Posted by psgels on 6 August 2008 with categories: Eve no Jikan



Short Synopsis: Our lead character lives in a future Japan where Androids are common and often used as tools
Highlights: The umpth anime about androids, let’s see what this one can add.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7,5/10
So, the six-part OVA Eve no Jikan is the product of the creator of Aquatic Language and Pale Cocoon, and this seems to be set in the same world as Aquatic Language. The focus isn’t as much on the graphics as the ones above: the animation is way more static, and there’s not much experimental animation like in Aquatic Language either. Eve no Jikan is really about its setting: androids, and the difference between humans and androids.

It’s definitely not a new topic these days. There already have been so many android series that I’m wondering what this Eve no Jikan can add to this. The first episode was decent enough, but I like how the setting so far hasn’t tried to rip off other ideas. I think the best way to describe the level of androids is a more pessimistic look at the time-setting of Real Drive, and I also was reminded of the beginning of the Second Renaissance from The Animatrix. It’s at the border where androids have become nearly identical to humans, but still miss some subtle differences, which I expect to get blurred more and more in the rest of the six episodes of Eve no Jikan.

Real Drive showed these differences between Androids and Humans when the androids needed to do something that they weren’t designed for (the combat android, who tried to take his glasses back, for example). In Eve no Jikan, these differences seem more psychological. This episode suggested that androids very well have a human consciousness, but this continues to be repressed due to their servant-functions, but I first want to see more of these Doji-kois: what happens to those people who don’t oppress their androids, and treat them as regular humans instead? I also wonder, why design a sentient android when it’s just going to be a servant? I fail to see the economic purposes of designing androids that can feel sad when they’re abused. Either that, or the bartender’s owner bought the wrong sort of android…

10 Responses

  1. Avatar Deya says:

    Hi there
    i read your blog often
    due your reviews,
    i found a copy of “franz kafka – a country doctor”, but i cant find the eng subtitles, T_T
    if you have a hint that can help it willl be really nice :)

    i thank you very much :)

  2. psgels psgels says:

    Strange place to ask this, but Tokyo Toshokan has a copy.

  3. Avatar Omisyth says:

    The approach to the subject matter was fresh enough to make it extremely interesting (to me, at least). So many little things can have meaning drawn from them to the extent that I found myself thinking about the show even after I’d watched it, and to me that is the mark of a good series.

  4. Avatar Sej says:

    I don’t think they *were* designed to be sentient in the first place. It seems like an accident to me, and one that society is largely unaware of.

    This show’s strength is that it approaches this problem as it really is. I heard someone else harping on about how this has already been done before, but I disagree. The closest thing I could point you to is Pino and Iggy in Ergo Proxy, but even that doesn’t count because they gain sentience by simply installing programs.

    I like the slice-of-life aspect that Eve sports, and the animation *is* actually pretty beautiful. There’s a lot of natural movement and attention to detail. Environments aren’t static and the audio really brings the metro alive.

    My only criticism would be that the protagonist is wishy-washy, and less interesting than every other character so far. His lack of confidence is also something of a selling point, however, at least in that he can feasibly gravitate toward understanding the dori-kei position on all of this.

    I remember learning about the potential problems between humans and sentient artificial beings, specifically regarding discrimination. Eve no Jikan is showing us a very likely prospect, if you think about it. The perception of Dori-kei is similar to the way people treat Akiba-kei in Japan already. Or hardcore VIPers and Hikkikomori.

    Because if you did find out that your androids’ AI was so sophisticated that emergent intelligence issues began to rise, those beings would would be in limbo. It would take so long for enough people to actively declare that those artificially sentient beings WERE, in fact, actually alive, and it would take a very long time before the AS community could gain positive recognition, let alone suffrage or other civil liberties.

    And Eve is probably going to dip into the whole “oh-noes-I’m-attracted-to-an-android” scheme a bit more.

    Enjoy it, why don’t you? I think Akiko was adorable and that her story was really sad. I know some guys that have watched the first episode over 4 times consecutively. I really prefer Eve no Jikan over Pale Cocoon, because I find the clutter of everyday life to be so much more attractive (as well as difficult to create well).

    And I noticed that the interfaces on all of the palm/cell-type things everyone used look just a little beyond what we’ve been seeing through OS/X, Ubuntu, and Vista stylings. I tend to loathe the oversimplification and disgusting anti-aliasing I expect to see puked all over every GUI that’s ever going to be made for the rest of my life and beyond, but I can’t say the ones I see in Eve aren’t depressingly true-to-life.

    Honestly, Eve seems to delve into human-AI relationships much more profoundly than I’ve ever seen before. It really shouldn’t be Vince marveling at Pino’s loyal behavior, Real openly admitting that her right-wing mentality can’t fathom the concept of an autoreiv having feelings, or Hideki marveling at Chii’s underwear… It’s supposed to be a slow development, with lots of discrimination and repression, and that look Rikuo gets when he first sees Akiko at his school is exactly what should happen. He should see that and remember her and her behavior and his impression of her and realize that he met her when she had gone out unbeknownst to her owners to be at Eve so she might express herself openly for a while, and in that one moment, all of that, including the indecency of it (perhaps mixed in with a little bit of shock at knowing he had also been somewhat attracted to the girl)–was how he should have reacted.

    And Masaki is appealing. He has a lot of potential to morph into a sort of bad guy, because he’s got this quasi-Luddite air about him.

    But seriously, why blog about anime if you’re not going to be more thoughtful? You didn’t even mention any characters. Didn’t you like anything about any of them? I personally prefer Akiko over Sammy at this point (just because Sammy seems genuinely depressed, and she reminds me so much of a real woman that I’m turned off by the thought of her–although Akiko is neat because she reminds me of a real child, so she’s got some optimism left in her).

    And if you’re just going to say you wished what you were seeing was something else you’ve already seen, why bother?

    Oh, and Eve’s score is to die for.

  5. Avatar Sej says:

    P.S.

    You say “they’ve already had so many android series,” but as I’ve been advocating the rights of artificially sentient beings at a time when they don’t even ask (I had a Mind Studies course in high school and we talked a lot about discrimination against robots), I tend to belong to the “they’ve already had so many human series” camps.

    People suck. I hope Yoshiura does more in this universe, or at least with this theme. I actually really enjoy series in which there are human and android characters that cohabit (like in Star Trek: TNG). I wonder what people would say to a series about a community that consisted entirely of artificially sentient beings. I doubt anyone who has that kind of vision would also have the interest in creating it, or else they would just be mirrors of human personalities who spoke in slightly monotonous tones.

  6. psgels psgels says:

    I write this post a while ago, but I believe that the reason why I decided to blog this was because I thought that there was potential for this short series. One episode however, was just too short for this series to really show what it was worth for me, and it merely set itself a solid base for the next few episodes to work with, even though it basically only established that the androids are oppressed and that they’re beginning to show sentient emotions (both of which have been done before). Oh, and the reason why I didn’t comment on the characters: none of them really stood out enough for me to warrant a comment.

    And as a student of computer science, I find it a bit hard to believe that sentient AI would just accidentally “appear”, since it’s already incredibly difficult to mimic the human brains, and I have difficulty to understand that when the programmers just were designing personal assistants, they also decided to make these beings as smart as human beings. Still, if intelligent AI was actually discovered at that point, but also misused, yeah, then I could imagine how people would neglect the endless possibilities of smart computers, then everything seems a bit more plausible. And that’s indeed my problem with this episode: we’ve just seen too little about the show’s setting to really let everything make sense. How were the androids designed? Do other people know that they can think for themselves? Those are some questions I want answered first before I’m going to fanboy about this anime.

  7. Avatar AlexS says:

    Sej: “I tend to belong to the “they’ve already had so many human series” camps.

    People suck.”

    Holy Cow! Sej, you’re in danger of becoming a sociopathic Dori-kei ;-)

    Honestly, I think that the relationship between humans and AI’s is a very rich theme that has not been sufficiently explored, and perhaps Eve no jikan offers an interesting perspective.

    I remember reading about how american soldiers in Irak felt an emotional connection to their combat robot, even though it is not at all anthropomorphic and is as conscious as a door knob. It’s just the nature of human bonding, that it is not very specific.

    I can only start imagining how things would go when robots are much more human like in aspect and behavior. Chobits already dealt with the subject, but there’s plenty of room for more interpretations.

  8. Avatar jo o says:

    +BITCHES DON’T KNOW ABOUT MY LEARNING FUNCTION+

    BRB, *evolution*

  9. Avatar mike says:

    Eve no Jikan does borrow some elements from Isacc Asimov. The three laws mentioned in the first episode, and built on later, were a deviation of Asimov’s 3 laws of robotics. The story seems to flirt with some of Asimov’s notions on how robots and humans would interact on those same laws. I thought the three episodes I have seen are were quite good and original outside of what I mentioned above. Even then it is borrowing and not ripping off Asimov’s work.

  10. Avatar mithra says:

    i don’t like idea of machines having feelings or being same as humans, we are superior cause we are God’s creation nothing made by man can ever be equal to God

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