Otaku Evolution Episode 136 - Now and Then, Here and There

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I last discussed the topic of "tragedy porn" during my Kikaider 01 video. Essentially, it's a melodrama so rife with manipulative and transparent tragedy wanking that it becomes increasingly difficult to take it seriously as you watch it. Now, granted, every drama intends to get you to feel for its characters and plot, but tragedy porn is just an endless parade of misfortunes for little rhyme or reason except to get you to tear up. 
 
With that reiterated, the title looked at here is Now and Then, Here and There, an anime favorite of mine. It does take a serious, no-holds, unglamorous look at war in a way few other anime do. But it does wear a bit thin when the main character tries to project a sense of positive thinking on people suffering endlessly. I can understand wanting them to hold onto life somehow, but Shu's smiles and assurances can come off annoying and empty, even if he's ultimately proven right. 
 
So the question is, is NTHT a real tragedy? A melodrama? Or something else? And if it is tragedy porn, why do I still like it so much? Well, join me for an analysis of this fine work. 
 
 
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