It took me a bit of time to research why WAO World insists in calling this show Anime-Gatari(s). Sadly for them, the mini movie bearing the intended name (Animegatari which practically means ‘anime story’) belongs to W-Toon Studio, who actually gets to produce Animegataris with WAO World taking care of the animation side.
The title cards are very similar, too!
Two episodes in and I am convinced that the show is really not optimized for casual anime fans, let alone for those who have not actually watched anime. I feel as if Animegataris is purposely showcasing anime community in a nutshell, to me.
And back to Minoa, now I will have to accept that having her as a clumsy and clueless is the right choice, going by the show’s direction. Her base knowledge for anime is next to zero but she becomes dead keen on learning more about and coming to terms with whatever she’d seen when she was little. If anything, Minoa pretty much represents the past you–before coming to know that anime is more than mere cartoons. The second episode gives us a little glimpse into some of the characters’ preferences for anime shows, when combined, makes up part of a big culture that heavily centers around the medium (anime).
More on this later, I guess.
Have you noticed how the show is doing the one thing that makes its aim very clear?
Animegataris is without a doubt a show produced in Japan, based everything around it in Japan and aimed at ‘anime’ fans. Until I see obvious changes in future episodes, what I have to say after this will forever hold true…
The Japanese word アニメ (anime) is short for アニメーション (animeeshon) and defines an art form that includes all genres but can be mistakenly classified as a single genre. This means even Disney films is called anime by a Japanese person, but thanks to an ever-living misconception, some Japanese people really have become affected by Western influence and actually start calling those カートゥーン / cartoons when the official Japanese word for cartoon is ‘MANGA’ (also means comics).
Animegataris takes on the Western term anime and not the Japanese term of it. Everything the show referenced so far has all to do with anime we know and love or hate. I am ready to be surprised if I ever see Frozen getting a mention in this show at all.
So, in relation to Minoa who has yet to really find out about anime beyond moving pixels, even you should have ‘that moment’ when you’ve witnessed a certain scene or meme, got curious and braved into a new world that you probably are familiar with in present time. Hell, the show spends initial minutes of the first two episodes having us look into Minoa’s ‘moment’, that is how much it wants to remind you.
There are so many unique methods of approaching the anime culture but I do think that Minoa will represent the timid person who is always moving forward albeit aimless. The people she meets in her discovering journey will be her guide.
If Minoa is the past you right now, one of the other characters would have to be the present you, unless you are a total anime elite bearing similarities to more than one character.
Looking into the second episode
I will most likely be coming back to edit this post until I have picked up on a satisfying amount of references this hell of a machine-show is going at.
Difficultly explained, Minoa’s nightmare is REM sleep in effect and having acquainted with Arisu doesn’t help in any way.
The part where Arisu and Minoa are recruiting for new members to the Anime Club, oh man. I would like to think that they have done a splendid job in paying respects to The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, nailing even the background music to almost one for one. Of course, they couldn’t take the actual BGM into this scene or else it will scream copyright. The choice of characters makes this even more fitting for the parody, having Arisu being the bold and shameless ‘hottie’ while Minoa expresses her embarrassment.
Here is what the show is parodying.
Right so, there was some speculation about how Animegataris‘s timeline is in 2016 Spring Anime Season because in the first episode Arisu has asked Minoa, “What are you watching this season?”
She then followed by telling Minoa that she was watching Hero School and R: Zero (Boku no Hero Academia and Re:Zero, geeez), both of which aired in Spring 2016 alongside many other shows she has referenced in the first episode. This episode makes it an undeniable truth that while we were hyping the hell out of those two shows (and others too–I have not forgot!), Miko was fangirling over Petelgeuse Romanée-Conti while slyly praising Rem’s seiyuu on top of saying that she is neither in team Rem or team Emilia.
Did you know that the voice actresses for both Rem AND Emilia have their roles in Animegataris? I will leave it to you to find out who they are voicing…
Another concrete proof of timeline is Minoa’s dad, who is seen reading a newspaper issued on 11th of May, 2016.
Minoa and Arisu finds absolutely no trouble in getting a club supervisor fitting for the latter’s category. If distance has to really be an issue, just make the adviser fat, right?
On the way to the club room, Arisu asks Minoa if she has seen Thousand the day before, to which Minoa is startled as she would definitely not be staying up at midnight to watch anime, let alone anything else.
(It’s actually Hundred but I’m dying of laughter because alteration in names for reference can sometimes really make the original series seem like a complete joke)
I am sure that you get the point of this show being a reference machine, yes?
*To make it worse, the show it’s referenced to actually aired on Tuesdays at 02:05 Japanese Standard Time. 2 in the morning, yo.*
Aaaaand Arisu does it. She officially lets go of the brake for the controversial opinion train.
Let this be a strong addition to the debate.
Having learned of Minoa making a subjectively rookie mistake for an anime fan, Arisu gives her a reminder to not miss out on Gaka Stray Dogs (Bungou Stray Dogs) the day after.
The duo gets a surprise visit from someone Minoa thinks is not of that type. Though, while we watchers have been given a hint already, it is actually understandable through Minoa’s point of view, that Kouenji Miko is without a doubt enjoying anime in a different manner to Arisu’s, since she has always seen Miko reading books with really complicated titles.
Should I have known that Animegataris would literally give us a rundown on parts of the anime culture, I wouldn’t have gone to explain what’s the deal with light novels and their names in the previous post!
And then, Arisu resumes her reference game upon facing Miko (I’m sure that she already knows about the latter being a light novel fan, seeing how they are in the same class and that Miko reads her novels out in public with pride).
- The Melancholy of a Happy Vuvuzela (The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya)
- Sold Out Offline (Sword Art Online) — LOL I hope that they aren’t jabbing at the show for being a complete sellout!
Startled again, Minoa seeks confirmation on whether she should pursue the path of light novels (we can assume it’s meant for original source material here) for maximum entertainment.
Returns Arisu with her controversial opinion train which triggers the hell out of Miko, who is a vivid light novel fan.
Before the cat fight is able to begin, Aoyama Erika the third year student barges in and introduces herself like a big fat trope–it’s lovely, though.
Minoa does not hesitate to push her onto becoming the club president but before she accepts the push, she remarks on some things club presidents are really known for, using quotes of some famous characters from the shows she (probably) has seen. I can only pick up on the last one because my ninja blood runs deeeeep through my veins.
Erika has another person in mind that she wants to drag into the Anime Club. It happens that Musashisakai Kai is someone they are already familiar with so getting to know him better is a little less painful.
Back to the club room, a meeting takes place where Erika takes note of each person’s ‘taste’, including Arisu’s fondness of moe for Old Game!! (New Game!!), specifically the character Run (Touyama Rin). Miko also lets us know that she’s a fan of and is looking forward to Gekisen Garumu (Gakusen Toshi Asterisk 2nd Season) when it would air in Spring.
As annoying of a chuuni person as Kai can be, one thing he has said to Minoa is surprisingly on point. One does not simply start digging into anime out of the blue; it has to start from somewhere, and to go further into discovering anime as a culture…
Classes are about to start so Erika suggests that they hold another meeting after school, to which everyone just quietly agree on.
Before Minoa is able to leave the club room, the talking cat calls her back to talk about some obvious things. They just happen to be great advice for all anime watchers in general.
“Don’t act like you know things, listen to people when they talk. And don’t force the conversation into something you like.”
Minoa realizes that the cat doesn’t have a name, though he just tells her that he has many. Is that like a hint on how the cat has been magically guiding people into anime fandom before Minoa became the next target of his?
Free to name him with her choice, Minoa vocally pulls out a plethora of common cat names in Japan. Seriously, Tama is that common. When her list gets to Nyanko I can’t help but think of this bugger below…
Thankfully the cat stops her short just as she’s about to name him Doraemon. I still don’t know what’s with the hate for that fat cat. They settle with Neko-senpai, all is well.
It seems like someone mysterious has found out about the talking cat. The only clues are that of a trouser and white and blue shoes; I can only assume that the person is male and unlikely a student, given that students wear brown shoes.
In their classroom, Miko lets Minoa know about her overenthusiastic side regarding her love for light novels (can also be said for original source materials in general). She has proven herself to be the original source material hipster type who loves to dismiss others’ opinion while holding her own up high (URGH).
Of course, being an elitist never ends well in a community where others aren’t living to conform with her views, as Miko’s personality pretty much gets a backlash in the next club meeting.
While everyone else discuss on what makes anime a classic, Miko was not there to take on Neko-senpai’s advice (being how you should not force a conversation into something you like) and shifts the conversation into Re:Zero, where Arisu asks her of whatever that has happened to “last week’s episode” (she is most definitely referring to Episode 18 — be prepare for ‘opinions’ upon clicking it).
Minoa’s painful speech actually gave my anime-loving heart a tiny dent. For someone who knows next to nothing about anime culture, to see two people hating on each other because of the exact same thing they both love doesn’t make any sense. Though, when looking from my own point of view I can see why people are like that. Minoa definitely is assuming that anime is a single category medium despite having gone through a conversation about how each of the club members like different things, so in the end she does not know what she is ‘talking about’.
Nakano Kouki probably makes one of those character appearances that saves a conflict, a very strong trope for school comedy anime. At the same time his appearance also cracks on a less popular trope, proven by Arisu’s statement.
To everyone’s but Kai’s surprise, he is a huge idol anime fan.
Please tell me, Alfredo, that he’s sporting a fancy Love Live! Sunshine!! shirt.
Having meet the requirement, the Anime Club is ready to truly start its journey with smiles and laughs, only to be rudely interrupted by the school council.
It definitely is overly dramatic! There however is a huge possibility that one of the three people that show up has personal connection with one of the club members, to the point that they need to make it intense.
I hope that I get to find out in the next episode.
See you then! ^_^