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July 9, 2012 4:36 AM   Subscribe

This might be the only video on the Internet of a bread robot violently committing suicide.

Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita, or "Humanity Has Declined", started airing in Japan last week. It's based on a light novel series that uses a far-future setting where mankind is slowly dying out and the world is overtaken by tiny gnomes. Despite the light pastel colors and cute gnomes, the underlying story is a dark one.

And the second episode is much, much stranger.
posted by 23 (82 comments total) 60 users marked this as a favorite

 
WHAT
posted by divabat at 4:39 AM on July 9, 2012 [8 favorites]


This kind of thing is the very reason some people move to Japan.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:41 AM on July 9, 2012 [20 favorites]


Despite its kinda so-so ratings on ANN, I still picked up the first ep last week and was very pleased. I've got episode two to watch this evening, so yay for me!
posted by Purposeful Grimace at 4:43 AM on July 9, 2012


D:
posted by beerbajay at 4:43 AM on July 9, 2012


If only to get away from the Chagas.
posted by crunchland at 4:44 AM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


MetaFilter: One incredible remark after another.

Other than the blood, this was very similar to the cow at the Restaurant at the End of the Universe. And they actually *ate* him, IIRC, soooo
posted by DU at 4:45 AM on July 9, 2012 [9 favorites]


"Why is the bread bleeding?"

Life would be so much duller without the Japanese.
posted by Thorzdad at 4:46 AM on July 9, 2012 [9 favorites]


Bread robot suicide, yes, but by no means not the only robot sucide on record.
posted by jeffehobbs at 4:56 AM on July 9, 2012 [5 favorites]


oh MetaFilter, without you I'd miss so many small details about the country in which I reside....

(I can't decide if this is a good thing.)
posted by squasha at 4:56 AM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


A sincere thanks for brightening up my Monday morning! Will have to watch this.
posted by TheAlarminglySwollenFinger at 4:58 AM on July 9, 2012


In Japan, honor also runs deep amongst anime vegetables.
posted by Schadenfreude at 5:06 AM on July 9, 2012 [10 favorites]


This kind of thing is the very reason some people move to Japan.

And they are very disappointed.
posted by charlie don't surf at 5:11 AM on July 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


It's too early in the morning for this.
posted by Foosnark at 5:16 AM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


I liked the last phrase - as they look at the bloodied floor and bread corpse: "Please help yourselves". Yes please!
posted by greenhornet at 5:18 AM on July 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


by no means not the only robot sucide on record.

I'll admit I didn't watch Robocop 2, but evidence from the first film as well as in the linked clip indicate those aren't robots.
posted by DU at 5:24 AM on July 9, 2012


No thank you.
posted by goethean at 5:30 AM on July 9, 2012


What in the hell did I just watch
posted by General Malaise at 5:32 AM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Aw man, I was expecting to see the graphic hara-kiri of an actual bread machine. But this is still plenty weird though.
posted by kinnakeet at 5:33 AM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Well there you go, that's how they convinced pilots in kamikaze. Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori..my ass.
posted by elpapacito at 5:37 AM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


This is why carrot bread is a bad idea. It induces robo-suicide.

Reject carrot bread; choose life!
posted by GenjiandProust at 5:39 AM on July 9, 2012


I was wondering when this would turn up on the blue- two episodes in, Jinrui is shaping up to be the highlight of the summer season. It's like the bastard love-child of Kino no Tabi and Sayonara, Zetsubou-sensei- two shows which, incidentally, anyone who liked this show's absurdism should watch.
posted by fifthrider at 5:39 AM on July 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


Sounds like it needs a DOUBLE.

Turn volume on the anime off.
posted by Sebmojo at 5:40 AM on July 9, 2012


That kind of has the same vibe as Puella Magi No Madoka, a short (12-episode) series from either last year or the year before. It's ostensibly a Magical Girl anime, which I gather is a huge trope in Japan, but apparently rather sets all that on its ear, as it is a very dark, and VERY complex story. Be warned that there is some fetishization of young girls, albeit animated, which I was surprised to find quite bothersome -- I guess I'm getting old. But it certainly wasn't a dominant theme, just an occasional cringe, and it was all PG-13 rated at worst. It remained an outstanding story in spite of that.

I think the voice of the bread may be the same actor as the little cat thing that recruits magical girls in Puella Magi, so that's probably why I'm reminded so strongly.
posted by Malor at 5:54 AM on July 9, 2012 [3 favorites]


I think the voice of the bread may be the same actor as the little cat thing that recruits magical girls in Puella Magi, so that's probably why I'm reminded so strongly.

That's a negative; Kato Emiri is active this season, but in the second season of YuruYuri.

That said, good call recommending MadoMagi, although it should be emphasized that it is most definitely not an absurdist comedy.
posted by fifthrider at 6:07 AM on July 9, 2012


It's like the adorable little brother of the murderous cyborg from Global Frequency.
posted by ArmyOfKittens at 6:08 AM on July 9, 2012


the underlying story is a dark one

After seeing this clip, my only response is "no shit, really?"
posted by Old'n'Busted at 6:09 AM on July 9, 2012 [9 favorites]


Crumbs!
posted by Segundus at 6:12 AM on July 9, 2012


A few minutes later, it occurs that some of you may be thinking, "Fetishization of young girls in a magical girl show? Gee, ya think?" But I stumbled into it sideways, didn't know anything about the genre at all, and haven't seen any other examples. It was recommended, roughly, as "This is a really twisted and interesting take on a common Japanese trope, magical girls", and that was the sum total of my entire knowledge base. I expected girls that could do magic. The occasional gratuitous panty shots weirded me the heck out.

I dunno when I turned into my dad, but that's weirding me out, too.

And it is definitely not an absurdist comedy. It's more in the 'high drama' vein.
posted by Malor at 6:13 AM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Good. It is good that this might be the only video on the Internet of a bread robot violently committing suicide.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 6:17 AM on July 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


Watched the first episode of this the other day and really enjoyed it. The concept is great, and I like how the actual cause of humanity's decline isn't revealed right away. But decline it has, to the point where the few humans left are incompetent, disorganized, at the utter mercy of whatever the natural world chooses to provide them ... OH WAIT!

That kind of has the same vibe as Puella Magi No Madoka, a short (12-episode) series from either last year or the year before.

Madoka was an absolute masterpiece. I honestly don't remember any fetishization of young girls in that series, at all, but that might very well be because I was blown away by the story. Here, you have the standard magical girl ingredients: high school girl chosen by a supernatural being to have the power to become a magical girl who fights evil. Only in this case, the girls are granted any wish they want in exchange for signing a magic girl contract (and as you might imagine, some "careful what you wish for" stuff comes up), a beloved character is suddenly and violent killed very early on, the girls discover that they have to fight evil beings the way a junkie has to shoot heroin, and things get much, much grimmer from there. Madoka is one of maybe a couple shows in my MAL that I gave a 10. Cannot recommend it enough. If Jinrui turns out half as good I'll be very pleased.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 6:21 AM on July 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


What is this I don't even
posted by clvrmnky at 6:27 AM on July 9, 2012


Oh, man, I just watched the first episode of this last night. I'd been spoiled for a few things, but not for the bread. The bread was a surprise!

You know those occasional shows where you spend the entire time going "WTF did I just watch? Wait, did they really say that?" This is one of those. I haven't decided whether I like it or not...might merit a rewatch.

The first ep had a frentic energy to it, like it was trying to cram in as much info as it could in half an hour. There was a LOT there. All kinds of social commentary on how we eat artificial food without really knowing what's in it, how most people don't think too hard about how that chicken gets to the table, and how people are content with their ignorance and that isn't particularly a good thing for humanity as a whole.

It felt like a mix of FLCL, Don Hertzfeldt's Rejected Cartoons short, and Kino's Journey. I'm not sure what to make of that.
posted by anthy at 6:28 AM on July 9, 2012


"If you pity my existence, please eat me."

Words to live by.
posted by codacorolla at 6:37 AM on July 9, 2012 [3 favorites]


Thst was odd.
posted by Confess, Fletch at 6:39 AM on July 9, 2012


Interesting. Looks like something that does give the same sort of buzz as FLCL (or Excel Saga). Is there any other new anime that comes recommended?
posted by MartinWisse at 6:41 AM on July 9, 2012


ok, c'mon, fess up. This is some fancy troll/joke where the subtitles in no way reflect what was actually happening ...
posted by k5.user at 6:41 AM on July 9, 2012


Is there any other new anime that comes recommended?

This season? Pfft. I'm watching Yuru Yuri strictly as a hangover anime, and that's it. There's some slim pickings this season. It's the Summer of the Backlog for me.

I am, though, continuing to watch Hyouka, which started in the spring season. It's a mystery anime with some gorgeous art and decent writing.

For anything else, you're welcome to take a look at my MAL in my profile.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 6:46 AM on July 9, 2012


This might be the only video on the Internet of a bread robot violently committing suicide.

Thank the Lord....

I don't think this is going to sell too many children on carrots,.... or bread.
posted by caddis at 7:01 AM on July 9, 2012


Wonderfully weird. People who do animated film should always have a slightly twisted imagination.
posted by Termite at 7:01 AM on July 9, 2012


"Why is the bread bleeding?"

Because Japan.
posted by maryr at 7:03 AM on July 9, 2012 [9 favorites]


Is there any other new anime that comes recommended?

It's summer, and summer is always thin. For my part, I'm just watching Jintai and picking at Sword Art Online and the second season of Rinne no Lagrange. By all appearances, that's pretty much all anyone on /a/ is watching too, save for the guys watching YuruYuri and a handful of diehard Muv-Luv fans.

Ah, well, backlog time it is I guess. Finished Shigofumi over the weekend; I can recommend that. Also, there's always last season's stuff- Lupin III: Mine Fujiko to Iu Onna was worth it, and as always the noitaminA pair (Sakamichi no Apollon and Tsuritama) was good. Accel World and Jormungand were bland, but somewhat watchable as well.
posted by fifthrider at 7:03 AM on July 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


Fucking carbs man.
posted by The Whelk at 7:04 AM on July 9, 2012 [6 favorites]


Carrot juice is murder.
posted by maryr at 7:13 AM on July 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


Do the Japanese have forums where they post and discuss weird American shit? I'd love to see some reactions to Tim and Eric.
posted by meows at 7:20 AM on July 9, 2012 [5 favorites]


This was great. I'm not exactly sure what is so weird about it, though. It's called "satire" people.
posted by KokuRyu at 7:31 AM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


I don't know, KokuRyu. I think that it's possible for something to be satire while still being plenty weird. Some of the best ones are meant to shock you into thinking.

I mean, one of the most celebrated satires out there debates the merits of eating babies.
posted by anthy at 7:41 AM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Carrot bread haiku

The carrot bread bleeds
Because of human children
who don't like carrots

posted by rh at 7:59 AM on July 9, 2012 [5 favorites]


JAPAN
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 8:06 AM on July 9, 2012


I think that it's possible for something to be satire while still being plenty weird. Some of the best ones are meant to shock you into thinking.

That's exactly the point. They are meant to be weird. Whereas the usual "wtf japan" thing is meant to be normal (or at least this is the claim by persons presenting the images to not-Japan). Like putting pictures of poop on things or showing celebrities reacting to things in the corner of every TV broadcast.

From the sound of it, this clip is meant to be weird. Which makes it weird but not an example of "wtf japan" any more than my example of the cow being eaten in RatEotU is "wtf england".
posted by DU at 8:16 AM on July 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


ok, c'mon, fess up. This is some fancy troll/joke where the subtitles in no way reflect what was actually happening ...

Why is the bread bleeding? We never got an answer to that.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 8:26 AM on July 9, 2012


Why is the bread bleeding is what you ask a news anchor when you already know the frequency.
posted by TwelveTwo at 8:33 AM on July 9, 2012 [7 favorites]


Is this how people with gluten allergies see bread?
posted by orme at 8:36 AM on July 9, 2012 [3 favorites]


Why is the bread bleeding? We never got an answer to that.

Well, in the video, the robot bread takes it bad that the MC does not want to eat any bread, and so offers himself, rending himself open, revealing that what appears to be blood is carrot juice.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 8:38 AM on July 9, 2012


While not quite as mind blowing as Puella Magi No Madoka, I thought Black Rock Shooter was a worthy successor. The finale is pure thrill. And has anyone noticed that a lot of the Magic Girl stuff after PMNM has kinda fallen by the waysides as all studios try to come to grasp with this new normal?
posted by Purposeful Grimace at 8:57 AM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori

I think you mean "dulce et decorum est pro panem mori"
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 8:59 AM on July 9, 2012 [7 favorites]


While not quite as mind blowing as Puella Magi No Madoka, I thought Black Rock Shooter was a worthy successor. The finale is pure thrill.

BRS was alright. I preferred the OVA, but the series - in a mere 8 episodes - also had a lot of merits. Apart from the combat sequences - which were really, really awesome - the more nail-biting aspect to me was that the series was a critique of the status quo's usual message to girls about their pain and anger: repress it. Here, we see the fruits of their repression - literal wars raging inside of them.

And I think this is part of a larger trend in anime. Not that there hasn't been social criticism in anime before, but it's getting very specific lately. You have Arakawa Under the Bridge criticizing the supposed merits of crawling up the corporate ladder, Nyaruko-san taking a not-very-subtle-at-all mocking jab at Tokyo Governor Shintaro Ishirara's obsession with "protecting the children" for H-games and hentai doujins, Kaiji's criticism of the societal encouragement to lead quiet lives of desperation, and so on and so forth. Anime is really getting pretty socio-political lately, while still churning out your usual moeblob Cute Girls Doing Cute Things, sometimes even with some overlap there.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 9:17 AM on July 9, 2012 [5 favorites]


(That'd be "lives of quiet desperation" of course. Sheesh, when I get het up about this stuff ...)
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 9:19 AM on July 9, 2012


DU - hmm, good point, but I'm not sure your definition of "wtf japan" is my (extremely loose, not at all formal) definition of "wtf japan." My definition isn't that it's completely normal for Japan but it's weird to us. It's that it's WTF in a very Japanese sort of way.

I guess that you could argue that there is other non-Japanese humor and satire which juxopositions cute things with horror and death effectively and that's certainly the case, but... I dunno. That bread slice wouldn't be out of place on a kawaii Japanese food sticker sheet. Combine that with the extreme genki cheerfulness of the bread in a corporate setting with what the bread is actually saying/doing, and... WTF Japan.

I can't comment on the RatEotU parallel, as I haven't read the books in rougly two decades and remember next to nothing.

Any way you look at it, I don't find it incompatible with being satire/social commentary. To me, it can be weird AND "wtf japan" AND an interesting satire on the nature of processed food.

I'm pretty sure that we're saying the same thing other than quibbling over terminology, though.
posted by anthy at 9:23 AM on July 9, 2012


It happened at the Weyland-Yutani synthetics foodstuff division out on New Newark, Mars.
posted by Renoroc at 9:57 AM on July 9, 2012


"WTF Japan" is generally meant to imply that Japan is strange for no apparent reason - it's twisted and weird society.

However, this clip demonstrates that there is definitely a lot of sophistication and intelligence to Japanese humour that, taken out of context, might be considered weird.

However, the people who just say "JAPAN, WTF AMIRITE" probably also think Wonder Showzen is representative of American culture (which it is in its own brilliant way).
posted by KokuRyu at 10:28 AM on July 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


However, this clip demonstrates that there is definitely a lot of sophistication and intelligence to Japanese humour that, taken out of context, might be considered weird.

This is meat and potatoes anime, in other words?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:46 AM on July 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


ok, c'mon, fess up. This is some fancy troll/joke where the subtitles in no way reflect what was actually happening ...

I would like to see a transcript of dialogue subtitles that would obviate the inherent weirdness of a distressed breadbot tearing open its own skull and geysering blood after a chipper monologue. Chop chop.
posted by cortex at 10:55 AM on July 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


There are a number of subgroups subbing this show. They usually have blogs and IRC channels where you can contact them. Or maybe one of our Japanese speakers here can provide their own translation of this scene.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 11:05 AM on July 9, 2012


I read the summary on Summer preview chart, but this finally convinced me to add this to my "Currently watching" list.

I was a huge fan of Kino no Tabi for the simple character design and unique stories.
posted by chrono_rabbit at 11:08 AM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


While I guess there's an element of "for no apparent reason" to it fairly often, I think if something is weird enough and surprises people, it'll be WTF JAPAN'd whether or not there's a reason for it. Especially if you've got some cognitive dissonance going on with cuteness/violence like you do here and if people didn't expect it to go quite that far. (The entire concept behind Narutaru is another pretty good example of this.)

I guess we'll have to agree to disagree.

I do think you're right about the context, though - there are quite a lot of things in every culture that when taken out of context seem really odd. It's just that in this case, the bread is weird even IN context.
posted by anthy at 11:14 AM on July 9, 2012


My wife and I watched the first two episodes last night, with our jaws hanging open. I mean MAN that is a weird show- it's the most surrealistic and weird anime I've seen in years. Weirder than Excell Saga and FLCL combined. We;re going to be watching more of it...but not right before bedtime.

Incidentally, the bread may not be the weirdest thing; the evil headless skinned chickens may have it beat. Maybe.
posted by happyroach at 11:18 AM on July 9, 2012


This is very thought-provoking, thank you. But let me ask you a question: Would you like some toast?
posted by qxntpqbbbqxl at 11:26 AM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Expected to see video of factory bread slicing or packaging robot suffering catastrophic mechanical failure and destroying itself in spectacular fashion. Anticipated describing it as a kind of metaphor for life.

I ascribe this to your failure to mention above the fold that this has to do with Japan, where something like that would represent a dull gray absence of imagination.
posted by Naberius at 11:42 AM on July 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


Yeah toast!
posted by WalterMitty at 1:01 PM on July 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


Mmmm, toast that comes with its own dippin' gravy.
posted by not_on_display at 2:33 PM on July 9, 2012


Naberius, I expected something similar, but I assumed the term "bread robot" necessarily implied Japan.
posted by figurant at 2:37 PM on July 9, 2012


MartinWisse: "Interesting. Looks like something that does give the same sort of buzz as FLCL (or Excel Saga). Is there any other new anime that comes recommended"

Nichijou SO MUCH

(available on Crunchyroll as "My Ordinary Life" or "My Everyday Life" or something like that)
posted by DoctorFedora at 4:24 PM on July 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


Sandwiches anyone?
posted by blue_beetle at 5:24 PM on July 9, 2012


When I read the synopsis of this show, I assumed something like YKK. Apparently I was very, very wrong.
posted by charred husk at 5:26 PM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ha, this looks great. And someone has uploaded the first two episodes.
posted by homunculus at 5:38 PM on July 9, 2012


That talking robot loaf of bread was JESUS, you guys
posted by Sys Rq at 7:01 PM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Also available on Crunchyroll. Neat show so far!
posted by chrominance at 7:12 PM on July 9, 2012


That was trippy! Anything beyond domokun is beyond my comprehension.
posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 7:13 PM on July 9, 2012


I do think this kind of weirdness regarding living food items may be more common in Japan. Case in point: Cat Soup.
Granted, this is a surreal work, but I've never seen anything similar from outside Japan.

(if the timestamp in the link doesn't work, go to around 13:30)
posted by Wemmick at 7:16 PM on July 9, 2012


I do think this kind of weirdness regarding living food items may be more common in Japan.

Ahem.
posted by vegartanipla at 8:13 PM on July 9, 2012


Wow. Episode 2 is even better. This show is really exploring the ideas behind what we eat, where it comes from, how it's made, and what might be in store for us. And the reference to A Better Tomorrow was priceless.

Yep, summer is saved.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 8:10 AM on July 10, 2012


Well there you go, that's how they convinced pilots in kamikaze. Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori..my ass.

Carrot bread would certainly be dulce.
posted by atrazine at 1:48 AM on July 12, 2012


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