My friends and I all had one. Some of them still haven’t gotten out of it. It’s that period of time where most, if not all of what you watch is Anime, and you join fandoms centered around your favorite ones. It’s a normal part of nerd development, it seems.
For those of you who seem confused by this “Anime Phase”, let me put it into perspective: imagine you had a show or TV genre that you were absolutely obsessed with. You could have been obsessed with it for weeks, months, even years, but it was the center of your attention in terms of being a fan. They’re one in the same. But rather than having it be an American or British TV show/genre, it’s Japanese.
This phase rose out of the Anime Craze of the 1990’s. It came as a result of kids having greater exposure and access to watching Anime, allowing for the phase to blossom. Kids are going through a period of wanting to watch nothing but Anime, and there’s nothing wrong with that.
The Anime Phase can range anywhere from casual (like mine) to all-consuming. I was one of the ones who would watch Anime casually, but wasn’t too far into it. I could watch other shows, and watching Anime didn’t take up my entire day. But there are others, including people I knew, who would spend their day only watching Anime. These are usually the ones that don’t ever leave the Anime Phase, although there are occasions when they do.
In most cases, those who have an Anime Phase never stop watching anime. I can tell you that most of my friends still watch certain anime (mostly to most popular ones), although I find myself unable to sit down and watch one. The last one I saw was three years ago, and although some anime are enticing, I just can’t sit for that long watching. I’ve developed kind of a strange relationship with anime, probably because of overly casual nature of my Anime Phase.
The Anime Phase has been going strong for over twenty years. It’ll be interesting to see how long it continues for, especially with the rise of other popular phases.