62 CommentsIrregular at Magic High School / By Scamp /

Irregular at Magic High School episode 3 – This probably won’t last long

oh how about in every wayOh I don’t know, how about in every single way possible?

After live-tweeting all three episodes of Irregular at Magic High School and having an amazing amount of fun with this poorly written pile, I ran a little informal poll to see if people were interested in hearing me blog this. The result for which was as inevitable as if the stupid kid stood at the front of the class and asked if everyone wanted to see him eat a spider. We all know it’s going to be terrible for him, but watching him bring pain upon himself is amusing.

Let us be under no illusions here. I would not be interested in Mahouka if it wasn’t as popular as it is. It would be another in the long string of crappy light novels about fighting magic high schools. But because it is popular, the parts where it differentiates itself from other anime within its genre stick out more and become fascinating. It’s like being an archaeologist and analysing what ancient civilisations perceived as beauty. Sure we may think that making your feet tiny or earlobes massive might be really dumb and strange, but to these people this was a highly desirable trait.

[HorribleSubs] Mahouka - 03 [480p].mkv_snapshot_20.57_[2014.04.23_22.12.59]The most obvious way in which Mahouka stands out is its perfect main character. I laid out just how absolutely perfect in every way he is in the first episode, and indeed episodes two and three continue to emphasise pretty much everything I said there. He saves the girls from being attacked (sexually in the case of the rather randy girls volleyball team apparently) and is capable of defusing any situation with calm and poise, with the added bonus of being basically the most over-powered bastard in the world with an in-depth knowledge of all the rules.

What’s interesting though is he’s not as ass. You often hear anime fans complain about spineless wussy male leads who will let himself be blue-balled over and over again as a parade of beautiful women fawn over his cock but he never fucks them. But when shows try to counter that and represent those people, the characters turn into sexual predators who grasp the breasts of those in front of them. You get Highschool DxD or Daimalder or whatever that one from a few seasons back about the demon king coming back to his world and then randomly having to attend school with his pink haired assistant who pissed herself (or at least I believe that was the light novel title for it). They act like rapists because you can’t have a pure girl who wants the cock and is given the cock. It’s the purity complex. Girls who fawn over a beta male who never acts stay pure. Girls who unwillingly get groped are pure because they didn’t want to get groped.

Tatsuya is not that. Tatsuya is a gentlemen. He is confident and calm with women who always knows what to say. He doesn’t make advances but that’s not because he stutters. He’s just perfect at dealing with them. He can’t have sex with this one girl who gropes him because it’s his sister and he’s a man of dignity. This way carefully keeps the purity complex intact while not creating one of the previous two archetypes. It’s a clever workaround. You can’t have sex with God himself.

[HorribleSubs] Mahouka - 03 [480p].mkv_snapshot_09.36_[2014.04.23_22.01.08]The bloom/weed thing is interesting in how it plays into the main character being perfect. It was supposed to be a labelling showing that the disadvantaged in society are systematically bullied. Social commentary and all that. It’s basically the main thing driving the plot at the moment. The thing is, our main character is presented as someone who will represent the Weeds. He won’t be held back by your labels man. But he’s not disadvantaged at all. In fact it’s revealed that he’s basically more powerful than everyone else combined.

It’s like a world where people with one arms are discriminated against but then Tatsuya comes out as a hero of the one-armed people, only for it to be revealed that he actually has eight arms. They’re not going to go back and stop discriminating against the one-armed people because of Tatsuya. It’s a way of playing the victim even though you are superior. It’s the white man fantasy if you will. Become the fighter against oppression without suffering any of the actual oppression. It’s why tumblr likes to invent -isms and why some men try to act like misandry exists.

[HorribleSubs] Mahouka - 03 [480p].mkv_snapshot_11.11_[2014.04.23_22.02.47]IF YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN.

Sorry, this post was a very serious breakdown of the bad points rather than pointing and laughing and making dumb jokes about incest. I promise there will be more incest jokes in the future.

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62 Comments

  1. Andmeuths
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 5:01 am | Permalink

    You will certainly have far more material to play along within the next few arcs. Unless the adaptation… decides that the Infinite Stratos II model of adapting LN is the way to go (basically, axing out anything remotely unique or interesting, in favor of bland Harem tropes).

    You will get to see Japan’s persecution complex once again manifesting itself in it’s full, ugliest glory(in the tradition of Code Geass and Guilty Crown). Whether or not the adaptation will ever touch on the idea of the Post-human, or the idea of what makes for a human, or the regression of society back where females are implicitly breeding stock in a world where lineage and bloodline is all important is another matter altogether. And whether these themes are badly carried out all throughout the show is up to you to decide.

    Mahouka is an escapist Shounen Power-Fantasy and an ode to the glory of Nippon masquerading as a crappy incest Harem High School Romance LN, where both the Harem and Romance can never be reciprocated (and will never be) , and the Incest a reflection of a screwed up family. That might explain it’s popularity, since it hits so many of those pleasure button among the Japanese Otaku audience that result in huge sales.

    • Scamp
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

      Man, fucking Japan’s persecution complex. That is one big thing I’m afraid of seeing when I eventually return to Code Geass

    • Chevalier
      Posted April 25, 2014 at 7:32 pm | Permalink

      To be fair, I’d say ANDMEUTHS is making a highly simplistic and misleading comparison here.

      Code Geass didn’t really give me that same sort of impression, at least certainly nothing remotely to the extent of what apparently happens in Mahouka if the rumors and spoilers are true. There are several key differences that often tend to be overlooked by such sloppy references.

      Lelouch, the exiled Britannian protagonist, isn’t even Japanese and his personal motivations to fight have essentially nothing to do with Japan being occupied. For him, that oppression was just another sign of the Britannian regime’s general brutality and decadence. He only gets involved in order to address his own family issues and other self-centered reasons, not due to any special love or appreciation for the Japanese people and their plight.

      If anything, the story was about a semi-evil foreigner who manipulated and exploited the cause of Japanese liberation for his own purposes throughout the entire show, which included killing off a bunch of Japanese militarists from the JLF rebel group relatively early into the season, when they hijack a hotel.

      Not to mention that the most prominent and overpowered Japanese character, Suzaku, is something of a hypocrite with a psychological complex, rather than a shining beacon of all that Japanese goodness or whatever. There’s no such thing as promoting the “glory of Nippon” in Code Geass when you stop to analyze these conflicting aspects.

      • Daniel
        Posted May 8, 2014 at 1:44 am | Permalink

        “isn’t even Japanese”, what? His Mother was japanese.

  2. Aethelwulf
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 6:55 am | Permalink

    Oooh, Don Juan-kun. So tall, so skilled, so dreamy, so perfectly boring… *swoons onto a Victorian-era fainting couch, fanning self….*

    To me, it seems like Tatsuya’s personality is it’s own subset of wish-fulfillment within the show’s regular power-fantasy framework. A viewer might envy a wimpy male lead or a boob-groping one for their circumstances (surrounded by hot girls, but with no pressure to act! Able to express repressed carnal desires without reservations or serious consequence!), but Tatsuya is designed to be enviable for the way he treats the people around him.

    There’s a subset of guys who have a knight-in-shining armor complex (I’ve dated two of them–they’re not so bad, really). They want to be the dashing hero of their own life story. They want to be the one to rescue the princess from the dragon (or from an undeserving boyfriend). They want to be better than the riff-raff who only think about getting into a girl’s pants. Whether or not the wannabe knights actually do want to get into said girl’s pants is besides they point; they just need to *feel* like they’re above all that.

    And that courtly ideal is the fantasy the Tatsuya represents. He’s suave, he’s cool, he’s a gentleman. He can overcome his desires and reject improper feminine advances. He, simply put, is just better! What a perfect vessel for all the awkward (but romantic) young fellows of the world to project themselves onto!

    TL;DR: Girls may wanna do him, but boys want to *be* him.

    • Andmeuths
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 7:21 am | Permalink

      I’m not sure whether that’s the case among the LN reading audience. I wouldn’t want to be lobotomized and essentially reduced to the status of slave (albeit, a very willing one, but that’s because he’s lobotomized for that).

    • Scamp
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 7:17 pm | Permalink

      I think the Knight in Shining Armour idea is interesting. It’s the Nice Guy complex. I could see an alternate world Tatsuya having girls call him such a Nice Guy, but in this world they all blush and love him.

  3. lmm
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 8:17 am | Permalink

    I like the serious analysis. (Except your misandry hobby-horse)

  4. Posted April 24, 2014 at 8:45 am | Permalink

    So how’d you take to that scene where Miyuki defragments Tatsuya’s brain just because he might not be interested in only her?

    • Cirith
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:50 am | Permalink

      Ah is that what it was supposed to be? At that point in the novels are you supposed to know that? Because here it just looked like he has some auto repair feature when someone attacks him.

      That actually makes more sense.

    • Mentar
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:53 am | Permalink

      It’s not. Miyuki didn’t “defragment” anything. For the time being, take the scene just as it was displayed.

      Miyuki casts magic on Tatsuya, which causes him to topple over and which indeed activates some kind of restoration ability. Once it’s over, both he and she smile about it, so the severity of the action wasn’t too high.

  5. Kaszak
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 8:53 am | Permalink

    Personally, i can’t stand how that goddamn school is designed. I mean, what kind of retard/asshole designed this bloom/weed split? That school supposed to train national treasures or something, so shouldn’t it develop and foster it’s student’s individual talents, like making a separate classes for combat, engineering etc, and make them more useful? But nooo, ‘Let’s just shove all students into “master race” and “worthless peasant” courses and watch them go for each other’s throats, hurrrrr!’. For some reason this really rustles my jimmies.

    • Mr.RR
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:06 am | Permalink

      The bloom/weed, I think, was made by the students. It is otherwise like regular classes/honor classes irl, just the honor roll students are on their high horses.

      • Kaszak
        Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:11 am | Permalink

        It’s still a bad thing if you have only 2 courses for such diverse field of knowledge. Imagine if our universities instead of having biology, chemistry, engineering, liberal arts courses etc. only had courses “good with math” and “bad with math”. It makes no sense to me.

      • Mentar
        Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:13 am | Permalink

        This is High School, not University. There is a Magic University for those who leave High School.

      • Kaszak
        Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:15 am | Permalink

        Oh, i see. I stand corrected then.

      • Mentar
        Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:17 am | Permalink

        I mean, don’t get me wrong, I do agree with you that this whole Bloom/Weed thing is ass. It will come over as extremely “FFS” once we learn the _real_ truth behind it all ^_^;

      • Andmeuths
        Posted April 24, 2014 at 10:13 am | Permalink

        Even some of the characters (or perhaps the author himself) acknowledges how unbelievably stupid, the origins of the discrimination was. Here’s a hint – Face.

    • Scamp
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

      Discrimination is stupid and that’s sort of what the show is supposed to be about. I’d hardly criticise the show for that element.

    • Banarok
      Posted April 25, 2014 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

      since i’ve read some of the novel i can say how it cropped up, i still think it’s kind of contrived but here i go.

      originally the just had the blooms that was the the uniform but it wasen’t TOO rare that magicans “burned out” their power or flat out died, and since the magicans are kind of a mix of the military and engineers they are at this time prime for keeping your country in tier one so to say.
      the government then set out a requirement that there have to be a set ammount of graduates each year, and that turned into making sure there where atleast someone skilled enough in the reserve to take the place of a bloom that burned out, but since it was a sudden change they diden’t have time to send back the 100 extra uniforms that where faulty (aka came without the flower) that where ment for the reserves.

      it was a while since i read this so if made a mistake somewhere please point it out but still, that is the general story of it, why the school would keep the bloomless uniforms seems beyond wierd.

  6. Mentar
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:07 am | Permalink

    Hi Scamp,

    I’d like to point out where your summary is off. Tatsuya is _not_ all-powerful.

    1) It’s shown that he is unable to properly wield the kind of magic that is taught in the curriculum (e.g. moving the roller). And we also know from his inner dialogue that he is NOT holding himself back. This is the limit of his ability, as he stated with a hint of frustration.

    Yes, he’s shown to be extremely proficient in combat ability and in theoretical knowledge about magic. But this is it.

    2) He is pretty bad at dealing with people who have a negative disposition towards him. In fact, he also has problems dealing with some people who actually like him, but I won’t elaborate to avoid spoilers.

    I find it a bit disingenuous to slap broad “perfect” “god” labels on him based on these obvious issues.

    The current bloom/weed distinction is based on a set of measurements of certain capabilities, and even Tatsuya agrees that based on them, he indeed _is_ a weed. However, for the “tasks” presented to him so far, his skills made him exceptionally capable. That doesn’t mean however that he has 8 arms. Just that he has other capabilities which are not relevant in the bloom/weed distinction, but which help him in combat.

    About his dealings with women – quite some content was axed. No, he is NOT particularly good at dealing with them (though his calm demeanor is a welcome detour from the norm, IMHO). He is rather a rational guy, not a Kazuma/Kaze no Stigma type.

    I dislike the label “incest”, because by definition it implies sexual activity between two siblings (which didn’t happen and won’t happen), but fiiiiiine – if it’s used to designate this very asymmetricl relationship between the two. I’ll only say that there’s more to it than meets the eye, but we’re not there yet.

    “Wish fulfillment” – you certainly have a point there. And following up what Andmeuths said: He’s right that the glory of Nippon including their persecution complex is definitely going to be unpleasant even for a fan like me. Then again, how about keeping that for the times when it’s actually part of the episode? Or are you planning to harp on that 23 more times?

    The thing is that almost all of anime is some sort of wish fulfillment. That in itself is nothing special. But as someone knowing all LNs, and so, the entire background story – would I want to trade places with Tatsuya? Hell no. No way in bloody hell.

    I think it’s obvious that you went into this show with certain preconceptions fueled by a myriad of summaries out there of which the most I’ve seen are hovering between oblivious and outright clueless. And now you are eager to take any hint that could be construed to be a validation of your preconceptions as “evidence” for it, no matter whether or not it’s conclusive. Is that going to make you happy in 23 installments now? Especially once later story developments will render several of your earlier conclusions invalid?

    FWIW – this is your blog, so your rules apply – I’d suggest to try to keep an open mind and either read the LN or at least the manga on the side. The anime cuts lots of details to keep up the pace, but it screws up the characterizations of lead actors quite a bit (especially Miyuki and Mayumi are barely recognizable).

    Well, just a suggestion.

    • Cirith
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 10:23 am | Permalink

      Having weaknesses only makes a character not perfect if they actually hinder him in what he does. Otherwise it is “look how great he is even with the handicaps X Y and Z”. He is talented in respect to engineering is he not? (I have the suspicion that he made his special magic guns himself, that would fit his interests and it would not be unusual for a mysterious inventor to turn out to be the MC. But do not tell me if I am right please.) I do not think that his limitations hinder him for engineering which realistically is the more useful discipline.
      But we are in a LN/anime world so fighting is the way he will use magic most of the time. I have only read the first part of the manga and some spoilers about some of his hax abilities. But I am already quite confident that for combat he is quite strong despite the drawbacks.
      So in what aspect do this drawbacks actually hinder him? A great fighter and a smart engineer seem plenty perfect.

    • Cirith
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 10:31 am | Permalink

      Also, he has not displayed problems dealing with people in the anime or the first 22 manga chapters for that matter, such problems become relevant when he actually displays them in the anime. It does not really matter what happens in the LN especially if it is later in the story

      • Mentar
        Posted April 24, 2014 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

        Cirith: Look at it this way: Tatsuya was unable to deal with the Bloom hostility over Miyuki’s desire to eat/go home with him constructively. He is being dragged around, and ended up in the Morals Committee against his will. He could have explained the apprehending of Kirihara much better. And let’s not start about his own family.

        He himself would without a doubt agree that he is bad at dealing with people, and Miyuki considers this (and “his inability to accept the good intentions of people”, as she puts it) his greatest weakness.

        Now – he is exceptionally intelligent, and this helps in resolving crises. But his social skills especially towards those harboring ill will towards him are far from perfect, IMHO.

        Anon: I on the other hand am not shocked to see you still roaming around dissing people even after the third episode of a show you call shit. If you’re right, that would make you a perfect fly circling over it.

    • Anon
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 1:22 pm | Permalink

      I’m shocked that Mentar is defending this trash over here, too. SHOCKED.

    • Hanasra
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

      Resorting to “It will be different later on because that’s what they show in the LN” is always a poor defense. An adaptation is always and must be judged on its own, separated from the source material. It is a different work, you can’t defend a poor novel adaptation because the novel itself is a literary classics. This is why people could enjoy Bunny Drop as it is regardless of the source material.

      In this case, Scamp write the impression of chosen anime each episode, which means that they stand on their own. Scamp doesn’t have to delete all of his pre-episode 8 Samurai Flamenco just because he dropped it later on. Those impressions still stand and will gave us a good insight on how those episodes actually judge without knowing any prior knowledge.

      I don’t know if you can understand this. Too many people these days have “It’ll get better I swear because of the LN/Manga/Later volumes” on any medium. The obsession of having overtly long and obtuse worldbuilding seems to be cause of this.

      • Mentar
        Posted April 24, 2014 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

        I’m not swearing anything, and I am not asking Scamp to be patient or anything. What I’m pointing out is that in my opinion, he is falling into the “self-fulfilling prophecy” trap. Due to a myriad of “summaries” out of which a significant oblivious-clueless subset is repeating “Almighty”/”Incest” and the likes, Scamp is taking those tidbits as “evidence” for his expectations.

        Or, to put it differently: I have strong doubts that if there had not been the pre-airing-hype-flamewars and he had no clue about the show at all whatsoever, he would conclude after this episode 3 that Tatsuya is perfect, almighty or whatnot. Because the material DOES NOT WARRANT THIS KIND OF VERDICT YET. After some scenes in LN Volume 4 or 7, maybe. But not now.

        But hey – I’m just commenting on his comments. Whoever doesn’t like the show, more power to them, I’m not blaming anybody.

      • Cirith
        Posted April 24, 2014 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

        Oh I think “it gets better” can be useful information, it is not an excuse for what something is at the moment and fans are of course biased, but there are some things where the beginning is just weaker than the rest. For instance I like the first discworld book less than the rest (though it is not bad either) and I consider the beginning of Gintama as weaker than later episodes.

      • Hanasra
        Posted April 24, 2014 at 3:23 pm | Permalink

        It works only if the wait isn’t that long. Like page 50 of a 500 hundred pages book, or episode 3 of 13 episodes anime. When you said “it’ll be better on volume 3 or episode 20″ shit ain’t gonna work.

      • Posted April 29, 2014 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

        If you ask me, “it gets better” is a response which never accomplishes its job if used in isolation.

        What really needs to be said is what’s making the story not better, followed by how it improves. This way you’re giving honest insight into your own perspective at the same time as you’re making a convincing argument for why someone should stick with the series.

        If they don’t agree then it’s clearly a difference of preference; both parties have saved a lot of time and effort, and can part amicably. If they do agree, everyone wins. Asking for flaws and their resolutions in one go also handily deflects myopic fans who can’t see the flaws in the thing love for their love of it.

    • Wodes
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

      “It’s shown that he is unable to properly wield the kind of magic that is taught in the curriculum”-boo hoo i can destroy the world but I can’t move a roller. That’s a totally meaningless “weakness”.
      “He is pretty bad at dealing with people who have a negative disposition towards him.”-How are people in general supposed to deal with people who have a negative disposition towards them? I don’t know if there’s really a “good” or “bad” way to deal with people who hate you.

      Reasons why this character IS functionally a god:
      -Became the only user (known) of incredibly high class magics that even the strongest Magicians in the world cannot use
      -Created his own A rank and Strategic Rank Decomposition Magics, as well as his own Regrowth magic
      -Became the first Artificial Magician at the age of 6
      -Became a Guardian at the age of 7
      -Learned how to use Gram Demolition (Whatever the fuck that means)
      -Actualised the Loop Cast theory (Whatever the fuck that means)
      -Became a pioneering expert in CAD software engineering as well as a world renowned researcher (I’m pretty good at CAD, i use it in my MechE classes)
      -Became Kokonoe Yakumo’s best student at the young age of 17, even outmatching him in pure martial arts and physicality, equal in terms of techniques, but outclassed in terms of strategy, knowledge and magical technical ability (So he’s a fucking ninja)

      And this was all before volume one. You have to wonder where else this character can go.
      http://mahouka-koukou-no-rettousei.wikia.com/wiki/Shiba_Tatsuya/History

      • Mentar
        Posted April 24, 2014 at 6:10 pm | Permalink

        Gee, nothing like someone who obviously doesn’t know the story, and simply spoils everyone by copy-pasting the wiki-summarized results of 13 LNs, written by a total fanboy (with several major errors), into this discussion. You’ve really been doing the community a big service. Don’t worry, you have a lock on “jerk of the week”.

    • Scamp
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

      Me thinks you’re projecting just a little. I didn’t call it wish fulfilment, not have a read plot summaries nor knew about Don Juan’s perfectness before jumping into the show. I read the first chapter of the manga and found it a little dull. How much they emphasise the main character’s gentlemenly nature was made incredibly apparent in the very first episode. He’s functionally perfect, in that what supposed limits they place on him are rendered irrelevant by something else. Perhaps saying 8 arms is the wrong metaphor. He has 8 tentacles that do all the jobs of arms and so much more besides.

      And the show is super incesty. I have no idea how you can’t see that. Literally every episode is full of the stuff. He says he would love to have her as his wife if they weren’t related.

      Literally my only interest in this is because it’s perplexingly popular. If it wasn’t, I would have given up after episode 1 because it’s poorly written dross whose only notable plot point of the racism is rendered meaningless by the main character’s perfection.

      • Hanasra
        Posted April 25, 2014 at 1:37 am | Permalink

        His definition of incest must involved sexual intercourse, so there’s that.

  7. Mentar
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 10:29 am | Permalink

    Well, “perfect” by definition implies flawlessness. That he obviously excels in certain areas is beyond question. I don’t think we’re in a big disagreement here.

    I was objecting because there are going to be several things that Tatsuya is really weak in, and that are going to be relevant to the show. And it would be better not to assume that due to being “perfect” Tatsuya doesn’t have to struggle with them.

  8. Posted April 24, 2014 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

    “It’s why tumblr likes to invent -isms and why some men try to act like misandry exists.”

    So are you implying it is logically impossible for any human female that exists to exhibit reverse misogyny-like behaviors (e.g. hate men)? Not trying to start a political argument on an anime blog, just curious.

    Otherwise a good post, and I do hope you hold on your promise for more incest jokes. It is a comedic gold mine full of untapped potential.

    • Scamp
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 7:29 pm | Permalink

      Of course they exist. They just have no power and is therefore functionally unimportant. It’s the Tatsuya’s weaknesses of isms.

  9. THAT GUY
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

    Uhhhhh I’m going to be THAT guy. Why u do dis scamp? why you bait misandry over and over again :(

    Saying misandry doesn’t exist is like saying non-whites can’t be racist. Yes its a FAR smaller problem than the reverse, particularly in business/politics. But it still exists in some small capacity. Please don’t take angry virgins on reddit as the sum total of mens rights and its advocates.

    • Scamp
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

      Unless we’re talking about child custody, it has no functional power. Calling misandry, much like calling racism against whites, only really serves to pull attention away from the much more serious other side of the fence.

      • Mr. Anon
        Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:41 pm | Permalink

        That’s a false dichotomy.

        And really I don’t think there should be sociopolitical arguments on an anime blog … it’s your blog of course, so do what you like, but … yuck.

      • THAT GUY
        Posted April 24, 2014 at 11:45 pm | Permalink

        Because we are incapable of concentrating on two forms of discrimination at once, so we should ignore one completely? That’s a pretty cynical position, and wouldn’t change the fact that misandry exists in a cultural capacity as misogyny does. I’d like to think we could tackle an issue like domestic violence from both sides rather than dismiss one side because its less serious.

      • Billish
        Posted April 26, 2014 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

        Racism against whites mattered in Die Hard 3, and look what happened there.

    • Kiseki
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 7:35 pm | Permalink

      No comment on misandry, but “non-whites can’t be racist” isn’t an apt comparison since it’s something limited to white majority populations aka not most of the world

      • THAT GUY
        Posted April 24, 2014 at 11:30 pm | Permalink

        South Africa would disagree, you don’t need to be the majority to be the oppressors. Also not an apt comparison because it can’t be applied to every country in the world, come on really?

  10. Rodrigo
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

    “It’s like a world where people with one arms are discriminated against but then Tatsuya comes out as a hero of the one-armed people, only for it to be revealed that he actually has eight arms. ”

    It’s funny because at first glance it seems like it’s going to be about discrimination against the weaker guys, but it turns out to be “oh how the world is unfair to MC, his skills are not recognized and so he is lumped together with the weaker, useless guys”.

    Also, this series of posts will have the most comments out of your episodics this season.

    • Posted April 24, 2014 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

      Some comments on E. Minor’s coverage of this episode suggests a lot of fun is to be had. I won’t be watching this show like the vast majority of almost everything that isn’t JoJo or these two anime people ignore for reasons.

    • Scamp
      Posted April 24, 2014 at 7:36 pm | Permalink

      That’s a great observation. He’s not representing the Weeds. He’s just a mistakenly identified Bloom

      • Posted April 26, 2014 at 10:47 am | Permalink

        “He’s not representing the Weeds. He’s just a mistakenly identified Bloom.”

        Great line. Of course, just as in The Olympics, there are misplaced unity, especially to counter misplaced hostility, but still.

    • Posted April 26, 2014 at 10:41 am | Permalink

      Heck, the whole system is shown as “flawed”, since basically /every single one/ of Tatsuya’s “Weed” friends is unique in some way, but 7 or 13 years of this system couldn’t identify its failing as this group does.

      • Mentar
        Posted April 26, 2014 at 11:12 am | Permalink

        And every single one of his “Bloom” friends have their specialty, too. What’s the point?

        I’m not trying to defend “the system”, mind you, but it does make sense to a degree. It measures the capability of the user to wield the different forms of magic IN GENERAL, not just concerning the special aptitude that each user may have. And in this respect, Tatsuya and the other “weeds” _are_ lacking. Simple as that.

        Now Tatsuya has other skills and capabilities which enable him to do several things which even the top Bloom representants can’t match. He STILL can’t properly wield magic in general – and not, because he doesn’t WANT to, but because he CAN’T. He _is_ an irregular, hence the name.

        Finally: Whether or not “the system” is good in gauging magical abilities or not is part of the plot. Obviously it’s failing in case of Tatsuya.

  11. Nick
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

    Scamp eat the spiders

  12. Posted April 24, 2014 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

    Misandry does exist, one time I asked out a girl and she cried “I thought you were gay!” then she said “No”

  13. Canary Paint
    Posted April 25, 2014 at 12:48 am | Permalink

    So I look at CartDriver cuz I do so often… And I see 43 effin comments for THIS anime… And I am thinking, what in this drivel, that I still have not dropped and will allow at least 1 more episode before dropping, could possibly provoke this many comments??? Then I think if these folks can explain why I haven’t dropped this already then I will have received some kind of gift.

    First of all, this anime is seriously innundated with incest stuff. I am becoming less instantly judgemental of this quality in hoping that it is some kind of Japanese admission of the chasm between physical desire and intimacy that seems to exist in our, I would say, overly Darwinian western world.

    Secondly, I certainly don’t mind this kind of analysis of an anime because statistically sexism and discrimination still exist despite them no longer being legally enforced in many countries. Thus, there must be some bias actually built into the reality that we live in so that any more than a superficial analysis of any media could very well reveal some these biases.

    And after waxing philosophically… I still have no idea why I have not dropped this anime.

  14. Shadow
    Posted April 25, 2014 at 1:17 am | Permalink

    if you ask me, i feel the only reason the imouto was added to this series was because this Light novel started being published in the 2008-2012 timeline.

    A timeline i like to call. The Imouto Spam Generation. It is in that period of time where light novels reached the lowest, with Oreimo being the vanguard of a pile of shit imouto light novels that came in that period.

    I feel this series, could work properly without the imouto. In fact, the imouto ruins the mood of the series. But since it is a series from that dark age of light novels, an imouto had to be in the series, otherwise it would not sell.

    I am glad that we are finally over that age. Although the Age of MC’s stuck in video games is equally annoying.

    • Posted April 25, 2014 at 4:42 am | Permalink

      Hey! Oreimo was decent! Well, the first season was anyway in my opinion. It only became a monster when they retconned the fine fucking ending that developed Kirino into a slightly more decent human being and everything afterwards was just a morally corrupt pseudo fan-fiction (this is from what I read of S2).

  15. R1CK_D0M
    Posted April 25, 2014 at 1:18 am | Permalink

    I’d actually been looking at tatsuya’s situation as commentary about trying to categorize people rather than discrimination as a whole. Sure, blooms discriminate against weeds, but Tatsuya being more effective than any bloom more points to a conclusion that simple categorization techniques from a discriminatory system don’t work like people think it should?

    I don’t feel like I’m able to word that last part satisfactorily…

  16. ANON
    Posted April 25, 2014 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    I said it before somewhere else, from ep1 it looks like all the weeds that are with the main character are actually the really talented ones, and every bloom who opposes them are talentless hacks.

    It is almost as if this guy intentionally failed the exams to become king of the weeds.

  17. Junner
    Posted April 26, 2014 at 8:39 am | Permalink

    Exactly. Always expected the fans to feverishly defend this piece of masturbation. But bear this in mind though, this started out just like Maouyu, ie it was an amateur online fiction and the prose was rather bad, and it does eventually got better writing wise even if it still relies on the core clichés throughout. It has a lot of lore and the points that you identified which predictably made it very fan-friendly – ie it is able to overcome criticism of inconsistencies by sheer volume of lore (much like how Muv-Luv works), and at the same time the same lore made it hipster to be a fan of.

    To paraphrase I comment I made in 2012 regarding the LN: “This is a fairly cynical series and I find the author very patronising to the readership..Central premise an imbal MC impossibly repressed by design then repeatedly plays the the same card. It’s essentially a variation of the ‘actual badass pretend to be wuss’ device that gets injected after every powerup cycle common in shounen, and turned it into one full series. It really kills any potential suspense.

    I suppose you can describe the MC as badass and because he has 0 EQ he will always pretend to not have an awareness of his badassness nor develop in anyway. That may mean he’s even more of a badass to some. The only somewhat interesting part is in an effort to justify MC’s impossible mental state (which is a bit like circular logic), there’s some ‘edgyness’ to his character as something appears off, like a psychopath. I hope he turns into one, would make this 100x more interesting.

    Can sort of understand why it may be popular but there’s really nothing ‘skilful’ about the writing..”

    Oh, MENTAR was defending it back end as well….

    But – I posed a question to one of my friend as why he’s looking forward to this in anime – seeing there will be no surprises after the LN. And his response: Who gives a shit about the story, it’s all about Miyuki animated OKAY? – I can live with that.

  18. Mentar
    Posted April 26, 2014 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    *hands Junner a barf bag and pats his back*

    Feeling better now? Goodie!

    Good luck coming up with ANY show/story which could not be ripped with mindless “blaaah! cliché! bad writing!” comments – there are next to none. Going this route is as retarded as trying to point out that shonen heros always seem to have (received damage)+1 hit points and that mecha are best piloted by highschool kids. Live with it, and if you don’t like it, leave it to those who still enjoy it.

    I enjoy the show despite its numerous flaws since it offers some things I do like: A male lead character who for a change is able to use his brain. A female lead character who has gone through quite an interesting development and is in a situation which in my eyes has no path to a positive ending. Lots of interesting other support characters, whose interaction I enjoy. A relatively well-designed world with a lot of inner coherence. And – in my case – some real curiosity how the situation around Tatsuya/Miyuki and the Yotsuba and the rest of the world is going to be resolved.

    Now, obviously a lot of people enjoy it, too. So if the “persecuted Japan” meme turns you off, leave. If your moral compass is so narrow that it can’t live through Miyuki’s plight, leave. If you can’t stand Tatsuya’s OPness, leave. Fair enough, it’s your good right. And don’t worry, nobody is going to miss you. I fore sure won’t.

    What I find almost amusing is how much Mahouka seems to irritate AND ATTRACT those kinds of people in the anime world that I detest the most: The pseudo-elite which are convinced of the merit of their own judgment, and who can’t stand to see a majority of anime fans watching something that runs against it. In most cases those elites have only a very shallow understanding at the material, but base very deep and profound verdicts on it. Merge this with the “hater” echo chamber that rips 95% of anime out there just because, and you get a wonderful cacophony with hundreds of comments/articles. And people are still watching the show.

    In the end, I’m having fun :) … you don’t.

    Good.

    • Junner
      Posted April 26, 2014 at 9:52 am | Permalink

      And queue the usual ‘don’t understand the source enough’ ‘elitists’ response – the irony. Well a lot of people enjoyed SAO too and I’m totally fine with that. But you know what? In my original post back I started out not attacking the story per-se but rather the author, for what I felt was a very cynical piece of work – a bit like the parasitic people on the rich and famous – no denying both parties probably enjoy it. And out leapt the fandom defense, ground hog day just like the above.
      And don’t worry, I’m only here looking for the latest blog on JoJo and ended up seeing this comment section. I have no plan to watch this anime, this is a purely incidental crossing of path. You may continue on your merry enjoyment with out any further obstruction from my part.

  19. Mentar
    Posted April 26, 2014 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    I see. “Piece of masturbation” was no attack on the story, then? Do you actually read what you write, or can’t you be bothered?

    The thing is: You don’t criticize, you denigrate. If you had fished the stinky trash out of your article and went with “I dislike the story because”, something productive could have come out of it. But you didn’t. For people like you it doesn’t suffice to be the accuser, you feel that you’re entitled to be the judge, jury and jailor, too. That’s the elitism you can’t even seem to recognize anymore.

    So you go back to your Jojo, and I stay with this little story which does not have hot-blooded heroes yelling the names of their skills in the faces of their opponents :)

    To each his own.

  20. Cobrah
    Posted April 26, 2014 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

    Not watching this one but I wanted to read this post and check out why it had so many comments. You’re a brave man Scamp, and I hope you survive blogging this.

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