Attack on Renai
Made by Ruihao Ye
Anime openings can be some of the most iconic moments of Japanese Animation, and I plan to make a mashup of a few openings, specifically by arranging their cuts in a logical order and to a few animesongs (ie the highest four rated anime openings by Reddit) ...Or so I thought I would do. Then, on that day, Renai attacked.
Created: September 29th, 2016
So in the end... I created an opening... But instead of honoring anime and making an homage... I got attacked by Renai.
My end project became a mashup of footage of multiple anime openings and the video for Renai Circulation from Bakemonogatari, one of the more memed anime openings out there. In essence, the story I have is that for some reason, Renai Circulation has decided to attack anime, and the other anime's fight back. And win... for now.
The music in the background is another very heavily memed animesong, specifically Guren no Yumiya by Linked Horizon, the song for the first opening for the anime Shingeki no Kyoujin. It has been used heavily as a joke (ever opening fits it), and since it is also battle music, I felt that it fit the project.
And overall... Well, I think it worked out personally.
The story I wanted to tell was that Renai Circulation was invading the anime world, and initially they sense its coming. When it does, they suffer defeat, loss. Tragedy. It seems hopeless. But with one more push, they win the fight against her, and chase her away. But it is only the beginning. Just think of every monster movie with sequels, and this is the story I was working towards.
The intention is to create a mashup of anime openings to an audio track, specifically the top four anime openings as rated by a Reddit bracket. In a way my goal is to celebrate the industry of Japanese animation through the various genres of anime by cutting them to the respective openings which in my mind can fit well with the big genres of anime.
Also, if, and ONLY if, I am able to complete this part early, I am planning on experimenting with mixing audio together from a group of anime openings such that they create their own song and meaning through the song. This can be done as pure audio or just quick cuts to the openings for the various lyrics, similar to DJ Earworm and their mashups of the billboard top songs on the American market.
The following videos are what I think represent my end goal. The first is more along the lines of the project I want to create, except instead of a supercut designed to point out the similarities in the medium, it will most likely use supercut like methods to transition cuts between each other to hopefully produce the message.
The second is the Hanasaku Iroha opening, and while it is only on my list for the video, the cuts between :45 and :55 are similar in my goal of how to cut the opening footage into a fluid visual piece. Also, my intention is to give the video an overall message, similar to the opening if critically analyzed, specifically though the cuts I plan to make for each opening.
The third is one from DJ Earworm which is mainly for the "stretch goal" video I plan to make once my first project can be done. By mixing the lyrics of the songs and the individual song's beats, the mashup takes a different tone, usually celebrating the medium of music for that year.
So in the end I created a mashup with a different intent. I indirectly wanted to tell a story, and close to the deadline I had been listening to the song Renai Circulation a lot. And because of its cutesy opening, I wanted to do something centered around it.
At the same time, I was listening to Guren no Yumiya, and suddenly I had the idea to remix the two songs together. But it failed miserably (BPM of Renai: 120. BPM of Guren no Yumiya: 180). So that wasn't going to work.
Instead, I remembered that meme that "guren no yumiya" fits every single opening video in existence. And I wondered if I could use that to my advantage. And so, I decided to make an all out opening with the song and videos I had at my disposal.
Therefore, I changed my intention for the opening, and instead of just making something honor Anime, I decided to take one step further and create an all out anime opening (slightly over the time limit) that had a short story through the cuts I chose for the video. I essence, I tried to create a monster movie in 1:51.
My work is best described as a video mashup, specifically an Anime Music Video, or AMV, although there are slight audio edits I make to the opening, but very minor.
The video itself is essentially a music video for a shortened Guren no Yumiya. In the anime community, there are fans who remix the video to songs in order to tell a story, either it being the story of the anime or give the footage an entirely different meaning. This includes remixing footage from a single or multiple series, and can use jpop or any other kind of music. And in similar fashion I tried to make a video with meaning to go along with the music.
The song itself, Guren no Yumiya, is about being a hunter, not the hunted, and in general is a song about fighting. However, while the original song pairs more with the plot of the original show (killing giants while not being killed by them), I thought it would be funny to recontextualize that as a fight song against one specific female character from a different anime, Bakemonogatari.
The show itself is a harem show, a show where a male main character has relationships with multiple female characters with most, if not all, with some kind of romantic interest towards the male character. And the opening that uses Renai Circulation is a particularly cutesy opening with an equally cutesy song behind it. In summary she would be the last character that a viewer would find innately threatening simply from appearance, and in many ways the opening embodies the cutesyness that anime tends to have depending on the genre. Therefore, I though that paring the cutesy context with battle music would provide a decent level of comedy.
Technically, the song itself is a remix, in the loosest definition. The entire video is 1:51, 21 seconds longer than a standard anime opening. That is because I decided to use the actual song from iTunes and cut it down, as there are some lyrics cut from the anime version which I felt made the song boring.
The opening itself can seem to follow the plot of the sequelbait monster movies. It starts with the monster approaching, the people wary. Then it appears, and it proceeds to ruin the people's day. And then with one more strong push, the monster is pushed back to where it came from. Except... at the end, a cliffhanger scene. This is what I remember being the framework for a monster movie plot, and with that in mind, I framed the story of the opening alongside this.
Initially, with the project I wanted to try to make a mashup of anime openings to "Celebrate anime". However, quickly I found that this broad and vague premise was not working at all, as I could not find a focus for the video I was to make.
Then, I experimented with Audacity to try to mix two songs, Renai Circulation with a different cutesy song, Platinum Disco. Both are from the same series of anime, the latter from Nisemonogatari. However, I found that A) the songs did not match exactly as I wanted them to do, and B) there already were mashups between the two songs.
After that I attempted to mashup Renai with Guren no Yumiya, but as I mentioned before, the Beats Per Minute were completely off, and so made for ugly sounding music.
Finally, I decided to go back to the video and try to make something with the actual opening that used Renai Circulation. And since I had Attack on Titan on the brain, I decided that in the spirit of both as memes, I wanted to create something funny with both that would let people laugh. Renai is cute, Guren is serious. When they meet, penpineapple--- *cough* I mean... When they meet, comedy must come from it, right? (and yes, the odd idea of chunking video together may also have been slightly influenced by the PPAP video... I get inspiration from weird sources).
From there I started cutting together openings alongside the full song of Guren no Yumiya, and... to my half surprise... the cuts actually fit really well with the song. It was like I was actively proving that meme to be correct while creating the video.
However, I suddenly ran into a few setbacks. There was only so much footage I could get from the Bakemonogatari opening. But to counter that, I decided to double up on some keys from the opening.
But that wouldn't be interesting. So I started looking through the color options in iMovie (I'm sorry... to both the quality and myself. This project really taught me about iMovie's limitations), and stumbled upon the first one; changing the colors so that reds stood out. The result was a cute girl face, but completely red. Almost like she was angry. And that was right near the swell in the song to the action-y portion.
At the same time, I knew that that would only work for a little bit; there were only so many color extremes that would fit well with the "story" I was starting to weave". And so afterwards I decided to look through more effects, and found the other effects available that iMovie had in stock. From there I experimented with effects until I was satisfied with the tone for the particular clip, and as I neared the end, I had a nicely flowing video on my screen...
The ending. I didn't know what to do for that.
Thankfully, I was playing around with the Nisemonogatari opening with Platinum disco, a video with another cutesy girl in it.
And for my ending, to leave it on a "cliffhanger", although Renai Circulation girl had been defeated, in her wake... Platinum Disco would arise.
So in summary, I created a video in which Renai Circulation invades the anime world, they first suffer a few defeats and loose hope, but in one more final push, they defeat her... only to have to start the whole thing again...
In the end I succeeded in creating an AMV with the story I had in mind. I used a few video downloading links to grab the video clips off of youtube, and from there reassembled them in iMovie to create the AMV.
In iMovie, I heavily used the cutting and video lengthening/shortening tools that the program offered, as well as the many color options and filters available through the software to create the end result. I even used it for a slightly hamhanded attempt at audio editing, mostly due to time constraints.
The end result is an AMV, a 1:51 monster movie, all anime, all cute, and even having the sequelbait scene as the cherry on top.
Initially, after I finished and watched it the first time, I could not help but laugh a little bit. Probably due to the disbelief in the project I had created in front of me.
However, after a few more times, there are a lot more issues that I can see in the video.
First off, I should have attempted to search harder for video without text in them. There were clips I had without credits, for instance the Bakemonogatari opening. However, I was unable to find creditless versions of all the openings that I used. Half of me believes that I could be able to find them if I searched hard enough, but the other half understands slightly that finding creditless versions of all the openings is not necessarily possible. Therefore, a different approach should have been taken, specifically finding openings without credits. And although the material would be less, I would have a better product nevertheless.
Also, I should have experimented with the transitioning effects between clips close to the end of the video, as the cut to Platinum Disco is abrupt.
There are some points where the editing doesn't match the song terribly well. Namely, the first of the repeat sections of the Bakemonogatari opening, and near the end. The ending is more out of my inability to think of a clear ending sequence, but with more time dedicated to it I should be able to think of ways to make it flow better.
Finally, I should have done a bit more remixing of the footage from Bakemonogatari, as the energetic portions of the song could use a bit more spontaneity in those cuts.
UPDATE: I quickly edited the video with the errors I had found. The older version is still in this post and on my channel, if the newer one cannot be accepted.
REUPLOADED DUE TO YOUTUBE STRIKE.
In general, I had a lot of fun with this project. I would be laughing to myself during portions of the editing as I played the video back to me for testing purposes. Also, I found that I enjoyed video editing with meaning, which is actually a relief to me. I plan on doing animations with story, and to be able to do that, I need to have an eye for edits. And although it probably is better for others to critique my editing ability (PLEASE DO SO), the ease to which editing came (not necessarily with meaning, just editing) was at the very least an assurance.
But... I also learned, finally, the terrible nature of the program iMovie. Early on I discovered that I could not leave gaps in video. That immediately hurt my workflow, as I first layered clips to edit long ones, and then resorted to dragging a long one, cutting it and praying it fit with the song. And even the cutting was dodgy, as sometimes it wouldn't even cut the clip, or it would cut the music, or it would delete the clip etc etc. It was a nightmare working with it, really, and it is really a miracle that the end product had some amount of quality left. I may work with iMovie still out of necessity; I do not have a better program on my computer, and most of my memory on my computer is going to other necessary programs, but eventually I will, no, I have to delete iMovie for a better program.
Finally, I have fostered great respect for audio editors through my terrible mistake at attempting to do audio mashups. I am not very talented with music, and so the BPM issue came up way too late into the project timeline. I may attempt to come back sometime later to play around with it, but in the meantime I will be only using it for small edits.
Title Image for the project: https://i.ytimg.com/vi/CN6mu32aLq8/maxresdefault.jpg
Shows' openings used: (parenthetical is opening number)
Bakemonogatari (4), Shingeki no Kyoujin (1), Mawaru Penguindrum (2), Fate Zero (1), The World God Only Knows: Secrets of the Goddess, Sword Art Online (1), Sword Art Online 2 (3), Magi: Kingdom of Magic, Gintama, Magi Puella Madoka Magika, Noragami, God Eater, Re:Zero Kara Hajimaru Isekai Seikatsu (2), Assassination Classroom, Death Parade, Shirobako (1)
Song used: Guren no Yumiya by Linked Horizon
Program used: iMovie (NEVER AGAIN!)
Reference and attribute any texts, concepts, ideas or related material that informed but wasn't directly used in the creation of the outcome.
I believe that this project has a lot of potential to really shine. I think making a mashup of specifically anime openings was a very clever idea. From all of the anime that I have watched, I do distinctly remember openings that were extremely well put together. Using them to celebrate Japanese anime culture is a perfect idea. I am wondering where you are thinking about posting this mashup other than the gallery though. If you have not decided yet, I believe it could get a lot of attention on YouTube. Overall, great idea!
Anime openings can be some of the most iconic moments of Japanese Animation, and I plan to make a mashup of a few openings, specifically by arranging their cuts in a logical order and to a few animesongs (ie the highest four rated anime openings by Reddit)
...Or so I thought I would do. Then, on that day, Renai attacked.