Anime World Order Show # 156 – Interdimensional Hipster Beards Abound

After saying we’d do it back during our Garzey’s Wing review and then proceeding to put it off for nearly six years due to fear (hmm, only 56 episodes in six years…), the time has finally come. We’re joined once again by The Internet’s Mike Toole, now Editor-at-Large for the Anime News Network and still the biweekly author of The Mike Toole Show to talk about the six-part ONA series The Wings of Rean.

Introduction (0:00 – 19:54)
We catch up with Mike and quickly summarize what he’s been up to these last five years. Of course, mere days after this episode was recorded, Mike got another “real-world” job so WE ARE ALREADY OUT OF DATE THANKS A LOT JERK. Seriously though, here’s hoping this one lets him work regular human hours (as opposed to the Ajin: Demi-Human hours he typically works). In the email box, we try–and ultimately fail–to solve an all-too common problem one of our listeners has…because we basically all have the exact same problem! I guess the “know-it-all” tag is more of a Bullwinkle J. Moose style “Mr. Know-It-All” one more than anything!

Promo: Right Stuf Anime (19:54 – 21:36)
Every day for the month of July 2017, as part of their Birthday Sale, Right Stuf has some massive discounts to check out. Every day there’s also a Mega Deal, so be sure to check every day since the Mega Deal is more often than not for something lots of people actually WANT. But then there’s what WE’RE reviewing! For you see, each volume of The Wings of Rean is a staggering 90% off as part of this sale! Behold the majesty: Wings of Rean DVD 1, Wings of Rean DVD 2, and Wings of Rean DVD 3 can all be yours to own, cherish, and inflict upon your friends and loved ones for pennies on the dollar! No doubt you’ll all rush on over to buy it after hearing…

Review, Or Something, Maybe, I Guess: The Wings of Rean (21:36 – 1:32:25)
I don’t remember what happened during this time. After asking around, none of us remember anything that was said. It can only be assumed that this audio is an accurate representation of the experience of watching venerated Mobile Suit Gundam creator Yoshiyuki Tomino’s latest venture into his fantasy realm of Byston Well, which he vowed to be handled better than Garzey’s Wing. Did he succeed, or is it just a twice-as-long version of Garzey’s Wing minus the legendary bad dub? And why has nobody in all this time bothered to steal our thunder on The Wings of Rean? Or did they and we just can’t remember?

Conclusion (1:32:25 – 1:36:09)
Otakon is a month away, so just in case we don’t get another episode out in time, we’ll all be in attendance and doing panels. Check the schedule or our Twitter feeds for days and times once they’re available. Next time, whenever that may be given that there’s also an Otaku USA deadline coming up, Daryl will review the 2001 theatrical anime adaptation of Osamu Tezuka’s Metropolis. Look forward to it!

9 Replies to “Anime World Order Show # 156 – Interdimensional Hipster Beards Abound”

  1. As a younger fan (early 20s) of older anime (70s and 80s) I can confirm to no one’s surprise that even in the college setting it’s hard to find anime fans with a shared interest in the vintage stuff. Even in the very nerdy school I went to I basically found only one person who really had a self-motivated interest in checking out older anime (in retrospect I should have appreciated more at the time that I found anyone). It’s kind of disappointing when you go to the college anime club as a hopeful Freshman and find that most people are playing anime themed tabletop games but don’t seem to be talking much about anime; if they were talking about anime it was very much the anime that was trendy with typical modern otaku types. To be fair that was just the introductory meeting, but all the titles for showings that happened afterwards were decided democratically. This sort of approach has been discussed before on prior episodes of AWO, but I have to say that the democratic approach to running an anime club is pretty much worthless for someone like me.

    During my undergraduate studies I eventually reached a point where I didn’t even bother actively looking for other anime fans anymore or attempt to interact with other anime fans at my school. When I did the conversations almost always went along these lines:

    “`
    Them: You like anime too?!? Do you know X, Y, and Z?
    Me: Yeah I know about them but only by name and that those titles are popular but nothing else.
    Them: Oh, what do you like then?
    Me: I’m particularly interested in anime from the 80s these days
    Them: Oh…
    *awkward silence*
    “`

    So yeah, I didn’t have a whole lot of luck finding many people with theoretical 80s nostalgia for anime. The heated discussion about the works of Osamu Dezaki or Noboru Ishiguro I fantasized about during my senior year of high school really didn’t materialize during college.

    Hell, even some of the anime fans I met in my undergraduate dormitory were more like theoretical anime fans: they still like the idea of anime but they didn’t actually watch a whole lot of it anymore. To be fair to them, anyone that wasn’t a Freshman was usually hellishly busy doing homework during the school year; with the limited free time on their hands anime just wasn’t the choice of recreation.

    I wouldn’t mind hanging out with older fans to watch older anime but as discussed in the podcast, how do you even find local anime fans outside of college? Even worse, when your anime interest is not the most popular stuff airing currently? I certainly haven’t found any good answer and so the best I have is the internet as an outlet for discussing this stuff which I’ve only really been using very recently to interact with other fans of older anime.

    I had never heard of the Brattle Theater before and I’m local to Cambridge, so I gotta keep that on my radar. Thanks Mike!

  2. Hey Gerald, don’t be hating on your Gall Force love, I love it as well. If you want to compare obscure titles you think no one cares about but you, that’s Sol Bianca for me. At least with Gall Force there is far more material for it out there than Sol Bianca. I have come across more Gall Force than Sol Bianca merch at conventions since I’ve been going to them, you got it made.

  3. Ok, this will be a LONG post on personal Tomino ramblings, so please bare with me.

    During the 90’s (around 94/95, basically 7th grade English class) I did a book report on the SECOND Gundam novel (I didn’t have the first or third). Reading it, I had little to no idea what was going on. I always thought it was just me but it turns out several factors were 1)the pre established Romanization of names (Char was Sha, Zaku was Zak). 2)My only source point for Gundam at the time was the model kits and toys I had which were of the 80’s/90’s variety and so I read Guncannon as a literal Guncannon. 3)Probably the most significant, was Tomino’s writing style which if you’re in junior high inner city school, will be near impenetrable. Oh how I wish I could find said book report and know exactly what I wrote (I do recall getting at least an A+). All I know is that the line up of Mobile Suits is far greatly diminished in the novels (I don’t even think Char had a Zaku, but did have a red Rick Dom) because I don’t think Tomino is even interested in the MS, just the characters (he even said once in an interview that he’s not interested in “robot anime”).

    So I got to see Tomino in person in the anime con that eventually got merged with NYCC. It’s cool to see someone you know worked on the stuff you’ve seen in person. Anyway, the showed the openings to all the stuff he directed/worked on……except for one thing, GARZEY’S WING! I even said (but not too loudly because I didn’t want to be rude) “What about Garzey’s Wing?”
    During the panel, someone dressed as a Naruto character (uh, the guy with the cloak with the stylized clouds) had the nerve to ask Tomino “So as a writer and future director, what’s important in writing a story?” The shear visceral cringe I felt was staggering. You are NOTHING to Tomino. You are a lowly maggot to him. You do not ask such a question to someone who’s been in the anime industry since Astroboy. Of course someone also just HAD to ask the usual questions like “What’s your favorite Mobile Suit?” Answer was the V Gundam stuff because the smaller size was more feasible) and “What did Char mean when he said Lalah Sun could have been like a mother to me?” Answer, I don’t think even Tomino knew.

    P.S. Gerald, I loved the original Gall Force too! Saw it in the 90’s during the Sci-Fi channel Saturday anime airings. I eventually bought all that was available though the sequels (sans Rhea) get progressively worse (just like Project A-Ko).

    1. I Think New Era was when Gall Force started to go downhill. I just remember not thinking much of it, heck I barely remember what happened in it.

      Rhea was my intro to it, so that’s the one I’m most fod of.

  4. Well, I gotta watch this. I wrapped up Brain Powerd yesterday and loved it, and I love the 16 episodes I’ve seen of Reconguista in G, so this sounds like it’s right up my alley. It’s at least worth it for the liner notes, which I didn’t even know had been officially published in English. I’ll probably go on and pick up Tomino’s Gundam novels in this sale, too. Now if only the Wings of Rean novels could get translated…

    Also, for the record, Raskolnikov from “Crime and Punishment” tends to be my reference point for a very good character. I feel like I see eye-to-eye with Tomino a lot. His anime was some of the first I ever watched, and it always makes me feel like I’m coming to anime for the first time again. Anyhow, I feel like I’ve say junk like this on here every time Tomino comes up, so I’ll go on and stop.

  5. I…I think I need to lie down for a bit after hearing those Tomino interview excerpts. I swear that as long as I live, I will never understand how that man’s mind works or why he insists on keeping half of the story inside his own head and never explaining it to anyone.

    Oh boy, I look forward to you guys discovering just how far Tomino’s issues with women run when you get to Brain Powerd.

  6. If the answer to Email Anon’s question is really social reinforcement, then I think the bottom line has to be the internet – and specifically twitter. While you may not find people who are watching the same things as you, you’ll definitely be able to find people to talk about old anime and “academically inclined” things. This can tie in with what Email Anon mentioned about panels. If you cast a wide enough net, you’ll when anyone tweets that they’ll be at a local convention, and you can meet up that way. (I’ve very rarely managed to actually network with someone via panels that I didn’t already know from twitter – it’s just not a good dynamic for that)

    Anyway, wow, Wings of Rean. I have no interest in seeing this show, but I’ll pay the price just for the production materials, easily. From what you’re saying, I feel like I could probably watch it at 2x speed and not lose anything: it’s not as if I’ll understand it even less, and at any rate, I feel like any understanding I’ll walk away with will come from the liner notes, not the visual storytelling or dialog. But then, maybe the true way to experience Wings of Rean is with a notepad and friends to compare notes with, like the folks Mike was talking about. Perhaps this was Tomino’s game plan all along.

    Japanese wikipedia – the fount of all correct and righteous Byston Well knowledge – claims that Shinjirou was indeed shot down during a kamikaze mission over Okinawa, which means that if Gerald is right and Shinjirou didn’t know anything was happening there, it’s the most complete nonsense history I’ve ever heard from an anime, /especially/ coming from a Japanese writer. The very reason Japan mounted massive kamikaze strikes against the USN during Okinawa is because having US troops on the doorstep to the main islands was so viscerally horrifying to them – not a single one of those pilots would’ve been thinking about anything /but/ the US landings there, and how they were going to give their lives to stop them.

    Incidentally, the Battle of Okinawa began 1 April 1945 during the last months of the war – it went on for months, not years. It’s something Japanese viewers would likely know. Probably.

    Also, you guys totally had the exact same discussion about L-Gaim during your Garzey’s Wing episode, right down to Daryl’s explanation for why he lumps it in lol. I guess it’s one of those timeless questions. (At least until Khoda finds an old interview where Tomino tells us the secret history of L-Gaim or something)

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