thesunlitgarden: (Default)
thesunlitgarden ([personal profile] thesunlitgarden) wrote2014-12-09 02:36 am
Entry tags:

rgu meta; duelist motivations [bonus Ivette!]

Warning, gifs below!

A friend asked what the motivations are for the various duelists/why they want the power of revolution and so I rambled a thing.

First I'm going to direct you to the opening, "even if I dream/even if I cry/even if I get hurt"; these lyrics are about who you see during each part.

Even if I dream; Utena (she doesn't really count here, as you could say she's not dueling for the power of revolution, but she IS dueling in part to act out being a prince fwiw)

Even if I cry; Saionji. The dude is literally crying in the opening. We'll go back to him in a moment.

Even if I get hurt; Juri. :c Enough said we will come back to her. (goodness KNOWS the poor girl gets hurt)

Saionji is the most clean cut obvious for his reasoning. He's miserable and lonely and he desires a true friendship. He claims he is in love with Anthy, yes, but I feel it's more that he is in love with what she represents: a way that he wont have to be alone and he can actually be secure and get what he wants. His desires for revolution stem from his insecurity (as do much of his other actions in the series)

Miki doesn't care about the power of revolution at first. He isn't interested, he's just part of the student council and in this because he was chosen. Because he is gifted, and he probably finds this all sorts of interesting, even if he doesn't want any part of it personally. What changes his mind is Anthy and, again, what she represents. His childhood/the relationship he once had with his sister.
His longing is to fill that emotional gap. Miki is all about not growing up and going back to how things were.

Juri is trying to get over Shiori, trying to get past that part of her. How much you want to read into it being queer denial is up to you, but she is stuck. Shiori has a tight hold over her and she can't get past it. For her it's about trying to find herself and move on with her life, but the problem is she's trying to decide who she is instead of accept who she is. You could even say she isn't all that interested in fighting in the duels. Her duel with Utena is because she is fighting to prove something (she is resisting the idea of miracles existing, as it was Shiori who told her to believe in them and if so they'll know your feelings. She tried, it didn't work, and now she resents the whole idea.)
Then there's the duels in the Ruka arc (for lack of better wording) and those are clearly not motivated by a desire to win the power of revolution. She even rips her own rose off-- it's not about that for her. She has her own problems to tackle and her own reasons for dueling.

Nanami's is pretty obvious, as later on she outright says it. I can't recall her exact wording, but she says how she's doing it to surpass everyone, even her own brother. If she is better than everyone then she is in control and no one can hurt her. It's about power for her. You could argue she's not even fighting for the power of revolution so much as what winning a duel would mean for her. She seems to want the power of revolution simply to have it rather than to use it.
The words about her surpassing are, granted, later on. However her first duel still has nothing to do with the power of revolution. I don't even think she KNEW about any of that then. It was just a (manipulated) outlet for her to fight Utena (to fight Anthy, to fight everyone coming between her and her brother.)

Touga I saved for last as imo he has the most complex reasoning assuming we're not talking about any other duelists, just the student council. (Though we can, there's Mikage and the black rose duelists, however I'd say the black rose duelist don't have that sort of motivation-- but I digress)
To understand Touga's drive best I feel you have to know where he comes from. It's been said by word of god that his backstory in the movie is the same as in the anime. So he was adopted and sexually abused by his adoptive father. He was a child; a helpless victim. I don't feel it's a stretch to say it's control for him, although that is a little too simplistic way to say it.
It's not simply control so much as it also is security. Although he quickly finds that there is something "better" than the duels. Akio.
Touga stops caring so much about the power of revolution (and I'll argue that before Akio he did care-- he would watch all the duels and keep track of them and act as host for the meetings. These duels consumed him, even if he wasn't always jumping to be in them. He's smart, he planned and bided his time to ensure he would win. And it worked against Utena.)
Once he sees Akio as this impressive, important, powerful figure he longs for that. He goes along with his plans and listens to him even when it upsets or bothers him (watch him in the ep where he gives earrings to Utena and pretends they're from Akio. he hates it, but he does it. And that's part of Akio's manipulation, too.) because he is convinced it will pay off
He has a history of sexual abuse from an adult man. And then, again. Akio is sexual with him and it is not consensual-- not with that imbalance of power. It wouldn't matter if Touga were wanting or willing (and ymmv on how you read him in the series), he is 16 at best with an adult man (late 20s at least) who is manipulative and who does not hesitate to use people.
So imo Touga does it because he feels he needs to, that this is the only way to be as in control and on top as possible.

Less ramble more chat logs. Improper grammar, abbreviations, and typos to follow.
*✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧*; me
Ivette~; Ivette
(Simple, yes?)

02:20 Ivette~ Wow Touga. You're very right about what tiu said about him
02:20 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* he's a douche don't get me wrong but that kid has been through SO MUCH SHIT
02:20 Ivette~ Like when I was seeing him with akio i was very :((( and then when I saw the movie and what happened with his adoptive father i was even more like akjdnsjs
02:20 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* remember, he's like 16 at most
02:21 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* he is literally a kid. akio, a grown adult (timey wimey ohtori shit aside he's in his late 20s) is literally manipulating and fucking a teenager.
02:22 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* so there is no way to see the situation as even or fair when it comes to touga and akio
02:23 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* touga is a kid who is trying to cope and go on with his life. akio is someone who does not hesitate to manipluate those around him and use their trauma to suit his needs
02:23 Ivette~ Yeah there's no way Touga can be making fully informed consensual decisions with akio
02:24 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* so touga comes off as this chauvinist pig type of dude (and on some level/to some extent he is, i'm not gonna pretend his problems clear him of that) but there are reasons for that
02:25 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* scientifically speaking (if we want to go there lol) a person's brain hasn't even finished developing by 16. there is literally no way to consider their relationship consentual, even if touga was saying he wanted it. (which he doesn't)
02:26 Ivette~ Okay Ty for reminding me of a lot of things and also helping me realize orher's. I can connect with a lot of the duelists. I think a lot of people can when looking at some of the ways they have come to be where they are for trying to achieve revolution.
I did have one question tho, do you think juri is in part in denial about her sexuality and trying to not dwell on that bc of shiori?
02:26 Ivette~ When someone is 16, they're still figuring things out a lot
02:27 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* also re: touga is a playboy and sleeps around. while not all victims of sexual abuse do, many victims can be really sexual. idk if i'm wording it well, but basically that sort of trauma can manifest in that sort of way. (when faced with trauma, esp at a young age, people generally either continue to emulate it in some respect or go the opposite way.)
02:28 Ivette~ And it's true that even tho someone that age can say they are fine with dating 20+ year olds and doing certain things, the damage that can be done to someone at that age bc of events like that can be pretty big
02:28 Ivette~ Yeah :/
02:28 Ivette~ That's definitely a thing
02:29 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* i feel like that could be part of it, but i hesitate to say THAT'S WHAT IT IS bc i feel like that sort of shuts that door, if that makes sense? like, it's more than that. it's also that juri has always been seen as special. and now here she is longing after someone who, from what she can tell, she can't have (for multiple reasons) and she cannot let that show. she needs to be the cool, collected, in control achiver the world sees her to be.
02:29 Ivette~ The ways that people can deal with sexual trauma and trauma in general is complicated.
02:29 Ivette~ Juri
02:29 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* she cannot mope and long for someone. i feel like both from outside pressure and her own inner pressure to be that person wont allow that
02:30 Ivette~ The ending with shiori in the fencing team (I think she was in it right?) and things seeming okay for them both is just :'(!! My characters,,,
02:30 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* i mean, look how she is with teachers. they respect her. rather highly. she is ADORED. she has to maintain that
02:30 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* yeah, shiori was on the fencing team!
02:31 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* much like touga, saionji, and nanami it seemed like juri and shiori were learning how to have a healthy friendship
02:31 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* bc they both adore each other
02:32 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* (it's somewhat implied (and laregely my headcanon) that juri comes from a VERY nice home and a very well off family (having all the nice jewelry in the cowbell ep, having lavish clothing, etc) who have high expectations from her. shiori, on the other hand, probably did not. they were friends as kids but shiori always felt below juri.)
02:33 Ivette~ Yeah from shiori's side she def felt like she wanted to like. Change feeling so inferior to juri
02:33 Ivette~ By one upping her
02:34 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* like there is NO QUESTION shiori adores juri and wishes she could matter half as much as her (because she feels she doesn't)
02:34 Ivette~ Wasn't she like surprised that juri felt love towards her?
02:35 Ivette~ Oh my god that screen cap
02:35 Ivette~ Kelly why
02:35 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* it's from the meta i linked to
02:35 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* there is more where that came from : )
02:39 Ivette~ Pain @ shiori and wakaba
02:39 Ivette~ I def connect with wakaba and I forgot what I was gonna say about
02:39 Ivette~ Self worth and importance not coming from yourself but from others
02:40 Ivette~ And how yeah that's rly fragile and dangerous
02:40 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* lol sorry i fucking STEAMROLLED the convo huh
02:40 Ivette~ Rude
02:40 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* mmhm. :c and we see that actually shatter around her (THANKS A LOT MIKAGE)
02:40 Ivette~ Sobs
02:40 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* (which is actually THANKS A LOT ANTHY)
02:40 Ivette~ Sobsss
02:40 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* (which REALLY should be THANKS A LOT AKIO)
02:41 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* almost always
02:41 Ivette~ I want to talk about milk and shiori sometime too bye
02:41 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* there are things she does on her own but it's... usually right back to akio.
02:41 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* okay lets (do you mean kozue? or just MORE SHIORI)
02:41 Ivette~ Oh yeah kozue. Sry got shiori and juri in my mind rn
02:42 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* sometimes i forget she's considered a side character
02:42 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* bc man there is a LOT going on with her
02:43 Ivette~ Miki and kozue Omggg. Like I didn't rly get that for miki Anthy is like. Replacing his sister almost. Like that's how he developed his crush on Anthy bc he wants someone to play piano with and be close to
02:43 Ivette~ And his sister oh man
02:43 Ivette~ Does the show ever say why they kinda. Drifted apart
02:43 Ivette~ And yeah omg..

02:43 Ivette~ Screams
02:44 Ivette~ Miki no
02:44 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* this blog is spot on and when you said that i immediately thought of this one and had to go find it
02:44 Ivette~ Sksjjsnksms ty perfect timing
02:44 Ivette~ Miki and kozue's relationship and interaction are so ambiguous
02:45 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* okay but anyway. it's... yeah that's actually p much how it is tho. like he's using her to replace his sister but he also has a crush on anthy in the process and then akio happens and makes everything sexual (remember the car ride with him, kozue, and miki? yeah) and it's awkward
02:47 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* (i can serious meta if you want but also i can say everything via tfln so)
02:48 Ivette~ Your "red car of sex"* was spot on Id forgotten just how sinful akio's car is
02:48 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* it really is i don't use the term red car of sex lightly
02:48 Ivette~ Feel free to seriously go meta
02:49 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* while you can sort of shrug off the sexual overtones between miki and kozue in the series it's a little harder to in the movie. where they take naked baths together.

02:51 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* and it's kind of like "oh well uh" before shit gets weird again
02:52 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* (and EVEN THEN, naked in a tub with his sister, is a rubber duck. a symbolism of childhood. kozue is still the "mature" one of the two, but still. at this age kids stop sharing baths. it's weird. incest-y kind of weird.)
02:53 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* and when i say it gets weird i mean it gets WEIRD there is still this animosity between them.

02:54 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* which i think is where the "they experimented sexually as children" theory/headcanon came from. kozue's acting out and being highly sexual and miki's clinging onto childhood and fighting against that sort of maturity and much as he can-- both of them going opposite ways.
02:55 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* but there is no actual canon grounding for that (the idea that they experimented as kids) aside from their relationship now so that's very ymmv
03:00 Ivette~ Yeah it rly is
03:02 Ivette~ Yeah I actually thought that kozue and miki were straight up incestuous in the past and could continue being
03:02 Ivette~ But u know no official word on any of that
03:03 Ivette~ Rgu is definitely a series that doesn't have much concrete answers or confirmed theories
03:03 *✧ Cat Guru Kelly ✧* YOU'RE TELLING ME [stares at miki's stopwatch]

* That's what I call Akio's car. Because that's what it is.