Normally when I’m late to watching the latest episode of the Hot New Thing In Town (and according to the power rankings, Humanity has Declined is the new hot thing in town), twitter will happily spoil me for the latest dramatic plot twists. For Humanity has Declined though, instead I get spoiled for what grand societal happening it is satirising this week. People were arguing over whether it was a critical view of fujoshi fandom or celebratory. Firstly, I think it’s more a commentary on subcultures in general rather than specifically fujoshi. Secondly, anyone who tried to argue that it was celebratory because of that one scene where they said comiket was very orderly and happy on the surface I feel missed the entire point of that scene.
The comiket was the entire publishing industry coming together rather than people going to them, in one giant fan orgy. The actual event itself was great for the fans because they get their wonderful piece of subculture. However the point of the comment about how calm it seemed there was to draw a direct comparison between what happened directly after that statement when the two publishers of the other magazines realised they were at a disadvantage because they were on their competitor’s home turf. The calm on the surface disguised the rivalries and backstabbing that was occurring and going to occur. It wasn’t to say “look at how wonderful everyone is”.
I don’t think Humanity has Declined has a non-cynical bone in its body. As I said, while I don’t think this episode is directed towards BL fandom and more directed at subcultures in general, it’s definitely not a positive one. You don’t have lines about how homogeneous the art looks and generic the characters are when the main character flicked through the first book in a celebratory depiction. Neither do you have that fucking brilliant line about the fairies. “You are aware there’s a group out there that will jump on whatever the latest fad is?” – “I know, that’s what I’m counting on”. You know, those creatures that create products that resemble the real thing but are in fact homogeneous pap cobbled together using broken down rubbish yet you’re ignorant and so are not aware of what the real product is like so you scoff it all down anyway like it’s the greatest thing ever? That’s what fans of a subculture are.
…holy shit, I only just made that connection now.
…holy shit, this anime is the most cynical thing ever.
…holy shit this anime is awesome.
What are the fairies anyway? My train of thought from the last episode was that they’re representative of what humans will eventually become. This was sparked by the reveal last episode that they reproduce when they have been exposed to enough ‘fun’. You do this by buying jokes to tell them. You could make them up yourself, but that might backfire and they’ll get depressed and won’t function as your personal compass. They must be packaged perfectly into their little boxes or else they’ll go out of control. Their faces are fixed into a perfect :D and can never break out of that. There was a scene in the first episode where a fairy tries to grab his face and pull down by the cheeks to express his concern that humanity is declining, but is incapable of turning his :D into a D: no matter how hard he tried.
Also they live on fake sugary sweets with no actual substance…fucking hell this anime is so cynical.
I’m not even sure if I like writing about it. The more I write, the more I start to feel depressed at this view of humanity.
Humanity is in Decline guys.
Oh god, now that I’m on this train of though, all these screencaps I have make me depressed. A gaggle of artists have a naked man in front of them, but their faces are locked in deep concentration as they instead focus on how to create the perfect hyper-realistic BL couple. When the main character says she talks to a boy, the lead BL editor is shocked at calls her out for her betrayal. We do not consume the real thing anymore. We’ve become so wrapped up in this fake version that we don’t even notice the real version when it’s right in front of our eyes. Chickens end up as chicken nuggets, but nobody’s sure how or whether that’s just an urban myth.
So yeah, totally a celebration of BL subculture guys.