Angel Beats! 12 – I’m Going to Emulate the Angel Beats Writers!

Seriously…

Because I felt that this week’s episode was just a crazy mix of everything, I’m going to let loose this week and just write a jumble of thoughts. Normally I have a central thought that guides my writing, but this week I’ll try this with no structure – just a giant mind dump. Here we go!

For the three weeks that I’ve been blogging this show, I’ve been attacking it pretty hard. I’ve had almost nothing positive to say about the series, and the few paragraphs of analysis I’ve tacked on to my last post was literally a drop in the ocean of my confusion and disbelief at just how absurd the show has gotten. I had such high hopes for episode 12. This episode could go a huge way in solving the mysteries of the world, as well as providing a much deeper characterization to the key characters involved in this comedy… errr… drama… err.. yeah. Instead, only one word dominated my thought process for the majority of episode 12: HUH???

Episode 12 was a gigantic jumble of confusing monologues and random scenes that made me even more confused about the show than I already was. The beginning of the episode, I felt, was definitely the strongest part of the episode. The action scenes were great, TK was awesome as always, and the show was mostly mindless fun. I don’t know why the shadows this time around died with one shot, while in episode 11 it took a ton of bullets to kill that one shadow. Well, I’ll suspend common sense for now. After all, apparently all the shadows were everywhere else on campus. Just not where the SSS brigade members were! What a coincidence right? Anyway, I was also wondering… Did the remaining members of GirlDeMo seriously disappear after that short speech? That was much more anti-climatic than I thought, but it did emphasize a point that the series has been driving in: Move on by living in the present, not the past.

Now THIS guy knows how to live in the present!

Sure it’s a rather cliché theme, and sure I think it’s naïve and I completely disagree with it, but whatever. Like I mentioned last week, the focus of the show has been on the present. The here and now of the world… for the most part. There has been a rather large disjoint between the background stories given for Naoi, Otonashi, and to a certain extent Yuri when compared to Yui or Hinata. Even still, after their backstories were presented, they were mostly left alone. There hasn’t been a reference to Naoi’s or Otonashi’s past since the episodes when their backgrounds were introduced, and that only further strengthens the idea that the show is trying to emphasize the camaraderie and the interesting times the SSS brigade is going through.

You go guys!

Of course, the specter that continues to haunt the show remains Yuri’s past and determination. And this week’s episode tried to expand Yuri’s character, which I believe failed miserably. Not to mention the confusing lines and monologues that seemed to come out of nowhere. I’ll just block quote one example:

Angel… No, I wonder if Kanade-chan is doing well. I should have come to understand sooner. We might have become friends, since we’re both girls. Even in this world, maybe I could have found clothes which suit her… But in the end it’s impossible. ~Mazui Subs

Huh??? I checked this translation through another fansub group, UTW, and it’s apparently accurate. I must be missing something here. Random line out of nowhere… Moving on…

One of the most important parts of the episode in terms of expanding Yuri’s character undoubtedly came from her speech while being captured by the shadow. I thought that her little speech also was a better explanation for adding onto what I was talking about in my episode 9 post. The reason why I really disliked how I thought the show was going to handle the “graduation” of the major characters was because the genius of the show has and always will remain the crazy characters that comprise the SSS brigade. Each character is defined by their past. I didn’t like the way that each character’s individual past was just brushed aside in favor of living in the present. But I digress, and that’s going into personal opinion.

But you know, the scene that really made me confused was the entirety of the conversation Yuri had with the controller of the shadows. I was expecting a far more revealing conclusion to the shadows arc than that. We learned almost nothing about the world they live in, and the entire thing brought up far more questions than it answered. Who is this mysterious programmer? The controller said that he has amnesia, so the obvious candidate is Otonashi, but he’s not an NPC. How did Kanade get her hands on the Angel Player software? What is this world? None of these questions are answered. All we know is that you can change this world based on your will.

Speaking of that, if there was something just completely unexplainable that I found in this episode, it was the “god complex” moment that Yuri experienced. A screenie so you won’t get confused as to what I’m talking about:

You can’t have forgotten this moment.

Where did this come from? This can’t be a ploy to deceive the controller, so the only explanation would be that Yuri actually considered being the world’s God for a moment, and that thinking of Kanade made her return to reality. Are you serious? I don’t remember Yuri ever having an inkling of power-hungriness inside of her. I don’t remember her being bipolar either. I’m just so confused. Someone help me with this.

Anyway, the biggest problem I had with the conversation was how “love” was brought into this. It was a rather strange concept to put into the show, especially thematically. The implication that the discussion on love is that in order to truly pass on from this world, you also have to forfeit your friendship and any current connections you may have. I never really thought about that implication before, and it made me dislike what Otonashi is doing and even the world that they’re placed in even more. Love is supposed to be the binding force that keeps everyone tied together, and a deep sense of camaraderie is the bond that ties the members of the SSS brigade together. To actively attempt to break those bounds seems rather cruel to me. If this world is truly meant to allow those with terrible pasts to live in the present and forgive their pasts, then I don’t see what’s wrong with letting the children experience true love – something that almost certainly never occurred in their previous lives.

He’s probably referring to the probably that Yuri will go crazy! Wait…

Oh, and a note for people with didn’t catch it, there’s a dichotomy between the words “koi” and “ai” in Japanese. When Yuri was talking with Hitomi, she used the word “koi” to refer to Yuri’s love for Fujiwara-kun. Koi is a rather childish and perhaps even selfish or one sided love. The kind of love referred to in that fake paradise that Yuri experienced is contrasted with the “ai” that the controller talks about. Just something I found interesting.

By the way, did anyone feel super trolled by the ending given before the credits? I could have sworn for sure that Yuri would have disappeared at the end. Also, did anyone feel that Yuri’s crying sounded and looked completely fake? But whatever. I suppose the last wish she has is to be with the people who she loves. Reasonable.

Whatever. Next episode – Graduation.

So I guess this means we won’t learn the background of 90% of the characters?

I assume that the plot in that episode will be non-existent, and that we’ll leave the Angel Beats series not knowing anything about anything, and all the characters will leave the Angel Beats world simultaneously… Or they’ll leave Kanade or Yuri behind while it snows or something. Considering the rest of the show, I wouldn’t be surprised if something like that happened with no set up whatsoever.

I hope you enjoyed my emulation of the Angel Beats writers! If it wasn’t chaotic enough, I apologize. I’m just not as good as them.

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47 Comments

  1. Posted June 21, 2010 at 2:27 am | Permalink

    I believe “clothes that suit her” refer to the potential of going shopping together for clothing, as female friends of high school age are likely to do. Alternately, could simply refer to the fact that Battlefront members wear different clothes than the regular uniform.

    I think Angel Beats! works better, as 2dteleidoscope has pointed out, when treated as a deconstruction or parody of the whole genre that Maeda has built himself, “pathos porn”, as 2DT terms it. Coherent narrative hardly seems to be the goal.

    • Posted June 21, 2010 at 9:40 pm | Permalink

      The clothes comment just seems far too out of place and completely out of the blue for me. It didn’t make sense within the context of what she was saying.

      I don’t feel that treating AB as a parody of Key works is appropriate, especially when you examine the episode concerning Yui’s disappearance. That episode was undoubtedly trying to tug at the heartstrings of the audience. Regardless of the goal of a series, a coherent narrative is always a plus… Unless you’re working with a different goal in mind other than story telling. I don’t think AB falls into that realm, especially considering just how hard it’s trying to weave a narrative together.

  2. Posted June 21, 2010 at 2:45 am | Permalink

    The crying definitely sounded fake. So fake it was ridiculous.

    I am awaiting the last episode, and then will compose my thoughts on the series. The biggest thing is that the show does not feel planned in advance.

    Also, the last two episodes take a lot from the second Matrix film. Hmmm.

  3. Posted June 21, 2010 at 2:48 am | Permalink

    I thought the “god complex” scene was utterly bizarre. It had zero build-up – unless you count Yuri’s (also unexplained) maniacal laughter in the baseball episode – and just felt so ridiculous. I also agree with you about the addition of love as a theme: it was extremely out of place and felt like slipshod work by the writers. Gah, the entire episode was so nonsensical and confusing, and I don’t even think a whole lot of the crazy amount of information crammed in was all that relevant. I’ve loved it at times, but this series certainly has been crazy…

    Also, you make far too much sense to be compared to the AB! writers. :P

  4. ~xxx
    Posted June 21, 2010 at 3:23 am | Permalink

    c’mon…

    would anyone just try to explain why this one has to go along with the graduation of Otonashi?

    anyways, if there’s a remake, would you try to watch it?

    • Posted June 21, 2010 at 9:42 pm | Permalink

      I’ll wait to see how the final episode plays out. And I give all shows a chance, regardless of first appearances. I usually drop after three episodes though, but I gave all anime of the Spring season a chance. When it started, AB looked like it had a lot of potential, especially considering the mystery of the world they lived in, so I kept at it. I feel it’s degenerated from that initial mystery though, but that’s just me.

  5. Anonymous
    Posted June 21, 2010 at 9:35 am | Permalink

    Explaining why Yuri looks like she went crazy.
    In 1 single instant, she realized what she aimed for in episode 1 (taking over the world) was now in front of her but found it ironic as it was no longer of any use as she understood her real desire, that of protecting peeps in the SSS.

    An example: Imagine yourself thinking that all your life that you would be happy if you had a billion dollars. On the day you get it, everyone you care for dies. You’re left with a billion dollars and the realization that what you really wanted was to provide a safe and comfortable future for your loved ones.

    On the topic of love in the world. The AI explained that the programmer felt that the world should not be a paradise with people being overstayers. Its like a hospital. If you’re cured and well, please give you bed to those who need it more. He narrowed the source of these overstayers as otonashi types and decided to make sure with hardcore measures.

    • Nevermindthat
      Posted June 21, 2010 at 2:15 pm | Permalink

      This. This is exactly why she had that feeling, if just for a moment. It was everything she had been fighting so hard for for so long. Finally, it’s right there, and…she can’t have it. It’s too much for her, so she…well, she kinda breaks ;p

      • Posted June 21, 2010 at 9:55 pm | Permalink

        Ha I just went back and rewatched episode 1, and she does say that she wants to take over the world! But that goal got literally 0 development throughout the series. I wouldn’t have a problem with her “crazy” moment if we learned more about her throughout the series, but the majority of the series was devoted to the backgrounds of several characters within the series, not the goal of “world domination”. I don’t remember Yuri pining for that goal at any other point in the series besides the beginning and end :/

        An interesting theory regarding love in this world, and I suppose that everything that this character stands for is contrary to everything the SSS brigade stands for. In that sense he’s an appropriate antagonist. I guess I’m more troubled by his rather random insertion, and also by the fact that “love” doesn’t stop people from disappearing. Case in point, Yui.

        • Anonymous
          Posted June 22, 2010 at 6:15 am | Permalink

          If you look at the series, you’ll notice that Yuri has never faltered in trying to reach that goal. From track 0, Kanade was mistaken for the bouncer of the hidden mastermind of the world. In episode 3, Yuri realises that Kanade’s powers are self made and she could be wrong on Kanade’s status. What do you do to test such a thing? You do an experiment. Episode 4′s attempt failed, Episode 5′s attempt succeded. At this time, Yuri noted Kanade as being probably just a normal person (but not with 100% certainity). In Episode 6, the sudden turn of events by an NPC called Naoi again raised questions on the nature of NPCs, prompting Yuri to investigate and get the SSS to experiment with disrupting classes. In episode 7, Yuri seemed to suspect Otonashi was sent to them perhaps by the world’s mastermind, hence her sudden desire to get Otonashi’s past in such a sudden move. When that proved that he was not some representive of a higher power (his sadness served as proof his past was really shit like theirs) and Kanade asked to join, Yuri did not reject.

          At this point in time, from Yuri’s point of view, everything is back to square 1. Many things have been ruled out though and some of the rules understood (computers for powers, dirt for objects, etc)

          In episode 8 and early 9, they were now reactive as events took place faster than they could handle. In late 9, Yuri likely suspected that Otonashi was going a different direction given he was the most likely one to out them all as the culprits of episode 5. She was not involved in episode 10 but an interesting thing is why was Yusa in a hard to notice location where she could see the 3 being attacked. I would note that as spying for confirmation of her suspicions in episode 9 thus she likely knew what happended in episode 10. When Hinata, Naoi and Otonashi showed up, that would mark them as a group with Kanade. These few episodes dealt with what would be termed group management matters rather than exploring the world

          Once the shadows hit, they were again in reaction mode and thus events led to 12. The entire series had Yuri trying to gather information, throwing out disproven hypothesis, go back to gathering information, etc. Its like science. A real life example is this: 80′s Eggs are good for you->New evidence->90′s Eggs are bad for you->New evidence->2000′s Eggs are bad for you in quanties greater than X but good for you in quanties of Y

          Regarding love, i believe the programmer felt that it was not the very short term love that lead to disappearing that was wrong but only when love stays for the long term was it wrong for the world.

          Looking at the series, i notice that never is anything really explained with 100% certainity about the world, only what can be done (dirt to objects, disappearing, computers to powers, inability to die, etc). All we get are view points that may very well be wrong. Yuri’s, Naoi’s, Kanade’s and finally the programmer’s. To watch this anime requires taking anything that is stated with a large pinch of salt, which is different from most non-mystery type of anime where what is stated can be taken 100%

          • Posted June 23, 2010 at 6:44 pm | Permalink

            I agree with your sequence of events, but I’m not sure how that proves that Yuri’s been constantly thinking of world domination at any point throughout the series. Are we supposed to trace her thought process back to episode 1? There certainly wasn’t enough time devoted to Yuri to let us know that she still wanted to take over the world. Not to mention that she apparently now trusts Kanade, as evidenced by her reminiscence when she took a rest in Guild. I certainly didn’t see any indication of her inclination for destroying Kanade there, or any sort of power hungriness. It was just straight up regret at not cultivating more friendship in this world. I especially never perceived Yuri’s personality as being THAT unstable.

            And about love, I don’t think there should be a difference between short term and long term love because the controller never differentiated between the two. He’s probably misguided then. I still don’t understand the thematic inclusion though.

            And I agree with your comment about not trusting what everyone says. Then again, there hasn’t been too much dialogue about the circumstances of the world aside from this episode, so whatever.

  6. Matt
    Posted June 21, 2010 at 9:49 am | Permalink

    I think if anything we need to rewatch the series all over again knowing where and when the train repeatedly jumps off the tracks to try and determine what the hell is going on lol.

    I dunno, I liked the episode, but ti felt really rushed. I wonder what would have been different is this show was say a 2 hour movie or a 26 ep series? Maybe, good by my old Canadian pal, Marshall Mcluhan, the medium is the message. The format is a mess, whatever we were trying to be told in this series is just impossible when taken in 22 minute segments separated by a week? Maybe food for thought.

    Personally, I thought that the God complex scene had some build up, we remember that early on Yuri rants about defeating God and conquering him for the unfairness that had be levied on her, well, what better a way to defeat him then to boot him off this throne and make your own decisions? If she had control of the Angel Beats! world, she could fix the injustices, she wouldnt have to fight against at least 4 different random evil situations that threaten them in a closed circuit world. It could be made into her paradise where she could be the angel and deliver the forgiveness and take the pain away from the new members of the world. She would in a sense be the big sister of the new world and can take better care of the people to make up for the failure of her past life?

    • Posted June 21, 2010 at 9:59 pm | Permalink

      I wouldn’t say that it was rushed, but there was just a huge info dump in this episode, and I feel it broke the pacing of the show.

      And on the God complex, see above. I should probably read all the comments first rather than doing this one by one :X

  7. lesterf1020
    Posted June 21, 2010 at 9:57 am | Permalink

    If anyone wants to know an example of sadomasochism and why wives stay with their abusive husbands I will point them here. How can someone torture themselves watching a show they hate for 11 out of 13 episodes and then have high hopes for episode 12? How can they be bitterly disappointed by episode 12 and then prepare to watch episode 13? How can anyone expect to get the backgrounds of so many characters along with a plot and action and a well written script in a 13 episode series?

    I strongly recommend a 12 step program. I don’t think they have one for people who punish themselves with anime they hate but I think you can modify one of the more common ones.

    I am getting deja-vu. This is Code Geass R2 all over again.

    • Posted June 21, 2010 at 10:03 pm | Permalink

      I can honestly say that this series had so many high and low points that I didn’t know what to expect for the next episode. I always expected something more interesting about the world to be revealed, and that made me stick with the show for all this time. This show had a lot of potential to deal with all the mysteries that it brought up, but now I’m feeling a bit cheated. Only one more episode, and I’m curious to see how this will tie it all up.

  8. Posted June 21, 2010 at 10:11 am | Permalink

    I really don’t get why people find this show confusing. Almost everything can be taken at face value, there little to no “out of the box” thinking or abstractness involved.

    I’ve found the show enjoyable so far, though not living up to the hype (I wonder why I felt the need to say that. These, or any kind of show, rarely live up to them).

    Just one more and it’ll be over with.

    • Posted June 21, 2010 at 10:05 pm | Permalink

      It’s confusing in terms of pacing and plot. With most shows I can weave a coherent narrative that the show was driving towards throughout its entire run, but with Angel Beats! I can’t. It’s almost more appropriate to consider it a series of short stories like Bakemonogatari rather than as a giant story.

      And yeah, the hype around this show was huge, and now…

  9. Posted June 21, 2010 at 10:19 am | Permalink

    “Well, I’ll suspend common sense for now.”
    This is your problem: the ‘for now’ part. You must suspend commonsense for as long as you watch / think about this show. It will never make sense.

    “By the way, did anyone feel super trolled by the ending given before the credits? I could have sworn for sure that Yuri would have disappeared at the end.”

    I have a theory about that. They ended the show there, then someone said, “Maeda-san, it says here we promised 13 episodes.” Next week is going to be total improv that doesn’t really fit with the rest of the show (in other words exactly like every other episode).

    • Posted June 21, 2010 at 10:08 pm | Permalink

      Damn I should have realized that earlier. Probably would’ve made the series more enjoyable :P

      And that theory would explain a lot….

  10. Posted June 21, 2010 at 11:18 am | Permalink

    I think the conversation with the random dude with the computers was confusing as well. If I wasn’t going to get a sad backstory for every character I wanted to know more about this world and why a simply computer program could be manipulated into real life. But the conversation was vague so I was disappointed.

    I think the random dude with the computers had to offer Yuri the job of “god of this world” so someone could take over after everything was reset. But since she grew as a person (due to Otonashi and Tenshi) she was able to say no. But I find it weird she was even considering the offer as she was sticking around in this world to hate god.

    Yes all the band members and nonimportant SSS members disappeared in the hallway.Considering everyone else who has disappeared (or almost disappeared) had to meet certain conditions to disappear I thought this was a little out there.

    • Posted June 21, 2010 at 10:11 pm | Permalink

      Haha I love how you call him “random dude” =D. Appropriate name.

      Anyway, I agree with your sentiments about the conversation between Yuri and the err.. person. In terms of the bigger picture, I don’t feel like I gained too much from that conversation.

      Oh ok, so they did disappear. Very anticlimactic and strange then >.>

  11. Posted June 21, 2010 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    When Yuri was going into that room with all the computers, all I could think of was Big O. I half expected her to discover that nothing in their world was actually real and that they were all just part of some weird computer program fulfillment of a strange book gone horribly wrong… although I guess that would’ve only worked had it been Kanade who’d found the place, since Yuri doesn’t have wings herself.

    I can’t help but think that this series could’ve been a lot better if it had been allotted more episodes from the outset.

    • Posted June 21, 2010 at 10:13 pm | Permalink

      That would’ve been an interesting end! And it would’ve added a new dimension to how I would have examined the series. Ah well.

      I can’t help but think that if there were more episodes, we’d get about 3 filler episodes though :P

  12. Posted June 21, 2010 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

    “Even in this world, maybe I could have found clothes which suit her…”

    Well, if you want to try and think about this symbolically, we need to retreat to the Bible. In his letter to the Colossians, Paul likens a personality to clothing. You can strip off the old personality, that is, sinfulness, and clothe yourself with the new personality, or righteousness. If we take this idea and apply it, Yuri is saying she wishes she could have found Kanade’s true personality, clothing which suits her, instead of the emotionless shell she projects.

    Or, she might just want to take her shopping. Who the heck knows at this point?

    • Nevermind That
      Posted June 21, 2010 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

      That…wow. Never thought about it that way, and I’m a bit of a Bible scholar (note I said scholar, not thumper)…I’m impressed.

      • Posted June 21, 2010 at 10:15 pm | Permalink

        Ah ok. It’s a rather strange metaphor though, because more recently I’ve seen far more references to “masks” as representing the numerous facets of the human personality. References to clothing always take me back to Macbeth and how they’re merely a front and hiding the true personality within.

  13. AuroraFlame
    Posted June 21, 2010 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

    The clothes line: I thought she was just talking about how best friends trade shirts and stuff that fit both of them, because they’re always at each others houses and borrowing stuff, blablah.

    This show…… went from ok, to my favorite series currently airing, to ok again, to jumbled mess of stupidity. I don’t even….. quality where? Definitely trainwreck of the year.

    • Matt
      Posted June 21, 2010 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

      I like the distinction of trainwreck of the year, but I feel it would be better as maybe biggest disappointment or worst use of potential of the year. It could have been soooo good, but it just ended up so….hmm….ah….not even sure what to call it lol.

      • Posted June 21, 2010 at 10:18 pm | Permalink

        I agree. So much hype around this show… And all for nothing :(. Definitely where a lot of my disappointment comes from.

  14. cenyth
    Posted June 21, 2010 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

    Maybe I was assuming too much, but I thought the clothes line referred to finding a battlefront uniform that actually fit Kanade (since she’s kind of small) and by extension accepting her into their group as a friend.

    • Posted June 21, 2010 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

      Hm, I never even considered just how small Kanade was in comparison to the rest of the SSS brigade :P But if they can find a small enough uniform for Yui, they can find one for her!

  15. Posted June 21, 2010 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

    I think I’ve come to grips with this series being a fake-deep defacto gun-porn filler and the only aspect that really weirded me out was the introduction of a new villain who we’ve never seen nor heard of in this next to last ep. I guess that’s a pretty big problem, actually…

  16. Kobukson
    Posted June 21, 2010 at 7:29 pm | Permalink

    It’s useless…it’s all useless…

    So, the afterlife is really a Matrix-like universe where the Angel Player software manipulates the very fabric of the reality? So is this the afterlife or just a computer game? Are these mysterious amnesiacs like Otonashi the One, the anomaly to break the Architect’s system of control? Who is the Architect, the one who coded the Angel Player and this faux universe (since the creator of the nameless shadow villain was brought to this world as well and did not create it either)? Why is the age of most of the Player characters all high school except for Mr. Guild Leader? And what exactly is this insanity syndrome called TK?!

    It’s useless…it’s all useless…if only Angel Beats had a little more red text…

    • Posted June 21, 2010 at 10:19 pm | Permalink

      Gah too many mysteries left unsolved and just one episode left. Kind of like Durarara!!

      And the mystery of TK is undoubtedly the most important one in this series. I’m sure he holds the key to everything!

    • Son Gohan
      Posted June 22, 2010 at 1:46 am | Permalink

      Actually Chaa is the same age as the others. He only looks more mature. It is said in the Angel Beats! Track Zero novel that he had a wife. An emancipated minor, maybe? Too bad Maeda decided to leave all the side characters’ backstories in the dark… I’d have loved to know TK’s, Noda’s and Shiina’s pasts.
      This show could have definitely done it with a few more episodes.

  17. Posted June 22, 2010 at 12:23 am | Permalink

    At the very least, Durarara!! has a coherent narrative, whereas Angel Beats! seems like Maeda and the writers were making it up as they went along.

    The most frustrating thing, to reiterate nearly everyone’s thoughts, is that this show could have been ridiculously good if it had been executed a bit better. In fact, there are some very well done parts of Angel Beats! that only serve to remind you how good the series could have been.

    I agree that a longer episode run may have solved a few of the series’s problems, despite having to probably put up with a few filler episodes. Although, nothing would be solved if the writers had continued to do the same thing and seemingly make up things as they went. All in all, what Angel Beats! really needed from the get-go was a better paced storyline, with a definite path and idea of where it wanted to go.

  18. Dins
    Posted June 23, 2010 at 8:41 am | Permalink

    Many of the first episodes focused on Yuri an Otonashi’s “relationship”, since she always picked him, and they together in every mission… was that subplot forgotten completely? And the whole thing about beeng deleted by angel, aren’t you supposed to fullfill your life here? I have to stop thinking stuff and just get over the last episode :s

  19. Ryan
    Posted June 23, 2010 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

    I’m disappointed.
    Not so much in Angel Beats as I am in THAT Anime Blog. I’ve been reading on this site for a couple of years now, and I understand that there has been a lot of changes to the style and purpose of the site, including the addition of new writers. But I used to come here and read really intuitive, comedic, and thought provoking posts; whether it be from my two favorites (Calawain or Crusader) or not. Now, however, (and I mean this in no offense to you Mystlord) I find myself coming to the site and being underwhelmed especially in the treatment of Angel Beats. I don’t know if Mystlord chose to blog this series or not but it’s honestly extremely frustrating to come here every week and here the same bashing every time.

    I get that you’re frustrated. My problem is if you’re gonna make episodic posts discuss each episode. period. Bashing the entire series while citing examples from each episode you write up is not the same thing. And I think that’s the even more to the point. Judge the show for what it is and don’t hold it up to some personal expectations. To be honest, I know a lot more people that enjoy the show for what it is, than what it should’ve or could’ve been, all it would take is 5 minutes of looking around to find that. And I feel on this site the show really isn’t getting it’s fair shake. Yes, I’m a fan of the show and a critic of it. I can see it’s flaws too, and I think that’s how someone blogging the show should be. I feel like I’m reading some rant from an anti-fan every time I read one of these posts.

    On a final note, I hope this comment of mine makes something clearer. I feel that the show it’s self is very representative of the world the characters exist in. It’s confusing and not very clear. But guess what, I don’t think this show ever set out on being a plot heavy philosophic series. It’s just a temporary suspension of reality. It’s fun. When my friends and I sit down to watch the show we find the: funny parts to be very funny, the dramatic parts to be well directed and sometimes very powerful, the back stories interesting and heartbreaking, the characters fun, the action very well animated and the music some of the best you’ll find in a series (that’s why it’s charted the Oricon multiple times).

    I hope that in the final episode you give Angel Beats a fair review, based on what’s truly there. If you really find that you can’t help yourself from another rant, then I beg you to find someone else on this team site that will write a decent review for you. Sorry for the long post, and I mean no offense at all. I look forward to the final Angel Beats review.

    • Posted June 23, 2010 at 6:14 pm | Permalink

      I chose to blog the series. It’s not that a needed a place to vent my frustration from the show – I do enough of that on forums. The opinions that I post here are those that I get while watching the show, and I believe that I give the show a fair treatment both thematically and satirically. It might just be my posting style that leads people to conclude that I’m just merely bashing the show, but I certainly don’t feel that way.

      I’m not writing up posts each time to completely deconstruct each episode. I’m pointing out what I believe are flaws in how the series presents itself, and the show certainly doesn’t help things by repeating the same issues that I feel hinders its message across each episode. It’s hard to praise the show for what it’s doing right when I feel that those elements are making the overall message and plot progression even more confusing. I like the humor, but when it’s improperly weaved in, I find it extremely annoying.

      If the show is meant to be a light and fluffy comedic series, it’s not doing well at that. If it’s trying to be serious or dramatic, it’s failing at that as well. Why I really dislike the series is because while individual elements are really well done, in the overall picture it’s just a giant mess. Why I chose to write my post like this, mixing some serious thoughts and some poking at plot elements, is because I wanted to get across just why I feel the show is as messy as it is. You can’t track a coherent thought throughout the series, and you can’t track a coherent thought throughout my post. If that intent got lost on you and you treated it as a giant deconstruction of the show, then obviously I did something wrong (or, and this is not an insult to you, people just don’t get the satire! After all, there were people that took A Modest Proposal seriously XD).

      And I’m certainly not alone in my opinions of dislike. If you surf around on various blogs, I don’t necessarily view my post as fundamentally different from other people who have posted confused impressions of this episode. If you’re looking for a recap and theories style of posting, then I’m sorry, but those just don’t fit me. And on the note of the music, I don’t view it as particularly good, and several people have actually pointed out why it just feels wrong and rather average (zzeroparticle over at Anime Instrumentality and chikorita157 over at that blog).

      If I’m writing a review, then obviously I won’t resort to an extremely satirical style, but depending on how the final episode wraps things up, I can’t promise a positive review at all. We’ll just have to wait until this Friday to see.

      • Ryan
        Posted June 23, 2010 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

        Thanks, I honestly didn’t think you’d respond to my post, so thanks again. I see that we just have some difference in opinion on a basic level about the show so I see no point in my belaboring anything. I can simply agree to disagree (it’s all good). I do want to point out though that just because you use sarcasm sometimes doesn’t make the entry a satire. And at this point, expecting a positive review of the final episode from you is pretty comical in itself. Maybe you could ask someone that does like the show to write an extra final thoughts post after yours, like what they did during Gundam 00 on this site.

        Thanks again for your hard work though.

        • Posted June 23, 2010 at 10:55 pm | Permalink

          Of course we can always agree to disagree ^_^. And there are other ways of satire besides humor and irony. Although it’s not the proper word, I can’t think of a better one right now, so I’ll just go with that :P.

          And I’ll see if I can get some other blogger to write some final impressions with me. Good to have a diversity of view points!

  20. Jaysus
    Posted June 24, 2010 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

    It’s like every week this show jumps the shark, but then offers a small ray of light that leaves you with the hope that they can salvage the entire clusterfuck…… only to repeat the same exact thing the next week.

  21. rpd
    Posted June 26, 2010 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    ok who can explain me how a girl who got someguys heart and wants to say ty. Was in the afterlife sooner than the donor

    • Matt
      Posted June 26, 2010 at 9:43 am | Permalink

      Can we count this as contradiction #56,745? Ugh, so much to dislike about the last episode, too little time. Cant wait for your post on this Mystlord, Im interesting in your take on the whole thing.

  22. primadog
    Posted June 26, 2010 at 10:23 am | Permalink

    too bad the epilogue ruined that possibility. But I am definitely intrigued by the idea that Otonashi is the misterious programmer. Imagine the curve ball it would been had it been revealed that the world loops, and otonashi got bored waiting for kanade and turned himself into npc. When the chance occurs, it’s not kanade but yuri that arrives.

    In fact, I’ll just pretend that this is the revelation for Ep13.

    Man, didn’t see that coming!

  23. jimjim
    Posted June 27, 2010 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

    In Japanese culture, cooking food for someone or dressing someone are considered as a very intimate expression of kindness and love.

    Heck, who was the last person who cooked a meal for you / chose clothing items together with you? I guess you get what I am saying.

    The out-of-no-where hit in the piles of computer said exclusively that he is the product of the program, just like the blade that Kanade developed.
    He is the physical interface built into the program, just like the key holder / oracle in matrix 2.

  24. Posted June 28, 2010 at 9:48 am | Permalink

    I agree that this episode still has not tied up all those loose themes explored throughout the series; it made the show even more chaotic.

    “Even in this world, maybe I could have found clothes which suit her”
    Yea, I thought this line was kind of awkward too. I took it to mean that Yuri would’ve wanted to go shopping with Kanade were they to be friend.

One Trackback

  • By Angel Beats! 12 Chain Reaction « hontou ni on June 25, 2010 at 12:34 am

    [...] Mystlord probably speaks for all of us: Highs and lows, what is the world, I am disappoint and cheated; oh please end well (enough). [...]

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