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Author Topic: 'First time' effect  (Read 3193 times)

Offline C0MPL3X

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'First time' effect
« on: January 16, 2007, 02:08:38 AM »
I was talking to this person with an username 'Kafka' few days ago during an online game (dota). I stroke the conversation first becaues I was curious if this person borrowed his username from Murakimi's novel 'Kafka on the shore'. I was right and we started talking about it and Murakimi's novels during the game. It so happens that my favourite Murakimi novel is Kafka on the shore (I've only seen a few though...) and his favourite is Norweigian wood. Also my first ever Murakimi novel was Kafka on the shore while his first was Norweigian wood. Coincidence? Or naturally it's just our difference in taste, values and perspectives on the world.
 
He then asked me whether I liked the anime 'series experiments: lain'. If I'm using lain as my freaking username in a game then of course I liked it! Then we sidetrack again into talking about animes, how he liked Paranoia Agent and didn't understand Lain, and how I think Paranoia agent is better but I like Lain better.
 
Thinking about it now, Lain is still one of my favourite animes. And it's also my first 'serious' anime other than pokemon dubbed. Yet when I watch Lain again, I still adore that cold, isolated and wired world and Lain who is finding out its and her identity.
 
So, if one views a 'first time' of particular genre or style in anime, can it produce an experience greater than its inherent value? And if one gets more accustomed to that particular genre or style, then will our first time 'illusionary' greatness vapourise or will the nostalgia still force us to overrate it? And as a reviewer, can one identify approximately how much they are influenced by this illusionary greatness and come to more or less an 'objective' grade?

Offline Sorrow-kun

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Re: 'First time' effect
« Reply #1 on: January 16, 2007, 03:02:24 AM »
I'm almost certain I've played against him.

More and more I'm starting to accept that there's no such thing as a perfectly "objective" rating.  Any reviews must have an inherent bias which depends on the reviewer.  First experience can potentially be just as much a source of bias as anything else unique to the reviewer, such as taste, etc, whatever.  The difference is probably that it's easier to recognize by a reviewer that this is causing bias.

As far as lingering bias is concerned, my first three anime were Love Hina, FLCL and Cowboy Bebop, each of which I watched at least another two times.  However, only Cowboy Bebop I was as impressed with after watching multiple times.  Love Hina, in particular, after seeing how often its formula was repeated both before and after it was made, I began to have less and less respect for after I first saw it, even though I did enjoy it first time round.  But I suppose it depends on genre as well.  For example, Kanon was the first visual novel conversion I saw, and I still really like it (maybe not as much as when I first saw it), despite its flaws.

Offline Kuma

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Re: 'First time' effect
« Reply #2 on: January 16, 2007, 08:51:57 AM »
Quote from: Sorrow-kun
More and more I'm starting to accept that there's no such thing as a perfectly "objective" rating.  Any reviews must have an inherent bias which depends on the reviewer.


I completely agree.  There is no such thing as a perfectly objective rating, because every reviewer places emphasis on different aspects of the title.  Some reviewers prefer certain genres of anime over others.  Even the state of my life at the time of viewing has influenced my opinions of certain anime.  While one should attempt a certain degree of objectivity, what is more important as a reviewer is consistency in your biases.  That way, people with similar tastes will be able to trust your opinions.

I still can't be completely objective about Evangelion, because of how much it blew my mind when I first saw it.  Nadia is another title I can't be purely objective about, because of life events.  I like the show as if it were a "9," but qualitywise it's about a "high 7."  I ended up giving it an "8" as a balance between objectivity and subjectivity.

Offline Kurier

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Re: 'First time' effect
« Reply #3 on: January 16, 2007, 10:08:35 AM »
I'd have to say that this is almost a Mother-love effect. Your mother is one of the first people you, and this causes a really strong bond in most cases. I'd apply this same principle to your first anime experience.

For me, it is Evangelion, which wasn't my first but it was my true first "I know what this is" anime (kinda like you really first incounter the doctor that delivered you and maybe his/her nurses then you finally meet your real mother). Evangelion isn't the best, but I've been known to defend it as such. I could never objectivily review it.
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Offline royal crown

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Re: 'First time' effect
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2007, 05:04:05 PM »
Going similarly off of what Kurier said, this reminds me of an ethics quandary that came about during a conversation about ethics with a friend. He was talking about how each individual is worth inherently what his net worth is, and thus ought to be treated as such proportional to the utility he gave to society. I respond: "Yeah, but if you were stuck between a choice of killing your father, or killing Bill Gates, would you kill your father knowing that his utility is less than Bill Gates?"

Hence, despite how objectivity should exist when weighing an anime for its merits, one must always accept an inert bias. This of course would exist in a "first" anime, if not solely because of the "wow" factor of watching anime to begin with (assuming that it was an anime you liked obviously).

So yeah, while it's good to be able to view things objectively, it's against human nature to have no bias whatsoever.

Offline Akira

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Re: 'First time' effect
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2007, 09:27:17 PM »
Let's face it: The first time of anything, whether it be sex, anime, or driving a car, always feels different somehow.

Which is why I'd never review Pokemon; I'd get my head bashed in.
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Offline C0MPL3X

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Re: 'First time' effect
« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2007, 12:46:37 AM »

Offline Ariani

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Re: 'First time' effect
« Reply #7 on: February 09, 2007, 08:02:31 AM »
I do believe first-time viewing can create a bias, but it's not the same for everyone. I can fully admit that the first anime I ever saw and loved (Sailormoon) was complete and utter crap, and were I to review it, it would be reviewed with that idea in mind. The filler is terrible, the early series' animation was god-awful, and the plotline is so spliced and chopped to bits that you really need the manga to understand it.

Doesn't mean I can't enjoy the show, but I do realise that a lot of my enjoyment of the show comes from pure nostalgia.

And of course there's the fact that it's only one type of bias that exist. Genre bias is a HUGE one. I don't care for mecha shows in the slightest, so I wouldn't touch them for a review. There are other examples, too, as there's lots of different bias out there.

Objective grading/reviewing in general is something that doesn't really exist. The goal is to get as objective as possible, but no one can completely avoid bias. It's just not possible. The best thing for a reviewer to do is to write what she thinks and feels to the best of her abilities. It's then up to the person reading the reviews to get different people's opinions on different matters and to find the reviewer(s) that have have the same tastes/biases for the best results.
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