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Anime’s Bad Repuation: Is There Truth To It, And WHAT Caused It?

Anime’s had a bad reputation for a LONG time.

Whether it’s:

  • Anime fans in the community.
  • Or anime shows and what it represents.
  • False stereotypes.
  • Or a minority of things that happen in anime.

Anime’s bad reputation comes from a lot of different places.

A lot of it’s unfounded bullsh*t from “some” westerners who can’t stand its popularity.

Other criticisms come from extremists who hate their lack of control over anime in 2020.

And in general – anime’s bad reputation is a result of people NOT understanding anime. Because they’re not willing to understand it, and would rather jump on the hate train.

Parents, friends, and other types of people fit into this category.


What people actually say about anime

anime is for losers reddit | anime losers |

If we look DEEPER into these forums, the comments look like THIS:

“All the people I know who watch anime really suck at life. And they all complain about being “nice guys”. What a bunch of losers. They should just all grow up. A lot of them are fat too.

Parents shouldn’t let their kids watch anime for the sake of “being themselves”. F*ck that anime sh*t.”

“I cannot get why there are millions of Asian-wannabes who would watch any piece of sh*t that comes from Japan and love it no matter what.”

“the only people i try to put down is people who watch anime and people who have social anxiety, and you fall under both of those categories.”

You can’t make this stuff up.

Google it and all the forums show up of people bashing anime. It’s as if they’re all using anime as a scapegoat for their “real life” problems.


debate org anime hater |


“Anime has contributed nothing to our society and it is a waste of electricity and time.

Anime has no educational value and it does not teach language skills.

You could instead go to a class and learn anime the real way instead of through a television and that way you could be more social.

In 1997, about 700 Japanese people experienced epileptic seizures and went to the hospital from an episode of Pokemon. There was a scene with lots of flashes and bright lights, but anime tends to have lots of this and poses a serious health risk.

There is nothing entertaining about it. Anime stole their ideas from American cartoons like cartoon network and nickelodeon and corrupted it.

Their animation style is crude, raunchy, and putrid. No effort is put into them and they are churned out to make money. Little girls and sexual material on the TV has no place in media and it disgusts me to see families sit down at the TV and watch it together.

Anime is creating sexual atmospheres and promoting p*rnography, as I stated before. Anime is a way for the Japanese to ruin future American generations and get their revenge from the atomic bombings.

The cartoon is slowly disintegrating our beautiful, brave, free society and we need to do something about it and soon, it will be the entire world. Just like cancer, anime grows slowly over time and it will take over and kill us off from the inside.

Our money is being stolen by the Japanese anime industry and it is being put into our eventual extinction. By creating body pillows and mangas, they are selling their products to the world and poor souls are giving in and funding the secret agenda of the Japanese government.”

Whether you wanna take this seriously is up to you. But this is what people genuinely think about anime.


anime pedophile claims goboiano |

And then there’s this from a few years back from the BBC spouting nonsense.

Anime’s bad reputation and the ignorance of what “anime” represents runs deep. Especially in western media and the people who work within it.


Why does anime have a bad reputation?

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Anime’s bad reputation stems from things like THIS. Fan service. And the extreme type.

Anime is surprisingly similar to Hip Hop, in the sense that the worst aspects are taken from the culture, and criticized as if these “aspects” represent the majority of the culture.

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And then there’s the loli culture of anime characters.

This is an aspect people use to bash anime’s reputation, claiming it’s pedophilia (unless the shoe’s on the other foot).

It’s something people in the west use against anime to make their bias, unfounded argument of why anime is bad, should be banned, or whatever else.

When you get a loud minority of these people together, that’s enough to infect everyone with the idea of anime being this that or the other.

That’s how false beliefs are spread and adopted, even if they don’t represent reality or what’s true.

And even if they lack context.


When did anime’s “bad reputation” start?

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We can trace this back to the 1990’s. I’d say the LATE or mid 1990’s.

This is the time when anime exploded in the west and other parts of the world. And ever since that time frame – anime is being criticized left right and center.

The internet has taken this to the extremes we see in 2020. Back in the 2000’s it was forums that started bashing anime and giving it this “false” reputation of what it’s supposed to be.

And now that happens on Twitter, and in some cases – blogs and news sites.

Especially from the culture vultures who wanna slander anime, change it and profit off it. All without giving a F about the culture in the slightest.


Where did anime’s bad reputation among fans come from?

YouTube video

If we’re talking about the bad reputation among anime fans – Weeaboo’s are the MAIN culprit.

American culture is popular in media. So popular that this term – Weeaboo is known across the world outside the USA.

Originally it’s a term to describe white people who wanna be Japanese.

And again – critics and haters have taken the WORST from anime fans, and are using it to paint anime as “weird” based off a minority of fans and how they behave.

That’s why anime’s reputation is blown out of proportion.

Related: The Differences Between – An Anime Enthusiast, Otaku And A Weeb


How anime’s reputation has improved over the years:


1. Anime’s insane growth 

anime google trends 2020 |

Thanks to the internet – anime has gone even further than it would have. AND at a faster rate.

Even Google recognizes anime’s growth since 2004 on the massive search engine with billions of searches per day.

In its own indirect way, anime’s growth over the years has reached teenagers, young adults and more. And drawn them to the world of anime.


anime vs hollywood film industry sales statistics 2017 |

Even back in 2017 – anime made 10% of Hollywood’s sales that year. And that’s WITHOUT a powerful machine behind anime, unlike Hollywood films.

Not to mention anime’s relentless “push back” from some of the masses, despite how far its come.

And that leads to my next point.


2. More acceptance, slowly but surely

netflix 2 |

Even though Netflix’s interest in anime isn’t praised by everyone, the fact they’re invested in anime tells a deeper story.

Companies like:

  • Netflix
  • Hulu
  • Amazon

And other “non” anime companies are indirect proof of anime’s reputation improving over the years.

If anime was viewed in the same negative light they wouldn’t bother with it.

And the fans being created from these companies is another sure sign of anime’s rep breaking through the stereotypes and negative backlash.


3. Relentless promotion from anime influencers/websites

Outside of Japan – there’s TONS of websites, YouTubers, bloggers, and so on who promote anime non stop.

And of course – on the higher end there are groups of these people who reach far and wide.

This “reach” has an indirect impact on anime’s reputation, growth, respect and curiosity for the industry. And why people are into it.

This is true even outside of websites and platforms like YouTube.

It’s ALL of these platforms combined that push a positive message about anime, and that continues to make the industry more attractive.

Related: Here’s The Top 15 Anime Influencers On The Internet


4. Mainstream (and non mainstream) successes

my hero academia mainstream |

anime to mention.

It’s one of the anime that smashed through the mainstream and is drawing in NEW fans to the industry.

The trend of this anime’s success hasn’t slowed down either.


sao ordinal scale anime |

The same is true for movies like Sword Art Online: Ordinal Scale. A movie which SURPASSED Your Name in sales.

The success of these anime movies and shows hitting the mainstream, and dominating is having a big impact on anime’s reputation. And how it’s viewed.

But whether anime going fully mainstream is a good aim or not, there’s still a stigma attached to anime that won’t fully go away.

But it’s a lot better than it was 20 years ago.

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