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Old 2007-06-17, 05:57   Link #1
gaguri
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Join Date: May 2007
Urusei Yatsura the series & movies

I've recently watched Urusei Yatsura 2: Beautiful Dreamer and it's one of the most surreal and wonderfully bizarre movie I've seen. I think the best part about the movie, which separates Beautiful Dreamer from his rather pretentious GITS movies (well...in my opinion...so let's not go into whether GITS is really pretentious or what exactly is pretentious) as an introspective work is his exploration of a simple idea through a mesmerizing and surreal experience, rather than failing to delve into many complex ideas at the same time. There was a scene where a distorted reflection on the puddle were juxtaposed by the same reflections, which became closer duplication of the reality as our perspective change continuously. Even such simple and mundane things, but for some strange reason beautiful and almost ethereal, drove home the question this movie threw in; am I a human who just dreamed of being a butterfly or a butterfly now dreaming of being a human? I think a lot of people would recognise this classic question asked by Lao Tzu. There are numerous other dream like, or bizarre sequences that is so unconventional, exploring that question through visual experience, but the marvelous thing is how it never preaches such an idea like GITS movies. It instead maintains the tone very light, and stressing more on the intriguing and ethereal aspects of such a journey to make it enthralling experience for the viewers.

Anyway, my request from the general populace who has seen the series (and possibly the beautiful dreamer too) is this: Is the series surreal, introspective and bizarre like the movie, or it's just the movie?
I know Oshii (known for awesome weirdness) directed the movie, and I have no idea who directed the series. And even if someone other than Oshii directed it, I'm not sure if such a surreal experience was more due to Oshii's creativity, or borrowed and inspired more from the original work. I know the movie had some silly slapstick comedy, which was nice in a way, but not really my cup of tea and I'm not prepared to go through awesome length of this series full of it.

So simply, how close is the series to the beautiful dreamer?
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Old 2007-06-26, 15:00   Link #2
ujiuji
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Brighton, UK.
Age: 51
Not very. As a fan of the television series I believe it has its own virtues but from your post they don't seem to be the kind you're looking for. Oshii's Patlabor films may be more what you are looking for. I've only seen the first of them myself, I found it thoughtful, darkly beautiful and not over-pretentious.
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Old 2007-06-27, 00:43   Link #3
suguru
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Join Date: Jan 2004
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Yeah, Beautiful Dreamer is one of my favorite movies but the rest of Urusei Yatsura is more insanity/romance/comedy than anything else. Plenty of weird things happen in the TV series and the other UY movies, but they definitely don't have the same 'feel' as Beautiful Dreamer has. I'll always love UY though, it was a big influence in getting me into anime.
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Old 2007-06-29, 15:49   Link #4
Tatakae
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Switzerland
Age: 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by gaguri View Post
Anyway, my request from the general populace who has seen the series (and possibly the beautiful dreamer too) is this: Is the series surreal, introspective and bizarre like the movie, or it's just the movie?
I know Oshii (known for awesome weirdness) directed the movie, and I have no idea who directed the series. And even if someone other than Oshii directed it, I'm not sure if such a surreal experience was more due to Oshii's creativity, or borrowed and inspired more from the original work. I know the movie had some silly slapstick comedy, which was nice in a way, but not really my cup of tea and I'm not prepared to go through awesome length of this series full of it.

So simply, how close is the series to the beautiful dreamer?
Oshii is the series' director from episode one until around 120/130. A lot of the earlier episodes have more of a zany feeling and are more geared towards younger audiences, paralleling Takahashi's manga in the beginning, but the series gradually shifts around episode 40/50 onwards to more bizarre and introspective stuff for connaisseurs which, while not quite on the same level as Beautiful Dreamer, come sometimes close to this movie's marvelous dream setting and introspective atmosphere. I'd point out for instance episode "Miserable! A Loving and Roving Mother!" (Animeigo Disc 20) in which Mrs.Moroboshi is dreaming inside the dream of a dream. This episodes somewhat foreshadows Beautiful Dreamer. Another very good one is "Parallel worlds! Where is darling?" (Disc 28) or "And then there was none" (Disc 20), albeit the former isn't quite about the philosophy of dreams and reality and the later not at all, but both episodes give you a good impression of how far the series sometimes can go to please or trick its audience. If I were you, I'd give the series a chance by renting some of the discs. Just keep in mind to skip the first 5-10 discs, you can still go back if you start to really like the series & characters.
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Old 2007-07-01, 05:56   Link #5
Adam E
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Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Canada
Age: 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by gaguri View Post
So simply, how close is the series to the beautiful dreamer?
Not that similar. A few of the episodes that during Oshii's reign as the head honcho are quite a bit like Beautiful Dreamer, but, for the most part, the rest of the series is fairly different.
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Old 2013-02-05, 06:15   Link #6
Kudryavka
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Join Date: May 2009
I love this series's songs, especially Lum's Love Song and Uchuu wa Taihen Da! ("Weird Space is Really Weird!"? not sure how to translate that in English well since the title omits a bunch of words necessary in English)

I would like to start reading the manga. Does anyone know if the Japanese manga are reprinted? Preferably in a combined format that decreases the number of books in the entire series? (Not going to bother with the English release since it's incomplete, out of print, and way overpriced secondhand. It's be way cheaper to buy the original manga even with shipping).
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Old 2013-02-06, 16:52   Link #7
RichardFromMarple
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Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Stockport UK
Has anyone seen the gag dub made by the BBC in 2000 for a Japanese TV theme night?

It's very funny though I don't think it sticks to the original plotline.

At least they kept what sounded like the original music, mostly nice swoopy turn of the 1980s synth tracks.
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Old 2013-02-09, 07:04   Link #8
alunde
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Midwest USA
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kudryavka View Post
I love this series's songs, especially Lum's Love Song and Uchuu wa Taihen Da! ("Weird Space is Really Weird!"? not sure how to translate that in English well since the title omits a bunch of words necessary in English)

I would like to start reading the manga. Does anyone know if the Japanese manga are reprinted? Preferably in a combined format that decreases the number of books in the entire series? (Not going to bother with the English release since it's incomplete, out of print, and way overpriced secondhand. It's be way cheaper to buy the original manga even with shipping).
According to the Wikipedia article about Urusei Yatsura there were three editions of the Japanese manga. The wideban edition, which I have, has the smallest number of volumes. I don't know what is in print now.

Some of Takahashi's anime works are being reissued on Japanese BluRay, this might stimulate interest in related products.
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