Terminology: itano circus

The Itano Circus is the name for a widely used style of shot where an actor (usually a mecha or aircraft ) dodges and is pursued by a storm of swirling projectiles (usually missiles though sometimes beams or tentacles or other objects ). Sometimes a single pursuing object is enough, if the trails are sufficiently twisting.

Named for the first animator to use the technique, the inventor, Ichiro Itano, is said to have discovered what it looks like to be in the middle of a hail of rockets when he attached fifty fireworks to his motorcycle and lit them all while driving it around on a beach. Alcohol may have been involved.

The technique first appeared in Densetsu Kyojin Ideon episode 29, was popularised in the 1982 series Super Dimension Fortress Macross (ex: post #15477), and has seen use ever since. It is very common in mecha anime, but has been known to appear in mahou shoujo or other action series as well.

Alternatively called the Macross Missile Massacre, further discussion of the trope can be found here and here.

Japanese Link
Web Anime Style interview with Itano (6 pages long)
Updated by grognarg over 3 years ago