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Old 2014-02-28, 12:36   Link #34021
Renall
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To be honest, I think some of the people who fail to see this particular flaw in Yasu - one which, if anything, actually helps realize her character as something more than a sad sack pity party by giving her legitimate human flaws - might be a tad histrionic and self-centered themselves. They empathize with Yasu because Yasu is a lot like them, but ironically their capacity for empathy is somewhat stunted when faced with characters who have problems that don't match up with their own.

For example, I always defend Battler's actions because I can empathize with his situation as well. Had we been told nothing whatsoever about why Battler had gone away for so long it would be easier to see him in a more negative light, but the text actually tells us what he did and why he did it, and those reasons are understandable. We're faced with the harsh possibility that maybe Yasu just wasn't as important to Battler as the woman who raised him or the way his father disrespected her memory. Yasu's portrayal tries to cast this as an error on Battler's part, but we only see it as such because Yasu apparently didn't know Asumu at all and never mentions her. There are hints, however, that she and Battler were quite close. I know what it's like to not see somebody for years, but I also know what it's like to lose somebody forever. It's not easy to judge Battler's decision, so it's not fair to just take Yasu's judgment as my own because of course she sees herself as more important than a person she doesn't even know. But that doesn't make her right.

I'm not saying those people are anyone posting here, though, that sort of thing is largely absent from this thread. But they do exist elsewhere, and it grates on me. Understanding Yasu is fine, but when it gets to the point of apologism then you're just sort of taking her presented self-pity at face value and giving her the attention she demands without questioning whether she's manipulating you into doing exactly that.
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Old 2014-02-28, 12:59   Link #34022
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Hm, I like Yasu. But I always thought the painting Battler over as bad person was meant to show her selfish side? I even assumed the text treated it that way.

Honestly, her selfishness is the reason I like her so much probably. I understand her motive, I think, but of course I do not justify it. No matter what Ryu wrote, who could ever think "Oh I see, kill them then"

In Our Confession, didn't Dlanor write something that it was Yasu herself who could not understand her words of "Without Love, it Cannot be Seen" ?

I was sure Ryukishi intended for us to realize that Yasu was quite selfish when she was accusing Battler. But it's still sad, reading EP7 for me. So, I probably fit into the sad sack pity party group of fans XDD
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Old 2014-02-28, 13:14   Link #34023
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Originally Posted by Renall View Post
For example, I always defend Battler's actions because I can empathize with his situation as well.

I know what it's like to not see somebody for years, but I also know what it's like to lose somebody forever.
Of course, both is hard because in the first case something is preventing you from seeing them and something could technically be down about that, though it might take a miracle, while in the other case it is absolute that you will never see that person again. I know both cases as well, actually also loosing my mother though a few years later than Battler (I wasn't a minor anymore...though really not by much) and avoiding my father who is kind of similar to Rudolph in a way
I actually was in a similar situation back then, having made promises and then just avoiding them because I was busy with myself. Looking back now I know how that might have hurt people, but in moments like these, especially when there is more than just grieving going on, things just get cast by the wayside...not out of ill will, but simply because all people involved are overwhelmed.

Still I wouldn't say I would defend Battler over Yasu on an emotional level. He also acted selfish, though also caused by an understandably horrible situation. The Ushiromiya family just systematically breeds disfunctional people
Yes, what Yasu did had probably a bigger influence on leading up to the crime than what Battler did, or what Rosa did, or anybody else alive on the island except maybe Genji and Kumasawa.

In the end I'd probably say that I think nobody on the island deserves unlimited forgiveness, except maybe Maria (though even that is debatable...but let's not get into the culpability of minors), but nobody deserves unlimited blame either.

They all had their horrible moments and their shining moments, the problem is that those weak people who ALL tended towards unhealthy escapism (be it investment, gambling, sex, daydreaming, lies, manipulation, abuse, or physical and psychological power plays) were handed an ultimate tool of hurried escapism.
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Old 2014-02-28, 14:07   Link #34024
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Originally Posted by battle22 View Post
I was sure Ryukishi intended for us to realize that Yasu was quite selfish when she was accusing Battler. But it's still sad, reading EP7 for me. So, I probably fit into the sad sack pity party group of fans XDD
The thing is, at times Chiru really doesn't sell this well at all. About the most candid the two of them seem to get is early in ep8. Otherwise, Beatrice seems fairly content to let Battler admit the greater share of fault except when she's directly called out on it. A lot of characters who could or ought to call Yasu out don't, except Ange who kinda comes across as whiny (because she is, but still).

I mean fine, respect their suffering and all that but it still helps to remind people who like to talk up how bad they have it that the people who they see as having hurt them have their own pains and joys too. Then again, maybe if someone had actually done that at some point none of that other crap would've had to have happened.

Honestly that's kind of the point the Beatrice/Natsuhi manga chapter makes. Shame that wasn't in the original, eh?
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Old 2014-02-28, 14:20   Link #34025
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I mean fine, respect their suffering and all that but it still helps to remind people who like to talk up how bad they have it that the people who they see as having hurt them have their own pains and joys too. Then again, maybe if someone had actually done that at some point none of that other crap would've had to have happened.
I would have really loved to see some of the developments in these situations

Kinzo: I'm so sorry, but I was forced to marry your mother and let it out on all of you. Btw. I kept the illegitimate daughter I had with an Italian escapee trapped in the forest behind the mansion and had an incestuous child with her. I hope you understand that I have to leave everything to that child now, don't you?!

Krauss: Hey you guys, I invested all of dad's money into these awesome business venture my cute associate said they would be worthwhile, now we technically don't even own the island anymore, that's why I hid dad's death.

Rudolph: Battler, cut Kyrie a break, I exchanged you and Asumu's dead baby at birth because I was already married to Asumu and it would have caused so much trouble to get a divorce.

Maria: HELP! MY MOMMY IS HITTING ME!!

Genji: So, you know Inspector, the story is like this...*2 days later* and that is why you need to take all of us into custody.

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Old 2014-02-28, 14:29   Link #34026
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To be fair though, Rudolf seems to recognize that he does have to say something at some point, even knowing that Kyrie and Battler are probably going to go "You did WHAT?" The truth isn't always nice in the beginning... you just kind of have to trust that clearing the air will make sense of things.

The manga makes that fairly obvious, Beatrice seems very understanding of Natsuhi's isolation and shame and to a certain extent they have a similar sort of issue with their self-image (Yasu sees herself as incapable of living as a male or a female and thus basically incapable of living at all, Natsuhi sees herself as worthless if she can't have a child because that's all anyone cares about her for). The fact that Beatrice reacts as she does sort of suggests to me that this was information Yasu didn't know; she's aware of the alleged abandonment and sees Natsuhi in a poor light because of it. She's unaware that Natsuhi's actions were a spur-of-the-moment regrettable impulse because she realized that accepting someone else's child as her own was ultimately an admission to herself that she wasn't worth anything and even had to fake the one task that anyone expected of her.

Although, again, the scene is rather oh-you-poor-Yasu-you, but at least Beatrice expresses some regret that she didn't understand Natsuhi's position.
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Old 2014-02-28, 14:44   Link #34027
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I think that might also be something that is grounded in a completely different genre background. We do have a lot of mystery novels that present an evil or insane culprit, even Christie (who created some sympathetic culprits) basically always made them at least clearly insane...all down to the maniacal laughter during the reveal (I look at you EP3 Eva).

Japanese mystery fiction (especially detective novels) has gone through a slightly different evolution, especially considering that, while most of the realism in the West came with hard-boiled fiction in Japan there was a big postwar revival of classical detective fiction and puzzle-like mystery-solving novels like in the Golden Age.
The one who really set that trend into motion was Yokomizo Seishi (who was also only mentioned in passing in Umineko for whatever reason). He's also often referred to as having constructed the first actual Japanese-style locked room with Murder at the Inn (1946) - though he himself said that he took extensive inspiration from Roger Scarlett's Murder among the Angells (1932).

Yokomizo had a very different style of writing mysteries, especially concerning motives and culprit culpability. Most of his culprits were motivated by the traumatic social change after the war, the breakdown of old systems, were unknowingly wronged by those around them, or were illegitimate children or outcasts who suffered under rigid Japanese rural culture.
His detective character, Kindaichi Kousuke, is not only decribed to have his very own idea of "humanism" but also let's the culprit escape or choose his or her own death instead of handing them to the police.
Yokomizo himself said in the afterword to the full version of Murder at the Inn (1947) that he agreed to a critique in a discussion round, saying that the motive of the culprit was missing aspect to properly comprehend and understand the culprit.

This carried over into a lot of novels and so there is a mass of stories where the culprit ends up being more sympathetic than his or her victims...if the murder wasn't a string of unfortunate accidents in the first place. The only thing representative that comes to my mind in English translation, though, would be the Kindaichi Shounen manga series.
I see, that makes sense. Many people's reaction(including mine) could be a result of trying to adapt a the expectation of a different genre background into Umineko.

Although I do wonder how many people who read Umineko are mystery buffs to begin with. To be frank when I first read the EP1 demo, I thought the suspense and horror part was the best part of it.

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Originally Posted by jjblue1 View Post
The more and more I learn about Genji the less I like him.
Yeah he is a pretty unpleasant man.

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Well, technically Yasu was wronged in many ways but the situation is too over the top to be easy to deal with it. Honestly I was hoping Ep 7 would sort of semplify things, not introduce us to such a complex story it seems more improbable and hard to believe than a witch existing on Rokkenjima.
Although Jessica, George and Battler all failed to understand her... well, picturing she's their illegittimate cousin/aunt/uncle that Natsuhi tried to toss off a cliff and that she actually had her sex switched is... well, a bit hard to picture.
She was wronged in many ways but it does not really come close to that understandable about how certain members of the Ushiromiya and servants deserve to die for it(from Yasu's point of view). Especially when the story isn't really build up that Yasu's motive is deep malice for every person adding unhappiness to her life. Chiru for the most part especially in Ep7 tries to depict Yasu as positive as possible. Especially the weird aspect on how Battler made a 180 on his stance with Beatrice. Sure it makes sense with some rereads but it is a little hard to take during the first time around(for me at least).

Also add that she apparently three timing with all of her cousins in the guises of different personas.


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Yasu is undoubtely male but some types of brain damage or uterus damage can cause a woman to not hormonally develop so technically that alone isn't proof.
I see.

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I don't know but really, I found disgusting how they let the issue on hold for so long. It wasn't like they permanently planned to hide it and it wasn't like growing up would make simpler for Yasu to deal with it since she was building up expectations over expectations and even trying to get into love relations.

What they did to her was worse than keeping the truth hidden from Ange.
Same here, I thought it was pretty disgusting as well. I think it was disgusting of Genji to make Yasu's life into a game of atonement for Kinzo. Although I do think it makes sense to wait until the early teen years to fully explain everything. The mistake was telling her after the whole affair with Battler and his promise.
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Old 2014-02-28, 15:09   Link #34028
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The mistake was telling her after the whole affair with Battler and his promise.
To be entirely fair, though, how much of this did Genji and such know about?
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Old 2014-02-28, 15:10   Link #34029
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Battler seems awfully cool with it anyway. The real tragedy is the whole thing might've actually actually been a plus for him.
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Old 2014-02-28, 19:14   Link #34030
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Originally Posted by goldendust View Post
She was wronged in many ways but it does not really come close to that understandable about how certain members of the Ushiromiya and servants deserve to die for it(from Yasu's point of view). Especially when the story isn't really build up that Yasu's motive is deep malice for every person adding unhappiness to her life. Chiru for the most part especially in Ep7 tries to depict Yasu as positive as possible. Especially the weird aspect on how Battler made a 180 on his stance with Beatrice. Sure it makes sense with some rereads but it is a little hard to take during the first time around(for me at least).

Also add that she apparently three timing with all of her cousins in the guises of different personas.
I think the general idea is that since the story didn't directly present the mindset in which she was but shows us, expecially in Our confession, an apparently calm Yasu who can strangle Kumasawa without much of a fuss, that Yasu chose to kill in cold blood when actually she was probably suffering so much strain she wasn't thinking coherently at all. Also I think that she was in an 'attempted suicide' mindset, in which you try to kill yourself but actually don't want to die, just want someone to realize you're in pain and come save you... which fit very well with her mentality of always hoping for someone to save her, to come for her, to understand her, to take her away.

Ep 7 is deceptive as Yasu presents her point of view filtered by copying mechanisms and ideals. She claims she's all right because she has Shannon, which more or less means she's all right in the same way as Maria is because she has Sakutaro, if not worse as Shannon can't even be hugged or showed around.
She claims she wants to be better than the other servants, not bullying the younger servants but in the end with her pranks she terrorized people and did so in a subtle way so as to hide her own responsibility.
A side of them feel she's at fault for not being liked but another, voiced by Shannon, claims the people not liking her are despicable and not worth her effort.
She feels inferior to others and to cope she desperately wants to be special.
She loses more objects than she acknowledge (we see that after Kumasawa taught her about the spider magic she was about to lose the keys again) and, like Maria did when she lost her key, she claims it's not her fault and tries to push the blame on someone else.
She wasn't probably so cool with the masquerade she had to take part at to please Kinzo but she seems to take it really smoothly... to reveal later on that wasn't the case.

So Ep 7 has hints she wasn't really taking things well, but they're pretty subtle.
In addition to this as Shannon she's used to put a mask on so she seems to be in a good mood more often than not (when probably her mood is close to Kanon's at his worst) and probably her hanging out with George and Jessica was more out of desperation for a bit of love and understanding than out of genuine affection for them. The first things Clair will say are, after all, that she's basically fine everywhere as long as she's loved... so it really wasn't about George, Jessica or Battler but about a girl starved for affection going through a deep crisis.

With Battler though, things were a little more sincere because when she fell for Battler she wasn't that desperate and therefore her feelings had birth more by sincere liking than purely out of desperation and need.

Technically though she's not 3 timing. Although she still has feelings for Battler she believes he forgot her and a side of her wants to forget him too as she wants to chose George. As Kanon she rejected Jessica even though she longed for her love too (and only in the tales Toya wrote Kanon will actively try to be with Jessica).

So Yasu's motive is mostly desperation that blinded her and that pushed her to make an insane attempt for help more than anything else.

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Same here, I thought it was pretty disgusting as well. I think it was disgusting of Genji to make Yasu's life into a game of atonement for Kinzo. Although I do think it makes sense to wait until the early teen years to fully explain everything. The mistake was telling her after the whole affair with Battler and his promise.
Uhm, no I think she needed to know right from the beginning she was a boy who lost a body part.
Sadly the world forces you to live building different expectations according to how you're male or female. If Yasu had known she was a male right from the beginning she would have probably suffered but wouldn't have spent years feeling an inadeguate female while costantly hoping she would develop in the end and, if she were to decide to pursue Battler just the same, she would have made it aware of her own condition and the risks involved.

What's the benefit of leaving her in ignorance so she'll feel bad because she has no breasts or a period and keeps hoping they'll come when actually there's no such chance and she'll end up being informed of the why later on? Is it really better than letting her know she's a boy missing a male organ with no hope to grow it back magically but that, although with some problems, can live as a girl if she really wish so?

At least if she had known from the beginning she wouldn't have had expectations that would never be fulfilled. I'm not saying the truth is nice because it's actually pretty horrible but the lie is no better. She's still incomplete for a lack of better term.

That's not a nice lie, like telling Ange her family was kind and gentle but ops, by some incident they all die opposite to tell her Kyrie and Rudolf murdered almost everyone and then were killed by Eva.

That's just a stupid lie whose only purpose might be that Yasu will better act the part of Shannon.

I also agree that Yasu placed way too much blame on Battler while making everything about herself and hardly understanding him.

We can see when he's not coming back she's thinking 'it's my fault because I'm not determinate enough yet' and while it can be true she's not enough determinate that's surely not what moves Battler's actions.
Battler isn't back because he had his own issues to deal with and Yasu's fault isn't the lack of determination but the lack of help she gave him. She didn't phone or write to encourage him, for all he knows she could have had forgotten him.

In addition to this I'm not so sure Battler had really forgotten her, I'm more inclined to think that he claimed so because he didn't want to openly admit he had feelings for her. Re-reading Ep 1 it turned out there's plenty of things that Battler remembers and the fact he claims he forgot everything seems more like a way to avoid pressure in case things are changed drastically.
After all he's uncomfortable when people compare him to his past self and maybe he thinks he's doing everyone a favour by not doing the same.

Honestly, I hope the manga will deal better with Battler as well. I'd like to hear his side of the story. In the past he cared for Yasu and it's implied he never fully stopped of doing so therefore I'd like to know how he took things, if he though Yasu took seriously his words, if he missed her, if he wrote her, if he was angered/sad/whatever by the fact she didn't call him.

On a funny note, George seems to be close to Gaap. It seems just casuality but then we learnt that George got closer to Shannon by 'losing a hat' that wasn't there in the first place... and that might have also 'lost a letter' that wasn't for him to take.
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Old 2014-03-01, 04:57   Link #34031
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She claims she's all right because she has Shannon, which more or less means she's all right in the same way as Maria is because she has Sakutaro, if not worse as Shannon can't even be hugged or showed around.

She loses more objects than she acknowledge (we see that after Kumasawa taught her about the spider magic she was about to lose the keys again) and, like Maria did when she lost her key, she claims it's not her fault and tries to push the blame on someone else.
I think the Yasu/Maria comparison is especially appropriate here. Just like Maria, Yasu's has been so psychologically crippled by her situation that (even with the money she inherited) she just doesn't have the capacity to realize better methods of escaping or dealing with her situation that may seem like common sense to us. Throughout her life, the only way she has ever learned to deal with the circumstances around her life (that would probably overwhelm anyone at such a young age) was with "Magic" (i.e. imaginary friends and using every possible method of deluding herself into believing that she's happy with her miserable life), which is also exactly what Maria had been doing as well. When confronted with the true limitations of such "Magic" (that it can never truly improve her situation), she goes into a very dark place, similar to what happened with Ange at the boarding school and Maria's reaction to Sakutaro being ripped apart.

This is why quotes like these are so disturbing to me:

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Originally Posted by Renall View Post
Yasu wants to look pitiful. Yasu wants to be sympathized with. Yasu wants to be acknowledged, even if it requires taking blame for something she wasn't solely responsible for. While this is certainly sad and maybe even something for which she does deserve sympathy, one can easily look at the other side of the coin and say "Well, you could've called Battler, you're rich, you have great opportunities and the potential for a bright future, your problems really aren't as bad as you want everybody to think they are." Sure, it's clear that she was depressed enough that she wasn't capable of seeing things in that light, but as observers we do have the ability to consider all information and its sources and be suspicious of it.
To me, this kind of mindset is somewhat reminiscent of Rosa's implied sentiment toward Maria after being confronted by the social worker: Stop pretending your problems are so bad (since I had to deal with all of my childhood issues and I turned out just fine!) and stop relying on your pretend friends and go out and make real friends already, if not, it’s your own fault, so shut up. As Rosa would continue ranting about how all of Maria’s problems are her own fault because she loves Sakutaro (i.e. it’s her own fault she has no friends, why she’s ostracized, why she’s treated as a weirdo), she rips apart Sakutaro hoping that it'll somehow "fix" Maria's attachment issues to her imaginary friends and somehow make her "normal" again. In the end, it only exacerbated Maria's problem as she would later spend all her time with Yasu daydreaming about all the ways she'd kill her own mother ("Anger and sadness without any place to go will tear you apart. ... Beato knew that. She could see that.").

While I certainly can't justify Yasu's plan to carry out a mass murder/suicide and wipe away all evidence with the bomb, it just can't possibly be as simple as "You're problems aren't that bad, you have all this money and power so just deal with it yourself or else shut up!" just like we wouldn't expect Maria to have the capacity to deal with all of her problems in her current condition (in which the only way she even makes it through the day is via her attachment to her imaginary friends). And before everyone here accuses me of joining the Yasu sad-sack-pity-party, I emphasize that I'm not necessarily "pitying" Yasu. I'm just saying that instead of criticizing her for the things (that seem common sense to us) she could have done but didn't have the psychological capacity to do, I'm more interested in considering the many many more things that other people could have done throughout her life to at least try to understand Yasu a little better and possibly help to prevent the whole Rokkenjima incident from occurring.
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Old 2014-03-01, 12:10   Link #34032
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You're assuming that Yasu and Maria are in fact mentally comparable. They're not. Yasu is clearly far more intelligent and discerning than that. If she weren't, she couldn't possibly have written the stories she wrote, and Beatrice could not possibly be as intelligent and crafty as she comes across. Yasu is not insane, Yasu is not developmentally stunted, and Yasu is not delusional. If you think that you're buying into her intentional self-presentation as a more helpless and tragic figure than she actually was or comparing her overly favorably with Maria.

And comparing Yasu and Maria is automatically problematic. Yasu was ten years older than Maria, with considerably greater influence, agency, and capacity for rational analysis. You cannot compare a person who is almost twenty years old with a long life experience of being forced to take care of herself and a clear understanding of how her world works and a complex self-image problem with a little girl suffering under a physically and mentally abusive parent. Maria was basically helpless on her own. Yasu was deliberately and intentionally teaching Maria coping mechanisms that Yasu herself was familiar with. This requires a level of self-reflection that makes it implausible to believe that Yasu had the same issues distinguishing fantasy from reality that Maria did. Maria also lacks Yasu's demonstrated capacity for long-term planning.

You realize that the presentation of Yasu's backstory is essentially filtered through Yasu herself, right? She's not a reliable narrator. It's clear she's much more aware of what's going on as she learns to prank people and do things to cope with her situation. That is not the mindset of a person who is psychologically incapable. Depressed? Probably. Not thinking 100% clearly at times? Most likely. But the other character that she comes closest to is actually Ange, not Maria. And Ange is perfectly aware that her escapism is escapism. She just doesn't see any point in living without it, because she believes that the life she's escaping from is pointless. That's Yasu's mindset as well.

I wouldn't rush to make a victim out of Yasu because Yasu is rushing to make a victim of herself, and anyone who does that ought to be questioned. That isn't to say she doesn't deserve sympathy, but she should be sympathized with because she's a flawed human being who probably caused herself and others undue hardship due to good intentions that went awry, not because she didn't know what she was doing or was mentally not able to see a way out. She saw ways, but she made excuses instead of taking them because what she actually wanted was external validation. What's sad about it is that nobody around her offered her the self-confidence she needed to look ahead to her own interests without feeling like other people needed to determine her worth... but Genji dropping the ball on her body image issues coupled with her unrealistic adherence to Battler's casual promise meant she didn't see much point to living.

And even then, it seems pretty clear that she cared enough about the people around her that she wanted to help them. She may not have even actually wanted to die until her efforts went so terribly wrong. In that case, it would more than likely push her over the edge, but that's a rather extraordinary circumstance that would be hard for anyone to process. If anything, being more like Maria might've made Yasu less consciously aware of the gravity of the incident, but the ending of ep8 seems to make very explicit that she and Battler understand full well what happened.
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Old 2014-03-01, 13:41   Link #34033
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You're assuming that Yasu and Maria are in fact mentally comparable. They're not. Yasu is clearly far more intelligent and discerning than that. If she weren't, she couldn't possibly have written the stories she wrote, and Beatrice could not possibly be as intelligent and crafty as she comes across. Yasu is not insane, Yasu is not developmentally stunted, and Yasu is not delusional. If you think that you're buying into her intentional self-presentation as a more helpless and tragic figure than she actually was or comparing her overly favorably with Maria.
Granted, I admit to favoring the Yasu/Maria comparisons (mostly due to the way that Ryukishi presents Maria's backstory in EP4 in parallel with Ange's and presumably Yasu's as well). However, you're also making the assumption that intelligence = mental capacity. I've been around the Psych Wards long enough to know that this is definitely not the case. I've seen patients at about Yasu's age who were just as intelligent, creative, and self-aware but just did not have the mental capacity to function outside of the hospital for a variety of reasons not related to their intelligence.

What I took away from Yasu's backstory (which I admit is heavily filtered) is that she grew up (as a servant) in an environment where she was just as powerless as Maria and was subject to the same kind of verbal and mental abuse from Natsuhi & the other servants as Maria had suffered from Rosa. As a result, Yasu developed a method of dealing with such stress/abuse that involves "magic" which she would later pass on to Maria during their Maria/Beatrice encounters. Since Yasu never really developed any other methods of coping with her circumstances, this "magic" would be her automatic response to any unfamiliar situation. When confronted with just how severely limited such "magic" really is, she went into a very dark place just like Ange did.

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But the other character that she comes closest to is actually Ange, not Maria. And Ange is perfectly aware that her escapism is escapism. She just doesn't see any point in living without it, because she believes that the life she's escaping from is pointless. That's Yasu's mindset as well.
While Ange is certainly initially aware that her use of "magic" is only a form of escapism, it is clear that she eventually deludes herself into blurring the distinction between magic/reality as her situation with her abusive classmates deteriorates. Otherwise, if Ange really was aware the entire time, I don't think she would consider ordering her stakes to attack/kill her classmates after that 5-hour marathon abuse session. Ange, being all alone, has no actual release for her anger. With Yasu, it’s subsumed into self-loathing, but with Ange it manifests in complete withdrawal from her surroundings. Ange would ultimately break down when her classmates tell her that the abuse would continue day-after-day, leaving absolutely no time or space for Ange to escape from her situation. As she snaps and orders the stakes to begin the massacre, she is forced to realize the true limitations of the "magic" passed on from Yasu-->Maria-->Ange.

Spoiler for EP4: Ange Snaps:


With nowhere else to release her anger, Ange would turn against her stakes (& Sakutaro) as she systematically "discards" each of them much like the way that a writer would kill off characters of a story, having everyone remain "in character" until the very end (I think this is also a sign of just how much these imaginary friends actually meant to Ange). In this situation, it wouldn't surprise me at all that Ange might actually consider blowing up the entire classroom in a mass murder/suicide if she had the means to do so like Yasu did. After all, we've seen real-life cases of such violence in Newtown, Virginia Tech, etc. Once again, I emphasize that I certainly don't condone such acts in any way. But again, it also can't be as simple as telling Ange: You're rich, you're problems aren't that bad, get over your family's deaths, get off your ass and start studying, and go make some real friends already.

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You realize that the presentation of Yasu's backstory is essentially filtered through Yasu herself, right? She's not a reliable narrator.
While I agree that the presentation of Yasu's backstory is heavily filtered, it still allows us to draw a number of conclusions regarding her state of mind regarding just how suffocated and powerless she felt throughout her childhood that she would, like Ange, spend such a significant portion of her life withdrawing and escaping into her own world of imaginary friends. I think this is also way Ryukishi intended by presenting Yasu's backstory through such a filter.

While Yasu was probably well-aware of the nature of her "magic" for a significant period of time (including her interactions with Maria), I think that there was ultimately a breaking point for her as well (just like with Ange) where the line between magic/reality was blurred and she was deluded into true believing her own imaginary creations. Finally, when Yasu was confronted with just how limited such magic really was and had no place to go with her hurt/anger/frustrations, it's not that hard to imagine her considering attempting to take it out on not only her imaginary friends (i.e. Shannon/Kanon and the way that their deaths are depicted in Yasu's own stories of EP1/EP2) but also everyone else around her when she acquired the means to do so.

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Old 2014-03-01, 14:51   Link #34034
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Well, technically it isn't fair to compare Yasu with Ange either. Ange's escapism mechanism took place when she was old enough to recognize it as an escapism method and prior to it she had other methods to interact and relate to others.
Yasu instead started very young, more or less like Maria, and deep down she never truly developed a different method to relate to others even if she probably tried.

Her primary answer is to turn toward her imaginary friends, like pleading Beatrice for help in her relationship with George, not to her human friends like Jessica. She fundamentally lacks faith in humans, a trait she shares with Maria but not fuly with Ange who, once destroyed the seven sister, will acknowledge only real humans can save her (in this case a teacher stopping the girls that were bullying her).

While you're right that Yasu wants to be a victim the problem is that Yasu is damaged enough not to see a different possibility to it.

She has plenty of ways to leave the island on her own even before she were to discover the gold and after she has given up on Battler but... she can't simply see them.

Yes, a normal person would but Yasu shows us clearly her thinking process doesn't work like the ones of a normal person when she thinks that Battler isn't coming back to get her because she lacks determination. There are many reasons one can assume for Battler not coming back that rage from Battler never planning to keep his promise from Battler wanting to keep it but being unable to.
None of them would logically include Yasu's mind status of whom Battler is completely unaware. She's basically viewing Battler as one of her fantasy playmates who can or can't do things according to her being able or not being able to do them.
In this she shows she's not able to relate with another human being in a normal way but she's still thinking at them in a way that's more similar to the one of small children, who thinks it's their will what makes their mothers move.
And in a way this explain her complete failure in her plan, as the adults, once solved the epitaph, completely ignored her, differently by how it goes in her novels in which she's taken seriously and somehow looked with awe and submission.
They probably don't even take seriously her declaration she would kill them all, though they likely don't like the fact she considered doing so.

So yes, if Yasu had the rational ability to consider her situation and make the right choices in regard to it, she would probably be a quite disgusting criminal.

As crippled as she is though, and placed in such emotional state, I'm not sure she was fully aware she had other options and of how wrong what she was doing is.

It's easy to say for people who're crippled physically what they can and can't do but it's harder for people who're crippled mentally or emotionally.
They can be unable of the most simple things. Yasu, who's Maria's friend, didn't consider using her power as family head to save Maria from Rosa. She thought that it was fine to push on Maria the illusion that in the golden land her mother would have been nice and then considered dragging them both there.

I don't think Yasu didn't care for Maria. It's more she doesn't have the mental ability to take the right choice for Maria.

She doesn't wish evil to Maria and even if what she does to her is evil she doesn't seem to realize it or refuses to realize it... which to her amount more or less to the same.

That's why I wish Ep 7 hadn't sugar coated things so much but had put down as plainly as it could be done her mind setting. Her feelings aren't as common and easy to understand as... let's say Ange's desperation and her situation is so unique it's hard to think an Umineko reader might have experienced being the incest baby of a billionaire who ended tossed down of a cliff, had his sex switched to female, was put into an orphanage and then forced to work as servant at such a young age while facing bullism and isolation from other servants and developing a defence mechanism that relied on self delusion and imaginary friends and ended up impersonating 2 servants before having the truth tossed at her.

Yasu is damaged in way we can't fully comprend by things it's unlikely we'll experience. It's easier to put ourself in Maria or Ange's shoes as what they face is definitely closer to common people's experiences than Yasu's unique situation and mind setting.

Ryukishi, in his wish to force us to understand Yasu, ended up doing the same mistake as Yasu. Wrote something too complex and at the same time too vague to allow us to pin well Yasus' feelings with the result we end up thinking that Yasu should have seen all the other possibilities that were laid in front of her.

She likely wasn't able to but as this isn't explained openly but just subtly the lingering idea she chose not to co-exist with the one she couldn't see them and this doesn't help Yasu's portray.
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Old 2014-03-01, 15:06   Link #34035
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Calling her "damaged" or "crippled" is making excuses for her when she's already making plenty herself. She knows right from wrong. She knows reality from fantasy. She just doesn't like it, because she wants validation and attention. She knows what she's doing and she possesses the capacity to analyze people's apparent needs and behaviors and attempt to make use of them (Our Confession demonstrates that she both believes Krauss and Natsuhi could be talked into helping her but also that she realizes she will have to deceive them as respects her true intentions). She clearly doesn't understand Krauss and Natsuhi on a fundamental level, but she at least recognizes their situation. Her dream of Lion is a carefully-constructed power and comfort fantasy, which is exactly what Will and Clair discussed that it was.

Yasu understands what "magic" is. She's most effective as a witch because she understands that. Why do you think her skill and power are talked up so much in comparison to figures like Maria or Ange? She's many levels above them, utilizing "magic" to conceal a specific intellectual and emotional thesis to both a specific individual and any unseen third party. Pitying her as a victim so lost in her dark places that she doesn't know any better is an insulting underselling of her depth, intellect, and yes, her personal flaws and failings. And also selling short the probable indications that she was never going to go through with murder anyway.
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Old 2014-03-01, 15:16   Link #34036
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She just doesn't like it, because she wants validation and attention.
You say that like it's a bad thing, as opposed to a reflection of someone whose desires and dreams were never validated outside of an abused child half her age. You always seem to forget that whatever "power" Yasu gained through solving the epitaph was only hers for a couple of years, as opposed to the thought patterns that dictated her entire formative years.

Honestly, your ridiculous pretense that gaining the gold should have been enough to "fix" Yasu's life is like claiming that dumping a new mother in Maria's lap should automatically make her stop talking to stuffed animals and become capable of making friends with everyone in her class.
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Old 2014-03-01, 15:26   Link #34037
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I'm suggesting her problems aren't actually as bad as she presents them, not that she necessarily was in the proper state of mind to actually address them. That's why she is flawed, the desire for validation exceeds the ability to think clearly about her actual situation. Even then, I find it extremely difficult to believe she'd think herself so trapped that she needed to kill others, and I think the text supports her tendency toward self-scapegoating. Which would be entirely consistent with her attention-seeking personality; if she can't get validation and love, she'd prefer to be reviled and viewed as the culprit. It's both admirable (in that she can be a remarkably selfless person who wants to help people she likes) and sad (in that she's willing to take undeserved blame).

But I am saying that, given that we're aware of this, we should be questioning her portrayal of herself, because there's an agenda there. And we ought not lose sight of the fact that other people exist in the world of the story besides her.
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Old 2014-03-01, 15:32   Link #34038
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I'm suggesting her problems aren't actually as bad as she presents them, not that she necessarily was in the proper state of mind to actually address them.
That's certainly an interesting perspective, considering that Yasu constantly downplays her problems and issues throughout the entirety of her sequence in EP7. In fact, I'd love to see you point out a specific part where you think Yasu is making a bigger deal than warranted over her problems.

EP7 is the Yasu equivalent of Maria's diary, and what you're doing is like reading Maria's diary and going, "Clearly all the little brat wants is attention. Why can't she just understand that her life isn't so bad? Some people don't even have parents."
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Old 2014-03-01, 15:43   Link #34039
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That isn't at all the case, although I don't know what good it does to try to defend my position from bald disingenuous baiting. At any rate, we know that Maria's diary was subject to criticism, because that's precisely what Ange did with it as she was reading through it. Ange attempted to read between the lines and suggest that Maria was actually unhappy, but was met with resistance on this interpretation. To what extent was she correct, and to what extent was she reading into it what she wanted to see?

I don't think it's accidental, then, that we could think the same of something in Chiru that you have correctly noticed tracks it as a sort of parallel. But we should question Yasu as a narrator even more than we would question Maria, because we already know that this is a fairly clever person with far greater intellectual and emotional depth than a child. If we don't do this, we're doing her a disservice as an in-universe author, and doing the author of the actual work a disservice in taking things at face value. If he didn't want the prospect of questioning the whole thing he wouldn't have chosen the format and character he did to present it, nor would he have left the resolution to the gentle touch Will provided. It appears that some ambiguity was desired. How to read that ambiguity is a matter of debate of course.
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Old 2014-03-01, 15:50   Link #34040
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The point of Maria's diary was that Maria's situation was actually more miserable than she put across and that she had less control over her life than she tried to convince herself. It doesn't make any sense to say these situations are being paralleled and then claim that one is slapping a coat of paint over a shitty situation while the other is making a shitty situation out of something that "isn't so bad".

Also, you still haven't bothered to point out an actual instance where Yasu has been histrionic about her situation.
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