September 01, 2007

He's Finally Lost It...

    I've been ill, jet lagged, and returning to both work and school.
Unfortunately, while I was out Stephen Den Beste completely jumped the shark.

Mechs....stupid?
Of course aside from the first 3 words in his post title, it is an article utterly devoid of merit...just some prattle about ground pressure and tensile strength and square cube law.

The sheer fallacy of the thesis is astounding given the ample evidence to the contrary....

 

That is not stupid.. THAT is kewel!(HT: Danny Choo)

I mean are YOU going to call this guy stupid? Stupid...no way...scary perhaps if you are an uninformed bystander, annoying if you are tasked with filling potholes, and grimly tragic if you are a sewer worker...but not stupid.

Using the photo evidence I would guess that Mr. Den Bestes' pessimistic ground pressure assessments were way off (which is surprising as I thought that was why Mazinger Z generally fought in the forests on the outskirts of town....but I digress).

   Giant Robots have cool theme songs....not insipid ones....

...and the best ones lend themselves to heavy metal as well ....but to deal with the main thrust of Den Bestes thesis..... that Giant Mechs are STUPID....well, just using the first generation of giant superhero robots (and the dubiously legal miracle of you tube) I can refute that handily.



That is not stupid...that's the 36th COOLEST THING I'VE EVER SEEN!!!

And that doesn't even deal with later generations of mechs..Likely the best known in the states are Macross (thanks to Robotech) and Go-Lion, (the more popular of the two franchises brought over for Voltron). 
Gundam,   in all its iterations both poignant and utterly wretched, generally had cool mechs (and even turn A Gundam was saved by a good story). Of course some of the best mech shows are hardly remembered now....more is the pity.

Then there were the next generation of Mechs such as Evangelion....

OK....bad example....

Er....
Anyway....let's look at this from the other side...

What sort of shows does Mr. Den Beste like!?

Opinionated Brickmuppet flaming below fold....

UFO Princess Valkyrie: An insipid, ethically challenged hero and a waaaay too loli female lead are the least of the crimes of this show. It manages the nigh-impossible task of making cute basically harmless catgirls really icky and creepy. Sanada, creates her catgirl maid army using the catgirl gun....to transmogrify and bimbofy hundreds of perfectly normal young women...students, mothers, career women it doesn't matter...they are loyal catgirl maids now....despite the fact that they all now seem to have IQs a tad less less than a hundred....they are generously permitted to live some shell of their normal life now until they are needed...then....with a blow of Sanada's whistle, they drop whatever they are doing and are off to serve our heroes.

OUR HEROES!!!
NOT SUPERVILLAINS!!!
THIS IS WHAT THE PROTAGONISTS IN THIS SERIES DO TO THOSE UNFORTUNATE ENOUGH BE NEAR THEM.
'cause they've got a labor shortage....

Now I think catgirls are cute and all, and there IS a terrible deficit of fawning, adoring catgirl madis in SE Virginia.

However, despite the fact that it is occasionally pointed out  I am a sad, pathetic, bitter, lonely, little misogynist....
...ASSAULT WITH A BIMBOFYING CATERIZER IS JUST WRONG!!!

2: Ah My Goddess: The seemingly inoffensive nebbish cypher that passes for a male lead fails utterly to order food for delivery and instead contacts an apprentice goddess who will grant him one wish....
He makes his wish....
He wants someone "just like her" to fall in love with him...
Given that Beldandy, the apprentice goddess, (on one of her first missions) is obviously sentient, and given that sentience implies individuality this results in the young girl becoming his luuuuv bunnie. The utter wrongness of this arrangement seems to be lost on our "hero" who just muddles through life with a look of innocence on his face and an utter lack of understanding of why the other goddesses are "upset" with him...(oh yes, wacky hijinks ensue) But its OK he's got a totally loyal goddess for a girlfriend...who doesn't argue with him...ever... and seems devoid of id except to the extent that she is serving him.

It's been 15 years since I've seen this and had it described to me as one of the cutest love stories that a certain fan had ever seen...I get the same vibe that one is supposed to get from that old Police song about the stalker.
Now to be fair, the series is not without potential, Beldandy is certainly a likeable character and if our hero had a conscience the story could be played for pathos, guilt, temptation and ethical quandary...but  as best I can tell, it never was * so I make no apologies to those bewildered that I did not put Beldandy, that congenial but pitiable meat-puppet, on the perpetually edited list.

Keep in mind that I'm the sort of sad, pathetic, bitter, lonely, little misogynist looser who COMPILES such a top 10 list and yet  SONG OF WIND AND TREES did not creep me out as much as these first two shows...
(full disclosure..it did gross me out slightly more...I mean...once I realized they were..you know.. ALL guys...but it wasn't creepy)


(* I'm told that there is a remake of AMG which is better in that the spell is not reversible....but there is still no indication that this bothers our hero)

3: Van Dread: Stephen also liked Van Dread....I totally and wholeheartedly concur with his assessment. Why do I use this to undermine his argument that mechs are stupid?

  BECAUSE IT IS A MECH SHOW. 

'sides...there's gonna be a Voltron Movie. So nenerneenerneeeener!!!

Anyway I rest my case...and await my readers input....from  within my bunker.





Update: Link to Animetal versions of the 4x '70s themes fixed.

Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 09:13 AM | Comments (9) | Add Comment
Post contains 963 words, total size 9 kb.

1

Giant mechas have cool theme songs?  Have you ever seen Megas XLR?

 

Posted by: RickC at Sat Sep 1 11:56:06 2007 (PoCOp)

2 I am not disturbed so much by the fact that you think that clip is the 36th coolest thing you ever saw, as I am by fact that you have a list of "Coolest Things I Have Ever Seen" that is at least 36 places long.  That bespeaks a measure of obsessiveness that may require professional help.  I urge you to seek it....soon.

:p

Posted by: ubu at Sat Sep 1 12:09:45 2007 (HULLT)

3

Sorry, no.  Liking Mecha shows = FAIL... at anime, at life, at anything you care to name. 

At best, a mecha show can be mediocre.  At worst, they're the worst things ever made.

Yes, that includes being worse than Eiken and Dokuro-chan.

/let me show you your medication.

/your medication, let me show it to you.

Posted by: Wonderduck at Sat Sep 1 16:26:19 2007 (Hrqgp)

4

The Youtube you have labeled as "cool theme songs" -- what is that vocalist's native language? He's got the weirdest accent, and I can't place it.

By the way, don't try to saddle me with somehow praising/defending UFO Princess Valkyrie. All through the period in which I was buying it and writing about it, you'll find me ridiculing it. Only the second series is any good, and even it only rises to the level of "OK".

And when, exactly, did I talk about Ah! My Goddess! as one of my favorite shows? It isn't. The OVA is monumentally dreadful. The TV series is pretty good, but I've got a lot better things in my collection.

Jeeze, if you're going to quote me, at least quote me accurately. I gave the second UFO Princess Valkyrie series 2.5 stars, and all the others are worse. The Ah! My Goddess! TV series got three stars -- but I've given 3 stars or more to 31 series. Neither of those particularly stands out among my reviewed series.

grumble

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at Sat Sep 1 21:56:37 2007 (+rSRq)

5

...I like mecha shows.  I do aknowledge that they are pretty stupid, but still rather fun. 

Of course one of my favorite parts of Infinite Ryvius (a show I really liked) is when they all laugh at the Vital Gaurder for being a bipedal humanoid robot.  Then again...it isn't used anything like mecha...it doesn't run, it doesn't jump, it doesn't punch things or have a knife/sword/axe.  In short...why was it humanoid? 

Posted by: Arson55 at Sat Sep 1 22:48:34 2007 (CtQJP)

6

The Youtube you have labeled as "cool theme songs" -- what is that vocalist's native language? He's got the weirdest accent, and I can't place it.

 

No, that is  Isao Sasaki who was one of THE big vocalists for old school anime theme songs. He was commissioned to do a version of the Mazinger Z theme for a proposed American version of the show a decade before Tranzor Z...He sang it phonetically.

As I understand it that show ran into the same perfect storm of standards & practices/ Federal Culture Control/ leftie nonviolent emasculating hysteria that gave kids in the US such cutting edge fare as Superfriends and Speed Buggy and it was never aired in the US with the possible exception of Hawaii and perhaps a few UHF stations.

 

By the way, don't try to saddle me with somehow praising/defending UFO Princess Valkyrie. All through the period in which I was buying it and writing about it, you'll find me ridiculing it. Only the second series is any good, and even it only rises to the level of "OK".

Hmmm ...you have a whole category dedicated to UFO Princess Valkyrie. You go on at length about the sympathy you have for Chorus and about other charachter points. I certainly got the impression that you at least enjoyed the series even if you didn't consider it high art...which is why I thought it was a perfectly appropriate foil to my Giant Robot Post.

 That being said, I see your review for #3 at least IS a thumbs down.....I sit corrected, and will have to come up with some appropriately self-flagelating post...

And when, exactly, did I talk about Ah! My Goddess! as one of my favorite shows? It isn't. The OVA is monumentally dreadful. The TV series is pretty good, but I've got a lot better things in my collection.
  

You seemed to mention it a lot, on Chizumatic 1st season more than your new one, it is listed with 3 stars here and you refer to it approvingly in this post (and make points that I fully agree with).Thus I stand by my scurrilous tarring of you on this point...as being in perfectly good faith.

 Like UFOPV, it seemed to be a show you enjoyed  a lot but didn't necessarily consider high art which made it a good fit for this post.

Posted by: Ken Talton at Sun Sep 2 05:41:01 2007 (l1XAG)

7 I feel compelled to respond to your mischaracterizations of Ah! My Goddess!:

In none of the various versions of the story did Keiichi wish for Belldandy to fall in love with him. He wished for her to STAY with him, leaving open the possibility that she would stay with him and make his life miserable. That didn't happen because they are both nice people.

In both the manga and the TV series she has numerous chances to get out of the contract, but chooses not to. And why not? All of the goddesses seem to regard life on Earth as a carefree vacation from their stressful life in Heaven. And Belldandy genuinely likes Keiichi. He would happily walk through Hell for her, and demands nothing from her in return.

If all you have seen is the OVA you can be forgiven for missing these points, since it did not touch on them at all.

Posted by: Jonathan Tappan at Sun Sep 2 23:01:35 2007 (Zimal)

8 All I have seen is the OVA...and it filled me with horror, not only because of its content but because soooo many people thought that it was a sweet love story.

Kinda' like that old Police song "Every Breath You Take" was a heartwarming love song.

I may have to watch the later version at some point.

Posted by: The Brickmuppet at Sat Apr 26 21:35:34 2008 (V5zw/)

9

MAZINKAISER!!!

 

FIREBLASTAAAHHHHHH!!!

Posted by: GO at Sat Oct 1 05:11:52 2011 (cAnMK)

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