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Latest Topics

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(Possible) Depictions of Autism in Anime

With autism becoming a growing phenomenon, it has become large enough to get official as well as ambiguous depictions in Western fiction. However, the disorder seems to be largely ignored in anime… Or is it? Analyze anime characters who, while not explicitly autistic, exhibit symptoms and behaviors associated with autism spectrum disorders.

  • You may want to give some examples for those who don't know anything about autism. – RadosianStar 1 year ago
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  • I wouldn't say autistic, but there are anime characters that show signs attributed to developmental disorders. Speaking inaudibly, trouble grasping simple concepts, being savants in some way, impaired speech, etc. Good topic, especially considering the wide array of characters that make up the anime universe. – MikeySheff 12 months ago
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  • I would suggest clarifying what you mean by "autism becoming a growing phenomenon..." What do you mean by this? Autism rates growing in numbers; autism becoming apparent in popular culture? This can be misconstrued a bit, perhaps offer information that supports this topic. – N.D. Storlid 7 months ago
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  • Maybe provide a proper, medical definition of autism and expand on the characteristics of it. Perhaps research how the creator(s) of the anime meant for the characters to be interpreted. – SecretEve 3 months ago
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Published

What makes Japanese anime and manga so appealing to Western audiences?

There has been increasing popularity in the West over Japanese anime and manga, prime examples being Avatar: The Last Airbender and Naruto. Although the West is not a stranger to Japanese anime such as Dragon Ball, the shows and books that are being localised are portraying more Japanese characteristics than ever before. Even JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure, that has a dedicated following in Japan, has had a faithful adaptation with Western localisation that has developed an almost cult status in certain niches.

Since Japanese media has seemingly distinct quirks that distinguish it from normal Western media, it would be interesting to analyse why western audiences are craving for more Japanese media.

  • It would also be interesting to consider the format of animated programs versus live action programs. That would be to ask what difference is there between watching an anime and watching a western produced live program with respect to how one responds to it. – Callum Logie 6 months ago
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  • It might also be a good idea to see how western animation is taking lessons from anime. For example: how western animation has embraced the idea of animation made specifically for adult audiences. – AGMacdonald 6 months ago
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  • A good idea might be to mention how shows like Pokemon were so influential to younger audiences growing up with it who could then 'transfer' to other Japanese anime/manga series. For older audiences Attack on Titan has been a bridge for so many into the world of Anime and Manga. – Isaac 4 months ago
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How much can one learn about Japanese customs through Studio Ghibli's films?

Studio Ghibli’s films, even in their English dub, incorporate subtleties about Japanese customs. For example, When Marine was there presents a Japanese festival scene and Spirited away and Princess Mononoke both present ideas of gods and spirits. Even though all of Ghibli’s films are fiction, to what extent are true Japanese customs presented ?

  • Maybe expand a little more on what would be the main argument in the article? Will it only focus on Japanese culture or Eastern culture (then what is Eastern culture?), etc. – L.J. 7 months ago
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  • To extend Birdienumnum17's commentary, perhaps you can selectively focus on a specific aspect of Japanese custom and culture that anime insightfully represents. For instance, select relevant animes that lend some perspective about the concept of friendship in Japanese culture. – minylee 7 months ago
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  • Also, how are these Japanese customs being represented, are they being distorted, exaggerated, etc.? And what does this say about the orientation and commentary that Studio Ghibli is trying to relate through these films, if any? – Jonathan Judd 6 months ago
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Locked

How Does Anime use other Historical Periods for Inspiration?

In Anime such as Full Metal Alchemist, anime can be seen pulling story and other aspects from different historical time periods. This can affect they way the production is portrayed. Discuss the different historical time periods that Anime pulls from and how they affect the plot. story line, costumes, and characters. As well as how the original history compares to the Anime

  • It would be a good idea to compare the real history with that of the anime. – BMartin43 7 months ago
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  • It would be helpful to anybody who is interested in writing on this topic to have a list of anime that are set in particular historical periods to aid in research. Let me start by suggesting Mushi-Shi. It's set between the Edo and Meiji periods and the way the fantastical intersects with the mundane in it is very fascinating. – Lokesh Krishna 7 months ago
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  • It may be important to consider the different time periods that are being considered and what is used regularly in anime. – jhacket5 1 month ago
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Taken by jhacket5 (PM) 1 month ago.
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Queerbating in Anime

Queerbating is the attempt to reel in viewers by providing false hints that there is a potentially queer relationship. One example is Sound Euphonium, a series about high schoolers playing instruments where two seem to have an almost-lesbian ending.
Is it harmful to the queer community? Or is it helpful that at least we get a little representation? Do writers/producers do it because they respect us but have to censor themselves or because they really just want a variety of viewers?

  • This is an interesting topic. I think you need to look at the history of homosexuality in Japan, Yaoi, and Yuri. For example, the medieval Warlord had homosexual relationship with their favored Samurais to ensure their loyalties while legally married to wives. With such historical evidences, the perception of homosexuality will be different from Western point of view, so it will require some cultural studies to explore this topic – idleric 10 months ago
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Why is stupidity considered a heroic trait in anime?

Goku, Sailor Moon, Vash the Stampede, the examples are countless. In anime, being an idiot is a shorthand way to show that a character is all-around good or at least innocent. It’s prevalent enough to have its own trope: Lawful Stupid. It’s not limited to anime but it is most prevalent there. Why is this? Is there a cultural or literary tradition? Is it just a fun trope to play with? The dea is definitely worth examining more in-depth.

  • I think most of the time it exists to add a bit of comic relief, and also allows the characters to get into more silly situations because if the character were at a genius level, they wouldn't fall for traps and stuff that could put them in unique situations. – xFezziwig 10 months ago
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  • I agree that it is essential to the comic relief of the stories, but I think it also makes an important point. Our culture places a great deal of value on intelligence, but these animes propose that intelligence is not the most important part of being a hero. You don't have to be particularly clever to triumph over difficulties. Your values (hard work, friendship, etc.) are more important. I think this is an important message. – C8lin 10 months ago
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  • I think stupidity is also a good way to show how characters are human. At some point, we all make dumb mistakes so it's natural for anime characters to show these same traits as well. – seouljustice 10 months ago
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  • I've wondered this as well. For example in Naruto, the hero is incredibly powerful and has a good heart yet he is clearly depicted as not being the brightest bulb in the room. His struggle to be accepted and to overcome his learning disabilities portray him in an underdog light. Showing us that hard work and goodness reign the day. – lion 8 months ago
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WW2 as a subject of inquiry in Japanese animation?

I’d like to hear someone explore the fan interest in World War II, but rather how it crosses over into Japanese animation and graphic novels. I have noticed that there has been a growing presence of WW2-inspired anime and manga such as Kantai Collection and Girls und Panzer. I think it would be worth discussing the Japanese view towards their own role in WW2 and how this view has led to a different handling of the subject in Japan. In many anime and manga, one can see that there is a hesitation to portray Axis-aligned countries strictly as villains. Often times, I have seen Axis-countries being portrayed from a neutral position like in Girls und Panzer and Axis Powers Hetalia, or WW2-esque settings being entirely re-written and replaced by alternate settings like in Strike Witches or Sora no Woto.

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    Is Anime Becoming More About the 'Fan Service' than the Story and Artwork?

    Now a days the new anime that come out either depict two of the following: 1) Action w/ a romantic interest who barely has any clothes on or 2) A romantic interest who’s over-sexualized. Most of the time it’s a combination of both.

    The question now becomes, does the over service of ‘fan service’ take away from the anime itself (artwork, story line, and character development)? Or does it bring to the table something that we have yet to notice? (This I doubt, but just to cover the basis and everyone’s views).

    Examples of these would be: Free!, Food Wars, Keijo!, and Okusama ga Seitokaichou! !.

    • I think the question you need to address here is the time frame. Anime is becoming more fan-service oriented compared to... when? Fanservice has been a massive presence in anime, especially that oriented towards the Otaku crowd, for well over two decades now. Even widely regarded and relatively ancient anime series like Neon Genesis Evangelion (1995) included lots of tongue-in-cheek fanservice, even advising fans to come back next episode for "more fanservice!~~" I think a great watch for researching this piece would be the 1991 anime mockumentary "Otaku no Video," which takes a comedic look at the original generation of anime nerds... as well as the origins of fanservice. You could possibly contrast the contemporary shows you mentioned with older material: Did older series have as much fan service? Did they integrate it better? What makes it seem like fanservice is always increasing in anime? Are the *premises* for these shows getting more fanservicey? (I do have to say, I couldn't imagine Keijo! coming out 10 years ago, ahhahah~) – PeterThelonious 9 months ago
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    • Fanservice has always been present like PeterThelonious said. I don't think fanservice takes away from the plot as long as it's not the central focus. There's plenty of anime that incorporates fanservice but also has good storylines. Another example would be Code Geass – seouljustice 9 months ago
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    • While an interesting topic for discussion consider looking at it from a cultural perspective. Japan does not have she same Judaeo-Christian outlook on the human body especially breasts as can be seen in many of their gag gifts, video games, and Anime itself. They merely see the human body as that, the human body that's nothing to be ashamed of. So maybe try looking at this from a different cultural perspective and see if that helps or not. Hope the advice helps! – GingerSavvy 7 months ago
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    • While an interesting topic for discussion consider looking at it from a cultural perspective. Japan does not have she same Judaeo-Christian outlook on the human body especially breasts as can be seen in many of their gag gifts, video games, and Anime itself. They merely see the human body as that, the human body that's nothing to be ashamed of. So maybe try looking at this from a different cultural perspective and see if that helps or not. Hope the advice helps! - GingerSavvy – GingerSavvy 7 months ago
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