School Days – 12

November 7, 2007 | Author: | In: Anime Blogs, School Days

It has been a long time since this was aired, and it feels like I’ve missed the boat on this one, but I finally got around to watching School Days episode 12. Now we could all see a not so happy ending coming, given the progress of how the show went, especially with Makoto getting around, but I didn’t expect this episode to be quite graphic, even though it was censored. Though I could see a lot of anime fans would be doing the banzai pose in praise of Makoto’s death, and I’m one of them. But this episode had quite a number of surprising events especially in the characters.

Impressions

Firstly was Makoto’s attitude and how he thinks back about everything that happened when he was cleaning up. It’s only now that he realises he was being selfish and it was that selfishness that caused all the mess. Though I’m not sure why they decided to bring this up now, probably in hopes to bring back some dignity to Makoto. But I think Sekai was the one that got turned upside down. Throughout this episode, it appears to have made it so she was the bad guy in the whole love triangle and how it makes her look as if she stole Makoto from Setsuna. But still, I didn’t expect Sekai to be the one that would stab Makoto, although given the circumstances, it fits perfectly. In the end she also dies by Kotonoha’s hands.

Kotonoha also took a new level of creepiness in how she opened up Sekai to check for a baby. It’s uncertain if Sekai was really pregnant or not, but I’m willing to believe that she was as the amount of time of when she found out till now is too short to see any real development of a baby. Speaking of Kotonoha, I think it was nice that she received a somewhat happy ending, though creepy, but happy to an extent. With the amount of crap that she went through in the series, I think it was good to show the ending of her on the yacht, clutching Makoto’s head. I thought that she would kill herself after killing Sekai, but I think the ending of her and the nice boat was more dramatic.

Overall Impressions

School Days is one of those animes that I knew was going to be a good show, but that was purely based on the fact that I have played the game myself, and completed about 70% of it. But for those who did not know anything about it, the start of the series showed it would be another school romance drama. But things started to change around episode 3 and it kept building on that until all hell broke loose. As the series progressed, I never thought that I would hate Makoto so much. Sure I hated him throughout the game, but the anime itself took it to a new level and it wouldn’t surprise me that Makoto would be the most hated male anime character of all time. But it wasn’t just Makoto that brought drama to the series. Sekai and Kotonoha brought in much emotions and love angst, and the supporting characters all thrown into the fray as well. The producers have done a wonderful job in developing the characters into what they are, and they are what make the series.

Overall this would have to be one of the best show of the Summer season, but I would have to also say School Days is one of the best adult themed school drama. The amount of tension that was building up, to Makoto sleeping around, and even Kotonoha’s fall into a mental state, there haven’t been many school dramas like this. Plus with the added violent ending, it is definitely a series that won’t be forgotten.



7 Responses to School Days – 12

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Matsuo Ryou

November 7th, 2007 at 11:45 pm

It’s indeed a nice anime.

I know it’s awhile ago, but I only started watching it yesterdat.
And before I knew it, I finished all 12 episode in one go!

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Falen

November 8th, 2007 at 7:30 am

You certainly missed the boat on this one…

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TDOMMX

November 8th, 2007 at 10:28 am

Heheheh. I told you that you didn’t have to worry about missing any “Nice Boats” (^_^).

Ever since I finished watching this series, I’ve had mixed feelings every time the phrase “School Days” has come up. On one hand, I’m thrilled that the School Days game and manga are being translated. I’ll have the chance to fill in the many plotholes and actually see some happy outcomes for a change. On the other hand, I cringe every time I think of Makoto’s philandering, Taisuke’s raping Kotonoha, and the antics of Otome and her lackeys.

Though Kotonoha technically “wins” in the end (and that’s using the term *very* loosely since she’s completely lost her mind), she absolutely did not deserve what happened to her. On a tangential note, I don’t see why people assert that Kotonoha is a “textbook yandere”; it seems pretty obvious to me that she was forced into a mental corner and snaps, thus making her a yangire. Nothing like, say, Kaede Fuyou, who was unstable to begin with.

I really have no idea what they were thinking when they animated Sekai’s Evangelion-style mental breakdown. It paints her as the bad guy and contradicts the actions and memories of every character, including herself. I keep thinking that the writers must consist of a handful of geniuses and a total dumbass (or someone with a split personality). The parallelism and symbolism in some parts are brilliant (the spilt tea on the coffee table), whereas others are pathetic (the play).

Okay, I’m beginning to rant. I’ll clam up for now.

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AS

November 8th, 2007 at 2:51 pm

Ahhhh, nice boat lol. I haven’t played the game but I don’t even know if I want to lol. I hate Makoto so much, but I admit that it was one of those animes that will be remembered, even if that memory is filled with hate and anger.

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Adun

November 10th, 2007 at 9:02 am

Matsuo Ryou: That must have been an adventure, watching it all in one go.

Falen: Indeed I have, but in the end I managed to finish it.

TDOMMX: All those things you cringe are what makes School Days what it is. Personally I think that if School Days didn’t have any of those elements, it would be another rather boring school drama series. But really, there isn’t much that is missing from the anime as the anime does cover most of the major plot points in terms of Sekai and Kotonoha, with of course some slight changes.

I also don’t believe Kotonoha to be the yandere type, unlike Kaede, Kotonoha only knew Makoto as the guy she saw on the train each morning. Though what we can gain from this is that Kotonoha did turn somewhat yandere due to the amount of peer pressure and abuse that she was under, but still I wouldn’t say that she technically “wins” since she is in a state of mental unstability.

Personally I found the Sekai being turned into the bad guy rather interesting. It kind of gives balance to the series especially with all the things that Kotonoha went through due to Sekai’s selfishness. It portrays that her selfishness ruined Setsuna’s chance of being with Makoto, but as well as breaking apart Makoto and Kotonoha.

AS: Playing the game is just like watching the anime. Of course if you could understand Japanese it’ll make it more enjoyable.

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TDOMMX

November 10th, 2007 at 6:46 pm

That’s not what I meant, Adun. I’m not at all against dark subject matter. Actually, a little bit of insanity can make it interesting to watch an otherwise dull or repetitive show. Shuffle and Gift -Eternal Rainbow- are two good examples. I’ve seen plenty of adult game-to-anime adaptions, and I’m inclined to say School Days is among the best.

The reason I cringe when I think back on School Days is because, unlike the other shows I’ve seen, everything in the series (minus the overdone fanservice) is plausible and frighteningly realistic – and totally preventable. By no means am I saying I don’t like the show – the parts I don’t like are merely because of bouts of terrible writing (my instincts tell me that these scenes weren’t in the original game). I especially like the subtle themes throughout the show such as, “Where are the adults?” (notice that the parents and school staff are never in the picture, and the only teacher we hear is a disembodied voice focused almost exclusively on his lesson plan). Yes, I’m aware that Sekai’s mother is in the game, and I think removing her from the anime helped underscore the lack of involvement in today’s parents.

I’m a pretty sensitive guy (or so I’m told). Because of the dull pacing of the earlier episodes and because of the odd fansub release timing between m.3.3.w and Conclave, I decided to stockpile a few episodes and marathon them once the release gap had been bridged. Big mistake. Let’s just say a few weeks of emotionally-draining cliffhangers run through in a single day take their toll. I was internally screaming, “Please, no…!” a lot during the course of the series. I was actually happy once I had caught up so that I could have ample time to cool down and process everything while waiting for the next episode (with 50% anticipation, 50% dread).

During the final episode, I actually had to kill my emotions for a while so I could handle what was going on. For the record, I had already seen the fansub of the game’s prologue and knew about the violent endings well in advance (thanks to uninvited animated GIFs of the endings used as message board avatars). But remember that it’s not the “what” that matters most; it’s the “how”. I was intrigued at how the pleasant love story I saw in the prologue could have turned into a bloodbath. And nothing, not even the spoilers I’d already seen, could have prepared me for this: a perfectly believable (and unforgettable) tragedy.

I’m not at all happy with the outcome of the story, but I’m damn pleased with how they did it. And the writers did a fine job of making me care for the characters (be it sympathizing with them, pitying them, hating them, or outright wanting to kill them myself). I am pleased with what happened to Makoto. I am not pleased with the three lives he helped destroy (Kotonoha, Sekai, and her unborn baby). I’m happy that the writers stayed consistent with Kotonoha’s case of denial (though I can’t say it’s much of an improvement over the alternative – Kotonoha committing suicide). As for Setsuna’s martyr complex and Sekai’s supposed betrayal of Setsuna’s feelings, I don’t buy it at all due to the contradictory evidence. I’ll write that off as a last-minute copout needed to nudge Sekai over the edge (like the writers needed it…).

I honestly hope School Days gets picked up for US release someday. When I have kids of my own and they are old enough to want to start their own relationships, I feel I’d have a responsibility as a parent to show them this series. I say this because my kid brother (currently 20) essentially did the same thing Makoto did to Sekai to his own girlfriend three years ago (though nowhere near as bad), and a few friends and acquaintances have suffered through situations similar to the events of the anime.

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Hayden

November 1st, 2008 at 1:23 pm

I got sooo sick of Sekai and Setsuna and all the other girls screwing up Makoto. Kotonoha was the best, and she ended out on top. But not on the manga though. :[

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