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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 Top05-17-2015 12:25:33 PM

Nocturnalux
Qualified Duellist
From: Portugal
Registered: 09-10-2007
Posts: 741

Free!

Now that was seriously hot.

Physis is there to make really vague premonitions and look pretty, I guess. I too never got any feeling there was a romantic involvement, I can't imagine Physis being in love with anyone. She's a bit to Blue and Jomy as Mother Eliza is to Keith.

Blue/Jomy slashes itself. [All that flying through space to save Jomy led to some of the more iconic images in the series and makes for perfect slashing fodder. It has got to be deliberate]

In-series, I suppose there is a justification for Matsuka being such a frequent visitor in Keith's room.[Since no one is supposed to know that Matsuka is a Mu it makes sense for Keith to address him in private more often than not. Come to think of it, Keith is a Mu magnet.[]

I really like Keith/Matsuka as well. In a very twisted way their personalities end up matching with Matsuka being a masochist empath and Keith the ultimate codlfish. It's been a while since I watched Terra, is it ever explained why Matsuka decided to stick to Keith through thick and thin? I really need to rewatch Terra and while I'm at I might as well tackle the movie.

Isn't Silver Diamond actual BL? I've been meaning to read it, I'll give it priority now.

In anticipation of the upcoming movie and in order to polish my Japanese skills, I started reading High Speed, the light novel behind Free!. I've heard that it was not half as gay as the anime but it's still pretty gay. It takes place when the boys are in elementary and later middle school so some of the homoerotic subtext is toned down but it has plenty of boys obsessing over boys and staring at one another's swimming with much talk about strong emotions.
Haruka comes across as almost creepy and really against getting at all involved with Rin, at least at first. From the anime I got the impression that he was peeved when Rin transferred to Iwatobi while in the novels he is furious. We also get a peek into Haruka's mind and see that he often finds Makoto to be a bother while virtually everyone and everything else *is* a bother, swimming being the one exception. His habit of looking away when is not pleased is mentioned as something of a defining trait.

Last edited by Nocturnalux (05-20-2015 10:33:03 PM)

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#2 | Back to Top05-18-2015 08:27:27 AM

HonorableShadow
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From: Ohio
Registered: 11-03-2006
Posts: 471
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Re: Free!

I wish some day someone would release a full translation of High Speed! Well I guess in a little while it won't be necessary since there will be a movie/the manga, but it still would be nice to read.

I'm actually kind of worried about the High Speed movie - I hope they'll find a way to incorporate Rei and Rin into it. Rei isn't present at all in either book and Rin is off in Australia so while I'm sure he'll have a role it will probably be tiny. emot-gonk  Plus no Momo or Nitori at all either. I was hoping for something fun that involved all of the boys, I hope they'll find a way to fit everyone in. The thing I'm most looking forward to seeing animated is Rin's letter to Haru [that he got too embarrassed to send so he sent it to Sousuke instead after making a poor effort to cover up the fact that it was meant for Haru. Sousuke wasn't fooled and showed it to Haru. ]

I got the new plushies the other day, they're super adorable: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CFEgu69VIAALGxy.jpg

I had the old plushies too, so now they're all one big happy family: http://41.media.tumblr.com/0f990cea242a … 4_1280.jpg

Last edited by HonorableShadow (05-18-2015 08:28:05 AM)


Rose tint my world...
Keep me safe from my trouble and pain.

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#3 | Back to Top05-18-2015 08:48:57 AM

Yams
Nest Boxer
From: Crystal Millenium
Registered: 02-13-2007
Posts: 960

Re: Free!

I'm asking about Silver Diamond because there are a lot of shonen-ai titles that are VERY light on the shonen-ai, a lot of them are nothing more than elaborate cock-teases. Like, the characters will kiss only because they trip over something and bump into each other, or after 23 volumes of nothing, they'll declare their love. It's not even that I need sex or anything, but I have read BL that had less BL in it than Free!, no joke. If it's labelled BL than I do expect more than just slash, I at least want a rewarding relationship.

Nocturnalux wrote:

Now that was seriously hot.

Blue's love for staring very deeply into Jomy's eyes is straight out of the manga, in fact.

http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i232/YamPuff/8a8ce0279191db01d8d9b2d486a9859a_zpsyiyes45m.jpeg~original

Well, if you insist, Keith...

Matsuka sticks with Keith because [he believes that Keith is truly a good person deep, deep, deep down. For example, when Sam dies Keith acts indifferent, however, with his empath skills Matuska can see that Keith is distraught and upset inside. Even though he is aware that Keith is using him, he feels as though he owes Keith his life for not outing him as a Mu and killing him. In fact, Keith decides not to kill Matsuka long before he discovers his full strengths and realizes just how useful and powerful Matuksa is. He believes in Matsuka's abilities and tells him so. As well, the way Keith lowers his defenses around Matsuka, almost as if he's asking Matsuka to go ahead, kill him and end this all, seems to make Matsuka hesitate and stick to him even more. And writing this just made me realize how complicated their relationship is and reconfirmed my love for it.] It also helps that Keith is not hard on the eyes IF YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN. school-eng101

EDIT: I am not very excited about the Free! movie for just those reasons. Rei is literally my favorite part of Free! and I think the four Iwatobi boys really have strong chemistry among each other, as a team and as friends, not even in a slash way. I'm not really interested in them as kids, especially when you already know what happens to them when they are older.

I'm curious if they will translate & release High Speed; the series is obviously popular enough. It's Haruka POV, right?

Last edited by YamPuff (05-18-2015 08:52:10 AM)


http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i232/YamPuff/im%20holllowz_zpsx9ddh2gp.png~original

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#4 | Back to Top05-18-2015 11:46:44 AM

Nocturnalux
Qualified Duellist
From: Portugal
Registered: 09-10-2007
Posts: 741

Re: Free!

Those plushies are really, really cute! etc-love

I can't see how they can incorporate Rei into the High Speed movie but Nitori might be possible as he knew Haruka and Rin back in the day, at least by sight. And it'd be fun to see some of the novel only characters animated. Sousuke fans will rejoice as there is plenty of him as well. But it is a bit strange that they chose to do a prequel instead of a sequel. What would also be very cool to see is a spinoff with the first ED, have all the boys in an alternate Arabian Nights scenario just for the fun of it. The second ED would work as well.

About the novels, they are surprisingly serious. Kyoani added a lot of comedy and light hearted moments with all of the boys just hanging out, it worked remarkably well and made the darker moments pack a punch. The novels have virtually no humor at all, at least so far, and the lack of Rei is severly felt on occasion.
It probably does not help that Haruka's geeky side is absent as well. In the anime apart from being a cold fish Haruka also goes on about mackerel and likes to draw things like the (in)famous Iwatobi-chan but in the novels he has none of that. What he does do is go out of his way to avoid Rin, even literally so. Very mild spoilers for the novel: [When Rin joins the IWSC Haruka is so eager to put a little distance between himself and Rin that he drags Makoto away under the pretext of getting timed in the short course. This when Haruka has absolutely no interest in times at all. Rin eventually joins them and more or less forces Haruka to race him, all this time Makoto is timing with a stopwatch. Haruka ends up barely winning, Rin asks Makoto for the time when lo and behold, Haruka takes the stopwatch and resets it. You get a greater feeling of antagonism than in the anime.]

From the anime I got the impression that the fishing village (that is based on a real place, I believe) is a beautiful and peaceful place but the novels make it seem almost ominous. It still comes across as gorgeous but the description of how the houses are almost squeezed between sea and mountains give it a claustrophic atmosphere. Maybe it is just my interpretation.

The novels' POV is not exclusively Haruka's. It often shifts to Rin and occasionally to Makoto. Odds are it will cover other characters, I am still on chapter 3. One very cool thing about the novels is that they expand the relationship between characters that we have not seen interact all that much like Rin/Nagisa and Rin/Makoto.

YamPuff wrote:

Matsuka sticks with Keith because [he believes that Keith is truly a good person deep, deep, deep down. For example, when Sam dies Keith acts indifferent, however, with his empath skills Matuska can see that Keith is distraught and upset inside. Even though he is aware that Keith is using him, he feels as though he owes Keith his life for not outing him as a Mu and killing him. In fact, Keith decides not to kill Matsuka long before he discovers his full strengths and realizes just how useful and powerful Matuksa is. He believes in Matsuka's abilities and tells him so. As well, the way Keith lowers his defenses around Matsuka, almost as if he's asking Matsuka to go ahead, kill him and end this all, seems to make Matsuka hesitate and stick to him even more. And writing this just made me realize how complicated their relationship is and reconfirmed my love for it.] It also helps that Keith is not hard on the eyes IF YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN. school-eng101

Thanks for refreshing my memory. Keith/Matsuka is probably the most twisted relationship in the entire series. It is also rather complex and way too rife with possibilities. That stun gun, I don't even.

Last edited by Nocturnalux (05-18-2015 01:54:47 PM)

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#5 | Back to Top05-18-2015 07:37:34 PM

HonorableShadow
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From: Ohio
Registered: 11-03-2006
Posts: 471
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Re: Free!

What would also be very cool to see is a spinoff with the first ED, have all the boys in an alternate Arabian Nights scenario just for the fun of it. The second ED would work as well.

I would love ab Arabian Nights spinoff! It's one of my favorite EDs from any series and I never thought they did enough with it. At least with Future Fish they used it to make storylines for all of the mooks they made, but besides the bonus art that came with the DVDs Splash Free was kind of sidelined.

Yeah, I heard that the books were a lot more serious in tone (someone even described them as "darker" though I don't know how true that is.) I'm interested to see how the manga will deal with it. I'm actually kind of hoping they lean more towards the anime tone than the HS tone but we'll see.


Rose tint my world...
Keep me safe from my trouble and pain.

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#6 | Back to Top05-19-2015 07:09:13 AM

Yams
Nest Boxer
From: Crystal Millenium
Registered: 02-13-2007
Posts: 960

Re: Free!

Ooh enlighten me if you will, Nocturnal, on Makoto's relationship with Haruka in the novels; how does Makoto view Haru, in his POVs?
I'm happy with my own anime headcanon but curious as the novel canon. emot-biggrin


http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i232/YamPuff/im%20holllowz_zpsx9ddh2gp.png~original

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#7 | Back to Top05-19-2015 09:33:22 PM

Nocturnalux
Qualified Duellist
From: Portugal
Registered: 09-10-2007
Posts: 741

Re: Free!

The Arabian Nights theme is also really popular with fans and is responsible for lots of doujin. It would also be a wonderful way of animating all of the boys including the HS only characters. Just imagine Nagisa providing the narration. Or Rei. Or both, actually.

But I am curious to see more about this letter Rin never got around to sending Haruka, the manga and/or movie must include that.

About Makoto and Haruka's relationship in HS, it does much to cement them as really close friends. Some heavier spoilers ahead:
[In the anime Makoto is afraid of the sea but HS he is afraid of being in the water, pool included. The trauma runs much deeper. Fairly early on Haruka falls in the river while trying to retrieve a girl's muffler. That he had been running a fever the whole day and was exhausted from running did not help either. Makoto and Rin find him and end up hauling him out of the water. Meanwhile Haruka has lost consciousness. Makoto clings to Haruka and repeats his name over and over again. And then he begins to shake uncontrollably. We witness this through Rin's perspective, it leaves such and impression on him that after Haruka is taken to the hospital Rin's worry shifts to Makoto.

Rin tries to sound Makoto as to what exactly happened but Makoto deflects him with his typical Makoto smile. But the moment he is left alone the shaking returns and it's severe enough that not even wrapping his arms around himself can stop it. Later we learn that this is a recurring thing. So clearly something is not quite right with Makoto.

Once the whole relay thing gets brought up by Rin, Makoto's intial reaction is to just go with whatever Haruka decides until an eventful episode. One afternoon he finds that his goldfish have died. So he picks them up and holds their inert bodies in the palm of his hand, 'as if asleep'. Makoto holds something like a funeral and buries them in his garden. He then spots the empty aquarium and it reminds him of Haruka falling in the water so has a major freak out complete with shaking and dashes out of his house.

Here the text turns entirely to Makoto's state of mind as he thinks about he does not want to meet Haruka now and how he must meet Haruka *lest he stops being himself*. Pretty heavy for an elementary school boy. Fortunately Haruka just so happens to be there in those very long stairs that connect their houses together. Haruka hails him and Makoto cannot help wondering if he was waiting for him. Makoto dismisses this almost right away but he would like to be so.

Makoto gets so close to Haruka as to be within arms' reach, his feet moving of their own accord. He asks Haruka whether he had realized he was there but Haruka claims he is just watching the sunset. Makoto reaches the conclusion that there is no way Haruka was waiting for him but that just thinking so made his pain diminish. He tells Haruka that just seeing his face makes him feel so much better. And Haruka smiles. I think it is the first time he does so in 80 pages so it is telling.

Haruka then asks Makoto if he is afraid of water and what is probably the most interesting conversation thus far takes place. Makoto has a minor panic attack but keeping his eyes on Haruka calms him down. We are told that it has always been so and that Haruka knows all about Makoto. Which is why Makoto makes the decision of opening his heart and tell Haruka how the funeral with the fishermen they witnessed as kids scarred him greatly. Makoto goes on about how ever since the water terrifies him and how even when he is swimming he is always trying to run away from it. He tells him about how he could not stop trembling when Haruka fell in the river and how horribly afraid he was. He felt as if whatever lurks in the water had taken Haruka.

The word used is 'kyoufu', something like 'terror'. And it became ever present and paralyzing.

Makoto asks Haruka to join the relay. And he makes a point of saying that it's not because Rin asked him but because he wants to swim with Haruka. Then come the famous lines, "I want to swim with you, it has to be you, it can only be you". Haru receives this with typical Haruka cold fish lack of reaction. But he says he'll think about it.

The scene ends with Makoto thinking about how much lighter he now feels that he has unburdened his worries. He is afraid of water but he loves to swim so he wants Haruka to be there with him. Makoto concludes that revealing himself to Haruka is enough for now.
]

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#8 | Back to Top05-20-2015 04:13:15 AM

Yams
Nest Boxer
From: Crystal Millenium
Registered: 02-13-2007
Posts: 960

Re: Free!

Mmmmm excellent, thank you!
There's an index on Tumblr of fan translations and summaries: http://sayasamax3.tumblr.com/post/56013 … -summaries

Makoto is my next fave character after Rei snd I like what you've said, may check out the novels


I like to think of the two in a co-dependant relationship, personally: There is a tendency for loved ones of people with borderline personality disorder (BPD) to slip into caretaker roles, giving priority and focus to problems in the life of the person with BPD rather than to issues in their own lives. Too often in these kinds of relationships, the codependent will gain a sense of worth by being “the sane one” or “the responsible one.” (wikipedia) school-sherlock That's my headcanon & I'm sticking to it.

Last edited by YamPuff (05-20-2015 04:14:01 AM)


http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i232/YamPuff/im%20holllowz_zpsx9ddh2gp.png~original

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#9 | Back to Top05-20-2015 06:36:06 AM

HonorableShadow
Cow Bellhop
From: Ohio
Registered: 11-03-2006
Posts: 471
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Re: Free!

The Arabian Nights theme is also really popular with fans and is responsible for lots of doujin. It would also be a wonderful way of animating all of the boys including the HS only characters. Just imagine Nagisa providing the narration. Or Rei. Or both, actually.

Yes, some of my favorite doujinshi have been from the Arabian Nights theme. There doesn't seem to be a lot of fanfiction about it though for some reason? Just a handful really. Come on western fandom what are you doing? emot-gonk 

But I am curious to see more about this letter Rin never got around to sending Haruka, the manga and/or movie must include that.

Yes! I'm so excited for that. etc-love I'll be really disappointed if they don't include it. But since its one of the major scenes [where Haru and Sousuke interact] I'm sure they will. I want to see the stuff about Rin's grandma animated too. (At one point she said  something along the lines of  ["that's the boy my grandson was so taken with that he switched schools!" about Haru and I wondered how much he talked about Haru to his family. emot-rofl] )

There's an index on Tumblr of fan translations and summaries: http://sayasamax3.tumblr.com/post/56013 … -summaries

Oo, thanks for the link!

I think maybe we should make a Free thread. What do you guys think?

Last edited by HonorableShadow (05-20-2015 06:37:43 AM)


Rose tint my world...
Keep me safe from my trouble and pain.

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#10 | Back to Top05-20-2015 04:12:52 PM

HonorableShadow
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From: Ohio
Registered: 11-03-2006
Posts: 471
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Re: Free!

Swimming and hot boys!


Rose tint my world...
Keep me safe from my trouble and pain.

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#11 | Back to Top05-21-2015 08:54:21 AM

Riri-kins
World's End
From: Cloud Nine
Registered: 09-22-2008
Posts: 2346

Re: Free!

My friends have recommended this to me cuz it's full of hot guys showing their abs. I need to see it.


Proud Saionji and Mikage fangirl
My Utena fanfiction: http://www.fanfiction.net/u/2000115/Riri-kins

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#12 | Back to Top05-21-2015 01:00:26 PM

Snow
Troublesome Insect
From: in the wolf
Registered: 09-30-2013
Posts: 642

Re: Free!

Hello, Free! folk!

Have an AMV


While I couldn't truly get into the series (I have that problem with slice-of-life), the eyecandy is superb. Makoto is luf etc-love

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#13 | Back to Top05-21-2015 03:59:35 PM

Yams
Nest Boxer
From: Crystal Millenium
Registered: 02-13-2007
Posts: 960

Re: Free!

Makoto is one hot piece of ass, let me tell you.

So, my loves, favorite pairing? I ship Mako x Haru school-devil Mako on top of course.  emot-dance
I also like Souseke x Rin or Rin x Nitori
NEVER Rin and Haru, I wont touch that ship with a ten foot pole.

I am not really a slice-of-life fan myself, I think the only example of the genre I've watched before was k-On, which I watched because I did a thing with a friend of mine where we each had to watch what the other recommended.  I made her watch Ouran high school host club. I tend to find slice of lifes a little frustrating with the meandering plots and the characters are just too 'moe'. Like they're so obviously made to appeal to you, you always have the cute one, the serious one, the megane one etc ec. So they can feel really artificial at times. But I felt Free! had more tham enough love and heart in it, but I felt just a teensy bit bored during the end of the second season. Like, you can only take so much of a bunch of hot, talented, privelaged boys angsting and whinging before you start rolling your eyes. But I say this with love.


http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i232/YamPuff/im%20holllowz_zpsx9ddh2gp.png~original

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#14 | Back to Top05-21-2015 05:30:55 PM

HonorableShadow
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From: Ohio
Registered: 11-03-2006
Posts: 471
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Re: Free!

Riri-kins wrote:

My friends have recommended this to me cuz it's full of hot guys showing their abs. I need to see it.

I think you definitely should! It's a nice refreshing anime and I really like it a lot. Summer is coming up and since it's a summer themed anime it's perfect. emot-wink

NEVER Rin and Haru, I wont touch that ship with a ten foot pole.

Haha, awkward... RinHaru is my all time favorite ship out of any anime and the only thing I ship in Free. emot-gonk I think we're destined to never ship the same things! Maybe some day.

I really liked that AMV Snow! Thanks for sharing.

There's some adorable new figurines that were announced today of the boys as kids. Getting ready for HS I guess.
http://hobby.dengeki.com/news/71115/

Last edited by HonorableShadow (05-21-2015 05:34:24 PM)


Rose tint my world...
Keep me safe from my trouble and pain.

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#15 | Back to Top05-21-2015 05:34:50 PM

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

Re: Free!

Free! Is worth a watch even if just for the extra context when watching 50% Off!

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#16 | Back to Top05-21-2015 06:13:05 PM

Nocturnalux
Qualified Duellist
From: Portugal
Registered: 09-10-2007
Posts: 741

Re: Free!

Great timing for this thread, I just received my Free! doujin emot-keke

Including this beauty:
http://i.ebayimg.com/00/s/ODM2WDYwMA==/z/7x4AAOSwd4tUBxEl/$_1.JPG

Arabian Nights theme for the win! etc-love

As far as pairing goes, mine is Rin/Haru all the way. I like it because while it is rife with tension (hell, and *because* it is so) Rin is capable of making Haruka evolve into an actual human being. Left to his devices Haruka borders on autism and even the creator has described me as a someone who is lacking fundamental. By shaking Haruka's convinctions and more or less forcing him to face him, Rin causes Haruka to become a more rounded individual.

I never could get into Haruka/Makoto even though I really like them both, just not together. It is probably it strikes me as too co-depended a relationship. As sweet and adorable as Makoto is I cannot help wondering whether he is not something of an enabler.

I also really like Rei/Nagisa and occasionally Haruka/Rei. And Kisume/Everyone.

And I was forgetting, I'm fond of Sousuke/Nitori.

Last edited by Nocturnalux (05-21-2015 07:01:09 PM)

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#17 | Back to Top05-21-2015 07:09:36 PM

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

Re: Free!

Honestly, I really dislike Haru/Rin.  Makoto accepts Haru for who he is (there is nothing wrong with being autistic, or being "autistic like") and Rin was nothing but an insanely self-centered asshole the entire first season.  What you refer to tension I refer to someone bullying another person who struggles to emote and communicate.  Makoto and Haru act like friends, and have history together that comes from positive places.  I can imagine them in a relationship and having conversations that actual couples would. 

Nothing Rin did in the first season was for Haru's benefit.  He emotionally punishes Haru for not being the competitor HE wants Haru to be so that he'll feel less like shit for having lost to him as kid, he acts like a fucking ten year old rather than up and tell his friends he wants to fucking swim with them and feels bad about Australia, and makes no effort to understand Haru's own perspective towards swimming.   That this causes Haru a lot of emotional conflict and to struggle with trying to figure out why he swims is pretty sad, actually, because he's doing it thinking he OWES something to Rin, he does it out of quilt.  A feeling Rin's open animosity does little to ameliorate.  Oh, and let's not forget that after an entire season of being nothing but nice to him (sans one well deserved rant from Rei), when Haru offers Rin the damn thing he's acting like such a child about, Rin PHYSICALLY ATTACKS HARU. 

It isn't until the second season, when Rin finally becomes fantastic, that he instead seeks to motivate Haru for the sake of making Haru happy, and does that by showing Haru that swimming can be a way to connect with people on a global scale and explore the world, in much they way that it connects him to his friends.  He didn't try and force a competitive spirit into Haru.  He just showed him that a bit of competitive mindset will be able to help him achieve other goals.  Considering that Rin was acting as a coach the entire 2nd season, it is a really fitting storyline for him.  But he wasn't able to do this without the lesson Haru and the other's taught him in the first season.  If anyone inspired someone to shape up, develop and grow it's Haru and his friends who changed Rin, not Rin "improving" Haru.

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#18 | Back to Top05-21-2015 07:54:04 PM

HonorableShadow
Cow Bellhop
From: Ohio
Registered: 11-03-2006
Posts: 471
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Re: Free!

As far as pairing goes, mine is Rin/Haru all the way. I like it because while it is rife with tension (hell, and *because* it is so) Rin is capable of making Haruka evolve into an actual human being. Left to his devices Haruka borders on autism and even the creator has described me as a someone who is lacking fundamental. By shaking Haruka's convinctions and more or less forcing him to face him, Rin causes Haruka to become a more rounded individual.

I never could get into Haruka/Makoto even though I really like them both, just not together. It is probably it strikes me as too co-depended a relationship. As sweet and adorable as Makoto is I cannot help wondering whether he is not something of an enabler.

Yeah, I totally agree with this. Something about MakoHaru is just, idk...really off-putting to me. It's supposed to be this really sweet relationship and I'm sure they're great friends, but it never did much for me.

One of the reasons I like Rin and Haru so much is because they brought about changes for the better in each other. Their relationship could be rocky at times and sometimes they didn't get along, but they fought for their friendship.  Haru didn't just abandon Rin when he was depressed in s1, though he could have easily done so after Rin coldly said he never wanted to swim with him again. He wanted to swim with Rin, he wanted to mend their relationship, and so he chased after him. In s2 Haru told Rei something along the lines of "thanks to you, we were saved" ("we" referring to his relationship with Rin) and Rin said something similar to Rei as well when he was giving him swimming lessons.

Rin in s1 wasn't a very good friend and I'll be the first one to admit that, but as the director said in an interview, that type of behavior from Rin was the outlier and not the norm. When he was younger he was (according to Haru himself) "an idiot who went around smiling all the time." And once his issues were dealt with, he went back to his normal sweet self. Australia brought him to an all time low and he was depressed because of it, and depression doesn't always cause you to act rationally. Not that it's an excuse to be an asshole to your friends, but I can see why it happened.

In s2, Rin helped Haru find his dream by taking him away from the situation that was stressing him out. He let him find his dream on his own terms, and so Haru was able to stop and think and realize what he wanted to do more than anything. Just like when they were kids, Rin pushed Haru and challenged him and tried to get him to swim in the relay. Once Haru stopped protesting about the relay, he found that he actually liked it a lot. Haru is just very tsun and stubborn a lot of times about admitting what he likes even to himself. (You could see throughout the season that he really did want to swim pro by the way his eyes shined every time someone brought up "pro-swimming" and his speech in the bath about how the water felt like it had been neutered and wasn't enough for him anymore.) Rin helps Haru be honest with himself instead of stagnating. I think they both changed each other and helped each other grow and that's why I love them so much. Plus their teasing (once they made up) is seriously adorable. You can tell how fond they are of each other.

Anyway! Nocturnalx, I've read that doujinshi before and I liked it a lot. I can recommend some more to you if you want?

Last edited by HonorableShadow (05-21-2015 07:56:38 PM)


Rose tint my world...
Keep me safe from my trouble and pain.

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#19 | Back to Top05-21-2015 08:22:52 PM

Nocturnalux
Qualified Duellist
From: Portugal
Registered: 09-10-2007
Posts: 741

Re: Free!

HonorableShadow wrote:

Rin helps Haru be honest with himself instead of stagnating. I think they both changed each other and helped each other grow and that's why I love them so much. Plus their teasing (once they made up) is seriously adorable. You can tell how fond they are of each other.

This, basically. Rin and Haru have to struggle a lot but that makes their relationship dynamic in a way that Makoto never is.
And I'm also willing to cut Rin some slack for acting like such a jerk through most of s1. He had been through a lot during his time in Australia and while that is no excuse to treat others badly I can understand why he was so upset at Haruka. After trying one's hardest to be the best at something, to lose to someone who is not even trying and who did not even want to win must be a crushing blow when you are already living in a foreign environment and very much alone. It would affect anyone, let alone someone as emotional as Rin.

HonorableShadow wrote:

Anyway! Nocturnalx, I've read that doujinshi before and I liked it a lot. I can recommend some more to you if you want?

Please do so emot-keke
I have a few Free! doujin already, including the first volume of Paradise Regained. I'm a sucker for the Arabian Nights theme.

Last edited by Nocturnalux (05-21-2015 08:25:22 PM)

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#20 | Back to Top05-21-2015 09:35:33 PM

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

Re: Free!

I would accept Rin not being able to handle his ~strong emotions~ if he was a thirteen year old, not a 17 year old.  And there is no excuse for bullying, being emotionally manipulative and at the end- physically violent with someone. At the very least, it should never be that person's targeted victim who is made responsible for "healing" them and Rin is pretty much rarely to never taken to task for how downright awful he behaves.  He is consistently framed as an emotional angsty weeaboo, and I find it pretty offensive.  Rin barely acknowledges that Haru is a human being and not just a person that swims really damn well for him to compete against for the majority of S1 [this being a HUGE insecurity of Haru's, that people only see him for his talent, see his swimming as valuable in what it means to them], and when Rin starts behaving similarly in S2 Haru finally tells him to back off.  Because S2 Rin is awesome, he immediately realizes his error. 

(It's weird, I LOATHE S1 Rin sooooooooooooooooo much, but adore him in S2; the way he is written, his storyline and interaction with the other characters, his coming of age and how he defines himself as a leader and a teacher, the dimension added to his personality when we see him with his host family, how he actually seems to have learned lessons instead of being rewarded by the narrative for being a shitlord... he's this fantastic, subtle force that affects all of the characters in their journeys, while have an overarching one of his own.)

Just because Makoto and Haruka as a ship doesn't have dysfunction and angst doesn't mean there is no depth to their relationship.  S2 was full of Makoto, of all people, coming to terms with his own feelings of inadequacy when compared to Haru's talents and whether or not Haru's incomparable skill would eventually separate them.  Makoto never pushed Haru to think about his future so long as Haru himself was happy coasting along, but when he realized that Haru wasn't happy, and was actively self-sabotaging himself in order to stay safe in the space that Makoto himself had helped create for him that Makoto and Haru had their biggest clash.  But unlike with Rin, I felt Makoto's strong feelings had everything to do with the fact that he cared about Haru and wanted Haru to care about himself just as much, where as Rin was always more or less just projecting his own issues onto an easy target.  Makoto was willing to spur Haru into the world of professional swimming even if it meant it would create a distance between them. 

One of the reasons Haru became increasingly afraid of succeeding was that doing so would naturally mean distance growing between him and his friends.  His parents are rarely home and he has a hard time making friends.  This would be a legitimate fear.   If anyone encouraged and actually assisted Haru with getting out and making those critical friendships in the first place every step of the way, and did so purely because he wanted Haru himself to be happy, it was Makoto.

Last edited by OnlyInThisLight (05-21-2015 10:13:44 PM)

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#21 | Back to Top05-21-2015 10:13:58 PM

HonorableShadow
Cow Bellhop
From: Ohio
Registered: 11-03-2006
Posts: 471
Website

Re: Free!

Eh, I think we'll have to agree to disagree. I don't see Rin's relationship with Haru as anything bad and I don't think it was intended to be. I'll probably never see it the same way as you do or vice versa.  The nice thing about the show is that you can ship pretty much whoever you want though. 


Please do so emot-keke
I have a few Free! doujin already, including the first volume of Paradise Regained. I'm a sucker for the Arabian Nights theme.

Off the top of my head, yesterday I just read a really cute one called "Just Between You and Me" - here's a small cap from it https://40.media.tumblr.com/14c8393ed19 … o4_540.png

Some other good ones are "Little Mermaid in Love" "And the Scales Fade to Foam" (I'm a sucker for mermaid themed doujinshi, I really hope the storyline that's in the RinHaru mook is with merHaru instead of chef Haru! Though I'd be happy with either) and "Goodbye Me." Tomorrow when I'm on my main computer I'll take a look to see if I have any Arabian Nights themed ones, I think have a couple.


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Keep me safe from my trouble and pain.

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#22 | Back to Top05-21-2015 11:11:59 PM

Nocturnalux
Qualified Duellist
From: Portugal
Registered: 09-10-2007
Posts: 741

Re: Free!

Free! is meant to be slashable, to the point I've even seen Makoto/Rin doujin. Odds are because they look cute together.

Thanks for the recs! I like to think that Haruka is one of the Sea People from Nagi no Asuka. It'd make so much sense.

One thing that always made me wonder, how come Makoto is the one who is afraid of the ocean when it was Rin who lost his father in a fishing accident? You'd figure Rin would be the one to develop such a phobia instead of Makoto.

EDIT: I also just received this doujin:
http://the-chilz.tumblr.com/post/102492 … -safaia-no

Last edited by Nocturnalux (05-21-2015 11:29:25 PM)

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#23 | Back to Top05-22-2015 07:04:42 AM

HonorableShadow
Cow Bellhop
From: Ohio
Registered: 11-03-2006
Posts: 471
Website

Re: Free!

Thanks for the recs! I like to think that Haruka is one of the Sea People from Nagi no Asuka. It'd make so much sense.

That would make sense! Headcanon accepted. emot-tongue

One thing that always made me wonder, how come Makoto is the one who is afraid of the ocean when it was Rin who lost his father in a fishing accident? You'd figure Rin would be the one to develop such a phobia instead of Makoto.

I think the key to understanding why Rin isn't scared of the ocean is in High Speed 2 in that scene with Rin's grandmother. Apparently Rin's dad isn't the only one who drowned, [his grandpa and great grandpa also died young from drowning, all in separate incidents. His grandma had to bury 3 generations of Matsuoka men and yet it's revealed that she's still a deep sea pearl diver even in her old age. I think that the Matsuoka family isn't one to fear the ocean no matter what. (Though they probably should develop a healthy fear of it at this point... and Rin really should be wearing a life vest at all times since odds are his family is cursed or something. emot-gonk) ]

Plus I think Rin is just in general braver than Makoto. One of Makoto's traits is that he gets scared easily and seeing that funeral procession and how many people died in it at a young age probably shook him up a lot. Fun fact: the old man who was friends with Makoto and drowned was an anime only invention, in HS he didn't personally know anyone who drowned. After he saw the funeral procession he began to feel like there was an invisible monster in the water with him trying to pull him down like it had pulled those boats.

Okay, I've had a chance to look at my doujinshi scans! Here's an Arabian AU that also has mermaids in it:
http://i59.tinypic.com/2gybyoi.jpg
(It hasn't been translated into English so I don't know what the title is, but I'm sure you can read it yourself. The art is beautiful!)

Paradise Regained (really cute)
http://i58.tinypic.com/hvymc5.jpg

Not an Arabian AU but really adorable, Snow Globe:
http://i61.tinypic.com/2z9cjk7.jpg

If you want scans for anything I recced let me know. You can find a lot of them (and more) here too: http://september.strawberrywine.org/arc … egory/free  They're all scanlated though.

Last edited by HonorableShadow (05-22-2015 07:05:18 AM)


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#24 | Back to Top05-22-2015 09:14:32 AM

Yams
Nest Boxer
From: Crystal Millenium
Registered: 02-13-2007
Posts: 960

Re: Free!

OnlyInThisLight wrote:

Honestly, I really dislike Haru/Rin.  Makoto accepts Haru for who he is (there is nothing wrong with being autistic, or being "autistic like") and Rin was nothing but an insanely self-centered asshole the entire first season.  What you refer to tension I refer to someone bullying another person who struggles to emote and communicate.  Makoto and Haru act like friends, and have history together that comes from positive places.  I can imagine them in a relationship and having conversations that actual couples would. 

Nothing Rin did in the first season was for Haru's benefit.  He emotionally punishes Haru for not being the competitor HE wants Haru to be so that he'll feel less like shit for having lost to him as kid, he acts like a fucking ten year old rather than up and tell his friends he wants to fucking swim with them and feels bad about Australia, and makes no effort to understand Haru's own perspective towards swimming.   That this causes Haru a lot of emotional conflict and to struggle with trying to figure out why he swims is pretty sad, actually, because he's doing it thinking he OWES something to Rin, he does it out of quilt.  A feeling Rin's open animosity does little to ameliorate.  Oh, and let's not forget that after an entire season of being nothing but nice to him (sans one well deserved rant from Rei), when Haru offers Rin the damn thing he's acting like such a child about, Rin PHYSICALLY ATTACKS HARU. 

It isn't until the second season, when Rin finally becomes fantastic, that he instead seeks to motivate Haru for the sake of making Haru happy, and does that by showing Haru that swimming can be a way to connect with people on a global scale and explore the world, in much they way that it connects him to his friends.  He didn't try and force a competitive spirit into Haru.  He just showed him that a bit of competitive mindset will be able to help him achieve other goals.  Considering that Rin was acting as a coach the entire 2nd season, it is a really fitting storyline for him.  But he wasn't able to do this without the lesson Haru and the other's taught him in the first season. If anyone inspired someone to shape up, develop and grow it's Haru and his friends who changed Rin, not Rin "improving" Haru.

EXACTLY HOW I FEEL. etc-loveetc-loveetc-love I also agree with Rin in season 2 being a MUCH better character but still not as a pair for Haru, IMO.

I have a soft spot for Haru, because he is a lot like me. I do have trouble communicating, connecting and emoting with other people, it has caused me real problems in the workplace and during school, and his relationship with swimming, not wanting to 'cheapen' his passion by relegating it to times and scores, and his fear of people defining him by his talent, is something that resonates with me and my own love of art. So when I see Rin trying to 'fix' and 'change' Haru, it kind of feels like a personal attack. We're not broken, we don't need to be fixed. We can grow and evolve and change, but don't attack us into being 'better' by some more socially acceptable definition. And while Haru x Mako is a rather co-dependent relationship (as I talked about in the other thread) I think it's one that's on the positive side, and a very respecting, trusting and loving one that can grow and last.

But I do totally understand the foe-yay thing, I get why Haru x Rin a popular couple. It just totally turns me off, like I can't even read a Haru x Rin doujin, they turn my stomach. But I'm totally okay with other people shipping them. XD And I usually like love-hate, dysfunctional relationships! I'm even totally okay with shipping abusive relationships - it's fiction, whatever. But not Haru x Rin, lol! Can not do.

Last edited by YamPuff (05-22-2015 09:20:41 AM)


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#25 | Back to Top05-22-2015 09:32:30 AM

HonorableShadow
Cow Bellhop
From: Ohio
Registered: 11-03-2006
Posts: 471
Website

Re: Free!

But I do totally understand the foe-yay thing, I get why Haru x Rin a popular couple. It just totally turns me off, like I can't even read a Haru x Rin doujin, they turn my stomach. But I'm totally okay with other people shipping them. XD And I usually like love-hate, dysfunctional relationships! I'm even totally okay with shipping abusive relationships - it's fiction, whatever. But not Haru x Rin, lol! Can not do.

I don't see Haru and Rin as foe-yay or as a love-hate relationship though. And I definitely don't see it as abusive at all. Rin and Haru are friends who like each other quite a bit. I know they had their rough patches and they're rivals, but they don't hate each other by any stretch of the imagination. I don't think Haru hated Rin even when he was annoyed by him as a kid. (I mean, just look at the song lyrics for Joy, Haru's character song:https://miraclesmay.wordpress.com/2013/ … lyrics-tl/)

I get where you're coming from though because I feel the same way about MakoHaru. :X

Last edited by HonorableShadow (05-22-2015 09:42:45 AM)


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