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EP. REVIEW: Run with the Wind


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meiam



Joined: 23 Jun 2013
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2019 8:45 pm Reply with quote
Nico and Haiji most definitely weren't on the same track team (maybe they were on the same team at different time). There's literally a scene where Haiji ask Nico if he ever ran in this episode and Nico act surprised that Haiji knew that.

As far as Shindo time, it's hard to estimate it since we don't know for sure anyone time and he started in position 10 or something like it (which is again, completely ludicrous). So if he started 10 minute before the last one and ended up finishing 30 sec behind the person before him that would make him 10 minutes 30 second slower. But he was heavily sick to the point of having to flat out stop running at some point and having a hard time walking straight, to even finish within a reasonable time frame is farcical. That would mean that, in the shows mind, a runner that has been training for a long time and wasn't sick can only run marginally faster than someone who's sick and started training less than a year ago. If that's not disrespect for long time athlete I don't who what is, "I can almost replicate your results obtained from yours year of hard work with just a few month of work while sick" would definitely count as an insult, although an oddly specific one.

Nico story represent a bit what I find problematic with a show that purport to be realistic while being anything but. It makes out the coach who told Nico that he didn't have the physic to be a long distance runner to be an ass when he was actually doing a very good job. As much as the whole "you can be w/e you want" thing is cute, it's blatantly false. If we just look at long distance running you can see pretty easily that there's a specific body type that has a clear advantage, unless you believe that Kenyan do so well at running because there country is so rich it can afford the best training facility/coach. Isn't the show entire message "you don't need to be very fast or win competition to enjoy running?". Why does it matter if Nico is part of the running team at his school or not? If he just love running he can just run by himself on his own time. Of the thousands of different sport, running is one of the few that you can practice with no special facility/equipment or personal around. If his coach who discourage him from running could see him run he wouldn't have discourage him from running because he'd knew he'd live in an anime world where body type don't matter.

Why does the show feel it has to bend reality to make sure the group run in the marathon? Wouldn't it be far more tonally consistent if the team didn't qualify but there reaction had been "Shrug, who care about competition let's keep training because it's fun even if we'll never win anything"?
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NeverConvex
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2019 9:59 pm Reply with quote
I think Run with the Wind has in a few cases failed to strike the proper balance between verisimilitude and zealous hope (or over-the-top dedication, maybe?) --- notably, as I rambled on about before, Shindo. (And Gina's very interesting argument that the sort of self-injurious attitude Shindo's character arc reflects is normal for the Hakone Ekiden I think reinforces my irritation, if not all of my original approach to the issue.)

But I disagree with you on some specific cases, meiam. Notably:

meiam wrote:
Nico story represent a bit what I find problematic with a show that purport to be realistic while being anything but. It makes out the coach who told Nico that he didn't have the physic to be a long distance runner to be an ass when he was actually doing a very good job.


I didn't parse that scene this way at all. I took it as Nico running up against reality, hard, as we often do, and Nico's coach embodying that but not in any sort of spiteful or cruel way. I thought that brief flashback was pretty exclusively about Nico, and had nothing substantial to do with reflecting on his coach or anyone else.
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sabriyahm



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PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2019 10:15 pm Reply with quote
MiloTheFirst wrote:


this are the very same 19 teams that all ranked above them in the qualifiers, unless they utterly rested in their laurels why would Kansei do any differently in this race, leave alone after having a seriously ill runner


There are only 10 teams at the qualifier. The other ten are seeded from the year before. I think we can assume those teams are strong but there is no guarantee they are better then Kansai. There is a lot of turnover in a college year to year. The ten seeded teams don’t stay the same in the real Eikidon. So making a seeded spot for the next year seems like a reasonable goal.
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MiloTheFirst



Joined: 10 Dec 2014
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2019 10:18 pm Reply with quote
meiam wrote:

Nico story represent a bit what I find problematic with a show that purport to be realistic while being anything but. It makes out the coach who told Nico that he didn't have the physic to be a long distance runner to be an ass when he was actually doing a very good job.


I don't think the show portrayed the coach as an ass. Nico did say in his flashback that the guy was only doing his job. also, I think the culmination of his arc was his realization and acceptance that he is the one that had used the "I have the wrong body type" card as an excuse to stop trying at all and let himself go. Lauren is the one that suggested Nico got traumatized. maybe I understood it differently but to me it seemed as if he just rode that temporary wave of sadness into a comfort zone in which nothings is ventured nor won, reluctant to prove himself that he can in fact improve himself (even if less apt for the task than others) if he does put on the effort, while knowing deep inside yet not wanting to admit that he always liked running itself.

I sincerely hope when the guy said he is retiring, he only meant from competitive events and keep running to his heart content
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MiloTheFirst



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PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2019 10:20 pm Reply with quote
sabriyahm wrote:
MiloTheFirst wrote:


this are the very same 19 teams that all ranked above them in the qualifiers, unless they utterly rested in their laurels why would Kansei do any differently in this race, leave alone after having a seriously ill runner


There are only 10 teams at the qualifier. The other ten are seeded from the year before. I think we can assume those teams are strong but there is no guarantee they are better then Kansai. There is a lot of turnover in a college year to year. The ten seeded teams don’t stay the same in the real Eikidon. So making a seeded spot for the next year seems like a reasonable goal.


I see, thanks for clearing that up. makes sense
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meiam



Joined: 23 Jun 2013
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2019 10:27 pm Reply with quote
NeverConvex wrote:

I didn't parse that scene this way at all. I took it as Nico running up against reality, hard, as we often do, and Nico's coach embodying that but not in any sort of spiteful or cruel way. I thought that brief flashback was pretty exclusively about Nico, and had nothing substantial to do with reflecting on his coach or anyone else.


Except he's not only competing in the marathon, he's even passing other runner. If it really had been about him running against reality he should have lost all the ground that Yuki made and then some.
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NeverConvex
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 1:09 am Reply with quote
I agree with that. I think that's not related to their misuse of that particular flashback, though; I think it's related to their misuse of the race itself. Or at least to the race's poor framing.

Shindo's arc was a problem for the same reason. As Gina argued, maybe Shindo was intended to portray the suffering a runner in the Hakone Ekiden would be willing to put himself through for his comrades.

So far so good. That's an OK premise. But do you really feel like that's what we watched? I don't. I think those feelings failed to transmit, and that I only considered that that might have been the intention on reading some of Gina's real-world cases. I suspect that's a failure of the show to show us the story it intended, but I also don't know quite what they intended.

That's not to just dog on the show, though. It's really pretty great, and dramatically better than most anime. But I think it being so good opens it up to more subtle critique as well.
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CrowLia



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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 1:20 am Reply with quote
I'm not sure I understand the platitude of complaints about the main characters not being dead last at all times. Yeah, it's not realistic but I don't watch sports anime for a realistic representation of sports. That's what real life sports are for. At the end of the day, the show isn't about running or winning, it's about what they find about themselves on the journey. It's not like any of them have won their individual sections, nor has the team placement ever been above 10th so far, so I really don't understand why every time I pop into this thread all I see is endless grumbling about how unrealistic it is that the main characters are doing regularly okay (not even spectacularly fantastic) at the thing they've been aiming to do for the whole series.
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NeverConvex
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 1:45 am Reply with quote
CrowLia wrote:
I'm not sure I understand the platitude of complaints about the main characters not being dead last at all times. Yeah, it's not realistic but I don't watch sports anime for a realistic representation of sports...It's not like any of them have won their individual sections, nor has the team placement ever been above 10th so far, so I really don't understand why every time I pop into this thread all I see is endless grumbling about how unrealistic it is that the main characters are doing regularly okay (not even spectacularly fantastic) at the thing they've been aiming to do for the whole series.


There needs to be some balance, though, right? The series loses that sense that real people are combating genuine, normal obstacles if we as viewers learn that, welp, it's just a friggin' sports shounen, so they can all run 100km / hour if they just pierce the heavens with the drill of sufficient emo or something.

At the same time I agree that there is no freaking point to the show if viewers just want straight reality -- if you want that, there are literal marathon'ing documentaries. But I think that only captures a fraction (though not a small fraction) of the complaints.
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CrowLia



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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 2:14 am Reply with quote
NeverConvex wrote:

There needs to be some balance, though, right? The series loses that sense that real people are combating genuine, normal obstacles if we as viewers learn that, welp, it's just a friggin' sports shounen, so they can all run 100km / hour if they just pierce the heavens with the drill of sufficient emo or something.



Except that... they're not doing anything remotely close to that. They haven't won anything. They're not even in the middle of the pack. The only one that came close to a typical shonen sports feat was Yuki -and even then he didn't have wings grow out of his back or lasers shoot out of his eyes, he just let himself go down the slope- and still he didn't win and the team was still among the last places. Prince and Shindo -the slowest runner on the team and the one that was sick- both ended dead last in their sections. Meian is de-estimating the 11 minute difference, in sports, a second is a lifetime. Remember the qualifier? The twins were distraught and in despair finding out their total time was like 2 minutes below the top schools. Here they ended nearly 2 minutes slower than the bottom placing schools. Races are decided by fractions of seconds, they're ages behind, so much so that Yuki's near win barely moved them up the ranks.

I just don't understand what kind of verosimilitude is being asked for, how much worse should Kansei be doing (they're not even in the top 10 out of 20 schools!) for this to be considered "balanced and realistic"?
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Merida
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 2:19 am Reply with quote
To me this is neither supposed to be a shounen sports show with superpowered moves nor a gritty documentary about the Hakone Ekiden. It's not so much about the race itself but what it means to every runner and how it helps them work through their personal issues. There would probably be less nitpicking if it was about some more obscure sport since everybody seems to be a semi-expert on running...

Anyway, i love this show and how realistic their times are has little to no influence on my enjoyment at this point since i'm just very invested in the characters by now. I want to follow them on their journey right to the end and it doesn't really matter to me if they finish first or last.

If i had to agree with one criticism, it's how they wasted the character of Sakaki, but that might still change in the next epsiode.
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meiam



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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 1:26 pm Reply with quote
CrowLia wrote:

I just don't understand what kind of verosimilitude is being asked for, how much worse should Kansei be doing (they're not even in the top 10 out of 20 schools!) for this to be considered "balanced and realistic"?


They were 10 at some point (I think just before Shindo) and that was after most of there poorer runner ran, if Shindo hadn't fallen sick they would have finished far above 10 (and they might still really do that, I wouldn't even be that surprised if they finished 2nd overall).

Like I said with my comment on the Nico story, the problem is when the character learn something about themselves trough event that are impossible in real life. Meaning they're learning something wrong (or rather that cannot be applied to real life). Which to me just defeat the purpose. Telling someone that there body type doesn't matter and they can compete with the best of them based on a series of event that are impossible to replicate in real life is terrible development. If someone really took that to heart after watching the show they're going to have a rude awakening at some point. Same with the idea that you can go in a few months from couch potato to running with the best, what happen when someone doesn't replicate those results and get demoralized or believe that they are somehow unsuited for it?

And this run completely counter to the whole "it doesn't matter how fast you are" that the show kept spouting at the start. If it really believed that, they wouldn't be running the marathon. It's a dissonance between what the show says:
"it doesn't matter how competitive people are so long as they enjoy running"
and what the show actually present:
"it's pointless if they don't actually compete in the marathon".
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Merida
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 2:13 pm Reply with quote
meiam wrote:
Like I said with my comment on the Nico story, the problem is when the character learn something about themselves trough event that are impossible in real life. Meaning they're learning something wrong (or rather that cannot be applied to real life). Which to me just defeat the purpose.


So the true purpose of this show was to educate viewers about the suitable sports for their body type?! You live and learn...

Quote:

And this run completely counter to the whole "it doesn't matter how fast you are" that the show kept spouting at the start. If it really believed that, they wouldn't be running the marathon.


Um, did we actually watch the same show? If you are referring to the Kakeru/Prince conflict, that was never about "being competetive" vs. "just having fun" but about having the right to be part of the team, regardless. Everybody, himself included, knew that Prince needed to get a lot better in order for the team to qualify. That's why they actually trained their asses off...whether or not the outcome was "realistic" (and whether or not that's really important) is up to debate, but the show never actually spouted "it doesn't matter how fast you are" ....
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MF65



Joined: 14 Dec 2017
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 6:12 pm Reply with quote
Meiam is just so desperate to nitpick on this show, that they're even getting tangled on their own strawman. I gotta admit that I'm starting to feel a bit of second hand embarrassment Embarassed

Okay, let's put this in simpler terms. Imagine you love painting. You're not very good at it, but it's your passion and it brings you real joy. One day, one of your teachers tells you "You know what, Meiam? I think your talents are more suited for sculpture." So, disillusioned, you stop painting. But would you actually stop loving painting? Wouldn't you want to get back that feeling of doing something that you love? That's what this show is trying to tell you. And it's not even being subtle about it, so I'm baffled how you keep missing the point so spectacularly.
Quote:
Telling someone that there body type doesn't matter and they can compete with the best of them

You really need to take off the "hate-watch" goggles and pay attention, because that's not true. At all. Wanna know why? Because, even though he's the one with a track background, he's still on the bottom three of the slowest members of the team. If body type didn't matter, he would be up there with Haiji and Kakeru. But guess what? Every other member that happens to be faster than him, have a "better" suited body for running. Oops.

Anyway, moving on to better things, these last few episodes have been amazing. The show has been great from the very beginning, but now it's firmly cementing itself in my TOP 10. Haiji is still the ultimate husbando material for me, but every new episode is doing a great job of endearing the rest of the cast to the audience (IMO, obviously). I don't want it to end Crying or Very sad
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MiloTheFirst



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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 7:10 pm Reply with quote
Bro, you are the one that is not understanding meiam criticism. He is not taking issue with the message of the show, he takes issue with the show wanting to have its cake and eat it. Is the message that you don't have to be great at something to find meaning in it? That's fine, but then why does the show had to go out of is way to also make all these guys incredibly good at what they are doing against all odds? It is like making the message of a movie that it isnt about how pretty people are but about what is inside while making all the characters super models. It doesn't matter if they end up dead last is this race they are already in the country's top 1 percent by even qualifying against all odds. And this issue is not only about his much the team keeps winning is about the incongruity of the storytelling. Haji keeps telling them that he is trying to find the meaning of running and the shows keeps pushing the narrative that one most find the meaning of effort inside one self, yet haiji keeps signing them up on standardized institutionalised competitions, the show says it is about wanting to do something for yourself and your friends yet all the challenges are competitions were the goal is placing in a podium. The criticism we make is not in the message but in the thematically inconsistencies
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