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PurpleWarrior13



Joined: 05 Sep 2009
Posts: 1280

PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 4:53 am Reply with quote
Utena was probably one of my first not-so-mainsream titles. I picked up the first VHS at my local Kroger for only one dollar when they were having a video blowout sale, which included many CPM titles (I saw a LOT of Slayers in the bin). I was only 12 or 13 at the time! It was a good series. I watched most of the rest of it later. I honestly don't think it's a show that's supposed to be taken too seriously. I like relaxing and watching it, and try not to think hard about every little detail. The show has a lot of symbolism, to the point where there's so much of it, you get confused as to what stuff IS and ISN'T real symbolism. I just like watching the show for it's story, and it can actually be really funny sometimes, in addition to being very dramatic. I like the characters, I like the art, there's really nothing NOT to love about Utena. Even my non-anime loving (anime hating?) little brother admits he enjoys Utena to some extent.

Now the movie... yeah the movie was a little weird... I had AMAZING art, music, and animation, but it did cross a little too far into the weird for my tastes...

I was thinking of shelling money for the expensive CPM DVDs a couple years ago, but screw them! I'm so thankful for Nozomi for saving this series! My god! These box sets are fantastic! The booklets, the extras, the art and packaging... they are almost perfect! The picture quality is a hundred times better than any of the old CPM releases of the series (especially the first 13 episodes' "Rose Collection...) I also like that they included all the CPM extras. The interviews with the voice cast are interesting, especially since it features some of my all-time favorite voice actors (Rachael Lillis, Crispin Freeman, Lisa Ortiz, Dan Green, Liam O'Brien, among others). It would've been nice if FUNimation did the same thing for the Slayers box set...
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Aylinn



Joined: 18 Nov 2006
Posts: 1585

PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 6:45 am Reply with quote
Quote:
That said, I tried to watch part of this at home over Christmas, and my non-anime-fan brother was unimpressed. Season three isn't a great place to start, and Utena is a hard sell for non-fans.

It depends I watched few episodes with my non-anime fan friend and she fairly liked them. Now, I just need to get the dubbed version to show her the remaining episodes. Smile

Monster in a box wrote:
I don't know what show you people were watching. Utena has no 'fat', aside from maybe the Tsuwabuki recap episode. In this age of 12 episode shows, you want less from shows that actually give you time to care about the characters? I guess I should expect no less from a community that thinks Madoka is THE BEST ANIME OF ALL TIME.

I have noticed that some Madoka fans praise PMMM for deconstructing the magical girl genre, so maybe you should point out to them that that Utena does the same with the classical fairy tale.

It seems that no one likes the movie. Sad Is there anyone else who, like I, absolutely loves the awesomely high level of weirdness?
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Nayu



Joined: 23 Dec 2010
Posts: 676

PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 6:46 am Reply with quote
CrownKlown wrote:
Im sorry but thats a load of crock. You need Utena in your collection to have it complete.

Utena is a shoujo, with heavy yuri overtones, that alone makes it unappealing to a large portion of anime fans. I have the original release and have watched it, but I would say its more cult than hit; ie a group of people like it to a large degree, but I don't necessarily think because its some masterpiece or great work. I just think its ridiculous criticize someone because they don't like that one show you like.

I don't go around saying, if you don't have last exile, crest of the stars, and Record of lodoss war in your collection I can't associate with you. And at least those are shows that have a more broad appeal.


QFT.

Utena is totally the Madoka Magica of the late 90s/early 00s. So overrated.

And to the person who brought up Wandering Son, that show is tainted by the fact that it starts off somewhere in the middle of the manga. I wish they'd skipped it and made more Aoi Hana or Sasameki Koto. Or hell, Girl Friends....
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Aylinn



Joined: 18 Nov 2006
Posts: 1585

PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 6:58 am Reply with quote
Quote:
Utena is totally the Madoka Magica of the late 90s/early 00s. So overrated.

No, Utena is much better than Madoka Magica. It's not overrated.
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Veers



Joined: 31 Oct 2008
Posts: 1190
Location: Texas

PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 7:35 am Reply with quote
Aylinn wrote:
Quote:
Utena is totally the Madoka Magica of the late 90s/early 00s. So overrated.

No, Utena is much better than Madoka Magica. It's not overrated.
Oranges are much better than apples. They're not overrated.
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willag
Crazy FangirlCrazy Fangirl


Joined: 21 Apr 2010
Posts: 2634

PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 9:24 am Reply with quote
Aylinn wrote:
It seems that no one likes the movie. Sad Is there anyone else who, like I, absolutely loves the awesomely high level of weirdness?

I just watched it for the first time last night, and I loved it! I loved the alternate take on the series, and I loved the overt sexuality between Utena and Anthy (instead of the heterosexual girlfriend romance 'no-really-I'm-straight-even-though-I-love-you-because-I-don't-love-you-that-way in the series). I could easily rewatch it, which I will soon.
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dtm42



Joined: 05 Feb 2008
Posts: 12995
Location: NZL

PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 11:11 am Reply with quote
I watched the movie before I'd even heard of the series. Yeah, big mistake. My girlfriend at the time wanted to watch it as she was a big fan of the show, so that's why I got it in the first place.
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bravetailor



Joined: 30 May 2009
Posts: 775

PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 12:29 pm Reply with quote
willag wrote:
Aylinn wrote:
It seems that no one likes the movie. Sad Is there anyone else who, like I, absolutely loves the awesomely high level of weirdness?

I just watched it for the first time last night, and I loved it! I loved the alternate take on the series, and I loved the overt sexuality between Utena and Anthy (instead of the heterosexual girlfriend romance 'no-really-I'm-straight-even-though-I-love-you-because-I-don't-love-you-that-way in the series). I could easily rewatch it, which I will soon.


I liked the movie a lot. It's not as dramatically solid as the TV series, but for me personally, it's the most visually gorgeous anime film I've ever seen.
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Aylinn



Joined: 18 Nov 2006
Posts: 1585

PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2012 2:02 pm Reply with quote
I'm glad that I'm not the only person who loves the movie Smile

Veers wrote:
Oranges are much better than apples. They're not overrated.

Of course oranges are much better than apples. Razz
Seriously though, Utena deals with problems like gender roles, how society imposes its ideas on people etc. Not to mention that characters from Utena have depth that characters from PMMM lack and SKU can been seen as religious allegory. Madoka Magica doesn't have complexity of this calibre, but I admit that PMMM is a fairly good mix of elements that are present in other magical girls series.
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Surrender Artist
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Joined: 01 May 2011
Posts: 3100
Location: Pennsylvania, USA

PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2012 4:01 pm Reply with quote
erinfinnegan wrote:
Surrender Artist wrote:
I liked Revolution___ Girl Utena! Can I crash on your couch for a week?

I'll consider it, pending how you rank your top ten favorite Miyazaki movies. Razz


Typo. ****!

My list starts with Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, but My Neighbor Totoro isn't on it, so we might be in trouble.

bravetailor wrote:
willag wrote:
Aylinn wrote:
It seems that no one likes the movie. Sad Is there anyone else who, like I, absolutely loves the awesomely high level of weirdness?

I just watched it for the first time last night, and I loved it! I loved the alternate take on the series, and I loved the overt sexuality between Utena and Anthy (instead of the heterosexual girlfriend romance 'no-really-I'm-straight-even-though-I-love-you-because-I-don't-love-you-that-way in the series). I could easily rewatch it, which I will soon.


I liked the movie a lot. It's not as dramatically solid as the TV series, but for me personally, it's the most visually gorgeous anime film I've ever seen.


Aylinn wrote:
I'm glad that I'm not the only person who loves the movie Smile


I enjoyed Adolescence of Utena. It didn't quite hold together narratively, but it looked wonderful and it was so strange and freewheeling that I enjoyed it tremendously. In a way it was the joy of, "what the ****?!" but with Kunihiko Inuhara, for all I know, that was the idea. The sheer strangeness and audacity of some of the imagery was too fantastic to not be great. I have to love any film with the line, "you're not the only one who can turn into a car," in it. Especially if it is spoken by somebody who has turned into a car.

I'm not surprised that some people didn't quite care for the Black Rose arc. It wasn't really narratively essential to the series, but I found it so emotionally compelling that I'm glad that it was there. "Wakaba Flourishing" was particularly intriguing and heartrending. I also really like it because I find it more interesting and intricate the more I think about it. I'll probably watch the whole series again without the months-long gaps that waiting for the releases required and I'm actually looking forward to examing the Black Rose arc again the most. I'll concede that the physical action in the duels was mostly dull and repetetive, but for me the wonderfully strange song lyrics, visual symbolism and context of the duels was what made them, although it wouldn't've been a bad thing if their fighting choreography had been the equal of everything else.


Last edited by Surrender Artist on Sat Jan 14, 2012 6:36 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Aylinn



Joined: 18 Nov 2006
Posts: 1585

PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2012 5:01 pm Reply with quote
Surrender Artist wrote:

I'm not surprised that some people didn't quite care for the Black Rose arc. It wasn't really narratively essential to the series, but I found it so emotionally compelling that I'm glad that it was there. The episodes about Wakaba were particularly heartrending. I also really like it because I find it more interesting and intricate the more I think about it. I'll probably watch the whole series again without the months-long gaps that waiting for the releases required and I'm actually looking forward to examing the Black Rose arc again the most. I'll concede that the physical action in the duels was mostly dull and repetetive, but for me the wonderfully strange song lyrics, visual symbolism and context of the duels was what made them, although it wouldn't've been a bad thing if their fighting choreography had been the equal of everything else.

I agree that the Black Rose arc is certainly interesting. I like it that the story becomes darker during this arc and the eerie similarity between Mikage and Utena. They both have a specific memory, which drives them to participate in the duels. They both delude themselves that they play a hero who tries to save a certain person (Utena has Anthy and Mikage also has Anthy, but he thinks she is Mamiya) and as a result they are both manipulated by Akio. Mikage's words that they are the same are so true. I think it's safe to assume that Mikage is an example of what would happen if Utena failed.
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bravetailor



Joined: 30 May 2009
Posts: 775

PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2012 6:20 pm Reply with quote
Yes, "Wakaba Flourishing" is probably the most heartrending single episode of the series. Seeing her have her 15 minutes...and then having it come crashing down as she becomes a "minor character" again has to move anyone who's ever felt like a supporting player among peers.

It always puzzled me too how the duels in the Black Rose Arc were curiously unsuspenseful. But then again, it provided the larger overall purpose of buffing Utena up into someone the audience considered unbeatable for a while...so that when Akio started chipping away at her invincible aura in the third arc, we were all the more worried for her, thus creating an added layer of suspense.
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Blood-
It...it's not like I post for you or anything!It...it's not like I post for you or anything!


Joined: 07 Mar 2009
Posts: 15127
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2012 7:05 am Reply with quote
Quote:
I don't expect anime outsiders to understand, but Utena is a deal-breaker anime for me; if you don't like it, we can't be friends (although I'm willing to hear your reasoning…).


NGE vs. RahXephon is my litmus test. If you prefer the pallidly derivative BlahXephon (or MehXephon) to the inspired train wreckage of NGE, then I know you've acquired your anime taste from an unflushed toilet bowl.
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dtm42



Joined: 05 Feb 2008
Posts: 12995
Location: NZL

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2012 8:18 am Reply with quote
I guess that means we can't be friends Blood-. And here I was about to invite you to a bar-b here in wet-but-warm New Zealand so you could escape the harsh Canadian winter . . .
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Blood-
It...it's not like I post for you or anything!It...it's not like I post for you or anything!


Joined: 07 Mar 2009
Posts: 15127
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2012 10:00 am Reply with quote
dtm42 wrote:
I guess that means we can't be friends Blood-. And here I was about to invite you to a bar-b here in wet-but-warm New Zealand so you could escape the harsh Canadian winter . . .


Hey listen, for a free invite to gorgeous Kiwi-land, I could friggin' learn to love RahXephon ... a lot.
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