Philipines life in the Anime lane
Hmmm… Ever wondered how this gargantuan influence came about in the Philippines? It touched the lives of both the old and young generations. Back then, it was not just Anime that touched the Pinoys hearts when it came to these types of shows.
Anime and Sentai Era
Right alongside Anime in the Philippines, a certain genre of shows popped out in our TV screen showing 4-5 men and women dressed in full spandex suits, fighting alongside a giant robot, frequently constructed by combining different vehicles that the group rides or uses. This category of show was known as Sentai and Tokusatsu. Tokusatsu mainly relies with the use of heavy special effects and whole lot of prosthetics. Ever saw the movie Godzilla? That’s one example of Tokusatsu, the Sentai genre is the one that features a giant robot controlled by a masked group. Combined with the force of Anime, these Japanese shows flooded our Televisions up to date.
These shows paved a way to one of Pinoys biggest fad.
The neophytes to start the Anime genre were pretty much like the Sentai and Tokusatsu genres combined. During my generation, the very first ones that showed in our TV screens were Voltes-V and Daimos. It was my mother who introduced my brother and I to these shows. It kept us fixated on the TV screens. I was not much of a fan of Daimos but Voltes V was my thing! I memorized that theme song every time they punched that button for their aircrafts to combine and form a giant robot to fight the dreaded Boazanian empire!
The story line is not that bad as well. It’s about 3 brothers, Steve, John and Robert Armstrong. A general’s daughter, Jamie Robinson and a former rodeo champion, Mark Gordon. (The names of the characters are totally different on the Japanese Version of the Anime). These 5 form the main members of the Earth International Defense Force or Voltes Team and they are the ones who pilot the 5 aircrafts that form the Mecha Voltes-V.
Two other Anime shows that took us by storm were Daimos and Mazinger-Z. However, they did not make as much of an impact as Voltes-V.
The Halt of Anime
These shows did not get off to a running start like most foreign shows. In the 70’s, Anime was completely banned in the Philippines because of the infamous Martial Law. They said that the shows influence viewers of violence and insurgence. Then president Ferdinand Marcos banned Voltes-V, Daimos and Mazinger-Z specifically for these reasons. But it worked the other way around didn’t it? They cancelled the show mid-season so people got mad and started the revolution. (I kid, of course!)
The resurgence of Anime went into full swing in the 90’s. The fad was so bad-ass, they started doing these Anime shows in tagalog! Shows like Ghost Fighter, Time Quest, Slam Dunk, Dragon Ball Z and Zenki are only a few to start this Tagalized version of anime. A network here in the Philippines even replaced the typical Drama series with Anime in Primetime!
The new anime in the Philippines now come in waves and we can’t even keep track of them. The one thing I want to point out in this is: It is always good to know where it all started.
Now to all you Real Pinoys… LET’S VOLT IN!