[Carnival] Final Thoughts on Rating 10/10 Anime

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Aughhhhh, I’ve been dreading this post! It’s not so much that I didn’t have fun with this carnival, which I did, but I’m horrid with deadlines and don’t like summaries.  So along with my thoughts on the whole affair of rating, I’ve also included my thoughts on the blog carnival experience.
Edit: In other news, THIS IS MY 100TH POST! ^_^

The Middle Ground
On the whole, it looks like most of the participants rate with a blend of what Yumeka aptly terms as “head and heart”, myself included.  There’s the more rational way of creating a list of criteria for what makes a 10/10, and then there’s that moment where love for a setting, character, or idea is enough for you to overlook the flaws that would otherwise bring down the score.

Notable Points
Of the standards described by the participants, there were a few that stood out to me.  Take for instance draggle’s insistence that watching an anime should never result in the viewer’s indifference.  If, despite watching an entire anime, you have no feelings whatsoever for the characters and the story, then that show has failed.  I view indifference worse than hatred, because then at least some part of me has reacted to what I’ve watched.

I very much agreed with Yi’s point that an a successful anime needs to relay the intended atmosphere and emotions.  There’s something very wrong if an anime aiming to be taken seriously results in my laughing at almost every single cheesy attempt at conflict (Fractale, anyone?).  An anime like Mushishi works beautifully because the intention blends perfectly with the final product.

Another area with which I agree concerns an anime’s repeatability, which Leap250 sums up in a nice and concise manner.  This standard obviously takes time since some years will have had to pass before you can note if and how many times you have re-watched a show.  Uchuu no Stellvia and ARIA are among those that I have watched at least once a year, and I can only commend their abilities to enchant me no matter how many times I watch them.

Hoshiko touches on a subject that I’ve never really before discussed, on how an anime ends. At first I thought that meant an ending that makes the viewer happy, but it’s more than that.  The ending should fit everything that has led up to that point.  I do appreciate a twist and prefer a surprise to the predictable, but it makes sense that the ending shouldn’t just come out of nowhere, or leave you at a loss.  Although I have watched Bokura ga Ita numerous times, I’m always pissed off at where the ending leaves the viewer, with no inkling of what will happen to our characters (I’m a die hard Takeuchi supporter).

And then there’s SnippetTee, whose rubric made me giggle.  Like many other bloggers, a breakdown for grading was made, only for the amorphous factor of the heart to undercut all the ratings.  I very much like the point made that genre should really have no place in the grading of an anime’s quality.  I can’t even count the number of times I’ve stumbled across MAL reviews condemning an anime for its boobs and butts…when the fan service is exactly what the whole anime is about.  I may hate fan service, but I wouldn’t rate an anime like Rosario to Vampire low for it (though I would for other factors!).

Final Thoughts
As to be expected, the carnival’s founder–du5k of One Minute of Dusk–has one of the most interesting discussions.  He points out that our own ideas of the “perfect” anime change over time the older we get and the more knowledge and experience we garner.  I enjoyed reading how his own methods for rating have changed in his years as an anime fan and reviewer.  And while I may not agree on the last method of rating by value (as how can you even begin to understand the target audience if it does not include you?), I can see how I, too, have changed over the years.  I used to rate by enjoyment only, and have only recently turned to a checklist of sorts.  Who knows what my reviews will be like in the future?

I want to take the time to thank du5k for inviting me to this carnival, as it was a fun and new experience collaborating with so many other great anime bloggers.  If asked, I would definitely participate again.  I do like keeping the participant list limited, though, since it’s a bit difficult to get around to reading and commenting on every one of the other entries.  Perhaps the next one should only have 10 bloggers, at the maximum.  I would stress the blogger list changing from carnival to carnival, so that different voices and styles can be featured.

Check out these other final impressions on the first carnival experience (links to pages to be added as they are written):

14 thoughts on “[Carnival] Final Thoughts on Rating 10/10 Anime

  1. I don’t know if I would include repeat-ability in my criteria. If one never watches a show more than once, can it not achieve a perfect 10? If one watches the show at a later date and loses his or her own’s original impressions is that because of the anime or the viewer? Should a reviewer’s change of aesthetic sensibilities affect the anime as artifact?

    I’m a bit confused at your target audience quotation. So unless I am part of the target demographic I can not understand said audience? If that’s true, then how is the target audience of anime different than say historical texts? I am not the target audience for Beowulf, does that mean I can understand the target audience of Beowulf?

    Good topic though, 10/10. Objective enough to promote discussion, yet controversial enough to promote differences. I enjoyed some of the reads more than others was introduced to bloggers I otherwise would never have clicked on.

    ^_^

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      • Review before submitting, eh? :p

        And I never said that all my 10/10 anime had to have the repeat factor. Repeatability is just something that may change my mind about an anime’s rating long after it’s already aired. And I think it’s a mixture of both the anime and the viewer that results in the show’s improvement or decline; I bring knowledge learned elsewhere over time and so may have higher expectations, or the anime may finally make sense to me once I’ve grown a little. I hated Princess Mononoke the first time I saw it because I just didn’t understand it. The 2nd time I watched it, some years later, I fell in love with its message and atmosphere.

        About the target audience, sure, you can probably understand a certain amount of target audiences that may not include you. But, it’s inevitable that there are probably going to be some historical or comedic or pop cultural references that fly right over your head simply because you are not familiar with them (like Showa Monogatari, or Nichijou). I’m sure reading Beowulf as someone with a bit more familiarity about the time period’s customs and culture would result in a different kind of understanding than say just your average graduate literature student with mild background in medieval lit.

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      • Well… I won’t follow an anime series if I’m completely outside if the target audience, because that would mean that i’m not able to understand it. My intention is much like what you’ve said in snippettee’s paragraph; it’s quite wrong to rate a fanservice series badly just because it’s overloaded with boobs&butts; they created this for people who enjoy fanservice, not for people who tries to dig for a story in an anime that does not care to include one.

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  2. Ah, that makes more sense. I originally read your claim as a there’s no way to understand something if you weren’t the intended audience.

    Gratz on 100 posts btw. 200 here you come.

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  3. All valid points especially the clarifications in the comment sections. The one I tend to affirm most is recognition of the anime’s intended atmosphere. That in short, is the main reason why I watch and follow anime so closely. With manga, you of course get the story, characters and themes; with anime you get the all so special added layers of atmosphere and ambiance. Mushishi of course, being a splendid example.

    Anyway, I was guided here by Riyoga and come with congratulations on your first anniversary of blogging and 100 posts too!

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    • Thanks for dropping by, ken🙂 I’m always glad to meet a friend of a friend, especially if he likes an anime as great as Mushishi! That is an anime whose atmosphere I have yet to duplicate anywhere else, but I will continue to search.

      Thank you, also, for the blog bday wishes and 100-post count!

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  4. Congrats on the 100th post!

    Anyway, so interesting to see what everyone had to say. Some are certainly more methodical than others. And a lot of people seems to emphasis just slight different things.

    “I want to take the time to thank du5k for inviting me to this carnival, as it was a fun and new experience collaborating with so many other great anime bloggers. If asked, I would definitely participate again. I do like keeping the participant list limited, though, since it’s a bit difficult to get around to reading and commenting on every one of the other entries. “

    I had fun with this carnival thing too, and I’ll probably join a few more some time. I’d say though that perhaps it’s better to just treat this as more of a blog topic guideline, and participate up to the extent you’re capable and wanting to. So no need to read everyone’s nor make a round-up if you don’t want to.

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    • Thanks, Yi! And you make a good point about how I should just approach it in the way that best suits me. But, I also kind of like being asked to read every one of the participants since it introduces me to bloggers I may have never looked twice at before. I guess that’s just my own guidelines then :p To pick maybe 5 and try to always include someone I don’t know, or don’t read very often.

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