What is Anime?
The word “anime” is actually a shortened form of the word for “animation”. It’s pronounced like the English word “ah-neem”, or if you want to show off, like this: ah-nee-may. As with all languages, there are dialects of anime. The two most notable are ‘Japanese’ and ‘English’. Japanese anime has subtitles in Japanese while English dubs have subtitles in what was once known as ‘Engrish’. These days Engrish has become more standardized, so it’s usually not too bad…it just takes some getting used to. I’ll explain why there is two different types of anime later on.
Anime isn’t just cartoons anymore; it can be anything animated that originates from Japan…including movies! Nowadays the term anime describes both animated television shows and movies that originate from Japan. All kinds of anime niches exist so you can find something for anybody’s taste.
You heard me right, one anime a year! I know, it sounds crazy. But let me explain why you would want to do this. When I was first introduced into the world of anime it was by watching Naruto back in 2007. At that time there were 576 episodes of Naruto available to watch on Crunchyroll (Crunchyroll is an online video streaming service), and I watched all of them! It took me about eight months to finish everything…and then what? All these new shows are coming out, and none of them interested me…they were just more Naruto clones. I stopped watching anime altogether because it felt like nothing really stood out from the crowd anymore even though there were hundreds of new shows airing each season. Why did this happen? Well, to put it bluntly: over-saturation. If you watch too much anime too fast your tastes begin to diminish! Why? Because everything starts looking the same after awhile; “Oh cool another shounen show about ninjas!” *Yawn*. And before long you realize that all these stories are different shades of the same color; they’re just pastel versions instead of vibrant ones.
What’s the Solution?
Well after a few years of being out of the anime loop I finally found a solution to this problem. I began watching one new anime a season! This means that I watched about 25 episodes per year maximum. And guess what happened? My taste in anime slowly began to improve again! Crazy huh? By watching only one new show per season, it gives your brain time to analyze what you’ve recently seen and determine if it’s truly something special…or if it’s just another pastel version of something you’ve already seen before. After awhile you’ll notice that there are certain shows that truly stand out from all the rest; they’re vibrant instead of pastel. And this is why we should watch only one new anime per year: so we can find those diamonds in the rough and truly enjoy them! It also helps us save money on our streaming service subscriptions (if we have any). You might be thinking: “One show a month is still too much for me!”. Well, don’t worry because there are ways around this rule. If you know somebody who watches anime, you could watch together with them. You could also watch older shows that are outside of their original season. This is what I do! There are lots of older shows that have been re-aired on other streaming sites like Funimation or Crunchyroll’s “Anime Classics” section.
Of course this doesn’t apply to everyone, but it works for me and maybe it can work for you too! Now let’s take a look at the different types of anime and why we should only watch one new show per season: we’ll start with shounen, then seinen, kuudere, and finally yuri (girls love).
Shounen Anime: Watch One New Show Per Season
Shounen is the broadest genre in all of anime; its target audience is primarily young boys ranging from elementary school to high school age (12-18). Shounen focuses primarily on action; there isn’t much emphasis placed on character development or relationships since the main focus is fighting each other and monsters…and winning! If there is any romance in shounen it usually involves a female love interest getting kidnapped by some monster or evil organization.
I have been watching anime for a very long time. I didn’t know this post would turn out so long, but it’s already 1000 words so I guess there’s no turning back now. Anyways, thanks for reading and if you have any suggestions or tips please leave a comment below!
My Top Shounen Anime
Hunter x Hunter (2011) – This is the best shounen anime I’ve ever seen…and it’s also one of my favorite anime series of all time! One Piece – If you’ve watched Naruto or Bleach you’ll probably like this one as well. Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood – A live-action movie was released in theaters in 2017 which means it’s been re-aired on television recently. Yu Yu Hakusho – When I first started watching anime this was the first shounen show that came to mind.