Aku no Hana Series Discussion

Topic started by Dream on April 6, 2013. Last post by Kobra678 8 months, 1 week ago.
Post by Dream (7,093 posts) See mini bio Level 20
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Welcome to the Flowers of Evil discussion thread.
Come here to chat about the latest episodes, the characters, plot, or the series in general.
Genre: Psychological
Produced by: Zexcs
Plot: FLOWERS OF EVIL revolves around Takao Kasuga, who is caught stealing Nanako Saeki's gym clothes by Sawa Nakamura whose cold attitude makes her generally disliked by everyone. In exchange for her silence, he makes a ‘contract’ with her, in which he must abide by all of her unreasonable demands. Initially torturous, Kasuga wants out until one day when things start to change between them...
Watch Online: Crunchyroll

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Well, the first episode has been out for a couple days now, so let us discuss.

As some of you might have seen by now, the series is making use of rotoscoping for rendering the character designs in the series and this has, not too surprisingly, generated quite the controversy with the online anime fanbase, enough so where plenty of negative backlash from fans on MyAnimeList.net have led the show to be currently ranked as one of the lowest-scoring titles within the site's database just on the first episode alone and some even claiming it completely bastardizes the manga source material.

What are your thoughts of Aku no Hana's first episode?

Mod Edit - Takashichea

11-5-13: Formatted Page

Post by Yuno_Shiki (89 posts) See mini bio Level 8

I saw some of the talks on it via another site, and you of course know my opinion. But for those don't, I haven't seen the manga source material, only the episode that aired. I'd probably be against the style they did here with the character designs. Now whether or not that's makes me vehemently trash the series is another thing. I've seen quite a few different applications of unorthodox artistry in different series: Panty Stocking and Garterbelt being one, the distinctive art work of the bakemonogatari series, as well as Katanagatari, and even Kiba (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kaiba whic) not to be confused with a series of the same name; these series were initially turn offs for me and there's more than enough cases where the artwork will have staunch weaknesses... Substance can more than make up for the failings, and believe me, I think Aku no Hanu has some flaws that really stand out of the animation, but there are in my opinion, elements of the unorthodox animation approach that work well with it. As long as it does something to engage me and keep it interesting, it's reasonable to think that I can set my initial thoughts on the animation aside and see what it has to offer, since the examples I just mentioned succeeded in that regard.

Long story short... I don't see the series as being a big budget film but it is taking a risk, and while I can understand some of the fan rage aimed at it because of all this, I don't see any circumstance where it would provoke the levels of vehement disgust it's managed on some websites. But to each his own on the opinion front. For me, this show is entertainment, and I honestly do hold some of that "keep the manga purity" mentality but not to the extent I feel in necessary to go up a wall over the artistry here

Post by Destinyheroknight (10,158 posts) See mini bio Level 21

Wait, What!? I didn't know Flowers of Evil have been released

Anyway the art style won't bug me that much, if the story and the characters are good

I don't get this hate, the people who make the anime is trying something different. I say it better then getting the same old anime design

Post by Dream (7,093 posts) See mini bio Level 20
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@Destinyheroknight: Tried telling that to the mob (I'm ggultra2764 on the page) and got ripped apart by the ignorant fools.

Post by Destinyheroknight (10,158 posts) See mini bio Level 21

@Dream:

Sigh, why can't they try to get past the art.

Making it the lowest on Anime List for its art is the most stupidest thing I have ever saw (it make the anime community look bad), well at lease they not sending death threats to the creators

Post by takashichea (10,614 posts) See mini bio Level 25
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@Dream:

I'll link this discussion thread to Daniel Newton's anime discussion hub along with the other discussion threads.

Post by Dream (7,093 posts) See mini bio Level 20
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Well, I just decided to get a peek at the manga and I must admit there's some pretty shocking stuff that occurs with our three leads (our male lead, glasses gal and the crush) throughout the span of the series which I won't bother going into detail on here for the sake of spoiling. It looks like the first episode was just a reprieve for the crazy crap that will be shown for the anime's run and meant to demonstrate how mundane and dull the male lead perceives his life as.

Will be giddy to see how the anime adapts the insanity the characters in this series pull off.

Post by lentfilms (4 posts) See mini bio Level 7

I saw the first episode of Flowers of Evil last night and I have not been this excited about an anime in a long time. I have a feeling that this could be the beginning of a really special show. It almost feels like Flowers of Evil is purposefully trying to be the polar opposite of modern anime. The show takes place in a high school setting yet school life is shown as a depressing and crushing environment instead of the fun youthful playground it is often portrayed as. The show's rotoscoped visuals are also very unmarketable and seem focused on creating a mood rather than selling merchandise. Every about Flowers of Evil feels very atypical and, whether the show fails or succeeds, it is going to be an interesting watch.

Post by Acura_Max (2,322 posts) See mini bio Level 13
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Well, that was certainly different. I can what they were trying to do and why everyone seems to hate it. In way, it was refreshing, but also pretty mundane, which I think the animators were going for. Anyway, I need to see more of this and the source material before I say anything else.

Aye aye captain
Aye aye captain
Post by AURON570 (536 posts) See mini bio Level 15

This is great so far! Awesome to see an anime going against the current trend of animation. The first episode worked really well with setting up the tone of the show.

For all the hubbub about how the characters look, the scenery and background art is fantastic. I mean just look at these:

I really appreciate that they went with rotoscoping. I'm really glad they DID NOT go with the typical moe character design. It made Sawa that much more creepy and scary when she went up to the teacher.

Also by having it rotoscoped, it reminds the audience that "hey this is animation, and we're tracing actual people's movements to do this. So if you think this looks bad, then just look at the way YOU move about, or watch how other people in real life move." It encourages the viewer to think twice about animation, what we think looks 'right/good/cute'.

I think that is really why some people are having such a hard time with it. They get so used to seeing a certain type of animation that they forget what animation is actually based on, real movement in real life!

Post by lentfilms (4 posts) See mini bio Level 7

@AURON570: I agree that Flowers of Evil does not have the exaggerated animation that most cartoons have but I think the reason some people do not like the show's look is that it does make the viewer "think twice about the animation." Rotoscoped animation in general looks really strange and creates an uncanny valley effect that is very distracting. The animation may be a tracing of "real life" yet it also feels very odd and awkward. I think that feeling adds a lot to Flowers of Evil's atmosphere but I can understand why it would turn a lot of people off. But that is okay, it is healthy for a medium like anime to have different shows for different tastes.

Post by AURON570 (536 posts) See mini bio Level 15

NOTE: This is going to be a bit of a rant, but I'd rather post it here than any other anime site.

I ended up having a glimpse of the 'reverse-rape' scene and some comments on it, and I just ended up getting mad. One comment said essentially "it would have been the best of the season, if it were animated properly." Which made me think, "are there people who actually think anime like To Love-Ru are sexy or well-animated?" I guess this says more about my own aesthetic preferences than anything. I avoid watching anime that use baseball size eyes and ridiculous proportions. And that guideline has served me pretty well over the years.

Arg, I just feel like the people who are criticizing this anime are criticizing it for all the wrong reason, or don't realize their own biases going into it, or they bash it just because it is being creative and taking a risk. Maybe this says something about consumer entitlement. For example, apparently some people stopped reading K-ON when they realized that the girls might have boyfriends. As if the readers were entitled to have the story play out in a certain way, which meets their expectations or biases. I imagine that some people are criticizing Flowers of Evil for not sticking with the style of the manga, but this just goes back to the whole "manga vs. anime" debate. The viewer/reader shouldn't feel like the creators owe them something to make the anime a certain way or tell the story in a certain way.

With that said, certainly we can discuss how various creative decisions impact the overall storytelling and what themes are brought out. And it would be interesting to see if someone could present a good argument for why rotoscoping negatively impacts the story of Flowers of Evil. But so far the criticisms of Flowers of Evil seem very shallow.

Post by AURON570 (536 posts) See mini bio Level 15

Ahh being a teenager. Why does this anime know me so well? Throughout my highschool years I had a crush on a girl with pale skin and long black hair. Yes she looked like Saeki-san. The relationship never went anywhere because I was a wimp. With that said the thought process that Kasuga goes through hits really really close to home.

On a lighter note, the ending theme kind of reminds me of the Phalanx Theme from Demon's Souls:

Skip to about 0:23 seconds of the Ending to hear similarity.

Post by takashichea (10,614 posts) See mini bio Level 25
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That ending's voice is creepy.

Post by AURON570 (536 posts) See mini bio Level 15
The actors for Flowers of Evil.
The actors for Flowers of Evil.

Edited (may 2, 2012): I'm not sure anymore if these are the actual actors or not. I've seen some sites claiming it is, other people saying it's not.

Post by Dream (7,093 posts) See mini bio Level 20
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I guess I'll offer up my quick two cents on Aku no Hana thus far:

For those who have sampled the manga, you'll likely notice that the anime has adapted events up to the 4th chapter thus far. I was thinking at first that the series was gonna cover all of the middle school section of the series as there would be enough material from the manga to adapt it. But with the slow pace of the series, that is becoming increasingly unlikely with the series appearing focused on adopting its slow pace to allow time for the audience to take in the tense and uncomfortable mood coming from Kasuga's predicament with Nakamura and getting into the boy's head.

As for my thoughts of the rotoscoping after a few episodes, I do have to admit my thoughts have become a bit more mixed now. I still think its use for the series is a good one in setting up the chillingly uncomfortable mood of the show with its characters looking more lifelike compared to more conventional titles. However, I do think the quality of the rotoscoping could have been better, as it seemed like this series is being made on a limited budget. There are random instances where characters are reduced to stills and then are moving about again in the next clip, some moments of choppy movement and the facial features of characters getting reduced to blobs in far range camera shots. I'll still stick with the series given that I have interest in seeing how the anime animates the later twisted scenes that Kasuga gets caught up in with Nakamura. But I'm likely gonna be a bit more nitpicky with the quality of the show's rotoscoping.

This is only the second anime I've seen that made use of rotoscoping, the first one I seen being Trapeze which makes far better use of rotoscoping with more details on characters and fluid movement. Here's a trailer for the series, with the middle of the video showing some nice-looking rotoscoping in action with Irabu's nurse, Mayumi.

Post by takashichea (10,614 posts) See mini bio Level 25
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@AURON570: @Dream:

We should make a concept for Rotoscoping. I haven't watch the show yet. I'm just bumping it with random comments.

Post by Acura_Max (2,322 posts) See mini bio Level 13
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@takashichea: Before you begin, you should know that the series has a very slow pace. By slow, I mean it's slower than an episode of Robotics;Notes. I think the pace is deliberate as the other users have agreed upon above. During the manga, a common theme is that the main character's life is mundane and the character is trying to escape it. I think the pacing really highlights it and makes us feel it.

Post by Dream (7,093 posts) See mini bio Level 20
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Post by Destinyheroknight (10,158 posts) See mini bio Level 21

Flowers Of Evil is a very interesting watch, I like the slow pace.

The art style didn't bug me at all, after the first episode (can't wait for the next episode)

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