When I was thinking for what this blog would be originally about, what I had in mind was to write about adult-themed content only, however I just didn’t spend enough time and thought with it on average compared to manga/anime, hopefully this will slowly change in the future, since I want more people to be able to view certain works more than some “hobby” or “special occasions only” material, but with that ME!ME!ME!, serves as the first bookmark for this!
A while ago I talked about the DAICON III, IV that a very known artist by the name of Hideaki Anno helped to create, which in turn gave birth to the then famous GAINAX. Unfortunately somewhere in the 200x everyone whom co-founded GAINAX left except the president…
Due to the original site closing down the first season and not having any means to embed the video, I used vimeo that has it.
The video starts with showing us Shuuchan (しゅちゃん) a
hikikomori (ひきこもり) or the Japanese equivalent of a basement dweller sitting in his bedroom when suddenly the girls on the tv screen suddenly pops out to grab him into this rather… Odd world
These girls sure are sul-superb dancers!
Where all the Memes (メメ) is joyfully dancing and singing oh so carelessly to the very light heart music…
Relax people, they have nearly invisible body suits on, this is totally PG-13!
Until they introduce him to the “Queen” aka Hana (はな) or if we are to go after the official translation: Hana Transformation, where the memes suddenly now have very tight and hard spotted body suits on with some… Well placed jewelery which just so happens to be a rather common accessory found in hentai manga/anime, this time their dances has also changed to moves that are very similar to certain “positions” people have in hentai manga/anime, in particular:
But suddenly Syuchan is interrupted by reality, but is dragged once again in to the “other world” by Hana-chan doing some clever moves to get to Syuchan.
If only life could be as spontaneous as this.
Where suddenly the joyful side ends and we are instead introduced to another Hana-chan (はなちゃん) which seems to be a more “submissive” version of the other Hana where we get a quick flashback to Shuuchan leaving Hana-chan in tears and then walks away, but when Shuuchan where Shuuchan falls down and being eaten slowly by Hana.
Shuuchan seems keen on not giving up and instead let’s out his inner rage which causes him to transform into some form of space marine soldier, whom is now hell bent on destroying those pesky memes.
However taking out a bunch of “underlings” won’t do much if you can’t take out the leader, which alas Shuuchan fails to do and thus also fails to rescue Hana-chan, but being the very stubborn anime/manga cliché he is, he refuses to give up, seeing as to how he can’t save Hana-chan anymore, he resorts to the only thing left, blow everything up, granted the gathered memes have a special weapon of their own…
Which overwhelms Shuuchan and in the end fails to destroy anything.
That is the ME!ME!ME! in a nutshell but probably not the most interesting part, instead mostly likely it’s everything from:
“WHAT JUST HAPPEN”, “I AM CONFUSED”, “I LIKE THE MUSIC BUT THIS IS JUST TOO MUCH”.
So just what is going on in ME!ME!ME!? For starters the biggest reason as to why the video is so cryptic and symbolic is because it’s a music video more or less, so it does not have THAT much time to fill up the missing answers like an anime can.
Thus we are forced down to essentially go frame by frame to analyze (which I totally didn’t do) just what the meaning is or what is going on in ME!ME!ME!.
Well to give you the easy part of the answer, the meaning behind ME!ME!ME! is in my opinion rather classical, there is no meaning to it… It’s you who interpret what the meaning is behind ME!ME!ME!.
Granted that is true to every form of media we have, the key difference is that ME!ME!ME! explicitly makes it clear that it’s YOUR interpretation, not the public, your friends, your grandma, no one but you.
As for the hard part of the answer, is that it isn’t some 100% liberal artwork where someone farting can be a metaphor to how we humans are just garbage and we need to obey our anime overlords, it has certain… “problems” or more accurately cases where certain theories we conjurer up tend to be full of errors due to not viewing the content in details, when at least exposed to the public.
To start with the first and second video, the person(s) goes on to say that Shuuchan is an otaku (おたく), which is not entire false but not even close to being true either, otaku is the japanese phrase for geek/nerd/dork/weirdo in Japan, with it being either seen as a negative or positive description of someone, usually though used in a negative way.
Instead it’s more hinted at that he is an hikikomori or the “extreme” otaku, someone who shuts themselves in, hence the word hinted, it’s not confirmed for sure, but it’s most likely is the case.
The person(s) then goes on about how it’s about Shuuchan combating his addiction with what the otaku commonly value (anime, manga, PVC figures, trains, computers, and so on)…
Which is false, I don’t know when the western world thought that having a hobby where you invest more time than 8 hours a week is now an addiction, just like you can’t be addicted to books you can’t be addicted to anime/manga/computers or what anything that does not give you an mental/physical addiction, a hobby is not one if them, however you can have an obsession over it, where you become emotionally invested in something.
Is Shuuchan obsessed with anime/figures/manga? Well given that his home looks more like that of an hikikomori than a typical otaku room
I would say it has more to do with him using anime/manga/figures like everyone else, entertainment, fulfillment and what have you.
And now to the biggest fish they claim ME!ME!ME! being about: ME!ME!ME! criticize the “degrading” depiction of women in anime/manga.
Here’s a newsflash to any westerner interested in Japanese culture… Sex, nudity doesn’t matter if done within it’s own area, simply put the Japanese care much less about the implications about “sexual images” due to one simple thought, it isn’t important since it’s part of who we are.
While in the western world, many cultures has been based around shame and sexualization of each gender, especially now with certain people still clinging on to the thinking that we need to “defend” a gender’s body.
If you don’t believe me, you can read up some bizarre fads we had in the past that we did to our natural bodies and body parts (case in point: Toxic makeup, corset, circumcision, etc.).
So no, ME!ME!ME! isn’t criticizing it, it is showing us what a typical ecchi (エッチ) anime main premise is about, remember I didn’t say Japanese don’t admit there is gender and sexual elements to it, but simply that they don’t view the world from a sexualized perspective, thus if you want to make art that contains nudity people won’t get enraged because you “depicts” that gender wrong or degrading.
If anything ME!ME!ME! would be criticizing the pandering not the content, that it is explicitly about 1 thing and 1 thing only, which is a huge difference.
Moving along, DouchebagChocolat video is still within the same subject of being addicted, so nothing new to say here, however he then starts to talk about that it’s about inner demons you are trying to combat… When being addicted.
Compared to the other two, this one is much more in style of how ME!ME!ME! is presented, open-minded so to speak,
but still I believe it’s cluttered with assumptions that really doesn’t hold much truth.
Lastly Gajin Goomba, he starts of good with saying the correct “otaku” aka hikikomori, but he gets it wrong saying that this is all about the word “moe” (萌え) and the industry it has spawned.
The problem here is that moe isn’t quite what Gajin Goomba makes it out to be, moe is a slang that generally has two meanings, one is the affection of a character in anime/manga/video games the other is an adjective to describe how “pure/cute” someone is.
ME!ME!ME! you could argue has cute characters, but I wouldn’t say they are portrayed as pure.
Rest is just personal experience with a growing trend in Japan which in short is that people are seeking alternative ways of getting the joy of dating, relationships and what have you.
So if those 4(3) videos all got it wrong, surely then I am the one who got it all right?
The most honest answer I can give is maybe.
The problem is that those whom have talked about this, usually only look at it with expectations within the first 10 seconds, “he is an otaku, he is an addict”.
That is also why many small errors or misconceptions occur, so with that in mind, what I believe ME!ME!ME! truly being about isn’t something entirely different from some of what the others has said, but it isn’t as set in stone as theirs.
Mostly likely is that Shuuchan is trying to escape reality, much like how we all do when something bad has happen to us, in his case it’s locking himself in, watching anime, painting figures and maybe cosplaying every once in a while.
The biggest evidence is in my opinion when our main character is in his “dream land”, where it suddenly changes into a much more grim and darker “dream land” where at first Shuuchan doesn’t notice Hana, but as she confronts him, he is reminded of Hana-chan:
From there we know that he then wakes up and notices Hana jumping around and puking something into his mouth, for all we know it could be about how sometimes we just wish that world inside the screen would just come out at us and drag us in, much like how Aha – Take on me music video does.
I believe the fluid is literally the taste of Hana/Hana-chan, or the “memories” of her.
Then the flashback/dead inside trip occurs, which mostly paints Shuu either as a victim or as the offender of a break up.
But if we looking at the lyrics to ME!ME!ME! it speaks of it being at least three sided, at one point we have Shuuchan (presumably) almost seeing Hana-chan like an idol, but at the same time she is the cause of his hatred and sadness, this then spirals into remorse and wanting to “erase it all”.
The most interesting part is that the song speaks of Hana-chan splitting herself into two, and Hana-chan slowly descending into the depth on unconsciousness only leaving Hana in charge and we have Shuuchan feeling remorse over something and he hopes Hana-chan can remember, remind herself.
And slowly it starts to describe of what happens in the video, Shuuchan goes down into the unconscious mind of Hana-chan to try and rescue Hana-chan, to remind her to remember her former self so to speak.
The later part talks about how “she was a good girl” which I believe is Hana describing the now “gone” Hana-chan, since the tone completely changes from the other two parts, it most likely that that it’s Hana “talking”.
Lastly it now describes about how Shuuchan will forever be a loser, no matter how he live, how fear stops, builds and accumulate inside you.
Given how the lyrics forecasts and follows almost perfectly with the video (which is should since this song was written explicitly for the animation of ME!ME!ME!), there isn’t much that needs to be explained about any symbolism it may have, since it’s quite straight forward from the lyrics, however it also is the last nail in the coffin for it being about the otaku culture.
Instead it shows how Shuuchan is dealing with him causing not only a breakup but a person he loved to change/transform into something corrupt or opposite of Hana-chan, which is a rather common plot story in hentai related media.
So in short, Shuuchan has some personal issues which has caused him to not only lose his (girl)friend but also which caused her to split her personalities into two where one is slowly devouring the other, which is something Shuuchan can’t stand to face since in the end he just keeps on failing.
Who then should watch ME!ME!ME!? Well if you aren’t childish enough to be all “OMG BOOBIES” and to be frank primitive thinking that sexualization is something we need to still have in this society and instead see past it for it’s amazing music and animation and for that matter the hidden story, then this is certainly for you!
This was a very long one, but that’s what I get for not being as active I should be with things, anyway I hope you enjoyed it and now I shall just take a small nap…