The Banzai Anime Club is a student organization that provides a space for anime fans to relax, socialize and discuss their common interests.
Jacob Jennings, the club’s marketing officer, manages the group’s social media accounts, as well as its OwlLife page and email system. He has held this position for more than a year.
Jennings has loved this genre of animation since he was a child. He believes there are many different storytelling techniques used in animation that cannot be done with traditional camera and film.
At each weekly meeting, the group watches a new anime series to expand the members’ horizons.
“We watch about six to 10 episodes to get people introduced to a series,” Jennings said, “things that not everyone has seen so that they can broaden their scope of what to watch.”
Those in attendance can share ideas for what to watch the following week.
“If someone has a series that they think is really good, they tell us the name of the series, and myself or one of the officers will look it up to make sure it is acceptable for viewing in the room,” Jennings said. “There are standards and rules that we have to abide by.”
Each meeting is an event in itself, as members are given the opportunity to watch an anime series that may be difficult to obtain or expensive.
Because the cost of production is so high and the profits don’t always make up for it, some anime series can be expensive to buy. According to Masamune Sakaki, a computer graphics creator in the anime industry, an average 13-episode anime season costs around $2 million. The club is fortunate enough to have anime donated by officers and members to keep the costs low.
The club holds meetings every Friday from 7 to 11 p.m. in room 215B in the Atrium, J Building, on the Marietta campus.
At the next meeting, held Friday, Feb. 24, the club will have “Random Anime Night.” This will be a grab-bag-style night, so the club will watch pilot episodes of various anime in one night rather than the usual first seven episodes of a pre-selected series.
There are no annual fees to join the club. It was originally established more than five years ago, prior to Kennesaw State’s merge with Southern Polytechnic State University. As of now, the club has nearly 20 members.