This has been stated in many places but I noticed it myself too, lately more and more anime & manga fans being overly obsessive with their taste and in thinking they “know better” than others. There are people who get made fun of or taunted for liking and enjoying a show that the internet collective thinks is bad. It’s like they think just because they like or dislike something then everyone else must too or they are wrong. It has gotten to the point where they’re immediately dismissed from any sort of forum or group just because they enjoy a particular show. What’s more concerning is that there are people who put on a facade and “stop” liking shows that they actually liked to maintain an image of being an anime or manga expert. On average it’s for liking a series that is considered mainstream or commonplace. The biggest examples tend to be the shonen trio (One Piece, Naruto, Bleach) or other popular series. It’s like once a series is well known, it becomes taboo to love.
To quote the Horrible subs leader: “I’ll still say this even though it’s cliché because it seems like a lot of you don’t understand it: Having “shit taste” doesn’t mean anything. Different people enjoy different things. Sometimes, you might even enjoy a show that the hivemind thinks is bad. For example, I enjoyed SAO and I also acknowledge the criticisms against it. It’s perfectly fine for me to like it even though I might be branded as “having shit taste”. Yes, that means it’s okay to enjoy Naruto, Or Bleach, Or SAO. Liking those shows doesn’t mean you’re retarded or you were born with some sort of defect. It just means that someone disagrees with you, so it’s okay to like those shows. Don’t let anyone else convince you otherwise”
I recently received flak for my love of One Piece. It was one of the first anime series I ever got truly into, and it was the first manga series I ever properly read too. My friend at the time recommended it when I complained I hated waiting a week for a new episode (and to show me the error of my ways for thinking 4kids version was ok… never again… never again.). It was then when I first noticed a discrepancy, there were things in the manga that weren’t in the anime. In most cases it was little things, an extra character here or side quest there, but in some series it can be huge differences.
I want to first talk about the popular and well-loved series (and one that people never seem to get flak for loving) FullMetal Alchemist. This is a series where the anime outsped the original manga work then went into an odd detour. Though the original anime was a different story it was still good and held to the way the characters naturally interact, the remake that followed the manga properly (fullmetal alchemist: brotherhood) was also amazing. Now while some things stayed the same (Noooooo hughes!!!!!! whhyyyyyy????? there were actually some major changes and it is actually worthwhile to see both and see the differences.
Now while perfectly fine to love that popular series, when someone loves Naruto they are often treated like a contagious plague victim. Considered to be one of Shonen jump’s more ‘successful’ series, and with 14+ movies and specials & a dozen videogames under its belt along with the manga and anime series who can argue, it had a long run of 700 chapters before its end. If you don’t know what the series is about please google it and give it a read, this is one of those iconic series you’d be really missing out on not getting to know.
A lot of fans of the series can be rather out of control, and as it said in the collegehumor video “The Adventures of butthurt anime fan” it’s the fans that suck not the series. Naruto fans that fall into the ‘narutard’ faction tend to ruin the love of the series for the rest of us. You get the crazy fanboys who try to tell you its bad, not because it is but because they say so, and the ones who try to force you to love it. Add to this a whole new generation of both sides of the coin will be coming since a new sequel to the series has started.
Spoiler warning sort of…
Naruto Gaiden: Nanadaime Hokage to Akairo no Hanatsuzuki (Naruto Spinoff: The Seventh Hokage and the Scarlet Spring Month) is a spin-off sequel mini-series of the Naruto and part of the grand master plan of Masashi Kishimoto’s “Naruto Shin Jidai Kaimaku Project” (Naruto’s New Era Opening Project). The mini-series will feature the next generation of ninja, including Boruto Uzumaki, who is the son of Naruto Uzumaki, the Seventh Hokage of the Hidden Leaf Village. Those who have read and enjoyed the first series will probably enjoy the new series, lots of pairings that people have wished for have occurred and one major twist happens in just the first chapter! (Sasuke you dog)
The main point of all this though is that there is no right or wrong answer to what makes a good series or a bad series. This is anime and manga, not life and death. I have read and watched all kinds of series; in fact I keep up to date on about 1800+ different manga series, with over 500 that I’m trying to catch up on. I’m not even counting the series I long since completed or gave up on due to lack of translated chapters. I read every genre ranging from action to sports to cooking to robots to magic to love stories and all types including yuri/yaoi & gender-bender as long as the story is to my liking or the artwork is amazing. I’ll post my list one of these days…
Now while I will defend to the death why I like my favorite series, (with facts and reasons not just screams and pissantery) I will never try to force my beliefs on others. We are all entitled to like or hate what we will, and like we all wish religion would do, we are all entitled to believe what we want to. The only thing that is black and white is the pages of mangas, not what is good or bad. Though 4kids is the devil…