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Panty and Stocking Respect the Cock

November 23, 2010

Yeah, despite the fact that Tom Cruise has had a couple of notable lawyer roles in his career (A Few Good Men and The Firm come to mind immediately.), the peeps behind Panty and Stocking decided it’d be best to have Cruise decked out as his sexist self-help scam artist from Magnolia. It makes perfect sense when you realize that said character is all about fucking as many women as you can using the power of The Secret– a perfect thematic compliment for Panty’s “I fuck anything that has a stiff appendage” attitude. It’s all about respecting the cock.

Since we’re already knee-deep in this shit, let’s run with this sexual metaphor. Let’s say that the medium of animation is a cock. In the anime industry, that cock isn’t getting much respect. Even many of the better series out there don’t take full advantage of the medium. Most anime series, quite frankly, play off of a narrow range of visual/animation styles and narrative tropes. Character designs rarely stray from the standard set back in the 90’s with the likes of Tenchi Muyo, while stories usually just expand on a handful of generic starting points (guy grows harem, guy has a special power that he develops/trains, girl loves guy that isn’t her “type,” group of girls hang out, etc,). Yeah, there are exceptions, but there’s no point in listing said exceptions when all they do is prove the rule.

So yeah, even when anime’s good, its a stagnant medium. You can execute that formula to its utmost potential, but you’re still just rehashing the same old shit. The industry as a whole just plain doesn’t respect the potential for diversity that’s inherent in animation.

I think this is leading to a good deal of metaphorical sexual frustration in many of the directors, writers, and artists. These peeps obviously love the medium of animation. You don’t get into a business like this that requires long hours slaving over storyboards and scripts and whatnot for a comparatively low salary unless you fucking love it, and I suspect that said love is fairly broad. The guys that get into this business, unlike the average fan, likely love all kinds of animation, but the demands of the industry make it necessary for them to restrict their talents to that very narrow range of possibilities mentioned above. These guys and gals have the potential to go in so many directions, but all of that is one massive cocktease. It’s all right there in front of them, but they can’t have it. All that shit rarely makes the animation companies the kind of money that’ll keep them afloat, so they have to sit back and watch all those dreams do a proverbial table dance– so close to tapping that ass, but so far away.

That’s where Panty and Stocking comes in. Gainax has been in a rut since, what? FLCL? Even when they make a decent series like Gurren Lagaan, they’re still beholden to the very narrow tropes that define the current state of the anime industry– the only thing separating TTGL from the rest of the pack is its energetic, impressionistic action scenes. Otherwise, Ganiax has been making the same old cookie-cutter bullshit like almost every other anime studio. Sometimes they manage to get some creative relief, like the ending animations from Hanamaru Kindergarten, but those are likely temporary forms of release. Those brief moments ain’t doing them any good.

That is, until Panty and Stocking was greenlit. The series is coming off like one massive orgasmic release. These animators are tossing out all manners of animation styles and references and so on– the sort of shit that they couldn’t get away with doing in a regular anime series. You couldn’t have a series that’s deliberately animated “poorly” the way the Transformers parody was, nor could you have an episode that apes off of the animation style used by Ren and Stimpy (with its exaggerated facial expressions and hyper-detailed still shots that expose every gross detail of a character’s appearance.). You even have that bit from episode five where styles are mixed together, seeing Panty and Stocking’s Cartoon Network visuals clashing with the more realistic animation used for the Japan-like neighboring city. That was like something out of Ralph Bakshi’s Cool World or something.

So yeah, Panty and Stocking respects animation’s cock. It’s a shame so few anime series are willing to do the same.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. November 23, 2010 4:30 PM

    Best metaphor ever.

  2. November 23, 2010 6:10 PM

    I guess this show will be some kind of a turning point in anime fandom. We will be hearing someone said that this anime is trying to be PaSwG or so and so. From now on, everyone are respecting the cock

  3. Niku permalink
    November 23, 2010 7:39 PM

    The reason really is money, of course. 90-some-odd percent of productions are based on some source material, with increasing sales of said material being the driving force behind choosing to animate a project. The companies funding it keep with the same style because it is what they know will sell. The money made from broadcasts and disc sales just about cover the production costs, so it’s really the advertising they’re after. GAINAX is one of the few exceptions. They work for towards their own artistic goals as their original projects prove. The adaptations they do in between is to help fund those.

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