The Evolution of Anime Over the Years

Hey there anime fans, have you ever wondered how anime has evolved over the years? Well, you're about to find out! In this article, we'll take a trip down memory lane and explore the transformation of anime from its early days to the present day.

What is Anime?

Before we dive into the evolution of anime, let's first define what it is. Anime, which is short for animation, is a style of Japanese animated productions characterized by its distinctive art style, colorful graphics, and engaging storylines. Its origins can be traced back to the early 20th century, with the introduction of cartoons and comics in Japan.

The Beginning of Anime

The roots of anime can be traced back to the 1960s, a period where it was considered a novelty. At this time, anime was primarily used in promotional materials and commercials. Its commercial viability was due to its cost-effectiveness compared to other forms of animation. However, as time went by, anime became more popular and started to make its way into mainstream television. Some of the early anime productions include "Astro Boy," which premiered in 1963 and became an instant hit, and "Gigantor," which was released in 1964 and introduced the concept of a giant robot to the world of anime.

The 70s and 80s

The 70s and 80s were significant years in the evolution of anime as a genre. It was during this period that anime began to diversify its genres and target audiences beyond children. The creation of shows like "Ace of Diamonds" and "Mobile Suit Gundam" opened the way for the mecha genre – anime that features giant robots. This genre became a staple in the industry and influenced the creation of later shows like "Evangelion."

The 80s also saw the growth of the fantasy and science fiction genre in anime, as evidenced by shows like "Dragon Ball" and "Akira." This time also marked the emergence of the "OVA" (Original Video Animation), which is a type of anime produced primarily for home video release as opposed to broadcast television.

The 90s and 2000s

The 90s were a period of transformation for anime, both in terms of technology and storytelling. This was the era where anime went global, with shows like "Sailor Moon" and "Dragon Ball Z" garnering a massive following outside Japan. With the advent of digital animation, anime creators could explore more intricate and detailed art styles as shown in the works of Studio Ghibli.

The 2000s ushered in a new era for anime. Shows such as "Naruto," "Bleach," and "One Piece" became increasingly popular, with many fans embracing the growth of action-oriented shonen anime. The development of on-demand streaming platforms like Crunchyroll and Funimation made anime more accessible to a global audience, increasing its reach beyond Japan.

The Present Day

In the present day, anime continues to evolve as a genre. The advancements in animation technology allow for more detailed and realistic animation. Many anime shows are now produced in widescreen format, a trend that started around 2005. One of the most popular anime in recent years is "Attack on Titan," which blends horror and action elements while maintaining a complex storyline.

Another notable trend in the present day is the rise of slice-of-life anime. This genre features everyday activities and events in a realistic setting, making it more relatable to viewers. Shows like "Your Lie in April" and "A Silent Voice" have become popular and showcase the evolution of anime as a medium for storytelling.


The evolution of anime over the years has been nothing short of remarkable. From its humble beginnings as a promotional tool to its current status as a globally recognized genre, anime has transformed in ways that could not have been anticipated. The influx of technology and the global reach of anime have made it accessible to many people across the world, and it has become a crucial part of popular culture.

So, what do you think about the evolution of anime? Which era of anime is your favorite, and why? Let us know in the comments!

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