Wednesday, August 01, 2007

A Batman Anime?

I read on Newsarama that there's a "Batman anime" movie in the works.

I hate it when American cartoons are called "anime."

I'm not an anime snob. I don't think that Japanese cartoons are superior to or any more "special" than cartoons from anywhere else. In fact, I love anime and American animation equally, and I recognize the flaws of both. It's just a matter of terminology, is all. "Anime" means "an animated cartoon made in Japan," end of story. It's why we called it "Japanimation" back in the '80s and '90s. It does not refer to the art style -- which is a great deal more varied than its detractors seem to think, and which to my knowledge has no specific name (I just call it "the Japanese pop art style").

I feel the same way about so-called "original English-language manga." Much of it is very good indeed, but if it's not from Japan, it's not manga.

So, no, this movie will not be a "Batman anime." It will be "an American Batman cartoon drawn in the Japanese pop art style." (Or a close approximation, anyway. How many "Amerime" shows look like actual anime? I love me some Teen Titans, but the resemblance to actual anime is purely superficial.)

If they wanted a "Batman anime" so much, they should have gotten a Japanese animation studio to write, produce, and draw it themselves. Heck, they could've licensed Kia Asamiya's Batman: Child of Dreams (a very good read) to a Tokyo animation studio and let them do with it as they would. I'd have liked that a whole lot better, since I love seeing pop culture icons from anywhere given a distinct "spin" by a different culture; I'd like to track down some back issues of Adam Warren's Dirty Pair for that very reason, but that's off-topic.

Meh... well, there's nothing I can do about it.


Robert Peterson said...

Actually anime doesn't mean animation from Japan, Japanese people just shortened the word. It's just animation.

Will "Filby" Staples said...

*shrug* Tomayto tomahto. I got over it.