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Toth

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  1. Still watching Higurashi Gou. And still not entirely sure how they will go about resolving this show. So far the idea seems to be entirely "It's the same exact story arcs as in the original Higurashi, but with a twist". This... I am not quite sure I like as much as I should. With every arc so far being four episodes, this means there are three episodes that are 90% boredom because it is just repeating stuff you already know with only some small hints that something has changed and then it all comes crashing down in an ending that usually has the murderers and victims switched up. The ending of the "Watadamashi" arc was a fantastic mystery though, giving you just enough clues to figure out 80% of what happened on your own, but still leaving something you need more information for to get a clear picture. And yet, YET, I am annoyed just how much of the arc was just the Watanagashi arc despite Keiichi giving the doll to Mion. Vast swathes of the plot shouldn't have happened like that. At least in this one Rika has the excuse for how fast she was dispatched to explain why she wasn't able to influence more things.
  2. Ryukishi played his audience like a goddamn fiddle! I mean... sure that the author specializing in ridiculously unreliable narrators and meta-twists will play a prank like this on the viewers he made to believe that the new Higurashi show is a remake. Damn... So the whole thing started to come down on Wednesday. Amazon put up the show and an episode list and people started wondering why it was named "Higurashi no naku koro ni Gou" and why its first arc is called "Onidamashi" (Deceived by Demons) instead of "Onikakushi" (Abducted by Demons) despite the first episode having depicted Onikakushi events. I watched the Reddit melting down in real time as people started discussing that this could indeed be a different story. And then Episode 2 aired. Immediately starting out with: IT IS A SEQUEL! NOT A REMAKE! GODDAMN IT, RYUKISHI! Ironically I am now a lot more curious how this will play out. I have honestly no clue whatsoever. None of this was ever shown in any of the VNs or mangas. So far the second episode as well depicts mostly Onikakushi events, including some scenes the first Anime skipped, but skipping a lot of very crucial scenes and still alluding to them as if acknowledging that they should be here. Which in turn makes me wonder: Anyway, my first hunch that the scenes they skipped were far too crucial for this to be a remake and suspecting a Rebuild of Evangelion situation was so absolutely on the mark that I'm still stunned about my prediction. Yay, I guess? In other news I am very slightly starting to get used to the art style. That doesn't mean I like it, mind you. I still find it lifeless and rigid with everyone looking like plastic dolls. The thick lighting effects somewhat manage to cover it up during twilight and night scenes though. Other than that I have nothing else to say, except having you enjoy the fantastic opening: There are two very tiny Umineko references in it though that leave me utterly at a loss just how meta this show will get. I hope this will not throw off people who only know Higurashi. Adding on these concerns there is a small bit at the beginning of the episode where: That was odd, to say the least. And now I'm worrying that this might mean...
  3. Just watched the first episode of the Higurashi Remake. I... I don't really know where I stand. So far the art style is the only part that severely puts me off. The characters look like plastic figurines and the always blushing cheeks during the slice-of-life segments never stop irritating me. I have been really paranoid about fanservice, but so far there hasn't been anything notable. There was one really strange crotch shot of Satoko during the picnic at the Furude shrine though that I don't exactly know where to put. Other than that, they have restrained themselves, but we also haven't seen any penalty games for some reason. On the plus side of things: The first few scenes lift the dialogue pretty much verbatim from the visual novel. I think that's their way of assuring viewers that they are trying a faithful adaptation. I also soon discovered that they ditched the reddened cheeks during serious scenes, which goes a long way in making me get used to the art, though the plastic feeling never stops, which will make gore scenes very odd to look at I assume. They also pull all the stops in terms of foreshadowing, especially the prominent display of Rika's calendar took me by surprise this early. Then we came across our first diversion. In a nod to the original Anime featuring the club's welcome card game to Keiichi the remake skips to one day later with Keiichi asking whether they will play this again and the club instead playing a "game" to find Mion's marker that she hid somewhere in the school. That... I don't really what was the intention of that? The card game was extremely useful for getting to know how the club and its penalty game's work, as well as giving a crucial clue for the mystery of this chapter. Why just telling what happened and even removing the penalty part of the replacement game? It's as if this Anime is aimed exactly at people who are already familiar with the story and don't need those clues anymore, which I think makes very little sense for a remake aiming at getting a new audience. This feeling got turned up to eleven during the final scene of the episode where for some reason the old Anime's opening song started playing for the credits. Does that mean they will literally use the old opening? Seriously? I'm... not sure what to make of that if it's true. And some tinfoil hat conspiracy theorist within me is quite on edge about this Anime pulling a Rebuild of Evangelion on us and severely altering the story we know. Heck, the post-credits scene extremely hinted at something like this, to be honest... I'll keep watching and will try to stay on my toes. We'll see how this goes storywise and whether I can manage to adjust to the art style.
  4. I had today a rather interesting moment that I'd like to share. So... I'm a teacher... and if you have seen my latest post where I was worrying about the tensions in one of my classes due to Erdogan's invasion of Syria, you know that I work with classes that have a very high migration background, about 70% and mostly Turkish. Today I had with that class again, though not Politics, but Computer Science instead. The students had to make short presentations of "Pioneers of Computer Science", the exercise was obviously more about the making of presentations than anything else, but the topic is interesting enough and I thought I could provoke some surprises by offering them an equal amount of male and female pioneers instead of the usual history of boring old men that you get too often. The history of Computer Science makes that quite easy, what with the software aspect being heavily female dominated up until 70s toxic nerd culture wrecked the gender balance. Anyway... long story short, the students didn't react much at all the stories of awesome female pioneers writing the first code, sending people to the moon, cracking the enigma etc. Which I hope had to do with them not thinking it unusual. What however they DID find unusual and which causes me to write here was the presentation of Alan Turing and how the persecution of his homosexuality drove him to suicide. That caught the students by surprise and caused a barrage of question. Why was it treated as a crime? What even is homosexuality? How did the perception of it change? Which countries are still criminalizing it? Remember, 70% Muslim background. Several of the students came into the conversation with either no knowledge whatsoever or had picked up some rather troubling notions. What made the discussion so open and productive however was that even those entered it not treating their image as truth, but as a question. It was not "Homosexuality is a desease.", it was "Is Homosexuality a desease?". There was a genuine curiosity for the right answer there. And with questions you can work. The students had to define what a desease is and quite quickly came to the conclusion that it can't be. The next question then was "Is it a fetish then?", which once again caused them to scramble for an answer, with me barely intervening at all. That it all started with the questioning of the persecution of one man also had the added bonus that at the end of the tangent we came back to this question and voiced the conclusion that the main reason for it being treated as a deviancy was a silence on the matter. An adherence to what is assumed normal and what not, one mostly created by religion. And that society only changed because of the thing we just did: Talk about it. Removing the shroud of strangeness and shame and treat any sexuality as a thing we can understand and accept. I must admit I was quite proud of my class there.^^ Despite being obviously also a bit troubled that 16/17 years olds living in Berlin of all places still had such a vague notion of what homosexuality is.
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