Almost Otaku: Is Shonen Worth Our Time Anymore?

Topic started by No_name_here on Aug. 18, 2010. Last post by djqj 4 years ago.
Post by No_name_here (856 posts) See mini bio Level 11
Staff

 Didn't Anno say something needing to bring EVANGELION back with these rebuild movies to save anime today?
 Didn't Anno say something needing to bring EVANGELION back with these rebuild movies to save anime today?

More questions from the sack of topics...

Gasero:  Do you have an anime niche? By that I mean is there a particular genre or quirk in anime that you are interested in experiencing more than any other thing associated with anime? Some people like moe, others like fanservice, slice-of-life, giant robots, shonen...
 
I’ve really made an effort to be bias free in my viewing of anime for this site. As I’ve said, I’m but the puppet of you Anime Vice lunatics, the executor of this community's will. Point me at what you want me to watch and I’ll try to take it on with an open mind. That being said, we’ve gotten some comments in the past about my viewership focusing mostly on shonen or seiten - - which I guess figures because I’m a guy? I don’t know.   I still think those classifications run a little too strict in labeling audiences. I’ve never been adverse to enjoying chick flicks as a rule. If it’s a good movie, it’s a good movie, in my eyes. Maybe I ought to mix things up by intentionally watching a shojo for Watch & Learn. Would ABENOBASHI be considered shojo?  I've got DVDs of that.

Aside from that, I’d say I just enjoy any series that surprises me and takes its story in directions no other medium would allow. That’s what fan service should really be about.

Wales: Are shonen animes and manga really worth our time anymore?

I guess…? I’ve been enjoying all the shows I’ve been watching. DEATH NOTE, GURREN LAGANN and FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST BROTHERHOOD are all shonen, right? Like I said, I’ve never been entirely clear on those definitions.  I know they’re all recent, at least.  Are audiences feeling like quality’s been dwindling as of late? A friend of mine who’s been a hardcore otaku since the early 80s says newer stuff’s ceased to grab his interest because they’re becoming too Americanized to appeal to international audiences. is that a common opinion? I probably don’t have a wide enough perspective to properly answer this, but what do the rest of you think?

And please, keep these questions coming! This is great. Suggest more topics in the talkback.

Tom Pinchuk’s the writer of HYBRID BASTARDS! & UNIMAGINABLE. Order them on Amazon here & here.

Post by FoxxFireArt (2,643 posts) See mini bio Level 25
Moderator
 You have been sticking with series that have high drama content. Not as if that s a bad thing at all. I do enjoy some good drama in a series. You could try something more in the realm of a comedy series.
Just shooting suggestions out in the dark. There is the Negima!? anime. The second season is the far better version. Don't mistake the two. They are vastly different. The Anime Vice profile is completely filled out for your perusing. FUNimation's video site has all the episodes out. Though, I would highly recommend the subtitled version. The dubs are littered with 'Valley Girl'-talk. Most of the better comedy animes that I know of are tricky, because they aren't licensed yet in the US. Myabe, My Bride is a Mermaid. That's on FUNimation's website now.
 
I'm seriously enjoying the new series FUNimation is streaming called Okamisan. That's a love-comady series, but all the episodes aren't out yet.

Another suggestion I could make. I know it's quite unreasonable to try and watch some of the larger series of the big animes. One Piece for example, that is in the 460+ range of episodes. At least for these articles.
What if instead of trying to watch the whole thing, you just try out specified arc from these kind of series? Sort of tasting the waters, as it were.
 
Often times, these series start slow and don't pick up until a certain point. In the case of One Piece, I would say a nice arc that would be a good jumping on point would be Sabaody Archipelago arc. That is a fourteen episode arc, very short by most shonen standards. It starts on episode 391 and concludes at episode 405. I believe all the episodes are available on HULU / FUNimation.
 
Another One Piece option I could suggest. You could try out the Feudal Side Story filler arc. This is a very short, two episode arc that takes place in an alternate world of One Piece where everything is like Feudal Japan. The great thing about them is that you don't need to know anything about One Piece to enjoy them. It's just a self contained and fun little story. Both episodes are available on HULU / FUNimation.
Episode 406
Episode 407

 " I guess…? I’ve been enjoying all the shows I’ve been watching. DEATH NOTE, GURREN LAGANN and FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST BROTHERHOOD are all shonen, right?  "

Death Note is more Seinen. Best to think of it like this. Shonen is PG-13 and Seinen is R. They target almost the same audience, but different age groups.
 
I'm looking forward to seeing what you select after Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood and Gurren Lagann. I'm not really interested in watching Brotherhood after the disappointing ending of the original series, and I can't stand the English dub of Gurren Lagann. Since I can't find an official source for the subtitled versions. I've just been mostly avoiding the discussion.
 
I only really use fansubs anymore for the anime titles VIZ handles. Luckily, my favorite animes aren't done by VIZ. So, that list is pretty minimal for fansubs.
Post by JD (46 posts) See mini bio Level 4
Abenobashi is supposedly seinen.  There is no simple rule for determining this, and sometimes the designations are irrelevant.  The only reliable way is to go back to the creative team and find what they said or ask them.
Post by sotyfan16 (1,341 posts) See mini bio Level 20
If Eva is to "save" anime then I'll go on an anime protest. Thankfully this won't happen as Eva would just cause more people to kill themselves (and companies don't want to lose customers). If you go with strictly a comedy series would you want the story to go somewhere are you curious to watch and learn about some of the bad qualities of anime? My suggestions for comedies are Sekirei and Toradora. Some series that are totally different that would be interesting to hear your reactions are Witchblade, Speed Grapher, Elfen Lied, Tenchi Muyo (any series besides Tokyo), and/or xxxHolic.
 
@FoxxFireArt:

Yes the second season of Negima!? is way better. I've only watched the dub eps of My Bride is a Mermaid but I like it (the ANN podcast tore this title apart and I was upset (and why the hell is there not an ANN Wiki?)).
Post by YotaruVegeta (584 posts) See mini bio Level 12
Eva already saved anime. Then it blew it up and flew into space.
 
Occult Academy. That is all.
Post by SamJaz (12,838 posts) See mini bio Level 20
@FoxxFireArt said:
"Death Note is more Seinen. Best to think of it like this. Shonen is PG-13 and Seinen is R. They target almost the same audience, but different age groups.
 
I'm looking forward to seeing what you select after Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood and Gurren Lagann. I'm not really interested in watching Brotherhood after the disappointing ending of the original series, and I can't stand the English dub of Gurren Lagann. "
 
1) Deathnote is officially Shounen. Hard to believe, but it was published in Shounen Jump so despite its dark themes, it's a Shounen.
2) The original FMA series was a glorified fanfiction. Everything from episode 14 onwards through to episode 64 in Brotherhood completely blows everything from the original series out of the water. I don't blame you for hating the course the first series took, but don't you dare write Brotherhood off because of how the first series ended. You'll never get to see Mustang lose his shit and torture Envy to death.
Post by sickVisionz (4,294 posts) See mini bio Level 24
Moderator
I don't think it's really getting any better or worse.  The super popular genres come and go.  In the late 90s to early 2000s it seemed like the super popular stuff in the US could all fit into super future intergalactic sci-fi space action (Trigun, Cowboy Bebop, Outlaw Star, GitS:SAC, etc) which isn't as popular as it used to be, but there's still plenty of good stuff released every year.  I also think there's a case where after some people pass a certain point in their life, they start to dislike anything new that's made whether it's good or not. 
 
You should ask your friend to define and give examples of this Americanization. 
 
As far as growing out of genres, that's entirely possible.  I was never a super fan of harem shows but I could watch them.  Nowadays, I can't stand them unless they make a point of trying to ground the characters's reactions and actions in a little bit of reality.
 
@sotyfan16 said:  

" and why the hell is there not an ANN Wiki? "

Make one!    
Post by Gasero (167 posts) See mini bio Level 9
I don't know who your otaku friend is Tom, but this person sounds elitist. If someone thinks shonen shows like Naruto, Bleach, and Once Piece are too Americanized they were probably bias from the start.
 
I'm not adverse to enjoying other genre in anime either, but typically I find myself not enjoying the themes and comedy attempts in Japanese animation. Therefore, I just stick to what I like best...action and mystery. I can't remember the last time I was interested in a slice-of-life, dating, or some other genre anime.
Post by constanzadellarosa (234 posts) See mini bio Level 15
Every genre has its jewels. If you are looking for something different try a high school rom com, like KareKano or ToraDora!; if you want to stick to shonen and/or  seinen try Dominion: Tank Police or Crying Freeman. These two may be old, but are good.
 
My question for you: how do you feel about live action adaptations (Japanese and American ones)?
Post by Count_Zero (344 posts) See mini bio Level 20
I'm not going to say that Shonen is worthless, but I will say that if you're concerned that most of the material in a genre (or medium) is bad, just take a deep breath, and remember Sturgeon's Law: 
 
"90% of everything is crap! " 
 
Yeah, that does mean that there's a lot of crap. However, it also means that there's still going to be some good stuff in there. For example, recently the harem romantic comedy anime To-LoveRu was licensed. That genre tends to usually be absolutely dire. However, my anime club showed it, and I thought it was absolutely hilarious! It felt like a modern Urusei Yatsura, but without characters that made Family Guy's characters look like pleasant people to be around.
Post by FoxxFireArt (2,643 posts) See mini bio Level 25
Moderator
@SamJaz said:

" @FoxxFireArt said:
I don't blame you for hating the course the first series took, but don't you dare write Brotherhood off because of how the first series ended. "

You see what I'm doing, now? Ya' see? This is me daring. lol
 
For the most part. I enjoy the first series, but I felt that the end was far from satisfying. I just did not feel as if it would be worth it for me to get invested once more in time, emotions, and money. Just for this to wind up with another lack luster finale. My original intent was to just wait till the series was completed before I watched any of it. That way if I wasn't enjoying how things were going. I could get right to the end quickly. Rather than waiting week after week for it to end, but as it came to the finale. I realized, I just didn't care at all. There are other shows I would rather watch that seem more promising.
 
@sickVisionz:
Why do we need an ANN wiki page? They are another anime news site. They aren't a producer of anime/manga. They aren't something that appears in anime/manga.
Post by SamJaz (12,838 posts) See mini bio Level 20
@FoxxFireArt: You will not be disappointed with Brotherhood. It had the most satisfying ending I have seen in any anime or manga. 
I enjoyed the first series, until people started turning into wood, and I found out the ending later, and I just laughed and read the manga, then watched Brotherhood.
 
The first series had an awful, crap ending. Brotherhood fixes everything in ways you never could've imagined. For a start, there's no Dante, Hoenheim's only children were Edward and Alphonse, our world doesn't exist, their mom isn't a homunculus, and Ed doesn't die at the end. Instead, he kicks more ass than Kamina. 
 
Trust me. Since you've seen the original series, start watching Brotherhood from the 14th episode, IE deviation point, the battle of King Bradley VS Greed in the sewers. Because you've already invested in the characters, your head will explode.
All you need to know is that Ed and Al didn't find that kid on the island, since he's not canon, and Tucker was killed by Scar. That's all you've missed, watch the 14th episode. If you're still not convinced, watch until the 19th episode. THEN you'll be convinced.
 

Post by FoxxFireArt (2,643 posts) See mini bio Level 25
Moderator
@SamJaz: 
I just can't bring myself to care anymore. The fact that it's 60+ episodes makes it so unwelcoming.
 
One of the things that frustrated me the most was the way Winry was just left out to dry in both the series and the movie. I hate it when a series develops character's relations and does nothing with it in the end. In the movie they even reversed the development that was made with Riza and Mustang. I'm sure they are going to kill Martel off again.
 
I just keep seeing this in my mind it having another non-end. They just waited way too long until they did this again. What's going to happen in a few more years? Are they going to just come out and do a different series with another different end?
 
These instincts have saved me from a lot of bad movies in the past, and they have only been wrong once.
Post by hitsusatsu11 (10,747 posts) See mini bio Level 20
Anno said "there is no anime newer than Eva"
 
@FoxxFireArt:

Though, I would highly recommend the subtitled version. The dubs are littered with 'Valley Girl'-talk. 
Also it has Chris Sabat's hilarious narration, which he does in his "Vegeta" voice. 
Post by SamJaz (12,838 posts) See mini bio Level 20
@FoxxFireArt: 
Right. 
Fullmetal Alchemist manga began in 2001 as a monthly manga. The anime began in 2003, around 24 chapters in. The author told the anime team to do a completely different ending, because she didn't want the anime to screw up the manga story with a bucketload of filler that would ruin the story. 
2009, the manga was in its final arc, and the Author gave the A-OK for a new anime, this time following the REAL story comes out.  The Brotherhood anime then comes out, this time aiming to be faithful to the manga.
2010, Brotherhood and the manga end within two weeks of each other.
 
Post by FoxxFireArt (2,643 posts) See mini bio Level 25
Moderator
@SamJaz: 
Uhhh, you might want to put some of that in spoilers. Tom is new to the series and actually interested in watching it.
Post by SamJaz (12,838 posts) See mini bio Level 20
@FoxxFireArt: CRAP.
 
Sorry about that. Thanks for reminding me. *Smacks head against wall.* Sorry, won't happen again. Fixed it now.
 
But yeah. Don't expect Brotherhood to be a remake like Rebuild of Evangelion. A good comparison for the difference between FMA and Brotherhood would be the difference between the Negima anime and the manga. They're completely different stories using similar characters. 

Post by sickVisionz (4,294 posts) See mini bio Level 24
Moderator
@FoxxFireArt said:
"
Why do we need an ANN wiki page? They are another anime news site. They aren't a producer of anime/manga. They aren't something that appears in anime/manga. "
Calm down.  He said he didn't know why a page wasn't on the site and I was suggesting he make a page that he felt we were lacking.  I can't see how it would hurt the site, but obviously we don't need it.
Post by FoxxFireArt (2,643 posts) See mini bio Level 25
Moderator
@sickVisionz: 
If you know it's not needed, why did you encourage him to make it? It's a news site. It's not a company that produces anything.
Post by sickVisionz (4,294 posts) See mini bio Level 24
Moderator
@FoxxFireArt:  Geez man, it was just a suggestion that he get to work and make pages that he thought the site needed rather than asking why they don't exist.  Never would I have thought that me saying that would get someone upset.  If you feel the need, just edit it out of my reply.
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