Most horror anime is not really horror, even if it scares us

Every Halloween, anime fans will receive a list of horror anime gifts for you to watch during the holiday. Year after year, the list is full of shows that are not really scary in my opinion. Of course, some shows involve a lot of violence and gore, or rampant demonic/vampire/monster activities, and quite a few popular titles are about the dark part of human psychology, including intense plots. So, what is “horror”? In short, this type of entry is intended to cause fear. Whether you are scared as an audience is subjective, but the real horror animation has a direct connection with the history of stinging tactics. Since there are few real panics, anime series that really meet the requirements have become more to be celebrated.

Since the birth of the media, the Soul of Terror has been a part of animation, at least in the West.Symphony of Stupidity from Walt Disney, especially “Skull Dance”, and works by the Fleischer Brothers Swing you sinner with snow White, Animation opens the door to the movie world for fantasy images, even if it is a fun musical with dancing corpses.However, in Japan, creators established a recognizable tone of terror in the 1960s, such as Adventure Boy Shadar with GeGeGe no Kitarō, Although focused on fighting monsters and ghosts to save the world instead of scaring the audience.In the 1980s, with the rise of OVA (basically direct video animation), it gave way to extreme violence, blood, sex, and weirdness. Evil City, Vampire Hunter D And of course, shake.

These animations use violence and blood to shock the audience, but they prefer excitement rather than panic.Of course, Tetsuo became a huge spot shake It’s purely physical horror in Conan Bo format, but this movie is not meant to cause fear, because it is exciting. Cronenberg focuses on the horrible and traumatic transformations that may occur in our bodies to dig deeper into our collective fear of the impending collapse of the fragile body, and Otomo Katsuhiro’s groundbreaking animation aims to create a gentle but still fascinating story of adolescence and male violence .

shake
Picture: Funimation

In fact, most of the anime movies and shows that fall into the horror genre are more like thrillers, whose focus is on surprises, keeping the audience curious and excited about what happens next. other It is a great anime with the plot of the final destination movie, great killings, and an interesting plot full of shocking twists and turns, but it is more like a bloody mystery than a horror show, and aims to provide an interesting Puzzles to solve who will die next.It’s not about disturbing the audience in a way that scares the audience Next Death scenes, popular things When Higurashi is crying success. Then there is a acclaimed trio: Boogiepop Phantom, Serial Experiments Lain, with Paranoid agent, Prioritize the atmosphere, the creepy images, and the feeling that reality is not like that. The series deals with paranoia and existentialism, leading to anime shows that are closest to horror, even if their plot does not follow any clear horror metaphor.

The animation may be scary, but time shows that there are obstacles; it seems to be much more difficult to make the audience feel scared when watching 2D drawings than with real people, but it can and has been done.Take an animated film as an example Monster room, A children-oriented 3D animated film, it still provides a lot of fright, weird atmosphere and the characters you are afraid of-all of which do not require violence and blood.Then there are R-rated animated horror movies, such as Train to Busan get rid of Seoul Station with Resident Evil: Degradation, It uses the zombie horror metaphor to make you care about what happened to the characters and feel scared when they inevitably die.

Seoul Station: A woman was hung in a bar by a group of zombies

Seoul Station
Image: FilmRise

Surprisingly, the anime is closer to the true horror tone of the juvenile genre.Since the 1980s, action horror anime has accepted horror metaphors and used them to make violence more severe, such as Demon man And above Vampire Hunter D. In the 90s, boy anime likes You You Baishu And super popular bleach Take inspiration from horror movies and shows Oni Taro Create action-centric series, still weaving supernatural elements. death Note with monster, at the same time, Take a psychological thriller, tell us dark stories of murders and serial killers, and introduce them to the mainstream audience.

In the past five years, the boy anime has put the characters in terrible situations by embracing the metaphor of terror, finally highlighting the optimism of the sub-genre, thus further promoting this idea. Attack on Titan Not only has it become one of the most popular anime shows of all time, but it has also become The walking dead This is one of the darkest and scariest shows in recent years. This is a show set in a cruel world, full of violence, blood and constant fear of the characters, they may die at any time-while still presenting a classic story of a young boy learning to embrace his own power.Even recently we have Demon Slayer with Jiu-Jitsu sea fairy, It can be said to be the two biggest boy animes at present, both adapted from the manga published in the prestigious Shonen Jump magazine, which also published such as One Piece, My Hero Academia, Naruto with Full-time hunter.

Jujutsu Kaisen Episode 3: Yuji killed his first curse by putting a sword on his head

Picture: Map

Demon Slayer with Jiu-Jitsu Sea Fairy Have all the elements of a successful boy anime: a cute protagonist and incredible strength, a story of perseverance and determination, and a group of supporting characters who support heroes and help them learn the value of friendship to face adversity. However, what makes them unique is that they basically adopted this magic weapon and placed it in a seemingly impossible horrible environment, where hope always has to fight harder to exist, where The power level is not only a toy, but also comes at a price. The character may face a terrible fate. The injury will not heal immediately, but will leave bloody marks. The villain is really terrifying.Watch the third episode Jiu-Jitsu Sea Fairy, It is essentially a haunted house story, using the creepy noise and the metaphor of things moving on their own, and then unleash a threatening spirit in our main characters, and then let them kick the ass with calm and growing power.

Before getting lost, The promised neverland Perfectly combined with a teenage story, the children got together to save the day from the monsters and turned it into a terrible and anxious horror story. The first season uses the framework to keep a distance from the characters. The contrast between the CG environment and the 2D characters makes the story feel inexplicable and highlights the weird images of villains and orphans in the play. Watchmen.

As for the more traditional “horror animation”, not all are lost.Adaptations of horror comedy Miliu Sauce Currently on the air, it cleverly uses horror metaphors to create an interesting anime that contains scary images of ghost whisperers.Next year, the much-anticipated classic adaptation of Junji Ito swirl The horror cartoon should be like a cross between physical horror and cosmic horror, because it records a small town plagued by the spiral curse. At the same time, horror has become an integral part of making anime both exciting and popular, even if these shows do not fully incorporate the essence of horror.