Media and Propaganda in Concrete Revolutio

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Present day journalism, advertising, and marketing has been forever altered by social media. Breaking news is found through Twitter updates while commentary is immediately broadcast from one’s fingertips into the ether on Facebook and Reddit, among other platforms. Previously, newspapers, radio, and television were the primary tools of broadcasting both breaking news and advertising goods and services with commentary reserved for the dining table, living room, or office water cooler. If you’re at all interested in the ramifications of the former, more immediate and current path for news and marketing, Gatchaman Crowds might be the series for you.

Instead of a social media focus, Concrete Revolutio‘s in-universe thoughts are filtered through an anachronistic setup that harkens back to these days of fedoras with “Press” and rows of desks with rotary phones visible through the haze of cigarette smoke. The Concrete Revolutio twist is that said phones are now flown to satellite girls by witches.


Knowing Shiki Magata: Four Perspectives

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Often in murder mysteries, narration is meant to give the reader or viewer pause, be it truly unreliable or simply filtered through the respective lenses of others. If the property desires the viewer to play along with the detective – and more often than not they do, as the reader is served by an in-universe self-insert of sorts – it behooves them to pay attention to who is speaking and what the speaker’s biases are in relation to the departed.

One person whose voice is conspicuously absent in The Perfect Insider is the deceased herself: Shiki Magata. Her innermost thoughts and desires are shown in bits and pieces, always in the words or mind of another.


Knowing What She Knows: Tsubasa Hanekawa

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“You’re not happy because you’re not trying to be happy. Nobody can make someone who isn’t trying to be happy into someone that’s happy.”

-Tsubasa Hanekawa to Sodachi Oikura, Owarimonogatari, Episode 5

Had this line been spoken by anyone but Tsubasa Hanekawa, it would have rightfully been dismissed as a treacly platitude, meant to prod the recipient into action. Instead, it acts as a powerful summation of all that Hanekawa has gone through in search of her own happiness and self-acceptance. Hanekawa was in Sodachi Oikura’s figurative shoes not long ago, and remembers all too well how she blocked out vital parts of herself in pursuit of perfection rather than addressing her innermost desires and seeking out personal contentment.

Owarimonogatari‘s Sodachi Oikura offers not only a reminder of the Hanekawa of Nekomonogataris past, but additionally provides a mystery on which the new, self-assured Hanekawa can cut her teeth.


To All of You: The Time of Concrete Revolutio

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I’ve never needed much sleep. Even as a child, sleep was an obnoxious fact of life that stopped me from doing things. However, as a child, I was unable to choose when I was supposed to sleep, and spent hours staring at my ceiling mind racing.

One of the many habits developed from this was placing life events into timelines. I would choose an event, say a family vacation I had specifically enjoyed, and count the days backwards to it.

“Sixty-three days ago, at this exact moment, I was at a sleepover at Diana’s house.”

With a starting point in mind, I then filled in the blanks from that point until the present day and organize my thoughts. This automatic filing of my own activities persists to this day. Even now, I sometimes wonder what watershed of events led to the particular moment that I’m living in right now.

Time is a weird, slippery thing that we attempt to define and quantify, but thinking about it from a personal perspective is horrifying enough to cause heart palpitations. The tiny decisions to do or not to do something add up, and it’s all too often only later down the road that we bother to look back and attempt to piece together how things happened.


Raise Your Flag: The Emblem of the Iron-Blooded Orphan

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Before watching a single Mobile Suit Gundam property, the franchise was initially described to me in the immortal three words of American General William T Sherman: “war is hell.” It was subsequently chronicled as “the worst 30-minute toy commercial,” but for this post, I’m primarily going to focus on the former. Epitomized by this age-old narrative, most Gundam series I’ve seen inevitably return to this trope, especially those within the Universal Century timeline.