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Author Topic: Anime and self respect  (Read 4356 times)

Offline Kuma

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Anime and self respect
« on: June 11, 2006, 12:18:01 PM »
I've been thinking about this a bit recently, and I thought I'd see what you guys have to say about this.

Sometimes it can be really hard to take some anime seriously.  Like FullMetal Alchemist, for example.  The show will have a serious tone, and overall the show will take itself very seriously, until somebody cracks a "short" joke and Ed goes into a screaming fit and becomes SD, killing the mood and making me lose respect for the show.  It can be hard to explain these things to people who aren't familiar with it, and it can make it hard to get into certain anime.  I find it hard to take some anime seriously, when they don't even take themselves seriously.  Some of the stuff is cultural, but far too often the sweatdrops, pratfalls and chibi scenes just leave me scratching my head and wondering why.

Thoughts?

Offline Sara

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Re: Anime and self respect
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2006, 01:12:48 PM »
I understand what you're saying, and for that reason I refuse to acknowledge my anime-fanism publically.
 
I don't think it's a matter of the creators not taking the show seriously, it's probably just to lighten the mood but it does **** the shows over 99.8% of the time.

Offline dheu

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Re: Anime and self respect
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2006, 02:09:16 PM »
I'm not quite sure what you're getting at, so if you could explain a bit more, that'd be helpful.
 
My reply to what I think you're saying:
 
It's not that the anime doesn't take itself seriously. Those sweatdrops, pratfalls, and chibi scenes are just devices for a quick gag laugh. They're used to lighten the mood, not make fun of the anime in which they are used. It's just like a serious US movie using a quick joke to lighten the mood, only it's a more visual method. It is probably just a holdover visual device from manga, because it's used a lot more often there as well as in anime.
 
I don't know. I don't see it as they're not taking a series seriously at all. Most anime, if they're serious all the time, will drown under the weight of angst and depression. They need something to ease the tension.
 
And I disagree with Sara a bit.  I think using such devices in a serious anime only screws it over 75% of the time, or so.  Most of the time, it can ruin a moving moment.  But sometimes it can work well and be used in just the right way to not destroy any of the serious emotions, but just lighten them up a bit.  Of course, don't ask me for examples, because I can't think of any right off the top of my head.
« Last Edit: June 11, 2006, 02:11:43 PM by dheu »

Offline sevenzig

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Re: Anime and self respect
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2006, 04:41:58 PM »
It's all just Snakes on a Plane (which comes out August 18th, be there.) Honestly, if something takes itself THAT seriously, then I don't want to watch. Overly dramatic and serious animes make me vomit.

*Copy Pasta Dheu.

Offline Sorrow-kun

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Re: Anime and self respect
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2006, 04:45:27 PM »
The thing I want to see when anime pulls such stunts is consistancy.

What I mean is, I can see how it's done not only to lighten the mood, but to also show a more human side to the characters that makes them easier to relate to.  But at the same time, when the timing is poor, it really does make for a point of distraction.  FMA's probably one of the more obvious examples, though F/SN does it as well, if just significantly more subtly (and sometimes unintentionally).  Even the best anime aren't immune to it, as one of the more recent episodes of Mushishi had a moment where the main character, Ginko is
Spoiler for Hiden:
stabbed in the stomach.
to which, when he recovers, he reacts in an almost "hmm.. didn't appreciate that" fashion.  It was almost comical, and thus, almost laughable, but certainly not dramatic as an event such as that should have been.

So, my opinion on it overall:  if it's done well, it's done well and if it's done poorly, it's done poorly.  The most important thing to it is timing, though, but it just shouldn't appear in or around the most dramatic sequences.

Offline Kurier

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Re: Anime and self respect
« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2006, 07:16:03 PM »
I think I will echo SK. If it is done right at the righ time, it is a great device. However, when it is used either a) right but at the wrong time (ex; funny joke that makes you laugh, while someone is dying) or b) done wrong at the right time (ex; bad joke that makes you sigh, during a filler episode) or c) just exicuted wrong.

I think when we view anime as an English viewer, we don't get as much out of the slap-stick gag humor as say a Japanese viewer. If you look at a majority of their [Japan's] humor it is slap-stick and/or gag. I've been told that as funny as it is to us, it is double if not trible as funny to a Japanese viewer when say, a character goes SD or (like in FMA) an old joke is brought back (like Edward ranting about his heighth).

Taking that into account, you assume that if the Japanese have different senses of humor, then they would have different senses of drama. If that sense of drama is magnified, an already powerful scene from, say, Fullmetal Alchemist can become extremely powerful. In situations like this, humor is greatly need to keep the viewer from feeling horrible.

I sure wish more jokes were cracked during Saikano...
I fell off the wagon and now I can't stop.

Offline Kuma

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Re: Anime and self respect
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2006, 07:18:38 PM »
Comic relief isn't the problem as long as it keeps in tune with the show.  If you're a dark drama, crack a dark joke for your comic relief.  Maybe the creators don't intend some of the jokes as lack of self respect, but that's the way I tend to see it.  It's like they're trying to remind the viewer that they're watching moving pictures in some sort of misguided post-modern way.  If you have a great believable story why break the mood?

and dheu, you got the idea of what I was trying to say.

EDIT:  Crack jokes during Saikano?!  It wasn't that great as it was, if it started cracking jokes I wouldn't have finished it.  Which reminds me of NTHT.  Shu's personality often leads to humour which breaks the mood, but that is who he is and he acts believably.  The characters in Saikano weren't anything like that.  I guess they could have wrote them differently, but that really wasn't the problem with the show IMO.  I just had a hard time getting into it and empathizing with the characters.  If a show makes me truly feel any emotion strongly, even if it makes me feel awful, it is an excellent show.  Being depressing isn't a drawback.  :)
« Last Edit: June 11, 2006, 07:26:45 PM by Kuma »

Offline Tamashii

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Re: Anime and self respect
« Reply #7 on: June 30, 2006, 12:36:12 AM »
It's a matter of opinion whether the "break-the-mood jokes" are pros or cons; however, I think Kuma's more essential point is whether or not an anime should maintain a strong sense of "self-respect," and if so, to what extent. An anime's self-respect can be brought into question in more ways than sudden cracks during serious scenes. It can be done with malicious plot twists, betrayals of certain characters, and other harmful strategies.

Taking into consideration the genre is an essential point, however. Should a comedy maintain a certain self-respect? I don't see the reason why, but it can be done. Should an action anime maintain some self-respect? Certainly so, particularly ones that are character or plot driven. I find it crucial that any drama, or any show/movie having drama, should respect its scenes of significance. Sadly, Fullmetal Alchemist took a crappo on itself, and so had numerous other shows. Surprisingly (and one that just popped in my head), FLCL had never betrayed itself, and neither has Evangelion or Kare Kano. Looks like Anno knows his art.

Offline UZ teh Burger King

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Re: Anime and self respect
« Reply #8 on: June 30, 2006, 09:39:31 PM »
Most of the anime I watch doesn't take itself seriously anyway, so I can't reply. If the anime is like Excel Saga, than no, self respect isn't nessecary. It just would bog down the tone of the anime. I do agree with the fact that most non-random anime should try to have some sort of tone of respect around it.

Offline Pachinko

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Re: Anime and self respect
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2006, 06:09:39 PM »
I can see what you are mentioning...
Thankfully, the anime I (try) to watch remain in the mood for a good 5-to-10 minutes, and as soon as its ruined, I hit the "off" switch. It's incredibly annoying when you get all teary eyed and some dumb-@$$ chibi crushes it... T_T
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