OXFORD, England – Insomniacs around the world are in deep relief after a recent scientific study has suggested that their problematic lack of sleep can be combated by watching anime, particularly those within the “slice-of-life” genre.
The genre itself can be defined as a melodramatic glimpse into the everyday lives of the portrayed characters, focusing on neither plot, conflict, nor conclusion, but rather on casual dialogue and brief, unenthralling bouts of antics.
The discovery was ultimately the result of an unusual observation, and is the brainchild of Sherry Bovlin, a University of Oxford professor and neurologist researching the pathology of human sleep disorders.
“On weekend evenings my associates and I get together at my place and watch anime and TV shows of all kinds,” Bovlin explained. “On this particular week, we began watching Lucky Star. About 15 minutes into the first episode, however, I noticed that my friend Stan was fast asleep.”
According to Bovlin, Stan is a severe insomniac. It is normally impossible for him to fall asleep without his prescribed sedatives.
“I instantly suspected that something was going on,” Bolvin told Anime Maru.
She immediately capitalized on her discovery, exposing Stan to a variety of slice-of-life series she found in a list on reddit. Recording the time elapsed before Stan fell into a snooze, Bolvin found that the results were consistent on the premise that Stan was able to fall asleep relatively quickly, lasting no more than 1-3 episodes.
After analyzing the results of her experiments, Bovlin was able to draw conclusions and submitted her article to the Journal of Sleep Studies and Light Novel Anime Adaptations, titled Since Viewing and Understanding Slice-of-Life Anime Requires only Marginal Cognitive Input, Cerebral Activity is Lowered Due to the Brain Either Detecting Outright Boredom, and It is this Transition that Triggers the Sleeping State.
Whether you’re watching the perpetual tea party that is K-On!, staring at the scenery of Non Non Biyori, listening to Oreki trying to explain the hidden meaning of ice cream in Hyouka, or simply shutting off your brain for Lucky Star, this phenomenon appears to hold true. The psychological effects of slice-of-life anime are truly fascinating. Even shows like How I Met Your Mother failed to reach these levels of mental alteration.
New FDA regulations have allowed doctors to prescribe slice-of-life anime to treat insomnia, to much success. Common remarks include cost-effectiveness and the opinion that any entertainment is better than staring into space waiting for sleep to kick in.
Using newly granted funding to advance her research, Bovlin is currently investigating anime with a focus on series length and filler content, and their possible sleep-inducing effects, with an emphasis on the popular series One Piece, Naruto, and Bleach.