Several professions are depicted in the world of anime, but rarely are video game or traditional game journalists given roles in the series that you hungrily devour season after season. We’ve seen police officers, doctors, idol singers, swimmers, volleyball players, and even astronauts, but never–to my knowledge–a game journalist.
In an anime climate that welcomes and celebrates different professions, you’d think we’d have see more of this ilk, especially since it’s one we see so many video game fans taking up here in the United States and everywhere else in the world. For every new video game journalist on the path to becoming established in the industry, there’s a new site that springs up to welcome ten more. It’s a ubiquitous job, and one that I’m well-acquainted with, especially since I cover multiple facets of the industry and other media as well (like anime, obviously.)
That’s why it’s so interesting to see the character Hanna Mikage of Lostorage Incited WIXOSS, an established WIXOSS player who herself is respected within the community and even writes for various WIXOSS magazines referenced in the show. She attends the same high school that protagonist Suzuko Homura does, and while at first the two girls aren’t exactly on friendly terms, they eventually become close and work together to dig themselves out of the predicaments they find themselves in.
Hanna is, for all intents and purposes, a freelance WIXOSS writer who obviously gets assignments writing for publications because she really knows her stuff. This is unorthodox mainly because this simply isn’t a character archetype you see much of in anime.
While you see journalists and reporters, they typically are assigned to the “straight” news, and they’re writing about much less frivolous things than a card game. They’ve got “bigger” things going on. To see Hanna not only given screen time but also treated as an equal (even though she is only a first-year high school student) is progressive for anime. However, it feels like we should have seen it several times already.
Hanna may not be a video game journalist per se, but she’s obviously part of the enthusiast press who’s turned her love for the game and community (she visits the WIXOSS forums quite often) into something that she can leverage. Not only that, but she’s one of the best WIXOSS players out there. She’s probably making a decent amount of money doing what she’s doing. You could liken her success to eSports players out there who are simply great at what they do, so their expertise is frequently sought out with editors, content producers, and advertisers looking to partner with them.
This could very well be the beginning of a reality we start seeing soon in anime, and while it’s been a long time coming, it’s a truer reflection of young adults, gamers, and hobbyists of all ages. They all have things they hold incredibly dear, and many of them like to write about it.
For me, it’s video games, anime, and tech. For Hanna, it’s WIXOSS. Could we see video game journalists cropping up in shows like Sword Art Online? How about Digimon enthusiasts? It’s certainly an interesting occupation to assign characters, and there’s a whole lot creators could do with this specific path.
Personally, I’d love to see it appearing more and more in modern anime, much like the apps in Digimon, the twists and turns of anime like Magical Girl Raising Project, and the sardonic cynicism of Girlish Number. The landscape is changing and anime can take these new ideas and run with them.
Top Image Credit: Twitter