Every so often I’ll talk about anime, how it’s perceived, and how anime fans are made to feel for enjoying it.
I did that in this post: 7 Outrageous Criticisms About Anime That Will Make You Scratch Your Head
For well over a decade now anime haters have been vocal about anime fans. Going as far as making accusations to push a false narrative.
A lot of people eat up those accusations and that’s why (to a degree) the anime industry has the reputation it does.
With so much “pressure” and the fear of being targeted, some anime fans feel ashamed to like and watch anime. And so they keep it to themselves to avoid the trouble.
That’s why you can find so may anime fans behind closed doors who you wouldn’t think are anime fans if you see them outdoors.
If you’re one of those anime fans and you feel ashamed, you shouldn’t.
Why there’s no shame in liking anime:
1. Life’s not a competition
Competition (keeping up with the joneses) is a losers game. Why? Because that mentality is born out of insecurity and begging for validation.
A lot of the time these “haters” talk down on anime fans because in their mind, you’re lower than sh*t for daring to enjoy something different.
It’s not just anime haters who are like this, haters in general are like this. And I mean haters in the literal sense of the word.
They treat their interests like a competition and are always on the hunt for validation. Going out their way to see “who” likes the same things they do, and sh*tting on anyone who disagrees with their tastes.
Life’s not a competition, and neither are your interests, dislikes and the things YOU want to do with your life.
If you wanna watch and enjoy anime, why feel ashamed to do that? Because someone who wouldn’t even show up to your funeral thinks you’re inferior to them?
Don’t be daft. And better yet – don’t fall victim to that so called pressure or logic.
Anime is made to be enjoyed. It’s entertainment in an animated fashion.
“Animation” is the only thing that makes it different to films if comparing apples to oranges.
There’s no shame in that and there’s no shame in being different.
2. Your happiness is all that matters
There’s ONE thing that’s true for everybody, even the haters themselves: happiness. We all want it, and it’s the one thing that matters more than anything.
When someone goes out of their way to step on your happiness, they’re doing it because they themselves aren’t happy.
They’re projecting their pain on to you, and being selfish while they’re at it.
That doesn’t mean you should give up your own happiness in the process. In fact, that’s stupid.
If you’re happy watching anime and it makes you feel that way, so be it. Don’t allow anyone to take that away from you, or persuade you into thinking it’s shameful to enjoy anime.
3. There’s nothing inherently wrong with liking anime
I giggle when I see people treating anime like it’s some kind of moral, ethical issue. As if anime is a sin (which people actually believe) and it’ll somehow corrupt your soul if you watch it
The only problem with these accusations is there’s NEVER any truth to back it up. Because it doesn’t exist.
Anime’s #1 goal is to entertain and if necessary – inform. It’s not a propaganda machine like the CNN’s of the world and other news companies these same critics bow down to.
No different to games, anime is more about the viewer and not the medium.
Objectively it’s not inherently bad, but based on the viewers dangerous or warped mindset it can be seen as bad.
That distinction is important to focus on.
You feeling ashamed for liking anime is pointless because you’re feeling shame for something that isn’t a real issue. Except in your own mind.
4. Anime portrays positivity
Shounen might be one of the most cliché anime genres, but let’s keep it real: it’s one of the most positive.
- The “never give up” attitudes of the main characters.
- The powerful life lessons.
- The hardships and how characters grow from their experiences.
- The lesson in perseverance.
Anime teaches you a lot of positive life lessons, and there’s tons of positive messages in the Shounen genre.
It goes beyond that though.
In slice of life shows like Violet Evergarden, you learn about emotional intelligence and much more.
We see Violet Evergarden go on a journey and by the end of it, she’s discovered herself and learned a F load along the way.
She ends up changing a lot of people’s lives through the power of words and emotions. And by listening to other peoples problems.
To be ashamed of anime when there’s so much positivity in so many different shows is pointless. Especially when that “shame” is based on the opinion of someone who doesn’t matter.
5. Anime is a pure art form
Compared to the BS being pumped out by the US a lot of the time, anime is educational. And even practical in the things it teaches you.
Anime does have cliches like any other medium. And it does have nonsense just like all forms of media. But generally speaking – anime offers more than all that Hollywood sh*t.
For one –anime isn’t watered down. Sugar coating isn’t the norm and politics isn’t the norm either.
All that pandering you see with Hollywood films and throwing in “diverse” characters just to “look” cool…
None of that exists in anime.
Anime is one of the few art forms that’s still pure, unfiltered, raw and uncut. And doesn’t shy away from topics or styles most creators and directors are scared of.
That’s the way art should be. Art starts out pure because the creators intentions is pure.
That’s why anime is more open minded and accepting of different cultures than let’s say, the US. So it’s the last thing you should feel any shame for.
Not that you should feel shame for being into US media or western media, but the people who want anime fans to feel ashamed don’t have a leg to stand on.
In the end – being ashamed of liking anime won’t do you any good. Especially when it’s not genuine to how you really feel about anime.
Like it, watch it, appreciate it, enjoy it, and stop worrying about the opinions of people who don’t matter.
Violet Evergarden image source: https://www.zerochan.net/2552580#full