COVID-19 FUELLED WAVE OF FANDOM
Industry watchers said the COVID-19 pandemic fueled a wave of anime fandom in the US over the past few years. This genre of Japanese animation became mainstream in Japan in the 1980s.
“With Covid, all of us sitting at home watching Netflix, we didn’t want to watch The Office or Seinfeld for the 10th time,” Mr David Edmundson, director of marketing at Bandai Namco Toys & Collectibles America.
“So we’re like, ‘Hey, let’s try this One Piece. It’s 1,100 episodes, it’s a little daunting but let’s just see what it’s about.’ And the show just hooks you.”