- Member: jhfong
- Studio: Ingress Productions
- Title: Robot Girl
- Premiered: 2000-10-03
- Was (Not Was) Robot Girl
(Commentary reprinted from ):
I made this video primarily as an experiment to see what I could do with the equipment I had, and whether there was anything more I needed to be able to continue producing videos. I picked this particular combination of song and anime because I wanted to have a song that was relatively obscure, and I wanted to start out with an anime that few people had made videos to before (none of which I'd seen) so as to avoid competition. It also helps that all three episodes of Boku no Marie are available on one tape, which made it easier for me to hunt for footage.
Perhaps it was a little too facile to pair up a song about a robot girl to a show about a robot girl, but Boku no Marie works better with this song than other anime about robot girls that I'd briefly considered using -- Multi from To Heart, the Sexaroids from the Bubblegum Crisis OAVs, Saber Marionette, Nuku Nuku or Key the Metal Idol. There's also more of a subtext I wanted to convey with this video: when Was (Not Was) first released "Robot Girl" in 1988, some people criticized them for being sexist, when in fact this song is supposed to be a satire of the desire to make women into submissive, obedient objects. And this fits perfectly well into the theme of Boku no Marie: Hiroshi builds Marie-chan as a way to avoid approaching Marie-san, but comes to realize his creation has a mind of her own. That's why I tried going for a sense of irony in this video to throw the song's message into sharper relief. I'm pretty satisfied with the way I accomplished this, as well as with a few happy coincidences of synchronization that I illustrate on my webpage.
On the other hand, running low on disk space wasn't the only technical obstacle I encountered in the making of this video. This is also where I discovered that the video cables on the Belkin USB VideoBus that I used as a capture device are sensitive to pressure. I had the cables hanging off the edge of the table, and it turns out that if they're bent, the video image gets darkened when you capture it. (Now I make sure to have the entire VideoBus adaptor lying flat on the table when I use it.) The footage I collected for this project ended up having brightness levels all over the map -- wavering up and down within a single shot in some cases -- and I had to apply brightness/contrast and level adjustment filters to practically every single shot in an attempt to even them out. I wasn't entirely successful, which is why the outlines look too dark and sharp in some parts of the video. On top of that, the preview files Premiere rendered after I applied so many filters ate up even more of my disk space....
After I'd been working on the video for a couple of weeks, trying to tweak the brightness in every frame and having no storage capacity left, I started feeling a little frustrated with the whole project and I just wanted to get done with it more than anything else. Unfortunately, this is reflected in the slapdash way I edited the last remaining part of the video, the fight scene between Marie and Hibiki during the sax solo. All I did was make cuts at the markers I'd placed on the beats, but they don't fit the phrasing of the music, and the scene where I cut out after a single frame showing Hibiki's face (at 2:36 into the movie) is particularly embarrassing. Still, even though I've kept all the footage I've captured, I don't think I'll ever make a revised version of this video. I'll just let it stand as a reminder of mistakes I made when I was naive and inexperienced. ^_^;;