Gatchaman Crowds Insight – 06

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You know, that’s what I was thinking….

Hey folks! While OC is busy traipsing about in real-life Akihabara; trading hard-earned cash for Gatchamn goods, I’m zooming about in the fictional city of Tachikawa; trekking the streets of Direct Democracy and Benevolent Alien Dictators. Has everyone done their breathing exercises? Good, now let’s begin…

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You got no GATHCA…

So we start with Tsubasa very much wanting to GATCHA, but like all other times, except for when Rui was in trouble, she’s coming up peanuts. But then Hajime, in post ice-cream eating bliss, offers up that for right now she’s just Tsubasa, and not yet a Gatchaman. I guess the Insight here is being who you need to be when you need to be that? That what you are now has value, and that sometimes pretense to something greater is just that.

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Dude, we elected an alien!

But before that can sink in we are off to the National Diet, where the freshly minted Prime Minister, Sandra-san is getting busy. He’s heading up some sweeping governmental reforms. Well, it looks like he’s set to vacuum. Heck, he’s an alien, he’s using the power of an artificially created, but contained black-hole to suck up the legislature and attached authorities whole! I like the exchange where he counters that he isn’t about bullshit. But honestly, Gel, your so full of it….From his self-effacing humor, to his complete lack of societal awareness, this can only go from somewhere really weirdly good to somewhere weirdly bad. Dude…say your not romantically involved with Tsubasa! The level of honesty you displayed gonna come back with bite!

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So, there goes my dream of LOLi Defender cabinet level power…stupid alien…

But he puts on another good public face. They do show him to addressing some problems that are likely to slip through the cracks of a large governing body. He’s made aware that there aren’t enough doctors in the rural, and isolated island, parts of the country. That reliable day care is a problem. He’s rescuing small children from hungry playground slides. He rides public transport. He did what pretty much any reasonable person would want to do if given the power, and that is getting rid of all the politicians and making them go be….whatever else they were supposed to be…

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I mean, what else are slimy people gonna go do?

And that means he basically has to shellac the entire Diet building and legislature. But not before chopping it down, and sanding the jagged edges to a fine, smooth finish. And then move the government seat over to a park, the hippie! People can and will vote via smart phone apps. It did so well electing the new PM, so it should do even better for citizen direct democracy on all national issues. No more time, and more important, money, wasted on local level elections, after all. Not only that! As GALAX is a super-effective as an administrator, you can say goodbye to the endless labyrinth of cabinet bureaucracy. The technocracy has become in toto technological! And the experts are just an ever-present talk-show away! But why am I so concerned instead?! I’m strangely reminded of Jello Biafra’s spoken word work, “Shut Up! Obey! The happiness you demanded is now mandatory!”.

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I wonder if they’ll have an app for a costume change….this needs variety….

But the problems of direct democracy aren’t bugs. The problems are built in features. Mob rule is just a step away. Not only that, but a populace, on the whole, cannot be depended on to have the full breadth and scope of knowledge on all the major issues to vote on in such a fashion. As we’ve seen, some people just go with the gut feeling they have, or with whatever the wave of trend happens to be. Most of us are aware that actual fist fights have broken out in the real world Diet. In this fantasy world, there have been fist fights on the street level. Good thing they have Blue Crowds, and GATCHAMEN on the street….Oh. My. What….they don’t……Oooooh. But they still have GATCHA, right? Oh Rui, your weird dreams of human evolution are getting crushed by the boot of “Meh. Whatever”.

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You tried my trapelicious delight…you tried….

Some Extra GATCHA

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Now…to trigger the bomb I surgically planted into my minion…and run Hajime over with a perfectly time rail car

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Look! It’s another alien….let’s elect him dance instructor! And make Mayu adviser for finance!

Yeah, I know I’ve avoided talking about the other sweeping reforms our Benevolent Alien Autocrat enacted. Because they should be, as most were presented as window dressing, So all the talk of where the money comes from after you cut this and that and where it goes after? It’s much much more complicated than a 22 minute piece of entertainment can encompass. But what they represent in the abstract is worth thinking about, just as having one perfect leader is worth thinking about…at least in the context of the show. Ah, narrative fiction, you’re such a safe place to explore ideas.

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Gel, you ain’t got no spark, man!

I think Hajime is right on point. Part of the human nature sweet spot is getting down and dirty and butting heads. We may hate conflict, but we need it. It’s the natural bookend to peace. Speaking of book-ends…nice to see answerous interuptous when it came to whether or not Hajime is in control of B-K. But Grandpa was also spot on. So, you have this ideal…now what, then what? Stupid youth, can’t even play shogi! But for all that, in this context of story, Gel is very nearly perfect as this idealized leader and first among equal of direct democracy. He’s super-humanly emphatic! He’s an alien! IOW, he doesn’t exist on this Earth….just as no perfect leader, or system, exists on this Earth. We have to get down and dirty with each other. That may not be as sweet as Hajime’s ice cream, but it’s still food for thought…

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Go home Sandra, you’re power drunk!


All around nerd that enjoys just about any anime genre. I love history, politics, public policy, the sciences, literature, arts...pretty much anything can make me geeky...except sports. Follow me @theskylion
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11 Responses to “Gatchaman Crowds Insight – 06”

  1. IreneSharda says:

    An interesting episode. The whole thing with Gel as prime minister is so delightfully horrifying, it’s like a car crash in a movie. You know what’s happening is horrible and awful, but you just can’t look away.

    Both Gel and Tsubasa are so naive. At least Gel has the excuse that he’s an alien, and so things might work differently where he’s from, but I felt really ashamed of Tsubasa, especially after that blow-up with her grandfather. She truly knows nothing of true conflict. And when he asks her about people who don’t think like her, her answer is to continue until they do? And Gel thinking that all military force is bad? And limiting the government to being pretty much just him listening to a bunch of internet polls?

    Oh, there are grave days in store for Japan…

    • skylion says:

      I have to admit that I generally don’t give Tsubasa much thought. I really have no idea why her character is there half the time, as I think I argued a few episodes back that any one of the other characters could have filled for whatever theme they are going for with her. The GATCHAMAN are very nearly AWOL this season, and some more so than most. And we already know that Gel is in clear violation of LOLi Defender Rule 5….sigh…I just throw me hands up…

      • IreneSharda says:

        That’s true. This does feel as if most of the Gatchaman aren’t even in the series. The most we’ve really seen is Tsubasa (a new character), Gel(a new character and not even a Gatchaman) and Rui (who wasn’t a official Gatchaman until this cour. All the others of the team are all being pushed in the background. They are pretty much window dressing, commentators on the actions of Tsubasa and Gel.

        • HannoX says:

          I’m sure after Gel and Tsubasa thoroughly screw things up the Gatchaman will come to Japan’s rescue. Which probably won’t be until the final two or three episodes. Until then this is Gel and Tsubasa’s show. I think the new characters were needed because they have a level of naivety that the Gatchaman don’t have because of their experience.

  2. Di Gi Kazune says:

    Your position has been ursurped! Are you going to stand for it!?!

  3. HannoX says:

    Wait. Did Hajime’s boobs shrink in this episode? Or is that my imagination or did she strap them down under her coveralls?

  4. zztop says:

    Meanwhile, Sugane was too busy playing Harem Prime Minister to pay attention to Gel’s election… >_>

    • skylion says:

      I’ve been trying to develop a story recently. I was reminded of one thing more than a couple of times. The first part of the story had a lot of development and set up involving the antagonists. A bit to much for the editor in charge. I was told to pull all that stuff back a bit, trim it. Because the name of the book is the name of the protagonists. I spent nearly half the introduction on characters that weren’t the headline characters. To wit: there are Gatchamen in this story named after the Gatchamen?

  5. BlackBriar says:

    What the episode expressed overall is that naïve people in a position of power are hazardous liabilities. Everything’s going way too laid back and Tsubasa, a sheltered girl has no real grasp of how the world works, as her great grandfather tried to explain.

    • skylion says:

      It’s does a good job exploring that naive ideal….which I, for one, think needs to be underlined…

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