The Otaku Diaries Look at the FUTURE OF ANIME!!!

In what is going to be (at least for now) the last major article of the Otaku Diaries, the Reverse Thieves reveal how at least some fans view the future of Japanese Animation.

When it comes to understanding the path anime will take, I think it’s important to look back at its past, though without being confined by it. But then I’ve already addressed that to a large extent through my 2000-2009 series, where I first looked at the past decade and then gave some ideas of where I think anime will go and where I want it to go.

Instead, what really fascinated me about this Otaku Diaries post was the fundamental idea of how your current mindset about anime goes a long way in determining how you regard its future well-being. Do you think anime is “dying?” If so, are you still optimistic about its future? The sample size, as they’re quick to admit, is not a particularly huge one, but it still provides an interesting variety, and it doesn’t make the fact that every single person said that they’d still be watching anime in 10 years, or at least hoped they’d be able to.

Another area of interest that comes out of all of this is the idea that a lot of relatively newer fans don’t mature their anime fandom but simply grow out of it. I have no idea how prevalent this actually is, but the idea is that once they leave high school or college, they leave behind all the shows they watched and move onto other media. I’ve seen it happen on occasion; the person who once loved anime has moved onto live action shows a la House and Heroes, as they offer something “more” than what anime has, or at least what they perceive anime as having.

Anime and especially manga have a fantastic range of stories to tell and decades of history. They can be mature, they can be childish, they can be sexually offensive, they can be enlightening, and sometimes they can be all of those things at once. If you’re a regular reader of Ogiue Maniax, then I hope that I’ve been able to convey that idea to you. But apparently this idea doesn’t reach everyone. Sure, it’s obvious why it doesn’t reach the people who see anime as nothing but tits and/or toons and who don’t understand why we take our hobby seriously, but it does seem somewhat odd that the people who get into anime are able to shed it just as easily.

Or maybe it isn’t odd at all. Maybe, as anime has become more well-known to people and as kids have grown up on the stuff, it just becomes yet another thing they feel they have to shed as they grow older and more “mature,” the process we all go through when we’re trying to reach that realm we call adulthood. In that respect, it is us nerds who are the real anomalies, those of us who can loyally stick to our beloved medium and have enough passion to defend it or decry its flaws.

5 thoughts on “The Otaku Diaries Look at the FUTURE OF ANIME!!!

  1. Well said.. Yeah, I think Anime can be utterly enlightening/thought provoking. You can do things that are very hard with live action. Creating a believable world is easier if everything is created in the first place.

    I notice the power of animation the most when I see an anime go live action. The characters essence is much harder to convey “in reality”, where in the anime everything is deliberate. Real people emit too much other information.. like walking too casually, smiling a little unnaturally, and other stuff that tosses random interpretations in your head. For example I’m thinking about the death note live action main character vs anime main character.

    I’ve gone from watching all the american TV I can get my hands on to my anime fix a few times now.. I think they are just different. My source of quality anime isn’t as abundant as quality TV though. I enjoy quality anime more, but it doesn’t mean I can find as much of it.

    It’s easy to fall out of the loop, because there’s nothing telling us to watch it. It’s not even close to mainstream. I only become an addict when I accidentally come across something that reminds me of how great it is.


  2. Watching anime is essentially doing something for yourself whereas watching mainstream TV series is to have conversation fodder. Perhaps anime works the same way in the U.S. when it comes to teenagers, I wouldn’t know.


  3. I have the philosophy that people can’t choose to be otaku or choose not to be otaku; you are one or you aren’t whether you know it or not.

    If you’ve got friends who aren’t watching anime in favor of Heroes, well, maybe they were intended to be Heroes fans all along and just didn’t know it yet. :)

    I have my own predictions about the next decade of anime:

    Sazae-san will still be on the air.
    They’ll make some Doraemon movies.
    They’ll make some Lupin movies.
    There’ll be beat-em-up shows for boys, and transforming-magical-girls-shows for girls and boys who have gotten past the girls-are-icky age.
    95% of Japanese people will never have heard of 95% of the shows that are most popular with otaku. :)


  4. I don’t feel the need to ditch anime, unlike most people. Then again I keep finding new ways to keep my experience with anime fresh, like playing pen and paper RPGs, for instance.

    Also I do watch a lot of things. Good American shows, The Discovery Channel, Anthony Bourdain, The History Channel, heck, I’ll rot my brain on SpongeBob SquarePants if I get bored enough.

    And I read. And play some chess. And fiddle with computers. And religion.

    You know what, I do too many things to not get bored of anime.


  5. Pingback: A Not-So-Secret Santa Post: Genshiken, Or the Otaku Bible that I Read, but Never Watched « Rainbowsphere

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