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Old 2017-08-06, 03:47   Link #1
False Prophet
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Join Date: Jun 2014
What the core audience of anime really want

(This post is by no means sarcastic)

One thing that I have heard more than one person complained is that anime nowaday pander to its core audience (otaku) too much, instead of trying to broaden the scope.

But what does the core audience of anime actually want? I have yet to see anyone trying to create a comprehensive list on this matter, and there are only some scattered article (like this one about the isekai genre) which talk about mass appeal.

(If you frequent platforms such as forums and 4chan like me, you will find it kind of strange that the fandom seem to always demand either the most well-executed or the bottom of the barrel.)

Anyone here has any idea about my question?
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Old 2017-08-08, 06:14   Link #2
Just another tanuki.
Join Date: Mar 2017
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If you talk about Japanese fans, sales numbers make it pretty easy to see which shows are popular (daytime / family shows excluded). Shows that sell well are almost always aimed at either male or female fans and have an attractive cast (mostly based on certain popular archetypes) that is supposed to be very appealing. Virtually all of the top-selling shows prominently promote characters with a very strong and usually artificial romantic/sexual appeal (see: Love Live, Free!, Monogatari series, Utapri, Yuri on ICE!!!), i.e. "waifu" / "husbando" material. That seems to be an essential component of well-selling shows or franchise. Of course this is not the only factor. But it's the most obvious one.

Last edited by Tanuki.; 2017-08-08 at 17:05.
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Old 2017-08-08, 10:29   Link #3
Pantsu Inspector
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Miyazaki solved this decades ago.
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Old 2017-08-15, 14:20   Link #4
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This is nothing new. It is just what the fans want has changed over time.

Back in the 1980s, for example, otaku often gravitated to works like Gundam, Ideon, and Macross. When the market became oversaturated with mecha and science-fiction, things gradually changed until Evangelion hit the scene, spawning many imitators, and moe gradually became a thing. Average characters started getting younger, designs focused on characters being even softer and cuter than before, and figurines of cute characters replaced mecha models as the go-to. It was a new generation in the late 1990s and 2000s.

During the 2000s fans seemed to want a lot of moe stuff, the "cute high school" or "cute middle school girls doing cute things" show. Haruhi Suzumiya and K-On! were sort of the apotheosis of this trend. The 2010s seem to be saturated with light novel adaptations of the isekai persuasion or the "magical high school" category.

The market has always focused on where the demand lies. Demand just changes over time.
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Old 2017-08-16, 17:52   Link #5
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The list or even core audience doesn't exist. It's basically a feeling of things that you woudn't want to be seen in public with so pundits can decry that anime is directed at otaku and cannot see the light. Essentially a big strawman.

This is the essential core of the anime fan that wants to evangelize anime to other people or share it as a legitimate hobby. It's not completely without merit though. If they want anime to grow and become part of the mainstream, that's how it has to be. But not every show desires to be this either. Which is why placing the same standards under an umbrella can be a bad idea.
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Old 2017-08-18, 21:59   Link #6
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Old 2017-08-26, 13:13   Link #7
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I'm actually not really sure what the core audience would want besides to spread anime out more. However, for some of my anime, I tend to go against mainstream popular ones and pick unique ones that I enjoy more.

But, I like shows with an interesting plots and characters like Sakurada Reset or Re-creators or really emotive ones like Shuumatsu nani ka shitteimasuka. However, I've recently started to dislike shows with stereotypical plots like harems or mecha shows like Regalia, though it's probably because I've seen too many of them. I did like Eromanga Sensei though.

But, yeah, I think its more of a trends issue based on sales too.
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Old 2017-08-29, 17:46   Link #8
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I think we often confuse ourselves with the core audience in the first place. Unless any of us here are native Japanese, we are not and we will never be the target demographic of Japanese anime as a gestalt phenomenon. Individual anime can, has, and likely will continue to be produced whose target audience is gaikokujin but they will always be the exception and never the rule.

So when we ask what the "core audience" wants and we include ourselves (assuming we are non-Japanese, that is) in this, we're overstating our own importance to the production committees and creators.
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Old 2017-10-11, 15:22   Link #9
Transfer Adventurer
Join Date: Oct 2017
This question has a really easy answer and it's called...

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Old 2017-10-12, 11:04   Link #10
Mad Pierrot
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I would say well animated scenes and chaotic stories considering the impact of the film Akira. However, I think that not even One Punch Man managed to succeed in this considering how its second season will be handled by different stuff members.

Also, while Dragon Ball and One Piece are very famous in Japan, the budget for the animation has been really bad and One Piece has been having pacing issues due to the fact the anime's story is close to the manga's. Also, Toei has kind of ruined Digimon tri. considering how long it takes to get another film and yet the plot is going nowhere.

On the other hand, the new Pokemon anime appeared to have attracted more viewers based on its style.

Nevertheless, a series that seems pretty popular is Jojo's Bizarre Adventure. A Part 5 hasn't been confirmed.
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Old 2017-10-12, 11:43   Link #11
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I disagree with the premise. While it's often de riguer to criticize the industry for sameness, in fact, I see rather a lot of diversity in what's offered. That makes for a number of different constituencies among the fandom. Look at the enormous range of success and failure in sales data. We have series selling tens of thousands of copies and others selling in the hundreds. You could associate the "core" audience with those top-sellers, I guess, but production committees still seem able to find the funds to produce more esoteric shows.

Production committees were very risk-averse after the 2008-2009 recession, and the range of anime offerings narrowed for a few years after that. The past year or two have given us shows like Flip Flappers, Made in Abyss, and Uchouten Kazoku which don't really fit into neat categories.
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