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Story: Japanese Video Stores

The “Science Fiction Monster” section

The “Science Fiction Monster” section

Japanese video stores.  They’re well-stocked and ubiquitous in big cities and small towns.  The problem is they’re just too confusing.  In the US, movies are organized within 5 to about 10 genres.  The categories are kept at a low number to cater to those looking for a specific movie, but remain specific enough for those just wanting to curl up with a good “romance.”  In Japan, however, the movies are organized into small subgenres, making it much more difficult to find specific films.  That means if you’re looking for Batman, you can’t just go over to action/adventure and look under the “B”s.  You have to go to the Science Fiction aisle, then the “Science Fiction Action” section, and then look under the “B”s.  Wha?

I counted 42 subgenres in the last store I was in, and that was only for the American movies.  This is the story of my experience looking for movies in a Japanese video store.  This is an observation. Continue reading

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