paradise lost

“May you continue to be a beloved king, instilling hope and fear in your subjects.”

So I joked on Twitter recently that for me there’s two types of posts I write. There’s the GIRI posts that I feel like I should write. These are probably most of this blog. As a writer, you know when you have that special inspiration. Most of the time… you don’t, so you just plug on through and rave about meido, traps, and OH GEASS NO moments. Other times, you get inspired. You know when something special is afoot, and the typing just won’t stop. These are the HONMEI posts. But there’s a third kind. The post you don’t know if you should write. Is there a class of chocolates for “I probably shouldn’t give her these chocolate truffles, but I am anyway”?

I feel like Paradise Lost fits that third category. It is a stark reminder of good times we once had. Maybe that’s what’s wrong with it. The good times? They’re no longer here. It’s also something that is written about a bit already, so unless I felt I could bring something new and fresh to the table, why bother writing a post? I could be rooting through the cobwebs of the internet for more K-On! sidetail images instead.


Looking back on Eden of the East, it was mostly a talking series. Gunshots, car chases, and Johnnies being cut off were the exception to the rule. I felt the ending to the TV series was perfect (well, I would have had Taki kiss Saki at the end, but that’s just my bent… I’m also the same guy who wanted Lulu to kiss Suzaku after he penetrates him) since it incorporated all the major aspects of the series: the bookend missile attacks that start and end the series (circular plot 4tw!), the Eden program used in conjunction with Juiz to counter the vile plot, and Taki becoming a hero of heroes with Saki’s help. All important points. And they’re all tragically missing from Paradise Lost.


The series is named Eden of the East after the sci-fi augmented reality smartphone app. It was genius! You take technology in its infancy today and ask how could you tell a story about it… well, the original TV show was about that. You had this program that seemingly did nothing but look for lower prices or to stalk some girl you like, but you end up using it to save the world via cloud sourcing. Brilliant! Not only that, the power of many defeated the power of one (the ones who launched the missile). Excellent! Only, there was no such thing in Paradise Lost. Eden was never used. In its place is a Skype-ish program (whut?) that… well… doesn’t really tickle my imagination. VOIP is something new in 2025? But good job by Pants for whipping up a VOIP program that runs across all app phone platforms and installs itself a la a virus. (Okay, okay… they used the program once on Taki’s dog. But they used the namesake program on the dog before. How do I know it’s not a cached image?) That to me is a letdown.

(The thing is… the original TV series left way too unexplained. Yes, a lot of cool stuff were being done, but we felt like there’s a whole backstory. And now? We got the backstory. We got Juiz explained. We got Mr. Outside. We got the conspirators. We saw the Wizard of Oz. It’s not the movie is terrible, it’s Production IG being terrible in not making this a twenty-six episode series with the exposition of the movie sprinkled within the TV series and ending with the Eden vs. missile clash. But that’s just me. In other news, I believe the following studios need to hire me as a common sense czar: Kyoto Animation, Production IG, Shaft, JC Staff, and Manglobe. Sunrise, you’re not on the list because common sense will only doom you.)


I relentlessly attacked Saki for being frumpy, but I never questioned her usefulness a la Marina Ismail. She’s the ultimate buff for Taki. There’s always a great woman behind a great man, since she’s the one nagging him to become better. That’s Saki in a nutshell. (Okay, okay, she doesn’t nag, she supports, but, hey, nag works better as a joke.) Only, she’s completely marginalized in this movie performing a fetch quest and spending very little time with Taki. In fact, I think Hirasawa was more useful than her which is just outrageous. Instead, the movie becomes Taki’s quest to save Japan and Saki’s quest to kiss Taki. Ugh. I also didn’t like her admission that Taki never spoke to her again after the kiss… we’re supposed to believe Taki’s this dependable savior of Japan, yet he completely abandons the person who cares for him most? He keeps his promise to beat-up Mr. Outside, but doesn’t keep his promise to see Saki? At least Kamina died so he couldn’t keep his!

(I believe Taki stayed away from Saki for her own good. He is a full-on criminal now, and he doesn’t want to drag her down with him. Noble. I can see that. Still makes it bittersweet. You know who’s happiest with this development? Osugi.)

(I also think he sent Saki on the useless fetch quest as a way to keep her out of harm. That’s how I read it instead of “the writers couldn’t come up with anything better for her to do than stand around and look frumpy.”)


Though part of me wonders if they’re setting this up for a sequel. Or as a prequel to Ghost in the Shell. I don’t know. But I enjoyed the story. I enjoyed an anime that properly uses app phones properly. I enjoyed the political intrigue. I just didn’t enjoy how I get this feeling the story could have been presented better. The other Seleção were too mysterious in motives, and Mononobe’s checkmate of Taki was never revealed.


Nonetheless, I don’t care. The thing about this movie… I wasn’t bored. I wanted to see what happened next. I didn’t check my own app phone for tweets, e-mails, or texts. I didn’t start browsing for funny cat pictures. I wanted to watch the movie. Was I disappointed that it wasn’t better? Yes. But did I feel it wasn’t a satisfying conclusion. No. In the end, we got what we wanted. We got Taki coming out the victor. (He said it himself. Only the winner gets to meet Mr. Outside.) We got Saki finally kissing Taki. (Corny, cheesy, but, hey, we wanted it.) We got most of the problematic Seleção taken care of. (Even if Mononobe’s death reminded me of a scene from High School of the Dead). And we got Taki being Taki. (Loved how he won by guessing? that he needed to wipe his memory to win. Remember, when asked before why he’d wipe his memory, he said that he needed to do it to win. I think this shows the writing staff at least had everything planned out.)


But I think we’re disappointed that there weren’t more Johnnies cut off or more missiles or more swordfights. Come on! It’s Eden of the East. It’s never been about that. It’s always been about how one man can change a society… and Taki proved there’s already a lot of momentum in society, but missiles, giant robots, and other flashiness aren’t the way to solve the problems. That’s the heart of the series. How one man can’t change the world. But many can.

(But you know what? I’m disappointed. Not because of how it ended, but because it ended. I say that about all enjoyable anime I watch. I just hope we could get a harem remake… Juiz could fulfill Ikaros’ or Belldandy’s role in any romantic fanservice harem series with Taki as the lead. Production IG, at least mull this over. Call me when you’re ready to go ahead on this idea. I’ll be waiting for your text.)


When I become an eighty year old taxi cab driver, I want my own army of “Ball Girls”.


What a great view. Of One World Trade Center I mean. I like how the NYC skyline is restored in this series… judging by progression of work thus far on One World Trade Center, I project Eden of the East to occur sometime between 2025 and 2035. There’s no way the site would be done by 2020 at this pace.

(Judging from the sunset, Kuroha must be residing in Brooklyn. This is the type of insightful, new, and fresh analysis you’ve come to expect from blog好き.)


I’m going to rename my iPhone “Johnny”… “jason’s iphone” is just too boring.

Disappointing movie? Yes. But the movie is a fitting end to the series, even if it feels like the series doesn’t want to end. We’re not satisfied with how the resolution came to be (i.e. Taki did not save Japan) nor are we satisfied that anything great happened. But it filled in the missing blanks. The movie almost felt like the writers just ran out of steam. They had checkboxes to check at the end like Mononobe dead, dog returned, Saki and Taki bid each other goodbye, and Mr. Outside outed as a character straight out of Crazy Taxi.

But more disappointing this is the end of this franchise. It was a great ride. I enjoyed it. I didn’t want it to end. I wanted them to add in ridiculous filler a la Lost and go into the details of the other 11 Seleção much like how I wanted more backstory in Angel Beats. But we’re done. No more Johnnies. No more Juiz. No more awesome Production IG animation. No more frumpy outfits. Noblesse oblige.

9 Responses to “paradise lost”

  1. I remember reading somewhere that it was planned for a 24 episode series. But when they found they had booked a place in Noitamina, they had to shorten it down to 11 episodes + 2 movies. If you’re going to blame anyone, blame the Noitamina producer. Why this wasn’t allowed to have 24 episodes and Shiki was >=(

  2. I think you captured my thoughts exactly Jason. Paradise Lost really was bittersweet. All of the things that should have happened happened, but it just didn’t feel like it should have ended yet.

    Actually after watching the movie I was completely expecting there to be another movie, but then I ANNed it and remembered from before that 2 movies was all that we are going to get. Oh well.

  3. My feelings were pretty similar – it wasn’t a bad movie but it should have been different, and one 24 episode season, or two 12 episode ones would have served the story better.

    The first film was good and it served quite well as set up (as well as some excellent comedy with number 6 and Juiz). The one thing that felt off was the deus ex machina ending with the trailers to avoid some of the other selecao appearing in the next. I’m glad they weren’t just used as a disposable plot point and had a part in this movie.

    The thing I most disliked about it was it was missing the big intrigue of the game they’ve spent the series setting up. No big moves were made and the main focus was on the fake/not fake/fake link to the ex prime-minister. If you’ve got a unique concept use that as your big plot point rather than something fairly unrelated!

    What was up with the not-Juiz team? Did they serve any purpose?

    I liked Taki’s big speech at the end. It’s great seeing a confident, charismatic male lead. And I think the “last we saw of Takizawa” line is just a bit of unnecessary melodrama spoken from a point sometime before he spoke with Mr Outside – Taki’s said he’ll be back, so he’ll be back.

    Sunrise, you’re not on the list because I’m applying for your Ultra Director position instead.


  4. this movie was so bad ._.

  5. Most people expected Paradise Lost to be the big climax after King of Eden spent so much time building up. And then it turns out the King of Eden was actually ramping down, and Paradise Lost ramped down even harder.

    Kenji Kamiyama’s all for unconventional pacing, but his works have always had a pretty big finale. I miss the danger and intrigue from the TV series, but oh well…actually wait yeah what the heck was up with Saki saying she never saw Takizawa again?

  6. So, Takizawa’s mom was fooling around with the future PM in NYC while she was pregnant from another man?
    And what was the purpose of the human Juizes if Juiz is an A.I.?
    My biggest complain for this movie is that I expected more from the confrontation between Akira and Mononobe. The latter seemed a big scheming villain but in the end he did nothing to stop his biggest rival’s plot and died a stupid death.

  7. To me it seemed like Mononobe was going to do whatever he planned to do and didn’t try to stop Takizawa simply because he thought his plan wasn’t going to work. Then he lost his memory and maybe died (we didn’t see the crash! we didn’t see the dead body! he could still be alive!).

  8. I do think the movie focused a little too much on the message of how NEETs can be important in today’s society. The ending was ok. It just gives you the idea that “Oh hey, look what can be done if you put your heart into things!” Did Taki save Japan? I think he’s saving it, bit by bit. He got the NEETS working hard to re-thrive the economy, although it would be nice to see the long-term effects if Taki TRULY saved Japan. I think the movie wanted to point out that even the littlest change can make a difference and “save” someone.

    I actually posted my thoughts on the potential of NEETs based on the series. You can read it at:

    And you’re right. i do wish we had more info on the other 11 Selecao. Sigh.

  9. Dont think its that bad an ending. The ending was pretty great. Also the tidbit with the 9th selecao phone ringing at the very end was a kinda fun tease. Sure I dont think it was as great as the rest, but it brought everything to a great close. It was more of a wrapping things up with more EotE fun times and emotional stuff. I liked it, atleast. But all well ends well and ending is never really well. :/ No idea where I am really going with this but yeah.

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