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Old 08-04-2007, 12:32 PM   #31   [permalink]
iwakura
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Wow,

You guys are thinking too much about such a title. Such thinking should be focused on more complex titles such as Tenchi Muyo, Eva, ...

It's cute. It's romantic. I still like it.
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Old 09-04-2007, 04:56 AM   #32   [permalink]
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Its not cute! Its not romantic.

You want cute? Fruits Basket. Fluffy animals everywhere.
You want romantic? Watch Kare Kano.

Love Hina is the devil. Its disgusting, and evil, and should have 0 fans. It is way too violent on the male. Beyond way. Its uber way violent on the male.
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Old 10-04-2007, 12:02 AM   #33   [permalink]
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Originally Posted by Pengi_Ken-Ohki
Its not cute! Its not romantic.

You want cute? Fruits Basket. Fluffy animals everywhere.
You want romantic? Watch Kare Kano.

Love Hina is the devil. Its disgusting, and evil, and should have 0 fans. It is way too violent on the male. Beyond way. Its uber way violent on the male.
Yes, it is violent, but in a uniquely anime way - really, look at looney toons, Wiley Cayote and the RoadRunner or any of the main characters ... who on a regular basis, fall off cliffs, get blown up, vaporized, atomized, burnt to a crisp, sliced diceced and pureed.

Of course, they all come back with no ill effect, beyond righteous indignation ... IMO, the percieved violence to these characters and that of say Keitaro, is nothing of note beyond the framework of plot device and gag potential. Dangerous to "impressionable" minds and or those with, shall we say, a "loose grip on reality" ... I suppose, it comes down to the critical difference of cause and effect - is it the gun that kills or is it the person? Does a show containing potentially objectionable elements such as "undue" violence to the male warrent close scrutiny from the standpoint of safeguarding our youth from the influence of violence in the form of satirical social commentary?

I think that such efforts are merely the bandaid used to mask a potential problem ... which is to say that within reason, conentrate on modifying the person, rather than limit the environment in order to "remove temptation" from the shielded individual.

Thus to you PKO, I say that if Love Hina is the Devil, then so be it, after all, real life is all about interacting with a less than perfect environment with a less than perfect knowledge base ... what better way to learn from life than by living it with an open mind, as opposed to sheltering the thought process in the hopes of eliminating the potential heretical thought!

I stated earlier, that one can get meaningful information and insight from such a show, despite the fact that it maintains a relatively simple stage composed of allegorically inspired characters ... placed within a less than plausible scenario. Are the characters distorted, Yes! ... and IMO they are meant to be that way in order to clearly manifest themselves as either aspects of a personality or perhaps, facets of a more complete individual ... portrayed in such a way to be relatively comprehensible model for lifes progressive cycle from simplicity to complexity and back again.

Sam
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Old 10-04-2007, 12:48 AM   #34   [permalink]
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Originally Posted by John Faulkner
However, consider what the message of Love Hina, as so allegorized, actually is. That a warm, compassionate side, which errs to a fault by excessive plasticity, will engender a loving relationship? That Eros may unfold his wings should one systematically avoid communication with a fellow human? That should one fail a University entry-exam, getting bitch-slapped will assure you finally get to attend Prof. NaruAndKeitaro4Eva's lectures on Schopenhauer's conception of compassion in a heartless Darwinian world?

Does "reality" actually have a clear, progressive message to detract from, in LH?


Granted, Love Hina does provide a baseline. The obligatory "but" is that what kind of baseline does it offer? Should the baseline be so fantastic and surreal, is there not the danger of, at its worst, permanent excommunication from reality and at best, a life-long pollution of one's worldwide of "reality" with infantile precepts?
Well, when one deals with the notion of fundemental emotional base, I suppose that it is safer and "saner" to err on the side of love and compassion. If one thinks of similar concepts such as - love your enemy or turn the other cheek, then I think the context becomes both clear and enlightening. Thus, the "baseline" as I see it is composed of the ideal, the model by which one measures and assesses ... the standard by which ones actions and thoughts are based against - not so much, in the hopes of achieving such a goal, but merely the implemenation of a standard that points to the idealized absolute i.e. the proverbial "moral compass" used as a tool of guidance ...


Originally Posted by John Faulkner
As I said, I agree that with the background of frivolity, the message of the positive effects of Keitaro's gentle nature can be distilled and separated. But herein lies the rub - the background of frivolity, which muddies the message. Would it not be easier for an urchin to identify with this essence of compassion and good-will if the background was less frivolous? Surely Naru's impersonation of a J-pop superstar in a dainty outfit, or Mitsune's penchant for providing verifiable evidence for her bra size, is a tall order for a hormone-charged, developing mind to overcome sufficiently for a clear, powerful underlying message of brotherly and/or inter-sexual love to come shining through (assuming there is one)?
Personal observations of the intended age group make me think that a more "realistic" approach would be "muddied" by the subtler and more mundane nature applied to the characters ... this "frivolity" or lack of seriousness, IMO makes for a deceptively educational plot device that is intended disarm the viewer to the point that the symbolics and information content get past the psychological barriers of the dreaded "educational" stuff ... that is no fun and not to be absorbed.

Originally Posted by John Faulkner
Yes, the individual predisposition must not be ruled out. I see it as an interaction between individual and the material at hand. Alas, I must disagree with you when you say "tied more closely" - certain to the day that the phenomenon of reality distortion is inextricably tied to the individual, yet it is also tied to the material at hand. Thus, the material can have as strong a role in maladjustment. To wit, a fisherman may fall into the sea due to suicidal thoughts, or due to a sudden gust of strong wind. Two causes combine to make user error.
To use your example, the fisherman with "suicidal tendancies" will in all likelyhood, JUMP into the sea to commit the intended suicide ... your example merely points to incidental coincidence that leads to a common conclusion.

The point being, that abberent mental processes that lead to a distorted world view irrespective of the environment. Yes, the environment in the form of sensory imput can have an impact to a limited degree, but when I say "user error" - translate that into a perception mechanism that either processes sensory imput inaccurately or a mind that compiles such data in a way that does not align to fundemental truisms of basic existance. I short, whatever this individual experiences will be distorted beyond the reasonable expectations of the rational designer/producer.

Originally Posted by John Faulkner
I guess what it boils down to is that fictional shows all have some degree of power in usurping reality. The key is to take the fictional parts as frivolous, and the serious messages with a stony face. Consider the modern child of our times though. So surrounded by digital media in the form of video games, movies, Internet, advertising, TV and anime messageboards. The boundary between fiction and "reality" becomes ever more blurred. Should we not be helping the child to get to grips to "reality" by incorporating a reasonable approximation to reality in media aimed at them? Take Love Hina: is it too easy to take one of the false messages I outlined in the first paragraph above as heart-felt "reality"?
I think, we are favoring opposing views on how to deal with the issue of how to treat the child in regards to the perception of "reality". My take on it, is to emphesize at an early age, the basic paradigm of problem solving and critical thought in sensorial perception ... In other words, teach the young child HOW to think, then provide a progressively more complex database of knowledge and problems that encourage the child to "think" first then do.

Within this context, I think, the basic problem of the "grip on reality" becomes manageable and even self correcting to a degree. I tend to favor, a "harsher" environment that motivates the individual to a higher level, rather than the opposite.

... where shows dealing with fantasy for entertainment/education, are taken for what they are ... and not what the individual wants them to be.

Life is all about problem solving, what better way to prepare the child than provide the mode and mechanism to encourage the mindset ... after all, there will come a time when mommy and daddy will not be there to hold their hands.

Sam
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Old 10-04-2007, 05:48 AM   #35   [permalink]
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Oh I see how it is. Yeh, you're exposed now Sam. You're a goddamn road runner supporter.

Well as a devoted Coyote believer, I want to know why the ---- the coyote has to starve and the stupid illiterate bird that couldn't assemble half the elaborate traps that Coyote could, gets to live.

In fact, the bird relies almost entirely on natural instinct and attributes (like speed). Coyote on the other hand didn't rely on what god gave him. He used his superior intellect to try and come up with better solutions. Does anyone appreciate that? No. Coyote has to starve. All because a bunch of hippies don't want to accept meat eaters. The spider isn't as pretty as the butterfly, so lets kill the spider.

Actually Sam, I wasn't talking in terms of censorship and whatnot. I was talking merely in terms of taste. What Princess Leia did to Han Solo was ok. Thats a woman's right. Watching a self centered bitch slap around a guy so pathetic that I'd compare him to a puppy except that puppys are cute and will be dogs one day, and enjoying it, is sick.

I wanted an extra paragraph so I'm going to keep typing. Love Hina is bad bad bad and focuses on all the wrong stuff. Did I mention it is bad? Horrid anime. Did not deserve the attention it got. What is with the competing too? I hate storys where the male has to compete. The very idea that love is something that can be determined via a war of prose and roses, is horribly unsettling. Its downright annoying if the show then has someone who will accept such competitions acting modest. A whore's a whore.

Dang, that last paragraph was slightly too long. I kinda pity you Sam, because I know that you must read everything I write. Its like a phone unanswered. Sure, if you don't read the first bit, you will be fine. However once you start reading what I'm writing, you wont stop. It must be a horrible thing to endure. If its any consolation, no wait, I don't want to console you. You're defending Love Hina for crying out loud. What next, suggesting that "Peach Girl" was in fact an informative anime on relationships?

When did simple battles get so complicated anyway? When I was a kid, you could believe that Sonic would beat the crap out of Mario on account of his super sonic speed, his very sharp spines, and his assortment of buddies who also have sharp body parts. Nowadays, its all gigajoogles as each side writes out entire essays on market practice, design philosophy, and engineering aspect of the producers in question. Similarly, we could tell those stupid sick ----- who like Rei that Asuka is a girl with spirit. It could potentially end there. I doubt that happens anymore. Now we have to go into pages of psychoanalysis to determine which female better represents a healthy and mature adult mind.

Haha, you had to read all that! hahahahahahahaha
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Old 10-04-2007, 06:49 PM   #36   [permalink]
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Originally Posted by Pengi_Ken-Ohki
Oh I see how it is. Yeh, you're exposed now Sam. You're a goddamn road runner supporter.

Well as a devoted Coyote believer, I want to know why the ---- the coyote has to starve and the stupid illiterate bird that couldn't assemble half the elaborate traps that Coyote could, gets to live.

In fact, the bird relies almost entirely on natural instinct and attributes (like speed). Coyote on the other hand didn't rely on what god gave him. He used his superior intellect to try and come up with better solutions. Does anyone appreciate that? No. Coyote has to starve. All because a bunch of hippies don't want to accept meat eaters. The spider isn't as pretty as the butterfly, so lets kill the spider.
I have another theory on the RR vs Coyote debate ... what can be stated as "fact" is that for the duration of the series, both characters remain "alive" and competetive ... which means what exactly?

1. In toontown, the relevence of things like food is subjective and arbitrary ... apparently, the Coyote is either dining on "dumber" prey, or really does not need to eat.

2. The notions of "instinct" vs. "intelligence" are fluid within the toontown universe ... RR shows distinct elements of higher order intelligence, but not speech ... W. Coyote is a human thinly disguised as a Coyote.

Message? ... perhaps something along the lines of Mankinds eternal centric hubris in thinking that intellect will prevail against the forces of nature and fate.

Originally Posted by Pengi_Ken-Ohki
Actually Sam, I wasn't talking in terms of censorship and whatnot. I was talking merely in terms of taste. What Princess Leia did to Han Solo was ok. Thats a woman's right. Watching a self centered bitch slap around a guy so pathetic that I'd compare him to a puppy except that puppys are cute and will be dogs one day, and enjoying it, is sick.
I think the problem is that you see the characters as actualized humans, and not the symbols that they seem to represent ... allegory is all about distilling down the complex into more comprehensible "aspects" of the whole. I agree, that if taken literally, the characters are not normal, nor desirable for all of there basic incompleteness ... but IMO Keitaro etal were never meant to be models of this sort to begin with ... look at these characters as being elements within a social equation - for the purpose of "exploring" the interactive potential/implications of modern mores and views.

Think about all of the characters with their "signature" traits and note the significance of such multivariate interactions along with outcomes ... and mose anime I have seen seems to reveal the spirit of parable or commentary on life.

Think on your reaction to the show ... what did you like/dislike about it ... was it entertaining yes/no and did you think about it?

Lastly, did you realize just how much you thought about the show and the possible lessons and or knowledge derived?

... and to think that this is a relatively simple and straight foreward show for the purposes of mindless entertainment ...

Sam
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Old 10-04-2007, 08:35 PM   #37   [permalink]
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Yes it's an overtly sado-machistic romantic comedy. What more could one want?
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Old 12-04-2007, 07:00 AM   #38   [permalink]
John Faulkner
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Originally Posted by iwakura
Wow,
You guys are thinking too much about such a title. Such thinking should be focused on more complex titles such as Tenchi Muyo, Eva, ...
Digimon, Pokemon, Beyblade, ....

Originally Posted by SamIam
Well, when one deals with the notion of fundemental emotional base, I suppose that it is safer and "saner" to err on the side of love and compassion. If one thinks of similar concepts such as - love your enemy or turn the other cheek, then I think the context becomes both clear and enlightening. Thus, the "baseline" as I see it is composed of the ideal, the model by which one measures and assesses ... the standard by which ones actions and thoughts are based against - not so much, in the hopes of achieving such a goal, but merely the implemenation of a standard that points to the idealized absolute i.e. the proverbial "moral compass" used as a tool of guidance ...
I agree that an ideal is a perfected model to which one uses as a guide, rather than actually attain. As concerns the ideals of LH, I concede that Keitaro does show the ideals of compassion to a certain degree. With regards to love however, I think LH shows an ideal which is a defunct "moral compass." It seems to show the type of idealized love which only has any purchase in high school or university. Where two meet in a relatively care-free environment devoid of serious responsibility, thus enabling a "hide & seek" courting procedure which involves routinized non-communication and projecting one's hopes and desires onto the other. Thus, this paves the way for a crisis when one realizes the other doesn't meet these hopes and desires - for lack of communication they live in hopeful shadows.

Originally Posted by SamIam
Personal observations of the intended age group make me think that a more "realistic" approach would be "muddied" by the subtler and more mundane nature applied to the characters ... this "frivolity" or lack of seriousness, IMO makes for a deceptively educational plot device that is intended disarm the viewer to the point that the symbolics and information content get past the psychological barriers of the dreaded "educational" stuff ... that is no fun and not to be absorbed.
I assume the intended age group is somewhere around 13+. At 13+, I would argue that the mental capabilities are there to absorb a more "realistic" approach. Now granted, the modern social milieu is such that the common perception is that fun must be intrinsically linked to everything - so the practicality of conveying a message through "realistic" media can be called into question. Yet if the message is conveyed in a "fun" way, although the viewer may grasp the symbolic meaning intended, the strength of the message is necessarily dissipated by the hedonistic presentation. The message is grasped, but its meaning is attenuated. Hence the lower probability of a heart-felt impact on real-life. Compare LH with perhaps its antithesis Grave of the Fireflies (GOTF). The latter is certainly suitable for the same age group, yet by virtue of its realistic setting, drives certain messages through far more effectively. The fact remains of course that LH aims also to provide a bit of fun and frolics. Yet this means LH doesn't drive home its messages as strongly as it would have done had there been a more realistic setting. Form fits function and LH's function cleaves to entertainment.

Originally Posted by SamIam
To use your example, the fisherman with "suicidal tendancies" will in all likelyhood, JUMP into the sea to commit the intended suicide ... your example merely points to incidental coincidence that leads to a common conclusion.

The point being, that abberent mental processes that lead to a distorted world view irrespective of the environment. Yes, the environment in the form of sensory imput can have an impact to a limited degree, but when I say "user error" - translate that into a perception mechanism that either processes sensory imput inaccurately or a mind that compiles such data in a way that does not align to fundemental truisms of basic existance. I short, whatever this individual experiences will be distorted beyond the reasonable expectations of the rational designer/producer.
I agree that in the extreme cases, where the viewer is mentally incapacitated beyond recovery, that the sole reason for an askewed world-perspective lies within the mind of the beholder. In full flight, the pilot opens the cabin door and does a duck-dive to the ground. But, for the borderline cases, where the viewer is not totally insane, yet is still quite malleable and impressionable, the environmental factor could be telling in shifting from one to the other direction. Where a hard-nosed environment would have pushed a certain street urchin towards a critical thinker, a laissez-faire surrounding pushes the same person to a homeless chav.

Originally Posted by SamIam
I think, we are favoring opposing views on how to deal with the issue of how to treat the child in regards to the perception of "reality". My take on it, is to emphesize at an early age, the basic paradigm of problem solving and critical thought in sensorial perception ... In other words, teach the young child HOW to think, then provide a progressively more complex database of knowledge and problems that encourage the child to "think" first then do.

Within this context, I think, the basic problem of the "grip on reality" becomes manageable and even self correcting to a degree. I tend to favor, a "harsher" environment that motivates the individual to a higher level, rather than the opposite.

... where shows dealing with fantasy for entertainment/education, are taken for what they are ... and not what the individual wants them to be.
I think we might not be at so opposite ends of a spectrum. For example, I advocate that people, not just children, have as firm a grip on reality as possible. Of course, young children may need to be shielded from reality in some sense by appealing to symbols that carry the underlying message. But the intended demographic of LH is not young children - rather people in their developing prime. LH is not damaging if one takes its frivolity for what it is (as you seem point out too), and take (what I think is ultimately) its paltry amount of morality seriously. As alluded to in my last post, the danger is always taking a game of Cowboys and Indians as WWII.

Consider what the German writer Friedrich Schiller said: "Deeper meaning resides in the fairy tales told me in my childhood than in any truth that is taught in life." Now it is doubtful whether anything resembling LH was in Schiller's heyday, but I agree with his sentiment that fantasy can show deep meaning. The key word is can. Imagine meaning pertaining to reality as a sunken treasure. The meaning in GOTF is like 10 million treasure chests stuffed full of expensive pearls, doubloons, the missing Dead Sea Scrolls etc. occurring at 1m depth. Quite easy to find once you dive in, and quite easy to get out afterwards. Whereas, for LH, the meaning is like 2 cents in comparison, occurring at 100m depth (note: depth here is not used to represent depth of meaning!). Very difficult to distill this meaning and furthermore, the increased danger of not making it back up again. One's mind becomes clouded with messages which have little meaning in reality, and there arises the possibility of mistakenly taking some of these as meaningful in reality - one drowns in fantasy. When the devil comes into power and preaches in the name of freedom, truth and love, He becomes irresistible -- worse the devil you think you know ....

Originally Posted by Pengi_Ken-Ohki
In fact, the bird relies almost entirely on natural instinct and attributes (like speed). Coyote on the other hand didn't rely on what god gave him. He used his superior intellect to try and come up with better solutions. Does anyone appreciate that? No. Coyote has to starve. All because a bunch of hippies don't want to accept meat eaters. The spider isn't as pretty as the butterfly, so lets kill the spider.
But consider Wile Coyote and Road Runner in a more evolutionary context. If that dog can't come up with a successful attempt at grilling that bird, its intellect is useless for survival and thus has no evolutionary right to be transmitted to the next generation. Mother nature is unforgiving on the prey, yet it is equally merciless on the predator with the supposedly higher intellect. So my advice to Wile Coyote - shape up mate, don't expect dinner to come to you on a plate by default, just because of your intellect .....

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Old 12-04-2007, 09:37 PM   #39   [permalink]
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Originally Posted by John Faulkner
I agree that an ideal is a perfected model to which one uses as a guide, rather than actually attain. As concerns the ideals of LH, I concede that Keitaro does show the ideals of compassion to a certain degree. With regards to love however, I think LH shows an ideal which is a defunct "moral compass." It seems to show the type of idealized love which only has any purchase in high school or university. Where two meet in a relatively care-free environment devoid of serious responsibility, thus enabling a "hide & seek" courting procedure which involves routinized non-communication and projecting one's hopes and desires onto the other. Thus, this paves the way for a crisis when one realizes the other doesn't meet these hopes and desires - for lack of communication they live in hopeful shadows.
... hopeful shadows, I like that ... I think though, your view may even be more idealistic than mine here. From what I see and have experienced, much of this millieu of love is based within the auspice of "hopeful shadows ... teen, adult, senior citizen ... it comes down to hope. The communication you speak of, in the "Wallgreens" world of perfection, rarely manifests in anything aproximating the ideal.

... and I think that is one of the pertinent points, when the techical aspects of communication fail (due to language barriers or personality profiles) ... what then allows for a baseline of "behavioral" communication? The cues and behaviors surrounding the emotional motivator of love/attraction/desire. Thus, it comes to pass that, as it is often noted, words fade in the light of emotion, and the very cognitive processes which drive rational thought, often take a bemused backseat to their "elders" in the form of emotions.

So, in short, in the more "rational" or "PC" world, one could very well expect more refined models of behavior as demonstrators ... but part of the humor in this equation arises from the exaggerated inneptitude of the main character.
Perfect the character or sober the situation and you no longer have Love Hina ... IMO you have Hinata Inn.

Originally Posted by John Faulkner
I assume the intended age group is somewhere around 13+. At 13+, I would argue that the mental capabilities are there to absorb a more "realistic" approach. Now granted, the modern social milieu is such that the common perception is that fun must be intrinsically linked to everything - so the practicality of conveying a message through "realistic" media can be called into question. Yet if the message is conveyed in a "fun" way, although the viewer may grasp the symbolic meaning intended, the strength of the message is necessarily dissipated by the hedonistic presentation. The message is grasped, but its meaning is attenuated. Hence the lower probability of a heart-felt impact on real-life. Compare LH with perhaps its antithesis Grave of the Fireflies (GOTF). The latter is certainly suitable for the same age group, yet by virtue of its realistic setting, drives certain messages through far more effectively. The fact remains of course that LH aims also to provide a bit of fun and frolics. Yet this means LH doesn't drive home its messages as strongly as it would have done had there been a more realistic setting. Form fits function and LH's function cleaves to entertainment.
Being a former High School Teacher, I can say that making lessons "fun" do indeed make for more effective learning. As for the "dissipation" of significance, I would say that it is often better to ramp up serious or touchy topics with humor in order to plant the conceptual seed. Consequently, when the individual encounters an approximation of the social scenario, the conceptual gestalt has already been established within the cognitive framework of the individual - the symbolics and outcomes would then take on new meanings based upon a real world setting.

Which is more effective GOTFF or LH... well, without a doubt, GOTFF has far greater shock value and undoubtably a profound message ... somewhat like a sniper round to the head - meticulously premeditated, precise and painfully direct. LH? A party pistol with a message.

Shotgun or stilleto ... take your pick.

Originally Posted by John Faulkner
I agree that in the extreme cases, where the viewer is mentally incapacitated beyond recovery, that the sole reason for an askewed world-perspective lies within the mind of the beholder. In full flight, the pilot opens the cabin door and does a duck-dive to the ground. But, for the borderline cases, where the viewer is not totally insane, yet is still quite malleable and impressionable, the environmental factor could be telling in shifting from one to the other direction. Where a hard-nosed environment would have pushed a certain street urchin towards a critical thinker, a laissez-faire surrounding pushes the same person to a homeless chav.

I agree that the grey area will always be problematic in terms of "effect", and that the entertainment industry has a shared responsibility in promoting a reasonably safe/non destructive viewing enironment. With that said though, I would be far more inclined to put resource emphasis in other areas than rely on the "sanitation" of the anime industry to prevent or minimize the "fall" of borderline cases. As stated earlier, the critical thinker should be the primary focus and function of the parent and teachers ... shows like Love Hina, entertain and use satire for the potential benefit of the intended demographic.
(which I agree seems to be about 10-15 range.

Originally Posted by John Faulkner
I think we might not be at so opposite ends of a spectrum. For example, I advocate that people, not just children, have as firm a grip on reality as possible. Of course, young children may need to be shielded from reality in some sense by appealing to symbols that carry the underlying message. But the intended demographic of LH is not young children - rather people in their developing prime. LH is not damaging if one takes its frivolity for what it is (as you seem point out too), and take (what I think is ultimately) its paltry amount of morality seriously. As alluded to in my last post, the danger is always taking a game of Cowboys and Indians as WWII.
To counter your analogy of Cowboys and Indians, I would say that information is all around us to absorb and learn from. Is it wise or even value added to develop the mindset predisposed to categorizing the nature and source of the knowledge, as opposed to the level of truth and validity?

The game you mentioned is just as relevent as WWII, if one strips away the cosmetics of historical epoch and cultural upheaval. The point I am trying to make hear is that there is a danger in the practice of segregating information by it source ... a truism coming from the mouth of Keitaro is actually of more absolute value than a lie coming from someone who participated in WWII.

... now as for DIRECTLY comparing Cowboys and Indians to WWII, what can I say beyond the fact that the only danger involved here would be from the borderline crowd mentioned above or one truly in need of professional help.

Rather, compare chess to WWII in terms of the difference in the intent and type of information one can gain.

Originally Posted by John Faulkner
Consider what the German writer Friedrich Schiller said: "Deeper meaning resides in the fairy tales told me in my childhood than in any truth that is taught in life." Now it is doubtful whether anything resembling LH was in Schiller's heyday, but I agree with his sentiment that fantasy can show deep meaning. The key word is can. Imagine meaning pertaining to reality as a sunken treasure. The meaning in GOTF is like 10 million treasure chests stuffed full of expensive pearls, doubloons, the missing Dead Sea Scrolls etc. occurring at 1m depth. Quite easy to find once you dive in, and quite easy to get out afterwards. Whereas, for LH, the meaning is like 2 cents in comparison, occurring at 100m depth (note: depth here is not used to represent depth of meaning!). Very difficult to distill this meaning and furthermore, the increased danger of not making it back up again. One's mind becomes clouded with messages which have little meaning in reality, and there arises the possibility of mistakenly taking some of these as meaningful in reality - one drowns in fantasy. When the devil comes into power and preaches in the name of freedom, truth and love, He becomes irresistible -- worse the devil you think you know ....
To which I say, hyperbole aside, take knowledge where you can, and with as little prejudice or preconception as possible ... and ... a personality used to economy, will extract the most from the least and simply revel in the rest.

Sam
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Old 17-04-2007, 09:26 PM   #40   [permalink]
John Faulkner
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Originally Posted by SamIam
... hopeful shadows, I like that ... I think though, your view may even be more idealistic than mine here. From what I see and have experienced, much of this millieu of love is based within the auspice of "hopeful shadows ... teen, adult, senior citizen ... it comes down to hope. The communication you speak of, in the "Wallgreens" world of perfection, rarely manifests in anything aproximating the ideal.

... and I think that is one of the pertinent points, when the techical aspects of communication fail (due to language barriers or personality profiles) ... what then allows for a baseline of "behavioral" communication? The cues and behaviors surrounding the emotional motivator of love/attraction/desire. Thus, it comes to pass that, as it is often noted, words fade in the light of emotion, and the very cognitive processes which drive rational thought, often take a bemused backseat to their "elders" in the form of emotions.

So, in short, in the more "rational" or "PC" world, one could very well expect more refined models of behavior as demonstrators ... but part of the humor in this equation arises from the exaggerated inneptitude of the main character.
Perfect the character or sober the situation and you no longer have Love Hina ... IMO you have Hinata Inn.
I have no argument with the point that communication in the stormy seas of love involves non-verbal categories. When I used the word "communication," I meant a more holistic conception, where two human beings convey their attraction not only rationally, but also in unspoken, kinesthetic forms. Even with this conception, N&K seemed to fumble around hopelessly; Keitaro seemed perpetually confused as to whether childhood darling Naru or his knuckle-headed doppelganger Mutsumi meant the most to him. Now this suggests he would go and have some communication between himself and these two female protagonists to ascertain what their true feelings were. To all LH fans, where was it shown in the series that he tried to do this? It was, if memory serves, late in the series until he finally resolved this issue with some clarity. Granted, this is probably a plot device to inject a tragi-comical love-triangle angle, but this doesn't take away the fact that Keitaro left it so late without pro-actively taking steps towards clear communication. Again, when N&K appeared on the cusp of getting close, N punches K's lights out, which again is fine for entertainment, but hardly argues for the case that they achieved a great understanding of each other's rational and irrational aspects. Apart from entering the perceived Shangri-La of Tokyo U, does K know about N's fears, dreams and hopes, and vice versa? Does N know about the different sides of K, not just his compassionate side? In reality, rarely if ever does one have just one side to their personality. And what about the practicalities of living together? Who's going to do the cooking? Who's going to do the shopping? How will N and K's attitude towards each other change, and can this be sustained through the many creases, folds and crevices that life throws into the mix? None of this is touched upon in earnest.

Which is why I think that, OK, the relationship of N&K touches upon aspects of love, but it doesn't get down to the nitty-gritty reality. The ineptitudes are inflated purposefully for sure, but it's to an extent that makes it too far removed from reality to have a large bearing on real-life issues pertaining to love. More on this removal from reality below (bet you can't wait ... )

As for my conception of love being ideal - yes, I agree it is ideal. However, you mention that an ideal is there as a "moral compass" .... and such a broad compass is what I intend; after all, a hopeless journey does one venture in rigidly outlining the details of love as though it applies in every individual instantiation. And I agree that humour is in LH .... that I will not question.

Originally Posted by SamIam
Being a former High School Teacher, I can say that making lessons "fun" do indeed make for more effective learning. As for the "dissipation" of significance, I would say that it is often better to ramp up serious or touchy topics with humor in order to plant the conceptual seed. Consequently, when the individual encounters an approximation of the social scenario, the conceptual gestalt has already been established within the cognitive framework of the individual - the symbolics and outcomes would then take on new meanings based upon a real world setting.

Which is more effective GOTFF or LH... well, without a doubt, GOTFF has far greater shock value and undoubtably a profound message ... somewhat like a sniper round to the head - meticulously premeditated, precise and painfully direct. LH? A party pistol with a message.

Shotgun or stilleto ... take your pick.
Your teenager teaching experience certainly outweighs mine, which consists merely of 1 term as a volunteer teaching assistant in High School .... my conclusions about the way teenagers think is mainly derived from my own experiences when I was a teenager.

As regards pedagogy, I would not argue with the promise of introducing elements of "fun" as a teaching tool; but I wonder whether we are making a valid analogy. School lessons aim, in the final analysis, to educate. Now, would you say the same for LH? I contend LH's raison d'etre is primarily to provide entertainment instead. Education is more a by-product. A school lesson will always have some educational value lurking in the background. LH is some small piece of education encased in frivolity. With LH, you have to dilute a lot of its content to get at, for example, compassion personified in Keitaro. Once this symbolic meaning is grasped, there arises the task of bridging this abstract concept to real life shores - in effect, you lose a particular example of compassion in action in a serious/realistic setting. Now compare this to that sombre WWII atmosphere of GOTFF, which uses a semi-autobiographical approach. You see Seita's compassion for his sister (however misplaced his pride was) manifested within a particular setting, and that hits home because you can relate this chain of events to reality straight away, by appeal to the historical timeline. The relevance of the message then hits you all the harder - substance fills the symbolic concept and that means you can't avoid it so easily: get this boys and girls, real life ain't fair.

And the sniper/party pistol analogy is very apt: a bullet can penetrate deep, and leaves an impression which one will likely not forget; a party pistol displays a message, which is read, but is not guaranteed to sink deeply. The ideal only becomes useful when you link it to your living reality; the former only exists due the latter:

"Now that my ladder's gone,
I must lie down where all ladders start,
In the foul rag-and-bone shop of the heart.
"
(W.B.Yeats)

Originally Posted by SamIam
I agree that the grey area will always be problematic in terms of "effect", and that the entertainment industry has a shared responsibility in promoting a reasonably safe/non destructive viewing enironment. With that said though, I would be far more inclined to put resource emphasis in other areas than rely on the "sanitation" of the anime industry to prevent or minimize the "fall" of borderline cases. As stated earlier, the critical thinker should be the primary focus and function of the parent and teachers ... shows like Love Hina, entertain and use satire for the potential benefit of the intended demographic.
(which I agree seems to be about 10-15 range.
I agree parents and teachers should be the main guardians and "engineers" of the critical force. I see, so you see LH as mainly entertaining and satirical, which may answer a previous question. The entertainment super-machine has responsibility, and it is my concern that it is increasingly having more influence than parents or teachers. Mommy and daddy will probably not be watching LH together with their young spark. Does one have trust in the ability of teenagers to critically evaluate, given the pervasive influence of media? I have my doubts from my experience. Do you expect a teenager to watch LH, see an endless stream of idealized pretty girls, and not come away with some sort of impression that girls should look/act like this?

Originally Posted by SamIam
To counter your analogy of Cowboys and Indians, I would say that information is all around us to absorb and learn from. Is it wise or even value added to develop the mindset predisposed to categorizing the nature and source of the knowledge, as opposed to the level of truth and validity?

The game you mentioned is just as relevent as WWII, if one strips away the cosmetics of historical epoch and cultural upheaval. The point I am trying to make hear is that there is a danger in the practice of segregating information by it source ... a truism coming from the mouth of Keitaro is actually of more absolute value than a lie coming from someone who participated in WWII.

... now as for DIRECTLY comparing Cowboys and Indians to WWII, what can I say beyond the fact that the only danger involved here would be from the borderline crowd mentioned above or one truly in need of professional help.

Rather, compare chess to WWII in terms of the difference in the intent and type of information one can gain.
Good point about the fallacy of assuming the truth value of something just by reputation. Ad hominem arguments form quite the poisoned chalice. The main point in the Cowboys/Indians VS WWII analogy was to show the danger of taking a frivolous happenstance as a serious message - i.e. not just erroneously classifying data, but misplacing the level of truth and validity. This sort of thing, incidentally, I see a lot of in Evangelion.

Originally Posted by SamIam
To which I say, hyperbole aside, take knowledge where you can, and with as little prejudice or preconception as possible ... and ... a personality used to economy, will extract the most from the least and simply revel in the rest.
Sam
A non-prejudicial joie de vivre surrounded by its diametrical opposite; what is it about the light that flickers in the dark ....

To recap:
(a) We both seem to agree that LH offers entertainment as its main function, and that it does show educational aspects in the form of a symbolic representation of compassion in Keitaro.

(b) We disagree on whether LH has any educational aspects with respect to "love." You cite evidence for a symbolic representation; I cite evidence that LH is too far removed from reality to have an educational message.

Now, should we get someone to read over this, before submitting this to a journal? I heard Prof. NaruAndKeitaro4Eva is available.
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Old 17-04-2007, 11:22 PM   #41   [permalink]
SamIam
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Originally Posted by John Faulkner
To recap:
(a) We both seem to agree that LH offers entertainment as its main function, and that it does show educational aspects in the form of a symbolic representation of compassion in Keitaro.

(b) We disagree on whether LH has any educational aspects with respect to "love." You cite evidence for a symbolic representation; I cite evidence that LH is too far removed from reality to have an educational message.

Now, should we get someone to read over this, before submitting this to a journal? I heard Prof. NaruAndKeitaro4Eva is available.
Haha ... actually the "journey" of this debate was the reward as far as I am concerned ... as for what comes next, I hope that this thread sparks more critical thinking for this and other popular anime.
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Old 09-02-2010, 06:31 AM   #42   [permalink]
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