This idea came through to me through this post and I thought it was a fun thing to do, if not only to remember and feel nostalgic while writing. So here it is, my history with anime or how I became the monster I am now.
First off, I have to say that when I was a kid I didn’t know the cartoons I was watching were anime. But they surely awoke some subconscious part of me to that kind of artwork and over-exaggerated expressions, because they were the only ones I found amusing (well, apart from the Spanish-produced Dogtanian, which holds a very special place in my heart). So, the first anime I watched had to be this one:
Huckleberry Finn Monogatari. I was obsessed. This series was also responsible for me being a bookworm, because I immediately wanted to read the books. I loved the whole freedom of the characters, the mischievious-yet-kind personality of Huck and I had a crush on Tom Sawyer, for some reason. The only character I didn’t like much was Jim and when I found out he wasn’t a kid in the books but had a much more meaningful story I was filled with glee. I remember crying when it ended. But I cried most when the following series were finished…
This was called Ai no Wakakusa Monogatari or Little Women (yes, me and the anime adaptations of literary masterpieces… looking back I think my whole future was planned out already: anime and books). This was when I first realised I wanted to write. I wanted to be brave, funny and wild-spirited like Jo March. Seriously, this series were such a part of my world back then that I remembered sobbing while holding on to a pillow. It has a sequel, Ai no Wakakusa Monogatari II which I think corresponds to the Good Wives book, although I’m not quite sure. It follows Jo and Professor Baer’s adventures in their new founded school and focuses more on their pupils. Looking back, I think most of it was filler. Back then I remember not caring much for it.
If someone found this for me, I’d be very thankful!
I must’ve been five or six years old when those shows aired, because from seven to ten something huge happened. Something with odango and twin-tails, a black talking cat and fabulous magical wands. I’m speaking, of course, of the eternally classic Sailor Moon.
I think this show has all the ingredients to please a young female child: magic, lots of pink, princess-looking female leads, tons of comedy, romance and gorgeous transformations (and cute battle suits!). I was in awe of it all, as were my friends back then. We didn’t talk of anything else but Sailor Moon, we didn’t role-play anything else. I still have a huge crush on Aino Minako… I always wanted to play her role, even though I’m a somewhat chubby brunette and I had short hair at the time. It didn’t matter. We let our imaginations run wild. Later on (two years ago, sort of) I rewatched the show in Japanese and I realized how bad the Portuguese dubbing was – they even mixed up the sexes of the cats! In Portuguese, Luna was a male cat and Artemis a female one. Usagi’s voice was terrible and I guess they had a very low budget, because there were only four or five voice actors. This made some of the voices very pathetic sounding. The series will start their rerun tomorrow, actually, and I hoped they redubbed it, but no, it’s going to have the same horrible dub as it did almost twenty years ago.
Sailor Moon was also the first series I had merchandise of. I had several two inch figures from Bandai and a couple of wands. I managed to recover the small figures, but I think the wands are lost forever. I’d like to expand my collection but the figures are so expensive due to their rarity that it’s pretty impossible for me to do so. Maybe they’ll produce some new ones in the occasion of the series’ anniversary (like Megahouse did with their two Kenshins) and I’ll finally lay my hands on a scaled Venus. And Mars. And Jupiter.
Apart from Sailor Moon, there was a little show that caught my attention as well. A show that soon became a phenomenon.
Although Dragon Ball Z was the real deal for most people, I still prefer the first series. They’re a lot simpler and nicer. Of course I was as obsessed with Z as everyone was (kids even skipped school to watch the episodes), but I soon grew tired of it after the Cell arc and dropped it quickly. It doesn’t hold a special place within me at all, like Sailor Moon and all the others did, but nevertheless it’s still a part of my history with anime, so that’s why I chose to put it up here. Summing it up: Dragon Ball I (YAY), Dragon Ball Z (COOL), Dragon Ball GT (full of suck).
After this it all subsided for a while until I was thirteen. That’s when I saw a series that truly changed my life and is still my favourite story from the manga realm. I stayed faithful to it until I was twenty-one, saying it was better than anything anyone presented to me and I defended it as hard as I could. Foolishly so. But here it is:
I remember even getting into a heated argument with an overseas acquaintance who was hooked on Inuyasha because, to me, Inuyasha was nothing but a Kenshin rip-off. I now know how stupid I was back then. So yes, I pretty much stayed with Kenshin for years and years and I didn’t pay attention to anything else until I met my boyfriend. I know the title of this blog suggests otherwise, but it was he the sole responsible of me being the way I am now. The seeds were there alright, but he decided to water them. He lent me a couple of series. I first watched Elfen Lied and was moved to tears. Next was Death Note, which I watched in two days. And then I was hooked. I started watching show after show, making up for lost time. I started to keep track of the new seasonal shows that were coming out and I began to collect figures, which is one of my biggest passions (although lately I decided to cut back a little). So I’ve been a full-fledged anime-geek for almost two and a half years now although, looking back, it’s always been there. I guess I was meant to be the way I am now.
I leave you with a couple of images from my absolute favourites, apart from Rurouni Kenshin.