Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

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marantana
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Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

Post by marantana » Thu Jun 14, 2018 6:00 pm

I saved Shizune for the last route. I regret it.
Emotionally, the "good" ending was the saddest of all endings in the game.
The "bad" ending was very, very quiet and sad too.

The only "I love you" came from Hisao and may even gone unheard because he voiced it and did not sign it. Also, it was when they were all together. Also, they didn't even talk of staying together.

So they just were "friends with benefits".

What do you think?

PS: Also, one of the most interesting issues in this route -- Shizune's family, why they didn't learn to communicate with her as a child before she could even write -- remained completely untouched.

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Oddball
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Re: Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

Post by Oddball » Thu Jun 14, 2018 9:27 pm

I think Shizune's good ending is the best place to finish playing the game.

They do a great job of capturing the graduation feeling and saying goodbye to all these great people you've met along the way and wishing you ahd more time with them.

From the relationship status though, it does paint a more negative picture. Shizune and Hisao feel like they're done. They're going to keep in contact for a while (probably) but there seems no plan for their future. Likewise, Shizune never seems to have really grown or changed as a character. Likewise, Misha's troubles seem to have just been ignored. There's a sense that nothing that happened really mattered. Everyone was just biding their time waiting for things to move on.
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ArcCain
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Re: Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

Post by ArcCain » Fri Jun 15, 2018 2:49 am

It is a little bitter-sweet in that way. Anon22 did say he wanted to try something different for his path. There are some things that could have been polished but he wanted to go more on implication and less on flat out telling us stuff.

Her dad never bothered learning sign language cause he could afford a interpretor, something that angered her as she grew older. He was and still is too full of himself to realize his error and she's too stubborn to tell him through a note.
Last edited by ArcCain on Fri Jun 15, 2018 12:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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marantana
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Re: Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

Post by marantana » Fri Jun 15, 2018 4:50 am

Thanks to both of you for sharing your thoughts and the author's approach.

The dad issue sounds very reasonable. So he is designed to really be that asshole, which of course to a certain degree explains the obvious issues Shizune and her brother have.
In a way, Lilly's and Akira's parents too have caused problems for their kids by basically abandoning them. Akira was meant to be Lilly's parent in lieu, even when the reality turned out to be the other way round. This could also explain how responsible and mature Lilly acts.

The "graduation feeling" may be very relevant in the US because more people move farther away than here in Europe, where the majority stays in or near their home town to go to university. I don't know how that is in Japan.
I think Shizune starts to grow when she realizes how her actions as a leader counteract her positive intentions. This also shows in her dominant sexual behaviour. In reality it's often the other way round -- disproportionally many submissive parts in the bdsm scene are people who are very dominant in their daily life (I had such a gf who was 28 at the time). Shizune is a very interesting character indeed.

I started with Emi followed by Lilly because they would be the most appealing characters I would go for irl.
I then played Hanako and Rin, who I (correctly) thought would be the most difficult girls to "get". Turns out they were and Rin also was the most interesting story in the game.
Shizune was the third character who I got interested in (in irl terms) from the beginning -- that's why I saved her for the end.
It's funny that the underappreciated character Misha is the one who has the clearest picture and determination for her future. Even more so than Lilly.
Like Shizune, Kenji's character as a crazy pain in the ass unfolds in a way that is very satisfying to the player -- most older players (I'm almost 59) have met such tragic persons at some time in their lives. In that way, the order I played the girls and the Kenji-ending I went for between Hanako and Rin was a good one.

All and all, this is one of if not the best vn's I ever played. This community project was very well done in all aspects. In a literary sense there are better kinetic novels like One Thousand Lies or Higurashi, but that's to be expected.

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Oddball
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Re: Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

Post by Oddball » Sat Jun 16, 2018 10:43 am

Her dad never bothered learning sign language cause he could afford a interpretor, something that angered her as she grew older. He was and still is too full of himself to realize his error and she's too stubborn to tell him through a note.
Shizune is very much her father's daughter.

You will talk to them in their preferred manner of communication or not at all. Shizune herself shows displeasure at writing things down or using text messages.
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calcifer
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Re: Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

Post by calcifer » Sat Jun 16, 2018 3:59 pm

Shizune is my favourite character, despite not having the most enjoyable route. Compared to others (say, Lilly's cliché Hollywood fairytale) it doesn't even bother with the "they've met, hooked up, spent a few months together and lived happily ever after" approach most other routes take.

At the end of her good ending, we are left with a young, still new, loosely attached couple that have barely started discovering each other. That's a perfectly decent, realistic place to be in a few short months. Projecting a little bit into the future, we know they'll become university students. Maybe the same school, maybe not. Maybe a long distance relationship, maybe not. High school romances rarely end up in a happily ever after anyway.

But being in the honeymoon period of a relationship with a new, exciting girlfriend with no obvious deal breaker issues at the end of high school? That's a happy ending in my book.
Shizune = Rin > Emi > Hanako > Lilly
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ProfAllister
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Re: Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

Post by ProfAllister » Sat Jun 16, 2018 8:54 pm

Ah, this discussion again. Always fun.

From my most recent read, I am currently of the opinion that Shizune's route "ends" with "The Summit". The next three scenes are epilogue - tying up the loose ends, reaching conclusions, etc.

Also, you're missing a key detail with even presenting the idea of "friends with benefits". First off, Shizune only has two friends. Secondly, a key tension throughout her route focuses on the fact that Shizune isn't good at dealing with people. She is so caught up in the moment at any given time that she has trouble thinking beyond the specific project she has in mind. Hisao knows this, hence why he doesn't push for Shizune to make plans. Besides, Shizune is far less about saying you'll do something, and more about doing it.

Also, something I literally just noticed. The last line of Shizune's route:
Shizune laughs, as if she doesn't have a care in the world, Misha's laughter joining with hers as easily as if it were her own. We'll meet again.
Shizune. Laughs. The girl who's stifled every vocalisation up to this point, to include her moans during sex. Laughs. In public. The girl afraid to have her voice heard, even by her lover. Laughs.

Five years of combing Shizune's route for the tiniest of details and insights, and I miss something so glaringly obvious. ><

It may seem trivial to you, but I'm still trying to wrap my head around the implications of this.

If it's not clear, I'm in the camp that her ending is unambiguously happy.


As for Shizune's family, that's a bit fuzzier. All we have confirmation of is that Hideaki doesn't know sign language. Other than that, it's left ambiguous (with the admitted implication that they can't).

What we do know is that Shizune clearly has a working understanding of sound. She deliberately chooses to be nonvocal, stifling every laugh and even moan. Getting into theory and speculation, I'm in the camp of people that believe this indicates that Shizune lost her hearing in early childhood (no later than 6, given Jigoro's "twelve years" line). This raises the possibility that she knows how to speak (not well, as she doesn't have self-feedback), and, given Jigoro's comment of trying everything, she almost definitely knows how to read lips reasonably well (caveat: reading lips is far from exact, and many find it unpleasant and annoying).

Her possible faculties aside, Jigoro comments that Shizune refused to talk to him, but he assumes that is normal for children/teenagers (as opposed to "normal for deaf people"). Compounded with this, Shizune relies on translators, but only uses the phrase "tell him/her" in "Pangrammatic Window", when she wants Hisao to say something to Jigoro. Notably, Jigoro's immediate response is to ask whether it was Hisao or Shizune saying it, which heavily implies that he knows what Shizune said. In this context, it seems more akin to siblings in an argument with each other:
"Billy, tell Jimmy I still haven't forgiven him."
"Jimmy, Wally still hasn't-"
"I heard him, Billy. Tell him I don't care."
So there's a lot going on with Shizune's family, but I imagine next to none of it has to do with her deafness.
Current Project: Misha Pseudo-Route

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brythain
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Re: Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

Post by brythain » Sun Jun 17, 2018 6:25 am

ProfAllister wrote:
Sat Jun 16, 2018 8:54 pm
Ah, this discussion again. Always fun.

From my most recent read, I am currently of the opinion that Shizune's route "ends" with "The Summit". The next three scenes are epilogue - tying up the loose ends, reaching conclusions, etc.

Also, you're missing a key detail with even presenting the idea of "friends with benefits". First off, Shizune only has two friends. Secondly, a key tension throughout her route focuses on the fact that Shizune isn't good at dealing with people. She is so caught up in the moment at any given time that she has trouble thinking beyond the specific project she has in mind. Hisao knows this, hence why he doesn't push for Shizune to make plans. Besides, Shizune is far less about saying you'll do something, and more about doing it.

Also, something I literally just noticed. The last line of Shizune's route:
Shizune laughs, as if she doesn't have a care in the world, Misha's laughter joining with hers as easily as if it were her own. We'll meet again.
Shizune. Laughs. The girl who's stifled every vocalisation up to this point, to include her moans during sex. Laughs. In public. The girl afraid to have her voice heard, even by her lover. Laughs.

Five years of combing Shizune's route for the tiniest of details and insights, and I miss something so glaringly obvious. ><

It may seem trivial to you, but I'm still trying to wrap my head around the implications of this.

If it's not clear, I'm in the camp that her ending is unambiguously happy.
I agree with all of this.

Some time ago, I think it was you who said the Shizune I wrote initially for 'After The Dream' was the most soulless one you'd ever come across. Part of my intention, in retrospect, was to portray Shizune who had entertained thoughts of having a second friend in her life, only to have that option apparently taken away from her. This made, in effect, two Shizunes: one who felt like a better person when either Misha or Hisao was around, and one who gave way to her more ruthless, 'cold' nature when they weren't. The other part of my intention was to attempt an objective (or at least external) view of Shizune, one from the perspective of a film-maker poring over a Shizune archive and trying to read her mind. At the time, it seemed like a good idea. Later, maybe not so great.

So as I explored the 'why not so great' question, I started writing from her perspective more, and also from those of her family members. I became more and more certain that Jigoro and Hideaki, while being just a little peculiar, were also hamming it up in the Japanese tradition of hazing the new potential family member—which is what bringing somebody home implies about your hopes for that person in that culture.
Post-Yamaku, what happens? After The Dream is a mosaic that follows everyone to the (sometimes) bitter end.
Main Index (Complete)Shizune/Lilly/Emi/Hanako/Rin/Misha + Miki + Natsume
Secondary Arcs: Rika/Mutou/AkiraHideaki | Others (WIP): Straw—A Dream of SuzuSakura—The Kenji Saga.
"Much has been lost, and there is much left to lose." — Tim Powers, The Drawing of the Dark (1979)

marantana
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Re: Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

Post by marantana » Sun Jun 17, 2018 6:34 am

wow -- and I thought I was being obsessive :-)

Currently, I play ef - the story of the two; but I'll have to replay One Thousand Lies, which I massively underestimated on my first readthrough and realized that only after reading some analysis threads.

And then Higurashi, where chapter 6, released a few days ago, somewhat disrupted my lines of thought and, now having a general idea of the larger picture, I'll have to re-read it (>90h) and take notes before ch.7 is released (december'18 or later).

But I'll definitely replay Katawa Shoujo in the light of what I now know from reading your and others' postings/replies.

marantana
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Re: Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

Post by marantana » Sun Jun 17, 2018 6:44 am

brythain wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 6:25 am
Some time ago, I think it was you who said the Shizune I wrote initially for 'After The Dream' was the most soulless one you'd ever come across.
"After the Dream"?

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calcifer
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Re: Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

Post by calcifer » Sun Jun 17, 2018 7:43 am

marantana wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 6:44 am
"After the Dream"?
After the Dream
Shizune = Rin > Emi > Hanako > Lilly
FluffandCrunch wrote: Every day is a gift, every hour is golden, every minute is a diamond. Life is wonderful, if you have the courage to live it.

marantana
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Re: Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

Post by marantana » Sun Jun 17, 2018 8:01 am

calcifer wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 7:43 am
marantana wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 6:44 am
"After the Dream"?
After the Dream
Ty! Brythaine wrote me a pn too. What a dedicated community still exists after 6 years...
Just like "Life is Strange" on their wiki and deviantart or "One Thousand Lies", which are both somewhat younger.
cu

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Oddball
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Re: Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

Post by Oddball » Sun Jun 17, 2018 8:12 am

So as I explored the 'why not so great' question, I started writing from her perspective more, and also from those of her family members. I became more and more certain that Jigoro and Hideaki, while being just a little peculiar, were also hamming it up in the Japanese tradition of hazing the new potential family member—which is what bringing somebody home implies about your hopes for that person in that culture.
Jigoro maybe, but Hideaki doesn't seem to change any between when you meet him in Shizune's route and when he meet him in Lilly's.

I always did think the bit with the eggshells was somewhat over the top. Then again, Jigoro might just naturally be a big jerk. If he was just hazing somebody, I would have expected Misha to have said something, but she treats his behavior like it's normal. Likewise, Jigoro seems to show just as much disrespect to Misha as he does Hisao.
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Re: Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

Post by brythain » Sun Jun 17, 2018 9:12 am

Oddball wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 8:12 am
So as I explored the 'why not so great' question, I started writing from her perspective more, and also from those of her family members. I became more and more certain that Jigoro and Hideaki, while being just a little peculiar, were also hamming it up in the Japanese tradition of hazing the new potential family member—which is what bringing somebody home implies about your hopes for that person in that culture.
Jigoro maybe, but Hideaki doesn't seem to change any between when you meet him in Shizune's route and when he meet him in Lilly's.

I always did think the bit with the eggshells was somewhat over the top. Then again, Jigoro might just naturally be a big jerk. If he was just hazing somebody, I would have expected Misha to have said something, but she treats his behavior like it's normal. Likewise, Jigoro seems to show just as much disrespect to Misha as he does Hisao.
I suspect when Shizune first brought Misha home, that's how he behaved. So in a sense Misha knows what's happening and just ignores it. Hideaki, I suspect, is partly the victim of trauma caused by having a father who is a practical joker of a certain type. I'm sure that if you ask people whose fathers are like that, you'll find alarming similarities.
Post-Yamaku, what happens? After The Dream is a mosaic that follows everyone to the (sometimes) bitter end.
Main Index (Complete)Shizune/Lilly/Emi/Hanako/Rin/Misha + Miki + Natsume
Secondary Arcs: Rika/Mutou/AkiraHideaki | Others (WIP): Straw—A Dream of SuzuSakura—The Kenji Saga.
"Much has been lost, and there is much left to lose." — Tim Powers, The Drawing of the Dark (1979)

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Oddball
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Re: Shizune's "Good" Ending -- Sad or Happy?

Post by Oddball » Sun Jun 17, 2018 9:27 am

I find it hard to believe that you'll find anyone quite like Hideaki.
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