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Yinlock
Oct 21, 2008
Probation
Can't post for 3 days!


Remo posted:

They had been building up to this reveal for the entire show as well, by using a distinctive wooden "thunk" sound every time he sheathed his sword

also that his sword was kinda lovely-looking while every other sword was explicitly super-shiny and metal

i also liked right afterward where he talked about how the technique actually kinda sucks and is hard to do, and when asked why he uses it then responds with "killing someone should be hard"

so good

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theCalamity
Oct 23, 2010

Cry Havoc and let slip the Hogs of War


Yinlock posted:

it does kinda make it confusing as to if he's an inspector who vapes OR if he inspects vapes themselves, presumably for illegal wizardry

who can glimpse his true nature

Fact and fiction is two sides of the same sheet of paper

Madtrixr
Nov 27, 2010




Yinlock posted:

i also liked right afterward where he talked about how the technique actually kinda sucks and is hard to do, and when asked why he uses it then responds with "killing someone should be hard"

so good

Yeah, this part is so so good. I mean, throughout the show its been shown almost everyone has been willing and able to cut people down, and here Shang is like, 50 levels above everyone else, and yet he knows that it shouldn't be easy to kill, if human life has no value to you, you're basically just a rabid demon.

It also fits well with how much of a lazy rear end in a top hat he is, where he hates being the cool hero guy, because its too much effort. Its not like, astoundingly good but S1 had some neat stuff in it, and I hope s2 does as well

Yinlock
Oct 21, 2008
Probation
Can't post for 3 days!


Madtrixr posted:

Yeah, this part is so so good. I mean, throughout the show its been shown almost everyone has been willing and able to cut people down, and here Shang is like, 50 levels above everyone else, and yet he knows that it shouldn't be easy to kill, if human life has no value to you, you're basically just a rabid demon.

It also fits well with how much of a lazy rear end in a top hat he is, where he hates being the cool hero guy, because its too much effort. Its not like, astoundingly good but S1 had some neat stuff in it, and I hope s2 does as well


it's especially good since the standard wuxia trope is "everyone murders everyone else at the slightest provocation, including and especially the protagonist"

like dudes screaming about how "THIS DISHONOR CAN ONLY BE CLEANSED WITH BLOOD" at a tiny cut and launching into an insane bouncing death spiral is standard wuxia procedure

EponymousMrYar
Jan 4, 2015

The enemy of my enemy is my enemy.


Remo posted:

They had been building up to this reveal for the entire show as well, by using a distinctive wooden "thunk" sound every time he sheathed his sword

This is literally the best thing about season 1. The attention to detail on that.

7c Nickel
Apr 27, 2008


I like how every strike he makes sounds like a gunshot went off.

Torquemadras
Jun 3, 2013



I really, really liked the first season of Thunderbolt Fantasy, including the absolutely magnificent reveal of Shang's fighting style, but I gotta say, I was let down hard by the OTHER big reveal shortly after that...

Vape Wizard was much, much cooler as a non-fighter dude who does everything with an incredible, almost suicidal brazenness and smugness of the n-th degree. Like, he kept playing people against each other. It was a joy to behold.

Only, nope sorry he's actually the second best swordfighter around, what, did you think he was ever in DANGER? Haha, who ever thought a giant smug rear end in a top hat clowning on everyone through nothing but sheer chutzpah and misdirection would be cooler than invincible sword lord #2, haha

Then again, while certainly a disappointing thing to end S1 on - not to mention the utter waste of the girl character, who does nothing, fails at everything, and is rewarded by the promise of having kids who'll continue their tradition, wowzers -, it might be the point to make Vape Wizard much more of a bullying rear end in a top hat than a brazen master schemer. He DOES gently caress up big time at the end of S1, after all. I dunno. Shang was definitely the highlight of the whole season, but I was very much disappointed by the last episode.

Maybe I'll like this, now that the twist about Vape Wizard is out of the way...? Oh well.


Probably gonna watch this eventually.

Cao Ni Ma
May 25, 2010


Every part you consider a negative of the vape wizards reveal in the end I thought was a positive. Him being ]secretly the strongest swordsman in the story completes the character, he's an rear end in a top hat through and through, roping around people in a huge scheme just to gently caress with them. Then all that power he had served him very little in the end when Gilgamesh killed himself denying the one thing he's spent so much time working on

Also I dont know why you think he's the second strongest dude in S1, he would pretty handily beat anyone presented in the story so far

theCalamity
Oct 23, 2010

Cry Havoc and let slip the Hogs of War


Why are people spoiler tagging events that happened last season?

gimme the GOD DAMN candy
Jul 1, 2007


vapey gave up fighting because he was stronger than anyone he had ever met. however, he never fought shang. and why would he, really? it's not like being able to beat shang or not would matter to vapey, since he can so easily manipulate him.

Yinlock
Oct 21, 2008
Probation
Can't post for 3 days!


gimme the GOD drat candy posted:

vapey gave up fighting because he was stronger than anyone he had ever met. however, he never fought shang. and why would he, really? it's not like being able to beat shang or not would matter to vapey, since he can so easily manipulate him.

it's more that he realized trying to master the sword was impossible and grew disillusioned with it, and so took up vape wizardry

Cao Ni Ma posted:

Also I dont know why you think he's the second strongest dude in S1, he would pretty handily beat anyone presented in the story so far

shang with an actual sword might be able to take him, but as has been said there's no reason for them to fight

Yinlock fucked around with this message at 19:29 on Oct 5, 2018

Weed Wolf
Jul 30, 2004


gimme the GOD drat candy posted:

vapey gave up fighting because he was stronger than anyone he had ever met. however, he never fought shang. and why would he, really? it's not like being able to beat shang or not would matter to vapey, since he can so easily manipulate him.

he realized that he'd never be "the very best" -- there'd always be someone better at swordplay than him due to luck of the draw / innate ability -- and that striving to be the very best would end up turning him into an rear end in a top hat like mie tian hai, whereas hed prefer just to be a clever rear end in a top hat instead

OnimaruXLR
Sep 15, 2007
Lurklurklurklurklurk

Whitey has to be a badass fighter because otherwise any of the scads of bloodthirsty maniacs who want him super, duper dead would have killed him fifty times to Tuesday already

He needs to be bare minimum strong enough to fight them off and then scamper away for them to stew in their ever-increasing resentment. And considering the kind of story this is, and the kind of setting it is, there are probably no shortage of evil assholes who think that they're the best because they can swing a sword harder or faster than anyone else they've ever encountered. How's he going to clown on them if he can't... uh, clown on them?

gimme the GOD DAMN candy
Jul 1, 2007


OnimaruXLR posted:

Whitey has to be a badass fighter because otherwise any of the scads of bloodthirsty maniacs who want him super, duper dead would have killed him fifty times to Tuesday already

He needs to be bare minimum strong enough to fight them off and then scamper away for them to stew in their ever-increasing resentment. And considering the kind of story this is, and the kind of setting it is, there are probably no shortage of evil assholes who think that they're the best because they can swing a sword harder or faster than anyone else they've ever encountered. How's he going to clown on them if he can't... uh, clown on them?

he's so strong that none of them have any idea that he is strong. he has always gotten away without fighting, either by manipulating someone else into fighting his pursuers or with illusions.

we saw his normal methods during the movie. spk didn't have hope that he could change his ways and leave his past behind until vapey put it in his head. vapey followed up on that by having spk unwittingly destroy any chance of him finding redemption with his own hands. just beating him in a fight wasn't even close to being enough. also, the movie made it very clear that vapey wasn't trying to ruin villains out of any hidden heroic tendency. the destruction and rebirth of spk caused more death and mayhem than spk likely had in his entire life to that point. heck, spk was just a warrior who liked killing other warriors, which is pretty mundane as far as villains go and look at all the time and effort vapey spent on being impossibly cruel to him.

K Prime
Nov 4, 2009



Weed Wolf posted:

he realized that he'd never be "the very best" -- there'd always be someone better at swordplay than him due to luck of the draw / innate ability -- and that striving to be the very best would end up turning him into an rear end in a top hat like mie tian hai, whereas hed prefer just to be a clever rear end in a top hat instead

Additionally, he finds the traditional wuxia standards of how to be the very best- e.g. becoming Mie Tian Hai or Screaming Phoenix Killer, and picking fights and training and picking more fights - extremely loving boring. As usual for Urobuchi there's a bit of metacommentary on the genre he's making mixed in there. He's not here to win every fight with his superior cultivation and gongfu. He's here because that's a dull and repetitive loop of plot he doesn't want to deal with, and would rather make everyone miserable in new and creative ways.

Cao Ni Ma
May 25, 2010


Yinlock posted:

shang with an actual sword might be able to take him, but as has been said there's no reason for them to fight

Nah, Shangs entire thing is that he uses his Qi to form the blade of whatever heís using or channel it inside others to blow them up from the inside, a real sword wouldnít improve his skills much just tire him out less.

Vape wizard created sword techniques so counter intuitive that the greater your own mastery of the sword the easier it would be for him to gently caress you up in them.

gimme the GOD DAMN candy
Jul 1, 2007


shang's great weakness is large groups, but even with that handicap he is still kicking after years of pursuit by every power-hungry rear end in a top hat in the known world. i suspect that very few people in xi you were still willing to fight him 1 on 1.

Pootybutt
Apr 5, 2011



Think dude is just saying it undercuts Lu's sheer brass balls displayed thus far, and is honestly just p lame, that it turns out nah I'm also the best fighter of all time. And yeah, I kinda agree, managing to outplay and outwit everybody despite NEVER picking up a blade woulda been far more impressive, tho I got what the purpose was.

Meh, my personal headcanon is Lu was just foolin that whole final fight w more of his illusion-inducing sticky icky, just for extra salt in thw wound, and that's in fact what I thought happened my first watch lol

Torquemadras
Jun 3, 2013



Pootybutt posted:

Think dude is just saying it undercuts Lu's sheer brass balls displayed thus far, and is honestly just p lame, that it turns out nah I'm also the best fighter of all time. And yeah, I kinda agree, managing to outplay and outwit everybody despite NEVER picking up a blade woulda been far more impressive, tho I got what the purpose was.

Meh, my personal headcanon is Lu was just foolin that whole final fight w more of his illusion-inducing sticky icky, just for extra salt in thw wound, and that's in fact what I thought happened my first watch lol

That's exactly it

Feels like it undercuts what's really entertaining about that guy. Impossible badasses all over the place, and here's some smug guy who walks up to a serial killer hunting him, casually asks him to team up, and GETS AWAY WITH IT... Seriously, the sheer strength of him and Shang easily carried (almost) the whole show.

I guess the show's ultimately showing him as more of a smug, bored bully (not that he couldn't be that without sick sword skills...). Just a little disappointed. Let's see what this season's take on him is, now that the reveal is done with.

EponymousMrYar
Jan 4, 2015

The enemy of my enemy is my enemy.


Torquemadras posted:

That's exactly it

Feels like it undercuts what's really entertaining about that guy. Impossible badasses all over the place, and here's some smug guy who walks up to a serial killer hunting him, casually asks him to team up, and GETS AWAY WITH IT... Seriously, the sheer strength of him and Shang easily carried (almost) the whole show.

I guess the show's ultimately showing him as more of a smug, bored bully (not that he couldn't be that without sick sword skills...). Just a little disappointed. Let's see what this season's take on him is, now that the reveal is done with.

On the other hand, this is Wuxia.
If you're not a martial art's master, you're one of four things: the protagonist underdog martial artist who earns his path to mastery, a supporting character martial artist who second strings all of their fights but learns valuable lessons in the end (or dies,) an extra, or a stage hand.
You may also in fact be a prop.

I too prefer the interpretation of 'I 'mastered' the sword and got bored with it so instead I took up vape wizardry because I know, at my core, that I am a smug rear end in a top hat.'

Much like how Shang's irreverence on how awesome Magic Swords are fits his fighting style and general outlook

EponymousMrYar fucked around with this message at 21:50 on Oct 5, 2018

K Prime
Nov 4, 2009



He's definitely fooling around that whole fight too. Watch what he does with his sword- he regularly throws it around for little flourishes and uses it off-handed just to emphasize how ridiculously superior he is.

7c Nickel
Apr 27, 2008


I just realized what this reminded me of.

Cao Ni Ma
May 25, 2010


I like how the natural extension of the whole "Always someone trying to be a super swordman" applied to smiths too in the end. Of course in this world there would be loving people crazy enough to make a sword that creates a portal to the far reaches of space just to prove they can.

Turin Turambar
Jun 5, 2011



I also loved Vape Wizard's twist/reveal at the end of first season, how he was both similar to the bad guy (at some point in his life) and at the same time the opposite.
In part he grew bored of being the strongest and started doing more intellectually challenging stuff (like being an rear end in a top hat thief), in part he was smart enough that obsessing with having to be the 'strongest evaaar!' didn't go anywhere and it was an infinite grind.

Yinlock
Oct 21, 2008
Probation
Can't post for 3 days!


Turin Turambar posted:

I also loved Vape Wizard's twist/reveal at the end of first season, how he was both similar to the bad guy (at some point in his life) and at the same time the opposite.
In part he grew bored of being the strongest and started doing more intellectually challenging stuff (like being an rear end in a top hat thief), in part he was smart enough that obsessing with having to be the 'strongest evaaar!' didn't go anywhere and it was an infinite grind.

it's more that he got so good at swords that he realized that mastering swords was impossible, which is why he calls it a "bottomless ocean" and mocks the villain for assuming there was some kind of summit to aspire to

when he realized that there's no end to it he just lost all motivation

Pollyanna
Mar 5, 2005

Milk's on them.




Yinlock posted:

when he realized that there's no end to it he just lost all motivation

I mean, he's not wrong.

gimme the GOD DAMN candy
Jul 1, 2007


i would like to think that shang went further into that ocean than vapey despite not really trying to reach the epitome of martial prowess. but again, there's not really any reason for the two of them to fight so it probably won't come up.

Darth Walrus
Feb 13, 2012




I think Iíll just repost what I said near the end of the old thread:

quote:

I think it helps if you see the show's four Sword Guys as a process, each representing a single step on the path to enlightenment (according to the show's philosophy) and failing in order to reveal the next step. First, we have Sha Wu Sheng, a great swordsman and tackily showy serial killer constantly hungering to demonstrate and improve his incredible skill. He fails, and we get Mie Ten Hai, a quietly ruthless overlord who's so skilled that he's gained the confidence to no longer feel the need to prove himself, but simply kills and collects trophies for pleasure. He fails, and we get Lin Xue Ya, who has developed his swordsmanship to the point where he has exhausted his interest in it, no longer deriving pleasure from killing and instead seeking less monstrously evil pursuits, but still addicted to the pleasure of destroying others. He fails, and we finally get Shang Bu Huan, the most enlightened member of the cast, who has abandoned swords altogether, and makes a specific point of not deriving pleasure from hurting people. His only goal is to help and protect others, causing injury, humiliation, and death only out of necessity.

It kind of reminds me of Meti's Sword Manual from the webcomic Kill Six Billion Demons, where the highest mastery of the art is to ditch it altogether and pick a better lifestyle like being a farmer.

This is also why Lin obliterated that tournament in the movie - to him, swordsmanship is romanticised murder, and so a tournament of swordsmen was nothing but a band of killers with delusions of grandeur. Sha, to him, was trying to whitewash himself without meaningfully changing his ways - a swordsman who shows mercy is kind of ridiculous when you could just not stab people with bits of pointy metal for fun in the first place. Of course, the irony is that heís still just as addicted to destroying people, even if he does it in more indirect and abstract ways, which is why we get the second half of the movie where weíre reminded why Shang is the actual hero of the story.

Darth Walrus fucked around with this message at 23:16 on Oct 7, 2018

Cao Ni Ma
May 25, 2010


I sure as hell didn't expect Aoi Yuki to be an evil talking sword

K Prime
Nov 4, 2009



Transcending history and the world, a tale of souls and swords, eternally retold.

Truxton
Oct 31, 2012


Whoa, looks like we got an actual ending sequence this season.

Lemon-Lime
Aug 6, 2009


This was a great episode of Shang Bu Huan's Arts & Crafts Adventure.

I love his dumb plan to fix the Index so much.

Lemon-Lime fucked around with this message at 22:36 on Oct 8, 2018

Kwyndig
Sep 23, 2006

Heeeeeeey




Truxton posted:

Whoa, looks like we got an actual ending sequence this season.

Nice glamour shots there

Darth Walrus
Feb 13, 2012




You know, Iím kind of curious whether anyoneís done decent art of the characters in a different artstyle. I ainít slamming the visual presentation, because itís cool and unique, but itíd be kind of fun to see these sword-obsessed weirdos with actual varied expressions.

7c Nickel
Apr 27, 2008


Darth Walrus posted:

You know, Iím kind of curious whether anyoneís done decent art of the characters in a different artstyle. I ainít slamming the visual presentation, because itís cool and unique, but itíd be kind of fun to see these sword-obsessed weirdos with actual varied expressions.



YOU ASKED FOR IT. YOU CAN'T UNASK FOR IT!

Can Of Worms
Sep 4, 2011

That's not how the Triangle Attack works...


I'm sad we didn't get another T.M.Revolution song for the OP, Raimei was such a great song. Hopefully that black Giorno fellow will get a theme song as good as Betsu Ten Gai as well, his theme was one of my favorite songs from the last season.

Darth Walrus posted:

You know, Iím kind of curious whether anyoneís done decent art of the characters in a different artstyle. I ainít slamming the visual presentation, because itís cool and unique, but itíd be kind of fun to see these sword-obsessed weirdos with actual varied expressions.
The characters have official art alongside their puppets on the official site (Season 1 here) and there was a manga adaptation of the first season. The art for the manga wasn't particular amazing but it was different.

Darth Walrus
Feb 13, 2012




7c Nickel posted:



YOU ASKED FOR IT. YOU CAN'T UNASK FOR IT!

I asked for decent art.

EponymousMrYar
Jan 4, 2015

The enemy of my enemy is my enemy.


Can Of Worms posted:

The characters have official art alongside their puppets on the official site (Season 1 here) and there was a manga adaptation of the first season. The art for the manga wasn't particular amazing but it was different.

The Manga adaptation is pretty different. It also adds some more pathos where the show doesn't and it's an interesting enough read to see what it does differently.

The original artwork is pretty good though. I find it kinda funny how some of the character designs were too plain so they gussied up the dolls for MAXIMUM GLAMOUR.

Truxton
Oct 31, 2012


Can Of Worms posted:

I'm sad we didn't get another T.M.Revolution song for the OP, Raimei was such a great song.

But we did get a new T.M. Revolution song for the ending, and the intro is basically "thunderBOLTfantasy, but sung by T.M. Revolution," and he's even a character on the show now!

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Yinlock
Oct 21, 2008
Probation
Can't post for 3 days!


EponymousMrYar posted:

The Manga adaptation is pretty different. It also adds some more pathos where the show doesn't and it's an interesting enough read to see what it does differently.

it kinda ruins some important scenes by cutting out some Cool poo poo, whether it be lines or actions though

but yeah it's worth a skim just for the characters making actual expressions

Pollyanna posted:

I mean, he's not wrong.

yeah that's the point

he got just far enough to actually see where he would end up, which was "be an unstoppable killing machine" and went "what that's lame"

EponymousMrYar posted:

The Manga adaptation is pretty different. It also adds some more pathos where the show doesn't and it's an interesting enough read to see what it does differently.

The original artwork is pretty good though. I find it kinda funny how some of the character designs were too plain so they gussied up the dolls for MAXIMUM GLAMOUR.

tbf it's not Eastern fantasy if every character isn't wearing priceless jewels on every inch of their insanely elaborate robes/hair

shang is once again an outlier in that his outfit is actually pretty simple/practical, feathers/weird crown thing aside

Yinlock fucked around with this message at 11:19 on Oct 9, 2018

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