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Interesting blog posts on Autism and Anime

Au Naturel

Au Naturel
 

Stuttermabolur

A psychologist said so
V.I.P Member
I'm not much into anime myself, but I tend to like people who are into anime. I did have a pretty bad experience with a "Japanese club" I joined in pre-high. All the other people were already friends, and it felt like they just wanted a social space to hang out in, so I felt quite unwelcome and like a complete outsider. To be fair I was also being incredibly annoying so I can't really fault them.
 
I’m personally not comfortable with anime/manga fans at all. To keep things short, I come from the country that invented anime/manga in the first place and I HATE the fetishizing and objectifying that goes on online. I can’t take it. It’s too triggering.
I’m familiar with actual fans of my country who learn the language, learn the culture and actually do business there with real people. These people aren’t into anime.
 

Misery

Photo-Negative
V.I.P Member
I’m personally not comfortable with anime/manga fans at all. To keep things short, I come from the country that invented anime/manga in the first place and I HATE the fetishizing and objectifying that goes on online. I can’t take it. It’s too triggering.
I’m familiar with actual fans of my country who learn the language, learn the culture and actually do business there with real people. These people aren’t into anime.

To be completely fair though, it does depend on the nature of it.

A lot of modern anime is... "mass produced". Corporate-directed stuff that's mostly about fanservice, designed to sell to overly horny nerds, thus all the lewd scenes and girls with their clothes falling off or some bloody stupid thing. That type of anime is very literally designed with the purpose of causing all of that fetishizing and such, because that makes money, and that's all Corporate cares about. That's why so much of it fuels that.

I grew up with a very different type of anime, back before it hit the mainstream in the US. It tended to be purely about storytelling. Go look at something like Akira, Zeiram, Fist of the North Star, and so on, and compare that with the "OH LOOK BOOBS" that is so common in today's stuff and boy is there a stark difference. Anime had not yet hit the point where corporate types would realize how it could profit them, so it was more... interesting.

I always call myself an anime fan, but I'm in it for some good stories and character development and such (and sometimes, for some comedy). So it's bloody rare that I actually watch any modern stuff as it's hard to find an exception to the "mass produced drivel" rule.

That's not to say that there arent exceptions of course. But those exceptions are pretty rare.

My point is, not all anime fans are created equal, or whatever, however you want to phrase that.
 
My point is, not all anime fans are created equal, or whatever, however you want to phrase that.
Yeah that’s true. Generally speaking the stuff from the past is higher quality.

It’s just that for me personally, maybe 90% of the people I encounter will go Naruto this and that, new anime this and that, and now I’m made to be the person answering all the weird Japan questions, when I don’t agree with most of the social norms and have been hurt by it in the past. It’s just a bad experience overall. So I’m going to avoid the group of anime fans altogether so I don’t have to go through a similar bad experience again.

Similar to how I wouldn’t go out of my way to mingle with cheerleader types who have bullied me in the past. Maybe some of them are good people and I’m missing out. But will I take the risk? No. I’m placing my bets elsewhere.

Imagine if somebody had a bad experience in their home country. Theyve been bullied growing up and had lots of negative experiences with lots of resentment.
Yet every time they mention their home country, the other people go “ohh I love Captain America/The Eiffel Tower/Pizza/insert other shallow cultural icon” and now you’re made into a representative of the country, and nobody takes you seriously anymore. It’s like that.
 

Misery

Photo-Negative
V.I.P Member
Yeah that’s true. Generally speaking the stuff from the past is higher quality.

It’s just that for me personally, maybe 90% of the people I encounter will go Naruto this and that, new anime this and that, and now I’m made to be the person answering all the weird Japan questions, when I don’t agree with most of the social norms and have been hurt by it in the past. It’s just a bad experience overall. So I’m going to avoid the group of anime fans altogether so I don’t have to go through a similar bad experience again.

Similar to how I wouldn’t go out of my way to mingle with cheerleader types who have bullied me in the past. Maybe some of them are good people and I’m missing out. But will I take the risk? No. I’m placing my bets elsewhere.

Imagine if somebody had a bad experience in their home country. Theyve been bullied growing up and had lots of negative experiences with lots of resentment.
Yet every time they mention their home country, the other people go “ohh I love Captain America/The Eiffel Tower/Pizza/insert other shallow cultural icon” and now you’re made into a representative of the country, and nobody takes you seriously anymore. It’s like that.

Oh yeah, I get it. I'm well aware of how the majority of them act. And VERY aware of how freaking weird (and offensive) they get about, well, culture.

I'll put it this way: Even despite everything I say... even I wont go near most anime fans. Sort of. I've been to conventions and such with all the cosplay and whatnot, and I've mentioned that on the forums before, but that's less of me being a fan of anything and more me having a gender crisis.

Heck, I'm also a gamer, it's like my entire bloody function, yet I will avoid most gamers like the freaking plague. I've seen too much of what too many of them act like. You think anime fans can be nasty? You havent seen anything yet... (and hopefully you wont have to. And if you already have, I both apologize and sympathize).

But what I've learned from all of this is that the biggest problem with meeting anyone in these groups who isnt, you know, a total maniac, is going to the right PLACE.

Think of, say, Twitter. Twitter always makes me think of that line from Star Wars: "You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy". And Facebook is like that too. It seems that wherever you have a tendency to gather enormous amounts of idiots on a regular basis, well... that's what you'll get.

Instead, the real trick is to find, well... pretty much what we've got right here. A smaller, focused group where friendliness and respect is rewarded and bad behavior gets the boot. Such places take more effort to find, but that's exactly why they tend to be so much better... the bad ones dont want to put in any effort, they just want to go where they can get the most attention the easiest. So, find a place like this, and you get a vastly different experience with people who dont suck, even if they were from a group... such as anime fans... who you previously may have had a bad experience with. I learned this lesson a very long time ago, loooooong before the rise of social media, and it's stuck with me ever since.

That's just my thoughts on the matter though, as someone who is very nervous, easily frightened, and very untrusting of people in general. It's all about finding the right place, to me. A place where people who are actually respectful hang out... regardless of any fanbase or whatever they may belong to.

Not always so easy to do of course... this IS the internet after all. Always be careful, that's what I say.

There was something else I was going to say on this topic too but suddenly hunger is hitting me.
 
Oh yeah, I get it. I'm well aware of how the majority of them act. And VERY aware of how freaking weird (and offensive) they get about, well, culture.

I'll put it this way: Even despite everything I say... even I wont go near most anime fans. Sort of. I've been to conventions and such with all the cosplay and whatnot, and I've mentioned that on the forums before, but that's less of me being a fan of anything and more me having a gender crisis.

Heck, I'm also a gamer, it's like my entire bloody function, yet I will avoid most gamers like the freaking plague. I've seen too much of what too many of them act like. You think anime fans can be nasty? You havent seen anything yet... (and hopefully you wont have to. And if you already have, I both apologize and sympathize).

But what I've learned from all of this is that the biggest problem with meeting anyone in these groups who isnt, you know, a total maniac, is going to the right PLACE.

Think of, say, Twitter. Twitter always makes me think of that line from Star Wars: "You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy". And Facebook is like that too. It seems that wherever you have a tendency to gather enormous amounts of idiots on a regular basis, well... that's what you'll get.

Instead, the real trick is to find, well... pretty much what we've got right here. A smaller, focused group where friendliness and respect is rewarded and bad behavior gets the boot. Such places take more effort to find, but that's exactly why they tend to be so much better... the bad ones dont want to put in any effort, they just want to go where they can get the most attention the easiest. So, find a place like this, and you get a vastly different experience with people who dont suck, even if they were from a group... such as anime fans... who you previously may have had a bad experience with. I learned this lesson a very long time ago, loooooong before the rise of social media, and it's stuck with me ever since.

That's just my thoughts on the matter though, as someone who is very nervous, easily frightened, and very untrusting of people in general. It's all about finding the right place, to me. A place where people who are actually respectful hang out... regardless of any fanbase or whatever they may belong to.

Not always so easy to do of course... this IS the internet after all. Always be careful, that's what I say.

There was something else I was going to say on this topic too but suddenly hunger is hitting me.
I get what you’re saying.
But I don’t want to spend my time going out of my way specifically to look for “intelligent, caring anime fan who won’t disrespect me and has deep understanding for nuance and culture” when I don’t even like anime and could just go to some other group related to my special interests for example.

It would be a different story if I wanted somebody to talk about anime … but I don’t. It’s a part of modern Japanese pop culture. I’m not that interested in all pop cultures regardless of origin country to begin with.

I guess part of it is that at the end of day, an anime fan is literally somebody who enjoys watching TV. It’s qualitatively the same as someone who enjoys watching TV series on Netflix.
But since it comes from an exotic culture, and there exist some talented artists, somehow people get it into their heads that their watching anime is more elevated or perhaps more niche and sophisticated than somebody watching Keeping up with the Kardashians or Game of Thrones. There is a subtle ego there.
While to me, it is culturally speaking, they are roughly the same in terms of sophistication. People here follow weekly anime shows. They may watch shows with cute girls with big breasts. They may watch shows with beautiful boys. They may watch shows with cute animals doing stupid things.
Sure there are exceptions. Adults here make their kids watch Miyazaki, and I think this is a good thing to do for educational purposes. His art is very good.
But culturally speaking I don’t see watching anime as being culturally different from somebody watching reality TV and to me that’s boring.
 

Knower of nothing

Well-Known Member
Once you are both a decent person but also an anime fan you're at the very least open to a more childish approach to art and that reveals the presence of a soul that may otherwise be lacking. Once you like art you are more likely to have creative hobbies of your own. Once you have creative hobbies of your own you're more likely to be sensitive to aesthetical experiences. Doesn't necessarily make the people more pleasant, but I find I at least feel like less of an alien talking with them.
Also @Misery , I'd be careful throwing out the "back then" and "nowadays" when it comes to fanservice. Though what was considered raunchy back then is more normalized and tame today, it was still definitely there. Looking at Akira to represent the era is like looking at Ping Pong to represent the 2010s.
 
Random thought.

I have this weird dissonance when someone REALLY likes an old anime from the 80s for example, and uses it to illustrate why they like Japan.
I think “dude, this Japan doesn’t exist anymore. This is from forty years ago. What are you talking about?”.

The youth of the 80s are (or are close to being) baby boomers now. Cultural norms have changed. Women have changed and men have changed.
That cute girl in the mini skirt is dead and that sweet boy is beating his dog in an old person’s home.

Perhaps I am bitter but still I advise against building feelings for an entire nation based on an outdated fragment of pop culture.
 

Misery

Photo-Negative
V.I.P Member
Also @Misery , I'd be careful throwing out the "back then" and "nowadays" when it comes to fanservice. Though what was considered raunchy back then is more normalized and tame today, it was still definitely there. Looking at Akira to represent the era is like looking at Ping Pong to represent the 2010s.

Oh yes, it was there, you're right about that, but what I meant earlier was, like, a series where that fanservice is all there is to it. Where that's the entire point, the absolute focus of it, and the "story" is just an excuse to show it. I doubt I need to list examples.

Though I should also have prefaced my previous post with the fact that even back then (late 90s, specifically) my watching of stuff was pretty limited. I dont have the patience, you see (seriously I literally havent so much as watched a traditional movie in over 10 years, because they take too long and really most are boring to me). So, take what I say with a grain of salt. Or a bag of salt, whatever. Heck, have an unnamed planet of salt, if you'd like.

I always forget to mention that when talking about this subject. That all being said though, it's not actually a subject I am exactly enthusiastic about either. Like, I can TALK about it (briefly and like a very fast-burning flame) but the enthusiasm isnt there and I get bored of the subject real fast. Even right now just talking about it here I'm already getting really unfocused and am running on fumes as far as things left to say about it.

Perhaps I am bitter but still I advise against building feelings for an entire nation based on an outdated fragment of pop culture.

Yes, I'd agree with this.

Frankly I know next to nothing about any region that isnt A: mine (Illinois, which I hate), B: Wisconsin (north of here), and C: Florida. Seriously, nothing. A fact I'm absolutely aware of and fully admit to. Well, okay, I know Las Vegas exists and I went there once. There's lots of blinky things there and it tries to take your money, that's my understanding of that. Not a fan.

Anywhere else though? No real knowledge, and no real interest either. Even if I've been exposed to media from it. And I'm glad I'm able to just admit that lack of knowledge, rather than get all weird about it or deciding that I just adore some thing I have .000001% knowledge of.

I wonder, maybe, if some people do it sort of as a means of... distraction? Like, they focus heavily on that so that they dont have to focus on some negative aspect in their life. I could see that being a possible reason, maybe. Or at least that's a theory that occurs to me in this moment. Heck if I really know.

But I don’t want to spend my time going out of my way specifically to look for “intelligent, caring anime fan

Aye, neither do I. Same with gaming, really, dont want/need to meet others, heck with that.

I suppose what I was saying earlier was really just me trying to advise against blanket statements. In general, I mean. That's all.

I aint good at being concise. Or making sense.
 

phantom

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
I’m personally not comfortable with anime/manga fans at all. To keep things short, I come from the country that invented anime/manga in the first place and I HATE the fetishizing and objectifying that goes on online. I can’t take it. It’s too triggering.
I’m familiar with actual fans of my country who learn the language, learn the culture and actually do business there with real people. These people aren’t into anime.
If it makes you feel better, i for one have zero interest in anything japan outside of technology that was invented there. The microprocessor, JFET, flash memory and so much more came from japan List of Japanese inventions and discoveries - Wikipedia
 
If it makes you feel better, i for one have zero interest in anything japan outside of technology that was invented there. The microprocessor, JFET, flash memory and so much more came from japan List of Japanese inventions and discoveries - Wikipedia
I think it is quite rare for somebody to separate their feelings for something like this. It may be autistic.
It is quite common for people to go “I like XYZ thing from ABC country -> I like ABC country”. Or “I met nice person PQR from ABC country -> I like ABC country.”

It’s a survival heuristic. Five million years ago, this level of reasoning was accurate enough I think (“XYZ person from ABC family gave me food -> ABC family is a friend”).
 

mysterionz

oh hamburgers!
V.I.P Member
I have watched some good animes. But the "anime community" is not my cup of tea.
A lot of the anime fandom is very very very questionable.. I would be here all day talking about the negatives of it. I just draw in an animeish art style and I like learning about the history of older anime’s. That’s it.
 

Stuttermabolur

A psychologist said so
V.I.P Member
I get what you’re saying.
But I don’t want to spend my time going out of my way specifically to look for “intelligent, caring anime fan who won’t disrespect me and has deep understanding for nuance and culture” when I don’t even like anime and could just go to some other group related to my special interests for example.

It would be a different story if I wanted somebody to talk about anime … but I don’t. It’s a part of modern Japanese pop culture. I’m not that interested in all pop cultures regardless of origin country to begin with.

I guess part of it is that at the end of day, an anime fan is literally somebody who enjoys watching TV. It’s qualitatively the same as someone who enjoys watching TV series on Netflix.
But since it comes from an exotic culture, and there exist some talented artists, somehow people get it into their heads that their watching anime is more elevated or perhaps more niche and sophisticated than somebody watching Keeping up with the Kardashians or Game of Thrones. There is a subtle ego there.
While to me, it is culturally speaking, they are roughly the same in terms of sophistication. People here follow weekly anime shows. They may watch shows with cute girls with big breasts. They may watch shows with beautiful boys. They may watch shows with cute animals doing stupid things.
Sure there are exceptions. Adults here make their kids watch Miyazaki, and I think this is a good thing to do for educational purposes. His art is very good.
But culturally speaking I don’t see watching anime as being culturally different from somebody watching reality TV and to me that’s boring.

I just wanted to say as someone else from an "interesting" culture, I completely get what you are saying. For me personally, I've always found japanophilia to be... weird. There are so many fascinating and interesting countries and cultures in the world, yet loads of people have this dream to move to and/or live in Japan just because they like their media. I feel the same way about people who's perception of the US comes from Feris Bueller's Day Out. From what I have heard from people who lived there, Japanese society has deeply ingrained racism and sexism. It also seems quite "fake" and manufactured, which makes me very uninterested in going despite really liking travel.

I'm Icelandic, and there are definitely icelandophiles around; Some are even japanese. The people who want to come here are very different from anime fans (mostly weird hippie types who like horsies), but it definitely feels strange talking with them. I've had at least four people ask me "do you like Sigur Rós?!/Björk?" when they learn I am Icelandic, but the truth is, they are more of an export and don't have a large homegrown fanbase. The strange thing is that the Icelandic band "Of Monsters And Men" are actually way bigger than both those artists internationally, but because being cute or ethereal isn't a part of their brand, people don't really connect it with Iceland. We actually have a big rap scene, and our social safety net is much weaker than in the other nordic countries, but you definitely wouldn't expect that based on stereotypes of us.

I also find it sort of distasteful to revere vikings, and think people have a lot of misconceptions about them (and no, I'm not talking about horned helmets or other surface level stuff). Vikings were actually quite horrible. They raided random villages, slaughtered the townspeople and took a lot of slaves. Seriously, perhaps the majority of Icelanders are descendants from Irish slaves, and Gaelish even shaped our language somewhat. By performing mitochindrial analysis, we do know that almost all Icelandic women are dependant on "ambáttir", female slaves which were treated quite horribly. Vikings also had a very patriarchal society with clear gender roles. I really don't get why some people think we had better gender equality than anywhere else in the world. Vikings were thieves and mercenaries, so I'm glad they were kicked out of the territories they were raiding. Most of the cultural significant stuff here like a legal system and literature came after the viking age had ended.
 

Luca

charm & chaos
V.I.P Member
I just wanted to say as someone else from an "interesting" culture, I completely get what you are saying. For me personally, I've always found japanophilia to be... weird. There are so many fascinating and interesting countries and cultures in the world, yet loads of people have this dream to move to and/or live in Japan just because they like their media. I feel the same way about people who's perception of the US comes from Feris Bueller's Day Out. From what I have heard from people who lived there, Japanese society has deeply ingrained racism and sexism. It also seems quite "fake" and manufactured, which makes me very uninterested in going despite really liking travel.

I'm Icelandic, and there are definitely icelandophiles around; Some are even japanese. The people who want to come here are very different from anime fans (mostly weird hippie types who like horsies), but it definitely feels strange talking with them. I've had at least four people ask me "do you like Sigur Rós?!/Björk?" when they learn I am Icelandic, but the truth is, they are more of an export and don't have a large homegrown fanbase. The strange thing is that the Icelandic band "Of Monsters And Men" are actually way bigger than both those artists internationally, but because being cute or ethereal isn't a part of their brand, people don't really connect it with Iceland. We actually have a big rap scene, and our social safety net is much weaker than in the other nordic countries, but you definitely wouldn't expect that based on stereotypes of us.

I also find it sort of distasteful to revere vikings, and think people have a lot of misconceptions about them (and no, I'm not talking about horned helmets or other surface level stuff). Vikings were actually quite horrible. They raided random villages, slaughtered the townspeople and took a lot of slaves. Seriously, perhaps the majority of Icelanders are descendants from Irish slaves, and Gaelish even shaped our language somewhat. By performing mitochindrial analysis, we do know that almost all Icelandic women are dependant on "ambáttir", female slaves which were treated quite horribly. Vikings also had a very patriarchal society with clear gender roles. I really don't get why some people think we had better gender equality than anywhere else in the world. Vikings were thieves and mercenaries, so I'm glad they were kicked out of the territories they were raiding. Most of the cultural significant stuff here like a legal system and literature came after the viking age had ended.

I agree. As a musician, I have a lot of interest in Scandinavian music and culture, without the interest in vikings or anything political... the same as how I have an interest in Eastern European music and culture and language without supporting the horrendous governments and politics of a lot of those countries (I will no longer support anything from Russia though. A lot of my real-life friends are from Ukraine so it feels wrong.)
My adoptive parents are from Eastern Europe and so are a lot of my irl friends, which is part of what sparked that interest.

I always think the fascination some foreigners have with America is really questionable too... our country is pretty hostile politically and socially, and I'm sorry to say, but a lot of the stereotypes about Americans are true. It is also not a safe country at all, especially not for immigrants or foreigners. I won't go too much into the politics though but I'm sure a lot of you know where I'm going with this...
I would not have chosen to live in America if I was given a choice. It's definitely not all it's romanticized as, far from it actually.

It's perfectly fine to want to learn about a country and the cultural aspects, but you should do so conscientiously so you avoid supporting or idolizing parts of the culture that are offensive and harmful to the people who live there.
 

Au Naturel

Au Naturel
I’m personally not comfortable with anime/manga fans at all. To keep things short, I come from the country that invented anime/manga in the first place and I HATE the fetishizing and objectifying that goes on online. I can’t take it. It’s too triggering.
I’m familiar with actual fans of my country who learn the language, learn the culture and actually do business there with real people. These people aren’t into anime.
A lot of anime are all about huge boobs and getting a peek at a girl's panties. That's because it is the fixations and fetishes of teenage Japanese boys that drive the huge shounen market.

I am not interested. I wouldn't have been even as a teenage boy. The better shounen offerings don't get caught up in that.

There are also anime that get into problematic areas. The worst ones involve the heavy sexualization of minors. Not that the little girls and boys are having sex, but they can be presented in provocative outfits and behave in a manner more appropriate for an adult. It is an aspect of Japanese culture I dislike. Japan finally banned the creation and distribution of child pornography in 1999 and possession in 2014, the last developed country in the world to do so. The fetishization of underage girls (or boys) as the ideal sex partner remains deeply entrenched in the culture.

My solution is not to watch those. Fortunately, they are a small proportion of the total.

There are a fair number of really popular anime that don't fall back on boobs and fetishes for their appeal. They have great art, an interesting plot, and characters that you can become attached to. They have a deeper message if you care to ponder such things. They go where western animation doesn't.

You might get 50 new anime in a season, but only a couple are really worth watching. (4 seasons to a year) Maybe a few more that are intermittently good. (Just my humble opinion.) Every couple of seasons, there will be one that simply blows me away with its qualities. And now and then an anime movie will knock my socks off. Over time, that builds up a lot of anime worth watching. That's worth being a fan.
 
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Misery

Photo-Negative
V.I.P Member
A lot of the anime fandom is very very very questionable.. I would be here all day talking about the negatives of it.

Yeah, same here.

And honestly, same with the gaming fandom.

Get me started on either of them... talking about what I see as the negative parts... and this topic would be just 5 whole pages of nothing but me rambling.

Exactly why I keep to myself, and my very small group of people I know who are into either (mostly gaming)

Though, maybe it's just me, but it seems like this general negative factor might the case with a LOT of things. Like, I've often heard from digital artists that the digital art community can be like this too, with the "main" part of it being generally mean and nasty. Heard that about a lot of different subjects/topics/hobbies.

Whether that's actually true or not, I cannot be sure, as those are outside of my own interest range so I havent seen it for myself.

You might get 50 new anime in a season, but only a couple are really worth watching. (4 seasons to a year) Maybe a few more that are intermittently good. (Just my humble opinion.) Every couple of seasons, there will be one that simply blows me away with its qualities. And now and then an anime movie will knock my socks off. Over time, that builds up a lot of anime worth watching. That's worth being a fan.

Generally, yeah. Though I personally have a whole lot of trouble finding any good ones.

In recent times I've really enjoyed One Punch Man. And... yeah that's about it.

Though for me, it really doesnt help that my preferred genre (horror) is for some reason not exactly well represented in anime.

I have read a lot of manga though, I always forget to mention that when it comes to this topic. Though, it's usually stuff that never makes it to the screen. Nothing recently though.
 

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