Man, this sounds sillier and sillier the more I think about, but I figure I have to address it because… well… it seems to come up almost every time you mention anime or manga to somebody who isn’t a fan. I’ll confess that I even wondered about before I started getting more into reading and watching this stuff.
I’m talking, of course, about hair.
You’ve heard all the same comments before, I'm sure. What’s up with all the crazy colors? Does everyone have a dye-job? Why do so many characters have such crazy bedhead? SUch questions are usually followed by ones about the big eyes, too. Like it or not, that’s what “outsiders” tend to fixate on, first.
To be sure, there’s plenty of “wild styles” to be seen. Somehow, I doubt Rei’s going in to the salon every few weeks to re-apply the precise hue of light blue. Likewise, Goku has got to be using a solid bucket of Brylcreem to shape his do. Actually, you factor in all the Super Saiyans and DBZ is a show that’s basically about hair (thus making Krillin all the more pathetic.) The explanation I used to get was that, while it might be more realistic to give all these Japanese characters black or brown hair, it adds variety to give them blues, oranges, purples and greens, and so on.
Now that I actually think about that, I realize that's a really unnecessarily explanation. And it’s silly that it even needs to get explained in the first place. It’s not like crazy hair is exactly unique to manga and anime. What about Wolverine’s “feral” wing tips? Or Superman’s blue hair? Have you ever met a real human being with hair as orange as Archie's? And what’s up with the checkers on his temple?
That’s right, they’re cartoons. Of course they aren’t going to be realistic. They’re supposed to be stylized, they’re supposed to be colorful, they're supposed to be unreal.
I know you Anime Vice lunatics have had to deal with silly comments like these. How about you share 'em, here?