Becoming an anime fan can seem like a very daunting task. However, I’m here to help and show you the world of animation waiting for you.
1. Have an initial interest in fantasy and adventure. In many regards, the best anime lies in these genres. There’s also the most of it. Sure, there are some excellent romances and dramas, but you want to get hooked, watch some fantasy and adventure animes. You may be surprised how excellent the visuals, characters, and messages are.
2. Watch some Hayao Miyazaki films. He created some of the best Studio Ghibli films, including Spirited Away, Princess Mononoke, and Castle in the Sky. These films are great fantasy stories and great works of fiction in general. Miyazaki’s works are an excellent place to for anime beginners and aficionados alike.
3. Understand that all anime is not great. You will never watch all anime created and you do not want to watch all anime. No one has. In contrast, you can easily see every Disney film or Warner Brothers cartoon; there is a limited amount of work to watch for those categories. You know how much anime there is? Pick up a dictionary and count every single letter; now you know.
4. Find your genre and/or director. Navigating anime is like combing a beach for a beautiful shell; amidst all the sand and worn out shells lies something crafted so perfectly, yet so difficult to find. That’s not to say it is tough to find good stuff, you just have to allow time to develop your niche. If you see a movie by a certain director, try another one by him or her. Do some research.
5. Expand if you are hooked. After watching a few shows, you might realize you love a certain director or studio. Be experiential and try something related to what you have already been watching, but not the exact thing. For example, if you like magical girl shows, try a historical fantasy show. If you like modern dramas, try a mystery anime. You get the idea.
6. Be patient. Watching one anime can take some time. Don’t rush yourself and watch what you want to watch. Of course, catch up on some classics, which you will find during your research.
7. Don’t start by watch Naruto or One Piece. Nothing against these shows, but they are ridiculously long. Watching these as a new anime fan can be frustrating and draining. Instead, find a good 12 or 24 episode show. That is not so daunting.
Good luck, new anime fan! There is a fabulous world ahead of you.