Tuesday, July 22, 2008

SG1.... So Generous one!

For a few years now, I have been addicted to a magnificent anime which I watch over the weekend on Saturday and Sunday on New TV from 8:30 am till 9:00 am. Entitled "Yu-Gi-oh" it is a fascinating story of a bunch of youth who are monster duelers which are out to save the world - as everyone is these days!... But what really fascinates me is the way it is introduced by that young woman who serves as a relay speaker between programmes, invariably she says things like "now our young viewers are eager to follow the adventures of the nice YuGi and his cute little friends...." and the "Surete Generale" - the censorship body which gives ratings to programs has classified it as "SG1" or "Suitable for all ages." One thing you can take from me: I would never let my three-year old nephew pass in front of the TV while I am watching it and for serious reasons....
Let me try to explain:
First, let's talk about YuGi, yes "nice" YuGi has two souls in him - one is a highschool student and the other is a 5,000 years old reincarnated Pharaoh - whereas modern psychotherapists normally classify this under schyzophrenia - Surete Generale begs to differ.... Now, his rival Seito Keiba - an orphan who got adopted by a demineering multi-millionaire - ousted his stepfather from the holding after masterminding an internal coup and appropriating the controlling share of Keiba Korps. That's "cute" isn't it?
The rest of the bunch aren't too well off either - Joey Wheeler is in love with Mae Valentine who keeps changing sides between the goodies and the baddies (Every helpful for child psychology), and Tristan, Duke and Serenity (Joey's sister) seem to be locked in a love triangle.
The parental absence is only too marked in the series: The only father figures are YuGi's grandfather and a scientist who is also a grandfather (Of a girl named Rebecca) - but otherwise, immediate fatherhood or motherhood are totally absent. One episode specifically involved a dueler who was a "slave" and entailed an introduction to mental sadomasochistic practises.
I forgot to mention that when the Seal of Orichalcos card is played, the contestant who loses the duel also loses his soul which goes to feed an evil monster called "Levithian" who is supposed to either "save" or "destroy" the earth depending on whom you believe...
Kazuki Takahashi, the creator of the series, once said "The story is quite violent, isn't it?" but naturally, violence is deemed to be "suitable for all ages."
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