In Regard to the Liberties taken in horror stories

Where’s Waldo?
Stories allow plenty of liberties to be taken to create plots and maintain the stories by letting events happen and elements to develop. Main characters are the driving force and in the center of the stories and more than often being the why of how things turn out. Sometimes more illogical in nature than logical the liberties taken shape the story when things happen because they happen. This is a in regard to such matters in stories, Another, and the things we’ve come to accept.

“How about I..?” “Yes, Sakakibara-kun?” “- do something not bright.”

 In regard to MC arduously looking for trouble

Becoming overly involved in problem. Why don’t more main characters invite trouble more often? They’re always thrown into bad situations but in the case of MC he gets in trouble by himself. Ghosts? Dead people? Eyepatches? A MC who personally gets myself into trouble as if realizing he’s a transferred student from the big city the next best thing is to  directly meet the oddest and shadiest people he can find in the new town.  Trouble? I AM trouble. I have a good life but who cares? I’m so going to get into trouble by messing with things even after being told I shouldn’t. Old town, mysterious people, creepy dolls.  Count me in. Events have to happen therefore the MC gets in trouble, however, usually there’s an inexplicable need for them to get in trouble in the first place.

In regard to drawing attention to an eyepatch

In her eye lies a world. Behind that eye there’s a universe. The look, the color, the shape. How cleverly is placed on one eye. What’s behind it? There’s a whole cosmos in there, a Bermuda triangle, riches, the world’s answer, the elixir of life, a piece of laundry from last week. In which it was asked what type of secrets a certain eyepatch held. Another had a way of being ridiculous in its way mainly focusing on this eye catching eyepatch. Close up shot? No. Eyepatch shot. Side shot? No. Eyepatch side shot. The eyepatch was so glorious that it was the cliffhanger for one of the episode. Want to see what’s behind this patch? Watch next episode.

In regard to getting good folks in trouble. In further regard to how to be a terrible MC

Not the decent people. Not them, but it’s always the most likeable character that gets the axe. Technically an umbrella but let’s roll with this one. When it comes to horror the victims usually turn out to be the good apples in these villages. It’s more or a rule to be part jerk, plain unfriendly, or be too weird in these places to be able mingle with the local crowd otherwise you’d be the first to go in horror stories. The bad guys won’t be as unfortunate as the good folks because they are part of the “dark evil forces” in the stories and won’t die easily. Also because they don’t get close to the lead and tell him secrets he shouldn’t know anyway. Friendly? -> Gets killed. Jerk -> Gets to see another episode. Damnation to the corrupted world of Another.  Damnation to all umbrellas.

In regard to let’s all be serious

It has to loved the way villagers in Another tried so hard to be secretive to the point that anyone would realize they’re hiding something. Hush. HUSH, boy. We must not speak of it. It is forbidden in the village. But only without any caps and spoken in whispers, (because whispers can’t be heard and keeping secrets are for suckers). They’re all secretive. If they don’t like visitors as much as they show it they might as well make appropriate plans to not let outsiders in their circles. Don’t sell the houses, don’t sell the property, say all the classrooms are full, say they’re town is known for having CrAAaaaZzzY villagers with equally crazy stories, etc. Not enough was done in Another to escape from the curse. This another of the many ways that horror in anime works by inviting the trouble into their world. Word of advice is, show them you have nothing to hide and they won’t think you have anything to hide.

In regard to PUTTING A KID IN CHARGE OF THE LIFE OF WHOLE CLASS (in which the use of caps requests to be excused)

One of the most baffling things seen in horror anime is the lack of remotely attempting to be realistic. But it’s not about looking for ‘perfect realism’ the issue but going to deep extremes to trigger events. In Another it wasn’t neither realistic nor practical. The adults were as inept and irresponsible rivaling those in “Alien Nine”. It doesn’t cut it whether Twintail girl volunteered or not. It doesn’t cut it if it works or not because the show doesn’t care either way. Instead of coming up with a better plan and getting someone else, older, more skilled and whatever else needed the school they picked ONE student in charge of making sure a tragedy doesn’t occur again. I slapped myself every time Twintail girl said with a serious expression she was the Head of Countermeasure because there was so little she could actually do no matter how hard she tried. Similarly bad for killing off one of hte few likeable characters who did try to do something. RIP Twintail girl.

In regard to the possibility of moving out otherwise the possibility of escaping

Escaping in a horror anime is impossible. I also gave advice back then by providing some theories off the top of my head to see if Another was going to remotely go that way. One of the things mentioned was that no one including the main character was going to try to leave the evil cursed village. They really didn’t. No one who was part of the main cast did or remotely tried. On the other hand only the most intelligent villagers ran away for a few months until the yearly random massacre was over. But that’s really because that’s how these type of stories are constructed to make all the characters have unreasonable needs to stay and “fix” the problem even knowing they probably can’t on their own. It’d be great if that was the whole purpose but they have other interests in mind aside from it. With so many random deaths one can only wonder how tourism does in that village.

In regard to seriousness not getting along with lack of seriousness

Dead teacher. Go to beach. That’s right, go to the beach. The hardest thing a horror can do is mix comedy, light situations in a serious show. It just doesn’t work because they are the opposite of what they’re presenting. It simply looks very off and it’s incredibly difficult to not end up making the show look like a total joke. On another note, there is some seriously wrong with the kids in Another. I don’t mean they don’t have a clue whatsoever about anything. I mean they don’t act like they should. Have they witnessed deaths before? Are they totally broken? No. The tragedy’s happened to other classes not them. They’re supposed to be ok. They only temporarily freak out when their classmates and later teacher kills himself in front of them then the next day they’re good to go. Massacre at the village? Go to the beach. Dead psycho teacher? Go to the beach. They don’t make any sense. But that’s because in horror anime things don’t tend to make much sense.

In regard to a further lack of any common sense

Kitchen in flames? No problem. Let’s ignore. The 11th episode pretty much takes the cake on lack of common sense to makes the audience doubt these are really in high school or even middle schoolers. MC tells some of his classmates that the kitchen (Kitchen) was on fire before leaving and what do they do? Something else and not taking care of a possible hazardous problem. Then much later they just remember there was something about the kitchen, that is seconds before they are killed by said flammable problem. What happens to flammable stuff? It goes boom and takes out supporting and background characters. Yep, things may not tend to make much sense but that one was pushing it.

In regard to seeing tragedies coming and unheard of Kodak moments (and no camera obscura was used)

The curse was known and they couldn’t stop it. That’s one thing, but they could’ve tried to prevent further harm instead of spreading the chaos. The final massacre of the last episode was seen a mile away the moment they got their hands on the tape which would create further indiscriminate killing one last time.

In regard to having Ali Project bailing out another show

Usually one that goes well to up the mysterious of a show. This time Project Ali served as a way to parodize the lack of deepness in Another. Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t. For Another it was more of a reminder of how forced the mysteriousness in it was. The BGM dramatic music was booming just about anything happened.

Reads: “doushite, Rei? Doushite.”

In regard to a parakeet with a limited vocabulary being the star of a show

Granted a better vocabulary the bird could have outshone many character in Another, especially those whose names were never remembered anyhow. The bird got soul, the bird got the name Rei down. The only way to make it any better was putting this parakeet in a three way match against InuxBoku parakeet and Toradora parakeet in a rap battle. The bird added goofy factor to the show by making it unintentionally comedic. Granted, it resulted in a + plus by making it enjoyable.

In regard to unnecessary gore, random deaths, and old ladies who may run too slowly

The number of casualties went up like they really wanted to clean house. I don’t think the number of victims were ten, there had to be more unless there were numerous deaths which looked like real deaths but were accidents. Either way the final episodes made Another looked like a desperate gorefest filled with randomness and inexplicable events. The old lady chasing after the two above was running slower than Jason in Friday 13th movies was one of those what the hell moments.

In regard to forgetting crucial details

No one remembers or says a thing about what happened years ago. Mei forgets to tells anyone something really important, that is, talking about the curse or bother to do anything at all. No one likes to recall anything and when they can they rather not. Probably the mystery could’ve been solved in less gorier ways. This was the just the way the story was constructed to ensure its craziness, then again the liberties taken by horror stories  tend to guarantee craziness. This was one of them.

In regard to calling characters by nicknames being most preferred

Another would’ve elevated itself to a better tier by changing everyone names to nicknames and ran with it. There goes Patches, there goes Twintails (also tsundere chick whichever was preferred), there goes Umbrella girl, there goes MC Not-Keichi. The audience would have undoubtedly loved Another more after it had changed all the names for whatever they’re better known for.  But that’s because they were getting awfully goofy.

In regard to preferring main characters to be dancing

Another wanted to secretly be a dancing show. Deep down we just know it and it can’t be proven otherwise after seeing the passion in them, those moves, that level of synchronizing. Another should’ve been about this. Daydreaming once a week about dancing during classes. The horror genre in anime covers its face with both hands.

In final regard to the general opinion of a non-official Final Destination anime adaption

Following the common trend of “things happen because they do” in stories the lack of common sense was abundant. The final minutes of Another are the worst as it doesn’t try to fully justify the final decisions. Why did the two managed to remember the extra person? Why was this curse so powerful that it could bring thunder and death like it was death itself? Was Mei’s reason not to tell the MC because he’d be hurt (compared to the dead classmates) or because it’d be futile remotely OK? Mei, as also being 2nd MC, lacked any sort of interest in the show and for anybody in the show aside from the lead. The main character was the worst of all as he is really the typical character in any horror story possessing lack of common sense, indecisive, and having a penchant for contradicting himself, following his instincts and making questionable decisions leading the rest of his classmates to their doom. But everything is really ok because the audience forgives him because he’s the main character. In a way we can say he’s the typical horror MC. The most interesting thing was that the parakeet did end up being the key to the mystery as suspected.

Folks, I don’t do final thoughts feeling obligated to say how good bad shows were. Besides all the colorful ways of stating how much of a cluster of elements Another was and how it followed other examples in the horror genre in anime by saying In Regard to I don’t think Another could have helped but to stand out in the season for how out there it was. In the case of Another it stood out for being a mesh of comedy and suspense each week deliberately full of supernatural, strange, and accidentally funny moments. From the overly dramatic and constant BGM pieces in the first episodes whenever anything happened to the deaths of each character by similarly by just about anything. Another could’ve played it differently by making the characters’ deaths have greater impact on the audience but they were given the axe before anyone got to know them better making death felt cheaper each episode. Someone up there really didn’t like their characters at all and I think that it showed when just about everything in the story wanted to kill off the characters in it. Another was a piece of work and the author was thinking out loud. On the bright side, the animation was fluid and the events enough to make the story interesting making it watchable. The gory elements are a reminder of Blood-C, the lack of adult guidance from Alien Nine, the lack of common sense from the regular horror story. Ultimately, it plays out like most regular horror anime with more than the usual liberties taken in the creation of it.

As usual all thinking required was done way back in the first episodes to see how the story would eventually play out. For most part it did, about Mei not being a ghost, the curse and the massacre to eventually come. I enjoyed the show in some ways like more of a mental exercise before it all goes array. For most part very differently than it was originally intended.

Extra theory :
The extra – it could’ve also been Mochizuki (girlish guy) because he had the time to alter the tape such removing the part where it indicates what the procedure after realizing it was possible he was the extra one. Another could’ve done something like that instead of relying on the the extra seat being the teacher’s which was.. yeah.
Mastermind/Culprit (alternative) – It has to be said Mei wasn’t the extra one neither she had killed anyone but alternatively could’ve been in a way the mastermind by concealing vital information because it was impossible to prove she didn’t already know the answer despite having the power. Lastly, that expression of hers when the show is over. I know, unlikely but Mei’s role as a player in the story feels much to be desired.

2 thoughts on “In Regard to the Liberties taken in horror stories

  1. I hope they close that damn school, i don’t think that just changing the cassette for a DVD is good enough a solution…

  2. 10 people dying every year? All associated in some way with the class? Close the town.
    Really, would have liked to have seen this done better. As for Ali Project: Meh. They’ve been rehashing the same lyrics since Noir.

Comments are closed.