One of the best – or more acutely, entertaining – parts of watching anime is keeping up with the anime blogosphere to see how they’re reacting to the anime I’m watching. The best is when a sizable percentage of writers get fired up over the same anime because, dollars to doughnuts, there will be fireworks. It might be something epic that causes people to put 110% in to displaying their love and admiration. It might be something controversial that causes spirited discussions and strongly worded rants on both sides. It might just be something normal that happens to catch everyone’s attention and pulls everyone together to share in the same experience.
I often steer clear of these events because, either, I don’t feel like contributing and rather enjoy what others are saying, or, I feel like contributing but someone has already made my point better than I could have.
If I didn’t already say so, I wish all my readers a very Merry Christmas!
I know nobody wants to spend a bunch of time reading blog posts today so I’m going keep it short. I wanted to start with a love powered moment and end with a love powered moment and the instant I saw this scene I knew I’d be picking it for this the last day of the 12 Days of Christmas (though technically, the real 12 days of Christmas starts on Christmas).
The scene is Rikka’s confession of love to Yuuta underneath the bridge in episode 10 of Chuunibyou demo Koi ga Shitai!.
I could say this scene is today’s moment because of the massive level of work Kyoto Animation put into it so that it would be the very definition of perfection but that’s doesn’t really explain it correctly. The better explanation is that I felt the genuine, sincere love Rikka and Yuuta have for each other – not mere affection, lust, interest, or the facsimile of love that are so prevalent in anime, especially in so-called “romance/comedy” anime series – and it just melted my heart. I want to Remember the Love because it is the reason for this season and that makes it the perfect way to end.
Good job Kyoto Animation, that’s why you’re the best.
If I was to complain about the current generation of anime I would say, among other things, that there’s not enough emphasis on what happens after the boy gets the girl or the girl gets the boy and there’s still too many loser male main characters. Neither are inheritantly bad; but, with the former, it’s because it went past the happily-ever-after that the second season of Clannad was so unique and great. And, the insistence by some on the latter really restricts the type of series that can be done and often feels like mere laziness on the part of the creators. Just look at the reaction from fans with Melancholy of Haruhi, Gurren Lagann, Steins;Gate, and Space Brothers to see what’s possible with non-loser male main characters.
A couple of things are becoming apparent as I go through the days; I’m getting more wordsy and there’s been a lot more personal reflection on my part than I’d initially thought would go with creating this series of posts. Today probably won’t be any different because I’m picking my favorite anime moment of 2012 for this post. In the real version of the 12 Days of Christmas song, the fifth day with it’s gold rings always seems to get the most attention so I thought I’d put my favorite moment here.
The recently released anime movie A Letter to Momo was overall a very solid movie that could have reached much higher if it could have fixed a relative small set of minor problems and put the elbow grease into polishing the various components to perfection. One area that needed a bit of polishing was, surprisingly because this is Production I.G., the animation work. If they had done so, they almost assuredly wouldn’t have allowed my biggest animation pet peeve to occur. Look at the screenshot below to see if you can figure it out.
Probably not in the way you’re thinking; I don’t think Chuunibyou Demo Koi ga Shitai (Chuu2) will put up anywhere near the same sales numbers as Madoka.
Shaft, the animation studio behind Madoka, is not a new animation studio. It was founded in 1975 and was a minor animation studio that produced only a few of it’s own animation series and movies for much of it’s history. That began to change when Akiyuki Shinbou was brought in to direct Tsukuyomi: Moon Phase for them back in 2004. After that series he stuck around and has directed to some degree almost every series Shaft has produced since then. Their profile slowly increased, in spite of the low budgets and hurried deadlines, and they had the chance to work on a wide variety of series like Sayonara, Zetsubou-sensei to Hidamari Sketch.