June 7, 2020
Before falling in love with anime, I used to tease my childhood friend for liking Naruto. When she would come over on Saturdays, she would always make her way to the TV at 8 p.m. to turn the channel to Adult Swim so she could watch it. It wasn’t until I watched Black Butler for the first time in high school that I was finally able to say, “ohhh, I get it now.” The more I watched anime over time, the more I discovered reasons to love it. Unfortunately, like with most shows I watch, I also found a few things I dislike about anime.
Anime music never fails to draw me in immediately, especially the opening song. Though I thought it would annoy me, I enjoy how the opening and closing songs change once the next section of the plot begins. The lyrics and beats of the songs correlate perfectly with the growth of the characters, which inspires me to reflect on how far the characters have come.
Some anime that have my favorite songs are Death Note, Attack on Titan, Tokyo Ghoul, and Assassination Classroom.
Hate: Talking too much during fight scenes
A lot of anime has this component of having two enemies pause the fight to talk about what they are going to do to their opponent and to explain their power. I was actually watching Fairy Tail a couple of days ago and Natsu was fighting Cobra. For some reason, they both kept mentioning what Cobra’s power was. Since I was expecting an epic fight scene, I got annoyed that it was being put on hold so the characters could keep reminding the audience of Cobra’s strength. Too much talking during fight scenes makes me lose interest in the conflict because it slows down the progression of the episode. If the characters are not cracking jokes or having a deep, meaningful conversation during a fight, I would rather just see punches consistently being thrown. There will be plenty of time for the characters to flex once they’ve won the fight.
Love: Art Style
Though anime is known for having characters with big, spiky, colorful hair, there are so many different anime art styles. For example, characters from Cowboy Bebop are designed completely different from One Piece characters. I’m always excited when a new character is introduced, not just for what they will bring to the story, but for how they will look. What will they wear? Will they have a scar? Of course, the art style for the setting and the scenes of anime is beautifully done as well. The intro for season two of Tokyo Ghoul has great transitions and interesting images that set a sad, yet beautiful tone to represent the season’s vibe. Also, I love getting those ads on Crunchyroll that show the creators drawing out their characters. They help me learn about the work behind the anime and help me gain more of an appreciation for the artists.
Hate: Drawn out conversations
I’ve watched enough anime to know that the long pauses are meant to add drama; however, at times I think it can be overdone. Sometimes I think the characters could be talking a lot more, especially in serious moments rather than saying each other’s names to break the silence.
Love: The determined character
As someone with anxiety mixed with a dose of self-doubt, I am always looking for sources of inspiration. One of the ways I have found inspiration is through determined anime characters. The determined anime character often has a very difficult goal or dream to reach. No matter how many steps it takes or how much people doubt them, they stick with what they want to achieve and do whatever it takes to get there. There are many characters like this, but the ones that resonate with me the most are Gon from Hunter X Hunter and Luffy from One Piece.
Love/Hate: Overly Sexualizing characters
I’ll end this list with an aspect of anime that I have mixed feelings about. When it comes to sexualizing characters by giving them a sparkly chest or by making a girl’s boobs huge, there are times where it makes sense and other times where I roll my eyes. An anime called Food Wars is the first one that comes to mind when I’m reflecting on this aspect. This is one of those amines that people need to watch with headphones because anytime a judge really likes the food presented to them, their clothes fall off and they moan, very loudly. This then leads to a cutaway showing some sort of metaphor to explain what the food tastes like. It’s very bizarre and I didn’t know how to react when it first happened. I’ve come to like the cutaways since I am a fan of metaphors and I love the visuals in those scenes. The over-the-top reactions can sometimes be funny and as a whole, I enjoy the anime because I like seeing them compete against each other to make the best dish. But the use of erotic or sexual images to add to a story can grow tiring for me. The same thing applies to shows like Game of Thrones or any show on Netflix that feels the need to have a sex scene added in right away just to spice things up. This formula may work for views, so I understand why an anime would choose to exaggerate boobs or make a character’s breath sound more seductive than it needs to be. I just don’t find it appealing. Some adults choose to have sex and some girls have big boobs; that doesn’t mean that I need to be reminded of these facts in every scene when all I really want is a good story.
Edited by Morgan Mitchell