Berserk

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Re: Berserk

Post by bomaye on Thu Jun 30, 2016 2:29 am

Spoiler:

So, via the author, Berserk was meant to be a story about anger, and the Golden Age was setting things up to make Guts angry. Friendship is a big deal to him, so he made the object of anger a friend and then based the Band of the Hawk on his own real life friend group growing up, a bunch of nerds who wanted to be manga guys. He was Pippin in terms of appearance, their group had a Corkus and a Judeau and a Rickert. They also had a sort-of Griffith. The author tells a story about how he was the one with talent out of the group but the Griffith was the leader that everyone looked up to. The Griffith would get angry and leave and get into fights and chase girls (later on they would found out it's because the author was so far ahead of the rest of them in manga that his friend couldn't handle it I guess), and then later on, the author gets into manga in college and the other guy kind of quits manga and to fill the hole nails a lot of girls in college and gets hired into a top company, paid a lot of money... and ultimately quits all that to get back into manga from square one because that's his dream. The author kind of uses this as a base for Griffith, how a dream can turn someone destructive, and then pushes his story Griffith way more destructive than his real life friend went.

Now I think the real telling thing is that there wasn't a Casca in his friend group, nor did he plan for Casca to become a romantic interest (he seems to write things in a subconscious fashion). I think he went overboard with it once the story went that direction, but he's also indicated he can't end such a long and grim story on a grim note, and considering Casca is still alive where she probably would've died originally, I think there may be a way to come back from it eventually.

Like with grimdark stuff, you have to balance the scale in such a way that there's eventually a payoff for the emotional suffering you put people through, too much takes you out of it and feels manipulative and exploitative. Ramsay Bolton in Game of Thrones is an example of a character I thought wasn't worth it, the amount of stomach-turning garbage he was responsible for wasn't worth the payoff when he finally got his. Joffrey Lannister is an example of a character who was worth it, he did some awful shit but you could see the tide turning on him and that there was light at the end of that tunnel. The Berserk anime didn't even show Guts and Casca being returned, so I did need some reassurance that this wasn't something that there's completely no return from, but I think we might eventually get a way out of this.

It sounds like a lot more awful things happened in the manga than the anime though, so maybe the scale is balanced too much in one direction over the other though.
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Re: Berserk

Post by Prajnaparamita on Thu Jun 30, 2016 7:39 am

bomaye wrote:
Spoiler:

Like with grimdark stuff, you have to balance the scale in such a way that there's eventually a payoff for the emotional suffering you put people through, too much takes you out of it and feels manipulative and exploitative. Ramsay Bolton in Game of Thrones is an example of a character I thought wasn't worth it, the amount of stomach-turning garbage he was responsible for wasn't worth the payoff when he finally got his.

Spoiler:

I think you hit the nail on the head right here with my frustration, manipulative and exploitative is pretty much what I felt after it was the third time in a row Casca had her clothes ripped off her body and was being forcefully penetrated by tentacles in rapid succession. I praised Berserk initiatively for not having rape be "cheap", and then there were a bunch of really cheap rapes (that peasant girl we saw for all of five seconds, what exactly was the payoff of seeing her also getting raped by demon dude?). I think what makes it even worse is that every time it was an example of "female character gets raped so that male character has an excuse to go super violent" which is 1) the fucking laziest narrative trope ever and 2) you don't even need an excuse for Guts to go smashy-smashy with sword! HE'S GUTS! SMASHY-SMASHY WITH SWORD IS WHAT HE DOES!!!

But yeah, I feel pretty similar in this to how you felt about Ramsey.

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Re: Berserk

Post by Enail on Thu Jun 30, 2016 1:27 pm

Prajnaparamita wrote:Yeah, I think I might have to tap out here, just because of
Spoiler:
the combo of peasant girl getting raped and then Casca getting raped in such rapid succession the good feels I had about "oh wow what a powerful and effective use of rape in a grimdark story to actually show something about these characters and the world they live in" are now kinda all used up. What makes it worse is that it's rape to motivate a male character and add to his angst, while rendering the female character helpless and totally without any agency, just a passive vessel for men to have feels at/stick their dick in

Ugh. I might return at some point, but honestly I feel like the author really used up my good faith and investment and I'm not interested in continuing

Spoiler:
Yep, I feel the same about how they've been using rape in terms of cheapness and over-sexualization, and how it sacrificed Casca's existence as an important character with a meaningful role just to make things worse for Guts. Compare it to the deaths of the other Hawks, which were awful and devastating in a way that felt true to the characters and to the story at its most successful and it was just so clearly off. Over-the-top, skeevy, generic.

I think for me it wasn't as completely destroying my trust and enjoyment because I went in expecting it to be this kind of series; the trust that it won from me was unexpected and there were enough times the author seemed to struggle with how to handle female characters well (eg. Casca got stripped naked in a ridiculous number of fight scenes) that I sort of felt like the time we got with Casca (and even Charlotte to some degree) as real, complex, specific characters with their own important character arcs and with agency to the degree the story's universe makes viable, was a bonus that could be taken away at any time. I mentally treat the author as a hostile witness or something Wink  So it harmed my appreciation and will affect my enjoyment and my trust going on, but it didn't completely destroy my appreciation of the character as she was and could have been, and I'm still in and hoping we'll be lucky again in the future.




Werel wrote:
12-13:

Enail wrote:Is that the demon baby? Which is another element that seems rather weird, cliched and likely to land up creating some weird gendered angst. But I'm sure it'll all manage to properly rip out my heart, too.  :/
Yeah, and definitely does all the things you anticipate, from innocent "lame trope" to Crying "why am I being so affected by this lame trope".

Spoiler:

This series is good at that  Wink


14:


-Not crazy about this whole 'Casca is insane, helpless and locked away for her own good, and usually topless' thing. It kind of feels like a cheap way to wring a little extra angst from things while keeping her around either for more cheap angst or (pleasepleaseplease) for her to come back to herself some day. And Guts is really bad at behaving in ways that won't freak out someone traumatized by demon-rape.
What Casca becomes in the following 20ish volumes is mostly a plot point/mute sidekick/emotional impact and that was rough for me too, but... no big spoilers... the last 8 or so (excruuuuuciatingly slow) volumes have been about progress towards restoring her sanity. That's part of what's kept me on the hook, but I'm also just a sucker for punishment Uh-oh


Apparently I am too, I think I have to see it through. It might land up all being a cheap and exploitative angst point, but there's a chance it will be more than that, and if that happens I want to be there to see it. Masochist high five!

Enail wrote:Without the sense of looming tragedy and the personal relationships deeply entwined, this all feels a bit flat and low-stakes now. I hope there's a plan for things to get back soon into more important, lasting character-based storylines and for dealing with Griffith (and for that to be in more meaningful ways than just Griffith being evil and powerful and Guts trying to stab him with his large hunk of elemental nerd sword. Just monster-of-the-day stories about a wandering, embittered swordsman seems like a waste.
Yeah, agreed. It's impossible to follow that up with anything that won't feel mostly pointless (i.e. your whole week IRL after finishing the Eclipse).

Laughing ...Sad

The series struggles to find its feet for a couple volumes after this (the moth-demon arc is boooooring and duuuuumb), and if I hadn't already been pretty invested in it/wanting to catch up with friends I might've bounced then, but I enjoy some of the places it ends up going. It becomes much less about personal relationships and human-scale ambitions than large-scale metaphysical world-building, though.

That said... I will admit that nothing ever replicates the sheer emotional impact and cohesiveness and character development of the Golden Age arc. If you wanna bounce at this point, you've gotten 90% of the good stuff out of the series (and fulfilled my dream of being able to employ metaphors like "I'm not piling up corpses to get to THAT castle" Razz), and I'm just completely tickled at having gotten to talk about the most important part of the story with you people Shiny/thrilled

Nah, I'm not as into metaphysical world-building, but I'm too invested in these characters, and also in the possibility of seeing a spark of redemption and hope for this brutal, devastating world, to give up now even if it's mostly anti-climax from here on. I'll watch Guts doing whatever he has to do even if it's just disemboweling random horrifying demons for the next ten years. You got me, damn you Razz

And holy shit, yes, useful metaphors.




bomaye wrote:
Spoiler:

Now I think the real telling thing is that there wasn't a Casca in his friend group, nor did he plan for Casca to become a romantic interest (he seems to write things in a subconscious fashion). I think he went overboard with it once the story went that direction, but he's also indicated he can't end such a long and grim story on a grim note, and considering Casca is still alive where she probably would've died originally, I think there may be a way to come back from it eventually.


Spoiler:

Interesting how well he landed up developing her given that she wasn't part of his big life-metaphor/inspiration. Usually when characters are a mix of real-life inspiration and made-up ones, it seems like the made-up ones never really become fully fleshed-out

Spoiler:


Like with grimdark stuff, you have to balance the scale in such a way that there's eventually a payoff for the emotional suffering you put people through, too much takes you out of it and feels manipulative and exploitative. Ramsay Bolton in Game of Thrones is an example of a character I thought wasn't worth it, the amount of stomach-turning garbage he was responsible for wasn't worth the payoff when he finally got his. Joffrey Lannister is an example of a character who was worth it, he did some awful shit but you could see the tide turning on him and that there was light at the end of that tunnel. The Berserk anime didn't even show Guts and Casca being returned, so I did need some reassurance that this wasn't something that there's completely no return from, but I think we might eventually get a way out of this.

It sounds like a lot more awful things happened in the manga than the anime though, so maybe the scale is balanced too much in one direction over the other though.

Yeah, absolutely. In the manga at least we got to see Guts and Casca's return, and also Rickert surviving, which gave me the sense that the author did have some goal here other than making everyone suffer and that there might be something rewarding for the audience, but it's definitely very close to the insufficient payoff line. Because the overwhelming sense of tragedy and despair is a pretty big part of the series, it can get away with quite a lot of devastation before the line, but it's gotta be carefully chosen, because everyone has a limit.

For me it was as much that the Casca stuff just wasn't done well that made it feel exploitative compared to the rest of the suffering, if she'd just made one hopeless last stand and then been killed horrifyingly by demons like the rest of them or even if she'd been raped by Griffith in a way that focused on what it was doing to her dream and her story, how it connected to all the plot she'd had up to that point, instead in a way that focused on her boobs and ass and just used to make Guts mad (which as, Prajna points out, isn't hard to do Laughing ), I would have sobbed my head off but felt like it was in line with what this story is supposed to be. Or if her state afterwards felt like it was being used to create something meaningful in her internal arc, like how all the dwelling on how pitiful Griffith was post-rescue was leading to something huge in who he was and what he'd do. It's the way you could sort of see the author thinking "I know! A whole lot of sexily drawn demon rape will be the perfect cherry on this sundae of misery, and plus then I can use her afterwards to stab the audience in the eye when Griffith isn't motivated enough! Grin" that put it over the edge IMO. Everything else, it felt like it was suffering the author was bearing along with the rest of us for the sake of something bigger, that part didn't at all.  
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Re: Berserk

Post by Werel on Thu Jun 30, 2016 3:54 pm

I keep having more book-length thoughts about this Uh-oh

manga 13:

So I re-read the scene again and it's even more "goes on way too long" and "tastelessly lascivious" and "OH RIGHT, THIS IS PULP FANTASY IN A MEN'S MAGAZINE Disapproving" than I remembered. Still very much agreed that the execution is terrible and I wish wish wish it had been done with real actual horror instead of "well let's sell some copies," because it could have been so much more devastating and true to the characters.

But as far as "why did it have to be rape," aside from "WHAT COULD MAKE GUTS MADDER," and aside from "that's the bad thing that happens to lady characters durr," I keep coming back to seeing it through the metaphysics of that world. I think Slan (butt-window-cape Laughing) at some point mentions that the more exquisite the suffering of a sacrifice, the more powerful the nascent Apostle becomes, and I can't think of anything that might make Casca or Guts suffer more "exquisitely." This is Femto's one shot to craft a demonhood for himself; he's got the path of bones all laid out, and the Eclipse is him putting the finishing touches on the throne at the top. He needs it to be exquisite, he needs it to be detailed with a gold filigree of highly personalized suffering, because what he does during the Eclipse will determine what he is for the rest of eternity. I tried for a while to think of something that could be done to Casca that would equal this as far as creating exquisite, intricate suffering (especially the eye contact, the personal nature of it), and couldn't think of much; that's why I wish it had been done better, because it really could've been something chilling instead of trashy.

(Speaking of chilling, is this panel not real hard to look at now?)

(Also... if his cosmology is drawing from actual oldtime European demonology as much as it is from Hellraiser, there had to be a sexual component to Femto's birth, I think. Black magic without sex is inconceivable in most of those old systems. That kind of evil is all about the meat, about disrupting and rending the meat and all its meat-functions, and what meat-function has more metaphysical power than sex? A feast of blood might be enough for a minor apostle, but to become the Prince of Longing, he needs the full gamut of suffering that can be visited upon flesh, including the very kind he originally won Casca by saving her from. It follows, from how I understand the nature of the God Hand. Shrug)

(Also also I sometimes wonder if the same but worse would have happened to Guts if Skull Knight didn't show up :/)

But
Enail wrote:For me it was as much that the Casca stuff just wasn't done well that made it feel exploitative compared to the rest of the suffering, if she'd just made one hopeless last stand and then been killed horrifyingly by demons like the rest of them or even if she'd been raped by Griffith in a way that focused on what it was doing to her dream and her story, how it connected to all the plot she'd had up to that point, instead in a way that focused on her boobs and ass and just used to make Guts mad (which as, Prajna points out, isn't hard to do Laughing ), I would have sobbed my head off but felt like it was in line with what this story is supposed to be.
Yeah, agreed. If there'd been more tie-in to what it meant to her, for her, what she was thinking, what happened to her dream in that moment, it would have been... exquisite suffering for the reader. And yep, I would've believed that the author was suffering along with us in a way I didn't feel as it stands (good way of putting it!)

bomaye wrote:So, via the author, Berserk was meant to be a story about anger, and the Golden Age was setting things up to make Guts angry. Friendship is a big deal to him, so he made the object of anger a friend and then based the Band of the Hawk on his own real life friend group growing up, a bunch of nerds who wanted to be manga guys. He was Pippin in terms of appearance, their group had a Corkus and a Judeau and a Rickert. They also had a sort-of Griffith. The author tells a story about how he was the one with talent out of the group but the Griffith was the leader that everyone looked up to. The Griffith would get angry and leave and get into fights and chase girls (later on they would found out it's because the author was so far ahead of the rest of them in manga that his friend couldn't handle it I guess), and then later on, the author gets into manga in college and the other guy kind of quits manga and to fill the hole nails a lot of girls in college and gets hired into a top company, paid a lot of money... and ultimately quits all that to get back into manga from square one because that's his dream. The author kind of uses this as a base for Griffith, how a dream can turn someone destructive, and then pushes his story Griffith way more destructive than his real life friend went.
Shocked I never knew any of this, and I love it. Jeez, there's nothing like a story of bestfriend betrayal based on real fraught complicated bestfriend heartache.

ETA: and it makes me feel less goofy for sometimes thinking of my friends as Taka no Dans the way Sex and the City people identify themselves as "Carries" or "Mirandas." Have def been like "of course, he's the Judeau" or "you would say that, Corkus," and if they're just real friendgroup archetypes that's somewhat less embarrassingly nerdy Laughing
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Re: Berserk

Post by Enail on Thu Jun 30, 2016 4:28 pm

Werel wrote:I keep having more book-length thoughts about this Uh-oh

SERVES YOU RIGHT!  Shiny/thrilled

manga 13:


So I re-read the scene again and it's even more "goes on way too long" and "tastelessly lascivious" and "OH RIGHT, THIS IS PULP FANTASY IN A MEN'S MAGAZINE Disapproving" than I remembered. Still very much agreed that the execution is terrible and I wish wish wish it had been done with real actual horror instead of "well let's sell some copies," because it could have been so much more devastating and true to the characters.

But as far as "why did it have to be rape," aside from "WHAT COULD MAKE GUTS MADDER," and aside from "that's the bad thing that happens to lady characters durr," I keep coming back to seeing it through the metaphysics of that world. I think Slan (butt-window-cape Laughing) at some point mentions that the more exquisite the suffering of a sacrifice, the more powerful the nascent Apostle becomes, and I can't think of anything that might make Casca or Guts suffer more "exquisitely." This is Femto's one shot to craft a demonhood for himself; he's got the path of bones all laid out, and the Eclipse is him putting the finishing touches on the throne at the top. He needs it to be exquisite, he needs it to be detailed with a gold filigree of highly personalized suffering, because what he does during the Eclipse will determine what he is for the rest of eternity. I tried for a while to think of something that could be done to Casca that would equal this as far as creating exquisite, intricate suffering (especially the eye contact, the personal nature of it), and couldn't think of much; that's why I wish it had been done better, because it really could've been something chilling instead of trashy.

Yes, I agree with this for sure. The exact same thing could have been handled in a completely different way, one that we've seen the author is capable of, and it would have been the perfect, soul-destroying devastation to sit at the top of the pile of corpses and suffering and betrayal, and totally in keeping with the crushing scenes of the Hawks being mowed down, the dynamic of the three main characters and Casca's own story.


(Speaking of chilling, is this panel not real hard to look at now?)

Shudder  Crying

(Also... if his cosmology is drawing from actual oldtime European demonology as much as it is from Hellraiser, there had to be a sexual component to Femto's birth, I think. Black magic without sex is inconceivable in most of those old systems. That kind of evil is all about the meat, about disrupting and rending the meat and all its meat-functions, and what meat-function has more metaphysical power than sex? A feast of blood might be enough for a minor apostle, but to become the Prince of Longing, he needs the full gamut of suffering that can be visited upon flesh, including the very kind he originally won Casca by saving her from. It follows, from how I understand the nature of the God Hand. Shrug)

That's an interesting way to look at it. Also, very Heavy Metal magazine  Razz (which I think is cut from some of the same cloth as Berserk).  


ETA: and it makes me feel less goofy for sometimes thinking of my friends as Taka no Dans the way Sex and the City people identify themselves as "Carries" or "Mirandas." Have def been like "of course, he's the Judeau" or "you would say that, Corkus," and if they're just real friendgroup archetypes that's somewhat less embarrassingly nerdy Laughing

 Shiny/thrilled  (But I feel kind of bad for the Corkus of the group Razz)

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Re: Berserk

Post by bomaye on Thu Jun 30, 2016 4:34 pm

Spoiler:

If Casca regains her sanity, there is still a chance that we do get how her dream was destroyed silent
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Re: Berserk

Post by Werel on Thu Jun 30, 2016 9:21 pm

bomaye wrote:
Spoiler:

If Casca regains her sanity, there is still a chance that we do get how her dream was destroyed silent

Spoiler:
There's also a thing that happens with her and Griffith in volume 22 that makes me very much want to hear what she has to say about him, and about everything that's happened, if she ever talks again silent

22 for y'all who've read that far:
The moment where he saves her from the avalanche on the Hill of Swords and she remembers him and strokes his face? And he plays that bullshit about "ummmmm it was the demon child that made me do it. Yeah, uh, some of the demon child got into me during the rebirth." Bullshit, Griffith. There's a tiny splinter of humanity left in you, and Casca poked at it real good. Her mute catatonic ass has POWER over you and you can't deal with that.

Or that's how I read it. Conflicting opinions eagerly welcomed. Smile
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Re: Berserk

Post by bomaye on Fri Jul 01, 2016 3:41 am

The Golden Age Movie 3

I'm gonna split this up into a few parts.

First off I did a live-blog while watching the movie because there were differences and things that were left out of the anime and I started writing thoughts down while I was watching so I wouldn't forget them for later and just figured "Fuck it, treat it like a long episode"

Spoiler:

- Griffith playing with the same toy as the kid who died for him in the opening bit Sad
- Vatican ohoooooooo
- "Four" GATSOO SAVES CASCA FROM THE NINJA GUY Shiny/thrilled
- Silat seems a little goofy for Berserk's setting somehow
- Mannnnn, Casca can't fill a gap with Griffith but Guts catches here and then here  eyes well up with the "Oh, there's a gap I can fill with someone" God dammit, I'm getting wrecked all over again ;_;
- Oh holy shit, she starts struggling against Guts a little and then he freezes because like HE KNOWS and then she's like "No it's okay" with her facial expression
- Skull Knight I heard about Surprised
- "Gaiseric" Soooo Skull Knight?
- So the bottom of the dungeon hole is the site of a Godhand or Behelit moment? Is that why Griffith had those demon hallucinations?
- Man, the way Griffith puts his hand to Guts neck like he fucking hates him but then Guts starts crying on him and his eye softens and his hand goes to his hand because "My only friend in the whole wide world is here"
- Licking Griffith's severed tongue, yuck
- "Speak properly" after he cut out the tongue of the torturer, thereeeeeee's that crazy-ass Guts from the Black Swordsman flashback o.O
- I love how Guts just starts running up the stairs like a crazy man killing like 30 guards at a time and the rest of the band of the hawk is standing there going "I'm seeing some shit"
- Guts and Pippin vs a hundred cavalry, poor cavalry
- Guts dressing Griffith Sad
- Griffith sees Guts hugging Casca then pretends to be asleep when she walks in :/
- So Griffith falling on Casca kiiind seems different than the anime. The anime made it out to be like an accident and she was comforting him, this was like... he was thrusting at her and like she kind of felt sorry for him and let him lie on her even though she was kind of >_< about it
- "I'll stay behind" and Griffith's hate eye opens. It's like he tried to manipulate Casca to get her back from Guts and still couldn't do it
- I think the anime might have had a better initial Black Eclipse look to it
- Anime had a better Behelit opening too
- I still don't know the meaning behind "Don't come." They won't be friends? He had an inkling they won't survive?
- Anime had a scarier face hellscape/Godhand look too
- "Four Guaridan Angels" the ones that stopped the Skull King? Didn't God send those? o.O
- And the Skull Knight was right because Guts doesn't have his sword with him :/
- Griffith catches Guts while the Godhand is rising, looks scared :/
- Ya know, when Guts catches himself by stabbing the knife in the Godhand, if that was a normal hand, he would've just wrist-slashed it to die silent
- Is that Old Lady actually a puppet? o.O
- Oh, it's a mask for one of the demon kings, that does ring a bell
- Is the Skull Knight fighting Zodd? Surprised.o:
- So... Skull Knight was an ancient Griffith and Zodd was an ancient Guts? Zodd did warn Guts :/
- Oh god Judeau smiles at Casca and then dies Sad Sad Sad
- They're playing goofy piano music during the Casca rape
- She's hallucinating him as he used to be during it too
- I like that here, he charged Femto, go stopped by like demon magic or whatever and then shocked the Guardian Angels by still moving through it
- And Casca's more concerned about Guts than her even while this is going on, man
- SKULL. KNIGHT. IS. SO. FUCKING. AWESOME Shiny/thrilled
- He's staring up at the moon again :/
- Takes the Skull Knight's sword from his hilt like he doesn't give a single fuck, he's got ghosts to kill. GATSOO Shiny/thrilled
- Black Swordsman loading up :nod:

Anime comparisons besides The Thing

Spoiler:

- Great facial expressions especially during the Baka scene and with Griffith's eyes. The stuff with Griffith's eyes up until the Black Eclipse was the only stuff where I thought his eyes were on par with the anime
- THE. SKULL. KNIGHT. IS. SO. FUCKING. AWESOME Shiny/thrilled
- Also I'm pretty sure I mentioned this in the liveblog, but Zodd and the Skull Knight possible being an old-time Guts/Griffith and the Guardian Angels being from God but seemingly hell demons has me interested in what's going on

The Thing...

Spoiler:

... was scarier and more traumatizing in the anime.

- I'll grant that part of it was because I heavily steeled myself for it instead of having it sprung on me in the anime.
- The gore was also worse and the rape was much more detailed.
- The hellscape was scarier in the anime. I remember it being deeper red and the animation was all uniform, whereas here we shifted between cel-shaded and animated, so it does take you out of it.
- It was the same with the demons. They were freakier drawn, but here they shifted between animated and cel-shaded. Some of the Guardian Angels looked goofy as hell.
- The deaths of the Hawks felt more rapid-fire here, I don't know why (don't know why) but it feels like the anime drew them out a lot more agonizingly, or maybe it was because you just don't have time to attach yourselves to the Hawks in the movies the same way
- The rape was more horrifying in the anime, I felt. They didn't show Casca having her clothes torn off by demons and almost spike-penetrated before being interrupted by the Femto birth in the movie, which was such a tense and awful moment. When they lowered her in, they played a goofy piano theme when Femto started in on her. In the anime, I remember it being quicker and scarier because they just went into it and left some of it to the imagination and it felt less exploitative because it just focused on what the act meant to the story, whereas here it was like animation masturbation.
- The one thing I turned away from was Guts hacking and pulling his arm off. It was disgustingly realistic, probably the worst gore I've ever seen animated

I would say this movie was worth watching for a few facial expressions and the stuff that wasn't shown in the anime (HE'S. SO. AWESOME Shiny/thrilled), but it's similar to the first movie in that I probably would not watch it again. Movie 2 is the winner out of all three of them.

Also something on Griffith/demons

Spoiler:

The manga author mentioned that there's an old-timey kind of idea that demons are the way they are because they're sad. There's probably something to Griffith coming off like the saddest guy in the world and then doing all of what he did and how he justified turning into a demon

Also the first episode of the new season is dropping tomorrow
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Re: Berserk

Post by Werel on Fri Jul 01, 2016 5:17 am

movie 3:

- Mannnnn, Casca can't fill a gap with Griffith but Guts catches here and then here  eyes well up with the "Oh, there's a gap I can fill with someone" God dammit, I'm getting wrecked all over again ;_;
I wish Casca didn't strike so many of the right notes for me so that I wouldn't be so wrecked by what became of her No


bomaye wrote:- She's hallucinating him as he used to be during it too
....Shocked

That's a pretttttty provocative decision. Some Implications there huh Neutral

bomaye wrote:- Vatican ohoooooooo
Shiny/thrilled

bomaye wrote:- So the bottom of the dungeon hole is the site of a Godhand or Behelit moment? Is that why Griffith had those demon hallucinations?
Shiny/thrilled Shiny/thrilled

bomaye wrote:- "Four Guaridan Angels" the ones that stopped the Skull King? Didn't God send those? o.O
Shiny/thrilled Shiny/thrilled Shiny/thrilled

bomaye wrote:- SKULL. KNIGHT. IS. SO. FUCKING. AWESOME Shiny/thrilled
Shiny/thrilled Shiny/thrilled Shiny/thrilled

bomaye wrote:- Also I'm pretty sure I mentioned this in the liveblog, but Zodd and the Skull Knight possible being an old-time Guts/Griffith and the Guardian Angels being from God but seemingly hell demons has me interested in what's going on
Shiny/thrilled Shiny/thrilled Shiny/thrilled Shiny/thrilled Shiny/thrilled

Thing you might consider doing: if you get curious and go wiki'ing, don't read the "lost chapter" that he omitted from the graphic novels. He says he got bullied by his publisher into releasing it to explain "what's going on," but regrets it because it's too much crass exposition and takes something away from enjoying the questions.

Descriptions of some of those facial expression character moments alone sold me, if this movie brings any satisfying new touches to this part of the story I'm extremely on board (once I uh...finally watch 2). Grin

OH MY GOD NEW EPISODE TOMORROW nailbiting panic
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Re: Berserk

Post by Enail on Fri Jul 01, 2016 12:29 pm

bomaye wrote:The Golden Age Movie 3
Spoiler:

- So Griffith falling on Casca kiiind seems different than the anime. The anime made it out to be like an accident and she was comforting him, this was like... he was thrusting at her and like she kind of felt sorry for him and let him lie on her even though she was kind of >_< about it

Spoiler:
In the manga it seemed like halfway in between those two, like it had sort of been an impulse to have sex with her, with a little of the 'is this seduction or rape?' feel of the Charlotte sex scene,  but then he just falls on her, so she puts her arm around him comfortingly, and I got the sense she was sort of left cold by the fact that she wouldn't have known whether she wanted to go with it or not anymore but it's overwhelmed by her sense of pity/duty for him. Or that's how I read it, might be overinterpreting.

Spoiler:


- The rape was more horrifying in the anime, I felt. They didn't show Casca having her clothes torn off by demons and almost spike-penetrated before being interrupted by the Femto birth in the movie, which was such a tense and awful moment. When they lowered her in, they played a goofy piano theme when Femto started in on her. In the anime, I remember it being quicker and scarier because they just went into it and left some of it to the imagination and it felt less exploitative because it just focused on what the act meant to the story, whereas here it was like animation masturbation.

This sounds more like the manga (no goofy piano music, though  Razz ). Seems like the anime did a way better job on this bit.


Also I'm pretty sure I mentioned this in the liveblog, but Zodd and the Skull Knight possible being an old-time Guts/Griffith

I'm not the only one who thought that!  Shiny/thrilled


Also the first episode of the new season is dropping tomorrow

Run in circles flail
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Re: Berserk

Post by bomaye on Fri Jul 01, 2016 2:33 pm

Werel wrote:
movie 3:

Thing you might consider doing: if you get curious and go wiki'ing, don't read the "lost chapter" that he omitted from the graphic novels. He says he got bullied by his publisher into releasing it to explain "what's going on," but regrets it because it's too much crass exposition and takes something away from enjoying the questions.

Spoiler:

I've heard a little bit about the Idea of Evil already, but that chapter was the one where I wasn't certain if I should read it or not if I eventually read the manga, or if I should read it or not because it's been cut from everything and apparently the author wasn't sure if he wanted to use elements of it in the story or not
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Re: Berserk

Post by Hirundo Bos on Fri Jul 01, 2016 7:08 pm

Hmh. I've been a little envious about your long communal watching thread, so I'm thinking maybe I'll try to catch up on this one... I'm at volume 3, at beginning of Golden Age, and from peeking forward at this thread I see I have some good stuff and some awful stuff ahead of me... don't know if I have a lot to say yet except
small spoiler vol. 3:

the writhing thing of souls reaching out of Hell sort of reminds me of one of my city's greatest tourist attractions, the Gustav Vigeland sculpture The Monolith, even though that one is supposed to be about life, not death.
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Re: Berserk

Post by Enail on Fri Jul 01, 2016 7:13 pm

Oh cool, Hirundo! Also yaaaay, more people to suffer with us! Run in circles flail
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Re: Berserk

Post by Izmuth on Fri Jul 01, 2016 7:19 pm

I love this series Grin

Frustrating slow updateeeeessss though.

Excited for the new season!
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Re: Berserk

Post by bomaye on Fri Jul 01, 2016 7:30 pm

ONE OF US ONE OF US ONE OF US
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Re: Berserk

Post by bomaye on Fri Jul 01, 2016 7:38 pm

Oh, also, I'm 100% certain that Werel brought it up already, but for you manga readers, we're gonna have to force you to listen to three songs

The intro



An upbeat song that outright lies to you.

The outro



A sad, mournful song sung around the bonfire of dreams (while the manga readers wait years for new chapters). If an episode ended on a sad note, it put the period on the sentence.

The next episode preview song



We entered battle to the this a few times, and a deep voiced philosopher questioned the meaning of life and how it related to the next episode to this (I never once watched or read what he said, but I listened to it)
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Re: Berserk

Post by Werel on Fri Jul 01, 2016 7:46 pm

YESSSSSS WE SNAGGED HIRUNDO Shiny/thrilled

(That sculpture is terrifying, btw. Were your city planners trying to scare people into going to church? Uh-oh)

bomaye wrote:We entered battle to the this a few times, and a deep voiced philosopher questioned the meaning of life and how it related to the next episode to this (I never once watched or read what he said, but I listened to it)
All that matters is 1) FORCES 2) when he says "DEETS" in a very serious way rofl

(I think it's ritsu or something but w/e he's saying DEETS)

I also submit to you Guts' theme, the bizarre but haunting soundtrack to pointing your sword at the moon on a cool night and allowing yourself, for one moment, to dream of resting comfortably in the warmth of someone's friendship.



ETA: And a version of Forces that's not blocked in the US, but beware of spoilery AMV.
Spoiler:
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Re: Berserk

Post by bomaye on Fri Jul 01, 2016 11:38 pm

Berserk S2 - 01

Spoiler:

- Hrmmm, I'm guessing this is a re-do of the first episode/compressed opening arc? Now with more Puck, Collette being a monk's daughter instead of a bar waitress, the bar scene happening differently
- OH SHIT KILLED A DEMON WHILE HAVING A NIGHTMARE
- Annnnnnd there goes Collette Sad
- Oops, Collette is back as a demon
- There goes Collette again
- Ooookay, Guts has clearly gone off the deep end if he thinks the weak are ants, or he has to Griffith himself into doing things because if he didn't everyone dying around him would be his fault

Animation-style: I like how gritty and line-y some of it is, but they're doing that 2D/cel-shade/3D mixture :/

Music: The intro and outro blew it. I'll probably be stockholm syndrome'd into liking them eventually but nooot even close to the others

Preview Song: I heard the music-director from the first anime got to produce one song for this. FOUND IT Shiny/thrilled
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Re: Berserk

Post by Werel on Sat Jul 02, 2016 2:09 pm

s2e1:

-This opening sequence, gosh. I'm just gonna recommend people consult the intro instead of watch/read all that content Laughing
-FARNESE Shiny/thrilled
-SERPICO Shiny/thrilled
-FLORA Shiny/thrilled
-WHAAAT, Isidro from the very beginning??
-Puck looks pretty cute (oh lord they're doing full chestnut Puck on tv rofl)
-I bet these skeletons are those same hundred men Smug
-Kay definitely a few Shiny/thrilled moments in that fight. SHHHUNK
-Except the sword sounds kinda hollow? Like a gate slamming?
-Hahaha weird that intermission title card looks all modern, not like it's 1997 at all.
-That ... tree demon ... is not even a real thing from Berserk Neutral Step up the monster game please guys, you got thousands of pages of boss demons to pick from
-I like the way Guts looks, and the potential for cool looking fights is there, I just hope I get used to the CG parts.
-Had a couple of HEHs from a couple good ol' Guts sass moments, that's nice

bomaye wrote:- Ooookay, Guts has clearly gone off the deep end if he thinks the weak are ants, or he has to Griffith himself into doing things because if he didn't everyone dying around him would be his fault
Or he just has to say that shit out loud where other people can hear it to convince himself that he's capable of Griffithing up Wink

Soundtrack: might as well be punctuated with Butthead laughs. Goddamn your prescient Heavy Metal comparison Enail Laughing

(Oooof for real that soundtrack though rofl)

Animation: "I feel like I should be holding a controller for when it cuts to me." The sketch filter was kind of neat for one or two shots & then just felt goofy, but I can deal. And intro sequence looks good on mute Cool

Overall though:

...I'm still pretty excited Crown
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Re: Berserk

Post by Enail on Sat Jul 02, 2016 4:22 pm

I'm not sure my spirit has recovered enough that I can survive more Berserk, but here I go anyway nailbiting panic

S2E1:

-a cute green-haired witch in a pointy witch hat?  Side-eye  Seems a little weird costume/style-wise in relation to the rest of the setting to me. Though I guess it fits with the elves somewhat.
-The music is...not good. It's so tinny and twiddly, it makes me think of Tetris Sad
-Not a fan of the cel-shaded/3d animation style mixed in there either, and sometimes the faces look weird and hair looks like straw, but it's not too jarring. Anyway, if I could deal with it in Ajin, I can definitely deal with it here.  And I actually kind of like the sketchy style bits
-The opener has one shot of Casca with a suuuper-cheesy maiden-in-distress pose/expression so exaggerated it looks like a parody. But Crying at a little shot of Judeau lying in a pile of corpses.
-Guts' first introduction and a few other bits feel like they're's paced and shot as a comedy, especially with that music. Neutral
-Nooooooooo, traveler-dude, don't give Guts a ride! No
Question about something from the manga that might be a spoiler for a future episode:
"Once you're dead that's it, there's nothing beyond that," but doesn't Guts have evidence that that's not the case? Or is it a timeline difference between the manga and the anime, and they didn't talk about that hell-vortex thing (and even maybe hint at the existence of a less hellish afterlife) prior to this (I think you said the anime has less of a flash forward at the beginning, Werel) ?
-The dream sequence music and battle music is a little better than the rest so far, ominous chanting helps cover all musical sins.
-The deep-voiced narration dropping in suddenly to tell us about his sword kind of made me LOL
-Demon-possessed Collette looked way cooler in the manga.
-The spirits leaving the corpses were pretty cool and eerie-looking, though, it's actually a nice use of the cg. And the fights weren't bad.
-Everything Guts says feels waaay more meaningful now, having seen what happened before it, than when I was reading it at the start of the manga.  Maybe it's that or maybe it's a change in this version, but his emotions seem a lot more raw, too, he comes across as closer to snapping than I remember in this bit of the manga (aside from the Griffith-y lines, some of his laughs are really bordering on crazy breakdown laughs ) - it feels like the eclipse events were very recent, whereas in the manga it felt more like older wounds that hadn't fully healed but weren't still gushing blood.
-Nothing new, and nothing that really wowed me, but there's promise. I think it'll serve and deliver something worth watching once we get into new things, which it looks like we will next week!  Run in circles flail
-That knight woman has picked herself the cutest, most childish-looking hairstyle possible, that seems like an odd choice in a world where being taken seriously is probably a struggle for her Shrug
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Re: Berserk

Post by Werel on Sat Jul 02, 2016 4:38 pm

S2E1:

Enail wrote:
Question about something from the manga that might be a spoiler for a future episode:
"Once you're dead that's it, there's nothing beyond that," but doesn't Guts have evidence that that's not the case? Or is it a timeline difference between the manga and the anime, and they didn't talk about that hell-vortex thing (and even maybe hint at the existence of a less hellish afterlife) prior to this (I think you said the anime has less of a flash forward at the beginning, Werel) ?
Spoiler:
No, he definitely knows that's not true at this point; I read it as either wishful thinking or trying to do a kindness to those people by hiding the truth. Or maybe just being cynical to the degree he thinks won't get him labeled as insane ("once you're dead, you come back as a hungry ghost to attack me, specifically, every night" would push the limits of most people's credulity Laughing)? Really not sure about that line. Shrug

Enail wrote:-Demon-possessed Collette looked way cooler in the manga.
SO much cooler. 10000% cooler.

Enail wrote:-Everything Guts says feels waaay more meaningful now, having seen what happened before it, than when I was reading it at the start of the manga.  Maybe it's that or maybe it's a change in this version, but his emotions seem a lot more raw, too, he comes across as closer to snapping than I remember in this bit of the manga (aside from the Griffith-y lines, some of his laughs are really bordering on crazy breakdown laughs ) - it feels like the eclipse events were very recent, whereas in the manga it felt more like older wounds that hadn't fully healed but weren't still gushing blood.
Yeah, agreed-- and way more sociable and less Black Swordsman-y. I actually laughed at how quickly he said "Guts" when the old man asked his name; if I were directing this episode it would've taken him a long, surly time to answer if he did at all.
Enail wrote:-That knight woman has picked herself the cutest, most childish-looking hairstyle possible, that seems like an odd choice in a world where being taken seriously is probably a struggle for her Shrug
Laughing I think the hairstyle may actually be part of her job (female-only ceremonial position), but I thought the same thing at first.

ETA: Also, Guts cooking and eating?? Shocked I think that's a thing that you never ever ever see in the manga even once, it's hilarious to even think about.
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Re: Berserk

Post by bomaye on Sat Jul 02, 2016 4:50 pm

I think the thing that drives me the most crazy about the animation is how it's clunky 3D except if they need something animated in a detailed way.

Spoiler:

Guts chomping into the rabbit, or when he was handed the towel. Puck a lot of times. Really takes me out of it because I guess I'm just not used to the random transitions

Also the detail between some characters. Contrast the mercs, who look decently lifelike, and Collette and the Monk, who look like dead-eyed puppets.

Also in his dreamscape, Guts running down the hall was in 2.5D but his flashback was in 3D

And that forest demon was like a full 3D cgi construct while he was a 2.5D character fighting him.

Why can't this just be drawn? Sad
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Re: Berserk

Post by Enail on Sat Jul 02, 2016 5:21 pm

The cooking stunned me too, it even looked like he might actually be adding things to make it taste good!? (it looked like he was cooking it in whiskey or something).  That is not a skillset or a concern I expected Guts to have Laughing

And yeah, bomaye, I'm with you, why can't this just be drawn? (I don't think that's actually a spoiler Razz)
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Re: Berserk

Post by Prajnaparamita on Mon Jul 04, 2016 6:47 pm

Well, I’m back, I guess I just couldn’t quit Berserk after all. Plus I wanna be able to catch up on the new anime, that too! Well, have more assorted thoughts, rants and lulz

Volume 15:

-Man, I really love the design of the evil elves! Berserk does a lot of “body horror” with the demons being giant lumps of flesh, eyes, mouths in all the wrong places, but there’s not a lot of examples of creepy-cute evil
-Lol I love Puck’s increasingly established role as Guts’ diplomat and translator, they’re both totally terrible at navigating social situations, but in the exact opposite way, with Guts always defaulting to smashy-smashy anger and Puck trying to befriend everyone he sees but failing miserably. What a team, you go guys *slow clap*
-PUCK THE SALT SHAKER
-I think this is just the chapter of peak Puck, breaking the fourth wall too now!
-…Did Guts just… Eat a raw snake, whole…? *barf*
-Also there’s cocaine in the medieval Europe fantasy world? I thought the coca plant only grew in the tropics?
-You know, I think it’s not mentioned often enough how much Guts’ psychopathic, unhinged tendencies are likely a result of the extreme sleep deprivation, stress, and hypervigilance he’s been going through for years now. In the beginning of this volume he describes not having slept for four days, even when he does sleep it’s constantly interrupted by having to fend off incubus and other demons that come after him in the night, and he can never, ever relax knowing attacks are constantly around the corner. Really, you couldn’t manufacture a better environment in which to induce a mental break, which is probably why those techniques are, well, used as “enhanced interrogation techniques”, after all. I mean hell, Guts describes looking forward to the prospect of passing out from blood loss, because of how little sleep he’s gotten!
-Oh man, the expression on Guts’ face when he sees Jill and reverts from psycho crazy bloodlust mode back into something more… human…
-SALT SHAKER PUCK, SALT SHAKER PUCK
-God, I am loving the dark fairy tale vibe of the Lost Children arc, I wish more of Berserk was like this
- "In a world of tiny red objects..."No but seriously, does everyone and their mother have creepy ass egg face pendants lying about?
-Uuuuugggh Miura why you gotta be so hot-cold about how well you handle sexual violence in your stories! Discussing the effect it would have on your life to be a child born from rape and the unspoken shame and stigma, that’s an angle that’s often not explored in stories like these
-And on the note of violence against women, sexual or otherwise, Jill’s torn nightgown and scuffed face on the night she runs away—nothing needs to be shown of what happened to convince her to leave, we can fill in the blanks, and I think here is what pisses me off so much about Berserk—sometimes issues of domestic violence, child abuse, and rape are handled in a thoughtful, sensitive yet powerful way, sometimes they’re totally gross as crass and put in seemingly for the audience to jerk off to, and it seems like fucking luck of the draw which one you get
-Awwww man, bitch-slap denied!
-My oh my, do I detect… YURI IMPLICATIONS?!?!
-STOP TRYING TO GET IN BETWEEN THE BEAUTIFUL GIRL LOVE WITH YOUR OVERSIZED PHALLIC OBJECT GUTS
-Look I’m honestly shocked Puck is still going on at Guts about this—he knows Guts doesn’t care about collateral damage, and can’t care about collateral damage lest he drive himself to crippling despair and guilt. It’s been two years, surely this should be something Puck knows goddamn well by now
-Welp, that’s the second penis of Berserk!
-Third penis, fourth penis…
-Man that was a lot more jiggling ball sacks than I ever needed to see in my life
-Crow: “I ain’t paid enough for this shit”
-Fifth penis… Sixth penis… I… I don’t know… how much more I can take anymore…If I die out here, tell my parents I loved them…
-Ooooh, more of those beautiful headstones with the strange images of saints carved into them like in graveyard near the castle in Midland! I’m surprised though that these peasants have intricately carved graves, I guess from the amount of work that looked put into them, I assumed such things were just for the graves of nobility
-Ooooh look it’s Poodle Face! Finally! I have no idea who she is, but I keep seeing her in stuff on the later Berserk chapters! Anyway, because of her stupid ass hairdo, whatever her name ends up being, she’ll always be Poodle Face to me! Hi Poodle Face!
-You know, I am really appreciating how much *less* Puck is sexualized in these later chapters compared to when we first met him/her/it/them. Given that he/she/it/them is an asexual genderless child, the constant shots of ASS were kinda creepy…
-Do eyeballs actually bounce? …Do I even want to know?
-IT’S MUTHAFUCKIN FLOWER CROWN TIME UP IN DA HOUSE, YA’LL
-I’m not quite sure which is more disturbing, tentacle rape or bee rape but man I’m glad we didn’t have to linger on that scene…

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Re: Berserk

Post by Enail on Mon Jul 04, 2016 7:19 pm

A lost soul returns to suffer with us again! Shiny/thrilled
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