Texhnolyze is F'ing Brilliant...

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Postby LeoXiao » Sun Jan 10, 2010 6:30 pm

This anime does seem pretty good, but I've never found the motivation to sit through it. It seems like one of those animes where you constantly feel like you're waiting for something.
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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Sun Jan 10, 2010 6:43 pm

LeoXiao wrote: It seems like one of those animes where you constantly feel like you're waiting for something.
That's actually a perfect description. The pervasive anxiety and portentousness throughout the series does a superb job at always setting the viewer on edge. This is really counterpoised by the series' extremely measured and languorous pacing. I'm not sure the series ever really delivers those "big moments". In the way it's the anime equivalent of No Country of Old Men; the expectations of the premise are never fulfilled and are instead almost consciously left to linger like a dissonance in a classical music piece that's never resolved.
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Postby Merridian » Sun Jan 10, 2010 6:51 pm

LeoXiao wrote:It seems like one of those animes where you constantly feel like you're waiting for something.
:lol: To me Texhnolyze was more "constantly feel like there's an ominous cloud of inescapable dread & gloom hanging around" than merely waiting for something to happen. In some senses you are right though, that dread-laced anticipation that occupies the first arc's episodes is very reminiscent of that uneasy feeling right before a bomb explodes. And that's kinda the point. That's pretty much what happens at the conclusion of the arc.

EDIT he beat me to it!
Jimbo wrote:In the way it's the anime equivalent of No Country of Old Men; the expectations of the premise are never fulfilled and are instead almost consciously left to linger like a dissonance in a classical music piece that's never resolved.
I can't help but feel as though this technique relied on the metafictional element of "what you could imagine is better than anything we could possibly try to deliver", especially since the actual destruction per se of Lux was left largely off-screen IIRC.

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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Sun Jan 10, 2010 7:07 pm

Merridian wrote:I can't help but feel as though this technique relied on the metafictional element of "what you could imagine is better than anything we could possibly try to deliver", especially since the actual destruction per se of Lux was left largely off-screen IIRC.
For some reason that final fade-out always struck me as representing a dying consciousness. It really lends a feeling that everything we've witnessed was little more than a dream that we'll never wake up from.
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We're all adrift on the stormy seas of Evangelion, desperately trying to gather what flotsam can be snatched from the gale into a somewhat seaworthy interpretation so that we can at last reach the shores of reason and respite. - ObsessiveMathsFreak
Jimbo has posted enough to be considered greater than or equal to everyone, and or synonymous with the concept of 'everyone'. - Muggy
I've seen so many changeful years, / to Earth I am a stranger grown: / I wander in the ways of men, / alike unknowing and unknown: / Unheard, unpitied, unrelieved, / I bear alone my load of care; / For silent, low, on beds of dust, / Lie all that would my sorrows share. - Robert Burns' Lament for James

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Postby Mr. Tines » Mon Jan 11, 2010 2:45 am

Heh. When I last posted in this thread, I hadn't yet cracked the shrinkwrap on the first DVD, and didn't get around to doing so for over 18 months.

The only reason I have watched as much of Texh as I have since was that I actually had the disk -- were it a fansub d/l, I would have had no compunction about stopping halfway through the first episode and writing it off as another of those "celebrated for no discernible reason" titles, rather than struggling through two and regretting it.

If I had wanted to sit through ~50 minutes of heavy breathing resulting in physical response on my part, I would have found a porno instead -- at least that way the qualia involved would have been generally positive.
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Postby Xard » Mon Jan 11, 2010 6:08 am

Well, it looks like no one bothers to use spoiler tags

Eva Yojimbo wrote:Bump for new discussion:

Xard wrote:I got to agree with Mr. Tines here.
Mr. Tines wrote:it definitely doesn't help with the "Who are these people and why should I care?" test, that's for sure.
All of the other characters fill more interesting roles and are more distinctly characterized. What makes Ichise so interesting is precisely his lack of a role, a place, a function, a personality. He's practically a non-entity wandering through the world and in a way I almost think he's metaphoric of the entire series. He's a blank canvass; a "stray dog" just running on instincts. I don't think he's a good character in the traditional sense but I think he works marvelously in the context of the series. Luckily, I've never been really hung up on the "who are these people, why should we care" mode of thinking when other elements are handled so superbly. Texhnolyze is a series that makes it very clear from the first ep. that there's more going on than anything we're going to get from the surface characters and somewhat minimal story.


I really don't have problem with his "stray dogness". He remains that way through the whole show. However he is COMPLETELY insufferable during first 9 eps or so.

Eva Yojimbo wrote:
Xard wrote:Add that together with absolutely disastrous pacing of first 7 eps or so I really can't blame anyone dropping the show.
What disastrous pacing? Tex is about the most brilliantly paced anime in existence; certainly the most originally so.


You should know I have no problems with slow films, I rather liked (to certain extent) hypnotic feel of early series. First episode is masterpiece of filmmaking no doubt.

However in whole context of the whole it is terrible because those seven eps are different from how rest of the show is paced. Plus at some time "hypnosis value" started to steadily decrease (I guess after first ep, which is why I said form didn't quite keep on its level) alongside with the fact "nothing happens" starting to become way, way too obvious. With tight scriptwriting eps first six or seven eps could've been put in 2 eps timeframe.

I'm not saying that should've been done but since eventually all magic of pacing got worn off I have absolutely no will to watch those eps again. Boring and tedious to max with barely anything happening.

They went too far with their "slow" pacing. And since rest of the show is not paced like that it strikes me as very superfluous and artificial directing, done for sake of it. Which - I gather - it was. There's really nothing I'd especially praise in pacing of those eps. It's more tedious than hypnotic.

Eva Yojimbo wrote:
Xard wrote:Ending was eartshattering trainwreck of gigantic proportions and in every possible meaning of words.
"Every possible meaning" could either mean awesome or terrible or awesomely terrible...


...or terribly awesome!

well, you figured out what I ment.

Eva Yojimbo wrote:
Xard wrote: by the time final scene came about I had already long gone into "oh boy, well ain't that nice :hohum: " mode and watched what happened with absurd bemusement.
I was pretty much riveted during the entire runtime... I mean, I think it's somewhat obvious that nothing good is going to come out of this, and yet that ending was still incredibly haunting to me.


I guess I liked furious conflict created by Nietzschean badass with cool moustache more than army of biocyborgs killing everything for lulz. It just felt cheap show ended up in such cliched territory.

Eva Yojimbo wrote:
Xard wrote:It would be be a lot easier to judge if I didn't have to go through oozes of fanwank generated by single line in final episode (you know what I'm talking about)
The one about Lukuss all being a conjuration of Kano's mind?


YES :lol:

I read many reviews of show (including yours), read through some fan pages/analysis and IMDB board (man, you got some huge posts right there)...

Eva Yojimbo wrote:
Xard wrote:The hilariously engrishy pronouncing kept me distracted well enough through that scene...talk about mood ruiner.
You're not the first I've heard say that but I guess it just didn't bother me. The poignant sadness and beauty of the music combined with the series more than made up for any questionable pronunciations. FWIW I have both OSTs and the last time I listened to that song I was a puddle of tears even then. It should be about the emotion behind the lyrics and music, not about the bad pronunciations of the words.


yeah, I saw slothen whine about say thing :lol:
ran1: Oh gosh this sentence gave me an internet boner. You're so tsundere.
Mugwump: Goddamn it, Xard! Take me in your arms, you magnificent sex god bastard!
And don't forget to wear the Ran mask.
Eva Yojimbo: You really are the Otaku equivalent of a Catholic and Jew rolled up into one giant dakimakura of guilt.
Gob Hobblin: Sanctimonious, subtly racist, vaguely misogynist, somehow says something while at the same time saying...nothing, really, at all....

Nice, Xard. That's nice.

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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Tue Jan 12, 2010 12:48 am

Mr. Tines wrote:writing it off as another of those "celebrated for no discernible reason" titles
Some of us have an appreciation for immaculate visual storytelling; which Tex has in spades.

Mr. Tines wrote:If I had wanted to sit through ~50 minutes of heavy breathing resulting in physical response on my part, I would have found a porno instead
Let's not exaggerate, please. The heavy breathing was mostly just in the first episode and hardly comprised the entire thing. And pornos aren't made with nearly as much attention to visual detail.

================================================

Xard wrote:However he is COMPLETELY insufferable during first 9 eps or so.
Why? He's basically just struggling to stay alive during those eps...

Xard wrote:However in whole context of the whole it is terrible because those seven eps are different from how rest of the show is paced.
Hmmm, I don't really see this. The series goes through several permutations in terms of pacing. Those first several episodes are all there to set up the climax of Yoshi's death. After that the pacing slows down again, Heavenward and Hades are in their own world in terms of design and pacing, and the ending picks up again but never really reaches any kind of action climax like that of Yoshi's death.

I really don't see any disconnected pacing between those first eps. and the rest; especially since most of those eps. are so intent on merely setting up the characters, situations, the motifs, the technology, etc. Ichise's trip through the sewers could be said to metaphorically sum up the entire series and it's so drawn out for that very reason.

Xard wrote:alongside with the fact "nothing happens" starting to become way, way too obvious.
Nothing's happening on the surface, that's true. But it goes back to what Merridian and myself were talking about it about how that nothing is really serving to set up the expectation of something while the actual something is happening under the surface from the beginning.

Xard wrote:With tight scriptwriting eps first six or seven eps could've been put in 2 eps timeframe.
Blech, no. That would totally ruin the pacing! I can't believe you don't get it's supposed to be drawn out like that!

Xard wrote:Boring and tedious to max with barely anything happening. It's more tedious than hypnotic.
This from the guy that loves Zerkalo. :tongue: I find your lack of appreciation for the visuals - which the slow pacing is meant to draw your attention towards - rather disturbing. Any kind of sped up pace would totally ruin the oppressive ominousness that the city and visuals create.

Xard wrote:I guess I liked furious conflict created by Nietzschean badass with cool moustache more than army of biocyborgs killing everything for lulz. It just felt cheap show ended up in such cliched territory.
Errr, except I think you missed the point. The idea being that the cyborgs were little more than a way to turn people into trees. They just stopped moving and rooted themselves to the world of Lukuss. It really wasn't about "killing everything for the lulz". Besides, Kano > Yoshi

Xard wrote:you got some huge posts right there)...
Would you expect anything differently?
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Jimbo has posted enough to be considered greater than or equal to everyone, and or synonymous with the concept of 'everyone'. - Muggy
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Postby Mr. Tines » Tue Jan 12, 2010 2:47 am

Eva Yojimbo wrote:The heavy breathing was mostly just in the first episode and hardly comprised the entire thing.
While there was some dialog in the second episode, I remember it as dominated by the ragged breathing of the guy doing the Black Knight impression.

While I cannot deny the effectiveness of an animation that, after I had forced myself to sit through the episode, left me feeling physically revolted enough to want to go have a lie down, I can call it self-defeating if it makes me actively never want to watch any more of it, rather than just being bored by what I saw. And that makes it bad when viewed as a whole.
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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Tue Jan 12, 2010 3:23 am

Mr. Tines wrote:I remember it as dominated by the ragged breathing of the guy doing the Black Knight impression.
Oh yeah, you mean when Ichise had his arm sliced off... I was thinking of the actual sex scene/heavy breathing in the first episode (especially when you brought up the porn thing).

Mr. Tines wrote: I can call it self-defeating if it makes me actively never want to watch any more of it, rather than just being bored by what I saw.
Not all viewers are as sensitive to these things as you and would actually take such a physical effect as a good thing. EoE left me feeling physically revolted and exhausted and I had to go lie down too but I also thought it was the most brilliant, powerful piece of cinema I'd ever experienced.
Cinelogue & Forced Perspective Cinema
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We're all adrift on the stormy seas of Evangelion, desperately trying to gather what flotsam can be snatched from the gale into a somewhat seaworthy interpretation so that we can at last reach the shores of reason and respite. - ObsessiveMathsFreak
Jimbo has posted enough to be considered greater than or equal to everyone, and or synonymous with the concept of 'everyone'. - Muggy
I've seen so many changeful years, / to Earth I am a stranger grown: / I wander in the ways of men, / alike unknowing and unknown: / Unheard, unpitied, unrelieved, / I bear alone my load of care; / For silent, low, on beds of dust, / Lie all that would my sorrows share. - Robert Burns' Lament for James

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Postby LiLi » Tue Jan 12, 2010 4:27 am

I... think I just lost any appetite I might have had for Texhnolyze.
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Postby Kutta » Tue Jan 12, 2010 5:59 am

@Texhnolyze

Bash me, when I first viewed Tex I actually liked the slow first episodes most. The slowness was nothing short of a boon to me, as there was more time to just stare at the visuals and get into a Tarkovskyan trance. The early struggle of Ichise is genius. Him crawling through the sewers with some limbs missing, following a flower petal, while all noises and sounds he makes are perfectly engineered and voice acted, and this going on for several minutes, was nice. In general, I did not perceive anything as a plot in the first eps, it was just some fancy things happening with characters in brilliant settings. Later, of course it all coalesced into an understanding of the plotline and the themes, but I think I'd just kept liking Tex even if it stopped at ep 7 or so,

because at first viewing the diminishing of the hypnotic pace and mood in favor of a more "normal" narration was not received well by me. Somewhere prior to Yoshi's death the story started to advance with a much greater speed and accelerated to Yoshi's death, then slowed down a bit, but never to the trance like extent of the early eps. The reason I did not like the middle eps was that I felt that now that the story is given some attention it's gotten revealed that the story itself is pretty convoluted and not that interesting.

However, the end made me revise my prior opinions; the surface world was nothing less than disturbing, the main themes started coalescing and the culmination of chaos and madness was rather spectacular in the underworld.
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Postby Mr. Tines » Tue Jan 12, 2010 3:12 pm

Eva Yojimbo wrote:EoE left me feeling physically revolted and exhausted and I had to go lie down too but I also thought it was the most brilliant, powerful piece of cinema I'd ever experienced.


The two pieces affected me on entirely different levels : EoE was a purely cerebral assault, which, though it left me emotionally bruised, after the fade to black I was only wanting to metaphorically vomit up fix-fics. What I watched of Texh had a null emotional effect (what would normally be simple tedium), but by the end left me feeling queasy enough that I was wondering whether I was about to literally vomit up my dinner.

Any implied sex in the first episode had entirely escaped my recollection when I did the compare/contrast bit, taking the linkage of ubiquitous heavy breathing to contrast the pleasurable tickle of arousal with the nausea and cold sweats that I had inflicted upon myself.
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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Tue Jan 12, 2010 7:17 pm

LiLi wrote:I... think I just lost any appetite I might have had for Texhnolyze.
Why?

Kutta wrote:at first viewing the diminishing of the hypnotic pace and mood in favor of a more "normal" narration was not received well by me.
While I can understand this I wonder if it would be possible to maintain that pace and hypnosis over the course of 22 eps. Granted, something like Satantango manages over an equivalent time length but I think it would be difficult in a series like Texhnolyze that has so many characters and factions in such a mysterious world that exists under very mysterious circumstances. I think its evolution into a more traditional narrative made sense to give the series a sense of forward momentum as it's really hard to maintain a hypnotic pace for such a long period of time.

Mr. Tines wrote:What I watched of Texh had a null emotional effect (what would normally be simple tedium), but by the end left me feeling queasy enough that I was wondering whether I was about to literally vomit up my dinner.
Fair enough. I'm not quite sure what the cause of the difference is other than that EoE is much more obviously narrative driven and "traditional" in that sense.

Mr. Tines wrote:Any implied sex in the first episode had entirely escaped my recollection when I did the compare/contrast bit, taking the linkage of ubiquitous heavy breathing to contrast the pleasurable tickle of arousal with the nausea and cold sweats that I had inflicted upon myself.
I'm a bit puzzled how anyone could forget the implied sex in the first episode; it's one of the more memorable striking aspects considering its placement in an episode almost devoid of dialogue. You don't remember the flailing black hair of the woman on top of Ichise before she pokes his eyeball out with her fingernail?
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We're all adrift on the stormy seas of Evangelion, desperately trying to gather what flotsam can be snatched from the gale into a somewhat seaworthy interpretation so that we can at last reach the shores of reason and respite. - ObsessiveMathsFreak
Jimbo has posted enough to be considered greater than or equal to everyone, and or synonymous with the concept of 'everyone'. - Muggy
I've seen so many changeful years, / to Earth I am a stranger grown: / I wander in the ways of men, / alike unknowing and unknown: / Unheard, unpitied, unrelieved, / I bear alone my load of care; / For silent, low, on beds of dust, / Lie all that would my sorrows share. - Robert Burns' Lament for James

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Postby Mr. Tines » Wed Jan 13, 2010 2:55 am

Eva Yojimbo wrote:I'm not quite sure what the cause of the difference is other than that EoE is much more obviously narrative driven and "traditional" in that sense.
Probably cues like the continual ragged breathing and the clinically sadistic material on screen. Implication is more powerful than, say, the direct depiction of the scattered viscera of EVA-02.

I'm a bit puzzled how anyone could forget the implied sex in the first episode; it's one of the more memorable striking aspects considering its placement in an episode almost devoid of dialogue.
I sit through sex scenes with a mixture of tedium and irritation at the best of times, waiting for the padding they form to be over and the narrative to resume -- if I remember their presence at all afterwards it is those that form the most egregious filler and thus are the most annoying. At the remove of a year, all that has stuck of episode 1 is someone who I tagged as a stereotypical mafia don, the presence of a montage of pale colour on white scenes (though not their content), and the more conventionally animated cuts to a guy descending a seemingly endless stair. Of course Texh ep1 didn't have any narrative to interrupt, so the memorable annoyance factor just wasn't there.

The summary was "You have not intrigued me; rather you have bored me by waving your artwank in my face for half an hour. Still, since people say this is good, maybe something actually happens when I press 'Next epsiode'."

she pokes his eyeball out with her fingernail?
I'd managed to forget that too, dammit.
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Postby LiLi » Wed Jan 13, 2010 3:37 am

Eva Yojimbo wrote:
LiLi wrote:I... think I just lost any appetite I might have had for Texhnolyze.
Why?


The descriptions provided in this thread by you and Prof. Tines, mostly, convinced me that my previous assessment that I probably don't want to watch this show might have been accurate.

Alas, I also keep running into unmarked spoilers - each of them more unsuited to my not-so-delicate palate than the previous one. Sorry, have to go barf some eyeball now...
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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Wed Jan 13, 2010 3:54 am

Mr. Tines wrote:Probably cues like the continual ragged breathing and the clinically sadistic material on screen. Implication is more powerful than, say, the direct depiction of the scattered viscera of EVA-02.
Most everything is implied in Texhnolyze; we see very little actual violence though we do often see the after-results.

As for the rest; you seem to comply with Brik (and most anime/movie fans) that narrative is really of primary importance. It's a view I can understand but one I doubt I'll ever agree with as a predisposition, meaning I can enjoy narrative/character driven works just fine but I've also learned to appreciate works where other considerations were of a higher importance to those making it.
Cinelogue & Forced Perspective Cinema
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We're all adrift on the stormy seas of Evangelion, desperately trying to gather what flotsam can be snatched from the gale into a somewhat seaworthy interpretation so that we can at last reach the shores of reason and respite. - ObsessiveMathsFreak
Jimbo has posted enough to be considered greater than or equal to everyone, and or synonymous with the concept of 'everyone'. - Muggy
I've seen so many changeful years, / to Earth I am a stranger grown: / I wander in the ways of men, / alike unknowing and unknown: / Unheard, unpitied, unrelieved, / I bear alone my load of care; / For silent, low, on beds of dust, / Lie all that would my sorrows share. - Robert Burns' Lament for James

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Postby DoktaTenma » Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:21 pm

Huh... IMO Texhnolyze is one of the most profoundly brilliant works of art ever crafted, and I found every aspect of it to be essentially perfect.

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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Sun Mar 28, 2010 12:23 am

View Original PostDoktaTenma wrote:Huh... IMO Texhnolyze is one of the most profoundly brilliant works of art ever crafted, and I found every aspect of it to be essentially perfect.
Not sure if I'd go THAT far. It barely missed my top 100 films list, but it's probably my second favorite anime series behind NGE.
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We're all adrift on the stormy seas of Evangelion, desperately trying to gather what flotsam can be snatched from the gale into a somewhat seaworthy interpretation so that we can at last reach the shores of reason and respite. - ObsessiveMathsFreak
Jimbo has posted enough to be considered greater than or equal to everyone, and or synonymous with the concept of 'everyone'. - Muggy
I've seen so many changeful years, / to Earth I am a stranger grown: / I wander in the ways of men, / alike unknowing and unknown: / Unheard, unpitied, unrelieved, / I bear alone my load of care; / For silent, low, on beds of dust, / Lie all that would my sorrows share. - Robert Burns' Lament for James

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Postby backseatjesus » Tue Apr 13, 2010 3:09 am

I just finished this. Currently digesting the ending. Other that, I indeed enjoyed it.

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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Wed Apr 14, 2010 9:42 pm

I did not enjoy Texhnolyze; it crushed my spirits. But it was really powerful, affecting stuff.
Cinelogue & Forced Perspective Cinema
^ Writing as Jonathan Henderson ^
We're all adrift on the stormy seas of Evangelion, desperately trying to gather what flotsam can be snatched from the gale into a somewhat seaworthy interpretation so that we can at last reach the shores of reason and respite. - ObsessiveMathsFreak
Jimbo has posted enough to be considered greater than or equal to everyone, and or synonymous with the concept of 'everyone'. - Muggy
I've seen so many changeful years, / to Earth I am a stranger grown: / I wander in the ways of men, / alike unknowing and unknown: / Unheard, unpitied, unrelieved, / I bear alone my load of care; / For silent, low, on beds of dust, / Lie all that would my sorrows share. - Robert Burns' Lament for James


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