By Stephanie Ijoma
For decades anime has been our safe haven when it comes to escaping reality. Anime has shaped us, inspired us, and kept us all entertained for many years. It is by all accounts a global phenomenon.
Anime allows us to appreciate and admire Japanese culture and talent. To think, once upon a time, that the anime and manga industries weren’t on our radar. But now, they help connect fans around the world to build friendships, develop platforms and inspire career-making decisions.
So we wanted to ask fans in the UK anime community: What does anime mean to you?
“Anime to us means everything.”
“Anime to us means everything. Not only has it been a means of entertainment to us, but also been an introduction into Japanese culture, learning important life lessons that motivate and enlighten us, and connecting with amazing people from all over the world sharing views and feelings on something.
“It’s a medium that transcends race giving a group of black people like us a means of connecting to a different world to a manner to which we couldn’t even dream of.” – 4 Eyes Academia | Gaming, Anime & Manga Podcast
“To me, anime is an experience. It can be a teacher, as we learn many lessons in love, friendship, passion and determination. Anime is sometimes a mystery where we use our minds to solve pieces of a puzzle that is the story unfolding before us.
“Sometimes it’s simply fun, as we sit back and enjoy the fights and action. Most of all, anime is social and allows us to share moments of some of our favourite shows with our friends & loved ones.” – @ChocolateKieran | Anime & Gaming Content Creator
“Anime to me is an escape.”
“Other than it providing interesting storylines and lovely visuals, Anime to me is an escape. A safe spot.
“Anime is a limitless world of pure imagination.”
“All of us have grown up watching anime and none of us would be the same people without it. Whether it’s an escape from the real world, a jolt of inspiration or fleeting entertainment you’re after, we firmly believe there’s an anime out there for everyone.” – The Animatics Podcast | Anime & Manga Podcast
“Anime is a limitless world of pure imagination. It’s one of the greatest influences on modern pop culture, music, art, etc and has evolved from a niche Japanese product to an massive global industry worth billions in a short period of time.
“Anime became a coping mechanism in a way, among other things and kept my mind clear. The animation style also pulled me towards my love of drawing. The myriad of stories, characters and genres have kept me entertained and engaged throughout the years.” – Maz (@seriouslyzany) | Twitch Streamer & Anime Enthusiast
“Anime shaped a lot of my life today.”
“Anime is a form of multiple messages, emotion & entertainment all in one. It’s something special to us as you always gain & learn something new from it, especially in the form of Japanese culture. It’s also a great coping mechanism when life can get tough.
“Anime shaped a lot of my life today. It introduced me into an entirely new culture, helped me make some great friends, and served as a way for me to bond with my brother. Watching One Piece, especially, as a kid is an experience I’ll never forget, and in the current climate; anime like My Hero Academia kept me sane throughout this difficult year.
“I always say there’s an anime for everyone and I stand by it – there is one out there that will change your life, like One Piece changed mine.” – Adrian (@impracticalgmr) | Gaming, Tech & Anime Content Creator
“It’s a form of storytelling that’s very different and makes you appreciate different cultures and their differences due to the medium of subbed anime.” – The Nerd Council | Podcast & Platform Bringing the Nerd Community Together.
There are millions of anime lovers who have a story to share on how anime has helped them navigate through life.
In this case, we wanted to amplify voices to those who use anime and have created amazing platforms for themselves to extend their admiration. Be sure to support these platforms and creators as they have a lot to bring to this industry. As always, anime is love. Anime is life.