Dreaming of Dad | An Original Poem

Management: Here’s the result of a tangent I went off of while trying to write something about Shelter. Shelter is an animated music video short about a girl, her dad, and the things he left behind and now help define and inspire her. Rather than a post I planned  to write about Shelter’s themes on grief and family, I ended up craft a poem about my angst and my dad instead. This is only my opinion, but it didn’t come out half-bad. Feel free to comment, and please enjoy.

Very rarely, I do get terrible nightmares. They’re dark dreams. They wake me in the middle of the night or early in the morning. I end up shaking. The sun has yet risen. I feel afraid. I feel alone. In these dreams of mine, my dad’s there.

But then he’s not. Violence. Absence. I usually keep them in the back of my mind, but when they’re brought back with searing vividness, I imagine roadkill that I’ve encountered of peoples’s cats. I sometimes cry. I’m a gloomy child, you should know. I don’t subscribe to that that subconscious invincibility, that uncritical indefatigably the minds of my peers seemed to be twisted by. Scenes of battles and beatings, battings and bullets twist my mind like the shock of an animal pressed into the bloody pavement by the callous consumer car-mobile paying no thought to the creature whose bones they cracked… and ground… and spread.

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Nisioisin, Nietzsche, and the Tyranny of Morality

Management: While my opinion of the show is generally positive overall, this essay, by no means, is meant to serve as a comprehensive review, but rather, as an articulation and analysis of some of what I feel is this series’ most integral and interesting themes. This essay discusses Zaregoto, Medaka Box, Katanagatari, and The Monogatari Series. Several points on The Monogatari Series were borrowed from previous posts on the show here, here, and here.

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The first Nisio Isin/Nisioisn work I encountered was The Monogatari Series, specifically Bakemonogtari. Nisemonogatari followed shortly after that.

I admired how closely the narrative formula of Bakemonogatari’s supernatural apparitions and normal school girls paralleled Sigmund Freud’s concepts of neuroses. Ambivalent feelings and beliefs become so sharply contested between the other for dominance that a cognitive dissonance, an unbelievable amount of mental and emotional stress, is almost bound to plague the person afflicted. Take, for instance, Hitagi Senjougahara’s conflicting feelings of affection toward the mother that raised her and rejection toward the mother that let her almost get raped. To avoid this debilitating stress, a person may develop a neurosis. A neurotic dissociates himself/herself from the current reality that is painful and a creates a new reality that isn’t. In the Monogatari verse, neuroses manifest as the oddities of the series. For Hitagi, that oddity was a weight crab deity that unburdened her of both the physical weight of her flesh and the emotional weight of her feelings toward her mother, feelings pleasant and painful.

And then I watched Nisemonogatari, an addition to the Monogatari franchise, I’m told, wasn’t originally supposed to be published and, given this fact, should be seen as more frivolous than fascinating. Fascinated I was though by what I saw despite its fan service, especially with anything involving Kaiki Deishu, but for reasons I wasn’t initially entirely sure of. I felt there was some profound message that Nisemonogatari was trying to communicate that wasn’t entirely pretentious. I also felt there was more thematic fruit to Bakemonogatari than I originally took for digestion.

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Death Parade ~ A Rant About Why the Show Isn’t Going to Hell

Management: Unlike more formal entries, this post is just me kind of freewheeling some hate I’ve worked up on something or other. I intend they be civil, but they are rants. They are demonstrably more passionately accusatory towards something or someone, but the points I’ll make will at least be coherent. I won’t do these on a regular basis. They’ll just spontaneously spring to life one day in a conversation, and I’d rather at least the reasonableness, if not the rhetoric, of my sentiments aren’t forgotten.

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Every Death Parade discussion that I’ve skimmed through had people dropping and arguing opinions. Not a whole lot of surprise there. It happens for most, if not all, shows. But there’s something about the type of opinion being expressed and debated in Death Parade that seems to be unique to it, special to it. This “specialness” is where the focal point of these opinions are concentrated: posts and polemics about good and evil and heaven and hell of all variations.

They frustrates me.

My public health professor posed a question about the infamous “Typhoid Mary.” People opined about who was right and wrong, while here I was, the only person in my class who thought this question about Typhoid Mary was dumb.

Here I am now, thinking that these Death Parade discussions about morality were dumb.

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Paranoia Agent: Strongest

Management: While my opinion of the show is generally positive overall, this essay, by no means, is meant to serve as a comprehensive review, but rather, as an articulation and analysis of some of what I feel is this series’ most integral and interesting themes. This essay, in particular, is about Episode 11 of Paranoia Agent, “No Entry,” though it does contain some elements of Episode 13, “The Final Episode,” towards the end.

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“Paranoia” is a term that could be described as seeing daggers in shadows where there are none. It’s a mental state where minor suspicion of the intentions of people and things, whether or not those people actually know who you are and whether or not those things are actually sentient, degrades to the point to a neurotic obsession. It becomes a plot against your life, a conspiracy where certain people, certain things, or all people and all things, are out to get you, to be cruel to you, to make you suffer.

“Agent” is a term could be described as something or someone being the perpetrator of something else.

The perpetrator of paranoia. The neurotically suspicious agent. For the first half plus of Paranoia Agent, the show plays around with who or what is beating everyone in the head with a bat. Or is there even someone out there like that? Is there a ‘lil Slugger? Is there a shounen bat? There wasn’t, and there is, and before where people were simply sent to the hospital, people are now being sent to the morgue. Shounen Bat has become the iconic equivalent to certain death in the show as the grim reaper is in pop culture (the bat’s bent in to parallel the bent nature of the scythe). It now kills everyone it ends up appearing to.

Episode 11, “No Entry” , pitches along, and it appears in the midst of this woman who you would think would be the easiest target to bludgeon into a crackly and pastey oblivion, at least compared to its previous victims. A woman with a fragile constitution and a weak heart, and yet alone she managed to survive, even when her house didn’t. It wasn’t luck though that she was able to make it out.

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Serial Reason | Denpa Teki na Kanojo, a Review

Management: This is a comprehensive review of own devising, where I go over a pro and con analysis of the material in an attempt to convince people to watch the show-in-review. Hopefully, in encouraging people in general to watch things I think are interesting, they’ll at least somewhat know what to expect while watching. For clarity’s sake, I’ll emphasize this: the review isn’t meant to be so much holistic as it is coverage of what I believe is of core importance to the show. 

Elements  of this essay take from some of Sigmund Freud’s ideas. That being said, the inclusion of those elements are not meant to be a total affirmation of everything they believe.

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Occasionally, news organs will report a sensationalist spate of grisly crimes with the perpetrator caught or the perpetrator at-large. Well, bombings, rapes, murders, etc. aren’t sensationalist per se, because when they happen, they can happen with all the perverse gruesome details people can imagine and probably more. What is sensationalist about this whole business is the “pundits” it spawns that attempt to make sense of all this, and of those “pundits,” there are many that say it’s futile to make sense it all, to make sense of the perpetrators’ motives and mindsets. No one in their right minds would perpetrate these these kinds of actions.

What’s less extreme, but still abnormal are individuals that we may more commonly encounter, in schools perhaps, that, nonetheless, exhibit very pronounced idiosyncrasies, ingrained beliefs and habitual behaviors beyond what could be considered conventionally shy, forward, etc.

Whether extreme and dangerous or strange and inconvenient,  by conventional, societal views, these people are beyond reason people defy reason.

Or they seem to. Denpa Teki na Kanojo serves to demonstrate, some of these people might actually be comprehensible, but in a different way.

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