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REVIEW: Dragon Pilot: Hisone and Masotan


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Caramichael



Joined: 07 Mar 2015
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 10:59 am Reply with quote
Wow, it really takes something to watch Hisone to Masotan and not see anything regarding the social commentary of women's place in Japan's work environment. It's like literally the central focus of the plot, but not a word on it...
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Fluwm



Joined: 28 Jul 2009
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 11:34 am Reply with quote
Caramichael wrote:
Wow, it really takes something to watch Hisone to Masotan and not see anything regarding the social commentary of women's place in Japan's work environment. It's like literally the central focus of the plot, but not a word on it...


Could've sworn I'd already read an ANN review that commented extensively on just that. I guess not?
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Caramichael



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PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 11:53 am Reply with quote
Off topic, I'm talking about this review, not what the site has said before.
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meiam



Joined: 23 Jun 2013
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 12:39 pm Reply with quote
Fun show as a slice of life, not very good when it tries it's hand making a more serious story (ie the first 6 episodes are good, you can skip the last 6). Hisone is a super fun character and she carry most of the show (not to say that the rest of the cast doesn't carry itself just fine).

As far as the comment on women in japans society, I'm just gonna assume that it's something I can't pick up on cause I'm not from japan. Because otherwise it came off like it was saying women shouldn't be involved in the workforce. For example the most sexist character in the show constantly complain that the D-pilot (all women) are always causing trouble, which the show then validate by having them constantly cause trouble (spoiler[and even making one of said women fall in love with him and drop out as a d-pilot, iirc]).
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belvadeer



Joined: 11 Jun 2006
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 12:49 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
In addition to the normal array of languages that Netflix offers, this one is also available in Turkish.


Huh, that's certainly interesting.
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Caramichael



Joined: 07 Mar 2015
Posts: 112
PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 1:02 pm Reply with quote
meiam wrote:
As far as the comment on women in japans society, I'm just gonna assume that it's something I can't pick up on cause I'm not from japan. Because otherwise it came off like it was saying women shouldn't be involved in the workforce. For example the most sexist character in the show constantly complain that the D-pilot (all women) are always causing trouble, which the show then validate by having them constantly cause trouble (spoiler[and even making one of said women fall in love with him and drop out as a d-pilot, iirc]).


It's the contrary, the premise is saying that women can't stay long in the workforce (ie: Dragons will at one point reject their pilot if they decide to prioritize anything else than them and Nao is shut out of her dream job because of her gender) and the pilots are all socially inept people, hence why "they're trouble", but that's also because they do not know what their place can be in this environment.

But that's the premise, spoiler[Hisone ends up coming to term with both her work and a personal life by assuming that it's ok to love the both of them, and her love for a human will not prevent her from loving Masotan. Nao comes to term that life does not always go with how you planned it and you don't need to destroy yourself over it.] There are much more to say about the plot, but not nothing.
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KitKat1721
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Joined: 03 Feb 2015
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 1:45 pm Reply with quote
Caramichael wrote:
Wow, it really takes something to watch Hisone to Masotan and not see anything regarding the social commentary of women's place in Japan's work environment. It's like literally the central focus of the plot, but not a word on it...


I was kind of surprised. I understand most of the overt elements of that commentary happens later in the series, but there's enough upfront that you aren't giving too much away. I guess it didn't make as much of an emotional impact on the critic as it did for me.

Regarding the dub, it was on the better side of Netflix's dubs, compared to more recent work with Violet Evergarden and Devilman Crybaby. Those were done by a different dubbing house and had either some bad miscasts (Evergarden) or an unaturally slavish script (both). Hisone & Masotan had some great performances and a better script.
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Joshua Zarate
I Pause For PantsuI Pause For Pantsu


Joined: 12 Jan 2017
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 3:28 pm Reply with quote
I had a pleasant time with this series. Sure, the last several episodes weren’t the best, but the show as a whole is still something I see myself recommending to those who are interested.

I don’t think it took something for the review to not say much more about the plot beyond what it did state. I thought the review did well in covering all the bases of the plot.
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meiam



Joined: 23 Jun 2013
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 7:40 pm Reply with quote
Caramichael wrote:
It's the contrary, the premise is saying that women can't stay long in the workforce (ie: Dragons will at one point reject their pilot if they decide to prioritize anything else than them and Nao is shut out of her dream job because of her gender) and the pilots are all socially inept people, hence why "they're trouble", but that's also because they do not know what their place can be in this environment.

But that's the premise, spoiler[Hisone ends up coming to term with both her work and a personal life by assuming that it's ok to love the both of them, and her love for a human will not prevent her from loving Masotan. Nao comes to term that life does not always go with how you planned it and you don't need to destroy yourself over it.] There are much more to say about the plot, but not nothing.


I have no doubt that this was the intent, but it really didn't came across if you watch it for what it is rather than what it portend to be. Representing women by D-pilot who are constantly causing more trouble than they're worth (and are only kept in because there job literally cannot be done by male) was a terrible idea. Ultimately most of the problem they caused wasn't because of society but there own action, Hoshino being a prime example. The most generous interpretation you can make is along the line of "Well, woman are a ton of trouble but we don't have a choice but to include them in the workforce"
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Apollo-kun



Joined: 11 Feb 2010
Posts: 1200
Location: Greensboro, North Carolina
PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2018 3:00 am Reply with quote
"A little fanservice" is untrue and disingenuous. There are quite a few camera angles that leer at the girls' tight bodysuits that happen throughout the series, and there are more than a few boob jokes. Not to mention the bodysuit rides up in the protagonist's butt like the world's lamest thong. Maybe by anime standards that's pretty scant, but at the same time, it's pretty out of place in a show that's marketed towards an audience who might not expect it.

Anyway, good review! It's always cool to see alternate perspectives. I personally think the show is interminably dull and rote, not to mention full of some of the most grating characterization this year and a complete tonal mess. I expect more from Higuchi and Okada.

Also, the constant EVA homaging got old fast - DitF did a better job of it, I feel.
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Sahmbahdeh



Joined: 05 May 2015
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2018 6:08 am Reply with quote
meiam wrote:
Caramichael wrote:
It's the contrary, the premise is saying that women can't stay long in the workforce (ie: Dragons will at one point reject their pilot if they decide to prioritize anything else than them and Nao is shut out of her dream job because of her gender) and the pilots are all socially inept people, hence why "they're trouble", but that's also because they do not know what their place can be in this environment.

But that's the premise, spoiler[Hisone ends up coming to term with both her work and a personal life by assuming that it's ok to love the both of them, and her love for a human will not prevent her from loving Masotan. Nao comes to term that life does not always go with how you planned it and you don't need to destroy yourself over it.] There are much more to say about the plot, but not nothing.


I have no doubt that this was the intent, but it really didn't came across if you watch it for what it is rather than what it portend to be. Representing women by D-pilot who are constantly causing more trouble than they're worth (and are only kept in because there job literally cannot be done by male) was a terrible idea. Ultimately most of the problem they caused wasn't because of society but there own action, Hoshino being a prime example. The most generous interpretation you can make is along the line of "Well, woman are a ton of trouble but we don't have a choice but to include them in the workforce"


I am struggling to understand how you didn't get that thematic intent pointed put above; it was pretty obvious, and I'm a guy, so it can't be purely a gender thing. Most of the problems associated with the pilots had little to do with them personally and were largely a result of them being treated as women first and capable workers second by society and the military (a highly masculinized professional space) in the first place. I don't know how someone can watch the conclusion spoiler[where a woman stands up to the sexist system that says she can only choose to be either a woman or a worker, and defiantly says fudge that, I can do both, is vindicated by the show, and think that the show is somehow sexist or just not interested in gender issues.] Boggles my mind.



Anyway, as for the rest of the show, I found the second half balanced the charming quirky aspects with the more serious story quite well without the latter becoming overbeaaring, a feat which surprised me as this is (co-)written by Mari Okada, who sometimes struggles with that. I think this is a sign of growth as a writer on her part (or maybe just being reined in by Shinji Higuchi, who knows).Usually stuff like this tends to become bogged down when it gets too serious, but this show never did as far as I'm concerned, and it handled its tone shifts better than most anime I've seen.

Aesthetically I'm going to have to emphatically disagree with the review that it was one of Studio Bones' weaker efforts; I think the opposite is blatantly true. The animation was fluid and consistent, the character designs (and dragon designs) were adorable and charming, the color design and backgrounds were appealing and worked to add to the show's tone, and the direction was solid all-around. And that's to say nothing of the music, which was delightful.
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Kendra Kirai



Joined: 18 Jan 2015
Posts: 166
PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2018 12:13 pm Reply with quote
Basic research fail of not knowing that the ending theme 'sounds like' a pop song from the 60s because it IS a pop song from the 60s. Seriously, at least look at the site's own info page about the series.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=mpFgoOl7-yI
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MiiyoSon



Joined: 24 May 2018
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 12:41 am Reply with quote
Quote:
For all of the cute factor that the series exudes, it's not one of the more nicer-looking titles that Bones has produced. The artistry uses thick lines, simplified designs outside of the airplane machinery, and backgrounds that sometimes look like they are illustrated in crayon. Character designs stand out more for how simple they are, too. If the design of the series was aiming for an more classic or kid-oriented look, then that has been accomplished successfully, but it's not as exciting as many contemporary otaku-aimed productions.


BULL! F***ING! S**T!!!!
This is one of BONES's best and most unique efforts in terms of original production because of some of the reasons you eluded to Martin.

Backgrounds don't feel like they were entirely drawn on the computer (which goes a looonnnnggg way for me) and although the designs are simplified(which is NOT a fault) they are appealing, expressive, and most importantly incredibly unique to stand out from all of this "otaku-aimed" bullshit coming out these days. All of this makes for a pretty exciting art design when put together.
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luisedgarf



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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 11:56 am Reply with quote
MiiyoSon wrote:
Quote:
For all of the cute factor that the series exudes, it's not one of the more nicer-looking titles that Bones has produced. The artistry uses thick lines, simplified designs outside of the airplane machinery, and backgrounds that sometimes look like they are illustrated in crayon. Character designs stand out more for how simple they are, too. If the design of the series was aiming for an more classic or kid-oriented look, then that has been accomplished successfully, but it's not as exciting as many contemporary otaku-aimed productions.


BULL! F***ING! S**T!!!!
This is one of BONES's best and most unique efforts in terms of original production because of some of the reasons you eluded to Martin.

Backgrounds don't feel like they were entirely drawn on the computer (which goes a looonnnnggg way for me) and although the designs are simplified(which is NOT a fault) they are appealing, expressive, and most importantly incredibly unique to stand out from all of this "otaku-aimed" bullshit coming out these days. All of this makes for a pretty exciting art design when put together.


While I partly agree with you, I also agree the show is somewhat boring, especially if you consider it takes place inside the Air Force, one of the military branches normally depicted as the coolest ones in fiction. You could easily put the characters inside, let's say, into an acrobatic squadron, or even in a civilian context, and the story would be mostly the same

Also, at least in Latin America, the show got lambasted for two reasons:

1- The whole premise of the show, and
2- The dub: While the dub is OK, one of the biggest criticisms against the dub was the fact this show was dubbed over more popular stuff like Code Geass and Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn, which didn't received a dub and both series were released in Netflix with this show. Needless to say, CG and Unicorn smashed Hisone and Masotan in popularity in Latin America.
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Cardcaptor Takato



Joined: 27 Jan 2018
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 3:34 pm Reply with quote
I enjoyed some aspects of Dragon Pilot like the slice of life elements and the cute art style. But as a whole I found the world building to be rushed and not well thought out and the melodramatic elements all felt very forced to me. Forced melodrama seems to be a problem I have with most of Mari Okada's works though I always keep trying to give her titles a shot.
Quote:
2- The dub: While the dub is OK, one of the biggest criticisms against the dub was the fact this show was dubbed over more popular stuff like Code Geass and Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn, which didn't received a dub and both series were released in Netflix with this show. Needless to say, CG and Unicorn smashed Hisone and Masotan in popularity in Latin America.
Neither Code Geass or Gundam Unicorn are Netflix exclusive shows so I'm not sure that it's fair to blame Netflix for why they didn't get dubbed in your country, as unfortunate as that must be.
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