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ANNCast (Video) - A Silent Voice




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justsomeaccount



Joined: 24 Oct 2014
Posts: 471
PostPosted: Fri Jun 02, 2017 11:49 am Reply with quote
Really nice podcast. As a fan of the manga, I mostly agree with Jake in that the tone was my biggest problem, not because it misses the point but it misunderstands it. And it was a shame because that casual/mean whipslash tone between drama and humor not only I thought was a very big base of how the scenes were made (even if sometimes to its detriment with weird humor and over the top melodrama) but also, since the movie has to be very efficient, that tone alone could have made not only the scenes but the character's reactions and psychologies (especially Shoya) way more effective in very little time. Instead, the pleasant nostalgic tone with suavized restrained dialogue and piano music everywhere made it feel too soft, and the most brutal moments were undermined instead of being hard to watch (except the spoiler[attempted suicide], I agree that was effective).

On a more personal note I also miss all the other people perspectives, but in a movie it's hard to see how it would all fit so I get it. But maybe they should have cut off some characters to make the movie more fluid, especially the ones that lose their purpose when you discard the elements related to them (Mashiba for sure, but the scene that comes to my mind the most is spoiler[grandma's death], when you cut Shoko's mother's character so much the complicated family dynamics are lost and therefore that scene in the movie only serves to make Shoya closer to Yuzuru and foreshadow spoiler[her fear of Shoko's suicide] and that's it, little else).

About Ueno, I agree that she is kinda the societal backlash, but more than that my take on her is basically she knows she's horrible and selfish and hypocritical but she doesn't even try to reconsider her feelings and prefers to project which is why (aside of her jealousy) she wants Shoko to hate her to be both in the same page and sees Shoko's reservations and attitude as dishonest and phony instead of self-hating. At the same time she can also point out some hypocresies of those self-pitying attitudes that would preserve a lame status quo without adressing anything; but yeah she's completely selfish and selective about it just so it benefites Shoya and screws the rest, but I understood where she came from.
But that doesn't mean her actions are justifiable and I think the series is what is says: The beating scene in the hospital (most clear in the manga with Sahara acting too), when later Shoko tries to reconnect with her, and when she speaks with Shoya near the end of the manga: those scenes made me very clear that she started to see and appreciate their attitudes on self-improvement and comunication, and that's when self-hatred sinks in and considers herself the despicable one (and Shoya says that she can still change little by little); so I disagree with Zac and I think she changed as a character, and that those acts to apologize, calm down and understand that she rejected are fundamentally more important, even if they need to actually address the harsh stuff about it instead of ignore it. I completely understand people hating her and I did during many chunks of it (and indeed the series focus way too much on her jealousy to illustrate it), but I found her consistent and understandable in the same vein of the other characters.
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Parsifal24



Joined: 20 Apr 2010
Posts: 950
PostPosted: Fri Jun 02, 2017 12:52 pm Reply with quote
I haven't seen the movie so I don't have an opinion on it I loved the Manga so I'm glad the Manga is being recommended so highly. Also thanks for taking my question comparing Orange and A Silent Voice. I have bad social anxiety and normally I have to work on Thursdays so normal I don't attend Livestreams. So asking my question and getting it answered is a minor victory.

I pretty much had the same reaction to Shouya that others in the Podcast had in that I mostly saw him as reprehensible those first few chapters made me hate him. As he was written like one of those "know it all" kid characters that knows how the world "works" but really have no idea about really anything substantive.

The discussion on Ueno was interesting yes I would agree she is a horrible person but it is interesting that prior to this podcast /A/ on 4chan had a couple threads defending her as "best girl." Don't know how much of that is an Anon being balefully contrarian for LOLz though.

As far as favorite character the easy pick would be Shouko and she is a lovely kind girl and having shared class with a girl who was deaf in High School. a realistic depiction of what it is like to deal with a disability like deafness. But honestly Miyako Shoyua's Mom has to be my favorite character

One could also find an interesting vein of analyses could be found as far as dealing with "special needs" characters and representation of them. In other series like Yuki Yuna Is A Hero and Interviews With Monster Girls, as far as Yaeko (Shouko and Yuzuru's Mom) goes.

While she was harsh and sometimes too hard on Shouko it felt less like an abusive home life and more like someone out of their emotional depth having to deal with a tough circumstance.

Her character and her family's reaction to Shouko being death reminded me of With the Light: Raising an Autistic Child espcialy wherespoiler[ Yaeko's in-laws try to make it about her being a bad Mom or some kind of Karmic retribution].

So one could see her harsh and sometimes wintery disposition towards her daughters coming from of a place of misplaced love.

Wanting her children to succeed and prove those that belittled her children wrong but being out of her element of dealing with a special needs child. Combined with spoiler[the death of her Mother] who was very the "heart" of the family.

Mind you I'm not defending her actions simply saying I can understand why and that it's not some kind of Mommy Dearest mind set (not saying Podcast took that position) I can see how it would be real easy to write her off as just a cardboard "Monster Mom".

When really I think she's a little more complex than that as most of the characters in the Manga are. In short Yaeko is a character I could empathize with even if I didn't "like" her because I think empathy goes a little deeper than merely liking someone.
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Utsuro no Hako



Joined: 18 May 2012
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 02, 2017 2:28 pm Reply with quote
When the manga was running, there were a disturbing number of people who sided with Ueno, particularly when she blamed Shouko for Shouya spoiler[being in the coma]. They actually argued that Shouko spoiler[was selfish for attempting suicide] and Ueno was right to call her out on it.

One aspect of the story the podcast didn't touch on was how Shouya's family was depicted. His sister only appears as a side character in the first few chapters, but it's clear she's having sex with older men despite still being in high school -- and she's doing it at home. After the flash forward, she has a daughter with the Brazilian guy, but the daughter seems to spend all her time with Shouya and Grandma, with the parents rarely showing up at all. You don't often see a set up like that in manga, but here it's tossed in as a minor detail.
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angelmcazares
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Joined: 23 Sep 2010
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 02, 2017 2:56 pm Reply with quote
Thank you for this enlightening discussion. I only watched the movie and liked it in general. My only big complaint is that the narrative felt choppy, like some content was missing, and the audience had to fill in the blanks. The comparisons with the manga confirm my suspicions that the producers of the movie took a bunch of things out to try to cram in as much material as possible.

The idea that the horrible and traumatic experience of bullying being treated as part of a typical adolescence is wrong and ridiculous. In general the movie succeeded in tackling heavy and complex emotional issues, but the parts where some of this was treated like typical slice of life otaku fare is disappointing. But I should not be surprised that anime productions use otaku escapism to sell merchandise. I do plan to buy this movie, but I would have been more pleased if it had been a bit more Flowers of Evil tone wise.

Finally, I also would have liked to have seen this story depicted in a full tv series. The movie is still solid to me and graded it a B+.
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Hikaru Suzuhara



Joined: 31 Dec 2004
Posts: 78
PostPosted: Fri Jun 02, 2017 3:43 pm Reply with quote
The film version is about not listening.

A better way would be to look at the fireworks show beforespoiler[ Shoko's suicide attempt]. We see all the side characters watching the same fireworks festival with their family/friends. Those people are all physically close to others, in EVERY SINGLE SHOT they're hugging people indicating how close they were and open they were.

Meanwhile Shoko and family + Ishida are the only people shown not physically touching or even interacting. They're all silently watching the fireworks. Shoko's mom and Yuzuru both leave, probably to give Shoko and Ishida a chance to talk privately, and neither can be genuine. Ishida is still pretending to be happy, and Shoko just gives up.

The fireworks scene wasn't meant to be "nice" it was meant to be awkward and uncomfortable, as two people who should be the closest in the story are shown to be completely unable to communicate with each other honestly. Even the bitch Ueno was linking arms with her family, and here are Ishida and Shoko, not with their families, not with each other. Unable to talk to each other.

In the final conversation Ishida blathers about nonsense and empty pleasantries, we even learn Shoko's birthday had passed recently, and he never knew about it (the story starts before her birthday). These are two people who don't talk.

To underscore this for the audience up until this point Shoko, despite being deaf, is the only character in the movie we as an audience NEVER have a problem understanding what she's saying. Yet in this scene (just before she leaves, and right after we find out about her birthday passing, for the first time, the director shows her from the back, we can't see her face, and her body hides her hands from the screen. Ishida is clearly looking at her hands and reacts but his reaction is just as meaningless as the rest of the conversation.

She then stands up, he asks her where she was going, and she gives him the same insincere smile Ueno was bitching about earlier in the movie, then says she's going to study. A smile which Ishida takes at face value, even though the child version of him understood that smile to be a lie.
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zrnzle500
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 02, 2017 6:10 pm Reply with quote
I really appreciated the series's portrayal of deaf people. Both of my maternal grandparents and one of my aunts on my dad's side are deaf and it was very spot on, from how they speak and how deaf and non deaf people speak when using sign language, among other things. They probably should have introduced sign language earlier but that is unfortunately not surprising, though better than what was done in the old days (my grandfather was forced to lip read).

I really liked Saori Hayami's performance as Shoko, as she not only captured the way deaf people speak (it actually reminded me of the way my late grandmother spoke), but she also really got across the emotions of the character at the same time, in one of my favorite performances from her. Aoi Yuuki's performance as Yuzuru was very good as well.

While one could argue the tone of reminiscing about youth might not be the best for the story, the idea that portraying bullying as a typical part of adolescence in Japan is ridiculous or absurd strikes me as incorrect. Should it be? Of course not, but unfortunately it is typical. Aside from the precise cause and the ultimate outcome, stories like this are not extraordinary enough in Japan. It wasn't too long ago that it was seen in the same way in the US.
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rti9



Joined: 08 Jul 2007
Posts: 1241
PostPosted: Sat Jun 03, 2017 12:48 am Reply with quote
I was wondering how much the voice of Nishimiya added to the movie for those who had read the manga. When you guys read the manga, did you imagine her voice? I ask because I remember how some people said how much the voices and the songs added to the Nana adaptations. I haven`t read the manga, but I was really surprised when she started singing. Since we are so used to listening to cutesy voices in anime, it caught me off guard. It would be interesting to hear how much research the voice actress had to do to get it right.

I doubt a TV series would be less criticized by not adapting accurately enough. I also feel that if it had been adapted as a TV series, most people would stop watching at the initial episode(s) since the beginning of the story is so uncomfortable.

I find it quite odd that people added the romance and comedy genres to its ANN info page.
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Stratum



Joined: 13 Aug 2012
Posts: 42
PostPosted: Sat Jun 03, 2017 4:38 am Reply with quote
angelmcazares wrote:
The idea that the horrible and traumatic experience of bullying being treated as part of a typical adolescence is wrong and ridiculous.

I don't think the movie was going for at all, instead it was trying to convey Shoya's shift in perspective from "it's all fun and games" to "no, this actually really horrible." The the scene shifts Shoko retrieving her notebook from the fountain to Shoya having been pushed into the fountain, to how Shoya being bullied almost perfectly mirrors his treatment of Shoko(with contrasting music to help sell the point), as well as "My Generation" ending the moment Shoko reaches the classroom, to me, indicated how Shoya went from oblivious to how terrible he is to acutely aware of it. I haven't read the manga yet, but I thought that it probably did something similar through narration.

As for Zac's complaint about the bridge/spoiler[confession] scene, I get why he likes the manga version as it sounds really impact-full, but I don't think I would've cared for it as much for a couple reasons:
1. For someone who has spent years of isolation Shoya should have developed some kind of communication problems.
2. If he can be so direct with her then why hasn't he apologized yet!!
3. Having Shoya do something in order to be deserving of a spoiler[confession right before it was going to happen would make the confession feel like it was there only for his sake, while having Shoko say it without any help or set up puts the focus on her and how she was the only one in the whole movie who had the guts to say it.]

Overall, I loved the movie and my only complaints are that the bridge scene at night was awkwardly set up, and the movie had one side character too many.


Last edited by Stratum on Sat Jun 03, 2017 11:53 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Merida
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Joined: 21 Feb 2012
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 03, 2017 5:30 am Reply with quote
It's been a while since i read the manga, so there's probably quite a bit i forgot about it which may be part of the reason the movie leaving stuff out didn't bother me too much. However, i do remember the manga getting a bit too melodramatic for my tastes, especially towards the end, so i defintely didn't mind the movie avoiding that (for the most part).

What the movie managed to get across pretty nicely IMO despite its limited time is how bullying (and group dynamic in general) works and how sometimes there's just a fine line between being the bully or the bullied.
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TdFern 87



Joined: 03 Jun 2017
Posts: 181
PostPosted: Sat Jun 03, 2017 7:24 pm Reply with quote
justsomeaccount wrote:
Really nice podcast. As a fan of the manga, I mostly agree with Jake in that the tone was my biggest problem, not because it misses the point but it misunderstands it. And it was a shame because that casual/mean whipslash tone between drama and humor not only I thought was a very big base of how the scenes were made (even if sometimes to its detriment with weird humor and over the top melodrama) but also, since the movie has to be very efficient, that tone alone could have made not only the scenes but the character's reactions and psychologies (especially Shoya) way more effective in very little time. Instead, the pleasant nostalgic tone with suavized restrained dialogue and piano music everywhere made it feel too soft, and the most brutal moments were undermined instead of being hard to watch (except the spoiler[attempted suicide], I agree that was effective).

On a more personal note I also miss all the other people perspectives, but in a movie it's hard to see how it would all fit so I get it. But maybe they should have cut off some characters to make the movie more fluid, especially the ones that lose their purpose when you discard the elements related to them (Mashiba for sure, but the scene that comes to my mind the most is spoiler[grandma's death], when you cut Shoko's mother's character so much the complicated family dynamics are lost and therefore that scene in the movie only serves to make Shoya closer to Yuzuru and foreshadow spoiler[her fear of Shoko's suicide] and that's it, little else).

About Ueno, I agree that she is kinda the societal backlash, but more than that my take on her is basically she knows she's horrible and selfish and hypocritical but she doesn't even try to reconsider her feelings and prefers to project which is why (aside of her jealousy) she wants Shoko to hate her to be both in the same page and sees Shoko's reservations and attitude as dishonest and phony instead of self-hating. At the same time she can also point out some hypocresies of those self-pitying attitudes that would preserve a lame status quo without adressing anything; but yeah she's completely selfish and selective about it just so it benefites Shoya and screws the rest, but I understood where she came from.
But that doesn't mean her actions are justifiable and I think the series is what is says: The beating scene in the hospital (most clear in the manga with Sahara acting too), when later Shoko tries to reconnect with her, and when she speaks with Shoya near the end of the manga: those scenes made me very clear that she started to see and appreciate their attitudes on self-improvement and comunication, and that's when self-hatred sinks in and considers herself the despicable one (and Shoya says that she can still change little by little); so I disagree with Zac and I think she changed as a character, and that those acts to apologize, calm down and understand that she rejected are fundamentally more important, even if they need to actually address the harsh stuff about it instead of ignore it. I completely understand people hating her and I did during many chunks of it (and indeed the series focus way too much on her jealousy to illustrate it), but I found her consistent and understandable in the same vein of the other characters.


I agree with what you said, and you are actually one of the few people here, well anywhere for that matter, I encountered that actually understand what Uneo is, instead most of many, that just bash on her character of being a b**ch.
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TdFern 87



Joined: 03 Jun 2017
Posts: 181
PostPosted: Sat Jun 03, 2017 7:28 pm Reply with quote
Utsuro no Hako wrote:
When the manga was running, there were a disturbing number of people who sided with Ueno, particularly when she blamed Shouko for Shouya spoiler[being in the coma]. They actually argued that Shouko spoiler[was selfish for attempting suicide] and Ueno was right to call her out on it.

One aspect of the story the podcast didn't touch on was how Shouya's family was depicted. His sister only appears as a side character in the first few chapters, but it's clear she's having sex with older men despite still being in high school -- and she's doing it at home. After the flash forward, she has a daughter with the Brazilian guy, but the daughter seems to spend all her time with Shouya and Grandma, with the parents rarely showing up at all. You don't often see a set up like that in manga, but here it's tossed in as a minor detail.


Some of those people still side with Uneo.
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TdFern 87



Joined: 03 Jun 2017
Posts: 181
PostPosted: Sat Jun 03, 2017 7:38 pm Reply with quote
spoiler[ So when Ishida removed both of those hearing aids, and it resulted her right ear completely unhearable, resulting only her left side to hear only. I didn't think Ishida did much to her ears to begin, until it was said and I gave a closer look. ]

I always thought both in the manga as well as the movie, that her hearing was so bad, that the hearing aids didn't do much to begin with? I heard of that from somewhere that being the case. Although it be nice if someone was to clarify all this. Thank you.


Last edited by TdFern 87 on Sat Jun 03, 2017 7:42 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Mohawk52



Joined: 16 Oct 2003
Posts: 8174
Location: England, UK
PostPosted: Sun Jun 04, 2017 9:27 am Reply with quote
Erm, I have 7 volumes on my shelf, not 6, unless the US only had 6 published. As a broadcast technical director allow me to suggest in future you have a mic for all guests talking on a programme. It will eliminate the sound level discrepancies this programme suffered from, unless of course that was the "technical difficulties" you disclaimed about at the beginning.

On topic of the manga, It was heavily hinted that Shouko had some feelings toward Shoya in the very first volume just before she transfered schools thanks to Shoya's misconceived reaction to her actions toward him when he is being bullied himself. to me the big bang moment was whenspoiler[Shoya discovers it was his desk that she was cleaning not her's. That was his epiphany of what a complete asshat he is and deserving of what he is now experiencing from then on.] Guilt is like a poison to the Japanese and leads to many deaths like one. it's also why Ueno was taking Shoya's side and blaming Shouko for his reversal of fate after Ueno herself left him to it with no defence and even joined in inspite of her feelings toward him. Remorse for her cowardice.

The desire for more positive experience is itself a negative experience. And, paradoxically, the acceptance of one's negative experience is itself a positive experience.
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