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Conspiratiorist
Nov 12, 2015


a kitten posted:

Wow, I'd completely forgotten that Subaru didn't get killed in some way before he was summoned. I think maybe the op where it shows him resurrecting/time flowing backwards somehow put that idea in my head? Huh.

Yeah, he didn't die before being summoned, but the story does do something that I think is more interesting.

See, initially Subaru has memory gaps whenever Return By Death activates, which is why he acts so confused during his first couple deaths. So, when you combine that fact with the way the anime presents its opening moments before he gets summoned (and the Prologue in the LN), I believe it's hinting that the continuity we're watching/reading from his appearance to Lugnica to his dying at Rom's isn't the first actual death, but the death in which he finally starts remembering his previous loops.

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AlternateNu
May 5, 2005


Sefal posted:

I somehow glossed over that as well.
Somehow protag dying and isekai are blended in together for me.

I was about to write about remembering a truck being involved too, when I realized I was thinking of Konosuba and Kazuís ignominious death at the hands of his own bad karma.

Grouchio
Aug 31, 2014



AlternateNu posted:

I was about to write about remembering a truck being involved too, when I realized I was thinking of Konosuba and Kazuís ignominious death at the hands of his own bad karma.
Except that was a Tractor and he more died of shock than get run over. Like a bitch.

ViggyNash
Oct 9, 2012


I remember whiplashing on this show because I really liked the first half and really hated the second half. I really want to see where this story goes though. It's got some really solid hooks.

Conspiratiorist
Nov 12, 2015


Why did you hate the second half?

ViggyNash
Oct 9, 2012


Conspiratiorist posted:

Why did you hate the second half?

I don't really remember, I've pretty much forgotten all of the second half. I vaguely remember something about there not being any progress but I'd have to rewatch the show to refresh myself on it.

RevolverDivider
Nov 12, 2016



The second half of Season 1 was the much stronger half though.

Raxivace
Sep 9, 2014



ViggyNash posted:

I remember whiplashing on this show because I really liked the first half and really hated the second half. I really want to see where this story goes though. It's got some really solid hooks.
I wouldn't say I hated the second half but otherwise this is basically where I'm at with Re:Zero.

For me the issue that Subaru is a significantly less interesting character when he's confidently succeeding with his plans. When they beat the whale in particular is where my interest really started to drop.

Conspiratiorist
Nov 12, 2015


I wouldn't agree with that, given that even when he plans ahead and succeeds, poo poo always goes wrong and he's got to desperately fumble his way forward.

And then the big wham of the arc is that he only gets one chance to get things right.

Toalpaz
Mar 20, 2012

Peace through overwhelming determination


Subaru has always had multiple chances iirc. Unless you're talking about a future arc in which case you shouldn't spoil by even hinting at future developments.

Grouchio
Aug 31, 2014



Can we discuss Isekai Quartet in here or will it need its own thread?

Conspiratiorist
Nov 12, 2015


Toalpaz posted:

Subaru has always had multiple chances iirc. Unless you're talking about a future arc in which case you shouldn't spoil by even hinting at future developments.

No, I mean that the "Save Point" is outside his control and moves forward the moment he accomplishes a major objective.

He doesn't get to redo once he succeeds; all the mistakes he made will stay with him. For example, he lucks out in the loop where Petelgeuse possesses him after they defeat the Witch Cult, since he then had another shot at the scenario and it allowed him to minimize casualties, but all the people that died before that as a result of not knowing the White Whale's full capabilities and struggling against it? Gone.

ninjewtsu
Oct 9, 2012



imo the weakest part of s1 was the second "arc" in the mansion. i liked arc 1 a lot for introducing the concepts and being relatively short and snappy, and arc 3 was generally strong concepts with strong execution, but arc 2 just didn't really have much to sell me on it.

Toalpaz
Mar 20, 2012

Peace through overwhelming determination


I really liked all of the arcs.

I liked arc 1 for the confusion and the 'what's happening'.

Arc 2 has an amazing hook and is a wonderful little unique mystery setup.

Arc 3 has the most character interaction and growth, where the main character gets owned. He also starts to accept his situation as real life and acts as if dealing with real people where before he sort of though he was a super hero or something.

Arc 4 is basically a continuation of Arc 3, I do like it. It has some of the most interesting shots like Subaru walking towards the mansion and freezing to death. It also opens information about the antagonists, the witches cult, because before that everyone kinda knew Subaru was pinging them as a bad guy, but now we know what those bad guys are like.

Basically, I think the author reveals an appropriate amount of world building and character interactions where the pacing feels incredibly nice.

Defeating the sky whale was very rewarding for Subaru but like... I've never really seen a character taken down so many notches before, and he literally admits that he wants to give up before Rem intervenes. They kinda have to give him something to feel kinda good about, though some of the respect is probably unearned considering how he'd been acting just a few 'days' earlier in their time.

a kitten
Aug 5, 2006



Fallen Rib

One of the things i like about this is how little Subaru knows about any of it. No goddess told him "hey if you die you'll come back", once he figures that out he has no way of knowing if his resurrections are limited or infinite (he knows that dying loving sucks though), and he has no idea what his "checkpoints" or what their success conditions may be. If he just managed not to be killed for years, but didn't do whatever it was he was supposed to do, would he think he succeeded only to suddenly pop back 20 years after he gets run down by a wagon or something?

MonsterEnvy
Feb 4, 2012


a kitten posted:

One of the things i like about this is how little Subaru knows about any of it. No goddess told him "hey if you die you'll come back", once he figures that out he has no way of knowing if his resurrections are limited or infinite (he knows that dying loving sucks though), and he has no idea what his "checkpoints" or what their success conditions may be. If he just managed not to be killed for years, but didn't do whatever it was he was supposed to do, would he think he succeeded only to suddenly pop back 20 years after he gets run down by a wagon or something?

It's one of the reasons he is fairly nervous about dying. (Along with it sucking) About the only thing he is sure of now, is that the Witch of Envy is responsible.

Conspiratiorist
Nov 12, 2015


Toalpaz posted:

I really liked all of the arcs.

I liked arc 1 for the confusion and the 'what's happening'.

Arc 2 has an amazing hook and is a wonderful little unique mystery setup.

Arc 3 has the most character interaction and growth, where the main character gets owned. He also starts to accept his situation as real life and acts as if dealing with real people where before he sort of though he was a super hero or something.

Arc 4 is basically a continuation of Arc 3, I do like it. It has some of the most interesting shots like Subaru walking towards the mansion and freezing to death. It also opens information about the antagonists, the witches cult, because before that everyone kinda knew Subaru was pinging them as a bad guy, but now we know what those bad guys are like.

Basically, I think the author reveals an appropriate amount of world building and character interactions where the pacing feels incredibly nice.

Defeating the sky whale was very rewarding for Subaru but like... I've never really seen a character taken down so many notches before, and he literally admits that he wants to give up before Rem intervenes. They kinda have to give him something to feel kinda good about, though some of the respect is probably unearned considering how he'd been acting just a few 'days' earlier in their time.

I've also loved all of it, but I can understand why people wouldn't like some parts as much, since although the first 3 story arcs share characters and themes they're structurally fairly different types of stories.

On unearned respect, that's a very important element - after being humbled so much, both by breaking down in despair over his own failings and witnessing how actual heroes carry themselves on and off the battlefield, Subaru can never truly feel like he's earned any credit for the things he's accomplished. After all, his ability is so easy and simplistic: what's a little suffering for the chance to undo one's mistakes at a critical juncture? He certainly would never imagine the likes of Wilhelm or Crusch or Julius or Ricardo hesitate, much less break down over it.

But at the same time, hating and deriding himself over it would be disrespectful towards Rem, so his only way forward is to push himself to be better, and actually try and become someone who is deserving of the respect and admiration of the amazing people around him. It's a true "zero to hero" story, and also a peculiar one in that sorting out his issues doesn't result in him powering up and displaying hitherto hidden Legendary Hero prowess - Subaru is still Subaru, and has to make do with what he's got.


Minor point: Arc 3 is everything covered from the Royal Selection to the end of the anime. Actual Arc 4 is what we'll get with the second season.

Beasteh
Feb 12, 2012

I'M QUESTIONING MY EXISTENCE AND THIS IDIOT JUST WANTS TO PEE OFF A WALL



Also the witches stench becomes stronger on him every time he dies so he probably doesn't want to make a habit of it at the very least since he's already a magnet to cultists at this point

Toalpaz
Mar 20, 2012

Peace through overwhelming determination


I like the slowly dawning re-contextualization where Subaru is like 'oh cool I have powers of darkness and a mysterious aura' isn't that edgy? To us understanding in universe Subaru actually smells like Satan and all his mana theming makes him seem like some nascent dark lord.

E: and also the other faction is willing and totally ready to accept him as a dark lord.

Toalpaz fucked around with this message at 16:30 on Mar 30, 2019

Beasteh
Feb 12, 2012

I'M QUESTIONING MY EXISTENCE AND THIS IDIOT JUST WANTS TO PEE OFF A WALL



He very likely is a candidate to be the new Archbishop of Pride

Ytlaya
Nov 13, 2005

I TRUST JOE BIDEN AND THE DEMS


Raxivace posted:

I wouldn't say I hated the second half but otherwise this is basically where I'm at with Re:Zero.

For me the issue that Subaru is a significantly less interesting character when he's confidently succeeding with his plans. When they beat the whale in particular is where my interest really started to drop.

I actually kinda agree with this despite really liking Re:Zero in general; the end-ish parts of Season 1 were my least favorite. You will be pleasantly surprised with the next season with regards to this; the story really goes the extra mile in terms of making his situation very difficult to resolve.

Furnaceface
Oct 21, 2004




I think Ive mentioned it before but I had a hard time getting into this show but by the end I loved it. One of the things I enjoyed was how the story slowly chipped away and Subaru's pride and ego until he finally realizes the new world he is in doesnt revolve around him like he had expected. That he remembers the pain from each death making him super hesitant to die again was fun too because it makes his super powerful ability have unintentional side effects, not all of them good.

Rem might be one of my favourite side characters ever.

Captain Invictus
Apr 5, 2005


Clever Betty

Yeah as someone who only got into the series very recently, I had seem Rem referenced a lot as the perfect waifu and all and figured it was yet another dumb meme because I'd always see the pink hair sister, blue hair sister, both in maid getups, but no, they were right all along, Rem actually is the best and is a far more complicated and compelling character than I expected going in.

Ytlaya
Nov 13, 2005

I TRUST JOE BIDEN AND THE DEMS


edit: wrong thread

vvv that was fast, I noticed I posted in the wrong thread like 2 seconds after making the post lol

Ytlaya fucked around with this message at 20:45 on Mar 30, 2019

Grouchio
Aug 31, 2014



You're in the wrong thread Ytlaya.

Conspiratiorist
Nov 12, 2015


It's worth pointing out that Subaru isn't conceited; he's deluded.

He's initially comfortable with the isekai situation because it was a chance to run away from the dissatisfaction of his normal life on Earth, and when rewarded for saving a Royal Candidate by a wealthy Lord, his choice is the so very mundane request for a job as a butler - because he genuinely just wished for a place where he could feel like he belonged, and even enjoys that his life is now the routine of performing housekeeping chores and spending time close to a pretty girl he likes. A world of magic and adventure before him, and that's what he wished for from the bottom of his heart.

When looping begins at the mansion, he dreads it. At no point does he wish he'll be the hero, rather, his impetus to deal with the situation comes first from self-preservation, and only after seeing Rem die does his goal switch to saving her, because while the situation is complicated, he truly wishes to protect the people he felt he became friends with. And the attempt is so psychologically tortuous that it nearly breaks him because, again - just as when he saved Emilia - he's just desperately fumbling his way forward.

And the key thing here is that nobody judges Subaru harsher than he himself does. He's the one who knows when he's been most cowardly, he knows when he's been just lucky, and deep down, from the beginning, he can't be introspective without feeling like a piece of trash. The foolish-looking, exaggerated and self-deprecating way he acts is a mask he puts to ingratiate himself with people, because he desperately wants people to like him and not see the piece of poo poo he *knows* he is.

What's born after saving Emilia and then Rem and the kids isn't pride, it's an innocent hope: "maybe I can be a hero... things worked out thanks to me, right?"

So when he confronts Roswaal at the Royal Selection, when he insults the Knights and then gets challenged by Julius, it's not because he's grown conceited: it's anger and frustration because he knows he's powerless. He desperately wants to help, but deep down he knows he's nothing but a gently caress up, and just wants to hold onto the illusion that if he just shuts everything else out and pushes forward then things will work themselves out.

When Emilia confronts him afterwards, it's desperation and despair, too. Subaru has been under tremendous stress, on the verge of losing his mind more than once already, gaining some tremendous baggage that he literally can't begin to explain and on top of things about himself that he doesn't dare unpack. And Emilia has been his rock so far, so when she rejects him too it's too much - he snaps, and tries to guilt-trip her in an attempt to force her to show him sympathy, that he's owed that much, despite the fact that he knows that she really can't understand his circumstances, and has her own reasons to be upset at him that he's choosing to overlook.

What follows after that is a continuation of the trend: anger, desperation, frustration, and trying to make things work out somehow. Until finally it's too much; the mounting failures and the horrors he's forced to witness as their consequence finally breaks him, and he admits to Rem that deep down he always knew he was worthless, that he couldn't accomplish anything, that it was all luck and that any praise he received was misplaced - he's no hero and can't save anyone.

"But you saved me."

Ytlaya
Nov 13, 2005

I TRUST JOE BIDEN AND THE DEMS


Furnaceface posted:

Rem might be one of my favourite side characters ever.

My apparently controversial Re:Zero opinion is that Rem is not actually that interesting following the conclusion of her brief-ish character arc and (end of arc 3/beginning of arc 4 post-anime spoilers) I was relieved that she was benched for a long time as a character by Plot. Beyond the latter parts of Arc 3 there isn't really any place for her character to go and she basically just exists as "girl who loves Subaru really hard." I also generally strongly dislike the whole anime/manga trope of a love interest being totally cool with the protagonist being in love with someone else and having such a "pure" love that they're fine just sort of existing in their close social circle for eternity. The absolute worst and most inexcusable part was when Subaru mentioned taking on Rem as a second wife if Emilia is okay with it - like I mentioned before, romance is the only aspect of this series I actually dislike, and I'm hoping for the extremely unlikely possibility that Emilia at some point tells him to gently caress off with that.

edit: Even the stuff Conspiratiorist mentioned in his post above this one is almost all just tied into Subaru being an interesting character, with Rem just sort of existing as a reminder that he had a positive impact on someone.

Ytlaya fucked around with this message at 20:50 on Mar 30, 2019

madmac
Jun 22, 2010


I mean, yeah after Rem's character arc largely finishes in the third Act there isn't that much more for her to do but I disagree that she isn't a fun and interesting character up to that point. For being the secondary love interest who doesn't even get introduced until the second arc, especially, she certainly leaves an impression. I pretty much hate Rem's archtype and I still like her quite a bit as a character.

Though now I do kinda want to stick up a bit for Ram being unappreciated as a character and hopefully Season 2 will change that a smidge.

Anyway, I'd almost given up on a Season 2 so I'm pretty excited, especially because the next arc is easily my favorite, and I daresay that's the consensus opinion.

Furnaceface
Oct 21, 2004




Emilia and Subaru are never going to hook up. He knows it, Rem knows it.

e: I havnt read anything so my impression is based solely on the anime, but the issue I have with Ram is that she is too confrontational/one dimensional to be fun and her scenes with Roswaal are just a little on the creepy side

Furnaceface fucked around with this message at 21:52 on Mar 30, 2019

Grouchio
Aug 31, 2014



Edit: I should not imply poo poo without spoiler tags.

Grouchio fucked around with this message at 22:17 on Mar 30, 2019

Captain Invictus
Apr 5, 2005


Clever Betty

grouchio can you go a single day in your life without being a stupid dipshit and doing poo poo like that, for gently caress's sake

Toalpaz
Mar 20, 2012

Peace through overwhelming determination


Do not talk about or hint to the contents of anything not season one!

Even acknowledging certain things over other things gives people implications and we don't want to know because we haven't read the source material!

Grouchio
Aug 31, 2014



Sorry. I should not imply poo poo without spoiler tags. That wasn't clear to me.

Furnaceface
Oct 21, 2004




God drat it Grouchio.

e: I just saw it before you edited it out and now Im even more mad

Captain Invictus
Apr 5, 2005


Clever Betty

Just exile yourself from the thread to save everyone the trouble and yourself the temptation, thanks

Ytlaya
Nov 13, 2005

I TRUST JOE BIDEN AND THE DEMS


madmac posted:

I mean, yeah after Rem's character arc largely finishes in the third Act there isn't that much more for her to do but I disagree that she isn't a fun and interesting character up to that point. For being the secondary love interest who doesn't even get introduced until the second arc, especially, she certainly leaves an impression. I pretty much hate Rem's archtype and I still like her quite a bit as a character.

Though now I do kinda want to stick up a bit for Ram being unappreciated as a character and hopefully Season 2 will change that a smidge.

Anyway, I'd almost given up on a Season 2 so I'm pretty excited, especially because the next arc is easily my favorite, and I daresay that's the consensus opinion.

Ram gains points simply for being "an important-ish female character who has no inkling of romantic interest towards Subaru."

Grouchio
Aug 31, 2014



Captain Invictus posted:

Just exile yourself from the thread to save everyone the trouble and yourself the temptation, thanks
Yessir

madmac
Jun 22, 2010


Furnaceface posted:

e: I havnt read anything so my impression is based solely on the anime, but the issue I have with Ram is that she is too confrontational/one dimensional to be fun and her scenes with Roswaal are just a little on the creepy side

Ram is secretly the gentle, caring, responsible sister. She just expresses that love through constant, biting sarcasm and occasionally violence.

I'm half kidding, but Ram does have a bit more depth as a character than initially meets the eye.

The nice thing is that if Season 2 continues to be popular, the LN should probably be far enough along to allow for a third season relatively quickly. (The first season actually finished slightly ahead of the LN, by comparison.)

As a quick zero-spoiler explanation of the source material for this series, it basically goes like this:

It started as a Web Novel, which went on for 6 arcs, or 5 and a half, depending on how you were counting.

The Web Novel was turned into a LN, which you know, has an actual editor and stuff. This is important because the anime is based primarily on the LN, whereas most people reading the series are referencing the WN, and they are very similar but not identical.

Last I heard, the author decided about a year ago to stop updating the WN, so going forward only the LN will continue the story after it catches up. I believe the LN is currently somewhere late in the fifth arc as of this month.

madmac fucked around with this message at 22:41 on Mar 30, 2019

EponymousMrYar
Jan 4, 2015

The enemy of my enemy is my enemy.


Oh neat, I liked Season 1 and I'm looking forward to season 2.

Had a hard time finding good manga adaptations (like Captain Invictus said there's three of them and they all cover different points ) and I'm not plugged into the LN/WN scene as much so I haven't read any of that.

I agree that romance is probably the weakest part of the show although it does do some things right (Emilia's 'you broke a promise to me' is pretty good characterization for both of them.)

Raxivace posted:

For me the issue that Subaru is a significantly less interesting character when he's confidently succeeding with his plans. When they beat the whale in particular is where my interest really started to drop.

To me when Subaru finally starts to succeed a loop it's a release valve for the tension of him failing so much beforehand. And I still found it interesting in how he handled certain parts of his success, especially the small details (him using Emilia's Cloak of Non-distinctness to talk with her so he could tell her what he needed to tell her and keep his second promise with her) since being able to pay attention to detail is one of the neater aspects of his revival/time loop power.

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Ytlaya
Nov 13, 2005

I TRUST JOE BIDEN AND THE DEMS


EponymousMrYar posted:

And I still found it interesting in how he handled certain parts of his success, especially the small details (him using Emilia's Cloak of Non-distinctness to talk with her so he could tell her what he needed to tell her and keep his second promise with her) since being able to pay attention to detail is one of the neater aspects of his revival/time loop power.

At one point (I forget if it's in Arcs 1-3 or 4, but it's not a spoiler either way) someone (I think Ram?) comments on how Subaru is utterly unremarkable in every way, but seems to somehow always be at the right place at the right time. It's kind of interesting thinking about how the events of the series must look from the perspective of the other characters who only see an uninterrupted chain of Subaru's "successful" loops. To them, Subaru must just be this dude who goes through bizarre mood swings and is randomly going places and saying things in ways that somehow result in avoiding bad outcomes.

edit: One other thing that comes to mind about Subaru's particular time travel gimmick is that it's probably for the best that he can't tell other people, because it would be immensely disturbing to find out that if this guy dies your current existence would effectively be erased and everything you did for the past couple days (or whatever) rendered irrelevant. Is the "you" from when Subaru goes back in time the same "you" as the current one? Who knows!

Ytlaya fucked around with this message at 00:21 on Mar 31, 2019

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