Anime Vice News

Powering Through HUNTER X HUNTER #111-120

I could use some Nen of my own to withstand this.

Earlier on, I described this series as an ongoing demonstration. It showed the difference between how a scene sounds on paper and how it actually plays on screen. That was Togashi’s goal: spinning compelling yarns with characters that were almost intentionally bland. At the time, I meant that positively. The prospect, for instance, of Gon playing dodgeball sounded dumb, at first, but ended up playing quite engagingly in the episode itself.

While HxH still exists to demonstrate that concept-to-execution gulf, it’s now showing the negative inverse, instead. If you told me we’d see ten episodes where this whole gang of superheroes finally raided this horrific super-villain’s palace, and waged war against all his powerful minions in a non-stop series of highly-destructive battles… well… I would’ve said “Game on!”

Yet, here I was, watching over three hours of combat that was somehow never that exciting. Initially, I wondered if that might be due to something simple, like the unwisely-drab palette they selected. Thinking about it more, though, the colors wouldn’t really matter that much. Instead, this is actually the point where the cleverness of Togashi’s conceit has dried up.

YU YU HAKUSHO had fights that were just as protracted as this, but the key difference was that there was always some sense of stakes. Yusuke could spend 30 episodes trading blows with Toguro, but it was always stressed that, if he lost, Toguro was going to go on and kill Keiko and the rest of his loved ones. HxH has skirted any of that stuff, and simply thrown in any fighters to balloon its cast in a really self-defeating way. Why should I care what happens to Knuckle? Would it have made more sense to involve Kurapka and Leorio in this, since they were properly introduced? What does it matter if the King is defeated, if he’s just lollygagging over his world conquest plot? It’s just fighting for fighting’s sake.

You can accuse a lot of other shonen of that, but DBZ and YYH always at least maintain some sense of stakes. Innocents being protected. And I can’t really stay involved without stakes. After I fulfill my pledge to catch up with this show’s most recent episodes, I’ll definitely be parting ways with HxH.

Read my comments on the previous batch of episodes here.

Kino88on May 19, 2014 at 4 p.m.
Yup, well said, this show has completely thrown away any and all compelling Reasons to keep watching, that raid on the palace was shockingly dull, It gets to a point were there are so many side characters being juggled That the show's sleepy narrator dose more talking and explaining than Any one else, it was like having some one read the worlds most boring Manga, even the shots were done in agonizing freeze frame, And the battle between Knuckle and Yupie has got to be one of The most mindblowingly long, dragged out, and ultimately pointless Battles in anime history!!!, So in conclusion, this show fucking sucks!!!,
sickVisionz moderator on May 19, 2014 at 4:14 p.m.
Earlier on, I described this series as an ongoing demonstration. It showed the difference between how a scene sounds on paper and how it actually plays on screen.

That's exactly my take on it. Up to a point, HxH was always much better than it sounded on paper. This arc has thrown that out and now it's totally as bad as it sounds on paper. God bless you for powering on to the most current episodes. I stopped right around where you are now and honestly haven't missed it since. Bleach might be the only series I've seen that rivals HxH for having a really good run of 60+ episodes and then completely shitting the bed. Maybe HxH bounces back but unlike Bleach, HxH is ongoing. When I came into Bleach I had the luxury of just skipping past the dreck a getting back to the good parts.

Lurkeroon May 19, 2014 at 5:38 p.m.

As much as I disliked HxH as it progressed, I am still going to tune back in when the next arc starts because it seems much more interesting. The long, slow crawl through the chimera ant arc lost me around episode 105 and I just read episode summaries after that. It was very disappointing that the show I initially started watching because it seemed uniquely against typical shonen tropes had fully embraced them at this point.

rubberluffyon May 19, 2014 at 8:24 p.m.

This is the best part of this arc and it's baffling reading these negative comments. Do people really not understand what's going on? There's 5 million people outside the palace, ready to be turned into an army for the King, he's ready to take over the world but "maybe" he won't kill all the humans, and he has the power to do it. This is literally the only part of HxH that actually has any stakes, but it's about two species who can't coexist, not about anyone destroying the world. Knuckle, Morel, Killua, Gon, and Meloreon's only goal is to separate the King from his Guards. Whether they win (or lose) doesn't matter, so long as they are stopped or delayed from being near the King.

Don't compare this to stuff like DBZ and YYH because it's not trying to do anything similar.

And also it's around this section that Netero's voice actor passed away, so that probably put a hurt on the production schedule.

jj_jacksonon May 19, 2014 at 8:40 p.m.

opinions vary i guess. this arc may not be everyones cup of tea. but i dont get why everyones bashing it like its the worst thing they have ever seen. and this does have the biggest stakes the series has seen so far..im sure they explained thousands of people are one day away from either being turned into ants or food.

zaldaron May 19, 2014 at 9:11 p.m.

My god I can finally get into the site! What has been up with it recently? So glad...ok now to read this...get back to JOJO...oh man does it get AWESOME! The pillar men are HILARIOUSLY FABULOUS!

sickVisionz moderator on May 20, 2014 at 7:43 a.m.

@jj_jackson: It's not the worst anyone has ever seen, but it's generic shonen drivel. Previously it was one of the better shonen series airing. Now it's down there in mediocrity with the others. If you're a huge shonen fan that might be enough for you as perhaps even mediocre shonen is enjoyable. For others who are less interested in the genre, there's much better stuff to watch than HxH right now.

@rubberluffy: I don't think plot confusion is the cause of people's dislike of it.

Marshal Victoryon May 20, 2014 at 12:28 p.m.

@sickVisionz: No people dislike it because it shows the heroes doing things they thought they never would. The main characters are not the happy go lucky ones from the 1st arc. But again opinions vary. But opinions formed on just the negative or worse the forced perspective negative weight much less as time goes on.

@rubberluffy: When some marathon a series they skip over... um stuff. Like little things like sub plots , main story, back ground detail an the basic building blocks of the ongoing story. Not saying thats going on here other than after this Tom should never ever marathon a anime series again. Its to his loss not gain in doing so.

@jj_jackson: Not every one is just the same people. Who know better shonen than you or I do. Not that thats insulting or any thing. Whew good thing they did not name that better than this series which does not follow normal shonen progression but is claimed to be generic. Yes I may have hurt my eyes rolling them typing that last sentance.

TOM stop now. No need for you to suffer! I mean marathoning a series has not done a help gain insight into the series. If any thing its caused you to miss whole chunks of plot, sub plot, back ground an just a few million people standing out side of the villians lair who mostly will die if he wins.

Odds now of you enjoying any thing in the rest of the series now is shot. Minds made up even if you think its not. So part ways here clean . Opinions vary. Mine was informed on watching the series. For others not so much.But opinions vary.

Lurkeroon May 20, 2014 at 2:33 p.m.

@rubberluffy said:

This is the best part of this arc and it's baffling reading these negative comments. Do people really not understand what's going on? There's 5 million people outside the palace, ready to be turned into an army for the King, he's ready to take over the world but "maybe" he won't kill all the humans, and he has the power to do it. This is literally the only part of HxH that actually has any stakes, but it's about two species who can't coexist, not about anyone destroying the world. Knuckle, Morel, Killua, Gon, and Meloreon's only goal is to separate the King from his Guards. Whether they win (or lose) doesn't matter, so long as they are stopped or delayed from being near the King.

Don't compare this to stuff like DBZ and YYH because it's not trying to do anything similar.

And also it's around this section that Netero's voice actor passed away, so that probably put a hurt on the production schedule.

The thing that bothers me is that the stakes keep going up yet the series is relying on some of the most amateur fighters to get things done. The new characters introduced during this arc could have easily been replaced with the amazingly strong characters in the previous arc. I get that the King would fight the supposedly strongest hunter, but to not involve more strong characters when the fate of the entire human race is on the line is ridiculous.

Neferpitou killed Kite in a matter of seconds. To think that he/she couldn't immediately kill characters who we know are weaker than Kite is silly. The difference in power has been established as too great. The Chimera Ant Royal Guard is near unstoppable. So what do they do? Send in some of the most amateur hunters available.

I know I am sort of jumping over the place, but it was really disappointing when the humans didn't put forth a more powerful effort.

SpectroRaphaelon May 20, 2014 at 4:05 p.m.

@jj_jackson: That all falls apart when:

The Rose bomb is revealed and it turns out that all that is needed to squash the ants is a bomb that's not even expensive or hard to acquire, but cheap and mass produced. I know the arc isn't over yet, but I'm waiting for an explanation as to why such a bomb couldn't just have been dropped on the ants in NGL. There would have been no human casualties and the hunters knew exactly where they were. Having an answer of: "Netero just wanted to test his strength" would be very unsatisfying too, as putting 5 million people in danger just for that would be ludicrous.

If the manga explains it, then I'll wait for it to show up in the anime, but please don't spoil it for me.

takashichea moderator is online on May 20, 2014 at 4:18 p.m.

@SpectroRaphael:

If you're going to put spoiler, put it in a tag. The way you format it will cause trouble. I'll edit your comment.

zaldaron May 20, 2014 at 4:36 p.m.

@Marshal Victory: ok first what do you mean by the forced perspective negative? No one is forcing my perspective, and Tom lays out the reasons for his dislike pretty clearly...and they are not what you imply. I'm glad you like it but honestly you seem to be pretty easily entertained when it comes to anime - and to not like the crazier more thought provoking things Tom at times seems to like. Sub plots if missed when you watch a lot of the show together are missed because they are not shown adequately by the series OR you are not made to care about them enough AND to many subplots can cause digression from the main plot that is annoying. The characters those who like the show seem to like, like knuckles, are not the main characters and I can understand why people would be annoyed at screen time taken away from the main characters. And wow did your response to JJ not make any sense...reword please...

This isn't the type of show for me as it focuses on characters and not ideas and the characters seem pretty one sided (and it is long long shonen which I don't normally like) but really you are not understanding Tom's criticism and it almost seems like you are doing it purposely - hence my reply.

Get back to JoJo Tom, its a better and more entertaining show and happens to be the one I am following.

jj_jacksonon May 20, 2014 at 4:54 p.m.

the only shonen i watch happens to be Naruto,bleach and one piece. well plus hxh. i have been watching anime for 15 years almost and have seen hundreds of shows from evangelion,cowboy bebop to hellsing, and Madoka Magica. so i guess if you have a similar background we just have dfferent opinions on the anime. All i have heard is how it falls into the typical shonen this or that but honestly i haven't seen any similarities. this arc is just different enough from mostly anything i've seen to put it down in my opinion. its more than hey there's a bad guy lets defeat him black and white. there's a gray area in this arc that never gets addressed in other anime as smoothly as this. but that's just me.

I can't stress enough that the majority of the people who have a problem with this arc are p'd off because the story doesn't go their way. People are spreading "your not gonna like this arc" like a disease so the people who are seeing for the first time have already the misconception that its gonna be terrible and they aren't gonna like it. I'VE SEEN WORSE. FAR WORSE. people who bash this are the same people who like fairy tail which is fine. but i for one think that show is horrible. its just different opinions i guess.

@Marshal Victory No one has mentioned anything good about this arc and trust me there are alot of good points. but yet none are ever brought up because of the PACING issue. Like this is the first shonen ever to have a different pacing i dont get it.

@SpectroRaphael But surely...you can't expect the hunter association..to use that method on every foe they come across...there are human lifes in that area villages, lakes, wild life...obviously the damage was already done but the association had faith in netero's abilities to not have to resort to such tactics.. what netero used was a last resort...a threat doesnt come and you just say "hey f it lets just kill everything in that area!" unless this is resident evil 2 and its raccoon city or something..

Donwunon May 20, 2014 at 6:14 p.m.

Hey now i've always supported this show and still do. Although the pacing for this arc in particular is bad but all the other elements are there for me personally fine and dandy.

I can understand why most are frustrated with this arc i am too even though i still love the plot where i disagree with Tom in particular is the...there is no feeling of stakes stance. This makes no sense to me outright but i understand what he means in context as the core issue's / confrontations of this arc are not clearly defined as bad guy X needs to fight good guy Y to resolve conflict. Togashi is weaving a much more complex and thought provoking theme than the normal shounen formula you've seen in every other show. Could it have been executed better in this anime form? Sure.....does this arc alone make the whole anime terrible...no but everybody's entitled to their opinion...of course

The second gripe i have with Toms write ups atm is they seem slanted on everything hxh is doing wrong and nothing more on what it has been doing right which i gather is due to the nature of him powering through the show wanting to get to the resolution as another user pointed out

but anyhow it is what it is. i am disappointed this arc has nearly taken up half of the shows episode count which what was made of 3 arcs of this show previously but i've learnt with many many anime shows things can turn from one extreme to the next and the fandom will shift from one side to the other...so yeah...

takashichea moderator is online on May 20, 2014 at 6:26 p.m.

@Donwun said:

The second gripe i have with Toms write ups atm is they seem slanted on everything hxh is doing wrong and nothing more on what it has been doing right which i gather is due to the nature of him powering through the show wanting to get to the resolution as another user pointed out

That's why we encourage folks to write blogs or PM Tom stuff that they write up with passion. When Tom and Sam Weller were talking bad about Toriko, TORIKO #147 is Hysterical... but Probably Not in the Way it Intended, my teammate, and I did a roundtable we wanted more of our Toriko wiki editing teammates to join. We prepare another way to look at Toriko, good and bad, TORIKO Roundtable -- AV MOD Material

If you feel about Hunter x Hunter, you're welcome to post an article like WayBig and I had done. I haven't seen Hunter x Hunter. I find myself reading the comments and the article.

Destinyheroknight is online on May 20, 2014 at 6:52 p.m.

I really need to catch up on HxH anime, my knowledge is just from the Manga. By saying that, I wish this arc move more faster, It like over 100 chapters (the longest Shonen arc in Manga, I have read) I can understand Tom's feeling

Marshal Victoryon May 20, 2014 at 11:47 p.m.

@zaldar: Um ok maybe re-reading what I said may help . Ya jumped to some conclusions not backed by what I said. Also before ya go on about how I am a push over on entertainment have you even watched Psyco Pass yet? All that talk of watching something different an thought provoking sounds great. Action to back that up? Like even trying something that would be out of your comfort zone perhaps? I do most every season thats why my watch list is so large at the start of the season. An narrows as the season goes on. Tween the two of us who tries the most different types of anime? We discussed this before. Just because I will try more types of anime does not mean I love every show. Hell many just pass as average. Even have a list if ya recall ?

Honestly that whole " you seem to be pretty easily entertained when it comes to anime - and to not like the crazier more thought provoking things" seems unfounded an just a nice way to say my opinion does not matter.Which it may not ,but then again opinions vary.I would ask again have you watched Psyco Pass? Tom liked it to. But I recommended it so its probably what grade school level cartoons? Not that I believe that but conclusion jumping sure can make things seem that way.

Forced negative perspective is very similar to bias. Except its when one experiences something in a entertainment form they don't like, then that colors their opinion about the rest of the series/show. 1st encountered this in a comic shop years ago when guy was talking to me about why he quit comics in the 70s an every thing 80s on sucks. So I ask the simple question what comics he tried from the 80s on? Why none he proudly reported cause they all suck. So how do you know they suck I asked if you never read any. Because they do! He forced his negative opinion on to works he never even read.

So for the record the ones forcing the perspective is them onto themselves. See this when some one just gets jaded with what they once liked / loved. When a show does not go the way it should in their opinion. That negative frustration then becomes the show. Not looking at the show for what it is, just what it could have been. Thats is the perspective part in a nut shell.

Now thats very similar to what some do with anime.Some quit at some point then proceed to tell you why the rest of the series sucks that they never saw. Hey I could be that way with Jojo cause I only watched 2 episodes of the 1st season, an it did not do much for me. But I plan on revisiting it some time. Tho that would be enuff by some standards to trash not just the 1st season but the second as well. Thats the reason why forced negative opinion do not stand up to the test of time. Cause some one will watch more of the series than them an call them on it. Or worse yet just dismiss their opinion from that point on.

We clear now?

Marshal Victoryon May 21, 2014 at 6:34 a.m.

@zaldar: Just so im clear on what your saying. Your argument is Toms opinion is right on about a show you never watched to this point, an do not like anyway. But im wrong because In your opinion I'm "easly entertained". An he should get back to Jo Jo .

That basicly what I took from what ya have said in this thread. Is that right?

zaldaron June 5, 2014 at 4:12 p.m.

Weee!!!!

Ah I had forgotten how much fun sparing with you was. The easily entertained aspect comes from fact that you seem to like everything and a show doesn't need much to entertain you. Sure you liked psycho pass but you liked a lot of other stuff to. Something has to get to psycho pass level for me to like it. Now I haven't watched this show true and judging by the fact it is long shonen it doesn't seem like it would be the kind of thing I would like, but that doesn't mean I can not have an opinion on it based on what Tom says.

If it does the things he says it does (which I expect it does) than it isn't good. There are non-opinon based methods of measuring what makes something good and what doesn't. Character development = good. Wooden characters that don't change not good (this has nothing to do with this show).

As for watching things outside my comfort zone sometimes but not often no. My time for entertainment is very very limited (which is why I haven't been in secret world) so I am only going to spend it on something I am pretty sure I will like. JoJo as it is shonen was a step outside my comfort zone (as was D-Gray man actually) both of which I have come to like. Though Jo Jo is much better.

Your opinon matters sure - I just think Tom is more likely to be right here, and none of the evidence from the show you have brought in works for me. Drawing things out to long, not having stakes that are emphasized enough, focusing on minor characters. Not going to make me like a show.

Marshal Victoryon June 5, 2014 at 5:50 p.m.

@zaldar: Yeah but see things were missed in the powering threw. Simply not seen or took wrong. Oddly enuff in The Elder Scrolls online joined a guild named after Fairy Tale an over 450 people in it most are big anime fans. An many love the HxH season atm. None voiced a "I hate it." None voiced gee it has no character development cause its got that in spades. Not one said gee if this only all this fighting had something at stake.

But if its not your cup of tea then simply do not drink. But since those who have not watched really should not be telling me what an why I should or should not like. You also mistaken that because I have a big list on the average an above that every thing I watch goes on there. But you are correct I have more time to kill than you. So really less than half of what I watch makes it on the list. Just do not assume to tell in general this is perfect for them an the greatest. When I do not know their tastes.

Similar in this series seems some missed the character development. Heck even one of the characters was surprised at what the "boys" would do. Also its refreshing for me as a anime viewer to watch a story unfold slowly. In the tell it to me yesterday oops to slow world we live in that change of pace is nice.

Also Issue 9 is out an has a collectors edition in TSW.Got a blog post on it with vid so ya might want to check it out. Oh just to give ya oranges an oranges. Pouf one of the kings royal guard in HxH manipulations of people in the story is as complex as some of the stories in TSW. Think of the main story with the Loki like guy.So does that mean your easily amused to?

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