×
  • remind me tomorrow
  • remind me next week
  • never remind me
Subscribe to the ANN Newsletter • Wake up every Sunday to a curated list of ANN's most interesting posts of the week. read more

Forum - View topic
Errinundra's Beautiful Fighting Girl #133: Taiman Blues: Ladies' Chapter - Mayumi


Goto page Previous    Next

Anime News Network Forum Index -> General -> Anime
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
hyojodoji



Joined: 08 Jan 2010
Posts: 586
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2016 3:14 am Reply with quote
Errinundra wrote:
The title of the series could be interpreted as "buffoon" and one would be tempted to apply the moniker to Furuta who by now is commonly referred to by his new title, Oribe, bestowed upon him by Hashiba, though chosen by Furuta. His new name demonstrates his inability to see to the truth behind appearances. A Japanisation of the English name "Olive", Furuta thinks it sounds impressive without being overly pompous. It also suits his penchant for dressing in green (I'm sure there's a joke there, as well). Only we know, however, that it is a woman's name.

Actually, the Japanese term 'oribe', which became Furuta Kageyasu's title and name which he is commonly known by, means the (staff of the) office that was in charge of woven stuff and dyeing in the Court. 'Ori' means 'weaving', and 'be' means 'a professional association'. This Japanese term 'oribe' is unrelated to the English word 'olive' etymologically. The 'Oribe no Tsukasa' office was mentioned in Yōrō-ritsuryō (an ancient statute book), which was compiled in the 8th century. Furuta Kageyasu's full title 'Oribe no Kami' means the chief of the 'Oribe no Tsukasa' office.
Yōrō-ritsuryō says:
Quote:
織部司條 織部司 正一人。掌。織錦綾紬羅及雜染事。佑一人。令史一人。挑文師四人。掌。挑錦綾羅等文事。挑文生八人。使部六人。直丁一人。染戶。

It should scarcely need saying, but it is unlikely that ancient Japanese people contacted Englishmen in the 8th century and used the English word 'olive' as the name of an office in the Court.
As to the sequence where Furuta Kageyasu and Takayama Ukon talk about the dark yellowish-green colour, that is probably a fictional scene. I have read Furuta Oribe no Chadō by Professor Kuwata Tadachika in the original, and if I remember correctly, the book did not mention such a conversation as that. Yamada Yoshihiro mixes fictional things with historical things in Hyouge Mono. For example, I also bought Volume 21 of the Hyouge Mono manga and read it in the original, and Volume 21 has a sword fight between Furuta Shigenari and Yagyū Munenori. In the scene, the sword-fighting style of Furuta Shigenari is modelled on famous baseball player Oh Sadaharu's 'flamingo' batting style.
The Hyouge Mono video file which is distributed without the rightsholder's permission and which you have watched probably has English subtitles, and the subtitles probably say, 'Olive,' in English. But even if a European language matters in the scene where they talk about the colour on the diegetic level, since Takayama Ukon says, 'Nanban' in the scene and 'nanban' means Spain or Portugal, it is Spanish or Portuguese. Not English.
 
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Errinundra
Moderator


Joined: 14 Jun 2008
Posts: 6547
Location: Melbourne, Oz
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2016 3:41 pm Reply with quote
^

I reviewed an anime, not a manga nor an academic treatise. I don't doubt you are correct in what you say about the historical Japanese application of the term oribe, but that misses the point. The anime is explicit on the matter. I recommend you watch episodes 16 and 17. Sixteenth century Furuta is aware of the traditional meaning of the word and is also thrilled with its homophonic association with the European word for his favourite colour. The double-meaning appeals to him. The scene is yet another illustration of how, for all his sharp intelligence, Furuta too often misses essential things. He is not alone in that. Hyouge Mono mercilessly lampoons its characters and the naming scene in episode 17 is in keeping with that creative intention.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website My Anime My Manga
Jose Cruz



Joined: 20 Nov 2012
Posts: 1783
Location: South America
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2016 4:58 pm Reply with quote
dtm42 wrote:
Are we the only two people in the forums who have finished Hyouge Mono? Because it often feels like it.

Damn shame, really. The show deserves far, far more love and attention that what it has gotten.


I watched it, I though it was good but I didn't feel like I fully grasped it. I am a more Genocyber type of animation fan I guess.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website My Anime My Manga
hyojodoji



Joined: 08 Jan 2010
Posts: 586
PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2016 2:04 am Reply with quote
Errinundra wrote:
^

I reviewed an anime, not a manga nor an academic treatise. I don't doubt you are correct in what you say about the historical Japanese application of the term oribe, but that misses the point. The anime is explicit on the matter. I recommend you watch episodes 16 and 17. Sixteenth century Furuta is aware of the traditional meaning of the word and is also thrilled with its homophonic association with the European word for his favourite colour. The double-meaning appeals to him. The scene is yet another illustration of how, for all his sharp intelligence, Furuta too often misses essential things. He is not alone in that. Hyouge Mono mercilessly lampoons its characters and the naming scene in episode 17 is in keeping with that creative intention.

I had watched the Hyouge Mono anime, and I know that the Japanese term 'oribe' reminded Furuta Kageyasu of the Spanish or Portuguese expression which meant the dark yellowish-green colour both in the manga and in the anime. But you said, 'A Japanisation of the English name "Olive".' In the Hyouge Mono canon, which part does indicate that the Japanese term 'oribe' is 'A Japanisation of the English name "Olive"' on the diegetic level?
 
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Errinundra
Moderator


Joined: 14 Jun 2008
Posts: 6547
Location: Melbourne, Oz
PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2016 7:53 am Reply with quote
I'm part way through a second watch of an altogether unexpected gem in Michiko and Hatchin - this time with the American dub. As I don't want to be posting housekeeping reviews two weeks running I revisited an old evergreen movie gathering dust on my anime shelves.

I'm tired from how busy work has been all week and from all the overtime, so this review may be somewhat rambling.

Akira

How I came to watch and own Akira: Not long after I purchased my flat in 2007, my interest in anime was kindled by a friend when she took me to see Paprika. In the film's aftermath I began to search out ways of feeding my new found hunger. A nephew kindly gave me some of his fansubs. We sampled a few episodes at his place, which enabled him to make some astute recommendations about what I might like: Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, Monster and Last Exile. I also discovered that the two nearest video rental shops (they were still common in Melbourne at that time and, amazingly, one of them is still operaing to this day) had a range of anime titles. The nearer one had somewhere between sixty and a hundred to choose from, amongst them Akira. It's funny how as recently as eight years ago an anime fan watched whatever they could get their hands on. Now we're drowning in choice. As the psuedo-guru from Head reflected, "Where there is choice there is misery." Some time not long after I purchased Akira, mainly because it was included in a bare bones movie collection released by Madman that included Ghost in the Shell (which was what I really wanted) and Ninja Scroll.


Neo Tokyo lights up as Kaneda's gang go hunting for their motorcyle rivals.

Synopsis: Tetsuo Shima is an angry, ostracised member of a teenage motorcycle gang led by Shotaro Kaneda in 2019 Neo Tokyo, which has grown around the ruins of old Tokyo, destroyed by a mysterious detonation in World War 3 thirty years earlier. Injured in a encounter with a child-like person with telekinetic powers, Tetsuo is abducted by a secret military unit who discover that he has extraordinary latent telekinetic powers of his own. Tetsuo uses his new found powers to vent his rage at the world but also finds himself being summoned by Akira, his apparent predecessor from thirty years previously. Kaneda and his gang set out to save Tetsuo from the military and from himself in a city where the tensions between the government and the governed are reaching a boiling point.

Comments: My initial reaction to Akira was an unfavourable one. The ugliness of the setting and of several of the characters was only exceeded by the brutality of Katsuhiro Otomo's world view. The viciousness of the assaults was challenging to say the least. Nevertheless I was beguiled by some of its aspects, principally the motorcycle scenes with all their thrilling movement and explosive impacts, enhanced by the extraordinary Kaneda's Theme that gives the on-screen violence its very own heartbeat. The justifiably famous sequence where Kaneda's gang sets off in pursuit of the their rival motorcycle gang, the Clowns, remains one of my favourite musical interludes in anime. (Up there with the Major wandering the canals in Ghost in the Shell, Mireille and Kirika walking along the Seine at night in episode ten of Noir, Spike's fall from the cathedral window in Cowboy Bebop and the running sequence in Millennium Actress.) So, yes, the violence is both repulsive and attractive. Since that time my opinion has softened somewhat; I've become thoroughly desensitised to anime extremes. (Well, maybe not of the ecchi variety.) I can see how Akira had such an impact in its time with its fresh approach to animation content and the then impressive technical achievements.


A Porsche burns as Yamagata closes in on his prey.

Time spoils all anime. No matter how impressive something may have appeared in 1988 it will look dated almost thirty years later. Akira is no exception. All the same, the detailed background art, the first-person camera sequences (the most difficult and time-consuming animation to do prior to computer assistance) and the thrilling choreography are still impressive. Oddly enough, there doesn't seem to be much multi-planing, though there is the characeristic anime panning. What Akira also brings to the screen is a new anime sensibility: a cyberpunk, film noir depiction of the future city; but it's a corrupt, festering, decaying city where everyone fights, either to survive or just for the thrill of it. That thrill becomes our vicarious pleasure. It might be ugly but it's still spectacular. Akira wasn't the first to bring this attitude to the screen: both Wicked City and Ai City predate it, although neither have its budget or its visual flair. Even Galaxy Express 999 from the previous decade plays with the notion of the broken future city, but that franchise's approach is undercut with a goofy sense of humour so it altogether lacks the relentlessly vicious tone of the later film. Akira would probably be best seen in a movie theatre on a big screen where sensation will usually triumph over close consideration. Oddly enough, I had the opportunity to see it a cinema way back around 1990-1991 when several anime films were being screened. I knew nothing about the individual films at the time so randomly chose Legend of the Overfiend. I picked the dud.

On a related but somewhat different tangent, Satoshi Kon was a one time protege of Katsuhiro Otomo. Watching Akira again after all this time had me realising how much Kon was influenced by him. There are scenes in Paprika (which contains the word Akira within it, by the way, but that's no doubt coincidence) that appear to have been inspired by homologous scenes in Akira. In Kon's case the pupil proved to be greater than the master.


Kaneda and Yamagata. Kaneda turned out better than I initially thought he would.
The image nicely distils the film's swagger.


All the characters are unpleasant. Most everybody in the film is governed by rage of some sort: the kids with their lot in life; teachers with their students; the government with its army; the people with their leaders, gurus with modern life; the police with its citizenry; the motorcycle gangs with their rivals; and Tetsuo with everything. His resentment is the defining personal emotion of the film. It is incoherent and undirected. It's just rage, and I think it's a large part of why Akira was so successful. Otomo tapped into an adolescent disconnect with the world. The same anger will be channelled a decade later by Neon Genesis Evangelion but with the personal violence replaced by a more passive aggression. It might be tempting to think that Otomo is cynically tapping into teenage disaffection but the same sour worldview can be seen across his admittedly small anime ouvre. The Order to Stop Construction, Canon Fodder and Steamboy all display the same misanthropy. There isn't an appealing character in any of them. It doesn't help that the designs rarely do the characters any favours.


Tetsuo: in Akira the city and the individual are never in harmony.

Like Tetsuo's rage the plot is also incoherent. As I argued earlier, sensation gets precedence over sense. The film spends so much time on what are superfluous action sequences (well, superfluous to the plot if not the tone) and establishing the relationships between the characters that, when the pscho-kinetic powers are introduced, there isn't time to properly give them context or to develop them. Tetsuo's transformation from angry schoolboy to pan-galactic god isn't explicated in any satisfactory way: it just happens. (That's not to say there aren't spectacular or chilling set piece scenes, ie the riots and toys climbing the bed to name two). There also never seems to be any point to Otomo's sarcasm towards his worlds and his characters. Where's the satire? What is his point? I'm left to conclude that his characteristic penchant for violence is simply sensation. I leave Akira excited and disappointed.

Rating: decent. Yes, it looks almost thirty years old but if you consider it in the context of its time its achievements are apparent. That said, I find it impossible to reconcile Otomo's often exquisite graphics with his consistently sour worldview. Otomo doesn't examine violence; he revels in it. If there was some sort of satirical point then it would be worthwhile, however violence as entertainment is just a form of pornography. Mind you, it's not the only anime around with that problem. Having said that, the animation and music for the motorcycle sequence early in the film are unforgettable. Unfortunately the movie never again reaches these heights.


The beautiful, iconic motorcycle.

****

@ hyojodoji,

Diegesis is irrelevant and therefore the question you demand I answer is pointless. I cannot explain to you the joke in terms you will accept. Clearly we each approach our anime viewing within a different framework. There is no further point to this discussion. I'm sorry.


Last edited by Errinundra on Mon Oct 07, 2019 4:26 am; edited 3 times in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website My Anime My Manga
hyojodoji



Joined: 08 Jan 2010
Posts: 586
PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2016 11:10 am Reply with quote
Errinundra wrote:
@ hyojodoji,

Diegesis is irrelevant and therefore the question you demand I answer is pointless. I cannot explain to you the joke in terms you will accept. Clearly we each approach our anime viewing within a different framework. There is no further point to this discussion. I'm sorry.

Though you said, 'A Japanisation of the English name "Olive",' the word which Takayama Ukon mentioned in the scene of the manga and the anime and which meant the dark yellowish-green colour is a corrupted form of a Spanish or Portuguese expression. Professor Saitō Yoshifumi has said the history of Japan's acceptance of the English language started in 1809. (It is said that Englishman William Adams, who drifted ashore to Japan in 1600, communicated with Japanese people via Portuguese.) Furuta Kageyasu received his Oribe no Kami title in Tenshō 13 (1585). There is no room for English in the thing which happened in Japan in 1585. If you think that Yamada Yoshihiro/the anime staff have satirically depicted Furuta Kageyasu as a person who could not see through the Japanese term Oribe's being a Japanisation of the English female name 'Olive', it is so-called 深読みのしすぎ. Probably you, who rely on the English subtitles, read too much and wrongly into the scenes about the dark yellowish-green colour and the title 'Oribe'.
Probably Yamada Yoshihiro had Furuta Kageyasu associate the Japanese term 'Oribe' with the Spanish or Portuguese word which meant the dark yellowish-green colour in order to show Furuta Kageyasu's having Nanban Shumi (a liking for Spanish and Portuguese things) to some extent.
 
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
nobahn
Subscriber



Joined: 14 Dec 2006
Posts: 5131
PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2016 12:38 pm Reply with quote
I've never understood Akira, and in a couple of weeks I'll have another opportunity to fully grasp just how little of it I understand.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message My Anime My Manga
Errinundra
Moderator


Joined: 14 Jun 2008
Posts: 6547
Location: Melbourne, Oz
PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2016 6:53 pm Reply with quote
^

Maybe the shortcoming lies within the movie, nobahn, not with you or me?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website My Anime My Manga
nobahn
Subscriber



Joined: 14 Dec 2006
Posts: 5131
PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2016 7:26 pm Reply with quote
^
That could very well be; by the way, this thread was trashed -- may I trouble you to restore it, please?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message My Anime My Manga
Errinundra
Moderator


Joined: 14 Jun 2008
Posts: 6547
Location: Melbourne, Oz
PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2016 7:34 pm Reply with quote
I suggest you ask Tony K. He locked it.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website My Anime My Manga
Akane the Catgirl



Joined: 09 Oct 2013
Posts: 1091
Location: LA, Baby!
PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2016 10:27 pm Reply with quote
The thing about Akira is that it was made to address a social issue very specific to Japanese culture at the time. (That being the rising delinquency caused by economic prosperity). With that said, I personally liked the movie, problems and all. (Seriously, RESOLVE YOUR DAMN SUBPLOTS.) I recommend reading Neil Sharpson's review over at Unshaved Mouse. I personally found it interesting.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Zin5ki



Joined: 06 Jan 2008
Posts: 6680
Location: London, UK
PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2016 9:08 am Reply with quote
An astounding review, Errinundra. I cannot be the only person who was, and indeed still is, most amazed by Akira and the standard it set. But you manage to dismantle the film at the joints to reveal an inexplicably bitter work that wields violence and unrest as tools in want of an application.

I am curious as to how you identified Otomo's sarcasm towards his characters though. Sarcasm arises through lightness or irony, whereas Akira is dark despite its colourfulness and serious despite its purposelessness. Certainly, if there was a hint of whimsy to this piece, perhaps in the fashion of Otomo's shorter films, then identifying what, if anything, it meant to express would be easier, but there is nothing of the sort.

I also dispute the classification of this film's gleeful violence as pornographic, for pornography is a fungible medium whereas Akira's destructiveness is too distinctive to be readily substituted. Even if, as you contend, it fails to convey anything, Otomo's sheer attentiveness to his gore and rubble just about avoids descending into senselessness no matter how graphic it is. Admittedly, this latter disagreement is probably of a broader scope than that of a single film however.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website My Anime My Manga
yuna49



Joined: 27 Aug 2008
Posts: 3804
PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2016 4:09 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
All the characters are unpleasant. Most everybody in the film is governed by rage of some sort.... It's just rage, and I think it's a large part of why Akira was so successful. Otomo tapped into an adolescent disconnect with the world.

Maybe that's why I have never been able to watch more than half-an-hour or so of this film. I felt no connection with the characters, and I'm much too old to be attracted by an "adolescent disconnect with the world." I retry Akira every now and then. Maybe I'll give it another go in the near future, but I'm none too optimistic.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
nobahn
Subscriber



Joined: 14 Dec 2006
Posts: 5131
PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2016 4:48 pm Reply with quote
^
Evidently the manga is required reading; failing that, read this. It has its hilarious moments.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message My Anime My Manga
Errinundra
Moderator


Joined: 14 Jun 2008
Posts: 6547
Location: Melbourne, Oz
PostPosted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 6:29 am Reply with quote
You guys keep calling out my choice of words. I have to exercise more rigour.

@ Zin5ki, thanks for the kind words.

Sarcasm is a bitter form of irony, I agree. What I'm trying to say, I think, is that Otomo's narratives undermine his characters. I typically begin a work of fiction with a positive reserve of sympathy towards any character. As I progress through the work my reserves of sympathy may grow or decline depending on the narrative. With all Otomo's works I rapidly lose faith in the characters. They invariably prove themselves to be psychotic or ridiculous or vicious or stupid or venal, etc. It's a downer.

Pornography is a highly subjective term. I like your suggestion that it is fungible. That said, I think violence is a form of fanservice and any fanservice might be described as pornographic if its use goes excessively beyond the requirements of the narrative, or character depiction and development, or the polemics. How far is excessive is the subjective part. I couldn't draw a line in the sand for you. Also, it doesn't have to be about sex or violence. People describe Makoto Shinkai films as scenery porn. For sure, that is hyperbole and I suppose I could be guilty of exaggeration also.

@ yuna49, If you gave up after 30 minutes I wouldn't bother any more if I were you. The best scenes are early on, the plot unravels and the characters disappoint.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website My Anime My Manga
Display posts from previous:   
Reply to topic    Anime News Network Forum Index -> General -> Anime All times are GMT - 5 Hours
Goto page Previous    Next
Page 12 of 57

 


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group