I’ve talked about it in some capacity before in all sorts of places (my About page, my MAL profile, in posts etc.) but I’d been exposed to anime very early in my life. This is actually very common for a lot of people from the Philippines who grew up in my generation, and like them the memories of my childhood do include having seen stuff likeVoltes V andDaimos (the former I believe we had on VHS xD)
But I don’t count those experiences as having watched the aforementioned shows. For one, while I do remember seeing them, I can’t for the life of me tell you for instance what Daimos was about (hell, it was only recently that I found out that Daimos was a friggin’ truck, not a train!), other than that there’s a giant robot beating up kaijus and maaaaybeeee(?) a romance between the pilot and a girl, I dunno. The point is, my viewing experience of those old old shows wasn’t much of an “experience” at all. Anime was just something I saw out of circumstance as a young lad, like you would Sunday morning cartoons and educational programs. Did I love Voltes V and Daimos? I probably did; or at least, as much love as a pre-schooler can give to a TV show, sure. But more than likely, I don’t think I’d ever proactively seek these shows out any time soon if at all.
During my time in elementary school ,”The Big 3″ of Bleach, One Piece, and Naruto was having its boom amongst its widely prepubescent audiences and while I’ve already made clear my predilections towards these mainstream titles in an older post, I’m not afraid to admit that even I was Naruto-head in my spry youth. Dude, c’mon, ninjas? Teenage ninjas?! (that are not at all mutants and/or turtles?!?…. I’ll stop) But in all seriousness, I really was a fan, no doubt. I watched the anime religiously, I played the GameBoy Advance games, I memorized the hand signs for jutsus (…*cringe*), heck I even bought the metallic head protector! A lot of my friends were into it too, and I remember we’d go and play wannabe ninjas during recess. Would I say that I loved Naruto? Of course. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t. Just, at present, I don’t think it’s something I can say about Naruto — more so now as someone who barely even watches shounen anymore.
I count my real start with anime when I first saw Fate/Stay Night in high school and immediately after watching an episode I fell in love (even if Animax at the time had been billing it incorrectly as “Sorcerers versus Magicians” smh). Everything about it; the seemingly (lol) multi-latticed storyline of Emiya Shirou and Saber, their budding romance, and what looked to me at the time as just a true visual feature unlike anything I’d seen before. Now, before you say anything I’d have you know that this would be around late 2007 to early 2008, and F/SN was still relatively new at the time so do believe me when I say that it looked really good for its time (I can’t stress this enough xD) . Can I confidently say to you lot that I loved Fate/Stay Night? Yeah. Loved it to bits. It had everything that I thought I wanted in an anime, and more. However, if you made me watch DEEN/Stay Night now, I highly doubt the experience would be as magical.
While all these shows will always always have a special place in my heart (some more than others), these are titles I wouldn’t really show favor to at present. It sounds like I’m needlessly dumping on these anime but I do also want to believe that this is just par for the course of being an anime fan. We all have our early favorites; the shows that got us into anime in the first place; the anime that at one point in time we thought of as masterpieces; even ones that we just loved for no conceivable reason.
Nostalgia is such a trap in that regard. It’s easy to look fondly back at memories of things we’ve seen or heard in the past because of the sentiment we embed within them — and this goes for everything really, not just anime. I mean, some of you may have this one book that you’ve read over-and-over when you were a kid; a song that you’d play on-loop endlessly; or a movie you thought you’d never get tired of. We think of these things as having played a part of who we are now and so we treat them with a sense of familiarity.
Over time however memories slowly but surely start to fade; sinking into the depths of oblivion. Not to say they’re irrecoverable (because you can most certainly recall even some of your oldest memories still at times), but often the memories we try to pull out from the recesses of our subconsciousness end up being fragments of a whole. Or, y’know… maybe I just have bad memory (tehe~)
BUT, this also serves to prove my point. A single piece of sentiment can go a long way; almost enough to fill in the gaps of what we actually can remember. More than that, sometimes all we ever remember is the sentiment; the feelings, the emotions — the love. So you kinda have to ask: do we continue to love something for the sole reason of having loved it before? Even when all it has going for it is nostalgia? Is that even love still?
Personally I’d say, no, not really. As often as we fall in love with shows over the course of our anime-viewing lifetimes, I find that it’s perfectly fine to acknowledge that falling out of love with certain anime shows as time goes by is very much a thing too. It’s not because I think these shows just suddenly changed over the years and became bad or anything of the sort (nor do I really think that you’re only ever supposed to like “good shows”), I mean, there are still shows that I’ve seen close to ten years ago now that I still love so I wouldn’t really say it’s solely a case of old anime just being old (and therefore no longer being up to snuff anymore) either.
I’d like to believe that It’s more so about coming to terms with how we ourselves may have changed over the years — and perhaps along with it the way we feel about certain anime as well. I’m sure the reason will be different for each show that every one used to love (should they/you subscribe to this notion), but if anything, and I’ll leave you with this;
“‘Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.”
or so the saying goes 🙂
Have you fallen out of love with an anime show?
What are some anime that you used to love?
Share ’em in the comments section below!
Happy Hearts Day to y’all; have a good one 😀
(and eyy, if you’re up for a lil’ Valentines double feature <cause lol how often does that happen on this blog> do feel free to check out this post about Winter 2018’s After the Rain if you haven’t yet)