As you know, this club is not a culmination of ideas from a dream I had last summer involving brain-eating aliens and fields full of flowers. Rather, it was much like a research project involving a lot of reading between the lines and ignoring advice from everybody except Matt and Daniel. My line of logic is not through innovation, but rather through anticipation. To be frank, I pay close attention to how other people do things, and promise myself NEVER TO DO THEM. This is why I read blogs and browse 4chan, because a good anime club president SHOULD. I didn’t read many blogs, but I’ll link a few that I “liked.”
To the point, this blog post is going to be about some of the stuff I did that I sometimes dragged Matt along for that I feel was really good for a club, and hopefully educate some of you on how not to scare newcomers off, especially when Fall comes around and we have to bring more people in. Not that I’m worried about that, I just really liked what we did this year and thought you all should know about it! Mina baka…
Sites I visited that don’t rhyme with “Fortran”
Emory Anime Club-Here’s a club that was linked to me a while back that really impressed my socks off. They’re a club from, duh, Emory University in Atlanta, GA. Basically, I could only assume their workload there is very small or next-to-nothing because they have time to blog about every single episode of everything that ever came out this season. This took a load of effort off of my back because I didn’t have to watch everything that ever came out this season and still have time to study. Granted, the time spent wasn’t much savings because their blog posts are really long, but it was sometimes better than watching the shows myself. Their point system doesn’t really go below 2.5, just keep that in mind. It’s basically a worthless number.
Anime Fansubbers- If I could show how NOT to run an anime community, fansub blogs are the perfect example of how anime makes you stupid. They’re elitist and self-praising, and mostly got that way because they know the fans desperately need them. And, well, we do. Nevertheless, they do offer some good insight every once in a while, and are the real barometer for the fandom. When things are looking bad for anime, they’ll obviously be the first ones to feel the pressure. In all honesty, the stuff they do is really appreciated, if only they weren’t such massive dicks about it sometimes.
And who could forget that one guy- I’m just glad he doesn’t go to my school. His blog is basically the blistering example of how I don’t want to run this blog. If I could describe it in a single metaphor, his blog would be to anime that World of Warcraft is to PC gaming: unfortunately representative of the majority of the community that the minority doesn’t like to talk about, but must acknowledge nonetheless. He seemingly likes anime for all the wrong reasons and the only reason I clash with him is because he doesn’t like the things I like (and he has a massive ego that is only paralleled by my own).
That being said, his blog has brought to light a number of things that I really didn’t previously understand about the fanbase for anime, something similar to the point driven home in episode 4 and 5 of OreImo (Chris you’re right random posts are disappearing off the blog). No fan of anime is necessarily a bad person, and they certainly don’t deserve the amount of disdain that other anime fans tend to spit out. In fact, they’re actually still very kind people with very misunderstood tastes in art. I mean, we all have things we relate to and enjoy, it’s just that some people just like little girls and really stupid bubbly stuff. Soldiers of England under Henry the Fifth put pictures of little girls and birds and flowers and stuff on their shields not because they were pedofiles or closet transvestites, but because it was the only peace and beauty they would find amidst the horrors of battle. This is why they don’t deserve a burning hatred that I sometimes playfully express regarding this aspect of the fanbase at meetings. I think Plato put it best:
“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.”
Really Crazy Things I Dragged Matt to
Nan Desu Kan- We really didn’t do much here except rage over how much we hated funimation, and oh, what a hate it is.
Denver University Anime Club- We owe a lot to these guys. Like, A LOT. Visiting this club was probably the best idea that
my brother I ever had. Their President, Matt Frisk, highly underrates himself as President of an anime club and for some reason thought I was somehow good at running an anime club. We talked endlessly about how a club is run and all sorts of other ambitious stuff. To be frank, I thought he was a bigger fan of anime than myself. I just happen to be obsessive-compulsive about what we show week-to-week. Nevertheless, his club bought us pizza, gave Daniel a room to sleep in for the night at wasabi con, and even gave me a ticket to Rebuild 2.22. Like I said, we owe them a lot.
That one anime club Sara runs- This was when he had that kick-awesome video with the anime we were showing that semester. We really could’ve done a better job presenting our club so we made up for it by giving them a hard drive Matt had but it ended up breaking Sara’s teacher’s computer. We’re really sorry about that. On the plus side, we went to their cosplay picnic they had and took that really good picture we have of Matt on the “Officers” page because Matt doesn’t have a facebook or anything and pictures of him are really hard to track down.
Wasabi Con- Most of you already know the gist of it, but I’ll post it below for posterity’s sake.
We got the opportunity to run the anime room for a few random timeslots, and even picked a few of our own anime. The conditions were that we essentially wouldn’t get too crazy and listen to neorose. I agreed to this and considered myself lucky that we got to do anything at all. Matt was, of course, having none of that and we basically turned this good cop/bad cop routine where I was trying to apologize to Neorose while Matt basically just had his way with the showing. This led to conflict with me, Neorose, and Matt all present where discussion turned to how we show the anime. This led to Neorose’s off-hand comment, “Who cares if we show 480p or 1080p? The average person at this convention wouldn’t know the difference between 1080 and a youtube-rip.” This led to me tearing him a new butthole during the gripe session when I remarked that he didn’t have any sort of respect for the people who attended the anime convention or the anime itself.
So, wheel of morality, turn turn turn, tell us the lesson we should learn.
Good idea, Bad idea
I put out a few bullets here about expectations for next year. I sure hope no one’s been doing stupid stuff in this club. But hey, I’m pretty sure you all are responsible adults.
This is all crap that I “learned” over the course of my time here at anime club, and therefore should mostly be ignored. That being said…
You don’t know as much as you think, your taste in anime sucks too- Ego is a dangerous, dangerous thing. It should be duly noted that the source all conflict everywhere really boils down to ego. That being said, people will argue with people over just about anything. So really, if you’re going to argue with someone over anime, recognize that arguing about anime will likely not see any forseeable change to the industry as a whole. Things are likely to remain the same just as they’ve always been when it comes to anime.
Really though, your taste isn’t that bad- Stick to what you know and like, don’t change your opinion or force yourself to like something because it’s apparently popular. Your tastes are unique to you, and with something that ties so directly to people so emotionally, opinions are likely to vary widely on the topic. Watch objectively, and acknowledge recommendations respectfully. Don’t blow off somebody who recommends 12 Kingdoms to you just because they’re wearing sharingan contacts and black lipstick.
Community is good, obsession is bad- Don’t be afraid to talk to a naruto-headband boy about sexism in mecha anime. Who knows, he might have decent opinions. Fact is, people who are obvious fans of anime don’t typically mind talking about it either. I think this is obvious, “talk to people about anime,” but don’t get weird about it. Getting weird about it involves sharing something like “My favorite hentai involve rape” or “sometimes I imagine Nagisa from Clannad giving me a footjob.” In short, discuss things that you also wouldn’t feel awkward mentioning to your dad. Not quite mom-level here, that’s pushing your luck.
That’s it, really- Remember, whether you’re watching Evangelion or tranny sailor moon tentacle porn, you watch it for the same reason you watch any other television show or Hollywood movie. It (typically) tells a good story, has pretty art, etc. etc. Appreciating that makes you a solid fan in my book. Don’t hate on something just because the fanbase sucks or because it’s by that studio, hate on something because you took the time to sample, didn’t like it, and are looking for something else.
I don’t want to get all wishy-washy here, but I’m going to get all wishy-washy. You people are weirdos, I hate you all, have a nice summer, and I’ll see you next semester. Or around Golden. I’ll be living there.