Who knew anime and hip hop could be so similar? On the surface this doesn’t even make sense.
Hip Hop is urban music influenced by black culture, street life, our struggles and everything in between.
Anime on the other hand is based on Japanese culture, their people, and other differences unique to Japan.
But being a fan of both Hip Hop AND anime gives me a fresh perspective on both worlds. Not to mention how similar they are in more ways than most people would think.
Let’s break it down and highlight some facts…
How Hip Hop And The Anime Industry Is Similar:
1. Both industries BLEW UP In the 1990’s
Hip Hop started in the 1970’s, historically. With the 80’s being a critical point that helped the industry “blow up” in the 90’s like never before.
It was the era of:
- Snoop Dogg.
- Tupac Shakur.
- Biggie Smalls.
- The Hot Boyz.
- Master P.
And so many other rappers I won’t mention.
The 70’s and 80’s played a big role in Hip Hop’s “explosion” that’s made it the biggest music genre in 2019.
Anime is the same
In anime’s case, it started in 1917, historically. But things got “more serious” in the 1960’s. And the 70’s and 80’s is where things started to spill out of control.
That “spillage” lead to the crazy explosion in the 90’s. And anime has been “put on the map” ever since that era.
- Dragon Ball Z.
- One Piece.
- Magic Knight Rayearth.
- Sailor Moon.
And so many others came as a result of 80’s anime like Akira, the original Dragon Ball, and other anime that are classics in 2019.
2. Both industries portray a certain level of “immasculinity” in 2019
I’m not here to debate or be “politically correct”. But you should know that by now.
The fact is – in the hip hop industry, the portrayal of men is more feminine than it ever has been.
Male rappers wearing skirts, eye liner, make up… the list goes on. And the proof is out there.
And anime is NO different
The constant portrayal of male anime characters who are:
And basically the types of guys who willingly take abuse from women… This is a common thing in the anime industry these days.
It doesn’t happen all the time, but that’s not the point here. The point is: it DOES happen.
The Hip Hop industry and the anime industry share this common trait in 2019.
3. Gay & “crossdressing” has become more acceptable in both industries
Over the years more and more hip hop artists are “coming out” about being gay… even though many end up being “exposed” instead of coming out straight.
That’s another story in itself, but the point is: it’s NOT as bad today in the hip hop community.
The fact that rappers dress like women is proof enough of this concept. Even if not literal.
The anime industry is similar
Gay characters in the anime community are more “acceptable” these days. And it’s happening more often as time goes by.
Though this has been happening for years at this point.
And this is becoming even more of a thing in terms of “Trans”. Or at least the portrayal of it in the anime industry.
It’s what we call TRAP characters in the anime community
- Rider Of Black (Astolfo).
- Makoto (Minami-Ke).
- Ferris (Re:Zero).
- Kojuro Shuri (Masamune Kun No Revenge).
They’re designed like “girls” but really they’re guys.
Not exactly “trans” but the portrayal is obviously there. Especially the crossdressing.
4. Both industries are “lacking” in quality content compared to “old school” stuff
I’m only reciting what the majority of people THINK in both industries.
But even with that said, objectively it’s undeniable that modern-day content in both Hip Hop AND anime is “generally” not as good as older content.
In the Hip Hop industry, all you have to do is look at the music being released today.
Nowadays you have:
- Mumble rap (that’s what they call it).
- Rappers who aren’t American who rap in an American accent (Iggy Azelia).
- Rappers “clout-chasing” and doing anything for attention.
- And Albums aren’t even exciting anymore. It’s more about Singles compared to say: the 2000’s.
The anime industry is the same
Anime these days is all about chasing TRENDS. I’ve said this too many times.
So much anime content is being PUMPED out every year, that most of it is generic, a copy and paste of another series, or plain lazy.
Most anime don’t even last long in terms of longevity. Let alone break out to become a major “hit”.
There’s a reason why:
- Death Note.
- Code Geass.
- Dragon Ball Z.
- Attack On Titan.
- One Piece.
- Black Lagoon.
- Neon Genesis Evangelion.
And so many other anime are STILL classics to this day. It’s been a long time since anime of this level or quality has been released.
These days it’s “harder” to find quality
Because there’s so much emphasis on “quantity” and chasing trends.
Both the anime and hip hop industry share this trait. And the results speak loud and clear.
5. Both industries are have negative stereotypes and stigmas
The Hip Hop industry’s had stigma’s and stereotypes attached to it since day 1. Especially since the 90’s.
As usual – the minority ruins it for the majority. And with Hip Hop it looks like this:
- Black people are gangsters.
- Black people are stupid.
- Hip Hop is ghetto.
- Hip Hop is a bad influence.
- Black people are drug dealers.
- Black people are poor.
And the list goes on. All this stems from Hip Hop and the image its created. Especially with the abuse of the N-word all over the world.
Though a lot of it is the fault of society. Most people believe anything they see (they’re closed minded).
Hip Hop influences culture, and is the biggest music genre on the planet, but it doesn’t stop these stigmas and stereotypes from creating problems either.
The anime industry is similar
It’s a little different, but the anime industry, just like the Hip Hop industry, is disrespected and has tons of negative stereotypes and stigmas attached to it.
- Anime fans are beta-males.
- Anime fans are autistic.
- Anime fans are losers.
- If you like anime, you’re a nobody.
- Anime is HENTAI.
- Anime is for perverts.
And the list goes on and on and on.
Bringing up anime in conversation is almost taboo. The kind of looks you get is outrageous.
And despite the anime industry being worth $15-20 billion, the west still shuns and looks down upon anime as if it has no value in the entertainment industry.
Both hip hop and the anime industry are similar in that way
Being a fan of either associates you with all kinds of negative stereotypes and stigmas… Most of which aren’t even true or justified.
And even though both industry’s are massive, they’re treated like “underdogs” to a certain degree. Not by fans, but by organizations and companies with political agendas.
There’s other similarities between Hip Hop and anime, like:
- Political correctness.
- Social Justice Warriors (SJW).
- Not getting credit where credit is due.
And even more. But the 5 reasons I mentioned are pretty legit by themselves.
What do you think?
If you can share some more, or you have suggestions, leave it in the comments.
I’m the Founder of Anime Motivation.
The 1st anime I watched was Dragon Ball Z. Followed by Claymore, Inuyasha, Attack On Titan, and the rest as they say is “history”.