Ah, so Trzr23’s Remembering Love project has come to an end! I’ve got to say, I thought squeezing in parts of shows I’ve already watching around all the others shows I feel obligated to watch that I haven’t already would be a bit of a choir but, it’s actually been brilliant! Reminding myself why I even bother dedicating as much time to anime as I do has had almost a rejuvenating effect, it’s made me excited for all the anime I am yet to watch that I may also come to cherish over time, ‘cause you know, there’s always more out there! This season’s Sakamichi no Appolon is proof of that. Even after three years of anime watching under my belt and, consequently, a hardened outlook on the stuff, it is still possible something perfect will come along, reminding you just why you love anime so!
Without any further ado, my final Remembering Love post! This time I’ve chosen to write about another classic, (albeit a more quietly praised show than Death Note) Kino’s Journey.
As with all the other shows I’ve chosen to write about during this project, Kino’s Journey is also kind of special to me- last Christmas I reached a point in my anime watching where I’d been watching shows that were consistently good but, I’d watched nothing that completely rocked my world for the longest time. I’d started to worry that I’d never watch a show that’d give me the chills ever again, that the metaphorical spring of my anime career had finally, and unspectacularly, drawn to a close. Yet Kino, (especially the last few episodes of it) brought back that overwhelming feeling of awe that I’d so sorely missed- it just broached so many fascinating topics that kept it whirring through my mind long after I’d finished watching it! Episode 9, The Land of Books, was particularly riveting, choosing to explore the thin line between fantasy and reality.
Ironic, almost, that such a topic was focused on within a fictional story itself. One of the characters introduced during this episode, The Author, posed an intriguing theory: according to him we will ourselves into existence, fabricating our lives around us (a theory with some credibility- well, it’s not exactly something we can disprove, is it? It’s definitely falsifiable!) so, that must mean that each and every one of our lives is fiction, fantasy even. So, what is reality? Well, it must be whatever exists before that point we will ourselves into existence, most likely nothingness, which is why the pages were left blank in The Author’s book containing “everything of the world.” However, what I really wanted to round off this project with was a point which, although was made to seem fairly insignificant by the deeper topics explored in this episode, (as mentioned above) seemed appropriate to focus on now.
During the final 5 minutes of the episode Kino meets with the Minister of the Department of Reading and Welfare who informs her that the castle has a dual purpose: to stash away books that are considered dangerous and to keep the critics away from ordinary people. She states that critics are “crazy people” who “ruin other people’s pleasure” by scouring the books with “their triumphant looks”, and that the “pleasure of books is a more private matter”. OK, so whilst the lady was incredibly creepy, what she said really strikes a chord with me, a critic myself. I believe I, and many other fellow bloggers often forget, in our desperation to give ourselves an air of sophistication, criticise too readily, forgetting that readers often chose to read posts because they focus on a show they love, and, therefore, we could end up souring their opinion of it. It’s also equally as easy to forget that anime, as with all art forms, are subjective and that our individual interpretations and opinions on it aren’t law, which gives the chief librarian’s statement “Critics cannot make any wrong decisions, after all, they are critics” an air of irony. Our experiences with anime, as with books, is a “private matter”. So what am I trying to say by bringing these points up? Well, that we could all probably learn something from them: to accept other’s opinions as perfectly valid rather than having such a black and white view of what is right and what is wrong, and that spreading love with often get you further in life, (or will at least provoke less scorn from those around you) than constantly hate-mongering- a nice, appropriate lesson given that this project is all about spreading the love!
Thanks to all those who’ve read my posts for this project! Hope you enjoyed reading them as much as I enjoyed writing them!
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Great choice. Though somewhat horrible as well because it reminds me of someone I know who watched it and fell in love with it. Problem is he holds that work against most animes nowadays, and can’t look at them without noticing a major flaw or flaws. Of course, as an anime fan, I am obligated to watch Kino’s Journey because I’ve heard a lot of praise for it, so I have to check it out sometime for sure 🙂
I used to do that too but, I’ve since discovered it’s far more beneficial to accept an anime for what it is is rather than holding what it’s not against it…
If you’re a fan of Mushishi and/or heavy philosophical debates you’ll like Kino’s Journey.
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