I’m fairly public about my thoughts on super hero movies. I just can’t get into them no matter how many I try (Ones off memory are The Avengers, Iron Man, Guardians of the Galaxy, The Amazing Spiderman). I always chalked this up to them being too predictable with the hero obviously gong to win but then I noticed, my favourite anime of all time, Anohana, opens basically saying Menma is dead and Jintan’s entire goal is to help her pass on. Is that not incredibly predictable? In April 2015 I purchased a subscription to Weekly Shounen Jump to read Food Wars and Nisekoi and I decided to read some other series to make the price feel a little better. Two of these were One Punch Man and My Hero Academia. Both focus on super heroes and I like both. Moving into the anime format, while MHA’s adaptation is releasing April 2016 I have finished One Punch Man and both my review and best anime of 2015 posts were praising it. Why? Why can I get into anime super heroes but not big screen super heroes?
I have thought of two possible reasons.
1 . I prefer animation.
This is generally true for anything that you wouldn’t classify under “slice-of-life” as I tend to think if it’s real actors it should be mostly real props. Not full of CG. I never understand why people prefer to see a movie with live action bits but a ton of CG over just an animated movie. I can back this up as not only have I watched and enjoyed a couple super hero based anime but I also remember enjoying Teen Titans, Batman: The Animated Series and Spider-man the Animated Series as a child.
We can go further and compare non-super hero shows/movies. I’m not even going to bring up stuff like Scooby-Doo, Alvin and the Chipmunks or The Smurfs so instead we’ll go to my safe zone: anime.
Anohana is my favourite anime as mentioned earlier and it got a drama version a few months back. I despise the drama version. Even though, to my knowledge, it had a lot of the original staff it feels like it was made because “Anohana’s popular and gotta milk it without caring what it meant!” with the 11 episode series rushed into just under two hours a lot is going to be cut but to me it felt soulless. Why will I bring this up but not Scooby-Doo? The Anohana drama actually seems fairly well liked among fans (despite the butchering of one of the greatest anime songs of all time). Another is Assassination Classroom. This one seems fairly mixed as it made it much further into the manga than the anime did in a much shorter time but I’m seeing a few people still found enjoyment in it. That might be the case for me but I left as soon as I saw Korosensei as I just couldn’t deal with how hideous he was.
2 . The focus on characters aside from the main hero.
Sure the movies will add some character that will either die or be in danger at some point, usually as motivation for the hero but also to try triggering the tears but go watch One Punch Man and try telling me any super hero movie gives the amount of character to its side characters we see. There’s quite a few “Freaks of the week” and heroes that barely show up that still have unique character. This might not be fair as One Punch Man is based off a manga that has been running twice a month since 2012 and the entire goal of a weekly/monthly manga author is to keep the story going as long as possible without burn out (or massive burn out yet still chug along, eh Kubo?) but
- I feel that may actually be what I like
- All these Marvel and DC movies were based off comics that often ran longer than One Punch Man has
So it is likely a combination of these two factors that explain why I love One Punch Man and can get into other hero based anime or manga but just can’t get into the movies. Keep in mind I don’t think they are bad and never during my time watching did I think they were. If I thought they were bad I wouldn’t have tried more than a couple or care enough to do this write-up.