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Answerman - Why Are Anime Series So Short These Days?


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John Thacker



Joined: 28 Oct 2013
Posts: 538
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 12:11 pm Reply with quote
Yep. What's really interesting is the way this has changed the audiences. The long running middle of the day shows were aimed for a broader audience. It's probably not a coincidence at all that with the shorter seasons and late night airings have come more in jokes and fourth wall breaks and genre savvy comments. On the other hand, shows airing during the day by their very nature have more filler and more ability to catch up even if you miss every other episode (hence previews and recaps.)

The few exceptions of longer daytime shows include some properties by surefire people who have had hits before, like Cross Game by Mitsuru Adachi.
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SkerllyF



Joined: 02 Sep 2016
Posts: 244
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 12:28 pm Reply with quote
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They then pay TV channels to broadcast the show in the early morning hours, which is seen as promotion for the home video release, and whatever other merchandise comes out.


So this may explain why adult series are not only broadcasted in the morning, but also come censored. It may be annoying for an R rated anime, but it´s also understandable
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MarshalBanana



Joined: 31 Aug 2014
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 12:38 pm Reply with quote
I do miss when 26 episodes was the standard(from around the mid 90s to late 00s), now it is usually 13 episodes, if it 26 episodes, then it's broken up into 2 seasons. I think the only new shows in the 10s to go over 100 episodes have been Toriko and Hunter x Hunter(JoJo of you combine all parts).
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Kimiko_0



Joined: 31 Aug 2008
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Location: Leiden, NL, EU
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 12:39 pm Reply with quote
So there's anime that's meant to sell toys, and anime that's meant to sell BDs/DVDs. But why is so much of anime seemingly aimed at teenagers then? They're neither interested in toys, nor have the kind of money you need to buy BDs/DVDs. Is it all just to promote the manga the anime is based on?
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mgosdin



Joined: 17 Jul 2011
Posts: 1156
Location: Kissimmee, Florida, USA
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 12:46 pm Reply with quote
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Shutting down an anime production is like trying to stop a freight train -- it takes a while.


That's true of many different kinds of projects. Another train analogy, shorter trains stop faster than long ones do. So, yes it would be easier to call a halt on a 12 episode production if something goes horribly wrong.

Mark Gosdin
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Whis-pur



Joined: 26 Jul 2015
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 12:52 pm Reply with quote
Kimiko_0 wrote:
So there's anime that's meant to sell toys, and anime that's meant to sell BDs/DVDs. But why is so much of anime seemingly aimed at teenagers then? They're neither interested in toys, nor have the kind of money you need to buy BDs/DVDs. Is it all just to promote the manga the anime is based on?


Well many of those series were originally manga that teens could easily get their hands on. Because there's already a built in audience for that series the mindset when animating it is the hardcore fans would most likely support their favorite series by owning the characters they've come to love.
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Ashtur



Joined: 04 Dec 2015
Posts: 14
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 12:56 pm Reply with quote
Whis-pur wrote:
Kimiko_0 wrote:
So there's anime that's meant to sell toys, and anime that's meant to sell BDs/DVDs. But why is so much of anime seemingly aimed at teenagers then? They're neither interested in toys, nor have the kind of money you need to buy BDs/DVDs. Is it all just to promote the manga the anime is based on?


Well many of those series were originally manga that teens could easily get their hands on. Because there's already a built in audience for that series the mindset when animating it is the hardcore fans would most likely support their favorite series by owning the characters they've come to love.


What's more, the manga is the merchandise in some cases. In other words, having an anime of a manga becomes advertising to sell more copies of said manga.
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WingKing



Joined: 27 Apr 2015
Posts: 471
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 1:10 pm Reply with quote
MarshalBanana wrote:
I do miss when 26 episodes was the standard(from around the mid 90s to late 00s), now it is usually 13 episodes, if it 26 episodes, then it's broken up into 2 seasons. I think the only new shows in the 10s to go over 100 episodes have been Toriko and Hunter x Hunter(JoJo of you combine all parts).


Also Aikatsu and Fairy Tail 2014. And Space Brothers ended at 99 episodes, so you might as well give it an honorary membership in the club. But yeah, definitely not nearly as many as there used to be.

I don't miss the 100+ episode marathon shows myself, but I wish we did have more 24-26 episode shows, because it often felt like that was the sweet spot between giving enough room to develop the characters and fully flesh out the story without letting things get dragged out too much. A quick glance at my top ten favorite TV anime says that seven of them were two-cour or split-cour, most recently Silver Spoon in 2013/14, and none were longer than that.
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CheezcakeMe



Joined: 31 Dec 2015
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 1:14 pm Reply with quote
I think the current system works better, even if I miss being able to sink into a 72 episode show and having so many anime with non-endings, we now get more variety and I do not miss awkward product placement. I loved Hana Yori Dango but those random stupid toys were really out of place in an otherwise serious story.

Last edited by CheezcakeMe on Mon Sep 26, 2016 1:15 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Jonny Mendes



Joined: 17 Oct 2014
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 1:14 pm Reply with quote
Kimiko_0 wrote:
So there's anime that's meant to sell toys, and anime that's meant to sell BDs/DVDs. But why is so much of anime seemingly aimed at teenagers then? They're neither interested in toys, nor have the kind of money you need to buy BDs/DVDs. Is it all just to promote the manga the anime is based on?


Yes manga/anime promotion makes most of anime theses days.
The most important part of most of Production Committees are big publishers like Kadokawa Corporation, Shogakukan, Hobby Japan and Shueisha.
If you look carefully on the credits you find that most anime are associate with this companies and these anime are used to promote their manga/LN.

Now, for these anime the success is not measured in number of BDs/DVD sold, but if these anime make the number of manga/LN sold go up.

Normally they have 1 cour planned but the number of anime getting a split 2 cour are increasing.
If the number of manga/LN sold go up, maybe you will get a new season.

But still sometimes there are anime that overcome these hurdles and keep getting new seasons even when the number of manga/LN don't go up because they already peaked. Anime like Slayers, Shakugan no Shana, Zero no Tsukaima, SAO and High School DxD. These are not dependent of manga/LN sales anymore.
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Aquamine-Amarine



Joined: 13 Jul 2014
Posts: 230
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 1:48 pm Reply with quote
Couldn't it also be because they keep catching up to the manga too quickly? I've noticed that Shounen Jump have been handling their anime adaptions much better in recent years, first giving a manga a 24-26 episode season, then waiting a few months, giving them another 24-26 episode season, waiting a few months, etc... Like the Haikyuu!! anime. Their new anime aren't treated like Naruto/Bleach/One Piece, where they go on forever and are constantly infested with low quality filler episodes. The quality of the animation is so much better too, when you wait a few months before giving it another season.
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fathomlessblue



Joined: 28 Mar 2012
Posts: 101
Location: Manchester, UK
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 2:12 pm Reply with quote
Kimiko_0 wrote:
So there's anime that's meant to sell toys, and anime that's meant to sell BDs/DVDs. But why is so much of anime seemingly aimed at teenagers then? They're neither interested in toys, nor have the kind of money you need to buy BDs/DVDs. Is it all just to promote the manga the anime is based on?


I think 'seemingly' is a key world here. While the subject matter & indeed presentation of anime is generally centred around the teenage market, Japan's particularly extreme societal obsession of looking back at one's youth (ie school life) as the best years of their lives resonate strongly with older otaku, who often yearn for some nostalgic & rose-tinted glimpse at a past they may not have experienced. We're currently seeing some of the most blatant examples of literally 'correcting your past' stories with the likes of Erased & ReLife. It's where some of the more pointed accusations of arrested development etc tend to come from. Also, there's an undeniably sexual aspect in the fanservice of such shows (whether mild or straight up ecchi) that people often try to underplay.

Granted, there are many other reasons to explain why teen-based/centric anime show up on late night tv, but the use of these slots to promote bd sales, the original source material or bespoke merchandise like figurines to people with the disposable incomes to afford them, reveals a core push to promote the shows to older otaku groups rather than just a school-aged audience


Last edited by fathomlessblue on Mon Sep 26, 2016 2:28 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Hardgear



Joined: 27 Mar 2009
Posts: 426
Location: Colorado Springs, Colorado
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 2:13 pm Reply with quote
I for one love it when a show is written and planned for a set number of episodes, with the possibility of more seasons down the line. This is much better than how most shows here in the US tend to be made, where they basically keep spitting out episodes until the ratings drop and the show gets canceled. I prefer the story to be well produced and planned with a concrete ending already in mind, seems to make for a much better overall story. At least that way it can end on a high note, as opposed to the whimper of a previously popular show that overstayed its welcome and jumped the shark one too many times.
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DerekL1963
Space CowboySpace Cowboy


Joined: 14 Jan 2015
Posts: 450
Location: Puget Sound
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 2:21 pm Reply with quote
WingKing wrote:
A quick glance at my top ten favorite TV anime says that seven of them were two-cour or split-cour, most recently Silver Spoon in 2013/14, and none were longer than that.


My top ten TV anime series on the other hand are dominated by single cour series. The only outliers are Golden Time and Welcome to the NHK! at 24, and Planetarian at 5.

Different tastes may determine the difference as much as anything else. Honestly, when I see something has more than two cour I drop it from consideration. There's only so much time available (anime is but one of my hobbies), and so much material I haven't seen to consider - something has to serve as benchmark to rule series in or out of consideration.
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rizuchan



Joined: 11 Mar 2007
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Location: Kansas
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 2:23 pm Reply with quote
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You'll notice that 90s shoujo anime is full of really awkward product placement. (Teenaged girl is very worried about her love interest, so she'd better pull out her little rocketship toy aimed at 6-year-olds and check her fortune!)


Yeah, it didn't feel out of place in, say, Kodocha, but I remember reading the Marmalade Boy manga and the author's side panels mentioning all of the merchandise tie-ins, and I just thought, "Is the demographic for Marmalade Boy really the same as those who like robots and plastic lockets and..."

Rocketship toys?! I was just googling Marlmalade Boy toys for examples to find out this is the very series Justin was referencing. Laughing

Unfortunately this seems to mean fewer Shoujo shows in general since merchandising is so difficult. Though personally I would welcome the return of Shoujo anime Barbie dolls.
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