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Old 2013-03-19, 21:27   Link #61
4Tran
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Originally Posted by Dawnstorm View Post
Isn't the story an integral part of the animation?
I've always thought of the story as part of the writing. If you think differently, how do you define the story?

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Originally Posted by Dawnstorm View Post
I'm not sure how to deal with "story". It's a thorny issue with adaptions. If you're talking about the "writing" in a novel adaption, what are you talking about? The novel's writing? The adaption work of the scenario writer/script writers?
The only thing that's really important is what shows up on the screen. I'm not too concerned with attributing credit for the most part, but I'd give it primarily to the writers who actually worked on the screenplay/scenario.

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Originally Posted by Dawnstorm View Post
Yes, I agree. I'm actually one of those people who cares (or thinks he cares) more about the form than the content. At which point the idea of what serves what becomes shaky. Very often the story serves as an excuse to show off stylish stuff.
Sometimes, but I think that it's quite a bit more rare than you might think.

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Originally Posted by Dawnstorm View Post
Still, I doubt you're supposed to wonder about camera angles in Skyfall, when you marvel at the shots (haven't seen the film).
In "Skyfall", the audience is positively invited to indulge in all the use of silhouettes, color contrast, and lighting used in the film. Everything drips with either meaning or at least evocative imagery. It's certainly worth seeing if you're interested in seeing some great cinematography - I'm surprised that Deakins didn't win an Oscar for his work.

As for the other topic of whether the component parts of anime can be examined in isolation, I say why not? We can talk about things like the cinematography of "Skyfall", or the action direction in individual scenes of "the Dark Knight" without referring to the greater work. So why can't we do this with regard to writing in anime? Sure it might not be particularly productive for certain shows, but discussing anime is sorta navel-gazing to begin with.
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Old 2013-03-19, 22:31   Link #62
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Originally Posted by 4Tran View Post
As for the other topic of whether the component parts of anime can be examined in isolation, I say why not? We can talk about things like the cinematography of "Skyfall", or the action direction in individual scenes of "the Dark Knight" without referring to the greater work. So why can't we do this with regard to writing in anime? Sure it might not be particularly productive for certain shows, but discussing anime is sorta navel-gazing to begin with.
By all means, go ahead and talk about the amazing wonders of the heart, just as long as you don't lose sight of the fact that the heart, like the liver, serves the overall purpose of keeping us alive.
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Old 2013-03-19, 22:43   Link #63
Akito Kinomoto
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I'd prefer to keep my liver. The world has plenty of heartless jerks but when's the last time you seen someone described as a liverless jerk?
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Old 2013-03-19, 22:53   Link #64
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I just took an exam on the liver it's definitely just as essential as the heart.

Archon Wing look what you did to this thread
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Old 2013-03-19, 22:58   Link #65
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You should have said kidney instead (you'll get crippled and die from poisoning without kidneys xD).
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Old 2013-03-20, 00:02   Link #66
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Originally Posted by Akito Kinomoto View Post
I'd prefer to keep my liver. The world has plenty of heartless jerks but when's the last time you seen someone described as a liverless jerk?
I'd sooner be heartless than to be called lily-livered.

Quote:
Our Middle Ages predecessors believed the liver to be in control of our emotions. It was thought to be the organ that created blood and that a poorly functioning liver was the cause of mental or physical weakness, that is, cowardice.

The second part of the explanation is that the lily was synonymous with whiteness.

So, putting the two adjectives together we get "lily-livered", that is, "having a pale and bloodless liver".
I suppose I'd also be offended if people thought I'm chicken-hearted. Ah, woe is me.
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Old 2013-03-20, 01:40   Link #67
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Originally Posted by 4Tran View Post
I've always thought of the story as part of the writing. If you think differently, how do you define the story?
Not sure, but since you can make up a story and never write it down, and since you can (for very simple animation projects at least) skip the writing process and go straight into the animation, and since it often exists in some manner before the project even starts (e.g. adaptions, or the fairytale show Furusato Saisei Nihon no Mukashi Banashi), it makes sense to keep it conceptually distinct.

We're just used to thinking of story in terms of writing since literacy is so important in our culture(s).

I can see two basic approaches: either highly abstract, which means that the scenario, the script, the storyboard, and the finished animation are all systematically related but distinct presentations of the same story; or highly specific, which means that the finished animation is the story, and everything else is part of a set of instructions to create the story. These are the extremes. Customise your definition according to your goals. (I'm not fond of extreme abstraction; that way lies the monomyth, which I don't find useful.)

***

Oh, and when you're healthy, you shouldn't really worry about your heart or liver too much. If something's off, though, you better have a precise diagnosis. It would suck to take medication for arrhytmia only to die of hepathitis. Luckily, that hardly ever happens. So...
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Old 2013-03-20, 02:59   Link #68
ahelo
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I think judging a certain anime should be based on what the anime is trying to perceive itself as. Whether it presents itself as series that has a very in-depth plot, a character-based series, or a simple story that gets exceptionally told through animation, the way I judge it is how good it is with what it wants to do.

In essence, I presonally judge anime by how well it's executed.
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Old 2013-03-20, 06:54   Link #69
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Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post

@ Triple R

Your whole analogy about sports teams works only to a certain extent and it really depends on how you look at "teamwork" as a whole. I find it ironic, for instance, that you highlighted "chemistry" for special mention. If it's the positive chemistry between a group of creators that leads to a successful anime, then I have to ask, what's the point of evaluating any of the individual as a standalone member, given that every anime project is made up a different team of individuals?
That "given" is precisely why there is much point to evaluating an individual as a standalone member.

Let's say that Animation Studio B kept the same "team" together for a decade or more. Same writer, same director, same composer, same everything. Then you'd know precisely what to expect from Animation Studio B from one anime to the next to the next. There would be less practical reason to try to discern precisely who should be credited with what because it's all about the team, and the team never changes.

But since teams are constantly changing in anime - Just like they do in pro sports - There's considerable value in learning what to expect from different individuals in the industry.

Psycho-Pass' quality has at least as much to do with Gen Urobuchi as it has to do with Production I.G. Gen never worked on a Production I.G. property before Psycho-Pass, so there's value in evaluating the writing in Madoka Magica and Fate/Zero in order to know what to expect in the writing in Psycho-Pass.

To be fair, not every anime writer comes with as distinctive a feel as Gen does. But some do, such as Mari Okada. And some Directors (like Shinbo) have a distinctive feel. And some composers (like Kaijura) have a distinctive feel.


Quote:
More to the point, is past performance a reliable predictor of future success?
It depends on the track record. With just one notable work to a writer or director or composer's name? No, I wouldn't attach much weight to that. Almost anybody could fluke something very nice at least once.

But if somebody has built up a good resume of work, then yes, I think that's a generally reliable predictor of future success. Will there be an exception here or there? Sure, but more often than not, past success will portend future success.


Quote:
How can we know for sure? Maybe so-and-so writer can write well only if he works with so-and-so illustrator/animator?
Well, in Gen's case, we've seen him write for both SHAFT (Madoka Magica) and ufotable (Fate/Zero). Both of these anime shows were exceptionally well-received, and that includes their writing. And SHAFT and ufotable tend to use rather different styles of animation. So with Gen, we can say that he's not so poor at adapting to different members on the production staff that he can only write well if he works with a specific illustrator or animator.


Quote:
Or maybe it just happens that their stars were not aligned during the production period, and an otherwise dream team still mysteriously fails to deliver.
Sure, this can happen sometimes. But it's rare. A dream team will usually deliver something that's at least "good".


Quote:
Also, if it's teamwork that's key, why are you so intent on assigning blame to individuals in the team?
I don't know why you're so intent on trying to persuade people to not evaluate the component parts of an anime separately.

People are quite capable of evaluating the component parts of an anime separately and also in evaluating how those component parts work together in unison (i.e. evaluating an anime holistically). Why not do both?

Maybe I'm wrong here, but I get the sense that you're fearful that the writing quality of anime simply will not hold up well to close scrutiny, and so its imperative that we anime fans convince people (including ourselves) to evaluate anime holistically and only holistically. Otherwise, the medium will get trashed by critics.

And honestly, I think that anime writing (on the whole) can hold up reasonably well to close scrutiny. Yes, there are some bad anime writers, but there are some excellent anime writers to. And there are also some decent and "just good" anime writers. The writing quality in anime isn't terribly different than the writing quality in all sorts of entertainment mediums (including Hollywood movies). As with other entertainment mediums, there's a wide range of writing quality there.


Quote:
If the project fails as a whole, in my opinion, everyone is equally to blame.
I just can't agree with that. I've seen anime shows with fantastic visuals and audio, but with weak writing. I've seen anime shows with great writing, but mediocre visuals.

Why should a great writer take a fall just because the animators did a poor job of animating his story? Why should animators who did gloriously beautiful work take a fall just because they were saddled with a crappy script?

That's just not fair, imo. So I'll likely never agree with it.


Quote:
Where do you draw the line, frankly? How do we know if it wasn't a case of the animators not trying hard enough to match the writers' "vision" or that the writers failed to give enough creative direction to the animators?
Writing can fail on its own even when it has great "vision". Writing can be undone by too many plot holes, weak character development, and other such details-based issues.

What can animators do about that? It's not their fault if the script they've been given to work with is loaded with plot holes and poor character development.


Quote:
That's why I don't understand your fixation with an anime's credits. To me, if a story piques my interest, I'd give it a try.
If a story piques my interest, I'll probably give it a try too. But it's good to manage expectation levels, imo.
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Old 2013-03-20, 08:00   Link #70
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@ Triple R

The thing is, even if you evaluate the writing,you have no idea how much of it the plot you're seeing was the writer's idea,or if it's an adaption if some adaptation choices were the writer's idea. The director could have been the one with the ideas and left it to the writer to execute them.

When I look at Lupin III the woman named Fujiko Mine, I have no clear idea how much of it is Yamamoto and how much of it is Okada, the only thing I know is that it's Yamamoto who wanted to do a darker and edgier show based around Fujiko.

When I look at the Nazo No Kanojo X adaptation it made some bold adaptation choices but I have no idea how much of those choices were from director Watanabe or from screenwriter Akao.

It's not that I'm against the idea of trying to evaluate individual contributions, quite on the contrary I'm fascinated with trying to know who did what, however the more I look into it the less I feel I actually know,we simply don't have much translated interviews out there so the info we have is pretty limited.

On a sidenote,I know I'm nitpicking but while Urobuchi wrote the LN Fate/Zero he didn't write one single screenplay for the anime adaptation,some writers at ufotable did.
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Old 2013-03-20, 08:24   Link #71
Akito Kinomoto
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When I said some anime fall apart without its technical parts and others hold together on their writing alone, I'm also alluding to shows that are considered great overall but would not hold without its audiovisual elements -and- shows that are considered great mostly because of its strong writing. The issue I have is if an anime is supposedly shallow (in the worst sense of the word) because its primary focus is form, what does it say about shows (or movies) that are critically acclaimed for the same reasons?

The obvious solution would be whether to judge the show as a "film" or as a "story." Paperman and Legend of the Galactic Heroes work as examples for both respectively; the problem is everything in the middle.

It's not entirely a matter of bad writing. My intention was also about form VS content.
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Old 2013-03-20, 08:48   Link #72
4Tran
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Originally Posted by Dawnstorm View Post
Not sure, but since you can make up a story and never write it down, and since you can (for very simple animation projects at least) skip the writing process and go straight into the animation, and since it often exists in some manner before the project even starts (e.g. adaptions, or the fairytale show Furusato Saisei Nihon no Mukashi Banashi), it makes sense to keep it conceptually distinct.
Writing in a show isn't purely about the physical act of writing something down. It can include all of the elements that we would think of that belongs in a script as well. Maybe an exception can be made for improvised lines, but even that might fit under writing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dawnstorm View Post
I can see two basic approaches: either highly abstract, which means that the scenario, the script, the storyboard, and the finished animation are all systematically related but distinct presentations of the same story; or highly specific, which means that the finished animation is the story, and everything else is part of a set of instructions to create the story. These are the extremes. Customise your definition according to your goals. (I'm not fond of extreme abstraction; that way lies the monomyth, which I don't find useful.)
I prefer to think of the animation, with all the post-processing in place, as the finished work. The story is something that's contained in that work, but it's not all of it.

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Originally Posted by totoum View Post
It's not that I'm against the idea of trying to evaluate individual contributions, quite on the contrary I'm fascinated with trying to know who did what, however the more I look into it the less I feel I actually know,we simply don't have much translated interviews out there so the info we have is pretty limited.

On a sidenote,I know I'm nitpicking but while Urobuchi wrote the LN Fate/Zero he didn't write one single screenplay for the anime adaptation,some writers at ufotable did.
Urobuchi didn't write all of Psycho-Pass either. Fukami Makoto is credited as the co-writer of all of the episodes except for episode 12. Then again, I don't know how important it is to attribute large portions of a production to a specific individual unless we know more specifics about that production. After all, both the writer and the director is going to deserve some of the blame if the writing is bad.

On a side note, does anybody know what Shinbo Akiyuki actually does? I know he's attributed as the director of all the SHAFT shows, but we know that he doesn't actually direct all of them. Does he even direct any of them any more?
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Old 2013-03-20, 10:39   Link #73
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Originally Posted by Akito Kinomoto View Post
if an anime is supposedly shallow (in the worst sense of the word) because its primary focus is form, what does it say about shows (or movies) that are critically acclaimed for the same reasons?
For starters, anyone who thinks accusing something of being "shallow" is a legitimate criticism is wrong.

About form vs content, I think (again) that the best entries can't be meaningfully divided by a straight line between the two. Where does "form" end and "content" begin? Is the "form" not a part of content by itself, if it's consciously decided to create a response in the viewer and even transmit a clear message? Is the "content" (i.e. the story) not just another form in which the core ideas of the work are presented to us?

Again, you can separate the two and analyse each of them in a vacuum, because not every production is as concerned with making a seamless whole. Sakuga MADs are all about discarding writing and seeing animation; conversely, many people in these forums discard the audiovisual presentation to concentrate on the characters and implications of the plot in a most abstract way. I just think that for reaching a good evaluation of a tightly constructed film, a critic will necessarily have to address the interplay between the "form" and the "content" and how each of them interact with the other and the whole, and the results this has on the film. If you go like "animation is a 10 because -paragraph-, writing is a 7 because -two paragraphs-, therefore the film is 8.5" you're missing the big picture.
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Old 2013-03-20, 16:36   Link #74
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Writing in a show isn't purely about the physical act of writing something down. It can include all of the elements that we would think of that belongs in a script as well. Maybe an exception can be made for improvised lines, but even that might fit under writing.
Sure. "Keeping it separate" would be an analytic methodology. Whether it's useful to do so is debatable. I just think that in the context of this thread it's useful to keep it separate.

So:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Akito Kinomoto
Lately I've been musing over how much the technical strengths or weaknesses of an anime can influence how much we enjoy it. My like or dislike for a show used to be dictated more by its literary elements like characters or story than its appearance or audio. But in hindsight it's counterintuitive since anime is a visual medium; judging a work solely on its writing is better suited for a book (or light novels to keep with the context of the topic).
Take the line "judging a work solely on its writing is better suited for a book". The problem is that writing for a book and writing for anime is very different. As Tiny Red Leaf said, the latter is a set of technical instructions for others to animate the story.

Someone, somewhere has to make up a story - has to create character, setting, plot. But doing so for a book is different than doing so for anime. There are adaptions from book to film, but there are also "novelisations" of films.

It's true that "judging a book solely on its writing" is better suited for books, but it's not true that you're doing justice to the writing in a book if you only pay attention to character, plot and setting. There's the language-specific stuff: diction, flow of ideas, paragraphing... All those things that aren't present in animation.

So judging a book "solely on character, setting and plot" is no more fair to the book than judging an anime "solely on character, setting and plot". That's why I think that, in this context, it makes sense to isolate "story" (characer, setting and plot) as something books and anime have in common (versus the elements of presentation they don't share).

Or differently put, "character, setting and plot" don't make writing writing. Words do. "Character, setting and plot" don't make an anime an anime. Animation and sound does. But "character, setting and plot" are important to both books and anime.

That animation has writing in its production process is a minor complication, but doesn't really matter for the distinction at hand. But it does cause confusion if you use the term "writing" to conflate a script with a (light) novel (even if you're only doing it subconsciously). Sure, you know the difference, and you can keep the distinction separate, but if you've got one word for both, you're more likely to slip up without noticing. And that can make discussions harder.
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Old 2013-03-20, 18:40   Link #75
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I don't know why you're so intent on trying to persuade people to not evaluate the component parts of an anime separately.

People are quite capable of evaluating the component parts of an anime separately and also in evaluating how those component parts work together in unison (i.e. evaluating an anime holistically). Why not do both?

Maybe I'm wrong here, but I get the sense that you're fearful that the writing quality of anime simply will not hold up well to close scrutiny, and so its imperative that we anime fans convince people (including ourselves) to evaluate anime holistically and only holistically. Otherwise, the medium will get trashed by critics.


I don't even know what you mean by "writing" when it comes to anime. For a start, totoum and 4Tran have correctly pointed out the difficulty in discerning the extent to which any one writer contributed to a given project. As Warm Mist and Dawnstorm have repeatedly tried to explain, writing a book is very different from "writing" an anime. Archon Wing's analogy about the heart and the liver still stands — and I've already said, sure, by all means extol the wonders of the heart (or the liver, if you prefer), but never forget its ultimate role as part of a larger biological system that keeps us alive.

But it's clear that you simply fail to grasp our explanations. All I'm saying is that while you can attempt to analyse the writing, you can't possibly do it in isolation. The constituent parts of an anime do not work in self-contained silos. It'll be ridiculous, ultimately, to think of them as separate parts, because none of them allows an anime survive on its own, just as none of us can survive if we have a heart but no liver.

No matter how brilliant you think it is, the writing must serve to help the animation come alive, because if it doesn't, there wouldn't even be an anime to talk about!

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Originally Posted by Dawnstorm View Post
Someone, somewhere has to make up a story - has to create character, setting, plot. But doing so for a book is different than doing so for anime. There are adaptions from book to film, but there are also "novelisations" of films.

It's true that "judging a book solely on its writing" is better suited for books, but it's not true that you're doing justice to the writing in a book if you only pay attention to character, plot and setting. There's the language-specific stuff: diction, flow of ideas, paragraphing... All those things that aren't present in animation.

So judging a book "solely on character, setting and plot" is no more fair to the book than judging an anime "solely on character, setting and plot". That's why I think that, in this context, it makes sense to isolate "story" (characer, setting and plot) as something books and anime have in common (versus the elements of presentation they don't share).
What Dawnstorm wrote above is key to understanding where we're coming from.

The choice of form fundamentally affects the way I write a story.

I could, for example, write you this simple story about a little girl and her dog.

Quote:
A girl takes her dog for a walk. Suddenly, a thief comes up from behind and snatches away her bag. Her dog goes into a frenzy and runs after the thief, leaving the girl lost in an unfamiliar neighbourhood. She wanders around until she finds her dog, which has successfully retrieved her bag. Happily reunited, they go home.
Not exactly Pulitzer Prize-winning material, is it?

But what if the story were told this way?



Where did the "animation" stop and the "writing" begin? Or, far more pertinently, can you not see and hear how this project leveraged on the strengths of its medium to tell a simple story in a way no other medium can?

The trio of final-year Taiwanese art students who created this animated short wrote in depth here about the processes they used to conceptualise and bring alive their project. Unfortunately, the technical details were written in traditional Chinese but, still, the stages ought to be fairly self-explanatory.

So, tell me, where in this process do you see "writing", the way we think of it in books, poetry or even manga?

How then would you judge this animation by its "writing"?




Very much more importantly, also think about how you would tell the story with words alone. Can words alone achieve the same effect as the audio-visual cues in Out of Sight?

Last edited by TinyRedLeaf; 2013-03-20 at 20:30. Reason: Because spelling and grammar matters to writing, even if they don't affect an anime.
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Old 2013-03-20, 21:41   Link #76
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Ok,as much as I agree with Dawnstorm and I 'll even add in a couple of quotes that go towards the screenplay being at the service of animators

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mari Okada
When you write a script, it's important to be aware how the next people (directors and actors) think of the script. You have to make things easy for the next people to handle and you should provide an incentive for them.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mamoru Hosoda about TGWLTT's screenplay
Okudera's screenplay had a very high level of detail so that it enhanced the storyboard greatly,the only elements not included in the script were backround settings.During the drawing process I remember telling myself "what a great script"
While you draw a storyboard, you have to perform some simulations for certain scenes but on TGWLTT you could always come back to the script.
That goes in towards the screenplay being at the service of animators.

But Triple R's point is pretty darn simple and I fail to see what's so alien about it.
If a team of animators gets handed a plot full of plot holes and are told to animate it, no matter what they do the plot holes will still be there and that is no way their fault.

It's not as if separating each part is unheard of,hell Woody Allen does it (the subject being Dr Strangelove)
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Old 2013-03-20, 22:03   Link #77
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But Triple R's point is pretty darn simple and I fail to see what's so alien about it.
If a team of animators gets handed a plot full of plot holes and are told to animate it, no matter what they do the plot holes will still be there and that is no way their fault.
MY point is also very simple and it relates to Triple_R's point about teamwork.

It a plot is full of holes, what the heck was the director doing? What the heck were the animators thinking? Why weren't the deficiencies highlighted and clarified with the writers?

To me, everyone is complicit in the said weakness. If an animator can't storyboard/animate a scene, because he or she has no idea what the writer intended, why didn't he or she surface the problem?

Sure, you could say that it's the writer's fault but, ultimately, if the the team is to work together well, trying their best to bring an animation project to life, then they have to communicate with each other.

If they aren't, well, who's really to blame? As far as I'm concerned, everyone failed. Maybe not to equal extent, I grant you, but fail they still did.


It is a collective responsibility, how the overall project fares. Don't even get me started on the things I did as a sub-editor to save a news story that I ultimately get no credit for. And that's just for producing a newspaper. I don't see why a collaborative project like animation is any different.
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Old 2013-03-20, 22:19   Link #78
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If the plot fails at delivering the work, then yes, no amount of direction and production values will save it.

But something that seems to elude a lot of fans (not specifically talking about anyone in this thread) is that if the direction fails at delivering the work, no amount of story will save it. You can have the damn Bible as a scenario, but give it to a crappy director, and you can be sure that it's going to be bad. Same goes for the rest of the components that make up the final product.

Something directly related to this is the way many people will consciously ditch everything else in the work and evaluate it just by the plot and characters. Hell, why don't they just extract the audio and listen to it in the background? How many times I've seen people outright missing the whole point of a sequence or episode and calling it shoddy writing simply because they were unable to pay attention to the visual and audio cues that were there to give a direction to the script.

There's another point that relates to the permissiveness you have with the elements, and I'll readily admit that personal bias plays a big factor in there. I'm much more forgiving of plot holes or deus ex machinae if the gist of the story works, and it's presented with confidence and skill. Many people will not care about crappy animation and mediocre direction if the script is engaging to them. That's personal, and something that we can't avoid in any discussion between more than one person.
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Old 2013-03-20, 22:51   Link #79
4Tran
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Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post
To me, everyone is complicit in the said weakness. If an animator can't storyboard/animate a scene, because he or she has no idea what the writer intended, why didn't he or she surface the problem?
That's either the director or the story editor's job (if the latter exists). Animators aren't going to step outside of their responsibilities, and that's if they are aware there's a problem in the first place. Inbetweeners and other junior animators might never even see the script. And you're probably not going to see other staff members, like the composer, critique the script.

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Originally Posted by Warm Mist View Post
There's another point that relates to the permissiveness you have with the elements, and I'll readily admit that personal bias plays a big factor in there. I'm much more forgiving of plot holes or deus ex machinae if the gist of the story works, and it's presented with confidence and skill. Many people will not care about crappy animation and mediocre direction if the script is engaging to them. That's personal, and something that we can't avoid in any discussion between more than one person.
That's an extremely good point. As an example, I'm currently watching Smile Precure, and I'm enjoying it enormously. However, there are some select posters who have a dislike for it because they feel that the overall plot isn't very good or other story reasons. I understand them to an extent, but only an extent because I feel that, while there's justification for their complaints, those weak areas do very little to impede the show's entertainment value.
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Old 2013-03-20, 23:09   Link #80
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Join Date: Apr 2006
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Originally Posted by 4Tran View Post
That's either the director or the story editor's job (if the latter exists). Animators aren't going to step outside of their responsibilities, and that's if they are aware there's a problem in the first place. Inbetweeners and other junior animators might never even see the script. And you're probably not going to see other staff members, like the composer, critique the script.
My point still stands. There has to be communication between team members for the project to work. Content production is an iterative process.

Just minutes ago, my colleague, the senior designer of the magazine I edit, approached me with ideas for improving the article we're working on. She's an artist, but she had to read the text to get a sense of how she could use images or typography to present the content. And, in the process of doing so, she felt, with very valid reason, that the article, when laid out on paper, was too grey.

So, she approached me with suggestions for a more graphical approach to present some of the points in the article. I agreed, and I fully appreciated her feedback, even though it would mean yet another round of rewrites on my part.

That's the kind of communication I am talking about. My colleague could have just shrugged and said, well, the likeability of the editorial is none of my concern; I'd just make do with what I am given. Instead, she took the initiative and suggested ways to improve the article.

I am pretty sure such interaction takes place in the anime production process too.

And if it doesn't, well, I'm willing to bet the end product won't be very good.
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