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the allure of anime part 2

Updated on July 21, 2011

part 2

So, if you have read part 1 called the appeal of asian drama, then we will travel back to the next step... anime.

Cartoons in America have existed since the dawn of moving pictures and I will not discount them for being funny and entertaining.... but the Japanese took the concept and like all things, improved upon it. They even have their own name wihich is copywrited and no one else, save Japan, can call their cartoons ... anime. Case in point, The Last Airbender... purely American made, but a genre similar to the Japanese anime, was prevented from advertising it as such. It is a serious business. These shows have a strange flair of the dramatic, using real dialogue that real people would speak, with problems and solutions facing the characters that would bring anyone down to their knees. They are also short in nature... finishing the story as a linear time line.... not just a funny episode each week without any connection to the next one, but, more like a fairy tale with a beginning, a middle and an end....

Animes are made to appeal to target audiences, like their manga(Comic book) counterparts. Each type has a description and all in the industry would know immediately who that particular style would appeal too. Also, with the manga as it basis, the artwork and settings that are already drawn, will easily give way to the moving pictures, and thus the anime is made.

Cartoon characters were drawn as real people with real problems. Time was taken to build these made up figures into real personalities, and it appealed mostly to girls. The premise... an established well to do Japanese family have to live with a curs
Cartoon characters were drawn as real people with real problems. Time was taken to build these made up figures into real personalities, and it appealed mostly to girls. The premise... an established well to do Japanese family have to live with a curs
PEACH GIRL:  New girl at school, caught between the boy who she has a crush on and the boy who has a crush on her... with an incredible villian pulling the strings....
PEACH GIRL: New girl at school, caught between the boy who she has a crush on and the boy who has a crush on her... with an incredible villian pulling the strings....
Naruto... in the beginning.. this anime has made to the cartoon network...for a while... they might have cancelled it by now due to the violence of it.
Naruto... in the beginning.. this anime has made to the cartoon network...for a while... they might have cancelled it by now due to the violence of it.
the main character, Ichigo Kurosaki, becomes a shinagami to protect his family.
the main character, Ichigo Kurosaki, becomes a shinagami to protect his family.
sister rosalee, who is part of the special forces to fight darkness.  from Chronos Crusade....
sister rosalee, who is part of the special forces to fight darkness. from Chronos Crusade....
Called Wolf's Rain, a story of devotion, reincarnation, and purpose.  it is a very powerful anime.
Called Wolf's Rain, a story of devotion, reincarnation, and purpose. it is a very powerful anime.
Jyu oh Sei, questions about the saving of mankind and the cost that must be paid to achieve that.
Jyu oh Sei, questions about the saving of mankind and the cost that must be paid to achieve that.

Appeal to the female population is prominent in anime. FRUITS BASKET, PEACH GIRL, SAILOR MOON, TOKYO MEW MEW... are the ones that come first and foremost to my old mind. Some are dubbed, some are only subbed, but the popularity of them make them rather worth while to sample.

How did this old granny get to this place? Well, the very first manga I read was FRUITS BASKET, This anime never made it to American TV, but the manga hooked me and when Funimation got the rights and brought it here, we bought the series. The artwork was amazing, the story line very sweet and funny, and the circumstances that our heroine and her friends face are daunting.

Then came PEACH GIRL... probably not well known... teenage themes. of acceptance and finding oneself abound in this one... Being over the top so to speak, as our heroine struggles. The villian in this one is truly a mean girl, then also has to come to terms with herself. I enjoyed this particular series... not for all the teenager melodrama, but the realization that i had been there and felt that.

Sailor Moon is an older anime, as is Tokyo Mew Mew.... and as I recall did make it to the saturday line up here in the U.S.

Now for the male population, these fall more along the lines of the good vs. evil kind of plot and always have swords, martial arts, ninja moves, etc. in the fore front... yet, there is a quiet moral, or a social more that slides in under the radar. The two most popular are NARUTO and BLEACH. These are undoubtedly, in this humble granny's opinion, the ultimate in the genre... and their fans get over disputes as which is the best.

The premise of Naruto... an orphaned boy is forced to carry a demon inside of him in order to save his shinobi villiage. Stands to reason, that although they are grateful, they don't want to get near him. Yet, he overcomes the isolation with the help of a few teachers, masters, etc to become a great shinobi and protects his villiage.... his friends and the events that happen to him and them as they grow up sends chills down my spine, but it is very thoughtout and well played. I believe it is in its tenth year by now...

Bleach... The premise to this is deep and dark. Shinigami, ghost like death gods, are sent to collect wandering souls before they are eaten by Hollows... souless creatures who are starving to be filled. A high school kid interferes with one and boom, due to incident, fate and misfortune has to become a Shinigami to save his family. Character development and the shear undertaking of the writer to have about twenty to thirty characters involved, keep this anime alive and kicking. It has been around almost as long as Naruto.

Now as much as I enjoy the above, this genre has been around quite awhile. Just the last fifteen years or so, it has hit the US. I think there are even folks lobbying against it... But these that I recommend are a lot better than family guy, the simpsons, and south park.(Before i get hate mail, remember this is only my opinion. And, folks, if they band anime, what makes you think they won't ban southpark for the same reasons....) Pokemon, Yugio, and others have made it to Saturday morning cartoons without the need for censure. And as in all media, porn and obscenities can also do abound. This article is not about those... but I am a firm believer that one does not throw the baby out with the bathwater...

Older animes that have touched this old heart.... the list could be endless and just because your favorite is not mentioned may be just remiss on my part, or I may have never seen it, which, I would love hearing your recommendation for it. But the following Iist are the ones that touched my soul... so here goes...

Chronos Crusade......about self sacrifice for the greater good.

Wolf's rain.... about purpose and meaning of life, of duty, and loyalty.

Jyu-oh-Sei... about the question how to save mankind from extinction

This is a very short list of a very involved form of entertainment. So I will shut up for now and give a shout out to others that I like, SAIYUKI, THE GETBACKERS, DEVIL MAY CRY, COWBOY BE-BOP, TRIGUN.... the list goes on and on. Some are simply not for the faint of heart, like HELSING and GLASS FLEET.... these two due to the extreme violent scenes and extreme adult themes should fall to the over eighteen group... but in their defense, the violence and adult themes explain the story and are not just put in for effect.

So i think i have ran out of steam... hope ya'll will try it... and if not, hope ya'll will defend the right for this genre to stay in America... take care... and please let me know what you think.

One thing that anime has produced are fan made amvs. I do not own these, but they are a few of my favorites. So I thought I would share them with you. I will not make any money on this. I just really like these. So enjoy.... and again let me know what you think, take care.

tokyo mew mew amv

fruits basket amv

naruto video

bleach amv

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    • KailReed profile image

      Kail Reed 

      6 years ago from Wisconsin

      No problem :)

    • meow48 profile imageAUTHOR

      meow48 

      6 years ago from usa

      it is possible for american cartoons to make that same connection. ones like airbender and x-men, but you are right. most american toons are gag oriented, for the laugh. not the cry. thanks for reading this. great comment.

    • KailReed profile image

      Kail Reed 

      6 years ago from Wisconsin

      Ive watched Clannad, Angel Beats, Blood+, FMA, and many other animes not for the action all the time but for the emotion. Clannad made me tear up on many occasion, and Angel beats made me cry at the end because of the connections I had with the characters. I felt as if I really knew them and I was apart of their lives. I felt their pain and happiness.

      Thats why I love anime because no american cartoon has done that to me. I don't think "cartoon" does anime justice. Its art.

    • meow48 profile imageAUTHOR

      meow48 

      6 years ago from usa

      i never saw evanglion, but trigun made me tear, and hold onto your socks for this one, it will age me, so did cowboy bebop.... hee.

    • meow48 profile imageAUTHOR

      meow48 

      6 years ago from usa

      i never saw evanglion, but trigun made me tear, and hold onto your socks for this one, it will age me, so did cowboy bebop.... hee.

    • RachaelLefler profile image

      Rachael Lefler 

      6 years ago from Illinois

      Yeah, Wolf's Rain, Trigun, and Evangelion are the only ones I think have ever actually made me cry.

    • meow48 profile imageAUTHOR

      meow48 

      6 years ago from usa

      ah, miss rachael, thanks for the kind comment, wolf's rain really brought out the tears.... and well, fruits basket is totally awesome... thankyou for visiting this again. take care.

    • RachaelLefler profile image

      Rachael Lefler 

      6 years ago from Illinois

      I also liked Fruits Basket, especially the manga, it's very cute. Wolf's Rain is very good but the ending was sad.

    • meow48 profile imageAUTHOR

      meow48 

      7 years ago from usa

      thankyou for the cumment, my kids liked pokemon too. check out some others too. you might enjoy them, take care.

    • profile image

      SusieQ42 

      7 years ago

      I enjoy the artwork of anime. My kids, when they were young, joined a pokemon club at Toys R Us, so I know a little about them, other than that, I'm pretty naive. Anyway, I enjoyed reading your hub and will stop by again.

    • meow48 profile imageAUTHOR

      meow48 

      7 years ago from usa

      sandra bullock? penny marshall? angelica houston? i am not exactly up on my producers or directors... though.but i do love the comment, thanks. oh i guess i have to believe also behind all those directors are women sort of influencing them, be it for better or for worse...

    • RachaelLefler profile image

      Rachael Lefler 

      7 years ago from Illinois

      I loved Peach Girl! It definitely needs more love. You know I read in a book on manga that manga writers are about 50% female and you rarely see so many women (or an equal representation of the population of women and men) working as creators in other kinds of entertainment industries. Makes you think in some ways maybe we're more sexist than Japan. Hollywood still seem like a fraternity, can you name one big Hollywood movie director or producer who's a woman? No. In Hollywood women are used for their "assets", not their brains. In anime, however, women are designing creative, original, deep, and beautiful artworks that are destined to over-shadow Hollywood's predictable, cheesy, often recycled and copied crap.

    • meow48 profile imageAUTHOR

      meow48 

      7 years ago from usa

      thanks, kiddo.

    • Uriel profile image

      Uriel 

      7 years ago from Lebanon

      okiiiiiiii right now i am in love with your page!!God bless you another anime FAN :D and you almost braught me to tears, for everytime i speak of anime here some give me the eyebrows and say grow up heheheheh :D:D

      1- you are right anime kicks american cartoon's ass headbutt :D:D [oki i usually don't get over excited but to some reason i am so glad to have read this hub ]

      2- you mentioned several animes that i watched and i say YOU HAVE Great taste ::D:D

      3- naruto and bleach touch me the most and naruto has one of the saddest tracks you can ever find in anime [my opinion] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zYoHBH1UOTE&fea...

      LOVEd the HUb glad to be a fan

    • meow48 profile imageAUTHOR

      meow48 

      7 years ago from usa

      they are!!!!!!!!!! and i love bleach, did you see the movie? and of all you mentioned, i have seen them all, but i did not mention them due to the fact that i wanted to bring up others, it wasn't because i did not like them. Tsubasa Reservoir, made me cry. thank you for stopping by. i appreciate it.

    • Freya Cesare profile image

      Freya Cesare 

      7 years ago from Borneo Island, Indonesia

      From your list I love Bleach the most. And you missed Prince Of Tennis, Inuyasha and Tsubasa Reservoir. Those series are awesome! Hehehe

    • meow48 profile imageAUTHOR

      meow48 

      7 years ago from usa

      way cool, glad to be of help

    • LuisEGonzalez profile image

      Luis E Gonzalez 

      7 years ago from Miami, Florida

      My son is into anime. He even wants to start his own company. After reading this I think that I am finally beginning to understand its appeal.

    • meow48 profile imageAUTHOR

      meow48 

      7 years ago from usa

      thankyou crysolite, i appreciate your comments.

      katiem2, check out some of these, it will help you understand and you will probably enjoy it... fruits basket... Kimi ni Todoke... Wolf's rain... The artwork is incredible. the story line interesting, and the angst is there. this is not like american cartoons...

    • katiem2 profile image

      katiem2 

      7 years ago from I'm outta here

      My 14 year old daughter loves Anime, now I have a much better understanding about the allure of anime. Thanks :) Katie

    • crystolite profile image

      Emma 

      7 years ago from Houston TX

      Awesome hub with fascinating pics.thanks for sharing.

    • meow48 profile imageAUTHOR

      meow48 

      7 years ago from usa

      wow. some of these i will have to check out.... but kimi ni todoke is right up there as my all time favs....

    • Susan Ng profile image

      Susan Ng Yu 

      7 years ago

      You're right. Most people dismiss anime as "cartoons" and therefore are for kids.

      I have a lot of favorite animes in different genres. Kimi ni Todoke, Ouran High School Host Club, Hellsing, Darker Than Black, Great Teacher Onizuka, Hakuouki, Rurouni Kenshin, Code Geass, Death Note, and Kaichou wa Maid-sama! come to mind right now. :)

      Oh, I've watched a lot, and I mean a lot, of anime. Hehe. :D

    • meow48 profile imageAUTHOR

      meow48 

      7 years ago from usa

      thankyou for stopping by, like i said, i was motivated by a way of communicating emotions to my daughter... and i think, if people would just take a quick look they would at least broaden there horizons a bit. what is your favorite anime?

    • Susan Ng profile image

      Susan Ng Yu 

      7 years ago

      Wow, I've never met a granny who's into anime. Cool! :D

      I agree, anime is on a whole different level than cartoons. There's just no comparison. I mean, the characters are much more good-looking, the storylines are more developed especially in shojo, seinen and josei animes, and the voices! I love anime voice actors! Hehe. :P

    • meow48 profile imageAUTHOR

      meow48 

      7 years ago from usa

      i like howl's moving castle and spirited away, too. you might try watching a completed series, like wolf's rain... or... chronos crusade... worth the watch, really.thankyou, red baron for the comment. take care.

    • The Red Baron profile image

      The Red Baron 

      7 years ago from Australia

      I dont watch many anime series, I mostly like anime movies. my favourites are a lot of the miyazaki ones, the girl who leapt through time, steamboy, summer wars. Highly recommended!

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