Nagi no Asukara – 07

Petitioning

Better times, when everyone worked together

spring13-highwPride or Entitlement? Which is the more destructive force?

 

Irreconcilable Petulance

New Cooperation

The new spirit of cooperation

It’s understandable that the children, who have put so much effort into their sacrifice for the Boatdrift ceremony that wasn’t going to happen, decide that it’s worth trying to get the adults to go along with it. And at least superficially, everyone wants to go along with it, with support gained, at least in lip service, from the fishing cooperative and even from Hikari’s dad. Unfortunately, it’s in the details where it breaks down. And those details are that each side perceives some slight from the other side, such that apologies are demanded. Actually, they aren’t even demanded, they’re expected. The smug self-satisfaction on the part of the men from Shioshishio was pretty jarring, with their “Feel free to apologize as much you want, our hearts are as great as the sea.” And maybe it’s too much for me to expect, but these guys showing up in wife-beater A-shirts and unbuttoned work shirts felt pretty low-class to me. Maybe I’m expecting too much, but at least make yourselves presentable. At least they didn’t have stains on them (and if it was another studio, I’d have just assumed that was because they didn’t want to animate it, but this is PA Works).

This they agree on

This they can agree on: Shut up, Hikari

So for Hikari, watching this new hope he had for cooperation fall apart, after he’d had success understanding Akari’s reasons for reaching up to the surface, and even his own recent understanding that the people on the surface are just people, watching this squabble over who was wronged ‘more’ destroy his recent dream is the last straw. And even if he thought that “we’re all people, we can communicate”, he learns that adults can find pretty stupid reasons to not communicate. And to me, the last straw is his father looking at Hikari and saying “are you satisfied now?” At what? At the complete unreasonability of ALL the adults? How does he look at that and come away with any idea that ‘we were right, and they were wrong’?

Fighting

Broken Dreams

Forcing the Issue

Akari and Hikari leave

Goodbye, Hometown

Given that, and Akari’s realization that her father’s point of view is always Water vs Land, rather than people, Akari decides that she is going to leave. And Hikari, faced with the the stubbornness of his father, decides he’s going with her. And the question arises, what would Uroko have done if they hadn’t given up, nor their father beseeched him for mercy? Would he have killed Akari and Hikari? Thankfully it doesn’t get to that, and they’re allowed to continue on, into another phase of their lives.

Uroko fights The Frozen Path

Would Uroko have frozen them?

One question is where will Hikari live. Does he assume he’ll go with Akari to live with Itaru and Miuna? Or perhaps he’ll go live with Tsumugu. The show sure hasn’t been very rigorous about anyone’s income or means of support, and he’ll be an imposition wherever he goes. Will he try to work? Drop out of school? Or will someone take him in?

header-spr13-highway

Really an excellent episode, and feels like a phase of the show ending. But will it be the beginning of something good? Or is it the start of more trials for everyone? I certainly don’t think that this went over the top in terms of melodrama, instead being a good example of the small-minded selfishness of adults who don’t get what they want.

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Proving that you don't have to be young to love anime, I enjoy all genres and styles of shows. If it's not hurting anyone else, you should never be ashamed of what you like!
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27 Responses to “Nagi no Asukara – 07”

  1. MgMaster says:

    Alright,having finally woken up from that awesome dream called WA2 episode 7 it’s good to see that Nagi also delivered this week.

    My tolerance for Hikari is turning into like and I dare say even a little bit of admiration.I admire the fact that he can see reason when the adults of Shioshishio behave like that.His father seems to be a decent man with a huge responsibility(even though he could’ve acted better & try to stop his people from arguing with the fishermen) but those other guys?They’re a terrible influence and while I don’t think the fishermen were any better,they definitely had a point with why their women keep running off.Now,I’m not saying it’s those fishermen that women would prefer as their behavior is just as bad but they got MANY MORE OPTIONS to choose from on the surface and I believe it’s something the men of Shioshishio should keep in mind.They can’t afford to behave like that just because the surface dwellers can,they don’t have that luxury & should try to be the better ones if they really want to keep their culture alive.

    I’m not gonna blame his father here but instead pity him for having to put up with those guys.If you ask me,it’s the Sea God that’s being an asshole for not getting more involved directly instead of putting most of the burden on one man’s shoulders.Don’t get me wrong here,I’m all for a higher deity letting humans sort out their own issues but if he’s not gonna help then he shouldn’t ask for anything either.

    Honestly,since Shioshishio is this bad already it would probably best if the sea people just went to the surface and wave Shioshishio goodbye .Abandoning one’s culture’s definitely not something easy to do but the well-being of the people should come first and they’d most likely have better lives on the surface.Not like they’re putting in any effort in trying to keep their culture anyway,might as well just be done with it & go where the grass is greener.

    • Highway says:

      It’s true, they really don’t seem to be doing anything to preserve their culture besides just trying to keep anyone from leaving it, and I’ve talked before about what a desperate, doomed effort that is.

      I don’t know if the problem is the sea god’s uninvolvement, or his avatar’s apathy. Sitting around talking about how things are bad might be a first step, but it’s nothing more than that.

      • MgMaster says:

        I just hate it how he had Uroko attempt to stop two of their citizens from leaving by force instead of trying to give them reasons to stay.

        • BlackBriar says:

          That’s a typical sign of being pig headed. Respected figure of not, he had no right to restrain them.

    • Irenesharda says:

      I really hope they don’t just abandon their culture. They have built a civilization under the sea, and it’s honestly more beautiful and interesting from the normal everyday Earth at least from my perspective.

      If everyone lived on land then this would just be your average SoL. The setting is what drew me to this and I really want to see them be able to save it. I actually think its to greater advantage to be like the sea people and be able to live on land or sea, then just simply human. I really hope that actually they find a way to save their culture and their people, perhaps even allowing the human descendants on land to be able to have Ena again or something.

      • MgMaster says:

        But as I mentioned above,the well-being of the people should take priority over keeping the culture alive.We can admire it as viewers but I’m trying to put myself in their shoes here and consider the best option for their current situation which is VERY BAD(maybe past the point of no return even) and the best option isn’t always the prettiest one.You know what they say,desperate times call for desperate measures!

        Of course,if there’d be a way for sea descendants living on the surface(or any land dwellers for that matter) to acquire Ena then that might just be their salvation.Actually,it might be their only salvation.

        • Irenesharda says:

          I don’t know if the situation is as dire as you make it. It’s not as if they’ll all die in the next few days or something, just because the fisherman’s guild wants to be pompous windbags. We also have really not seen that much of this world other than these kids lives and a group of annoyed fishermen. It’s really not enough to doom an entire species.

          And if you wanted to act purely on the survival and well-being of the race than they actually shouldn’t let anyone go to the surface at all and then completely monopolize the sea’s resources. However, because they aren’t tyrants, they leave the people a choice, even if it’s not in the best interest of the sea people as a race.

          And from what they’re indicating, it may be the land people that are the one’s in trouble right now, and just don’t know it.

      • Highway says:

        Maybe there are some advantages, but there are also disadvantages. People on land aren’t going to die from mere 16 hours of being out of the water.

        And as far as culture, if there were things worth keeping, then people would keep them naturally. But the way to keep your culture extant isn’t excommunication and banishment of anyone that fails to meet your purity-of-thought test. That might keep a culture pure, but it will lead to its death.

  2. Irenesharda says:

    I really enjoyed this episode. Not as much as a lot of other people did, but it was really good. Them showing the constant disagreement between two different cultures and two different peoples, shows the very real reality that getting over such differences and coming to agreement is going to take more than one simple meeting with one simple festival. It’s going to take time and needs people to push for it on both sides. The children are actually the best candidates to make this change as long as they are not consumed by their parents’ prejudices.

    As for Akari leaving, I understand why she did it, I just wish there was some way she could do it without contributing to the downfall of her people. As for Hikari, I think he’s beginning to get into his teen rebellion “I hate my dad (parent)” phase. The way he just decided on a whim, “I’m running away too” just screams that. I think he’ll be back. He has no real resolve to stay on land like Akari has and the sea is his true home, even if he disagrees with his dad. His dad is trying to help his people, but he’s so used to the way things are he won’t even try to talk with the surfacers since he believes nothing will come of it. After a while, a preteen boy’s anger and angst will wane and he will eventually get homesick.

    As for Uroku, remember that I think they said that he’s a scale from off the sea god, so he’s really part of the sea god and his avatar. He feels about the sea people as if they were his own, because in a way, they are his own. They are trying to continue teasing us as to what kind of disaster is going to hit the land, and they are trying to protect their citizens in any way they know how. The problem is that they aren’t bothering to explain anything, which would probably go a long way. However, that scene at the end was beautifully animated.

    I also like how they are really showing how much Hikari cares for and loves Manaka. He is stubborn and pushing to have this festival so much because he knows that this is what she wants. And what really makes it selfless is that he “knows” in his mind that Manaka loves Tsumugu and even though he knows that he is pushing her to be in another guy’s arms, he will still do what he has to to make sure she’s happy.

    However, seeing how the “real” Manaka instantly gravitates to Hikari without thinking, as both a constant support but as an equal as well now that she’s gaining her courage, I have a feeling that she’s not meant for Tsumugu as much as Hikari thinks.

    I’m betting that line from his mom is going to play out here, where she says that she’s with her husband because she loves him, and it doesn’t matter if he’s from the land or sea. Hikari is more like his dad then he thinks…;)

    Next week, I don’t know if Akari’s beau looks too happy about her decision.

    • Highway says:

      I dunno, it seems like they aren’t actually trying to do anything to keep people in Shioshishio. All they do is threaten them. If they were actually interested in doing something they’d, you know, do something rather than just say “no, don’t do that”. The worthlessness of the general population of the sea people is perfectly embodied in that group of men, who sit around complaining about how they’ve been wronged, sit around not doing anything, waiting for things to be made better. These are people who are supposed to be in the most productive part of their lives, yet we haven’t seen them produce anything except bad feelings.

      I think you’re just deluding yourself with Hikari x Manaka. 😉 Even if she cares for him, there’s a big difference between a friend you want to support and impress and the person who captures your heart.

      • Irenesharda says:

        If you say so… :)
        I usually know my romance plot signals. We’ll just have to see in the long run.

        Also, I don’t think we should judge the entire sea culture simply on these particular men, no more than we can judge the surfacers on their prejudice and those men at the meeting. If that were so, we’d have to doom both groups because all of those at the meeting were all acting equally horrible.

        • Highway says:

          From what was said, I took a clear difference from the attitudes of the Sea Dwellers and the Land Dwellers. The sea dwellers were the ones who put the squash on the Boatdrift ceremony in the first place, leading it to be canceled by the land people. And then they were the ones who demanded apologies first. Being the first to go low is a significant position. Not to mention they were the accusatory ones about ‘stealing’ women, a position which infantilizes the women involved and shows a complete lack of respect.

          So I really don’t see it as equally horrible.

          • Irenesharda says:

            But then you have to say that the surfacers were just as childish by basically saying that the woman desired surface men because surface men were better. Also, from the way I understood it, it was confused as to who was the one who want to stop the festival in the first place. The sea people blamed the land people and vice versa.

            Even though as humans we automatically tend to side with the side that we connect with, I’m giving both sides the benefit of the doubt and saying both sides are just as stubborn and prejudice as the other. As Hikari said, the land people see the sea people as fish, and the sea people see the land people as pigs.

            • Highway says:

              What I got from the conversation, watching it a few times, was that the sea people complained about the scale of the ofunehiki, saying it was too big and too much for them to deal with. So they continually pushed the land people to cut it back. Eventually it was cut back so much that the land people decided to unilaterally cancel it because at that point it wasn’t worth the effort. Then the sea people got mad that it was canceled, even though they had been the ones pressuring it.

            • skylion says:

              It’s kinda like no single country really wants to host Eurovision…they just keep passing the buck around. Ireland was rather infamous for it.

            • Highway says:

              Or the Olympics. It’s a great honor to host the Olympics… once every couple generations. Any more than that, and it’ll bankrupt you (if it didn’t bankrupt you the first time).

  3. skylion says:

    That Boatdrift mannequin cannot catch a break! Either vandalized by angry children, or broken by misunderstanding, it’s still doing one heck of a symbolic job. Wonder what it will get up to in upcoming episodes?

    It was the realization of the wrong they did that brought Sayu and Miuna full court into the drama, and brought on some much needed understanding between the two groups. Is there some echoing going on here?

  4. BlackBriar says:

    While the two sides who remain in constant disagreement brings a true sense of reality, it’s really sad to see that a bunch of adults who should be deemed responsible can’t even try to set aside their differences for the sake of the children and their efforts. Compared to them, Hikari is the one has grown up.

    The father most likely saw his children’s final decision coming from the start despite his warnings. They were kind of biased if you ask me because he was generalizing everything. I’ve seen some things and what I know is that if children can’t see eye to eye with their parents, they’d rather be anywhere but home.

    I’ve always had a low opinion of Uroko for his rather lazy, pompous attitude but trying to stop Hikari and Akari by force, even to the point of physical harm is just low. And because of such an act, I fail to see how that’s “protecting” them. Had he explained himself about whatever promise he made, then maybe things would have in an easier, less confidence shattering direction. Something tells me Hikari will be staying at the same place as Akari. He is already on good terms with Miuna and her father.

    • Highway says:

      Well, except that Hikari tried to beat the snot out of Itaru the first time he met him. But really, it’s a young family. In a depressed area. Sure, the incremental cost of another person isn’t 33% more than 3 people, but it’s likely something that’s difficult to afford. I wonder if Hikari realizes that burden.

      The thing is, they didn’t even need to set aside their differences for the children’s sake. They should have done it for their own sakes. But they couldn’t get past the perceived slights of the past.

    • Irenesharda says:

      I’m giving Uroko the benefit of the fact that he’s pretty much a demi-god. He not human or a sea person and he’s as close to a deity as they get to see. He doesn’t need to explain himself and he operates on a different plane of thought than everyone else does. I don’t think we’re supposed to really understand him. He does what he believes is in the best interest of the people and his duty is to the sea god and to them.

      So, yes, from our point of view, what he did is low. But again, he’s not human/sea person, he doesn’t operate or think in the same way. I’m guessing he has a reason for not explaining to them, or else he just doesn’t care to explain himself. He’s above them in the pecking order, that’s just the way it is.

      • MgMaster says:

        To hell with that,lol.Just because he’s a deity doesn’t mean he can do whatever he wants.If he does it anyway,that would make him into an evil entity.

        I’m in the opinion that a god/demi-god should be respected rather than feared(unless he was a war god or something,but that’s certainly not the case here).

        Oh well,I guess we’ll see how this goes.Maybe they’ll go into more detail about the Sea God & Uroko and on how the Shioshishio got to the state of having to close down their middle school because there weren’t enough children attending it(that’s already very bad in my eyes).They have plenty of time in two-cours after all.

        • Irenesharda says:

          Actually being a deity kind of does allow him to do whatever he wants to do. It kind of comes with the territory of being a god. And most of these kind of deities come off as both good and evil at the same time. Consider the Greek gods, they could punish a human in horrible ways for simply saying something against them, yet they also maintained the world and righted wrongs as well.

          The gods are both respected and feared in legend, that’s nothing new, and they usually come par and parcel with one another. The sea god supplies the sea people with life as well as the energy/magic their civilization runs on. Also, as he IS the sea god, he has control over their home and over 70% of the Earth.

      • anaaga says:

        I agree on this. Uroko might be a jerk most of the times, but he’s the oldest among the citizens. He knows the true history between the land and sea, including the separation of the two faction. Overall, he knows what’s best for the village. That is, according to his opinion, of course. No matter what his opinion is though, I am sure it is for the best of the sea people and their perseverance. I am sure though that his decision is not based on some whim.

        • Highway says:

          I wouldn’t be so sure. Gods are frequently arbitrary and capricious, flawed beings with tempers and lack of insight. Plus, as Gintaro said in this week’s Gingitsune, “Japanese gods are about as irresponsible as you get.” I certainly don’t think it’s a given that the Sea God knows what’s best for anyone besides himself.

          • skylion says:

            I cannot remember where I read it, but it was quite some time ago. The story of humans and kami is that while humans acknowledge that the kami are capricious, they hope they aren’t belligerent.

            I think this episode shows some belligerency…

  5. sadakups says:

    I knew shit was about to happen in that meeting. It’s too early for the sea and land people to actually reconcile, considering that it has been one of the ideas this show is trying to do.

    • BlackBriar says:

      Obviously the adults are too thickheaded to come to an agreement themselves so it looks like the burden will be placed on the children to do what they refused to.

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