Anime is Manga's Best Advertising Friend
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Posted 11/21/14

So, after years of watching anime - according to http://myanimelist.net/animelist/shukujo&status=2&order=0 , I have spent 589.79 continuous days watching anime, to be precise - I have come to the conclusion that anime, for the most part, is really just glorified advertising for the source material it comes from.

In Japan, the manga industry is 25x larger than it is elsewhere in the world. Twenty-five times. That is an ENORMOUS difference. It can be argued with a good deal of merit that the reason for this massive difference is the amount of time the average Japanese person spends in transit to and from work - it's a notable portion of their lives, in fact. The average Japanese person travels approximately 1,950 miles per year by train - that's a whole lotta time to do what most people do on the train: read.

Anyone who is familiar with GIntama knows how many jokes they make about there being a businessman's JUMP, a housewives JUMP - but the reason they make those jokes is because it's TRUE. There really ARE weekly manga magazines, just like Shounen JUMP, tailored to a great many niche audiences in Japan. It's not just teenagers or young people who read the manga and light novels the anime we love so much come from.

I began thinking about this due to the high prevalence of "filler" or open, unclear endings to many anime series. I used to call them bad endings, but now I gauge them by how much those endings make me want to run out and read or play (in the case of visual novels) the source material. If you want to prove this for yourself, go into any anime chat room and ask the people there, "How many of you started reading a manga (or playing a VN, or reading a light novel) after being dissatisfied with how the anime for that manga (VN/LN) ended?" I can almost see many of you raising your hands right now.

There are many exceptions, of course. There are anime that come from original scripts, for example, such as the currently airing WIXOSS series, and Psycho-Pass as well. However, in those cases, I think they just follow the more traditional route (from the Western way of thinking) to the ultimate goal: the consumers' reading choices. What I mean by that is the manga/books that always follows original script anime can be thought of like the products that come out after a successful movie or TV show.

There are also a number of other minor exceptions to this rule, as I am sure some of you are bound to point out, but regardless of those, my point still stands - Anime is the Best Advertising Friend Any Manga Could Hope For.

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Posted 11/23/14
Yep, Square Enix had an article detailing how Fullmetal Alchemist manga sales have boosted after every anime adaptation.

Attack on Titan, Magi and Seven Deadly Sins all have recorded huge boost thanks to successful anime runs.
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