PES: Peace Eco Smile – The Best Summer 2012 Anime No One is Watching (Except Me)
Oh dear, why are all the episodic blogs missing out on this fabulous anime?
I shall reprimand the following bloggers for their incompetence:
Organization Antisocial Geniuses — my dear lovely workplace — how dare you not write a summer evaluation on it! Inushinde and other Cart Driver writers, have you no sense of taste? Anime Instrumentality, this show is more exciting than the latest OSTs by FictionYokoKajiuraHisashiJunction!
And Flomu, stop your Nichijou fangasming and watch some PES!
Clearly, you are all silly people. How can anyone not like a sci-fi anime that’s essentially a giant Toyota commercial?
Is it too soon — as it is only four episodes in — to call it an anime that is perhaps better than Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita? I think not! I am after all a MAL user and I’m proud of it!
And thank goodness a lovely studio like Studio 4C is working on this show!
Studio 4C is known for blowing people’s minds with their adventurous take on art styles. Mostly famous for Mind Game and Steamboy, the studio is also known to be as artsy as Studio Shaft — in fact, it may be even better. I personally enjoy its creative take on the mahou shoujo series called Mahou Shoujo Tai Arusu; its art style is fun and engaging.
So I am glad that they are going for a new genre that Gainax has pioneered: animeverts. Gainax’s magnum opus, Houkago no Pleiades, is about a touching story on mahou shoujos becoming one with the spirit of a small company called Subaru.
It is an epic adventure that can be watched on YouTube — the same site that gives us the avant-garde art films featuring people falling from skateboards. I shall not spoil the Homeric ONA, but it reminded me that Subaru is a wonderful car company to use in Gran Turismo.
With such strong competition, t is a tough challenge for Studio 4C to take. After all, 4C is as indie as animation studios can get. It does take jobs from celebrities, but it has fun with it: it inputs genius art twists into its beautiful music videos (how can anyone not love “Passion”?) and takes us on a ride with some of the best anime directors playing with their artsy styles in a work called Genius Party. 4C has no experience in competing in a tough market, let alone the competitive market of animeverts.
Yet, PES has exceeded my expectation.
What can I say but Studio 4C has done it again?
In the first episode, everything is explained in a lovely pace: faster than the speed of light. Like a rollercoaster that failed the safety test, we are seeing a montage of images that work together if you are on cannabis: a spaceship crashing down to Earth, a text that covers the Earth that reads: “Drive your Love”, a guy with a bad hair coloring exclaiming how Earth is amazing, the spaceship showing itself as a giant bee, a drunk woman walking on the railing, the woman falling from the bridge, the guy whose name is Pes in utter shock, him jumping out of the ship to save the woman, the woman’s brother conveniently walking near the event, every character floating for no reason whatsoever, Pes saying to the woman to hold his hand, the woman suddenly kissing Pes, the brother getting frightened by his sister kissing someone, and the woman saying it’s fate that she has met Pes.
Its storytelling skills is sublime. And the first episode ends with a moral that everyone can understand:
If you are craving for more goodness, check out the second episode which is less subtler with its message. Aliens are excited over Pes driving a Toyota Prius, the symbol of majesty and fun. Pes thinks about living with the woman, Kurumi, because she’s not only hot but has a nice car. The episode also explains Kurumi is like a sunflower: a symbol of pure, innocent brightness. As Pes imagines how to “convey how [he] feels to someone who is as bright as her”, his heart aches to be loved. I am taken aback by the romance; any male who does not get turned on by a girl who owns a Toyota Prius is not masculine.
Speaking of Freudian psychoanalysis, is this work a clever statement on mechanophilia and drugs? If this anime is taken seriously, it’s provocative and thoughtful. Episode 3 shows the couple driving a Camry on Mario Kart’s Rainbow Road, telling us that driving eco-friendly Toyota cars is like taking drugs with your girlfriend. This trip is the start of a loving relationship between two mechanophiliac drug addicts.
But not all cars give you that type of trip: Episode 4 introduces a black street racing Toyota car: the Lexus LFA if I am correct. Pes is shocked that the girl likes such a car; the girl on the other hand is excited she is on a Wangan Midnight racing simulator. The aliens are interested in stealing Toyota’s secrets just as we are on the drugs used to create this anime.
It’s a pity Crunchyroll, best website with the best subs in the world, does not have all of the episodes released yet. According to the synopsis, the Lexus LFA will return as a rival to the Toyota hybrids. A possible showdown awaits: Toyota versus its own luxury branch. That’s worthy of becoming the centerpiece of RAW’s 1000th episode.
And so, I consider this post to be an advertisement to other anibloggers — hopefully in the same way Gainax and 4C envisioned their works. I am waiting for the great anibloggers at Chocolate Syrupy Waffles to watch this show as well because their intelligence level are at about the same level as this show.
As I think on, this show is way deeper than Jintai, a satire on environmentalism, technology, and the psychology of the Japanese society. What Jintai has excess is an actual reason — a theme — for this show to exist: look, we are declining and we have to accept it and somehow move on; what it also lacks is a need to forcefully shove an opinion down our throats. Subtlety is overrated, the screenwriters and the director of PES seem to say. They prefer a straightforward approach, favoring a commercial approach over artistry. To put it simply, Studio 4C is on the right track — the right being, of course, the symbol of right-wing laissez-faire capitalism.
So let us suspend our disbelief, as Toyota argues, and our brakes of rationality as well. For if we ever take a stop and think things through, Toyota will have to recall this masterpiece of an anime.