What is Anime?
The word Anime is an abbreviation of animation. In Japan anime means all animation - however, to the rest of the world anime has come to mean "Animation from Japan".
For many years anime had been produced in Japan for their own market, and designed in a way to appeal to local people. It had a specific way to create and tell a story from its art-work to the finished piece and has evolved since the early days of Japan's involvement with the film business early in the 1900s.
Over the past forty years it has expanded globally with fan numbers in the millions. Anime is now translated into many different languages around the world.
Films of animated characters such as Batman and Spiderman are recognised for what they are, everyone who knows the characterisations accept that they are totally different from the cartoon strips shown in some daily newspapers. When it comes to anime, everyone who knows it will simply state that it is completely different.
This can range from one extreme to another. Whichever way it is depicted, anime art-work will certainly not be overlooked.
When it comes down to the story, constraints don't ever appear to be applied. The intention from the film makers is to take the audience on a journey in which everyone is involved. A storyline can run for a huge number of episodes - possibly from a dozen or so, to hundreds of episodes all demanding the viewer to get emotionally involved through the whole of the anime.
There isn't any limit placed on the type or style of "programme" which would make for a popular anime. A romantic comedy, or crime thrillers, drama and classical stories are all suitable material for anime. As the subjects are so varied there will always be a choice of anime suitable for one or another sector of the population to watch and enjoy.
Many anime productions involve the history and culture of Japan. Some anime create their own version of Japanese history or are based on Japanese mythology. There are even instances of anime which don't appear to be explicitly Japanese, but then refer back to Japanese awareness.
Anime is Reaching Out
It is strange how some things to go full circle, and even some American cartoon productions are now beginning to be inspired by anime. Some productions are even now starting to be inspired by anime and are beginning to have live-action English language versions.
Anyone who wants to start watching anime, needs to decide on the type of programme which they enjoy and look for something within that genre in anime. Ask for assistance from anyone who is known to enjoy anime, or simply try out some of the various genres - if it's as expected that's great. If not - try again!