Author Topic: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?  (Read 21787 times)

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Offline Gonzo

Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #25 on: July 16, 2015, 07:28:00 AM »
Welcome to the forum! Not a bad way to start your membership here  :guts:

Thanks! Sorry about my annoying message, I'm just so eager to discuss this series with other fans.

Well, for some readers, it seems that any scene where Guts isn't splitting Griffith's head open is filler. For that kind of sentiment, they aren't actually invested in the series, or care about the characters. They're just looking for an ending.

Its just such a weird way to view the series, not helped by the fact that only the Golden Age arc has been adapted into anime (neither version I've seen yet). Its one of the best fantasy stories I've ever read, and while the Guts vs. Griffith stuff is clearly the overarching narrative thread, there's so much more to the series which makes it truly great.

I'm not sure that's true. Maybe you mean Chapter? Because there are only three arcs after the Golden Age. Conviction starts with Rochine, so that's consistent with your notion; but trolls aren't introduced as enemies until Vol 24, 2 volumes into the Millennium Falcon Arc. Fantasia kicks off effectively where the sea god stuff begins, so that makes some sense, I suppose.

Sorry, I'm getting my Arc/Chapter/Episode terminology mixed up. If I recall correctly, while the trolls only start two volumes into the Millenium Falcon arc, that's because the preceding episodes were more focused on Griffith and introducing Schierke.

I think maybe a better way to phrase it is that the first supernatural entity/entities that Guts battles in any given arc, while isolated from the main plot, sets up a lot of the character development and concepts of the overall arc, so I don't see these parts of the story as filler. I can't even think of a segment of the story that I could describe as 100% filler, every part contributes to either the plot, the world-building, the character development, the philosophical/ethical themes, etc.

I think the Boss overstayed his welcome a bit, but all that waiting paid off for me with the sea god.

The Boss whizzed by for me because I read all of Berserk at once, but I can see how he would've been annoying on a release-to-release pace, I found him a little tiresome too.

Indeed, and that's been a consistent problem among casual readers ever since there's been an online Berserk community. The slower pace of releases merely exacerbates that problem. But brighter days are ahead!  :ubik:

I'm really excited! A lot of my Berserk-reading friends were cautioning me to read slowly (in-between all the terrible ID@LMASTER jokes), because of the hiatus, but then this was announced just as I was around vol. 32-33. Such fortuitous timing!

I really hope it isn't like last time, where he only releases a few and then goes on another long hiatus. I don't think Miura would do that three times in a row though, and given he's such a workaholic (spending his first hiatus on that sci-fi manga), I think he's been spending his second hiatus plotting out the rest of the story and building up a substantial episode backlog.

Also its great to talk about Berserk with fans who aren't making really unfair complaints about the release schedule all the time. I haven't directly experienced the long wait, and I'm sure it has been excruciating, but it seems really unfair given how Miura has spent 20+ years of his life sinking all of his energies into Berserk, and its paid off so far. Like I just spent the last two years of my life putting together a Masters thesis, about a single topic, and it was extremely exhausting, so I can only imagine what 20+ years on a single manga must be like!

Yes Indeed! One more week. I've never understood why some people are nagging about the releases. I mean with every new episode I want to know more. They should be excited about the wait. It makes the new episodes even better. Like (for smokers) waiting to get off a plane to smoke a cigarette. The wait is long but the smoke is good once out.  :ganishka:

Anyways, I'm glad that I never considered the series to go downhill after the golden age.

As a smoker I know what you mean.

Offline Aazealh

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Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #26 on: July 16, 2015, 09:51:16 AM »
I think maybe a better way to phrase it is that the first supernatural entity/entities that Guts battles in any given arc, while isolated from the main plot

I think the big misconception is to believe Guts' fights are isolated from the "main plot". The main plot is Guts' adventures, that's what Berserk is all about. Obviously, the revenge against Griffith is at the core of the series, but his encounter with Jill and Rochine isn't less relevant to the story than his encounter with Femto in volume 3. If anything, one could rather argue that various sections of the story that focus on Griffith's side, like the confrontation between the Holy See alliance and Ganishka's forces, are farther away from the "main plot" than Guts rescuing Farnese and Casca from the trolls' den.

But it would still be incredibly myopic to dismiss them, right? Because they greatly participate in the establishment of world events, and beyond that, are just plain fucking cool. The bottom line is that it's futile to try and decompose arcs into a formula because the story evolves much more organically than that.

The Boss whizzed by for me because I read all of Berserk at once, but I can see how he would've been annoying on a release-to-release pace, I found him a little tiresome too.

As with basically every single thing in the story, some people complained to no end about that while it wasn't even remotely as bad as they made it out to be. His last appearance is a bit redundant with the second-to-last one, but the way the events unfold make it hard for me to see how that could have been done differently without sacrificing something else.

I really hope it isn't like last time, where he only releases a few and then goes on another long hiatus. I don't think Miura would do that three times in a row though, and given he's such a workaholic (spending his first hiatus on that sci-fi manga), I think he's been spending his second hiatus plotting out the rest of the story and building up a substantial episode backlog.

I think you're a bit misinformed about the hiatuses. The prepublication in Young Animal started becoming irregular in 2008, and before that there had been a slow decrease in the amount of episodes released per year that had started as early as 2004. Now I personally believe that many things factored into this, from side projects that required Miura's participation (PS2 game, Trading Card Game) to him progressively spending more time to do the artwork (which I believe is the main factor in the returning prepublication rate being monthly), to his health requiring a more reasonable work/personal life balance.

But obviously the biggest cause has to be story development. It's no secret that Miura writes the overarching story aside from his time working on the episodes proper, and I think it's clear when you look at where in the progression of the series things slowed down that he had to stop when he reached a certain point to plot the remaining course. Essentially, things are always fine in a series so long as you've got lots of time to give things closure. You can create new storylines that run parallel to each other, add new elements, etc. It's when things are coming to a close and time comes for you to wrap all of these things up, and to do so in a satisfactory and coherent way, that the shit tends to hit the fan. See all of the big stories that ended lamely (from The Dark Tower to the Wheel of Time to the Lost TV show and countless others) for examples of an author not properly anticipating his story's end.

So I've been convinced ever since the beginning that Miura's making sure that this doesn't happen to Berserk. That what transpires in Elfhelm (from Casca's return to the Elf King and what's next for not only Guts but his friends) and what we learn about Fantasia and Falconia (and the God Hand, and the Moonlight Boy, and the events from a thousand years ago, and... and...) all connect beautifully and make perfect sense, leaving no thread untied. All the while being badass. A tall order, wouldn't you agree? :slan: But one I think Miura's up to.

Offline Gonzo

Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #27 on: July 16, 2015, 11:09:46 AM »
I think the big misconception is to believe Guts' fights are isolated from the "main plot". The main plot is Guts' adventures, that's what Berserk is all about. Obviously, the revenge against Griffith is at the core of the series, but his encounter with Jill and Rochine isn't less relevant to the story than his encounter with Femto in volume 3. If anything, one could rather argue that various sections of the story that focus on Griffith's side, like the confrontation between the Holy See alliance and Ganishka's forces, are farther away from the "main plot" than Guts rescuing Farnese and Casca from the trolls' den.

But it would still be incredibly myopic to dismiss them, right? Because they greatly participate in the establishment of world events, and beyond that, are just plain fucking cool. The bottom line is that it's futile to try and decompose arcs into a formula because the story evolves much more organically than that.

Okay I admit that my definition of the 'main plot' is a bit shaky and subjective. I think we're saying roughly the same things though!

What I'm trying to get at is that I think a lot of people vastly exaggerate Berserk being 'meandering' or Miura not knowing where he's going - every story (like Rochine, trolls attacking the village, etc), no matter how isolated it may first seem to the reader, have always helped to establish important concepts or plot points that become relevant to larger unfolding narrative. I think the same thing is going to be true of the Sea God stuff and the events that transpired there (like the moon child, merrows, Farnese developing her magic abilities, etc).

This suggests to me that Miura puts a lot of thought into the structure of his story. As someone whose read a few long-form series, I think Berserk has one of the most simultaneously tightly-written and intricate/complex stories I've read. I just don't understand what some people are on about when they complain about post-Golden Age Berserk.

I think you're a bit misinformed about the hiatuses. The prepublication in Young Animal started becoming irregular in 2008, and before that there had been a slow decrease in the amount of episodes released per year that had started as early as 2004. Now I personally believe that many things factored into this, from side projects that required Miura's participation (PS2 game, Trading Card Game) to him progressively spending more time to do the artwork (which I believe is the main factor in the returning prepublication rate being monthly), to his health requiring a more reasonable work/personal life balance.

Oh yeah, I knew it slowed down, but a 19 week hiatus just doesn't seem that long to me to count as a real hiatus, even if it was record-breaking. I think its because I'm an ASOIAF fan that such a break seems negligible, but I can see how it would've been really difficult for people who've been reading the series for a long time.

But obviously the biggest cause has to be story development. It's no secret that Miura writes the overarching story aside from his time working on the episodes proper, and I think it's clear when you look at where in the progression of the series things slowed down that he had to stop when he reached a certain point to plot the remaining course. Essentially, things are always fine in a series so long as you've got lots of time to give things closure. You can create new storylines that run parallel to each other, add new elements, etc. It's when things are coming to a close and time comes for you to wrap all of these things up, and to do so in a satisfactory and coherent way, that the shit tends to hit the fan. See all of the big stories that ended lamely (from The Dark Tower to the Wheel of Time to the Lost TV show and countless others) for examples of an author not properly anticipating his story's end.

So I've been convinced ever since the beginning that Miura's making sure that this doesn't happen to Berserk. That what transpires in Elfhelm (from Casca's return to the Elf King and what's next for not only Guts but his friends) and what we learn about Fantasia and Falconia (and the God Hand, and the Moonlight Boy, and the events from a thousand years ago, and... and...) all connect beautifully and make perfect sense, leaving no thread untied. All the while being badass. A tall order, wouldn't you agree? :slan: But one I think Miura's up to.

I think he's capable of that too!

Offline Aazealh

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Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #28 on: July 16, 2015, 11:18:52 AM »
What I'm trying to get at is that I think a lot of people vastly exaggerate Berserk being 'meandering' or Miura not knowing where he's going

They don't just exaggerate, it's flatout wrong and anyone who seriously believes that is an idiot. But I don't think too many people actually do.

This suggests to me that Miura puts a lot of thought into the structure of his story. As someone whose read a few long-form series, I think Berserk has one of the most simultaneously tightly-written and intricate/complex stories I've read.

Agreed.

I just don't understand what some people are on about when they complain about post-Golden Age Berserk.

I know it's the easy way out, but a lot of people are just stupid. It doesn't really go much farther than that.

Offline buttonmasher

Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #29 on: July 16, 2015, 01:25:19 PM »
If someone has this opinion then chances are they were introduced to the series by way of the anime series.  My first introduction to Berserk was in 2003 when I bought it on a whim.  I loved it and started showing it to my friends.  I shared  it with my roommates and they were loving it but after the eclipse episodes they wanted to kill me. "What the hell? Why show me this? Everyone just dies?  this just came out of nowhere!!"  There really was not enough foreshadowing for the eclipse in the series.  At the time I thought the eclipse was great and I was impressed with the author for having the courage to swing the series into this weird supernatural direction.

The reality, as we all know, is that the manga didn't suddenly jump the shark but rather was preparing the reader for the eclipse From the start.  The anime watcher did not get this same experience and viewers are completely shocked and sometimes annoyed with the ending.  Chances are we were all shocked by the eclipse but it's a lot easier to accept it when you have Puck, SK, and Wyald in the story. While many people enjoyed the story of the Golden Age arc, they were disturbed by its ending and all this "magic bullshit".

I had to know The rest of the story  so I jumped into reading the manga and was so surprised by how BRUTAL the Black Swordsman arc was and I was also having a really hard time accepting Puck as anything other than annoying and "kiddy".  I'll be honest, for a few days I was really underwhelmed by the manga.  It didn't have the same flavor as the anime and I was getting annoyed that the tone wasn't the same.  It was like this Miura guy was screwing up my new favorite show!  As I continued reading I began to have a whole new appreciation for the series and that resulted in my love for it today.  My point is that the anime misrepresents the Golden Age  in both tone and scope and I think that results in people being put off by anything post Golden Age. 

The complaint being voiced by anyone who considers themselves a fan is ridiculous.  If you can enjoy the epic flashback that the author has meticulously crafted then how about putting a little faith into the actual meat of the story.  It all comes down to people wanting to see more of the sameand not really understanding Berserk at all.  Anyway, just wanted to share my experience as a reformed hater of all things not Golden Age. 

Offline Aazealh

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Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #30 on: July 16, 2015, 02:01:02 PM »
The complaint being voiced by anyone who considers themselves a fan is ridiculous.  If you can enjoy the epic flashback that the author has meticulously crafted then how about putting a little faith into the actual meat of the story.  It all comes down to people wanting to see more of the sameand not really understanding Berserk at all.  Anyway, just wanted to share my experience as a reformed hater of all things not Golden Age.

Thanks for sharing your story buttonmasher. I think we all agree with each other here. Thing is though, the TV series was released almost 20 years ago (1997-1998), so you'd think whoever had misconceptions because of that would have either moved past it (like you did) or stopped caring long ago.

Offline jackson_hurley

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Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #31 on: July 16, 2015, 03:35:42 PM »
Secretly in their heart they adore it. They just like to nag about something (when they should not)  :mozgus:

Offline Gonzo

Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #32 on: July 18, 2015, 06:15:51 AM »
Secretly in their heart they adore it. They just like to nag about something (when they should not)  :mozgus:

This is the only reasonable explanation I can find for someone reading 37 volumes of a manga that they claim stopped being good at 14.

Offline Hensmon

Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #33 on: August 05, 2015, 04:00:17 PM »
To me, the Golden Age Arc was a masterpiece and the true pinnacle of the manga. It did not go downhill after this point (it is still amazing) but the rest of the arcs do not quite live up to the standard of this one.

I actually found one or two of the volumes in the series to be really bad. The script particularly became way too childish and literall. Everything had to be spelled out for the reader, and in doing so, lots of the rich character development and interaction in the script was taken up by it. Only Guts' script steered clear of this and remained interesting.

This childish approach you could also see in the way Miura handled the characters artwork later on in the series. When big scenes (like fighting an apostle) emmerged, Miura would draw every character standing next to each other so perfectly in one shot, making sure to fit alllll of them in. This is common practice in shogun anime... You have to make sure the characters of each market demograph have enough screen time. It's more of an business move than an artistic one. Even Puck (who I learned to love) became nothing more than a comic tool. 

Offline JMP

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Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #34 on: August 05, 2015, 04:44:47 PM »
I actually found one or two of the volumes in the series to be really bad. The script particularly became way too childish and literall. Everything had to be spelled out for the reader, and in doing so, lots of the rich character development and interaction in the script was taken up by it.
I didn't see it that way at all. The story is still laden with lots of great characters and storytelling throughout. I'm not sure what you're referring to when you say the script became childish. I didn't see a change in how Miura presents the reader with characters and developments, except maybe that he's become even better at it as he gains experience as an artist.

This childish approach you could also see in the way Miura handled the characters artwork later on in the series. When big scenes (like fighting an apostle) emmerged, Miura would draw every character standing next to each other so perfectly in one shot, making sure to fit alllll of them in.
To me this is Miura giving the reader a sense of perspective of where all the characters are currently located as some serious action is going down. I love how he does this as it helps me stay oriented during some potentially disorienting scenarios. Plus, how shoddy would it be if he didn't draw each character in that case? It would leave me wondering "Hey, where did so and so go?"

Even Puck (who I learned to love) became nothing more than a comic tool. 
Puck is mostly used for comic value now, but to me that's because we already know Puck. Miura showed us who this character is earlier in the story. Now he doesn't have to continually showcase Puck's personality, since we're already familiar with it, but can concentrate more on some of the newer characters that we don't know as well yet.
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Offline IncantatioN

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Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #35 on: August 05, 2015, 04:50:27 PM »
I actually found one or two of the volumes in the series to be really bad. The script particularly became way too childish and literall. Everything had to be spelled out for the reader, and in doing so, lots of the rich character development and interaction in the script was taken up by it. Only Guts' script steered clear of this and remained interesting.

This childish approach you could also see in the way Miura handled the characters artwork later on in the series. When big scenes (like fighting an apostle) emmerged, Miura would draw every character standing next to each other so perfectly in one shot, making sure to fit alllll of them in. This is common practice in shogun anime... You have to make sure the characters of each market demograph have enough screen time. It's more of an business move than an artistic one.

Can you be more specific and point out which volumes or fight scenes you're referring to?
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Offline Walter

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Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #36 on: August 05, 2015, 05:07:52 PM »
To me, the Golden Age Arc was a masterpiece and the true pinnacle of the manga. It did not go downhill after this point (it is still amazing) but the rest of the arcs do not quite live up to the standard of this one.

I think a lot of newer readers get that impression because of how contracted the Golden Age is. It's like a "greatest hits" of Guts and Griffith growing up. It's dense because it's written as a flashback (a REALLY long one), intended to tell character backstories. The structure inherently makes events pop off quickly and in rapid-fire succession. And it was indeed well done. But the series had to return to a normal pace eventually, or it would have felt quite weird.

Quote
I actually found one or two of the volumes in the series to be really bad. The script particularly became way too childish and literall.

I'm not sure I know what a "literall" script is. As for "childish," I assume you're referring to jokes and comic relief. If so, well, there are jokes and comedic elements strewn throughout the entire series.

Quote
Everything had to be spelled out for the reader, and in doing so, lots of the rich character development and interaction in the script was taken up by it. Only Guts' script steered clear of this and remained interesting.

Ah, so that' what "literall" meant. Well, if everything in the series is spelled out, then how have we collected 15 years worth of threads with people confused about various story elements? I think what you're describing is how Miura began dramatically expanding the scope of his world around the time of Vol 22.

And I believe that it's a misnomer to say everyone but Guts was put in a kind of stasis where no character development occurred because Miura was too busy writing about the world. Those things just happen more subtly and across more time. Take Farnese for example: There's no two-page spread instant character development, because hers occurs across 10-15 volumes. The characters with the least amount of development since that time are Casca (who has her own reasons for being on development hiatus) and Serpico, who I'll grant you has felt like he's been in stasis-mode for a long time. But I fail to see how that warrants throwing the entire cast under the bus considering all the cool shit that has occurred between Guts and Schierke, Schierke and Isidro, Farnese and Casca, Farnese and Schierke, Farnese and Guts, etc. etc.

Quote
This childish approach you could also see in the way Miura handled the characters artwork later on in the series. When big scenes (like fighting an apostle) emmerged, Miura would draw every character standing next to each other so perfectly in one shot, making sure to fit alllll of them in.

That's a truly strange usage of the word childish. And there's only one scene that I can recall where Guts' group is fighting against apostles (at Flora's mansion), and indeed there are other characters around. But ... what exactly is the problem with this? It's an odd protestation, particularly since it's your one salient example of bad art across the whole series.

Quote
This is common practice in shogun anime... You have to make sure the characters of each market demograph have enough screen time. It's more of an business move than an artistic one.

Shogun anime... Is that anime that chiefly appeals to warlords in ancient Japan?  :carcus:

Anyway, if you're protesting the cast being larger, Miura explained his reasons for adding more characters to Guts' party more than 5 years before he did so, and it's not to make more money. Also, if making more money were even part of his intentions, he wouldn't be making a seinen manga. He'd be making a shounen one (maybe even a shogun spinoff series for good measure).

Miura showed us who this character is earlier in the story. Now he doesn't have to continually showcase Puck's personality, since we're already familiar with it, but can concentrate more on some of the newer characters that we don't know as well yet.

Well said! The only thing I'd add is that I think Puck's role changing is a result of his role in the group being displaced by others. For example, Schierke pretty much serves out the same role Puck once did. Instead, Puck hangs with Isidro, who honestly needs more help than Guts does at this point  :puck: :isidro: Anyway, I'm sure we'll get a lot more of "serious" puck in Elfhelm, which is just around the corner.


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Offline Hensmon

Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #37 on: August 05, 2015, 07:37:33 PM »
Haha knew it would be a little controversial, but I really did notice a decline in the script quality. Really I'm just talking about a few moments or episodes that feautred towards the of the end manga. 90% is great for me! Its almost expected and understandable, the guy's been writing this thing for years, its quite natural for decline in quality with these things. It's hard to make masterpieces everyday for 10+ years!

Just to clarify when I say literal/childish, it is not really the comic stuff and jokes that are annoying me at all, I enjoy these... It's hard, but maybe the best way of putting it is that I feel like im having everything spelled out for me. High percentage of script on the page can get devoted to it. Guts can often be the only one that grounds situations with a bit more realism.

Just to add, It's normal for the money to play a part in how these projects develop. Such a long and slow release over years will see number of readers drop. Publishing co. will pressure for more relatable characters and/or widden the target audience by loosening the niche. I think this is where a lot of the problems I find I have come from.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2015, 07:45:26 PM by Hensmon »

Offline Aazealh

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Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #38 on: August 05, 2015, 07:49:32 PM »
Haha new it would be a little controversial, but I really did notice a decline in the script quality. Really I'm just talking about a few moments or episodes that feautred towards the of the manga. 90% is great for me! Its almost expected and understandable, the guy's been writing this thing for years, its quite natural for decline in quality with these things. It's hard to make masterpieces everyday for 10+ years!

You still haven't specified exactly what scenes (or entire volumes, like you said) are concerned by this lower quality you're mentioning. Also, by saying the Golden Age arc is the pinnacle of the series, you're intrinsically asserting that quality has declined ever since then, meaning for over 15 years.

Just to clarify when I say literal/childish, it is not really the comic stuff and jokes that are annoying me at all, I enjoy these... It's hard, but maybe the best way of putting it is that I feel like im having everything spelled out for me. High percentage of script on the page can get devoted to it. Guts can often be the only one that grounds situations with a bit more realism.

I'm not surprised, you do strike me as a quick-witted individual.

Just to add, It's normal for the money to play a part in how these projects develop. Such a long and slow release over years will see number of readers drop. Publishing co. will pressure for more relatable characters and/or widden the target audience by loosening the niche. I think this is where a lot of the problems I find I have come from.

You clearly have no idea what you're talking about. And have apparently not bothered reading what Walter told you either.

Offline Hensmon

Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #39 on: August 05, 2015, 08:37:40 PM »
You clearly have no idea what you're talking about. And have apparently not bothered reading what Walter told you either.

Wuhoo, just some observations on my part, no need to get fiesty now ;)

I read what Walter put. 'If Miura wanted to make money off the project he would go and create a shounen' (I got it right this time!). Thing is he already went a made a damn good seinen, BUT I think it's a fair comment that towards the end the material slowly - in parts!!! - opened up to be more shounen. As said, it's common place in all industry to widen you target audience as time goes on. Numbers fall it's inneviatble and this a result. You see it on almost all movie, tv, music and even in the art world too.

Edit - Manga/Anime is very different in the last 10 years, whats demanded by new generation is a lot more watered down and following tested formulas, it's easy for artists to get sucked in finacially or creatively influenced by the times they are in. Just how it is.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2015, 09:04:26 PM by Hensmon »

Offline jackson_hurley

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Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #40 on: August 05, 2015, 09:05:24 PM »
Correct me if I'm wrong but when berserk goes on sale in young animal, aren't the number going up a lot for these issues? If so, in my opinion it's a sign that people still like it and that the quality didn't go down. I'm pretty sure if the breaks were annoying people that much the sales would not go up as much. might be totally off track with that comment. I just don't feel (never felt) that the quality dropped or that some parts were childish.

Offline Hensmon

Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #41 on: August 05, 2015, 09:15:05 PM »
Correct me if I'm wrong but when berserk goes on sale in young animal, aren't the number going up a lot for these issues?

Absoloutly, you see this rise in numbers due to opening up the demographic and making content more relatable for them. Childish was maybe a poor use of wording on my part, it's just allowing some of the content to target younger audiences. This was dissapointing for me, which is why I believe that some bits of the manga were better than others.

Offline jackson_hurley

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Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #42 on: August 05, 2015, 09:56:26 PM »
Absoloutly, you see this rise in numbers due to opening up the demographic and making content more relatable for them.

That's not really what I had in mind though. I don't think the content has been made to be more relatable for the readers. It's just a progression in the story, where some things were explained because ... well, we were at that point.

To me it's still as violent as before, even if they are a few kids hanging around Guts. I would still not show this manga to youngsters. And I never felt that introducing Isidro or Schierke or any of the younger ones was just to get a wider fan base. I think the numbers grew because it's a damned good manga and people started to talk about it more as a result.

I've introduced a lot of people to the series just by talking about it. I guess it's only a matter of opinion. Mine is that it neither went downhill nor the quality of the writing dropped. If anything, the newer episodes are of even better quality than before.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2015, 11:45:09 PM by jackson_hurley »

Offline Walter

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Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #43 on: August 05, 2015, 10:54:02 PM »
Haha knew it would be a little controversial

It's not much of a controversy. It's really just you talking at us, with everyone else kind of scratching our heads at your conclusions. 

Anyway, since you never replied to me on it, I may as well just repost what I already have regarding your claim that Miura is a sellout and added more characters for a chance at the BIG children's market bucks: Miura explained his reasons for adding more characters to Guts' party more than 5 years before he did so, and it wasn't to make more money.

Quote
it's easy for artists to get sucked in finacially or creatively influenced by the times they are in. Just how it is.

Maybe this statement applies to newer artists who have yet to break into the scene, but Miura doesn't need to establish himself as an artist, or pretend to be hip with what the cool kids are reading these days. He already has a vast audience developed over three decades (I'm guessing Berserk is older than you...). Also, he has enough clout with his publisher that he can take a full year off of publication. That doesn't speak of an artist that's clamoring for the latest manga trends in order to meet his readership quota for the month.

Absoloutly, you see this rise in numbers due to opening up the demographic and making content more relatable for them. Childish was maybe a poor use of wording on my part, it's just allowing some of the content to target younger audiences. This was dissapointing for me, which is why I believe that some bits of the manga were better than others.

Whew, this is getting kind of ridiculous, man... How exactly did you ascertain that the hypothetical rise in sales was a 1:1 correlation with "making content more relatable" ? Wouldn't it be more logical that the series has naturally gained an audience over time because it's of stellar quality? Follow-up question: How would adding a new secondary or tertiary character with a more wide appeal directly attract a wider readership if said characters are never featured in the marketing campaigns for the series? X-ray vision? Osmosis? Follow-up question: Based on your research, how did the lucrative children's market respond to the troll rape-impregnation and the explosive Daka birthing scene?

If you think the series declined in quality, fine. But you're taking an extra step in pretending to have an inside scoop of how the manga market works, and insinuating that Miura is a sellout. So it isn't just disingenuous, it's kind of embarrassing.
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Offline Cuthbert19

Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #44 on: August 06, 2015, 03:23:05 AM »
Absoloutly, you see this rise in numbers due to opening up the demographic and making content more relatable for them. Childish was maybe a poor use of wording on my part, it's just allowing some of the content to target younger audiences. This was dissapointing for me, which is why I believe that some bits of the manga were better than others.

The way I look at it, the rise in popularity is probably due to the fact that this book has been published for 25 years and still going.  It's only natural that more and more people would be picking up the book every day while maintaining the original fan base that has been reading all along.  I started reading this manga ten years ago and I still see posts here and on redit and such by people who just started and never have I read someone say "Wow, I love this book! I really wasn't sure about checking it out until one of my friends told me there were mermaids and a young girl witch (or whatever it is that you are suggesting is new and childish, not sure)"

Fair enough that you like the Golden Age best, and you did say you still like the vast majority of the book which is great, I just don't feel the same about Miura pandering to demographics to cash in.  Clearly if he wanted to make bucks he would not be going about things the way he has with the ultra violence, rape scenes, and year long hiatus.

Offline DarkAdin

Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #45 on: August 06, 2015, 12:30:00 PM »
I don't know who says that and why, but for me, I see every arc as important as the Golden Age. Miura and therefore Berserk are getting better and better with time, like the wine. We're not only witnessing the development of the story, but also the development of the man's technique, of the author himself, because he's been improving it in every aspect. That is also a main factor to keep in mind. And as long as he does that and enjoys it, we fans won't have to worry about him taking the path other mangakas followed.
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Offline Hensmon

Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #46 on: August 06, 2015, 04:18:32 PM »
Fair enough that you like the Golden Age best, and you did say you still like the vast majority of the book which is great, I just don't feel the same about Miura pandering to demographics to cash in.  Clearly if he wanted to make bucks he would not be going about things the way he has with the ultra violence, rape scenes, and year long hiatus.

Thank you for the calm response ;).

Guys some seem to be getting a little too defensive on this issue... Please don't take this personally, it is my opinion and actually a common and shared view by many who have read the Berserk series, so please keep an open mind. Walter just to clarify, I have read the thing about 3 times and must have been about 5 years old when it first came out. Interesting that you felt the need to make this a part of the discussion.

I don't think Miura is a big sell out. I think he made some minor changes and loosened up a few things to accomodate for the times. I have no issue with children characters or with the increase in a fantasy theme. There has been children throughout, but the way thier dialogue was handled is more mature/thought-provoking in earlier works. To answer your question Walter - You can also have extreme violence and teen orientated content sharing the same space, it happens all the time, so this is no indication otherwise. Teen audiences LOVE gore afterall (and sex).

If I'm honest I'm bit surprised that no one agrees with me (even just a little!). In my opinion the watering down of content, poor dialogue and off pacing at parts is so damn obvious that maybe some rose-tinted glasses are being worn. We all love Berserk, but to treat it as this 30 year saga that never ONCE dropped in quality is obsurd. No artistic project in the world has remained at a 10/10 level throughout. Even Da Vinci saw his bad days. It is not an insult to Miura, just human and artistic nature.

Regarding the money... It is a factor and IMO naive to think otherwise. One example I can think of is in one of the early episodes when Puck is being introduced. Puck makes a direct referance to himself, explaining his reasoning for being there; a comic tool to break up the dark stuff. Miura felt the need to explain himself, clearly taking up suggestions to make the story open to people who dont want darkness 100% of the time. He adapted to meet more needs. Is this un-common in the industry?

Offline Delta Phi

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Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #47 on: August 06, 2015, 05:11:23 PM »
Guys some seem to be getting a little too defensive on this issue... Please don't take this personally, it is my opinion and actually a common and shared view by many who have read the Berserk series, so please keep an open mind.

Source? Just who are all these people? What's the demographic? How long have they been following the manga (certainly these aren't people who started with the movie triology)?
The standard consensus around these parts is that the Conviction arc is the best arc (or at the very least, the most favored) in Berserk. For me personally, its the Millenium Falcon arc.

If I'm honest I'm bit surprised that no one agrees with me (even just a little!).

Really?

In my opinion the watering down of content, poor dialogue and off pacing at parts is so damn obvious that maybe some rose-tinted glasses are being worn.

And yet you still haven't provided evidence of any of this despite being asked by everyone who has responded to you.

Puck makes a direct referance to himself, explaining his reasoning for being there; a comic tool to break up the dark stuff. Miura felt the need to explain himself, clearly taking up suggestions to make the story open to people who dont want darkness 100% of the time. He adapted to meet more needs. Is this un-common in the industry?

This might be a good point...if there weren't hundreds of years of history involving comedic relief characters within storytelling and the arts.
While these don't include characters, here are a couple examples I'm familiar with:
1. During heavy content in a stage performance, it was common for the orchestra to play lighthearted entr'actes during scene changes to relieve audiences of tension and depression that might have accrued from the story.
2. During the Baroque period is was considered bad form to end a piece of music on a minor chord because it would leave the listener in an undesirable state of melancholy.

I might add, I don't think it's helping your case by picking Puck, a character that's been in the manga longer than anyone other than Guts (he shows up within the first 10 pages of Black Swordsman), as an example of Miura changing his vision to draw in a larger audience. From the very beginning its obvious Puck is a vessel for comedy. He wasn't suddenly changed halfway through the manga.

Offline jackson_hurley

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Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #48 on: August 06, 2015, 05:36:08 PM »
In my opinion the watering down of content, poor dialogue and off pacing at parts is so damn obvious that maybe some rose-tinted glasses are being worn.

Really?

And yet you still haven't provided evidence of any of this despite being asked by everyone who has responded to you.

Indeed, I am still waiting to see the obvious example that you are talking about since the beginning of your arguments.

Offline Oburi

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Re: Why do people say it went downhill after the Golden Age Arc?
« Reply #49 on: August 06, 2015, 05:43:05 PM »
I don't think Miura is a big sell out. I think he made some minor changes and loosened up a few things to accomodate for the times. I have no issue with children characters or with the increase in a fantasy theme. There has been children throughout, but the way thier dialogue was handled is more mature/thought-provoking in earlier works.
If I'm honest I'm bit surprised that no one agrees with me (even just a little!). In my opinion the watering down of content, poor dialogue and off pacing at parts is so damn obvious that maybe some rose-tinted glasses are being worn

I think you may be the one wearing the glasses dude, no offense. As much as I love the first 14 volumes of the manga it's absurd to claim the dialogue was more mature/thought provoking back then, and that the content is watered down and the pacing is off now. Berserk is incredibly consistent both in terms of story structure, dialog, characterization, pacing, artwork... especially for something that had been in the works for as long as it has. That's what sets Berserk apart from everything else. That's why it's been able to continue successfully for so long. However, even considering how consistent it has been for so many years, there's still no doubt that Berserk has only grown stronger in almost every single aspect.

You should really give specific examples of what you think has been simplified or watered down or where and when you think the dialog is poor and the pacing is off.  It seems completely ridiculous to me that someone would make such claims in such a broad, generalized way. I'm honestly scratching head in bewilderment at these thoughts. Please elaborate on what you think has been watered down since the Millennium Falcon Arc started because I'm at a loss.