Updated: Nov 8, 2020
Brief History of Anime
Anime is a hand-drawn and computer animation style originating from Japan. The word anime is the Japanese term for animation, referring to all forms of animated media. Outside Japan, anime refers specifically to animation from Japan or Japanese media art style. Japan is known for its dramatic animation style often characterized by vibrant graphics, flamboyant characters and fantastical themes. Anime is also heavily involved Manga (Japanese Comics). Many popular mangas become animes. Anime is not limited to manga, but videos or light novels also have inspired many animated shows.
Anime and Manga has been traced to Pre-World War II period but after the war, the industry began to evolve at a rapid pace. During the war, one way the Japanese people captured this time period was through anime and manga. Some anime criticize or promoted the government and the war. During this time anime or manga was manly uses as propaganda to sway the people’s views on the war and the relation with Western Nations.
Post-World War II is when the anime and manga industry began to change from propaganda to entertainment. This is due to several outside influences post-World War II brought to Japan. Part of the reason the anime began to change and become influenced was due to the Allied Occupation of Japan; in other words when the USA occupied Japan. By having a Western Nation occupied Japanese territory, the USA bought different their ideals and culture shaping much of Japan.
During this time is when we began to see how the anime and manga industries captured these changes. Part was the introduction to new media/art techniques and how it paired with the anime art style. It was not until the 1970's that amine truly distinguished itself from Western influence with its own distinct genres like mecha (robot suits); such as Gundum and Astro boy. However, it was not until the late 1980’s and early 90’s did the anime industries boom into “mainstream” entertainment. During this time, is when we saw popular animated series such as Dragon Ball, Sailor Moon and Pokemon surface. Although, anime began to develop at a rapid pace it was still not seen as popular outside of Japan. However, as times have changed and with major advances in technology, especially streaming services it has allowed anime to become available and accessible tp many people. Allowing the anime to reach new audience and gain a new fans.
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