Television

×

×

Is it the end of the road for anime in India?

https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/smartcrop_800x800/public/images/tv-images/2018/11/12/pokemon.jpg?itok=-0MTG5Az

MUMBAI: Back in the 90s, a new legion of toon addicts was created in India with the advent of anime shows such as Pokémon, Dragonball Z and Naruto that were telecast on Cartoon Network. A few years later, the genre hasn’t found the popularity in Indian kids that it has in some other parts of the world.

The popularity of anime has suffered owing to parental restrictions because of the adult themes in some of the content, relatively low promotions and the lack of merchandising. Long gone are the days when anime fans, or Otaku, went bonkers collecting tazos or duel master cards or even the Pokémon Red Emulators.

While cartoons and anime are both caricature sketches that are, in turn, animated, the latter has a very distinct style of art using specific visual elements for its characters. A majority of the animes are based on manga comics that were not easily available in India until online shopping companies started selling anime DVDs and manga comics from other parts of the world.

Sony Pictures Entertainment’s channel Animax was one of the channels that aired Japanese anime content in 1998. Last year, the channel was replaced by Sony Yay, which has a full-fledged focus on local home-grown content. Recently, Turner International India announced that it would pull the plug on its anime offering Toonami from 15 May. This is a clear indication that the genres failed to elicit interest from its young audience. At present, Toonami airs shows from the Cartoon Network Studios, Hanna-Barbera and the Warner Bros Animation libraries.

Doraemon, Shinchan and Ninja Hattori, which are still the most popular among kids after Chhota Bheem, started life as manga series and were subsequently adapted as anime shows. These shows are among the flagship shows that the Indian broadcasters showed on television but, as the TV viewing evolved, the focus shifted to local home-grown content. That was the time when Chhota Bheem was born in 2008.

A media professional said that anime series are still popular among the kids. “Who wouldn’t love watching Pokemon, Dragonball Z. These shows would have worked only if they were promoted well like the shows like Chhota Bheem, Motu Patlu and among others. If these channels push anime content, the kids will love it. It is not the case like kids are not watching these shows that are why they are shutting the channel; in fact, it is because they want to come up with their original content.”

However, another media expert had a different view. “Japanese content was created during the 70s and 80s and was picked up by the broadcasters because they had to fill the programming slots, so there’s a different approach between Japanese content and original content,” they pointed out.

In the early years of Indian animation, broadcasters found it suitable to licence shows from other countries for air time. But as the industry picked up, producing and owning IPs became cost-effective. Channels didn’t need to depend on borrowed material like anime. Another aspect is that it is not easy to dub anime content, considering the different East Asian culture. Local shows can be easily modified to the kids’ thinking.

However, it would be wrong to say that the anime culture isn’t developing in India. Growing fan clubs; online social media groups are providing great platforms to share and gather information; stores are printing anime clothes, cups, gifts and other merchandise for shopping in several areas. Though not in every city, Comic Cons are being organised and promoted as well. Awareness is increasing, but slowly and it seems the teen and adult audiences are more inclined towards it than children.

It remains to be seen whether Turner comes up with a replacement of Toonami just the way Sony Yay entered the market. The future of Indian home-grown content seems bright, as far as new characters emerging on every kids' channels is concerned, but it will be interesting to observe whether broadcasters find answers to the conundrum of Japanese anime content in India.

Also Read :

Sony Yay banks on originals with a slew of fresh content

No reason for GECs to panic as IPL grabs eyeballs

The era of dance reality shows

Owning IP not priority for Big Synergy

Latest Reads

https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2019/09/23/shrotstv.jpg?itok=J3iL4PpT
ShortsTV expands to 60 million homes across India adding Dish TV, d2h and Airtel Digital TV

MUMBAI: ShortsTV, a leading next-generation content platform delivering high quality short form content to global audiences, is now available on India’s major DTH platforms after launching new partnerships with Dish TV, d2h and Airtel Digital TV. The service, debuting in 2018 exclusively on Tata...

Television TV Channels Movie Channels
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2019/09/23/hfc.jpg?itok=RKiPMUTK
ISL Franchise Hyderabad Football Club unveils its logo

MUMBAI: Hyderabad Football Club (HFC), the newest entrant into the premium football tournament franchise, Indian Super League has unveiled its official logo titled ‘Reliving Hyderabad’s Football Legacy’. The logo of Hyderabad FC embodies the city’s heritage with the minarets of Charminar and the...

Television TV Channels Sports
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2019/09/23/cnbc.jpg?itok=XiSWbHmv
CNBC-AWAAZ launches ‘STARTUP Nation’ - A comprehensive daily-show on Startups

MUMBAI: As the country rides the start-up wave, pioneer of startup programming and India’s award-winning Hindi business news broadcast channel, CNBC AWAAZ today announced the launch of its latest daily-show - STARTUP Nation. The thirty-minute show aims to bring together stories of entrepreneurial...

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2019/09/23/zeecafe.jpg?itok=uuwYA56W
Witness the challenges of the battlefield across treacherous terrains with the BBC First drama ‘Our Girl’ on Zee Café

MUMBAI: As a female medic in the British Army, Georgie Lane’s life is full of battles – both physical and personal. Our Girl, follows the fearless adventures of the tightknit unit of soldiers in ‘2-Section’ as they fight for survival on the most dangerous missions of their lives. Watch Our Girl...

Television TV Channels English Entertainment
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2019/09/23/dangal-tv.jpg?itok=CVPM7YNY
BARC week 37: Dangal retakes top spot in yo-yo struggle across genres

Enterr10 Television network’s Hindi GEC was the most watched channel Across Genres on All Platforms as well on the Free Platform in week 37 of 2019 (Saturday, 7 September 2019 to Friday, 13 September 2019, week or period under review).

Television TV Channels Viewership
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2019/09/21/Zee%20Kannada.jpg?itok=XUlTLr0x
Zee Kannada’s 'Jote Joteyali' garners 171% growth in primetime slot

MUMBAI: Zee Kannada’s recently launched show Jote Joteyali garnered 171 per cent of total growth in the primetime slot, according to the channel. The show was launched on 9 September, has topped the chart in Kannada television industry in fiction genre. The show is telecasted every Monday to Friday...

Television TV Channels Regional
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2019/09/20/ss.jpg?itok=o6tHW5k2
Star Sports launches MISSION 2020 with the Men in Blue

MUMBAI: The ‘Men in Blue’ have embarked on their quest to bring the ICC T20 World Cup Trophy home next year, beginning with the home season of cricket on Star Sports with South Africa tour of India that started on September 15th. Mission 2020 will showcase all India matches as they prepare for the...

Television TV Channels Sports
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2019/09/20/zee.jpg?itok=KNZ8xLWb
Zee Kannada’s Jote Joteyali launch breaks all records in the Kannada Television Industry

MUMBAI: The No. 1 Kannada General Entertainment Channel, Zee Kannada’s recently launched Jote Joteyali tops the charts in the Kannada television industry in the fiction genre. This eccentric love story garnered a total of 171% of growth in the prime slot of 8:30 PM, Monday to Friday. The record...

Television TV Channels Regional
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2019/09/20/cnn.jpg?itok=O8cbHiBg
CNN International to launch new programming

MUMBAI: CNN International, which reaches more than 400 million households around the world, is launching new programming from September 24, 2019. Broadcasting live at 2.30am IST, The Brief with Bianca Nobilo will provide viewers with an incisive look at the most significant live events and stories...

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories