Most of my hits that come from google searches lately have come from people searching for pornography because i said porn in the same post that i mentioned Katy Perry and Zooey Deschanel. So, yeah, that’s, um, something. Anycase, it’s true, and you all know, that Katy Perry is just the porn version of Miss Deschanel.
I think the west lost something or forgot the importance of this. What i’m talking about is animation. We, by we i mean westerners, don’t really have a distinctive animation style. Well, we do, with Looney Toonery and South Park and Family Guy and The Simpsons, but we don’t have an animation for dramatic stories. We have comedic cartoons rather than serious animation. I know there are styles that could do this because i know what graphic novels look like, but those rarely, if ever, are made into series or films. Rather, most series and films that aim at drama or action borrow or wholesale steal their style from anime, which is the umbrella term for japanese animation.
See, they knew or never forgot the power of animation, which is close to the power of dreams. Anime covers a wide spectrum of styles, from cartoonish to realistic, from comedy to dramatic, and that spectral shift is usually evident in the animation style chosen. But, yeah, animation is a powerful tool and allows one too visually create the unfilmable. Or the difficult to film, which is now widely reliant upon CGI, which is a technology i’ve never really been a fan of when you mix it with live action. What Pixar does is fantastic because it fits and doesn’t distract, supplementing animation with computer animation can be quite seamless, but reality and computer animation don’t mix the way filmmakers always seem to believe it does.
What i mean to say is that animation isn’t only for children or shutins or the deranged. Miyazaki taught the west that, though we should never have forgotten it, because what’s ever been more powerful than Disney? I bring this up because i recently watched the series Avatar: The Last Airbender, which is really an awesome show, though made for children, but it fits with what i’m talking about, because the themes transcend age. It’s hilarious at times, there’s action, romance, lust, philosophy, vengeance, shame, war, and magic–the magic of story, the magic of animation, the magic of life, and the magic within the series itself: bending. It’s an american cartoon that aired on Nickelodeon, but the style is completely anime, and it’s set in some sort of chinese land. The Boondocks does the same thing, using anime style, but it’s set within the paradigm of african americanism.
I like animation, and using anime is neither good nor bad, it’s just interesting to me. I like some anime quite a lot, being a huge Miyazaki fan. There are some other people who make very intelligent animated stories that are endlessly watchable and forever thoughtfully deep. There’s an unfortunate stigma that anime’s acquired, mostly because its subculture consists of quite strange people, much like those who got far too into The Lord of the Rings or Star Trek or Star Wars. Anything with a powerful fanbase becomes acquires a sort of unique idiosyncratic peculiarity that borders on the surreal and wholly implausible, which is quite offputting. I mean, if someone told me they spoke elvish, i’d have a strange notion of who they are, just as if they were always wearing DragonBall Z shirts or told me that they were a jedi and believed in the Force. You know, strangeness. Like Scientologists.
Despite all that, i like anime well enough.
This is one of my favorites. Probably my favorite. It has everything in it from a battle with gods to endless love to political subterfuge.