I just coded all night.
> Mental Dissonance and Akio Ohtori

This analysis was donated by mistspinner.

    You know something, as much as I absolutely loathe Akio, there’s also this odd sense of mental dissonance whenever I think about his character too much – because, at root, Akio started out as Dios who, even if his methodology was wrong, still is heavily implied to act from the same altruism and compassion that drives Utena herself.

    Then we get to present day, and Akio is a bastard, a completely asshole of an antagonist –

    And yet, you can never quite forget that Akio was Dios once, and that sense of lost innocence and goodness makes Akio/Dios’s present state all the - sadder? more pathetic? tragic, I suppose – so in a way, he’s a Tragic Villain, not necessarily because of Things that Happened to Him, but because of what he let himself become.

    At the same time, this tragedy does nothing to detract from his essential douchey nature - but at the same time as you are made vividly, viscerally aware of Akio’s douchebag nature, his time as Dios is still there, at the back of your mind, a disconcerting reminder that this complete asshole nonetheless was once, actually, quite a sweet kid. It’s a very grey sense of morality and character we’re talking here, and it ties a lot to one of the major themes in Utena, that no one is truly diametrically good or bad, witch or princess.

    And – thinking out loud here, indulge me – there was a wonderful analysis on ohtori.nu’s Akio subsection talking about his nature as an archetype, which in essence meant that he had to, from the beginning, be necessarily wholly good or bad (as befits a fairy tale morality). Thus, the essay goes on to say, that black-and-whiteness, that duality is what causes Dios to shift to Akio – because once Dios loses some of his innocence, he must lose it all. Black-and-white thinking then, is the fatal flaw of Dios’ character – which ties back, again, into Utena’s themes of ambivalence: no one is good or bad, and Utena herself ultimately triumphs where Dios does not because she is able to accept that with Anthy. Even as Anthy hurts her and turns out to be far less innocent than she believes, Utena refuses to cast her away for good, to accept that she’s purely a Bad Witch instead of the Good Princess she had acted like up until then - Utena, for all her naivety, succeeds because she rejects the dualistic prince/princess, princess/witch view that Akio could never let go.

    But back to the man himself.

    What I was saying, in essence, then, is that Revolutionary Girl Utena manages to give us the rarest of a Complete Monster villain and a Tragic one, together, where even as Akio is painted as 100% asshole, there’s this nagging sense of dissonance because of his past, which makes it hard to hate him even as you hate him – preventing you, in essence, from viewing the series’ most morally dubious character in black-and-white terms.

    To which all I have to say is well-played, BePapas. Well-played indeed.

Personality + Relationship + Narrative + Miscellany + Music

Introduction + Characters + Reference + Submission

Go Home
Analysis of Utena + Empty Movement

Akio is no rapist, he is just an opportunist that makes his home a school full of emotionally compromised teenagers. This frame is actually pulled from the Metropolitan Museum of Art archives.
I considered making this a time gif that would occasionally flash Dios as having a ponytail. Then I got lazy.
I know this layout is sort of a spoiler, but so was the closing of the first season, so suck it.
This is far and away the most complex layout I have coded, and I know it does not look like it.
So are they waltzing or foxtrotting or what?
Because according to Ikuhara, if it were Akio, they would be doing the lambada.
These swords ended up looking like the crosses in Evangelion. I left it on purpose because hellz yeah.
I wanted this layout to look like a fairy tale. It ended up looking like a French textile exhibit. Oops.
Polly want some C4? Sorry, coding and Colbert do not mix.
It is March. It is snowing. It is Canada.
You know what is an awesome idea? Coding on your rag. That is smart.