Let me state the obvious here: The Internet for me is a hotchpotch of more often than not, meaningless and pointless activity that needlessly complicated a person’s real life. My blog complicates my life because everyday, I end up wondering: “Was it all worth it?”

Seeing as you, my dear, teeny, tiny audience are caught in this swirling vortex of nothingness (hence designation of ‘Void’), I have no choice but to let you in on the latest in pointless endeavors. This time the madness comes from the digital art community! The players of this foolishness are the fairly popular anime-art haven DeviantArt and the anti-Anime league.

Anyone still remember that ol’ blog post about how the Manga/Anime style is hated for its un-anatomically correct figures and simplified, generic style? Well, apparently, that little argument has erupted into a full-blown controversy for many would-be Internet drama queens! (Reminds me of the good ol’ Robotech fandom days, good times) I now present to you:

StudioMMG presents the latest, pointless and whiny Internet Drama: “The Anime Artist’s Retort, To the Anti-Anime Artist”!

DeviantArt has released a statement regarding this latest “controversy”.

“This topic was brought to DA from Damaged927 (Some guy's ID) from the collection of hate mail that we have been receiving. Therefore, because we are writers, we decided to write about it.

The original question from Damage927 was why do non-anime artists, have a prejudice to anime? Moreover, the collection of hate mail we received, always ask us why do anime artists “suck” or why “we get so much hype”? Therefore, the DAOS, in an effort to promote unity and love amongst all artists of all art forms, is going to try to make both sides understand each other...”

FlipMcGee posted this DeviantArt statement on the Conceptart.org forum, a place believed to hold the highest concentration of guys-and-gals-who-don’t-think-anime-artists-should-be-taken-seriously. I’m going to be taking responses from that forum, because #1, I trust the artistic opinions of those guys more than some of the DevArt admin people. Anyway, here’s the excerpt I was talking about:

“So why do Anti-Anime Artists act the way they do towards us Anime Artists?

Reason Four: ... Anti-Anime Artists are jealous of Anime Artists.

Reason Five: Fear of the unknown + Not the status quo = Anti-Anime Artists”

Full article found here: Issue #8: An Anime Artist's Retort, to the Anti-Anime Artist

I could easily go on and dissect every little detail about DeviantAer “official position” regarding the issue, but I’d rather not. In any case, this blog is not about declaring which style is better. It’s about more inane things. Like boobies.

I found this on the forum. It was posted by a certain Kev Ferrera, a regular Conceptart.org forum poster. He had... a very disturbing thing to say about this whole Anime/Manga issue. (If you are a total otaku, you might've heard of what I'm talking about)

Disclaimer: There are no known sources to back up these insane claims. Read all the way to the end to get to the bottom of this. This post is in no way intended to offend anybody, apart from your average otaku.

“The fact is, Manga was an Axis creation during World War II. Hitler and Goering were looking for a way to spread the Nazi message in a more populist form and both being great fans of Disney (believe it or not) they engaged their culture ministry to obtain some cartoon artists in Germany to create a popular style to use in propaganda posters. The German artists failed to live up to Hitler's wishes (Hitler having been an artist himself) so Hitler essentially outsourced the creation of these propaganda cartoons to Japan. Hirohito was glad to oblige, formed a huge studio of Japans best cartoonists, and this is why Manga came out of Japan.

Quite a bit of early Manga had hidden swastikas in the hair of the characters as secret code demonstrating its origin. Of course very few nowadays know the origins of Manga, so many draw the hair without the swastikas.

One of the reasons so few know about the origins of manga is because the main studio producing the propaganda was destroyed in the first atomic bomb blast. (It was right near the Nissan steel plant, which produced war material and had not yet started making cars, which I think first happened in the late 1950s or early 60s)

Anyhow, before anybody defends Manga too strongly, you should know its origins in Nazi propaganda. Its design was strictly for the purposes of fooling the unwitting. Unfortunately, it has found some degree of success lately, which I think demonstrates the resurgence of a certain ideology in the world.”

My thoughts:
As usual, people quickly rushed to argue at the insanity of this article. Kev is a highly respected member of the Conceptart community, but some point out that this post was just off-the-wall crazy.
Which it is. People argued tirelessly about the origins of the Swastika symbol, etc. Understandable.

A member by the name of Mambo tries to reason with this, “…Modern manga has really nothing to do with the Nazi ideology despite it's roots as a propaganda tool. The Mitsubishi corporation was part of the Japanese war machine - producing fighter planes for Japan (the famous Japanese 'zero' fighter)... but Mitsubishi of today certainly has no links to a Nazi ideology. Why would manga be any different?”

Cute little schoolgirls are bent on corrupting your mind.

And Kev responds:
“mambo, you're missing the point. Manga is still effective as a tool for corrupting minds, just as it was intended. It is not devoid of all nazi content.

Just think about how racially similar all the charcters are, same eyes, same nose, same hair, etc... Its amazingly generic, just like the eugenics projects of the Nazis.

That's the problem with it. The message lives on in the style.”

My thoughts:
Of course, people fall for the trap, and respond with varying degrees of seriousness. Can mambo can play along with this madness? He ask Kev:

1) Who exactly is behind this dastardly plan to corrupt the minds of youth?
2) Why would they be corrupting them and to what end?
3) How can I get in on it? Put me down for the corruption of 16 year old cheerleaders with 36DD breasts.
4) Do they have a secret manga-nazi handshake?

Kev quickly retors:
If you don't understand that the creation of a generic set of facial characteristics is directly tied to the Nazi ideology of racial purity, then I really can't help you.

Maybe you look like a Manga character already, so it doesn't bother you. But where does that leave everybody else? This is classic under-the-radar propaganda. Those who are already indoctrinated will not be able to see it.

Propaganda is not "active measures". It is by nature "under the radar". If people know its propaganda, it doesn't work.

The people behind the manga phenomenon are the corporate hegemony, which is borderless and worldwide. If you study such things as how the Nazi empire was financed, you come across such companies as IG Farben and Thiessen Krupp. And when you see how they are tied in with the global economy you can see their influence.

And of course a dumbed-down consumer is always good for business. And if people seek to be homogeneous, much less variety of product needs to be produced, which of course saves factory expenses... You don't need to change the mold, just keep stamping out the same stuff. The same toys, the same television shows, the whole thing is about speedy broadcast of this "be generic" ideology. And the international banking cartels and their subsidiary corporations easily retain power, if all everybody seeks to do is conform.

The whole thing gets very complicated. But conformism to a fantasy racial purity that also happens to be childlike (indoctrinating the people into infantilism and helplessness) is very much the whole idea.

Don't keep the people down... have the people keep themselves down. Simple.”

My thoughts:
Interesting. Sort of reminds me of the current generation of Robotech fans and their blind devotion to the current administration. Notice nobody speaks out against Harmony Gold’s admin anymore? Everybody on Robotech.com just a faceless fan trying to get into the Officer’s Lounge. Okay, nevermind. I'm starting to sound as insane as what Kev is proposing here (Although I do worry about this fan that goes by the name of ‘Tommunist’). Anyway, if you think I sound whacked, keep reading this thread. If you can stomach it.

“If you want to promote racial eugenics through nazi-manga propaganda, hey, its a free country.

But you should know that manga art is intrinsically corrupt and anti-humane and promotes your own conformity to a corporate system that seeks to dominate your mind and keep you infantilized. Just keep that idea in the back of your mind as you slavishly copy the elements of manga style instead of developing your own artistic personality and gifts.

A lot of the original surviving documents passed between Himmler and Hirohito's propaganda staff about the creation of Manga can be found on certain usenet groups. (Which I can't find -ed)

The last book I saw on the topic was in special collections at Yale University Library. It was just really a binder, 4 ring, leather bound, falling apart, all written in German. It had some of the working papers of the German cartoonists. cut out and put in plastic sheaths (which was so old it was rock hard and so brown you could barely see the images beneath it) At the end there was some Japanese documents that had been translated into German.

I wish I could be more specific as to the location of more of this material. I lot of the guys on the usenet spy networks had a lot to say on the topic (not all of which I believed, of course)”

My thoughts:
Alright. If you are wondering what the heck was all of this about, don't worry. I'm as confused as anyone. Anid Maro, another forum-goer, takes this all pretty well despite the
lack of compelling evidence and responds “…I will continue to treat this discussion as a plaything for my personal amusement”.

Hahaha! Oh well, lets close this one. Kev, if you please:

“..Just to clarify, just about everything I've written on this thread is just pure fun silliness. It was prompted by Flip McGee's first post which linked to an article which proclaimed anti-manga folk (who I later joked were also called Mangacists) were somehow jealous of manga and were failing to appreciate its qualities because it was outside of their cultural frame of reference.

Now, one either engages with these kinds of "arguments" or one simply transcends them with more absurdity. I chose the latter.

I do have personal artistic differences with certain aspects of manga/anime/ whateverthehelltheretentiveaficianadoswanttocallitsotheycanfeelsuperior that I would tend to categorize as stylistic eccentricities that are contrary to observable reality, the endless repetition of which has resulted in a tumult of visual clichés cascading into world culture. I have a problem with that tumult of visual falsity.

I do think art reflects character and affects character and since I do prefer idiosyncratic people to homogenized automatons, I would wish that artists would be more personal aesthetically rather than conform to a mass styles. (Not that I don't find hieroglyphs, for instance, wonderful.)

Then again, I have really enjoyed some of the animated movies I have seen in this style. I do not think people who are into Manga are necessarily losers.”

My thoughts:
You have to understand, this debate is a lot deeper than we all think. Anti-anime advocates, who sometimes think they are better than everyone else, constantly whine about this and that, while Pro-Anime art advocates, who think they are better than everyone else, keep going at it as well. There is no victor.

Kev is just showing us the absurdity of it all. (He has been advocating people to adopt their own visual style and not cling too much to anime, and I tell you THIS IS TRUE if you want to be a serious artist) In the end though, the debate is ultimately as pointless as debating whether Koreans are out to take over the Robotech franchise. If you want to express yourself in the anime/manga-visual style, then I ain't gonna be your mama and talk you out of it. I happen to love the anime medium. You know why, Void.

But the thing is with Kev's absurd conspiracy theory is that they're fun. And if you don't see the inherent joy in having a moment of senseless, fairly insensitive, and stupid fun, then get out of the internet, fast - because inconsiderate jerks lurk around every corner, drama queen. I know because I was all of em'.

A forum poster from Conceptart.org (CA) posted this image:

If you're one of those jokers who can't take a joke, then get a sense of humor, will ya? I still remember a bunch of kooks complaining about this April Fool's Joke posted by a blogger named Darkwater. He posted on his ol' blog about a company called Harmony Gold and that their offices burned down!

The joke ran its course, but you know what? Two years later, the topic managed to get brought up on some obscure forum, and they started bashing Darkwater for being an insensitive prick - that it was way out of line. Below is the actual image posted by Darkwater on his blog on April 1st:

Do you believe this is true? (If the
answer is yes, congratulations! Good for you! )
Now, go sue Coke for making you fat!

I know I've had my fair share of drama when I participated in the Robotech fandom, but this is just retarded. Or maybe people are just gullible. Here's my advice: Use common sense, please! That's the whole point of this thread!

Anyway, I may have just derailed my own thread. Lets get back to the topic on hand. Which was... wait... What the hell was the topic?! Sheesh!

Well, if you can still stomach more of this post's absurdity, then please, I order you to watch this World War II cartoon relic. Another disclaimer: You may not look at Donald Duck the same again.


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