Why I Don’t Really Watch/Read Anything New
Every new season there are plenty of new shows that people get excited about. I generally brush these new offerings aside and wait. I wait for two very distinct reasons:
- I don’t like to wait for a new episode every week. I watch anime and read manga in marathon sessions. I can easily polish off a standard 26 episode series in the course of a day or two. I’ve read through about 300 chapters of Bleach in less than a week. I’m not usually one for watching the first few episodes of each new show and then either watch them all or follow the ones that I like. I think Claymore is one of the best examples of this phenomenon for me. It started out as a recommendation from a friend and I had also heard a bit about it so I read all the manga out in a few days (at this point it was at around chapter 90). For anyone else that follows the series, you will know that the release schedule for it is once a month. That makes it really hard to follow the show when I can’t remember what happened 50 chapters ago. For people who actually followed it since the beginning that’s something from a few years ago. Parallel that to if Kishimoto were to reference something that happened during the Orochimaru/Attack on Konoha arc in next week’s chapter.
- I only have so much time. And I would rather not waste it watching sub-par shows. As I have previously stated I normally will only watch shows that get high ratings. I frequent top 50 anime lists through a variety of sites and cross reference them to get some ideas of shows that I should watch next. Occasionally I will get a strong recommendation from a friend in which case I will try out that show.
The first point is probably something that people are more likely to sympathize with while the second is probably more contentious. Even with sites like AnimeNewsNetwork and MyAnimeList aggregating hundreds if not thousands of votes and using a Bayesian system, a ranking list cannot really be universalized. While not everyone likes every show in those lists, some shows are undeniably game-changing and have shaped the development of the industry in recent times. Studio Ghibli movies have helped bring anime into the mainstream of American culture and made it a lot more acceptable. It’s hard to not like the universal appeal of those movies, but not everything is met with such acclaim. Everyone has some genres they love and some they don’t like so much. Additionally, I might be in an action/adventure mood one week while the next week I might want to watch something more comedic. The power of having a ranking list along with a tool like MyAnimeList is that I can put shows that I would have an interest in on a list of shows I need to eventually watch. That list is one that is continually growing because of more shows that catch my eye as well as the lack of as much time as I had a few years ago to watch anime. Freshman year of college I could spend about 6-8 hours a day watching anime but those days are no more.
I do still follow a few manga that are ongoing just because of their popularity – notably Bleach, Naruto, Claymore, and D. Grayman. I’ll have to admit that I will often have to look up information on Google because Naruto and Bleach have been running for so long that references to things even a year ago I might not remember. Regardless of these things, I am excited about the future of anime and manga and will be anxiously waiting for new things to add to my to watch list.
Feel free to suggest shows for us to watch and discuss!