Sex and violence have been conflated on countless occasions, certainly, but I don’t think I’ve ever heard them coupled in a way as… direct as in this episode without the grouping sounding creepily sado-masochistic. You know, Sophita goes on so coquettishly about how she’s in love with Casshern and how she wants to fight him, and it’s all cute - - romantic, even. Imagine if it was one of the big, brutish bots saying those exact same lines, though?
Yeah, the prospect doesn’t sound so cute and innocent anymore, does it?
I’m officially out of dubbed episodes to (legally) watch online and I’m wondering if my appreciation of this show’s going to change once I switch to subbed next time. I hate to admit that my enthusiasm for the material has cooled by a degree or two over these past couple episodes.
Mainly, it comes down to dialog. It’s not that it’s bad per se, but the conversations do run long enough that patches of cheesy statements really start creeping in. We are talking about a show that started with robots saying “Eat Casshern!” of course, but I don’t mind that so much as the on-the-nose explications from Sophita wherein she details everything about her past and voices everything that’s on her mind. It’s the sort of material that gets you thinking that this show might’ve benefited from being shorter than 26 episodes, as there wouldn’t be as much air time to fill with stretched-out conversations.
At the same time, I am still appreciating the sentiment of everything that’s being discussed here - - even if I’d rather it be expressed in two lines instead of ten. Thus, I wonder if reading the dialog’s going to make it seem better than when I’m hearing it spoken aloud. We’ll find out next time, I suppose.
Watch this episode, "The Angel of Ruin” right above and decide for yourself, then read my comments on the previous episode here.
Huh… you know, it’s always a little pleasantly eerie, whenever you find the same sentiment coming at you from three totally different avenues.
See, I run the Spartan Race, right? And recently they put out a new ad sampling some motivational speech claiming that the secret of success lies in the experience of nearly drowning. It’s a lot more uplifting in the video, trust me. Basically, the idea’s that you must want whatever you want in life as much as you want to breath - - like it’s a survival instinct.
And last month, I saw DARK KNIGHT RISES, and there was that whole section where Batman can’t crawl out of a pit because he isn’t afraid, right? Remember what the breakthrough in the thinking was that got him back out? Bats throws the safety harness down, so he’s actually got everything to lose if he slips again. He’s throwing all his chips in.
So here were are with DEADMAN WONDERLAND - - this freaky mature audience cartoon from Japan - - and it’s spinning the same notion in its own unique vocabulary. Ganta’s trying to learn how to be stronger, right? So what does his psychotic mentor do first? He smashes all his life-preserving candies, so their target practice becomes a tense matter of survival for the kid. Then, his “Ganta Gun” or whatever gets to be wall-smashing powerful only after Ganta’s so low on blood that he’s basically anemic.
It’s a powerful message. A universally-applicable one, obviously.
It’s a shame, then, that the crew doesn’t seem to be practicing what they preach, because they obviously haven’t put everything on the line with what they’ve got. There’s only one episode left, so this is obviously going to end on a cliffhanger and, seeing as how many of lunatics have been saying that this series wasn’t actually that much of a hit in Japan, there’s a good chance that they’ll never be able to finish their story.
See kids? That’s what happens when you don’t listen to the Spartan Race dude and Batman’s prison mentors. That’s what happens when you save what you really want to do for later.
Watch this episode, “Gig of Despair” below and decide for yourself, then read my comments on the previous episode here.