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Very often, in the middle of an anime episode, I can see some screens lasting just a few seconds.

They very often consist of some drawing/aesthetic element or gag element. It is very often combined with some sound. Most often it is "the onsen sound".

It seems that its purpose is to separate different scenes/setups, make interrupts in long scenes or to make a place for adverts in TV series.

Examples:

  • In Bleach: it was Kon's footprint.
  • In KonoSuba: it was an encircled "このすば" writing combined with the voice of seiyuu screaming loud: "KONOSUBA!" and main characters' silhouettes resembling Mario Bros. game mechanics.
  • In KanColle: it was a drawing of a newly introduced character with her name.
  • In Arpeggio of Blue Steel: it was a sonar screen with the sonar sound.
  • In Tenjou Tenge: it was two female main characters during transformation back into "adult form" and cutting sakura petals with katana.
  • In One Punch Man: it was a white bold "ONE PUNCH MAN" writing on a red or blue background and also some character's silhouette performing his special attack, accompanied by short electric guitar play.

My question is: What is the name of this technical element?


Potentially linked question (I'm not sure if we are referring to the same element)

  • 1
    The linked question is unrelated to an eyecatch since it's still used as a storytelling element instead of commercial break separator. – Aki Tanaka Jan 17 at 16:11
  • 3
    Just a note : The KonoSuba is different, as there are multiple in single episode and are only single piece. normal eyecatch usually have two pieces for before and after the break. So they are just unconventional scene transitions. There acually is an eyecatch in episode 1 where Aqua spergs around and "PAUSE" shows on screen to dissapear after few seconds. anime.stackexchange.com/questions/29372/… – Euphoric Jan 18 at 7:52
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In Japan, the term is called eyecatch, which is also known as bumper. As the question has mentioned, it's usually to indicate the start and end of the commercial break.

In broadcasting, a commercial bumper, ident bumper or break-bumper (often shortened to bump) is a brief announcement, usually two to fifteen seconds in length that can contain a voice over, placed between a pause in the program and its commercial break, and vice versa.


In Japan, an eyecatch (アイキャッチ aikyatchi) or internal eyecatch is a scene or illustration used to begin and end a commercial break in a television program, especially in anime and tokusatsu shows. The term is used, in Japan, to refer to all kinds of bumpers.

In many television series, eyecatches are contemporaneous into the climax of a story, leading onto speculation during the commercial break.

Unlike in American programs, in which bumpers are typically supplied by the network (when they have them at all), eyecatches are almost always produced by the production company and considered a part of the program itself, rather than (or also serving as) a segue into a commercial break. They are typically two to six seconds in length. Eyecatches for children's programs are often longer and more elaborate, while eyecatches for programming intended for adults may consist of nothing more than the program's logo against a black background.

  • 3
    Also, if the eyecatch includes music it will often be included on the soundtrack CD (OST) with a track name of アイキャッチ (or アイキャッチA, アイキャッチ1 etc if there are multiple versions). – Simon Brady Jan 17 at 23:50
  • 1
    Yes! Ebglish calls it a bumper, whether in audio or video. Awesome answer! – Jesse Steele Jan 18 at 7:29

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