Filler

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Fillers in Anime - Good for development or Waste of Time?

The one common debate among anime fans is the quality and importance of filler. Most of the time filler is used in anime not to surpass its ongoing manga that came first so it is used to pad the story out so the manga is further ahead of development than the anime. But when it comes to stories that doesn’t have an original source, filler is often used to slow the pace down to let audiences get familiar with the characters and even build up its own lore. But these days audiences want a faster paced story at the cost of character development and world building. So should filler be excluded from all stories if it has no purpose? Or when done right, should it be allowed to stay?

  • The only time I've had/heard complaints is when the filler is a stretch for time, in which they can't provide character development without the manga's insight. Filler made for that reason, inherently can't have purpose. So it kind of answers it's own question: anything without actual content/progression can be categorized as unwanted. But at the same time, I'm not someone willing to sacrifice character development or world building for fast pacing. They're both undesirable. The handling of character development is most important and should always be present in order to remain engaging. – Slaidey 3 years ago
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  • Fillers can add depth to the characters and the setting if they are used right. A filler that does nothing to further develop characters would not please the audiences, so it would be important to make sure that it does have some point about characters etc. It can also be used to smooth out few points that were barely touched in the original works, such as characters that were "forgotten" or provide explanation to some plot elements. In short, the filler needs to "fill" the gaps in the original work. – idleric 3 years ago
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  • I feel that Fillers (although some are underdeveloped) can be used efficiently by making the series more in-depth. Not only can the audience see the daily events that impact the protagonist, yet also highlight moments in a Filler's life that affect the happenings of the whole plot. – AnnaliseAtua 3 years ago
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When Filler is Good

Sometimes, filler is dreaded. It’s a time when an Anime fills in a gap with unneeded material, usually to give it’s source material time to give them more material, and fans start letting out a groan of frustration. But it’s not always bad. Sometimes, it’s good. This article would explore when filler is actually good, and by good, we define it as something that, in a way, adds something to the fictional world or plot of the show.

  • I have been actually thinking about doing an article like this! Once it gets approved, I would love to write this! – Kevin Mohammed 5 years ago
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  • Nice idea! Yeah, I feel the same. I honestly don't mind filler if I feel it adds to the story in some dimension. It's only annoying if it seems like there is no point in having it. It reminds me of the trend of splitting the finales of book-to-film adaptions into parts or extending small books into long, saga-like movies. I didn't mind it in the case of the Harry Potter films, but there are other cases where it felt like just an obvious cash grab. – aprosaicpintofpisces 4 years ago
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  • I find that a filler episode is helpful when the show gives us something to contemplate, it helps explore the evidence through the characters' perspective and maybe offer a little extra insight. I've been watching an anime called Endride which has a filler episode, based on how the show presents its evidence on the issues of the show, I think its rather useful in that sense, but that's just my opinion. – RadosianStar 4 years ago
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  • Fantastic idea! You can also take into consideration what lines up with the manga (if one is available) and if said filler is actually filler since it's in the manga. – OldxSoul 4 years ago
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  • I think filler can be fun in more action oriented, or serious type anime. The filler episodes are when more silly or daily slice type of behavior can be seen from our heros/heroines. Example: protagonist usually in battle or tough situations casually goes to an all you can eat buffet. – bluishcatbag 4 years ago
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  • Filler is definitely important, and I think you can make the structural argument that filler can at times sign post the end of a dramatic arc or plot development and signal the beginning of a new one. Kind of like a space between two important arcs or as a signal of a turning point? What immediately comes to mind is the school festival in the first season of Code Geass - it serves as a break between "things going comparatively alright" and "things falling apart" and also signals the cause of the transition – phaasch 4 years ago
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  • Naruto: Shippuden comes to mind. Sure, probably 90% wasn't needed, but there were episodes that provided the backstories for various characters (including Kakashi and Itachi) that were important to the main narrative. Also, Season 5 is worth watching just to see Deidara and Tobi capture Three-Tails (if you feel like you have the time, that is). – OkaNaimo0819 1 year ago
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Filler Outside Anime

Anime is mostly known for filler, but sometimes, even books or movies, TV shows or anything else, can have filler too. This article would examine such instances and how they were received.

  • Did no one catch the obvious problem with this topic before they approved it? How is Anime "mostly" known for filler? A prominent trait of Anime is filler. But Anime is "mostly known" for filler," it's mostly known for crazy hair, loud screaming, school girl sailor outfits, and magic. I get the intention of the description, I just find the opening line misleading and poorly phrased. – Jonathan Leiter 5 years ago
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  • With Anime, filler episodes are more or less obvious because there's likely source material (manga or light novel) that it's being based on. For, say, Western, live-action TV shows, what would be a "filler" then? I think it would be important to first define what a filler episode is! As for the second part, I'd imagine most audiences don't like fillers. But in the case of a show like Gintama that's both innovative and meta, fillers can actually be a highlight! – txl 5 years ago
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  • I think better wording for this would be that most Anime is notorious for having fillers, most of which is uninteresting and bleak, rather than it is known for fillers. Then again, as mentioned previously, some do fillers right. So open up the discussion to which Anime had good filler arcs and why that was, and what needs to be done in order to make fillers more interesting and engaging. – andreacr 4 years ago
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