- Members: VegettoEX, MeriC
- Title: Sex, Lies, & Roses
- Premiered: 2004-09-25
- Midtown Is it Me? Is it True?
Anime Weekend Atlanta 10 (2004); Pro Contest
WINNER: "Best Angst"
NOMINATED: "Best Drama"
NOMINATED: "Best Character Profile"
Back in the spring of 2004, Meri was driving home from Mike's dorm (while he was still in school) listening to the new Midtown CD, Forget What You Know. Upon hearing the track "Is it Me? Is it True?" (which we had actually had for quite some time, by itself; the band put out the MP3 months earlier), Meri decided that the song very much fit the character of Akio from Shoujo Kakumei Utena. Having just recently rewatched the show with Mike, Meri put the idea past him (for some reason expecting a response of disinterest based on the proposed source footage). Much to the world's delight, Mike agreed.
And thus began the video.
This video was originally supposed to focus on Akio's use and abuse of most characters (mostly Utena and Anthy), but there was just the right amount of footage with just the two characters (Utena and Akio) that it began shifting more in that direction, so that's where we took it. You'll note that we do showcase some of the other "abused" characters, but it's mostly in the interest of showing the full "scheme" of things at Utena discovers, so to speak.
This video is somewhat different from our typical videos in that there isn't one single set storyline with a beginning, middle, and end. In addition to the story told about Utena's encounter with Akio, we mostly go for a general "mood" and "feeling" about Akio, showcasing him in all kinds of situations (mostly as a hero to himself!).
In the beginning we show Akio as the "fallen prince" along with the appropriate lyrics, and him noticing Utena as a "princess" he can exploit. Akio makes his "moves" on Utena and eventually she succums to him. Each instance of Utena hitting some kind of "breaking point" is represented by the candle blowing out, with three in total. You've pretty much got any background information you need to examine the rest of the imagery used, so have fun enjoying our story!
BEHIND THE SCENES:
First off, this footage is heavily filtered. How convenient that AbsoluteDestiny's beta version of "the guide" just happens to use Utena as an example! Woohoo! Man, Utena DVDs are sooo bad looking... and can be sooo pretty...
Interestingly, the first part of the video edited was the very ending. The flow of the changed music just humorously fit Akio riding off in/on his car in a very dark and disturbing way so perfectly. The beginning "puzzle" (somewhat) intro consists of 67 images. The Utena-style French text in the middle of the video was created from scratch; all of the words are either taken from the song's lyrics or general theme and translated to French. It is a cycle of 17 images/phrases that loops one and a half times.
This was a nice kind of somewhat different video for us to work on, and we were delighted (as seen by the nominations) that other editors found interesting points to the video. It's much more "dark" and possibly even provocative than we typically edit for a video, and that's pretty neat! Hope you enjoy it.