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Old 2012-07-11, 20:15   Link #61
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Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post
Of course every creator should aim for greatness. If not, why the heck should he bother creating? But just because he thinks his work is great doesn't make it great — it only makes him vain, an ugly quality not becoming of any artist who sincerely wishes to create something beautiful.
Just to be clear, I don't think that Urobuchi himself ever called Madoka Magica "a masterpiece". However, he did hype up Episode 10 in a way that showed considerable confidence on his part. IIRC, he encouraged viewers to rewatch Episodes 1 through 9 after watching Episode 10 so that they would get a new appreciation for those episodes and gain a better "big picture" viewpoint on them.

I like this sort of ambition on the part of anime writers.

No, you don't get to make a "masterpiece", simply because that's not your call. The decisive judgment comes instead from your professional peers — and your ever fickle audience.
Oh, I completely agree with you here. My point is more that masterpieces don't come about strictly through creators/writers trying to create something half-decent and then just hoping for the best and lucking out. Sometimes masterpieces are hyped beforehand, and the creators/writers behind them were in fact "swinging for the fences", so to speak.

Mind you, when a writer swings for the fences and misses, that's when you tend to get your big trainwrecks.

Yes indeed. To be sure, I find the word "masterpiece" bandied around way too often. It cheapens the value of the word. If everything is a masterpiece, then nothing is. It becomes a meaningless label, worthless as a measure of greatness.
I strongly agree with you here, which is why "masterpiece" is one word I try to be very careful with when using. Though "masterpiece" is maybe slightly overused, I don't think it's been devalued the way that "awesome" and "epic" have, when it comes to evaluating various works. So I'm glad that the word "masterpiece" largely retains its weight, imo.

Though it may seem like mere semantics, I find it helpful to distinguish between "milestone" or "landmark" anime and the so-called "masterpieces". Anime like Astro Boy, Akira, Ghost in the Shell, Princess Mononoke and Neon Genesis Evangelion were all important "landmark" productions, because they left an indelible imprint on the minds of creators and audiences alike, significantly influencing the way all later anime were conceptualised and produced.
I definitely think its possible to be a "milestone/landwork" work without being a "masterpiece", and vice versa. It's certainly possible to be both, but being one doesn't automatically make a work the other, imo.

So I agree with you here as well.

As for "masterpieces", let's be brutally frank: Most anime feature far too awful animation to be truly considered masterpieces on a technical level, regardless of the anime's popularity.
I think I'm with Bri here. I don't think that an anime needs to be a masterpiece of animation in order to be an "overall" masterpiece. It can help, certainly, but I don't think it's necessary.

To me, it would be like saying that for a Hollywood movie to be a masterpiece it needs to have cutting edge and top-notch graphics.
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