At this point, you’re used to a lot of the weirdness anime has to offer – from the art style to the character design choices to the subject matter. But sometimes a family member or friend can’t understand the appeal.
Next time you’re hit with one of these, let us help you answer your mom or your friend!
Why do anime characters have big eyes?
The perennial question. The easiest answer is that not all of them do, of course – it’s a matter of art style, and while children’s shows and moe shows tend to have bigger-eyed characters, this is not true across the board.
That said, the hallmark of anime characters tends to be larger, wider eyes than you usually see in Western animation. So where do they get it from? Well… Western animation, actually.
The legendary Osamu Tezuka was, as many know, close friends with Walt Disney. But in addition to the friendship itself, Tezuka modeled his art style on both Looney Tunes characters and his friend Disney’s creations. His early works, like the original Astro Boy and Princess Knight, look and move much more like a Disney or Warner joint than what anime looks like today.
As the anime art form became popular and Tezuka’s proteges began creating their own works, the large eyes stuck around. So, Sailor Moon’s enormous eyes are actually thanks to Bugs Bunny and Mickey Mouse!
Why do anime characters have weird colored hair?
Nowadays it’s fairly common to see someone with pink, blue, or rainbow hair walking down the street. But back in the day, anime cornered the market on strange hair colors. So why does the cast of your favorite anime have a full spectrum of hair colors?
You have manga sales to thank for that. In most early manga, human characters were assumed to have natural colors. But to make their work more eye-catching on the newsstand, manga artists would give their characters crazy hair colors on the cover.
For a time, unnatural hair colors in anime were meant to denote someone “different” or “alien,” like Ranma’s girl-type form in Ranma ½ Nowadays, though, purple or green hair is just par for the course!
Why is so much of anime pornographic?
It’s not. Congratulations, you’ve just learned something about your friend’s viewing habits!
As it turns out, only a very slim percentage of anime falls under the actual category of “hentai.” It’s true that the are some risque jokes in anime, and lately there seem to be more of those jokes in mainstream shows. But when it comes to more “adult” jokes, they tend to only show up in shows meant for an older audience – which can, admittedly, be hard to spot when different demographics share art styles.
Let’s face it – people will always be weirded out by things they don’t know. What matters is that you enjoy it – so enjoy!