When a writer chooses to tell a story out of sequence there really should be some kind of reason other than there was an absence of any other narrative hook. Despite the desperate attempt to grab the audience through narrative devices, Boogiepop has fallen pretty flat with its first arc.
And I don’t say that to suggest that writers shouldn’t play with narrative structure or that a story told out of sequence can’t be entertaining. But essentially, Boogiepop wa Warawanai has so far confused and bored it’s audience, started to become clearer and introduce some intrigue, before showing its hand and wrapping things up in a neat little bow. All this begs the question was whether or not the story would have been equally as ineffectual if it had been told in order?
Even leaving aside the plot, after three episodes we have zero characters to really get behind or that we know anything of significance about, the atmosphere is pretty placid though I guess maybe they are going for a still and mysterious tone (missing it if that is what they are going for), and they wrapped up the only mystery they’d presented worth caring about because the over-arching who or what is Boogiepop doesn’t really interest me. And why should it? They’ve done nothing to make me think that it will be a significant reveal.
By the end of next week I’ll have decided my watch list for the season (though it does move a little after that), and at this point I can’t say that Boogiepop wa Warawanai will be on it. It’s done too little to interest me and it isn’t even something that will be fun to pull apart each week and complain about. Mostly because it is committing the worst of story crimes: it’s boring.
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Boogiepop Omnibus Vol. 1-3 (Light Novel)
- Episode 1: Leaving the Audience on the Outside in Boogiepop
- Episode 2: Boogiepop Begins To Reveals Its Secrets
- Episode 3: Disorderly and Dull, Perhaps the Worst Things for a Story To Be
- Episode 4: The Sprouting of a New Imaginator in Boogiepop
- Episode 5: Weak Introductions To Characters We’ll Never Know
- Episode 6: Beward the Dull and Languid Pacing
- Episode 7: The Interesting Premise That Just Keeps Putting Me To Sleep
- Episode 8: Things Finally Seem to be Popping Along
- Episodes 9 and 10: The End of the Imaginator and The Start of a New Arc
- Episode 11: An Enemy of the World
- Episode 12 and 13: Pop Goes the Fear Ghoul?
- Images from: Boogipop wa Warawanai (2019). Dir. S Natsume. Madhouse. 2019.
11 thoughts on “Disorderly and Dull, Perhaps The Worst Things For A Story To Be”
I don’t blame you. I feel like the only people who will continue to warch are those that saw the older anime or read the light novels. And even those people don’t like this adaptation for other reasons.
Though this is an interesting lesson in how not to adapt material because regardless of what they are trying for here, they aren’t achieving it. unless they wanted something incredibly dull to watch.
That was a major problem I had with Beyond: Two Souls; it jumped around back and forth chronologically, and there was little rhyme or reason to it. It made certain revelations more impactful, but otherwise, I would often be invested in a subplot only to be frustrated when the next segment moved away from it.
The technique can work, but it needs to feel like there was some sort of reason for it and here it just feels like they were desperate for a gimmick and didn’t trust their own story.
That’s how I felt about Beyond: Two Souls, though the creators went a bit further in that I don’t think they had any faith in the medium itself.
I think what failed to grip me was how every character (unlike those in Phantom) only seemed to exist for the sake of the story. So if the story is not interesting, the characters are gonna fall flat too, and the entire thing with it. The generic art and design didn’t help either.
What I find really odd is that they manage to make what should be an intriguing story that dull. Murder, monsters, aliens, a mysterious girl… It should be interesting. It amazes me how dull they managed to make this plot seem.