Why Anime is Better Than American TV -Rakudai Kishi no Cavalry

Rakudai Kishi no Cavalry
Also known as:
A Tale of Worst One
Chivalry of a Failed Knight

Link to (totally awesome) OP:

So I'm from the US, hence the topic title/post slant and I'm just using this show as an example. It brings up (at least) the following issues/concepts/stuff to think about:

what it means to be weak
what it means to be strong
the strength of the weak
comparing “natural” or genetic-oriented talent to “earned” talent
Bushido (samurai's honor code)
gender roles
gender identity
self identity
mental(?) or character(?) consistency
appropriate/inappropriate social relationships
romantic exclusivity
consequences of social norm violations
conservative/gender role conception of “honor”
retributive justice (punishment based upon crime)
the (in)importance of diction in communications
the OP has the “languages deriving meaning”
when it's appropriate (or not) to “interfere”
when it's appropriate (or not) to “trust”
social classes
why one should try to understand others
societal-level determined identities and the conflicts that arise
how families and individuals relate (healthy vs unhealthy)

And of course: cultural contrast with “American” culture

That's a lot to think about. Compare that to your favorite American TV sitcom that covers maybe 3-4 topics only with a focus of entertainment. Hence why American TV is just boring, it can't hold my attention at all. Anime is genuinely interesting, however, since it provides enough different topics for me to think about, all at once. So that's why I watch anime.

What I'm asking is: Why do you watch anime?
To have things to think about?
Pure entertainment? (american sitcom style)
Cultural contrast?
To enjoy the art?
Because the sci-fi in anime better than shows on the sci-fi channel?
Robot fighting?

And~ Do you have any recommendations for others to watch?
Especially shows that dive deeply into the reasons you watch anime or any of the topics listed above.

It's got a lot plot that's for sure

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It has a bit of everything, including fanservice, which directly starts discussions relation to consumer sales, targeted shows, the conservative "objectification" argument... Then the whole superficial vs content-oriented view points.

So can you watch a show with some fan service or does the presence of it ruin the entire show? Why? Actually the way it's used in Rakudai Kishi no Cavalry is the entire point of the first episode because it creates conflict leading up to a discovery of the main character's strength and Stella's world being turned upside down.

Well, Im convinced...I'm never doing another 'Murican thing ever again! takes a bite of bacon then a shot of whiskey, then sets the bottle down next to his 1911


I watch anime because it's refreshing to watch because it covers different things than show do in the west. I also prefer the way Japan does horror or stuff with really dark themes as a lot of the tropes that I'm used to from western horror aren't used in anime and that makes it genuinely awesome as hell to watch. In terms of stuff I'd recommend you can't go wrong with Berserk, Death Note or Madoka Magica.

in america the media by and large is controlled by a few corporations with profit being the most important thing. priority wise the quality of the show and content doesnt matter as long as it makes a profit.

while that does exist in japan also, there are way more company's and lots of small ones that really care about the content.

point is, content made because it's wonderful and the artist want to share>content made to make money.

also the fan service thing in japan is partially because in their culture the christian/western morality never was a thing. women are sex objects there and feminism isnt a thing. being a "pervert" is considered normal. kinda sad.

I love this show too, but is it better than true american shows? No.

Its not even that great of an anime.

Here is the bottom line. When you try to sell a show to the networks, the only thing the network cares about are guaranteed views.

Sitcoms sell, comedy sell, dramas sell.

A long drawn out story over multiple episodes......ehhhhhh does not sell unless the show is just freaking spectacular.

You have shows like Game of Thrones, Justified, and Dexter that have high production value WITH a great story line.

But those shows are gambles for the networks. With the exception of game of thrones, most of these shows still do not rake in as much cash as something like the big bang theory.

And the same issue comes up in anime a lot.

Lets face it. A lot of anime is VERY similar with different plots.

Why? Because anime studios have figured out what basically amounts to recopies for making successful anime.

Lets consider another anime that came out this season.

Totally different plot line. Totally different feel and art style. BUT both shows have the same tropes.

Why? Cause thats how they freaking suck you in. They pad the list of characters with all these girls (or guys in some cases) so that the story contains at least 1 character that you will like.

IMO its cheating really.

The amount of stories out there that are true gems that do not need character padding are few and far between. It does not matter if it is japanese or american, or any other country.

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I actually know a lot of people to who are into the dark themed/gore/horror genre of anime.

In addition to Berserk (haven't seen tho) I'd usually recommend:
Claymore (swords, gore)
Black Lagoon (guns, disillusionment)
Deadman Wonderland (alternative-reality, gore)
Gantz (aliens, trauma, gore)
Hellsing (vampires, gore)
Psycho Pass (justice, some gore)
Blood-C (vampires, gore)
Highschool of the Dead (fanservice, gore)
Steins;Gate (sci-fi, psy thriller, despair)
The Book of Bantorra (has some dark parts)

anyone know of others?

There's good american Tv and there's also really shit anime.


So I'd argue that fanservice is actually more common in American television than Japanese, and btw, Japan is considered a Western country. Study globalism some time.

This simply isn't true. Or rather, the topic is so complicated that it can't be simplified to that.

Please remember that Anime is actually very niche in mainstream Japanese society, not an accurate representation of it, and that Japanese society has a conservative slant compared to American society. But specifically, in terms of actual feminism, it's actually enshrined in the constitution.

In the 1948 Constitution:

So while it may look like feminism isn't part of Japanese society due to cultural differences or skewed viewpoints into the society, feminist principles are actually embedded directly into the societal fabric. Such enlightened views as "women are people too" had to be added to America's society.

I've watched Deadman, Psycho Pass HotD and I've heard of all the others except The Book of Bantorra

You're forgetting about budget, targeted audience and the cultural differences. These factors set Anime above American TV overall despite the practical parallels related to the production of broadcasted media.

Budget is especially important for plots that tend to need lots of it, so basically sci-fi.

Stein's Gate is an incredibly interesting sci-fi thriller that costs a fraction of what it would cost to produce in America as a sci-fi drama. Low budget sci-fi is just terrible since it ruins the consistency of the show. By not needing the extra budget, certain genres tend to express themselves better as Anime.

Other examples in this category would be Outlaw Star/Cowboy Bebop. American produced version of these shows would be terrible. Remember the live action version of DBZ? I don't, because I wiped all memories I had of it: it was that bad. Yet as an Anime, it's completely watchable (if you're into that).

American TV shows tend need to have a very broad appeal in their pilots to justify the higher costs of production. Without being as bound to this (comparatively speaking of course), Anime can actually be very targeted knowing that it will “turn off” some users.

A deal-breaker to produce in American TV is totally possible in Anime so niche Anime, resulting in higher overall diversity, is totally a thing. An example being mixing polar genres. That's a no-no for Americans. Examples of such anime are Elfen Lied, a show that mixes both moe and gore, or Mirai Niki for both psychopathy and relationships or shows that have-no-plot-deliberately and focus only on character interaction: Lucky Star, Yuru Yuri. These are very niche shows and are relatively well produced.

For cultural differences, it's actually more interesting to watch another culture's broadcasts regardless of plot to contrast the values/cultural principles. The most interesting TV I've ever watched was a news report about events in the middle east in 2011 from the native's perspective.

Viewing things in terms of the Japanese culture over American is specifically interesting because the language and culture contain a lot of dialogue subtext requiring a lot of extra decoding to grasp the meaning.

Japanese culture prefers indirectness and an emphasis on context to convey information (example: honorifics) where as Americans prefer comparatively very direct dialogue. This is why dubs ruin Anime. The subtleties of the culture and language are lost; subtleties American TV just doesn't have. Listening to the Japanese dialogue, one can know exactly why a character suddenly gets offended, grasp complicated relationships in a way that could never be present in American TV.

So the whole possibility vs probability argument. The idea being that you're more likely to find Anime that fits your tastes than American TV shows.

Personally, I find there are very few American TV shows that require my attention to watch them (sitcoms especially, incl BBT) so I just turn them off since they just aren't interesting enough. Shows like House MD/Dexter/GoT are relatively rare as Tjj226_Angel pointed out. In contrast, a decent portion of typical Animes have the potential to hold my interest by touching on the topics listed in my first post or others.

So, I'm much more likely to find shows I genuinely like for an Anime season than an a for the same season American TV.

Do you agree or disagree the possibility vs probability argument applies here? Why?

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I'm not sure if I'd agree at all. You go on to explain the difference in the approach of making various shows on cultural, budgetary and target audience grounds, and the reason you prefer the Japanese approach (apples), but then you go on to dismiss the American shows as lacking in those specific areas which are obviously catering to a different set of needs which you don't find yourself in (oranges).

I mean, if you prefer anime or the variety of niche genres, so be it, and anime will obviously work better for you than any American counterpart. But reversing the argument is beyond easy. On American TV, you currently have fantasy, sci-fi, post-apocalyptic, historical, thriller, horror, mystery, superhero (etc) big budget live action dramas, while Japanese live action shows are severely lacking. Now, imagine me dismissing anime because of that. Again, apples and oranges.

Personally, I am simply not a fan of exposition in any anime I've seen so far (not to say I dismiss it, but it takes away from my enjoyment), and on the other hand, I think some of the best long-format storytelling ever made is currently airing on (mostly) American cable networks. So I don't really see the need to dismiss it.

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Content keeps on coming nonstop all around year, 13 to 26 episode stories. This is the main reason I watch anime, and I think I'm not the only one.
Winter 2016

Music, Aniplex = Sony Music Entertainment Japan, and I'm not even fan of these vocaloids or other hyper jpops.
I actually started to play guitar again after I decided to play most of the op/ed's from Bleach and Gintama, which instead did lead me to learn most Asian Kung-Fu Generation songs. Then I probably wouldnt have ever bothered otherwise to figure out any song by ear, and some of these tracks have been so cool that I've just had to solve that puzzle.

Dark comedy is huge plus for me, and nothing except actual comedians do it. These cheery comedies dont make me laugh, and then if it starts to take time from story ...uhhh, annoying. For me its a bit like listening someone talking about nothing.

Right now they are extremely patterned like there is this hidden 101 anime sets rule. Basically same type of character is going to act exactly how that character acts in every other anime, and this irritates me.

Secondly Ive noted recently different animation companies basically competing head to head, like they are either listening same popularity metrics, or just measuring dicks. For example there is right now ongoing two animes with red head magican girl & the black swordsman boy.

Basically I couldnt even find some tracks I figured to show as example, and I think its major loss for Japanese music that you cant find them unless you know what to search, and even then the only options are appel store or pirate.

Funfact: remembered last Game of Thrones starting time from that fodder summer season, like it was already first or second month for me just watching docs, lectures, and NASA stuff: "..I wonder when GoT starts again?" and it had 1st episode out. :D

On a serious sidenote. anything is better than American Television.

I'm a huge fan of third-wave Azerbaijani space exploration operas, myself.

On a serious note myself now, what's with the hate? Seriously, some of the best dramas on TV right now are being produced on American TV, disregarding network programming of course (but even that occasionally slips in something weirdly unique, like Hannibal). Only British programming comes close. I mean, if you know something better, please do share. Outside of animation, to be specific.

I was going to contribute to this thread, but I think this pretty much summed up my thoughts when reading all of the OP's responses.

You are grossly mistaken. You need to research just how many anime studios are going under because of the same issues american tv shows face.

Niche anime are slowly dying off, and the diversity is slowly becoming stagnant.

Its becoming more and more uncommon that anime studios set out to make good anime.

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the thing that makes anime so great to me is the fact speech flows more naturally. in most live action shows the actor is clearly nervous which results in a delay between lines. that combined with the dramatic under tone in the actors voice makes the majority of shows unwatchable for me. some of the shows people regard as good have actors use accents to prevent the actors from using undertone. most comedians don't go to acting schools so they don't normally have the undertone problem. that said accents don't work in British tv because they make shows way too cheaply or they try to hard to make stuff funny.

culture transcends borders these days. Saying American TV is bad is not really describing the problem.

Of course American TV is bad ... nearly ALL TV is bad ! It is produced for an ever shrinking market for the remaining millions of couch dwellers who require less and less sophisticated programming.

The problem TV faces is that it can't actually get those old viewers back or attract new ones to begin with due to modern more interesting internet technologies so they are hamstrung by making more and more extreme levels of ( often depraved or depressing ) trash for the dwindling terrestrial grazers to consume.