Honestly, when I started my anime blog and podcast in 2010 I really didn’t know what to expect. I thought I would write about Cartoons, then talk about them on the Podcast. I figured people who liked anime would listen, everyone would get along great. It was extremely quickly that I realized that it wasn’t that simple.
There is an underlying problem in anime fandom: There is so much anime. I’ve written about this a hundred times but I keep coming back to it because it remains a barrier to new fans who attempt to come into the medium. Fans looking for an action show, they get turned off by the fans who watch high school romances. Fans of high school romances quickly get turned off by the people who are obsessed with science fiction. The fans who skirt the line and try to be “anime fans,” fans of the medium at large, are few and far between. I remain one of those fans, I simply watch the things that look interesting to me. I go from Kill la Kill, to Cowboy Bebop, and back to Toradora. I did not expect the in fighting and drama that followed.
The biggest was the complete paranoia of Moe fans who, at the time, were just coming up as the most vocal group in the fandom and many of them fight attacked from anime fans who didn’t like little girl cartoons. There were thousands of words written about how Anime News Network was a biased cesspool that wanted to destroy Moe because they prefer other shows.
This pattern started long before I dove into Anime culture. This pattern will continues now that I’ve surfaced on the other side of the Anime pool.
Other illustrates this fact better than this college humor video that came out last month. The satire pulls from the real world so much that I could picture myself in the middle of the fight meekly trying to get everyone to get along.
This is the current state of the anime fandom. An inhospitable waste where if you fall into the wrong group of fans, could turn you into an insufferable; entitled Japanophile.
How do you avoid this trap? Have self-awareness. Look at what other people around you are doing. Look at a normal person and how they consume culture. Ask yourself if your reaction seems rational. The fact that you love Anime, any kind of Anime, should not be your defining characteristic. If your identity is wrapped up in loving a certain type of Japanese cartoon, it’s time to step back and do some soul searching. Unfortunately, the type of person who should be reading this won’t get that message till their personality flaw blows up in their face.