December 31st, 2014 – January 1st, 2015.
So, time to finish this series. Minimal notes, minimal screenshots, let’s go.
First recipient of “National Hero Award”, a scheme to make superheroes a reality.
“My goal is to return to being a normal girl.” Lies, you too are a Red Ranger at heart, Flamenco Pink.
Yup, it’s a reverse pyramid! Their numbers are endless!
“It’s true Red Axe would’ve taken the initiative, but now I am the Commander of the Flamengers.” – “What you see from the top…” it’s easy to criticize people, until you’re in their position, with their responsibilities. Heroes supposedly work for the people, but they’re somewhat of loners, free of true responsibility.
“One individual should never drive an organization.” Anti individualism, anti-hero talk.
Aside from Soichi, the hard-core “Red”, everyone else is working as a team, pooling their efforts. Good.
“Domestic Violence #1.” Please.
“I was surprised that you’re being nice.” Oh my.
“Sometimes, it’s best to do nothing.” Hm.
“Hero will never give up,/ never hide, never be defeated,/ never accept evil.” Now I know what Ping Pong’s “Hero talk” made me think of, this eye-catch.
Yup, this isn’t to avoid needless chaos, but to protect themselves from it.
Having to pick the five people who matter the most to them.
Soichiro only has 5 people on his cell, probably Joji and the other Flamengers. This part is actually touching, the whole sequence.
Goto’s girlfriend is one of the people Hazama will save, heh.
Goto, an upstanding man, won’t cheat, doesn’t do anything to be ashamed of, so he’s trusted.
Yup, humans never change, always petty things going on.
Hazama facing the hardship of having to decide who lives and dies, but that’s what a superhero does, did you not fight monsters to the death? Do you not have to pick which civilians will be saved? Superman’s choice. Lois, or the plane?
Yup! Always limits, this is the same one.
Joji, finally sounding like a true hero, like a real adult.
“Kaname-san’s gone.” – Classic Joji, talks big, then runs away.
“Can you guarantee they don’t have spies at this base?” – So hard being the leader, it’s no wonder Joji couldn’t handle it.
Konno-san is back, after being a villain, huh.
And Hazama does The Right Thing™. There’ll be repercussions, but that’s what being a hero means.
Guess if their plan is known, they’ll attack, to reduce the time the heroes have to prepare. They still had more.
“You need to learn to control yourself!” – Said the Prime Minister who keeps slapping superheroes.
Only from outside can you see the full picture.
Japan, won’t listen to their daughter just because she’s an adulator, heh.
Mari, still only looking out for Mari.
Hazama and Goto, want to call one another, then don’t. Such love.
“My name is Gasoline Boy.” Just Samurai Flamenco being Samurai Flamenco.
How they just ran over Nice Rope. The deaths of From Beyond are very anticlimactic, and that feels as if it’s the point.
Miami Ballerina? Samumenco please.
A beholder! From Beyond is also combining!
“The Destruction of Japan device.” LOL This is like watching the Superman cartoons from the 1940s. The drill reminded me of NGE though.
Superheroes assemble! We’re still deep in ridiculous anime sentai land, heh. Also, Joji threw an axe by hand and cut a limb from hundreds of meters? O.O
“This is not a dream, this is not fiction. In reality, your superheroes were always fighting.” – Samurai Flamenco, a call of nostalgia, of belief.
Yes, the USA with their comic industry.
“You can be a hero in your life.” – Samumenco and Valvrave crossover, Also, being a hero means beating up others. Quaint.
“Let’s Flamenco!” Holy shit.
“Beyond Flamenco”! Masayoshi is the force driving the universe, he’s the narrative cause of it all!
First King Torture was a dark mirror of Masayoshi, and now we have even more of a mirror, let’s see where it goes.
The voice of the group. The representative. So he’ll be telling himself to stop, heh.
“Why would anyone want to conquer the world?” Good question. You’re the evil ones, though.
“The only difference is what we’re crazy about, how we’re crazy, and the degree to which we are crazy.” I’d say that’s quite a difference?
“You’ll be defeated some day, so just give up now.” Not very heroic, if he were to do so.
Superheroes, representatives of collective individuality (ha!, will stand up to the regime which will try and stop them!
An outreached hand, going heaven-ward, very symbolic.
Mr. Justice! Hero Union. Let’s rock.
Mr. Justice is humming the tune of the American anthem. I’m not surprised. Americans often are depicted as cliches in anime”, but in this show, it fits.
“Midorikawa”, “Kuroki”, just noticed the other Flamengers’ names fit their colours.
That action music reminds me of Mission Impossible, nice.
“You are Flamen, erm…” – He’s wearing it! Your Prime Minister, ladies and gentleman!
72% support is incredibly high.
“If the masses believe it, a lie will become true.” – For a certain value of “true”.
“And they were all fictional creations of Hollywood writers and studios!” – The worst fate imaginable.
Yeah, special attacks become funny when you have to use them repeatedly. “BEAM! BEAM! BEAM!” Heh.
See! It did all seem like a fictional storyline, but the government’s!
Ooooh, new OP – Ah, just new art, still no real animation, but I dig the feel.
“He isn’t clever enough to pull off something like this.” Such praise, but it’s true. He’s an honest lad, our Hazama Masayoshi.
“It seems I’ll be here longer than anticipated,” he said, in a full-body lockdown suit, including a muzzle.
81% support isn’t enough? That wannabe dictator!
Flamenco in the dark and dank alleys, sort of like how he began.
Masayoshi hiding in King Torture’s hall? And so the hero becomes a villain.
Mari ran away because seeing Moe reminds her of her cowardice. A cowardly act, but she already admitted that. Self-loathing.
Being Moe is suffering. That line came out perfectly.
Mari is vomiting light? What the fuck did she eat?
Moe wears a bag on her head so Mari won’t cry. This is emotional, and so very ridiculous.
Moe, Mari knows you weren’t trying to look good, and that’s what really hurts her.
Mouth to mouth kissing, immediately after Mari vomited her guts out? Disgusting.
The Prime Minister is blaming the other side of what he’s done, so if people blame him of the same thing, they’ll have come second.
Hazama has a hard time stealing even one bun. He always broke the law, for justice, but this is a criminal and unjust act.
“What did I do everything for?” – For your sense of justice.
“It’s only natural to help people in trouble.” – Even when you yourself are low. That’s why you’ve done it all, Masayoshi.
An uplifting message, and right at the right time. This story discusses narrative causality a lot, and it’s often manipulated in-verse, so let’s see how they use this up later.
“Took you long enough, stupid.” – Gotobro best bro.
It’s the return of the stationery! Indeed, brings back memories!
Harakiri Sunshine truly got to Goto, they’re even playing low-key inspiring music here.
Not his country, so not full power.
They’re going to cut off audio, but not video. He’ll appear as a hero, instead of a villain, which he probably is.
His middle name is Flameco? WTF?!
What the hell is going on here? This is Guillotine Gorilla levels again.
So, the Prime Minister draws power from his support figures, which explains why he wants more.
“Love always returns!” <3
Sadistic Mari back in action!
And the “Ching! Ching!” signifying another pair ofcrotches were stomped.
“Power determines truth. Alone, truth has no power!” I bet Konno will get some cameras in there.
“Running a country only requires a single icon!” and his golden armour, yeah, fascism.
Yup, I knew Konno is in there, transmitting.
“Being forgotten is worse than being hated.” – Especially in the media.
“So we have aliens here now.” – And what were “From Beyond” supposed to be? Also, I did wonder where we’d go from here, with 5 episodes to go.
So, the Prime Minister wanted power, but only to ward off a greater evil.
“Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi!” was translated as “You’ve gotta be kidding me!” Heh.
“What? Is this really happening?!” and “Everyone and everything is a Flamenco!” together encapsulate this show up to this point.
Everyone feels they’ve seen this before, coming back to exactly 10 episodes ago, episodes 8-9, and the “I’m so used to this.” Cause yeah, the scale changed, but it’s always been the same deal.
Goto, the only one who truly understands Masayoshi, who pushed him forward, who called him back, as was needed, and who thought of his resolve and goals.
“Don’t worry about what might happen! If you get killed, I’ll avenge you.” – Such reassurance.
“People tend to be more honest on river embankments.” Someone watched too much TV and movies.
An interface! I’m starting to think all Flamencos are interfaces, and Masayoshi is an interface for humanity’s sense of justice.
So, it wasn’t really planned by the government, but by Alien Flamenco, and the Japanese government made use of it.
Only race able to maintain peace, which is why they lead, and which comes from being a unitary whole.
“Unite all life, stop all conflict.” – Very common villain scheme in anime.
“Come onnnnnn!” This sounds so lewd.
“I don’t know why you’re wrong, but had you been right, I’d have done as you say!” – This is actually the core of much philosophy, we seek proof to what we feel to begin with. Believing his inner sense of justice, that’s Hazama for you.
“No, no, the problem is that you’re stupid!” – Haha.
“The difference between stupidity and justice is paper-thin!” – Heh. How do you even argue with that? That’s an argument to end all arguments.
“Evolve or die!” Yeah, the only road is forward.
This is so meta, a show took TTGL’s over the top, and is over-the-topping it, and not as a comedy.
Yup, Alien Flamenco is reaching peace, through war. He’s forcing evolution rather than letting it happen naturally.
What do you care about time, as your evolved being, and if they go extinct, then what does it matter?
We’re in Neon Genesis Evangelion episodes 25-26 right now. And there are still 4.5 episodes to go.
OH SHIT! “I am the universe’s will and this place is your goal.” – This IS those 2 episodes of NGE. But that means Hazama’s goal was to get back home.
So, charismatic people create energy, which then draws people and warps, and when two energy creators fight, one draws in the other’s energy. So, Hazama basically got Red Axe’s energy, and joined him to his side, and also drew in From Beyond’s energy, which kept drawing more and more to him? Losing would’ve made him like Beyond Flamenco, who’s just a mouthpiece? But yeah, Alien Flamenco kept drawing to him, making him more and more charismatic, so to speak.
Yup, this is the “Inner-world God-author” theory, ala Sophie’s World, and Hazama is the God-author. I called it in episode 9, “Act 3”, bullet point 2! (link – https://geekorner.wordpress.com/samurai-flamenco-episode-9-notes/)
“Either keep fighting, or it will become entertainment and legend for other worlds.” – Huh.
“I am the one who controls all life in this universe.” – No, that’s different from being the embodiment of the universe itself.
“When you decided to start your journey, you changed the world. You were influencing others, but they also influenced you.” A metaphor for all of us embarking on a journey to find ourselves and our place within the world.
A word that can grant wishes, so those who happen to use it happen to have their wishes granted, which is made easier if you use it non-stop, “makes sense”.
In other words, random luck, so it goes.
Also, about assimilation, earlier, in episode 10, we’ve had this screenshot (http://i.imgur.com/Vo5XnDd.jpg), where King Torture said he’ll assimilate everything. Cycles without end here.
Six months later, world of quiet, the real question is what will we do with 4 full episodes.
“The Quiet Life”, with that garish red background. Doesn’t seem very promising.
Hazama is happy over Goto being happy. Such friends.
“It’s so boring!” – Last time Konno asked for excitement, he got captured by King Torture. Someone is going to say “Flamenco” and wish for interest again, and the whole thing will start all over again.
Jealousy and conflict! Mari wanting Goto and Moe makes sense, she wants everyone to love her, she wants to be loved at all costs. I remember people also saying that about Freddie Mercury.
“Let’s start stalking him.” Oh my.
“You may be the last source of evil in this world.” Hee hee.
Ishihara is too much of a boss for Masayoshi, it’d be like a kitten dating a lioness.
Goto’s first name is “Hidenori”? Oh my.
Oh, Goto has both cell phones, and is messaging himself?
Yup, now we’re talking about the unmoving society, and how kids can’t get their own better future in it, back to talking about “an era of peace and prosperity” as suffocating the youngsters, a metaphor for Japan.
That boy looked like Hazama though.
No, you should be worried about the bomber who might blow up another room first.
Hazama asks for curry, trying to feel home.
See, he kept repeating the word, and his wish came true.
Yup, he drew to him an abnormality, interest.
Yup, “My only desire was to do bad things to Samurai Flamenco.” – This is back to how Batman created his “enemies”, all the so-called ideals, in the end they’re there to fight the hero.
But you can’t kill him, Seiji, or it’ll be over. So, is his food service bad, or is the bad thing not allowing Masayoshi to eat it? Psychology!
Someone staying after their death to haunt the living, sort of like Goto’s girlfriend. Is this a case of Fight Club, is this Hazama doing this to himself?
“Colourful”, I too thought of the other Flamengers.
This is mostly the realm of malicious pranks. But yeah, eek.
A middle school student, how is he driving a truck? Then again, he’s supposedly also a ghost.
A hero can’t let go of their mantle, not until they die. That’s the true message of the universe.
“The mind can make you see things that aren’t real.” And then we see his girlfriend’s umbrella and cell phone, obviously.
The hurt over the one you believed will always be by your side not believing you.
Evil is always in our hearts, and there can be no justice without evil, right? That means for justice to exist in our hearts, there must also be evil for it to fight, in our hearts.
Also, Goto and Hazama’s falling out was similar to Mari and Moe’s – escaping facing reality.
“Remember how when Mari-san saved the world, Hazama-san helped out a bit?” – Hee hee. That Moe.
“Teaching Love” with that garish red background O.O
The last few times Hazama contacted Goto, Goto said “Finally, you call me.” – So, what are you waiting for, Hazama? It indeed also says Goto will wait for Hazama to make the call.
“My Axe Ears are 7 times more sensitive than human ears.” – Hahaha.
“When he’s in trouble, to whom does a hero turn?” – Very good question. “A hero… does not ask others for help.” – A rough existence, the true sacrifice.
“A hero’s ultimate enemy is loneliness.” – Not being able to share their burdens, their victories, even their identities. So, Hazama supposedly gained the ultimate popularity, and yet he’s all alone, so long he’s a hero.
“It even drives some to evil.” King Torture, and even Alien Flamenco, with his “assimilation”, to never be alone.
Love, the “ultimate secret weapon.” Please.
“I don’t understand, how can love make people stronger?” – Wow, he really is a novice superhero, isn’t Hazama’s love of his grandfather, of justice, of the people, isn’t that what gave him power?
Is Goto questioning his own decision, or is it him seeing his would-be girlfriend questioning it? Probably both.
Ishihara, reminding Hazama she’s always been there for him, and also, a form of love. A parent’s.
“From the moment I saw you, I knew you were special, that you were worth betting on.” This could also be a love confession.
Yup, love is a ward against loneliness, not just yours for others, but theirs for you. A superhero is never truly alone, they’ve got allies!
“I hate your guts and can’t stand your presence, but I trust your sources.”
“That’s the nicest thing you’ve ever said to me.” – The sad part is it’s true.
“I’ve done fine without love.” – “That’s only because you’ve never recognized the love within you.” And he did turn obsessive, about justice.
A young kid, a young Hazama, just focusing on the opposite, to be noticed by senpai.
“While you ignore reality to stay sane.” Is there any other way to remain sane? It might seem contradictory, but it’s likely true. Discworld made use of it as well, with how people can’t see Death as Death. If something is “impossible”, then we won’t allow ourselves to see it.
“Evolved”, please. Just send him to Alien Flamenco :P
Welp, finale time.
“When will tomorrow come?” ;_;
And Goto is surprised he gets an SMS back from his “girlfriend”, he’s almost possessed.
Watching a movie with his “air-girlfriend”, oh my.
Yeah, I saw Goto thrusting his hand into the flame. Two people, out of love, acting out of extreme deprivation, of extreme sadness.
He’s sending SMS with both of his hands individually, he’s Charlemagne.
“If you died, it’s possible he would never recover. Instead, I would prefer to scar him for life.” Just as happened to Goto, because the wound can’t close until his girlfriend or her remains are found.
“In other words, I want you to kill me.” – Oh damn, cause then Hazama will have to fight his best friend. But telling Goto this, just reduces the chances of him doing so.
They loved him enough to fake his death and let him do his own thing. What parents.
“You have yet to become a dark hero…” Someone sure read too much Grant Morrison.
Hazama already has a dark past with his parents, and the realization he caused all the harm that followed his inner wishes. But becoming a dark hero won’t keep him fighting for justice, would it? And even if he’d become a dark hero, the world is far too orderly and peaceful for a dark hero to have who to fight.
“And my actions made you famous.” Yup, a crazy stalker, feeling ownership. His hero, the image he created for the hero.
Except as we know, it’s actually Hazama’s wishes that did so, though the outside world helped.
“I want to become your traumatic past, one that will never disappear.” Seriously crazy.
“If love is what you and I need, then we can find love together!” – The scariest thing for the crazy, when their object of desire turns out even crazier, hee hee.
“I can explain this, Officer! I mean, Goto-san!” – Hee hee.
“GOTO-SAN! Let’s get married!” – Hazama doesn’t understand love, so he also can’t tell there are different kinds of love.
“I’ll do everything your girlfriend would have!” – Oh my.
;_; that final message Goto sent himself from his girlfriend.
The old man who helped Masayoshi is in the nursing home. Good, good.
Yup, Konno can’t believe Ishihara being nice to him, I’d be creeped out too, as if an alien took over her.
“I’ll face you, but don’t go after anyone else. I’ll face you, even if it’s for the rest of my life.” – Another love confession, of sorts.
Yup, the peaceful world over uniting wasn’t due to Masayoshi’s decision, but a temporary sense of unison. Time for humans to be humans once more.
Someone littered! Samurai Flamenco’s call to action! His wish, or just human nature? Heh.
Post Show Thoughts:
This was such a messy show, but thinking about all the things holding it from greatness, all the reasons I provide to why it should be deducted points, they all come off as excuses. Yes, episodes 11-12 were really poor, but reading over my old notes for it, the ideas were very well presented, and all tied into a cohesive whole very well.
7.5/10? 8/10? At the very least.