Forum - View topic
This Week in Anime - The Lovable New Thieves of Persona 5 the Animation


Goto page 1, 2  Next

Note: this is the discussion thread for this article

Anime News Network Forum Index -> Site-related -> Talkback
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
johnnysasaki



Joined: 01 Jun 2014
Posts: 620
PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2018 8:35 pm Reply with quote
"Also, would it have killed them to make Yusuke a romance option? I mean COME ON, who sketches their best friend's butt in a church?"

literally after complaining about him wanting to paint Ann nude...

and about the Teacher romance:yeah,THAT'S OPTIONAL,and Persona 3 has done it before.Don't complain about the game giving you an option you don't like if it doesn't force you to take it(especially when the Persona games gives you multiple romantic options),especially when the choices represent the player through the MC(that's why they don't talk too much or have much of a personality in the main games,remember.?).
That's like complaining that the Infamous games give you the option to be ruthless and evil even though they don't enforce you to be if you don't want to...
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
jroa



Joined: 08 Aug 2012
Posts: 463
PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2018 11:41 pm Reply with quote
I think a fair number of people were hoping for too much in terms of the anime adaptation somehow being able to avoid or fix the structural issues present in the original game.

As good as it was, Persona 5 was only subversive in a few specific ways and ultimately not particularly progressive as a whole. Both the game and the anime would have benefitted from taking a more comprehensive and inclusive approach. For instance, I have to agree that they could have easily removed the gay panic scene(s) in either version of the story.

For the record, I'd also have been perfectly fine with Yusuke being a romance option in the original game myself. It feels like that would have been relatively simple to do and far from an unwelcome choice in a series like Persona that gives the player characters plenty of freedom to pick their own love interests in any given playthrough. Therefore, I can only hope that the Persona 6 staff will take something like this into consideration for the next development cycle. Even if we were to speak in purely pragmatic terms, they would lose nothing and potentially gain much by doing so.

Moving on...I would say Makoto's characterization already indicates that the anime staff understands how to emphasize some of the better parts of the source material. She was one of the most interesting characters in the core cast and it's nice to see that in practice here.

I do think the sequence with Ann and Yusuke felt awkward even in the game, specifically because of what she had gone through on a personal level by dealing with Kamoshida. It doesn't make much sense to almost immediately follow that up with the whole undressing bit. That said, I don't think the use of fanservice per se is enough to nullify the positives of a character's portrayal, at least not when it isn't present at excessive levels. Which is why I would say the anime has more of a mixed record in this regard, rather than a bad one.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
BodaciousSpacePirate
It's Over 9000!It's Over 9000!


Joined: 17 Apr 2015
Posts: 2726
PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2018 11:44 pm Reply with quote
johnnysasaki wrote:
and about the Teacher romance:yeah,THAT'S OPTIONAL,and Persona 3 has done it before.Don't complain about the game giving you an option you don't like if it doesn't force you to take it(especially when the Persona games gives you multiple romantic options),especially when the choices represent the player through the MC(that's why they don't talk too much or have much of a personality in the main games,remember.?).
That's like complaining that the Infamous games give you the option to be ruthless and evil even though they don't enforce you to be if you don't want to...


When a game spends its first 10 hours presenting a charismatic adult man who has relationships with his students as an abuser, and then gives the player the option to be "romanced" by a sexy lady teacher, is it even remotely surprising that some of the people who gravitate towards games that purport to depict "real societal problems" the way Persona 5 does are going to interpret this as some kind of "relationship power dynamics between adult man and student = disgusting; relationship power dynamics between adult woman and student = awesome" message? It feels like the creators are just tempting fate here.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message My Anime My Manga
jroa



Joined: 08 Aug 2012
Posts: 463
PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 12:03 am Reply with quote
BodaciousSpacePirate wrote:

When a game spends its first 10 hours presenting a charismatic adult man who has relationships with his students as an abuser, and then gives the player the option to be "romanced" by a sexy lady teacher, is it even remotely surprising that some of the people who gravitate towards games that purport to depict "real societal problems" the way Persona 5 does are going to interpret this as some kind of "relationship power dynamics between adult man and student = disgusting; relationship power dynamics between adult woman and student = awesome" message?


Both situations feature unbalanced power dynamics and they can be rightfully criticized for that commonality, to be sure, but I would point out that the specific degrees of consent and methods of approach were quite different between the two scenarios, not just the genders involved. Even then, it is possible to make the case that both outcomes can come across as troublesome in retrospect.

Despite the surrounding supernatural elements, the details of Kamoshida's exploitation and extortion of his students felt frighteningly close to a tangible example of abuse. Which, critically speaking, is both a blessing and a curse because it readily invites comparisons to real life circumstances and might provoke all sorts of reactions among any past victims found among the players/viewers.

Then you have the other case, which was portrayed as more of an idealized fantasy where a student and a teacher basically agreed to engage in roleplaying outside of the classroom and gradually opened up to each other. They were not equal partners, legally speaking, but it was not an overtly aggressive dynamic. To be blunt, that romance option was created in order to appeal to a fetish and it does lead to murky thematic implications. But all the same, how people want to judge such things is often going to rely on whether it contributes to or detracts from their individual experiences, regardless of any high moral principles we may want to invoke.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Chester McCool



Joined: 06 Jan 2016
Posts: 322
PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 1:12 am Reply with quote
BodaciousSpacePirate wrote:
When a game spends its first 10 hours presenting a charismatic adult man who has relationships with his students as an abuser, and then gives the player the option to be "romanced" by a sexy lady teacher, is it even remotely surprising that some of the people who gravitate towards games that purport to depict "real societal problems" the way Persona 5 does are going to interpret this as some kind of "relationship power dynamics between adult man and student = disgusting; relationship power dynamics between adult woman and student = awesome" message? It feels like the creators are just tempting fate here.


Kamoshida literally blackmails, rapes, and abuses his students. Joker, that is to say, you the player, is the one who initiates the relationship with Kawakami. She doesn't 'romance you', you romance her. None of the girls Kamoshida raped wanted it. They were forced into it via blackmail, threats, or physical violence.

The context between the two situations couldn't be any more different. If there was an instance where a female student had a crush on a male teacher and pursued it, and it was treated as 'icky' and vilified, then sure, it'd be a double standard.. but Kamoshida is literally a rapist and abuser. None of his victims were shown to have 'wanted it'
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
BodaciousSpacePirate
It's Over 9000!It's Over 9000!


Joined: 17 Apr 2015
Posts: 2726
PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 1:36 am Reply with quote
Chester McCool wrote:
Kamoshida literally blackmails, rapes, and abuses his students. Joker, that is to say, you the player, is the one who initiates the relationship with Kawakami. She doesn't 'romance you', you romance her. None of the girls Kamoshida raped wanted it. They were forced into it via blackmail, threats, or physical violence.

The context between the two situations couldn't be any more different. If there was an instance where a female student had a crush on a male teacher and pursued it, and it was treated as 'icky' and vilified, then sure, it'd be a double standard.. but Kamoshida is literally a rapist and abuser. None of his victims were shown to have 'wanted it'


Which would be all well and good if the way these two situations are being presented in Persona 5 was an isolated case, but from what I've gathered, the argument is that media depictions of teacher-student relations are predisposed to frame male teachers like Kamoshida (i.e. as predators), and female teachers like Kawakami (i.e. as the ones being pursued).

This is something that a lot of people seem to feel is an ongoing issue, both in entertainment and news media (and although it seems to be more or less confined to discussions of US media, I'm sure that people concerned about this are more than happy to talk about it in the context of Japan, too):

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2006/mar/24/usa.gender

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/14/business/media/fox-news-women-teachers-sexual-predators.html

Edit: fixed links.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message My Anime My Manga
Woke Weeb



Joined: 03 Jul 2018
Posts: 8
PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 2:18 am Reply with quote
johnnysasaki wrote:
"Also, would it have killed them to make Yusuke a romance option? I mean COME ON, who sketches their best friend's butt in a church?"

literally after complaining about him wanting to paint Ann nude...


Um, yeah? Yusuke demanding Ann to be painted naked was super gross and icky. Yusuke and Ren would be super progressive and liberating.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Chester McCool



Joined: 06 Jan 2016
Posts: 322
PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 3:56 am Reply with quote
BodaciousSpacePirate wrote:
Which would be all well and good if the way these two situations are being presented in Persona 5 was an isolated case, but from what I've gathered, the argument is that media depictions of teacher-student relations are predisposed to frame male teachers like Kamoshida (i.e. as predators), and female teachers like Kawakami (i.e. as the ones being pursued).

This is something that a lot of people seem to feel is an ongoing issue, both in entertainment and news media (and although it seems to be more or less confined to discussions of US media, I'm sure that people concerned about this are more than happy to talk about it in the context of Japan, too):


I suppose it just boils down to the breakdown of men and women's views and pursuit of sex and relationships. A boy managing to score with his hot teacher would be seen as more of an accomplishment and worthy of praise by his peers, but if he was a teacher doing it with a student he'd be seen as a predatory creep, someone who can't get with a woman his own age so he creeps on underage girls, and thus, a failure. Sex as a status symbol for men, essentially.

I'm not really too familiar with a lot of American media, but the ones I've seen never really romanticize or glorify either version of teacher-student relationships. They always portray it as negative. In Japan though the sexy female teacher is a common Harem or fanservice trope, and in shoujo manga there's a number of times a female student has a crush on or actual relationship with a male teacher. In the game, one of the options when Kawakami says "but I'm your teacher" is "That's the best part". It's clearly playing on the harem/fanservice trope angle, in addition to the maid stuff.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Divineking



Joined: 03 Jul 2010
Posts: 1233
PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 7:37 am Reply with quote
I'm also in the camp who found it to be incredibly awkward when the game went from Ann's storyline of dealing with Kamoshida's sexual harrassment to Yusuke wanting her in a nude painting literally right after that arc. I'm glad the anime at least had the sense to cut the whole bit where he essentially attempts to blackmail her into doing it because boy howdy did it take me a while to like Yusuke after that.

Far as the Kawakami thing goes it really does feel like the game's staff was trying to have their cake and eat it too since having one storyline revolving around a teacher harassing a student and another where you can romance your teacher is pretty contradictory no matter how you try to handle the latter (and it's not like the game did a particularly great job of selling it beyond obvious pandering). Having said that I did end up romancing Kawakami (along with most everyone else) in my first playthrough so I realize I'm being pretty hypocritical here. Though if I were being kinda frank Makoto and to a lesser extent Hifumi and Haru are kinda the only romance options in general that don't feel...questionable in the face of what the game's themes are supposed to be
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
BadNewsBlues



Joined: 21 Sep 2014
Posts: 3839
PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 1:32 pm Reply with quote
johnnysasaki wrote:

and about the Teacher romance:yeah,THAT'S OPTIONAL,and Persona 3 has done it before.


Persona 3 didn't feature a open romantic relationship with an older character.

Quote:
Persona 5 is Very Bad at handling its female characters, I won't deny that. Like thanks, I definitely needed a scene of Ann bathing for no reason.


Hey if we can get a scene in the game of the MC, Ryuji, & Yusuke in a public bath for no reason why not a scene of Ann bathing?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
jdnation



Joined: 15 May 2007
Posts: 1164
PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 6:41 pm Reply with quote
I think we can all agree that teacher/student dating is bad and highly unprofessional.

That said there is a significant difference between the contexts of the Kamoshida arc, and the latter with Kawakami. They are therefore not comparable.

This would be like saying the story of Shinkai's Garden of Words is bad without exploring the context.

If the relationship with Kawakami is bad, it's for a completely different set of reasons than with Kamoshida, with only one commonality being they are both teachers.

And Anne is certainly creeped by Kamoshida, but not to the extent that she doesn't mind flaunting her beauty with her modelling job, as well as dicking around with the guys. She was disgusted with Kamoshida, but never traumatized to the point where if some guy oggled her she'd curl up in a ball and need a safe room.

Her Persona powers also provide her cartharsis and as it's design and character implies, she very comfortable with her looks and hanging around guys. She doesn't welcome creeps like Kamoshida, but she's obviously comfortable with friends poking fun at her or teasing or flirting. Girls are okay with this with guys they've known for a long time and are comfortable with and understand when someone is joking. So this is just normal. But if it's some stranger or someone they don't know or like, it's a different story and this would be unwelcome. Anne didn't feel victimized by Kamoshida as much as concerned about her friend who suffered far more. So Anne was always stronger than most detractors give her credit for.

And for Yusuke, he's an artist, artists typically study and paint nudes. How was he supposed to know about Anne's history with Kamoshida when they met? Yusuke is also certainly an oddball so he lacks tact. But again, this is a completely different situation than Kamoshida and Anne's not an idiot who'd equate the two. Especially given her modelling job.

Same for some gays hitting on your bro in town. Tactless, sure, but hardly criminal or out of place in real life depending where you are. And I'm sure there are more gays that can chuckle at a joke at their expense than there are those outraged at something on their behalf, but that's just me. In any case that again in not at all comparable to anything Kamoshida did.

So I don't see how the writers of the game/show got it 'wrong.' The grand scheme of things is that things aren't so black or white, as the end if the game shows. People are saddled with the weight of expectations society in general may place upon them, and thus you either bear it responsibly or break under it and become a 'shitty adult.'

But as with all things, one of these is not like the other. And therefore I don't see the writing as being thematically inconsistent with how it handles affairs. If anything the Kamoshida vs Kawakami thing looks more like a juxtaposition.

Of course the only inconsistency is if the player chooses to date all the girls simultaneously. So you deserve what's coming, but none the less because game creators don't have infinite time to simulate the real world based on all your choices on your playstation that the story must carry on regardless.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Lord Oink



Joined: 06 Jul 2016
Posts: 876
PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 9:08 pm Reply with quote
BadNewsBlues wrote:
Hey if we can get a scene in the game of the MC, Ryuji, & Yusuke in a public bath for no reason why not a scene of Ann bathing?


Hear hear. Equality between the genders, I say. Laughing

jdnation wrote:
And for Yusuke, he's an artist, artists typically study and paint nudes. How was he supposed to know about Anne's history with Kamoshida when they met? Yusuke is also certainly an oddball so he lacks tact. But again, this is a completely different situation than Kamoshida and Anne's not an idiot who'd equate the two. Especially given her modelling job.


Yusuke pretty much said he had no interest in Ann as a woman. Even during the desert cutscene, Yusuke was the only guy not looking down her shirt. He obviously ain't interested in her that way.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
lossthief



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 598
PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 9:42 pm Reply with quote
BadNewsBlues wrote:


Hey if we can get a scene in the game of the MC, Ryuji, & Yusuke in a public bath for no reason why not a scene of Ann bathing?


Well I mean, did MC, Ryuji, and Yusuke have an entire introductory arc about how they don't want to be objectified and exploited? Because that seems like the relevant point to me. It's not that P5 has cheesecake - it's that it creates entire character beats and storylines around the theme of fighting against adults who objectify/abuse these characters, and then participates in objectifying them both in and out of diagesis.

The problem isn't "oh they put in a Hot for Teacher storyline" or "Ann's PT outfit is too revealing" - it's that these decisions actively conflict with P5's stated thematic goals in a way that frankly sucks pretty hard.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
all-tsun-and-no-dere



Joined: 06 Jul 2015
Posts: 105
PostPosted: Thu Jul 05, 2018 3:03 am Reply with quote
jdnation wrote:
I think we can all agree that teacher/student dating is bad and highly unprofessional.


Okay this post starts off pretty well...

Quote:
That said there is a significant difference between the contexts of the Kamoshida arc, and the latter with Kawakami. They are therefore not comparable.


Oh whoops, here's the part where I start strenuously disagreeing.

Quote:
And Anne is certainly creeped by Kamoshida, but not to the extent that she doesn't mind flaunting her beauty with her modelling job, as well as dicking around with the guys. She was disgusted with Kamoshida, but never traumatized to the point where if some guy oggled her she'd curl up in a ball and need a safe room.

Her Persona powers also provide her cartharsis and as it's design and character implies, she very comfortable with her looks and hanging around guys. She doesn't welcome creeps like Kamoshida, but she's obviously comfortable with friends poking fun at her or teasing or flirting. Girls are okay with this with guys they've known for a long time and are comfortable with and understand when someone is joking. So this is just normal. But if it's some stranger or someone they don't know or like, it's a different story and this would be unwelcome. Anne didn't feel victimized by Kamoshida as much as concerned about her friend who suffered far more. So Anne was always stronger than most detractors give her credit for.


Speaking as someone who once was a teenage girl, there are a lot of girls who feel extremely uncomfortable with sexual remarks and teasing from their male friends; they just don't want to be marked as killjoys or prudes, so they put up with it and smile. She was clearly extremely uncomfortable with being forced to pose nude as a diversion, which is not a far stretch from the fact that Kamoshida was trying to force her to sleep with him by threatening her friend. It wasn't just concern for Shiho - she felt guilty because she felt like if she had given in and gone to his place, he wouldn't have beaten her or molested Shiho. Likewise, Ryuji and Ren emotionally blackmail her into posing nude because it's the quickest/easiest way to distract Yusuke long enough to sleep in. It's not on the same level, but Ann is still the victim of sexual assault, and trying to force her to "use her sexuality"

I'm uncomfortable with the way you call her modeling "flaunting her beauty", but that's beside the point here.

Quote:
And for Yusuke, he's an artist, artists typically study and paint nudes. How was he supposed to know about Anne's history with Kamoshida when they met? Yusuke is also certainly an oddball so he lacks tact. But again, this is a completely different situation than Kamoshida and Anne's not an idiot who'd equate the two. Especially given her modelling job.


You act like she doesn't have the right to draw and maintain her own boundaries. Nude modeling and regular modeling are two completely different things.

Quote:
Same for some gays hitting on your bro in town. Tactless, sure, but hardly criminal or out of place in real life depending where you are. And I'm sure there are more gays that can chuckle at a joke at their expense than there are those outraged at something on their behalf, but that's just me.


What? No. No. No. I'm bisexual and most of my friends are LGBT, and every single one was hurt and angry at how Persona 5 handled the gay men. There are places in the US where straight men can murder gay men with no legal consequence because of the "gay panic" defense. Having the only gay characters in the show/game be literal predators is incredibly unfunny, irresponsible, and damaging.

Quote:
So I don't see how the writers of the game/show got it 'wrong.' The grand scheme of things is that things aren't so black or white, as the end if the game shows. People are saddled with the weight of expectations society in general may place upon them, and thus you either bear it responsibly or break under it and become a 'shitty adult.'

But as with all things, one of these is not like the other. And therefore I don't see the writing as being thematically inconsistent with how it handles affairs. If anything the Kamoshida vs Kawakami thing looks more like a juxtaposition.


LossThief already nailed the response to this.[/i]
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
ronri



Joined: 11 Apr 2013
Posts: 43
PostPosted: Thu Jul 05, 2018 4:03 am Reply with quote
While the depiction of gay men is unfortunate it's not without its basis in certain parts of Asia. I don't know if it's a cultural thing, but there's the Okama culture in Japan. Similarly, I've interacted with groups of people in the LGBT community in Asia akin to it wherein this specific behavior is almost treated as normal; yes both the flamboyance and the jokey "predatory" behavior being instigated, almost as if it's a given and part of the attitudes associated with the culture. For me though, this was a long time ago around mid to late 90s up to early 2000s, so times may have changed and such attitudes and behavior could very well be outdated or phased out nowadays. Then again, we have characters like Lala-chan who was pretty cool overall if you interacted with her and Ohya a lot.

Last edited by ronri on Tue Oct 30, 2018 7:03 am; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Reply to topic    Anime News Network Forum Index -> Site-related -> Talkback All times are GMT - 5 Hours
Goto page 1, 2  Next
Page 1 of 2

 


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group