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Post Reply Are anime more enjoyable if you don't know the source material?
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Posted 12/27/15
I see this a lot with anime. People complaining, sometimes quite bitterly, about how bad an anime is because it doesn't faithfully follow the source material. Instead of judging the anime on its own merits they judge it on how well it one-for-one adapts the original work.

As someone who rarely reads manga or light novels I'm often left perplexed by the attacks. Since I'm watching the anime with "fresh eyes" all I have to go on is what the anime presents and while these fans pour vitriol on the anime I'm thoroughly enjoying it.

So I'm left wondering if it's better, as primarily an anime fan, to have never viewed the source material. Of course, I understand that without the source material often there might not be an anime, but at the same time I'm in a position to judge the anime just as the anime viewer, not as a fan with certain preconceived expectations.

What do you think, is it better to "go in blind" or to be familiar with the source when watching an anime?
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22 / M / Fraxinus
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Posted 12/27/15
The anime that comes to mind with this is Akame ga Kill. Once it started to deviate from the source material there was quite a bit of salt from the manga readers. I'll concede that the writing became a little... "iffy", but based purely on the action, it wasn't half bad. The writing turned to crap, but when you follow the source material faithfully, and then decide halfway through to create an anime only ending, that's to be expected. All I kept hearing was to just go read the manga, because it was so much better. Well, I did start to, not too long ago.

Anyway, I think when it comes to watching an anime which you've read/played the source material of, you're more excited and hyped to watch it in anime form, but it also makes you extra critical, as you'd want it to be as faithful as possible to the source material. I feel inclined to say that it's better to go in blind, as that would prevent you from being as critical, and you could just enjoy the anime more. But then, I can also understand the hype that comes with watching an anime that you've read/played the source material of.

I will say, though, that if I'm currently reading a manga, and there's an anime of it, I would much rather read the manga first, at least up to the point that the anime has reached.
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22 / M / Norway
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Posted 12/27/15
A good example here is One Punch man
Ive been reading both the (One) manga and the new one for a long time. I believe the enjoyment i got from watching it perfectly adapted into an anime was way higher than what I would get going blind into it.

Ofcourse it's painfull when one of your favorite manga gets obliberated (Tokyo ghoul root), but i'd rather have the knowledge of how good something could be rather than getting cheap entertainment from a bad adaptation.
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22 / M / Germany
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Posted 12/27/15 , edited 12/27/15
Judging from what I've seen so far. Yes, definitively.
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36 / M / Planet Sanno
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Posted 12/27/15
I am going to have to vote yes on this. Any anime adaptation is its own thing, and should be appreciated as such. ... Though I do admit to making exceptions if the adaptations go hilariously far into left field (see: ISUCA).
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37 / M / SW Ontario, Canada
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Posted 12/27/15
Absolutely. It's nice to know there is a manga, light novel, etc. out there if you want to go deeper into something after a watch, but watching an adaptation of anything is definitely hurt by being familiar with the original first.

Heck, even in the best case scenario where the anime turns out really well and is spot on the same as the manga, you're still spoiled on all of the character arcs and plot points.
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Posted 12/27/15
Personally I feel like it does not matter whether you go in blind or not. It does not bug me if the manga does not follow the anime I enjoy them both. The manga just gives me an idea as to how the anime will turn out.
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Posted 12/27/15
In a way. When I watched the first HxH series I enjoyed it because I didn't know it was heavily edited from the manga. Now that I've read the manga I can never appreciate it again.
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18 / F / Everywhere
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Posted 12/27/15
Yes, but it goes both ways. If you watch the anime first, then you'll criticize the manga and focus on all the differences.
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22 / M / Norway
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Posted 12/27/15

FruitPunchSamurai987 wrote:

Yes, but it goes both ways. If you watch the anime first, then you'll criticize the manga and focus on all the differences.


How do you criticize the manga after watching the anime? That makes no sence, as the source should only work as a base for improvement...
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Posted 12/27/15
I see this mostly with people that get really invested in an anime, then view the manga as a "letdown" if it's too different. It's not as common if the manga is the actual source material, though.
Posted 12/27/15
Yeah, I think you will enjoy it MUCH better if you don't read the source material. Would you rather see that beautiful plot twist on paper or on the big screen? I only read manga for anime series that have already finished. (With the exception of a couple, I just HAD to know what came next!)
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20 / F / I don't know T_T
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Posted 12/27/15
Yeah I do agree. In my case it'd be Tokyo Ghoul. I never read the manga but I found the first season to be a fairly fun watch. I just never bothered watching the second season yet.

Otherwise, I remember reading Magi before the first season came out and when I watched the anime, the end really pissed me off.
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21 / F / Bay Area
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Posted 12/27/15

rcsatcrunchyroll wrote:

I am going to have to vote yes on this. Any anime adaptation is its own thing, and should be appreciated as such. ... Though I do admit to making exceptions if the adaptations go hilariously far into left field (see: ISUCA).


I actually went into Isuca blind and didn't like it, and then read the source material and wondered why they added unnecessary monster of the week type of episodes.
Le_Dom 
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24 / M / Montreal
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Posted 12/27/15
Probably yeah.

I can understand why people might not be too happy when an adaptation doesn't follow the source material 1:1

But really, I don't think changing or adding things is that big of a deal as long as it doesn't contradict the ideals/spirit of the series.
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