You finish up that awesome season of your favorite summer, fall, winter or spring anime. You are so pumped and so excited for it but, nothing more happens. You browse the forums, surf through page after page of posts yet, you realize that there won’t be a season two. So you ask yourself, where is season 2? Today, we will discuss the topic of why we usually do not see a season two and what that means for us viewers.
When we love an anime, we want to watch more of it. Unfortunately, this is not the case for many niche anime. I’m talking anime like Kyousougiga, that are strange and peculiar and do not have much in the way of product advertisement. Anime like Naruto or One Piece are able to be popular due to having high circulation with manga, as well as product accessories and merchandise. A successful anime is often dictated by how much money can be put into the medium and how much the fans put into it. This first bit right here is often a major cause. Without the money input from fans or even proper studio funding, most anime just don’t make it after the first run. Fan’s have crazy amounts of influence, whether indirect or direct, on how successful an anime can be. Piracy is a HUGE factor in this situation. Now, before you get your pitchforks and burn effigy of yours truly think about it this way. When a new anime is out for circulation and you pirate the episodes as they release only to buy the anime afterwards, usually a used box set, sometimes new. What effect does this have? Well, for starters you did buy it so you aren’t pirating it anymore however, the damage you did was already done. People watching this anime on televised stations in Japan are already paying to watch it. Using sites like Crunchyroll or Hulu, that pay to have you watch, some of that money is routed to the company making that anime. So when air time is on, those paying to watch or those who have cable are already paying the company for their work. The person who just pirated the whole first season while it was on air, just effectively hurt the animation studio behind said anime. Sure, like I said above you bought it afterwards but, what if it was a niche anime? That was funding that they can no longer make up. What is a 50USD blu-ray box set or a 25USD box set, compared to no longer being on air? I know this situation is dicey at best but, we do have a lot of power in terms of what happens to an anime. You may think what you are doing is not harmful to start with, however it does have massive ripples that you can’t see.
That being said another factor behind the failure of an anime and no second season is also behind the publishing company. If they don’t want to put forth the money for another big budget risk, they won’t. Companies like content that can be grasped by a large audience who are willing to pay to watch or that will at least spend hundreds of dollars on official merchandising. Just look at Pokemon and Attack On Titan, specifically Attack on Titan. Attack on Titan is a rather niche anime that blew out to a larger audience. It has a MASSIVE retail market in terms of clothing, key-chains and other bits and bobbles. Attack On Titan has a huge fan-base that is willing to shell out the dough to make another season, which will be happening, heck they are even doing a spin off high school series! But what about big budget anime that went over well like Triggers Gurren Lagann or Kill la Kill? Both were very successful and have a very large fan-base that will buy their products! While it may be too soon to rule Kill La Kill out, Gurren Lagann hasn’t had a flicker or tease of a second season for a long time. While it has had a re-circulation release, thanks in part to the Toonami revival, it still has many fans clamoring and wanting a second season. These titles however are both collaborated works and while I do not have to access to know, I am sure it wasn’t a cheap collaboration. Most collaborations are expensive, since some usually involve to production companies. That being said it is easier to split the bill. However, it just sometimes comes down to whether the publishing company feels like putting down the money on a risky and unique IP.
These choices and influences have far reaching effects, It is why we see companies making quick, fan-service filled anime. They are targeting a group that they know will watch and spend themselves crazy on their products. It is also why you see so many short gaming or manga adaptations, they can already piggy back off the publicized success of the manga and won’t have to worry about too much backlash; that is, if they don’t botch it up even more so. These series are often series that help recoup a loss after a risky investment into a unique or niche anime that may have turned out different than they had anticipated. That being said, sometimes you can have successful niche, anime so long as it has the backing of a popular name. I mean if Hayao Miyazaki was able to put his name on a popular anime, just imagine how many publishers would be willing to front the money to make it. Even a series that feels like a Miyazaki film, Mushi-Shi, took 8 years just to be able to get a season two up and out. I am the one of FEW who even knew about this anime and loved the first anime, so this type of anime getting a second season is odd to some but if the company loves it then they will do what they can to publish it. It just sometimes is not enough.
So, where is season 2? It could be in the works, it might not be. The consumer driven world of the anime industry is a rough place to be in. It is often the fans who make or break an anime. So, if you like an anime. Please don’t pirate it. Pay to watch it and if you can’t afford that just make a free Crunchyroll account. Those annoying ads help pay for the licensing fee that Crunchyroll pays to the publisher to air their work. In effect helping the anime you like. Whats a few 30 second-minute advertisement, compared to pirating your favorite anime to hell? But at the same time, it also lies in the lap of the publishing company to make the decision on whether or not to support a niche title. That is why Kick Starter is successful. It is why Patreon is successful! If you love what you see and want more of it, you can directly input into the work yourself! It is why I am doing Patreon, why so many animators and studios are turning to these places.
So, what is your opinion and feelings on anime that don’t get a second season? Do you feel like the anime should have been given a better chance or maybe more press coverage? Feel free to leave us a comment below or on our Twitter. I also don’t mean to be hounding but if you like what we do here and want to have some input feel free to give our Patreon page a look! It is entirely optional but the support goes a long way! : 3
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