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Old 2011-02-25, 05:43   Link #41
MisaoFan
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Generally, noitamina shows aired in the middle of the season, I mean the same month as the other animes aired.
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Old 2011-03-25, 14:03   Link #42
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Producer Kōji Yamamoto confirmed on his Twitter account on Friday that Fuji TV's late-night Noitamina timeslot has received its lowest ratings to date. However, he emphasized it has nothing to do with the quality of the current works (Fractale and Wandering Son). Although he acknowledged the timing of the Great Eastern Japan Earthquake (Higashi Nihon Daishinsai) disaster and other matters, he accepted responsibility for the low ratings as a producer.
Over on ANN, Justin Sevakis observed that this was a mixture of a "Japanese" response, where the producer takes personal responsibility for failure, and a "show-biz" response of deflecting criticism from the creatives.

I doubt the earthquake played much of a role. Ratings for those shows were, by Noitamina standards, pretty terrible before the quake hit.
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Old 2011-03-25, 14:12   Link #43
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Originally Posted by SeijiSensei View Post
I doubt the earthquake played much of a role. Ratings for those shows were, by Noitamina standards, pretty terrible before the quake hit.
I'd say that the earthquake was definitely was a factor. Anime DVD sales were down by 50% this week too. Although, to do the proper comparison, one would have to check if any new news hit around that time slot and how other shows (non-kids) did comparatively.
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Old 2011-03-25, 14:28   Link #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MisaoFan View Post
Generally, noitamina shows aired in the middle of the season, I mean the same month as the other animes aired.
ehh, isnt that most anime generally started at same time?
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Old 2011-03-25, 15:41   Link #45
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Dunno guys, IMHO the shows are overly ambitious, independent of personal tastes, I do not see how they think anime audiences will be expanded* (and their DVD sales increase) by targeting girls that grown out of reading shoujo manga (half-joking here).

I liked some of the shows from the zone, but generally speaking the ones I did not drop took like forever to reach some interesting plot or develop characters. Plus personally, I can hardly think of one show that had decent character designs.

* By the way that is not necessarily a good thing!
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Old 2011-03-25, 16:32   Link #46
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Originally Posted by bayoab View Post
I'd say that the earthquake was definitely was a factor. Anime DVD sales were down by 50% this week too. Although, to do the proper comparison, one would have to check if any new news hit around that time slot and how other shows (non-kids) did comparatively.
I guess if we're talking specifically about the week after the earthquake then perhaps you're right, bayoab. We don't having ratings data yet for that specific episode. Overall, though, the current Noitamina shows have not been doing all that well according to the figures posted by Katapan in the ratings thread.

*1.9%(--.-%) 01/13 24:45-25:45 CX* noitaminA - Fractale (2.5%, new) - Hourou Musuko (1.4%, new)
*1.8%(*1.9%) 01/20 24:45-25:45 CX* noitaminA - Fractale - Hourou Musuko
*1.6%(*1.8%) 01/27 24:45-25:45 CX* noitaminA - Fractale - Hourou Musuko
*2.1%(*1.6%) 02/03 24:45-25:45 CX* noitaminA - Fractale - Hourou Musuko
[no data for 2/10 - perhaps it was an off week?]
*1.5%(--.-%) 02/17 24:45-25:45 CX* noitaminA - Fractale - Hourou Musuko
*2.1%(*1.5%) 02/24 25:00-26:00 CX* noitaminA - Fractale - Hourou Musuko

Even if the quake brought Noitamina's ratings down below 1%, they weren't failling from a very high place to begin with, especially in comparison with Noitamina's historical ratings performance.
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Old 2011-03-26, 00:39   Link #47
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Well its noitaminA's fault I guess.
Hourou Musuko was forced into an 11 episode adaptation which forced them to skip the beginning of the manga which might alienate some viewers while Fractale was forced to have an 11-episode adventure. Is that even an adventure?
I think the 11-episode format is coming to bite them.
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Old 2011-03-26, 01:46   Link #48
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Actually, Wandering Son was meant to be 12 episodes, but due to the earthquake/tsunami, what were going to be Episodes 10 and 11 were compiled into a single episode and 12 became 11. Source

Fractale's adaptation actually only had 9 episodes worth of material, so scriptwriters were hired to add in 2 episodes worth on filler. Coincidence Episode 5 has someone different in charge and is a filler episode? I think not. That's what Yoshioka Shinobu does for a living.

The length isn't the main issue. The main issue is lately noitaminA is airing shows that don't fit the demographic. This is a section that is supposed to be appealing to young adults in Japan.

What was the most popular title that aired within it? Nodame Cantabile. The final season had an 8.6% rating, which is virtually miraculous for its timeslot. It was all about adults.

After that it was The Tatami Galaxy and House of Five Leaves. 4.4% rating. Tatami sold relatively well, Five Leaves didn't. Both featured adults.

Next was Shiki and Moyashimon live action. 2.2% rating. I don't think that live action did the slot any favours. And despite the vamp/gore factor, Shiki was slow. Plus it had a fair amount of teens, which had more focus than the adults. Never heard about how Shiki sold, presume it didn't do well.

Currently you have Fractale and Wandering Son. 1.1% rating, may have dipped below 1% for a while, seem to have drifted back up to 2%. Both are shows featuring kids. That is not the demographic's target audience. noitaminA's better rating shows have had adult characters in the main roles. Aoi Hana, the other title from the same manga-ka as Wandering Son, was a good series but it effectively lead to the end of the Noise timeslot. Taking on that manga-ka's work was a risky venture to begin with. As for Fractale, its failures squarely rest on Yakaman's shoulders, which he has finally had the balls to admit. Source Sounds like neither has sold well.

The April series for noitaminA don't quite seem targetted to the demographic either.

It's simple. Start airing shows that properly target the demographic that made noitaminA successful in the first place. And make sure you don't have halfwits like Yakaman ruining the shows they're in charge of. Get those basics right and then the timeslot can get back to where it should be.

In the end, sales are everything in this business. Quality does mean something. But it isn't a necessity to sell well. Shinbo is the king of running way behind schedule but continues to rake in the cash for Shaft. KyoAni isn't exactly striving to excel anymore but sells even when it stuffs up things like Endless Eight. J.C. Staff has shifted away from more mature shows and is focusing on moe. When a terribad show like Milky Holmes sells over 10k units, which is more than most series from last year, that says a lot about the state of the industry and the paying fans.
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Old 2011-03-26, 01:54   Link #49
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If we're at the point where the last real bastion of "art for art's sake" in anime has to resort to straight commercialism, maybe we really are at the end. Hourou Musuko is a phenomenal show - a masterpiece - and Fractale damn good and underrated. We have 30-40 other series every season that are driven primarily by financial considerations. Can't we have two that just try to be good?

I don't begrudge the producers and networks from trying to make money, even with NoitaminA. It just kills me that we can't celebrate the fact that almost every series the block has aired in the last year has been anywhere from very good to sublime. I guess in anime as in every other commercial artistic enterprise quality doesn't matter - that's no surprise, but it was nice to think that there was one hour where it still did. C'est la vie.
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Old 2011-03-26, 02:16   Link #50
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I'm sure the actual creators/producers themselves don't enjoy producing such drivel en masse. But in times of hardship you do what you gotta do to stay afloat. In due time, hopefully the industry will be able to pick itself back up and start polishing those gems again.
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Old 2011-03-26, 02:38   Link #51
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Originally Posted by Guardian Enzo View Post
If we're at the point where the last real bastion of "art for art's sake" in anime has to resort to straight commercialism, maybe we really are at the end. Hourou Musuko is a phenomenal show - a masterpiece - and Fractale damn good and underrated. We have 30-40 other series every season that are driven primarily by financial considerations. Can't we have two that just try to be good?
I'm not sure Noitamina was ever really about art for arts sake - the block was very successful for several years.

Not sure what happened, really. I have to admit I expected Fractale to be a poor seller - the less than serious tone early on seemed like a poor fit with the kinds of fans that gave other artsy shows like Ghost in the Shell SAC and Tatami Galaxy gppd sales. I don't know, maybe they were hoping to attract the market that buys box sets of major 90s shows with the general style of the work. But I'd be hard pressed to say I saw much wrong with the handling of Shiki or Wandering Son. And besides, its not the low DVD sales for some shows that surprises me - its the low TV ratings.
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Old 2011-03-26, 02:46   Link #52
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Anime has taken a significant shift from story-driven series to character-driven series. Pre-2000, it was about the story. Now it's the characters that define whether a series sell or not. Shows mentioned above don't have characters that meet the character formulas that equal success these days.

Want a series to succeed financially? Target a demographic effectively and give them the characters they want. noitaminA's successful shows did that. Their recent ones haven't.
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Old 2011-03-26, 03:05   Link #53
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I'm pretty amazed Wandering Son even got an adaptation, especially after how poorly Aoi Hana sold. I'd probably have to pick myself off the floor if it were actually doing well commercially. Aoi Hana was fantastic; Wandering Son has problems with its directing and pacing, but they're not severe enough to warrant those kinds of ratings. I would say the problem with these two is that the issues they examine aren't things Japanese society is ready to deal with seriously. Japan loves traps and Class S, but not in a way that makes most people want to honestly examine it in the context of reality. They're certainly targeted at the proper demographic for NoitaminA, though.

Fractale is just a complete mess that has no concept of characterization or storytelling. The immature tone is nothing like what NoitaminA has hosted in the past. The fact that they picked it up makes me wonder how much the network actually knows about the shows when deciding when to air them.

Characters and story can't really be separated, since the characters drive any story. What would Hamlet have been about if his mother and uncle weren't devious and power-hungry? You can have characters without a real story, but it just doesn't work the other way.
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Old 2011-03-26, 03:43   Link #54
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Originally Posted by Last Sinner View Post
Want a series to succeed financially? Target a demographic effectively and give them the characters they want. noitaminA's successful shows did that. Their recent ones haven't.
Generally I've found I need to invoke other elements along with characters to explain the difference in popularity among shows, but this actually intrigues me. If true, we can say that Noitamina viewers dig artsy bishounen types but not trap shotas.

(Because you can't tell over the internet, I can't keep a straight face right now.)
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Old 2011-03-26, 07:37   Link #55
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Originally Posted by _gallo_ View Post
Well perhaps what audience is looking for is some coherency over the typology of anime aired in a tv block. As far as I remember when Noitamina started it was mostly shojo and josei adaptations. People who loved these kind of stories started to watch anime on FujiTV because they knew more or less what to expect season by season. This is not to say that josei are more or less equal, but still you can feel more affinity between Usagi Drop and Hachikuro rather than Hachikuro and Trapeze. What Noitamina tried to do in my opinion was to make more different (genre-wise, story-wise) the anime aired in the tv block, perhaps to capitalize on the initial success. This has jeopardized the Tv ratings as the old audience don’t know what to expect anymore and prefer to skip the entire thing. Anime fans didn’t change their habits since they’re already accustomed with different genres, but a consistent share of noitamina audience was composed of casual viewers a now FujiTv seems to have lost them.
It’s not a perfectly explanatory reason, since there are some anime not josei based which have done good, and some josei adaptations that got lemons. But I’m wondering if by sticking only to josei adaptations the situation would have been different today.
Then there were also some bad choices. Antique Bakery was to keen on fujioshis' fantsies, TM 8.0 was ruined by a poorly execution, Nodame Cantabile was spoiled by the direction of the second season etc etc etc.
BINGO, We have a winnah!

Not much to add that people haven't already said. I generally loved looking at Noitamina works. I looked forward to the stuff religiously every year until about ioono, 2010. No real reason, just got distracted. Haven't really been keeping up, although they still seem to be doing stuff outside normal otaku interests. For that, they earn my praise at least for being mavericks in an industry known for it's inward nature.

Bunny Drop seems like something that could reconnect with the core audience.
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Old 2011-03-26, 08:34   Link #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Last Sinner View Post

Currently you have Fractale and Wandering Son. 1.1% rating, may have dipped below 1% for a while, seem to have drifted back up to 2%. Both are shows featuring kids. That is not the demographic's target audience. noitaminA's better rating shows have had adult characters in the main roles.

The April series for noitaminA don't quite seem targetted to the demographic either.

It's simple. Start airing shows that properly target the demographic that made noitaminA successful in the first place. And make sure you don't have halfwits like Yakaman ruining the shows they're in charge of. Get those basics right and then the timeslot can get back to where it should be.

I think that you're right here.

I think that quality, in a general sense, can make a hit anime even more successful, but that the starting point to commercial success for an anime can't be just quality in a general sense.

Any commercially successful anime needs to have a hook that appeals to certain target demographic(s).

A hook is something like the anime's premise being one that's very intriguing, or its art work and character designs being very attention getting, or its characters being good shout-outs to other popular anime characters, or its characters being ones geared towards a certain target audience.

In the case of your average noitaminA anime block viewer, it now seems that an important hook is having adult characters living adult lives. This is desirable for such viewers probably because it makes it easier for them to identify with the characters, and the anime's narrative.

An anime like Nodame Cantabile taps into an audience that most animes don't get. And that audience probably wants an anime that speaks directly to them. It's not your typical otaku audience, imo.


Truth be told, I don't really have a problem with this. There's already plenty of animes out there with teenage or kid characters. Maybe it's good for the anime industry to have some sort of commercial incentive to make animes with adult characters as the main characters, as that can add greater diversity to the sorts of characters and stories that can be found in the anime world. Now an argument can be made that if an anime company wants to fully tap into the audience that watched Nodame Cantabile then they're probably going to need to produce an anime with adult characters in most/all key roles.


It's certainly true that good stories can come in all shapes and sizes, with all sorts of different characters of different ages and types. However, there is something to be said for a story that speaks directly to you.
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Old 2011-03-26, 09:45   Link #57
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If anything that's really what anime needs more of, stories about people ABOVE the age of 15. I love the stuff, but as you get into your 20s, it gets harder and harder to really bond with certain characters and stories after awhile.
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Old 2011-03-26, 12:28   Link #58
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I think there's way too much focus on the age of the characters. Wouldn't a discerning adult viewer prefer a smart, involving series about a teenager over a dumb, boring one about an adult? Are we so incapable of empathy that we only want to watch series about people who look like us?

House of Five Leaves had almost no underage characters - it focused on adults in their 30's and 40's (and even older). It was superbly written, beautifully animated and had great BGM. It tanked. Hourou Musuko is almost entirely about middle-school kids and their travails. It's beautifully written, gorgeously animated and has great BGM. It's in the process of tanking.

So what's the lesson? Well, it's pretty clear that quality isn't a selling point on it's own. I'd also argue that the age of the characters doesn't ultimately matter so much either - it's the presence (or absence) of the "magic buttons" that matter. If you don't have at least one of them - moe, incest, etc. - you're not going to draw mass audiences and sell blu-rays. I think the choice the NoitaminA producers (and the money behind them) have is very simple - continue to produce low-rated series of high quality and hope for the occasional breakthrough hit, or give up and treat the block like any other hour of commercial anime.
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Old 2011-03-26, 12:28   Link #59
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Originally Posted by Last Sinner View Post
As for Fractale, its failures squarely rest on Yakaman's shoulders, which he has finally had the balls to admit. Source Sounds like neither has sold well.
I'll be the first to admit that I don't like what Fractale is turning into after getting all worked up over it, but please read the article you're quoting before bashing away. Yamamoto Koji is not Yamakan. I actually applaud Yamamoto Yutaka for sticking with it the way he did, but the show seriously needed a bigger budget and two cours, and it's ending in a pretty disappointing manner with the level of sophistication it has shown throughout the series. I guess I partially blame my expectations for that, but seeing AnimeSuki users grasping for straws, trying to make sense of the story and where it was heading, I imagine casual viewers and the Noitamina demographic found it completely baffling. I believe this wasn't Yamakan's intent.

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Originally Posted by Guardian Enzo View Post
I think there's way too much focus on the age of the characters. Wouldn't a discerning adult viewer prefer a smart, involving series about a teenager over a dumb, boring one about an adult? Are we so incapable of empathy that we only want to watch series about people who look like us?
Why do you think garbage like Angel Beats!, K-ON! and OreImo sells? It's relatable to the yet undeveloped minds of the middleschool demographic.
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Old 2011-03-26, 13:01   Link #60
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I think there's way too much focus on the age of the characters.
A few people bring up the impact that character age can have on certain target audiences, and this constitutes "way too much focus"?

No, I think it's a legitimate point.


Quote:
Wouldn't a discerning adult viewer prefer a smart, involving series about a teenager over a dumb, boring one about an adult?
Yes, but that's not what's at question here.

It's that many viewers want to see stories that speak directly to them. That they can relate to. For many adult viewers, high school life is an old and fading memory, making it harder for them to relate to than a story involving adults in adult settings.

Now, speaking personally, I'm not yet at the point where a story involving teenage characters in high school is one that I can't relate to at all, and hence I can still very much enjoy such stories. But I will admit that a story involving adult characters is often one that I now find easier to relate to.

Even a College/University setting is one that's fresher in my memory than a high school one.


Quote:
Are we so incapable of empathy that we only want to watch series about people who look like us?
It's not about people who "look like us". It's about people that are in a place in life similar to our own, whatever they may look like.

I'm now at a point where empathy is often all the emotional investment I can give to many anime characters. It can be hard for me to live vicariously through many anime main protagonists because they're living a life that I haven't lived for 12 years now, and will never live again. At best, it raises a sort of nostalgia in me, and makes me wish them well.

For some viewers, being able to live vicariously through the anime main protagonist increases emotional investment, and narrative immersion.

With an anime like Monster, for example, I can relate to how Dr. Tenma has to make serious sacrifices in his professional life in order to deal with struggles in his personal life. It's easier for me to put myself in his shoes, and wonder if I would make the same choices if I was him.

In any event, it can simply be nice to see a story that speaks directly to you, for a change.


Quote:

So what's the lesson? Well, it's pretty clear that quality isn't a selling point on it's own. I'd also argue that the age of the characters doesn't ultimately matter so much either -
I disagree with you then. I think that a strong argument can be made that many of the long-time viewers of NoitaminA want to see animes with adult characters in adult settings.

It's unfortunate if good animes are hurt by this, but that's the cost of oversaturating the market with a certain type of anime.


I myself would welcome more animes with adult casts and adult settings.
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