I am an honest guy for the most part. Yes, I do lie once in a while, although I can argue that I don’t lie as voraciously or as desperately as Satou from NHK. As I said in the previous post, I’d rather be honest with myself and admit that I’m an otaku, or whatever people like to call me, than dwell in a shell of lies and cowardice. Some people write me off as somebody helpless; they write me off as nothing more than an idiot. Some people, however, care to know more on why I like anime as a medium and why I love it more than most things (family excepted).

Yesterday, after having a reach-out to destitute children, some of us – totally new to one another, decided to eat together and share a meal, perhaps of quiet thanksgiving and celebration of the day done, of the children we tried to help, going beyond the requirement of the course (our school is society-oriented) and empathizing with the plight of the kids when that topic popped up in front of our very eyes.

One of the girls asked: ‘What’s your passion?’

Of course, I simply replied ‘anime.’

This was when she asked why, which made me think for quite some time. Here is what came up during the discussion:

  • Unrequited love. Our country, even until now, is still gripped tightly by the colonial powers that once controlled it. Of course, I don’t pertain to this as a sense of physical bondage; however, our minds and thoughts are still predominantly towards these colonizers (and even I have myself to blame). Our mentality as a people was quite scarred by these countries (United States and Spain) that we have failed to develop ourselves as people with an identity. Why have I mentioned this? That is because our media reflect what Western minds have ingrained in our thoughts. We appeal to consumables: we like ideas that are easily internalized for the most part, and often times we simply love some primitive form of Marxist clash that doesn’t improve us as a people or as individuals. We love simple, circumambulating dramas: we love thesis-antithesis-catharsis formulas, and it really reflects in our television so much that (yes, there it is), even the extremely real situation of unrequited love fails to exist in television for the most part, or in the different TV programs seen here. Drama in television has become boy-meets-girl, boy-likes-girl, girl-likes boy, sofsdhguswgwuty38qtfsdjnfvsdgvq34qcw0fvzynvbyes0das0gnt (protracted static), and then a happy ending. There isn’t even a blurring of the world: the world is only seen a lot of times in black or white, which it isn’t supposed to be.

  • Media as simply a consumable, and nothing more. Western media for the most part only serves to be consumed, whereas Eastern media would really force oneself to think (a lot). I think that I myself wouldn’t learn from watching these dramas on television that deal with the formula mentioned in the previous bulleted paragraph. I’d rather watch something like Hiatari Ryoukou, and it would be a lot more intelligent, because it lacks the protracted static of Philippine television. Compare watching Last Life in the Universe from Scary Movie 4. *shudders*

  • Realism. If you can’t even have unrequited love in a supposedly live-action drama, how can you be realistic? Incidentally, that’s also among the main reasons why I love anime but am simply blasΓ© about cartoons. There is simply no character development within cartoons (as expected, of course), but I’ll be damned if there is even character development a quarter as fast as Elfen Lied (melodramas included). The shows move at a pace that’s grindingly slow, which irks me, and character development ALWAYS happens near the end, where there are series of epiphanies, somewhat so OMFG UNBELIEVABLE that I find watching them simply proving that one is absurd. As much as I’ve tried to avoid mentioning H&C in this post, I can’t help but do so, as that’s simply the epitome of gradual, believable change within the characters without even saying a lot of ‘I love you’ from the characters or other bullshit. It’s also pathetic, not bathetic like most melodramas (Philippine and Western) I’ve watched some episodes of.