The French word for fish is “poisson”. Now that I think of it, it sounds a lot like poison. Anyways, there’s this expression used in Quebec (and I’m pretty sure nowhere else) when you call someone a “poisson” or a fish it means they’re gullible. Like they’ll gobble up anything. I really wanted this expression to exist in English as it would have been such a good fit for this week’s post title… Oh well.
Look, I’m not going to sit here and pretend Pet is a good show. It really isn’t. There are too many obvious flaws and not enough strenghts to make up for it. Arguably very few if any strenghts. The only thing I can say for it is that I don’t hate it. I want to see where it goes. And for the life of me, I don’t know why.
Maybe it’s because of stray moments of brilliance. There was a scene this week. Hiroki having just left with Katsuragi on a mission for the company, Tsukasa finds himself alone in their apartment getting ready to go meet a company boss. It’s a meeting he’s kept secret from Hiroki and one where he plans to exercise some pressure on this boss. He mumbles happily to himself as he gets dressed. The camera switches angles frequently but only very slightly. The images are often off centred in an odd way, as if the camera wasn’t properly framed. Tsukasa’s speech is disorganized and he almost seems to talk over himself somehow. The actor is varying his pitch and Tsukasa sounds kind of manic yet he never raises his tone in any way. The sound track is jumpy a competes with the voice track. The effect is fantastically unsettling and tense. I was holding my breath without realizing it. It’s a small piece of actually wonderful movie making showing a high level of mastery from the director and it’s wasted on the material.
I say wasted but that’s not even right. I still think the base premise is quite interesting and full of potential. The characters are sadly under-realized but they’re not particularly bad just sort of shallow. And even the plot does have a lot going for itself.
For instance, this week Tsukasa continues to plan his personal escape from the company and his attack on Satoru, keeping everyone else including Hiroki in the dark. Meanwhile an unsteady Hiroki and Satoru are doing their first job alone together, both a little lost without their respective mentors and on a high stakes and very difficult mission. There’s a lot of excitement and tons of cards up in the air. Every body is plotting and trying to come out on top. We’re not sure who’s gonna snap and who’s gonna end up betraying everyone. And we assume Hayashi’s gone but we don’t have any actual proof.
If you haven’t been following the series, that sounds like a bunch of gibbersih but you might still be getting the idea that it’s one of those twisty crime dramas where you never know who to trust. And it is.
The problem is in execution. It goes off on these needlessly “dark” tagents that I assume are suppose to be disturbing but come off as immature. Kind of the opposite of the feel the series desperately want’s to acheive. And the pacing and exposition are so way off that half the time you’re not sure what’s going on or what everyone’s motivation is which is particularly bad in this type of show.
In the end, I am still watching Pet and I will continue. I want to know if Hiroki is ok, he was ruched to the hospital at the last minute. Probably because he hasn’t been eating lately. I want to know who will come out on top, Tsukasa or Satoru. But frankly, I couldn’t care less about any of the other story threads. Heck, I barely even follow them. But what did pique my interest is enough to keep me going.
Contributed by Irina
from I Drink And Watch Anime!