimon Adventure Tri introduce a new addition to the team in the form of the very shy Meiko and her cat-like Digimon partner Meicoomon. In order to help them feel included, the team invites the pair along for a relaxing day at a Japanese bathhouse located on a hot spring.
Due to the recent Digimon attacks and the general public fear towards the otherworldly monsters, the gang instructs their partners to act like stuffed animals so that they can come along for the ride as well.
Shenanigans ensue with Meicoomon and Biyomon find themselves being carted away in a pile of laundry, and the human girls have to enter the male side of the bath house to find them. It's a risky scene that involves lots of nude male characters crossing paths with the females, and it'll be interesting to see how the English dub handles it. It also features the long-awaited return of Mimi singing.
8 The Second Digitamamon Episode
The Digidestined and Digitamamon have had a rocky relationship, to say the least. In the first series, Joe's run-in with the egg-shaped Digimon ends with him and Matt having to stay and work in the kitchen of Digitamamon's restaurant or several weeks in order to pay off one bill.
The second time around evolves in a similar manner, only this time with Digitamamon's bad temper coming from a dark ring hidden deep beneath his hard exterior. The main difference is that in the second encounter, the food jokes just won't stop. While most of them stay kid-friendly, a couple of low-key one liners in the episode are clearly geared towards adults with real-world problems.
One such line comes before they even find the restaurant with Hawkmon telling Armadillomon that he needs to watch his cholesterol. Another comes when, after hearing that the kids have no digidollars to their names, Digitamamon exclaims that he now understands why the French detest tourists. With very little world experience, most kids likely didn't understand these one-liners.
7 Agumon's escape clause
When poor Wormmon was introduced, he was seemingly just another luckless lackey tasked with supporting the series' latest antagonist in the form of the Digimon Emperor. His quivering voice and unimposing form were the stuff underdogs are made of though, and slowly but surely he cemented himself as a quick-witted partner who was just trying to help his lost master find his way back to the right path.
When the Digimon Emperor's scheme to capture Agumon and force him to evolve to Skull-Greymon over and over with the hopes of understanding how to control the beast backfires and Agumon escapes, the Digimon Emperor is understandably livid and asks anyone who may be listening how the dinosaur Digimon managed to get away. The clever Wormmon suggests that maybe there had been an escape clause in his contract.
It's the kind of word play that probably left most youngsters scratching their heads.
6 Mr. Nishijima's job title
When he's first introduced, Tai's homeroom teacher Mr Nishijima seems like a typical stickler for hard work, completely oblivious to the existence of the digital world and the Digimon which inhabit it. As the first film progresses, though, it is revealed that while he is a real teacher, he also works with the government in monitoring Digimon activity, and is fully aware of the identities of the Digidestined and their partners.
After he helps Tai by quickly escorting him to the scene of the series' first real battle, Matt and Tai confront him with questions about how he knows so much. He then reveals his actual job title to the stunned pair: National Data Processing Bureau Information and Communications Strategy Section Information Management Office Management Officer Level 2.
For a kid, this would seem like a non-sequitur joke with a bunch of three-plus syllable words strung together, but we as adults understand how complicated the bureaucracy of government work can be, and for us the title is as funny as it is disheartening.
5 Izzy's semiconductor line
Digimon: The Movie was one of those films that the critics hated but the fans adored. This probably has a lot to do with the fact that it does very little in the way of exposition, banking on the fact that most of its audience has seen the series and are familiar with the characters and locations.
What it did very well, though, was carry over the sense of humor from the anime. The second act in particular, which centers around Tai and Izzy trying to find a way to stop the evil Digimon-turned-computer-virus Diaboromon from taking over the internet and destroying the human world, features a delightful string of quips from the pair.
One such moment comes while Izzy is brainstorming as many ways as possible to stop the villain, and asks Tai if he's ever heard of a semiconductor. In a moment which illustrates exactly why Tai was not the one to get the crest of knowledge, he responds "someone who works part time on a train?"
4 Etemon's Beatles reference - Digimon Adventure
Etemon has to be one of the franchise's most memorable characters, hands down. The self-proclaimed monarch of rock and roll is as formidable at being an antagonist as he is at quipping music related one-liners. His entire persona is modeled after Elvis Presley, he almost always has a microphone and amplifiers with him and often is accompanied by a backing band consisting of his Gajimon lackeys.
His best reference comes when, while trying to digivolve to fight against him, Agumon and the other heroes realize that they can't achieve their larger transformations while under the web of Etemon's dark network. To explain this, Etemon pulls from none other than the famous fab four's back catalog and quips "you say you want a digivolution? Well, I say no!"
Every parent who was a fan of rock and roll had to have jumped for joy at the show giving them the opportunity to show off some of their own music collection to their impressionable offspring.
3 Mimi's and Palmon's Roots
After the Digidestined manage to defeat their first major antagonist Devimon, their would-be mentor Gennai appears to them for the first time and informs them that their work is far from over. He tells them that in order to save the digital world from further threats, they must set sail towards the Continent of Server to find their respective tags and crests which will allow their Digimon to digivolve even further.
In order to accomplish this, they set sail across the digital ocean on a makeshift raft. Things seem to be going fairly smoothly until the gang is attacked by the gargantuan ocean-dwelling Whamon, who swallows them whole.
While they're cascading along the watery innards of the beast, the ever fashion conscious Mimi exclaims that her hair is being damaged all the way to the roots. Her partner Palmon offers her own roots in replacement, to which Mimi replies "you're a plant!"
It's a hair-care related zinger and an adult problem most kids would not have the knowledge or experience to fully grasp
2 Sora's sense of values
The second group of Digidestined kids settle into the roles much faster than the originals, which makes sense as they have the older kids for guidance and two of the original members, T.K. and Kari, are very much a part of the new team. They also benefit from a set of perks the first group never had, like being able to come and go from the digital world whenever they please and being fitted with a new wardrobe when they travel into it.
The first time they discover the new duds, they spend a scene marveling at the new duds. Davis being Davis comments that he wonders if he could trade his in for an upgrade. Sora overhears this and quips "kids today have no sense of values. When I was a kid, I showed a lot more respect when I received a gift."
It's a cute line but it's made even funnier by the fact that though from a kid's perspective she probably seemed quite old, at the time Sora was barely a teenager herself.
1 Bokomon and Neemon parenting Patamon gender joke
Digimon Frontier flipped the franchise's mythos on its head in a number of ways, not the least of which was by featuring a group of new Digidestined kids who became Digimon rather than partnering with them. It also showed us what the Digimon version of parents might look like, and it may have been the first time many children were exposed to the idea of a same sex couple.
After they come into possession of a Digi-egg which eventually hatches into a familiar character in the form of Patamon, Bokomon and Neemon take it upon themselves to parent the little guy.
When asked which one would be the mother and which one would be the father, they confess that they don't even know. It was a cute moment for the anime, but an important step in opening children's eyes to the importance of accepting all different kinds of parents, and one they probably didn't even realize they had been exposed to until many years later.
Digimon Adventure Tri: Our Future is set for release in Summer 2018.
Were there any adult jokes from any of the Digimon series that we missed? Let us know in the comments section below!