Anime - Ocidental Japanese?

Zoro

Completely Average High School Student
Anyone here can explain me why the Anime comes from Japan, but the characters has an ocidental format/style?

Today asked me that but i couldn't answer xD

Regards
 

Rui

Karamatsu Boy
Administrator
Because people tend to identify any abstract imagery as being from their own culture or background, which is also why it's so accessible as an art form for people all over the world.

R
 

ayase

State Alchemist
Well that was a short thread.

I do buy that argument to a large extent, and while I tend to view most anime characters as Japanese (not least because they're speaking it) a lot of them do have quite big wide eyes (and they seem to be getting bigger and wider, not a trend I'm personally keen on). Not wishing to make any sweeping statements about racial characteristics, but that's not something particularly associated with people from an Oriental background, so I can see why someone would see them as being European.

Oddly enough, your current avatar does look distinctly Asian in appearance Rui.

animefreak17 said:
Animes origins are Japan. Anime is art
 
This might sound odd, but unless characters are drawn in a realistic fashion, I don't regard them as "people", as such. They're just... cartoon characters. They belong to their world, which is not the world I belong to. Eh, I don't really know how to explain it.
 

Rui

Karamatsu Boy
Administrator
ayase said:
Oddly enough, your current avatar does look distinctly Asian in appearance Rui.
The gigantic Asiatic lily in the corner might help with the association there, subliminally :)

Large eyes are common in many comic art styles, and some characters are drawn to look especially caucasian or especially exotic, so I just assume characters are meant to be Japanese unless information to the contrary is stated. I wonder though, in series where they deliberately stick to less fanciful character designs, do people still categorise them as caucasian? I'm thinking of series like Hell Girl where the setting is very clearly Japan, and the characters are clearly Japanese, but (for the non-supernatural characters at least) they're drawn without all of the rainbow-hued hair and saucer-shaped eyes which are usually associated with anime?

(I don't think DB's Son Goku really counts as human so it's a moot point, but given the origins of the legend as well as his complexion I've never particularly thought of him as caucasian.)

R
 

Animefreak17

Godhand
Well sometimes you can see characters have different faces and body or accents giving the hint that there from over seas.
 

ayase

State Alchemist
I wonder though, in series where they deliberately stick to less fanciful character designs, do people still categorise them as caucasian? I'm thinking of series like Hell Girl where the setting is very clearly Japan, and the characters are clearly Japanese, but (for the non-supernatural characters at least) they're drawn without all of the rainbow-hued hair and saucer-shaped eyes which are usually associated with anime?
Hmm. Equally I wonder if Japanese viewers of Western animation ever perceive characters as being Japanese? It's possible, especially when you consider more recent, anime influenced shows.

fabricatedlunatic said:
This might sound odd, but unless characters are drawn in a realistic fashion, I don't regard them as "people", as such. They're just... cartoon characters. They belong to their world, which is not the world I belong to. Eh, I don't really know how to explain it.
I think I can see what you're getting at. It's not as though my brain attempts to convert the 2D image into a realistic image of a person, but if I were asked to consider who'd play them in a live action role I'd tend to have a particular ethnicity in mind for most of them.

The more I think about it, the more I think it's the language I hear them speaking which has an influence on how I perceive them more than anything else, even the setting. I started to consider shows I watched with the English dubs, and I have to say the characters are nowhere near as definitely Japanese in my mind as those in shows I've watched in Japanese.
 

Sparrowsabre7

Za Warudo
I would say that all cartoons have a style inherent to their country which may or may not influence their perception by others.

I wouldn't say anime characters are drawn neutrally. Maybe they don't "look" japanese, but how many western cartoons really look american? Yes some use realistic styles, but think of the Simpsons, South Park, or even the Avengers cartoon: All throoughly stylised and I would say they resemble western faces no more or less than anime characters resemble asian faces.

Japanese people most likely perceive Western animation as foreign just as we do theirs.

Reminds me of an article explaining why LEGO figures are yellow; it was to transcend race and let the child's imagination decide. Of course then they made their licenced LEGO people flesh coloured and made their heavily anime influenced sets so... yeah :p
 

Animefreak17

Godhand
yeah but the huge difference between anime and western cartoons is that western cartoons are more friendly to kids well 90% of them anyways anime must have at least 60% kid friendly
 

Vashdaman

Za Warudo
Well, personally, I can't help but feel it's due to a tendency that developed in which western aesthetics and imagery became more desirable for the Japanese. You can say that "all cartoons have big eyes" and so on, but most other cartoons you will be referencing are of western origin, and yet still don't usually place such heavy exaggerated emphasis on typically western aesthetics as anime does. I believe that if you look at years gone by, small eyes and aesthetic features that were typically very Japanese were what was highly appreciated in Japanese society (and it seems to make a lot more sense to value your native features), so this suggests that it wasn't always a case of "wanting what the 'others' have".

I have suggested this in the past and I know some disagree, but I think the western influence and almost 'imperialisation' of beauty over the rest of world, is having devastating consequences for many people's perception of their native appearance. The amount of cosmetic eye surgery's that take place in countries Japan, or the bleaching of skin in places like India, or the Caribbean islands appreciation for "lighties" supports this argument. If you go to many of these countries and you watch the TV or look at magazine covers your almost guaranteed to see an overwhelmingly disproportionate number of models or actors who all have western features about them. That's what people are consistently being told is 'attractive'.

I think it's shame, and I think the situation should be addressed so that there is more balance.
 

Shiroi Hane

Dragon Knight
The explanations I can remember are:

Tezuka, the "God of Manga", was aping western stuff like Betty Boop.

Every child knows that if you take a circle and draw a couple more circles and lines inside, you get a face. To Japanese children it looks like a Japanese face.
 

Sparrowsabre7

Za Warudo
Shiroi Hane said:
The explanations I can remember are:

Tezuka, the "God of Manga", was aping western stuff like Betty Boop.

Every child knows that if you take a circle and draw a couple more circles and lines inside, you get a face. To Japanese children it looks like a Japanese face.
Wasn't something like that in an episode of Genshiken when Madarame (sp) was explaining why people are attracted to hentai? :p
 

ilmaestro

State Alchemist
I always thought anime was intentionally Japanese.

Also, can someone please rewind time so that I can avoid the brain cell loss that came from reading AF's posts in this thread.
 

Animefreak17

Godhand
ilmaestro said:
I always thought anime was intentionally Japanese.

Also, can someone please rewind time so that I can avoid the brain cell loss that came from reading AF's posts in this thread.
sorry -_-
 
Top