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Old 2013-03-03, 14:21   Link #201
Bri
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
Sorry, I was probably unclear about this: people before the digital age would experience feelings of nostalgia only decades after experiencing something, but in the "digital age" people experience what is seemingly the same feeling over events that occurred a much shorter time ago - perhaps only a few years. I brought it up to say that even though your perceived "golden age" of anime (2005-2007) was less than a decade ago, all of us digital brats are still very capable of feeling nostalgia for it.
How do you separate between nostalgia and actual quality differences? Anime has had periods of creative slumps. For example you can objectively argue that the industry took a hit in the aftermath of the economic crisis and the general output in the period 2009-2011ish was not as good as before and after.
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Old 2013-03-03, 14:51   Link #202
hyl
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Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
So people should just blindly accept any and all changes? Nothing new should ever be objected to? Things never change for the worst?

There's been bad changes in human history where people objecting to them made a positive difference.
And how many people in japan are objecting to this trend? As far as i am seeing, most of these complaints comes from are "us", not "them"

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Originally Posted by synaesthetic View Post

I'm sorry but you can't sit there and tell me that a shovelware F2P MMO is anywhere near the quality of a subscription-model game. They just aren't. They aren't even remotely close. Anime is no different--the industry just decided that they'd rather focus on easier-to-please customers (which happen to be more numerous, and have more disposable income) than the highly discerning fan.
It's funny that many of these "quality subscription mobel MMO" have become a f2p (or atleast somewhat free, with both a free and a premium paying version with more features) while primarily relying on micro transactions
Which is a recent trend/change in the mmo industry. Only the the immense popular (although slowly declining) WoW is keeping it's subscription model without having to worry about going to f2p any time soon
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Old 2013-03-03, 14:58   Link #203
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The main reason I took issue with Syn's claims are not the claims that the industry has somehow dropped in quality, but that she phrases her complaints in an unproductive manner. Like Relentless pointed out, her rants come out no better than plain and simple nostalgia bias. "Anime used to be good, why isn't it it good anymore??" This is especially the case when she uses such a small gap in time to phrase her criticism of the industry.

There are legitimate claims people could make about the last few years of anime since 2006.

1. Light novel boom. Lets face it, as a source material for anime, light novels are quite different from manga or original scripts. They carry their own traps and devices and tend to be rooted in strongly with their fandom. I think no other material in the industry has given a stronger "story for your otaku" feel than this (This is where some smartass points out that everything is otaku, but you know what I mean here so please don't).

2. Financial crisis, the destruction of the US anime market, and the resulting decrease in amount of anime titles. Since 2007, we have seen a systematic decrease in the amount of titles being produced every season. Furthermore, some of these titles which used to be tailored more towards Western interests, no longer are. With less titles comes a little less variety on average, and especially in the 2008-2010 time period, it was a bit hard to find too many titles that went against the norm.

3. K-ON! and moe and art. There are certainly other titles that could be picked for the "moe" trend like Haruhi Suzumiya or even as far back as Azumanga Daioh, but K-ON! is what brought "moe" to more mainstream acceptance in Japan. It's the rated G moe so to speak. It is around the time of K-ON! that we saw an explosion in anime titles that do similar things. The "cute girls doing cute things" meme cropped up during this time, and the popularization of it is what probably gives the perception to some that they don't make anything but moe lately. This is reflected most strongly in 2008-2010 though. The other effect of K-ON is the effect it has had widely on the industry. Look at the character designs for any A-1 show. Everything is starting to become more simplified on average and it is because of these so called "animation" techniques employed in K-ON! IMO. It's not a pleasing trend for me at least.
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Old 2013-03-03, 15:10   Link #204
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hyl View Post
And how many people in japan are objecting to this trend?
I don't know... how about the number of people who buy Gundam Unicorn but don't seem to be buying anything else? There certainly seems to be a lot of them.

You shouldn't jump to conclusions. Things are not always as cut-and-dried as you seem to think that they are.
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Old 2013-03-03, 15:12   Link #205
hyl
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Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
I don't know... how about the number of people who buy Gundam Unicorn but don't seem to be buying anything else? There certainly seems to be a lot of them.

You shouldn't jump to conclusions. Things are not always as cut-and-dried as you seem to think that they are.
Sales wise not many in japan seems to be objecting about the current trend of animes. Why else would some series that were questionable for us, be extremely succesfull in japan? Or the reverse, why are some series that we like (like for example Shin Sekai Yori) a bust in japan?

As for gundam Unicorn, there is more to it. Especially because Unicon seems to be playing on the nostalgia factor of the old fans and new fans alike unlike Age
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Old 2013-03-03, 15:17   Link #206
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hyl View Post
Sales wise nobody in japan seems to be objecting about the current trend of animes
Gundam Unicorn pulled down sales that would make Madoka Magica green with envy.

So who are these people buying Gundam Unicorn but not other current anime? Why are they not buying other current anime?

Clearly they're not opposed to the animation medium itself, or they wouldn't be buying Gundam Unicorn. So why is no TV series anime even coming close to Gundam Unicorn in sales? Is there a marketplace out there, in Japan itself, that is dissatisfied with most of what modern anime has to offer, and would prefer more shows like Gundam Unicorn?

At the very least, these are perfectly reasonable questions to ask. And depending on what the answers to them are, some of your assumptions may well be off-base.


A lot of people in Japan may be silently objecting to some of anime's current trends. Some of those people may simply be objecting by keeping their wallets close.
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Old 2013-03-03, 15:21   Link #207
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The reason I made that point, and in the way I did, was because of the tone. It's really easy to paint with broad sweeping generalizations and dismiss the things you don't enjoy and claim that it's all something or someone else's fault. And that's what the "kids these days" rant does (and no, it has nothing to do with age). It takes your own preferences based on a perceived standard/pattern from the past, elevates them onto a pedestal as inherently superior, and looks down on another group of people because they have different values, all the while lamenting that "they don't make things the way they used to any more".

This whole thing is completely counter-productive.

I mean, first, let's establish whether or not the world has really changed, and what that change really is. The F2P trend is arguably more clear and objective than this bit about the "quality of anime". You might also append to that the trend towards lower-priced mobile/tablet gaming, as opposed to the traditional big-production boxed-copy games, and the push to make even single-player experiences feature always-on connectivity, downloadable content, and microtransactions. What does all this mean? The market is always evolving, but what does it seem to be heading towards? The balancing act here is to not be sensationalistic and set up "straw men" to tear down (and framing what you like as "Quality" is a pretty easy way to set up straw men). If you look to the future and see nothing but doom and gloom... well, we're not going to have a very objective conversation about whatever the "problems" are.

Ultimately, if we're indeed heading to a "new world", the most important questions to ask ourselves are: where do I fit in it, and what can I do to impact/influence it? To do that we have to understand clearly where we were, where we are, and get a sense of where it makes sense to go. I don't buy for a second that any trend in the way media is packaged or delivered (or the sorts of content explored) represents the death knell of "Quality". By the same token, it's a refining process. It may be that F2P MMORPGs haven't quite hit the mark yet in terms of providing all the best experiences to all sorts of gamers. But that doesn't necessarily mean that "Quality Is Declining" either. "Quality" is not such a one-dimensional word that it has only one linear metric. Any given thing has many different qualities, and every product is subject to trade-offs and compromises. And we shouldn't look with rose-coloured glasses at the past either and pretend that previous eras weren't also a) in the midst of transitions of various sorts, and b) not also subject to their share of problems, challenges, and shortcomings. Again, my point being that a serious conversation about changing trends can't be driven purely by cynicism and discontentment, but by some degree of dispassion and big-picture thinking.

And beyond that, I would also say that things are way too complicated to assume that there's any one single overriding trend that defines everything, not least of which is because any trend almost immediately gives birth to a counter-trend. For example, the sales of shows like Jojo and Psycho-Pass undermine any argument that suggests the "otaku market" only wants "moe" these days. In reality, there are hundreds (thousands, millions) of little trends going on at once in all sorts of directions, and some of them correlate and some of them don't. Trying to boil it all down to a simple rubric is a fool's errand. And that's again why sweeping generalizations don't help, because then we get hung up on the inherent falsehoods of the generalization rather than actually having a conversation about what is really going on and what impact it is having on both us and on the industry on the whole.

(So no, I'm not saying we can't have a conversation about "quality" or that "everything is relative". But we need to be more specific and measure things in ways that are clear and understandable so that we can at least agree about what it is we're really talking about here, and then can use objective evidence to build some sort of case.)
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Old 2013-03-03, 15:25   Link #208
hyl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
Gundam Unicorn pulled down sales that would make Madoka Magica green with envy.

So who are these people buying Gundam Unicorn but not other current anime? Why are they not buying other current anime?
Possible reasons :
different demographic: including the old fans of the older gundam series and the fans of the novels
direct to video releases: unlike madoka Gundam unicorn did not air on tv
lower price than most other anime discs
worldwide releases with multiple subtitles and audio tracks
edit: forgot that gundam is a big cultural icon. That's also something that gives it an edge over other animes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
Clearly they're not opposed to the animation medium itself, or they wouldn't be buying Gundam Unicorn. So why is no TV series anime even coming close to Gundam Unicorn in sales? Is there a marketplace out there, in Japan itself, that is dissatisfied with most of what modern anime has to offer, and would prefer more shows like Gundam Unicorn?
Because most anime discs are primarily collectibles for the fans in japan. The very same fans who already seen the entire series on tv. Likewise, the K-on movie was the 2nd best sold blu-ray in 2012 and the 3rd one was being Cars.
Might not be coincidence what those 3 have in common?
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Old 2013-03-03, 15:34   Link #209
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Originally Posted by Bri View Post
How do you separate between nostalgia and actual quality differences?
Psychoanalysis? In all seriousness it's a bit difficult to do, not least of all because the concept of "quality" itself is somewhat subjective. If I had to give a quick and dirty way of telling whether something is coming from nostalgia or from an actual assessment, I'd say that it's nostalgia if people are making vague comparisons to the past. The difficulty in making the split is that we're all making comparisons to the past (our previous experiences). Some do it more heavily than others, but not everyone verbalizes it.

I'll say again that I don't think it has to be an either-or type of thing. Your past experiences and preferences contribute toward your present judgment. It's not the case that you're blinded by past preferences, or that you view things at present with no influence from the past.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bri View Post
Anime has had periods of creative slumps. For example you can objectively argue that the industry took a hit in the aftermath of the economic crisis and the general output in the period 2009-2011ish was not as good as before and after.
I don't know, I sure liked Hanasaku Iroha (2011) and I continue to discover lovely series from that time period... you can objectively argue the point by using certain metrics, but your choice of metrics that constitute quality is subjective as well.

But why should we as fans get so caught up in that? If you didn't like any series from that time period, it's fine say that none of those series appealed to you, and that you felt that something weird happened to the industry. If we're being honest with ourselves, we should also admit that maybe something was going on in our own lives at that time, which impaired our enjoyment of those series.

As far as I'm concerned, the only true measure indicating that output fell would be if the majority of the fan base took on a negative opinion of what was going on and left, without any new people being attracted to it (similar to what Triple_R pointed out with Star Trek). Otherwise, it's either just you, or it's just a shift to a new demographic that you're not a part of.

Anime is an art form, a medium for the transmission of ideas; it isn't a science experiment where something happens one way or another. Trying to objectively assess quality... maybe it isn't impossible, but why bother?
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Old 2013-03-03, 20:51   Link #210
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Very interesting discussion going on that can be applied to many things beyond anime. For me, it's easiest to think about nostalgia goggles with video games. I can clearly recognize well-made video games from the modern era that are "high quality," fun, etc, but don't fit into my rose-tinted enjoyment of old school games. I've essentially lost the ability to enjoy games the way I used to. Games have evolved so quickly and changed so much that there are definite differences between the current generation and the previous ones. I get most of my enjoyment from the SNES-N64 era. There are certain aspects to the way games were designed back then, some due to trends, some due to technological restrictions, that I prefer. I'm quite confident and willing to admit the genesis of these preferences is that these are the games I grew up with; that I became used to and that I spent my most fond gaming years on. I can't bring myself to enjoy modern games as much even when I can quite clearly recognize that they have extremely high production values and can see why others enjoy them so much.

The preferences for the old are very much a real thing in the mind of the individual. I can definitely understand the "things were better back then" rants you sometimes hear from the older generation from this perspective. It's only natural that the world they grew up in and enjoyed is what they preferred, even if there are undeniable improvements in the modern world. I don't like when people dismiss someone's enjoyment of an old piece of entertainment, whether it be music, television, or whatever, simply based on nostalgia. Yes, nostalgia is involved - but to the individual, those preferences are still a real thing.

Nonetheless, quality itself can fluctuate. I'd relate this more to production values... BUT you can't compare apples to oranges. You can't say anime itself has declined in quality because of shifts in the type of titles that are being produced (I'm thinking genre here). If you're going to compare generations based on quality itself (and try to leave out your own nostalgic enjoyment), you should be comparing similar titles. Modern sci fi versus old sci fi. Modern slice of life/drama versus old drama, etc. You can't compare modern moe/slice of life titles to old sci fi and expect a very objective analysis to occur. You'll choose the genre you gravitate towards. That's the starting point of most of these complaints, in my opinion. The anime industry and the anime fandom have begun to gravitate towards different genres as their predominant focus. If this happens to be a shift away from your own preferences, one is tempted to claim that the quality itself has dropped.

Further compounding the issue: if you like sci-fi and remember fondly an era when sci-fi was more prevalent, there were probably more options to choose from in this genre. Sci-fi might still exist as a lesser focus, but with less options, the chance of finding a series that really clicks with you are going to be lower. So, not only is your favorite genre declining in prominence, but it's becoming harder to find those amazing shows as a result. It's easy to see why people might want to claim the quality itself has dropped.

It's pretty hard to compare entire generations to each other, with all of this considered.
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Old 2013-03-03, 20:58   Link #211
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Originally Posted by Last Sinner"
1. We saw a general trend (not definitinive, but general), that newer fans face a considerable barrier to anime that isn't current and that anything older than 2 years before they started. Getting used to the current state of things seems a necessary step before venturing back in time.
lol, people are funny sometimes. There does seem to be a cutoff point for me where anime is too old for me to enjoy (I'm not interested in anything black and white from the 1960s, and I watched the first episode of the 1971 Lupin series once, which I found horribly boring; sorry Lupin fans), but that cutoff point is way in the past... there's a lot of good 1970s anime, and everything from the 1980s on is perfectly smooth sailing. The idea of 2013 anime fans having a hard time adjusting to pre-2011 anime is amusing. "I can't adjust to this Angel Beats and K-On, man. It's just too different from the stuff they're airing today."

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While it did open up access to so much, I feel it really killed the social aspect of anime fandom. People who once gathered in big numbers to get to see anime and to chat with other anime fans now can in solitude in their own home with anonymity.
This I would have to disagree with. A friend of mine who's been into anime since the late 1980s, back in the day where getting each individual VHS tape was a journey all its own, talked about how he felt isolated in his fandom back in the day because there was almost nobody around to discuss it with aside from certain newsgroups he frequented. I'm sure that there were nice congregations of anime fans back in the '80s and '90s and that they made for some great times, but as far as the quantity of interaction goes, I find it hard to imagine that the olden days - where anime was an extremely underground thing that most people were only fleetingly familiar with and felt rather scornful towards (I hate the term 'Japanimation' because it's so closely associated with those times) - saw a more thriving social sphere than the modern age, where anime's popularity has grown exponentially compared to 20 years ago. This message board alone is responsible for a none-too-modest 4.5 million posts worth of anime discussion.

Of course, things might be different down in your neck of the woods, as I'm fairly certain anime gained popularity in other countries much sooner than in the United States.
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Old 2013-03-03, 21:08   Link #212
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lol, people are funny sometimes. There does seem to be a cutoff point for me where anime is too old for me to enjoy (I'm not interested in anything black and white from the 1960s, and I watched the first episode of the 1971 Lupin series once, which I found horribly boring; sorry Lupin fans), but that cutoff point is way in the past... there's a lot of good 1970s anime, and everything from the 1980s on is perfectly smooth sailing. The idea of 2013 anime fans having a hard time adjusting to pre-2011 anime is amusing. "I can't adjust to this Angel Beats and K-On, man. It's just too different from the stuff they're airing today."
I admit I find it a little annoying when people are super close-minded about old shows. I've encountered this more than once when trying to recommend Maison Ikkoku to people. I consider the show as close to perfection as a romance/comedy anime can attain, but some people won't even give it a chance because of the dated visuals.
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Old 2013-03-03, 21:18   Link #213
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I admit I find it a little annoying when people are super close-minded about old shows. I've encountered this more than once when trying to recommend Maison Ikkoku to people. I consider the show as close to perfection as a romance/comedy anime can attain, but some people won't even give it a chance because of the dated visuals.
Same but what I can I say I love CLASSIC whether it is anime, TV or Film. Heck the 1980's don't even seem that old to me when I can I turn on a film from the 1920's
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Old 2013-03-03, 21:56   Link #214
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Same but what I can I say I love CLASSIC whether it is anime, TV or Film. Heck the 1980's don't even seem that old to me when I can I turn on a film from the 1920's
I was born in '89 so I am inclined to agree that the 80's aren't that old. I mean, I can see where people are coming from in that animation quality has more consistency nowadays, but I don't see how older visuals are so jarring that they can stop you from watching a show that you would enjoy if it were produced today (then again, I really like Kingdom, which is airing right now, and people seem to be really turned off by its visuals). Another interesting thing is, whether it's anime, film, etc, going further back in time, you can see aspects of how culture has changed, too (tangentially, this is why I've always loved reading Shakespeare, Don Quixote, Herodotus, etc, as it is an amazing window into the mindset of past cultures...)

I did notice little bits and pieces of 80's Japanese culture that is different from today in anime I've watched from the 80's like the aforementioned Maison Ikkoku and other ones like Touch.

I'd consider myself an anime fan that was 'acculturated' or 'brought up' with 90's and early 2000's era anime. While I'm not as obsessive today as I was in the past, I'm still along for the ride. I don't think my tastes have changed very much, either. The industry has changed, for certain, and there were times when I felt like my days with anime had come to an end, but there's always been the odd series that keeps me attached to the fandom when my interest was waning. I think this season (or, more accurately, the shows currently airing), in particular, has been quite strong from my 'vantage point' and individual taste.
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Old 2013-03-04, 00:57   Link #215
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Casey View Post
there's a lot of good 1970s anime, and everything from the 1980s on is perfectly smooth sailing. The idea of 2013 anime fans having a hard time adjusting to pre-2011 anime is amusing. "I can't adjust to this Angel Beats and K-On, man. It's just too different from the stuff they're airing today."
Now, that's the most extreme example I have but there's plenty of posts in the suggestions section of the forum that ask for animes newer than 90s because they don't like "old animation".
Now you and I aren't like that,but I'm very much willing to believe we're in the minority.
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Old 2013-03-04, 02:00   Link #216
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I've been watching anime for over 20 years(if you count the pre-Toonami era), even before I knew what it was, and I've had a similar sentiment as far as anime goes around 2008, 2009. At some point, it feels like you've seen just about every idea out there, and even new ideas are based on pre-existing concepts. That's when I just happened to fall into reading manga. Even though a lot of manga still followed these same tropes, I dunno....something felt...different about them. Maybe it was the way I had to use my imagination for certain things, but even with that, eventually, I felt the same way about manga. That's when I turned to seinen(and mildly, josei) works. Even when the initial premise of the story was something I had scene before, the amount of depth the chars in seinen works tended to be unique from the textbook examples I was accustomed to. I know every series is different in their own way, but seinen works were like a breath of fresh air; as if they had a 'higher range of freedom' as to how its story flowed. I still don't watch as much anime as I used to, but its been better since I've started reading seinen works. Keeping things fresh is important. Diminishing marginal utility is the term that comes to mind to describe my continued interest in anime.
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Old 2013-03-04, 16:34   Link #217
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I split the tangent about microtransactions in F2P games to its own thread.
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Old 2013-03-04, 16:45   Link #218
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Quote:
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I split the tangent about microtransactions in F2P games to its own thread.
Thanks a lot, I wasn't really happy about crapping up this thread but I didn't want to just give up on the discussion.
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Old 2013-03-06, 14:18   Link #219
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I've noticed that recency seems to have a strong presence in this thread. To elaborate, I don't think the problem is the industry changing on tastes or for better or worse nor is it the fact that some fans can go along with a heavy dose of X while others prefer Y. The issue is how the Internet fandom--us, basically--seems to be dominated by people who usually focus on current shows. We--and by we I mean most of us--seem to treat anime as current event talking points and not entertainment.

Why does the fandom have it in their collective thoughts to talk about the last episode of an anime the same way someone talks about last night's American Idol? At the end of the day we watch it for our entertainment, not to give an update on how well or not KyoAni is doing these days.

Not to mention the discussion is bound to get repetitive whether you like or dislike a show because there's only so many talking points you can bring up. When you watch the same anime as everyone else, you inevitably think the same things as everyone else.
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Old 2013-03-06, 15:36   Link #220
Key Board
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It happens in not just anime, but all kinds of hobbies

we call it:

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ennui

for the most part if you experience it, it's your own fault

you can change hobbies, but until you change your habits, it will happen again and again
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