So we’ve all heard of this thing called pacing but few of us ever really think about it too much unless it’s bad. Good pacing is something that comes natural to a lot of anime and so when one comes along that is a bit slower then the norm or is a tad to fast we all get up on are high horse and start kicking up a fuss. But really is bad pacing really bad or is it just different?
I just finished Honey and Clover. No spoilers ahead. I’d say Honey and Clover suffers from unbalanced pacing as events seem to jump around constantly. Some stories are told in an episode or two but some are drawn out and take four or more episodes to give us the same amount of information. It makes watching it very awkward at times and it even put me off for a time.
I’m not saying slow pacing is a bad thing but there are times when you should really just speed up a little bit. Mushi Shi is a good example of mixed pacing that works well. When it needs to be calm and slow it is but when the action starts it can pick up the pace and present information faster.
Fast pacing is another problem and this usually occurs with adaptions of bigger manga or games which need to squashed into a 12 or 24 episode story. It can also occur when the story is just too long for it’s allotted amount of time. This happened with Persona 4 The animation, Blue Exorcist and Guilty Crown. It’s not always a bad thing but when you start to skip over key events or extended periods of calm then your pacing gets thrown out the window and the viewer will notice this. In some cases it doesn’t matter too much but when it’s incorrect you’ll be left feeling like something wrong has just happened and in some cases you won’t even realize it was the pacing that made you feel uneasy.
In thinking about this I’ve noticed there is some stories that never get mentioned for pacing and that is because the pacing is perfect. The sad thing is that good pacing is rarely recognized and is certainly not a factor someone would use in recommending something new to a potential viewer. You’ve never considered the pacing of Yotsuba, Full Metal Alchemist, Clannad or Spice and Wolf before have you?