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Old 2013-04-16, 14:28   Link #32141
Renall
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drifloon View Post
I really can't agree with the idea that Yasu's self-loathing is some kind of exaggeration at all. If anything, it's practically the defining point of her character. The fact that she sees herself as furniture, her hatred of herself for being unable to love, the constant self-vilification and mockery of her own beliefs that is so present in her message bottles...It's most certainly an important point, and really, I don't see anything that unbelievable about it. I'm honestly continually stricken by how genuinely human Yasu's character is, actually.
Well of course it's human. But it's also extremely questionable whether her mental state was actually as damaged as she may have portrayed it. It's a legitimate question given the difficulty in knowing enough about the change in her character from 1984 to 1986.

Plus if the letters are pre-incident, the state she was in while writing them may have differed quite a bit once the actual time came. What if Battler wasn't what she expected? What if she was foiled as she'd hoped? What if she just got cold feet because there's a big difference between doing something private and harmless and doing something to actual people?
Quote:
And as for whether she makes a believable culprit, well...the fact is, a lot of people commit murder, and many of those aren't people that would have seemed to be the type to kill to the outside, even to those who felt they were really close to the person in question. Self-hatred is seriously an incredibly destructive thing, as I know from experience; if it's kept bottled up inside for long enough, without anyone else knowing about it, it can definitely become all-consuming and yes, it can ultimately turn into a total apathy and inability to care about anything, like the Beatrice we see in some of Clair's scenes or in the EP4 tea party. Such a state of mind would more likely lead to suicide than anything else, but yes, I can see it leading to some kind of desperate, futile gamble like the one Yasu ended up pulling, on the basis that she has nothing to lose anyway and can't really bring herself to care about the consequences, however much she might intelectually understand them.

...And, well, whether that's something that can be sympathised with is ultimately up to the reader, I guess! But on whether it's actually believable or not, I honestly think that it is. A person can definitely be perfectly intelectually sound, even to the extent of being able to plan and write something as complicated as the message bottle stories (and indeed the murders themselves), while still being a complete and utter mess emotionally. With all the
complicated stuff Yasu's had to deal with, I can definitely see her getting to that point. Maybe you would call that "insane", but in the end that's just a label for a state that a normal person can't identify with. Being "insane" doesn't necessarily mean that one isn't capable of logical, rational thought; a person can intelectually know that something's wrong, but that really doesn't hold much power if they're too emotionally ruined to care.
Why pick a day when there are a dozen innocent people completely unrelated to her problem? Because Battler just happened to be coming back that day? What stopped her from buying a knife, calling him on the phone, and meeting him for a heart-to-heart/lover's suicide? That goes beyond self-destructive or even sick and starts bordering on willful, deliberate evil. I do not believe that Yasu was evil. Even if she were mentally unstable, she is sane enough to at least realize that she can kill herself at any point she wants. If she decides that she cares so little for anything that she'll just murder everyone who cares about her and several people who had nothing to do with anything... well that's monstrous. I could totally understand snapping and killing herself. I could understand killing Battler. Where do you draw the line at what you think is understandable and what you recognize as morally reprehensible? Is it slaughtering a nine-year-old girl? Is it murdering some guy who just worked there? Is it orphaning a six-year-old? If she is intellectually capable of understanding these things, how does she justify them? If she's capable of detailed planning, why not plan a way to get as many unrelated innocents as possible out of the way before sealing up her catbox?

If she is so lacking in empathy as to fail entirely to understand that her actions do irreparable harm to people who have not intentionally or deliberately harmed her, she does not deserve to have her heart understood. That's not spite, that's simple fairness. Why should I feel sorry for one who had no sympathy for others? Someone who, despite swearing up and down that she could not be loved, was loved? Proposed as you have, we're talking about a culprit who was so selfish, so lacking in empathy, so downright indifferent to the world that she found it perfectly acceptable to do unto others the evil that was done unto her, recognizing it was evil and unjustified, while entirely ignoring those who loved her.

That she was treated badly is not something to justify or excuse (although really... she wasn't treated very badly). It's bad, for sure. However, it also doesn't excuse using innocent lives as window dressing to your own selfish desperation, particularly when that desperation is at least partially your own fault. Why was she desperate? Why was she broken down? That wasn't all done to her. She did it to herself. I think she recognizes that.

So yes, I understand her self-loathing. But I will not excuse her actions if she was in fact the culprit. I also don't believe she was, so I don't really have any conflict in that respect. There's enough evidence that Beatrice and Yasu are scapegoating themselves to make it pretty clear to me that when push came to shove and her desperation and emotion came to a head, her existence was validated by someone and she could not bring herself to do all the things she wrote herself as being able to do (and then hesitantly, at any rate). I don't think Battler would forgive those actions, but he'd certainly forgive those feelings. Battler had the ability to stop those actions by validating those feelings. Battler lived. Something still happened. Do the math, I'd say.

---

Let's set that aside for a moment though, and ask this:

Assume that you're right. Why would Eva defend and protect this kind of person? She has absolutely no reason to do so. To her, some goddamn lunatic snapped and killed everyone. Yasu is a person she barely even knows. Even if she understands Yasu's reasoning and emotional state (a bit of a stretch, I think, given Eva's complete lack of sympathy for Natsuhi), why hide it from Ange? Why would that truth be so hard to deal with? Why bottle it up? Why keep it from the world?

She loses nothing exposing Yasu's crime. She gains nothing from hiding it; worse, she loses Ange, the daughter she always wanted and the only family she has left. Even if Yasu admitted to her it was about Battler, Eva would surely recognize that it wasn't Battler's fault Yasu overreacted as she did. Even accepting this proposal, and even granting Eva more empathy than she demonstrably shows, Eva's actions make no sense.

There has to be a nexus between Battler, Yasu, and Eva. A point of common ground that all three would be willing to cover for. Eva has no reason to protect Yasu, but she does have reason to protect herself or Battler. Battler might have reason to protect Eva, and definitely has reason to protect Yasu and himself. Yasu has reason to protect Battler, but potentially little reason to protect herself (why should she care?) and no clear reason to protect Eva (again, what's Eva ever done for her?).

Ange wants to believe Eva is the culprit, but the text suggests the opposite was the case. Yasu wants people to believe she is the culprit, but it appears that she's actually covering for someone or hiding something beyond her own involvement given her characterization and Beatrice's turn toward being a sympathetic figure. Battler as the culprit is both mocked in ep7 and ep8 and is covered in the portrayal of Black Battler, who appears to be doing things mostly because that's the role he's been forced into. Given ep8's ending, I have to think all three of them were somehow caught up in something that surprised all of them. Something that Battler and Yasu felt culpable for, but which they didn't directly cause.

Now what could that be?
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Old 2013-04-16, 20:19   Link #32142
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Honestly I think Yasu was represented poorly. To understand Yasu is like playing a guessing game on how was her life and how she reacted to it. It doesn't help her story is filled with subjective narrative that needs to be interpreted, contrasting statements that probably were meant to express her inner confusion but that are often left hanging there unresolved so that one can't say what Yasu decided in the end, informations kept unrevealed, stuffs that seem hard to believe (like her 6 years obsession over a twelve year old or her refusal to do something productive about it), decisions that seem to have no purpose (why killing everyone?) and that we don't even know if she took in the end (did she really kill everyone in the end or just wrote about it?) all mixed up in an evidently complicate psychology that, to be understood, needed to be laid out clearly at least in the end, not just abandoned to speculations from readers especially when the idea is you should be able to justify her and feel sympathy for her while she's suspected to be the culprit of cold blood murdering so many people.

Yasu clearly had multiple issues but in the end we're left to speculate over them. Was her deformity that bothered her or was her infertility or was the fact that she believed Battler would love only a woman with big breasts while George only one that could produce children or was all of the above? Or was the fact that even if she felt female she was actually male only even as a male she couldn't meet the... expected requirements?

Did she planned killing someone or was something more harmless or she planned it but then didn't make it because she backed out or because her plan was hijacked?

It doesn't make things better that, in the end, we don't even know which was her role in Prime. She was likely up on something but it's unlikely in the end she murdered someone as implied by Ep 8 ending and by Eva's action that Renall analyzed so well. Did she murder herself? Or did she merely destroyed her identity? Even this is left up to debate.

So... as far as I'm involved, Yasu had a lot of potential but, in the end, her portray was left too unclear so that to judge her one has to rely on what he speculates over her and while doing this in an ongoing story is fun, now that Umineko has ended honestly I'm not so amused as it seems more a characterization hole than everything else.
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Old 2013-04-20, 21:20   Link #32143
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Well the Ep 2 teaparty at least seems to imply that there is a very big difference between wishing harm on others (as Rosa surely often did, confirmed by the ep 8 manga apparently) and actually seeing it happen. There is also the theme in ep 7 that Yasu can't control whether the game occurs or not. Combined with what Ryu is saying (and Beatrice's "can't be helped" attitude to her public perception in ep 8) it makes me wonder if she wrote the two message bottles before hand, killed herself (either figuratively or literally) quite early in the family conference, and all the fallout built from there. Sher can't control it because she is dead, and if the secret family heir exposes themselves then mysteriously dies/disappears (assumedly after getting some reaction from Battler), imagine the fallout and inheritance battles that might then occur. This could make early Beatrice the anger and pent-up emotions that Yasu felt, and latter beato the guilt at what her actions caused (ep 4 teacparty beato screams depression). Just a thought.

As for mental state, having just begun to study psychiatry recently I can say with full confidence that you can be seriously mentally unstable and still maintain planning functions (though people who are psychotic often don't, but there is not strong evidence to say that Yasu was delusional or hallucinating). Regardless, people who have schizophrenia (the classic but poorly portrayed voices in head) have been known to hurt family and friends and unrelated people, but they don't classically match Yasu. To my limited knowledge, Yasu is much more of a borderline type. Borderline personality disorder means the person is on the border between neruotic (unhealthy mental functioning) and psychotic (altered view of reality). They often have a history of childhood trauma or sexual abuse, and they live in this black and white world where people are either the Best Thing Ever, or scum of the Earth (and can switch). They have been known to test others through shouting insults at them or threatening harm or suicide (as they don't truly believe anyone would stick around) and usually have intense self-loathing (they are afraid of happiness, because they think they don't deserve it and won't ever receive it). They can occasionally develop into psychosis, but I don't think this is the message we are meant to take from Yasu.

I believe that even if Yasu isn't borderline, the issues remain. The reason we are meant to feel sorry for her is that even when she (for ease of use) is surrounded by so much love, she can't see it and dosen't think she deserves it. These people can be impossible to live with, they can be incredibly cruel and violent, but the reason we feel sorry for them is because deep down they are fractured and hurt. They tend to hate themselves more than anyone else, and simply can't deal with that emotion. I think that is what we are meant to feel for Yasu, not sympathetic to her actions, but empathetic to just how broken she must have been inside.

This is supported by the way we were meant to feel towards the whole Mion/Shion thing, and also because in real life this forums anger essentially represents how people respond to these people. Their therapists are usually sadly aware of how damaged they are, while the people who they harm (or who know them ie us) can only be appalled at their actions (and usually rightly so).

Once again not saying Yasu has borderline, just that I think this is how we are meant to approach it.
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Old 2013-04-21, 06:41   Link #32144
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Hm, looking up borderline personality disorder, I think you're probably right. That does seem to fit pretty well.

I think this could also be applicable here. If you look at the "Signs and symptoms" part of it, it's quite striking how well it fits.
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Old 2013-04-21, 09:35   Link #32145
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There is a lot of overlap, and I don't think yasu was designed to be a textbook case, but is just also not that far removed from reality.
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Old 2013-04-21, 10:39   Link #32146
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Speaking of Yasu, for anyone who's interested the "Stupid Goats Seacats Reread Session tumblr liveblog / analysis" is now done with Episode 2.

The google doc with every post for easier reading can be found here.

For anyone who missed it the first time around, the link for episode 1 is here. It's a reread of Umineko by two different people each giving their own insights, with a specific focus on Yasu's perspective. It, imo, does a great job of highlighting a lot of the stuff that was troubling her, and shows just how much of it Ryukushi baked into the story even early on.
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Old 2013-04-21, 11:11   Link #32147
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Yeah, I've been following that and very much enjoying it. Their interpretation of Yasu and general way of looking at Umineko is really refreshing, I think.
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Old 2013-04-21, 11:11   Link #32148
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Stupid Goats is awesome, thanks for keeping us up to date.
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Old 2013-04-21, 13:09   Link #32149
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This is just priceless
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Old 2013-04-25, 12:47   Link #32150
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The Stupid Goats read-through is excellent. Thanks for linking the document file, Oroboro!

In the re-read, one of the people mentions that in original plans, Natsuhi and Gohda were going to be having an affair. I may vaguely remember hearing something about this before now, but I have no idea where. Does anyone know the source of that information?
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Old 2013-04-25, 20:44   Link #32151
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Oh my god, that was a brilliant readthrough. I just finished reading through the analysis of ep 1. Will he/she/they do all the episodes?
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Old 2013-04-26, 01:32   Link #32152
AuraTwilight
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They intend to, yes.

And there's two readers, FYI. One of them is a girl, I'm not sure of the other and I can't tell you which is which. The archive style's kind of weird.
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Old 2013-04-26, 09:57   Link #32153
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Excellent. I've replayed the games a couple of times, and must honestly admit that they are noticing things I never did. Makes me appreciate some of the characters a lot more (poor Yasu).

There's something I don't get, though, though maybe I'd have better luck asking, and not here.. But according to them, Yasu has been planning on blowing up the island for quite some time.
Is this just in the "Novels" or in Prime too? Because I can't make sense of it, since in ep 7, she complained that if it had been the year before, or the year after, a small incident might have occured (Either that Shannon or Kanon "died" or Yasu commiting suicide (both died), was my interpretation), but this doesn't make sense if she planned on blowing up the island the whole time, does it?
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Old 2013-04-26, 10:10   Link #32154
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The people who write the blog or whatever are insightful, but they are given to massive bouts of Yasupologism (stop excusing everything and bagging on people other than her!) and seem intent on believing that she totally dunnit in Prime as well... or at the very least aren't really considering any semblance of a "Prime theory" and are just thinking about her mental state.

I'd take any comments about the larger picture with a grain of salt, at least until such time as their commentary gets to Chiru as there's a lot of things that come up there which would seem to put the lie to the notion that Yasu was the culprit or was even premeditating murder at all, while also providing alternate theories about it.

But none of those theories really exist in ep1-4, and Yasu is clearly intending to cast herself/Shannon/Kanon/Beatrice as the culprit in Legend and Turn. So discussing it in that context is probably appropriate, and one can presume that the culprit character of those episodes was planning on blowing up the island the whole time.

Also I would caution against believing everything they "find" was necessarily there in the first place. Ryukishi had eight episodes to change things and we happen to know a major reshuffling of the series happened right after Turn. So are some of these things there all along, or were they retroactively made relevant? There's a lot of parts of Legend that don't end up going anywhere later, you just don't notice because they didn't.
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Old 2013-04-26, 18:02   Link #32155
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Seems like a pretty cool blog. I've already given up at discovering anything new and significant in Umineko. If there is something, maybe thick and tinted glasses are what is needed to see it.

(I tried love, didn't work)

And well, otherwise their commentary would be just a play-by-play, and not very interesting to read, right?
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Old 2013-04-27, 03:46   Link #32156
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Regarding this quote:
Quote:
on wanting yasu to be happy:

“Ryukishi: I think for that her, who lived for love, at the moment that was fulfilled, her life was fully completed. That’s why to preserve that feeling perfectly for eternity, so that no one could destroy it, she just wanted to quickly seal herself in the catbox.”
I dug through the tweets and found it. It was a response to:
Quote:
今でも考えるのはヤスには幸せになって欲しかったです!入水が幻想で無ければ幸せかもしれませんが...真 実は猫箱へ...
(It's just someone musing that if Beato drowning herself was just an illusion, then Yasu could maybe be happy.)

In context, Ryukishi's comment doesn't seem to have anything to do with things like Yasu killing anyone or blowing up the island; it's only about her decision to commit suicide during the motor boat scene.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Simplice Cantabile View Post
the fragments shown may represent different versions of reality!
In what sense? Different possible realities? Or different actual realities?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Drifloon View Post
We're talking about the guy who named Kyrie, Ange and Asumu after Ragnarok Online spell names here. I wouldn't read too deeply into Ryukishi's choices of character names.
Oh, I don't know... that he chose those particular spells might say something about the characters.

For example, all three spells are buffs, but "Kyrie Eleison" and "Assumptio" are specially exclusive to each other; both buffs can't be active at the same time (that means you, Rudolf!).

As for "Angelus", it doesn't have any such restrictions, but it's just plain useless to begin with!
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Old 2013-04-27, 06:44   Link #32157
GreyZone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wanderer View Post
Regarding this quote:

I dug through the tweets and found it. It was a response to:
(It's just someone musing that if Beato drowning herself was just an illusion, then Yasu could maybe be happy.)

In context, Ryukishi's comment doesn't seem to have anything to do with things like Yasu killing anyone or blowing up the island; it's only about her decision to commit suicide during the motor boat scene.
It really is sad that people like to take R07's quotes out of context so often...

Anyway, how about this: Beatrice can not, under any circumstances, leave Rokkenjima. She is bound to Rokkenjima. That does not apply to Yasu though, so while Beatrice "never leaves the island", the fate of Yasu is hidden in the cat box.
The problem with this is that it takes a quite literal stance about that boat scene.



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Originally Posted by Wanderer View Post
In what sense? Different possible realities? Or different actual realities?
Or maybe it is just fictional realities. Some of the characters in the fragments were definitly "out of character", so what Dlanor said about some characters always having the same characterization and capabilities, even if not controlled by the player, possibly only applied to EP5. After all we had all the talk about "subjectivity" in Umineko. If we suppose that EP5 was based on a forgery by multiple witch hunters, who asked people that know the Rokkenjima victims, it would certainly create a more "obejctive" characterization, while Legend and Turn were created from the memory of supposedly 1 person.
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Old 2013-04-27, 08:40   Link #32158
Wanderer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GreyZone View Post
The problem with this is that it takes a quite literal stance about that boat scene.
If the scene was even based on a real event at all.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GreyZone View Post
If we suppose that EP5 was based on a forgery by multiple witch hunters, who asked people that know the Rokkenjima victims, it would certainly create a more "obejctive" characterization, while Legend and Turn were created from the memory of supposedly 1 person.
Although in EP6 Ange credited 18^8 with writing End.
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Old 2013-04-27, 10:20   Link #32159
GreyZone
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Although in EP6 Ange credited 18^8 with writing End.
That is why I said it is based on a witch hunter forgery. The original was probably proving that Natsuhi was the cultprit. But in the 18^8 version Battler "entered" at some point. That is the point where 18^8 changes the story, where Battler says one of his favorite phrases "it's no use, no use at all". We however only saw a "metaphoric version" of what happened after, with the court.
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Old 2013-04-27, 10:36   Link #32160
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It's also interesting to think about the meta-implications of stories after Dawn. Featherine invites Bernkastel to participate at the end of ep6; what does that mean for what Requiem is supposed to be? What is Twilight? Each has what appear to be at least 2-3 possible stories in them, but also a bunch of information that doesn't seem like it would be in either a fiction or a reality.

We know there are other Fragments and other theories because of the whole goat thing (plus there's an infinite sea of them and we only see a dozen at best). But we only sort of kind of have authorial attribution for six of them.
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I submit that a murder was committed in 1996.
This murder was a "copycat" crime inspired by our tales of 1986.
This story is a redacted confession.

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