By Rafael Motamayor
It’s almost midnight, and you just finished binge-watching the latest season of My Hero Academia. Just before going to bed, it suddenly hits you. You are completely powerless as your mouth opens, your lungs get filled with air, and you shout…
“Kie sō na hikari da to shite mo, ike!”
That’s BLUE ENCOUNT’s opening theme for the first part of Season 4.
Don’t worry, we’ve all been there. Whether it’s “Shinzou Wo Sasageyo” (Attack on Titan) suddenly sneaking up on you and making you stand up to do the Scout Regiment salute in the middle of a workday, or the all-time classic “A Cruel Angel’s Thesis” (Neon Genesis Evangelion) making you cry because you remember The End of Evangelion all of a sudden. No matter the cause, the result remains the same: you now have an anime opening song (anime OP) stuck in your head.
Fret not, dear reader. We’ve got just the solution for you. Just use our step-by-step guide to cleansing your brain of that earworm, and pretty soon you’ll be right as rain!
Step 1: Acknowledgement
The first step is admitting there’s a problem.
Don’t try to deny it. Embrace that you cannot think of anything else other than “TIT FOR TAT” from Cautious Hero: The Hero is Overpowered but Overly Cautious, or the magical keyboard sounds of the opening for “Mister Fixer” from ID: INVADED. You can only start the healing process once you tell yourself, “Yes, I am unable to stop myself from singing along to this anime OP.” By confronting the issue head-on, you open yourself up to improvement.
But hey, it’s extremely catchy, right? I mean, the play button is right there.
Step 2: Give in to the earworm
They say that in order to truly get rid of a “problem,” you have to face it head-on. When it comes to getting a song out of your head, it’s unlikely you can simply fly out and meet the band that recorded the song or talk to them about it, so the next best thing is to just listen to it. On repeat. For a long enough time that you can’t even hear it anymore. That’s a thing right?
Ask your closest friends or family members, have them keep you grounded with some noise-canceling headphones or a state-of-the-art sound system, and find the full-length version of the song. Now, just sit back and relax. You’ll really want to focus in on every single, minuscule detail of the anime OP.
It’s not enough to simply listen to LiSA’s record-breaking “Gurenge” (Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba). You have to completely give yourself over to the soft piano notes, devote your heart to protecting Nezuko, and immerse yourself in the total banger of a chorus. Carrying a sibling in a tiny wooden box on your back is optional. Only then will you finally be free.
Step 3: Hit that watchlist
What’s that? Not only did Steps 1 and 2 not work, but your family looks at you weird now that you stuffed one of them in a box and tried to carry them on your back thinking they were a demon? Well, stick with us here for a second.
Thankfully, there are options. Just take a look at your “My Queue” and pick something else. Sure, you could just rewatch Cowboy Bebop again, but maybe something new will pique your musical interest in a whole new way, removing that earworm once and for all.
Step 4: Mute your TV?
Desperation has set in, hasn’t it? If that previous step didn’t work, or perhaps it did and now you’ve got more songs stuck in your head, there’s always the option of muting your television or phone. Of course, this might make it a bit tough to pay attention to what’s happening on-screen.
Plus, if you mute your player now, you’re going to miss out on the smooth stylings of the OP for If My Favorite Pop Idol Made It to the Budokan, I Would Die or the ominous Darwin’s Game theme.
We suppose there’s one last option…
Step 5: Skip the intro (yeah, right)
OK, so maybe you’re not capable of watching an anime without singing along or tapping your foot to its OP. That’s OK. You know why? Because there’s nothing wrong with that, and skipping the intro isn’t going to solve the problem you have–it’s just going to make you miss out on some sweet tunes.
It’s going to be OK.
What’s that? There’s also an ending song?! Well, it looks like you’ve still got options. It just so happens that all of your options involve blasting that anime playlist at max volume in perpetuity.
With that, we’ll leave you with one last earworm:
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