Big ol’ Amnesia Rant

Orion looks the same as I do when I watch this show

I’ve said time and time again how much I loathe otome game adaptions. I can like the game and source material fine (Heart no Kuni) but the adaptions are always god-awful. The Heart no Kuni movie was a special kind of terrible though. Still, to be clear I have nothing against the games themselves.

I’ve made my dislike very known. So it’s weird I’m watching Amnesia. Usually I only watch one episode of these terrible OGA before I quit it. Amnesia has something going for it. It’s got a genuine mystery that I want solved. Each episodes leaves me with more and more questions. Now, if the show ends and they’re all unresolved then I’ll be super mad I wasted six hours of my life on this drivel.

Amnesia does offer me something else. It’s been awhile that I watched something even though I hate it. I’ve watched shows to completion that were just plain bad, had terrible characters or were so bad they were too entertaining to stop. It’s fun to watch something and complain about it the whole time. Maybe not to those who follow me on twitter but fun for me nonetheless.

However, it was episode nine that pushed me to my limit. To the point where I could no longer idly sit back and laugh at this stupid show. It had truly become so terrible that I could not believe it.

Deep down I wanted to believe (and I still kind of do) that everybody was acting so horrible on purpose. Since she wasn’t going back in time but switching to another universe completely (as seen by the changes in her friends and obviously Waka), it was possible that she had ended up in universes specifically where her then boyfriends were at their worst. The original universe she came from might have them all be regular(ish), nice guys. I didn’t really consider it much when Orion mentioned that the first universe that we saw/he appeared in might not be the first one but since she died twice before that, it’s possible it wasn’t?

OK then maybe they aren’t actually this horrible. It might be different if you actually play the game and can dedicate yourself to one guy and maybe they seem better. Maybe there’s that. I saw one terrible defense of Toma (we’ll get to that after) and one really good one of him on tumblr. The good one cleared some stuff up. It didn’t make his actions excusable but they gave a little more insight into.

So, let’s work backwards. We’ll start with Shin.

In retrospect, Shin doesn’t seem so bad anymore. He came off as really… hmm… needy? It was mostly that while he was concerned about the heroine, he was also worried about getting his dick wet. It wasn’t specifically worded this way exactly but he continued to whine about “I can’t go back to being just friends with you”. I guess it would be difficult if the girl you were dating suddenly forgot you and wanted her space. Sure. She’s his childhood friend to boot. But he couldn’t get over it and even made advances at what was essentially a stranger. Eventually he accepts the situation but she bites it immediately after.

Next we go to Ikki aka Basically Twilight™ . Now, let’s have a look at this guy. His problem is that he made a wish as a child that girls would pay attention to him or something. And it happened. Now, all girls that see his eyes fall in love with him. His problem is literally that everybody loves him and wants to bone him. If that is not the most mary-sue things you could imagine well then keep that to yourself. Luckily for Basically Twilight™, his story comes off as slightly sympathetic when he tells it. It doesn’t make it any less ridiculous and stupid but hey. BABY STEPS.

Basically Twilight™ only dates girls for three months before dumping them. This works out for his fan club who take turns and report in with each other about how the Ikki-boning is going and everything else. The heroine originally joins the fan club ~ironically~ and starts to date him but actually starts to like him. Basically Twilight™ admits that he likes her because she’s the only one who doesn’t fall in love with him. It’s a little sad that this version of the heroine leaves some questions unanswered or at least leaves some interesting story behind. I mean, I guess if you play the game you’d find that out and all but since there are only two episodes left (at this time), it kind of sucks for the viewers. To be fair, everything about this show sucks for the viewers.

He also shows up at her apartment drunk too but we’ll let that slid since I guess it doesn’t really hurt anybody. It just kind of makes him look bad. To me, anyways. Of the four Basically Twilight™ is the only one not to notice that she’s lost her memories. He thinks something is weird with her but he is the only one not to deduce something is off with her. Bad adaption choice? Maybe? I prefer to believe he’s that self-centered. I guess when I’m trying to criticize the show I can’t go on biases like that. Whoops!

Next we get to Belts McGee. Kent is the only one who hasn’t wildly offended me or irritated me to some extent. That isn’t to say he’s perfect. He has the same amount of personality as her (little to zero), for one. Personally, his blunt personality and forgetting their date was kind of a turn off too. Still, he finds out about her memory and converses with Orion and is generally agreeable all around. Unfortunately, he only gets one episode. Maybe for the best. If he had been given another, he might have blown his chance to be the only not horrible one.

And Toma.

Toma, Toma, Toma. Now, OK I didn’t know about the cage thing before the show aired but it seemed like a ton of people did. I thought, in earnest, “surely Toma won’t be horrible!” and this was met with scoffs because guess what? Worst one.

He lies about being her boyfriend when he realizes she has Amnesia, drugs her repeatedly so that she won’t leave his apartment and when that fails he locks her in a cage. Now of course this is all for her protection. That makes it OK. According to some fans, anyways. He also has her go back in the cage because “he’s a guy and he won’t be able to control himself” but to be fair I think all of them but Kent made a similar comment so uh, negative points across the board?

In the next episode, he catches up with her at her apartment and they find out she was actually in love with him and about to confess before she lost her memories. Toma feels regret (kind of) about the things he’s done but the heroine tells him not to apologize and that he did it because he was protecting her. So that makes it ok.

One of my favourite responses to the Toma hate on tumblr was saying that since the heroine was so stupid for drowning (OK, that one was a maybe) and getting hit by a car twice that he was really doing her a favor and that she should be thankful or whatever for being locked in a cage.

So there itself is one of my biggest problems. During the whole Kaibutsu-kun outrage I saw a comment along the lines of “well, it’s target audience is female and this happens a ton in female oriented media, isn’t this what women like?” It’s gross that it’s true but it really seems like it. Let’s bring up Twilight again. He treats her pretty bad during the second book but it’s OK because he was doing it to protect her and because he loves her! That makes it ok! Of course, that’s accepting a large part of his motivation wasn’t just that he wanted to keep her to himself. But even then, it’s still romantic, right???

Maybe I’m just overreacting but isn’t that so gross? That people eat stuff like this and call it romantic when it’s clearly terrible of them? I know I would never stand for the person I was dating locked me in a cage or ditched me in the woods. I’ve watched a lot of abusive relationships from the sidelines so maybe I just decided at a young age I wouldn’t put up with that kind of treatment but is that what it takes? To watch someone you love suffer or to suffer yourself at the hands of someone you love and trust?

But Fang-tan! Just because you enjoy something with this kind of scenario doesn’t mean you like the scenario itself! Well of course I know that. Isn’t that why yandere characters are so popular? (I find fetishising mental illness like that kind of abhorrent as well but that’s a different rant for a different day) It’s just that it seems like you can’t expect to be taken seriously with these issues when the games, books and movies directed at you usually have some kind of abuse played as romantic.

I don’t want to seem like a hypocrite but I realize Heart no Kuni features guys just as terrible in personality. In that series though they don’t dance around the fact. They know they’re terrible and more importantly she knows they’re terrible and calls them out on them. She still falls for one of them (and the canon choice is the worst, in my opinion) but she still confronts them and makes a change on them.

Like, that’s what makes this even worse. The heroine doesn’t do anything at all. No complaints, no nothing. She doesn’t scared or offended or anything. You think someone who lost their memories would be a little more on edge. Even after she’s died a bunch of times, she still is blank as a board. Alice having a backbone and challenging the terrible dudes around here is what I like about Heart no Kuni, then.

I wanted to talk about my fantastic delusion of how Ikki’s fanclub are like a meta shot at the kind of girls who play otome games/watch adaptions and criticize the heroine for being boring and terrible despite lacking any personality themselves but alas, I’ve already gotten way off topic. (Again, how can we demand respect if we can’t respect each other?)

As I said before, I’m watching this because there are so many things I want resolved and wrapped up. It’s done a good job of presenting a mystery and making it interesting. It’s just filled with a bunch of pretty-eyed twats. One of those mysteries is Ukyou. We’re nearing the end of the series and we’re on to his spotlight episodes now. Since he’s been a big mystery since his first appearance early on and even killed her himself in episode ten, I am pretty curious about what’s going to happen.

Though even if this show remains interesting until the end, I’ll be happy when it’s over and done with.

 


3 Comments

  • Kastel

    March 19, 2013

    Belts-kun is the best husbando anyone can go for. Please do not hurt his feelings.

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  • Anonymous

    June 18, 2016

    If you haven’t played the game tho, you definitely should. Kent best guy

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