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Best Team of the Year is a Japanese organization for the promotion of better team building and teamwork skills. Each year its executive committee hands out awards for the best collaborative groups in a variety of industries.

Recently, Best Team of the Year asked its 200 committee members between the ages of 24 and 33 which character from the works of anime powerhouse Studio Ghibli they’d most like to have as a leader, and also which they’d like to have as a boyfriend or girlfriend.


Let’s start by finding out who the committee would love to have giving them orders and spamming their mailbox each day with requests for the impossible.

#5: Lord Yupa

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Starting off the leadership ranking, in fifth place is Lord Yupa, the wise and experienced traveler who serves as a mentor to the titular character in Nausicca of the Valey of the Wind. That beard alone demands respect!

#4: Totoro

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The surprise choice for fourth place is Ghilbi’s most instantly recognizable character, Totoro. While a character who doesn’t speak may seem like an odd choice, a good leader must serve as a rock of stability during crises, a role the perpetually calm and collected Totoro would have no problem fulfilling.

#3: Captain Dola

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In third place we have Captain Dola, the rough-and-tumble leader of the sky pirates from Laputa: Castle in the Sky. We have to say, if she barked an order at us or asked us to go on a coffee run we’d be sure to do exactly as we were told…

#2: Prince Ashitaka 

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Coming up just short of the top spot is Princess Mononoke’s Ashitaka. Although the reticent Ashitaka embodies many of the same hands-off, quiet leadership dynamics that Totoro does, his ability to tear a man’s arms off with a single well-placed arrow would definitely come in handy should he need to discipline a subordinate who’s acting out of line.

#1: Nausicaa

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Unsurprisingly, the respondents’ number one pick for best leader was Nausicca herself. Given that the princess spends most of her film trying to work out a solution to a bitter conflict that will be amenable to all parties wrapped up in it, we agree she’s a fine choice.


Okay, so we know who the people of Japan would most like to have fronting their company, but what about affairs of the heart? Here’s how the same group voted with regard to the character they’d most like to date.

#5: Nausicca 

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Nausicca also makes an appearance in the rankings for ideal dating partner, coming in at fifth place and proving the undeniable appeal of a strong woman. She’s also pretty cool, especially with that glider of hers, and there’s no denying that she’s a good-looking woman.

#4: Kiki

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Fourth place goes to everyone’s favourite witch, Kiki; the earnest, plucky young from Kiki’s Delivery Service, who’s also got a live-action film adaptation coming up. Somehow we’d feel more comfortable on the back of Nausicca’s glider than letting Kiki fly us around town on her broom, though…

#3 Ashitaka

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Strong, silent type Ashitaka checks in again at number three on the list of Ghibli lovers. It’s perhaps to be expected that he should make a second appearance in the list, we suppose; like the character Toki said when she met this strong young warrior for the first time in Princess Mononoke: he’s not handsome, he’s gorgeous.

#2: Seiji Amasawa

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Despite already having a girl he’s interested in and being so dreamy he can make people in their 30s contemplate killing themselves, avid reader and aspiring violin maker Seiji Amasawa from Whisper of the Heart grabs the number two spot.

And finally, the ideal Ghibli character to be in a romantic relationship with is…

#1: …

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Totoro? Really!?

But you know what, the more we think about it, the more sense this choice makes. Sure, he may not have the ability of speech, but the inability to say anything on his own makes him a great listener. And at the end of a long, hard day, what could be better than a boyfriend who will patiently listen as you blow off steam, then top it all off by letting you take a nap on top of him?

Totoro, you heart breaker…

Source: Hachima Kikou
Top image: Lang 8
Insert images: Exblog, Rakuten, Blogspot, Naver Matome, Yahoo! Japan, Yahoo! Japan, FC2, Fanpop, Screened, Blogspot