The art of anime


Growing up without cable, I didn’t watch the same shows most people did as kids. I was limited to a pretty wack channel called Qubo and another channel that was on every Saturday morning called CW4Kids that was by far my favorite. One of my favorite memories as a little kid was waking up every Saturday morning in time to watch “Dragonball Z Kai” on CW4Kids, thus starting my love for anime.

Sadly, a lot of people dismiss anime because of how different it is. People also seem to lump those who watch anime into one category of “weebs” (someone who devotes themselves to the anime culture). I’ll be the first to admit that there are a ton of people out there who are overly obsessed with anime culture and it can get pretty weird, but those kinds of people are a rarity. Not everyone who watches anime becomes completely submerged in that culture in an overly weird way, but I can tell a lot of people think along that line based on personal experiences, and they are truly missing out.

The main animes I watch are the fighting ones and I love the power that the characters have. The power that many anime characters have is similar to those in the Marvel or DC universe, but it’s more tasteful to me because of the animation. With today’s superhero movies that use live actors, it takes a lot of money and time to show the power of the characters through special effects, so their power is not seen quite as often.

With animes being animated, creators of the show can fill an episode with fights so powerful that planets and universes don’t even stand a chance. Plus, many anime characters look like regular people as opposed to how some superheroes don’t look human and are covered in high tech gear. Anime characters’ methods of getting stronger are usually the same across the board too, simply training and working out.

These two things make anime seem closer to real life to me and allows me to get sucked into the world I’m watching and think that it’s real for the time being. I remember watching an episode of “Dragonball Z,” where the characters were explaining how to perform a kai energy blast. Me, being completely sucked into the Dragonball world at the time, attempted to make a kai energy blast right alongside Goten and his brother Gohan, and it was a success.

I kid, but there are many times where I’d rather be training with Goku and Vegeta, or running through the Hidden Leaf Village as a young shinobi, and it all stems from how anime pulls me in and makes the outside world seem boring.

Another characteristic that draws me and a lot of others towards anime is how dark it can be. By this, I mean a couple different things. One way the beautiful darkness of anime shines is through gore. Bloody battles where limbs get chopped off, blades impale flesh and bodies are torn apart. All of these are part of the anime culture, and I love it.

The other way animes embrace darkness is through their characters and concepts within the shows. Many characters, even the good ones, have a dark backstory or a dark secret within them. “Naruto” is a perfect example of a show that does this. Naruto, the main character, is overwhelmingly good, yet he has an evil spirit trapped inside of him which gives him power, but he battles with it daily. His best friend, Sasuke, is an interesting character as well. He started off as a good character, but his longing for revenge on his brother (who killed their parents and clan) caused him to go towards a darker side, adding a complexity unlike any other.

The show “Devilman Crybaby” is also a success because of it’s dark concepts. To sum up this violent show, demons possess people worldwide, but there are a few who can learn to live with their demon and it gives them immense powers. The idea of demons possessing the world population isn’t exactly nice and rosy, but it’s intriguing nonetheless.

Anime is definitely not everyone’s cup of tea, but it’s amazing and powerful characters combined with dark storylines make it mine. Those who love anime are definitely in a subculture that is ridiculed today, and it needs to stop.