Fall 2011

December 19, 2011

5 of 12 Anime Blogging: Hunter X Hunter Efficient Violence Handling

I’ve waited for a month to get to this scene. This is one of those early indicators if HxH will deliver the same level of violence to get its “definitive” brand across the new audience. Many Anime Enthusiast look forward that the remake will be in equal or to an above level as to its predecessor, so this one seals a great deal of it.

Hunter X Hunter is one of those special shounen anime that doesn’t stand to its genre stereotypes. The way how the world is painted is not in the same stroke as your Naruto or One Piece. Its much more, dark, more grounded to the cruelty of the physics of reality. The first series doesn’t constrain itself in the level of violence this series has. People die, and they can die in almost any ways possible. Kids aren’t just happy-kids with a big dream and being insufferably nice with everyone.

One thing that the took my attention in this series, is the relationship of Gon and Killua. They’re like the Yin and Yang but basically belong to that same sect of awesomeness. Despite them being kids, seeing how their personalities no differ from the common kids we knew. It’s almost jarring knowing that these kids aren’t what you think they are.

The screen cap above is one of these moments that I admire. Although its pretty much the same result as in the first series. This one strikes me much more than the last one. It kind of play both sides of Killua and Gon, making them more developed and their relationships much more meaningful.

Just watching from the first series, I can sort of understand why some veterans find the new one lacking. But now knowing both of them, made me conclude that both of them performed well. But for the efficiency, the new one has more to deliver.

For one: Killua killed the man and showing only a bag which we can easily deduce as a heart. But not able to see it, makes it much more gruesome leaving the imagination to ourselves. The second is by letting the heart stop than squashing it tunes the dark elements more by letting the villain die in an agonizing slow-death. The sinister look on Killua gave him a much darker tone, for someone you shouldn’t mess with. This fulfil his role being this dark protagonist of sorts. The last one is how he placed the bag into the Man’s hand. This can be interpreted in two, either can be both: This puts the final mocking of our villain being nothing but a small fry; and adding the mindset of Killua being a Kid. The latter made this scene better, since it makes weight on Killua treating the hunter exam as a game.

The we also get to see Gon being cool on what he saw with Killua. Gon for being a shounen lead, doesn’t seem to find death as forbidden like any other character. He seem to accept that death is inevitable and it will eventually come as it come. But he doesn’t put death as an option when he can control it. He seem to display restrain on others principle and sort to accept it. Which is lacking in most shounen series. I can’t seem to remember protagonist stop preaching over the non-violence or death approach than these character are. Which made this series unique among the others.

This is what I think made this series much better than the earlier. Also, it delivered its tone in a most efficient way, as well as confines itself to its intended audience. If animes can be dark without resorting to cheap violence of its tone, then I would be complaining that I can’t look back to do retro reviews.

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