I am a Japanese. I would like to hear what an overseas person thinks of anime.
I'm not good at English.
実は同じ内容のスレッドをSuggestionsセクションに投稿していたのですが、Gene ral Animeセクションに移るべきだというご指摘を受けましたので、移動しました。
私たち日本人が普通だと思っている多くの表現は、海外の文化圏の人々にとって変だと思うことが 多々あると思 います。
There are many 'forms of expression (translator note: w.r.t anime presentation or dialogue)' which are normal to us Japanese, but which may appear strange to foreign interest groups.
And that "difference in perception" is what I would like to know about.
If anyone from outside of Japan has any doubt on a 'form of expression' appearing in an anime, I would like to hear about it. And I will try to answer your doubt as long as it is within my means to do so.
I especially welcome questions on the names of characters.
"Does this surname actually exists?"
"I would like you to write this name in Japanese."
and things like that.
I await your reply.
I would like to remind everyone that this is an english forum not a japanese one, and all post here must be made in english.
Hi again! Now that this is in the right sub-forum, we won't have to worry about this thread being closed.
I'm actually kind of curious as to what the Japanese think about Westerners/Americans? (I live in the US). Have you thought about traveling to/visiting the US?
You could move this thread to a Japanese lesson forum or website instead of AnimeSuki, right ?
To answer your question.
But since you're Japanese making (or taking) questions, I might as well take this opportunity:
Can Americans someday make "anime" on their own? Mind you, I'm aware of the Japanese view using the term "anime" for all animation. Unfortunately, we English speakers differentiate the Japanese style of animation apart from everything else, including Korean.
To anyone else on this forum, don't bother answering this question, especially if it bothers you. :p
Thank you very much!:)
I'm very glad.
This is awesome. A Japanese getting outside hir comfort zone (sorry I'm not sure if you're a boy or a girl). In recognition of this, I'll keep my English as simple as possible when replying to this thread.
Well, I'm not American, but animes are quite popular here in our country. It is just so unfortunate that our seiyuu industry is not as flourishing as yours, and our voice actors usually do Asian dramas or something like that.
Speaking for myself, I find anime as a very versatile genre ("you can put anything into an anime, from everyday life to the works of Karl Marx") and has more profound lessons than anything I have ever seen. I would say "anime is the soul of the Japanese bared for all the world to see".
Anyways, I am asking you some questions about yourself and Japan, but I guess I'll send you a Private Message for that.
But here is one in my mind: Can foreigners adapt a Japanese alias while in Japan, especially if his given name is incredibly difficult or offensive to spell or pronounce in Japanese, and provided he stays there for a long time?
I can't understand.:(
残念ながら私は中学校(Junior high school)レベルの英語力すら怪しいので迷惑をかけることも多いかと思います:heh:
申し訳ないが、できるだけ原文の後ろに並んで、機械翻訳より英語に訳した文を入れてお願いします。このフォ ーラム（掲示板）では、英語でしか会話していけないのです。完全に私の間違いでした。はい、すみませんでし た。m(_ _)m ゴメンナサイ。
[In English: Sorry, but as much as possible, I would like to request you include the machine translated text after your original text. We can only carry out conversations using English in this forum. It was completely my mistake. Sorry. *prostrates sorry*]
I could try to greet you with my rudimentary Japanese but that would be insulting so I am gonna chicken out of it.
Other than that, I am going to provide my answer to the topic you started this thread with.
I think anime - as in the medium - is wonderful. It's a very vivid and valuable medium of storytelling. And there are so many classics! It's just awesome.
However, I dislike anime - as in the actual products - in general. There are exceptions, of course. Those would be the classics I mentioned. However, in general, I dislike anime and it's been getting worse as of late. I could be getting tired of them or I am just getting more cynical. But either way, I feel that most of the shows that get produced miss the mark and completely miss the potential the medium has.
However, I have known from a while, although I don't know with certainty because this is basically what I hear from others, that anime is somewhat looked down upon in Japan. And that the anime industry isn't necessarily a financially sound one. I can therefore understand the constrictions that most anime face. Especially now that the industry has more or less become dependent on what the mainstream society doesn't find acceptable. With that in mind, I think it's really something else that most anime still manage to tell a good story and even explore a few things about human nature and other deep philosophical constructs occasionally. I am not conceited enough to shoot down the hard work of lots of people. Not when many of them work underpaid and without much recognition by society.
As for a request for you, I would like to hear from you how you personally see anime and how the general populace sees anime in Japan. You sound like the type of person that sees things from a casual perspective. Most people whom I have read opinions from on this subject have been people who were analytical and perhaps knew far too much about how the industry runs. I would like to know how a Japanese citizen completely uninvolved with the mechanisms of the industry sees anime. Or any related media for that matter.
Lastly, I encourage you to spend more time on English boards etc. if you wish to interact with foreigners. You could even try playing a MMORPG or some other online game with friends you make over the net. Continuous communication is the fastest and the best way to learn a language. That is, assuming you have more than a passing interest in interacting with foreigners.
Now if only somebody would be kind enough to translate my post into Japanese.
I will try to use simple English. When I cannot I will try to use very precise words in the hope that the precision will aid in translation.
Since you ask about anime I will review a few anime that have gained significant popularity on this board, and express why I believe they appeal to Westerners.
I believe that Japanese animation appeals to Westerners primarily because of the universality of the human condition.
Some anime are very straightforward in its presentation of these universal themes:
Consider Cross Game (クロスゲーム) a recent anime adapted from a manga by Mitsuru Adachi (あだち 充). This anime was very popular here at AnimeSuki, even winning the AnimeSuki Choice Awards last year. The story contains some Japanese elements such as Japanese funeral customs, Koshien, and Japanese concepts such as senpai-kohai relationships.
However, the commonalities are much more significant: Grief for the death of a loved one. The complexity and difficulty of romance. The importance of keeping promises. Working together as a team to accomplish a difficult goal.
Americans especially can identify with the baseball arc. We also have our Little League games, and National championships. With a few minor alterations, the story of Cross Game could occur in any Small Town USA.
Other anime may at first glance appear to be more Japanese, but actually have strong Western roots.
Consider Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica (魔法少女まどか☆マギカ) the show that won this year's AnimeSuki Choice Awards. What can be more Japanese oriented then a Magical Girl anime?
However, Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica was inspired by the story of Faust. A famous Western legend of a man who made a "deal with the devil." Because of this, Western fans began making accurate predictions about the plotline as early as episode 2. By episode 9, several Japanese fans began commenting on this, wondering how the Western fans were able to predict future events so well.
Additionally, the Magical Girl elements are originally Western, and are not unfamiliar to Westerners. Any Western girl, or boy who has sisters, was exposed to the Magical Girl genre in shows such as Sabrina the Teenage Witch, Rainbow Brite, or She-Ra. The original Japanese Magical Girl shows were developed from an old Western show called Bewitched.
The ending for Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica as well:
Spoiler for Spoiler for ending:
Certainly significant Japanese elements have been added to this show, but the sources are primarily Western.
Other shows are very Japanese in origin yet still have wide appeal to Westerners. The works of Takahashi Rumiko (高橋 留美子) are good examples.
Inuyasha (犬夜叉) is a story set in Japanese feudal era and populated with Japanese legends and myths. To the Japanese these are more familiar stories. To a Westerner however it is new and mysterious. Because the story of Inuyasha is a quest, both reactions are effective in generating interest.
Ranma 1/2 (らんま1/2) requires understanding Japanese concepts of obligation to fully appreciate the difficult situation Ranma is in. Western fans often do not understand why Ranma has such a hard time making a choice between his multiple fiances. However, the exploration of gender issues has significant appeal to Westerners. What does it mean to be feminine? What does it mean to be manly?
Maison Ikkoku (めぞん一刻) is very Japanese. Many of the obstacles that Godai needs to overcome before winning Kyoko's hand in marriage do not exist in Western culture. However, the general story is very universal. A boy must become a man, and prove himself worthy to marry the woman he loves. Most stories externalize this development into a monster that the boy must defeat. Maison Ikkoku shows an internal development. Godai must change himself, and must defeat his own weakness. This is a less common depiction, and therefor made Maison Ikkoku notable, even outside Japan.
Shows like these often have elements that Westerns do not understand, or don't even see. However, these differences of perception are not enough to prevent a Westerner from enjoying the show.
I believe the shows that are most confusing to Westerners are those that use Western iconography and symbolism incorrectly.
Christianity, particularly Catholicism is commonly used this way. Enough so that Western Anime fans even have a term for it: Anime Catholicism, or to reference the most glaring error that we often see "Nuns are Mikos." (Nuns are actually quite different from Mikos. The image most Westerners associate with Nuns is an elderly woman wielding a ruler that will be used to punish you for some mistake you made.)
Shows such as Chrono Crusade (クロノ クルセイド) are so flagrant in these errors that often it serves as amusement for Western fans. Despite these errors, the general story of a sister sacrificing herself to save her younger brother is again a story with universal appeal, and so the show is still popular with Westerners.
However I think this errant use of Western symbols is one of the reasons Japanese anime has a reputation for "weirdness" among the mainstream Western audiences. The obsession with giant humanoid robots being the other.
There are several other things in Japanese anime that Westerners have trouble understanding.
For example "Class S" (クラスS) is often incomprehensible to Westerners and mistaken for lesbianism.
Since it will be the result of my awkward English if it says origin, please do not apologize too much.
I thought that it would do so from the next a while ago.
I think that I will do my best in English study from now on.
So, anyone recommend us a global MMORPG here?
@topic Welcome to Animesuki, TS (Topic Starter).
Try reading the Japanese Culture thread here to see what we foreigners like and dislike about Japan.
My capability is insufficient for understanding a long sentence completely. :(
Therefore, please allow becoming the answer of only the understood portion. :heh:
I think that anime is wonderful.
There are two purposes that I look at anime.
The 1st is for discerning whether he buys it, when the book of comics is published.
That is, anime is seen, and if interesting, I will think that an original will also be read.
The 2nd is for enjoying signs that become anime, and it moves and talks, when original comics are already read and the contents are known.
Probably, there are those who have the same idea also in the other Japanese.
But,I think that anime appreciation is not fundamentally faced all with so deep an idea.
Most people get interested from a picture, an outline or the voice actor that is appearing, etc., and think that they see anime.
Anime and manga have already rooted as culture for the Japanese.
Therefore, we do not have a question to the existence, reading manga, and seeing anime.
Thank you for the advice.
I would like to challenge, if there is an opportunity by all means.
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