12 Moments in 2011: The wrong reaction

Not all memorable moments are going to be positive ones. The memory of Endless Eight will be with us for many years to come, and even if you thought it was high art, it’s a safe bet that you didn’t really “enjoy” it in the strictest sense.

We Still Don’t Know The Name of That Flower We Saw That Day, or AnalHana for short, started as a decent-looking, sort of understated, tasteful look at what a tragedy could do to a group of friends. Sure, it was hard to really feel their separation when we were kind of just told “this is how it is,” but the execution was fairly tight.

Then, the wheels just started to fall off. The moment I can point to where I realized, “there is no subtlety left here at all” was probably the back room of the video store. And from there, I couldn’t not notice the ridiculosity of the shouting and crying. It all culminated in the final episode, for me one long moment of agape wonder. Menma the Friendly Ghost and her friends devolved into simple crying machines guaranteed to eke a reaction out of sensitive otaku, and boy did it. Just the wrong one. My tears flowed freely, alright, but I don’t think in the way that was intended.

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Fuck these (11) Comments.

  1. digital boy says:

    For me this is memorable because ghosty and I watched it while blasting Angel of Death.

  2. LOL I remember Angel of Death.

    I also remember people being genuinely touched and moved by this show, not all of them otaku. I blame a cognitive bias towards NoitaminA.

  3. kimaguresan says:

    There is media that touches and moves me in the whole of a story. In that I can tune out certain elements to get to the core of something. I can also reflect on those certain elements later and think of how stupid they were.

    Interesting characters touched by tragedy, yup.
    Manipulative forced drama, big yes.

    I didn’t dislike it, but can recognize it for what it ended up being.

  4. Shinmaru says:


  5. vucubcaquix says:

    I ended up tuning out of the show by the time Manma showed up. AnoHana didn’t help its case in trying to be a sober look at loss when it kept playing up the creepy sexualization of Menma from the opening scenes onward. Then there was Anaru and the nasty case of Male Gaze.

    But Poppo is a pretty awesome dude, I will say. This show would’ve been a thousand time better if HE was the protagonist.

  6. drmchsr0 says:

    You’re quite right about the forced dramanuke and the creepy sexualized aspect of lo- FFFFFFFFFF YUKIATSU Y U DO DIS.

    I blame the fact that it had 11 episodes and they were pacing for at least 13.

    Ironically, most soaps tend to devolve into this.

    Though to be honest, I was…. almost touched.

    Feels less forced than KEY, though. Even though it’s not saying much.

    • otou-san says:

      hm, I can’t say whether I agree with that statement or not. You’re probably right, although maybe it’s that they feel forced in a different way, not more or less so. When I mention the tried-and-true reaction-getting techniques, I was thinking pretty specifically of Key/Maeda.