When did we lose our way

Topic started by Miyoron on Nov. 7, 2010. Last post by Miyoron 3 years, 8 months ago.
Post by Miyoron (6 posts) See mini bio Level 13
This is the beginning of perhaps a series of blogs that I might write so if it goes over well, maybe I'll do more. Now I like anime, in some cases I even would say I love anime. It's got a nice, distinct style to it and its own brand of humor that I wouldn't change for the world. Sometimes I really get into an anime and it'll give back 110%. Other times though, it'll decide it would rather take me by the head and kick me to the curb.  When this happens, I have to stop and think to myself just when this anime lost its way in my eyes. 
 
The anime in question for this article is Mahou Sensei Negima by Ken Akamatsu, the guy who did Love Hina. A fun series premise:  a young mage has to complete his training in Japan by teaching a class filled entirely with quirky Japanese school girls. Negi Springfield, a 10 year old Welsh boy, has his work cut out for him considering he has to keep his powers a secret from everyone or be forcibly turned into an ermine by some mage council back home. It's a silly premise, but it leads to lots of amusing little adventures, panty shots and the like. Plus, it's got a plethora of cute girls who are all interesting in their own right. Whether it's the shy bookish Nodoka or the tsundere type swords lady Setsuna, there's plenty of girls for every one! 
 
Of course, one girl, a rather brash young lady named Asuna Kagurazaka, happens to see Negi use his magic to save someone from falling off a flight of stairs. She confronts him about it, forcing him to explain the situation and needless to say Asuna is fine with keeping his secret. She doesn't particularly like Negi from the start, especially since he replaced the teacher she had a crush on for the longest time, Takahata-sensei. As time goes on though, she starts to feel for the little guy as they go through zany adventures involving a love potion, vampire attacks (courtesy of class mate Evangeline A K Macdowell) and even time travel. As time goes on, more girls learn his secrets and Negi starts learning kung fu from one of his students even! 
 
This is about the beginning of the end for me, however. The point at which Negima switches from a rather fun little almost harem anime romp to a shounen magical combat anime.  Spoilers ahead for those of you who do not wish to know. 
 
It seems to me that Ken Akamatsu should stick with romantic comedy things because the guy cannot write an interesting villain to save his life. In the grand scheme of thing is a group of ne'erdowells headed by a stereotypically emotionless white haired mage kid named Fate. He first shows up in Kyoto during a class trip with his first group of evil doers tryin to kidnap Konoka, a student of Negi's who has ties to the Kansai school of magerie. The combat portions of this are interesting, but of course Fate is being set up to become the main villain in the series so the final battle ends with him getting away with his minions. One later shows up and becomes Negi's friend in combat, rivals almost, and things just slide down hill from there. 
 
As the story delves increasingly into Negi's attempts to find his father, who might still be alive, I found myself caring less and less about it. Especially once Negima falls into DBZ territory and breaks out the old Hyperbolic time chamber not once, not twice, but THREE times in at least two separate arcs. In fact, in one arc it even works to their disadvantage since the villain knew they would do it and adjusted her plans to happen before they came out. Eventually things spiraled out of control with Asuna being a princess from the magical world and Negi trying to use dark powers to try and make himself a better fighter when in the end things would have been fine enough if they had just stuck with the original comedy formula. 
 
I haven't read it in a while, so perhaps some of these issues have been resolved. At this point though, it doesn't matter to me. Negima, you lost your way. 
 /nerdrage
Post by rubberluffy (595 posts) See mini bio Level 16
I read once that Akamatsu didn't want to make this a harem series, but was pushed into it.  It seems Negima pushed away from that as time went on.  I haven't read it since around chapter 100, though.
Post by Destinyheroknight (10,342 posts) See mini bio Level 21
You talking about the manga not the anime    
Well, it still have the comedy and a lot of characters development
Calling Negima! fighting styles a Dragon Ball Z clone is wrong. Dragon Ball Z had two kinds of fighting, close combat martial arts and Ki blasts, that all. Recently in Negima! we have a character that use Ninja skills, Guns and various magic projectiles, charms, swords, strings, summoning magic, time control, machines and technology, gravity, illusion magic, Ice, lightning, water, fire, and other skills in their fights. Can you say they did all this in Dragon Ball Z? There are so many more levels to the Negima fighting system then Dragon Ball Z had, calling it a Dragon Ball Z clone just ignores all of them. Yes, there is martial arts, but there is also so much more to it. 
If you don't like the fighting then you can watch Negima!? it probably more your taste, then the manga.
But I still don't see your problem with Negima!, it better then most action manga out there

Post by Miyoron (6 posts) See mini bio Level 13
@Destinyheroknight:  
I wasn't comparing the whole of Negima's combat to DBZ. Mostly just the training montages and the fact they used the old hyperbolic time chamber trope at least two or three times:  Evangeline's mansion and somewhere in the magical world as well. And yes my entire argument is about the manga, I watched most of the first anime but couldn't get into the second one. The whole of my argument is I wish the manga was still more of a harem comedy sort of deal as opposed to an action romance comedy whatever other genre it turned into. I'm not saying people shouldn't like Negima, I'm just saying I don't anymore. 
 
I do still like the characters, but I just hate the direction the story went in.  
 
Also the picture of Fate there is what I meant about hating Ken Akamatsu's villains. Without a doubt my least favorite villain in a long time.
Post by Destinyheroknight (10,342 posts) See mini bio Level 21
@Miyoron: 

Mostly just the training montages and the fact they used the old hyperbolic time chamber trope at least two or three times


They only did the training montage for the Jack Rakan's fight, and also you only see a little training. Most of the time it is character development with the girls.   

Evangeline's mansion and somewhere in the magical world as well.


It's Evangeline's castle, not a mansion. It a magical world most royalty have them, not just Evangeline. They was never meant for training 

The whole of my argument is I wish the manga was still more of a harem comedy sort of deal as opposed to an action romance comedy whatever other genre it turned into. 


It still is a harem comedy, it like 40% action & 60% comedy. There also Negima!? & Negima!? Neo that more on comedy, thats really funny. It not like Akamatsu-sama totally forgot about his harem fans   

but I just hate the direction the story went in.

 
What do you don't like about it? It have comedy, action, characters development and romance.    
I like the way the story is going, Akamatsu-sama is really good at foreshadowing. It not like Akamatsu-sama putting things out from nowhere  
Akamatsu-sama was trying to be unique with this manga, I think he doing a great job at it.
Negima! haven't lose it way, it trying new things
Me and you probably won't see eye to eye about this 
 Think you for crushing poor Makie
 Think you for crushing poor Makie

 
Post by Miyoron (6 posts) See mini bio Level 13
@Destinyheroknight:  
Haha in the end you're probably right about not seeing eye to eye on it, and I'm fine with that. I just had an anime related rant and I figured this would be the best place to do it. All power to Akamatsu for trying something different and all. I just kinda got bored, there's no huge reason for it or anything. It's not like when I quit Naruto for its recent storyline. I just sort of lost my desire to read so...I stopped. 
 
Also the training montage was definitely done more than once. Remember the whole bit a the festival that worked right into Chao's plans? I'm probably remembering wrong. Either way, Negima was a good experience but just not for me anymore.
Post by Destinyheroknight (10,342 posts) See mini bio Level 21
@Miyoron:    
I know where you coming from with Naruto, it is getting really boring
It wasn't a training montage, they was having a break from the festival and talking about what to do with Chao.
But anyways I hope you find a good anime to your taste, have you try Angel Beats!?

Post by Miyoron (6 posts) See mini bio Level 13
@Destinyheroknight: I have not, I'll take a peek, always lookin for new stuff~
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