Inquiring Minds Want To Know 2019 #12

Inquiring Minds Want To Know

Right, I’m not entirely sure I understand the question this week but we’re going to give it a great effort and see if we can answer it. As always, if you have a question for me, feel free to complete the survey here or at the bottom of the post.

What is the most important thing to make Anime and why?

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Meiji Tokyo Renka Episode 5

Okay, as I said in the introduction, I’m not 100% certain I understand this question. For instance is it asking what is most important to make an anime watchable or interesting or it actually asking about the technical side of making anime. If it is the latter, I’m out of luck because I’m pretty much clueless as to the specifics of what goes on behind the scenes to make an anime happen (okay, I get the usual writing, story-boarding, production process but nothing beyond the fairly generic).

So, I’m just going to assume it is the former and look at what makes an anime work because I’ve probably got a better chance of getting to a sensible answer with that one. Better chance. Not a guarantee.

Now, I’ve always said on my blog that I primarily watch anime, and engage in most of the forms of entertainment that I dabble in (books, movies, video games) for the story lines. For me, that’s what will make or break something. Whether the story fits together neatly, whether it builds to an interesting climax, whether it moves me emotionally. I’m aware that some people aren’t so concerned about whether something has a strong narrative and are happy just watching characters interact or comedy skits, and that works for them, but for me what makes an anime truly great and memorable, is when the story really sticks with me and the journey the characters have gone on really connects.

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However, ultimately I think an anime just needs to succeed at being what it wants to be. If it wants to be a slice of life, than it should be and not try to sneak some plot elements in and push for character development that doesn’t fit. Mostly because people looking for a story probably won’t be happy and people wanting a blissful slice of life won’t appreciate the intrusion of these other elements (unless they are well integrated and balanced). Same with comedy or harem or any genre. Whether I like it or not, I appreciate a show that manages to be exactly what it sets out to be and doesn’t try to pretend to be something it isn’t. Using the tropes and standards from a given genre and using them well usually results in something highly entertaining, at least for fans of the genre, and for everyone else, they probably weren’t going to get on board regardless.

Meiji Tokyo Renka is probably a great example of this. It isn’t doing anything new, visually it isn’t amazing, the music is pretty great though and some of the characters have been really charming, but Meiji Tokyo Renka isn’t trying to break new ground. It is just being this cute reverse-harem with a bit of time travel thrown in, and while there are some fun plot elements afoot, for the most part it hasn’t really stepped outside of its genre box (though the camel showing up was still a bit on the weird side). The anime works, it is entertaining, and ultimately while it won’t get a lot of attention in a season full of more impressive or dramatic works or amongst works that had a lot of pre-season hype, it is a fairly functional anime and one that most people wouldn’t be too upset about stumbling across in their quest to find something new to watch (it won’t work for everyone but nor will it horrifically offend).

That probably didn’t answer the question you intended and I’m sorry but I tried.

Thanks for reading
Karandi James
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2 thoughts on “Inquiring Minds Want To Know 2019 #12

  1. Yes! I personally agree with you on this, if an anime managed to keep the storyline within the genre that it sets out to be, spicing it up with the suitable plot when necessary then it would emerge well as a whole.

    But then again, I think there are no definite answers to it because everyone’s perspective is different and with it, comes different expectations on what makes it good and the important elements in it.

    Liked by 1 person

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