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Digimon Fanatics
Digimon Adventure 02 In Retrospect (Part 7) 
25th-Aug-2010 11:17 pm

The transcript is available on my LiveJournal page. There's too much text and it simply will not fit onto one single post, so I'm splitting it into two posts:

Transcript A: http://theegad.livejournal.com/7307.html

Transcript B: http://theegad.livejournal.com/7450.html
26th-Aug-2010 04:58 pm (UTC)
So, very well, this one is finished, too ^^

After all: Really, I kinds liked the idea in the final episode with all that international children standing there, while "Bokura no digital world" was playing. I really did! I even liked the dark spore children getting digivices...
But... It messed with Adventure to much. Would they have made a good explaination about the new chosen as well as the international chosen and why they have partners... It wouldn't have sucked so much.

But, really, as a child I got really, really angry about the "Well, believe in your dream, so it will come true." Since I - my 10/11 years old self - actually came to they point I WOULD have to work for it. And, as the epilogue came, I felt it was kinda unfair, that the chosen children weren't just chosen and allowed to have this great adventures. No! Their childhood dreams even came true, without them working for it. Oh yeah! It kinds sucks not to be chosen, doesn't it?
And no, no digimon appeared in front of my by me just believing in it... -.-" Shit happens.
26th-Aug-2010 07:45 pm (UTC)
I just thought of something. You asked that, "If Daisuke's only desire was to see Vamdemon destroyed, why wasn't it made a fantasy like the others?". Well, if it makes you feel a bit better, just pretend it was and everything from Daisuke rescuing the other kids from their delusions up until the epilogue - is all just a nonsensical fantasy in Daisuke's head.

That's my head canon anyway. XD
26th-Aug-2010 09:22 pm (UTC)
I actually thought of the very same thing! Haha!
26th-Aug-2010 10:23 pm (UTC)
If only someone could edit the end of 02 so that once the shot of the new Chosen running over the field has ended, it cuts to just a shot of Daisuke unconscious in a world where Vamdemon has caused the apocalypse - Silent Hill 'Bad Ending' style. XD
27th-Aug-2010 11:27 pm (UTC)
Or perhaps Daisuke running into a room and finding a dog wearing an ear-piece pushing random buttons on a computer panel.
27th-Aug-2010 11:28 pm (UTC)
27th-Aug-2010 03:26 am (UTC)
Several other people's, also. It's (or was) on the tvtropes WMG page for Zero Two.
29th-Aug-2010 07:30 am (UTC)
I've read a few people theorize about why Daisuke wasn't affected. I'll just copy and paste what Higuchimon said:

I'm going to use the same theory I have every other time this topic has come up anywhere.

It wasn't *desires* that it actually caught them in. It was *obsessions*, things they wanted more than anything else in the entire world, things they'd *give up* things for, things that they didn't have but wanted.

But Daisuke *has* what he wants: he has friends and he has family, and he knows he'll never *not* have those. He trusts in them completely, and he *knows* they'll never betray that trust.

He does not obsess, because he doesn't need to. It's entirely possible that's a trait of either Courage or Friendship, so if Taichi or Yamato had been there, they might not have been caught by it either. Or it could just be Daisuke himself.

Either way, the other five had something they wanted above all else: a family reunited, a family member returned from death, peace from the fighting, to really feel as if he'd paid for what he did, and (supposedly, though they did a really bad job of showing this, much less building up to it) being appreciated/focused on by one's parents.

But Daisuke just doesn't think in those ways. Yes, he had a crush on Hikari, but his world wouldn't come to an end if he didn't date her, because he has what he really treasures most: her friendship.

Yes, he has goals, but I think he sees them as things to work towards, not to obsess over.
29th-Aug-2010 07:33 am (UTC)
LOL, I should site where I get it from: http://forum.fanfiction.net/topic/2306/615057/1/
29th-Aug-2010 02:26 pm (UTC)
I think that's being entirely too generous, and it makes Miyako's case look even worse in retrospect.

Overall, I believe Daisuke became way too robotic and super-human during the Finale for me to believe that he was carrying out the objectives of a normal child at that point.

I was made blatantly aware of this when I looked at the Daisuke from some of the beginning episodes of Adventure 02 when I was editing Part 6. In comparison to the Daisuke of the Finale, I can't find anything about his supposed "character development" that would have lead me to the conclusion that we come to in Episode 49. Belial Vamdemon actually asks, "Are there children in this world without dissatisfactions or worries?"

Daisuke seems plenty dissatisfied with his sister at times, and if he truly is happy with his family--how come we never get to see him interact with them on a level like Iori or Ken.

Oh, and he seemed plenty obsessed with that Ramen thing in Episode 50. He even says, "I'm going to be the best in the world!" When he talks about it. That sounds like an obsession to me.
29th-Aug-2010 09:34 pm (UTC)
Before I reply, I'll say I'm a 02 fan. I know the season has many flaws, but preference doesn't often follow logic.

Daisuke has issues with his family. Very few children don't. However, that doesn't mean he doesn't love them and they him. He doesn't interact with them on a level like Iori or Ken because he doesn't have a dead relative to look up to or shadow him. His issues with his parents are pretty minor and his relationship with his sister is ordinary. He isn't obsessed with having a better family just as he isn't obsessed with having better friends because he occasionally butt heads with them.

As for the Ramen thing, it was more of a dream than an obsession. If it never came to pass, he wouldn't get too worked up over it. His crush on Hikari was becoming not as important thanks to Ken and she's friends with him anyway.

(LOL, need to develop my arguing skills more)

On an OT note, I sometimes amuse myself by wondering how the Law and Order characters reacted to Digimon going through the city. I can just picture certain lawyers tapping their watches impatiently as Digimon keep passing by and by. And Robert Goren trying to strike up conversation with one of them while Eames stands bemusedly by.
30th-Aug-2010 12:35 am (UTC)
But the thing is, we as audience need to see these things to know them. If we JUST see Daisuke arguing with his sister than we assume that's all their relationship is. Unlike the sentence from Hikari in the dub "Tai bugs me sometimes but he's still the best brother ever" or something to that effect, at least makes us aware of their relationship. And they show that in how they act towards each other. With Daisuke and Jun, ALL we see is them bickering, whereas if we were to see something like for example Daisuke protecting Jun or sticking up for her, whatever, it would make us think otherwise. Audience having to 'assume' things in order to fill in plot points is bad storytelling.

Don't get me wrong, part of me wants to like Daisuke because he's the underdog. I think some of the flack he gets, especially in the english dub, seems unfair, but then you think 'what does he do to deserve otherwise?'. He does say and do heroic things but they come out of nowhere with no background for why he is that way when other times he's a complete jerk. Take Tai, he could be an idiot because he's by nature a hot headed boy who wants to take charge, but part of that comes from being an overprotective big brother. With Daisuke...what? Where did he get this wisdom? From what we see, he doesn't care much for his sister so...where? It's ok to fill in the blanks but we shouldn't need to. We don't need complete exposition but there should be enough hints for the audience to work things out themselves, not just make things up. With Daisuke there just isn't anything to go on. At least for me anyway. Who knows, I might be missing something, but since the first time I watched this series at 10 I've just not got his character.
30th-Aug-2010 12:36 am (UTC)
Eh, YMMV. I'm bowing out.
30th-Aug-2010 12:41 am (UTC)
LOL, just to say, i am completey drunk so don't take anyting I've sid to heart. XD
30th-Aug-2010 05:58 am (UTC)
Aww, and just when things were getting interesting. I though we had a good thing going here.

YMMV can is easily attributed to anything, you know, whether its Evangelion or Pokemon. That's why I try to be objective, I want people to think!

Anyway, continue the conversation at your leisure--I encourage it! I'm always looking for new perspectives as it is part of helps me put my own thoughts into perspective becuase I want to cite what fans say about a work!
31st-Aug-2010 01:12 am (UTC)
On an OT note, I sometimes amuse myself by wondering how the Law and Order characters reacted to Digimon going through the city. I can just picture certain lawyers tapping their watches impatiently as Digimon keep passing by and by.

And here I thought I was the only one. XD
27th-Aug-2010 01:53 am (UTC)
Great work, it was long but it was worth it. I wish they did 02 again too. Thank you for this amazing videos.
(Deleted comment)
29th-Aug-2010 05:01 am (UTC)
I actually, I've spent a few long nights wondering about the points I made. I probably should not have called Miyako or Daisuke "Mary Su" types of characters as their character types do not entirely fit that trope. Also, I think I should have elaborated a little more about what BlackWarGreymon's storyline should have been, based on what was written instead of coming up with my own ideas.

If you come across anything that I should know about or would strengthen or rival my objectivity, please don't hesitate to let me know.
(Deleted comment)
29th-Aug-2010 02:49 pm (UTC)
The way it was explained was that these children had an emptiness inside that needed to be filled. Milleniummon's data (the Dark Spores) provided that fulfillment by turning them into little evil geniuses.

In all reality, its actually not a bad idea--it was just poorly executed in the show. If you look at it according to Christian allegory, Milleniummon's data is akin to earthly treasures and desires. They are only fulfilling for a short time, but ultimately only Christ can bring true fulfillment.

One of the problems I had with Adventure 02 is that there was no Christ allegory inserted into the equation. Daisuke just told the children to believe in themselves, and all would be fine. In fact, that's the end message of Adventure 02. I argued that if Ken actually came to a point where he "believed" that he was meant to be the Digimon Kaiser, would that give his status and the things he did legitimacy?
31st-Aug-2010 01:34 am (UTC)
Just six minutes in, and I have to comment already.

I've questioned the competence of the Digital Gods ever since they decided to recruit young children without even giving them the choice to say yes or no. Ever since I've been old enough to really consider the ethical implications, I can't help but think of the Gods as being morally ambiguous - possibly even having ambitions of their own. This is head!canon, of course, but I think it's a fairly logical conclusion. One doesn't need to be cruel or destructive in order to be power-hungry, and perhaps they're Well Intentioned Extremists who genuinely believe that they're working towards an ultimately good goal.

So I don't really have a problem with the explanation of the destabilization of the Digital World; what I have a problem with is that none of the children found it suspicious. Looking at the beginning of the season through that prism, I found it even more compelling: the pawns of the "good" gods facing off against the pawn of the "bad" god, both sides under the illusion that they are acting out of their own prerogative. In fact - if the intentions were different - one could almost see some logic behind Ken's actions. (Digimon pose a threat to humans, and the Digital Gods cannot be trusted. Therefore, the best thing for humanity is to enslave the Digimon before they have a chance to cause large-scale problems.)

I still have a long way to go, so I will probably add another comment later.
31st-Aug-2010 01:44 am (UTC)
"All the depth that the characters had is lost, because the show is doing all the thinking for us."

Uh...that's not really how character depth works. Showing fantasies and dreams are a means of expanding characterization - even if you don't think it's a good way to do so. In fact, showing a character's dreams is showing, not </i>telling</i>, and is frequently used in critically-acclaimed works as well as in less-well-received ones.

You're certainly entitled to dislike the execution- because I certainly did - and even its usage as a way of character exploration. But stating that its use negates all character depth just doesn't make any sense. That it insults audience intelligence is an entirely separate gripe.

Showing Iori standing with his father doesn't make his relationship with his grandfather suddenly poof out of existence, for example. That depth exists, and continues to exist, even after a poorly-executed dream sequence.
31st-Aug-2010 03:32 am (UTC)
"Showing fantasies and dreams are a means of expanding characterization - even if you don't think it's a good way to do so. In fact, showing a character's dreams is showing, not telling, and is frequently used in critically-acclaimed works as well as in less-well-received ones."

What I disliked about the execution was that we've already had certain degrees of expansion of characterization within the show itself. If anything, the illusion are redundant because we've already been given enough evidence that this is may or may not be what the characters have been thinking/dreaming of anyway.

Showing Iori standing with his father begs the question where his grandfather was during that dream sequence--was he simply not part of it? What about other members of Iori's family? Do his dreams simply not include them? You see, there are limitations to what you can show, but there are not limitations to what we can imagine!

Consider what I said about Hikari. I won't knock Hikari's illusion because it doesn't make sense, but isn't it kind of simplistic for the type of person that she is? Isn't her dream the kind of dream that the rest of the chosen children would share anyway?

It has a lot to do with leaving certain material in the realm of the audience's imagination rather than letting it play out the way it did in Episode 49.
31st-Aug-2010 04:14 am (UTC)
I'm not disagreeing that the dreams were dumb, mind you. I just disagree with the idea that the dreams negated previous characterization. Redundant? Completely. Simplistic? Most definitely. Nonsensical? Largely, with the exception of Takeru, Iori and Ken.

You see, there are limitations to what you can show, but there are not limitations to what we can imagine!

But relying on the audience's imagination too much is also lazy. There has to be a balance, and, in this case, they had to show what was happening (IMO). The fact is that they still did it badly, but I honestly don't have a problem with the fact that Iori was shown standing with only his father, for example, because it became clear that this fantasy wasn't satisfying. It would have been far more meaningful if everyone had realized the incompleteness of their dreams - the people missing from them, the simplicity of them - without Daisuke's intervention. But I do like to give credit where credit is due, and I think the writers actually had a pretty good idea with this one.
31st-Aug-2010 05:05 am (UTC)
True, I guess the illusion didn't necessarily negate everything. I felt like the absence of certain details within each illusion was what downplayed everything else that we had seen in the developmental process.

However, did they really need to show anything? Did we need to see Takeru's vision in order to surmise that he wanted his family back together? Did we need to see Iori's vision to realize that he wanted to see his father again? Did we need to see Ken's vision in order to know he wanted forgiveness for what he did in the past?

I just see this mind illusion thing as kinda breaking my train of thought about trying to figure out these characters. The mind illusion just figures everything out for me.
31st-Aug-2010 05:16 am (UTC)
Well, it is important to remember that this is a kid's show. And, whether we like it or not, we just can't expect the same level of sophistication out of a kid's show. The first season had its own deficiencies on account of its intended audience, as JesuOtaku mentioned in her retrospective: the villains lacked anything resembling depth or substantial motivation, which was actually handled far better in the second season (for all its other shortcomings). 01 also had its share of Fridge Logic and needless exposition and Gennai being needlessly obtuse and so-on and so-forth - it just handled characterization and the overall plot much, much better.

So...I do think you are expecting a little bit too much from a kid's show when it comes to some of these points. Repetition is one way of making sure that your audience gets The Point, and - when your audience is supposed to be 6-11 year olds - some redundancy is definitely forgivable. At least it respects their intelligence more than most Western cartoons catered to the same demographic.

It should also be noted that 02 still did a better job than a lot of contemporary Shounen and Shojo, which are aimed at an older demographic, and have less of an excuse.
31st-Aug-2010 07:19 am (UTC)
What about Tamers? How was that recieved?
31st-Aug-2010 01:11 pm (UTC)
In Japan? I don't know. I don't think it was quite as popular in the West as the first two.

But I clearly recall Tamers getting flack for being a little bit too mature for the audience it was intended for - by fans, at least. It was accused of being Darker and Edgier, and betraying the spirit of the franchise.

In a way, you could say that Tamers grew up with its audience, sort of like Harry Potter did. As an adult (or something resembling it), I now think that Tamers is the best of the lot, at least in terms of its technical merits. But I definitely didn't like it that much when I was younger - not nearly as much as I had the previous two installments.
31st-Aug-2010 02:02 am (UTC)
Again, I completely agree with you one the epilogue and the final episodes. There was a loooot of fail.

I still like this season though, and perhaps my desire to write about it is because it is so flawed.
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