Next 10 Years of Anime Industry?

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Next 10 Years of Anime Industry?

Post by Tachyon » Thu Jan 14, 2010 1:25 am

http://www.generationmechjournal.com/20 ... Journal%29

The link above is an interesting piece by what seems to be an informed fan on the last and the next 10 years of the anime industry. I haven't kept up with news on the anime industry but it seems like the author of this piece is on to something. What do all of you think?
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Sureiachan

Re: Next 10 Years of Anime Industry?

Post by Sureiachan » Mon Feb 15, 2010 10:06 am

Frankly, it seems like Anime is going through its own "Dark Age" like comics did during the 80s - 90s.

In that period in comics, thanks to the grim & dark batman "Dark Knight Returns" and other well-done comics of that type, everyone thought the future would be grimdark and serious and it had to be adult and realistic. Similarly, anime seems to want to be realistic and attract the angst of teenagers with less bombast and melodrama and more "realism." The schism occurs where people are expecting this to mean "adult."

No one wants to be a fan of something "kiddy," it's not popular and it's not "cool." It's hard to admit, even to oneself when someone likes something that is considered "immature," unless it's so over-the-top immature it's purely made for comedy. As a result, more anime seems to be heading away from the "kiddy" good v evil, save the universe stuff, while heading toward the grey areas and "adult drama" type stuff. No one is saying that anime can't have those elements, but when you eliminate the fantastic, the bombastic, and the romantic elements (romantic in the sense of being cinematic, but not as over-the-top,) you're left with boring tripe (at least IMO.) As much as people don't want to be "kiddy," this isn't entertaining to a lot of people.

The balance has to be struck between the drama and the melodrama, action and character development. A line that was (some say) frequently crossed in the original Evangelion series, but was well-maintained for the most part. This leads to the other problem, being that nostalgic fans want a return to their Gundams and Mazingers and suchlike, but the comparisons with the original series are inescapable and create problems of their own. The solution would be to develop a new property, but developing new properties is tricky. This is a multi-issue.

Collaboration with American companies, touted in the article, is not the best of ideas, in my opinion. While it is a solution, this brings its own problems (lack of confidence such as with IGPX and a lack of understanding what makes an anime good and unique.) I agree that this might be the best solution for the development of properties, but when I look at the results and translations of earlier years, I tend to shudder and worry for that. Maybe I'm too concerned, but with few exceptions, I tend to really really regret listening to dubs.

The problem with co-development also lies in the fundamental expectation of Japanese and American companies. Where it seems that Japanese companies tend to want to produce a good show for a specific age group or on a certain topic, American companies automatically see animation as something for kids and either want to dumb it down or don't take the care to craft if correctly. Certain shows tend to escape this, but the majority of animations produced in America (or translated) are "kiddy-fied" despite a target audience and/or censored thanks to foolish and puritannical American law.

I think a good solution for a Japanese company might be to approach the problem from a slightly different angle, something that some companies are taking advantage of (Marvel.) They should start sniffing around producing an anime for American properties - established characters who might benefit from an anime-style makeover. They've already done so with a few instances (Batman, Iron Man, and Wolverine,) but can you imagine what they might do with something like Gargoyles? Especially because re-making from such a rich show would allow them to streamline and eliminate some of the retcons done to fuel later storylines.

But this being a mecha forum, of course, I'd rather they do a good old-fashioned super robot show, like a nice GaoGaiGar or Godannar to user more recent examples, or to reach further back, something like a Mazinger or even a Voltron.

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Re: Next 10 Years of Anime Industry?

Post by Tachyon » Mon Feb 15, 2010 1:25 pm

Thanks for sharing that. A lot of good points to consider. I agree with many points you raised. What indicators do we watch to see whether or not your predictions come true?
If you don't like the news then go make some of your own.

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