dimecres, 12 de maig de 2010

LOL

Una bona ressenya, si senyor...

So you know the story. The nameless main character wakes up in some town or some church, and it’s always that quiet backwater town that happens to be situated on the total opposite side of the world from wherever the big bad is. Anyway, the main character wakes up and he has no memory. There’s always a kind villager who, lacking a family of his/her own, takes in said nameless, amnesiac, bound-by-fate-to-save-the-world, sword wielding main character. Maybe there’s a time-skip and we hear how kind-hearted, sometimes mute, usually spiky haired main character has grown on the people of the town, and especially the person who took him in. But, well, the world needs to be saved, and the hero’s newfound family member isn’t going to leave the god forsaken sticks (or, worse, IS, and is going to tag along being annoying as fuck). So there’s that bit about “you’re a true member of the family”. And it’s always such a big, rubbery one, a complete and utter waste of melodrama that’s about as bearable as watching the shoe-horned love scene in a George Lucas film.

And, just sometimes, that kind caretaker is a nice young girl, and she insists on calling our hero “Brother”. Or the sickeningly cute Japanese “Onii-chan”. That’s OH KNEE CHAN. That’s right, anime folks, you know that word. Chances are you’ve heard it about a million times in every big-eyed product out of the Land of the Rising Sun. “Onii-chan, this” “Onii-chan, that” and, often, just a grating “ONIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIICHAAAAAAAAAAAAN!!!!!!”

You know the story. You’ve watched / played / read it about a million times, because, for some reason, the Japanese are obsessed with the idea of “outsider with amnesia becomes one of the family”. It’s absurdly popular in all forms of media and is always delivered with all the ham and cheese a farmer could squeeze, full of sap, morality, yearning sincerity, and complete and utter bullshit.

We are talking about the Japanese, folks. These are the people who, for hundreds of years, spat on and killed anyone who came to their land from the outside. These are the people who think they, and they alone, are descended from some ancient Sun God Emperor, and that everything outside of their rice-laden mountains is an insane, pitiable, barbaric (sometimes amusingly so) savage land. These are the people who are the least racist people in the world simply because they look down on all other races as equally non-Japanese. Pearl Harbor slant eyed Mister Miyagi.

Has there ever been a case of an outsider (and that’s literally what they call all foreigners) TRULY being welcomed into Japanese society? Not to even speak of into a family? I’ve heard so many stories about daughters who were disowned for trying to make such a thing happen. Foreigners couldn’t even be put in the same cemetery as Japanese for thousands of years. Name a single prominent foreigner in Japanese business or politics.

So, I present to you, in far more words, and carrying infinitely more thought and care, than in above doujin, this conjecture. Next time you unwrap your new game or load up your most recently pirated episode and you see that outsider being adored, fawned on, loved and called as one of a family, that next time, just think about if someone in Japan isn’t having the most heinous laugh in all the world about this great big farce.

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