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How A 100-Year-Old Japanese Art Form Inspired The App Of The Summer

People costumed as Pokémon Go characters participate in a game search during a gathering of players in July in San Francisco."

Pokémon Go has become one of the most downloaded apps in history, but where did it come from? Kevin Matyi explains the history of anime.

Japanese animation, also known as anime, has existed since the early 1900s; however, it only gained popular attention when shows like “Astro Boy” and “Speed Racer” came out in the 1960s.

By the 1970s, animators had formed their own style and genres, such the mecha genre, where giant robots punch each other in the face.

In the following decades, anime developed its own unique visuals.

Many characters developed large, expressive eyes, unnatural hair colors and small noses. They also became paler, their faces more pointed, and expressions became more dramatic and over the top.

The Pokémon anime showcases many of these changes.

Of course, every anime is different, and each artist’s style puts a unique spin on artistic traditions.

Currently, over 120 new anime are streamed to the United States every year. One streaming company, Funimation, also dubs many anime in English so that more people can enjoy the show.

Anime has even become a part of American entertainment. Television shows, like “Steven Universe,” reference well-known anime like “Cowboy Bebop.”

Meanwhile, some popular anime, like Pokémon, continue to run weekly in the United States...with no end in sight.

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