Or “Sales Barriers for Anime”
This was originally going to be named “how 2ch reads sales charts” but then I remembered that trying to classify any part of 2ch as a singular is a rather foolish thing to do unless you want hits. Wait, oops.
Anyway, this is obviously not gospel truth, but a neat, simplified guide by someone who is clearly somewhat of an industry watcher and a brave warrior on the battlegrounds of the 2ch sales threads. Disc sales numbers referred to here are Oricon numbers.
Mostly anime where disc sales are not a main concern from the beginning; either truly insignificant shows1 or close to it.
Ex: NHK anime, Children’s anime, Pay channel shows (WOWOW, etc), Nippon TV late night shows, Gonzo shows, IG Original shows, etc
Mostly insignificant shows. Shows in this area generally failed to attract any interest and are looked upon as endangered, shadowy species.
Ex: Gin’iro no Olynssis, Hyakko, Hero Tales, Shikabane Hime, Akikan!, etc
The line between significance and insignificance. Depending on the week, the title may chart if it gets lucky. However, these titles are normally frightened away from the charts, as they’re afraid that Totoro might squash them.
Ex: Yozakura Quartet, Blassreiter, Simoun, Kaze no Stigma, Nabari no Ou, etc
Significant enough to not count as insignificant. However, their poor sales are generally enough to chart, often causing people to only feel pity or sympathy for them.
Ex: Ghost Slayers Ayashi, Galaxy Angel Rune, Kimikiss, Our Home’s Fox Deity, Kyoran Kazoku Nikki, etc
Light novel anime often falls in this category. Might be enough to turn a profit with Kadokawa DVD pricing. The title considered the hurdle is now quantified as a single unit of sales, as in “one Zega.” Anime in this category is considered to be in dangerous territory, as Manabi, the problem child, often makes faces at these titles.
Ex: Rental Magica, Goshusho-sama Ninomiya-kun, Kurenai, Shinkyoku Sokai Polyphonica, Zegapain, etc.
Many titles fall in this category. Marginally performing shows, many of which didn’t sell as much as their popularity would make you think they would.
Ex: Manabi Straight!, true tears #1, Sketchbook, Gun X Sword, Yami to Boshi to Hon no Tabibito
The line of profitability. Also the line at which one could say a title is doing okay, but some may call some titles that sell this many a failure, so it’s quite hard to judge.
Ex: Denno Coil, Soul Eater, School Days, Linebarrels of Iron, Super Robot Swars OG, etc
Titles that gathered a reasonable amount of attention and sold reasonably well. Posters may still make fun of these titles’ sales, but they’re rarely considered “failures.” Growth stocks.
Ex: Seto no Hanayome, Bamboo Blade Garei -Zero-, Higurashi no Naku Koro Ni, Planetes, etc
The point where a second season looks likely, and a reasonable number of discs one can hope to sell. Producers seem to begin to be praised at this point.
Ex: Strawberry Marshmallow, Rozen Maiden, Hidamari Sketch, The Familiar of Zero, Darker than Black, etc
Impressive sales, favorites that can easily be called “hits.”
Ex: Spice and Wolf, Full Metal Panic Fumoffu, Nodame Cantabile, My-Otome, Sgt. Frog, etc
The entry point into the world of five-figure sales. There is no problem with calling regular late night anime that sell this much a “major hit.”
Ex: Toradora, Shakugan no Shana, Natsume’s Book of Friends, Pani Poni Dash!, Fafner in the Azure, etc
The top class of sales for titles that target the narrow otaku community. Praiseworthy honors students.
Ex: Minami-ke, s-CRY-ed, Da Capo, Strike Witches, Eureka Seven, etc
The point at which people who normally don’t buy DVDs begin to buy a title. Outstanding works brimming with frontier spirit.
Ex: Gintama, Death Note, Big Windup, Aria the Animation, Negima, etc
Properties with many strong, ardent, and powerful supporters. Major stars with deep fanbases.
Ex: Air, Tengen Toppa Gurren-Lagann, Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS, Clannad, Hetalia, etc
Titles in between the above and below categories that stand as influential and steadfast titles.
Ex: Lucky Star, Azumanga Daioh, G.I.T.S. SAC 2nd GIG, Initial D 4th Stage, Fate/Stay Night, etc
New leaders that become the talk of the industry. Incredible flamewars break out between supporters of titles of this group and titles in the next tier.
Ex: Full Metal Alchemist, The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, Code Geass, Macross F, Gundam 00, etc
In a completely different class from the rest. Godly sales.
Ex: Gundam SEED, theatrical anime (Kara no Kyokai, The Girl Who Leapt Through Time), Bakemonogatari, etc
Theatrical anime or anime made for the public at large. The stars of the industry.
Ex: Ghibli anime, Eva films, Zeta Gundam: A New Translation, Final Fantasy VII Advent Children, The World of Golden Eggs, etc
- keep in mind that the kind of poster who would make this chart judges a show’s worth by its economic performance. original term 雑魚, or “small fry” [↩]