All Anime Looks Alike; Actually it Doesn’t
People who are unfamiliar with the breadth of anime are often only aware of the most famous shows. Series like Pokemon and Dragon Ball Z may seem ubiquitous, but the truth is that anime is as varied and nuanced as music. Stereotypes abound, but there is virtually an anime that can appeal to the interests of anyone.
From art direction to plot, characterizations and even the movement of the animation itself; it’s important to realize that the universe of anime and its cultural following is extremely diverse. Anime is home to every genre; from romance and horror, to slice of life portrayals, and anime fans can be just as unique.
Video Games Are Homies Too
While anime generally refers to animation created by Japanese studios, the definition can be more tenuous, especially as many aspects of anime culture tend to overlap. Japanese video games have a following that is quite prolific, and many of the most popular game franchises in the West originated in Japan.
The capabilities of modern consoles has enabled game developers to create hyper-realistic graphics, but many Japanese games still retain an animated feel, with art direction that focuses on exaggeration and distortion of reality. Games often feature cut scenes and pre-rendered footage that can be considered anime. In many cases, Japanese games are grouped into the same category as anime, especially in the context of conventions.
Conventions; Halloween For Big Kids
The popularity of anime has generated the establishment of conventions that dapple not only the Far East, but the West as well. The United States is home to both large and small conventions that are filled to the brim with exciting activities, costumes and presentations by people who work in the industry, such as artists and voice actors. Whether it’s just a few hundred attendees at a fledgling convention or tens of thousands at the largest established cons, all conventions are cemented by one common goal; to unite fans of Japanese media.
However, one doesn’t necessarily need to be privy to anime culture to have a good time. Anime conventions are akin to an extended version of Halloween. It’s an opportunity for people of all demographics to engage in their appreciation of fantasy, art, and the personification of beauty. Anime conventions often feature panels and events that aren’t specific to anime, and while Japanese animation, comics and games are the focus, you’ll often find people interested in Western comics, characters and other media, especially those who’ve garnered a spotlight in pop culture.
Cosplay; Be a Superhero, a Zombie, an Alien Unicorn
Fans of anime may take it a step further by seeking to make their favorite characters step into the real world. The dedication and effort some people put into their costumes is impeccable, and if you go to an anime convention, you’re sure to see a masquerade of hand-made costumes and even people who’ve taken on the personality of the character they’re portraying.
You Can Purchase Replica Weapons
There are various weapons used in anime, but one type of weapon really stands out to how it handles an enemy. From the Wooden Zangetsu Sword, Zelda Master Sword, Dragonball Z Dabura Irwin Sword, to the Masamune Sword – these swords are all unique and individual in what they can do. Fans of anime love collectibles and these swords are one thing that you can purchase a replica of online or in a specialty shop.
Fandom is Infectious
From fan-fiction to fan-art and even fan-dubs and fan-subs, the culture of anime fans is quite overarching. When you’ve enjoyed an animated film, game or series and you’re feeling melancholy about the end of the adventure, fan works may allow you re-live and re-imagine aspects of the source material in new and exciting ways.
While a lot of fan-fiction and fan-art is notorious for being lackluster in comparison to the original, with a bit of digging you can find works that feel quite professional and polished. People who are unsatisfied with a character’s development or the finale to a story can find solace in alternative contributions from fans.