Walking into my favourite bar, about 20 – 25 years ago. The smoke machine slithered through the metal cage that surrounded the dance floor. Leather and tattooed skin gleamed under the black lights. Silver chains and dangerous piercings. And in the far top corner of the room, Ghost in the Shell anime movie played on a hanging TV set.
We were all ghosts in our own shells.
I don’t think anyone can find an accurate fan demographic. Ghost in the Shell was one of those obscure anime cult classics. Loved by all, regardless of gender, and hugely popular in the underground at the time. Now? Apparently people are saying on social media that Ghost in the Shell fans are 75% male. Since when? As I skim these comments, I can’t help to think they’re posted by people who don’t know and were never there.
In any underground, alternative scene, anime was a huge influence. Ghost in the Shell and Akira are top of the list. I wouldn’t dare say which one is better, they’re both unique movies. But I will throw in a quick recommendation in the same vein. Robot Carnival. Worth it.
You see, it was all a part of the lifestyle. Anything punk. Cyberpunk long before anyone started calling it Cyberpunk. It all meshed together. It was never only a fanboy thing. It was a freak thing. And we were proud of it.
Times have changed, of course. The scene has long since become scattered. People got old. Got families. A lot died young. Live fast, make good looking corpse.
The truth is, Ghost in the Shell doesn’t have an original active fan base anymore. It’s an old movie, and people have moved on to the 21st century.
In regards to any controversy about the failed live action version, it’s the same underlying problem as the movie I Am Legend, and many other examples. There are still fans of the original book that hate the movie. I liked the movie. I also like the book. I don’t like how Hollywood keeps copping out by using the same title, when the movie is obviously a completely different story. I don’t think Hollywood knows how to market to a brand-new 21st century audience, and it is tiring waiting for them to figure it out.
Well, this post ended up being more depressing than I planned. That really wasn’t my intention. I was aiming for nostalgic.
Anyway, on a lighter note, I’m updating this blog and my website. Enjoy the changes and look for a new blog design soon.