Anime Vice News

Almost Otaku: Has Anime Educated You?

And help me name this show I've forgotten!

 This is what I'm talking about. The world needs more playgrounds patterned after the human intestine.
 This is what I'm talking about. The world needs more playgrounds patterned after the human intestine.

Maybe this is a little out-of-left-field, but I got to thinking about it after talking with my friend and frequent collaborator, Mike Gallagher. He’s the same long-time fan who put the whole scanlation issue in perspective for me. He was telling about how comics are so pervasive in Japanese culture that there’s instructional manga for basically every subject you could want to learn. Manga for office protocol, manga for cooking recipes, manga for baseball skills… ad infinitum. It’s amazing how certain notions can trigger memories and this topic of edu-tainment brought my mind back to my youth in Asia.

 I really did feel like I'd learned how to rob a highly-guarded castle after watching CASTLE OF CAGLIOSTRO.
 I really did feel like I'd learned how to rob a highly-guarded castle after watching CASTLE OF CAGLIOSTRO.

I remember reading a series of hardback, text-book style mangas at the library and watching their accompanying anime on TV. I can’t, for the life of me, remember what the name of the series was - - so please help me out here if you can - - but it’s left unforgettable images in my mind. Basically, it taught children biology by imagining the human body as something between an office building and a giant mind. There was a hierarchy of characters residing in buildings within the gut, while hard hat-wearing workers (representing blood cells) toiled in long tunnels (representing blood streams.) Each episode addressed issues of nutrition, sickness and general health, contrasting the goings-on of these body worlds with the activities of the human children who owned them outside. In one episode, specifically, the boy ate too much junk food and subsequently got sleepy. The aforementioned workers were then shown intercepting these big chunks of food as they entered the digestive track and then running disaster control to keep the chemicals they released into the blood under control.

Weird, certainly, but memorable.  I don’t know, I’ve always had a special appreciation for well-done “edu-tainment” (and I emphasize well-done) the same as my appreciation for music-driven animation. Of course, it’s great to have something edify you at the same time it entertains you, but I think there’s also something appealing about using artistic abstractions to represent normally-dry scholarly concepts.  I could really go on for much longer about this but, to keep it on topic, I’ll keep it to asking you Anime Vice lunatics if there’s any memorable educational anime similar to what I’ve described above. Or is there any time you’ve ever watched or read something that educated you about a subject you were unfamiliar with. Just as a welcome side product.

And one of you resourceful Anime Vice lunatics has to know the name of the show I described above. C'mon!

-- Tom Pinchuk is the writer of UNIMAGINABLE for Arcana Studios and HYBRID BASTARDS! for Archaia. HYBRID BASTARDS! is available  here and UNIMAGINABLE is available here for pre-order on Amazon.com.  

hitsusatsu11on June 16, 2010 at 1:25 p.m.
Taught me about fire safety XD 
 
  
FoxxFireArt moderator on June 16, 2010 at 3 p.m.
Well, watching anime has helped me learn and improve some of my Japanese. The series Detective Conan taught me a lot in a few segments of forensic sciences, and Japanese culture and holidays, such as White Day.
From this series I was partially educated in Japanese Kanji. It's because of this series is why I wanted to learn to speak and read Japanese.
I wrote about it in some blog posts.
Kristantei Deduction Show
Test Your Brain With These Quizzes
Two More Quizzes
Another Two DC Movie Quizzes 

I wish I could help you out, but I've never heard of the series you are talking about.
Kuma_From_Argentinaon June 16, 2010 at 5:48 p.m.
I learned a lot of Cooking basic in Yakitake Japan...
hitsusatsu11on June 16, 2010 at 10:53 p.m.
@FoxxFireArt: Those DC quizzes are freakin intense.
FoxxFireArt moderator on June 16, 2010 at 11:57 p.m.
@hitsusatsu11: 
Why do you think I love them? =D
 
I spent a long time working those suckers out to solve them and see how they made sense, and I loved every minute of it. I can't describe the rush I get when I work these puzzles out myself before I've been given the answer, and find out I'm right.
hitsusatsu11on June 17, 2010 at 12:06 a.m.
@FoxxFireArt: The one with the snake, I knew the word was Hebi I just never thought to think of the puzzle like that.
constanzadellarosaon June 17, 2010 at 6:57 a.m.
I own a copy of a meta-manga by Akira Toriyama called Hettapi Manga Kenkyujo, basically a manga about drawing manga. It's very old (1985) but really entertaining and useful (one of my cousins leared a lot with it!).
Addfwynon Sept. 10, 2010 at 1:18 a.m.
*casts Thread Necromancy Level 1* 
 
Yakitate actually was quite interesting, as I do a lot of baking as a hobby.   
 
Of course, manga/anime help improve my Japanese, though I've reached a point where just talking to people is better for my [conversational] Japanese than watching drama or anime are.  Manga is still very useful to work on my reading, especially some of the more wordy/lengthy series like Death Note or MPD Psycho.

Dig Deeper into Japan

The Island nation of Far East Asia, and the setting for the vast majority of Anime and Manga.

Edit/View the Wiki
Hit the Forums (125 Posts)
Add/View Images (8 Images)
Watch Some Videos (4 Videos)
Pokemon Black and White Looks Delicious in Motion

First video of a Pokemon battle in Black and White.

Comment & Win: One Piece Vol. 52, 53

Time for a giveaway folks! Now, act civil, we don't want anyone to get hurt in the mad rush to win.

Beginner's Guide to FLCL

Gainax's madcap, surrealist anime, broken down for new viewers.

Ballz Deep

Steve gets intimately close to Dragon Ball Z, for science!

Top 3 Awful Anime Dubs

Grit your teeth and get your ear plugs ready cause this week we're taking on the three most amazingly bad dubs of all time!

Does Anime Get Too 'Niche?'

THE VICE PIT. Sometimes, it feels like watching somebody else's home movies, doesn't it?

Anime Caption Contest! -- 8/18/14

Let's party hard at the beach while it's still summer!

Was KILL LA KILL Actually Any Good?

THE VICE PIT. With a few months of hindsight, Sam and Tom have very different takes on Trigger's bold series.

I'm Trying Really Hard to Like ALDNOAH ZERO #2

...but it's sooooo self-serious!

Listen to the JOJO'S BIZARRE ADVENTURE Rap!

Richie Branson continues his weekly anime-inspired rap series with the hip-hop tribute "Stand-Up."

JOJO'S BIZARRE ADVENTURE : STARDUST CRUSADERS #20 -- Special Review

Eat poo... and die?

Community Spotlight 8/15/2014

While many were preparing for the first week of the new school year, these users were deep into this week in anime.

NOBUNAGA CONCERTO #1&2 -- Special Review

A spectacle like this only comes once in a great while.

Was KILL LA KILL Actually Any Good?

THE VICE PIT. With a few months of hindsight, Sam and Tom have very different takes on Trigger's bold series.

I'm Trying Really Hard to Like ALDNOAH ZERO #2

...but it's sooooo self-serious!

Anime Caption Contest! -- 8/18/14

Let's party hard at the beach while it's still summer!

Does Anime Get Too 'Niche?'

THE VICE PIT. Sometimes, it feels like watching somebody else's home movies, doesn't it?

Community Spotlight 8/15/2014

While many were preparing for the first week of the new school year, these users were deep into this week in anime.

JOJO'S BIZARRE ADVENTURE : STARDUST CRUSADERS #20 -- Special Review

Eat poo... and die?

Excellent Anime You Might've Missed -- BREAK UPS

It's a lot more than 'slice of life.'

Listen to the JOJO'S BIZARRE ADVENTURE Rap!

Richie Branson continues his weekly anime-inspired rap series with the hip-hop tribute "Stand-Up."

Mandatory Network

Submissions can take several hours to be approved.

Save ChangesCancel