Urge to Kill, Rising…

Argh. Ok just finished GSNK #6. Forget it. No plot, just more of the same idiocy. One possible explanation had occurred to me, but I wanted to believe anything else. Sadly, I should have run with it.

Spoiler: Yes, it was all Ryoko behind the scenes, working with some of Reika’s family retainers. The part I don’t get is that just about everyone in the show seems to be unusual.

I feel like an idiot for ever letting myself believe that this show might redeem itself. I should be forced to stand on a mound of discarded Ikkitousen DVD’s, so small children can point at me and laugh. “Hey, he thought that show had a plot! Doody-head!”

Yes, I’m a little peeved at being taken in, but this is just piss-poor craftsmanship. Spoilers below the fold to say why, and I can’t put all of them in tags.

First a bit about two elements in the episode. Of course we just had a combat meido introduced in this episode. Yes, the Yuki, although she talks more and is anything but emotionless. Great, another Angry Bodyguard.

And I don’t get Reika at ALL now. She seems permanently in her red-eyed version, but not as sexually aggressive, and without the MPD. Succubus or not? Unusual abilities or not? Was that all just a temporary plot device to explain why she’d suddenly vamp Shungo? The flashbacks confirmed solidly that it has been Reika we were seeing all along, and there is some kind of story there that’s being rolled out bit by bit…. or made up as they go along. Probably the latter. Let’s face it, the writers are just pulling things out of their asses now. I hate to say it, but you know what show this is reminding me of? Those Who Hunt Elves. I’m seeing similarities in the writing, the way plot elements appear and disappear per their momentary convenience, no matter how contrived.

Spoiler: At one point, Shungo is captured, tied up, and has the tar beaten out of him by two guys. Later, Reika finds him, gets all emo, and then is knocked out by a strange woman in a mask. Shungo leaps up and attacks the woman, but she easily bests him — until he finally gets one hit in that breaks the mask. Of course it’s Ryoko, and the whole thing was a big, er, prank.

At that point, there should have been a murder, IMHO. And you know what? There was. Any chance that this show could be taken seriously was just killed. I don’t mean any chance that it could have a serious plot, although that got killed too. Obviously the writers had no intent of creating any serious plot; this was just a big “Gotcha!” moment.

That’s a huge problem for the show now. The audience has to trust the writers in order to be immersed, to believe in the characters and the story. As a writer, you cannot jump out and yell, “Just Kidding!” and expect the viewer to believe anything you write afterwards. Not one single time. If there is an attempt to build dramatic tension, it has to be played straight, because if the viewer finds out you were lying, the trust is destroyed. From then on, any further attempts are going to be doomed, because the viewer is not going to trust what they are seeing. “Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me.” So the viewer isn’t going to be immersed in the story any longer; he or she is going to hold themselves apart from it, waiting for the “gotcha!” moment.

And that is death to a story.

R.I.P. Goyshusho-sama.

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