It's been something I've been wanting to get out for sometime now.
So ok before I jump straight into this there is 2 things I wanna confirm.
1. I Enjoy watching anime and reading manga
2. I effing hate what cosplay and subculture is doing to ruin it.
You see, I unlike many of those younglings self proclaimed anime fans out there, I grew up with the 90s and early 2000s of anime. And lets be perfectly honest, apart from the animation quality, everything back then was way better. Story, style, characters, fking everything was more masterfully crafted. But everytime I tell someone to go back and watch an amazing series like GTO, they'l just go on renting and raving about ooh how the characters arn't good looking or how the animation quality is too old school, oh for f**ks sake......
Anyway, the anime industry was slowly growing and shows were getting more and more interesting, whether it's mainstream stuff like Full Metal Alchemist which everyone knows about or Full Metal Panic which I can challenge you to see how many people will mistakenly think it's FMA without knowing what it actually is, animes in general were getting more interesting to watch with better stories more interesting characters...well you get my gist.
But that all changed when the fire nation atta....no wait I mean that all changed in 2006
CULPRITTitled "The Melancholy of Suzumia Haruhi" By all means this isn't a bad anime, well it isnt mind blowingly amazing but it certainly is a pretty fresh concept. Basically in a nutshell, story is about this girl who is oblivious of the fact that she is the god of the universe and this means when she gets pissed off, shit happends to the universe. So knowing that, aliens, time travellers and god knows what unworldly creatures(all in the form of very attractive humans) started flocking to earth to keep her in check, the catch is they cant let her know her true ident or she would probably abuse it......which of course not all goes according to plan and everyone almost got wiped out.
So why did this anime made such a big impact in the industry? Well for a start Haruhi came into the scene much like how Pulp Fiction did with the movie industry. Haruhi was following a non linear plot line that shows events of before and after the big indecent that happens in the middle, pretty smart, but something not entirely new to a Tarantino fan like myself. But well to the anime industry having most of their fans glued to computer screens unaware of the stuff that goes on in hollywood or the world, this was something totally mindblowingly new. But it wasn't the story that gave it it's insane success, the story was only a kickstarter, it was the characterization. What they did, was use all the positive and popular anime character stereo types and created a perfected version of everyone...and use them in the story, completed with tons of fan service, robots, lazorz, rock bands, bunny costumes and of course bouncy bewbs which in turn drived the once reclusive anime community into a zombie-ish like occultish state of worshipping this anime....no shit
This made the creators of Haruhi filthy fuckin' rich. Selling everything they could make out of the series, books, figurines, posters, shirts....fk probably even sex dolls. And with such success which production house would'nt wanna give it a go at this new money making style huh? Stories before Haruhi was mostly about broken characters and their journey to find their place in life. But after that it was all about perfect fanservice characters and their boring everyday life. It actually got pretty obvious that a series was taking ideas off Haruhi...say like K-On(which I fking hate) and their 'rockband' theme or Angel beats which had practically the exact same main character...just that she has a different name. But hey! They all makes tons of moolah so why give a shit?
In 2009 the guys of Haruhi conducted the ultimate experiment called "The Endless Eight"
Supposingly a sequel of the series. What they did basically was animated 1 episode, play it over 8 times and then sell it as some exclusive special edition dvd box set and see how many blind fans would stupidly buy it, and believe me, I have met people dumb enough to, whats more their actually proud of it.
It's sad really. Today with pretty much 90% of the studios out there churning out shit shows that they think could make a few good bucks, we can consider ourselves very lucky to even get a handful of decent shows every year, and even so, the subculture community would spawn all sorts of fan crap to ruin the series and to prompt many studios to stray away from their original stories just to cater to the fan market to get their greens.