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Author Topic: Alternative World Alternatives  (Read 2144 times)
rowan_a._seven
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« on: January 21, 2004, 12:54:10 AM »

Hi.  Seeing as how "The Alternative World" is one of the more...negatively critiqued El-Hazard installments, I was wondering what changes people would make to it if they could.  Personally, if I could I think I'd make the main cast more proactive.  In OAV1 they shaped the storyline, and if anything the plot had to keep up with them and their actions.  However, in "The Alternative World" virtually everything is manipulated by Arjah, and the characters seem to be simply waiting to perform a task.  While this isn't necessarily bad in and of itself, the execution (in my opinion) left something to be desired, and I really would've liked to see the main characters do more than essentially wait for their parts in the story to take place.  Take Miz, Fujisawa, Rune, and Afura, for example.  They're on a farm with a Creterian native.  Once the more 'totalitarian' aspects of agricultural life were shown, they could've used those characters and Chabil to provide more background and history for Creteria.  As for Jinnai, Shayla, and Groucho, I think it could've been very entertaining seeing the three of them actually work together and perhaps get involved in the rebellion that was going on.  That would've at least given us the other side of the story and presented Jinnai and Shayla a chance to have a more important role in the series...and hopefully spare us the image of fat Jinnai. :bawl

So, if you could change something about "The Alternative World" what would it be?  
« Last Edit: January 21, 2004, 12:55:50 AM by rowan_a._seven » Logged
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« Reply #1 on: January 21, 2004, 01:09:04 AM »

Put simply, the El Hazard cast had no business in a psuedo-European fantasy setting.  The arabian flavor of their exploits is what had set them apart from the competition in the past.  Losing that uniqueness hurt the series.  
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« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2004, 03:15:18 AM »

Firstly, I would do something about the NUMEROUS loose ends in the story that the series never bothered to fix. The most glaring of which is obviously the Mystery of Chabil. It is simply unforgivable that the creators would be so sloppy as to completely forget about one of their characters. Sure the guy was a minor, throw-away character; but since he was basically Rune's love-interest, you should give him a notable exit. The least they could have done was give him a two-second death scene. He could've fallen off the assembling Eye of God pieces, died honorably defending Rune from the Cretarian soldiers, or got eaten by a mountain lion. SOMETHING.

I'm not even gonna get started on the IMPORTANT loose ends, the ones actually dealing with the main plot. Like where the hell the Eye of God came from, what the fuck happened with the Rebellion, just who or what Arjah is, what the mystery was behind Quawool/Kauru/Ifurita-stand-in's tribe, and why they were sent to stupid Creteria in the first place.

Oh well. I still thought Alternative World was better than El-Hazard 2 though, if mainly for the unintentional comedy.
« Last Edit: January 21, 2004, 03:24:29 AM by lord_god_jinnai » Logged


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« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2004, 09:07:56 PM »

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So, if you could change something about "The Alternative World" what would it be?  

Hoo boy  ::)

Alt World got some things right, at least, for me.  I've learned to enjoy Alt World by ignoring the story, and concentrating on the characters.  Alt World didn't get all the characters right, but most of them are actually very well written, I think.  Kauru contrasts with Miz, Afura and Shayla nicely.  Fatora is somewhat redeemed as a capable and caring girl (before episode 13, anyway).  And poor Nanami has some truly heart-rending angsty scenes.

I don't have a problem with the basic premise of the story.  Yes, most of the planet of El-Hazard hasn't been explored.  The gang has never left the area near the Great Holy River.  But they had just gone on a field trip in OVA2.  And it makes sense that Makoto would accidentally trigger another dimensional trip while he was working with relics, trying to rescue Ifurita.

But I'd still change a lot.

Either get the continuity and time-line right, or ignore it.  Alt World is supposed to take place One Year Later.  But I've argued before that this can't be right.  Makoto's research would be further along after a year, and Kauru would have been selected much sooner than that, among many other things.

Drop most of the Unsolved Mystery around Kauru.  It isn't needed.  Find another way for Makoto to rescue her from the river, and just let her be a talented priestess and a good little girl.

Drop any hints of an implied Makoto-Kauru romance.  Make it clear that Kauru loves Makoto like a brother.  Her sisterly love makes for better comedy with Nanami and Shayla than if she's just another girl in the harem, and Makoto can remain completely faithful to Ifurita.

Drop Arjah.  Makoto accidentally sends everyone to Creteria by himself, with a failed experiment. Or maybe rewrite Arjah as a human Creterian scientist, who accidentally kidnaps the gang while he's trying to repair the Spring of Life.  He could work as an evil Schtalubaugh type character.

Drop the Creterian Eye of God.  The Spring of Life can still be a part of something bigger, or it can be Makoto's challenge all by itself.

Develop the unique "relationship" between Jinnai and Deva.  As it is, it cuts directly from Deva accepting an unintended proposal, to Deva more or less raping Jinnai in episode 13.  Ick.  Write in some more subtle romantic comedy there, before Jinnai goes to Creteria.  Maybe Deva even goes to Creteria with him, and she keeps trying to distract him and seduce him, or he gets to be a hero and rescue her, or something.

Completely rewrite the Shayla and Jinnai plot thread, from when Shayla is trapped in the stupid giant ping pong ball (as if she'd stand still long enough to be trapped), to when she finds Makoto and Kauru.  Keep the chase going.  Instead of being trapped by the Creterian Bugrom, Shayla and Jinnai have to work together to avoid capture.  Maybe they both try to hide in a busy Bugrom hive, in a wacky kind of way.  Keep the evil flesh-eating Creterian Deva, but don't stretch that joke out for several episodes.  Shayla can have a fan-servicey bath scene, but not in a Bugrom egg pond-- she wouldn't be stupid enough to do that, either.

Develop the implied conflict with Volcania.  Develop political intrigue with Gilda.  Write Jinnai into the conflict-- he's a brilliant political and military strategist.  He escapes Shayla and the Creterian Bugrom more quickly, and then he goes to work for Gilda, or for Volcania.

Drop Dall's stupid infatuation with Kauru.  And don't suddenly change Dall into another character half-way through the story.  Either Dall remains a clueless pretty-boy weenie, or he's a troubled man, drinking to drown his sorrows, from the beginning.

Don't split up Afura and Shayla for practically the whole story.  They're both good by themselves, but they're much better when they're playing against each other.

Give Fujisawa more to do.  Don't strand him on the farm with Miz the whole time.  The poor guy doesn't even get to do any drinking.

Rewrite Miz.  That's one characterization that Alt World didn't get right.  She can still be a clingy and domineering wife, but she should still be a sympathetic character too.  She comes off as a foul-tempered shrew, mostly.

Develop some Afura angst, after she gets fed up with Miz and Fujisawa and flies away from them.  Maybe give her a nice angsty scene by herself, sitting in the tree, wondering what she's doing with her life, and why she's alone now.  Heck, give her a Creterian love interest too.

Nanami is tricky.  Her Alt World angst has come to be one of my favorite bits.  But still, maybe she could have a bigger part in the story.  Instead of opening another restaurant, maybe she becomes Makoto's full-time assistant.  Maybe her trip to Creteria gives her another dimensional ability, or maybe her gift of seeing through illusions has another use in the Spring of Life.

And the biggie-- what the heck happened to Chabil?  For that matter, what the heck happened to Rune?  Rune is angst personified in OVA1, and yet she isn't shown longing for Chabil after she returns to El-Hazard.  A final scene like that could be a beautifully bittersweet ending.

That's enough  :P
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« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2004, 11:40:03 PM »

First of all, the complete and utter lack of this character would be the first thing I'd change!
<------------------------------------------

Otherwise, I don't think I could sum it up any better than MrWhat. Arujah was pretty stupid and a lame way of motivating the story. I say, ditch him! And Chabil, the poor guy (good one LGJ!). You know, I never really thought about it too deeply. Especially since the last time I actually watched Alt World was 1998 or '99, when it was still new. I eagerly devoured it since it was a new El Hazard anime. But in hindsight........ gawd it really sucks doesn't it?
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« Reply #5 on: January 22, 2004, 12:14:27 AM »

Unfortunately, yes it does, Saucer.  That's one of those vices of mine; eventually, once I get passed all this silly GBA programming business with Sv4, I'd love to develop an El-Hazard thing.  But as I've been warned, I shouldn't rewrite AW or anything else.  Basically, take it as it comes.  Such a shame MrWhat makes a much more appealing story to work with for the most part.  But that's okay... I dunno if I'd want to fix AW so much as ignore it.
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Lord God Jinnai
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« Reply #6 on: January 22, 2004, 12:53:06 AM »

To me, El Hazard 2 and Alt World are the El-Hazard equivalents of Dragon Ball GT. I like to tell myself that they aren't part of the original canon, just so I don't end up killing mass amounts of people because of Massive Anger Build-up. (MAB)

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« Reply #7 on: January 22, 2004, 01:03:16 AM »

Well, I guess technically you can deny them that, seeing as ol' Hayashi had nothing to do with them, essentially...

I dunno, though.  I guess that reminds me of one time when my mom mentioned to my brother that the news story that was on TV at the moment was upsetting to her.  So my brother says, "So, turn it off."  My dad retorts sarcastically, "Yeah, that'll make it go away."

Basically, it looks like the later parts of El-Hazard were on a expontial downward curve and we're sort of stuck with those repercussions.
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« Reply #8 on: January 22, 2004, 03:43:04 AM »

Quote
I guess that reminds me of one time when my mom mentioned to my brother that the news story that was on TV at the moment was upsetting to her.  So my brother says, "So, turn it off."  My dad retorts sarcastically, "Yeah, that'll make it go away."


Wow I'm kinda sorry I missed that ^^; That is such a dad line. I am amused now^^;

Sorry I have little to say about this topic that hasn't been said yet :p

Cept with Dahl... Mr. What said he shouldn't have changed personalities in the middle of the story. But maybe all that eccentricness was his way of dealing with his angst so he wasn't just drinking away his sorrow all the time.

Maybe he really was serious and deep all along but he liked to play the clown cos that got him more attention? Hell I do this all the time! Some of my best eccentric moments are when I feel like crap on the inside but I just want people to notice me.  So I'm not sure it was a complete change in personality so much as maybe some kind of coping mechanism...

Sometimes Dahl reminds me of Captain Tylor. 99% of the time Tylor is a complete freak. But every now and then he says something really profound and leaves you guessing if he really does just have incredible luck or if he DID have some grand master plan.  

Well anyhow, I think Dahl's turn around is feasible.
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rowan_a._seven
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« Reply #9 on: January 24, 2004, 01:57:27 PM »

Yeah, I agree about Dall.  Even if his turnaround in personality is implausible (which I don't consider it to be), I was pleased by it simply because I thought his playboy persona was very aggravating and boring.  Then he became a brooding drunk which I found to be interesting.  ^^;
Personally, I think the characters who made out best in "The Alternative World" are Dall, Gilda, and Nanami.  Rune had her moments early on, but the unresolved Chabil plot is quite frustrating.
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MrWhat
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« Reply #10 on: January 24, 2004, 04:50:14 PM »

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Well anyhow, I think Dahl's turn around is feasible.

That's fair.  When I think of it again, I don't really have a problem with the change itself.  It's how suddenly the change was made, and how drastic the change was, that I don't like.  I'll still say it could have been written out better.

But when I become a multi-billionaire, and I commission the Director's Cut re-make of The Alternative World, I'll be sure to leave that part in there  ;D
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Lord God Jinnai
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« Reply #11 on: January 24, 2004, 05:02:19 PM »

Hopefully you'll also take out that horrendous 13th episode and kill whoever wrote it.

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« Reply #12 on: January 24, 2004, 05:45:31 PM »

Exactly. If you're going to have an episode of pure, shameless fanservice, you at least make the art look good!

...oh wait. *coughs* I mean, we should've had a thorough conclusionary episode to try to tie up some of the loose threads (many already mentioned). Of course.  ^^;
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« Reply #13 on: January 24, 2004, 05:57:48 PM »

Again I will take this opportunity to question -- how did three girls get molested individually by only two others?
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« Reply #14 on: January 24, 2004, 08:28:45 PM »

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Hopefully you'll also take out that horrendous 13th episode and kill whoever wrote it.



Wait wait wait wait wait.  *Blinks in confusion.*  You're saying that thing was written?  I find that a little hard to believe.
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