Why do people hate Mecha Anime?

Mecha is a dying genre of anime or at least facing reduce popularity with enormous hate from newer fans of anime. Why such old and once powerful genre become one of the most hated genres in anime? Let’s try to figure it out.

I personally hate mecha and cyberpunk animes with passion. Even a thought of watching such animes would make me puke and I believe I am not the only person who thinks like this way. But as the hater of the genre and having enjoyed some of the mecha anime I can understand both parties, which in turns gives me right to write about it. And as a side note, this post is not meant to hate on mecha animes.

For starters mecha is not a genre, It is a setting to tell a story. As a mecha anime can be a phycological, slice of life, ecchi, moe and much more types of anime concurrently. The “big robots” are tools to tell the story rather than emotional state that the story wants to tell. Having tagged “mecha” only tells that anime would be included with robots, It can not and will not tell you about what type of story it is. This also applies to “game” genre of anime. I don’t think many people understand that “mecha” does not mean, that it would be bad or boring as it is mean to tell a story, it is the medium, not the emotional state it tries to achieve.

Now moving towards hate. I personally think when a person consumes a medium of art he is looking for something that he loves or what we call it as artistic taste. Anime community has split into mainly three fandoms each of them haveing different artistic test. These three are old anime fans, shounen anime fans, and new anime fans. These anime fans got into animes in a different time, watching different animes with different taste, So naturally these fans mostly expect different things from animes. Now mostly old anime fans enjoy mecha anime and mostly shounen anime fans hate mecha.

Old anime fans were mostly involved in pseudo-realistic animes, by that, I mean the animes which feel realistic but they are highly fictional in nature. While shounen anime fans were mostly involved in pure fantasy style animes. This has created the massive gap in understanding between old and shounen anime fans. This difference is like old liking science-fiction and shounen liking science-fantasy, basically the difference between star trek and star wars.

Then why don’t shounen fans don’t like mecha anime? The answer is simple, they don’t like to see robots. If you watch any shounen then you understand that in shounen animes rely heavily on facial and body expression to deliver an appealing narrative, shounen animes are also very position and power based. Positioning is very important part of the shounen animes while mechs can fly giving background no feeling of depth or significant which sometimes work on shows favor. In most shounen anime different techniques have in world explanations, how powers work sort of things while in mecha it is not needed. In shounen, animes scene can develop tension without any background character development simply relying on facial expressions just watch re-zero for example. While in mecha characters had to be fleshed out to feel significance and tension in the scene, that is why most popular mecha anime takes huge breaks from battles to develop their characters, unfortunately, most of the mechas don’t understand this principle and fails flat on grounds. That is why many people don’t like mecha and will stay away for anime which have tag mecha.

Of course, these are only my thoughts, please let me know your thoughts about the subject in comments below, let me know if you like mecha animes or not. If you like this post then please follow, like and share. Thanks, guys.

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16 thoughts on “Why do people hate Mecha Anime?

  1. I did a post on this awhile back about my lack of emotional connection with most mecha anime and it does come down to the fact that a fight between two robots is inherently pretty dull unless you happen to be into the technology itself. The characters are all but sidelined as two hunks of metal either shoot at each other or flail mechanical arms, swords, whatever. That said, there are some mecha that get the balance right between the ‘amazing’ robot fights and the character development.
    I don’t think mecha is going anywhere. It has its niche market and a strong following of loyal mecha fans. However, for me mecha is always going to be fairly hit and miss (with more misses than hits) unless it happens to one with strong character development.
    Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Before: Mecha anime involves piloting a giant robot (whether alien of origin or built on earth), aliens invading earth for either world conquest, revenge, or any other hidden agendas they have, good guys versus the bad guys, metals clash during the fights, good guys wins, end of story.

    A little after before: mecha now has become smaller robots for people to pilot and it is easy to mass produce! It’s now not a battle between good versus evil aliens but now it is a battle of what people believed is actually right. -But I still like it if the aliens were the bad guys because they have always been humorously been stereotyped as evil.

    After: Mecha now does not pertain to the robot someone is piloting but can be also the suit that is mechanical which can now be considered as mecha. And most of these are portrayed by beautiful, young girls not even old enough to have a drivers licence.

    As a person weaned during the “before” era, I am having issues accepting the new term for the word mecha in mecha anime. I miss the giant robots, the giant fights which leaves Earth to a horrible mess after the giant behemoths duke it out, I miss just every cliche things you can expect from a mech anime. Maybe I’m still weak with using words but what want to say explain is that mecha, like any genres which exists, is rapidly evolving and we can just take it whether it is good or bad. My only issue is that it is 1) limited to suits that they wear and 2) it is combined with ecchi.

    I’m a traditional guy; give me back all the fun that I’ve enjoyed.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. LOL, I agree, mecha started as the medium to tell sci-fi war stories, during ecchi revolution just like with all genes, mecha evolved as well, unfortunately, creators didn’t understand that lighthearted ecchi don’t go well with hardcore serious action drama.

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  3. I love the Gundam Seed, Destiny and 00 – mecha. Not the Schwarzermarken, Valvrave, Aldnoah.Zero mecha. It just feels different. And I agree, most of those shounen fans I know almost never bat an eye on any series that has a ‘mecha’ tag on it. I think for a series about huge robots to gain some sort of sympathy from the viewers, it first needs to present carefully the motives, conflict, and relationship of the pilots before jumping automatically to full-on combat.

    I don’t know. I guess it all boils down to preference. Mecha series has declined over the years (in story context and production), but I’m one with those who’ll still give those new ones a try.

    Thanks for sharing this post!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I personally am pretty fond of some mecha anime, but mostly for the giant robots and fight scenes. I don’t take any particular interest in the human characters because most of the time the people are pretty uninteresting or the plot and story are over used with no real creativity. I basically just like the shows for the robots.

    The best mecha anime I’ve ever scene would either be Brave Police J-Decker which is an old 90s anime that has surprisingly one of the most interesting and charming cast of characters along with a very unique story that is more similar to what you’d expect from Transformers (which it takes inspiration from if I’m not mistaken), my favorite thing about the show was that unlike a lot of robots in anime which are just mindless machines, the robots are actually part of the cast, having sentience & emotion and each have their own individual look along with personality and occasionally an episode for each of them. The story for the show can go from lighthearted and cute to something much more dark with a great deal of emotion. It was so much fun at the same time an unexpected emotional roller coaster. All the episodes are on youtube. I’ve watched and re-watched them all. I was pretty surprised anime from a long time ago held up so well in quality with such a nice story and characters.

    The other mecha anime I really liked was Gurren Lagan, also very fun and had such memorable characters and animation. I feel guilty I never really finished it…I did love the anime though. But of course, for me the robots were the best part.

    Nice post! I’m not sure how to get an account here. So, my apologies for just commenting. Your reviews are great ^_^.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi, Dozusumbrella, I haven’t watched Brave Police J-Decker, I think I will give it a try. As for Gurren Lagan, it is the only mecha anime I enjoyed, art and the battles were legendary, truly one of the best mecha animes.I am also thinking of watching Neon Genesis Evangelion, heard quite great things about it. Anyway thanks, buddy.

      Also to get a global WordPress avatar you have to make gravatar on http://en.gravatar.com/ Hope this helps or open a WordPress account and get a gravatar. Anyway it will work, ^_^

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Haha, yeah. Gurren Lagan was amazing. And that’s good to hear! Brave Police J-Decker is pretty good for something of it’s time, I hope you enjoy the anime. It’s adorable. Neon Genesis Evangelion has amazing animation along with an interesting story. But I personally don’t really like some of the characters but that’s just me, I’m sure you’ll find some of the cast likable. And no problem, I hope you have fun with watching all those.

        Thank you! I’ve been wondering how making an account here worked, this really helps! I think I’ll be able to make an account and actually use it when I have time. Maybe even make some reviews. Thanks a lot, pal!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. To customize your profile you need Gravatar, just make a Gravatar from the link I have given you and you can write your profile and change your picture. I think Gravatar works with every WordPress site. As for WordPress, it works same as facebook, you just need to get your hands dirty and learn. Best of luck.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. This is a very critical post. I have been watching mecha since I was a kid, but I didn’t particularly care for it. I didn’t outright dislike it, mecha series just didn’t absorb me as much as a kid. But as an adult, I’m now a Gundam fan and other selected anime series with fighting robots. But for me, the most important first and foremost will always be the story. No matter the genre, if the story is crap, I won’t like it. That’s why I’m dismayed by what seems as a total disregard for anime in the mecha genre, even outward hatred towards it. And I actually disagree that shounen fans hate mecha, since some mecha anime are also in the shounen genre. As for newer anime viewers, though, I think I must agree that not a lot of them gravitate towards mecha series. Perhaps it’s because it’s not very “mainstream”. And there’s a stronger label of “otaku” associated with fans who watch mecha, even stronger than other mainstream shounen series. As for mecha anime featuring cold and unfeeling robots mindlessly fighting, I must disagree. Some of the Gundam series that I have watched have been some of the most emotional series I have ever watched. Mobile Suit Gundam 00 features some very similar situations that our world is experiencing right now, eerily so, that it gave me goosebumps and really made me emotional. I think it depends on the anime. Not all mecha anime are the same in the same way that not all shounen anime are the same.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Mecha is not really a genre, but it is a setting to tell a story as I said in the post. I mostly had a bad experience with it that is why I don’t like it, I loved Gurren Lagann either way. It is not a bad per say but it is certainly hated in specific community in anime.

      Like

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