Toronto's Japanese Animation Club

The anime habit can quickly become an expensive one. Especially for Americans who don’t get to see their favorite Japanese cartoons on TV. Fortunately there is a good affordable way to see big blocks of your favorite anime at once: boxed sets.

Almost all of the popular anime series are available in a variety of boxed sets. These usually contain several episodes, a half season, or an entire season of a program. Much like the popular boxed sets of American or British TV shows. Ordering a boxed set can enable you to catch up on a whole season of your favorite anime.

Indeed anime with soap opera type plots, continuing storylines, cliff hanger endings and fast paced is well suited to a boxed set. A fan can easily catch up on a whole season of his or her favorite show in a couple of days sitting. Such a boxed set is a perfect way to fill the time on a boring weekend or a rainy day off.

Where to Find Anime Boxed Sets

The best place to shop for anime boxed sets is online. Almost every series ever made from classics of the 1920s and 30s to the most recent hits has been collected into some sort of a boxed set. These are almost all available for sale online.

Prices do range widely so you will have to shop around. The big shopping sites such as Buy.com and amazon.com appear to be the best place to look. Deepdiscount.com also seems to have some pretty good deals.

One way to save money is to purchase titles that are a few years old. Online retailers often offer these at some sort of a discount. It is also possible to find some used titles for sale through sites like E-bay. Another way to save money is to swap boxed sets you aren’t watching to somebody else for their sets.

The average price for a popular anime boxed set can range between $40 and $100. Some will go for more than that but those willing to shop should be able to save money.

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Shopping for Anime Boxed Sets

Simply typing the name of a series that you are looking for into a search engine will show you how easy it is to find. It often takes a while for recent titles to show up in the US. Another problem is that big American video distributors may not stock anime. This means it is often distributed by smaller outfits.

A person should definitely be careful when dealing with these. Some of them are pretty good but others may not do that good a job of customer service. It may take weeks for some of them to ship out a particular title and they may not have everything that they advertise or list on their websites in stock.

One good suggestion is to always pay extra for the UPS or FedEx shipping this will get the DVDs to you quicker and they are less likely to be damaged. Shipping through the mail is cheaper but it is slower. It must also be noted that the Post Office is no longer as reliable as it once was.

Boxed Sets via Streaming Video

Unfortunately it is currently not possible to order boxed anime sets through methods like streaming video. Individual episodes can be found this way but most equipment won’t provide enough of them. Services like Netflix may not have more obscure material available.

That means it’ll probably be a few years until you can download your favorite series directly into a box next to your TV. It isn’t here yet but it is definitely coming some day.

If you can find individual episodes of a particular series you have not seen yet it might be a good idea to watch one or two of them before ordering the series. That way you won’t end up wasting money on a boxed set you don’t plan to watch.

Another place it is sometimes possible to get boxed sets from is the public library. Libraries in some cities like Denver do stock large selections of animation. These sets are often scratched up but they can be a good introduction to a particular series.