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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 Top03-14-2007 11:45:38 PM

Romanticide
Cow Bellhop
From: Mazatlan
Registered: 10-18-2006
Posts: 447

Differences of caracter in Utena at the final duel.

I don't have the sources right here so I will write from memory.
*Manga: After Akio leaves into the inverted castle, Utena tries to break Anthy's coffin without success; at one moment she gaves up, and throws here rose wing saying it doesn't suits here anymore. Then the spirit of Dios comes down of the castle, takes the ring from the floor and he gives it to her. With newfound strenght Utena smashes the coffin and frees Anthy from it. The rest is history.

*Anime: Utena, betrayed, broken and discarded on the floor while Akio uses her sword to try to broke the gate of revolution; Dios only appears to her to tell her it's hopeless to go on and that he will tend her wounds later, Utena smashes the fist and gets up, to her the game is not over yet... you already know the rest.

Same character, different versions. It's not uncommon in a work of fiction that the hero passes a moment of doubt and hopeless, but in this case both Utenas have different reactions. Manga Utena gaves up, maybe only temporally but she only can get up when her admired figured gives her hope. Anime Utena didn't gave up in the whole sense of the world, she is hurt, she cannot get up and because Akio is smashing her soulsword into the gate, her body hurts more; is not that she doesn't want to get up, she can't, and Dios instead of giving her courage he tells her to give up, she doesn't .

So what do you think? Is manga Utena weaker? or it's just two different visions?


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#2 | Back to Top03-15-2007 12:10:56 AM

SleepDebtFairy
Revolutionary
From: Virginia
Registered: 10-16-2006
Posts: 2095

Re: Differences of caracter in Utena at the final duel.

I can't really say who is weaker, since I haven't yet read the manga, so I don't know how manga!Utena is in the rest of the series.

But the differences are interesting. From what you said, in the manga, Utena regains her hope from her beloved hero and idol who she looks up to. In the anime, she looked up to the ideal of Dios all through out the series, until the very end. In the end, it's Dios telling her that it's hopeless that makes her get up, even more determined despite her wounds. Is this showing that after what Akio showed to her and remembering her true memories, she decides to be her own prince and not listen to Dios? Or that despite looking up to Dios, the refuses to give up anyway. Hmm.

On another note, I've endlessly debated to myself whether the Dios at the end of the anime was a part of Utena, Anthy, Akio, or just the ghost of Dios himself. It's confusing and interesting. emot-confused

Last edited by SleepDebtFairy (03-15-2007 12:11:14 AM)


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#3 | Back to Top03-15-2007 12:11:36 AM

Hina the Prince
Friend, Perhaps
From: Israel
Registered: 10-20-2006
Posts: 320

Re: Differences of caracter in Utena at the final duel.

Manga Utena is weaker, yes. She would have probably done nothing if it wasn't for Dios. Anime Utena didn't need Dios anymore at that point - she was going to save Anthy no matter what, which is what real nobility is all about. Manga Utena, on the other hand, made it look like she still depended on the Power of Dios. Giving up so quickly on your best friend is not very princely, nor is it very Utena-ish. Even in the movie, where Utena is a closed off, rather hopeless person who clings to her prince in a different way, in the end her love for Anthy and will to save her were stronger than anything else. This is the Utena I know and love. etc-love

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#4 | Back to Top03-15-2007 12:14:59 AM

SleepDebtFairy
Revolutionary
From: Virginia
Registered: 10-16-2006
Posts: 2095

Re: Differences of caracter in Utena at the final duel.

Hina the Prince wrote:

Manga Utena is weaker, yes. She would have probably done nothing if it wasn't for Dios. Anime Utena didn't need Dios anymore at that point - she was going to save Anthy no matter what, which is what real nobility is all about. Manga Utena, on the other hand, made it look like she still depended on the Power of Dios. Giving up so quickly on your best friend is not very princely, nor is it very Utena-ish. Even in the movie, where Utena is a closed off, rather hopeless person who clings to her prince in a different way, in the end her love for Anthy and will to save her were stronger than anything else. This is the Utena I know and love. etc-love

That's the Utena I love, too. emot-keke I think it's very much like her to cling to her image of Dios, until the very end where she decides to become her own prince.

After all, her true memories are very different from the sugar-coated ones she normally remembers. And I think it's her real, sub-conscious memories that drive her. In those, Dios wasn't being a real prince to her. It was her that decided she would become a prince on her own to save Anthy since Dios couldn't. So I think it's very like Utena to not listen to Dios after all of that, in the end when she is faced with her real memories (at least it seems that way) and who her "prince" became.

Last edited by SleepDebtFairy (03-15-2007 12:15:43 AM)


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#5 | Back to Top03-15-2007 12:36:29 AM

ShatteredMirror
Yaoi Pet #1
From: Sacramento, CA
Registered: 10-22-2006
Posts: 8858

Re: Differences of caracter in Utena at the final duel.

I've only read the first two volumes of the manga and that was quite a while ago so I don't remember it clearly, but I think that at the end of the anime it was her loss of faith in Dios that drove Utena to open the gate. I'm not sure why her mind changed the events into the sugar-coated silhouette flashbacks that we see at the beginning of the first episode, but it is indeed the real memories that drive her. I mean, it's one thing to want to emulate someone you admire, but it seems stronger, somehow, to become a prince to save Anthy because nobody else can, than to be come a prince because a prince saved you.

Okay, I didn't word that as well as I'd have liked to but it's as close as I can get at this time of night.


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#6 | Back to Top03-15-2007 12:45:20 AM

SleepDebtFairy
Revolutionary
From: Virginia
Registered: 10-16-2006
Posts: 2095

Re: Differences of caracter in Utena at the final duel.

ShatteredMirror wrote:

I've only read the first two volumes of the manga and that was quite a while ago so I don't remember it clearly, but I think that at the end of the anime it was her loss of faith in Dios that drove Utena to open the gate. I'm not sure why her mind changed the events into the sugar-coated silhouette flashbacks that we see at the beginning of the first episode, but it is indeed the real memories that drive her. I mean, it's one thing to want to emulate someone you admire, but it seems stronger, somehow, to become a prince to save Anthy because nobody else can, than to be come a prince because a prince saved you.

Okay, I didn't word that as well as I'd have liked to but it's as close as I can get at this time of night.

I kind of think that the reason why Utena's mind substituted her real memories for the typical fairy-tale ones is because she wants to remember it that way. When recalling her prince, Utena often says that she was so young she can't remember much. Which is pretty true. She was very young.. and it was a pretty traumatic memory. A girl getting stabbed by millions of swords and never dying, always suffering. (It sure made her forget the trauma of her parents dying) Utena's mind might have wanted to block that out because it was so scary, but her sub-conscious memory of it still drove her to want to protect Anthy so much when she met her. emot-keke I think it's pretty like Utena to do things that way. She's very naive, and a lot of the time it's also because she doesn't want to face the big, bad scary world.

(Sorry for rambling, but I agree with what you said, too. :3 )


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#7 | Back to Top03-15-2007 07:58:03 AM

Maarika
Someday Shiner
From: Estonia
Registered: 10-17-2006
Posts: 2510
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Re: Differences of caracter in Utena at the final duel.

SleepDebtFairy wrote:

On another note, I've endlessly debated to myself whether the Dios at the end of the anime was a part of Utena, Anthy, Akio, or just the ghost of Dios himself. It's confusing and interesting. emot-confused

I suppose that depends on the context, but I believe he's mostly portrayed through Utena's POV.
Such as this scene:

Utena:  Akio-san...save Himemiya.
Utena:  Akio-san!
Utena:  Hey...save her...
Utena:  Save...Himemiya...
Dios:  You should't move. I'll tend to your wounds later.
Dios:  Such a gentle child. Are you crying?
Dios:  Do you see the rose-shaped gate over there?
Dios:  Within that gate is that which is eternal, something shining, the power of miracles.
Dios:  With that power, anything is possible.
Dios:  You can't do it. You're a girl, aren't you?
Dios:  Besides, you don't have power. With power, anything is possible.
Dios:  You can even free her from her fate.
Dios:  But how the power is used...
Akio:  ...is my decision.


Akio does not a damn thing to save Anthy and that tears up any hope Utena might have had for her prince ideals. When she collpases again Dios comes to talk to her. Note the way he's talking to her - as if Utena was a helpless girl like Anthy and that even a prince cannot do anything to save her; moreover, there's no way Utena can become one. This is what makes Utena decide to give up on her belief in the prince ideals. And that's what she does. What's good about being a prince if you still can't end someone's suffering?

SleepDebtFairy wrote:

After all, her true memories are very different from the sugar-coated ones she normally remembers. And I think it's her real, sub-conscious memories that drive her. In those, Dios wasn't being a real prince to her. It was her that decided she would become a prince on her own to save Anthy since Dios couldn't. So I think it's very like Utena to not listen to Dios after all of that, in the end when she is faced with her real memories (at least it seems that way) and who her "prince" became.

I quite agree. Except I'm still not very sure whether Utena really remembers every detail about her memory of Dios and Anthy. Akio reveals her the part about Dios, but nothing is ever mentioned about Anthy. I do think Utena was still probably fighting  sub-consciously for Anthy's sake. And then again, it doesn't really matter if she'll remember all the details of her past since she didn't dwell in the past as much as some other characters and she wanted to make a change now and then.


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#8 | Back to Top03-15-2007 12:35:55 PM

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

Re: Differences of caracter in Utena at the final duel.

Going back to the original posting, I think these are two different points in the underlying story. In the manga Utena has failed Anthy, the burden of betrayel rests on her. She thinks she has permanently lost Anthy. The self-loathing she feels at that point is emotionally equivalent to Anthy on the staircase. Utena throws her ring away while Saionji cusses her out. Then Dios restores the ring, and with it Utena smashes Anthy's coffin. Anthy revives, but it turns out to be brittle revival. The shards form into a new sword for Utena. I don't understand the symbolism of that. From then on Utena's will never wavers much although she discovers that her path is more complicated and difficult and amibiguous than she thought. Then they all decide to go into the castle and it transpires that only Utena and Touga are truly free from their coffins.

In the anime she fights at least as well as Akio, in the manga she is outclassed. Either way, final victory lies in doing the one thing Akio could never do, sacrificing everything for Anthy. The consequences of defeat are slightly different in the two stories: Anthy going back to be the Rose Bride vs. Anthy dying. In the manga, as the fight grows most hopeless, Utena has a vision of Dios and then she remembers something he said to her that she had forgotten. At that point she realizes that he can't rescue her. She gets strength from that knowledge, from remembering who she is, and what she had set out to do from the start.

Anyway bunches more happens in both stories after that. In the anime Utena focuses her attention on Anthy while Akio looks on and in the manga she focuses on Akio while Anthy looks on. In the manga she is rescuing Akio as much as anyone and there seems to be the possibility that he secretly yearned to be overcome much as Mikage did.

In both stories Utena shows Anthy the path out by going first.

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#9 | Back to Top03-19-2007 01:37:51 PM

Fayli
Saionji Slapper
Registered: 03-19-2007
Posts: 25

Re: Differences of caracter in Utena at the final duel.

I think the manga is more clear in the fact that Akio and Dios are separate, the anime is not and i think this is the reason why the two differ so in the end.

I also think that neither Utena is weaker, because i find it hard to define what makes one weak and the other not. I've always been interested in the Buddhist undertones of the series and i believe that the appearance of Dios giving Utena back the ring in the manga was a form of skillful means in order for Utena to achieve her goal emot-wink

In the anime, i believe that Utena finds the strength from within to go forward and open the door, because of the fact that Akio has betrayed Anthy.

But,

To be honest though, and i got this feeling mainly from the anime. I think that Utena was never real (much like the dueling arena ect) but rather a set of ideals that lead Anthy to where she ends up, free. Utena was Anthy's freedom. How can we be sure that any of the events actually happened? Again i personally think it comes down to the idea of skilful means. Freedom is Anthy's form of Nirvana. Utena was Anthy's Bodhisattva, but i personally believe that she never physically existed (nobody remembers her in the end!)

Last edited by Fayli (03-19-2007 01:42:47 PM)

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#10 | Back to Top03-20-2007 06:31:06 AM

garesuka
New Student
Registered: 03-17-2007
Posts: 6

Re: Differences of caracter in Utena at the final duel.

I think the reason why no-one remembers Utena is because the school gets reset, everyone is back to how they would of been if they hadn't of entered the duels. Though some things have changed for the good the second time round. Utena passes from the dream like world into a reality, she can't really exist in both worlds anymore. Its kinda like when you wake from a dream and can not dream the same dream.

I tend to believe that Utena was real in the sense she was Anthy's lost psyche. However the school was the thing that wasn't real. Its a purgatory made from the divide within Anthy. Utena ended up merging within Anthy, essentially they became the same being. I interpret Anthy's leaving the academy as her taking the first couple of steps of the new her, hair down and independent, the very person Utena was. The ending credits were like Anthy taking the journey out of the perverted fairytale of a world of princes, nobility and courage, walking out into the real. Searching for Utena IMO was Anthy's decision to keep on searching within herself but this time not relying on false fairytales but relying on her new found courage.

I quite like how the movie portrayed the student body as those parasite vehicles. It was if they were trying to take Anthy back to prolong the dream. But as soon as Anthy made it out, it became that of a dream and nothing more.

Though its quite possible that everyone was part of that dream, Utena, Anthy, the school body. And somewhere there is a real person waking from that dream, as a more complete individual.

Anthy is a blank canvas, if any of the other duelists won... then we would of had a different Anthy. Because Anthy seems to change and adapt whenever someone 'wins' her. Utena is engaged for the longest and completes the trials and her personality/conscious is reflected onto Anthy, and as the Chameleon she is.. becomes what Utena was.

I don't think either Utena was stronger or weaker. They both represent the same thing just realized Revolution in different ways. And about Dios helping out Utena, I think Dios might of been Utena's own conscious.

So you have Anthy void with no conscious of her own, he adapts Utena as hers who adapted Dios as her own. So its kind of a strange way of getting Dios and Anthy back together. As Utena was more of a Dios than Dios was.

Anyways, thats whats on my mind. Its midnight... so goodnight. (I probably contradicted myself school-eng101)

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#11 | Back to Top03-20-2007 12:47:21 PM

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

Re: Differences of caracter in Utena at the final duel.

garesuka wrote:

(I probably contradicted myself)

Yes, but so what? The story contradicts itself so we don't have to be consistent either.

The exploding curry episode shows them experiencing each others' lives. Anthy gets a break from being Anthy and Utena gets an opportunity to be more empathetic (a chance she does not make good use of since she just wants to switch back). Still, it is a start for them to become more like each other.

When AnthyUtena is cornered by the bullies she cracks her knuckles and slaps one of them. The defiant look is very similar to the glower that little Anthy gives to the mob just before they condemn her.  It is as if Anthy has briefly regained her lost courage that enabled her to defy mankind to protect her prince. It is also a chance for Utena to understand how Anthy became the way she is although she does not understand it yet.

edit: Manga and anime Utena are strong and weak at different times. In both versions Anthy loses hope and Utena awakens her from despair.

Last edited by brian (03-20-2007 01:27:14 PM)

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