How do you feel about the state of anime nowadays?

That question is likely to draw some strong opinions from our readers. There’s no question that the past few years have produced a number of works critically acclaimed for their innovative plots and characters. But then there are some series that have built up huge fanbases for their…wait, why was that again? As one Chinese anime fan so eloquently put it, it’s almost as if these “mass-produced series” are on par with fast food… 

In this short opinion piece from a Japanese newspaper, a 24-year-old Chinese student of Japanese who is currently residing in Osaka shared his thoughts on the current state of quality in anime. A Japanese Twitter user was then kind enough to share the news clip with the rest of us:

“I came to Japan this April from Jiangsu Province, China. I was really interested in traditional Japanese culture, anime, and manga. I read Akira Toriyama’s masterpiece Dragon Ball when I was young, and began watching anime in Japanese about six years ago.

But recently I’ve lost all interest in the anime that have been airing on TV. The stories are dull and not at all interesting. These recent shows are like fast food–there’s a lot of oil so it’s tasty, but nutrition is lacking. It’s all just cute girls and scantily clad women. I feel like they’re just trying to sell the girls.

I believe that there are two reasons why the number of these “fast-food anime series” has increased. First, the production costs of anime are so high that companies are trying to sell goods like figurines of girls and badges to the male fans. Second, I think that some fans are not watching anime for the story anymore, but only because the girls are cute. Both of these reasons are disrespectful to women.”

While some Japanese anime fans conceded that he had raised a just argument, others took to the web to voice their discontent at the student’s words. The following is a small sampling of their reactions:

“It’s not that simple. Even if the characters are good, I still won’t watch it if the story is bad.”

“I feel like this person must be a true fan of anime. I agree with him. He’s saying something that’s undeniable.”

“I can sympathize…”

“It’s OK. Everyone in Japan realized that about 20 years ago. So it’s no problem for things to continue this way (´・ω・)y-~”

As that last comment points out, this topic seems to pop up every few years or so. I wonder how we’ll view anime 10 years down the road from now…I guess we’ll have to wait and find out.

Source: Hachima Kiko
Image: Polyvore (Storystereo)