What’s in a Fight: Netero vs Meruem (Hunter x Hunter’s Analysis)

Action has always been one of my favorite genre in action (if it’s done well). At their best, they are basically a physical of storytelling with the climax of a fight mirror emotional catharsis of the characters. To an outside observer, making bunch of people hit each other may seem simple, but there’s an elegant construction in any great fight scene. Film Crit Hulk lay out all the elements of a good action in his Mission Impossible video: It needs objectives, stakes, obstacles, and wrinkles (among others).

With that said, in this post, I want to analyze one particular fight in Hunter x Hunter that I’ve been thinking about using those elements that Hulk was talking about above: Specifically the fight between Netero and Meruem in the Chimera Ant arc.

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What Makes a “Good” Death (Jujutsu Kaisen’s Analysis)

Itadori Yuji lamenting about death

Jujutsu Kaisen‘s protagonist, Itadori Yuji, reflected quite a numerous times about the nature of death. As an example, the fact that he did not want his Senpai at school to experience a “bad” death is what initially spurred him into action, plunging him deep into the supernatural battle against the Cursed Spirits. It’s an odd phrasing, but wanting a “good” death basically means wanting an end to a life that feels satisfactory to you. Everybody is destined to die, so the least we can do is to choose how we die (until we somehow achieve immortality at least).

But that does brings up an obvious question, one that Yuji, and Jujutsu Kaisen as a whole, tries to explore: What exactly makes a “good” death?

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Duality of Individuality (Analysis of Hunter X Hunter’s Chimera Ant Arc’s)

(Warning: Spoiler for Chimera Ant Arc portion of Hunter x Hunter)

Individuality, or individualism, is the perhaps one of the most overvalued or undervalued traits, depending on who you are on the side of debate. Some people champion this value, often putting it in a stark contrast against the crushing conformity of our soulless machine of society, chewing people out and spitting them out as a cog in the machine. At the same time, I’ve also seen individualism regarded as everything that’s wrong with white-centric society, where the emphasis toward individualism brought about through western imperialism has basically allows exploitative abuser who don’t care for nobody to thrive, and we should all become more collective who care for each other. Sometimes the latter is also being advocated as a response for the former, where our individualist machine of society has to be replaced with a more collective-driven society.

One thing for certain, however, is this insistence of how individuality is always something that is seen in direct contrast with collectivity, of how putting the emphasis of one self is something contradictory to emphasizing over the others. And while that is true in a sense, there is a weird gut feeling that I have which tells me that this dichotomy feels simplistic. I can’t quite explain why it is, but it just feels that way to me.

The Chimera Ant arc in Hunter x Hunter, however, really manages to clarify that weird gut feeling that I have. Which is to say that individuality can be both paradoxically feeding into our destructive impulses but also a source of empathy for the Others in our society.

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Analysis of Gintama’s Comedy

Image result for Gintama

So, my usual M.O. of watching anime as of late has been just watching whatever it is that’s either mostly fell under the radar of the anime community that I’ve been (or just not watching anime entirely *cough*Buffy the Vampire Slayer*cough*it’s pretty good*cough*). Gintama more or less fell into that M.O which is a weird thing to say considering it was one of the most successful anime and manga franchise in Japan and, to a degree, in the “mainstream” anime demographic of the west.

So short impression, I like Gintama. It has some of the most absurd out-of-left-field gag I’ve seen out of….well almost anything. Beyond that, it has a strong entertaining cast of characters, which the series utilized very well, and also surprisingly has a really heartfelt character-driven drama.

I’ve pretty much caught up to the entirety of the old series (including the second movie, which was…..good, I guess?) and are now watching to the 2015 series. Considering how much time I’ve invested, I more or less become familiar about Gintama’s consistent comedic tricks. Tricks which I am now going to share to you to introduce you to the madness that is Gintama.

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