“Anime was a mistake,” a quote famously misattributed to the incredible Hayao Miyazaki, seems to encompass how the vast majority of people feel about anime nowadays.
Everyone is kind of over anime now, which is understandable: its tendency towards drawn-out storylines, over-sexualized women (unreasonably large anime boobs, anyone?) and the overpopulation of anime fandoms with insufferable otaku man-boys can all get exhausting after a while.
And while it looked like anime was having a fandom renaissance in the mid-2000s, a lot of that enthusiasm seems to have fizzled out.
But not so fast: Thanks to Michael B. Jordan, anime is a mistake no more. Jordan, objectively the most beautiful and talented man alive (these are just facts), is a self-professed anime fan. After one guy on Twitterfor liking anime and living with his parents, MBJ had to set the record straight:
First of All I’m 6ft and they live with ME, put some respeck on my name. LOL…aaaand goku & naruto are real ones 🙌🏾 lol https://t.co/QspyHD2zwH
— Michael B. Jordan (@michaelb4jordan) February 23, 2018
Fear not, anime connoisseurs: MBJ is not one of those “fans” who only watches “Naruto” and “Dragon Ball Z” —his favorite anime is “One Punch Man,” so he’s got some nerd cred.
The original tweet, though, points to a larger problem within the anime-fan community: the idea that anime fans are some kind of marginalized identity. The real reason anime fans get negative reactions from the vast majority of people is not because “normal people” don’t like anime, it’s because of the weird otaku culture that’s grown around it.
The otaku stereotype is definitely overblown to some extent — obviously, not all anime fans are hentai-obsessed, awkward, mansplaining mouth-breathers.
There are, however, enough of these kinds of anime fans to give the genre a bad name, and to make anime fandoms uncomfortable places for women to be a part of (no one wants all the attention that comes from being the only girl at Anime Club meetings, after all).
That’s one of the reasons it’s so refreshing to have someone as chill as MBJ profess their love of anime; it makes it okay for regular people to be into the genre again.
As it turns out, Michael B. Jordan has been subtly shouting out his love for anime for years. Some light digging through his Twitter feed uncovers some Naruto” episodes.anime-related moments, including some reactions to “
By far the best, though, was uncovered by one Twitter user, from an interview where MBJ was asked what his guilty pleasure was:
i'm watching an old michael b jordan interview and he got asked what his guilty pleasure is and he fucking wrote anime but scribbled it out and changed it to women i'm laughing pic.twitter.com/LVJIKcBlbj
— aoife (@ryusietai) February 20, 2018
What will become of anime after Michael B. Jordan’s revelation? Will there be another renaissance of the anime fandom? Only time will tell, but in the meantime, the internet is still losing it’s mind over MBJ: between this and the whole, Michael B. Jordan has had his fair share of viral fame lately.
The internet, reliable as always, has been playfully roasting him now that he’s revealed he’s a “weeb.” Here are a few choice memes that have sprouted from this gift of a situation:
Remember theof that kid brandishing one of those plastic sticks with a pointy hand on top, screaming that he has the power of god and anime on his side? Now, imagine that kid was Erik Killmonger. You’re welcome.
At the risk of sounding like a Michael B. Jordan middle name truther…I believe it.
remake space jam but instead of michael jordan it's michael b. jordan and instead of looney tunes it's anime
— His Wiggles (@brentraptor) February 25, 2018
All these ’90s nostalgia-fueled reboots lately have been pretty hit or miss, but I have a good feeling about this one. Someone greenlight this, stat.
There’s nothing like a sweet anime sword.
my friend was sitting behind Michael B Jordan at a Warriors game and sent me this pic.twitter.com/6pdY7Zb7iD
— maie (@MaieAiyed) February 28, 2018
Someone put this miracle of Photoshop in the MoMA.
Erik Killmonger is super into “Naruto” and T’Challa is as thrown for a loop as the rest of us. A little bonus: someone recreated this scene as a drawing!
Just sayin pic.twitter.com/PxGd6E0UWf
— Chris Calrissian (@Chriskakashi) February 23, 2018
Another reboot worth watching.
ALL HAIL THE KING OF WEEB-KANDA!
WE BOW BEFORE THEE AND THY GLORIOUS REIGN. pic.twitter.com/WzGsaZLkEK
— Lady Giv (@givdesigns) February 21, 2018
All hail the weeb-king.
Truly, a 6-foot anime god among ain’t-shit men.