Evolution from “Joe Anime Fan” to “Anime Fan”

FIRST POST OF 2008!! WAI~! ^_^

I wanted the first post to be about what I thought were the best characters of 2007, which is still a work in progress, but I decided to elaborate a little more on how I turned from “Joe anime fan” to an all out “Anime Fan” from that previous post!! Lucky you, you get to know a tad bit more about me! ^_^’

I wanted to start from way in the beginning from when I first discovered anime, but there is already a {poorly written} post about that ;) , so let’s start from my first years of High School. OH!! But before that, here’s the differences between “Joe Anime Fan”, an “Anime Fan”, and an “Anime Otaku” as defined by me:

—-Joe Anime Fan only watches anime for the sake of watching it. Also “Joe Anime Fan” only watches the most mainstream anime and the things he/she is told to watch on T.V by thier licensor or broadcast station, which is mostly Shounen-type anime like Naruto or more recently Death Note. A noticeable trait all “Joe Anime Fan” have in common is they have no interest in the story, they just want to see explosions, boobs, fighting, and GAR-ness. NOTE: “JOE ANIME FAN” MIGHT NOT KNOW WHAT GAR IS…

—-An Anime Fan not only watches anime, but he/she discusses about some aspects of anime. It can range from favorite seiyuu to best animation studio. Also, you turn into an “Anime Fan” once you broaden your range and try out different genres. An “Anime Fan” doesn’t have to like the genre he/she tries, but being curious about other anime and their genres is what separates “Joe Anime Fan” from a true “Anime Fan”. Another trait seen in “Anime Fan” is that he/she will try to learn Japanese at some time. Their reasons range from wanting to play imported Japanese Games to understanding Japanese songs without looking around the internet for translations. NOTE: NOT ALL “ANIME FANS” WILL TRY TO LEARN JAPANESE, BUT THE MAJORITY WILL. 53RG10 has proclaimed himself to be at this level.

—Anime Otaku has every trait “Anime Fan” has so there’s no need to re-write it. But “Anime Otaku” are more knowledgeable and they take fandom a step further. He/she will start to collect things…expensive things. It doesn’t necessarily has to be a lot of things, they usually stay focused on one thing and one thing only. Some collect figures, others Anime Video Games {these are usually Visual Novels}, and others even collect full-sized pillows. A noticeable trait all “Anime Otaku” have is that they are passionate at what they collect and are ruthless critics. NOTE: EXTREME ANIME OTAKU RISK STARVATIONS FOR THE SAKE OF GETTING A LIMITED EDITION FIGURE/PILLOW/GAME/ETC. Another trait the “Anime Otaku” has is that at one time, he/she will try to cosplay, again, not all of them will, but the majority will. The “Anime Otaku” must know the character and the character’s traits for him/her to decide whether he/she will cosplay as said character.

—THE ANIME-FAN EXCEPTIONS. These are people who 53RG10 cannot give a classification to, so he made these specifically for them:

“Joe Anime Enthusiast” have varying traits, it can be a combination of “Anime Fan”, “Joe Anime Fan”, or “Anime Otaku”. The “Joe Anime Enthusiast” may talk about anime, but if it’s about ONLY ONE ANIME, he/she cannot be classified an “Anime Fan”, if he/she cannot back up what he/she is saying, he/she cannot be called an “Anime Otaku”. “Joe Anime Enthusiast” may also collect figures, but if they are only doing it to show off, he/she cannot be called an “Anime Otaku”. If a “Joe Anime Enthusiast” cosplays as a character just because the character looked cool, cute, pretty, etc. etc. the person cannot be called an “Anime Otaku”.

“Anime Enthusiast” are a bit easier to understand. These are people who combined “Anime Fan” and “Anime Otaku” without having all of their qualities. “Anime Enthusiast” may be collecting something and have knowledge of said thing, but they have not reached the ‘overall anime knowledge’ level required to be an “Anime Otaku”. The “Anime Enthusiast” may cosplay as a character, but the “Anime Enthusiast” will only cosplay as a character he/she has seen, it is not necessary for them to know EVERYTHING about said character.

This ends 53RG10’s definitions…

======================================================

So by reading that, where do you place yourself?

Okay back to my story, let’s see I was about to talk about my first few years in high school. Note, I suck at storytelling so there’s a lot of time jumping and it’s fast paced!! ^_^’

During the first two years of High School, I was the only person in class who watched anime. Since there really wasn’t that many other people with the same interest, I rarely had any conversations with them. Besides, they had the complete opposite interests as I did. The majority of people listened to Rap, Hip-Hop, and R&B, I listened to Rock, Alternative Rock, Pop-Rock, and some Metal, they liked Grand Theft Auto, I liked Final Fantasy, they were into First-Person Shooters, I was into RPG’s, they were into cell phones/text messaging, I was into computers/e-mail…Plainly put, I was on the other end of the popularity meter, always been always will. Well, I’m not one to follow trends, so I kept being how I was…there are bound to be some people sharing at least one of my interest right?

Yes, but it wasn’t until the end of my second year {sophmore} that I found some of them. {Most of my first year I spent with my cousin, brother, and people from the neighborhood, we mostly talked about stupid dumb stuff…at least we shared the same music taste! ^_^’ }

So from the beginning of my third year, I met up with those people I found who shared the same interests as me…unfortunately, not the anime part, which was fine because I didn’t watch a lot of it anyways! ^_^’ We liked the same music, games, and movies, but best of all we all liked to draw. Of course, we each had our own style…I obviously drew anime style!! One of them {yes his name will be kept secret} drew very awesome realistic fantasy pictures and it was with his influence that I came up with the elf from my icon. Also, it was him who told me where I could get my share of anime online for free!!

And that’s where I started to get drawn into anime a lot more. I used to watch what was only on T.V. {Adult Swim} but with the site he gave me, which is YouTube, I could watch a lot more than I could handle!! Here was a site where I could watch any anime episode that has been uploaded for free!! So for the rest of my High School year, I watched as much anime as I could during lunch period…which for some unknown dumb stupid reason was split into two parts and I couldn’t really hang out with people I knew… -_-

After graduation, we all went our separate ways, he moved away to another city and I moved to another part of town for unknown reasons… But, we kept in touch and even hanged out around the mall and other places, but overtime we eventually stopped as we each had our own stuff to do. And with no one to hang around with, I was bored to death on my free time, so I watched anime on the site he recommended a few months back.

But I just watched anime. I didn’t talk about it, I didn’t read about it, I didn’t care what it was based on, I just watched, I was still “Joe anime fan”. And I used YouTube until late fall of 2006…yes that long with crappy quality. Well, I didn’t care at the time so I kept watching YouTube. I’ll also confess and say that I watched Ah! My Goddess, Mai-Hime, Eureka SeveN, Suzumiya Haruhi and other 2006 anime on YouTube… -_- It wasn’t until early December that I learned about Direct Downloads, Torrents, and anime music! ^_^

I was a bit scared to use torrents because I didn’t know what it really was, I kinda understand why other people use YouTube even now. So while I learned what torrents were and their copyright stuff from Wikipedia.org, I used Direct Downloads to get my first taste of High Quality anime. And the honor belongs to Ah! My Goddess episode 1. That was the first HQ episode I ever downloaded. I was excited to see it, but because I was still uninformed, the episode looked like complete crap. I learned that I needed the correct codec to play it…-_-

After I got anything that was necessary, I watched the episode. After it ended, I promised myself that I will NEVER watch anime on YouTube ever again!! ^_^ After that I went on a pilgrimage to watch some of my favorites again but this time in HQ!! But it was a bit hard to find stuff on Direct Download, so I had no choice but to try out this torrent stuff. One awesome thing that I found out is that you can have multiple files on a single torrent file, I didn’t have to go looking around for individual episodes!!! Also, depending on how many seeds you have, you can download a whole season in a matter of hours! So I spend most of the beginning of 2007 watching anime that I’ve already seen and listening to lots of anime OP/EDs. I was beginning to break away from being just “Joe anime fan”!!! ^_^

Also, before 2006 ended, I joined a few anime groups over at MySpace, I resigned from most of them. But there were two very different groups and each had their own style. The one where there were more of “Your Favorite XXX”, “Your Least Favorite XXX” and those type of post was Dancing Queen’s very own group, Anime In Progress {right now it’s at version 3!! ^_^ The first one was gone due to a hack and the second one due to DQ resigning herself!! ^_^’}, the other one, where there were more serious stuff and where I used to spend most of my time, was deftoned‘s Anime Alternative. It was in these two groups that I started to discuss about anime and later about Jpop, Seiyuus, Animation, Storytelling, and other aspects that has to do with anime and the otaku culture.

I think I can say it was Dancing Queen and deftoned who helped me break away from being “Joe anime fan” and really start being an “Anime Fan”. But it took a while.

By the beginning of January 2007, I was still re-watching stuff I’ve seen on YouTube but this time in HQ. It wasn’t until mid February that I started to recognize seiyuus. But I wasn’t yet interested at what they worked on or similar sounding characters, I was more interested in anime music, like thier OP’s and ED’s, and the story of the anime. It was around this time that I tried genres I thought I would never see, like Yuri {Strawberry Panic!} and Slice-of-Life drama {Lamune}. And as I watched more and more different anime, I started to recognize more and more seiyuu voices. The easiest were Horie Yui and Nonaka Ai, both from Gakuen Utopia Manabi Straight! and I recognized both of their Negima characters!! ^_^

Before I knew it, I began to be interested in different aspects of anime. Things like seiyuu work, music, animation, characters, and theme/story. I also got a taste of what the otaku community does with their free time…”Hare Hare Yukai” anyone? But I really started to see what makes anime so different from American Cartoons, and it has nothing to do by the way it looks visualy, it’s the themes, stories, and genres it touches. While American Cartoons usually cater to kids, anime has something for everyone. You like lesbians?, there’s something for you, you like homosexuals? there’s something for you, you like blood and gore?, there’s something for you, you like magic?, there’s something for you, You like drama?, there’s something for you, you like little girls?, amazingly, there’s A LOT for you ;) . And another thing I like is what seems to be a childish and kiddy show, it can turn to be one of the best love/drama story that you’ve seen. {Nanatsuiro Drops suddenly came to mind.} So I’ve learned not to judge an anime by the color of it’s skin, but by the contents of it’s character. {I think I’ve heard that line somewhere?} ^_^’

So, with my interest of not only the anime itself, but the other things that come together and make the anime, I have leveled up from “Joe Anime Fan” to a Full Fledged “Anime Fan” in Mid-2007…but at the time I didn’t know that. {I barely realized it yesterday when I wrote that Happy New Years post!! -_-‘ } It’s crazy how I went from “Joe Anime Fan” to “Anime Fan” in abut half a year. I think it’s due to all that Power Watching that I did. Hell, I don’t even remember what I watched at what month, but at least I kept a list of anime I’ve seen and stuff. With the exception of a few of them, I really did watch a crap load of anime in 2007… The only thing I watched through 2006 was Suzumiya Haruhi, Eureka SeveN, Ah! My Goddess {both seasons}, ARIA the ANIMATION, ARIA the NATURAL, Mai-HiME, and Mai Otome… O_O Damn, I really need real life friends… -_-‘

And that ends the story…

Wow, I wrote a lot more than I expected, I thought it would only take like 7 or 8 paragraphs, and I even left out a lot of stuff so I could keep it short!! If something needs to evolve, it has to be my writing… -_-‘

5 thoughts on “Evolution from “Joe Anime Fan” to “Anime Fan”

  1. i think i could say i wasn’t ever really “Joe Anime Fan,” I was always wanting to know more and learn more. My problem was finding people to talk about anime with, which is why i made AIP. Now i think i seriously went into Anime otaku mode once i started collecing figures, plushies, posters, wall scrolls, key chains, and pins. It had a character i loved, i had to have it. But i’m glad i helped out with getting to into anime fan mode! I will say i also did watch a lot of shows on youtube, my brother would download anime for me through torrents but sometimes he’d be to slow in getting a certain series so i would go to Youtube for my anime needs. But now that i’ve fully mastered torrents, i never watch stuff on youtube. the quality is just so horrible!

  2. Wow I can’t believe I read everything in this post. I want a prize.

    But seriously, its quite interesting reading on how people ‘evolve’ in anime. Maybe I’ll start writing my own story sometime.

  3. Cosplaying isn’t just what anime otaku do. I’m an anime fan (and hoping NEVER to get into the otaku level for fear of majorly hurting my wallet), and I’ve cosplayed. =)

  4. Great post! I don’t have a list of stuff I’ve seen, but I have a list of crap I HAVE (watched or not).

    What’s interesting is that when I first started getting in to anime back in 1999, I was actually around a handful of people who were into it, and at the time, there really wasn’t a “Joe anime fan” because anime was even more niche then than it is now. A friend at the time let me watch some fansbus of Evangelion and I watched all of it in 2 days. He was a tape watcher who just started downloading, so I picked up a lot of things from him.

    I never really went through the joe anime fan per se because I’ve just watched anime on television; however, for awhile I did watch only what others told me to watch (though what I got was based on stuff I liked–romantic comedies, bishoujo stuff). I was on dialup for the longest time, so obtaining stuff myself was out of the question then. But like I’ve mentioned to you before, even early on, I followed seiyuus, some music, and other stuff (though I wasn’t much of a manga reader). This friend also had a roommate who was into cpop and kpop idols, so he had videos of so jpop and seiyuu performances as well. so my seeds were planted so to speak.

    It was spring 2005 when I started getting more serious with things (thanks to Tsubasa Chronicle and Negima). I watched a ridiculous amount of stuff (similar to what you did) between spring and fall of that year and there was no turning back. I guess for me, I was thrown into the fire from the get go. Sailormoon, CCS, Gunmdan Wing, Tenchi, and others were on television at the time i started watching anime, but my friend and I opted to watch the fansubs instead. so a lot of what i do now, is “second nature” to me.

    i had no idea that your “turn” was so recent! i give you a lot of credit because never once have i seen you as a casual fan and hold your opinions in high regard!

  5. @Asuka: That’s why I created that “Anime Enthusiast” category!! ;)

    @deftoned Wow! Thanks!! ^_^ I’m sure that if I knew what anime was way back when I was first exposed to it, I wouldn’t even be a “Joe Anime Fan”, but with only Cartoon Network and 4Kids as my source, I only watched stuff like Shaman King, InuYasha, Yu-gi-oh!, Pokemon, DragonBall, and the like without even considering trying new stuff. I just watched what other people were watching, and even with that, there were rarely people who I could talk with in school… -_-‘

    But the internet and it’s community satisfied that desire and I can get out what I been wanting to say out of my system!! And with a blog, I can write about whatever I feel like!! ^_^

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