I have been doing analyses on anime rating and popularity for over a year now, using information from various blogs and websites that are primarily English-based. This begs the question on whether they really captures what an average Japanese audience really finds popular or worth watching. This is when I managed to come across this website which gives data on viewership rating of animes, Sentai and Kamen shows from most Japanese networks, covering the last 11 years from 2000-2010. This is exactly the type of information that will let me find out once and for all the actual popularity of each anime series on TV in Japan. I have listed below the top 10 shows based on average daily rating over the last 11 years.
In this post, I will make extended mentions of the ‘rating’. According to the Video Research explanation of their numbers, these ratings refers to to average percentage of households in which any TV is on and tuned to a particular channel during a particular show. Numbers are based on meters installed in sample households. Meters register every minute, and the results are averaged over the length of a show. [EDIT: As kransom mentioned in the comment section, the Video Research data that I used for this analysis on comes from the Kanto region, which makes up about a third of the total Japanese population. It is a shame the data does not represent the whole of Japan as I originally thought but it should also give a good proxy for the whole country]
When collecting the anime information over the last decade, I have also gotten around to collecting what genre(s) each anime belongs to. This vary quite a bit from the basic genre (action, adventure, comedy, drama) but also sub-genre like (school, sports, music, mecha). When possible, I also try to differentiate whether the anime is shonen, shojo, seinen or josei. With this information, I am able to assign each major studios the most repeated genre of its anime releases to see whether any cool trend can be gleaned or certain beliefs justified (that studio XXX only does action, Studio YYY does more fanservice than others).
In this first post on this topic however, I will first look at the look at the demographic genre, since it is a little easier to segment and discuss. This can be divided as either Shonen (boy), Shojo (girl), seinen (grown male), josei (grown female) and Kodomo (young children). I hope that this will give some perspective to what studios are the major player in each category. At least I certainly learn something myself from it! Criteria and assumptions I use to come up with this analysis is presented right at the end of the post.
– Top anime studio listed for each demographic is based on:
i). the percentage of the anime categorized explicitly as that genre over total anime produced (highest share of animes in that demographic)
ii). total absolute number of anime series from that genre produced (highest number of animes in that demographic)
i). Artland – 54% (average across all samples is 32%)
ii). J.C. Staff – 22 series (average =7.8)
(Note that the brackets above refer to the average across all studios. This should give a point of comparison to how the top studios compare with the mean)
I have recently finished inputting the data from 2000 to 2009 (pending some quality check but that will have to come later) so now I can start doing some more anime of the animes from the last decade. The first analysis I want to do is to look closely at animes produced by each studio and how many are recognized as great. For example, Madhouse studios have by far the most anime series listed in the top 100 (18). However, it is possible that it produces so many that if you look from the ratio perspective (how many series produced to how many listed), its record may not be so prolific.
Some note before the list:
– The list is ranked on the number of anime series that appear in the ‘top 100 anime series of the decade‘ list (see my previous post here for the list itself and the methodology behind it) over the total anime series production released by the studio [quality percentage] – The logic is that the higher this number, the more likely the studio is to release great series as opposed to forgettable duds (the more accurate measure should be taking an average of the anime score that it produces, from say ANN rating. I currently do not have the data to do that at this point so I am sticking with this methodology for now).
– Studios need to have a minimum of 10 series produced in the decade. This excludes the possibility of a studio being a one-hit wonder and top the list with 100%, having only done one good anime.
– The list only includes anime series. I will have a different list with movies +OAVs
– Bear in mind that I am working with an anime series sample of 974. So when I am comparing it with the top 100 anime series, on average, the quality percentage of a studio should be 10.2% or there should be 9.7 series for every one good series produced. Any studio with higher ratio than this should be considered above average.
Listed anime: Clannad, FMP: Fumoffu!, Clannad -After Story-, Kanon 2006, Lucky Star, The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya
Other anime: K-ON!, Sora o Miageru Shoujo no Hitomi ni Utsuru Sekai, FMP: Second Raid, Air TV
Comment: Very low number of series produced compared to other major studios (ranked 26th in total anime series produced) but dominate the list in term of sheer quality of the outputs. The studio have released FMA Fumoffu as their first series this decade and have been releasing about 1-2 series per year since. It is also definitely riding the moe wave of K-ON! and Haruhi at the moment!
Having been able to collect data up to 2005, I got a bit curious about how the segmentation of the movies and how many ‘original’ anime films are actually released in each year, as opposed to ‘sequels’ or ‘franchise’. The root of this comes from the fact that in my top anime of 2000s analysis, there are only 34 films good enough to be listed in the whole decade (3.4 films a year). The number sounds a little on the low side (Only under 4 good anime films released per year?), so I want to substantiate that by looking at all movies being produced during the same period and put this number into a bit more perspective.
When analysising the group type of the films, I have separated them into 3 categories as followed:
a). Original – Films that are not based on any prior anime series or franchise
b). Sequel – Follow-on from anime series or movies
c). Franchise – Part of a franchise of anime or game series. Tend to relate more to more popular series
I will briefly take a break from all the anime of the decade analysis and dive into a new topic that I have been working on. Having worked on all the anime people love enough to mention as the best of the decade, it left me wondering, how many shows are there really out there?
This led me to start compiling data of all the animes basing it on the the wikipedia page that list all the animes produced by year. It also has all the data so far that I find useful for other analysis like demographic, year released, director. It is a rather time-consuming exercise so I have only managed to cover 2000-2003 so far. The rest will follow. Also, do let me know if there is any other website which may offer a more comprehensive animes that were released by year. I still have to browse around Anime News network to cross-check the wiki list but so I may have to update this number later in case wikipedia is not as all-knowing as I hope it is… As for the date, I have categorized each one based on their release date in Japan, which is consistent with how I treat the top anime list.
First, let’s look at the total number of productions during these four years
A few observations from this: