Anime has been and still is one of the largest industries in Japan, over the years the fandom has been joined by a few western fans too as a result of exposure to anime due to Toonami. Its safe to say many non-asian fans started this way! In recent years the number of people watching seems to be rising and we have well-known people and some celebrities coming out of the anime closet, as such the fandom is growing, however, even though we can all be considered anime lovers there exists a number of variations in the types of anime fans. Here’s a list of the 7 main types of lovers.
The depiction of Japanese food in anime isn’t just about how well it’s designed, but the overall presentation and how the characters prepare and serve each dish. When it comes to the presentation of anime food vs real life food, many Japanese animations depict meals and snacks in their traditional form.
As the name suggests, newbies have just discovered their new found love for anime and it is likely they are only a few episodes deep in one of the very mainstream anime like Naruto, Bleach, Tokyo Ghoul etc. Newbies can often be spotted in conversations as they tend to make a few small mistakes in character name pronunciation and sometimes even getting some names wrong. This can make them very irritating to fans who have been in the scene for a while but in general, the anime fandom is very accommodating and accepting to newbies.
The Anime Otaku
The word Otaku in among fans outside Japan is used to describe someone who is an extreme fan of something, but it is usually used to refer to gamers ( Otaku gamer or Gemu Otaku ) or anime fans. However in Japan, it is seen more as a derogatory term and it is advisable not to use it among friends as you would in the West, unless you’d like to lose a friend! An English translation would be someone who has an anime ‘mania’. Otaku's are experts and interact with other fans online and in real life, they are mostly quite normal with a profound interest in anime!
The Anime Hikikomori
The term Hikikomori is used to describe a very specific type of people, these folks don’t enjoy interacting in the real world and like to stay at home, they pass their time playing games, reading manga, light novels and watching tons of anime (I guess that doesn’t sound too bad) However, the word Hikkomori does not carry the best annotation and usually refer to those with low social
The term Weeaboo is given to a person who is usually of western origin and has a seemingly unhealthy obsession with anime. These folks associate all things anime with Japanese culture and unnecessarily use the few Japanese words they know mixed in with English every time they speak! Weeaboo's no doubt love anime and Japan but in their quest to shun their own identity and ‘be’ Japanese, they piss off many fans who believe they are stereotyping Japanese culture, because. Weeaboos tend to think that everything in Japan will be like in the anime and have no cultural knowledge of the country beyond what they see in anime.
Most anime fans have had a crush on a character at one point or another, this is close to what a Waifu fan is! They are fans who get super obsessive over a certain character and develop a real crush on the characters. The term waifu was originally used by male fans who have had a crush on female characters but today we can see female fans using this term for their male characters obsessions as well. These fans will talk more about the character they love than the story or plot, some waifu fans have taken it a step further and proclaim their love for their anime waifu by wearing a wedding band!
Nijikon refers to fans who are no longer interested in the anime but are specific characters of anime and manga. They have a strong obsession with a character and will either have a deep yearning to ‘be’ the character or just are only interested in specific 2D characters. These folks are those that can be seen carrying cardboard cutouts and have their own dolls, in some extreme cases they don’t find any interest in humans of the opposite sex anymore and have lost touch with reality somewhat.
This term is used to describe anime fans who jump on the bandwagon as they see it rising to popularity. Fans who have been into anime for a while tend to get irritated by these folks as they do not have full information about what they are talking about but will join in just to be apart of the hype or because they see it is becoming ‘cool’. These types of fans will pretend to like the Fullbringer arc of Bleach because they think they are supposed to! (we all hate it, did you even watch bleach?). Bandwagon fans can be called out as those who start watching anime just because they heard Micheal B Jordan started watching it or because Kim Kardashian mentioned she was ‘obsessed’ with anime.
Reading this article, you may have been able to identify with more than one of these 7 types of fans and that's totally natural, these 7 types are all based on extremes and in real life we are all somewhat of anime Otaku’s, If you’re reading this article you’ve probably had a waifu character you loved and we all try to weave in our limited Japanese vocabulary sometimes just to feel closer to our characters. Which one do you identify with the most?