Discussion What advantage does modern anime has over old anime?

beatmachineon

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Instead of praising good old anime, i want to hear opinion about the positive point of modern anime.

when people bashing modern anime they like to talk about ecchi and moe ruining anime, so what(trope) does modern anime has created to make anime meduim look better than old anime?


PS :i love retro more though
 

TrienDarkform

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I'm guessing you're asking about things beside visual quality, which digital composition and CG have contributed to?

Personally speaking, I can't really name anything specific, and I enjoy both modern and older anime, and I've been watching for over two decades (man, that makes me feel old...). As much as some people may like to classify things into 'tropes'... good storywriting has existed, and still exists, and doesn't necessarily require the writer to come up with new ideas (afterall, what stories/ideas have been repeatedly written about throughout the millenia?). Trends and what's popular may change, but the realm of anime has a decent amount of variety, that you really can't make any generalizations, and gives you some choice. Maybe what's mainstream isn't necessarily what I may find enjoyable, but there's still other series to watch. And some of these trends which are popular today weren't exactly nonexistent in older anime, they just weren't as trendy at the time (and vice-versa).

A few random thoughts, though...

Some might argue that modern stories have gotten more complex, such depicting things more realistically besides black and white morality, for example. Interestingly enough, the older I've gotten, the more I've found myself agreeing and disagreeing with that in different ways. I'll not get too detailed into personal philosophy, but essentially, while I agree that the world is a complicated place and there are no black and white solutions, I also believe that there are distinct good and bad things, just that situations, choices, and consequences can contain both. (And that is a discussion for a different time). Somewhat related to this is the trend towards darker stories, though this is not exclusive to anime either though. Again, I end up taking both sides on this one as well. It can make for more interesting storytelling. But after a hard day of work out in the messy real world, sometimes I just want to come home and calm my mind with something simple...

Showing my age...

First anime: DBZ (original airing via bootleg VHS tapes, finished the series before it ever came over to NA broadcast TV...)
Some favourites, older and newer: Escaflowne, Lain, Madoka, Zetsuen no Tempest. Films: Mononoke Hime (though most anything Ghibli's good :P)
Some favourite soundtracks: Record of Lodoss War (original OVA), Escaflowne, Madoka, Vividred Operation (not-so-great anime, lovely music)
 
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ProGoddess

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I'm guessing you're asking about things beside visual quality, which digital composition and CG have contributed to?

Personally speaking, I can't really name anything specific, and I enjoy both modern and older anime, and I've been watching for over two decades (man, that makes me feel old...). As much as some people may like to classify things into 'tropes'... good storywriting has existed, and still exists, and doesn't necessarily require the writer to come up with new ideas (afterall, what stories/ideas have been repeatedly written about throughout the millenia?). Trends and what's popular may change, but the realm of anime has a decent amount of variety, that you really can't make any generalizations, and gives you some choice. Maybe what's mainstream isn't necessarily what I may find enjoyable, but there's still other series to watch. And some of these trends which are popular today weren't exactly nonexistent in older anime, they just weren't as trendy at the time (and vice-versa).

A few random thoughts, though...

Some might argue that modern stories have gotten more complex, such depicting things more realistically besides black and white morality, for example. Interestingly enough, the older I've gotten, the more I've found myself agreeing and disagreeing with that in different ways. I'll not get too detailed into personal philosophy, but essentially, while I agree that the world is a complicated place and there are no black and white solutions, I also believe that there are distinct good and bad things, just that situations, choices, and consequences can contain both. (And that is a discussion for a different time). Somewhat related to this is the trend towards darker stories, though this is not exclusive to anime either though. Again, I end up taking both sides on this one as well. It can make for more interesting storytelling. But after a hard day of work out in the messy real world, sometimes I just want to come home and calm my mind with something simple...

Showing my age...

First anime: DBZ (original airing via bootleg VHS tapes, finished the series before it ever came over to NA broadcast TV...)
Some favourites, older and newer: Escaflowne, Lain, Madoka, Zetsuen no Tempest. Films: Mononoke Hime (though most anything Ghibli's good :P)
Some favourite soundtracks: Record of Lodoss War (original OVA), Escaflowne, Madoka, Vividred Operation (not-so-great anime, lovely music)
Thank you for sharing your thought which is enriching and enlightening. :super

It reminds me of when I was child where I used to watch Doraemon. It's such a consolation that the same anime is still showing after so many years. In fact it existed even way back to my parents' time. :teehee Some anime are just "good for all times." :)

One of the classic stories that I had watched before was "Candy Candy" - a kind of romance story for the young souls growing up toward their adulthood who yearn for love. When we look at the current series as compared to the older (classic) ones, they may be very different, though the fundamental of romance and love may be the same. But the presentation is somewhat different. Obviously the differences are also influenced by our society and norms over time. I wouldn't say which one is better, but rather they are unique in their own ways during that specific time or era and I don't mind either of them.

I'm not a person who enjoy that much of ecchi or hentai kind of animation but if it is just for fanservice and not showing too much, then I am quite fine with it. I guess in our modern society, people are more open in such behaviour that what they experience in real life are also portrayed in the story they write and draw.

In terms of animation production, it is obvious that with the more advanced technology, we are able to produce better shows - like graphics, sound effects, etc. These are complimented by better and widely available mediums like high-end TV and sound system, and in the entertaining industry, the advanced cinema's technologies on its big screen.
 

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The things I'd add are consistency and voice acting.

We tend to look back on 90's anime and remember the artwork as being a bit better than it really was. Mainly because that stuff was designed to be viewed on CRT TV's which were blurry enough that fine detail issues were harder to notice. Now any art mistakes are more visible than they've ever been and due to that there are less of them and backgrounds tend to be better. There are exceptions, of course. But on average I think anime is in much better place in that respect.

Voice acting is also vastly better than it's ever been. I don't speak Japanese but in terms of expressing emotion you can really tell how far the Japanese voice talent has come. It's pretty rare to hit bad voice actors these days but classic series like Berserk, Tenchi Muyo, and even Dragon Ball were full of them. The level of talent that makes series like Re:Zero as good as they are just didn't exist back then.
 
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TrienDarkform

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In regards to "better artwork from older anime", some of it probably relates more to the animation philosophy. At least for certain examples that come to mind, there may have been more character detail in a single frame, but with less frames of animation. Sometimes, just a single frame, with some pan + rotation. And backgrounds were definitely not as nice... sometimes for action all there would be is some streaky 'motion' background, even if the character art in front had some nice detail.

I guess we expect more motion these days, so while we can get some admittedly strange looking in-betweens sometimes, overall the feel is that there are more things moving.

Now you've got me itching to go through some old DVD's frame-by-frame... or heck, dig out some old VHS tapes. That is, if I can even find my old VCR... let alone anything that will take a composite outout... uhm, nevermind...
 

Single Soul

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i think it's more interesting plot, and harem anime became less popular as for me, ppl like more a good story
 

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This is a tough one, modern anime doesn-t have consistency across all of them, we might have something extremely good and well made and we might have something that looks like I did it in Photoshop...

I'll use two examples taking two series that are both a classic and have a modern adaptation...
DBZ for instance... I never really like the drawings since they are not that special, however the classic was actually pretty good even if it was really easy to draw it was carefully done. Now take Super..... That is a POS

Saint Seiya... The 80's classic was a masterpiece, the first set of OVA actually shown how technology can make something extremely better, but then we had the second set done by a bunch of lazy people and the quality drop considerably. Then came Omega... a disservice to the classic and a slap to fans.

When animes are well done in this era they are flawless and visually amazing (Tokyo Ghoul, Attack on Titan, Code Geass, Terra Formars (1st season). The animation becomes beautiful, audio follows it perfectly, and there are no lazy frames or draws... However what I see on modern anime is that they all start pretty good in animation but they start lowering that quality towards the middle of the season.
 

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personally there both good and many are classics of their time

But there is one thing older anime has an advantage over it's more stereotyped for males. if you look at male bodies they were all muscle and testosterone based and though i'm a guy i kind of want to see that again in some ways, where you see well built muscular dudes with huge power. A good example is jotaro from jo jos bizarre adventure of the pillar men the pillar men were well built and so was jotaro but jotaros quick wit was amazing and i think the one reason i really enjoyed that character was his quick wittiness. i haven't seen such a character again with both muscle, brains and quick wit for a while. from DBZ the best examples are vegito and gogeta as those saiyan forms are not only powerful, well built, intelligent but very witty we clearly see that in their battle and its fun to watch. The intelligence of vegita with goku's battle instinct can give the strongest of the strongest a full run for their money with comedy relief and the wittiness we don't see anymore.

also i think todays anime is more fan servicing with females which is awesome I love the fan service received from hot girls and am always happy for more female fan service but I feel the modern male characters lack confidence and power and guts to go all out older anime had male characters that had an aura of confidence in tough situations and would prevail none the less sometimes i don't see that in today's characters a whole lot even in a tough situation they were quick witted and thought instincitvely to solve a problem

i mean compare the jojo bizarre adventure pillar men to gray from fairy tail if people think gray is doing fan service those pillar men are a whole other level i wonder what a manga made with equal fanservicing to both sexes would be received.

it seems in older anime male fan service was provided and today its more female fan service. and the main thing it seems was that older anime the character development was done it was the character fighting and showing off today's anime characters are in pre puberty stage where they have to learn how to control and use their powers and abilities so a larger section of the manga is taken up in character development which older manga avoided.

just a thought
 

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the evolution of the art-style is always intriguing to me, everything yuyu-hakusho/dragonball and on are fine in my book

i dont really care for slayers sailor moon and other old anime where the noses are too pointy

the biggest issue i have is when people do not use CG properly, an anime is supposed to look like an animated manga in my opinion, not some pixar film

there are some animes that properly use CG, but some just go apeshit
 

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Not sure if this is true necessarily, but I think the modern technology is very helpful for small and independent studios with tight budget. Well, I mean these days most studios are still small flies compared to Ghibli, but I think there's plenty of opportunities and possibilities for them to create animations that are visually O.K. even with meager resources.

Back then TV anime is much worse than anime movie, but I feel like these days the quality gap is noticeably closer. Still terrible compared to high budget anime movie obviously, but the differences are not very apparent.
 

kencana

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1. Better graphic
2. Better treatment for female characters (look at Attack on Titan and FMA)
3. (If you're a fan) More BL/yuri anime. I cannot imagine anime like Doukyuusei, Sakura Trick, etc etc being made 30 years ago.
 

WalterB

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Art and animation. Think something like Fate/Stay unlimited blade works
 

Phileos

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If we're talking about them in general, then I think modern anime has much better animation and voice acting than old days. Also because of the intense competition in the modern anime industry, series tend to have fewer cliche nowadays (oh god, forgot those harem series).
 

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advantage is the composite effects and depth of 2D drawing. there was no depth before!
 

BlakeRus

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Not sure if this is true necessarily, but I think the modern technology is very helpful for small and independent studios with tight budget. Well, I mean these days most studios are still small flies compared to Ghibli, but I think there's plenty of opportunities and possibilities for them to create animations that are visually O.K. even with meager resources.

Back then TV anime is much worse than anime movie, but I feel like these days the quality gap is noticeably closer. Still terrible compared to high budget anime movie obviously, but the differences are not very apparent.
That's a great point, Doraku. I think modern technologies cut down some of the production costs and allowed for smaller studios to make larger scope projects than they could ever before.
 

Swirls

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I did prefer the more realistic look of characters in older anime, even 15 year old highschool kids, looked more proportional cpmpared to the emphasis on cute taken to 11 nowadays, makes it very hard to watch for me personally. The darker colors (everything is too bright and often shiney nowadays) is a minor one I'll find myself griping over, esspecially on shows trying to seem more mature and edgy. What modern anime has is, I guess, more consistently better animation? Maybe that isnt even true.

Maybe the real reward here is not necessarily the old but the fact that as anime moves forward, new things are tried and great shows are born of it. Looking back there is a great catalog.
--- Double Post Merged, , Original Post Date: ---
1. Better graphic
2. Better treatment for female characters (look at Attack on Titan and FMA)
3. (If you're a fan) More BL/yuri anime. I cannot imagine anime like Doukyuusei, Sakura Trick, etc etc being made 30 years ago.
To address number 2. Rose of Versailles, Revolutionary Girl Utena, Sailormoon, Cardcaptor Sakura, Birdy the Mighty, Princess Mononoke, Ghost in the Shell. I think female empowerment was much more prominent through the 80's and 90's than it is today. I havent seen strong, fleshed out character like that since (I'm sure there are some, someone can help me out here, i've probably also just forgotten).

Even Mikasa, is more of just an edgy, angry character with little depth (I found annie more compelling in that show). I think for me, Nami from One Piece is a good example, she is entirelly her own person, with her own quirks and she seems authentic, she's not just a super powerful badass character, like some seem to think is required for a good female character, she's a strong female and she's fleshed out.

Obviously correct me if I'm completely wrong here.
 
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Admiral Teach

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It's my opinion that modern anime do have the potential for superior animation, but sacrifice it for inferior art. I watched the first few minutes of an ancient Super Robot Anime that, frankly, is horrific. I think it was Devilman vs. something. The one with the breast missiles. Something drew me in during a fight scene, other than the fact that the female robot's only weapons are to launch her assets at the target uselessly. *Zahem*

I paused the anime and just stared. The background was pure art. Plain and simple, it was gorgeous, a stunning vista of mountains in the background. It was something you wont' see beyond the 80's, and it was ALL hand-drawn by people whose talent is now sadly forgotten and pointedly ignored. That is... tragic for any kind of medium. I'm sure there's lots of 80's and even 90's anime that count as hidden artistic gems. The only reason they aren't incredible to watch is the animation itself. It's expensive, time-consuming, and can get absolutely out of control if hand-drawn, and is difficult to properly handle with modern CG technique.

But I think ALL anime, from those I've seen, suffer from this seeming trend in how they portray animation, especially in combat fluidity. The rare few 80s series I ever watched were, if I'm not forgetting, Zeta Gundam and ZZ. Both are known for their incredible animation. It says a lot to realize they STILL hold up well even to this day, with the dull coloration being the only true smear. It also speaks volumes for the quality of anime from any era, even to this day.

There was also the original Saint Seiya, which I only watched small pieces of near its final arc. It was impressive. The animation was not perfect, but the art was the aforementioned exceptional quality, paying careful attention to detail, while still providing a nice balance between fluid and what I call "solid" movement. I am no professional artist in any form, so forgive me if I make up my own terms to describe what I see. But the Seiya anime is a great example of something that I don't see beyond the 80s or early 90s. The quality of background combined with animation that felt "right" and watchable at its best, clunky and horrific at worst. I think the end of the 80s found balance in its inconsistencies. And the top quality stuff seemed to know when to not animate mundane sequences, and when to ensure important, meaningful scenes were animated in a memorable fashion. Budget was of course always a determining factor, but because computer involvement was gone, I feel the artists' own creative desire or pride went into the works, ensuring SOMETHING worth looking at.

And then the 90s. From what I can see, the 90s is where the "solid", "blocky" animation came from, as well as a refreshed color pallet. All the 90s anime I've ever watched, and these comprise the majority of shows in my list (including my very own One Piece!), gained several defining features: namely, the washed out coloring often seen in 80s manga vanished. There's exceptions, but generally bright stuff was colored brightly, I'm assuming not just from new inking processes, but also advances in hardware in general? This brightening allowed for potent contrast between light and dark colors, giving a great deal of quality artwork to characters. this made them "solid" parts of the scenery. In return, the quality of background art got a little weaker. The 90s seemed to focus on finding consistency. I would need to watch 80 and 90 works, a lot of them, to know if my observations are across the board or not, but I'd take a bet that it is so. The 90s were the end of detailed, truly exceptional artwork, replaced by something that was just "good". As for animation, it suffered from the solidness of the characters. They were made to ALWAYS have detail to them, and so didn't move as well as they should have.

The issue with movement ended up getting a horrible, notorious solution: those still-frame action scenes or flashing background nonsense that really accomplished NOTHING but give children seizures and adults headaches. Or just look bad. This seemed to be all over the place in the time period but it got worse as the decade progressed.

Perhaps I should focus on a single anime's example. One Piece! It really is a perfect candidate for everything from the 1990s to present day, due to its continuous, unbroken run. Watching the early episodes is a treat. Everything up until the middle of the Skypiea saga is clearly old school. The shift is almost instant and noticeable. I think studio changes had and big impact, but the clear first implementation of modern animation techniques felt jarring. Sure, it probably existed back in earlier episodes, such as the CG Merry and water in the openings from a certain point forward. However, the artwork and animation, especially focus on giving proper shading, still existed and was often hand-drawn.

The 2000's shift into computer-driven anime production really, really started off BAD. I can't think of a single 2000's anime that enjoyed both fluid animation and art. It just doesn't exist for a lot of it. There's some exceptions, as I think OP continued to this time with relatively unchanged art, but the shows I ever exposed myself to did not cut it, such as Gundam SEED, Destiny, and Pokemon. Budget clearly always played a part in anime, but the 2000's seem to be a point where, if you don't have the budget, it's incredibly obvious. OP did indeed suffer from this, but still followed that trend where the fluidity remained where it counted, or it kept things solid and consistent. Pokemon opted to go for blocky animation when possible to ensure the Pokemon always were drawn on-point. And that was the correct decision, imo. Naruto also works as a good example. Wiki says it started in 2002, and kept on until 2007 when it shifted to Shippuden. Shippuden is writhe with "modern" animation. Whereas what I recall of Naruto very much was not, and tended to create some VERY memorable scenes where it counted, similar to 80s anime adaptions like Seiya.

Starting at 2006~ish, I started noticing a significant change in anime in general. The spectacular backgrounds are gone. I don't see anything truly beautiful very often nowadays in the background. Sure, it can be pretty, but it's often soulless or just sort of... there. It doesn't draw attention to itself, doesn't try to be a part of the story. One Piece escaped this phenomenon, for a while, because it's world was so rich, but others series lost the touch or never had it to begin with, like Bleach. In return, animation quality spiked dramatically. To compare more from Sunrise, we had Code Geas and Gundam 00, both presenting exemplar modern animation fluidity while retaining a solidity. If CG was used, it blended in. (And if I was smart and really cared about this rambling post's legitimacy, I would stop writing until I researched exactly how these anime were produced and what techniques and hardware/software were used. But Imma pirate. Fate will decide if it's worth something!) Some battles were incredible from series I watched, like the Sasori/Sakura fight, the Lucci/Luffy battle in Einis Lobby, and Uluquirra/Ichigo in Bleach.:gatling

All among the big three, as sadly I don't recall what else I bothered to watch at the time. But it couldn't be denied that coloration got brighter, and the animation superior to what had gone before. Just look at 00 and SEED. No comparison. And those fights mentioned were the "special" ones, the climaxes to the story at certain points, for the last two, at least. The artwork suffered by reducing the attention to shading, which is essential. Things started to have depth.

And... then we hit this decade. Everything was going this way since the late 2000s. That nice animation was not cheep and often reverted to blocky, choppy movements. Worse yet, with background gone, the characters and their respective animation was critical. It becomes exceedingly hard to generalize post 2010 or so, because all anime seemed to start diverging in style. CG became a thing, and hideous forms of fluid but shallow animation started cropping up, and does so whenever a high levels of movement are involved. It can not only look like bad water color, but hurts to watch, too. *Looks pointedly at Black Clover*

We are now back to square one.:facepalm We have animation quality that's essentially making the same mistakes as in the 80s, but without ANY of the detail, on average, that made those series in the past classics. Shading variation is as dead as Dofflamingo's Smile industry. Instead of attention to HOW shadows on people are supposed to look, we get this... this "lighting" whereby there really is no difference in character depending on where they are. The shading color pallets are more or less the same from day to night, indoors and out. Special effects and lighting suffer from this same general blandness. It's like extremely concise but poorly detailed water color. Someone in Japan has forgotten to watch their Bob Ross tutorialsO0.:no Some series avoid this, at first glance, but the artwork and animation are back to the inconsistency problem. Whatever progress that was starting to get made in the late 90s and late 2000s has mutated back to where it originally started, just with soulless computer generation that makes being lazy so much easier and profitable.

It's gotten so generally bad that I decided to just give up on anime entirely. I stopped watching OP at the travesty of Marinford. And good that I did so. Shippuden was generally the worst of animation trends, so I dropped that almost as soon as I picked up it up. As for the rest, most series don't blessedly last anywhere as long as Never Ending Shounen, so I was tortured or entertained for far less time to memorize mistakes and failures in presentation.:devil-mad

Since we've come to a full circle, sort of, or more like steady, downward spiral, I'd say the problems with anime are what they have ALWAYS been. It's expensive, often underappreciated, complex artform that can do amazing things only in the right circumstances with a budget that it probably doesn't deserve. Every now and then a gemstone appears, like Seiri no Moribito, Code Geas' season 1, Attack on Titan or Hunter x Hunter 2011, and others beyond my feeble memory's reach. But the remaining offerings are as gravel. What's so sad is that many would shine like gems if only they weren't hindered by this tepid medium.

Edit: I didn't include voice acting, but I must confess that is ONE particular asset modern anime has going for it. Most anything in the 80s was bad or next to hopeless. The 90s got better quickly, but the real successes are in the past 10 years. Japanese voice acting is superb. *Shakes finger at English dubs*
 

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It's my opinion that modern anime do have the potential for superior animation, but sacrifice it for inferior art. I watched the first few minutes of an ancient Super Robot Anime that, frankly, is horrific. I think it was Devilman vs. something. The one with the breast missiles. Something drew me in during a fight scene, other than the fact that the female robot's only weapons are to launch her assets at the target uselessly. *Zahem*

I paused the anime and just stared. The background was pure art. Plain and simple, it was gorgeous, a stunning vista of mountains in the background. It was something you wont' see beyond the 80's, and it was ALL hand-drawn by people whose talent is now sadly forgotten and pointedly ignored. That is... tragic for any kind of medium. I'm sure there's lots of 80's and even 90's anime that count as hidden artistic gems. The only reason they aren't incredible to watch is the animation itself. It's expensive, time-consuming, and can get absolutely out of control if hand-drawn, and is difficult to properly handle with modern CG technique.

But I think ALL anime, from those I've seen, suffer from this seeming trend in how they portray animation, especially in combat fluidity. The rare few 80s series I ever watched were, if I'm not forgetting, Zeta Gundam and ZZ. Both are known for their incredible animation. It says a lot to realize they STILL hold up well even to this day, with the dull coloration being the only true smear. It also speaks volumes for the quality of anime from any era, even to this day.

There was also the original Saint Seiya, which I only watched small pieces of near its final arc. It was impressive. The animation was not perfect, but the art was the aforementioned exceptional quality, paying careful attention to detail, while still providing a nice balance between fluid and what I call "solid" movement. I am no professional artist in any form, so forgive me if I make up my own terms to describe what I see. But the Seiya anime is a great example of something that I don't see beyond the 80s or early 90s. The quality of background combined with animation that felt "right" and watchable at its best, clunky and horrific at worst. I think the end of the 80s found balance in its inconsistencies. And the top quality stuff seemed to know when to not animate mundane sequences, and when to ensure important, meaningful scenes were animated in a memorable fashion. Budget was of course always a determining factor, but because computer involvement was gone, I feel the artists' own creative desire or pride went into the works, ensuring SOMETHING worth looking at.

And then the 90s. From what I can see, the 90s is where the "solid", "blocky" animation came from, as well as a refreshed color pallet. All the 90s anime I've ever watched, and these comprise the majority of shows in my list (including my very own One Piece!), gained several defining features: namely, the washed out coloring often seen in 80s manga vanished. There's exceptions, but generally bright stuff was colored brightly, I'm assuming not just from new inking processes, but also advances in hardware in general? This brightening allowed for potent contrast between light and dark colors, giving a great deal of quality artwork to characters. this made them "solid" parts of the scenery. In return, the quality of background art got a little weaker. The 90s seemed to focus on finding consistency. I would need to watch 80 and 90 works, a lot of them, to know if my observations are across the board or not, but I'd take a bet that it is so. The 90s were the end of detailed, truly exceptional artwork, replaced by something that was just "good". As for animation, it suffered from the solidness of the characters. They were made to ALWAYS have detail to them, and so didn't move as well as they should have.

The issue with movement ended up getting a horrible, notorious solution: those still-frame action scenes or flashing background nonsense that really accomplished NOTHING but give children seizures and adults headaches. Or just look bad. This seemed to be all over the place in the time period but it got worse as the decade progressed.

Perhaps I should focus on a single anime's example. One Piece! It really is a perfect candidate for everything from the 1990s to present day, due to its continuous, unbroken run. Watching the early episodes is a treat. Everything up until the middle of the Skypiea saga is clearly old school. The shift is almost instant and noticeable. I think studio changes had and big impact, but the clear first implementation of modern animation techniques felt jarring. Sure, it probably existed back in earlier episodes, such as the CG Merry and water in the openings from a certain point forward. However, the artwork and animation, especially focus on giving proper shading, still existed and was often hand-drawn.

The 2000's shift into computer-driven anime production really, really started off BAD. I can't think of a single 2000's anime that enjoyed both fluid animation and art. It just doesn't exist for a lot of it. There's some exceptions, as I think OP continued to this time with relatively unchanged art, but the shows I ever exposed myself to did not cut it, such as Gundam SEED, Destiny, and Pokemon. Budget clearly always played a part in anime, but the 2000's seem to be a point where, if you don't have the budget, it's incredibly obvious. OP did indeed suffer from this, but still followed that trend where the fluidity remained where it counted, or it kept things solid and consistent. Pokemon opted to go for blocky animation when possible to ensure the Pokemon always were drawn on-point. And that was the correct decision, imo. Naruto also works as a good example. Wiki says it started in 2002, and kept on until 2007 when it shifted to Shippuden. Shippuden is writhe with "modern" animation. Whereas what I recall of Naruto very much was not, and tended to create some VERY memorable scenes where it counted, similar to 80s anime adaptions like Seiya.

Starting at 2006~ish, I started noticing a significant change in anime in general. The spectacular backgrounds are gone. I don't see anything truly beautiful very often nowadays in the background. Sure, it can be pretty, but it's often soulless or just sort of... there. It doesn't draw attention to itself, doesn't try to be a part of the story. One Piece escaped this phenomenon, for a while, because it's world was so rich, but others series lost the touch or never had it to begin with, like Bleach. In return, animation quality spiked dramatically. To compare more from Sunrise, we had Code Geas and Gundam 00, both presenting exemplar modern animation fluidity while retaining a solidity. If CG was used, it blended in. (And if I was smart and really cared about this rambling post's legitimacy, I would stop writing until I researched exactly how these anime were produced and what techniques and hardware/software were used. But Imma pirate. Fate will decide if it's worth something!) Some battles were incredible from series I watched, like the Sasori/Sakura fight, the Lucci/Luffy battle in Einis Lobby, and Uluquirra/Ichigo in Bleach.:gatling

All among the big three, as sadly I don't recall what else I bothered to watch at the time. But it couldn't be denied that coloration got brighter, and the animation superior to what had gone before. Just look at 00 and SEED. No comparison. And those fights mentioned were the "special" ones, the climaxes to the story at certain points, for the last two, at least. The artwork suffered by reducing the attention to shading, which is essential. Things started to have depth.

And... then we hit this decade. Everything was going this way since the late 2000s. That nice animation was not cheep and often reverted to blocky, choppy movements. Worse yet, with background gone, the characters and their respective animation was critical. It becomes exceedingly hard to generalize post 2010 or so, because all anime seemed to start diverging in style. CG became a thing, and hideous forms of fluid but shallow animation started cropping up, and does so whenever a high levels of movement are involved. It can not only look like bad water color, but hurts to watch, too. *Looks pointedly at Black Clover*

We are now back to square one.:facepalm We have animation quality that's essentially making the same mistakes as in the 80s, but without ANY of the detail, on average, that made those series in the past classics. Shading variation is as dead as Dofflamingo's Smile industry. Instead of attention to HOW shadows on people are supposed to look, we get this... this "lighting" whereby there really is no difference in character depending on where they are. The shading color pallets are more or less the same from day to night, indoors and out. Special effects and lighting suffer from this same general blandness. It's like extremely concise but poorly detailed water color. Someone in Japan has forgotten to watch their Bob Ross tutorialsO0.:no Some series avoid this, at first glance, but the artwork and animation are back to the inconsistency problem. Whatever progress that was starting to get made in the late 90s and late 2000s has mutated back to where it originally started, just with soulless computer generation that makes being lazy so much easier and profitable.

It's gotten so generally bad that I decided to just give up on anime entirely. I stopped watching OP at the travesty of Marinford. And good that I did so. Shippuden was generally the worst of animation trends, so I dropped that almost as soon as I picked up it up. As for the rest, most series don't blessedly last anywhere as long as Never Ending Shounen, so I was tortured or entertained for far less time to memorize mistakes and failures in presentation.:devil-mad

Since we've come to a full circle, sort of, or more like steady, downward spiral, I'd say the problems with anime are what they have ALWAYS been. It's expensive, often underappreciated, complex artform that can do amazing things only in the right circumstances with a budget that it probably doesn't deserve. Every now and then a gemstone appears, like Seiri no Moribito, Code Geas' season 1, Attack on Titan or Hunter x Hunter 2011, and others beyond my feeble memory's reach. But the remaining offerings are as gravel. What's so sad is that many would shine like gems if only they weren't hindered by this tepid medium.

Edit: I didn't include voice acting, but I must confess that is ONE particular asset modern anime has going for it. Most anything in the 80s was bad or next to hopeless. The 90s got better quickly, but the real successes are in the past 10 years. Japanese voice acting is superb. *Shakes finger at English dubs*
Some of the English dubs were good back then while some were like “wtf”. 40 year olds pretending to be in middle school. They hired regular actors that were either in New York, Vancouver or LA not anime only actors from Texas and LA so there was a better variety, even the same voice actor had a better range. Some of the voices/pronunciations were so off they was hilarious. The worse was when they dubbed songs and got a singer that either wasn’t as well trained or it wasn’t in their voice range. Art was more realistic but the animation was inconsistent because they were produced too quickly.

Now, series could take a break then restart in a year or two. That rarely happened in the 90s and if it did they had crappy OVAs with different hair colours and art styles. Oh and the English dub had other actors and the pacing was very slow. :notrust
 

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