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Japan Word of the Day #94 – Kūru (TV term)

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Today’s Word is: Kūru (クール)

Kūru (クール) is a TV broadcasting term that refers to the division of a year in four parts.
Each kūru consists of 3 months of regular TV programming. It’s said that at the end of three months producers and TV studios can generally tell whether the show is worth continuing for the next quarter or not.

In anime industry, shows for children are typically scheduled to run for 4 kūru (a whole year) as one season, and shows for higher age audience tend to run for 1 to 2 kūru at a time. This is because kids’ shows are usually strongly tied into toy sales, and they require more time to develop the toys and market them to customers during shows’ run.

The first kūru of a year spanning from January to March is sometimes called fuyu kūru (冬クール/winter quarter). Similarly, April-June is haru kūru (春クール), July to September, natsu kūru (夏クール), and October to December, aki kūru (秋クール). Many TV news sites and magazines publish a list of new shows that’ll start at the beginning of each kūru.

Image source: Ascii