Harry P

Harry P

I enjoy reading and analysing literature, film, and animation. I enjoy deep analysis of WHY we like media and WHAT is good about it. I seek to extend this joy to others.

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    Latest Topics

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    The role of fillers in anime: Is there a way around them?

    Analyse the role fillers play in anime to protect long running anime series from running out of source material. Fillers in anime are used to prolong a certain stage of the anime without affecting character relationships or the main plot line. Typically, they are used when an anime series catches up to the manga it is based on, and seeks to give the manga time to "catch up". For example, Naruto Shippuden is a popular anime series that ran from 2007 to 2016. In that time 500 episodes were aired with 205 or 41% of them being considered filler. There are many examples of this (One Piece, Bleach, etc), which have led viewers skipping fillers in their pursuit of the rich storylines these series have to offer. Whether or not a viewer likes or dislikes filler episodes, skips or pushes through them, they are clearly a significant flaw in the process of anime series adapted from manga. Perhaps, it is better now? Or perhaps it is the same? What alternatives are there for writers when the adaptive material overtakes the original? Since in essence it is an adaptation, should it expand on its own? Or should producers of these large anime series go on hiatus to allow the manga to catch up?

    • This is super interesting! "Filler" happens in a lot of TV shows, mostly animated ones but not exclusively anime (though anime is certainly the most extreme filler to content ratio!). Would love to read an analysis of what it says about shows that need to insert fluff to fill out episode counts. Is it an industry problem? Do shows need to run longer than their stories are capable of carrying them? Or should everything be like the mini-series that are a few hours long and all plot all the time? Great topic :) – SBee 9 months ago
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    • I think this is changing with the internet. Now, that everything comes out instantly in seasons, it is hard to have filler. When i think of filler i think of Dragon Ball and Naruto. I wonder how long it will take until anime's start poking fun at fillers and self-aware that no one wants them. A satirical look on fillers if you will. lmaoo – Ninety-Nine 8 months ago
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    • A problem in a majority of anime. I first got fed up with Naruto because of the unnecessary fillers (but more importantly the flashbacks - do they count as fillers when done purely to increase episode length?). This topic should definitely be written soon. – rosewinters 8 months ago
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    • There is actually a pretty good brief explanation of why fillers exist by an anime itself, Gintama (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a4S9NuI6NKo). But as Ninety-Nine said fillers were more of a practice/trend of old anime. It'd be interesting to explore the importance of fillers before in storytelling and how their changes (or decrease in frequency) affect current anime. – Lyka Cali 6 months ago
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    • I am definitely the type to skip filler if I can, and I wish it didn't exist. However I think in the case of anime, it essentially has to. Anime has the mostly unique problem that it is an adaption of a written work (usually one that is ongoing). Also, especially with older anime, it is done in a week to week episode format. So if the show catches up to where the original current work is, it is kind of stuck. I personally do not think they should start creating their own "cannon" content. The shows should stick to the original source material as best they can. And there are few options other than filler. An example is One Piece (my favorite anime). They basically did away with filler all together, but instead pad out episodes and fights, making the already long arcs longer. This is not a problem. The problem isn't longer arcs, it's stretched out episodes with bad pacing. But the other alternatives are the anime just stopping until there is more material to work with, or filler. A lot of Netflix anime release in seasons, waiting until there is a new arc in the manga before releasing their next season. I think this might work better. But if you are a network releasing an episode every weak, filler may be your only option. As annoying as it is, filler is somewhat of a necessary evil. – Joel Stadler 6 months ago
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    Latest Comments

    Harry P

    You are absolutely right! Journaling is extremely helpful in many ways. My journal is a mix-mash of mindfulness and gratitude journaling with the occasional additional of a “mini analysis” of the book I have recently completed reading. I feel like my emotions can escape and I can more clearly see what is causing my stress as it is literally written on the page. In regards to my “mini analysis”, I find it extremely satisfying to write what I liked about a book and see where it takes me. Sometimes, it simply ends after a brief recap of my favourite scene or ideas in a novel, but other times it can transform into an impromptu essay which allows me to appreciate a book further and help me remember it for more than just its entertainment value.

    The Impact of Writing on Well-Being and Self-Development
    Harry P

    This article has filled me, and most of this comment section, with much enthusiasm and resolve to combat these various thoughts and personas that attack us during the writing process. I particularly resonated with your depiction of the Gatekeeper, which you describe as an archetype in its own right but with the ability to incorporate other internal critics in an attempt to stop the writing process before it even begins. Indeed, throughout my entire undergraduate I was in the intense vice that is this fear of writing. This was to the point that I would rather succumb to deeper (and darker) feelings of depression and self loathing than force myself to even THINK about writing. For me, it was only the looming threat of deadlines that urged me to push through and finish anything. I hope as I move onto my Masters I improve in that regard and I think recognising these “voices chattering in our heads” for what they really are can help remove the power they hold over us.

    A Short Guide to a Writer's Imaginary Critics
    Harry P

    Great article! I too am interested in alternative mediums of storytelling that can be incorporated into the classroom alongside (or in some grades replace) traditional modes of storytelling. Perhaps, as comics are both visual and literary, they can be analysed for both content simultaneously. What I mean is, literary analysis as well as techniques specific to the medium such as composition, colouring and art style, which all contribute to story and impact.

    Comics in Education: Benefits and attitudes