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Old 2013-10-18, 18:46   Link #13501
XFire
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Originally Posted by Lupus753 View Post
I was displeased with the ending because it seemed that Zenkichi didn't rise to her level, but rather she fell to his. Which is a very shallow victory. Medaka said she was impressed that he rose up in the company, but it seemed insincere. Like she was saying, "I'm impressed that you spent a decade to get a position I could've obtained in a week, while I'm still higher-ranked than you'll ever be". It was so infuriating.

Then, Zenkichi says to himself, "While I was climbing in her company, she was thinking of how to restore the moon. Just like high school, it shows the great disparity between us". He tried to catch up with her for the whole series, but gave up when he realized how impossible that was. That's why the ending was such a shaggy dog story to me.
Well, you could look at it that way. Of course, you could also bring up the fact that everything that Medaka has ever done is a direct result of Zen, and that she's seemingly incapable of functioning without him telling her what to do. Or you could argue it was the other way around and Medaka just dragged him all over the place the entire time. Or any one of a dozen other interpretations that all basically equate to what Shiranui said in the first chapter: "What an unhealthy relationship".

Alternatively, you could accept the fact that the two of them are deliriously happy and in love with each other and move on. Which is kind of what I did.
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Old 2013-10-18, 22:04   Link #13502
ccie20012
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Of course, you could also bring up the fact that everything that Medaka has ever done is a direct result of Zen, and that she's seemingly incapable of functioning without him telling her what to do. Or you could argue it was the other way around and Medaka just dragged him all over the place the entire time.
It is important that these two things are not contradictory.
Overall, I totally agree - especially with the last sentence.
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Old 2013-10-24, 21:35   Link #13503
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Originally Posted by Lupus753 View Post
I was displeased with the ending because it seemed that Zenkichi didn't rise to her level, but rather she fell to his. Which is a very shallow victory. Medaka said she was impressed that he rose up in the company, but it seemed insincere. Like she was saying, "I'm impressed that you spent a decade to get a position I could've obtained in a week, while I'm still higher-ranked than you'll ever be". It was so infuriating.

Then, Zenkichi says to himself, "While I was climbing in her company, she was thinking of how to restore the moon. Just like high school, it shows the great disparity between us". He tried to catch up with her for the whole series, but gave up when he realized how impossible that was. That's why the ending was such a shaggy dog story to me.
I really understand your feelings, because such is a possible interpretation, and shows a lack of tightness in the plot that Nisio's other series, such as Monogatari, do not have, while still maintaining Nisio's trademark non-sensicality.

I, for one, was ultimately pleased because at the very least, Zenkichi's character arc of maturing from a child to an adult was kept mostly intact. He won by simply accepting what his limits are, something reflected in his Zero; Model Hitoyoshi, which allowed him to perceive his own limits.

Maybe he wouldn't ever surpass Medaka in her game, given that she's all too perfect, so he surpassed her in his own.
The Zenkichi who rejected eloping with her is one who realizes that he couldn't have gone on like that, without his independence, as if he were a kid. He was having fun in his Student Council, so he didn't want to leave yet. And that was when she realizes how far ahead he had gone from her. Because he understood enough about himself that he was willing to part and grow-up.

And that's where Zenkichi was always stronger in -- he just understands, and he tells you he understands in a way that you can understand. A quality reflective of him being the best potential user of Styles in the series, not to mention why the "personality" of Parasite Seeing was compatible with his.

So, to me, I'm fine with him not winning in her game, personally, because I think what you said he did to have even more value. Yes, absolutely , Zenkichi is someone working a desk job while Medaka fixes moons -- but at the same time, Zenkichi's victory is to me an indicative of something much more valuable.

Just my interpretation.
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Old 2013-10-24, 23:23   Link #13504
Lupus753
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I was confused because Medaka talked of him "surpassing" her. And yet, the thing he was better at (connecting to other people) was something he was better at since day one. "Surpass" means to start off weaker and become better - not to start better and then continue being better. With Medaka's words, it's like a rich man telling a homeless man that the poor have it easier than the rich because they don't pay taxes. You just want to punch that guy.

I was angry because it really felt like the story was building to the complete opposite, only to not do so, Nisio basically saying, "Sorry about that, but this guy will always be a loser". Sure, it's unexpected, and maybe you could call it a deconstruction of something (though, I think this manga could never decide whether it wanted to deconstruct something or play it agonizingly straight), but that makes it no less frustrating. Just because something's brilliant doesn't mean it's not a terrible idea.

Last edited by Lupus753; 2013-10-25 at 00:15.
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Old 2013-10-24, 23:44   Link #13505
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Then, I guess what we must look at is the perception of this surpassing.

As Kanoya's hallucination on Zenkichi's heart said: "Would you look at that. You surpassed Kurokami from the very beginning".

Although I understand your anger, and think that part of it is completely justified.
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Old 2013-10-25, 00:17   Link #13506
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In a way, Zenkichi did surpass someone who had a great impact on his life: his dad. He didn't become a pathetic bastard who abandoned the people he cared about or gave up just because his love interest was an amazing person.

Sure, Zenkichi never became quite as amazing as Medaka, but he found his own niche and he worked hard at it. Whether or not he's satisfied with himself is something only he can answer and not by comparing himself to someone else.
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Old 2013-10-25, 00:25   Link #13507
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Originally Posted by Lupus753 View Post
I was angry because it really felt like the story was building to the complete opposite, only to not do so, Nisio basically saying, "Sorry about that, but this guy will always be a loser". Sure, it's unexpected, and maybe you could call it a deconstruction of something (though, I think this manga could never decide whether it wanted to deconstruct something or play it agonizingly straight), but that makes it no less frustrating. Just because something's brilliant doesn't mean it's not a terrible idea.
About this: it's obvious that this manga was very confused, and Nisio didn't seem to really take it seriously. I never felt the seriousness of a grand piece of work like Kizumonogatari in Medaka Box.

In the end, the manga just wasn't really good, because it kinda had a pretty terrible progression and plot. It had mostly good characters -- some glaring exceptions here and there -- but it was definitely lacking in structure, gradation and cohesion.

And I think that is reflective of Nisio's lack of seriousness. He was just playing around. I think his rather poor conclusion to Kumagawa's character arc in the graduation can attest to that, not to mention the rushed ending.

So yeah, I agree that it's frustrating, but for different reasons.
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Old 2013-10-25, 00:26   Link #13508
Lupus753
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I wonder what his dad's definition of "amazing" is. Well, she was really good at house tasks. I guess that counts? Otherwise, I'm not seeing it.
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Old 2013-10-25, 00:44   Link #13509
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Originally Posted by Lupus753 View Post
I wonder what his dad's definition of "amazing" is. Well, she was really good at house tasks. I guess that counts? Otherwise, I'm not seeing it.
She's a surgeon, a good one I would surmise. That's amazing enough.
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Old 2013-10-25, 06:44   Link #13510
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When I think about it, Nishio's others works, like Katanagatari and Monogatari series, have some certain levels of deepness because they are not manga. They are LN so that he can freely do what he want without being pestered by some editors. Medaka Box was published in Jump, a magazine with their target audiences are kid from 10-15. So Nisio was forced to follow some unspoken rules and couldn't pull out his normal troll moves like killing important characters from the main cast or making a girl look like the main heroine but letting the protagonist go out with another girl. Had Medaka Box been a LN, Medaka's illusive idea could have been crushed by cruel reality leaving her hopeless or Zen could have ended up with Mukae.
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Old 2013-10-25, 17:43   Link #13511
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To be fair, the manga did try parody the tropes utilzing the 'bite-the-hand-feeds-you' humor.
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