Blast From the Past: The Direction of Anime: “Sex sells” or is it what WE want?

Okay, so I presume you all saw the “sex sells” portion of the title and going like “WTF?!”. Before you jump to conclusions, let me make my argument.

In Hollywood movies, we commonly like to talk about movies with lots of bikinis or sexual content as “sex sells” to the male viewers. True, we get physical reactions to those scenes, but how does this apply to anime? Well, there are those so-called “obligatory beach episodes”, but that’s too general, I’m talking about something more specific, but before I indulge on that, let me ask you what is the sexual interest of an average otaku?

As you know, most otakus are known to be lolicons or rather, men who prefer women of smaller stature and act more “child-like”, or if you must, more moe. Or at least…that’s the stereotypical beliefs and the evidence you can see online.

Now, since we’ve established what turns on most “general” otaku, we can now go back to what counts as “sex sells”. Instead of your typical Caucasian bombshell that can make my most non-anime-viewing men drool, the version of “sex sells” to otakus is pretty much moe anime.

No, I don’t have disdain for moe; however, I do feel as if there’s been a line that’s been crossed. As more avid otakus would say: “There’s no such thing as TOO much moe“. Well, if you truly feel so, then please, tell me how you think you are any different from most sanjigen lusting men, aside from the different love interests. While moe in general is an amusing part of anime, the recent influx in the amount of anime that focus on moe and solely moe  is overwhelming.

Before you get any wrong ideas, I don’t think moe is overwhelming because I can’t stop fapping to it, but rather, when you see it in EVERY OTHER ANIME series, you get pretty fed up with it. As a male with sanjigen and nijigen interests, I like to keep a reasonable dosage of both types in my head at once. However, that doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate moe. When you have a show which is not primarily a moe show, but rather, something with a decent plot, and when it features a moe scene, I get as excited as any crazed fanboy.

That being said, when you have full-on moe shows like Ro-Kyu-Bu!, I get fairly annoyed, and to be honest, I have no incentive to watch it. While I’ll admit this assumption[kawaii moe shoujos on the cover] has made me miss out on some great anime series (ie Madoka, until recently, because I thought it would be a moe mahou shoujo show), but I still like to think that things should be available in limited dosages. Same principle as fanservice; everyone loves to see the occasional oppai bounce, but when you have full-on sex shows like Seikon no Qwaser, you can’t help, but feel somewhat disgusted.

So, to the “what we want” portion of this article. Well, what do I want? Maybe less moe, and by less, I mean in moderated amounts? I understand the production companies have to make money, but if they only make kawaii-loli-moe anime all day long, then I’m afraid I’ll have to quit anime. What happened to all those hard-earned moe characters from a long time ago?

Anyways, I decided to question my friends on Twitter and here are some results:

“Do we need more moe in our anime?”

@Bishoujoneesan: …no, not really.

@anaaga94: Yes, but not ecchi moe.

@samufugu: There’s already a lot if. Either or, 50/50.

@foxyladyayame: Well, I’m not a fan of moe, although a certain type I do like, especially in manga, so my answer isn’t no or yes either…it depends, but if you want to reach the masses, I guess moe anime are a must.

@sutoraikuanime: More moe would be mind blowing.

@Im_Mio_Akiyama: Anime. Not fanservice. Anime

@SakuyaFM:  I SHALL SAY YES.

@seinime: In moderation, not full of it, like K-ON!.

@Dez691: I like moe, but I think it’s fine as it. No point in forcing moe where it doesn’t belong.

@Amoirsp: No, we need more basis/plot/story. Something reasonable. Moe is integrated, not hashed out. If the trend keeps up, I’m not skipping two seasons in 2012, I’m skipping the rest for eternity.

@sarckz: I think it’s more than enough.

@roberttene: No. We don’t [need more moe]. I think they’re adding enough moe. There’s barely any anime without moe in it! And sometimes it gets annoying.

So as you can see from the general consensus, people do believe that there is a surplus of moe in our anime. Albeit inticing to some viewers, it detracts from the true value of the anime. However, because of the whole “sex sells” logic, production companies can not shy away from pumping anime full of moe like a ‘roid rhino would with their ‘roids. While I wouldn’t say all anime out there are moe-laden, it is quite blatantly obvious that some shows per season exists for the sole purpose of siphoning money out of its lusting viewers.

No, it’s not a major dilemma, but rather a disturbing truth that, our anime is lacking in plot, not because the stories have become rather bland, but because of how the “higher-ups” and corporate would like to turn the anime into a financial hit. And as we all know, excessive moe and a decent plot only appears in a show on a blue moon.

-Kryska

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