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REVIEW: Monster Episodes 31-45 Streaming




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MaxSouth



Joined: 11 Oct 2008
Posts: 842

PostPosted: Sun Jul 10, 2011 7:18 am Reply with quote
does "side stories" mean "story of the week", "keeping the status quo in terms of main story" -- basically, nothing in the actual story moves?..

if so, then this project should have been way shorter, to not fill it with filler...
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Surrender Artist
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Joined: 01 May 2011
Posts: 3100
Location: Pennsylvania, USA

PostPosted: Sun Jul 10, 2011 7:52 am Reply with quote
MaxSouth wrote:
does "side stories" mean "story of the week", "keeping the status quo in terms of main story" -- basically, nothing in the actual story moves?..

if so, then this project should have been way shorter, to not fill it with filler...


It's been a while since I watched any of this, but as I recall, the side stories were usually tied, even if a bit tangentially, to the main story and sometimes became quite relevant to it later on. Even if they weren't, I found them to be were really well told and interesting in and of themselves to be worth watching. Naoki Urasawa is surprisingly good at imbuing characters with interest and depth in relatively short spans of time and I thought it made the experience much richer. I suppose, however, that having watched it two episodes at a time on SyFy's late, lamented anime block might have made me more amenable to them than if I had watched it in in the traditional 'marathon' approach.
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Salsaman1991



Joined: 24 Jan 2009
Posts: 137

PostPosted: Sun Jul 10, 2011 9:37 am Reply with quote
Surrender Artist wrote:
MaxSouth wrote:
does "side stories" mean "story of the week", "keeping the status quo in terms of main story" -- basically, nothing in the actual story moves?..

if so, then this project should have been way shorter, to not fill it with filler...


It's been a while since I watched any of this, but as I recall, the side stories were usually tied, even if a bit tangentially, to the main story and sometimes became quite relevant to it later on. Even if they weren't, I found them to be were really well told and interesting in and of themselves to be worth watching. Naoki Urasawa is surprisingly good at imbuing characters with interest and depth in relatively short spans of time and I thought it made the experience much richer. I suppose, however, that having watched it two episodes at a time on SyFy's late, lamented anime block might have made me more amenable to them than if I had watched it in in the traditional 'marathon' approach.


Urasawa ties everyone's stories together. The conflict between Tenma and Johan always remains first and foremost. However, the secondary characters have lives, motivations and objectives, too. They don't stay put the whole time until it's their turn to help the protagonist, or die.
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Seraphim_Alchemist



Joined: 29 Apr 2006
Posts: 114
Location: Camuy, P.R. (US)

PostPosted: Sun Jul 10, 2011 12:35 pm Reply with quote
These were my favorite batch of episodes as I watched 'em on Syfy. I really hope Viz hasn't given up on more box sets Sad.
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Delpheno



Joined: 31 Mar 2008
Posts: 59

PostPosted: Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:32 pm Reply with quote
Seraphim_Alchemist wrote:
I really hope Viz hasn't given up on more box sets Sad.


I think they did... should've just released Monster as a complete series.
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MaxSouth



Joined: 11 Oct 2008
Posts: 842

PostPosted: Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:55 pm Reply with quote
Surrender Artist wrote:
MaxSouth wrote:
does "side stories" mean "story of the week", "keeping the status quo in terms of main story" -- basically, nothing in the actual story moves?..

if so, then this project should have been way shorter, to not fill it with filler...


It's been a while since I watched any of this, but as I recall, the side stories were usually tied, even if a bit tangentially, to the main story and sometimes became quite relevant to it later on. Even if they weren't, I found them to be were really well told and interesting in and of themselves to be worth watching. Naoki Urasawa is surprisingly good at imbuing characters with interest and depth in relatively short spans of time and I thought it made the experience much richer. I suppose, however, that having watched it two episodes at a time on SyFy's late, lamented anime block might have made me more amenable to them than if I had watched it in in the traditional 'marathon' approach.


thanks for reply... if the "side stories" are intervened with main story line, then this is different quality thing and the mentions of them as negative by reviewer might be inappropriate...
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immortalrite



Joined: 27 Mar 2009
Posts: 55
Location: Eugene, OR

PostPosted: Sun Jul 10, 2011 9:54 pm Reply with quote
Carl Kimlinger wrote:
where's the sense of humor?

I thought Johan's "here, buy your drugs with this" line to that prostitute was pretty funny in context, but perhaps only darkly so, being an ironic parody of the virtue of charity. Then again, this statement is really part of a genre of Monster's blackly-(and perhaps even unintentionally)humorous one-liners which also include "is he choking on his own vomit?" and "it looks like that cat was shot with a sub-machine gun."

As regards Monster's obsession with the abrupt and jarring interjection of "side stories," this is by and large the series' most significant and obvious flaw, one which is also arguably Urasawa's most obnoxious and problematic storytelling trademark in general; I remember in one of his reviews of 20th Century Boys, Carlo Santos very aptly described the experience of this phenomenon simply as "whiplash syndrome." I watched this with a friend and I remember after a certain point every time we noticed that a new episode would feature a seemingly completely unrelated character, we would stop to speculate whether or not this was a brand new character or simply some obscure side character from the beginning of the series brought back from the proverbial grave: "Wait, so who's this 'General Wolf' again?" - "He's that guy who showed up once like 50 episodes ago." Of course, in the big picture everything comes together more or less logically, but this plotting methodology can really start to get annoying for even the more patient of viewers. Also, when you have an endlessly-proliferating cast of characters, there is always the danger that one will end up looking a little bit too much like another. In Monster I found this, at least initially, with Dr. Reichwein and Hans Georg Schuwald (I mean, couldn't he at least given them a different shaped mustache?).

In any case, I, like many others, still call for a plague, a plague on the House of Viz for refusing to release the rest of Monster on DVD. It seems to me that if they are truly that unconcerned with generating a reasonable return on a title which they nevertheless paid to be dubbed in its entirety, perhaps the respectable thing to do would be to sell the license, or perhaps simply the distribution rights, off to someone who actually cares.
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