Anime. What is it? And what is it not? Don’t ask me because I don’t know. And neither does a good majority of the anime community.
Let’s be real here, as much time as we all spend watching anime, not many of us really know what defines an anime as an anime. Sure, we know that an animated series or movie created in Japan is anime. That’s a no brainer. But, when we are confronted with shows that look like they’re anime, but not made in Japan, or shows that have elements of an anime, but again, are not made in Japan, the lines become heavily blurred. This is where conflict arises.
It really depends on who you ask in the anime community whether a show is an anime or not. Some specifically restrict the heavenly title of “anime” to series and films only made in Japan. However, you can ask someone else and they will tell you that as long as it’s in the style of anime — big eyes, over exagerated expressions, ect — then yes, it is an anime. Then there are people who will shrug and say that they don’t know and move on with their day. Normally, I am that last person. However, that doesn’t exactly make for a good blog post does it?
If you ask me, it really doesn’t matter whether these questionable shows are anime or not. A show is a show and as long as it’s good and I like the art style then I really don’t think it matters. I’ll watch what I want to watch; end of story. If you don’t agree then that’s completely fine as well. As long as you don’t create a superiority complex around that, or begin picking on people because they either are a “nerd” for watching an “anime” or accusing them of not being a “true anime fan” because they watch something that’s a questionable anime, then you do you. My point is to just be nice to other people.
However, I digress, despite my heavily neutral standpoint on this issue, I would like to put my two cents in on this argument. I personally lean towards the side of “if it’s in the style of anime, then it’s an anime”. This is because I feel that it’s slightly exclusionary to put labels on these shows that fall into a grey area just because they are not made in Japan. Furthermore, there are a couple of points that support these questionable shows. Here, I will be addressing them while using RWBY as an example.
I could use several other series as an example — Avatar: The Last Airbender for example — but because I am a enormous RWBY fairy, I shall be using this series as an example. Plus, I haven’t watched any other questionable series — that I know of anyway. Sorry.
Wow, this is a really long intro. If you haven’t skipped over it yet, I applaud you! However, this is getting too much even for me, so let’s begin!
1) It Adheres to the Japanese Meaning of the Word “Anime”
2) It Adheres to the English Definition of the Word “Anime”
Key words, “style of animation originating from Japan” and “a Japanese style”. Nowhere is it stated that the show must be from Japan. The requirements for a show to be an anime are very loose, and therefore shows that a lot of the so called “standards” a show must meet in order to be categorized as an anime are very much so made up by the anime community.
Furthermore, the couple of optional things that the definition gives as notes to identify a show as an anime are things that RWBY meets. Colorful art and characters? Check.
I think that’s that then. Of course if you don’t agree then that’s completely fine. This isn’t exactly the debate of the century here. I do however reccomend you watch RWBY regardless of this topic. The animation is nice and it gets better and better as the series progresses. The same can be said about the plot. If you enjoy video games you will probably enjoy this series as well.
This was a rather silly post, and I don’t think it went anywhere but I still hope you enjoyed reading it all the same. However, if you are going to take away anything from this post then it should be to just be nice to people, and not harrass others because of silly issues like this. Just be nice to people. End of story.
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