It’s a love language
If I were to play Never Have I Ever with the game master saying, “Never have I ever finished a TV series,” know that I’d put down a finger in shame. Sure, I reached the last season of Gossip Girl back in grade school, but I‘ve left the very last episode unwatched to this day. Most times, I stop my attempt before even getting halfway through.
I’m a moviegoer and a bookworm. You can find me at the cinemas or the bookstore, but never in front of my laptop binge-watching a series. You name it—from American sitcoms and Filipino teleseryes to K-dramas. I had crossed out anime before ever giving it a try. Well, until I found out my crush was an anime enthusiast.
He was a moviegoer and a bookworm, as much as he was a binge-watcher. Film and book recos were casually exchanged, but his excitement about anime was so cute—it piqued my curiosity. I wanted to understand his enthusiasm (and low-key impress him, of course). When I found out that Attack on Titan was one of his “favorite series of all time,” I turned into a binge-watcher to finish one whole season in a week.
It’s like I flipped a switch. He was impressed, but I was in shock. My Netflix account was in shock.
Now, people reading this might think: Really, B? Over a crush? Well, it was worth breaking the streak (or lack thereof) to have our conversations lead to dates. And since we’ve made a silent pact to bond over it now, let me share my thoughts on anime that I gathered from binge-watching with my otaku boyfriend. 🤭
The animation is the hook, but the story is what makes me keep watching
Anime is a great example of the phrase there’s more than meets the eye. I used to think anime was only praised because of its visuals; I was totally missing out on the fact that a series holds a world of its own. A feel-good series like Spy x Family can even have a variety of genres built into it—there’s romance and family, but also action and mystery. The episodes leave you wanting more of each.
Anime is weird, and that’s why I like it
You have to consider the uniqueness of anime to actually appreciate it. Jujutsu Kaisen’s film–Jujutsu Kaisen 0—portrayed love in such a despicable way that I was speechless as my BF and I left the cinema. Love was deemed romantically odd and horrific, but it made sense. Anime presents things in ways you never thought possible. (How do the authors even come up with these stories?)
Live-action adaptations shouldn’t be an option, TBH
Anime is the counterpart of Manga for a reason. The animation stays true to the narrative for the story to be delivered as is. Live-action adaptations aren’t ready for the exaggeration of it all. How Attack on Titan was adapted more than once shows the effort, but with the accurate depictions of Japanese cities in anime—it might just not be enough.
Here’s to taking chances on romance and anime. BRB, having a watch party for two!
Words Bianca Villena
Art Matthew Ian Fetalver