Decades Later, An Animator's Complaint Discovered In Akira

·2-min read
On the side of medical equipment, is a Caution sign.
On the side of medical equipment, is a Caution sign.


Would you have noticed this?

Until December 28, Akira is streaming on YouTube for free in Japan. With the country’s end of year holidays underway, people have more time to spend watching the movie, and perhaps, more time to notice all the little details.

And little details are something Akira is not lacking.

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As noted by Twitter user HikozaTwi (via My Game News Flash), at around the 38-minute-mark in the movie, there’s a Caution sign on some medical equipment. Underneath, it looks like English is written, but it’s actually Japanese that was written in the Latin script.

In English, the text translates to:

Why do we have to fill in this far! Knock it off! Enough

This is the first I had heard of this complaint in the movie.

Making anime is hard, and here, a staff member found a stealthy way to blow off some steam. The amount of detail in each frame is staggering, which no doubt required tremendous time, effort, and energy of those making the movie.

It’s amazing that after all these years, people are still finding things in Akira. Are there any undiscovered bits, complaints, or inside jokes?

Originally a manga, Akira debuted in 1982 and finished its run in 1990. Creator Katsuhiro Otomo adapted it to a feature film in 1988, writing the script and directing the movie. It’s gone on to become one of the most influential manga and anime ever, and its mark on popular culture continues to be felt even today.

Earlier this year, Kotaku reported how the anime seemed to predict some recent turmoil, including Covid-19 and its impact on the Tokyo Olympics. At times, it seemed as Otomo had almost predicted the future—or, at least, elements of it.

This past summer, Akira received a 4K remaster on Blu-ray. The anime, like the manga, is a visual feast.

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