Edward Ju (gundam@loop.com)
Mon, 13 Mar 2000 00:23:15 -0800

>re: mecha rennaisance and running gundam to the
>not very optimistic, and not a good way to go. many
>people moan about how it's the same old story again
>and how nothing is new. i've never given originality
>a high priority. rather, it's the execution and
>delivery of the show - the panache - that makes or
>breaks a show, for me. e.g. eva broke new
>grounds, but didn't deliver. g wing, otoh, didn't do
>many new things, but was a more enjoyable watch than
>eva, for me.

Depends on what you expect from an anime show. Eva
just happened to be a not-so-original idea/story
presented as anime, which was never done before,
and people get uncomfortable because they still have
certain expectations of anime, just like how some
people think toons are for kids. When "Being John
Malkovich" came out, certain critics put it down for
being original and new but offering nothing by way
of good storytelling. People who's seen more indie
and experimental films were just laughing their
asses off at the dissmissive comments. If the Eva
story was being presented as a live action film,
people will probably find it easier to accept.

If Anno's goal with Eva is to break the taboo and
encourage discussions on certain topics, the show
certainly delivered - when people talk about Eva,
they don't waste their time arguing about who's
cuter than the rest of the characters, who should
be a couple, etc. They get down to the show's
ambiguities and what's going on in the character's
heads. That alone was a bigger accomplishment than
what Wing did.

In fact, I read that Evangelion was a byproduct of
Anno's self-excorcism. He basically locked himself
away and slaved on the series during a depression
and used work to get over it. The show got to be
so huge probably has something to do with how it
resonates with so many people, but I don't think he
really made the show with the goal of appealing to
the broadest audience possible.

>re: g gundam, nanotech, ultimate gundam.
>eddie, i didn't catch the "ultimate gundam" name for
>the devil gundam. i'm going to cop out and blame our
>filipino dub on this one. :P they've always called
>that beast "gundam da devil".

Hey, that might just be the case. But now you know
what they've been omitting.

>mark: yes, the plot twists in g gundam were very
>reminscent of super robo plot twists. i'm still not
>sure what to make of them, however. the feeling one
>gets is of having the rug pulled out from under you,
>as the show pulls out all the stops.

Then you'll probably hate these recent movies:

- The Six Sense

- Reindeer Games

- Fight Club

- Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me (if you saw
  the first one)

>unexpected, yes. is it creative? probably. is it
>good form in storytelling? my brain's jury is still
>out on that one. :P (stupid off topic -- i can't
>shake the mad cartoon image of mark simmons in
>animerica magazine's critique section...does that
>cartoon resemble mark?) g gundam didn't seem to set
>up the plot twists by seeding the preceding episodes
>with clues (visual or otherwise), and that's what has
>me scratching my noggin. even yu yu hakusho does a
>better job of laying visual clues to reveal the plot
>twist several episodes later.

You must have the popular Japanese detective manga/anime/
live action shows, because they always have this
contrived setup but when the crime is finally solved
and the killer's identity revealed, one feels it is as
arbitrary as it can be, because no real visual clues
were really given as the narratives went along.


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