Thanasis is a writer, professional geek, and assistant editor at MANGA.TOKYO. He started watching anime with the mecha shows of the 70s and hasn't stopped since. He loves JRPGs.
Episode 3 of Re:CREATORS is exceedingly good. The series has a carefully considered plot that is trying neither to impress nor to overflow us with flashy battles and philosophical mumbles. It’s a fresh story, and lately, we have been short of fresh stories. Thank the anime god for Re:CREATORS.
Japanese Title: 平凡にして非凡なる日常
One of the main themes of Re:CREATORS is about discovering our character description. Many times, it is our own beliefs that we project not only to our creations but also to the creations of others. This is what this episode is exploring: when change is powerful enough to make a difference. Writers are not always aware of these changes, and many times the world they create goes beyond their understanding. Scene after scene and description after description, aspects of the world are created by the things that are implied, the story between the story.
The only new character we see is briefly introduced in the only fight scene of the episode. The female knight is, according to our protagonist, Alicetaria, and is probably allied with our magical girl and the main antagonist. Yuya Mirokuji, who was the final boss in his world, is hardly a villain here and instead fits the stereotype of the anti-hero. He misses his world but understands the potential of going after their creators. On top of their worlds, there is also the possibility of modifying themselves. If the creator-god is in charge of every little detail, shouldn’t they be possible to alter the characters as well? Yuya is clever and free-spirited, and I am guessing that this is not the last time we’ll hear his unique insights.
Meteora, though, is more interested in discovering how that restructuring could work. She wants to know more about the technicalities and foregoes philosophical inquiries for a more hands-on approach. Do we want to know what happens when we rewrite a character? Let’s rewrite the character! Even after their test fails, knowing that they just don’t have enough information is progress. They do come with a very interesting hypothesis though: while the characters and the world are created by the writer/artist, they are further developed into the minds of the consumer. We find our own meaning in the creations, no matter what the creator intended for them.
On top of all of this, our protagonist, Sota, still struggles in creating something of his own. The show hints that the unknown character in the military uniform is probably his creation and that his inability to draw has something to do with this whole plot. Is she his creation?
Spoilers: Celestia took a glimpse into her own future when Marine talked about a plot twist from the most recent novel on which her anime is based. Like an unsolicited medium advice, Marine talked about something she took for granted. On the other hand, for Celestia her world is as real as any other, and knowing such a plot twist could have messed with her psyche.
Flow: Marine describes her drawing process as part conscious and part in a state similar to possession by a higher spirit, as if the drawing is being created on its own. This state in positive psychology is also known as ‘flow.’ It is a mental state in which the creator, in this particular instance, is so immersed in his activity that the process feels almost automated. In other words, flow is complete absorption to the task at hand.
I said it before and I will say it again: unless the quality of the animation is as bad as Qualidea Code, I don’t really care about it being stellar. I’m not an animation expert, and my untrained eye can only go from ‘this looks good’ to ‘this looks awful’ with a few shades in between, but I believe that story tramples animation any day. I doubt that we want an industry of anime series that provide sensations more than narratives; a brave new anime world can be easily prevented.
Celestia’s reaction to the ‘prophetic’ words of her illustrator was too mild. She was probably not too familiar with the concept of spoilers and maybe it’s not in her character description to be annoyed by such trivialities. In my character description, though, there is a tendency to like stories like Re:CREATORS, and I am looking forward to the next episode.
© 2017 広江礼威／小学館・アニプレックス