Shellana

Contributing writer for The Artifice.

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    Latest Topics

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    What Western cartoons can learn from Japanese anime

    After flipping through television channels I once dedicated myself to as a kid, I noticed that a lot of the current Western animations do not use the medium to the extent seen in Japanese anime. Of course there are exceptions, but the majority I’ve seen are episodic, simplified, and primarily targeted towards children. If current Western cartoons can learn something from Japanese anime, what would it be?

    • It would be interesting, if in this topic, one went into the cultural differences between Japan and the Western world and how that contributes to the difference in animation- as well as the marketing audience of each. – szamponi 2 years ago
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    • I tend to view Western cartoons to be more dumbed down, not all of them of course, but a pretty big majority of them. Other than that most anime looks more visually appealing, not necessarily the characters, but the overall design. However it does depend on that cartoons and anime are you going to compare, and what particular aspects at that since Disney animation is very visually appealing and fluid versus the rather rigid anime one... – crispychips 2 years ago
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    • Well, if Western animation could learn anything, its probably that good writing and that serial shows can work. Avatar The Last Airbender did quite well. It also might be worth it to look into what the differences in target audiences. Anime seems to be going for more dedicated fans(fans who will tune in each week to catch the next episode). On the other hand western cartoons seem to just want to bring in the most viewers. I also wonder if we had more children's serial shows, would they be popular and can they be profitable in the same way that episodic shows are? – Schmerica11 2 years ago
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    • So many things! 1. Don't treat your audience like they're stupid. 2. Don't keep secrets for too long, or at all/don't be stingy. 3. Hire actors with energy & honest bones.Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra are great examples - but they aren't the first serialized animated series in the world, which is a false truth people believe here in the west. There are countless wonderful animes about important human trials.Animation isn't an easy craft. I find when people turn their nose on animated shows, they think back to being a child and how powerless it may seem from their current perspective or how mindless their childhood cartoons were. Some literature for children is awful - those are the ones that never stay in the pockets of your soul. We hate them for wasting our time. The medium of a story isn't to blame. How can you blame a pages of a book that bares terrible literature? Animation is beautiful. The west needs more story tellers. Stronger story tellers. Open story tellers.Anime is an important inspiration! Great topic! – yase 2 years ago
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    • I think the key fact here is that western cartoons and anime are apples and oranges. Other than the type visuals, they are very different. Cartoons are animated kids' shows. They might be very deep, well made kids' shows, but they are definitely kids' shows. In that sense, cartoons are a genre. Anime, however, is not an genre, it is an art form. Anime covers a wide variety of genres: action, romance, comedy, horror, psychological thriller, and more. And, while all of them are made in mostly the same way, they are distinctly different in most other ways. There are, of course, some commonalities that spring from the common cultural roots of anime, but for the most part anime is not a homogenous artform. It might only be fair, then, to compare cartoons and anime directed at children, as they serve a common purpose. Comparing something like Steins;Gate to Courage the Cowardly Dog would not really be fair or helpful; of course Steins;Gate is better, but not when you consider the particular fact that it wouldn't be good for kids, which is what's relevant here. – OddballGentleman 1 year ago
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    Latest Comments

    I usually try to enjoy dubs as much as subs, particularly because I’m a fan of some of the English voice actors. Some of them are hilarious and charming in real life, and despite popular internet opinion, many of them are dedicated actors (usually coming from a theatre background).
    Dubbing is a REALLY hard thing to do. The voice actors are acting in a vacuum so they can’t play off of others, they have to match lip flaps because the animation’s been made… etc. I think they get too much undeserved enmity, which is too bad because a lot of them really to try.

    Sub or Dub? Voice Acting and Authenticity

    I’ve never really seen Kishimoto as a very good romance writer.Honestly, I find the romance quite frustrating sometimes.

    Love in Masashi Kishimoto’s Naruto

    A great example! Especially since No Country For Old Men continues to be a beautiful analogy for America.

    Psychopaths: Cinema's Worst Critics