Anthropology of NAHS: Anime Fans


Nicole Spektor

Pose of Victory: Junior Sydney Jones shows her support and inspiration as a part of the North Atlanta anime community.

Anime is an animated style of Japanese film and television that has substantially grown in popularity in the the West since the 1990s. Over the past three decades, the film style has become something of an esoteric hobby for many teenagers in America. Many fans in the anime community praise the style for its distinct appearance, as well the variety that can be found across multiple genres. Shows can range from gritty realism to comedic slice of life stories. Anime is especially celebrated in Atlanta, home of Anime Weekend Atlanta, MomoCon and Dragon Con.

Because of all the enthusiasm and commotion surrounding anime, it’s garnered a stable fan base among North Atlanta Warriors. Shirts and other swag brandishing various images from popular anime shows are sported in the hallways and North Atlanta even has its very own Anime Club. These fans can be found talking about the latest “My Hero Academia” or “One Piece” episodes or cosplaying at several conventions around the country.

Anime enthusiast and senior Isaiah Hiley has strong opinions about anime, which he has been watching since he was young. “Anime has wholeheartedly developed my identity,” he said. “I love the way an animated cartoon can convey such a deep and powerful meaning. And the visuals are beautiful.”

Fellow anime fan Sydney Jones agrees. “Anime inspires a lot of my art and has helped me develop as an artist. The plots are really grabbing,” said Jones, a junior. “My favorite stuff comes from Studio Ghibli.”

This popular animation style is a distinct art form preserved by students like Hiley and Jones. It can inspire many others to try out the anime art styles for themselves, or to become a part of a group of people with a passion for the Japanese cartoons. It is a way for messages to be conveyed and art to be shown that can be seen as unique from typical Western film and media. So if you see an anime aficionado around school, give them a wave and maybe ask them about the newest update on one of the shows that they like – you might even find yourself enjoying it.