Tuesday Terminology: Itano Circus

Tuesday Terminology is a weekly segment to enlighten the masses with words, phrases, and ideals usually tacked on to today’s anime/manga scene.

This week’s topic: The Legendary Itano Circus

You know that crazy attack mechs do in your favorite Gundam or Robotech/Macross series?  The one where there’s too many missiles to count.  There’s actually a name for that.  It’s called the Itano Circus.

Itano Circus is named after famed animator and director, Itano Ichiro.  He is basically the man who developed the idea onto paper, well… multiple pages of paper.  The Itano Circus is a mass volley of an attack containing  missiles and/or laser beams whose trajectories swerve and zigzag towards their locked-on target.  The visual wonder that resulted has become widely popular among anime studios and the concept is still used in anime today.  There really isn’t much more to it, besides it’s huge popularity the point that Itano’s peers honored him by naming the technique as such.  So to minimize text, here’s a 20-minute video of the concept of Itano Circus in action.

If you’re interested in the speculation on if this kind of thing is even possible, click here.

Hako’s Thoughts:

Mecha-space/airborne battles really would be super-boring without the Itano Circus.  Even now, when this kind of stuff is partly (or completely) animated in 3D, it’s still nice to look at.  All those dazzling light/smoke trails are really pretty in some cases.

–Hako

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