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The First Rule of Kiraboshi: Don’t Talk About Kiraboshi

November 29, 2010

No idea if anyone else has picked up on this, but with the past few episodes I’ve been getting a certain vibe from Star Driver.

You know how Fight Club was all about the impotence of modern men to affect the world around them to any significant degree, thus resorting to beating the hell out of each other as the only means of “control” that makes a lick of sense? That’s what I’m seeing in Star Driver.

The good guys in Star Driver, the kiddies in the drama club that are protecting the maidens or whatever, are fighting a hopeless battle as far as I can tell. They desperately want to save the maidens from being deflowered or whatever it is the Kiraboshi dudes do to them when they want to go to the next level. They see this as a good thing, not only because it keeps the Kiraboshi gang from getting the shit they want, but there’s a definite “don’t fuck with me when I don’t want to be fucked” vibe to it as well. It isn’t just about keeping the baddies from powering-up their mecha, it’s about loudly crying “no means no.”

The catch is that in preserving the whole maiden thing, they’re locking themselves into a life of isolation and meaninglessness. The maidens get to keep their purity and get to fuck over Kiraboshi’s vague plans, but they have to live on this damn island for the rest of their lives– to be free you gotta imprison yourself and shit like that. Even what’s his face is bound to the island under threat of execution– leave the island and his ear-fetish maids will gank his ass. Maybe succumbing to Kiraboshi’s demands will set the maidens free of their island imprisonment, allowing them to leave and do whatever the hell it is that they want to do with their lives. All they have to do is sell their souls to the proverbial devil and put out. It’s a lose/lose situation for the good guys.

But the Kiraboshi kiddies aren’t in a better position. They have all of this power at their disposal, but it’s largely ineffective. They can summon giant robots into some alternate dimension and duke it out, and they all have various “first level” powers that can be used in reality, but none of it seems to be of any real use to them. Have we really seen anyone use their super-swanky powers to any real constructive end? That swimmer chick could blow shit up with her clone power thing, but she couldn’t control it. Pink-haired whorebag can kiss dudes and put them under her control. To some degree. Maybe. It seems awfully easy to break her control. And everyone else? What exactly can they do? Not much as far as we can tell. They have all of this great potential, but they can’t seem to do jack shit with any of it, and it’s made all the worse with Takuto’s interference. They may have all the posturing of superiority, but they’re in just as much of a fucked up situation as the drama club kids.

So, you have the good guys that can’t win no matter what they decide to do, and you have the bad guys who can’t win regardless of how much they seem to be capable of doing so. Neither side can really do much of anything. They’re just like all of the dudes from Fight Club– they exist in a world where they have belive they can make a difference, but everything’s acting against them. Hell, even Takuto’s not particularly effective. He may be able to kick Cybody ass, but now that the Kiraboshi gang’s announced that they may have the ability to regenerate destroyed mecha, what’s the use in being able to slice up shit like a flamboyant garbage disposal when the thing you just offed can come back next week to do it all over again.

Everything’s shaping up to be a big, futile mess, and the only time anyone seems to really enjoy themselves is when they’re duking it out in their Cybodies. Despite all of their posturing, the Kiraboshi kids can only exert their potential when fighting, while Takuto seems just as lost outside of Tauburn. Outside, he’s just the third wheel in a love triangle. Inside, he’s the Galactic Pretty Boy, kicking ass and looking good while doing so.

So yeah, we’re looking at some sort of anime equivalent of Fight Club at this point in the series. All of these kids are impotent to affect the world around them, so they have to let out their frustrations with the world in giant robot fights. Very few Kiraboshi peeps seem all that upset when they lose. If anything, they seem relieved to have been able to vent their frustration. It’s Robot Fight Club, and at this point Galactic Tyler Durden’s kicking all sorts of ass. We’ll see where it goes from here.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. E Minor permalink
    November 30, 2010 3:37 AM

    Hm, the futility of duking it out in Zero Time is an interesting comparison to men pointlessly punching each other in Fight Club, but I’m not sure if it extends any further than that. I disagree that Fight Club was merely about the modern man being able unable to affect his surroundings. I felt Fight Club was mostly posing a question on traditional masculinity and whether or not it still has a place in the modern society; the ending ultimately rejected the extreme in Durden as destructive and dangerous.

    I’m not seeing any underlying tension at hand in Star Driver other than “gosh let’s fight over these maidens for the umpteenth time.” None of the characters are really grappling with their identity. Yeah, they’re stuck on the island, but the writers have barely fleshed out a legitimate reason for this at all that I’m not sure anything can be said either way about it.

    • Landon permalink*
      November 30, 2010 5:03 PM

      Right on there being more to Fight Club. I’m just conventiently simplifying it for the purposes of this post. Although I’d disagree with it rejecting Durden. His plans did win out in the end, and to me it seemed like it was a matter of his alter ego being unnecessary rather than his ideals being at fault. Otherwise, I don’t think his plans to blow up all the banks would have succeeded. At least that’s how I saw the movie playing out. I never got around to reading the book.

      And yeah, Star Driver hasn’t exactly done a good job of fleshing out everything, and that’s why I’m running with this idea at the moment. I’m taking the lack of info as a sign that there really isn’t much meaning behind any of this. I’m assuming that the lack of development’s intentional rather than simply bad writing. It’s more than a bit of a stretch, but I like stretches, and I don’t blame anyone for feeling otherwise.

      • E Minor permalink
        November 30, 2010 11:13 PM

        I don’t think the fact that Durden succeeds is evidence that the movie endorses his philosophy. Sometimes, assholes just win the battle (though not necessarily the war).

        We know the narrator is full of shit. We know Durden’s full of shit. I mean, for all his nonsense about how men should join Fight Club to “feel” because they’re oh so numb in society, the irony is that they just become Tyler’s mindless drones instead.

        The only reason they can ever do anything is by not caring. In the end, the narrator wakes up and starts to care. He might have been too late to stop the exploding buildings, but he did save the one important thing to him: Marla.

        I dunno, I guess I respect Fincher, especially now that The Social Network is out. I have a hard problem thinking Fincher would just make a simple “Man the fuck up” movie.

        Anyway, sorry if I continued the Fight Club tangent rather than discuss Star Driver!

  2. envy permalink
    December 2, 2010 10:35 AM

    Kanako’s first phase gave her good looks and great business sense

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