This is an existential kind of question. A question that a lines itself with things like “why are we here?”, “what are we supposed to do?”, “who am I really?”, “what do I want?”, and many other questions that make us think beyond are current time frame and reference point in time and space. Of course, my question was about anime in general and not life itself, though the two can be connected to each other for many of us. This post is kind of influenced by one of my friends on facebook, who after I announced I was finally convinced to watch RWBY, which may or may not be an anime depending on your own personal definition, wanted to know if there was a point to it. Now, this isn’t going to be a post about RWBY, though a post might appear when I am all caught up with it. Maybe. Instead, this is a post about why I and maybe some other people watch and blog about anime.
Arguing about what is the point of anime is the same as arguing about all fictional media in general. To some people, anything fiction doesn’t have any point to it. All they need are facts in order to live out their lives. I, of course, think that fiction is very important. Not only as a way to escape from our normal day to day lives a little bit at a time, but as an expression of creative ideas that many of us having running around in our heads. These ideas could just be plain “I am making a fantasy adventure series” or they could come up with amazing “what if scenarios” revolving around some extreme exploration of the world events right now. Different people have so many great ideas in their heads, which is why there are so many genres of fiction available. Sometimes, ideas overlap and look the same, but it’s all about the execution. For something that doesn’t have to exist, I’m glad it does. It’s nice to see how other people see the world and how they think. It’s like getting to know people without meeting them.
Narrowing this down a little further, the question becomes why anime specifically? It’s not the only form of fiction that I pay attention to, but it’s one that I hold dear amongst many other forms of fiction out there. When I watched anime for the first time, there was something different about it that drew me to it. The art, the style, and the story telling. All of those were so different and so engrossing from what I’ve seen at that time. Even now, everything special about is still there, but with maybe a lot less flare from seeing more of it. Western animation just didn’t have the appeal to me at that time. Right now, there have been some that have come close like Avatar: The Last Air Bender and the new Voltron series, but the only people that seem to be able to do anime well are anime production studios. The original source. I can see why animation from such a small country has gotten huge all around the world. So many people have their own reasons to watch it, but this is mine.
As for blogging, that all goes the same way. For me, blogging is something new that I started recently but I can’t help not doing it. It’s one of the few ways that I try to use my own creative abilities. In a meta sort of way, blogging is how I talk about creative ideas with hopefully some creative ideas. I try to think up some interesting ways to explain my point of view about why I like anime and what I find intriguing about several different series. Sometimes I am successful, sometimes I am not and that is okay. Talking about creative ideas with creative ideas seems to be a popular thing these days. There is a large amount of youtube videos which individual people and groups of people work hard to make interesting videos about anime and other media, many websites like comicbookmovie.com and animenewsnetwork thrive on that while also talking about anime in an creative and new way and/or giving an opinion about creative ideas, and then there is an endless amount of bloggers. Not everyone is creative, but then not all ideas that form into anime and other media are creative either. Nobody is perfect.
So, bringing it all together, none of us need to be here or need to write anything or watch anything. It’s something that we choose to do and thus defines us. I can go around and only talk to some people at my job. Only talk about the job and how it can be done better. For some of them, I never know what they do outside of the job and that’s all I see or know about them. To make this even worse, it’s possible to talk to everyone like this, but that would be a very cold existence. An existence more fitting for a robot then a human being. Us watching shows and talking about them becomes a part of our identities and how we can connect with other people. Now, tv shows and anime are one thing. There are also other obvious interests like music, youtube videos, comedy, and some others create interests that make us who we are and allow us to connect to others on a personal level. So that is the point here, creative ideas allow us to be human beings and separate us from robots.
I don’t think I should start asking what the point of most of the things I do is. Mostly because I know that most of what I do is meaningless (particularly at work – though the few bits that do make a difference sometimes help to justify the rest). When it comes to anime (or any other type of story) I’m in it for the entertainment. Anime is currently my obsession but books, games and movies are all still fairly high on my list of things I find entertaining. Basically when someone asks me what the point of watching anime is, I ask them what the point of watching football is, or anything for that matter, and usually we find something else to talk about.
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I don’t think I was the right person to ask what is the point of thing either. It feels like the whole world is based on things that only have value because humans put a value on them. It’s kind of scary. The entertainment industry is huge for a reason.
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I watch anime because I love them and I write about the anime that I watch because I like discussing them (even if no one listens). For me, the point is that it’s something I enjoy .. 😀
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Darn it. I like these kind of posts, perhaps I should subscribe to a psychologists group or someth- nah. They wouldn’t talk about philosophy and anime together.
That aside, personally I watch Anime, because it’s the best way for me to enjoy my time. Or in other words, to kill time until I die. But I don’t really see it as any other form of entertainment, but an ideal one: I believe myself to be quite lacking or even empty, and I feel saved with it, as I cannot live without filling myself with tales. And the best type of transmitting them is, no was Anime. I say was, because right now I believe Visual Novels are the best ones, but I think we can include Anime, Manga, LNs and VNs in the same category, can we?
Well, without Anime, I think I wouldn’t mind dying, as otherwise I would live like a machine: waking up, eating, studying, working, sleeping. But I think everyone just need a form to “enjoy” their own time to continue living. I say that, but I’ve never experienced being on the brink of death without any stimulus, so perhaps I’m wrong and survival instinct will kick in and force me to live. Not sure.
Why blogging? That is, indeed, something I ask myself quite often. Whelp, when I actually do write, that is. I think I would be fine with just sharing things, as I don’t really have much of “myself” to put and thus “create” (as I’ve said, I feel quite empty… nah, that’s too good of a word for me, perhaps a sponge? Absorbing and releasing the same stuff without changing much? Sorry, can’t find a better example)
Now, let’s search for a psychologist or better yet, let’s talk to the mirror.
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I wasn’t expecting a huge response, but hopefully Anime isn’t all that you are living for right now.
A anime focused psychology practice would be good.
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Whelp, just me having lots of tim- it’s a lieee. Just found it relatable.
Yeah, now I also have Manga, Light Novels and Visual Novels… don’t worry though, I’m fine as I am.
Yep, sadly where I live the word “Anime” isn’t even known. They would probably think you’re talking about “souls” or worse, religion.
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There’s a Tumblr called mangatherapy, I think you might like it because it’s touted as pretty much what you’re looking for. The discussion is a lot like Scott’s, too.
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I should have known that existed on Tumblr.
Also, I am not a therapist in any capacity….
Oh, thanks. I will check it out, though my best therapy is actually watching/reading AMLnVn.
The point of anime is because I enjoy it, like others have said, but since my love for anime gets so passionate I need an outlet to vent, whether it’s deep SGRS questions or drooling over bishonen. Having been an anime fan for most of my life (but not being aware of the term “anime” for a lot of my time as a fan), I guess I really can’t imagine myself blogging about anything else except maybe music and/or my studies and/or books, and to me, none of those things warrant much discussion in a space where the point is not to be bored to death (plus I tend to forget book characters, plots and such after I’ve read them).
I have learnt a few languages over the years and when I’ve blogged about it in conjunction with anime, there’s been an audience for those posts, but I have no background in linguistics whatsoever, I have less passion for language compared to anime and I’m much better at discussing culture rather than the language itself…
Why blogging? Ever since my first blog (which has since been deleted), I’ve grown used to talking into the void called the internet and it’s probably the best way to have a haven away from the real world, to discuss what you like when you want to.