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View Full Version : Why not just call Manga ''comics'' and anime ''Cartoons''?



Vidocq
05-15-2014, 09:11 AM
Naming them by different names makes it sound as if they were diferent mediums. Manga and Anime are literally just the japanese words for comics and cartoons. I guess you could argue it references the specific cultural style, but then you got stuff like
''Batman and Son'' that is being called a Cartoon even though it was made by a japanese studio and it looks like seinen anime.

The diferences between the two are becoming less and less blury and it's starting to look even more like just a way for closeted geeks to not admit that they like watching cartoons.

Overhazard
05-15-2014, 09:34 AM
I feel like by calling Manga "comics" and anime "cartoons" that would be disrespectful to the culture where they come from.

thespianphryne
05-15-2014, 09:39 AM
Naming them by different names makes it sound as if they were diferent mediums. Manga and Anime are literally just the japanese words for comics and cartoons. I guess you could argue it references the specific cultural style, but then you got stuff like
''Batman and Son'' that is being called a Cartoon even though it was made by a japanese studio and it looks like seinen anime.

The diferences between the two are becoming less and less blury and it's starting to look even more like just a way for closeted geeks to not admit that they like watching cartoons.

I agree with you. And unless there's a specific reason, I do just refer to them as cartoons/animation and comics.

Personamanx
05-15-2014, 09:47 AM
I once asked an acquaintance who spent a few years in Japan. He told me that in general most folk there did not make the distinction. "Family Guy" and "The Simpson's" are as much anime as "Dragonball" or "Kill La Kill." He may just be going off of a small group of folk he talked to about it of course but I found his observation interesting.

Michael P
05-15-2014, 09:48 AM
Calling anime cartoons is actually a really fun way to needle anime superfans. Not that I'm suggesting anyone should do that.

eye of all
05-15-2014, 09:54 AM
Just for specificity's sake -- the statements "I like cartoons/comics" and "I like anime/manga" mean different things for better or worse. If a Marvel/DC fan asks whether I read comics and then I start spouting off about Manga and Euro Comics, there would be a bit of a disconnect there.

just another user
05-15-2014, 09:55 AM
I don't know, when I think about cartoons I think "for kids", and when I think anime I think "tentacles"

thespianphryne
05-15-2014, 09:59 AM
HA! JAU, you pervert! Tentacles is hentai.

I get that 'cartoon' has the implication of childlike/-ish. Which is why I'll say 'animation'. And so do the Japanese, except that they like their little cute diminutives, hence 'animé'*







*Source: Japanese Lit. Prof. SO.

Michael P
05-15-2014, 10:02 AM
That's a good point. When I think "cartoons", I think more Chuck Jones than Hayao Miyazaki.

Then again, Pokémon? That there's a cartoon if I ever saw one.

Paradox
05-15-2014, 10:44 AM
http://recordbrother.typepad.com/imagesilike/images/cartoons_feb66_cover1.jpg

I couldn't help myself....

Speed Force League Unlimited
05-15-2014, 10:45 AM
I wonder about that sometimes, but then I think of things like what eye of all said

HA! JAU, you pervert! Tentacles is hentai.Knowing that hentai is the Japanese word for pervert, it makes this statement all the more amusing :p

Bullet Sniper
05-15-2014, 11:22 AM
Plain and simple.

Because Japanese manga and anime are so inherently distinct and different in looks and style than American or Western (which is what we tend to refer to by default whenever we think of "cartoons", "animation", or "comics") stuff in a more collective sense that they are usually referred to by people as their own sort of separate category or medium of entertainment and not to mention they have different ways of designing, writing, and illustrating things.

Even though they're otherwise essentially the same thing. "Manga" just means "comics" in Japanese and likewise "Anime" just means "cartoons" or "animation" in Japanese.

Bullet Sniper
05-15-2014, 11:27 AM
Oh and I felt like posting this, since we're poking fun at the difference between american and japanese animation:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N4RhCy126RA

BeastieRunner
05-15-2014, 11:34 AM
The only terminology that drives me batty is graphic novel. It's 22 pages of story, art, and cool paneling; it's a comic book people!

FanboyStranger
05-15-2014, 11:40 AM
The only terminology that drives me batty is graphic novel. It's 22 pages of story, art, and cool paneling; it's a comic book people!

Yeah, it doesn't quite drive me up the wall, but it is a misleading term. A collection isn't a graphic novel, either. Something like Nao of Brown, a novel-length story of original content, qualifies as a "graphic novel" to me. That's obviously what the intent behind it is.

They're all comics, though. Since "Manga" is essentially the Japanese word for comics made by the Japanese, I am totally okay with its use describing comics of a Japanese origin as those comics are produced with specific cultural expectations and reception in mind. Similarly, I'm okay with the use of "bande dessinee" for comics of Franco-Belgian origin as they are produced with specific cultural expectations and reception in mind.

Speed Force League Unlimited
05-15-2014, 11:45 AM
The only terminology that drives me batty is graphic novel. It's 22 pages of story, art, and cool paneling; it's a comic book people!That term is used for a 60 pages+ story on the sidelines, sometimes in continuity and other times not

Alan2099
05-15-2014, 11:50 AM
They call it that because Japanophile like to feel special.

Marc Lombardi
05-15-2014, 12:12 PM
I call Anime anime, Cartoons cartoons, Comics comics and Manga manga. There's a difference for each one.

JasonTodd428
05-15-2014, 01:26 PM
If someone says to me that they are reading a manga or watching an anime then its pretty clear what they mean and I can therefore know what a discussion with them will entail. On it's most basic level it's simply a way to make a distinction between these two particular types of "cartoons" and "comics". That distinction has never bothered me except when some fans get it into their heads that "manga" or "anime" are far superior across the board to other examples of those two media.

Ghost
05-15-2014, 01:54 PM
Who knows. It gets even more complicated when you think about 'American' cartoons that were animated in collaboration with a Japanese studio. Shows like DuckTales, Batman: the animated series, Inspector Gadget, Transformers, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Thundercats, the Boondocks, and Tiny Toon Adventures. Are they anime, cartoons, American anime, etc?

dupont2005
05-15-2014, 06:10 PM
The only terminology that drives me batty is graphic novel. It's 22 pages of story, art, and cool paneling; it's a comic book people!

What if it's four hundred pages?

Kid A
05-15-2014, 06:13 PM
Who knows. It gets even more complicated when you think about 'American' cartoons that were animated in collaboration with a Japanese studio. Shows like DuckTales, Batman: the animated series, Inspector Gadget, Transformers, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Thundercats, the Boondocks, and Tiny Toon Adventures. Are they anime, cartoons, American anime, etc?

If you want to go by strict definitions, then sure it's complicated, but over time there's a set of attributes that people associate with anime, and they aren't in those cartoons. The borderline examples would be stuff like Avatar the Last Airbender.

CSTowle
05-15-2014, 07:13 PM
They call it that because Japanophile like to feel special.

That's my guess, and as a nerd who can be prickly about certain things related to my hobby I'm OK with using the terms to avoid arguments.

Fast
05-15-2014, 07:56 PM
I would have no problem with calling them all cartoons/comics etc. However each of these words have individual connotations that have already been discussed. If everyone was on the same page it would be fine but there has been a distinction (warranted or not) that has pretty much made it so that they now have to be seperate things in order for their to be a coherent conversation. Telling someone on CBR that "I love cartoons" vs 'I love anime' brings about different images whether they should or not.

Legato
05-15-2014, 08:03 PM
It reminds me of the original argument on does comics count as literature?

dupersuper
05-15-2014, 08:18 PM
Manga's a style of comic, anime's a style of cartoon. One uses the terms when one wants to specify said type.

zhris
05-15-2014, 08:58 PM
HA! JAU, you pervert! Tentacles is hentai.

Personally I'd consider tentacles more ecchi than hentai, but I guess it could go either way.

Back on topic; We use those terms to denote cultural origin, the same reason we say 'Mexican Food', 'Chinese Chess', or 'Swedish Erotica'.

t hedge coke
05-15-2014, 09:05 PM
We use those terms to denote cultural origin, the same reason we say 'Mexican Food', 'Chinese Chess', or 'Swedish Erotica'.

This. Otherwise, if used to describe a particular style or tic (to the exclusion of all other styles and MOs from the same region/culture) it's just orientalism. The thing unifying manga, from Lone Wolf & Cub to Plica to One Piece, isn't big eyes or sweatdrops, it's that they're comics made in Japan (initially) for a Japanese market.

The only thing making anime, anime, is that it's cartoons made via Japan primarily for its home market. It doesn't matter what style it's animated in, how fast or slow paced it is, or whether it's two weeks old or twenty years old, or where you/I first came to see it.

As terms, they should denote region of origin/initial-market.

John Venus
05-16-2014, 01:23 AM
I use them to create a distinction. When I say 'comics' people are likely to think that I am talking about DC, Marvel, Image, Dark Horse or some other publisher instead of stories like One Piece, Naruto and Vagabond. However, when I say manga, people know exactly what I am referring to. If call Batman comics manga (aside from the actual Batman manga made in Japan) then people aren't going to get what I am talking about.

The same logic is applied to anime and cartoons as well. Using different terminology just makes it easier to see what you are referring to.

Marc Lombardi
05-16-2014, 03:03 AM
So is it safe for me to Google Swedish Erotica?

Ghost
05-16-2014, 03:21 AM
If you want to go by strict definitions, then sure it's complicated, but over time there's a set of attributes that people associate with anime, and they aren't in those cartoons. The borderline examples would be stuff like Avatar the Last Airbender.

I disagree, well with some things. Stylistically, the Boondocks is basically an anime made for America. Also Inspector Gadget and Thundercats looked more 'anime' depending on the studios that drew certain seasons. More-so than some others.

From Gadgets wiki: "In the second season, the animation increasingly began to resemble a typical 1980s Japanese anime cartoon, most likely because it was animated by DiC's own then-new Japanese-based animation facilities (many first-season episodes that were animated by TMS Entertainment often mimicked typical American animation, akin to their work on Tiny Toon Adventures). It was not uncommon for Gadget to briefly freeze in an "anime" pose when shocked, or slower frame rates when characters would move."

I do agree shows like Avatar and Teen Titans are borderline, or obviously inspired by anime.

Muad'Dib
05-16-2014, 01:23 PM
I'm not a fan of the sub-genrification of artforms. Not in music, not in comics, and certainly not in film/animation. The medium is the medium, and genrification serves no purpose in the art itself, but does serve in the realms of marketing/promotion/sales...to me it serves to divide us into camps rather than unite us in a love of the art, the storytelling, the creators. Animation is animation regardless of what timezone its produced in. Comics are comics regardless of the home nation of the creator.

pearlofthepacific
05-16-2014, 07:39 PM
Yes, if it's in print, comics; if it's projected, it's an animation....but there's no reason why we shouldn't use specific terms when we want to discuss specific styles or genres.

I live in Japan, so I see manga every day, non-J comics less frequently...TBH I call them all comics or manga indiscriminately, but when I want to differentiate, I think of manga as something with Japanese-style panels and emanata and (ideally!) more unity between words and pictures.

I have no problem with "graphic novel"...it tells me that it's a story complete in one book (so serials are "comics"), and many of these seem to owe as much to the color art from the picture-book boom of the 80s and 90s as they do to black and white manga or comics with flat color...so why not have a name for them?

I don't think that naming a style or genre needs to divide us.

Alan2099
05-16-2014, 07:49 PM
Manga and anime isn't a style or genre. I've never understood people that use that as a defense.

Can you honestly sit there and tell me things like Pokemon or Sailor Moon have anything in common with Franken Fran or Devil Man?

They have no more in common with each other than The Muppet comics and Garth Ennis's Preacher.

And why is it that stuff that comes out of Japan is the only ones to get the fancy names? People that like Judge Dredd don't insist that it's ... I dunno Eurocomic or some stupid name.

Legato
05-16-2014, 09:16 PM
From the sound of things this thread looks like a powder keg waiting to go off as, judging from what I've read, some folks have no respect for Japanese culture.

Pól Rua
05-16-2014, 09:59 PM
From the sound of things this thread looks like a powder keg waiting to go off as, judging from what I've read, some folks have no respect for Japanese culture.

It has nothing to do with respect for Japanese culture.
The main people who are going to be offended by people referring to 'manga' as 'comics' or 'anime' as 'cartoons' are culturally appropriationist Western Japanophiles who can tell you everything about what episode of 'Naruto' anything happened in and live on Pocky but have no actual respect for Japan as a real country, just as a storehouse for their cultural fetish objects.

If you're reading comics and want to call them 'manga' that's fine.
But if you want to get huffy because someone calls your comic book a comic book instead of it's secret Japanese clubhouse name, then you may be the problem.
I read European Comics and feel no need to refer to one as a bande dessinée, but even if I did, I think it would be unreasonable for me to get offended or angry or start to bandy about claims of racism or disrespect for culture if someone called them a comic or even *gasp* a funnybook.

It reminds me of people who insist "I don't read comics, I read graphic novels". It's a nonsensical distinction, and its roots are in a form of intellectual dishonesty. It's so much easier to brand ALL comics as mindless trash, if you refuse to admit to yourself that the comics you like are, in fact, comics at all.

Legato
05-16-2014, 10:02 PM
It has nothing to do with respect for Japanese culture.
The main people who are going to be offended by people referring to 'manga' as 'comics' or 'anime' as 'cartoons' are culturally appropriationist Western Japanophiles who can tell you everything about what episode of 'Naruto' anything happened in and live on Pocky but have no actual respect for Japan as a real country, just as a storehouse for their cultural fetish objects.

If you're reading comics and want to call them 'manga' that's fine.
But if you want to get huffy because someone calls your comic book a comic book instead of it's secret Japanese clubhouse name, then you may be the problem.
I read European Comics and feel no need to refer to one as a bande dessinée, but even if I did, I think it would be unreasonable for me to get offended or angry or start to bandy about claims of racism or disrespect for culture if someone called them a comic or even *gasp* a funnybook.

It reminds me of people who insist "I don't read comics, I read graphic novels". It's a nonsensical distinction, and its roots are in a form of intellectual dishonesty. It's so much easier to brand ALL comics as mindless trash, if you refuse to admit to yourself that the comics you like are, in fact, comics at all.

TBH the ones who are up in arms over the term are the ones who prefer manga as comics while others, such as myself, couldn't really give a crap one way or the other.

Pól Rua
05-16-2014, 10:23 PM
TBH the ones who are up in arms over the term are the ones who prefer manga as comics while others, such as myself, couldn't really give a crap one way or the other.

That's the distinction.
I don't care what people call 'em. If they're enjoying 'em and it makes 'em happy, Hurrah! More power to 'em.
The only time it impacts on me is when someone gets snotty and angry because I used the wrong codeword. That's just being mean and weird.

Now can we pick on the people who, when they say 'comics', only ever mean Mainstream Superhero Comics From Two Particular Publishers?

Alan2099
05-17-2014, 07:53 AM
Now can we pick on the people who, when they say 'comics', only ever mean Mainstream Superhero Comics From Two Particular Publishers?

You mean everybody in the whole world except those weird hipster indie people?


:p I'm kidding. Don't hurt me... and is it just me, or do out smilies now suck?

mathew101281
05-17-2014, 08:00 AM
The only terminology that drives me batty is graphic novel. It's 22 pages of story, art, and cool paneling; it's a comic book people!

To me their there is as much difference between a comicbook and a real graphic novel, as there is between a comic strip and a comic book.

Lady Warp Spasm
05-17-2014, 09:05 AM
The only terminology that drives me batty is graphic novel. It's 22 pages of story, art, and cool paneling; it's a comic book people!

Same here. I have no problems with respecting cultural differences as far as comics and animation, i.e. manga and anime.

t hedge coke
05-17-2014, 03:33 PM
TBH the ones who are up in arms over the term are the ones who prefer manga as comics while others, such as myself, couldn't really give a crap one way or the other.

It's been my experience that there are quite a few superhero fans who will have fits if you try to talk about manga (or most non-English-first comics) as comics, particularly on comics messageboards. "That's not comics! I said comics!"

That stuff goes both (and all other) ways.

One thing I appreciate here in China, is that foreign comics are pretty much still treated as comics. Someone may clarify the country of origin, or a writer or artist's country of origin, but it's nowhere near as separatist as American fandom can sometimes get. And, it's considered bad form, among the younger, to clarify whether a comic is "for" boys, girls, men, women, w'ev.

"Graphic novel," well... there are graphic novels. Why not? And some are serialized? Again, why not? But calling something sixty pages long a "novel" seems silly, to me, and calling a twenty page "floppy" a "novel," is almost as silly as calling it a "pamphlet." Why you're not supposed to call them "magazines," I never got, though. In general, it's pretty accurate.

Alex L
05-17-2014, 10:34 PM
Graphic novels, to me, are initially created as a standalone, one-sale sort of thing as opposed to the floppies that are four-part or six-part stories. So the One Volume Bone edition would not count, since it was originally published as, and meant to be, a serial. Persepolis and Superman: Earth One are, I believe, originally meant to be, and published as a complete volume and so I would consider them GN's.

Speed Force League Unlimited
05-17-2014, 11:57 PM
Sometimes I want to just call manga comics, other times I like the distinctive names
Makes it easier to know which is which

t hedge coke
05-18-2014, 12:13 AM
Graphic novels, to me, are initially created as a standalone, one-sale sort of thing as opposed to the floppies that are four-part or six-part stories. So the One Volume Bone edition would not count, since it was originally published as, and meant to be, a serial. Persepolis and Superman: Earth One are, I believe, originally meant to be, and published as a complete volume and so I would consider them GN's.

Generally those are called OGNs, or Original Graphic Novels. Even the ridiculously short ones

Persepolis however, was serialized.

How do you feel about serialized prose novels? Still novels or are the bulk of Dickens, etc, just collections?

Tomppa
05-18-2014, 01:35 AM
I'm not a fan of the sub-genrification of artforms. Not in music, not in comics, and certainly not in film/animation. The medium is the medium, and genrification serves no purpose in the art itself, but does serve in the realms of marketing/promotion/sales...to me it serves to divide us into camps rather than unite us in a love of the art, the storytelling, the creators. Animation is animation regardless of what timezone its produced in. Comics are comics regardless of the home nation of the creator.

I get your point, I really do but sub-classification and genrefication of music, animation and comics helps. Somebody might like rock music only, another one likes pop music only. Same with comics and animation, somebody likes bugs bunny cartoons but not anime, somebody likes mecha anime but not slice of life anime. That's why these terms are easier and help people to describe in short what kind of music/animation/comics they like. I don't like all kinds of music or everything animated or every comic but I still consider myself a fan of all of these. So I don't see genrefication being the reason for dividing fans into different camps, we mostly do it ourselves. And even from marketing/promotion point it helps fans also to classify these things because when I hear about a comic it helps me to estimate whether I might enjoy it or not and whether I should spent money on it when I hear if it's an American superhero comic or a Japanese high school drama comic. Because I don't usually care for the latter type while I usually love the former.

All in all I don't have any problem to call manga comics and anime cartoons and often I do use them that way because it's a shorter and quicker way to describe my interest by saying that I'm a fan of animation and comics than I'm a fan of American and European comics, manga, anime and western animation/cartoons. However when I discuss with someone online for example about our interests then it's easier to use terms like anime and manga to separate Japanese cartoons and comics so when they say they read manga then I immediately know what they are talking about.

There's also the fact that anime and manga are usually made in Japan by Japanese and mainly for the Japanese first and foremost so cultural differences affect the product and make it very different from its western counterparts both stylistically and thematically. Some people that like western animation and comics don't care about Japanese because they can't get over the style differences. And I have sometimes had trouble watching anime series because I didn't know all of the Japanese mythology or all the folk tales involved or referenced in them. So Japanese products getting their own terms in US/Europe while European/US products don't get them is more justified because there are more differences when you compare American comics/animation to Japanese comics/animation than if you compare them to European comics/animation.
Of course it varies with some anime being very western influenced (Cowboy Bebop) while some western cartoons are very anime influenced (Teen Titans, Avatar) but usually there are some distinct differences. So separate terms like manga and anime aren't that bad but they're still not that important to me and I could honestly go either way with it and can't see why anyone would care about it that much because at the end of the day it is all comics and animation after all.

I do however think that words manga and anime have now become so associated as the terms for Japanese comics and cartoons in western world that it would probably be kind of difficult to get people to start talking about them under the umbrella of comics and cartoons. For example in my mind at least, if somebody mentions the word cartoon I first think of funny animals and slapstick, Bugs Bunny, Garfield, Daffy Duck, Woody Woodpecker, Flintstones or Scooby-Doo or something classic like that but when someone mentions the word anime I think of practically noseless, big eyed girls in school girl uniforms with rainbow colored hairs, giant robots and maybe martial arts, some weird and violent/gorey shit (and tentacles too sometimes, lol), you know, Haruhi Suzumiya, Sailor Moon, DBZ, Gundam, Miyazaki's work, NGE, and what have we.
Incidentally if somebody adds Saturday and morning in front of the word cartoons I start thinking about TMNT, Transformers, Thundercats and before or after school (cartoons) make me think of Ducktales, Goof Troop, Darkwing Duck etc.

Pól Rua
05-18-2014, 02:30 AM
My one gripe tends to be with the people who'll say something like, "Oh, I hate comics!"
And when you point out that they read lots of comics, they'll say, "Oh No, those aren't comics, they're manga!" or "They're graphic novels!"

Too often it's misused as sekrit code for 'the comics I like'.

And it's the same with a lot of people who want to nitpick about subgenres. They just don't wanna cop to enjoying cartoons or comic books or listening to country and western or rap music or whatever...

"It's NOT dance music, it's EDM!" or whatever...

THOSE people.

t hedge coke
05-18-2014, 02:50 AM
My one gripe tends to be with the people who'll say something like, "Oh, I hate comics!"
And when you point out that they read lots of comics, they'll say, "Oh No, those aren't comics, they're manga!" or "They're graphic novels!"

Too often it's misused as sekrit code for 'the comics I like'.

And it's the same with a lot of people who want to nitpick about subgenres. They just don't wanna cop to enjoying cartoons or comic books or listening to country and western or rap music or whatever...

"It's NOT dance music, it's EDM!" or whatever...

THOSE people.

Amen.

I watched a friend get eviscerated last year for posting on facebook that, essentially, everyone reading her post has read comics probably that week, whether they think of themselves as someone who reads comics, or not, because most instructional pamphlets or posted safety notices are formatted as comics, if you're on facebook, you're seeing mots and one-panel comics regularly, political cartoons or the tag of a Garfield strip stuck on a coffee mug. Even people who'd cop to reading half of Vertigo's ouput, or something, were still all "I don't read comics! I don't like [insert genre, probably superheroes, here]."

That stuff's ridiculous.

Comics should be the default English term, because it's the only one that embraces, in its rough definition, everything, while others have regional, genre, or page count qualifications. From Spider-Man Unlimited to One Piece to Blondie or Philosoraptor, it's all comics.

WestPhillyPunisher
05-18-2014, 02:54 AM
I've always been of the opinion that Japanese anime is MUCH more sophisticated than American made cartoons in terms of style, substance and story, so, in my mind, there IS a difference between the two terms. Can you imagine U.S. studios, forever hamstrung by the FCC, holier-than-thou religious groups and legions of overprotective parents producing shows chock full of violence, bloodshed, rampant gunplay and swordplay, yuri, hentai, nudity, harems, horror, girls with guns, girls with monster boobs, the whole nine yards like Japan does? That's why the U.S. has done boatloads of goofy, funny and cutesy-pie stuff while Japan brought us classics like Akira, Cowboy Bebop, Evangelion and so forth.

t hedge coke
05-18-2014, 03:04 AM
WestPhillyPunisher, what about, say, AEon Flux or American Pop? In terms of maturity and quality, I'd put American Pop, or even Coonskin, against the majority of cartoons from anywhere. Certainly, having less comedy in something, too, doesn't make it any more mature. Eva had quite a bit of comedy. I think anybody that feels Antz is a bad movie or The Simpson's doesn't have a mature sense of humor is off their rocker (or, y'know, have different tastes than me), but "off their rocker" sounds more dramatic).

I'm not sure "monster boobs" and harems actually net you one-for-one "more sophisticated," though, and certainly, on a technical level, American animation has made some great strides for the world.

FanboyStranger
05-18-2014, 10:59 AM
One major difference between manga, N American comics, Euro-comics, and British comics is the variety of format. In N American, the 20 page monthly issue still reigns supreme. It's graphic albums in Europe. Manga has its phone books. The Brits have their 6-8 page weekly progs. That is a distinction that does need to be considered, in my opinion. As does the methods of production for those forms of comics. Again, there are cultures within those various regional industries that have different expectations for the production and reception of their product that does need to be considered.

The comic strip vs comic book dichtomy is a good one to examine in terms of similarities and differences. Yes, at core, they are both comics, but in production and excpectation, they are different beasts.

Zetsubou
05-18-2014, 11:34 AM
Comics
Manga
Manhua
Manhwa
Fumetto
Bande dessinée

Mormel
05-18-2014, 11:41 AM
Here's another crazy thing, though. At one point, I walked into a comic book store, and indicated to the store owner that I wanted to order some Marvel comics, referring to them by the Dutch word stripboeken (which is the neutral translation of 'comic books'). And he insisted that I call them by the English word comics, as he apparently felt they were distinct from European comics like Tintin and Suske & Wiske. I was kind of confused, but decided to go along with it.

Alan2099
05-18-2014, 12:21 PM
I've always been of the opinion that Japanese anime is MUCH more sophisticated than American made cartoons in terms of style, substance and story, so, in my mind, there IS a difference between the two terms.
Your opinion is WRONG. The most popular animes have basically been Sailor Moon, Dragon Ball Z, and Pokemon. Nothing about them is anymore sophisticated than your average episode of G.I. Joe, Ninja Turtles, or (tremble) My Little Pony.

Speed Force League Unlimited
05-18-2014, 01:45 PM
Your opinion is WRONG. The most popular animes have basically been Sailor Moon, Dragon Ball Z, and Pokemon. Nothing about them is anymore sophisticated than your average episode of G.I. Joe, Ninja Turtles, or (tremble) My Little Pony.I have no idea what to say about sailor Moon, never saw it, always looked like mindless $#%^ about a bunch of simply mindless people

As for more sophisticated, think of things like Death Note, Code Geasse, and other kinds of thriller/drama/psycho analyses genre.
I could guess even Pokemon and Dragonball Z count to some as more sophisticated because of the heavy explaining they do at times, or as people nitpicking Christopher Nolan movies call such explaining: "Exposition Dialogue"

Zetsubou
05-18-2014, 02:05 PM
Your opinion is WRONG. The most popular animes have basically been Sailor Moon, Dragon Ball Z, and Pokemon. Nothing about them is anymore sophisticated than your average episode of G.I. Joe, Ninja Turtles, or (tremble) My Little Pony.

The most popular anime are also the most overrated ones.

The most sophisticated anime I have seen are Darker Than Black, Monster, Master Keaton, Blood +, Koi Kaze, Elfen Lied, Fate Stay Night, Tsukihime, Tsukuyomi Moon Phase and Canvas 2.

The MunchKING
05-18-2014, 02:24 PM
Your opinion is WRONG. The most popular animes have basically been Sailor Moon, Dragon Ball Z, and Pokemon. Nothing about them is anymore sophisticated than your average episode of G.I. Joe, Ninja Turtles, or (tremble) My Little Pony.

Popular in Japan or over here in America?

WestPhillyPunisher
05-18-2014, 02:42 PM
Your opinion is WRONG. The most popular animes have basically been Sailor Moon, Dragon Ball Z, and Pokemon. Nothing about them is anymore sophisticated than your average episode of G.I. Joe, Ninja Turtles, or (tremble) My Little Pony.

Apparently you haven't watched very much anime other than what you described. I never said anything about popular, just sophisticated. Other than the examples I mentioned, throw in the Gundam franchise, Fullmetal Alchemist, Ghost in the Shell, the films of Hayao Miyazaki and Satoshi Kon, Hellsing, Black Lagoon, Clannad, ARIA, the samples are many and varied. Bottom line, there's much more to anime beyond what you've seen on Cartoon Network. And besides, who's to say anybody is right or wrong, I was merely expressing an opinion.

pearlofthepacific
05-18-2014, 04:07 PM
Sailor Moon, Dragonball Z, and Pokemon were made for the under-7 crowd. And Dragonball Z was originally aired nearly 20 years ago. Go ahead and enjoy them, but I can't see any reason to judge the entire Japanese animation industry by them!

John Keyt
05-18-2014, 04:12 PM
Isn't manga Japanese for comic ? Always thought cartoons was anime .

bugrom
05-18-2014, 04:58 PM
I have been consuming anime and manga in large quantities for around 20 years. I just call them cartoons and Japanese comics most of the time. I don't really have a problem with people choosing to use anime and manga as the terms though unless they are those people who get mad if you call them what they really are.

Alan2099
05-18-2014, 06:05 PM
Apparently you haven't watched very much anime other than what you described. I never said anything about popular, just sophisticated. Other than the examples I mentioned, throw in the Gundam franchise, Fullmetal Alchemist, Ghost in the Shell, the films of Hayao Miyazaki and Satoshi Kon, Hellsing, Black Lagoon, Clannad, ARIA, the samples are many and varied. Bottom line, there's much more to anime beyond what you've seen on Cartoon Network. And besides, who's to say anybody is right or wrong, I was merely expressing an opinion.
You presume too much.

I've been watching anime since it was widely known as Japanimation. Personal favorites of mine include Trigun, Cowboy Bebop, Hellsing (although I seem to be one of the few that prefer the original series), Lupin III, Spirited Away, Excel Saga, The Cat Returns, and Voltron (preferring the english version to the Japanese source material.)

Also Evangeleon sucks. I just want to get that out there. It's a horrible series. I never cared for Deathnote either. Oddly enough, I do enjoy Highschool of the Dead, even though the series by all rights should be considered garbage.

Anyway, what I'm trying to say is that I don't think it's fair to say that anime as a whole is of higher quality simply because some of the titles titles that are good.

I've seen Fencer of Minerva and Ikkitousen. You're not going to convince me that anime should be put on some high pedestal of ultimate quality.

Pól Rua
05-18-2014, 06:28 PM
Japanese animation isn't any more mature than Western animation, it's just that there's more of it. Basically, if 5% of Western Animation is 'good' and 5% of Japanese Animation is 'good', then sure, there's more Japanese stuff there, just because there's more of a base sample.
But as with anything, Sturgeon's Law applies. 90% of everything is bull[pudding].
And just as Western Animation is choked with Saturday Morning Toy Ads, Japanese Animation is choked with interchangeable (and interminable) 'struggle' series and harem comedies. Most of which are just as interested in selling product.

And there's nothing that says an animated series aimed at 7 year olds can't be good.

wjowski
05-18-2014, 07:21 PM
It's a stupid distinction. Particularly when it's applied to *any kind of comic or animation from Asia*.

FanboyStranger
05-18-2014, 08:07 PM
Here's another crazy thing, though. At one point, I walked into a comic book store, and indicated to the store owner that I wanted to order some Marvel comics, referring to them by the Dutch word stripboeken (which is the neutral translation of 'comic books'). And he insisted that I call them by the English word comics, as he apparently felt they were distinct from European comics like Tintin and Suske & Wiske. I was kind of confused, but decided to go along with it.

While there is almost certainly some nationalistic chauvinism involved, I don't think he's wrong to make that distinction from a professional standpoint. As some posts earlier in the thread have shown, when most readers say 'comics', they mostly are referring to 20-26 page montly periodicals released in the N American market. There is a discernable difference in format in the European market for first run material. You don't have Tintin 1 produced one month, then Tintin 2 continuing the same story the next month.

While most of this thread has dealt with the differing reactions of fans towards manga, N American, and European comics, I think the subject is more diffuse than some people would like to accept. In ignoring the terms of production, you're ignoring what makes those various comics distinct from one another. They are all comics, but they are not all created equal. Yes, you have goofy chauvinistic readers unwilling to look beyond their narrow viewpoint in terms of what they consume (which, quite frankly, I find sad, even if I'm not as conversant with manga as I'd like to be), but to deny how those comics are made and presented is to do a great disservice to the medium as a whole.

In other words, if Random Fan A says "Manga rools, other comics drool", I don't take it very seriously because that's an uninformed viewpoint. On the other hand, if Paul Pope, who has worked in both industries, says that there's a discernable difference between manga and comics, I need to examine what he's saying. I understand that's a bit TCJ for our purposes at CBR, but if I want to be intellectually honest about the discussion, I can't help but see the disinction.

And yes, my starting point is still "they're all comics."

I have no real opinion on anime vs. N American animation. My gut tells me that there's been so much pollination of Japanese style animation in N American programs that it's probably very difficult to discern at this point, but the only cartoon I watch regularly is Archer, so I don't feel I can make a statement to that effect in good faith.

Billy Batson
05-18-2014, 08:15 PM
The North American animation industry is such a ghetto.

the only cartoon I watch regularly is Archer
You should try Venture Bros if you haven't. :p

FanboyStranger
05-18-2014, 08:16 PM
Japanese animation isn't any more mature than Western animation, it's just that there's more of it. Basically, if 5% of Western Animation is 'good' and 5% of Japanese Animation is 'good', then sure, there's more Japanese stuff there, just because there's more of a base sample.
But as with anything, Sturgeon's Law applies. 90% of everything is bull[pudding].
And just as Western Animation is choked with Saturday Morning Toy Ads, Japanese Animation is choked with interchangeable (and interminable) 'struggle' series and harem comedies. Most of which are just as interested in selling product.

And there's nothing that says an animated series aimed at 7 year olds can't be good.

I'd also submit that people in Anglophonic culture probably only get the best/most popular of what Japanese manga/anime has to offer. We get the The Wire of manga/anime, but we don't get the Dads.

And I think one of the faults with the Big Two as far as comics these days is that they make no effort towards making comics that appeal to both a smart seven year old and an adult who has read comics throughout their life.

FanboyStranger
05-18-2014, 08:22 PM
The North American animation industry is such a ghetto.

You should try Venture Bros if you haven't. :p

I actually do watch and love Venture Bros. It's just so erratic in its scheduling. Which, in itself, makes it something of an outlier in terms of the N American television medium.

One of my favorite comics artists, Stephen DeStefano (of 'Mazing Man fame), works on the show.

(Quite a few big comics guys work in animation. Paul Rivoche, one of my absolute heroes, for example.)

Pól Rua
05-18-2014, 09:09 PM
The North American animation industry is such a ghetto.

I'm sure there are many really excellent animators who disagree with you.
Bruce Timm, Paul Dini, James Tucker, Genndy Tartakovsky, Stephen Silver, Michael Dante DiMartino and Brian Konietzo, Seth McFarlane, Pendleton Ward, Craig McCracken, J.G. Quintel, Paul Rivoche, Darwyn Cooke, Adam Reed, pretty much everyone who's working for Pixar/Disney, Dreamworks Animation, Ralph Bakshi's still out there... the rise of online animated shorts like 'How it Should Have Ended'...

Pretty star-studded 'ghetto'.

Billy Batson
05-18-2014, 09:20 PM
I'm sure there are many really excellent animators who disagree with you.
Bruce Timm, Paul Dini, James Tucker, Genndy Tartakovsky, Stephen Silver, Michael Dante DiMartino and Brian Konietzo, Seth McFarlane, Pendleton Ward, Craig McCracken, J.G. Quintel, Paul Rivoche, Darwyn Cooke, Adam Reed, pretty much everyone who's working for Pixar/Disney, Dreamworks Animation, Ralph Bakshi's still out there... the rise of online animated shorts like 'How it Should Have Ended'...

Pretty star-studded 'ghetto'.
Well, I wouldn't call Set McFarlane excellent, bleh. I wasn't really talking about the quality of North American animation, there's plenty of good stuff and I'm familiar with most of your examples. It's just in terms of subject matter/viewership North American animation still mostly focuses on children shows/movies and adult comedy shows.

PwrdOn
05-18-2014, 10:24 PM
It's a bit silly to insist on using specific terms to refer to Japanese comics and cartoons, especially since the style and tone of these works was heavily influenced by Western media that was exported to Japan in the post-war period. Of course there are some distinctive elements of Japanese media, but it's a bit silly to consider it to be a native Asian development entirely separate from what's being produced in the West.

In any event, many lightly regarded Western productions from the 80s like the GI Joe, Transformers, and Jem cartoons were actually animated in Japan, only Filmation resisted the outsourcing trend and as a result had to cut corners almost everywhere resulting in astoundingly cheap looking results. These days, most of the animation work for both American and Japanese productions is outsourced to Korea, which probably explains the similar looking product more than anything else.

Paradox
05-18-2014, 11:20 PM
Scott McCloud did a pretty good job explaining the differences in the Japanese approach to comics/manga in Understanding Comics that might work in here I think, but I've simply never been into the Japanese stuff enough to know how accurate it really is.

WestPhillyPunisher
05-19-2014, 01:45 AM
You presume too much.

I've been watching anime since it was widely known as Japanimation. Personal favorites of mine include Trigun, Cowboy Bebop, Hellsing (although I seem to be one of the few that prefer the original series), Lupin III, Spirited Away, Excel Saga, The Cat Returns, and Voltron (preferring the english version to the Japanese source material.)

Also Evangeleon sucks. I just want to get that out there. It's a horrible series. I never cared for Deathnote either. Oddly enough, I do enjoy Highschool of the Dead, even though the series by all rights should be considered garbage.

Anyway, what I'm trying to say is that I don't think it's fair to say that anime as a whole is of higher quality simply because some of the titles titles that are good.

I've seen Fencer of Minerva and Ikkitousen. You're not going to convince me that anime should be put on some high pedestal of ultimate quality.

That was never my intention. I'm no raving geeky otaku trying to spread the holy gospel of anime. You have your opinions and I have mine. I simply find anime more enjoyable that American animation. And for the record, I enjoyed shows like Ikki Tousen, HOTD, and my all-time favorite guilty pleasure was the pantyflashing fest, Agent Aika. I also apologize for assuming that you haven't watched more anime than you have. One should never assume which is foolish, which I had been.

mathew101281
05-19-2014, 07:37 AM
I think the reason why manga has a different connotation in many people's eyes has less to do with quality and more to do with diversity of content. Manga isn't dominated by on genre like American comics are and anime isn't dominated by one demographic like cartoons are in the states. That means, that even though overall quality is probably the same, anime/manga targets more then one demographic and thus brings in audiences that its counterparts here can't or won't. This is why some people probably think manga are better then American comics. It's not so much a quality thing as it is an ease of being able to find something that appeals to you thing. Heck, the fact that manga targets women in a major way doubles its audience right there.

Hazard
05-19-2014, 07:48 AM
It's an easy way to differentiate.

Also plays into the expectations you have for different words. Saying I love movies is not the same thing is saying I love novels which is not the same as saying I love French movies and I love old, Black and White movies.


Your opinion is WRONG. The most popular animes have basically been Sailor Moon, Dragon Ball Z, and Pokemon. Nothing about them is anymore sophisticated than your average episode of G.I. Joe, Ninja Turtles, or (tremble) My Little Pony.

Dude, all caps wrong is just rude.

Also, your opinion on popularity works only in regard of the American market, if that.

Donald M.
05-19-2014, 09:13 PM
Because for fans of manga and anime, the distinction is important. It's not just about liking cartoons and comics, it's about specifically liking Japanese cartoons and comics.

JaggedFel
05-19-2014, 10:08 PM
That was never my intention. I'm no raving geeky otaku trying to spread the holy gospel of anime. You have your opinions and I have mine. I simply find anime more enjoyable that American animation. And for the record, I enjoyed shows like Ikki Tousen, HOTD, and my all-time favorite guilty pleasure was the pantyflashing fest, Agent Aika. I also apologize for assuming that you haven't watched more anime than you have. One should never assume which is foolish, which I had been.

Yeah Anime has a wider range of genres. Most American Animation these days is pure comedy for the most part which is nice but I dont know personally sometimes I like a good action show or mystery drama.

Jabare
05-20-2014, 05:08 AM
In practice cartoons and anime are technically the same, but referring to them differently generally highlights the different styles and techniques not to mention histories of both mediums and there are several notable difference once you get past the shallow comparison that they are just art.


As for Manga and comics I think thw two are very distinct in a lot of ways, yes they are both drawings/artwork. I think its fine to acknowledge the cultural difference and the aesthetic difference that comes along with both of them. If you read comics than read manga you will see a very noticeable contrast. If your unfamiliar with one or the other grouping them together makes sense, but if you are familiar with both genres you'll be aware of some of the big differences the genres tend to have with one another



HA! JAU, you pervert! Tentacles is hentai.

I get that 'cartoon' has the implication of childlike/-ish. Which is why I'll say 'animation'. And so do the Japanese, except that they like their little cute diminutives, hence 'animé'*







*Source: Japanese Lit. Prof. SO.

hentai is a subsett of anime

Alex L
05-20-2014, 05:29 PM
Generally those are called OGNs, or Original Graphic Novels. Even the ridiculously short ones

Persepolis however, was serialized.

How do you feel about serialized prose novels? Still novels or are the bulk of Dickens, etc, just collections?

Hm. Hadn't put much thought into that, actually. I do know there are some books that are compilations of magazine articles and whatnot, and obviously there are book series like A Song of Fire and Ice or Wheel of Time that are not standalone novels. Not really sure what I'd call them.


I've always been of the opinion that Japanese anime is MUCH more sophisticated than American made cartoons in terms of style, substance and story, so, in my mind, there IS a difference between the two terms. Can you imagine U.S. studios, forever hamstrung by the FCC, holier-than-thou religious groups and legions of overprotective parents producing shows chock full of violence, bloodshed, rampant gunplay and swordplay, yuri, hentai, nudity, harems, horror, girls with guns, girls with monster boobs, the whole nine yards like Japan does? That's why the U.S. has done boatloads of goofy, funny and cutesy-pie stuff while Japan brought us classics like Akira, Cowboy Bebop, Evangelion and so forth.


Apparently you haven't watched very much anime other than what you described. I never said anything about popular, just sophisticated. Other than the examples I mentioned, throw in the Gundam franchise, Fullmetal Alchemist, Ghost in the Shell, the films of Hayao Miyazaki and Satoshi Kon, Hellsing, Black Lagoon, Clannad, ARIA, the samples are many and varied. Bottom line, there's much more to anime beyond what you've seen on Cartoon Network. And besides, who's to say anybody is right or wrong, I was merely expressing an opinion.

But you're not comparing the two equally. The American cartoons you're limiting to what's mainstream, whereas with the anime you're going "well, obviously you have to do some digging beyond Cartoon Network" (as though CN didn't show Cowboy Bebop or Trigun back in the day). Either you compare what's mainstream and easily accessible, or the entirety of their catalog.

Selena Musić
05-29-2014, 02:25 PM
It's Japanese culture. There's no point in changing names. Style is completely different from American comics and cartoons.

"Manga" just means "comics" in Japanese and likewise "Anime" just means "cartoons" or "animation" in Japanese.

Beacon
07-25-2014, 12:36 PM
Those terms exist in the western world for the same reason “graphic novel” and “sequential art” do; so pretentious people don’t have to admit to reading comic books. "Comic books" are for kids and nerds.

Having said that, at least Manga generally exists in a format that is unlike most other comics.

I cannot figure out any real difference between “anime” and “cartoons” though.

Carabas
07-25-2014, 12:52 PM
Those terms exist in the western world for the same reason “graphic novel” and “sequential art” do; so pretentious people don’t have to admit to reading comic books. "Comic books" are for kids and nerds.
Sorry, but the USA still isn't the entire Western world.


Having said that, at least Manga generally exists in a format that is unlike most other comics.They're in paperbacks. Seems like exactly the same format most comics are printed in.

mathew101281
07-25-2014, 02:08 PM
To me the word manga means a particular type of comic. I don't use the two terms interchangeably because doing so wouldn't be saying much. If you were telling somebody that you watch tv or read books they would ask you what kind of tv show or book? It's the same thing with comic. Manga has its own set of conventions and norms that separate it from what we call comics.

TroubleWithTrebles
07-25-2014, 03:12 PM
Tap dancing and A Chorus Line are both dance but not the same. Film Noir and RomCom are both film but have jack crap to do with each other.

Collected underground newspaper cartoons collected into graphnov print format are no more a graphic novel than 120 pages of Garfield strips from 1979 -1982, despite being in a book format.

The intention of the inception of manga for the desired semiotic response of the audience is worlds away from that of Super Thong Babe issue #1. Thus from start to finish they are disparate enough to need separate classifications.

heretic
07-26-2014, 03:04 AM
Speaking as one who was there in the late '80s/ early '90s rise of imported Japanese stuff; one major point on the (perceived) Anime/Manga vs Cartoon/Comics distinction is the breadth of subject matter (including what one could and to a degree still can get away with) in the former.

Now the more cartoons in the West get away from the SatAM/Disney template and American Comics diversify from the Superhero one, the less that division makes sense.

Xalfrea
07-26-2014, 03:40 AM
I always make the distinction and nobody gives a crap.

But sometimes I say "American animation" and "Japanese animation". There's nothing wrong with using the word "animation" now, is there?

Thor2014
07-26-2014, 05:55 PM
I always make the distinction and nobody gives a crap.


But sometimes I say "American animation" and "Japanese animation". There's nothing wrong with using the word "animation" now, is there?

nothing at all. I like the term 'japanimation' myself. ;)