An Auto Ethnographic View of Akira 1988

Studio A

Before watching Akira (1988) I didn’t realise how regularly I’ve seen references to it in Western popular media. From Michael Jackson’s and Kanye West’s music to Street Art, Streetwear, and even to Sci-Fi or Apocalyptic style films.


(Source: Neo-Tokyo Is About To Explode – Akira Murals In Shibuya: Link)

Akira‘s combination of cyberpunk dystopia, youth alienation, scientific-based philosophy and grand scale visual bombast was already a staple part of the western sci-fi genre throughout the 80s” (Usher, 2016)

My personal experience with Akira was interesting to say the least, I found myself confused for the most part until the end of the film when everything comes together, 3 quarters of the film was very chaotic and overwhelming. Which reinforces feelings of being in an Apocalyptic mess created by the government.

The main cast of characters were quite stereotypical, a misunderstood male lead who has reasons for all…

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