December 21, 2010
I guess everyone has their own “world” of sorts. The kind of place that you like to escape to when you’re feeling down or depressed so you could be alone with yourself, to find a bit of solace in a mad, mad world. It’s a defense mechanism for some, and a daily facet of life for others. Sometimes it really is easier to just get away from it all somewhere you can sort out your life, calm yourself and try to go at life once again. For Tsukimi it’s the ocean of jellies, her favorite animal and best friends.
But what happens when even one’s own paradise is compromised? Where does one escape to when even their own private places no longer feel private?
December 16, 2010
Well if you need to, you’ll do what you have to to save your home. The apartment is practically ancient, and ancient things tend to be veritable storehouses of old and classic stuff. Not even the current residents know what’s inside, and if those will save the apartment, they’ll do what they have to.
Save maybe going out into public anyway.
November 28, 2010
The reaction they have to the cafe and the food probably shouldn’t surprise me if they’ve lived their entire lives shut in and isolated from the rest of the world. They live a relatively simple life from what we’ve seen, and most of what they’re seeing and eating now is new to them. It’s a whole new world so to speak, one I think they’re learning to appreciate.
Oh and it seems they’re also learning to appreciate “Kurako” and no just calling him meat.
November 20, 2010
Yes, looks mean a lot especially as a first impression. As shallow as it sounds, it’s not surprising if some big shot corporate executive is going to listen more to to a fancy and stylish lady than to one who hasn’t looked like she’s bathed in weeks. You still need to make your statement the very moment you meet. It’s all about starting strong and ending strong, so looking like a hobo isn’t going to work no matter how brilliant your reasoning is.
It also helps to, you know, not freak the shit out when you haven’t even done or said anything yet. The Amars went their to protest and… well you’ve seen just how smoothly their grievances were aired.
November 13, 2010
Kuronosuke sure is a looker (as a male), and as a man it is something I am proud to admit. Born rich into a powerful political clan with anything and everything at his disposal, sometimes there’s nothing more that one would want. Even then, he’s cross-dressing on his off time, evading his family and poking into affairs he doesn’t really have to. His altruism is a bit suspect because he seems to have his own agendas.
Then we have Tsukimi. Barely getting by as a otaku slob with her fellow escapees now being called the Amars, she is perfectly content with her life for reasons all her own. Now we know her mother has died, yet she strives tolive on with a promise never to cry. Jellyfish obviously has a deep connection with her mother both as a source of her joy and her sadness.
And yet as I had said before,their lives aren’t all that different at a first glance.
The episode confirms that her mother really has died, leaving a deep psychological and emotional trauma that has influenced her life ever since. A promise of strength on the deathbed makes her want to live and breath strong, without crying or show any signs of weakness. There is an irony in this for someone who wishes to be strong in memory of her mother, yet at the same time running away from the difficult things that face her. She does not run from everything, but her desire to be passive and get away from them is evident. There are still questions as to how her mother’s death has affected her self-esteem issues and her self-identity, but I can presume to believe it is rooted on her mother being her emotional backbone, the very person who helps maintain her identity as a person. She was not ugly as a kid, but perhaps her mother was the one who kept her believing that she was a good and beautiful person, no matter what the world says.
With her mother having passed, she must have lost that emotional and mental backbone that kept her upright and believing. With no one to help relieve the social pressures that diluted her world and self-image, she confines herself to her shell, only being okay to open up to others like her and no one else. A classic defensive mechanism.
Clara did say it best: her problem is that she over exaggerates any criticism, even the criticism she creates for herself. This is one of the things that really puts her down, and one of the things that she must overcome to come out of her shell.
If the parallelisms between her and jellyfish hasn’t been clear before, it sure as hell is clear now. They possess a pure aesthetic beauty that is marred and overrun by the idea that they are the stone faced killaz of the oceans. There is truth to that as the neurotoxins of sea jellies like the Box Jelly is one of the most potent toxins on the planet, and with that fear and rejection dominates the persona people see of these delicately beautiful creatures. As the princess of Jellies, Tsukimi has adopted the persona the public has of them, as those of feared and undesired entities no one wants nor cares about. She has then fulfilled the vicious cycle of society’s dictated negative self-identity, a jellyfish who believes what the other creatures of the sea say about them.
Seeing Kuranosuke be jealous was adorable and all, but you must ask “why now?” when he sees Shu hugging her. It was only now that he probably realized he’s not just doing things for his own gain, as a challenge to his own beautification skills, but as he implied in the previous episode he sees a deeper quality within her that he cannot find in the shallow lives of others. Perhaps the attraction implied previously, but only now does it come to the surface. He finds some sort of beauty in the physical ugliness that Tsukimi automatically presents for her own reasons, as opposed to the physical beauty that others show which disgusts him.
I could therefore conclude that in reality, Kuranosuke searches for a beauty far beyond the one that people in his life showed. These were the beautiful people who fought and dragged each other down to get to him, in the process bringing out the ugliness within them that completely overpowers whatever physical beauty they had in the first place. This inner ugliness disgusts him, and so he wished to find if it is indeed possible for people to be beautiful inside and out. For him, he thinks Tsukimi is this person. Tsukimi’s obviously not like those other girls who giggle and drool over him and this is one of the things that probably caught his eye, as is the rest of the Amars.
I wanted to ask myself why he’s doing this. Clearly it’s not only because of the ugliness he’s seen within the hearts of others, but I think it’s also related to his own mother. We haven’t seen too much of his own memories so far, but his mommy complex (not yet, and I hope never will be, Oedipal) is also at the root of his own motivations and desires. He found his mother to be an ephemeral beauty, and I’m safe to assume not only physically but inside as well. As he had come to live in the household ten years ago, thus indicating that he might really be a bastard child, his memories of his mother have become few and far between. I surmise that his search for the complete beauty is also a search for his mother as well: a person who was beautiful both inside and out.
The possibilities of a love triangle are here, but I get the feeling that it’s going to be subtle and subdued compered to everything else,at least to the insanity of the Amars household. I never would have guessed that this would be an romance, but since love tends to be at the center of most interpersonal conflicts it was only a matter of time I guess.
November 5, 2010
It’s one thing to be afraid of beautiful people, and it’s another to be afraid of the concept of beauty altogether. While beauty itself is in the eye of the beholder and thus probably never the same between any two people, beauty in its core still refers to those you find aesthetically and visually pleasing. So why fear beauty when it is supposed to be a good experience?
Would it be correct to say that everyone on the apartment really have fears regarding the issue of beauty? It might be because we haven’t heard their sides on the issue yet, but Tsukimi makes it rather obvious that she has an issue with beauty that goes beyond mere distaste, but beauty itself seems to rock her to her core.
October 30, 2010
Does their fear of the Stylish stem from an almost intrinsic psychological fear, or an irrational phobia? It would seem that out of everyone, only Tsukimi seems “immune” to this issue they all share. Mitsuki’s happy-go-lucky and positive approach is apparently a toxin to their own happy existence in their own special world where, for them, nothing can touch them.
How then would this affect them now that a Stylish has entered their world?
October 17, 2010
I wasn’t actually supposed to start blogging this show today since I have semestral finals next week, but due to the fact that the first episode greatly impressed me I ended up doing this earlier than expected so I wouldn’t forget what I was supposed to post.
It was sort of strange, considering that I haven’t read the original material, that I was having a YM conversation with a friend regarding how anime and manga these days are always trying to increase the value of inner beauty as opposed to physical, outer beauty. I was initially assuming that being a NoitaminA show classified as Josei, I thought it would have been more female-centric with a an “inner beauty over outer beauty subtext”, which is a theme pretty much every damn show is doing these days, but once you get the glamorous cross dresser infiltrating their secluded life… well…