the answer to everything: take a nap

militarypenguin replied to your post:militarypenguin replied to your post:i just wanted…

aaaaaa this was so encouraging to read. ;_; I do plan on rereading Umineko sometime, and I’ll maybe give more in-depth thoughts and impressions as I re-examine the eps…!

YAY!!! the golden witch’s beautiful smirk and warm embrace and sadistic cackling await you with bated breated, militarypenguiiiiiinnnnnnnn uooooohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!

militarypenguin replied to your post:i just wanted to thank you so much for all your umineko posts and explanations. I have a learning disability that really hinders my reading comprehension skills, so even though i loved umineko, i found episode 7 way too confusing, and that was so discouraging. Reading everything you’ve posted really helped me to understand Yasu and the whole story so thank you! i’m so grateful you take the time to do this :D

I, too, have a learning disability (it’s largely why I’m not terribly confident about discussing Umineko; I worry I didn’t comprehend the text correctly), and I am likewise extremely thankful for all of your thoughtful Umineko posts!

pennnn, you’re too sweet! really, most of it is very much just my personal interpretation and personal feelings regarding the work, so people shouldn’t think that i’m more prone to “comprehending the text correctly” than anyone else. it’s a story that encourages personal interpretation of a lot of things, after all, and i have my own biases and shortcomings like anyone!

plus, there’s a lot of things about the story that i spent a very long time invested in totally wrong answers before working it out by hearing the thoughts of other people, too! what i’m saying is pen is hella smart and reading his umineko thoughts would be a joy, although no pressure at all! thank you for being so kind!

i just wanted to thank you so much for all your umineko posts and explanations. I have a learning disability that really hinders my reading comprehension skills, so even though i loved umineko, i found episode 7 way too confusing, and that was so discouraging. Reading everything you've posted really helped me to understand Yasu and the whole story so thank you! i'm so grateful you take the time to do this :D

Ahhh, you’re welcome! It’s really rewarding for me to hear that as well, and you’re incredibly kind! I just have a lot of fun talking about Umineko, but if that helps you out at all, then all the better! Thank you so much for reading; I’m the one who is grateful to you!

yasuda-yoshiya replied to your post:ive never watched or played higurashi but i was under the impression that bernkastel was rika?? or smthing like that.. that rika became aware of the time loop and as such was able to.. er, im not sure actually. so can you explain the relationship between them if you dont mind? :O

that’s actually really interesting about rika’s resolution basically being the reverse of yasu’s! i’ve never thought of it that way before, but that really exemplifies how umineko is a kind of an “anti-higurashi” in general, doesn’t it?

yeah, you could see it that way! there’s not a lot explicit in the text, but i always found the idea of bern’s reactions to umineko being informed by her higurashi experiences kind of interesting and fun to headcanon about.

as far as the two main witches go, there’s also that yasu and beato choose to have a lot more overlap between them (although i do think you can still make a distinction) - yasu’s narrative is that she “becomes” beatrice, after all, and beato still slips into speaking “as yasu” during emotionally vulnerable moments

rika and bernkastel, though, drift in the direction of disassociating with each other more and more, don’t they?

ive never watched or played higurashi but i was under the impression that bernkastel was rika?? or smthing like that.. that rika became aware of the time loop and as such was able to.. er, im not sure actually. so can you explain the relationship between them if you dont mind? :O

no, i don’t mind at all! although i’m not really the bern/rika expert - you might want to touch base with ruriair for that sort of thing too!

bernkastel is rika in a lot of senses - they share the same origin and experiences - but the easiest way to understand it coming from umineko is probably that rika = sayo yasuda, the human being who died on rokkenjima; bernkastel = meta-beatrice.

basically in higurashi rika underwent a canon time loop where she repeated so many times that her memories and feelings started surpassing what we would understand as a human’s

those memories and feelings gave birth to the meta-existence of bernkastel who was still tied to the game and trying to beat the loop, but thought of herself as the non-human entity who traveled through different worlds (and was coming to view the people around her as “pieces”), as opposed to the actual human being, rika furude

bern/rika’s emotional conclusion at the end of higurashi was basically the inverse of yasu/beato’s; they had reached that happy world where she could live as a human being, but as a result, rika came to the conclusion that she had to explicitly throw away being the higher-being “witch” bernkastel, and just live as a regular human in a single world, pursuing happiness in that fashion. and presumably the existence of bernkastel who was discarded by rika was left to wander the sea of kakera seeking new ways to satisfy her boredom, and eventually appeared to invade umineko

it’s kind of a contrast to yasu/beato, in that yasu probably died in misery, but meta-beato was able to find some measure of contentment and happiness with battler in the golden land

i hope that helped!

How would you write Madoka Magica? You have mention that it looks good on paper, so how would you have executed the story?

i’ve been considering this ask for a while and thinking about various things like

again, focusing sayaka’s story far more about her drive and ideals about “heroism” (and therefore tying her character arc far more explicitly into her response to mami’s death and over-idealizing mami as a hero, etc), and things like going more into the problematic aspects of what homura is doing and how damaging a lot of her actions are, and the way the grind of the repeats is going to affect the way she connects to other people and sees their humanity. for example how does she feel about the “failure madokas” compared to the strong, beautiful, heroic madoka she fell in love with in the first arc, etc etc etc, basically various things to make the writing feel more about exploring these girls as people with individual nuances and things to wrestle with as opposed to all of them serving a broader obvious “thematic project” of “let’s tear down magical girl dreams and tropes!”

and then i realized that all i’d really want to do is hand over the characters and their premises to ryukishi to write

How do you think Bernkastel feels about Rika? Does she hate her, because she's a reminder of the past she hates so much? Or is it actually the way around, because Bernkastel wasn't able to have her happy ending, she wishes for Rika to live hers to the fullest in her stead?

I don’t think she actively hates her, exactly? Probably my personal Bern headcanon is that she’s mostly bitter about it, but also, Bern-like, wants to consider herself “above” it as well. Frederica Bernkastel seems to be pretty firm about disassociating herself with Rika Furude! 

Bern’s ego would be best suited if she was able to convince herself she didn’t give a shit and that Rika and her friends are just another gameboard and bunch of pieces for her to play with out of boredom, but she’s most compelling to me, obviously, out of the interpretation that she has a lot of issues about being “left behind” and the promises of happy endings and miracles that apparently applied to “Rika” but didn’t appear to apply so much to her. She sure got mad at Willard when he started spouting off about those things in EP7!

You once said that you didn't like how Sōichirō had portrayed the EP4 Tea Party, but… what displeased you in it exactly? :o Not enough emphasis on Beato/Sayo's point of view?

That’s basically it! It feels super rushed to me, and the actual important things that are going on in the emotional subtext - Yasu’s feelings of despair, Battler fighting against himself - are brushed over in favor of what felt like, to me, hammering out all of the red/blue exchanges quickly. When I reread the EP4 Tea Party in the VN, all of it feels so heavy to me - the weight of Yasu’s constant, grappling despair and how agonizing this really is for her just crushing down on you. Viscerally feeling how much it takes for her to keep re-energizing herself to adopt the evil witch mask, over and over, and keep re-invoking Ange’s name so Battler will stop faltering.

Also the manga version excluded “my golden witch” and Yasu’s reaction to that, which is totally unforgivable!

Something about the panel and art direction doesn’t sit well with me either - it’s very, well, clean and pretty? Part of the power of the EP4 Tea Party is how ugly and rough and brutal it is - the contradiction between how the end of the episode proper partially manipulates you into the urgency of doing as Ange asks and destroying the witch, versus seeing what that actually looks like. The VN does this through description and, again, that heavy, agonizing emphasis on Yasu’s perspective, but the manga would have to also convey it through the art.

I think yumetabibito once wrote a post about—ah, yeah, here it is! She puts it a lot better than I could…

takolina replied to your post:takolina said: the serialized version is basically…

iirc the serialized version does touch a bit more on the girl’s inner struggles and emotions beyond her surface personality of being ultra forgiving but it’s still basically written from the bully’s POV, so!

ah, okay! i might go ahead and check it out then, thanks again! jade the best

the idea of doing good being hard, often being flat-out unrewarding, and often counter-intuitive, but still being worth doing - as opposed to obvious narrative “rewards” or payoff sort of being laid out for people who do it - is one that really really gets to me

probably why fukumoto makes me bawl a lot and i can’t help but love it even though nonexistent women

takolina said: the serialized version is basically an extension of the short story, iirc it starts just before they met again after he learned sign language and then continues on past it so it is the same story you’re thinking of actually!

ah, thanks for the clarification, jade!

yeah, i want to make clear that i can totally understand why so many people loved and felt touched by that story, and i have no issue with stories of forgiveness, obviously - it’s just that i found the writing around the girl in general pretty frustrating in the lack of texture or emphasis on her perspective. but again, i read it a while ago, so!

Have you read the serialized version of Koe no Katachi? I think it might be something that may interest you! It's about a deaf girl and the boy that bullied her as a child, and how they deal with their actions/situations when they are older.

Hmm, I don’t know if I’ve read the “serialized version,” but I remember reading sort of a short story/manga version that was floating around Tumblr a while ago!

It was interesting and sweet in a lot of ways, but to be honest, from what I remember, I actually found the characterization of the girl sort of frustrating. To me, it came off as very obviously tailored around the emotional development and exploring the feelings of the boy who bullied her, with the sweet deaf girl who held nothing serious against him forgiving him as a sort of “obvious reward” for him “getting better” and a natural extension of all the effort he put in to learn the sign language, etc.

Um, that sounds kind of harsh, but I probably have a slightly visceral reaction to things like that where it comes across to me like girls are automatically sweet, forgiving, of people who have been terrible to them, etc - and I didn’t feel like she had a lot of emotional nuance or agency in that story, a sense that she also had her own difficult journey of emotionally working through that situation, rather than sitting there as a sad victim and then a device to extend total forgiveness to her bully.

t-that still sounds kind of harsh! But! I do honestly want to thank you for the recommendation anyway, and if there’s a different version of the story than the one I’m thinking of, then I’d probably be interested in it! It’s really kind and considerate of you to think of me and the kinds of stories I might be interested in!

Do you think that if Rosa hadn't been killed October 1986 and was allowed to live a long life, that she would have eventually mellowed out, become a better mother, and returned to being a kind person? Or was she such a horrible, awful person that there was no hope of her ever changing?

I would probably say that I, personally, am really skeptical about the actual concrete chances of Rosa being able to recover in a way that’s not so much to do with her just being a “horrible awful person with no hope,” but rather the way her thought process and mentality works.

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This might be a complicated thing to answer since it's about the meta world, but what happened to Erika? She was with Bern and Lambda during the last tea party, so did she become a Voyager Witch too? Or is she just a piece that Bern keeps around for kicks and giggles?

It is sort of fuzzy, and I don’t really have a good, solid answer for it, to be honest! EP8 Erika’s characterization in general was sort of frustrating for me in that, while I was never a huge fan of Erika, it completely undid what I thought was a satisfying resolution to most aspects of her character in EP6. It was frustrating seeing her come to the triumphant conclusion that she was in control of her own fate, and no one’s piece anymore, and then go back to slobbering over and enthusiastically serving Bern. It was also frustrating seeing her go out on that other note of bittersweet triumph about the contradiction of her status as Witch of Truth, and choosing, therefore, to face up to the truth of her own death and jump into her own obliteration, and then… nope nevermind she’s back to troll!

Uh, that really doesn’t answer your question at all, but at least the narrative treatment of her in EP8 would suggest she’s still tied to Bern one way or another, but I found Erika’s portrayal in EP8 in general so baffling I mostly just kind of sit here facepalming about it instead of being able to come up with any coherent thoughts, really.