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Thread: Cartoons vs. Anime

  1. #1
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    Default Cartoons vs. Anime

    While I don't have any solid opinions on this debate, I'm wondering what people here think about Japanese Animation compared to Western Animation. Please don't be rude and be constructive in your opinions be it about animation, art, storytelling, tendencies, things one has over the other, etc. You can debate with each other so long as it don't boil down to insulting others.

    Have fun.

    P.S. If this is the wrong place for this thread, let me know.
    Last edited by matt0044; 29th March 2013 at 1:36 PM.

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    Wouldn't Japanese animation be covered under Easter animation? Unless you meant Western animation?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jolteon91 View Post
    Wouldn't Japanese animation be covered under Easter animation? Unless you meant Western animation?
    DAMMIT. I'll go fix it. Where was my brain on that one?

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    On your head, hahaha.

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    I prefer anime as in my experiences anime tell a wider varieties of stories than what I can find in your average cartoon, of course I don't dig as deeply into the Western animation scene as I do anime, so there is likely to be some stuff I just don't know about.

    The animation is another plus for me, I see some of the stuff my little cousins watch, and I can't help but think to myself "Wow, the quality in most of the anime I watch is just so much better than this." Though once again, I don't really have the greatest of sample sizes to work with on this, though I'd love for anyone to point out some Western animation tv series that have quality even close to being on par with something you would get from a KyoAni, P.A. Works, ufotable etc.


    Quote Originally Posted by brendan25 View Post
    On your head, hahaha.
    One would think his brain would be inside his head, rather than on it.
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    let me just go ahead and say this; anime are not cartoons and they are nothing like them. and on my opinion, anime are much better than cartoons and the animation style is much better.
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    Quote Originally Posted by shadorai View Post
    let me just go ahead and say this; anime are not cartoons
    Yes, they are.
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    Quote Originally Posted by shadorai View Post
    let me just go ahead and say this; anime are not cartoons and they are nothing like them. and on my opinion, anime are much better than cartoons and the animation style is much better.
    Anime is Japanese cartoons, so yes, they are cartoons. People should really accept this. Cartoon doesn't mean "funny non-Japanese kids show", it applies to all shows animated from SpongeBob to Cowboy Bebop.

    =====

    When it comes down to it, western animation is no better or worse than anime. Western animation just tends to focus much more on comedy. Shows like Ed, Edd'n Eddy and Johnny Bravo and even early SpongeBob are hilarious. But, there are those few rare experiences of good western action as well. Samurai Jack is an amazing series, the 2011 reboot of ThunderCats was animated in Japan but isn't an anime and is very impressive, and Young Justice is probably one of the best western action shows you'll ever see. And of course you can't forget classics like Batman: the Animated Series and the good ol' Looney Tunes, not to mention the majority of Disney movies.

    Anime is a great source of action for me. I grew up on Toonami and was introduced to shows like Speed Racer, Voltron, Sailor Moon, Dragon Ball Z, Tenchi Muyo!, Outlaw Star, Rurouni Kenshin, Gundam Wing and several others. This is were my fandom began and I have come to appreciate a lot of anime, both action and non-action (though that is rare). While I do enjoy a lot of anime, there are some titles I've seen that were very bad IMO and a select few I totally dropped because I thought they were garbage.

    While anime is usually my preference when it comes to what kind of show I watch, there are definitely western shows that put some anime to shame. I would put Young Justice up against any action anime. And personally, the "moe" genre of anime is extremely unimpressive to me and very boring with Madoka Magica being the exception. This is strictly opinion, but I'd rather watch SpongeBob reruns than K-On.

    Western cartoons and anime both have their strengths, but both also have their own weaknesses which depends on the quality of the show itself, not because it's from one country vs. another. WHERE a show comes from shouldn't matter, especially considering that shows like Winx Club (Italy) and Code Lyoko (France) also have aired on US television. In the end though, it's all animation, and there are good and bad shows regardless of where they come from. But anime IS cartoons.
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    I don't think that one is inherently better than the other. Either one could be animated beautifully or animated atrociously. It all depends on who is doing the work and what kind of style suits the writing. Although I find the subject matter more appealing in anime than in western cartoons. Here in the states, adults still have the misconception that all animation is automatically intended for children, which is why they got shocked when they here stuff on Family Guy and shows like it when their kids are watching it because they assume that since its animated, there is no harm in watching it.

    Also, western animated shows seem to be pigeonholed to catering to kids, sacrificing quality for ratings. Sure they sometimes get stuff under the radar, but the slightest hint at anything controversial, and the soccer moms are up in arms about it. Case in point is the "What Was Missing" episode of Adventure Time. In it, there is heavy subtext that implies that Marceline and Princess Bubblegum might have been more than friends at some point. But as soon as someone even suggests that its true, they go up in arms and go on about the "gay agenda" and what not. Where as in anime, a plot like that wouldn't even register as a blip on the radar. Rather than relying on subtext, an anime will sometimes just flat out say stuff, with the writer telling you exactly what was meant when someone does or says something.

    As for anime, its very clear that its not simply a child's market. Which is why I tend to lean more towards it more than western cartoons. Don't get me wrong, they can still be good as Adventure Time, Regular Show, and Young Justice proved. But if I had a gun to my head and I had to pick a side, I'd more than likely choose anime.
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    I don't specifically prefer one over the other, because I'm not a racist psychopath the quality of a show doesn't have anything to do with where it's from.

    Quote Originally Posted by shadorai View Post
    let me just go ahead and say this; anime are not cartoons and they are nothing like them. and on my opinion, anime are much better than cartoons and the animation style is much better.
    This thread title is terrible because it makes people post **** like this.

    Quote Originally Posted by voicerocker View Post
    Anime is Japanese cartoons, so yes, they are cartoons. People should really accept this. Cartoon doesn't mean "funny non-Japanese kids show", it applies to all shows animated from SpongeBob to Cowboy Bebop.
    But there are still some stupid people out there who think that all cartoons are children's shows, which is where a lot of the outcry behind South Park came from.

    When it comes down to it, western animation is no better or worse than anime. Western animation just tends to focus much more on comedy. Shows like Ed, Edd'n Eddy and Johnny Bravo and even early SpongeBob are hilarious. But, there are those few rare experiences of good western action as well. Samurai Jack is an amazing series, the 2011 reboot of ThunderCats was animated in Japan but isn't an anime and is very impressive, and Young Justice is probably one of the best western action shows you'll ever see. And of course you can't forget classics like Batman: the Animated Series and the good ol' Looney Tunes, not to mention the majority of Disney movies.
    There's a lot of Western animation that's comedic out there, yes, but let's keep in mind that, even there, there's some dark material hidden in those.

    And personally, the "moe" genre of anime is extremely unimpressive to me and very boring with Madoka Magica being the exception. This is strictly opinion, but I'd rather watch SpongeBob reruns than K-On.
    Seconded. Not specifically Madoka, though. But in general, that particular sub-style is kind of... getting old. It wasn't particularly good when it started, and now it's horribly played-out and kind of keeps me away from a lot of series.

    Quote Originally Posted by deathseer View Post
    Case in point is the "What Was Missing" episode of Adventure Time. In it, there is heavy subtext that implies that Marceline and Princess Bubblegum might have been more than friends at some point. But as soon as someone even suggests that its true, they go up in arms and go on about the "gay agenda" and what not.
    The only "backlash" I remember about "What Was Missing" was when the gans got mad when a creator took down something that implied further that they were lesbian lovers (because they weren't) and fandom tried to urge them into putting it back up and canonizing the fact that they were lesbians. The fandom tried to bully the creators into making some of its characters gay, because apparently the sexuality of a children's show matters.
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    Like others have said, I don't really prefer one more than the other in terms of what they bring to the table. I have had just as much as a good time with cartoons in the 90's as I have with anime now. ( Yeah, I know anime are cartoons, just bear with me here) That being said, I guess I've outgrown the most of the culture that today's cartoons are based around. I prefer my animation with deeper stories and better writing. I know there are some some cartoons like this (Avatar, Young Justice and even Phineas and Ferb), but it's more easily available in anime form. imo Both types of animation have shows that are just simply retarded (Green Green/Fish Hooks) but this tends to shine more here in the states, probably because of it being more easily exposed here. It's also a lot easier to just boot up laptop and not have to sit through the commercials that cartoons tend to have, I know Netflix and such negates this though. In terms of animations it self, both have there bad and good. It's simple a style of drawling.

    In the end, it's just a lot easier to relate to anime as whole. Not to mention that today's cartoon channels are straying away a little from actual cartoons. The anime comunity seems a lot more engaging too, whether that's a good or bad thing. If I had to pick one though, I'd clearly lean to the anime side. In my experience there is simply more variety. Some "good" cartoons also seem to get canceled for some reason.

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    Honestly, there's really no difference between Western animation and Japanese animation. But I think anime has better characters for the most part in nearly all anime, and they especially don't treat their children like idiots unlike most cartoons over here. It could be because they're more lenient about their children there, but you know, we can do the same thing over here without getting too extreme. Almost everything from the 90s and beyond proved it well. This may be the nostalgia talking of course, but cartoons these days just aren't very good at keeping a good balance of story and characters, as well as subtlety. Oh hell, you would be lucky to have a cartoon with decent subtlety, everything's just about in your face about it (which personally bothers me, and is why I don't watch Adventure Time and Regular Show amongst others, next to the fact the style used in Adventure Time actually scares me, and makes my eyes hurt from lack of shading). Meanwhile for the most part, anime handles it well enough to the point of maturity--even if it's in your face about it.

    There's also the animation quality. Western animation is more on the simplistic, colorful side, while anime focuses on the detail while still having limited animation--yet I've noticed anime has more care put into them. Yes, money is always going to be involved, but it's like the Japanese pretty much make sure to use up their budget while Western animators cut corners to make sure there's money left over. I could be wrong, but it just looks like that to me. That's why I'm almost always going to go for anime if the quality of animation was involved, unless you pit it up against Disney or Don Bluth's works. For the love of all that is good, I never want to be in the situation where I'll have to be forced to pick one style for the rest of my life. Yes, I'll love anime, and I will for years to come, but I love Disney and Bluth just as much (especially because anime was strongly influenced by Western cartoons, particularly Disney movies).

    So overall, it really just comes down to personal preference. I can see where some people would stick up their noses at anime, especially when it comes to the adults (e.g. our parents), but it just depends on how one was introduced to it. While my mom doesn't mind anime anymore for the most part if just for the animation, she will never get into it because of its reputation of how it objects women (which is true, but it depends on the anime/manga) if not so much the story using Japanese culture to fuel it. That's the problem she has with Studio Ghibli films: she can never wrap her head around the story because she engrosses herself into the Japanese symbolism when there is no real need to. She will stay and watch mainly for the animation. And I think that's fine, there is something gorgeous about Japanese animation that most Western cartoons don't have, and so I can see how it will grab someone's attention.

    So yeah. My thoughts on it, even though it may not make sense in some places, I think. *shrugs*
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phlogiston View Post
    There's a lot of Western animation that's comedic out there, yes, but let's keep in mind that, even there, there's some dark material hidden in those.
    Gravity Falls and Courage the Cowardly Dog for example.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jolteon91 View Post
    Yes, they are.
    If I could rate your post agree I would.

    Anyway, I don't think it's fair to say either is better, I mean sure, I love me a bit of steins;gate, but god is regular show good. Anime caters to a wider audience than a lot of western cartoons, I mean sure, there are western cartoons that are aimed at adults (south park, family guy etc) but a lot of the time cartoons are associated with children, whereas in japan cartoons can be for any age group. Take baccano or steins;gate for example, they aren't exactly what you'd call kids shows, you wouldn't expect to see them on cartoon network or jetix(that's still around right?) but you would see something more child friendly like some batman cartoon. There are anime for every genre imaginable, there are plenty of people who don't regularly watch anime (I do) who still enjoy anime, because they treat them like a normal show. Sure there are anime out there that are aimed at kids (card captor sakura, tonnes more, but none come to mind) Another thing that you'll notice if you watch anime is the voice acting, in japan it's taken a lot more seriously than over here, I'm not saying that all voice actors don't have any emotion (steve blum's pretty cool) but a lot of the time you don't get the same level of acting as you would with anime. Now as I said before, I don't think of one as being more important than the other, but I hope you see what I mean when I say that anime shouldn't just be brushed of as children's cartoons.

    I saw someone on a forum that I visit make a post something like "What makes a good children's TV program is one that is aimed at adults, but suitable for children" and I couldn't agree more. I enjoy a lot of anime because the primary audience (again, using baccano and steins;gate as examples) is that it isn't aimed at kids, a lot of kids shows are dumbed down to the point at which the aren't enjoyable. I recently started watching hi hi puffy ami yumi again, and god is it dull, it's so predictable, and just not fun to watch, but when I was a kid (well, a younger kid) I loved it, but on the flip side of this, I can still quite happily watch episodes of spongebob or edd ed and eddy from back then. Going on from edd ed and eddy, the writer of that originally worked on adult cartoons, and made edd ed and eddy because someone made him a bet.
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    Quote Originally Posted by absolalone111 View Post
    Another thing that you'll notice if you watch anime is the voice acting, in japan it's taken a lot more seriously than over here, I'm not saying that all voice actors don't have any emotion (steve blum's pretty cool) but a lot of the time you don't get the same level of acting as you would with anime.
    American voice actors for our cartoons can be just as good as the Japanese voice actors for their shows, or even vice versa (yes, there have been bad Japanese voice acting). It's just that when a show is going international, you have to translate it into the language the people of a certain area are familiar with, which includes phrases and sayings/dialects. And language is a complexity that sometimes doesn't always translate well. Japanese to English is no exception.

    Now you say some voice actors here don't take their jobs seriously. I'm sure they all do, otherwise they'd be out of a job, it's just some have better experience and, let's face it, vocal range that makes them stand out. Otherwise, it's because of bad voice directing or just bad writing in general, and that's where most people roll their eyes and groan. Well you know, being a voice actor is a harder job than one would think, and it can be dangerous. You could lose your voice or damage your throat/vocal chords if you're not careful and are not exercising it. (Yes, you exercise your vocal chords, and keep your throat wet.) Mel Blanc would always record Yosemite Sam's lines last because it would hurt his throat every time he's screaming into the microphone. When he got older, someone else had to take over as Yosemite Sam.

    Do also keep in mind that anime became more mainstream in the 80s and 90s, so it's still a fairly recent movement, albeit not old. So there was a need for voice actors/actresses, and some of them entered new territory when it came to anime--there is a noticeable difference between Japanese and Western shows after all, and most of them probably hadn't grown up watching Speed Racer (which had a bad dub anyway), Kimba the White Lion, AstroBoy, to name a few (that we got). Majority of the dubbed anime we got around that time were either bad or decent, and it really shows especially once you compare them to modern dubs. (And even then, some of them are decent, like 4KIDS.)

    So it really just depends on the person and the character they're portraying, and how the script was written (if it was changed completely, or if it remained true). Yes, you're always going to get that one character who doesn't sound right, or the casting/translation is just a bunch of WTF-ery. But for the most part, English anime dubs have steadily been getting better as more and more people get exposed to the culture. There's really no "perfect" dub, but we've had some pretty damn close ones.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kutie Pie View Post
    American voice actors for our cartoons can be just as good as the Japanese voice actors for their shows, or even vice versa (yes, there have been bad Japanese voice acting). It's just that when a show is going international, you have to translate it into the language the people of a certain area are familiar with, which includes phrases and sayings/dialects. And language is a complexity that sometimes doesn't always translate well. Japanese to English is no exception.
    I know they can, there are quite a lot of really good voice actors. I understand perfectly that a lot of things don't sound well when translated over, dialect, sayings etc, I'm not criticizing scripts.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kutie Pie View Post
    Now you say some voice actors here don't take their jobs seriously. I'm sure they all do, otherwise they'd be out of a job, it's just some have better experience and, let's face it, vocal range that makes them stand out. Otherwise, it's because of bad voice directing or just bad writing in general, and that's where most people roll their eyes and groan. Well you know, being a voice actor is a harder job than one would think, and it can be dangerous. You could lose your voice or damage your throat/vocal chords if you're not careful and are not exercising it. (Yes, you exercise your vocal chords, and keep your throat wet.) Mel Blanc would always record Yosemite Sam's lines last because it would hurt his throat every time he's screaming into the microphone. When he got older, someone else had to take over as Yosemite Sam.
    I didn't mean that they don't take their jobs seriously, poor choice of wording on my part. I do understand that sometimes it isn't an actors fault, and it can be a director's fault when something doesn't sound right.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kutie Pie View Post
    So it really just depends on the person and the character they're portraying, and how the script was written (if it was changed completely, or if it remained true). Yes, you're always going to get that one character who doesn't sound right, or the casting/translation is just a bunch of WTF-ery. But for the most part, English anime dubs have steadily been getting better as more and more people get exposed to the culture. There's really no "perfect" dub, but we've had some pretty damn close ones.
    I agree. I don't really do dubs, but one that I thought was close to perfection was the baccano dub, that is the only anime that I've ever watched the entire thing dubbed.

    Just out of curiosity, have you ever done any voice acting? You seem to talk from personal experience, and I'm just a little interested if you have, or if you're just knowledgeable.
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    The main difference that I can see is that you get a lot more story driven cartoons in Japan than you get in the west.

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    I prefer cartoons over anime (which I don't watch much of). Cartoons also tend to have more varied art styles and less cliches, which is a plus for me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by absolalone111 View Post
    I know they can, there are quite a lot of really good voice actors. I understand perfectly that a lot of things don't sound well when translated over, dialect, sayings etc, I'm not criticizing scripts.

    I didn't mean that they don't take their jobs seriously, poor choice of wording on my part. I do understand that sometimes it isn't an actors fault, and it can be a director's fault when something doesn't sound right.
    Fair enough.

    I agree. I don't really do dubs, but one that I thought was close to perfection was the baccano dub, that is the only anime that I've ever watched the entire thing dubbed.
    I will watch either dub or sub, usually sub first. I hear the best dub we've gotten thus far was Cowboy Bebop, though I heard the Baccano dub was great as well. So far, I think the best dub I've personally heard excluding the dubs of Studio Ghibli films (because those tend to be aweseom) was Azumanga Daioh.

    Just out of curiosity, have you ever done any voice acting? You seem to talk from personal experience, and I'm just a little interested if you have, or if you're just knowledgeable.
    I've mostly done a bit of research the past couple of years, read up on experiences, and watched a video from I think Lanipator of TeamFourStar when he talked about voice acting tips. But I've done a bit of amateur voices myself for personal projects of my own (for school or for fun), and with a few friends. I have almost hurt my voice doing it a few times, and to help I kept a bottle in reach, and made sure to get in "character" before recording the lines and kept from screaming (only because I don't have a proper sound booth, but even the ones we have at college aren't completely soundproof depending on how loud you are).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brownie View Post
    I prefer cartoons over anime (which I don't watch much of). Cartoons also tend to have more varied art styles and less cliches, which is a plus for me.
    I wouldn't say so. Cartoons too have their own cliches. Believe me.

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    My like for Japanese cartoons have changed overtime. It used to be really fresh as a kid and I adored the medium while I was in my teens. Now, the majority of them either bore or disgust me. Though there aren't many, American cartoons have stuck with me however I have gained an enjoyable hobby in American comicbooks. That said, adaptations of them are usually very satisfying (stop messing up our favourite superheroes, Man of Action).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kutie Pie View Post
    I will watch either dub or sub, usually sub first. I hear the best dub we've gotten thus far was Cowboy Bebop, though I heard the Baccano dub was great as well. So far, I think the best dub I've personally heard excluding the dubs of Studio Ghibli films (because those tend to be aweseom) was Azumanga Daioh.
    I've never seen the dub of Cowboy Bebop, or the original (I'l get round to it at some point) I thought that thr ghibli dubs that I've seen were pretty good, although when I re-watched spirited away, all I cpould hear was Lilo from Lilo and stich speaking.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kutie Pie View Post
    I've mostly done a bit of research the past couple of years, read up on experiences, and watched a video from I think Lanipator of TeamFourStar when he talked about voice acting tips. But I've done a bit of amateur voices myself for personal projects of my own (for school or for fun), and with a few friends. I have almost hurt my voice doing it a few times, and to help I kept a bottle in reach, and made sure to get in "character" before recording the lines and kept from screaming (only because I don't have a proper sound booth, but even the ones we have at college aren't completely soundproof depending on how loud you are).
    That's actually pretty interesting, voice acting is something that I've been interested in for a while, I know this is a little off topic, but have you got any links for any specific sites that you'd recommend to someone who's interested in it, or think they should check out?
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    I really, really dislike most western cartoons. Please note that I do live in the United States so I can only speak for the cartoons shown here. Western cartoons seem to be very shallow, locking themselves into two genres: comedy or action. Even then, within those genres few set themselves apart from the rest as being any good(Teen Titans, Adventure Time, Samurai Jack, Young Justice, etc.). Much of the western cartoon scene now are things such as The Amazing World of Gumball, an idiotic mess. Pair this with what is largely undesirable art and most cartoons are unbearable.

    I realize that not all anime are golden. However, cartoons cannot touch the variety, depth, or art of anime overall. Evangelion, Code Geass, Clannad, and even the much hated SOA are far and above the vast majority of cartoons and the list keeps going. This may stem from the fact that cartoons are geared towards children while anime have much more freedom, it doesn't change my stance. This also applies to old "classic" cartoons, give me Saint Seiya(or even lucky star) over Tom & Jerry any day

    Personally, I prefer Anike to the vast majority of western programs, live action or animated. I hardly ever touch my TV, only using it to watch CNN in the mornings or The Supernatural. I do however enjoy some western programming(Doctor Who, Sherlock, and The Supernatural as previously stated).

    Soooo... yeah, that's about it
    Quote Originally Posted by Mew. View Post
    I guess you are a special one and do not fit under the "most people" category

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Leicester. UK
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elnava View Post
    I really, really dislike most western cartoons. Please note that I do live in the United States so I can only speak for the cartoons shown here. Western cartoons seem to be very shallow, locking themselves into two genres: comedy or action. Even then, within those genres few set themselves apart from the rest as being any good(Teen Titans, Adventure Time, Samurai Jack, Young Justice, etc.). Much of the western cartoon scene now are things such as The Amazing World of Gumball, an idiotic mess. Pair this with what is largely undesirable art and most cartoons are unbearable.
    Ah hell no man, a lot of western cartoons have a pretty nice art style, although a lot of them are less than steller, there's still a lot of nice looking things out there, with quirky art styles.
    Quote Originally Posted by Elnava View Post
    I realize that not all anime are golden. However, cartoons cannot touch the variety, depth,
    Agree
    Quote Originally Posted by Elnava View Post
    or art of anime overall.
    Disagree
    Quote Originally Posted by Elnava View Post
    give me... Saint Seiya(or even lucky star) over Tom & Jerry any day
    I think I was just a little sick in my mouth. Certainly there are a lot of anime with more depth to them than Tom & Jerry, but lucky star? Really?

    I do agree with the bit about how western cartoon only have two genres thing, if I try and think of a cartoon I like, 90% of the time I think of a comedy, but this doesn't make them inherantly bad. I really disagree with the idea that "the vast majority" of anime are above cartoons, there are a lot of western cartoons that have depth to them, although you may not think it. Adventure time being an example here, the episode about that cookie that wants to be a princess deals with transgenderism and LGBT rights. I mean sure, I do preffer anime to a lot of western programs, I've never been a massive fan of dramas or anything with people in, I've always preferred cartoons, but the reason I prefer anime is that I haven't really looked into western cartoons as much. Maybe there just isn't anything to look into, or maybe I just haven't tried hard enough. Going back to your comments on art, it goes both ways, you can quite easily dismis anime as "that thing where everyone has massive eyes" but there are a lot of different art styles within anime, same as with western tv. Watch adventure time, then watch billy and mandy, then watch courage the cowardly dog, then watchthe powerpuff girls, and tell me there isn't a variety in art. Although I will admit, there are a lot of frankly supurb anime out there, as a lot more effort is put into making anime look good.

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  25. #25
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
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    corn country
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    Quote Originally Posted by absolalone111 View Post
    I think I was just a little sick in my mouth. Certainly there are a lot of anime with more depth to them than Tom & Jerry, but lucky star? Really?
    Also, the fact that they're comparing something light-hearted and slapsticky to something with legitimate plot is kind of not fair. It'd be like comparing Family Circus to Anthem.
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