Jump to content

Macross Frontier Girls Part 4, Who do you like best now?


osamu41
 Share

  

95 members have voted

  1. 1. This Frontier Girl is my favorite so far....

    • Sheryl Nome
      54
    • Klan Klan
      20
    • Ranka Lee
      9
    • Nanase Matsuura
      2
    • Cathy Glass
      3
    • Nene Rora
      0
    • Raramia Rerenia
      0
    • Monica Lange
      0
    • Mina Roshan
      0
    • Grace O'Connor
      4
    • Kanaria Berstein
      0
    • Ram Hoa
      0
    • All of the above one at a time again. Third time's a charm, right?
      2
    • All the Zentraedi Babes (Pixie Sq) at once!
      0
    • None of the above
      0
    • Dude these are cartoon characters. You guys are sick!
      0
    • Still not sure.
      1


Recommended Posts

We haven't been given all that much to go by, with respect to Grace's character. Again, the mystery of her character gives the appearance of masking something more complex, but until her character is developed, it remains nothing more than an appearance.

True, but we know enough to draw conclusions about her personality and some of her motives. She's been developed, if by proxy. I fail to see how this is any different from the people that jumped on the Sheryl/Nanase/Klan bandwagons way before we knew anything about them. A lot of their character rests on fan interpretations, so it is with Grace. She just doesn't have as much as Ranka or Sheryl. Even Cathy is rather poorly developed, but we know enough to like her and sympathize with the loss of her father. Frontier tends to be vague with it's character, giving more a feel or personality than outright characterization at times.

I think one of the problems surrounding her character is that she's repeatedly been used as a plot device to initiate events in the story. Overall, I get less of a feeling that her actions are driven by a unified purpose so much as they act as a means for the writers to periodically inject mayhem into the lives of the characters. Not that she needs to do much more, of course; "evil for the sake of being evil" will often suffice for motivation when the villain isn't meant to be the centerpiece of the story.

Well, last I checked that was the purpose of being a villain. Though i wouldn't call her a mere plot device. She obviously has her reasons, they just haven't been revealed yet. Like I said, I like her because she turned out to be a lot more interesting than I thought she'd be. Seeing as just about everything that's happened has something to do with her actions, I'd say she's a lot more central than you'd think. The whole plot practuically has to do with Leon and Grace's actions. If she's a plot device because she moves the plot forward, I guess Alto and crew are mostly bystanders or plot devices themselves. ^_^

From what I've seen, MF's greatest strength lies in the way in which it communicates the emotions of the characters; not simply through dialogue, but through subtle gesture and expression. Regardless of whether you approve of the way in which the various relationships between the characters have been explored or not, it's clear that there's a lot more detail that was put into portraying the characters.

Oh I hartily agree there. At least somewhat. Frontier, I think, is a lot better making one care though plot rather than character. It makes you want to know where it's going. Where it takes the characters, rather than where they take it. As such, it's not a very character driven show outside of what I said about the villains orchestrating everything. Though it's had it's character episodes, which is why I'm still inclined to agree with you. It strikes me as the type of show that's better on the second viewing. I just find very little of the triangle romantic, and I myself am a romantic. It's a great relationship triangle. It's just that some of the characters can be a bit obscure at times for things to work like they should. Certain things not as solid as they could be. Sometimes we don't get the feel for the characters we should. It's kind of shallow at the moment. So I'm saying it could be a lot better than it is, and lacks some of the punch it needs. Trust me, this has nothing to do with the Ranka/Sheryl debate, and more to do with Alto.

Whether you prefer the plot to the characters is a different story altogether. ;)

Indeed, and the overarching themes and conflict have made up for the somewhat wishywashyness of some of the triangle. Though it goes well with the character action. After characters and plot go hand in hand. So I guess I prefer the plot, which is very rare as I'm usually a character kind of guy. It's got good characters, but they seem to trade off between developing them vs developing the outer story. The second the inner one started, the outer would come almost to a halt in early episodes. So even the plot's far from perfect given that, and Michel's somewhat worthless death outside of being an example to Alto.

I think this discussions a bit deep for a rather shallow thread. ^_^

Edited by Mercurial Morpheus
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I just asked someone from a Chinese forum... seems like Sheryl fans are also numerous there, with some who dislike Ranka.

From what I've heard Chinese fans make animesuki look neutral... and unlike English forums, chinese fans were pro sheryl prior to Star Date. As a day 1 sheryl fan there was clearly more people who preferred Ranka to Sheryl before star date on english forums. What can I say I liked bitchy sheryl (her ep 3 diss to alto when she got in the car was gold) and as for alto yelling at her.. well hime sama was being an idealistic idiot which also later got gilliam killed so I'll leave it at that...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Naw, it just reeks of unbelievability that it would be mere "dislike".

I don't know about the forums you frequent, or maybe I just didn't pay as much attention, but I still don't buy the whole "few liked Sheryl before 'Stardate'" bit. I swear I noticed a heavy Sheryl bias from pretty much the get go.

Ironically, I think it was "Stardate" that first confused me on Sheryl. :lol:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I went with "not sure". Sheryl's WAY up the past few eps (and Ranka's way down), but things could change. Grace---one 2 sec scene won't change things enough to make her my fave (though I liked her from the beginning). The poll for the last ep will be the only one that really matters. :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I went with "not sure". Sheryl's WAY up the past few eps (and Ranka's way down), but things could change. Grace---one 2 sec scene won't change things enough to make her my fave (though I liked her from the beginning). The poll for the last ep will be the only one that really matters. :)

Enh, I don't think it's going to change much. If we'd had the first poll before "Star Date" aired, then we might have seen some major fluctuations between the first and second polls, but as it is, it seems that every poll turns out the same way...Sheryl first, Klan second, Ranka third, and everyone else with a smattering of votes.

It seems like everyone picked their favorites early, and have stuck by them for the long haul. At least, I know I did. :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Enh, I don't think it's going to change much. If we'd had the first poll before "Star Date" aired, then we might have seen some major fluctuations between the first and second polls, but as it is, it seems that every poll turns out the same way...Sheryl first, Klan second, Ranka third, and everyone else with a smattering of votes.

Wish we did, since I still think Sheryl always had the edge. Even if in the "fans who side on looks alone" department.

It seems like everyone picked their favorites early, and have stuck by them for the long haul. At least, I know I did. :)

I've been saying that for a long while. People make their mind up and stick to it. Though some characters can grow on one. For example, I like Klan a lot better now than I did earlier.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wish we did, since I still think Sheryl always had the edge. Even if in the "fans who side on looks alone" department.

I've been saying that for a long while. People make their mind up and stick to it. Though some characters can grow on one. For example, I like Klan a lot better now than I did earlier.

Yeah, Klan's gained some supporters. People seemed to like Kathy at first (because she looked like Misa), then they disliked her (because she was swappin' spit with Leon), and now they like her again (because she's back with Ozma...and, let's face it, there's no way she's EVER going back to Leon).

Grace seems to have gotten a bump recently (two of 'em, actually ;) ), but I think people started liking her more once they realized that she was the secret bad guy.

As you say, Sheryl always had the edge, but she was a lot less popular when we only had the Deculture Edition to go on.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wow, I'm very different from the norm then.

Hated Sheryl at first, now I'm rooting for her---she has good odds of being my eventual fave.

Didn't like Klan then, don't like her now.

Ranka---thought she was very cute and was my fave for a long time, but I've gone from "meh" to "she's just a complete idiot" over the past few eps.

Grace started "just above the middle" and has climbed slowly but surely.

Didn't really like Cathy much early, she goes up and down (not because of Leon).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As you say, Sheryl always had the edge, but she was a lot less popular when we only had the Deculture Edition to go on.

Oh, I believe that. She didn't really have any saving graces there. I just don't believe there was some big turnaround come episode five. Especially given how poorly her character fit into the episode up to that point in my opinion. It felt a bit forced, like they were trying hard to make her likable. It built over the course of the early episodes, like any character.

I've always sort of liked Cathy, though I'll admit that she's not much of a character.

I also started liking Grace around the time they began to suggest that there was more to her than the nervous looking woman adjusting her glasses in the opening suggested. I actually found it funny how long that image lasted despite it being proven untrue in the actual show.

Edited by Mercurial Morpheus
Link to comment
Share on other sites

True, but we know enough to draw conclusions about her personality and some of her motives. She's been developed, if by proxy. I fail to see how this is any different from the people that jumped on the Sheryl/Nanase/Klan bandwagons way before we knew anything about them.
If the character is static, then it doesn't make that much of a difference. By contrast, the path that a dynamic character's character development takes can influence whether you like them or not.

There are two things that you can do if a dynamic character fails to meet your expectations. First, you can re-evaluate the character in terms of the new development to see whether they still captivate your interest, or you can try to justify to yourself that the character hasn't fallen short of what you wanted to see. I think the difference between the two approaches lies in whether you feel more compelled to extol the character's virtues, or if you feel more compelled to absolve them of their mistakes.

While first impressions can be important, this isn't necessarily the defining criterion for whether we prefer one character over another; especially when the characters are evolving over time.

A lot of their character rests on fan interpretations, so it is with Grace. She just doesn't have as much as Ranka or Sheryl. Even Cathy is rather poorly developed, but we know enough to like her and sympathize with the loss of her father. Frontier tends to be vague with it's character, giving more a feel or personality than outright characterization at times.
There is, however, a difference between a character impression which is carefully detailed and expanded upon over time, and one that has been completely neglected. Since the plot requires that we not know Grace's diabolical plans until the very last minute, her character has been poorly developed in the interests of preserving that mystery. In so doing, any development that she does recieve will hinge on a last minute revelation in which her character is thrust upon the audience. As far as gimmicks go, she's a fun character, but she loses out in terms of characterization. It all boils down to what you're looking for, I guess.

Well, last I checked that was the purpose of being a villain. Though i wouldn't call her a mere plot device. She obviously has her reasons, they just haven't been revealed yet. Like I said, I like her because she turned out to be a lot more interesting than I thought she'd be. Seeing as just about everything that's happened has something to do with her actions, I'd say she's a lot more central than you'd think. The whole plot practuically has to do with Leon and Grace's actions. If she's a plot device because she moves the plot forward, I guess Alto and crew are mostly bystanders or plot devices themselves. ^_^
Not necessarily.

Grace is more symbol than character, embodying the baser qualities of human nature. The destruction of Galia-4, the onset of Sheryl's illness, and the power struggle on Frontier were all events that could have been written in without Grace's involvement in the story; the common thread lies in the ideas of ambition (be it scientific or political) and betrayal. Since her character hasn't been explored in relation to these events, she's more the symbolic representation of a "conflict" than a character in herself.

Villains can be much more than that. Even very simplistic villains often recieve sufficient character development to allow them to serve as foils for the protagonists. If their motivations are carefully explored throughout the series, they can stand alone as characters in their own rights. But again, it depends on whether the writer is interested in actually exploring the character or simply is looking a means to set up a conflict.

The focal point of the story has always been on how the three protagonists interact with each other in the face of the obstacles placed in front of them. You could see it in episode five, where Sheryl and Klan's dialogue on why people fly or sing, in conjunction with Alto's paper airplane, gave Ranka the inspiration to sing her first song in public. You could see it in episode seven, where Ranka's insight into Sheryl's feelings on stage provided the impetus for the duet that helped Alto in the battle with the Vajra. Whether you love them or hate them, every conflict links back to the relationship between the three protagonists, and their greatest successes always result from them working together as a team. The actual nature of the conflict itself is largely irrelevant; all that matters are the bonds that unify them.

Oh I hartily agree there. At least somewhat. Frontier, I think, is a lot better making one care though plot rather than character. It makes you want to know where it's going. Where it takes the characters, rather than where they take it. As such, it's not a very character driven show outside of what I said about the villains orchestrating everything. Though it's had it's character episodes, which is why I'm still inclined to agree with you. It strikes me as the type of show that's better on the second viewing. I just find very little of the triangle romantic, and I myself am a romantic. It's a great relationship triangle. It's just that some of the characters can be a bit obscure at times for things to work like they should. Certain things not as solid as they could be. Sometimes we don't get the feel for the characters we should. It's kind of shallow at the moment. So I'm saying it could be a lot better than it is, and lacks some of the punch it needs. Trust me, this has nothing to do with the Ranka/Sheryl debate, and more to do with Alto.
Alto's character, specifically, has been somewhat underdeveloped in the interest of building suspence with regards to the triangle. The framework has been built up quite well, but there are a lot of deliberate holes that have been left behind, especially with regards to his past, that make him difficult to read.

But this is a common enough trade-off in romance; as the intersection point of the triangle, his character is defined more in terms of his relationship with the girls, than his own qualities as an individual. He might not be exceptional, but he gets the job done.

I think this discussions a bit deep for a rather shallow thread. ^_^
A thread is no more shallow than the people participating decide to make it. ;)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Personally, I've liked Ranka from the start and I still do! Nothing has changed my mind about her, and the same thing can be said about Sheryl; I did not like her at the start and I still don't like her!! As for the others, the only one that has changed for me has been Grace. I've never really given her much thought until she destroyed that planet and killed all those Zentraedi!! Man, I really did not like her then, but for some reason (the skin tight flight suit) my mind has changed and all is forgiven!! I'm in Grace's corner now! I know it's shallow, but it IS anime. ^_^

Edited by aerocombatpilot
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would click on this when I'm trying to fall asleep. I find it interesting that this discussion is even occurring to be honest. As I'm tired, excuse me if I'm not representing myself properly or not responding to your thoughts fully.

If the character is static, then it doesn't make that much of a difference. By contrast, the path that a dynamic character's character development takes can influence whether you like them or not.

There are two things that you can do if a dynamic character fails to meet your expectations. First, you can re-evaluate the character in terms of the new development to see whether they still captivate your interest, or you can try to justify to yourself that the character hasn't fallen short of what you wanted to see. I think the difference between the two approaches lies in whether you feel more compelled to extol the character's virtues, or if you feel more compelled to absolve them of their mistakes.

While first impressions can be important, this isn't necessarily the defining criterion for whether we prefer one character over another; especially when the characters are evolving over time.

There is, however, a difference between a character impression which is carefully detailed and expanded upon over time, and one that has been completely neglected. Since the plot requires that we not know Grace's diabolical plans until the very last minute, her character has been poorly developed in the interests of preserving that mystery. In so doing, any development that she does recieve will hinge on a last minute revelation in which her character is thrust upon the audience. As far as gimmicks go, she's a fun character, but she loses out in terms of characterization. It all boils down to what you're looking for, I guess.

Oh, I've never claimed that she was a great character. Often characters like her are given to the shadows and left to be the mysterious threat. Sure, they could've done more, but development isn't entirely all backstory and change. Cowboy Bebop was a good example of this. Like I said, we know enough to relate her to things. Understanding a character's personality and motive is just as important, and that understanding is not entirely dependent on knowing everything there is about them. Call it getting a feel for the character, if you will. Could she be better developed? Yes. Would that strengthen her as a villain, maybe, maybe not. There are weaker developed villains than her. Heck, even Leon is less of a character than Grace at times. I agree with your analysis, but at the same time think that she's got enough going into what purpose she serves. As long as it doesn't ferel out of place or inappropriate, it still works. Are you arguing that it's wrong to find such a character interesting? What exactly are we arguing about? :blink:

First impressions are important, and can color one's views whether they know it or not. Particularly depending on the course of development. Of course opinions can change with time and development. Though a lot of people in anime fandom seem to make up their minds early or stick to key things. I know that first hand from all the loathing of Mitsuki Hayase due to poor presentation and people sticking to it. So, yes, imprinting isn't everything, otherwise I'd be wondering how such a nice seeming Plain Jane could be so twisted. It can matter though, is all.

I've never argued that Grace was some awesome character, and agree that her inner character is neglected, but she's still and fun and interesting one. Even if she is "symbolic". I merely argue that a character can be more than the sum of her parts through interpretation. Even if it is essentially a weak form of "fanfiction". It's interesting to see how she goes about things, and her impact on others. Even if they might be considered superficial.

Not necessarily.

Grace is more symbol than character, embodying the baser qualities of human nature. The destruction of Galia-4, the onset of Sheryl's illness, and the power struggle on Frontier were all events that could have been written in without Grace's involvement in the story; the common thread lies in the ideas of ambition (be it scientific or political) and betrayal. Since her character hasn't been explored in relation to these events, she's more the symbolic representation of a "conflict" than a character in herself.

Villains can be much more than that. Even very simplistic villains often recieve sufficient character development to allow them to serve as foils for the protagonists. If their motivations are carefully explored throughout the series, they can stand alone as characters in their own rights. But again, it depends on whether the writer is interested in actually exploring the character or simply is looking a means to set up a conflict.

Maybe so, though they work very well with her. Particularly with Sheryl. Of course villains can be deeper. I love a good sympathetic villain. Though there's nothing wrong with a symbolic one provided they maintain the level of a viable threat, as most villains serve as a tool to develop and try the heroes. Maleficent in Sleeping Beauty was a powerful villain, and all we know of her is that she gets very bitter at being "not wanted". Frontier isn't the type of show that needs a visible, strong villain. It's the conflict that they create that's been important. The threat that matters. Having two people pulling the strings of an entire colony is a pretty good one. I find where it's going with this just as interesting, particularly now that Ranka, Ozma and crew have stopped being bystanders in the overall conspiracy.

The focal point of the story has always been on how the three protagonists interact with each other in the face of the obstacles placed in front of them. You could see it in episode five, where Sheryl and Klan's dialogue on why people fly or sing, in conjunction with Alto's paper airplane, gave Ranka the inspiration to sing her first song in public. You could see it in episode seven, where Ranka's insight into Sheryl's feelings on stage provided the impetus for the duet that helped Alto in the battle with the Vajra. Whether you love them or hate them, every conflict links back to the relationship between the three protagonists, and their greatest successes always result from them working together as a team. The actual nature of the conflict itself is largely irrelevant; all that matters are the bonds that unify them.

Which is why I've said that the story does compliment the characters well, and vice versa. But the show is still very story driven. Not like that's a bad thing. In fact, many other characters are starting to take part in the direction the main plot is going. It's like the Space War One. A inner plot (triangle) amidst an outer plot (Zentadi). The outer started off affecting the inner one, until it went vice versa. We're starting to see some of that here.

Alto's character, specifically, has been somewhat underdeveloped in the interest of building suspence with regards to the triangle. The framework has been built up quite well, but there are a lot of deliberate holes that have been left behind, especially with regards to his past, that make him difficult to read.

But this is a common enough trade-off in romance; as the intersection point of the triangle, his character is defined more in terms of his relationship with the girls, than his own qualities as an individual. He might not be exceptional, but he gets the job done.

Oh, Alto's personal development is pretty good. We have an idea of what makes him tick, and can understand the motive of his actions. The only problem is that it's hard to see his relationship with either girl in a romantic light, as they've never really explored it, hence when you have a scene like the one between him and Sheryl, it doesn't feel like the climax it was meant to be/could have been. It can be taken in so many ways. It's very clear that a breakthrough has been made, and his feelings are strong, but I think even he doesn't know entirely what they are, and it affects the feel. His confusion embodies my own, so the character is easy to relate to. It's obvious that there's still more to come. It's always difficult when the guy is the wishy-washy one in the triangle. It's there, but it could be better. Though it still works in a way. Like you said, it defines him more than he defines it. It's a lot of take with little give, at least on the romance area. He feels more like a protector or concerned friend, which works well as the rest of his relationship with them is pretty solid.

A thread is no more shallow than the people participating decide to make it. ;)

Seeing how this is one where most people admit to liking Grace for her boob fondling, it's interesting that you take issue with one that doesn't. ^_^

Best wrap this up. I think I said everything, though probably not.

Edited by Mercurial Morpheus
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...