People have been clamoring that there is an Anime Gate going on, and that taking down the popular voice actor, Vic… Mig…nawn… Vic. Taking down Vic was a huge part of this. My argument is Anime Gate is much older than #KickVic, and is much broader. Let’s start at the beginning.
Signs at conventions asking for hugs/kisses, people taking pictures with cosplayers with their hand on their boob/butt, hyped up youngsters running at people full speed for a glomp, etc… Anime Convention goers have always been debaucherous, and there has always been this awkward excited energy to anime conventions… and a lot of us finally grew up and it became more okay to say ‘This! This! I don’t like THIS!’
2014’s Cosplay is Not Consent is where Anime Gate really started from. Then we have the whole Momokun situation where a cosplay guest was being all handsy and gropish with other attendees. People complained and conventions restricted her appearances but lately it’s as if people forgot about her.
In between, we’ve had the whole Anime Matsuri situation, where John Leigh of Anime Matsuri had lolita guests claiming that he had harassed them both online and in-person.
Vic Mignogna has had allegations whispered at conventions since I’ve been going to them in 2004 that I have personally heard of. Women claiming that Vic is creepy, that conventions were going to stop having him as a guest, etc.
There is a spreadsheet going around of accused abusers from anime conventions. Right around this time, #KickVic started. Something like #KickVic was almost destined to come up in this post #Metoo world. The allegations against Vic Mignogna aren’t that bad even, for the most part. Too huggy and kissy on women/girls of questionable ages for way too long of a time. That sums up this whole Vic thing, in a nut shell.
‘This! This! I don’t like THIS!’
While convention behavior between guest and attendee, cosplayer and attendee, and even guest and convention volunteers once you factor in Vic’s alleged behavior towards staff when he doesn’t get his way, is only half of what could be considered an Anime Gate.
You then have Westerners trying to re-make anime in their own image, what with Crunchy Roll allegedly misappropriating funds to make High Guardian Spice, Steven Universes nods to video games and anime, Crunchy Roll ignoring the popular Goblin Slayer for it’s yearly awards because it’s content is problematic, Netflix’s She-Ra, and the countless ‘Ameria-manga’ cartoon and comic art styles that have come before all of this.
The real Anime Gate might just be the fact that a lot of the 2nd generation of Anime fans who were 90’s kids finally grew up and took off the rose tented glasses, and said enough was enough on social media… where they were finally heard.
But hey… that’s just a theory… an Anime Gate theory!