My Little Beef with AMV Hell

After watching AMV Hell Championship Edition a couple months ago, I found I had developed a slight distaste for the AMV Hell series and its various clones. That doesn’t mean the video wasn’t funny; in fact, it was hilarious. It is just that…while I like AMV Hell for its short, odd juxtapositions of music and/or sound clips with anime for effect, I also dislike them for that particular aspect.

If you have ever watched “Robot Chicken”, AMV Hell has the same sort of layout: it has short, humorous scenes and quickly jumps from one to the other to the next. This is one of the series’s best traits as the scene changes after the punchline, preventing that particular joke from getting stale. But with that comedic benefit comes an aesthetic problem that effects me along with (I’m sure) some other people. The “changing channel” sound during the half-second transition between bits disorients me for a second and disrupts the flow of the video.

A strict interpretation of the phrase “Anime Music Video” would lead to a video consisting of anime synced to a single piece of music or sound. Multitracked video might be allowed if the different songs are mixed together with smooth transitions, such as the Reflections of Style series, the DDR Project videos, or the Animix Project.

Maybe I’m analyzing this too much because of course, the AMV Hell style of presentation MEANS to parody it with over-the-top visuals (read: fanservice) and subversive use of normally tame tunes or dialogue. It thrives on the WTF factor. In fact, some of the song/anime pairings could probably make good AMVs themselves, like Yakitate! Japan to “Rye or the Kaiser” (“Weird Al” Yankovic).

Oh, and here’s a bit of “Suzumiya Hell” for you:

It sounds like a hundred finches all panicking at the same time.


One response to “My Little Beef with AMV Hell

  1. I dunno, I really liked all the AMV Hell’s, especially 0 and 2.


    Anyway, AMV’s arnt always literally AMV’s, sometimes they are just anime to something other then its original audio track. And thats the case with AMV Hell. The point of AMV Hell(s) is comedy, its not supposed to be viewed as ‘i bet they’d play this on MTV japan if there were no copyright problems!’ but more of “this should be on Comedy Central or HBO” or something.

    Watching it as an AMV instead of a a bunch of comedy clips combined into one easily viewed video just isnt a good idea, simply because, as you pointed out it lacks the traits of a music video. If you watch it as an AMV and not as a comedy video, it really isnt good at all.

    Oh and random but, im pretty sure a few of the clips in some of the AMV Hell versions were actually made into full-length AMV’s later on (or even before they were used for AMVH).