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Zac Bertschy - In Memoriam


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jenthehen



Joined: 23 Dec 2008
Posts: 746
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio
PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2020 2:49 pm Reply with quote
This came as a total shock to me, and is so, so sad. He will be missed.
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shinbashi



Joined: 06 May 2008
Posts: 4
PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2020 10:50 pm Reply with quote
The anime community has really lost someone special. It’s hard to even know what to say, but I feel I owe Zac at least a few words. The Answerman column was really my introduction to ANN and I listened to the podcast from episode one. The passion Zac brought to everything he discussed was so evident. My attitudes on media criticism and art are heavily influenced by him and the podcast was a real source of joy and comfort. His writing about depression and weight loss were also really meaningful to me. My deepest sympathies to the people closest to him. I listened to some old episodes of the podcast after I found out and it’s so hard to believe he is gone. Crying or Very sad
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Alestal



Joined: 22 Apr 2005
Posts: 568
Location: Dallas, Texas
PostPosted: Wed May 27, 2020 10:27 am Reply with quote
God bless him and his loved ones. Thanks for everything, Zac!

Praying for us all during these challenging times. Crying or Very sad
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Olliff



Joined: 28 Feb 2008
Posts: 538
PostPosted: Wed May 27, 2020 12:04 pm Reply with quote
I saw this news when it came out and left me devastated and loss for words. I was hesitant on posting anything, but I felt obligated even though I have not posted on ANN in quite a while. My in person interactions with him have been very limited due to distance, but it was an honor to meet him at Anime Expo.

Zac will be sorely missed for his contributions to not only ANN, but the English speaking anime as a whole. I have spent countless hours consuming his content. My admiration for his articles, podcasts, honesty, and overall editorial style was one of the driving reasons of what brought me to ANN. Zac had a strong personality, passion, and drive.I don't think it was an understatement that many people equated ANN as a whole to him. My condolences go out to his family and friends for this tragically early loss of life.
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danpmss



Joined: 30 May 2015
Posts: 584
PostPosted: Wed May 27, 2020 12:46 pm Reply with quote
This is heartbreaking to read... Crying or Very sad
Rest in Peace, Zac.
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zetsuie



Joined: 21 Jul 2006
Posts: 192
PostPosted: Wed May 27, 2020 3:31 pm Reply with quote
I just miss that I will never get to hear you on the anncast again, and I will never get to read a new writing by you again. I just know I lost something I wasn't supposed to.
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RafaMorasTenor



Joined: 10 Jun 2014
Posts: 1
PostPosted: Wed May 27, 2020 5:02 pm Reply with quote


It's hard for me to put into words the deep sadness I've been feeling these past days at Zac's passing, and, for a time, I debated whether to even write here, because I was never fortunate enough to know Zac personally, and my sincere, most heart-felt condolences go out to the dear friends and family who did, whose grief I can't even begin to imagine. But I can say with all the honesty in my heart that it was one of my dreams to meet him and thank him, because like so many others who have written here, his work changed my life, and I wouldn't be who I am without him.

Zac is the first person I can think of whose passing moved me to tears without ever having met him, because the fact is no other writer ever challenged me, motivated me, and made me laugh as much as he did. Just as he once wrote of Simba and Luke Skywalker, I chose the title My Hero, Zac Bertschy for this post because that's how much his writing and words helped and inspired me. The passion, fearlessness, and wit with which he expressed his thoughts on depression, empathy, and art all left an indelible mark on me from the time I was in my late teens, and it fills me with deep sadness to know the world has to go on without him. There are entire artistic concepts and ideas I'd have never been exposed to were it not for him, and when I was at my worst with my struggles with anxiety and depression, his candor in talking about those issues helped lift me out of the darkness.

Zac also made me laugh harder than most actual comedians, and things like his amazing ANNCast cold opens and the "(insert anime) in the logo style of something completely unrelated" memes he'd regularly share on Twitter occupy an entire folder on my desktop that I go back to any time I need a smile.

And the love and reverence he had for works like Evangelion and Eizouken basically changed my outlook on the entire medium of animation, with his "Get In The Robot, Shinji" essay possibly being my favorite piece of writing on anime ever.

So although I never got the chance to thank you in this life, thank you, Zac, from the bottom of my heart, for changing my life. I can't imagine the pain and struggle you went through with your personal demons, but the fact that you were able to publicly open up about and use those experiences to help others is a testament to concepts you so dearly championed a million times over: empathy and compassion.

Rest in Peace, an my sincerest, most heart-felt condolences to his friends and family and all of the ANN staff at this difficult time.

Sincerely,
Rafael
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Toriko36



Joined: 09 Nov 2010
Posts: 205
Location: Hoboken, NJ
PostPosted: Thu May 28, 2020 8:24 am Reply with quote
I have been a fan and avid follower of not only ANN but Zac for most of my adult life. As a massive anime fan, ANN was one of the very first sites I ever found when I was just a teenager and now into my 30's still visit almost daily.

Does anyone else remember when Zac was running Answer Man back in the early 2000's? Loved reading his responses, at least once they made me truly LOL. Incredible writing by him not only in that column but everything he produced.

Like so many here, AnnCast became part of my life when it started way back in 2009. Loved every episode, especially those years/decades in review when he had guests from other areas/podcasts. As many commented here, it's going to be sad and tough not hearing his voice on future episodes but we and future generations of anime fans are lucky enough to have the recordings to playback whenever we want.

I was also lucky enough to meet Zac at a few conventions throughout the years and almost annually at AX. WIsh I was able to hang out with him more but just lucky enough to have at least met him and have a few pictures with him.

I hope his peers, colleagues, friends and family can take comfort in knowing that he was a truly good person and had a huge impact on so many of us. I hope you can find peace and comfort during this time. Thanks for everything Zac, your legacy will live on.
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Matriel
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Joined: 16 Jan 2010
Posts: 84
PostPosted: Thu May 28, 2020 9:13 pm Reply with quote
This hurts, this hurts a lot. When I think of Zac, I think of ANN. He is ANN to me. I can’t believe he left before Evangelion: 3.0+1.0. I know I'm not alone here, ANNCast was a big deal to me. The way he so eloquently and frankly spoke about a particular series or movie was inspiring and made me think about media in a different, more intellectual way. Zac elevated me. At the same time he told me it was ok to like what I like, and be who I am; to not let the voices of the masses dictate what brings me joy. I’m really, really going to miss hearing Zac's voice. This hurts. Rest now, Zac. You will be greatly missed.
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Steel Angel



Joined: 19 Aug 2004
Posts: 268
Location: Texas
PostPosted: Thu May 28, 2020 10:13 pm Reply with quote
Have to say, I'm a bit shocked.
Was doing one of those "lets go check ANN, it's been awhile".

Known Zac as one of the people here making it happen, for longer than i care to admit. For me he was almost as a representative of anime itself, cause you always knew where he stood on any given review, which was the work i enjoyed most from him.

His talents will be highly missed in the years to come.
May his family be well in such a time of bereavement.

Here's to ya Zac
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Alkzy



Joined: 10 Jun 2014
Posts: 15
PostPosted: Fri May 29, 2020 8:19 am Reply with quote
This is tragic. You have my condolences.
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TarsTarkas



Joined: 20 Dec 2007
Posts: 4519
Location: Virginia, United States
PostPosted: Fri May 29, 2020 11:07 am Reply with quote
Zac could write a review of an anime that he considered horrible, but write it in such a way that even fans of the anime had to laugh at it too. Sadly a lost art now.
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Copyrighted Name



Joined: 20 Feb 2008
Posts: 28
PostPosted: Fri May 29, 2020 4:20 pm Reply with quote
Zac's opinion was always one I took seriously, both for anime and for other media, and listening to him on ANNcast (along with Justin and Jacob) helped me learn a lot about film and develop my taste. I always meant to talk to him someday.
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RinKokonoe40



Joined: 29 May 2020
Posts: 6
PostPosted: Fri May 29, 2020 8:19 pm Reply with quote
RIP. He will be sorely missed.
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DriftRoot



Joined: 20 Jun 2003
Posts: 222
Location: NH
PostPosted: Fri May 29, 2020 9:10 pm Reply with quote
As so many others have said, Zac was a huge part of my experience as an anime fan going way back. I always admired his wit, his humor, his writing, his passion and creativity... and what always seemed a very open challenge to engage in this hobby to the best of one's ability. He inspired me on several occasions to do just that, and I can honestly say that there is no one else who made me feel as welcome and included in this fandom as Zac. I have not been part of the anime scene for quite a while, but this sad news is certainly closing a chapter I didn't really even realize had a few pages still unread.

My deepest sympathies to his family, friends and colleagues who are being affected by this most personally..
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