Why are Manga and Anime so Popular
Manga is more than just being a Japanese comic and amine is more than the Japanese animated version of the manga. While in most cases, an anime is based on a popular manga – there is so much more to it. For starters, it takes years of dedication and mastering an art style before a manga can be published – as well as having a storyline. That’s why manga has grown in popularity since it was first released to the public years ago. The same can be said for anime regarding the storylines, art skills, as well as having the tools and skills needed to create a show or a movie. While anime and manga in Japan have a different meaning – many people in the west have simplified both manga and anime to be Japanese versions of comics and shows.
Before we get too into it, no, Japan did not steal comics or animation from the west – this mindset could be further from the truth. In all honesty, Japan has been making cartoon related artwork for decades. Which can be seen even back in ancient Japan where people have discovered humorous drawings of animals, people, and nature. The truly ironic thing is that the drawings from back them have been the inspiration for modern-day manga artwork. This isn’t to say that no inspiration was taken from the western world – one major example being Osamu Tezuka, which some may consider to the founder of modern manga, admitted that he did take inspiration from Disney. Though, the linework and how the features of the artwork were more so influenced by a combination of Japanese and Chinese culture.
Anime is perfect for all ages and groups
Additionally, one of the reasons why manga and anime are so popular is because they can cater to all age groups. The typical mindset in the United States is that cartoons and animated shows are for children. Though, when it comes to manga and anime – there’s a story and a show for anyone from the innocent child to the adults who prefer to see something more mature. Even the children’s show in Japan does not hold back with certain topics – such as death. While in American cartoons, which are heavily censored if they originated in Japan, will always avoid topics such as death or anything too extreme. No matter the anime or manage, there’s always traces of Japanese culture within it – which is portrayed by students doing work or studying for exams and having an intensive work ethic.
One of the major reason why people are flocking to manga and anime is the distinct art style. Though this is not to say that the art style used is limiting in any way or not creative. Since the expectations for manga and anime styles are so vague, each creator can add their own artistic touches which can appeal to a variety of fans. As an example, one of the most common anime and manga stereotypes are the characters having huge eyes, bug hair, and unrealistic bodies. While that is seen on occasion, it’s more common to see an art style that looks different. Looking at the work of Studio Ghibli compared to Dragon Ball Z can easily paint a clear picture of what I mean.