Love Live! S2 13

Love Live! S2 13: WE DID IT

Pon. Alright, it’s time to be serious. Serious mode. Realmode.

Oto. I’m always serious.

Pon. This show became a real chore to watch, but I wouldn’t say it’s “bad.” To me a “bad” show is one that doesn’t have much to offer very many people. That’s clearly not true in this case.

Oto. I’ve said this before, but I feel like the second season was worse than the first. Not sure why people like it more. A main reason, and I just realized this recently, is that the second season doesn’t have any real struggles. My favorite scene from this whole series is that part where Honoka, Umi, and Kotori have their first concert in front of an empty auditorium. That got to me. It really felt like they were reaching for something with everything they had. That persists through the first season, but the second season just feels like they’re sitting around the whole time and NOTHING FUCKING HAPPENS! They never really have to strive for anything. I never thought they might lose. The Love Live competition wasn’t even that present in the second season. The only time they struggle is when they’re trying to write music. They had no problem with it in the first season. I’m fine with seeing the writing process, but it’s like they’ve never written music before.

Pon. There were a few episodes in the second season that I genuinely enjoyed. The one about Nico’s creepy home decor was good, and the Nozomi one was good, but it has to do with what you’re talking about. Those characters feel like they want something. It feels like they’re working toward something. The show doesn’t achieve that with every character, which, yet again, is one of the perils of having such a big cast, but that’s a baseline requirement for me. Some nerds can get through these shows purely by admiring cute skirts or whatever. I am not those nerds.

Oto. Yeah, those were good. The second season’s not all bad, but it doesn’t feel like much actually happens.

Pon. What pisses me off is, there’s that bit where Honoka talks about what music means to her … why the fuck wasn’t that a constant theme throughout the show!? She could’ve had an actual arc! What happened there?

Oto. Yeah, that was just her graduation speak. She doesn’t give a fuck. She just liked hanging out with her friends. That’s what I got as being most important to her. Especially when she cost Kotori her position as a world-famous designer. Thought I forgot about that one, didn’t you? I can’t hate Honoka. She’s still the best, but sometimes …

Pon. I refuse to have character arguments about this show at this point.

Oto. Weren’t you just saying how Umi is your favorite?

Pon. If by “favorite” you mean “the absolute worst possible character” … no, stop! I’m not gonna do this. It’s totally pointless.

Oto. Alright, fine. Shipping, then?

Pon. You know what? I honestly don’t care that much. NicoMaki has some good douj, but I still feel like the show doesn’t sell it very well. Otherwise I’m okay with the canon ships. Honoka has to be shipped with, whatshername, Tsubasa from A-RISE. Because of this.

Oto. I still want to find some good Honoka/Tsubasa, but yeah. I’m not that worried about it either. That’s kinda how I feel about all ships, though. Live and let love.

Pon. … Live.

Oto. As long as the douj is good.

Pon. We need to talk about the appeal of this show, since that to me is the really interesting thing about it. I keep mentioning this person whose entire Twitter existence is devoted to Love Live… well, here’s part of their justification. And I want to make clear that I’m not putting this here to make fun of it. I’m putting this here because I relate to it.

… because I’ve watched love live I’ve gotten back in touch with a part of myself and my emotions I’ve been too ashamed to reveal in front of others, which was entirely because of a lack of confidence; I’ve always wanted to be a storyteller and inspire others to feel real true emotions, yet have always lacked the emotional grounding to do so effectively because I hadn’t yet really examined my OWN emotions, or my own reasons for why I wanted to do what I wanted to do. …

Oto. This is why I have a hard time saying anything is bad. If a show can impact even just one person on this level then it’s doing something right.

Pon. Yeah, I’ve been there. I’ve been in pretty much that exact place. If you want to make things, you need to learn to get past the prevalent irony somehow, since, even if the thing you’re making uses irony, creating something that people can connect with is essentially a sincere act. You expose yourself by doing it. So, you know what? I’m glad Love Live helped at least one person learn how to deal with that. It’s a difficult thing to deal with.

But my whole angle on Love Live is shaped precisely by that difficulty, which is why I can’t see the show how this person does.

If any show filled this niche for me, it was Aria, which in one sense is a show about the usefulness of sincerity and just generally not being an asshole. But it’s also a show about how sincerity is fucking hard. It comes easily to one character, which makes her sort of alien to her friends (insert pun about how she’s literally from another planet), who do have to struggle with it. And they learn from that, but they also worry about it. It really does expose you. There’s a time for sincerity and a time for irony and skepticism. I guess my point is that, while Love Live is a show about how sincerity doesn’t have to be hard, it’s hard because we make it hard, Aria is a show about how sincerity is and always will be a struggle, which to me is a lot more relatable, and the reason why I can’t really buy most of the characters in Love Live.

A related thing that weirds me out about the whole Love Live thing is how closely people identify the characters with the voice actors. Which, yeah, is something they themselves do … to fucking sell you stuff. I’m not saying they don’t have a genuine emotional connection to the characters they play, but, entirely regardless of that, regardless of anything, crying on camera is a career move for them. μ’s is not real. μ’s is a fiction designed to get you to buy CDs and concert tickets. This doesn’t mean you can’t get anything out of it–look at something like Gundam, which is useful in many ways despite being a series of toy commercials. But we need to take a step back and have some perspective here. Sincerity helps you connect with people, but, whether it’s intentional or not, sometimes people are motivated by things other than making you feel good. That’s where irony comes in. You just have to judge case-by-case how much irony vs. how much sincerity the situation calls for, which is precisely why it’s so hard.

Oto. I don’t like thinking about that stuff. It makes me sad. Reminds me of this Doctor Who special. David Tennant’s TARDIS merges with Peter Davison’s and Tennant has this whole speech about how his 5th incarnation may have been his favorite and how he learned so much and how it changed him. And you don’t see it as the Doctor talking to his younger self. At least I didn’t. It’s more like David Tennant talking directly to Peter Davison about what he did for the show and what he did for him when he watched the show when he was younger. But was that just a horrible ploy to garner favor from the audience? Were they just manipulating me?

Pon. My point isn’t that you have to always be like, “no, this is just a late capitalist scheme” or whatever. Obviously the point of a story is affecting you emotionally, and you have to be open to that, or else why bother? My point is that the healthy way of approaching media is to be ironic and sincere at the same time. Humans are really good at paradoxes. This is one that we need to embrace. Love Live doesn’t seem to embrace it in its attitude toward art, so it ends up just frustrating me.

We need to deal with this idea we keep coming back to, though, about the official Love Live stuff, the show and music, being the least interesting aspect of it. It’s one of these things that’s as popular as it is because of the kind of community people have formed around it, and I’m always interested in what about the “canon” material makes that kind of community possible.

What it reminds me of, actually, is Twilight fanfic. My understanding of that community is that there isn’t the same reverence for the source material you got with the big pillars of western fanfic that came before it, Harry Potter and Buffy and Star Trek, etc. People seemed to write about those things because they liked what those things had to say in the first place. But with Twilight, if the stuff I’ve read about it is accurate, there isn’t the same kind of belief that the fanwork lives in the shadow of the original. Twilight gave people some basic character templates, and it gave them a community to write in and for, and that’s kind of it. It’s used less like a thing in itself and more like a writing prompt.

Maybe Love Live works like that. Well, it’s possible that everything does these days. But, for me, a lot of the most interesting Love Live fanwork is the work that diverges in some significant way from the plot of the show–the work that doesn’t respect the canon.

That brings up another thought I’ve had … feel free to interject here.

Oto. No, I’m good. Go on. This is interesting.

Pon. Okay, so my other thought is, when fanwork does try to work within the constraints of some amount of fidelity to the original, a source without a whole lot going for it in terms of character, themes, etc. is a real liability. You can only have so many doujinshi in which Maki goes to Nico’s house, right? It’s fine the first time, it’s charming, but the fifteenth time it’s like, fuck, can’t Nico go to Maki’s house now? Can’t Maki go to Rin’s house? Does Rin even have a house?

And so this is why original works that deal with big ideas are particularly good for fanwork. The fanwork can borrow those ideas and work through them in a lot of different ways.

We could talk about Harry Potter and dealing with growing up and the reality of death at the same time, but we’re not gonna do that. We’re not gonna do Touhou and belief systems. You know what we’re gonna do?

Oto. I don’t know. What are we going to do?

Pon. Kancolle.

Oto. Eeeeeeeeeehh.

Pon. No, hear me out. It’s true that a lot of the fanwork that I’ve seen is just porny, or cutesy romance … not that there’s anything wrong with that, beyond it getting old fast … but I have to admit that there’s a lot to work with there. The characters are these girls imbued with the souls of battleships. So what is a battleship soul? Is it a tsukumogami? Is it a composite of the entire dead crew? What does that do to a person’s head? How does a ship-human hybrid learn to love, or even to respect the lives of the human beings it was created to defend, in situations of extreme duress? What happens when it fails? What’s it like being a weapon that is also a human? What’s the lifespan of a shipgirl? What does it mean to literally tear the past out of hell and become one with it? What are the implications of that? How does that work as a metaphor? Why in the glorious name of eternal fuck don’t Kancolle fans ever talk about this stuff? Never mind that last one … my point is just that it’s fertile ground for fanfic. Love Live has very few big ideas, and maybe this is a constraint on the extent to which the fanwork can. I’m not saying every show should be about big ideas, but I wouldn’t say every show needs a huge fanwork community, either.

Oto. We should just douj. Kancolle douj go! You’ve already written half of it.

Pon. Fuck that. I could be writing original stuff.

Oto. As long as it’s fun and interesting, what does it matter?

Pon. Uh … money?

Oto. Filthy capitalist. Fuck you. I’ll do it on my own.

Pon. Fine.

Oto. Fine!

Pon. Fine. In any case, let’s close the lid on these idol shows. No more of this shit … when’s the new Macross coming out?

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11 thoughts on “Love Live! S2 13

  1. Day says:

    On the matter of fanwork, the Love Live franchise is what I tend to think of as a “perfect” franchise in that regard – the format allows for endless possibilities particularly in terms of fanfiction and doujins because the underlying framework (high school idols!) can be used endlessly. I myself have been working on a fanfic (I KNOW) following a group of girls who exist as Regular Students in the mobile phone game Love Live School Idol Festival, and its very easy to do so because of this framework. Other examples I can think of off top of my head are Strawberry Panic, G Gundam, and Jigoku Shoujo – basic frames that are easily adaptable and potentially have no limit. (I think one could also use Gundam Build Fighters as well in this manner although I’ve never given it any thought previously.)

    But this anime is crap. I disagree with the idea that someone getting something on an emotional/psychological level out of something means it isn’t bad (witness the phenomena of Left Behind! or, more disastrously, the Turner Diaries), but I’m not really interested in hashing it, I just note it as background. I was finally sucked into LL fandom via the aforementioned game because I have a horrid love of handheld rhythm games and its a pretty solid one, but the anime is completely vapid – it took me roughly two years to slog through it all and ultimately I only did because it was easy to drift into watching it when eating my breakfast/getting dressed before going on a twelve-hour shift. I wasn’t in the state of being where I was going to be watching something like LotGH or Infinite Ryvius or something of that sort. Watching this, I marveled at how completely empty it is – so many people loved it so much, and are so intense about the characters, that I was honestly disgruntled on some level at the show for failing to actually develop its characters at all. (I’ve since read two volumes of the manga, which in just the first few pages gives Honoka depth she doesn’t manage to get in the entire anime.)

    First season is bad, second season is worse! I liked the stuff when they faced the blizzard and were helped by their schoolmates and had to hike across town, and I liked watching them go to the temple on New Years, but its a complete waste of time otherwise.

    The material put in as a sop for shippers is perfunctory at best – NicoMaki isn’t even slightly convincing, screw that nonsense about the potatoes. Hanayo gushes at Rin once and that’s more convincing than NicoMaki. But I think the only ship that comes off as valid based on the TV series is NozoEli, probably because they actually spend time together otherwise and clearly understand/get each other. (I ship Kotori with Erena from A-RISE – in my canon – ‘headcanon’??? – Kotori met Erena while she was working as Minalinsky or however its spelled and Ms. Tall Dark and Bishoujo kept coming back to hit on her. And it doesn’t even have that much less canonical support than NicoMaki!)

    Have you seen Symphogear, by the way? You should blog that next!

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    1. Neither of us has seen Symphogear, and I want to watch it soon either way, but we’ve been trying to decide if it’s something we’d be able to keep writing about for 36(?) episodes. The worry is that it’d devolve into HOLY SHIT DID YOU SEE THAT in every post. I dunno, is there enough substance there for it to work, do you think? (I mean we are managing to do a super sentai show, but it has a reputation for being the weird one, so that makes it easier.)

      Re: good/bad, sometimes the basic storytelling craft of a thing is just too broken for me to deal with, but I figure Love Live is competent in the brutalist way that a sappy made-for-TV movie is competent. A lot of my value judgment has to do with how people use the thing. Like, I’m okay with braket having a revelation about art/craft, but what I remember about Left Behind (unfortunately I’ve read a lot of it) and the people who read it is narrowmindedness and paranoia, and that’s no good. So I’m not saying every emotional response is equally good. Most of what I’ve seen people say about LL doesn’t veer into creeper territory … it might do a little better than other idol stuff in that regard, since at least the characters in LL have some marginal amount of agency and do stuff because they want to, rather than because a producer and a mass of indistinguishable male fans want them to. Though I say this with the big caveat that I’m selective about who I pay attention to and may just not be seeing this stuff.

      I’m always open to the idea that something like LL turns people into unquestioning consumers and complacent labor…I guess that’s where my complaints come from. It’s the uncut sincerity of both the show and the fandom that bothers me. A sincere main character would be fine, but I start resenting that character when their approach works 100% of the time. I kinda liked that scene where Maki rejects the order of senpai/kouhai and tells Eli to shut the hell up…except that she’s the damn bourgeoisie and might feel at liberty to do it because she has more money than Eli…that’s sort of an interesting dynamic, now that I think about it, but the show doesn’t care about that stuff. It’s built to encourage taking things at face value.

      Anyway, I think our fanfic would be about a different group somewhere geographically distant from Tokyo that really does have to succeed for the sake of their school, and sees the Tokyo groups as the constant thorn in their side, if not as outright villains–they have more resources, they always win, fuck them. It’d be easier to deal with if the Tokyo groups acted like villains, but they’re more like elephants stepping on ants. They don’t even notice. Because their culture of obnoxious sincerity prevents them from thinking about that stuff, maybe.

      If your fanfic is online anywhere, I’d be interested in seeing it. I always think about using fanfic as a way of talking about what I’m reading/watching and then never do it. Except April Fools last year, I guess, when I could do it under cover of just screwing around…lel.

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      1. A Day Without Me says:

        Well, fanfic is here: https://gargarstegosaurus.wordpress.com/fanfiction/love-live/, although I haven’t written anything in a while since lol life. I started writing it for a few reasons – I wanted to write something that lets the protagonists ulitmately triumph but also with developing aspects LL never bothered with, like, what if the girls actually have things they’re struggling with? What if like most teen girls they are dealing with falling in love with people? What if they’ve got families who aren’t really down with their daughters becoming idols? But I was also really frustrated with the lack of actual competitive feeling going on in LL and wanted to do that, too. I think LL could’ve been a really great sports anime! That isn’t quite what I want to do, but that feeling is there, too.

        So, mine is in a school with enrollment issues, but in part because single-sex schools in general are on a downward trend in Japan because less and less people think they’re a good way of prepping kids for the real world since the real world isn’t single-sex. And they’re in Kyoto. And instead of the school never having had school idols, they’ve got a dysfunctional group that imploded during the run-up to the previous Love Live. One of the girls is realizing she’s gay. Another wants to be a geisha but her political/corporate family doesn’t approve and she’s going to become a school idol since she thinks her parents will cave to her being a geisha since they’ll surely think an idol is even worse. There was a lot of potential territory LL never even looked at.

        As far as Symphogear goes, whereas LL got worse, Symphogear gets better, albeit in part since it gets more absurd. So maybe it wouldn’t quite fit your need. Regardless, its a great franchise, though, so its worth at least giving a try even if only to watch. On the other hand, it does have surprisingly good development of its characters, and does it sneakily enough that its easy to not even notice that its been doing it until you’re two seasons into it, so it may not be devoid of things to write about after all.

        I’ve read the entire main Left Behind series. It was a combo of morbid fascination and scholarship-related efforts.

        LL, by the way, is obviously about communism, speaking of agency – the idols have seized the means of production! No producer, no talent agency managing them… it’s all their own show, although they apparently don’t make any money from it, and this combined with their exictement over third party merch does position this in questionable territory.

        As regards Eli and Maki, well, I find it hard to think Eli might come from poor folk background given that she trained as a classical ballerina as a small child.

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  2. I haven’t seen Love Live yet (though maybe I should!) That said, I get what you’re saying re: μ being a fictional brand designed to buy your empathy and sell you stuff, I think it’s more complicated than that? I don’t doubt that Love Live (like a lot of anime and a lot of entertainment, tbh) was built from the ground-up to be marketable and draw in a wide and fervent audience. But there are people who’ve come to identify pretty heavily w/ the series–plenty of people like the mobile game, others really love the idol fantasy, some enjoy shipping the characters and maybe a few people changed or came out of the closet b/c love live spoke to them in a way that made them want to be more honest with themselves and genuine with others. Similarly, anime as a medium (actually, all mediums) are packed w/ works that pander to specific groups but are re-purposed by minorities into works that specifically speak to them. So here’s my question: how do you criticize love live w/out blasting a community of people for whom the show’s proven to be a great means of exploring their own feelings? Isn’t shutting that avenue down for them in bad taste? Or should everyone have a right to express their own feelings on the matter, considering it’s their personal opinion, even if it means trampling on other’s identities? (and there’s danger in identifying w/ fictional media in the first place, so.)

    All of this can be resolved fairly easily by saying “this is just my opinion and not something anyone else should worry about” but it’s something I’ve been considering recently

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    1. I’d say go ahead and give Love Live a shot if you haven’t. Not just on the strength of so many other people liking the show, but because it’s not as though I didn’t get anything out of it. There’s some pretty okay stuff in there, from my perspective. It’s an interesting counterweight to imas for sure.

      But then I’ll almost always answer like this, because I almost always hate arguments over whether people (in general) should or shouldn’t watch something, which tend to range from unproductive to just mean. I don’t like gatekeeping and have no interest in doing it. It’s possible that, post to post, I don’t do enough to disassociate myself from it, but I do try … my usual strategies are 1. be straightforward about preferences/biases so people know where I’m coming from and whether my smokin’-ass takes are likely to be useful to them, 2. admit when I’m straight-up wrong, e.g., when I under-emphasize a bunch of women creators, and 3. just signal to people in more-and-less-straightforward ways that my reactions are shaped by my particular experience and aren’t in any way authoritative:

      To me a “bad” show is one that doesn’t have much to offer very many people. That’s clearly not true in this case.

      … which to me is a lot more relatable …

      That’s the general bit, but the specific examples you bring up probably need to be addressed individually.

      First, the capitalism stuff. I don’t advocate becoming a hermit and avoiding all art that’s influenced in some way by capital, which, under capitalism, would be … everything. But I think this is somewhat divorced from whether Love Live or whatever is or should be emotionally affecting. I definitely don’t want people to like x or y thing less than they do. I just want them to have enough self-awareness about it that they’ll ask themselves whether paying $150 plus shipping for concert footage means they’re being fleeced. Which … for real, $150? I’m highly suspicious as to whether the person who set that price is interested in you or your wellbeing. They also probably aren’t interested in distributing much of that money among the people who physically made the thing you like. Anyway, it’s their job to convince me otherwise.

      I think it’s highly unlikely that a seiyuu is out to get anybody’s wallet. But they’re to some extent public figures, and any footage we see of them, assuming it’s not some creepy paparazzi stuff, is meant to convey some particular thing or achieve some end in keeping with the IP. I don’t want people not to get emotional when actors and other creatives get emotional, which, shit, I do that. Just, you know … how much will it cost you? How many weeks’ worth of groceries? Where was that plastic made and by whom?

      I’m particularly hard on this stuff because I could also stand to be a better judge of what I need and what I don’t. All the fucks and shits are directed at my own fuckin’ shitty self. This is something I could’ve been more clear about.

      As to someone using Love Live as an avenue to, say, come out of the closet … I mean, I’d think that was great. I have to give Love Live extra credit here in the sense that it doesn’t seem to resist being used in this way, as other shows might; it’s an idol show in which the characters aren’t herded around by men. Their motivations are theirs, regardless of whether I think they’re vague, abrupt, etc., and that’s a cool thing. But I also don’t think my opinion should matter to someone coming at the show from that angle, so I probably wouldn’t approach that unless I were citing somebody with the relevant experience … but then am I making that avenue opaque by not talking about it? This is tough … and also why I really try to discourage people from thinking of me as an authority on anything except, like, being pedantic about what deconstruction is.

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  3. I think there’s a lot of fascinating stuff in the fandom section (heck, I’ve written about it myself because it really seems to me that Love Live! the franchise is almost indistinguishable from the Love Live! fandom sometimes—where does it end?). If I had to be very simple about it, I’d say the reason Love Live! works to such an insane degree on the fandom level is because it is a simple thing. It’s not very complex. The plot’s straightforward, the direction’s energetic but not abstract, the characters are very easily defined within their own particular boxes, the music’s simple easy-to-listen-to pop (except for “After School Navigators,” which you thankfully didn’t encounter while watching the show), etc. In terms of sincerity, I think that means the barrier to entry is extremely low for a show like Love Live!. And while I agree with you that sincerity is really friggin hard and it shouldn’t be forgotten how hard it is (shows like Oregairu 2 tackle this directly), I also think there’s something to be said for making it simple—if only because it makes vulnerability look a lot less scary. People have to be given a reason to try, and it seems like Love Live! really does that for some people.

    The other thing I’m really interested here is what you said about the irony-sincerity dynamic, especially in terms of commercialism. In particular I’d love to see you apply that mode of criticism to something like AKB0048, which is a literal fabricated commercial extension of a business (versus Love Live! comparatively “organic” origins) but I feel escapes those foundations in a surprisingly profound way. And anyways, isn’t that going to be a struggle you encounter in an piece of commercial media? Why is Love Live! more damned by it than other shows, or movies, or whatever? (Or perhaps I’ve misunderstood you somewhat.)

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    1. I like After School Navigators! It sounds like a parody. Or a Symphogear character song.

      None of these big IPs is any “worse” than another in terms of wanting your money. But I don’t think the fact of their wanting your money is necessarily “bad” by itself, as long as it’s something you’re aware of. The decisions these companies make aren’t a result of active malice so much as banal bureaucracy that’s designed to keep doing the thing that brings money in. So, I do think it’s pretty shady when their strategy is to essentially get people addicted to a product without considering any consequences beyond profit, but I also think it wouldn’t be that hard to push back against if consumers were more mindful and coordinated. Which I guess is a big if.

      I mean, I don’t think we have to pick an attitude toward these shows and be total partisans about that attitude, the One True Attitude. I might think, in parallel:

      – This show came out of an amoral money-eating machine, and is in some way shaped by that
      – The people who made this show probably are sincere storytellers, and work within this system because it’s the only system available for producing and distributing the kinds of stories they want to tell, and maybe, I dunno, the keyframes person had a tough time in school and wants to use this particular shot of Nico to provide some comfort to somebody going through the same thing

      Among other things. I’m just arguing for having nuanced opinions, and for just taking a second to chill before you hit the “buy” button. Which, yeah, is applicable to all commercial media. I just gave Love Live all the heat here because it was the topic.

      Whatever surface-level nitpicks I had, that performance to an empty auditorium in s1 is genuinely cool. I’ll give the fans that one. And, yeah, someone in a different place emotionally may need a different approach to sincerity. Things that’d benefit one person may be lost on someone else who doesn’t need those things as much.

      As far as AKB0048–Shoji Kawamori comes from the world of year-long toy commercials, which … okay look, I love Macross. For a lot of these directors, I’m willing to grant that time spent in the industry made them better able to use it to make meaningful things within not-the-most-inspiring constraints, rather than turning them into unthinking cogs.

      The thing in your post that caught my attention with regard to the fanwork stuff wasn’t even in the fandom section–it was when you mentioned the “guileless approach” being something you appreciated. Here you mention straightforward plotting, which I think is the same thing. My thought is, when you look at the fandoms in the west that produce a relatively large amount of fanwork–novel series like Harry Potter; certain webcomics; Steven Universe–I’d say that these things are characterized, with some chapters/episodes as exceptions, by a stylistic straightforwardness. The people telling these stories aren’t trying to be auteurs about it. So when somebody sits down to do fanfic or a fan comic, they don’t have to wrangle with a rigid storytelling structure or style that plays a large part in defining the original work. They can just do whatever and have fun with it and still produce something fairly identifiable with the original.

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      1. Yaaa, I don’t have much to add. I really appreciate, though, how your thoughts just kind of spill into each other. And you’re a good writer, so it’s not a mess. So…um…yeah, I’m just really trying to say thanks for sharing and writing (and responding directly to me)! I’m just really happy I had the chance to read your thoughts.

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