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Is Manga Better than Anime? -- THE VICE PIT

Gecko endings! Filler! Another never-ending debate! Are there times when the anime differing from the manga works... for the best?

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zaldaron March 24, 2014 at 2:48 p.m.

For me certainly not as the motion and voice make the animated show much better. I just don't care about art enough to get into storytelling where the focus is more on art than the story which in Manga and in Comics it often is. I come from novels..those things without pictures so my desires are different.

zeemod155on March 24, 2014 at 2:53 p.m.

Some Anime I just watch out of principle/loyalty. Part of me really wants to see the voice actors and color bring my favorite scenes to life. The other Part knows that sometimes my imagination has a WAY bigger budget than the animation studio's' do.

Destinyheroknighton March 24, 2014 at 3:33 p.m.

Manga all the way for me, they normally don't take that much of my time away. But I like anime to, when I have the time

sickVisionz moderator on March 24, 2014 at 5:38 p.m.

I generally like anime more. The anime would have to be an abomination for the manga to be better imo. It'd be like looking at storyboards for a movie and liking those better than the actual movie.

Also, the first Fullmetal Alchemist is like a super high rated and very acclaimed series. This idea that it's terrible really needs to die. I don't think I've ever seen such a swing from this is one of the best to this is one of the worst in anything like this series has gotten. It's probably just the internet though.

Destinyheroknighton March 24, 2014 at 6:19 p.m.

@sickVisionz:

Also, the first Fullmetal Alchemist is like a super high rated and very acclaimed series. This idea that it's terrible really needs to die.

Never going to happen :)

JiCion March 25, 2014 at 5:30 a.m.

That's kinda of a hard question, because each form has its downside.

- Manga can be too short per chapter or can drag a lot when it comes to exposition, battle or flashback. While it doesn't really bother when you have the physical copy, following a weekly manga can lead to being tedious due to drag. Furthermore, some mangas are not weekly, but monthy, or when-they-feel-like-it-y.

- Anime usually follows the source material quite well, but sometimes they make questionable omissions. Also... fillers... which are boring, uninspired, unfunny and bring nothing to the actual manga story.

If I had to choose one, I'd mostly go with anime, because I like the animated art style, the voicework and the music... which aren't present in mangas. However, I'd like to point out that I do follow weekly mangas that are ahead of their anime counterparts in term of story. Then again, like I said, some chapters take forever to come out.

Kino88on March 25, 2014 at 8:33 p.m.
This may be a very obvious example, however The Akira manga was vastly superior to the film adaptation, Yes I know that was a movie and not an anime serial, but still Just sayin,
flashback180on March 25, 2014 at 10:54 p.m.

anime for me ...

SpectroRaphaelon March 26, 2014 at 4:14 a.m.

Anime is just better on so many levels for me.

I love to read books, but manga does not provide the same room for imagination to play much of a role. All the characters are already designed and all the settings too, so there's hardly anything left for imagination to play a part in.

The anime also provides much more in terms of benefits. Motion always makes action much better, and the visuals as well. A great soundtrack also serves to enhance scenes, and voice actors also help to improve the emotional impact.

Sure a painting of a crying child can be moving, but add colour so you see the red in their face, add sound so you actually hear their cries and the emotion is greatly multiplied.

Fillers are not intrinsically bad and can be just as entertaining as the source material (ex: G8 arc in One Piece). And of course, if you don't like them, you can always do the so easy task of skipping of them.

I can understand anime that deviate from source material, but even then it depends on what is added. I still prefer the 2003 version of FMA to Brotherhood. The atmosphere and emotions from the first one were just so much more powerful.

zaldaron March 27, 2014 at 11:44 a.m.

@sickVisionz: It is only bad in comparison to brotherhood. Judged by its own merits it is a fine show. Its like comparing eva to the first ghost in the shell movie. Both are good, classic even but most people (I think) would say ghost in the shell is better than eva....simply because you can understand it without needing a PhD in philosophy...and maybe some acid...

sickVisionz moderator on March 27, 2014 at 3:45 p.m.

@zaldar said:

@sickVisionz: It is only bad in comparison to brotherhood.

I don't get this. Brotherhood has better fight scenes but to me, FMA original was the rare shonen show that actually didn't need to rely on fight scenes to be good. Better fight scenes is cool but not at the expense of a worse everything else.

@zaldar said:

Its like comparing eva to the first ghost in the shell movie. Both are good, classic even but most people (I think) would say ghost in the shell is better than eva....simply because you can understand it without needing a PhD in philosophy...and maybe some acid...

"Not I," said the cat. I'd question the "most people" part as well, especially based off of how super popular Evangelion is and remains compared to Ghost in the Shell.

Also, you don't need a PhD to understand Evangelion. Perhaps to try and draw some made up connection between the story and the majority of things that the creator admitted were basically just flavor text he got from reading about Christianity and thought would spice up the visuals or be an interesting name, but the actual story of Evangelion and the connections between the characters is pretty understandable on a single viewing. Plus it's entertaining, something GitS doesn't get until adapted into a TV series :)

Dream moderator on March 27, 2014 at 4:03 p.m.

Depends on how the creators do both adaptations, though manga would win in many instances since it actually does fully develop its plot to its conclusion without filler or leaving things hanging and anime adaptations of said manga are mostly used just to promote the series and get fans into buying the manga.

As for the age old debates regarding popular titles on what to prefer:

FMA- First anime series over Brotherhood and manga. The former doesn't make itself into a cookie-cutter shonen adventure title.

Evangelion- Manga. Takes the strengths of both the original (complex character depth) and Rebuild (less angsty characters) anime series and puts them in a blender which take away the weaknesses from both.

takashichea moderator on March 27, 2014 at 7:29 p.m.

Hey your question got answered in this Vice Pit!

Here's my take. I'm indifferent to both. There are strengths and weaknesses in both media. My brain is fried today from the RT projects for Winter 2014 and Guilty Crown.

AnimeManga
Pros
  • Music and VA makes it more engaging and memorable
  • Depends on folks: Fights are more enjoyable.
Pros
  • It's less likely to be censor depending on the subject
  • More fan's creative freedom - hard to describe this. I form voices and animate panels in my head.

Yeah, I'm crazy.

Cons
  • Lots of censorship
  • Lots of filler!
  • Exclusive Endings or changes usually ends in failure (IE: Soul Eater)
Cons
  • When tackling 20 pages (for weekly manga), I read too fast. It feels short.
It's best to binge on manga rather than reading 1 chapter a week and crave it.
Vapovile moderator on March 27, 2014 at 9:16 p.m.

@takashichea: O crud! How did I not see this episode? Well thanks for letting me know. Now...

Personally, I prefer watching the anime of a series if possible, since it makes it easier to visualize what the characters are doing. The addition of music and sound effects also helps to enhance the desired atmosphere that the author intended, where a manga is limited to only visuals. The one major downside to any anime adaptation is the inevitable filler arcs, which in most cases doesn't add anything to the main plot.

On the flip side, reading manga is typically less time consuming, so you would be able to read more of it in the time span that one would normally spend watching a 25 minute episode. Going to an extreme example, but I am sure you could read to the current One Piece chapter in 1/4 of the time it would take you to watch the anime, which I am currently doing. It's still a great show, I am just saying that it has a LOT of content to go through to become current xD.

As for my original question, I'd say it depends on the series being adapted that determines if it should strictly follow the manga or not. I remember that in the Soul Eater anime, they never once gave a panty shot of Maka, which in my opinion made her seem like a stronger female lead character than other attempts at female characters. When i read the manga, however, one of the first few chapters has Soul showing Sid a panty shot of her, which imo just detracted from her image. So yes, in that instance, I'd say that the anime did a better job. That's not to say that those shots are inherently bad, it's just that imo they make a female character have a weaker, almost comical image than the one they were trying to project. Murphy spelled out my thoughts about the Hellsing manga pretty clearly as well.

Gecko endings are also a pain to have to deal with, as Tom said, most of them feel rushed and sloppily done. That's why I like how Bleach decided to put their anime on hold until they have a backlog of manga to grab source material from, so when the anime does come back we won't have to deal with situations like the Bount or Amagai filler arcs. Plus, I can almost guarantee you that once Naruto and Bleach end, we are going to see a remake of both of them without the filler, and the will be better series for it.

zaldaron March 31, 2014 at 8:19 p.m.

@sickVisionz: Sigh....has the creator of eva admitted that there was no deeper philosophical point? Links please? If so my respect for him is at an all time low and the respect for ghost in the shell the movies raises even more. The entertainment value comes from the deep philosophy and associated thinking, not simply the blood, gore, or tired plots. Brotherhood was a better show because it had more of this (I didn't find the fight scenes better) and because the plot made more sense. All the bone stuff of the person that they tried to reseruct when they were made being the kyroptonite was incredibly silly, and the faux depressing ending simply for the sake of being depressing (as opposed to a larger philosophical point as in lain, eva, C, or last exile) is just stupid.

When I say most people would find ghost in the shell as better than eva I suppose I mean most people who treat anime like classic literature or artsy foreign movies rather than simple disposable entertainment. A group I always want to be larger than it seems to be. Sigh. But then we live in a world where no one watches cosmos and everyone watches honey boo boo. *grabs gun to shoot himself as he gives up on the human race*. Idiocracy here we come!

Destinyheroknighton March 31, 2014 at 9:51 p.m.

@zaldar:

Hey!! Don't call me and my friends and co-workers nobodies. I really do found it strange that I never meet anyone who watch Honey Boo Boo, I guess I lucky LOL! I like to treat Anime as both, like to be entertain and think (but I like being entertain more)

nishi99on April 1, 2014 at 5:21 a.m.

Anime for the most part. Especially Shonen like DBZ and YYH where you can see all the action on screen.

sickVisionz moderator on April 1, 2014 at 3:46 p.m.

It depends on what you consider "deep philosophical points". If the only deep thing you think Eva has to say deals with why things explode into crosses and completely ignore everything it's got to present to you about father-son, father-daughter, male-female relationships as nothing as well as self-worth, then yes, it's got very few if any points to make.

@zaldar said:

When I say most people would find ghost in the shell as better than eva I suppose I mean most people who treat anime like classic literature or artsy foreign movies rather than simple disposable entertainment.

Hard to argue with the logic that if you like Eva more than Ghost in the Shell, it's because you dislike classic literature, artsy foreign movies, and are simply into disposable entertainment.

I think a key difference between the two of us is that I like seeing relationships play out while you seem to value a lot of man's place in the universe type of stuff. I think Evangelion has rather profound things to say about relationship between parents and children and how that relationship can impact future relationships as well as how people view themselves. For me, that's what makes the world go round rather than staring up at the cosmos as you put it and wondering about humanity's place in the universe when we haven't exactly gotten it right here on Earth yet. More relationship based commentary is what appeals to me. That's why I love the first FMA so much more than Brotherhood. Izumi and her child, Ed and Al trying to bring back their mother then having to fight a pseudo-reincarnation of it, the ultimate bad guy being a strained lover. To me that appeals a lot more than say, a comical brother and sister relationship and some guy trying to transmute the planet (which I felt was just a cheesy way of trying to one-up what the anime did with it's big reveal being that a city had been transmuted).

Different strokes for different folks, but I really resent the idea that the more grounded one that deals with issues that impact the lives of everyone on an everyday basis is somehow shallow or less deep/meanigful than pondering about the cosmos, which to me ultimately doesn't really matter for life on Earth as we know it.

zaldaron April 2, 2014 at 2:54 p.m.

Really? I would say man's place in the cosmos is the only question that really matters. Does life have meaning or is it meaningless? How you answer that question decides how you answer most other questions. Certainly eva has things to say about all these issues and the other issues are also important. It is very good about saying things about parental and child relations and does so well. Ghost in the shell does as well, but has more to say about what makes one human which is something that can never be discussed and thought about enough. Neither of the full metal alchemist shows are big on either of this but I found the later one to have a less silly plot for reasons stated above.

Cosmos was a reference to a science TV show that hardly anyone is watching but that everyone in the US should be watching - since we live in a country where state senators want to write bills stating God created mammoths on the sixth day.

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