Yoru no Yatterman – 05

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Yoru no Yatterman took some interesting turns this week but, ultimately, has become the Gundam G of the deconstructionist, post-apocalyptic, retro-theme genre. The story lurches incoherently between formulaicly crazy and weirdly mysterious but flat.

It’s all over the place and, because I’m not invested in the original franchise, the simple fight-of-the-week formula isn’t gripping me and I just don’t enjoy watching it anymore.

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This week introduces Takeshi, who’s super strong, fighting to win comforts for his sick mom, and has a bladder infection or something because he’s constantly peeing everywhere.

I’m sure his peeing ties into earlier Yatterman shows or is a cultural joke or… something, but it felt totally random to me and, after the first time it’s used as a joke, it wasn’t very funny.

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Yes Yatterbot soldiers. It was just some snowmen peeing on that Yatterking statue…

This was actually the funniest moment in the episode.

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Beyond Takeshi, the first half of the episode is dedicated to Gatchan trying to show strength and get ready for a prize match (against Takeshi). I enjoyed watching Gatchan get all riled up over beating Miss Doronjo into the ground and then losing his confidence immediately because he can’t even defeat Boyaki but… Gatchan is such a dull character to begin with.

Rather, any character development he gains from this is cliche at best.

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As far as visuals, this week presents another mixed bag. On the up side, we got a decent amount of action in the animation, plenty of characters and mechs designs, and some occasional uses of color.

On the down side, even at 1080p the snowy background washed out many of the opening scenes. Worse, the ‘flash back’ scenes with Doronjo and her mom may as well have been on blank white fields, they were so high contrast. Even if I liked Yatterman’s aesthetic, and I don’t, this wasn’t the show’s best week.

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So Yatterman obviously cheats and sends mega-mecha to the fighting tournament and destroys all 3 of the champions instead of giving out a goat each and some pocket money. Nothing new or surprising, given how purely villainous Yatterman has been presented up to now.

Then Doronbo shows up and beats the Yattermen completely for once. They also leave the winnings with Takeshi, who is unconscious but wakes up soon to pee…

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The mechs fights were especially quirky, especially because they were narrated by ‘the whispering reporter’ who may or may not be a new character or a call back to original Yatterman. He added a level of pun humor that was… weirder than funny.

That all aside, we see another parallel between Ally and Doronjo’s mom (Ally repeats a scene of building snow men from Doronjo’s memory) and I have to wonder where that season long plot arc is going. It was given so little attention though, and it was so blatant a ‘this is an important long-arc’ scene that I didn’t really care.

All these ‘what a twists’ just don’t feel earned.

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6 thoughts on “Yoru no Yatterman – 05”

    1. Yeah. The brackets didn’t really work out as a thing I don’t think. I liked that they made me dig through more quickly but… don’t know? They got readership but seemed to garner as much confusion as to why certain shows were facing off against each other than fostering ‘yeah I want one show to beat the other’

      maybe the season didn’t have enough contenders to make the pairings that surprising? (Yatterman running out of steam is really the only surprise)

  1. I got most of the jokes, but I had to take a trip to TV Tropes to figure out things like the whispering reporter. The thing is, though, that while I got the joke, I didn’t find it all very funny.

    Takeshi was partly a reference to an old Time Bokan series called Hurricane Polymar, but he was really a send-up of 60s and 70s style heroes. His use of “Boku,” pure heart complete with being a mother’s boy, impoverished background, overwhelming enthusiasm, extreme physical powers, immature but inoffensive mentality, and especially his facial design are all very retro. Even his incessant need to introduce himself felt familiar.

    However, as a character of the week, he takes up too much time. His solo-fight was about twice as long as it should have been. This entire episode would have fared better had a main character been constantly paired with Takeshi and given an arc. Instead, Galina took the center stage for only the first half before getting discarded for the main crew.

    Stylistically, I got that this was all mimicking the comedy and pacing of those old shows. However, we only have 12 episodes here and they consider the core conflict so important that they show us a flashback of what was lost at the start of every episode.

    I’m going to continue watching this, but I understand why you’re dropping it.

    1. I think it’s less the subject material for the jokes and more their timing. The snowmen/pee scene at the beginning was funny BECAUSE it was so tightly timed with the passing yatterAPC. The next funniest joke was Galina beating a little girl to the ground and actually feeling pumped up about it… but even that was lite on laughs.

      By comparison, the ‘cat under the tiger’ mecha mask reveal pun should have been equally funny (along with all the weird Ghejis Khan jokes) but they weren’t because a whispering guy had to send them off and they came at us too quickly in succession / without a ‘punch’

  2. Based on the commentary I’ve seen for Junketsu and Yatterman, I think the only reason people don’t like this one is because they don’t have the dimension of having the French Revolution stuff to fall back on, since they haven’t seen the original Yatterman. For someone like me, who hasn’t seen the original anime and finds no joy in inane rehashes of the French Revolution again (not since Chevalier D’Eon showed that anime can do it well), these comments apply to both anime.

    1. Interesting point. Well, not about the French revolution, which would happen like 600+ years after the events of Junketsu, but about scene in general.

      I would go a step further and say we can attach to Maria more than Yatterman because —-people—- that populate their settings feel specific and believable.

      Yatterman’s people are referencing a genre, or a brand, which itself was already a caricature. Maria is setting characters in a time and place and presenting (some of) them as nuanced, complex human beings.

      But you are right, Maria’s setting — as a place of war and peasants — is not really noteworthy. It could be in modern day Brooklyn and be just as interesting, as long as the people (and the factions they represent) were portrayed with the same degree of detail. Even then, I’m talking bout supporting cast like the Monk and Michael. Maria/Joseph aren’t one dimensional but they aren’t exactly complex either.

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