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Old 2006-01-19, 09:30   Link #1
shiro83
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Why does anime air during such late hours in Japan?

Have you ever seen little footnotes where an anime episode is about to end stating when the next episode is airing? Times stated are around midnights to 4am.

I am wondering why the broadcasters air anime during such late hours...
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Old 2006-01-19, 10:09   Link #2
DaFool
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Anime is aired during late night hours in (as kj1980 would put it) 'obscure UHF' channels or non-free cable / satellite channels because the market for anime is small. The only exceptions would be prime-time shounen shows like Naruto or family shows such as Doraemon.

In the West, prevalent thinking is that anime is for kids.
Guess what? In Japan the prevalent thinking is that anime is for kids (meaning those below 20 yrs old in Japan)

Thus, the only people who subscribe to anime are the following:

1.) kids
2.) teenagers (who may or may not 'grow out' of anime)
3.) animation industry professionals
4.) videogamers
5.) otaku

The shows that are aired very late at night / wee hours of the morning are otaku-targeted shows, you know...the stuff with twincest and loli and fanservice and everything else that makes anime enjoyable.
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Old 2006-01-19, 11:01   Link #3
eggplant
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Unless a specific anime contains themes that are deemed acceptable by general standards, they are catered to otakus, which still make for a niche viewership, and thus the time slots are pushed to the wee hours by default.

Broadcasting stations realize that these programs will not result in high ratings, which is the definitive yardstick for prime time air slots, and renowned companies will not put their money and reputation on the line by sponsoring shows with potential controversial themes.

Despite its third rate treatment, late night anime ratings are feasible for the given time of day, in some cases substantial, and since the majority of the shows are sponsored by the publisher, distributor, or a company of correlation to the said anime, the targeted audience has been effectively reached.

Besides, with ratings not being an inherent criteria of late night TV, the idea of time shifting via VCRs and DVRs becomes plausible.

Then again, the production cost of one 30 minute episode is at least $100K, not including the sponsorhips fee, so no wonder the economics of late night anime are heavily dependant on the purchasing power of exorbitant R2 DVDs by obsessed otakus like me.
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Last edited by eggplant; 2006-01-19 at 11:43. Reason: fixed typo
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Old 2006-01-19, 11:27   Link #4
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Kohaku, why "social unconformity" (shakai futekigou?) ?
That's a complicated word for this thread ^^'
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Old 2006-01-19, 11:48   Link #5
琥珀
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It can't be accepted by most people (おとな) in Japan.

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Old 2006-01-19, 13:06   Link #6
DaFool
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So if I were an anime company with a moderate spending power, how should I arrive towards a decision as to what kind of anime to make?

1.) Aim for primetime, with minimal controversial themes, but maximal character goods and model kits.

2.) Aim for otaku hours, since the story isn't that appealing anyway except to a select few. Since the market is niche anyway, broadcasters could care less therefore we're free to load up on all sorts of crazy stuff to satisfy the fans.
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Old 2006-01-19, 14:04   Link #7
tugatosmk
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What I'm curious about is how were the anime schedules from 1990 to 2000. I know there are a lot more different series per season nowadays, but still...

Is the current late-night scheduling a 21st century trend or did it start earlier?
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Old 2006-01-19, 14:40   Link #8
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Most likely a number of factors:

1.) Digital Satellite HD television broadcasting in widescreen / letterbox. Hence we have a lot of hi-res raws of digital anime nowadays.

2.) Shrinking of the direct-to-DVD OVA market since 'obscure UHF' television exposure at 3am is better than no television exposure at all. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OVA,
especially the part regarding the economical 13 episode series.

3.) I'm not complaining. More variety is better. I'd rather have a gazillion 13-eppers and a few 100+ eppers, though some would prefer more 100-eppers, but those are mainstream tastes.
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Old 2006-01-19, 16:15   Link #9
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They had a great article about this in newtype saying that the the nost money was actually made in merchandise.
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Old 2006-01-19, 18:46   Link #10
shiro83
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Thanks everyone. Now I understand the lateness of airing anime shows.
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Old 2006-01-19, 19:11   Link #11
jpwong
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I'm curious to know why a lot of the latenight anime time listings on TV station and official sites tend to list air times as like 26:30, or 27:00. Is it easier for people to figure out those times rather than 2:30am or something?
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Old 2006-01-19, 19:30   Link #12
bayoab
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpwong
I'm curious to know why a lot of the latenight anime time listings on TV station and official sites tend to list air times as like 26:30, or 27:00. Is it easier for people to figure out those times rather than 2:30am or something?
The airing times of shows in Japan is usually 4:00 -> 28:00. I believe this is to remove all ambiguity and so that late night shows still air on the same day.
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Old 2006-01-19, 19:37   Link #13
琥珀
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For Japanese TV programs, for example, they will use 1/19 25:30 instead of 1/20 01:30. It is a habit, or a culture.
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Old 2006-01-19, 19:52   Link #14
BigPrime
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shiroitenshi83
Have you ever seen little footnotes where an anime episode is about to end stating when the next episode is airing? Times stated are around midnights to 4am.

I am wondering why the broadcasters air anime during such late hours...
Ask yourself why AdultSwim airs late at night and why Toonami/Miguzi airs in afternoons and evenings and you'll have your answer. It's because that's when the people they want to reach will be watching. Teenagers/twentysomethings and other semi-responsible adults watch TV late at night, after finishing work, getting out of the bar or finishing with their studies. Kids and families watch TV in the afternoon and evening hours.

Television companies, Japanese, American or any other, are businesses. They air programming when they feel the market for it will be watching. Soap operas air in the afternoon because housewives watch television in the early afternoon. Cartoons air in the morning and afternoon because the kids are either on their way off to school or just getting in. Dramas and family shows air in the evening ("prime time") because that's when the whole family is "supposed" to be gathered watching the boob tube together. Teenagers and twenty-somethings keep strange hours, everyone knows that and as such, the shows aimed at them air at...unusual...hours.
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Old 2009-03-30, 21:11   Link #15
ria1414
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigPrime View Post
Ask yourself why AdultSwim airs late at night and why Toonami/Miguzi airs in afternoons and evenings and you'll have your answer. It's because that's when the people they want to reach will be watching. Teenagers/twentysomethings and other semi-responsible adults watch TV late at night, after finishing work, getting out of the bar or finishing with their studies. Kids and families watch TV in the afternoon and evening hours.

Television companies, Japanese, American or any other, are businesses. They air programming when they feel the market for it will be watching. Soap operas air in the afternoon because housewives watch television in the early afternoon. Cartoons air in the morning and afternoon because the kids are either on their way off to school or just getting in. Dramas and family shows air in the evening ("prime time") because that's when the whole family is "supposed" to be gathered watching the boob tube together. Teenagers and twenty-somethings keep strange hours, everyone knows that and as such, the shows aimed at them air at...unusual...hours.
I don't see how teenagers can keep late hours, especially if they have to go to school in the morning.
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Old 2009-03-30, 21:25   Link #16
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Originally Posted by ria1414 View Post
I don't see how teenagers can keep late hours, especially if they have to go to school in the morning.
Indeed, so you've solved half of the problem yourself.

It is not targeting directly at teenagers only, its also targeting at otaku and hikkikomori NEETs, people who are always at home and don't have work or school.

Anyway this thread is like inactive for 3 years.
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Old 2009-03-31, 09:34   Link #17
solomon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tugatosmk View Post
What I'm curious about is how were the anime schedules from 1990 to 2000. I know there are a lot more different series per season nowadays, but still...

Is the current late-night scheduling a 21st century trend or did it start earlier?
Simply put it exploded in the late 90s. TV Tokyo had really made a name for itself as the anime station and with "Those Who Hunt Elves", they led the way in graveyard slot anime.

The practice soon trickled out to most major networks except NHK (they only rarely do it).

Simply put, TV tokyo leads the way still today. TBS is 2nd then Asahi TV in terms of having many of the more "niche" or "otaku" shows (a sizable majority of which are aired on Tv Tokyo every year)

NTV made a name for itself airing shows that were aimed at a NON otaku audience. SOme of it's most famous were Hajime no Ippo, Monster, NANA and Death Note.

Fuji TV had certain otaku aimed shows like Rahxephon and the first Kanon and some real wierd experimental stuff like Wolf's Rain and Technolyze. Bad scheduling and low ratings are rumored to have soured programming's opinion of such relatively throwaway fare.

They recently struck gold with their Noitamina block though, primarily the aim to create anime for college age women, the audience is prolly wider than that. Their shows range from Honey and Clover to Jyu Oh Sei to Hataraki Man to Moyashimon to Hakaba Kitarou. They (along with NTV) are the only animes to have relatively noticible TV ratings (ranging from low 3% to high 5% average which is considerably higher than most graveyard anime) due to more mainstream appeal.
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Old 2009-03-31, 09:54   Link #18
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I always wondered how Hayate the Combat Butler got an early morning time slot despite it's otaku-ness (Kugimiya Rie tsundere, maid trap, fanservice, etc.) and numerous obscure references. Perhaps they were deliberately reaching out to a broader audience with kids while keeping the otaku happy?
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Old 2009-03-31, 11:52   Link #19
Astrana
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prime time would air most popular anime and Japanese drama.
+ Otaku never sleeps early lol
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Old 2009-04-02, 13:39   Link #20
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well there is got one obvious reason there late hours anime shows that is anime series with female characters with doobi.

besides that is really one reason to show it late hide the doobi from the little kids.
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