Here we will embark on a two-part exploration of Anime, a distinctive genre that calls for a wide array of skills, particularly in voiceover work. Originating from Japan, the term 'Anime' is a contraction of 'Japanimation', which ultimately derives from the word 'Animation.' This first part will delve into the essence of Anime, its historical context, and how it contrasts and parallels to other genres. Our journey in anime voiceover will be one of insight, tips, and excitement.
Animation spans a vast spectrum, ranging from SpongeBob SquarePants to Mickey Mouse. So, how does anime differ from general animation? While we will address the narrative aspect later, let's initially focus on the performance aspect. Animation, as an art form, offers a layer of subtext and is universally enjoyable. Typically, it's illustrated and scripted for a younger audience, characterized by its kid-friendly, colorful, slapstick, and understated nature. Bright artwork and character behavior are common features. In contrast, Anime employs a broader palette of colors and usually leans toward a more orchestral soundtrack. However, the most profound divergence resides in the narrative.
Although Anime incorporates slapstick and humor, a significant theme often involves the perpetual struggle between good and evil. Characters are complex, complete with rich backstories, often mirroring the intricate plotlines found in TV dramas. Anime does not sidestep hardship or pain. For instance, in a traditional animated cartoon, a character could get blown up with TNT and walk away, albeit sooty and coughing up black smoke. In contrast, the same scenario in Anime would graphically depict the damage and associated pain.
Now that we've established how anime differentiates from animation, the next question is: how does it compare to video games? Like anime, video games often adopt a realistic approach to entertainment, unafraid to include detailed content. The most significant discrepancy lies in the visual presentation. Unlike children's cartoons or even the most detailed animated creatures, video games aren't drawn in the same way. Although we see intricate graphical work in animations like Finding Nemo, Frozen, and Toy Story, video games prioritize a commitment to realism. When a video game portrays the Pyramids or a Soldier, the focus on detail is meticulous, striving for an accurate reflection of reality.
In this article, we've outlined how Anime differentiates from other genres and offered a broad overview of Anime in relation to its comparable genres. In the upcoming second part of our exploration, we'll scrutinize the similarities that exist between these genres and Anime. Stay tuned for the second installment of our Anime journey.
Our Journey in Anime Voiceover Part 1 by Alan Shires