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This Week in Anime - Does Great Pretender Stick the Landing?




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chrisb



Joined: 07 May 2006
Posts: 461
Location: TX, USA
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2020 4:32 pm Reply with quote
I really wish anime would just leave out the whole human trafficking stuff. Great Pretender and Lupin the 3rd’s last season are both amazing shows that obviously had no idea how to handle the subject. I have yet to see an anime treat child abuse responsibly.

edit: Fruits Basket and Stars Align are maybe the only anime (that I’ve seen) that handle the topic somewhat well.
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wolf10



Joined: 23 Jan 2016
Posts: 500
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2020 6:07 pm Reply with quote
I did kind of spend the last few episodes thinking, "What about the children?" It wasn't hard to piece together that spoiler[most of the 100 million from selling Abby went to buying the kids (the total was given as 70 million)], a trick that we only actually learn about through the flashback arc, but I shouldn't have had to. The first three arcs were so good about keeping us aware of the emotional stakes, and then the last one just didn't.

That said, the epilogue scene with Cynthia and spoiler[her son] was cute, but didn't really feel earned as spoiler[they were never actually seen together before then]. All it needed was one short scene (even just a few seconds) in an earlier episode to establish the connection to actually make that feel like an emotional payoff. A seasoned screenwriter would know that, so it's probably on the cutting room floor somewhere.
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Takkun4343



Joined: 19 Jul 2007
Posts: 1114
Location: Gahanna, Ohio
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2020 9:34 pm Reply with quote
Last TWIA thread, I said that criticism of slavery apologia should be saved for anime that try to tackle real-world human trafficking instead of sticking with isekai slave trades, and next thing I know, today's TWIA happens. I don't know whether to be impressed or scared, but either way, it's times like this that I'm convinced I'm psychic.
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Zhou-BR



Joined: 28 Feb 2008
Posts: 1154
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2020 10:22 pm Reply with quote
I wish the show had actually gone through with Edamura betraying and screwing over everyone else, because that's what they deserved for manipulating and keeping him in the dark yet again. And bringing back the rich bastards who got conned in the previous arcs as allies left a really bad taste in my mouth.
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Silver Kirin



Joined: 09 Aug 2018
Posts: 367
PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2020 1:05 pm Reply with quote
I also wished that Makoto would betray everybody at the end, but I knew that wasn't going to happen. All in all, I enjoyed Great Pretender, the only complaint I had in this part is that there were too many fakeouts, it was getting a bit repetitive and predictible, but the characters, the use of colors and the animation style really elevate the show. I also have to give kudos to the voice acting in the neutral spanish version, which is the one I saw, Makoto's actor despite being relativly new in the industry gave a great performance, especially in the penultimate episode.
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jdnation



Joined: 15 May 2007
Posts: 1395
PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2020 5:27 pm Reply with quote
The show was fun. Dub is definitely better towards the overall feeling of it for this one.

For awhile at the end I was leaning towards legit surprise if they actually had the balls to make Makoto betray them as Silver Kirin said, but I expected another twist, as that was more fitting with the whole comedic angle and the Robin-Hood like thing they had going... and maybe that angle would've worked is Makoto had a brother or something and he would be the one to have done that and the end would be a mix of both tragedy and a rainbow. But, eh...

chrisb wrote:
I really wish anime would just leave out the whole human trafficking stuff. Great Pretender and Lupin the 3rd’s last season are both amazing shows that obviously had no idea how to handle the subject. I have yet to see an anime treat child abuse responsibly.


And what in your opinion, would be responsible treatment of this subject matter? Serious question.

If you mean they should get more explicit about all the details involved, then that means a bump in the age rating.

For the kind of show that this is, it was suitable enough to get by, no different than 'Taken.' Otherwise the only appropriate way to fully explore this is in a documentary where things are verbally explained. But most shows trust the viewer to fill in the gaps without getting too explicit. Particularly when shows like these are deliberately outlandish in their scenarios for entertainment purposes, and the main motivation is that they are taking out people who you are supposed to detest. It makes sense that the scale should go up from beginning with narcotics to ending with something more detestable like human trafficking.
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#918281



Joined: 04 Dec 2020
Posts: 1
PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2020 9:43 pm Reply with quote
I would love to see a "This Week in Anime" covering Air Master!
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Gina Szanboti



Joined: 03 Aug 2008
Posts: 9380
PostPosted: Mon Dec 28, 2020 12:42 am Reply with quote
Late to the party as I only now finally caught up with the last half of this.

Quote:
There had to be better ways for Makoto to pull one over on Laurent.

But he didn't pull one over on him, did he? Wasn't bringing them in part of the plan? It had to be, otherwise,spoiler[ they'd have had to drug him and his crew too, to get them to the island unawares.]

What bothered me most about including them is that it was well established in the first half (and in The Sting) that when a con goes off perfectly, the mark never knows they were hit. spoiler[As far as he knew, the FBI raided him and killed all the people he would've blamed, so the only way for him (and the others) to know they got conned was for Edamame to tell them, and that makes no sense to do that, since he wasn't actually betraying Laurent.]

But that aside, I still loved every minute of this. So much fun, great characters, gorgeous artwork, terrific music. Encore, please!
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