Sometimes I’m accused of nostalgia for older anime.

My youth makes that impossible, though: a person can only feel nostalgia for something they’ve known. I’m relatively young. I feel nostalgia about Gundam Seed and Code Geass (rest assured that I harbour no illusions about their quality).

Since older anime is new to me, it attracts me because a significant chunk of it excels, a bigger chunk surprises, and almost all of it contrasts nicely with the newer anime that I watch.

A recent interview with Katsuhito Ishii about Redline prompted this line of thought. Continue reading “Nostalgia”

What Sakugabooru isn’t

Pic not related, but cool (Dangaioh, 1987)

Sakugabooru unquestionably stands among the good things which’ve emerged in anime talk since I started watching. These days, even non-specialists use it: people like me, who aren’t sakuga fans. This fact is a credit to the site and to the team who run it. They have a Patreon. I subscribe myself.

With a wider audience, though, comes a greater risk of misunderstandings. I’ve learned a little more about Sakugabooru recently—all those long days indoors, see?—and I thought I might try to offer some notes for inexpert, lay viewers like me. Continue reading “What Sakugabooru isn’t”

Anime’s aspect ratios

Anime-Gataris (2017; before you rush to try this: it doesn’t manage this kind of wit often)

Aspect ratios go unremarked, but few things can be more fundamental to an anime than its shape. To my knowledge, few things have been said on the topic. Jamal, voice of the podcast Get in the Mecha, has covered it a little, in an episode which helpfully reminds us that aspect ratio is a choice. Jamal’s treatment focuses on aspect ratios’ artistic ramifications, though, so I thought I’d have a go at gathering some more basic historical information about them. Continue reading “Anime’s aspect ratios”

Anime’s history is brief

Sabu and Ichi (1968–9)

Someone who worked on Astro Boy (1963) directed an anime film which came out this year. The whole mass-broadcast history of anime lies within living memory. More, it lies within one person’s active career.

Japan’s oldest living person predates the earliest known Japanese animation. The whole history of anime fits, just, into a lifetime. Continue reading “Anime’s history is brief”