Anime

I really like anime. I think my family thinks that I'm obsessed and maybe I am a little. I watch it regularly and I enjoy it and I'm not going to stop watching it. At the same time I'm not one for remembering every little nuance, episode, or character biography. I don't cosplay. I don't do fan-fiction. I don't hang out on boards talking to others about the next episode. I just like to watch them and enjoy the stories and get a little escape.

The one thing that does bother me though is the assumption that all anime is either A. childish B. perverse. To be certain the fact that it's animated, given how animation is marketed in the US, seems to indicate it's for children. However, the adult themes present in most anime make it decidedly adult. This is especially true due to the sexual content embedded in a great deal of the anime on the market.

I think that these two issues, childishness versus perversity go hand in hand. The fact that people in the US see animation as targeted toward children and then are suddenly faced with animation that has graphic sexual content or graphic violence are shocked by the conflict of ideas. So instead of embracing it like they would any other movie or tv show, they balk.

I think about shows like True Blood, where one of the main characters has sex with his ex and right near the climactic end he spins her head all the way around killing her. The next day websites and facebook are alive with comments from office workers and house frau's alike about what a shocking but great scene it was. Disturbing for sure, but worth it given the context of the show. Throw that into an anime format and you'd probably hear people complain about how disturbing and disgusting it was and you'd probably have some groups asking for such material to be banned.

Not that it doesn't happen with current movies and tv shows, just that the outrage would be less of a fringe issue and more mainstream disgust if the material happened to be animated. Sort of a double standard.