December 12th, 2013.
Mari Faces Reality; King Torture and Hazama’s Shared Origin Story
Hazama is racing to save his friends and confront his arch-enemy, while the characters in this show both obey and oppose the laws of narrative causality. Last episode actually surprised me in a couple of places, so let us see what we have on our hands this time.
- Hm, it just hit me, the name of Mari’s band is triple-M, and their names are triple-M as well.
- Yeah, in case the last few shows weren’t enough, this show reminds you it actually isn’t afraid to throw some punches out there. Also, Hazama as he gathered his resolve and music played was quite cool! This was when he truly risked his life, when he truly became a hero.
- “Viva Rocketorture!” – And just in case you forgot, the show isn’t shy about showering us with ridiculous and over the top superhero show lines :)
Thoughts and Notes:
Mari Meeting Mari; Up, Close and Ugly:
- Heh, calm music, someone waking up at their leisure, just after we have an opening message in garish red telling us “Final battle” :)
- Well, so we’re seeing how they ended in their predicament. Yes, that’s the perfect screenshot to use for this moment. The music is also very fitting – they think it’s not serious and treat it as a stroll in the park, but we, the watchers, know how it ended up… including with King Torture saying he’s been “communicating” with Mari for hours, and we know from his talk with Konno that he means torture, when he says communication.
- And after everyone doesn’t dare talk back to Mari, here is someone who will break to her the harsh reality,that she’s not important, that this is not her story. I think her terror is more at not being the main character, rather than the prospect of death. Also, King Torture in this regard is sort of like Goto, and he even has a uniform, will Mari fall for him as well? :P
- How nice, a villain who throws a character’s words back at them. Not because he’s petty, but because that is what a villain does. Reminds one of Berg-Katze from Gatchaman Crowds. Furthermore, he shows Mari that she’s never been a hero.
- “Unless you’re truly prepared to die, don’t claim you’re risking your life.” – Completely different, but reminds me of the Code Geass message – “Only those who are willing to be killed should be allowed to kill.”
- The show would have you believe that this is the face of true love, of happy and joyous release, but true love is about the road, about the sacrifice, about the pain and the resentment. Also, he truly is testing and showing Mari her weaknesses, he is treating her as an adversary whose spirit must be crushed.
- By the by, in the torture of Moe sequence, there’s another lesson we can see here. Mari can’t understand Moe, who will willingly suffer pain for another. Mari is used to being loved, not to loving others. That’s another reason she doesn’t understand Goto and Hazama who don’t fawn over her. She treats others as objects to keep her entertained, rather than as people.
- I actually felt the sadness when Mari began singing on stage in her torn outfit.
2) Evil is the New Good!
- Ha! Interesting! Almost Lelouch-ian! People asked for justice, and only wars followed, thousands of years of people fighting for good and justice, and what is right, and there are only atrocities being committed, usually in the name of what is so-called “just” and “righteous”. As such, perhaps it is the quest for good that leads to evil, war, and sadness. So let us be united, in “evil”. Let us find peace in the absence of wars brought by the “good”.
- It actually reminds me of some politics. Around here we have a political party who purportedly is for peace, and one which is against peace. The party “against” peace is more likely to sign peace treaties, because the pro-peace party gets voted against when it comes to these issues in the parliament, but when an “anti-peace party” brings these peace agreements, the political opposition votes alongside the coalition. Ass-backwards? Yes, but also reality.
- “We are the same.” – Seeing how King Torture grew up watching the same superhero shows, how he’s influenced by the same shows, but chose the other side… makes me think of two more media that pulled a similar move – M. Night Shamalan’s Unbreakable, and the anime Bamboo Blade (though there it’s a girl whose hero is a sentai-series villain, nothing about real superheroes/villains). I like it, seeing his past, seeing his decision. Of course he obeys the sentai shows’ rules, he’s a fan! :)
- Ha! All those threads/posts – what had video games/TV shows taught you. Superhero shows taught King Torture:
- Superheroes live alone – but he had allies.
- They fight for justice/peace, only for it to soon fall apart.
- Their actions accomplish nothing.2+3 are related, because in shows the show-makers keep having evil come around, so there’ll be something interesting to watch, and here, King Torture kept sending out minions.
- Yeah, The Greater Unification Theory of Evil – so many villains in anime are idealists who just want to re-unite with everyone, with their loved ones. Nothing new here, but this might be the point. So, he’s been lonely, and he doesn’t want anyone to be lonely any longer.Post Episode Notes:This had been an amazing episode. There was enough text, subtext, and context here to fill an entire movie or series. We got to see Hazama become a true superhero, we got to see some actually not ridiculous ideas from King Torture, and hear how he truly is similar to Hazama, we got Mari to finally confront her nature… this episode had been amazing.
Post Episode Notes:
This had been an amazing episode. There was enough text, subtext, and context here to fill an entire movie or series. We got to see Hazama become a true superhero, we got to see some actually not ridiculous ideas from King Torture, and hear how he truly is similar to Hazama, we got Mari to finally confront her nature… this episode had been amazing.
It’s a 2-season show, I have absolutely no idea where they’ll take it from here (apart from Hazama dealing with his fame as Samurai Flamenco), but it’s going to be interesting. Also, it seemed Joji came and saved the scientist, I don’t think it was the onlookers.