SamJaz: Which do you prefer best, Deconstruction (If this fictional element were real, why would it suck ?), Reconstruction ( This is why you enjoyed the stuff that waa Deconstructed, remember?), or a straight-up Preposterone (PREPOSTEROUS AMOUNTS OF TESTOSTERONE!!), in terms of viewing pleasure, after-thoughts, or enjoyment? For reference, see Neon Genesis Evangelion, Gurren Lagann, and DragonBall Z respectively, though Gurren Lagann also qualifies for Preposterone.
We might not be on the same page about the definition of these terms, but I definitely like the ring of “preposterone.” That’s a neologism I’ll definitely be using from here on out.
Variety’s a big part of what I look for in my entertainment. I can enjoy the earnestly-simple or the sophisticatedly-ironic depending on what mood I’m in. So I really don’t have a preference for any one of these sub-genres… provided that they’re being done intentionally.
What does that mean?
As I’ve said before, part of the fun of writing for this site is that it’s allowed me to see commonalities I might’ve missed without the broader perspective I’ve gotten here. To that end, I know that I’ve seen Deconstruction, Reconstruction and Preposterone like in Westerns, in spy movies and even in rock. I think CountZero even drew a comparisons to superhero comics, describing EVANGELION and GURREN LAGANN as mecha’s answer to WATCHMEN and KINGDOM COME, respectively. So these "stylistic concerns" apply pretty broadly. I think it all breaks down to the importance of not falling into habit. Tradition’s all well and good, but if you do it long enough that you’ve lost sight of why you’re doing it, it becomes a hindrance.
Alan Moore wrote an essay about audiences demanding more of their myths as the years go on. So if you have several decades of straight-forward mecha, eventually you want to pick apart the old clichés and tropes, you get EVANGELION (right?) However, if people follow those inversions until they become cliché in themselves, then you need to rebel againt them by, ironically going back to the roots. You can see the Bond movies often going through a cycle of things getting too ridiculous (invisible planes, outer space battles and what not) so they have to go back-to-basics, until things get too serious and dramatic and they decide they need to lighten things up again. And so the cycle repeats.
These have all been great questions, so please, keep them coming, Anime Vice community! I will answer whatever’s asked.