Welcome to the Bluebird~!

It’s the problem of every student: school is cramping their style and their lives, and it’s my problem as well. I haven’t really watched the amount of anime I would have liked to, but then again, I’ve promised I’ll be more serious towards my studies this semester.

I haven’t really watched anything wonderful these past few days except for the nineteenth installment of NHK. The fifth episode of Code Geass was decent, but the Pizza Hut stuff was pretty annoying, especially because it was that obvious. But a smattering of everything I’ve watched isn’t really in my agenda – I’m here to talk about ep19 of NHK.

It really wasn’t as abhorrent or disquieting as animation nazis pointed it out to be; it was just artistically different, and it was skewed more to the abstract side. As I’ve mentioned in the AS Forums, I could more or less compare the art of the animation to Caravaggio’s art – it focused on the contrast between light and shadow subtly. I liked it a lot, so I wonder if that really is as big a problem as those critics bring it out to be. I certainly didn’t see anything oppressive to my aesthetics, so meh to them.

That’s only the tip of the iceberg, however. The episode itself, barring the art and animation, was simply magnificent. From the intercalated BGM, to the pathetic peals of Torotoro-san, it was a well-made work (save for the art and animation, maybe). The episode marked somewhat of a resurrection and a reincarnation of the lives of Satou, Yamazaki, Misaki, Kobayashi and her brother. Despite ubiquitous and exasperating problems, the strength of the human spirit triumphs. Instinct, however, also was of large effect especially in the rediscovery of Kobayashi’s brother the meaning of what it is to go outside and live. Satou realizes his folly, and Yamazaki as well as Misaki try to help Satou improve his condition: Yamazaki engages Satou in game-creation, a legitimate job; Misaki tries to be the absentee mother of Satou, as he resides in a place far and away from his mother. In turn, Misaki sees hope and improvement in herself as she tries to nurture Satou into becoming a better person. In this process, however, one can see, as an active viewer, the transformation of these characters from having thoughts and actions of obnubilation to becoming people who believe in a meaning and a value to their own lives (due to lucky happenstances, but still). I still highly suggest watching NHK if one hasn’t done so right now. It’s just a large waste not to see probably the best social-commentary anime of the year, as Koi Kaze was two years ago.

(In case you wonder, I do still do summaries, but I do them when I want to do them.)

Question Mark
So, are my general insights alright? Care to criticize or accolade? What do you think about the episode? I didn’t care to post screenshots. They must be everywhere already.

8 Responses to “Welcome to the Bluebird~!”

  1. Retsgip Says:

    I’d have to agree with you here on NHK 19. I hardcore-d this a couple months ago up to about episode 12 and had a lot of fun with it, but it’s only recently that I’ve begun to see some powerful messages. I’m not exactly sure when, but if I had to pinpoint it, I’d say the suicide arc was when this anime hooked me for good. I’ve found the situations strangely familiar from then on, so maybe that’s also why I’m enjoying it. It relates to me.

    I’d have to say the motif of this anime is about hope and friendship. You mentioned it a few times with the other characters, and I think you’re totally hit it dead on. The past few arcs have been about hopelessness, but in the end we say rays of hope for the characters. How do they achieve hope? Through friendship.

    Most people have thoughts of inadequacy and even though we may not be so…overzealous…in dealing with it, we still experience it. We get this feeling from the other people involved that there’s this huge cloud of hopelessness raining down on them. Only until Satou actively tried to hang out with them like friends, did they realize that life wasn’t hopeless. Satou’s friends showing up was also a wakeup call for not only him but the others as well.

    Then came another poignant story with lots of lessons to be learned. Gaming is bad! Well, at least games that let you lose control of yourself. We’re presented with the extreme cases of Satou then the brother to show us the bleak and relatively hopeless world they’ve gotten involved in. Only once we see them hit rock bottom, can we see them effectively saved. Once again, how? Friendship.

    Hope through friendship, it’s powerful stuff. I just hope the writers can keep presenting us with powerful material because I’m really enjoying it. Hope you enjoyed my attempt at being smart, now to finish my term paper @_@

  2. Danny Says:

    As for school, I am relatively free now, after exams.

  3. Michael Says:

    That’s a bunch of insight, Rets. Thanks. 🙂

  4. tritoch Says:

    I want a Misaki person right now..

    *hijacks Michael’s blog*

    GIMME MY MISAKI or this blog gets it!!!!!

  5. Ryan A Says:

    I agree that the anime is trying to show resolution and meaning to socially resented/repressed/regressed/etc characters, but with general ideas like friendship and love (general but still complex ^^). I find this really uplifiting because the manga doesn’t spend much time on the “dramatic” effect. With animation and music it becomes something else that can deliver these messages in a variety of toned ways.

    Gaah, I need to really catch up some NHK watching 🙂

  6. smashingtofu Says:

    D: this episode got me by surprise by the end of the episode,

    not because of the animation (I actually like it, from an artist’s and possible animation major’s perspective, and I agree with the Caravaggio-esque-ness although…it IS a bit choppy in some parts)

    *possible SPOILER*

    the fact that megumi was absent had an ironic effect to you-know-who and herself which frankly, almost got me in tears
    and the anime is going in a positive direction imo, compared to how the manga is going right now…not that I’m complaining, its just that I still like the manga somewhat better at the moment…

    *spoiler end*

  7. isygb Says:

    Good site!!!

  8. Taler Says:

    accolade is a noun pretentious git

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