Descending Stories: Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu

Discussion in 'Specific Anime Discussion' started by chii, Sep 22, 2016.

  1. chii

    chii Well-Known Member

    Posted by chii on Sep 22, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2017
  2. Starletka

    Starletka Silver Supporter

    The first season was pretty good, even though the slow pacing was killing me.
  3. Taek

    Taek Well-Known Member

    Posted by Taek on Jan 1, 2017
    I was talking about the first season last night and now I've got myself all excited for this again.
    ZetsubouKaiji likes this.
  4. Starletka

    Starletka Silver Supporter

    After the first episode, I'm glad to say the quality is still as high as it was in the first season. :pickleda: (And the pacing is still as slow.:@_@:)
  5. Taek

    Taek Well-Known Member

    Posted by Taek on Jan 7, 2017
    Episode 1

    I feel like we've dropped straight back in, which is more than I could have wished for.
    Obviously being back in the present time now, I do miss (the original) Sukeroku, he was a charismatic man who brought life to the screen whenever he was on, Yotaro shows promise to fill the void in a very different way though, so I'm looking forward to seeing if he develops in an equally as satisfactory way.

    In Sukeroku's place though, Yakumo fills the story completely, even when he's not on screen his presence is felt. He is the engine behind all of Rakugo now, and you can feel his machinations. Especially at the end there, "I would rather Rakugo disappear completely than become corrupted. Rakugo will die with me, that is my fate". I loved Yotaro's response to his question too, he does Rakugo for Rakugo's sake.

    If I had one complaint, it's that we didn't see a full performance this episode like we used to in the first season, though I suspect that is more to do with needing to get more content into the first episode to get us back into the swing of it, I'm looking forward to seeing performances by Yotaro and Yakumo. Hopefully some new characters too.
    trottolina and ZetsubouKaiji like this.
  6. tootalls

    tootalls Well-Known Member

    Ahh just as well thought out, high quality and woefully boring as I remember it..........
  7. Starletka

    Starletka Silver Supporter

    wtf is that morbid opening?
  8. Gens

    Gens Database Moderator

    Posted by Gens on Jan 14, 2017
    I honestly think this opening's pretty goddamn fantastic, and that visual, with the whole skeleton bit, is just pretty cool as hell to me.
    ZetsubouKaiji likes this.
  9. ZetsubouKaiji

    ZetsubouKaiji Well-Known Member

    Episode 2

    Maaan, it's super early in the year, but that OP is going to be a contender for best opening of the year. It's so fuckin' stylish and perfectly fits the show. It's definitely the best OP this winter by a long shot.

    Yakumo deals with a baby the same way I would. I laughed at him looking at it like a filthy little creature that was going to destroy his stuff.

    Then that cute scene was followed by something that gave me the sads, when he awkwardly tries to console Konatsu in her sleep. She still can't accept the loss of her father and needs someone to blame, and Yakumo is more than willing to accept that blame due to his guilt. Their conversation about why she hasn't killed him already was so intimate and exposes so much about what shapes both characters.

    The there's poor Yota. Things were going too smoothly for him last week. He was the hotshot rookie, but being a pro is another whole kettle of fish. He doesn't even have time to settle into his own style before rumors about his past deal a massive blow to his career. Now he's too distracted to even figure out how to make his own style and he completely embarrasses himself this episode. That stripping scene made me cringe so hard. I do like that he tried to own his past as part of his performance, but he went about it in completely the wrong way. It was also the most Yota way, too.

    That ending conversation was intriguing and seems to be shaping the big arc for this season. I am so damn excited.

    Fantastic episode.
    Taek and Starletka like this.
  10. Starletka

    Starletka Silver Supporter

    I just hope Yakumo doesn't die the next ep yet. Or the one after that. Or the one after that.
  11. CaptainSlow

    CaptainSlow Well-Known Member

    Episode 1
    I really liked Yotaro's opening monologue, I felt right at home and started remembering everything I enjoyed about S1. And it just kept improving from there. I hope this season can rise to the standard set by the previous, even with the challange of keeping things within one contemporary-ish time period (probably).

    Those cars in the scene with Yotaro and Konatsu though, they look nothing like the kinds of vehicles you would've seen in 70's (EDIT: or 80's, whoops) Japan! Deen, what you doin'? :sweat:

    Also, Yotaro is a damn nerd. I love him. :laugh:

    EDIT: Only just watched the OP (the copy I watched didn't have it) and DAMN. Definately going all out with the whole "shinigami in his final moments" thing. :love:
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    Last edited: Jan 20, 2017
  12. ZetsubouKaiji

    ZetsubouKaiji Well-Known Member

    Episode 3:

    If a complete yotaro like Yota is capable of such catharsis then there is hope for us all.

    The start of the episode puts a pretty clear point on why Yota is struggling right now. The ear is a both a gift and a curse. Being able to recreate what he hears is a useful skill, but it's stunted the development of his own style, because up to this point he could just get by on copying what he heard and get praised. He doesn't put much thought into the stories he's telling and I'd think it'd be neigh impossible to put your own mark on a story without understanding the characters or what they're saying or why they're saying it.

    However, I think later events in the episode make clear that Yota doesn't need to understand the stories intellectually. Maybe he doesn't understand all the insults being used, but through his conversation with the mob boss he comes to understand why the character in the story would go on such a rant. Yota is someone that learns through hard experience rather than pondering things. It might give him a deeper emotional connection to the story, than understanding on a purely intellectual level. After all, whenever he performs that Rakugo now he can always channel being scared shitless and ranting at a mob boss.

    I like how the show is taking its time with Yota's relationship with Konatsu. The show is taking its time making the relationship credible. The transition from a marriage of convenience to an actual relationship is an interesting one. It's got its bumps because Yota has so much to learn, but when he gets it right he manages to nail it. The little bit of conversation after the confrontation with the mob boss was quite sweet.

    Then there's the end of the episode where Yakumo proves he's a Rakugo master. Hot damn the way he transformed to tell that story was amazing.

    The conversation between Yakumo and Yota about why they do Rakugo was a great way of highlighting the difference between the two characters once again. However, why Yakumo's way might seem more dry and passionless, he's a master performer that can still run circles around Yota. He might still do rakugo for his own ego, but he knows just how to work his audience.

    Best episode yet. Funny with a few nice emotional moments.
    Taek likes this.
  13. CaptainSlow

    CaptainSlow Well-Known Member

    Episode 2
    Was not expecting a sudden heckling match mid-performance, though I liked how it was used to introduce Yotaro's current issue - going pro is rough, especially when dealing with the media and hecklers while simultaneously trying hard to find your own niche and behave how everyone thinks you should. Considering he also inherited his stage name (as the dandy pointed out), no wonder he's floundering...

    > "Excuse me! Your baby has something on its mind!"
    I'm using that one from now on. :frustrat:

    That kid has a Game Boy! Does that mean we're in about late 1989? The time jump was way bigger than I thought. I mean, I know Yota-kun got out of jail in the 70's, and it's implied in Episode 1 that this season takes place about a decade after that, so that makes sense.

    That performance though. He tried too hard, but you could tell he was nervous as heck - not only due to the passionless crowd and the new venue but likely to the fact he had everything else floating over his head. Poor bastard. :sweat:

    That stink-eye Yakumo gave the writer was class. :laugh: I'm not surprised he's suspicious of him, the writer seems to know way more than he should for just a simple fan of Rakugo.
    ZetsubouKaiji likes this.
  14. Taek

    Taek Well-Known Member

    Posted by Taek on Jan 30, 2017
    Damn, I thought I'd been posting about this!

    Episode 4

    The perfect feel good episode
    Time skip and Shin-chan is now a kindergartner, and holy shit does he look like little Sukeroku.

    Rather than talking about the events of this episode, because really, there were only a couple to talk about, I'd like to talk about the dynamic between Konatsu and Yota. @ZetsubouKaiji made a great point about episode 3 and how they were building up the relationship slowly but brilliantly, but now we've jumped 5-6 years ahead, it would be safe to assume we've missed loads of development. In some ways, that's right. But what we get instead felt really heart warming to me, I can believe their relationship has progressed into one of mutual love and respect for each other because of the work of the other episodes, it's not a perfect relationship by any means but that only makes them feel more real to me. Yota asking/making Konatsu do the rakugo performance was excellent and I enjoyed every minute of it, I do wonder if we're building up to her being the first female Yakumo? Who knows.

    As for Yakumo, man he is a presence still. He really does command the room whenever he enters it, and he does it without fear or anger or anything like that. He is a person that gets respect through earning it from people. Of course Kona-chan is still wary of him, but it was nice to see him be so warm with Shin-chan too.
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  15. ZetsubouKaiji

    ZetsubouKaiji Well-Known Member

    Episode 5:

    Well, shit, things were going along pretty smoothly this episode, but then that fucking ending. God, I hope Yakumo didn't just die, because that would be super depressing. Especially because the end of this episode shows that he's still so terrified and haunted by his past.

    On a happier note, I just have to love Yota's simplistic way of looking at Rakugo. There's something so innocent about the way he goes at it with no ego and no intention other than to share the joy of Rakugo with his audience. Although of Yakumo did just die, then Yota is about to have a very heavy burden laid on him, because he really will be the only one carrying the burden of keeping Rakugo alive.

    Great episode that's got me wanting the next one right this second.
  16. Starletka

    Starletka Silver Supporter

    Ep. 5:
    Hooolyyy shiiiit.
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  17. CaptainSlow

    CaptainSlow Well-Known Member

    Episode 6
    Aaah, finally our Yota-kun got to do "Inokori"... just a shame that Yakumo wasn't around to see it. Still, the strength that Yota managed to muster up in order to do that performance, and what a brilliant one it was... :cry:

    More time speculation trivia:
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  18. Taek

    Taek Well-Known Member

    Posted by Taek on Feb 13, 2017
    Episodes 5&6

    I heard that the ending to ep 5 was a doozy, so I decided to wait until 6 was out too before watching it, and I'm half glad I did
    because holy fuck that was a punch in the guts ending. Not just that Yakumo has a heart attack and we're not sure if he's going to die or not, but the whole process where he see's Mizukichi in the smoke, and then Sukeroku in the candle room. The whole thing was difficult to watch and then it just ends. It was such a feel good episode up to that point too.

    Episode 6 denies us any real hope until the very end too. But in the meantime, we get Yota's best performance we've seen so far, and it was definitely fun to sit and watch him become the conman in Inokori. The show continues to make me wish I was perfectly fluent in Japanese so I could get all the language jokes that I'm sure are in there too.

    The ending was good though, I'm glad that Bon is still alive, even if he now feels that he has to confront the demons of his past. It also looks like we'll be getting more flashback next week, so I can't wait.

    @CaptainSlow I instantly thought it was the Kobe earthquake when they mentioned that too.
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  19. ZetsubouKaiji

    ZetsubouKaiji Well-Known Member

    Episode 7:

    I maybe not have cried like Yota, but I was definitely welling up thinking of the enormity of Yakumo's sacrifice.Despite his coldfish exterior Yakumo's years of storytelling really have left him with a deep understanding of emotion. He might actually feel the pain more deeply than anyone.
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