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REVIEW: Thermae Romae GN 1


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Setsura1



Joined: 31 Aug 2012
Posts: 261
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:40 am Reply with quote
Very Interesting series! Wanted to read more but couldn't find more than 3 chapters on the net. Will have to pick up the book at some point.
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dtm42



Joined: 05 Feb 2008
Posts: 14082
Location: currently stalking my waifu
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 6:55 am Reply with quote
At six half-episodes the Thermae Romae Anime was highly enjoyable, even with its budget animation and repetitive formula. I'm not sure how long the story could be stretched out and still kept interesting, though it sounds like the Manga manages to do so without too much difficulty.

And US$35 for a single volume of Manga? Man that's expensive, even if it is a hardcover with glossy pages.
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SuperSaiyen312



Joined: 29 Jan 2012
Posts: 27
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 10:18 am Reply with quote
dtm42 wrote:
At six half-episodes the Thermae Romae Anime was highly enjoyable, even with its budget animation and repetitive formula. I'm not sure how long the story could be stretched out and still kept interesting, though it sounds like the Manga manages to do so without too much difficulty.

And US$35 for a single volume of Manga? Man that's expensive, even if it is a hardcover with glossy pages.


Indeed, it was actually a good anime.
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Keichitsu0305





PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 10:27 am Reply with quote
Quote:
As might be imagined in a story about bathing, there is a lot of nudity in this story, although very few actual penises.


Speaking of which, here's the cover of Vol. 1 in Japan. Cen

Personally, I didn't like the anime because of the poor, listless Flash animation and the inclusion of Anachronism jokes (why was there a guy wearing an Ultraman mask in the 120s C.E?)

The manga, while repetitive with the whole "go to Japan, take neat idea, and bring it back to Rome" plot, has great premise. A man who comes from a "superior race" steals the ideas of the "lesser class" and uses it to become incredibly wealthy. You can plug that idea in any time period where a very common practice among one group of people is exploited and marketed by another.

The art is also worth the high price. The architecture, interior spaces, varied age and body types, and even facial expressions are distinctive from each other without having characters look like a carbon copy of each other. I'm also glad they included notes about certain bathing performance of the Ancient Romans and how that parallels with Japanese bathing.

Glad I bought it (and yeah, I might let my Dad borrow it). Wink
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SuperSaiyen312



Joined: 29 Jan 2012
Posts: 27
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 10:32 am Reply with quote
Keichitsu0305 wrote:

Personally, I didn't like the anime because of the poor, listless Flash animation and the inclusion of Anachronism jokes (why was there a guy wearing an Ultraman mask in the 120s C.E?)


I think you're the only one that feels this way. lol

Edit: Wait, what Utraman mask?
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here-and-faraway



Joined: 21 Jun 2007
Posts: 1495
Location: Sunny California
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 11:01 am Reply with quote
This title has been on my amazon wishlist forever and the review has pushed me further to get it... It's half off right now ($17.49) on amazon. Very tempting...
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skafreak51



Joined: 13 Feb 2009
Posts: 199
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 11:59 am Reply with quote
dtm42 wrote:
At six half-episodes the Thermae Romae Anime was highly enjoyable, even with its budget animation and repetitive formula. I'm not sure how long the story could be stretched out and still kept interesting, though it sounds like the Manga manages to do so without too much difficulty.

And US$35 for a single volume of Manga? Man that's expensive, even if it is a hardcover with glossy pages.


Technically, it's the first two volumes of the series in one book. Yeah, it's a bit expensive- I had mine preordered for a while on amazon, so I wound up getting it for I think around $18 once it finally shipped =X
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Keichitsu0305





PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 7:03 pm Reply with quote
SuperSaiyen312 wrote:


Edit: Wait, what Utraman mask?


This guy from Episode 1.
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marie-antoinette



Joined: 18 Sep 2005
Posts: 4136
Location: Ottawa, Canada
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 9:42 pm Reply with quote
I definitely want to pick this one up but I'll admit, the price has scared me off a few times. I'll definitely get around to it but it needs to be a more purposeful buy than most I make, if that makes sense.
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Snomaster1
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Joined: 31 Aug 2011
Posts: 2358
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 2:03 pm Reply with quote
I read the review of "Thermae Romae" and the reviewer had said that the manga's creator didn't do American bathing habits. I'm not terribly surprised by this. There isn't a lot of public bathing in America. There used to be some Turkish baths here but they were closed down a long time ago when AIDS became a public health problem.
We tend to bathe in private here. And no,I didn't forget that this is a Japanese manga and that this is completely a Japanese affair. I just thought I'd throw in my own two cents into the discussion.


Last edited by Snomaster1 on Thu Dec 14, 2017 12:33 am; edited 1 time in total
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lys



Joined: 24 Jun 2004
Posts: 950
Location: mitten-state
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 5:26 pm Reply with quote
Mari Yamazaki did move to Chicago after starting the series, so it is possible she might share some thoughts on US bathing practices in the future (it'd be out of place in the main series, but maybe in one of her essays)...

I didn't have much interest in this series, until I read it. Then I decided it was awesome :) And then I went to Japan and experienced the baths for myself (even home baths were really nice, compared to what I'm used to!), and I was quickly won over to the "Yay Japan!"-ness of the series. Baths are great :D
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here-and-faraway



Joined: 21 Jun 2007
Posts: 1495
Location: Sunny California
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 5:46 pm Reply with quote
Lys wrote:

I didn't have much interest in this series, until I read it. Then I decided it was awesome Smile


What did you like about it? I'm really on the fence about whether or not to purchase it. Thanks!
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EireformContinent



Joined: 30 May 2009
Posts: 977
Location: Łódź/Poland (The Promised Land)
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 5:56 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
There used to be some Turkish baths here but they were closed down a long time ago when AIDS became a public health problem.


Sorry for off-topic, but how are they related? And real Turkish baths have very little in common with sitting in the water, since Muslim culture highly value running water. I'd rather compare hammams I've been to to long sections of saunas.

Who haven't been in public bath doesn't know what life is. I wonder what characters of the manga would say about sulphur heaven of baths in Tibilisi or old class of Gellert baths.
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RestLessone



Joined: 02 Aug 2009
Posts: 1425
Location: New York
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 7:19 pm Reply with quote
EireformContinent wrote:
Quote:
There used to be some Turkish baths here but they were closed down a long time ago when AIDS became a public health problem.


Sorry for off-topic, but how are they related? And real Turkish baths have very little in common with sitting in the water, since Muslim culture highly value running water. I'd rather compare hammams I've been to to long sections of saunas.


I don't know too much about public baths, but remember some tidbits from history class. One must remember that, at the beginning of the AIDS epidemic, people were unsure of how it was transmitted. There was a huge scare. Furthermore, gays were being scapegoated as purveyors of AIDS and gay bathhouses were blamed for the spread. It should be noted, of course, that the goal of a gay bathhouse is to provide a venue for sex, so it's not the same as the average public bath. In any case, they suffered. The public didn't like them, and I imagine they lost business as people became wary of contracting the virus. Until then, the common STDs weren't permanent; they were something that could be fixed with medication.

Honestly, I have only really heard of gay bathhouses in the US. Even back then, I don't think public bathing was big. If any exist, they'd probably be of the Turkish/running water variety.
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enurtsol



Joined: 01 May 2007
Posts: 13982
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 7:37 pm Reply with quote
Lys wrote:

And then I went to Japan and experienced the baths for myself (even home baths were really nice, compared to what I'm used to!), and I was quickly won over to the "Yay Japan!"-ness of the series. Baths are great Very Happy


"Don’t Forget Your ‘Wrap Towel’! Our Female Reporter Experiences Japanese Mixed Public Bathing for the First Time" Laughing

(Note: for some reason, ANN's phpBB keeps re-correcting d-o-n-t in the URL to d-o-n-'-t and that messes up the URL link.)



  • Hold on, what was the point of the towel?

    If you thought that the wrap towel was sufficient in completely covering the female figure, think again. Likewise, although the men conceal themselves with a hand towel, strictly speaking most of the men are completely naked. Tomoe, on first entering, tried not to notice the men by her completely in the buff, but admits that in such circumstances, “your line of sight naturally drifts in that direction.” Whilst the women are not completely naked, after bathing in the wrap towel, the women’s body lines become transparent. Our reporter admits that this creates a sense of sexiness. She adds that the body line can be distinctly seen and the figure from the rear is particularly striking. It seems that although the wrap towel goes some way in hiding the essential parts, it is not by all means foolproof.

    The men bare all

    It would seem that for anyone bathing in the outdoor baths, the men’s changing room is completely on show. Of course, taking a peep would be a breach of public etiquette.

    Reporter: “What do you think about mixed bathing?”

    Male visitor: “This is my first time to come to such a place and to be honest it’s made me realize what a novice I am. A hot spring is a place to heal and relax the body, a place to reduce unwanted fatigue, but coming here has only made me nervous and fidgety. I feel like I’m unable to enjoy the basic fundamentals of the hot spring experience. Wicked thoughts come into my mind; I feel like a despicable, deplorable man. I think I need to start over again!”

    After this comment, the interviewee fled into the distance never to be seen again.

    So what do you guys think? Has our reporter’s experience made you feel even just a little bit inclined to venture into the realms of “konyoku”? On a concluding note, we have one very important piece of advice; it is probably safer not to come here on a double date. I think you all know the reason behind that.
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