The mystery of Fitchburg State's Anime club

By Chris Withers

Photo by Nicole Rollo

People walk by us every day, but there are some invisible figures among us that we don’t tend to notice. This can apply to the student organizations at school. While some clubs are well-known, others exist in the shadows. These clubs are shrouded in mystery, floating around like ghosts you would see in Japanese cartoons – otherwise known as anime.
“The Anime Club has been around since the fall of 2005,” said current club president Nicholas Carr. “But a lot of people still don’t know about us.”
One main reason why many people don’t know about the club is the lack of publicity done to get their name out there. The executive board members do ask attendees if they have any ideas of how to publicize their club. One idea was attending Rock the Block and handling out fliers about the club meetings. Even with that, there are currently 20 to 25 members attending on a weekly basis who are content to simply watch and discuss anime.
Club member Travis Stewart said, “We are considering further activities, but are currently focused more on binding the club together than educating the organization on the history and nature of the medium.”
Here is a brief history lesson on anime. A multitude of people tend to see the 1990s stereotype of anime being largely tentacle-based… adult material, and the club would like you to know they don’t swing that way: “we have a code… no adults-only content in the club.” The club would also like you to know that they watch a wide variety of shows each semester stretching from action, to drama, to science fiction. This semester, they are screening four series: the sci-fi survival action series “Jyu Sei Oh: Planet of the Beast King,” the sci-fi drama “Gunslinger Girls,” and the high school comedies “Baka and Test,” and “Cromartie High School.”
“In the past, we have dedicated one or two nights to watching some classic films (last semester “Macross: Do You Remember Love?” and “Ghost in the Shell”), and both films were preceded by a brief presentation regarding their significance and production,” said Stewart.
One big event the club does every spring semester (in the month of May) is GameCon, which is open to resident and commuting students. Different games are provided for attendees to play to their heart’s content.
The Anime Club meets every Wednesday at 6 p.m. in the Condike Science Building’s lecture hall (room 202).