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View Poll Results: AnoHana - Episode 5 Rating
Perfect 10 46 52.27%
9 out of 10 : Excellent 24 27.27%
8 out of 10 : Very Good 13 14.77%
7 out of 10 : Good 4 4.55%
6 out of 10 : Average 1 1.14%
5 out of 10 : Below Average 0 0%
4 out of 10 : Poor 0 0%
3 out of 10 : Bad 0 0%
2 out of 10 : Very Bad 0 0%
1 out of 10 : Painful 0 0%
Voters: 88. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 2011-05-18, 09:56   Link #161
VentAileron
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And in either cases, that makes the show lose credibility in your eyes?

Wait, you know what, let's do this through PM. Don't feel like posting short questions dedicated to one person.
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Old 2011-05-18, 10:05   Link #162
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Originally Posted by VentAileron View Post
Please elaborate.
Two words: Cross Game.

Let me add my voice to those of james0246 and risingstar3110. From the very beginning, I've had serious problems with the set-up of this particular drama, hinging as it does on an overly contrived plot device. I've already brought up the issue long ago in the generic thread. Having a walking, talking ghost be the main driver of all the drama completely kills my ability to suspend disbelief, and hence hampers my ability to enjoy the show.

The already overwrought drama then takes another turn for the incredible with a character regressing to a state of cross-dressing in order to relive memories of a dead friend. In the context of this show, it's completely abnormal and uncalled for and that's why, like james0246, I find it difficult to accept how everyone seems to be brushing aside the incident as an embarrassment they no longer want to talk about.

Death is supposed to be the major driver of all this show's angst, and as I've said before, death is most effective, dramatically, with the absence of the departed character. Instead, what I see is a somewhat older girl (real or not real, the debate continues on and on) milking audience sympathy every episode by crying at the slightest opportunity. It gets old, not to mention increasingly annoying.

Of course, I can accept that it's all just me. Something about this show just doesn't rub me in the right way, even though so many people seem to adore it. Taking a broader view, the one biggest thing I've noticed this season is how much my viewing tastes have changed with respect to the larger AnimeSuki community. I'm not sure what to make of it any more.
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Old 2011-05-18, 10:14   Link #163
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LOL in your opinion.
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Old 2011-05-18, 10:39   Link #164
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Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post
Taking a broader view, the one biggest thing I've noticed this season is how much my viewing tastes have changed with respect to the larger AnimeSuki community. I'm not sure what to make of it any more.
I also don't see why you should be bothered by that. Doesn't people like a unique taste and vomit at mainstream?

I agree with you that the reason Yukiatsu would cross-dress completely escapes me. But I've no problems agreeing with others that the friends just don't feel like talking about it, I mean, what is there to talk about? Everything that needed to be said had been said the instant the truth came to light. Also, if you find the event fundamentally not fitting inside the show, wouldn't you naturally feel better if it was dropped just as fast as it came? Since there is no point justifying it.

Having Menma physically appear on screen is indeed a way to emphasize the loss and raise sympathy among the audience. The show's emotional impact is almost solely based on that. You've to remember though that Menma's ghost isn't the real thing; she can only effectively communicate with Jinta. Episode 5's ending reminds us on that. Then again, Menma is indeed a very weak character that apparently only has one trait and that's 'naturally adorable', which is indeed quite annoying at times.

Your opinion seems to rest heavily on that you want your drama to be believable and resemble reality as much as possible. I will not argue about that, because it's a fundamental acceptance issue.

PS: I've no idea what you want to say with 'Cross Game'.
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Old 2011-05-18, 11:01   Link #165
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Originally Posted by VentAileron View Post
I also don't see why you should be bothered by that. Doesn't people like a unique taste and vomit at mainstream?

I agree with you that the reason Yukiatsu would cross-dress completely escapes me. But I've no problems agreeing with others that the friends just don't feel like talking about it, I mean, what is there to talk about? Everything that needed to be said had been said the instant the truth came to light. Also, if you find the event fundamentally not fitting inside the show, wouldn't you naturally feel better if it was dropped just as fast as it came? Since there is no point justifying it.

Having Menma physically appear on screen is indeed a way to emphasize the loss and raise sympathy among the audience. The show's emotional impact is almost solely based on that. You've to remember though that Menma's ghost isn't the real thing; she can only effectively communicate with Jinta. Episode 5's ending reminds us on that. Then again, Menma is indeed a very weak character that apparently only has one trait and that's 'naturally adorable', which is indeed quite annoying at times.

Your opinion seems to rest heavily on that you want your drama to be believable and resemble reality as much as possible. I will not argue about that, because it's a fundamental acceptance issue.

PS: I've no idea what you want to say with 'Cross Game'.
Cross Game uses a very similar premise, except it doesn't use having the actual spiritual representation of the dead being present to keep the weight of the event within the hearts and minds of the characters.

I would argue that AnoHana and Cross Game while using the same premise, are two very different shows in this sense.
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Old 2011-05-18, 11:12   Link #166
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And thank God for that, since we get two very different kinds of enjoyment from both - if we're so inclined.
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Old 2011-05-18, 11:13   Link #167
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Originally Posted by MeoTwister5 View Post
I would argue that AnoHana and Cross Game while using the same premise, are two very different shows in this sense.
I agree, they're impressively similar in the first episode, but from there onwards they definitely part their ways. Other than the dead person being or not being there, another main difference lies in the characters' behaviours.
In Cross Game, while still mourning their loss, the characters do move on since the beginning and try to live their lives as much normally as they can. In AnoHana instead we have deeply wounded characters that seem to be right in the middle of moving on (perhaps the final goal of the series) and are suffering a lot in the process. So yes, the two series are different imho.
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Old 2011-05-18, 11:20   Link #168
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I wouldn't mind the difference so much if the supernatural aspect of the show was somehow more subliminal (the way "ghosts" were represented in the VR world of Dennou Coil, for example), instead of being bluntly thrust into my face in this fashion. Ghosts may or may not be a figment of imagination, but the way Menma is presented in this show effectively eliminates all ambiguity, and hence serves only to raise my incredulity.

For a show that everyone is praising for its "realism", I completely fail to see how it could claim to be "realistic" when its key plot device defies all reality.

And that, in the main, is my major beef with AnoHana. To me, it's just not emotionally "honest", relying instead on highly contrived devices to draw and hold attention.
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Old 2011-05-18, 11:22   Link #169
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Yeah. While Cross Game is about characters who have essentially moved on with their lives and just trying to fulfill the last known final wish of the dead, AnoHana is about characters whose lives had stopped living on that day and trying desperately to escape the vortex they're in with the help of said character's spirit no less.

Quote:
I wouldn't mind the difference so much if the supernatural aspect of the show was somehow more subliminal (the way "ghosts" were represented in the VR world of Dennou Coil, for example), instead of being bluntly thrust into my face in this fashion. Ghosts may or may not be a figment of imagination, but the way Menma is presented in this show effectively eliminates all ambiguity, and hence serves to only raise my incredulity.

For a show that everyone is praising for its "realism", I completely fail to see how it could claim to be "realistic" when its key plot device defies all reality.

And that, in the main, is my major beef with AnoHana. To me, it's just not dramatically "honest" at all, relying on highly contrived devices to draw and hold attention.
The realism being praised for the show is mostly for the characters, their psych profiles and their states of grief, and not really the spiritual aspect. Even if you remove that or make it into a more realistic approach as opposed to a wandering ghost, the believability lies in the character's coping with their grief rather than them (or Jinta) coping with seeing an apparition of the dead every waking moment.
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Old 2011-05-18, 11:28   Link #170
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Originally Posted by MeoTwister5 View Post
The realism being praised for the show is mostly for the characters, their psych profiles and their states of grief, and not really the spiritual aspect. Even if you remove that or make it into a more realistic approach as opposed to a wandering ghost, the believability lies in the character's coping with their grief rather than them (or Jinta) coping with seeing an apparition of the dead every waking moment.
And why the heck do they need a ghost, of all things, to kick their butts out of moping? How is having a ghost being the key driver of all the action "realistic"?

Well, it's not really important, because we're arguing about subjective opinions and different expectations in the end, and there is of course no end to such argument. Suffice to say that AnoHana just isn't something I particularly enjoy at this stage.
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Old 2011-05-18, 11:30   Link #171
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MeoTwister5 View Post
The realism being praised for the show is mostly for the characters, their psych profiles and their states of grief, and not really the spiritual aspect. Even if you remove that or make it into a more realistic approach as opposed to a wandering ghost, the believability lies in the character's coping with their grief rather than them (or Jinta) coping with seeing an apparition of the dead every waking moment.
I couldn't agree more.
Nevertheless, if the "supernatural" aspect bothers some, it may or may not prove the bane of the series for them - I mean, it's not like we've had any actual conclusive evidence as to what exactly, Menma is, now have we?
Maybe those people would be vindicated later on.

Who knows?
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Old 2011-05-18, 12:07   Link #172
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Originally Posted by risingstar3110 View Post
Poppo can tell Jintan to take up a set of card. Point it away from him, and tell him to ask Menma to read the cards in order

If Menma can't read it, then she shows that she has no ability to perceive, a.k.a Jintan hallucination. But if Memma can read it out and Jintan knowing which card is which without looking, then i will have to ask you about the scientific explanation for that? Psychic?
You need to watch more Derren Brown. Like I said, even if you can't explain it scientifically, it's still more rational to believe there's some trick going on rather than believing in the supernatural, which only raises more questions than it solves.

Quote:
Wanna bet? The huge knot of this anime to be untied will be whether Menma really exist or not. And it will solve at least half (if not all) of the issues that we have right now

And running around looking for your hallucination, or eating your hallucination's cake is an crazy act by itself. So i doubt if he hasn't accepted her yet
What will Menma's existence really solve? I don't see how it solves any of the issues that the characters currently face. Did Menma's existence alone solve Jintan's shut in personality?

I said a part of him still thinks she's a hallucination. He's obviously mixed on it in ways even he doesn't fully understand. And Jintan didn't want to run around looking for a hallucination. The others did because they thought it was an actual ghost. Eating a hallucinations cake is crazy but like I said, Jintan probably feels that atleast a little reassured that he knows he's hallucinating. He's accepted her to a degree on a level that he isn't even fully aware of, but he hasn't accepted her completely. Accepting her completely would be taking a huge risk that he doesn't want to make. And it's only natural that he's going to be pessimistic about his odds.
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Old 2011-05-18, 13:23   Link #173
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Originally Posted by MeoTwister5 View Post
Cross Game uses a very similar premise, except it doesn't use having the actual spiritual representation of the dead being present to keep the weight of the event within the hearts and minds of the characters.
Spoiler for Cross Game (later episodes):

Last edited by Pellissier; 2011-05-18 at 13:44. Reason: this is better if put under spoiler tags because it refers to events happened in a quite advanced stage of Cross Game.
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Old 2011-05-18, 13:24   Link #174
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You need to watch more Derren Brown. Like I said, even if you can't explain it scientifically, it's still more rational to believe there's some trick going on rather than believing in the supernatural, which only raises more questions than it solves.
Controlled experiments. Sure, if you're so inclined, you can always come up with alternative explanations. Even if they have to become progressively sillier as evidence piles up. But really, do the Busters look like they're that reticent to believe in Menma's ghost?

Quote:
What will Menma's existence really solve? I don't see how it solves any of the issues that the characters currently face. Did Menma's existence alone solve Jintan's shut in personality?
Well, it would make a rather large difference on whether he should get himself checked into a hospital or not...
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Old 2011-05-18, 14:10   Link #175
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And why the heck do they need a ghost, of all things, to kick their butts out of moping? How is having a ghost being the key driver of all the action "realistic"?

Well, it's not really important, because we're arguing about subjective opinions and different expectations in the end, and there is of course no end to such argument. Suffice to say that AnoHana just isn't something I particularly enjoy at this stage.
While I acknowledge that I also share a tiny distaste with Memma's actions in this anime, I think it's silly to complain about something they tried to throw in your face from the beginning (At this point that is). I think that was part of the brilliance of the writing. From the start they blatantly showed you Memma, and confirmed she was dead rather fast, while she's running around Jintan this whole time. The story basically said, if you don't like this, this might not be for you.

There was no running around the issue. The anime never pretended to be an absolute capture of reality. Of course, how could it be if you have some supernatural entity walking around you like that? How many groups of friends such as these in the show ever even end up talking and making up with each other in some ways?

Of course I keep mentioning how interpretation of this show changes depending on whether Memma is a hallucination or a ghost, but nonetheless, the end goal of the show is reuniting the group of friends and moving on.

A little bit of use of fairy tale magic shouldn't take anything away from that unless you saw the whole thing as completely realistic from the start.

Granted, I think you seem to be arguing that this would be more poignant to you if the characters came to these solutions on their own. But if Memma is an hallucination of Jintan, isn't this the case then? That's why I said the interpretation matters and why I prefer than Memma really isn't a ghost.
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Old 2011-05-18, 14:51   Link #176
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Wanna bet? The huge knot of this anime to be untied will be whether Menma really exist or not. And it will solve at least half (if not all) of the issues that we have right now
I'm so taking you on.

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And why the heck do they need a ghost, of all things, to kick their butts out of moping? How is having a ghost being the key driver of all the action "realistic"?
No, this is not a reality show. But then, I don't find anything unrealistic really so far. It's definitely not unrealistic if Menma is a hallucination, and it's not unrealistic either if Menma turns out to be a real ghost. As I said before, what is a ghost anyway?
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Old 2011-05-18, 17:14   Link #177
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Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post
Two words: Cross Game.

Let me add my voice to those of james0246 and risingstar3110. From the very beginning, I've had serious problems with the set-up of this particular drama, hinging as it does on an overly contrived plot device. I've already brought up the issue long ago in the generic thread. Having a walking, talking ghost be the main driver of all the drama completely kills my ability to suspend disbelief, and hence hampers my ability to enjoy the show.

The already overwrought drama then takes another turn for the incredible with a character regressing to a state of cross-dressing in order to relive memories of a dead friend. In the context of this show, it's completely abnormal and uncalled for and that's why, like james0246, I find it difficult to accept how everyone seems to be brushing aside the incident as an embarrassment they no longer want to talk about.

Death is supposed to be the major driver of all this show's angst, and as I've said before, death is most effective, dramatically, with the absence of the departed character. Instead, what I see is a somewhat older girl (real or not real, the debate continues on and on) milking audience sympathy every episode by crying at the slightest opportunity. It gets old, not to mention increasingly annoying.

Of course, I can accept that it's all just me. Something about this show just doesn't rub me in the right way, even though so many people seem to adore it. Taking a broader view, the one biggest thing I've noticed this season is how much my viewing tastes have changed with respect to the larger AnimeSuki community. I'm not sure what to make of it any more.
as if you read my mind. EXACT same thoughts. a cross dresser ex-friend is bound to get you to ask SOME questions at least. it's like the anime is trying to surprise us for the hell of surprising. of course it's better than what i was expecting - a scene where they all cry, smile and say it's all okay, then yukiatsu stops crossdressing. friendship = magic, yeah. actually they did the same thing while avoiding the drama. yukiatsu said "i was able to stop thanks to you" to the glasses cold girl. so...they caught him in the act and thats all it took? yeah right. and noone in anime ever suggests to go to a shrink. i wonder why...as someone said - "there is a fine line between feeling sorry for a character and feeling that he/she should be in a mental facility".
and why is everyone still doubting that menma is a ghost? we see her withought jinta being anywhere near her.
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Old 2011-05-18, 18:14   Link #178
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so...they caught him in the act and thats all it took? yeah right. and noone in anime ever suggests to go to a shrink. i wonder why...as someone said - "there is a fine line between feeling sorry for a character and feeling that he/she should be in a mental facility".
Whatever the reasons that motivate Yukiatsu to dress up as Menma, either as a way to deal with his guilt, or to get people to forget about her, the act itself is not one that would require him to seek professional help- at least not in America. Yukiatsu's public life is not being affected by his cross-dressing. He continues to function in the society. The fact that no one is asking him to see professional should not be taken as one of the problems that make the series unrealistic to some viewers.

In any case, it has become increasingly difficult for me to grasp the complaints over "realism." This series is realistic in its portrayal of how people react to the losses of closed ones, to their growing pains, and their angst. One might enjoy this series more by focusing more on how the characters interact with each other and dealing with their past.

Last edited by ipodi; 2011-05-18 at 23:25.
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Old 2011-05-18, 23:40   Link #179
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Are you sure? 0_o
Most of your points (and assumption) there also surround whether Menma really exist or not....
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Old 2011-05-19, 02:14   Link #180
TinyRedLeaf
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No, this is not a reality show. But then, I don't find anything unrealistic really so far. It's definitely not unrealistic if Menma is a hallucination, and it's not unrealistic either if Menma turns out to be a real ghost. As I said before, what is a ghost anyway?
Realism is not about being real.
Realism (noun)
...a way of thinking and acting based on the facts of a situation and what appears to be possible, rather than on hopes for things which are unlikely to happen.
The key concern in any work of fiction is plausibility. Without establishing a plot that is plausible, suspension of disbelief becomes that much harder and that, in turn, makes it difficult for viewers/readers to enjoy the fiction, particularly fiction that seeks to be "realistic" rather than "fantastic".

And, pardon me, I just find it incredibly implausible for an otherwise normal guy to regress into cross-dressing just because he misses a dead friend terribly. It's the kind of plot device that works only within the sphere of anime. If I were to show AnoHana to viewers who are unfamiliar with anime, I am 99% certain that Yukiatsu's predicament would draw far more WTFs than sombre understanding.

That's a problem I notice I frequently encounter with Mari Okada's screenplays. In True Tears, she threw in the trite device of sibling incest, both as a red herring and as an incredibly implausible plot development to drive a wedge between a pair of characters. However, within the anime community, such devices are easier to digest, because it happens so frequently that fans have long since learnt to shrug it off, accepting it as normal.

To me, her works seem to suggest that she lacks sufficient insight on real human emotions and predicaments, and therefore relies on tropes to carry her stories. It's fine to me if that's what fans in general want. Hell, why would I want to convince anyone to dislike what they enjoy?

But, by the same token, don't turn around and try to convince me that any of such tropes are "realistic". They just aren't, not within the context of this particular drama, because there simply has not been enough development to explain how it could have taken such a drastic turn.

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In any case, it has become increasingly difficult for me to grasp the complaints over "realism." This series is realistic in its portrayal of how people react to the losses of closed ones, to their growing pains, and their angst. One might enjoy this series more by focusing more on how the characters interact with each other and dealing with their past.
And the major problem for me is that Menma the ghost is an incredibly annoying distraction from the so-called "realism" displayed by the rest of the cast.

Menma is an actual entity instead of a haunting memory. Her very presence in every episode saps attention away from far more interesting developments, such as revelations of how Anaru is growing as a character, even as Jintan remains pathetically stuck in a hikkikomori rut (let's be honest, he hasn't grown much since the beginning of the series).

If Menma were a stronger character, I may not have minded as much. But as she is at the moment, she inspires sympathy but not empathy. To me, she's like pretty wallpaper. She's cute, sure, but that's about all we can say about her right now. She's there to tug at heartstrings, effectively so, but there's little we have seen about her to allow us to understand why she is the way she is and how she intends to move on. That draws tears, true, but it most definitely does not inspire understanding, at least not for me.

Of course, I would reiterate that I fully understand that it's all subjective. That said, I would appreciate if people don't brush off valid criticism as a simple refusal to suspend disbelief. How well a viewer is able to do that depends as much on the storyteller as it does on the viewer managing his own expectations.
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