last night in Aix Keiko Courdy was giving a talk and mentioned Tetsuwan
Atomu, the machine boy with an atomic heart.
patrick no doubt you use this example in your course on atomic and
nuclear age at uc santa barbara !!
interesting to see the cultural transfer from Japan to Walt Disney.....
The Origin of Animé: Astro Boy
Osamu Tezuka was the originator of Animé. During World War II, the
atomic bombs that were dropped in Japan killed many people. It was
depressing, and made the Japanese people angry. Osamu Tezuka then
released the first Animé, it was called Tetswan Atomu. That Animé was
about a little machine boy with an atomic heart whose creator disowned
him because he wasn't able to grow. Caring people then rescued him by
nurturing and accepting him as one of their own. This smoothed over
some of the nation's anger and was a big step in allowing people to
forgive. Another major step toward the growth of Animé, was when a
producer liked the idea and decided bring it to America. American
investments gave Japanese artists money and equipment (such as cartoon
cels) to make the product look better. Astro Boy (which is Tetswan
Atomu in English) had become a hit in America. Unfortunately, US
broadcasters complained that there was too much violence in the shows
and there could be involvement with death during the course of a
story. Walt Disney said that children could not be trusted with death
or a concept as complicated as death. So, American fans never got to
see the last episode of Astro Boy! That was how Animé started.
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