Is KeyAni a bad thing?


A friend of mine pointed me to this article by jaalin of the Random Curiousity blog and it sparked a lively sparring between me and him lasting almost 3 hours. Here’s a little of my own thoughts.

I think it’s a total waste of ability and resources. A studio of KyoAni’s caliber shouldn’t be doing harem shows, which have traditionally just been there for the sake of showing off some more girls in maid outfits or nekomimi or some other ridiculous stuff like that.Not that I don’t appreciate it – it’s just something I feel is better left to the “lesser” studios and not the oharuhiliness that is Kyoto Animation.

Sadly, harem shows have sunk to such a level where harem is equated directly as fanservice. Of course 95% of most harem shows that have been produced are very much fanservice shows and are as she says, “quite ridiculous”. However, is it really true it’s a waste of resources and ability? What I truly think is that Kyoto Animation is trying to breathe life back in to the romance genre, after years of ridiculous fanservice shows that build upon the initial sexual nature of the origin material, totally ignoring the story of the original material. Kanon was never about the sex strictly, there was also a story to be followed and many characters to emphatise with. Besides, “harem” is a very big misnomer on it’s own, as the games just provide multiple choices, not all the choices.

If my understanding is correct, the main reason they picked up Kanon was because of the success of their initial venture into the visual novel genre, AIR.

Of course KyoAni’s venture in to AIR did in part made them take up Kanon, but in the end, they remade Kanon due to fan effort rather than picking on the success off AIR. Everybody who has even a little bit of understanding of the visual novel scene knows that Kanon 2002 did not give true justice to the awesomeness that is the Kanon VN and in fact, it would probably be more of a commercial venture by Toei to make more money off the popularity of Kanon than to truly tell the story of Kanon, while KyoAni is doing directly the opposite, by truly animating Kanon with a full storyline that encompasses the essence of the VN.

The way I see it, it’s like if Studio Ghibli decided they would make more money doing hentai. What if Totoro’s fat tail was on the front side of his body? What if Kiki used her broom for more than just transportation? What if “Laputa” actually meant “La Puta”? Could Ghibli have done it? Sure. But did they go ahead with cheap flattery and quick indulgences to make a quick yen? No way – they took their time to craft masterpiece after masterpiece that audiences around the world have held in the highest regard.In that same way, I’ve always hoped that KyoAni would start picking up material of a higher “moral standard”.

If KyoAni started to animate shows like Ghost in the Shell or Laputa, they won’t be wasting their “time and abilities”? What do you define “higher moral standard” as anyways? There isn’t much of an original moral standard to look upon anyways. Besides KyoAni did take their time with Kanon and even gave it a full 24 episode run, even if it was a remake. I would call that “taking their time to craft a masterpiece”.

So, is KeyAni a bad thing? I don’t really think so. Just like how Sunrise is associated with mecha and Gainax is associated with weirdness, Kyoto Animation’s association with “harem anime” (a misnomer by itself) will be here to stay. At least they’re pulling it off much, much more better than the rest. If Kanon 2006 is a waste of “resources and abilities”, then I’ll say we better not watch anime at all in the first place.


  1. Hinano Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 6:49 am

    I think your friend is retarded because there was like no fanservice (and if there was it flew by me) and Kanon focused on the story and as you mentioned the whole ROMANCE genre. I used to watch stupid sex/fanservice harem shows because that was the only way I could watch romance shows, but KyoAni actually puts stuff out there that says “hey you know what, we don’t need a girl shoving her tits into a guys face to have him like her and thus complete the romance for this series”.

    KeyAni FTW!

  2. deltazechs Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 6:55 am

    I have no misgiving regarding the idea of KeyAni. I had enjoyed both Key related anime and novel adaptations made by Kyoto Animation. As long as their quality of animation and story directing continue to awes and impress, I will continue to watch whatever they produce

    After all, there’s still a lot of years ahead of them. How many Key visual novels can KyoAni continue to animate before they run out of material? Sooner or later, they have to turn back to their old projects or other new material

    I am not in a hurry to watch or demand any particular genres from them. Like you said, if a studio really spent their time and effort in crafting a masterpiece, it will show in the final product. As long as it’s done well, any genre of anime can shine. Just my opinion

  3. lolikitsune Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 7:05 am

    Oh my, the comments thread on that post is EPIC.

  4. Asrialys Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 7:07 am

    >Gainax is associated with weirdness


    Anyway, I don’t mind what they’re doing now. Air, Kanon, and Clannad aren’t like normal anime adaptations of harem games They are taking potentially powerful stories and themes and turning them into great works of art for everyone to see.

    I think when a animation company becomes very popular, people like to think about other works that would be better off done by that company. I, too, like to think about what other things KyoAni may be capable of, but that doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate the work they have done and will do.

  5. Xellos-_^ Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 8:23 am

    KeyAni is bad becuase we have wait longer for more Haurhi and FMP.

    If KyoAni wants to breath life back into the romance genre then they should pick something similar to KGNE. The Best Romance Anime i have ever seen.

    I drop Air after ep6, Kanon after ep1 and will avoid Clannad like the plague.

  6. Eirik Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 8:40 am

    This made me think that, nowadays, people are spoiled when it comes to waiting for new seasons. Not even a year has passed since the first season of Haruhi and fans from the different KyoAni series are already arguing with each other!

    In the Saint Seiya fandom, we had to wait more than fifteen years to see the last arc of the story animated. I don’t think we (haruhi fans) will die if we have to wait a few more seasons for more.

  7. Nayuki Fanboy Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 9:15 am

    If Yuuichi had ended up with Nayuki, there wouldn’t be all this complaining. ;D

  8. Sorrow-kun Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 9:35 am

    >If KyoAni wants to breath life back into the romance genre then they should pick something similar to KGNE. The Best Romance Anime i have ever seen. – Xellos-_^

    Funny you say that, since I thought KGNE was a terrible example of a romance anime with uninspiring characters, poorly weighted melodrama and a middle section that stagnated. I think some far better examples of romance anime are titles like Koi Kaze and Bokura ga Ita. And Kanon is the type of anime that can’t really be judged on a single episode, and needs at least six or seven before you can give it a fair shake. Whatever, it’s probably a difference of taste more than anything else, but when you criticize KyoAni’s work and then turn around and say something I saw as terribly mediocre as KGNE as a better alternative, people (like me) will inevitably disagree.

    On topic, if KyoAni continue making things that I find as entertaining and captivating as Kanon, then I won’t complain. KyoAni’s strength is that they take an incredible amount of care with their work, so it doesn’t really matter all that much if the premise of the material is epic adventures in complex fantasy universes or some dude in a new town where it snows a lot surrounded by chicks with issues, they take the care and effort to tell the story in such a way that, by the end of it, you care about the characters. That’s the hardest step in any story, no matter how ‘epic’ it is, and KyoAni have been impeccable with that. If they can continue to keep doing that, then kudos to them. Encore.

  9. Avisch Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 9:44 am

    Nayuki Fanboy:

    I agree, very much so.

    On the discussion

    KeyAni is an alright thing. I like how they’ve done adaptions of stories, I like how smooth their animation is (I probably won’t ever be able to take a SHAFT work seriously). I think my only criticism is that their ability relies on dramatic scenes, and humorous scenes. I would really hope for a in-depth conversation that provokes some thought (though this is likely my own perspective). And so excuse me if episode 23 of Kanon was somewhat boring in the end to me……….I can’t really complain becuase I don’t know the original work (KEY).

    Maybe CLANNAD will be my answer.

  10. FortMan Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 9:49 am

    Gainax is associated with weirdness

    I thought that was reserved for Studio 4C?

  11. Avisch Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 10:09 am

    Gainax – Comedic and sometimes psychologically violent wierdness (mainly with EVA)

    I took a brief look at what Studio 4C has done

    Studio 4C -All types of weirdness.

  12. Nighty Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 11:06 am

    Kagirobe (( which means Key + Novels )) Animation is not a bad thing. The only bad thing is that non-Key works that deserve the same level of adaption won’t get into their hands. Imagine SaiMono + Kyoto Animation. It would be a political drama of orgasmic porpotions. But in Madhouse’s hand, it’s good, but lacks good musical and visual approach.

    But at the same time, I’d love to see they become more creative with their solid animation skills. They’re pretty much rehashing their same styles of approach in animation, storyboarding and background imaging over and over, even in their non-Key works. Even Miyazaki’s new movie is going for a different visual approach this time, in water colours.

  13. Kanon_fan82 Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 1:37 pm

    @ Xellos:

    Man……if you gave up on Kanon after ep. 1…….you missed out on one awesome show! The animation itself kicked so much ass…..not to mention the story-line :)

    In the same sentence though…..I can understand where you’re coming from………I thought that Air was crappy before episode 7 and couldn’t see what all the hype was about until that point…….

    the thing with harem anime is that you have to give them time to develop…..

    As long as the story-lines are captivating, and the characters are interesting, I could watch KeyAni collaborations all day :)

  14. BOZZ Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 2:23 pm

    I honestly don’t see how anyone could consider Kanon as a harem anime, you don’t really see any of the girls go head over heels in love with Yuuichi for no reason whatsoever as is the case in quite a few harem series.

    Also, if KyoAni is all about harem anime then why are they doing a comedy like Lucky * Star?

    Since some people are doing a bit of a name association with some companies I’d like to add this for Kyoto Animation:

    hair-lo :P

  15. JS Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 2:39 pm

    Key + KyoAni = Really good combo IMO.

    Key’s games have a really good (and tear invoking) storyline for each character path and KyoAni’s animations are legendary, so why not?

  16. Kurogane Shiroikaze Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 2:55 pm

    @Hinano: My friend brought up some really good points actually, but in this case, please replace “your friend” with “the original author of the said article”. And yes, KeyAni 4TW.

    @Asrialys: True that. Of course it would be nice to see KyoAni doing other stuff, but what I really don’t like is the way jaalin puts KyoAni making Kanon a “waste of time and resources”.

    @Xellos: KGNE… the best romance anime?! Please don’t make me bust my gut from laughing.

  17. DrmChsr0 Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 4:59 pm

    I got a prescription for all you KeyAni Haters out there.

    Go play planetarian. All the way to the end. Then come back to me.

  18. Chaos2Frozen Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 5:01 pm

    You know, I don’t recall any other anime studio that cause this kind of debate between anime watchers before… (Feel free to correct me if I’m wrong…)

  19. Spanky Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 5:31 pm

    I thought that the way it works in Japan is that the company owning the property proposes the deal to the studios. (Possible exception: Gainax). So it’s Key asking KyoAni to do AIR, Kanon, and Clannad. KyoAni either says yes, no, or moar moneyz plz.

    I mean, how else do you explain Lucky Star? Maybe KyoAni will turn it into AzuDai level greatness, but I can’t imagine KyoAni picking that Kadokawa property out of thin air. Besides, all this other stuff is getting in the way of Dancing Very Merry Xmas, dammit.

  20. Kurogane Shiroikaze Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 5:56 pm

    @Spanky: Not really. It’s more of a collaboration most of the times. You know, people with the same thoughts come together and do the project. I don’t think there’s a tradition of the original owners asking for animation studios to do their work, but rather more towards the opposite I would say.

  21. Son Gohan Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 6:05 pm

    KyoAni are so good that they can take a shitty story and make a great anime out of it. But I’d rather see them animating some GOOD stories like FMP and Haruhi, thank you very much.

    Now, I enjoyed Kanon for the animation, the music, the voice acting, the humour and the moeness of the girls.. But please, don’t tell me that it’s a great story. It’s the usual cheesy romance with some supernatural twists and some fake drama injected in it. I say “fake” because the whole miracle thing at the end totally cheapened the drama. If they had killed off Shiori at least…

  22. Chaos2Frozen Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 6:44 pm

    You do recall it being written several years ago right?

    Also, Kanon’s not about crying your eyes out, it has happy endings too. And how that heck is the romance cheesy? I don’t recall having the same feeling as when I was watching ‘Kyoshiro to Towa no Sora’…

    Now THAT’S the defination of cheesy romance. (No offence)

  23. Alias Said,

    March 22, 2007 @ 10:07 pm

    Strictly speaking, Kanon is more of a romance/ drama anime (Abeit one with a crapload of supernatural happenings) rather than the classic, what do you call it, “Harem” anime. As far as I know, there’s only one instance of fanservice throughout the show, and it wasn’t too deep into either, compared to, say, Code Geass, which had a fanservice every other episode in which the Mechas aren’t trying to rip of each other’s heads. To that end, your friend most probably didn’t actually see the series, or has this mentality that the only shows that bring in the money is those with action in them, or just plain too young (Physically or mentally) to fully completate what’s happening within the series; either way, the Kyoto/air association isn’t a bad thing- in actual fact, it’s probaly a very profitable venture if their standards don’t drop.

    P.S.: If you really want to get it through your friend’s head, ask him to bear in mind that Kanon ’06 is a primarily plot/comedy-driven anime, or something akin to life action dramas turned anime, and the target audience is generally around the 20+ range, so if he’s going to look at it expecting something like Digimon or Gundam seed, he most probaly isn’t going to be satisfied. Of course, if your friend is a total soccer mum, there isn’t a point in continuing at all; he’ll most probaly just use “Moral standard” as his major stand point in that case.

  24. lolikitsune Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 12:39 am

    >>Now THAT’S the defination of cheesy romance. (No offence)

    … romance? Kyousora?! ROMANCE?!!! KYOUSORA?!?!?!?!!!

    Get out!

  25. Kyoani is a Hot Babe while Kanon is a Balding Old Fart… at Riuva : Research Institute for Unicultural Visual Arts Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 12:45 am

    […] My e-drama senses are tingling!! After the massive battle royale, or rather, Zerg swarm of Kanon fanboys slaughting Jaalin of Random Curiosity, and Kurogane’s subsequent surfing of the hate wave, I must come clean – I did my bit in helping the comments on RC grow by trolling. After all, a good bit of mental stimulation never hurts the fanboys. […]

  26. Quajafrie Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 1:48 am

    Air sucks. Kanon sucks more. I’m pretty sure that Clannad will suck too, less or more. Haruhi rocked. KeyAni is garbage, KyoAni is gold. The End.

  27. Xellos-_^ Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 1:59 am

    The one point that keep coming up in the discussion for how good kanon is, is the animation quality. Animation quality has never been a reason i watch a series, I watch the entire Violinst of Hamlin series and it was more watching a picture a book. THe first thing i look for in a anime/books or any medium is the story and character. If i don’t like either i drop it, it is why I drop Air after 6 eps, I am amaze i even lasted 6 eps.

    Kanon was more of a special case I did watch the 2002 series and already knew what the series was about. There was no point in watch the current series when i could care less about the animation quality and i wasn’t a big fan of the original Kanon either. It was just anime i wasn’t that into, it was the entire concept fo Kanon that i didn’t care for.

    I like my Romance straight up with a heavy does of drama and preferably no comedy and no supernatural or scifi stuff. I rate KGNE as my top 4 anime ever right after Eva, Macross and Utena, just above El-Hazard OAV.

    As for the whole KeyAni/KyoAni, i just rather see more Haruhi and FMP then more of the same form Key. Especially since i don’t much care for Key stuff.

  28. Kurogane Shiroikaze Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 2:37 am

    @DRM: Very much seconded. Planetarian is perfect example to the power of Key’s scenario building and storytelling.

    @Son Gohan: Wow, so if the person you loved the most was dying and you couldn’t do anything to save her, you wouldn’t beg for a miracle? If you did and she survived, wouldn’t her life be “cheapened”?

    @Alias: I’ve passed him Kanon 2006. He didn’t really say Kanon sucked, just that he thinks that KyoAni remaking Kanon and now subsequently CLANNAD is a “waste of time and resources”.

    @Quajafrie: My friend sucks. jaalin sucks more. I’m pretty sure that you will suck too, less or more. tj_han rocked. RandomC is garbage, Hop Step Jump is gold. The end.

    @Xellos: Screw the animation quality. The point here has always been that people think “KyoAni are wasting their talent with harem animes”. If you can’t like the story, don’t start to mask it by saying the animation studio wasted their money on it.

  29. Xak Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 3:22 am

    lawl i tot of commenting yesterday but decided to be lazy XD

    personally i think key games are superb…they have great plots, with plenty to distinguish them from the generic romance…they have an abundance of little details in the story which actually are related to the ending(s) which u usually would need a second run through to catch or fully appreciate…which is something i appreciate since it makes the subsequent runs through the game more interesting…since i have a pretty good memory for plot i can get bored of the story easily if i have to play through multiple times…

    i’m highly in favour of KyoAni making animes out of the KEY games…heck i dun think i wanna see a KEY anime not made by KyoAni XD
    they do seem to be spacing out their KEY productions so it’s not as if the KeyAni productions are taking over all the others completely…

    lawl i wanted to write some sarcastic parodies of comments but kurogane did them all XD

  30. NaviX Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 4:02 am

    To all of you who want to flame Kuro’s friend, look no further for I am he. Now with that out of the way, let me clarify a few things.

    1. I did not say Kanon was a waste (maybe I did say it in the heat of the argument but I really didn’t mean it) of KyoAni’s time. I merely said that if KyoAni continues making Key stuff specifically, their other anime projects might get shafted.

    2. Key might take advantage of KyoAni and it will fall into the clutches of over commercialization (like Sunrise) if KyoAni continues with specifically more Key stuff.

    3. KyoAni needs to come up with more original stories. Their adaptations are damn bloody good but they’ll need original stuff to survive in the future. How many harem or Key shows can they make before running out of material?

    4. Kanon is a HAREM anime. Any anime with many girls liking the main character is a harem. Kanon is not your stereotypical harem show with girls falling for the main guys for no reason. A quote from wikipedia might enlighten you more, “The term does not necessarily imply sexual connotations. Most members of the “harem” have some level of emotional attachment to the lead, ranging from romantic interest to casual friend to a sibling figure.” I believe this hold true for Kanon.

    5. I have a very wide definition of fanservice. IMHO, every anime has some amount of fanservice. Any unnecessary scenes or poses or ‘moe’ expressions that are there to attract certain viewers are fanservice. Now don’t get me wrong, fanservice is not a bad thing in itself, there are many anime’s that I’ve put myself through only for the fanservice (like GSD, I only watched it for the mecha, UC shows FTW!). Even GitS has fanservice for god’s sake! Although I do hate shows that thrive only on fanservice (like GSD or any fanservicy harem shows) and not good storytelling and proper character development.

    6. Kanon is a harem anime (or romance if you want to call it that). Harem anime usually focuses more on character development than the actual story itself. The story is there for the characters to develop and fall in love and etc. I prefer animes with good story and good character development and I feel that Kanon’s story is not on an EPIC level. Feel free to disagree with me on this point (although I shall never waver). So IMHO, Kanon’s story is just above average. And Kyousora is one the WORST anime ever. I say it is the shame of the harem/romance genre.

    7. And there’s nothing wrong with more Haruhi and FMP. Both are great series that deserve more than they’re getting. Romance be damned

    8. And lastly, I want KyoAni to remain as KyoAni, not turn into KeyAni. There are other people besides harem/romance fans who love KyoAni. Some of you may say this is nothing to worry about, but the very fact that people are calling them KeyAni makes me wonder about its future. I believe KyoAni will one day find itself without material or trapped in the clutches of over commercialization due to Key execs thinking like Bandai and milking KyoAni.

    Oh yeah, I’m NOT jaalin. I had a conversation with Kur0 in IRC and he somehow made me look bad when he wrote his article.

    @kur0: thanks for NOT defending me since this was your mess in the first place.

  31. lolikitsune Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 5:57 am

    >>I like my Romance straight up with a heavy does of drama and preferably no comedy and no supernatural or scifi stuff. I rate KGNE as my top 4 anime ever right after Eva, Macross and Utena, just above El-Hazard OAV.

    Wait, “no comedy” and “Utena” within two sentences of eachother?!

    Shame on you for being a space alien, Xellos!

  32. Xellos-_^ Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 6:00 am

    When was Utena clasiffied as a Romance?

  33. lolikitsune Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 6:47 am

    >>When was Utena clasiffied as a Romance?

    lolikit broke.

  34. THAT Animeblog » Harem shows need to look pretty ’cause I jerk to the fanservice! Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 7:01 am

    […] Saw this and this, and now I’m just chipping in my own two cents. […]

  35. Son Gohan Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 3:35 pm

    I believe that if you have been building up the drama for the whole series, then you must have the guts to end it all with a tragedy. I accept Ayu’s awakening, but Shiori should have died. The fact that everyone miracolously recovered was too unbelievable.
    That’s why AIR was far better than Kanon. I was on the verge of tears on the last episode. I like bittersweet endings.

  36. Mirrinus Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 3:53 pm

    I’m still totally clueless as to how people can argue that KyoAni isn’t taking the moral high road by adapting Key works, then turn around and praise Haruhi and FMP. Those two have way more fanservice and ecchi than Kanon 2006, I’m totally lost as to this whole “moral road” business. I mean, Kanon went 24 episodes without showing a single panty shot. That’s saying something right there.

    So if the whole moral argument doesn’t fly in this case, then where does that leave the argument? I guess it all boils down to “I don’t like this genre, so the company doing it must be wasting their time!” Which is funny, because I honestly can’t take that seriously. I personally can’t stand mecha shows, so I would much rather prefer Clannad over another FMP anyway. What are you going to do to argue against me? Say that I’m not allowed to dislike a particular genre?

    Well personally, I thought FMP was very well done by KyoAni, and even though I hate the genre, I can still appreciate the quality of the anime. Do I have to make any accusations about the animation company over it? Of course not; it’s not their fault I hate a particular genre. Stop blaming others for your own personal tastes. If you honestly hate a company’s decisions on what to animate so much, then why are you even bothering to follow their shows? If you’re going to complain about something, please complain about something more universal, like poor animation or directing. I honestly couldn’t care less how much you hate sci-fi or romance or harem or whatever genre you don’t care for. And, I’m sure, neither will most of the company’s fans anyway. If you’re going to evangelize, at least do it right.

  37. Kurogane Shiroikaze Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 5:29 pm

    @Mirrinus: Yep, you’ve gotten the whole point of this argument right. I can stand people calling Kanon “harem anime”, I can stand people calling for Shiori to die because “she’s sick”, but I definitely can’t stand the hypocriticalness of people saying “KyoAni is wasting their talents on harem anime” just because they see more girls than guys in the show(I’m not surprised if they’re mostly jealous FYG’s who don’t have enough doses of their favourite stuff).

    If you don’t like “harem” anime, just say so, don’t go around blaming the animation studio saying they’re “wasting their talents”. It’s like a total denial of the hardship and dedication they’ve put in to their work and that’s a very, very cruel thing to do to anyone or anything.

  38. lolikitsune Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 7:17 pm

    I blame them for making Suzumiya, because it was shit, genres be damned!!

  39. Alias Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 10:58 pm

    @Xellos: The first 6 episodes of Air is mainly the buildup period. The real interesting bit comes during the Summer arc and the subsequent Arc, in which the entire story comes to a close. Just as well, it isn’t easy to understand either. It took me 2 months, 17 phone calls, 3 discussion sections, 110 hours of computer time and a trip to Japan to figure out what exactly happened towards the end. (Okay, so the trip to japan didn’t really help much; just another one of my family outings)

    @ NaviX: Actually, most classical harem series is something akin to a
    Sitcom for most of the early episodes and have usually little to no charater or plot development until towards the end of the series. The main reason behind my standpoint of “Kanon ’06 isn’t your classical Harem anime” is because it manages to somehow spread out the major events into easy to asorb, bite-sized pieces, as opposed to most of the other Harem anime I watched, with everything happening so fast that before I understand half of what’s going on the series ended. A bullet train, so to speak. Granted, the buildup was somewhat slow but otherwise….

    That aside, we need to consider that Kyoto animation, despite being founded in 1981, has just recently gotten into the “One anime per season” business; they have to start somewhere, and it would save them alot of script time to take an existing script and edit them to their liking than pull one out of thin air; I mean, which would take more time: a visit to Key’s manager or work on a brand new script from nothing? Kyoto animation isn’t exactly what you would call the big ten producers of anime, and since the Harem/romance/slice of life anime genre isn’t exactly the most crowded market in japan compared to, say, mecha combat, it would make more sense for a small company to establish itself in that genre first rather than fight it out with the bigger companies trying to produce action anime.

  40. Moe Check! » Rhymes With Rankery Said,

    March 23, 2007 @ 11:15 pm

    […] So I’m sure most have heard of the recent kerfluffle about KyoAni’s decision to animate Clannad. The progenitor, so to speak, would be this Freezeframe commentary on Random Curiosity. Now, I have my own opinions about Freezeframe’s history of controversy, but I have to at least maintain a semblance of professional courtesy. Putting that aside, the issue here is that KyoAni is now making an anime from Key’s Clannad game, and some believe that this is, and I quote from the original post, “a total waste of ability and resources“. Others disagree. […]

  41. FlameStrike Said,

    March 24, 2007 @ 1:49 am

    “KeyAni is bad becuase we have wait longer for more Haurhi and FMP.

    If KyoAni wants to breath life back into the romance genre then they should pick something similar to KGNE. The Best Romance Anime i have ever seen.

    I drop Air after ep6, Kanon after ep1 and will avoid Clannad like the plague. ”

    Heh you like KGNE? I thought it sucked, you didn’t even watch Kanon. Really if you droped AIR at 6 and Never watched Kanon you don’t know if there good or not. If I had a pick between Kanon or Haruhi 2 I’d pick Kanon over Haruhi 2, it’s not like a little delay will be that bad.

    As for KeyAni, I have no complaints, Key’s games are great and KyoAni makes damn awesome anime so it’s win win. Doing the Harem genere is not a wast of KyoAni’s talents

  42. sagematt Said,

    March 24, 2007 @ 3:34 am

    About the comments: tl;dr
    Sorry about that, but I’m at work. I’ll just add my 2€ worth:

    We are forgetting something pivotal here: Kyoto Animation is a company. Which makes profit. So, quit the whole idealistic “making shows with high moral standards”. Whatever show they make, it has to make some profit… GOOD profit. This is actually one of the reasons I’m a big fan of the symbiotic relationship between Key/VisualArts and Kyoto Animation, they both have made lots of profit by joining their brains and brawns in their creations.

    Now, “making show with high moral standards”, if it works for them, I’m totally fine with it. It works with Studio Ghibli. Would it work for KyoAni? Maybe, but what they are doing totally works for them too (like a charm), so I don’t see them shifting gears anytime soon.

    Also, every studio has its own style. A perfect example of this is “Negima!?”. Most of the time, anything Shaft is practically PPD + whatever show they are making. Of course, there are obvious exceptions, but even then, they follow their style of “cram as much references as possible in one episode”. Defining KyoAni style is hard to put in words, they have a “Midas’ touch”, which most of the time has been its high production values, likeable male leads, and refreshing HAREM dynamics.

    Whoopsie, I just used the forbidden word. I didn’t want to get into that, but whatever.

    When I was discussing on IRC about harem as a “genre”, I got a reply that one should not label so many different shows into such a label, but stereotyping is something everyone does everyday in their daily life. After giving it some quick thought, I decided to name “harem” as a metagenre, since it gathers a cumulus of potentially different shows by a single characteristic, which might or might not actually define the proper genre of the show.

    Now, about the nature of the “harem” games itself, most of them are not really harem. You choose a girl, go her route, and get the girl. That’s it. Most of the other girls get neglected whenever you go on a specific’s girl route. The biggest fault/strength for those game-to-anime conversions is that, well, it would be boring to only make a show about a specific girl route and totally neglect the other ones, enraged fans would totally go against such a thing, so the creators have to take in account all the fans of the game, and thus, such a conversion will feature most (if not all) the girls, in order to please all the fanbase. This process is almost inevitable, and most of the time the dynamics of the source game have enough interaction between the characters to allow such a thing.

  43. “WE ARE FUCKING NOT DOTQ. THIS TIME SERIOUSLY.” » Blog Archive » In Review: Saigar 2007 Said,

    March 24, 2007 @ 5:23 am

    […] I’m not going to bitch about how Saigar was one of the most idiotic things I’ve ever subjected myself to (up there with watching Soul Link and Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuuutsu). I’m not going to bitch about how I want more attention. I’m not going to bitch about how Drm is still the only good anime blogger. […]

  44. sagematt Said,

    March 24, 2007 @ 6:06 am

    Now, regarding jaalin’s post (I’m at work, and currently on a break, I have nothing better to do):

    I think it’s a total waste of ability and resources. A studio of KyoAni’s caliber shouldn’t be doing harem shows

    That is entirely his own opinion, KyoAni should decide on making whatever show makes the most profit for them. It’s the only choice you are allowed to take on any company, I don’t see why it should apply differently on that market.

    which have traditionally just been there for the sake of showing off some more girls in maid outfits or nekomimi or some other ridiculous stuff like that.

    It’s entertainment. Whatever floats your boat…

    Not that I don’t appreciate it – it’s just something I feel is better left to the “lesser” studios and not the oharuhiliness that is Kyoto Animation. If my understanding is correct, the main reason they picked up Kanon was because of the success of their initial venture into the visual novel genre, AIR.

    This is the part that confuses me. He is ranting about the nature of harem shows, while making note of the oharuhiliness of KyoAni. Perhaps we should remind him of the heavy harem dynamics in the show (Kyon’s POV or Haruhi’s POV), about the costume raping of Mikuru, the discreet but generous ammounts of fanservice…

    Maybe I missed what he meant by “oharuhiliness”. Maybe “oharuhiliness” doesn’t include fanservice… Yet, Haruhi without fanservice would be… “irrelevant”. Yes, that’s the word. I’m not saying it’s what makes Haruhi special, but it’s an integral part in such feat. That, and its harem dynamics.

    Anyways, at the very end, after flaming Kanon throughly, he ends up saying that it is a “superbly produced series”. So I think the conclusion here is: tl;dr – He is just a harem hater who just wanted to rant about “harem” in general, but concludes that “harem” made by KyoAni is a superb product.

    So, let’s just stop the flaming. Differing opinions, KyoAni wins, let’s move on.

    (I’ll rant about Kuro’s post later, at home)

  45. Danny Said,

    March 24, 2007 @ 7:11 am

    i certainly wouldnt say that kyoani is wasting there time with a show like Kanon (or Key), but i wonder how I would feel if they ended up making 10 of them? (are there even 10 key games?) it would be so much nicer if kyoani did anime of all genres. what used to be badly animated not-funny fanservice became a romantic drama that was kanon (im talking about harem here, even though i wouldnt say kanon is strictly harem), so what about a short action-shounen? nooooow dont call me crazy for suggesting something like that, but a lot of the shounen we see now are pretty mediocre. im also just curious to see what a shounen by kyoani would be. in fact, i would love to see a show of all genres by kyoani to see what they are like. so far, we have the key-romance-drama type show like Air and Kanon, the uber-awesome school life show Haruhi, mecha/comedy FMP fumoffu and TSR, and it looks like soon to come, slapstick/slice of life lucky star? and the opposite of shounen, i would loove to see a good shoujo school life romance by kyoani.

  46. lolikitsune Said,

    March 24, 2007 @ 7:31 am

    >>the discreet but generous ammounts of fanservice…

    Discreet? What the hell is discreet about it?

    >>So, let’s just stop the flaming.

    But everyone’s enjoying this! Jaalin likes the attention, Kurogane likes the influence, tj han likes the drama, Dream Chaser likes the bitching opportunity, Stripey likes the chance to sound scholarly, DKellis likes that he can ping other blogs by posting his response, thereby becoming better-known, Lupus liked the post fodder, and I… I’m really being an ass, aren’t I?

  47. Kurogane Shiroikaze Said,

    March 24, 2007 @ 10:22 am

    @LOLikit: 2nd best comment of the post ever. Yeah I love the seeing how influential I am after this post XD.

    I guess this issue has been blown out of proportion (as most blogger dorama tends to become) but I’m still glad to have made my point. So the next time people start to hypocritically bitch about the animation studio when in reality, they just can’t like the show, I’ll be glad to make my point again.

  48. lolikitsune Said,

    March 24, 2007 @ 11:44 am

    And I’ll be glad to play my part again too. Quite glad, because everything I said about you guys? I could say it about myself, too.

  49. “WE ARE FUCKING NOT DOTQ. THIS TIME SERIOUSLY.” » Blog Archive » loldebate Said,

    March 24, 2007 @ 11:48 am

    […] Man, everyone’s yammering on about Kyoto Animation. (Hopefully, that was in chronological order…) […]

  50. sagematt Said,

    March 24, 2007 @ 12:35 pm

    Discreet? What the hell is discreet about it?

    Whoops, my bad. Wrong use of a term.
    That proves I can’t be both working and posting ¬_¬
    (It’s funny that he read my whole comment, though)

    Ok, so I tried reading all the comments, but I just couldn’t. Maybe if I catch the discussion before it gets heated. Anyways…

    Oh my, the comments thread on that post is EPIC.

    Tell me about it:

    Love Hina, Shuffle, and now Kanon are 3 best made harem animes


  51. jaalin Said,

    March 25, 2007 @ 6:28 am

    lolikit’s really at my jugular for this one, lol

    As with most of my posts, they’re meant to be taken as a whole package – breaking it down into specific parts isn’t the way I intended it to be read. The piece was written to show my initial bias with the genre, then eventually applying a rational analysis at the end to elucidate the “paradigm shift” that KeyAni has brought about. It’s like you said – KyoAni is breathing life back into the genre, making it less about the fanservice and cheap indulgences (the “lower morality) and focusing more on the depth of the relationships. The way I see it, studios have just settled into the fanservice formula for these shows because it’s guaranteed money, to the point where the plot takes a back seat to a snazzy new character design – Kanon 2006 sets a new standard by reminding everyone that a truly worthy show is propelled by its plot and its relationships, not by whether she’s wearing white or striped or kuma-san pantsu. As I like to put it, there’s just no integrity, no “moral standard” in doing that – is the show so boring that fanservice has to be used to keep audiences interested? (Shuffle and Da Capo being two of the biggest sinners here)

    For this reason I chose to use the word “chaser” at the end – the sweet, fruity juice to wash down the burning hard vodka to make the whole drink enjoyable, rather than leave a bad taste in your mouth.

    Keep in mind, my opinion is just that – my opinion – it’s not there to offend anyone or to rub anyone the wrong way, only there to provide my own unique angle of approach to evaluate what will surely be one of the most memorable and influential anime of our generation.


  52. sagematt Said,

    March 25, 2007 @ 11:14 pm

    He talks as if fanservice is a sin. He believes morals should take an integral part on each animated show.

    Sure, that’s only on your own utopic world. In this one, whatever makes the most profit, is the winning formula. Fanservice is proving to be a winning formula for most animation studios. Would that formula change in a near future? Maybe, and if it does, I’m all for it. It’s not like fanservice is a panacea, and this has been proven by myriads of god-awful fanservice-filled shows.

    A paradigm shift? Yes, it will happen. We are actually experiencing that process. But KyoAni is just joining the best of two worlds. The fanservice is still an integral part of it. And also, the perfect hook.

    Best regards.

    *quickly wears his asbestos suit*

    ps. Also, source material also plays an integral part. At first, we always got manga-anime conversions (and book-anime conversions too, but I won’t get started on that). Then, eroge-anime conversions came along. Now, non-ero visual novel to anime conversions are already happening, along with lots of ero and non ero novels to anime. So, we’ve got lots of diversity, now it’s only a matter of choosing our favorite poison.

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