silverthunder: (Ling - XD)
Aphrael ([personal profile] silverthunder) wrote2013-02-05 01:21 pm
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Mirai Nikki

So my sister gave birth almost a week ago. I haven't been able to see the baby (she lives eight hours away from me, and I won't have time off until March), but I've seen plenty of pictures. My mom is still down there, helping my sister with the first few weeks (which I'm sure she's grateful for).

The baby's name is Calvin. I thought that was pretty awesome. He's going to be so sick of stuffed tigers after a few years, I'm sure.

I currently have a cold (all nice and settled in my chest, so I'm hacking up flem and feeling that sting whenever I breathe, which is lovely). I took today off work, but I'm already starting to bounce back, so hopefully I'll make it in tomorrow.

Anyway, I said in a previous post that I'd talk about Mirai Nikki, and here it is.

The oh-so-original premise of Mirai Nikki is battle royale - kill or be killed, until one survivor remains (who will be the winner). We have a weak hero who is terrified out of his mind (understandably), a lot of psychos who find the game fun, and the female protector, who is strangely unphased by the killing and the unpleasantness. And let's not forget her creepy stalkerish obsession with the main character that borderlines a mental illness of some sort, making their relationship all kinds of unhealthy and, at the best of times, co-dependent.

But, well, that stuff kind of speaks for itself. Mirai Nikki was really only interesting because of Yuno - because in a sick, twisted way you wanted to see what new and disturbing thing would come up on the next episode. Dead rotting corpses in her house? Check. Violent killing spree in defence of the main character? Check. Drugging and kidnapping the main character? Check. Smiling and laughing while killing? Holy shit check.

But really, that stuff kind of speaks for itself. Let's talk about the last portion of the series - the time travel, and the results of said time travel.

My understanding is that Yuno was kind of fucked up to begin with - I mean, the way her parents treated her and her subsequent accidental killing of them afterwards would do that. But the time travel made things that much more squirrelly and inconsistent, because she had pieces of a memory but with no context. She was used to killing - yeah, she did it before, the first time she went through the game. She was obsessed with Yukiteru - yeah, they hooked up in her last go-around. And I would think she probably lost her mind right at the point when she won the game, became the god of space and time, and then realized she couldn't bring anyone back to life.

Really, though, you'd have to be pretty crazy to jump back in time, kill your former self, and take her place to go through the whole fucked up game over again.

My interest is in the split in the timelines, though. So Yuno wins the game - in what is referred to later as the First World - and then she jumps back. This creates the Second World, but does it really? At this point, the two are so similar that the Second World really just erases the First World altogether (either that, or there's a First World sitting around with no people and no god left). So, we'll say that the Second World becomes "true" at this point; the First World doesn't exist, or it may as well not.

When Yuno jumps back again after what she believes to be her second win, she goes back too far, and then when Yukiteru follows her, things start to change. A lot of those tragic life events that set off some of the other players start to - well - not happen. So the Third World actually branches off from the more-or-less entwined First and Second Worlds, and becomes its own beast, to the point where the game never even happens because its founder becomes aware of the result (makes no sense to appoint a new god of time and space if they're just going to jump back in time and keep repeating things, amirite?).

I find this approach to timelines interesting. Normally when you're fucking around in time, you have to keep a sense of cause and effect. In other words, this tragic event happened that made me want to go back in time and correct it. However, I can't, because to do so would mean I never went back in time - which would mean I never corrected it, so it happened, so... you get the picture, endless loop.

The notion that going back in time creates an alternate possibility (or World) is a neat way of getting around that sticky little rule. It unfortunately makes you think there are probably other Worlds sitting around rotting because of a lack of a time space god, but given what we see of Yukiteru at the end in the Second World (ie, there is not a goddamn thing there), those possibilities seem to have inevitably turned into "dead ends", like the wrong turns in a Choose Your Own Adventure novel (which fits in with the theme of the series, so it makes a lot of sense).

The fact that Second World Yukiteru turns catatonic and unable to function - uninterested in even starting to try and function - without Yuno really speaks volumes for the co-dependent nature of their relationship, and how fucked up it left him in the end. It's unfortunate that there are no therapists floating around in endless empty space, right?

I would have been interested in seeing Third World Yukiteru and Yuno interacting and somehow forging a relationship on equal ground without all the co-dependence, but judging from the manga ending, that avenue will never be explored. I'm guessing Third World Yukiteru is going to fade into obscurity or something (not like he's really important or anything, right? Right). I'm going to pretend he met Akise and they ended up going out, because Akise was all kinds of awesome and deserved better than a one-sided love anyway.

For those interested...

Mirai Nikki 1st OP: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=okapFtXWcqI
Mirai Nikki 1st ED: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eiTdYWJHd6k

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