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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 Top08-05-2009 08:58:20 AM

aerendyll
New Student
Registered: 07-26-2009
Posts: 1

Two questions that are bothering me - the dances and Miki's timer

I'm sorry if these things have been asked before, but I'm dying to know and my searches on the forum weren't very fruitful.



The dances:

I can't help but notice that there is a dance in both the series and the movies with Anthy and Utena. I don't think the dances would be included in both the series and the movie if it didn't hold a secret meaning to it.

Things I noticed:
- In both scenes we see Utena and Anthy in different outfits, but in different ways. In the movie Anthy and Utena have their reflections which wear different outfits - they actually wear their school uniforms and their reflection shows Anthy as the Rose Bride and Utena in her full duellist clothes. In the series both Anthy and Utena wear dresses at first, but after Anthy's dress gets wet and falls apart (according to Nanami's plan) she gets a tablecloth as dress and Utena appears in her duellist outfit - they perform the dance in their latter outfits. The thing that gets me is that Anthy wears clothes with different meanings in the series and in the movie - the tablecloth is an emergency dress that Utena quickly put on her and in the movie she is reflected as the Rose Bride. Would this matter?
- Both scenes involve spraying liquids in some relation to Antry, though not the same ones. In the series a servant at the party opens a bottle containing punch/champagne/another similar alcoholic drink and it gets sprayed all over Anthy's dress. In the movie Anthy picks up an Axe and destroys a pipe of the watering system that's in her garden/the dueling arena. As a result the whole place overflows with water.
- Both scenes play at night.
- In the series they are being watched by a large group of people while nobody knows they dance in the movie.

What could this mean? Is there a meaning or reason behind the dances? (Other than them being awesome animation goodness.)



Miki's stopwatch:

This is another thing that strikes me as odd. Why would Miki carry around a stopwatch and almost constantly use it in the series? Does it refer to them having a limited amount of time or does he record how much time he spends thinking about his sister? Something else? I don't have a lot of observations here, sadly...



I'm dying to know what you all think!

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#2 | Back to Top08-05-2009 11:35:37 AM

Malacoda
Sunlit Gardener (Finale)
Registered: 07-26-2009
Posts: 180

Re: Two questions that are bothering me - the dances and Miki's timer

Personally, comparing the movie and the series is really difficult business because the two, while having similar themes, are completely different. In the movie, water always represents Touga. The fact that the scene takes place at night is related to Utena's desire to watch the stars with Touga (and did you notice the lack of stars before the dance scene?). Since Touga (Utena's former love interest) is very absent in this scene, I've always viewed it as the start of Utena's and Anthy's romantic relationship.

In the series, I though the scene was a mix of eye candy and a show of Utena's princeliness. Nothing symbolic here! Besides, it's Nanami's introduction episode. Anything involving early-series Nanami is there for the laughs. Though there was some nice foreshadowing in regards to the million swords.

Sorry if the above doesn't make any sense. I'm not the best at analysis.

And for Miki's stopwatch, the topic was really well covered here http://forums.ohtori.nu/viewtopic.php?id=1963

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#3 | Back to Top08-10-2009 01:44:15 AM

OnlyInThisLight
KING OF ALL DUCKS
Registered: 01-15-2008
Posts: 4411

Re: Two questions that are bothering me - the dances and Miki's timer

I agree with Macolada as far as the movie goes, and that the dance scenes in the series are part of the fairytale motif. 

But also, there is something about two people dancing that is wonderfully fitting for Utena.  A method of achieving happiness (which is an often time overlooked but critical theme in Utena, happiness) that involves two people working together, and yet is conducive to highlighting gender inequality.  (The man usually leads).  Of course, just like those paths of our own to happiness that Ikuni wishes more young people could imagine, you can invent new dances of your own, with a partner or no.  Though, some are wary and need a kind friend to help them feel comfortable shaking it out on a dance floor. 

But this is obvious.  I need to stop posting shit that everyone knows and pretending to be smart. orz

ALSO, part of that whole "oh, this?  this is just your innocent, run of the mill shoujo series right here.  nothing freaky is about to happen in later episodes.  no. look at the dancing and rose petals and ambiguous girl friendship. happy ending to mean girl's hi jinks.  don't worry.  you are safe here"  vibe the first arc wants get across to facilitate the eventual mindrape.

Last edited by OnlyInThisLight (08-10-2009 01:45:43 AM)

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#4 | Back to Top08-11-2009 09:37:12 PM

Itsuke
Pathtracer
Registered: 12-08-2008
Posts: 341

Re: Two questions that are bothering me - the dances and Miki's timer

I think Kunihiko Ikuhara decided to do the two dance scenes because he likes showing two girls dancing. Is anybody here watching the new yuri anime aoi hana? It's airing in Japan now, Ikuhara is responsible for creating the opening scene. Guess what he did----yup, it's another heartwarming dance scene between the two leading female characters!

Here's the evidence~~

Started out upside down~
http://img12.imageshack.us/img12/3375/12516808.jpg

Let's twirl!
http://img12.imageshack.us/img12/3633/52746495.jpg

All of a sudden you see the two ladies transformed into their younger selves~~
http://img13.imageshack.us/img13/8496/11337916.jpg

and back to normal again~~
http://img9.imageshack.us/img9/1710/28835577.jpg

And here's the OP and ED on youtube (in HD!):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YlR488aQEeU

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#5 | Back to Top08-16-2009 05:28:20 PM

NajiMinkin
Hacker Ringleader
From: The Incredible Edible Egg
Registered: 06-23-2007
Posts: 2537

Re: Two questions that are bothering me - the dances and Miki's timer

In the case of the series, I see "At The Night of The Ball" as a reflection of the series plot as a whole, like I do with most Nanami-central filler-esque episodes.

Example:

Anthy and Utena are invited to this thing - in this case, a dance; in the series' case, a dueling game - where Anthy is appointed as the "Queen" (rose bride?) and it sounds all well and good, but will it really turn out well for her? Hmmmn?
They're both sent dresses/uniforms (or if you want to see it as Akio trying to put Utena in a dress/rose bride outfit) from this weird guy, who leaves Utena with some cryptic words and something girly and covered with roses (dress vs. ring). Utena's not really sure about his intentions, but goes anyway, hoping that it means Anthy will get friends/be saved.
Upon arriving, Utena gets distracted by the handsome man who she thinks is her prince while Anthy is taken to the side and attacked and left vulnerable in the middle of a crowd, her Queenly illusion destroyed. Everyone stares at her with malevolence and it's totally like the million swords of hate. Seriously, guys.
Anyway, Utena hears her being tormented and abandons the prince-man to put on her own prince garb and shield Anthy from everyone's hate. Then they dance and shine and it's awesome.

~fin~

I mean, it's a stretch, but that's how I see it, dawg.

Why dancing specifically? I think it's to showcase the fact that Utena is the lead, for one, and the fact that they are totally in love. etc-loveetc-love And they're just their own people. They start dancing after everyone saw Anthy topless and it's. Just. Awesome. Don't question it.

As far as comparing it to the movie goes, I actually do think you're onto something. They are very similar. Thus I think the meaning will be as such, once one uncovers it.

Now, the stopwatch is pointless to explore. I think it's the one part of SKU that will forever remain completely encrypted. Discuss all you will, but I have accepted it as God and let it go.


http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f64/_u_t_e_n_a_/100x100/starryklimtsig.png

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#6 | Back to Top09-04-2009 10:57:29 AM

satyreyes
no, definitely no cons
From: New Orleans, Louisiana
Registered: 10-16-2006
Posts: 10328
Website

Re: Two questions that are bothering me - the dances and Miki's timer

As for the watch, we've talked about it some in this thread; it's also occasionally come up on other threads.  My favorite interpretation is that it's highlighting Miki's reluctance to move into the future -- which is to say, further away from his sunlit garden -- while also playing up his obsession with precision.  Ikuni (the show's director, Ikuhara Kunihiko) once said in an interview the watch is entirely meaningless and just based on an old habit of his own, but most of us don't trust him to talk straight about Utena given how ridiculous most of his answers to questions about the show are.  (In a different interview he said Miki's watch holds all the mysteries of creation.  Go figure.)

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#7 | Back to Top08-20-2011 03:57:28 AM

dirufacade
Ballgoer
From: Baltimore & DC
Registered: 08-03-2011
Posts: 148
Website

Re: Two questions that are bothering me - the dances and Miki's timer

Necro!

Thought I'd throw in something I've been ruminating on said dance sequences:

In both the movie and series, Utena actually invokes the power of Dios / *transforms* for the dance.  In fact, in the series she's also jumping from table to table in a very similar fashion to the way she hops around the dueling arena.  Similarly, the "dress" she whips together for Anthy almost certainly has to have the power of miracles holding it together. As far as I know, this is the only time Utena transforms outside of the Dueling arena and happens in the episode immediately after the first time Dios descends from the castle.

I feel like this sequence contains all the mysteries of creation, or at least can be used to draw insight on how the Diosforce / Utena connection works and how said Diosforce can operate outside of the Duel arena,


~ diru

Don't talk shit. One does not hear about Abraxas by accident.

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#8 | Back to Top08-20-2011 01:05:43 PM

KaleMarsh
High Tripper
From: Washington, DC
Registered: 06-13-2011
Posts: 245

Re: Two questions that are bothering me - the dances and Miki's timer

satyreyes wrote:

Ikuni (the show's director, Ikuhara Kunihiko) once said in an interview the watch is entirely meaningless and just based on an old habit of his own, but most of us don't trust him to talk straight about Utena given how ridiculous most of his answers to questions about the show are.  (In a different interview he said Miki's watch holds all the mysteries of creation.  Go figure.)

Sweeeeet.  I love it when authors don't take their work too seriously.

As for the dance sequence in episode three, for the longest time, that was my least favorite episode, but since then, I've come to see the party in the same light as NajiMinkin.  The added bonus being that, after the party, she becomes just Utena again.

I hope the old members don't mind newbies bringing old threads back for rumination.  I'm having fun reading all the old stuff you've posted.

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#9 | Back to Top08-22-2011 10:10:02 PM

brian
Atlantean Singer
Registered: 10-22-2006
Posts: 588

Re: Two questions that are bothering me - the dances and Miki's timer

The dance evokes Cinderella's Ball, where two people meet and then have to wander all kinds of labyrinths to find each other again. It is probably also the place and moment where Anthy really starts to feel whatever it is she is feeling for Utena.

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#10 | Back to Top08-23-2011 01:21:26 PM

artemis88
Mikage Mistruster
Registered: 05-05-2011
Posts: 66

Re: Two questions that are bothering me - the dances and Miki's timer

OnlyInThisLight wrote:

I agree with Macolada as far as the movie goes, and that the dance scenes in the series are part of the fairytale motif. 

But also, there is something about two people dancing that is wonderfully fitting for Utena.  A method of achieving happiness (which is an often time overlooked but critical theme in Utena, happiness) that involves two people working together, and yet is conducive to highlighting gender inequality.  (The man usually leads).  Of course, just like those paths of our own to happiness that Ikuni wishes more young people could imagine, you can invent new dances of your own, with a partner or no.  Though, some are wary and need a kind friend to help them feel comfortable shaking it out on a dance floor. 

But this is obvious.  I need to stop posting shit that everyone knows and pretending to be smart. orz

ALSO, part of that whole "oh, this?  this is just your innocent, run of the mill shoujo series right here.  nothing freaky is about to happen in later episodes.  no. look at the dancing and rose petals and ambiguous girl friendship. happy ending to mean girl's hi jinks.  don't worry.  you are safe here"  vibe the first arc wants get across to facilitate the eventual mindrape.

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#11 | Back to Top10-27-2011 08:48:35 AM

Rotten Mooring
Precious One
Registered: 10-26-2011
Posts: 281

Re: Two questions that are bothering me - the dances and Miki's timer

I can't help but notice that there is a dance in both the series and the movies with Anthy and Utena. I don't think the dances would be included in both the series and the movie if it didn't hold a secret meaning to it.

I DO! Fanservice~etc-love

Either that or

Ikuhara decided to do the two dance scenes because he likes showing two girls dancing.

emot-dance

As for Miki's stop watch, I once read a theory that Miki is timing the lines for the dubbing. If you check (apparently) each time he stops the watch, the time shown on it is equal to one of the lines a character has recently spoken. It's not a very interesting theory, philosophically speaking, but it is an entertaining one. emot-keke
And could I see that being an old habit of Ikuhara's? Yes. Very yes.

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#12 | Back to Top11-28-2011 04:31:21 PM

Atropos
Atropos Turretslayer
From: Hampden College
Registered: 10-22-2011
Posts: 906

Re: Two questions that are bothering me - the dances and Miki's timer

Perhaps Miki's watch is trying to show how futile and destructive the search for eternity is: by trying to preserve their memories forever, they're losing the chance to create new memories and enjoy what they still have.

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