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Post Reply Are We Living In Anime's Greatest Creative Era?
Posted 12/18/13

aidenraine wrote:


sevenhells wrote:

With all the pandering, no, it is dying and nothing can ever save it.




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Posted 12/18/13 , edited 12/18/13

taim808 wrote:

Ok, so I may have been abit low on the 15-20 and should of said around 20-25. Your statistics included OVA's and Movies, I was talking about series only which I mentioned and said in ANOTHER part of my post. Not to mention, a few would of had no licenses outside of Japan.

The Golden Age discussion is just irrelevant now.

Not enough to constitute an era COMPARABLE to the one you're suggesting, but yes one to constitute and era for THOSE times.



No, you shouldn't have said 20-25. Because the average of those years is not 20-25, the exact average is 96. Nearly 5 times as many. And the last time I checked, Anime OVAs and Anime Movies ARE anime. Unlicensed anime IS anime. I'm not trying to bust your balls here, but you really don't get to pick and choose what constitutes anime and what doesn't. If you're saying movies don't count, then you're saying that nothing Hayao Miyazaki, arguably the most prolific anime creator of all time, ever did counts as anime. Or that when a studio creates an OVA attached to a series, the series is an anime, but somehow the OVA doesn't count.

To your last sentence, the volume doesn't matter. There were less teams and less games back in the 1960's for Football and Basketball. Are you going to say those eras aren't comparable to the current era of sports? There were less TV shows on back in the 1960's and 70's. But, any TV expert will tell you that Gumshoe, The Lone Ranger, The original Superman, etc...made up the "Golden Age" of television.

As long as there is enough product to constitute an era, which you admit, there is cause to compare eras.
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Posted 12/18/13

supasoggyrolle wrote:

I've been an anime fan almost my entire life, even before I knew what it was. Starting back in the 80's as a kid with shows like DBZ, Ronin Warriors and Sailor Moon. Since then, I've seen over 1,100 animes. And even though I like going old school, I find that the best and most highly regarded animes are more recent.

Steins;Gate (2011), FMA: Brotherhood (2009), Clannad After Story (2008), Death Note (2006), Code Geass (2006), The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya (2010), Spirited Away (2001), Cowboy Bebop (1998).

It seems that the most revered animes have come out after or around the turn of millennium. Do you agree that the millennial age is the golden age of Anime? Or do you feel that titles from previous generations, such as Astro Boy, Akira, Legend of the Galactic Heroes, Fist of the North Star, and other titles from the 80's, early 90's and before, are still the standard bearers for anime greatness? Or, do you think the greatest animes have yet to be seen?

What are your reasons?




Interesting thoughts.... Hmmm I think it may be too early to tell. But I think your thoughts are well versed

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Posted 12/18/13
Clannad wasn't terribly creative.

What made it so good is that it was a story about life and families: something we can all relate to.
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Posted 12/18/13
Yes, because the potential is there and no, because there has to be a desire from creators and production companies to make the shows creative as possible and I think the pinnacle of that was early to mid last decade.
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Posted 12/18/13

Lemalas wrote:

Clannad wasn't terribly creative.

What made it so good is that it was a story about life and families: something we can all relate to.


Until the ending of After Story....honestly still pisses me off.



As for the actual topic of this thread I'm not sure if I'd call it a golden age because of the creativity of each show (cuz lets be honest we get a lot of the same stuff). However I would say that we are in a golden age because there is something out there for anyone and everyone. Literally, there is bound to be at least one anime series out there right now that someone could like, its impossible for there not to be. Its beautiful how the field has expanded to give us all these incredible series from completely off the beaten path of normal genres.
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Posted 12/18/13

alishere2 wrote:


Lemalas wrote:

Clannad wasn't terribly creative.

What made it so good is that it was a story about life and families: something we can all relate to.


Until the ending of After Story....honestly still pisses me off.



As for the actual topic of this thread I'm not sure if I'd call it a golden age because of the creativity of each show (cuz lets be honest we get a lot of the same stuff). However I would say that we are in a golden age because there is something out there for anyone and everyone. Literally, there is bound to be at least one anime series out there right now that someone could like, its impossible for there not to be. Its beautiful how the field has expanded to give us all these incredible series from completely off the beaten path of normal genres.


You have every right to be upset about that. Have you seen Angel Beats! ? If you haven't, I won't spoil its ending, but I will say it's more appropriate for its story and setting.

Clannad should have kept it real instead of throwing a sudden happy ending thing in.

Then again, the alternative is... you know. It would probably be the saddest anime ever had they not done that thing.
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Posted 12/18/13 , edited 12/18/13
The future is built on the shoulders of the past.

I'm inclined to say that everything is, on average, equally creative at the time that it's created, and that in 20 years people will look back at the anime we have now the same way we look back at the anime from 20 years ago.

Whether or not something can maintain its popularity over time I think strikes me as a largely different measure.
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Posted 12/18/13 , edited 12/18/13
I see some getting off topics to the original question, so golden age now or past? I think to start, we must review the culture and North American Anime vs Japanese in terms of culture.

In terms of the culture, I am starting to be one of the older farts in the community. For those of you who don't remember the 80s or early 90s, Anime really didn't exist. We had their shows of course. the dragon ball, Sabre Rider, etc. But what we did get usually were just syndicated shows edited dubbed and re-ordered for kids on Saturday morning. Compare to Japan where culture, and the target demographic was much different. There were amazing and more mature shows out there, but often missed. Example, Tekkaman Blade. It was severely edited for North America and was renamed Technoman. Competing to Dragonball and it's cute magical land, there was no chance.

You couldn't get undubbed versions really. The way it worked is somebody would get VHS pirates or knew somebody who could get it into the country (Canada for myself) and then they would sub it. Often badly. There were no major voice over studios or professional subbers. We got terrible literal translations for extremely expensive vids, or rental only. Then there were shows such as Akira, and many movies that I rented but alas their titles fail my brain because I can no longer remember. Most every show had to be high quality because it was more difficult to produce, export etc.

It was doubly worsened where I live. The TV and broadcasting council actually banned all anime from retail for a while since there was no rating system governing it and they were not privy to review or some such. It had to be removed from all stores and was not legal to sell. This was for only a short while because it was then re-defined to be foreign genre and was able to be loopholed back into the market. Damage was done however with many of the top retailers and specialist stores already having closed.

Then manga and anime started becoming mainstream. The more serious and "real" anime started reaching our shores. Sailor Moon is what I would say truely exploded it here. The late night drama was not just some kids show.

With any industry, there is always a big boom for demand, then a surplus, and then a crash. This is what happened several years ago and is still, in a way, continuing. The demand is so high, that people will buy anything without discerning quality. Poorly written, drawn, and cliche stuff starts getting bought up even though it lacks substance. The industry goes into overdrive with mass volumes of prints. People like myself can no longer easily find stuff that has a quality they are used to.

"anime hipster" I believe is the term said earlier. In a way, it is true. When seeing that which has been done used everywhere and exaderated, it is tough to enjoy. People stop buying, it becomes a fad thing and the market crashes. Don't believe? Tokyopop and others are perfect examples. No longer able to be sustained, many major prints are stopped in english translations and some of the good ones are lost to us. Initial D manga is one that still is a huge eyesore in my collection. Buying from when it first came to print in north america, it seems destined to forever be uncompleted unless omnibus editions start coming. That is not the only one. There are excellent writers that I have books for that ended early due to inability to get a foothold in the market after being lost in the flood of drivel.

But do not mistake this for a North American Hipster thing. Those who create also feel this way. It can be seen manifesting in a couple of ways. One is to go overboard trying to make an artistic thing stand out. Alas this often ends up being hard to follow and drawn out in my opinion. The second is what has only just recently started.

We have begun a new golden age.

It actually was pretty well summed up with the creators of Evangelion. For those that have the Evangelion 1.11 DVD 2 disc set, they have a write up as to why the redid the series. I do not have the exact quote available, but they decided that they wanted to take their original story and re-do it for modern times because after 12 years, they could no longer see any inspired stories, tales or quality coming from the industry. There wasn't the same groups of youths coming out to create it. So they decided to do the Evangelion rebuild in the hopes of inspiring a new generation of people who want to create stories.

They are not the only ones. It had been years since I was able to find an anime that really grabbed me the way the shows of the 80s and 90s did. Surprizingly, one of the few that did isn't even Japanese, Avatar, the Last Airbender is a show I think kinda gave a kick back to Japan, though this is only from my own presumptions. Since then, many shows have started emulating that form of story telling again. Be it a comedy, drama or action. Create natural characters that people can remember! To give examples of how my Jadedness has been overcome, shows from past few years that blew me away. All because they did away with the cliche, and brought what made the classics great into modern era.

Memorable characters
Quality animation
Enchanting ambiance (music, set art, etc.)

Seto no Hanayome (My Bride is a Mermaid) (Comedy)
Sword Art Online (Drama/Romance)
Girl Und Panzer (Light hearted character piece with action)

and of course Attack on Titan (Action/Tragedy) whose success I feel is from pushing the above points. Because if you strip it down, the story is really similar to a traditional mecha movie. Still rates as, to this point in the series, one of the best series animes I have seen.
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Posted 12/18/13

Vaporisor wrote:

It actually was pretty well summed up with the creators of Evangelion. For those that have the Evangelion 1.11 DVD 2 disc set, they have a write up as to why the redid the series. I do not have the exact quote available, but they decided that they wanted to take their original story and re-do it for modern times because after 12 years, they could no longer see any inspired stories, tales or quality coming from the industry. There wasn't the same groups of youths coming out to create it. So they decided to do the Evangelion rebuild in the hopes of inspiring a new generation of people who want to create stories.

My copy was within arm's reach, so...


On another foot, an interesting question is whether there's a tradeoff between technological advancement and creative energy. Lately it feels like more shows are pushing the envelope on technology rather than storytelling, although we are still getting some really great, vibrant stories. But does anyone think that as the race to create better looking anime subsides a bit, creating stronger, more compelling stories will see a resurgence?

Just as people slow down with the new tech and start experimenting with it more as a storytelling vehicle.

I'm not claiming we're in a drought so much as there seems to be an ebb and flow to this kind of thing, and recently anime strikes me as going more for spectacle than substance (... alright, more than usual lately, at least).

This could EASILY all just be perception bias on my part, though.
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Posted 12/18/13


Whoa. Probably one of the best arguments on the topic I've seen. I definitely agree with most of it, but some things are different from my perspective, being here in America, as opposed to Canada. Plus, I believe I might be a younger fan to this than you, as I didn't come along until Sailor Moon, DBZ, Ronin Warriors, etc... I never remembered a time of anime being banned, I'm not sure if it ever was in the states. But, I do remember how incredibly hard it was to find good anime on TV. I was fortunate, as in the mid-late 90's, I actually happened to move around the corner from a specialty rental store that had literally EVERYTHING that had ever been made.

Nevertheless, even then, the quality of what was available back then pales to what you can get on just a single stream site like CR, now. In the argument I was having with another poster here, OVA's vs. Series was brought up and I remember back when most everything that came out was OVAs, as opposed to TV series, because anime didn't yet have a foothold on TV like it does now. The Hakkenden, Ogre Slayer, Baki The Grappler, 3x3 Eyes and such. Nostalgia gives them a place in my heart, but when compared to things like FMA, Monster, even a film I watched tonight: "The Garden of Words", it's just not in that league. It's great in its own way, in its own era.

I've never had a period where I was jaded on anime. I've always loved it. I think that's because I like such a wide variety of animes. I love gore and intense stuff, but I also enjoy Moe comedies. (Though, I do agree that with all the studios around now, alot of anime put out is drivel and you have to watch multiple shows to find the classics.) Still, I think that pound for pound, like you said, we're entering a golden age of anime and when you take all the really great anime out of the drivel, it will outweigh numerically, the amount of really great anime from the past. I think it may be a volume thing.

P.S.: Love the Seto No Hayamone reference. Not a lot of people point that out for the classic it is. One of the few animes I actually couldn't binge watch because it would give me headaches from laughing so hard. AOT is also new to my top 10 all time favs list.
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Posted 12/19/13 , edited 12/19/13

supasoggyrolle wrote:

P.S.: Love the Seto No Hayamone reference. Not a lot of people point that out for the classic it is. One of the few animes I actually couldn't binge watch because it would give me headaches from laughing so hard. AOT is also new to my top 10 all time favs list.


Very true, and really, I don't think there is a bigger example of how the fantastic anime have started to be overlooked. I read the concept, saw some initial art, and really just sluffed it off for quite a long while as just being another cliche and cheesy, cheap made series. When I started watching it, I was harassing my bro via text that he had to watch it. He didn't want to watch it thinking the same thing I had been. But I kept poking at him. Hour later I get the following texts.

*Gasp
Masaaaaaaa.....

I could not stop laughing. I finished the whole series, then immediately re-watched it with my bro I enjoyed it that much!

But darned if I can find anybody else who had seen it!

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Posted 12/19/13
Personally, I think that with the progression of technology for the medium and the sheer amount of energy put into the industry, yes, there are more great anime being made now than there were in the past. The bottom line is that there are a greater number of people doing it now, and higher demand for it. Because there are more anime, there are more good anime, and because the tools and techniques for creating anime have increased, there's more potential for talented people to find cool ways to use them. Both these factors combined mean that in general, anime is doing better than it has in the past.

Completely seperate, however, is the issue of content and storytelling. The tools put to use in writing a story aren't constantly improving like those used in the technical aspect of making an anime. Stories come from human minds, and are subject to trends and taste. While I, myself, believe the current era of anime to be the greatest, that's largely because the storytelling of this era meshes well with my personal taste. Doubtless, there are others who prefer the storytelling trends of yesteryear, and while the anime of now has improved in term of image and sound quality, presentation, as important as it is, can never take the place of content: the story wins out.

So, if the question, specifically, is whether we're living in anime's greatest creative era, I would say... N/A. Storytelling itself will always be creative, and older writers have done plenty of amazing and novel things with their stories, just like newer ones. I can't see any era being inherently more or less creative than another; they're all merely subject to their particular tropes and sensibilities.

I do, however, think that overall, we are living in anime's greatest era - so far. Stories will always be stories, but in terms of technology (and hopefully, numbers), anime will just keep getting better. More titles being made, with higher production quality, will inevitably bring us more anime that will meet or exceed our expectations.
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Posted 12/19/13
I don't know. I just watch the stuff.
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Posted 12/19/13
I will try to keep it simple without a start there would be nothing today.Some older animes stand the test of time even if the animation is different.

Yes there is good anime today but a lot dont follow the manga and we seem to be let down more nowadays.A lot are so predictable it is not even funny.

Some genres are way over created leaving us blah! Saturation is not always good.

The animation is truly amazing today no question about that! But I know one CG anime that the color stinks ands lokks dark a lot of the time otherwise it be even better IMO

In sports it seems homage is always paid to greats of the past where as in anime old anime is looked upon with disdain IMO

The debate will never end!
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