The current perception of traditional, so-called outbound, marketing is incredibly negative. Cold calling is a thing of the past, with the “do not call list,” caller ID, or the lack of a landline phone altogether. Most people employ ad-blockers online – even if they do purposefully disable them for sites they want to support – to rid themselves of website banners or pop-ups. Most snail mail is easily tossed into the nearest trash or recycling bin. And anyone who is asked by their company to dare and knock on the doors of people’s houses is certainly to be pitied – even girl scouts selling their well-known cookies can barely get away with this anymore.
Outbound marketing is the more traditional newspaper or magazine advertisement, designed to introduce the masses to one’s product. It’s easy to fall back on to create an initial contact point, or if one isn’t internet-savvy enough to maximize the potential of online inbound marketing. A mixture of both usually yields the best results, even with outbound marketing’s negative connotations.
Episode 0 of Gatchaman Crowds insight was titled “inbound,” which is the vastly preferred marketing method of today. Its title was apropos as the episode itself – without utilizing a more direct marketing plan like a magazine advertisement – acted as marketing for the upcoming second season of Gatchaman Crowds. Inbound marketing is far more organic, using social media campaigning, blogging, and search engine optimization.
Both the first season of Crowds and insight have touched upon moving away from more traditional ways of doing things. This comes full circle in insight‘s seventh episode when Gel Sadra introduces a new, third option to their smartphone voting process: Let Gel Sadra handle it. The change comes about after a visibly suffering Gel polls his most loyal constituents, arriving at the conclusion that people would rather surrender their autonomy to him as opposed to having a say in the decision themselves. Naturally, both Rui and Hajime are opposed to this idea, having spent the entire first season attempting to shake off the trappings of Japan’s traditional vertical society.
While Gel likely doesn’t mean to create a dictatorship – he lacks the historical context of such governments on Earth – the new voting system gives him near-absolute authority under the guise of everyone continuing to participate in the decision-making by voting. What they’re actually doing is surrendering their opinion and decision to another person without thought. Because his vision and actions have been successful thus far, people readily trust and accept him as their leader, creating a new version of the previous vertical power structure.
“This may be conflict, but it’s nothing to be sad about. Everyone’s just searching for their own answer. You shouldn’t be afraid.”
– Hajime Ichinose, Gatchaman Crowds insight, Episode 7
Episode 7 of Gatchaman Crowds insight is additionally focused on timetables. Humanity is finicky and often rushes, even when it’s not advisable. Rui has learned this the hard way, and while the GALAX creator has now stepped back from championing CROWDS, Rui remains steadfast in the belief that people should think things over and come to their own conclusions. Hajime is also a large proponent of this, insisting that Gel shouldn’t be afraid of differing opinions, even when Gel can’t understand.
In spite of Gel’s good intentions, he can’t take on everything himself. Furthermore, he lacks the understanding of humanity’s nuance to make sense of why uniting everyone’s hearts won’t achieve the peace he desires. It’s no wonder that Berg Katze ran screaming in the other direction, as Berg was one who preyed on the individual and specific desires of others. Up against a being like Gel who has no concept of individuality or independent thought, Berg doesn’t stand a chance even with his ability to take on the form of others.
The episode closes with a literal translation of “outbound” when, full of the thoughts of humanity, Gel vomits a number of insight bubbles, creating the “gentle beasts” that JJ prophesized. Similar to Gel, they likely are neither negative nor positive; however, like traditional outbound marketing, they appear before people and force a contact point.