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Post Reply Are Male Protagonist Shows Extinct?
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Posted 1/10/18 , edited 1/10/18
Maybe.....

Keep in mind that Anime is not made for an American or World audience, it's made for a Japanese audience, if it sells elsewhere great, but it's not the primary goal. The primary goal of all anime is to SELL STUFF IN JAPAN, and Japan is watching what makes the money very carefully. They've been having economic issues for a very long time now and the population is aging ( http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/japan-population/ . ) So as the female population of Japan starts spending more on what has long traditionally been a male's market you're going to see a shift, cause the rule is follow the money.

Plus remember Crunchyroll, while a wonderful service, is NOT all new anime. They buy based on their own market and they're catering to those tastes.
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Posted 1/10/18 , edited 1/10/18

xxJing wrote:
Actually in this case it does matter. The reason is quite a few anime are created with the intent of being a form of escapism, especially for men. It's not so much about being able to relate to the main character, as much as it is being able to fit into the main character's shoes. For my point, each of those things is different.

Relating to the main character would mean you consider him his own person but are able to sympathize with his struggles, you can theoretically do this with a female character as well.

Putting yourself into the main character's shoes however, when you are a straight male, requires the main character to also be a straight male. You are essentially 'escaping' into this alternate universe, and you need a good vessel to carry your consciousness. The reason that there have been a lot of alternate world shows, is because it is very literally escapism. The story itself is about a male who leads a mundane life, where no one appreciates him, getting thrust into a world of adventure and magic where many people appreciate his worth. It's a perfect 1 to 1 connection with the reader.

As an example, Log Horizon is the ultimate escapism anime for me. Shiroe is nearly the perfect vessel for me to escape into. I subscribe to most of his philosophies, he has only a few very capable women who really desire him with the rest of the cast being a strong circle of friends with their own strengths and weaknesses, and the people in his life accept him for both his strengths and his weaknesses by filling his gaps.


I say bullshit. I sympathize with female characters just fine. Hidamari sketch isn't escapism, and the aforementioned CCS isn't unrelatable because the main character is female.

I can enjoy stories with gay lead characters and still relate to how it feels to love, lose, and the struggles. I don't need to be in a wheelchair to feel for the creator of angelic layer (not the manga artist, but the in story creator). Blood + is awesome escapism and I cheer for Saya to win.

Anime is a medium, not a genre, and our abilities to sympathize and feel empathy are not limited to needing a carbon copy of who we are, especially not physically.
xxJing 
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Posted 1/10/18 , edited 1/10/18

serifsansserif wrote:


xxJing wrote:
Actually in this case it does matter. The reason is quite a few anime are created with the intent of being a form of escapism, especially for men. It's not so much about being able to relate to the main character, as much as it is being able to fit into the main character's shoes. For my point, each of those things is different.

Relating to the main character would mean you consider him his own person but are able to sympathize with his struggles, you can theoretically do this with a female character as well.

Putting yourself into the main character's shoes however, when you are a straight male, requires the main character to also be a straight male. You are essentially 'escaping' into this alternate universe, and you need a good vessel to carry your consciousness. The reason that there have been a lot of alternate world shows, is because it is very literally escapism. The story itself is about a male who leads a mundane life, where no one appreciates him, getting thrust into a world of adventure and magic where many people appreciate his worth. It's a perfect 1 to 1 connection with the reader.

As an example, Log Horizon is the ultimate escapism anime for me. Shiroe is nearly the perfect vessel for me to escape into. I subscribe to most of his philosophies, he has only a few very capable women who really desire him with the rest of the cast being a strong circle of friends with their own strengths and weaknesses, and the people in his life accept him for both his strengths and his weaknesses by filling his gaps.


I say bullshit. I sympathize with female characters just fine. Hidamari sketch isn't escapism, and the aforementioned CCS isn't unrelatable because the main character is female.

I can enjoy stories with gay lead characters and still relate to how it feels to love, lose, and the struggles. I don't need to be in a wheelchair to feel for the creator of angelic layer (not the manga artist, but the in story creator). Blood + is awesome escapism and I cheer for Saya to win.

Anime is a medium, not a genre, and our abilities to sympathize and feel empathy are not limited to needing a carbon copy of who we are, especially not physically.


I thought I was pretty clear, you must have just skimmed over my post.

I never said you can't sympathize with a female character. I simply said that it's hard for a straight male to project themselves on to a female character for the purposes of escapism.

Also you seem to not understand the concept of escapism. Escapism is feeling as if you yourself are part of the fictional world. Many people play video games to 'escape' from reality, it's the reason quite a few video games have silent protagonists / character creation.

So while you can watch CCS and sympathize with Sakura. Unless you fantasize about being a 10 year old girl, you aren't watching CCS for the purposes of escapism. People, especially men with mundane real lives, watch shows like SAO, Infinite Stratos, Log Horizon, Overlord, Smartphone, etc... so that they can feel like THEY are part of that story, like THEY have been thrown into a world of magic and adventure and have a bunch of hot chicks clamoring for them.


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Posted 1/10/18 , edited 1/10/18
I I can easily tell you that for the past few years we got some of the most boring and annoying female character of all time. I KNOW that these thing are in anime for a LONG...time, it’s just way worst nowadays.

1. High pitched voice, if the voice actor are like that irl i’d kill them, i NEVER knew a person in my entire life someone with a voice this pitched, even for 10 year old or even younger.

2. When there’s a girl in a realistic anime (slice of life or whatever) is HAS to be a schoolgirl.

3. LOLLLLIIIIS. The worst thing in history of humanity before Cancer and Aids.


I have no problems with girls in anime. But when they have one of these 3 thing. It just ruins the whole thing, it mostly makes me stop the serie in general.
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Posted 1/10/18 , edited 1/10/18
I don't agree that escapism is always about projecting yourself onto the protagonist. To me escapism can be anything you do to get away from everyday responsibilities or problems. Playing games and watching movies and TV allow me to just forget about everyday life. I honestly wouldn't want to be in the shoes of a lot of the protagonists in the media I like. Their problems are usually worse than mine and they are often in mortal danger.
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Posted 1/10/18 , edited 1/10/18
If we're talking about one of my all time favorite anime, /girls-und-panzer, or shows with comparable appeal like Sailor Moon or this season's /katana-maidens-toji-no-miko, I would liken the experience to watching a daughter play a sport, or, say, being a fan of a female Olympic figure skater and watching her win gold. I don't need to feel like I'm a part of that world to get great enjoyment out of it. /a-place-further-than-the-universe isn't an action show, but it has the same appeal of seeing the girls reach their goals. /non-non-biyori or /laid-back-camp are just comfy and relaxing at the end of the day.

The following is adapted from a reply I wrote in a now-deleted thread on MAL, which was complaining about Toji no Miko:


Rayzer wrote:
But these "things" are catered to those creeps liking underage girls because they can't do it in real life.


Daniel_Naumov wrote:
I simply fail to fathom where do they pull out the viewers to justify it financially. This is not art, this is some filthy show to make money. Okay. What kinda Japanese social outcast without many prospects in life would be willing to see this? ALL OF THEM? 33% of the society??

This partially explains it:
https://gaikokumaniakku.wordpress.com/2014/02/03/space-dandy-episode-5-moe-is-the-longing-for-fatherhood/

You can argue that it's pathetic and unhealthy, I won't resist. I also think it's clear that the article is too optimistic about viewers' pure motivations - though it varies from person to person, the moe-anime fanbase in general seems to exhibit a blend of both the protective caring instinct and predatory lust, and most shows include some form or other of sexual fanservice. Of the moe fans I know, some like the fanservice and others complain about it, because it's not what they're watching for.

My most anticipated show of the year is Hakumei to Mikochi, which has basically no sex appeal - just look at the characters. https://www.google.com/search?q=hakumei+to+mikochi&tbm=isch I'd classify the manga under "comfy and relaxing."

I wrote this about /brave-witches, which is similar to Toji no Miko, though I'm currently not optimistic that Toji no Miko will be able to make me cry like the Witches series and Girls und Panzer did.


nDroae wrote:
The alien Neuroi and the war against them are merely the setting; the primary focus is on the girls' interactions and growth. As a fan of the moé military gimmick, I've found that I very easily get emotionally invested in the girls' struggles and triumphs.

A surprisingly comparable franchise, which I also started watching in 2016, is Sailor Moon (1992). Despite having polar opposite target audiences, both shows appeal similarly to me with their alternation between cute slice-of-life and magic-fueled fantasy action against evil foes. The action is better in Witches, thanks in large part to 3D CG, but that's not paramount in either case - like a grandma watching Hallmark movies, I simply love the characters and love seeing them succeed. Plus, thankfully, the Witches never need a man to show up and rescue them with a rose dart. (Not to denigrate Sailor Moon; overall I've taken to it even more than to Strike Witches.) These reliably satisfying shows mainly offer stories that are simple, even cookie-cutter, but effective. Many episodes are self-contained, focusing on one or two of the girls without advancing any overarching plot. To me, that "filler" is the main draw of both shows.


Why so many cute girl shows this season? Most seasons there actually aren't many moe shows to choose from (believe me, I keep track closer than you do), but there are always more in winter. Winter 2017 cute girl shows:

/miss-kobayashis-dragon-maid
/gabriel-dropout
Urara Meirochou
/kemono-friends
/nyanko-days
/bang-dream
Schoolgirl Strikers
/minami-kamakura-high-school-girls-cycling-club
/idol-incidents
Little Witch Academia (Trigger, not really a moe show)
Kirakira☆Precure A La Mode (made for shoujo market)
/interviews-with-monster-girls (sort of a playful innocent harem)

I asked, "Is winter just the CGDCT season now? Because the workers are extra-miserable?"

Anise_Punter replied, "No, it's because they're comparatively cheap to produce, and the studios save their big budgets for spring when the highest number of people are watching."

Tip: don't quote this entire long post
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Posted 1/10/18 , edited 1/10/18

xxJing wrote:

I thought I was pretty clear, you must have just skimmed over my post.

I never said you can't sympathize with a female character. I simply said that it's hard for a straight male to project themselves on to a female character for the purposes of escapism.

Also you seem to not understand the concept of escapism. Escapism is feeling as if you yourself are part of the fictional world. Many people play video games to 'escape' from reality, it's the reason quite a few video games have silent protagonists / character creation.

So while you can watch CCS and sympathize with Sakura. Unless you fantasize about being a 10 year old girl, you aren't watching CCS for the purposes of escapism. People, especially men with mundane real lives, watch shows like SAO, Infinite Stratos, Log Horizon, Overlord, Smartphone, etc... so that they can feel like THEY are part of that story, like THEY have been thrown into a world of magic and adventure and have a bunch of hot chicks clamoring for them.




I guess you're right. I just don't "get" escapism. And upon retrospect, it's very much not a reason why I watch anime. The confusion seems to be that the OP is complaining about not enough male characters, which I feel is definitely wrong, and have listed many that have male leads, (which you have also listed a few). In context of the subject at hand it seemed you were in agreement that there are less male leads.

What I think is going on is that the OP is looking for your aforementioned escapism, and a very particular sort, which he's finding lacking. (even within the field of fantasy there are still a plethora of male leads. Just not his style). Of this, I can concede because it's a matter of taste and viewing choice, not actual lack.

If you want to argue that anime is solely about escapism, I still hold to my point that anime is a medium, not a genre as many people seem to have the misconception about, (and the industry's choice to jump on ever passing fad and clone the ever loving hell out of it would make it seem).

There's still no real lack unless what's really being said is "I can't find anything I wish to watch", to which nobody can help.
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Posted 1/10/18 , edited 1/10/18

timmeh123 wrote:

I don't like men


I'd rather have a male protagonist, since I am obviously the same sex, and I can relate to "him" on a personal level


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Posted 1/10/18 , edited 1/10/18
No, male leads in anime are not going anywhere. Other posts have already highlighted the shows this season and recent seasons with male protagonists. I will say that this season there are an unusual number of "cute girls doing X" shows, but that's just an anomaly for this season. Many shows with female leads are targeted at a male audience anyway, such as most of the moe stuff that I mentioned before (although if you don't like those moe slice of life shows, I'm right there with you).
I'd encourage you not to write off all shows with female main characters though-you'd be missing a lot of great stuff!
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Posted 1/10/18 , edited 1/11/18
Hey everyone!

Thanks for all of the replies, and I enjoyed reading what you all wrote!

I do want to apologize if I seemed like I was attacking or I was against shows that had female leads. I don't have a problem with that at all. I've come to realize that I am at fault for making assumptions about shows containing female leads. It is ridiculous that I would limit my shows for such a petty reason, and I feel stupid for doing so.

Again, sorry if my writing came across in a negative or obstructive way.

Thank you!

- Tim
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Posted 1/10/18 , edited 1/11/18

timmeh123 wrote:

I do want to apologize if I seemed like I was attacking or I was against shows that had female leads. I don't have a problem with that at all. I've come to realize that I am at fault for making assumptions about shows containing female leads. It is ridiculous that I would limit my shows for such a petty reason, and I feel stupid for doing so.


That's good to hear. I didn't bother to chime in earlier because most people just attack things they don't understand, rather than try to investigate them.

I'm atracted to shows that give me different perspectives, but I get that most people like comfort food.

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Posted 1/10/18 , edited 1/11/18

timmeh123 wrote:

Hey everyone!

Thanks for all of the replies, and I enjoyed reading what you all wrote!

I do want to apologize if I seemed like I was attacking or I was against shows that had female leads. I don't have a problem with that at all. I've come to realize that I am at fault for making assumptions about shows containing female leads. It is ridiculous that I would limit my shows for such a petty reason, and I feel stupid for doing so.

Again, sorry if my writing came across in a negative or obstructive way.

Thank you!

- Tim


I think you made your point quite well, actually, and I didn't see anything negative or obstructive at all in your post. :)

There are many, many other ways you could have framed and phrased some of the same issues that absolutely would have been.. problematic. Anyone who's been around on the internet for more than a few seconds has probably seen them (though usually when it comes to games and not anime, in my experience). You, however, pretty clearly and articulately started your thoughts. If you dive back into shows with female lead characters with a different perspective, then cool. If not, that's cool too. It is pretty big of you to state that you may have been wrong though. Don't see that on the internet often enough. So, kudos!
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Posted 1/10/18 , edited 1/11/18

serifsansserif wrote:


xxJing wrote:

I thought I was pretty clear, you must have just skimmed over my post.

I never said you can't sympathize with a female character. I simply said that it's hard for a straight male to project themselves on to a female character for the purposes of escapism.

Also you seem to not understand the concept of escapism. Escapism is feeling as if you yourself are part of the fictional world. Many people play video games to 'escape' from reality, it's the reason quite a few video games have silent protagonists / character creation.

So while you can watch CCS and sympathize with Sakura. Unless you fantasize about being a 10 year old girl, you aren't watching CCS for the purposes of escapism. People, especially men with mundane real lives, watch shows like SAO, Infinite Stratos, Log Horizon, Overlord, Smartphone, etc... so that they can feel like THEY are part of that story, like THEY have been thrown into a world of magic and adventure and have a bunch of hot chicks clamoring for them.




I guess you're right. I just don't "get" escapism. And upon retrospect, it's very much not a reason why I watch anime. The confusion seems to be that the OP is complaining about not enough male characters, which I feel is definitely wrong, and have listed many that have male leads, (which you have also listed a few). In context of the subject at hand it seemed you were in agreement that there are less male leads.

What I think is going on is that the OP is looking for your aforementioned escapism, and a very particular sort, which he's finding lacking. (even within the field of fantasy there are still a plethora of male leads. Just not his style). Of this, I can concede because it's a matter of taste and viewing choice, not actual lack.

If you want to argue that anime is solely about escapism, I still hold to my point that anime is a medium, not a genre as many people seem to have the misconception about, (and the industry's choice to jump on ever passing fad and clone the ever loving hell out of it would make it seem).

There's still no real lack unless what's really being said is "I can't find anything I wish to watch", to which nobody can help.


My point was more that there is a certain genre of anime, a rather popular one, that relies on the protagonist being a male. And not just on the protagonist being a male, but also being as neutral of a character as possible without breaking the story.

That said, there are a few female characters I have been able to self-insert into. One is Maki from Air Master. Maki is about as gender neutral of a character you can find, she's extremely stoic. Another is Ange from Cross Ange. Ange is extremely bad ass, but without the whole girl power thing. She has some very real personality flaws. The last would be Elle Ragu from Shadow Skill, for similar reasons to those listed above. In fact, one thing I love about anime is that it can create female protagonists that don't make me feel alienated. American shows almost always have a 'girl power!' thing to them.
Posted 1/10/18 , edited 1/11/18
No. Not that I noticed since I only watch anime with male protagonists lol.
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Posted 1/10/18 , edited 1/11/18
I never really thought about the ratio of male to female MCs because it seems balanced enough to me I guess...I would have noticed it it was all male or female MCs. Personally I like both. I agree that there are not enough secondary male characters that are well written and important to the story(best friends, brothers, role models, teachers, heroes the MC wants to be like, mentors, rivals). I also wish there were more secondary female characters that were friends/mentors/teachers etc instead of potential wives. For example Sailor Moon always had the sailor scouts to rely on and they were always having fun just being awesome friends. Why are there not more character interactions like that without all the random fanservice? Even sisters/brothers in anime do not act like real sisters/brothers do most of the time. It's weird.
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