Man…did I ever start off the blogging like a ball of fire. Right out of the gate I let loose a firestorm of a post by tackling one of the most hated & celebrated aspects of anime culture: Fanservice. You either love it, hate it, REALLY hate it or just don’t give a crap about it either way. Either you think it’s ruining anime as a whole, or you think those who despise it are just uptight prudes that need to get over themselves. One thing we can ALL can agree on is that fanservice, for better or worse, serves only one purpose these days: making money for anime producing studios.
If you haven’t noticed by now after all of the posts I’ve written thus far, I have a penchant for dwelling in the land of hyperbole. I go waaaayyy over the top responding to things simply for comedic affect. I really don’t believe the concept of fanservice is gradually draining the blood out of the anime industry like a vampire suckling on the neck of a virgin female. Honestly speaking, there were times when I was younger that I acted just like all the body pillow hugging, figurine owning otakus that companies are mostly pandering to today. We’ve all had that period in our anime watching journey at one point in time, male or female.
Even the staunchest, most die-hard otaku has to admit that sometime in the mid 2000s there was a seismic shift in the anime industry as far what type of shows were being made. Gone are the days were almost every genre you could think of was represented and pretty much separated from one another. Now the most of the shows today fall mostly into 4 categories:
- Romantic comedies with varying amounts of fanservice
- Slice of life shows that mostly revolve around school settings
- Ecchi series that try to promote themselves as something they aren’t
- Moe blob shows
To clarify, I’m not speaking in hyperbole when I say that in every season of anime for the past decade those 4 types of shows have dominated the population. At least 70% of each season’s cabinet is filled to the brim with those otaku pandering anime. This, people, is what people like me are “complaining” about. Because the otakus are giving them the most views/money, anime companies have shifted their focus to making sure this niche of the anime community is who they serve first. And that is just….wrong…
If you are an anime superfan and decide to live your life fully dedicated to it, that is your choice and I have no right to tell you otherwise. However, I also have every right to get annoyed with having to sift through all of your waifu shows so I can find something that actually had some thought put into it. As I’ve said before in the past, too much of anything is never good. The over-saturation of the anime industry with shows dedicated to moe blobs and fanservice is hampering the spread of it to the casual fan in a way it never has in the past. And it’s all because companies just want to fill their pockets with even more money than they already have. It’s almost become a requirement for budding writers/anime creators to have some form of fanservice in their work, whether it be subtle or overt. Heck, even established shows that have been running for ages aren’t exempt from this trend. Case in point:
Besides the obvious pandering to otakus, what other logical reason could there be for Nami’s bust exploding to such unnatural proportions over time? No, I’m not ignorant to the concept of characters growing up with the passage of time in a series. But come ooooooonnnnnn people!! There’s no way you can use that flimsy excuse to explain Nami going from grapefruits to full-blown watermelons!!
And no, I’m not just picking on Nami. Almost every female char in One Piece that gets some significant form of camera time has gotten the same treatment. The mermaid princess, Nico Robin and Viola from the Dressrosa Arc are just a few I can name off the top of my head. Heck!! Rebecca was basically fighting naked then entire time!!! I know I’ve already used a ton of images already, but…
Just look at it!! I mean…I mean come on!! She’s freaking naked, people!! There’s no justification for this outfit! Let’s just call it what it is: Shameless fanservice for the sake of pleasing otakus who will gobble up the eventual figurine that will come from this.
Okay, okay…allow me to calm down for a second. Because as much as I’ve harped on about anime studios and otakus bearing the blame for the influx of fanservice, fans like me are to blame as well. A former co-worker once told me that as long as there’s a market for something, it will always exist. Simply put, we failed to cut off the head of the snake and are now paying the price. Those of us who despise this sort of shameless pandering didn’t do are part to nip things in the bud early on and are now having to deal with the consequences. Not saying that things can’t be done now to sort of shift things to a more normalized state. It’s just going to be a lot harder now that the industry has become set in its ways.
Am I just blowing hot air yet again? Bashing my head against a wall that will never be broken down? As always, let me know down below. Cause as always, this is Just…My 2 Cents!