My initial interest in anime had lead me to purchase all of the available titles at the local On Cue (which at the time was about 8 or 9 titles on VHS). My thirst for these great stories needed to be quenched, I needed to see more. I felt like a caveman seeing fire for the first time, completely amazed.
At this time in my life I also was part of the collectible card game scene. In the early 2000’s there was no shortage of card games and all sorts of properties that were being converted into card games. During my time playing CCGs I met a friend that turned me onto a show called Dragonball Z (DBZ. The show opened my eyes to the first epic story I have seen.
By the time I started watching DBZ the Cell games story had just ended and the new season started with the World Games. The Trunks saga through the Cell games is regarded as the best story arc in the series, and I just missed the conclusion.
However, with some of the new villains being unveiled, I had to at least see what the hype was about. As I started getting more into the series, I started the long process of ordering back VHS tapes of previous episodes that I had missed.
Cartoon Network was also in the process of starting the show over from the start. I instantly started watching to gain the knowledge of the characters. Gohan (one of the main characters) started the show off as a small child. The episodes I was watching, Gohan was a teenager. This was my introduction to a character actually growing in physical appearance over the course of a show.
Over the course of my anime binge, I have been introduced to so many things that I haven’t seen in US film or animation. It was these shows that made me start questioning the role of animation. Why was animation seemingly only being used as a medium of comedy and kid movies? I was still in high school, but I was curious as to why adult themes or ideas couldn’t be expressed through animation. This is an area of question I would continue to have through college.