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Gougai! Gougai!

HOLY SHIT PEOPLE, IT'S NOT BAD ENOUGH WE'RE GETTING AN UTENA EXHIBITION RIGHT NOW

THEY. ARE. MAKING. A. NEW. MUSICAL. NEXT. YEAR. START LOSING YOUR SHIT RIGHT NOW

#1 | Back to Top09-15-2008 11:06:54 AM

dlaire
A Whole Orange
From: Poland
Registered: 04-08-2007
Posts: 2322

Did Touga want to be second End of the World?

Yesterday I started to think about this - Touga followed every Akio's step, he tried to seduce his sister, he isolated himself from Studen Council, maybe he attempted to be like him?

What do you think?
Do you think that he could be like Akio?

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#2 | Back to Top09-15-2008 11:25:18 AM

Aine Silveria
Pumpkin Bride
From: Allegan, MI
Registered: 11-03-2006
Posts: 2098

Re: Did Touga want to be second End of the World?

I don't think so.

Touga wanted the power and authority of Akio's position, but doesn't really have the capability of being someone like Akio. He emulated him, because he saw Akio as a successful adult (and, after all, don't all these characters really want to be adults?), but could not be him. There was still something noble and good in Touga, however warped and twisted it may have been, as seen in his desire to save Utena from WE. He also did a right shoddy job of seducing his sister, when we all know he's so much better at seduction than that.

Perhaps initially, yes, he did want to be WE, but... I think he realized he couldn't be, and that it wasn't healthy to be anyway.


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#3 | Back to Top09-15-2008 08:58:19 PM

Frau Eva
Voodoo Queen
Registered: 10-16-2006
Posts: 803

Re: Did Touga want to be second End of the World?

The question is, what does Touga know? There's a point where he genuinely wants to win the duels to gain power, and a point where he only wants to win to stop Utena from facing the horror that he knows will happen if she wins. Akio, of course, probably only clued him into what the final duel would really do when he was too emotionally entangled in Utena that he's challenge her and do just what Akio wanted. When he knew the duels would just lead to a good stabbin', I think it's pretty obvious he didn't think becoming Akio was possible and was starting to realize that all the screwed up things he did were all for moot. The master manipulator isn't going to help you out in the end, just throw you under the bus once you've stopped being useful.

So the question is, before he knew what the duels were really about, did he think he could become Akio? Probably. He seems pretty pleased with himself winning against Utena, and we don't really see him getting any perks he couldn't have had just being on the Student Council and being himself. But that is a stupid idea, if you think about it, because if you know Akio in the slightest and know his usual methods, you have to ask yourself why he'd stand by and let some punk protege have ultimate power. I know Akio's a cunning manipulator, but it's a pretty obvious conclusion when you see Akio going to all this trouble manipulating a game with such a huge prize and no other reason to do it.

Akio: "So, as you can see, I'm a very powerful guy. And I'm giving it away in a game, because uhhh.....well, anyway, I like the cut of your jib, so how 'bout I give you a running start? The fee is a mere pittance compared to it, really."

Touga: "I'm too blinded by power to care!" *bends over*


And now I have the image in my head of Touga as Gob from Arrested Development saying, "I've made a terrible mistake."


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#4 | Back to Top09-20-2008 11:39:35 AM

Baka Kakumei Reanna
Atlantean Singer
From: Wisconsin
Registered: 07-31-2007
Posts: 572
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Re: Did Touga want to be second End of the World?

I always saw it more that Touga was opportunistic, and saw a plethora of benefits from being in Akio's trust that outweighed any drawbacks. Whether the buttsex is a benefit or a drawback just depends on your interpretation of the character.

But in all seriousness, it's clear that Touga is able and willing to manipulate both people and the circumstances of current events to benefit him, and while I don't think Touga wanted to emulate Akio entirely, or be an "End of the World In Training," he certainly stood to benefit from being close to Akio, and probably decided he could learn quite a bit from him as well.

Of course, I think that changes later on when Touga is clued in a bit more on the nature of the duels and such, but if anything, that seemed to make Touga even less interested.

Uh... short answer is no. emot-keke


We see things not as they are, we see things as we are.

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#5 | Back to Top01-18-2009 05:34:31 PM

pojypojy
Miki Molester
From: Italy
Registered: 01-05-2009
Posts: 33
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Re: Did Touga want to be second End of the World?

Lady Chani wrote:

I don't think so.

Touga wanted the power and authority of Akio's position, but doesn't really have the capability of being someone like Akio. He emulated him, because he saw Akio as a successful adult (and, after all, don't all these characters really want to be adults?), but could not be him. There was still something noble and good in Touga, however warped and twisted it may have been, as seen in his desire to save Utena from WE. He also did a right shoddy job of seducing his sister, when we all know he's so much better at seduction than that.

Perhaps initially, yes, he did want to be WE, but... I think he realized he couldn't be, and that it wasn't healthy to be anyway.

Necroing this thread because of this one, actually :-) But I think my question fits better here rather than in the body language discussion. I, too, think that Touga tried to emulate Akio to an extent, and later realized that he didn't really want it - his failed attempt at seducing Nanami kind of proves it. But it makes me wonder: if seducing Nanami was a part of the "I can do what Akio does" train of thought, when and where did Touga learn about the Akio/Anthy incest? Did Akio outright tell him (I would have loved to hear that conversation - talk about bread eggs milk squick), or was Touga another one to walk in on them?

The latter would make me think of some kind of pattern re: the deliberate use of the incest revelation on Akio and Anthy's part. As I see, the general consensus is that Anthy set things up for Nanami to catch her having sex with Akio, in order to scare her away and out of the game. We might say the same happened with Utena, only that she wasn't nearly as shocked as Nanami - actually, for a moment there, her loyalties got to lie with Akio, and she dated him (and supposedly had sex again) afterwards(*). I wonder if something similar happened to Touga, only that Akio would have orchestrated that. I can see him allowing Touga to "casually" happen on a Saturday night encounter; Touga's reaction might have given Akio further clues on how to manipulate him, as in some kind of test. If he was seemingly okay with it, that might already have been an indicator of the moral treshold he was willing to cross. Then, it would have given Touga a (first?) secret to share with Akio - enforcing his delusion to actually matter more than the average puppet controlled by the Ends of the world.

And lastly, I think it would resonate with his indifference (bordering on contempt, perhaps) towards the Rose Bride. He would have seen Anthy as basically Akio's property, and a rather worn out one. We see that, what with all his romanticism, Touga doesn't really see the floozies as anything more than sexual objects and ego boosts; perhaps Nanami is right when she implies that, once you have sex with him, you lose value in his eyes (Utena is an exception eventually, but at first, a good part of his interest comes from her sexual unavailability). There is no reason he should see Anthy any differently; she might be the key to revolutionize the world, but in Touga's eyes, she's also a passive sex toy that belongs to Akio. Of course Akio would  have no reason to disprove that; he wants the duelists to think Anthy is a mere tool with no will of her own. But Touga seems to be the only one, relatively early in the series, to really buy into that. He's on the other end of the spectrum compared to Utena, who's the one who sees Anthy *just* as a person (the other Seitokai sort of fall in between - with Saionji and Miki projecting their ideals about love on Anthy, and Juri seems annoyed at her, which is still an improvement compared to not considering her at all). That's why Akio worked so much with him, I think: Touga had enough ambition to commit himself to the duels and advance the game, but could never really be a threat because he would leave the Rose Bride where she was supposed to be - keeping Akio's power intact.

This is just an hypothetical thought that was meant to be more of a passing comment and turned out tl;dr... but the more I think about it, the more I find the Akio/Touga power play fascinating.

....................................................................

(*) And really, I'm starting to wonder who took care of Utena before she went to Ohtori (since there's no aunt Yurika in the anime). While I can accept her being somewhat oblivious and immature about her own sexuality, and having no first hand experience of how relationships between siblings work, the fact that she's sort of indifferent to the incest is still worth noticing. She's like "oh noes, my best friend is sleeping with my love interest", not "OMG these two are brother and sister and are totally boinking each other! Excuse me if I throw up in my mouth a little" (that was Nanami, actually). But it's also OT for this thread, d'oh! emot-rolleyes

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#6 | Back to Top01-18-2009 06:04:53 PM

Bluesky
Chpn Dlst
From: Your window
Registered: 10-25-2008
Posts: 1939
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Re: Did Touga want to be second End of the World?

I felt he'd be happier as second in command, all the benefits without the responsibility.


/人◕ ‿‿ ◕人\

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#7 | Back to Top01-18-2009 07:53:51 PM

Ragnarok
Caption Captor
From: Canada
Registered: 10-20-2006
Posts: 4472
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Re: Did Touga want to be second End of the World?

Akio has responsibility? emot-confused


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#8 | Back to Top01-18-2009 08:14:24 PM

End of the Tour
Ballgoer
From: The Nowhere Islands
Registered: 09-11-2008
Posts: 143

Re: Did Touga want to be second End of the World?

pojypojy wrote:

We might say the same happened with Utena, only that she wasn't nearly as shocked as Nanami - actually, for a moment there, her loyalties got to lie with Akio, and she dated him (and supposedly had sex again) afterwards(*).

Bit of a tangent, maybe, but I never got the idea that they had sex on that particular date.  Was this implied somewhere that I missed?

And anyway, I saw that as less that her loyalties were with Akio than that she was better at pretending that everything was fine with him than with Anthy.  Because it turns out she cares about Anthy far more than Akio, and thus was feeling more hurt in regards to her than him.  But some of that might just be me.

As for why Utena didn't seem to have incest-specific squick over seeing the two of them together, well, she was an only child, and (as far as we know) she had no family at all since before puberty.  So perhaps she didn't develop as strong of an incest squick that most of us do.  (Which isn't to say that some only children or orphans can't wind up really bothered by incest, of course.)


Sometimes life is about making difficult sandwiches.

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#9 | Back to Top01-19-2009 08:23:11 AM

pojypojy
Miki Molester
From: Italy
Registered: 01-05-2009
Posts: 33
Website

Re: Did Touga want to be second End of the World?

End of the Tour wrote:

pojypojy wrote:

We might say the same happened with Utena, only that she wasn't nearly as shocked as Nanami - actually, for a moment there, her loyalties got to lie with Akio, and she dated him (and supposedly had sex again) afterwards(*).

Bit of a tangent, maybe, but I never got the idea that they had sex on that particular date.  Was this implied somewhere that I missed?

*facepalm* Okay, fail on my part. I was totally thinking of this scene while it actually was this one. Yeah, there probably wasn't sex in episode 37 - and you're correct in saying that ultimately her reaction (dating Akio) is  more a retort aimed at Anthy than a pro-Akio action. Although I still think that was somehow the moment where Utena got closer to lose her famous nobility, and therefore stepping into less princely and darker territory. It always struck me, how unlike her it was to direct a passive aggressive jab at Anthy in that conversation over the breakfast toasts. One would expect Utena to be more straightforward; but it's also true the relationship she has with Anthy is somewhat different than the relationship she has with everyone else. Of course her being upset at Anthy doesn't last long.


End of the Tour wrote:

As for why Utena didn't seem to have incest-specific squick over seeing the two of them together, well, she was an only child, and (as far as we know) she had no family at all since before puberty.  So perhaps she didn't develop as strong of an incest squick that most of us do.  (Which isn't to say that some only children or orphans can't wind up really bothered by incest, of course.)

I suppose we just have to apply some suspension of disbelief then, because it's not like the incest squick is something only your parents can teach you - it's ingrained in the society Utena lived in for thirteen years of her life. It's hard for me to elaborate on Utena's background, because she has this great defining moment when her parents die and she meets Dios, and then she just pops up at Ohtori. I mean, with all the other main characters, no matter how limited the insight on their past is, you can speculate and make up some consistent theory about what made them become who they are. We know why and when Utena starts wanting to become a prince. But that's not all of her personality, and I admit I'm quite in the dark about the rest of it. In the manga she had this quite functional home life with her aunt, but I suspect a similar scenario can't apply to the anime. Meh. I wish I knew. emot-confused

Back to Touga...

Miss Bluesky wrote:

I felt he'd be happier as second in command, all the benefits without the responsibility.

But then, isn't that what he already is at Ohtori? Popular, influential, girls come to him as soon as he snaps his fingers, but he isn't really responsible of anything because hey, it's high school. I think he found an alliance with Akio appealing because, in perspective, he wanted to be something more than a high school golden boy. IMO Touga is an alpha that is just acting as Akio's beta because it's convenient to do so. Or at least that's how I see it.

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#10 | Back to Top01-20-2009 03:52:41 PM

hollow_rose
Egghead
From: Ohio
Registered: 10-26-2008
Posts: 1074

Re: Did Touga want to be second End of the World?

...I think Touga might have wanted to follow in Akio's foot steps at the start of the series. But by the end, when Akio screwed him over with Utena, I think he may have realized he was in over his head. He seems very thoughtful when he's talking with Saionji at the end of the series. Maybe he even regrets the extent he became involved with the schemes of the End of the World, although its hard to say since Touga doesn't get episode "arcs" the way the other Duelists do. We don't see as much of his motivations.


20 threads dead so far.

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#11 | Back to Top01-20-2009 04:00:41 PM

pojypojy
Miki Molester
From: Italy
Registered: 01-05-2009
Posts: 33
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Re: Did Touga want to be second End of the World?

Yeah, for being such a relevant player to the dueling game, we never really get a Touga-centric episode or storyline. He's mostly defined by the way he acts to other characters but we never really see him alone... that's rather telling, come think about it.

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#12 | Back to Top01-21-2009 08:38:15 AM

sharnii
Pharaoh of Phanstuff
From: Melbourne Australia
Registered: 08-10-2008
Posts: 2416
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Re: Did Touga want to be second End of the World?

Yes. school-eng101

Don't tell me I have to actually back that up... emot-tongue

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#13 | Back to Top01-21-2009 01:16:27 PM

StarlightArcher
Miki Molester
From: Texas
Registered: 12-06-2006
Posts: 30

Re: Did Touga want to be second End of the World?

I have to agree with what most have been saying. Touga as a person seems draw to the power and the control End of the World exerts over everyone. Given enough time and emotional scarring Touga would probably be the ideal protege. However, was the series winds down, his eyes seem to be opened to the kind of character Akio is.

It's very interesting that Touga's thoughts are so vauge. Most of what can be understood about him comes from the reactions and analysis of other characters. By the end of his final duel with Utena, he warns "But you mustn't open your heart to the Ends of the World, or to the Rose Bride"

He's been observing Akio pull the strings on every duelist before him. By the time he challenges Utena, I believe he realizes he's simply fodder for her princely growth. By his words, it appears that he knows Utena's in for one painful doublecross, why does he still challenge her? Why exactly does he stay in the game? Is there some silent hope that he'll beat her and save her from what's coming? Or is it Touga being his manipulative self, trying to shake up the game & put Akio on the defensive?


Why yes, I am made of Fabulous!

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#14 | Back to Top01-22-2009 09:13:01 AM

SexingTouga24/7/365
is on a BOAT!
Registered: 12-10-2006
Posts: 2267

Re: Did Touga want to be second End of the World?

Ragnarok wrote:

Akio has responsibility? emot-confused

Ensuring that his bride to be does not catch him cheating school-eng101

Also am guessing that part of the reason that he plays the game up till the end is that he saw that the path had been prepared for Utena, and that despite any of his warnings; the events would go according to plan and that his chance to alter the plan, if he could, was completely lost to him with the losing of his last duel.   

Another guess is perhaps a slight regard for rules and order...for example he tells his sister to keep on her ring; even when besides being a memento, it does not seem to have much of a point. (in regards to dueling ) Saying something along the lines of she is our representative...

Sorry if that made no sense.


"If all the world is a stage and all the people players"...then I demand a less shitty part or the ability to get off of the stage. Slowly my sanity slides, slipping, swirling, spiraling...Save Me I need Sleep...Shattering Soon. school-devil "RukaxTouga equals the Fourth of July" MY patriotic celebration...FUCK ME TOUGA AND RUKA NOW!! etc-wankgirl etc-wankdude

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#15 | Back to Top01-22-2009 10:07:56 AM

rhyaniwyn
Myth is my Bitch
From: Tallahassee, FL
Registered: 11-09-2006
Posts: 684
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Re: Did Touga want to be second End of the World?

Regarding whether Touga wanted to be a second Ends of the World...I agree that initially, yes.  Akio is the ultimate player.  Everyone is in awe of Akio , Akio can get any woman he wants, and Akio has power over people, in a public position, and of a "magical" variety.  (Or so Touga probably thinks, originally.  How could Akio give way power if he doesn't have it to give, after all?)

Why does Touga start to have second thoughts? -- because I think he does have second thoughts as the series progresses. 

Well, I tend to compare him to Utena.  Sometimes Touga's actions are insufferable and a big part of that is that he thinks he knows best.  Just like Utena, who pokes her nose into other people's business and thinks she knows better than they do how they should conduct themselves.  (Yes, that's right.  Wakaba, Saionji, Anthy, Touga, Juri, Miki... Utena was constantly appointing herself the protector of others or telling others how they should act.)  Touga is much the same way. 

Touga is more jaded, or practical, in that he sees nothing wrong with being paid back for his "princeliness" with popularity, luxury, status, and sex.  Which doesn't communicate my point exactly.  Hmm, well, he's not as idealistic for the sake of idealism or as innocent.  Touga would agree with Akio's statement, "Without power, you are doomed to live life dependent on another.  [...] That's the way the world works" while Utena would tell Akio to shut up, because that's not how she wants to see things.

So Touga seeks power, but comes to find that there are some prices he is not willing to pay for power.  Maybe after seeing it, Touga feels that the highest point of the school is not as wonderful as he imagined.  Maybe Touga finds things to fight for other than power.  Whatever the case, I think Touga changes his mind about Ends of the World.

Regarding why he duels Utena at the last...I think it's little of both...

Episode 36 wrote:

Saionji:  Who would have thought that that girl was Tenjou Utena...
Saionji:  That girl who was inside the coffin.
Touga:  She's still all alone within the coffin.
Touga:  In order to save her, I'll beat her.

Touga, near the end, still has his chivalrous impulses.  Yeah, they're slightly patronizing, but he says his reason for trying to beat Utena is to protect her.

Episode 36 wrote:

Saionji:  We must rise from our coffins!
Saionji:  From within the coffins that the Ends of the World has prepared for us!
Touga:  I'll give you an answer. Tonight.
Saionji:  Tonight!
Touga:  Saionji.
Saionji:  Yeah.
Touga:  Standing up is dangerous.

He means that literally, because Saionji stands up.  But why have Saionji stand up and have Touga say that line?  It's meant figuratively as well--standing up to Ends of the World is dangerous.  For Touga, who wants to keep Utena out of Akio's hands.  For Utena, who wants (or will want) to get Anthy out of Akio's hands.  It could make a target or liability out of you.

Episode 36 wrote:

Saionji:  How'd it go? Did you get this "answer" you wanted?
Touga:  Yeah. Last night made it perfectly clear.
Saionji:  Oh? Then care to let me in on it?
Touga:  It's now clear that she's someone very important to me.
Saionji:  So now what?
Touga:  I will fight once again!
Touga:  And I must prevail.
Touga:  After all, there's no other way to save her.
Touga:  If she wins the next duel,
Saionji:  she gets the Power to Revolutionize the World.
Saionji:  But if that happens...
Touga:  ...she'll fall into the Ends of the World's hands.

Why did Touga need to have that "moment" with Utena before he made his decision?  Was he giving one last try at seducing her?  Did Touga need to confirm, as he implies, that Utena was important enough to him for Touga to "stand up"?

If it's the latter, he did it in a fairly safe way.  Akio intended for Touga to duel one more time (I think?).  Duels were acceptable.  What might not have been was Touga coming completely clean to Utena about everything he knew about Anthy, Akio, and the duels.  Why keep playing the game instead of stepping outside its boundaries?  Maybe it's a respect for rules order, as SexingTouga says.  Touga does seem to display that preference more than once.  Maybe it's a tiny bit of arrogance, or cowardice, or spite, or selfishness on Touga's part.  Maybe all four.


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