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Just finished Fate/Stay Night, and I think it's allowed me to finally put some of my anime-thoughts into words:
I often get the sense that I'm missing a lot of philosophical themes when I watch anime. I don't know how much of it is my tendency to miss dramatic subtleties in general, how much is due to the themes being lost in translation, and how much of it is culture clash. Or maybe I'm just overthinking things, and not missing anything.
Anyhow, an example from Fate/Stay Night: Shirou is an idealist who wants 'a world where nobody cries.' During the course of the show's two dozen episodes, several characters ridicule his idealism, calling him a 'hypocrite' for caring more about others than he does about himself. And I don't know what to make of that. It sounds a lot like the 'Nobody is selfless because everyone who helps others gets something out of it, even if it's just a warm bubbly feeling' nonsense. But maybe 'hypocrite' is the closest translation of a Japanese word that we don't have; or maybe it's just a bad translation.
Anyhow again, Night has proven to be as visually spectacular as Zero. The dialogue was a bit slow at times for my taste, and some of the characters' actions made me facepalm. (You just got done telling Shirou how much easier it is to kill masters than servants...so why are you ignoring the enemy master?!) But overall a fun watch.