Akatsuki no Yona – 03

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This week’s episode of “I don’t know why half of you love this show so much” Akatsuki no Yona consists of two flashbacks that establish Huk’s earlier interactions with Yona and Soo-Won, and one current event scene where a broken Huk repeatedly saves Yona from attacking wildlife.

Until proven otherwise, I’m just going to keep noting that Yona is pretty much terrible. Well, not terrible, per se. It’s just remarkably average and this episode’s constant clash of silly kiddy moments was totally dissonant.

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I get it! The happy childhood these characters shared was so happy and carefree that Soo-won’s mega betrayal’s destruction of Yona’s will to live is understandable. But maybe that would have been more compelling if the flashbacks were shot from Yona’s perspective?

Because Huk’s memories of Yona still paint her as a spoiled, weak willed brat, even though he loves her!

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However, it’s more interesting to look at this episode as a dedication to each of these three children’s fathers, and less about them. In this case, Huk’s perspective is probably necessary, because Yona is too much of a dull-whit to notice all but the most obvious contexts for each man.

About all I can give a thumbs-up to here was each father’s visit to their sickened child. Huk’s adopted father (and general of the clan) is brash but ultimately there for chuckles and clearly loves his grandson; Soo-Won’s father is clearly an unstable psychopath, and he treats Soo-won more like a valued possession than a person, and the King doesn’t visit Yona until later that night — but he loves her so much he makes her a soup! (and he does a terrible job at it.)

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Ignoring all this happy context, which in many ways would have made a more interesting show than the one we are watching, Yona snaps back into the present. There the princess takes a bath but gets covered in leeches, and is saved by Huk. Then she wanders off into the woods looking for her hair pin and is…uh…ambushed by a pack of snakes…then she’s saved by Huk again, and I’m just confused…
…Why is NATURE attacking Yona now? Whatevs…

6 thoughts on “Akatsuki no Yona – 03”

  1. >Why is NATURE attacking Yona now?

    Why wouldn’t they? She’s in their pond, their nest, etc. Still makes more sense than Soo-won’s betrayal, or why the King wanted Hak to be her bodyguard, or any number of more important things they still have to explain/hand-wave. Plus, it helps make your obnoxiously whiny and spoiled character more sympathetic if literally everything is out to get her.

  2. I don’t understand. I thought you dropped this? I read the manga and it isn’t going to get much better. If you don’t like it now you are not going to like it better after 26 episodes. I liked the manga from the beginning but that’s me. I liked the humor… but I really can’t see you enjoying this when you have other shows to fawn over this fall,

    I recommend you drop this and save yourself some grief. Unless of course you want to do the negative review thing in which case go right ahead.

    1. I don’t understand either but here’s the gist:

      For whatever reason, more than 100 people are reading the Yona reviews specifically and lambasting me over twitter each time I’ve said I’d drop it. Twitter aside, ~100 readers average puts Yona in the middle of our popularity spectrum, which makes it worth following.

      So, until Preston can dig out of her own review load or people stop checking out my reviews, I’ll be keeping writing them. Yona is certainly not the worst show to hit my cue this season. That special hell is reserved for SEGA Girls. uuuugggghhhhh

  3. I agree with some of your criticisms, and in fact some of them are indeed legitimate detractors to the show. However, there seems to be a sort of double standard going around here, given that so many anime this season, even those which are getting consistently high ratings are equally juvenile, or more so. The double standards arise because the subject matter of Yona simply isn’t quite as edgy or cool as some of the anime around. It is simply a Korean political drama and battle shoujo. Yona is taking its time with its characters, fleshing them out for who they are, even if they are not the most appealing of characters. Yona is a whiny, childish, spoilt princess practically devoid of any strength of character, but surely there is a place for this kind of character in an anime, as long as they are developed and shown well. I respect AnY for not going back to the usual anime tropes (so far) and instead developing the characters in organic manners. While I felt this episode was not absolutely necessary, and perhaps the flashback should not have been so drawn out, I think it was crucial in understanding our 3 main characters. Honestly, without this flashback, I would have thought Yona’s obsessive liking of Soowon in the preceding episodes was just ridiculous.
    Nowadays so many anime just rush ahead with the plot with little focus on the characters other than to highlight various stock facets of their characterization. I am glad that every season there will be a few shows who decide to slow down and take their time with character exploration. Shigatsu is another show this season who is doing this superbly. Is AnY executing this brilliantly. Far from it. But I appreciate the effort.
    I think one needs to view AnY more reflectively. Sure, it may be more slowly paced then other shows, and it may seem juvenile because it’s subject matter is not edgy. But at the core of it is a pretty beautiful show that honestly sits better with me then all the ‘edgy’ VN and LN adaptations nowadays. AnY isn’t a great show at this point by any means, but it definitely isn’t terrible.

    1. Thoughtful, long burns are great in my book. In fact, Fate/Stay ep Zero and 1 were both given 10s because of slowness. Room to breath and develop. That’s not really my issue with Yona.

      Of the shows I’m reviewing, which do you feel are getting unfair treatment? (Keeping in mind that Vanadis and others are being reviewed by more than one person)

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