Cogito Ergo Proxy simulwatch [RS] (29/11 - 21/12)

Lordhippos

Stand User
Ergo Proxy also includes one of my top 10 favourites episodes from any TV series, anime or otherwise. When we get to it, I'm fully expecting people to react with, "Wait, that one?!"

I don't normally worry too much about how good an individual episode is among those of a good series, but there are times indeed when an episode can blow you away or really stick with you.

There is an episode in Clannad AS that is really good and such a nice change of pace from the pain & suffering before it, though likewise I won't spoil it for anyone who hasn't seen the show yet. Also VE has that episode as well which is also really again (again won't spoil it! :D).

Thanks, man. 😅👍

Let's hope that one was the longest they get, eh? For everyone's sake! 🤣

:eek: 😅 😎

Don't worry I read it all except for the links that had the spoilers in! :)

It's interesting that Iggy is shown as slightly camp although it doesn't come across in the subs and I wouldn't catch it by what he says or how he says it, unlike everyone's favourite camp Android from Star wars.
 
Great first episode with huge amounts packed in and great world building within the first ten minutes. We've got a cyberpunk, ?post-climate crisis, neo-capitalist big brother society, with Seele the bosses still searching for immorality and any human apparently of any worth having their own scary, walking, talking, drop-kicking Alexa autoriev, who is most definitely not spying on them. The cherry on the top was a bit of paranoid android at the end, quite the inspired choice heh. Expecting some social commentary and existential AI subject matter and the posts here themselves are very foreboding regarding the upcoming mysteries! I think I will like this quite a bit.
 

HWR

CCG’s Reaper
AUKN Staff
A very solid first episode! I had forgotten how Radiohead’s Paranoid Android was used as the ED and to great effect.

It’s a rare occurrence to see a song by a Western artist/group featured in such a fashion (I can only think of “Girl’s on Film” by Duran Duran from SpeedGrapher and “For the Love of Life” by David Sylvian from Monster as other off-hand examples.)
 

Lordhippos

Stand User
A very solid first episode! I had forgotten how Radiohead’s Paranoid Android was used as the ED and to great effect.

It’s a rare occurrence to see a song by a Western artist/group featured in such a fashion (I can only think of “Girl’s on Film” by Duran Duran from SpeedGrapher and “For the Love of Life” by David Sylvian from Monster as other off-hand examples.)

Great Pretender by Freddie Mercury used on the Great Pretender anime as well.
 

WMD

Railgun
That goes for the autoreivs in particular, which are both eerie to look at and unnerving in their mix of subservience and dominance in relation to the humans.
Their designs are so good. It feels they go especially hard on the idea with Iggy. Who at times seems playful and at others seems very sinister in that first episode.
 

Dai

Stand User
Episode 2
The web of secrets, lies, and above all control grows thicker in this episode, while again we see the proxy cutting a swath of chaos through it, this time chasing the seemingly timid Vincent. There are some little moments I like here, such as an autoreiv touching its master's(?) shoulder to push him into doing something as minor as saying a civil farewall, or poor Iggy getting left behind after excitedly planning Re-l's shopping trip.

The standout scene in this episode is the proxy rampage at the stairs, which is a clear reference to the Odessa Steps scene from Battleship Potemkin, or possibly one of the many movie scenes inspired by it, like The Untouchables. This show's unique spin on the classic image of a pram toppling down the stairs is that in Romdo no one seems to care. This is all the more shocking when you consider that they were Raul's family, which has been mentioned indirectly by this point, but that fact has been somewhat hidden in plain sight since we never saw them together. The dead mother and infant are quickly absorbed into the casualty statistics presented to Raul along with the chilling assurance that all surviving witnesses have been moved into isolation (where I suspect they'll spend the rest of their lives).

 
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WMD

Railgun
Episode 2

I'd forgotten how immediately this show gets on with things. We mostly follow Re-l as she tries to find the truth but seemingly everyone either wants to stop her or have been put in her way including poor Iggy and he doesn't even know it! The way the mystery is built is so well done and the cutting back and forth between Re-l and Vincent in the final moments as she finds a clue and we see his eyes is a great cliffhanger.

The world building (and reinforcement) is again done so well. The little cuts to adverts about spending and creating waste, and the sight of arm slaves on the back of trucks just being driven around like it's normal all add to the sense of unease and "not quite right" in the city. This all comes to a head in the crazy scene of Vincent running for his life as civilians and autoreivs get mown down and people don't even understand how to react until it's far too late! It's so shocking.

And then poor little Pino. It's like shes the only one to react as she turns back towards her brother only to be knocked aside as Vincent and the Proxy pass and then we see her in the pose to awakening. What a soul crushing moment to achieve self awareness; just as you watch your mother and brother get killed in front of you and you couldnt save them. And now the authorities are after her too and just wants her dad to come home 😭
 

Lordhippos

Stand User
Episode 2

It's good to see that bureaucracy never changes, if you want to hide something, you just need to file the right paperwork. Even being the granddaughter to the regent only gets you so far.

The little kid with the baby and mother was kind of creepy there for a minute, but later on we see the opposite, where she went to get a balloon for the kid. I'll take a second to note that the balloons were about the only source of actual colour we've seen so far, everything else is very muted in tone.

What's the deal with the statues here in the meeting? are they AI statues? It seemed like they were part of the conversation, but they are also just statues so wasn't sure! :D

I was just thinking that Re-l should abandon her attendant Iggy and leave him behind when she went and did it :)

Poor kid getting infected just as everyone she knew died in front of her, I wonder how she escaped the lockdown without getting caught.

So Vincent was shown at the end getting cornered, and Re-l found a necklace that is the same as the one he had, was/is Vincent also a Proxy in disguise here or something? the meaning of this discovery is troublesome. If not that then the proxy had the same necklace as Vincent had, which I think was a religious symbol of some kind.
 

João Gomes

Thousand Master
What the hell, I don't get Radiohead for the ED in the French edition, this is horseshiit man. Next up, no fly me to the moon urgh.

Was straight up gonna roll into episode 3 directly but then I remembered we're simulwatching this 😅

Very impressed, on all fronts really. I was expecting a drab-looking, slow-paced series. Instead, while drab-looking, it's more so in a positive way, the art direction and coloring really set the mood for the whole thing.

Slow-paced it is not. So pleasantly surprised by how quickly it moves along, without feeling rushed.

A lot is set up already, with quite a few questions made to pop up in our heads and I can't wait to know the answers. The animation is great, the character design also.

Re-l seems like a good protagonist. I'm expecting cool stuff from her. I wonder if her emotional response to that encounter with the proxy was fear or something else, given the same happened on its end.

The Entourage system is ripe for creepiness (and we already got a quick look at that here and there) and the overall ambiance is eerie, which I appreciate immensely.

Very happy so far!

@Lordhippos they did that thing with Vincent where a character usually has their eyes shut and when they open them, it means shiit's getting real and they're not so harmless after all [giddy~ - I love that stupid trope lol], so the immediate implication is that Vincent is that beast proxy. Re-l's Iggy did remark that Vincent couldn't take his eyes off of her and the first thing the proxy does is touch her lips...

Remains to be seen if it's just a red herring.
 
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It's interesting that Iggy is shown as slightly camp although it doesn't come across in the subs and I wouldn't catch it by what he says or how he says it, unlike everyone's favourite camp Android from Star wars.
I actually wouldn't describe Iggy as camp myself. 🤔
I would say in fact that he's quite masculine in his demeanor; it's just that he uses some feminine speech forms. He's very decisive in his behaviour, though, and certainly without any of C-3PO's jitteriness.

The other thing that always impresses is the sense of design. There's such a distinctive visual language on display, and it all helps to build a quite unsettling atmosphere.
☝️This I have nothing to add to. I just wanted to pay tribute to how on-the-money this sentiment is.

Ergo Proxy also includes one of my top 10 favourites episodes from any TV series, anime or otherwise. When we get to it, I'm fully expecting people to react with, "Wait, that one?!"
Hmmm... intriguing.

I'm gonna stick my neck out a bit here and have a go at pre-emptively guessing the episode. Can I have three guesses?
• First guess: "Someone Like You" (Ophelia)
• Second guess: "Dead Calm" (Busy Doing Nothing)
• Third guess: "Nightmare Quiz Show" (Who Wants to Be in Jeopardy!)

What's the deal with the statues here in the meeting? are they AI statues? It seemed like they were part of the conversation, but they are also just statues so wasn't sure!
To me, they're like SEELE from Evangelion Rebuild but as statues instead of monoliths. 😛

Basically, they take the role of a shadowy committee pulling the strings behind the scenes.

This is culled from what was originally going to be my episode 2 post, but each of the four is actually named after a real-life figure who worked in and around the field of philosophy:

• Edmund Gustav Albrecht Husserl was a German philosopher and mathematician:
• George Berkeley was an Anglo-Irish philosopher:
• Jacques Marie Émile Lacan was a French psychoanalyst and psychiatrist:
• Jacques Derrida was an Algerian-born French philosopher:

Don't worry I read it all except for the links that had the spoilers in! :)
Ah, bless you for your patience, buddy; that's a great result for me. Just like the above part of this post, though, the external links are really only intended to show the source of my info. (I haven't even fully read the articles myself! 😛)
 

Lordhippos

Stand User
Basically, they take the role of a shadowy committee pulling the strings behind the scenes.

Figured as much, would be nice to get a visual cue off them though, I wondered if the camera was not just going on a jaunt around to show us statues whilst people were talking off-camera 🤣

@Lordhippos they did that thing with Vincent where a character usually has their eyes shut and when they open them, it means shiit's getting real and they're not so harmless after all [giddy~ - I love that stupid trope lol], so the immediate implication is that Vincent is that beast proxy. Re-l's Iggy did remark that Vincent couldn't take his eyes off of her and the first thing the proxy does is touch her lips...

Remains to be seen if it's just a red herring.

Maybe Vincent knew the surveillance would pick him up as a Proxy and therefore tried to keep his cover, all very troubling though! I noticed the eyes as well and yeah the trope is definitely a thing, it's like "well, that handicap has been removed" :)
 
Bingo. Your second guess was correct. ✔️
Wow, nice. 😯

It's a great pick. I mean, I can understand why some people would find it an odd choice, but I agree with you. It's got a really strong script. In fact, it was only my #2 guess because it seemed almost "too obvious" to be the episode you were talking about. We must both have unorthodox taste.

The episode just goes to show, though, that this series has impressive breadth as well as depth.

What the hell, I don't get Radiohead for the ED in the French edition
What?? Really? What do you get in its place?



And while I'm here, recalling impressions of episode 2:

This is the second episode that begins not with your traditional anime opening sequence, but instead more like a film, with opening credits displayed over the action itself.

The main development this time out is undoubtedly the moment when both Raul Creed's wife and their newly appointed baby die in the same accident resulting from the rampage of the long-haired "Proxy". Was it specifically targeting Vincent, or did he just become an unlucky random target? In either case, their child stand-in AutoReiv seems to have come down with a case of cogito virus. Raul himself, though, seems oddly unmoved by the tragedy.

We're seeing some quite Masamune Shirow-inspired things here and there. Romdeau is perhaps reminiscent of the city of Olympus from Appleseed, and there are also some soldiers piloting mecha that made me recall the Landmates from the same series.
 
something was off about Raul during that whole scene but I hadn't made the connection that it was actually his family.
I was worried for a moment that I'd prematurely disclosed some key info, João, but a quick skim back through episode 1 confirms the clue. When Vincent has to decline to take the child AutoReiv, Pino, away from the woman, she scolds him, saying "My husband is the chief of the Security Bureau."

Unless you're keeping track of job titles on the fly (and Raul's is subtly shown on a nameplate on his desk in the scene where he's first introduced), alongside trying to keep up with all the other new things coming at you as well, then this series does a great job of leaving key details, as @Dai so succinctly put it, "hidden in plain sight" from newcomers. The script is really clever like that. 👌

Speaking of details being hidden, I meant to acknowledge this point about Iggy's mode of speech before:
it doesn't come across in the subs
You're absolutely right, of course. It only occurred to me after typing that earlier post of mine that that's probably why the writer of the page about Iggy on the Ergo Proxy wiki missed the subtlety.

They still should've checked their facts before criticising the accompanying promo materials, though, I think.

Is anyone watching the dub? How is Iggy's character coming across in that?
 

Dai

Stand User
Something I can't remember if I'd realised previously about episode 2 is that the first time Raul sees his son is seeing him die. There's a phone call earlier where his wife is describing the baby to him.

It's interesting how isolated people seem in such a big city. They're constantly shadowed by entourages, but hardly ever interact directly with more than one person at a time. Even when Re-l talks to her grandfather he's hidden behind metal bars and a mask, and flanked by the ambiguous talking statues.
 

WMD

Railgun
Is anyone watching the dub? How is Iggy's character coming across in that?
I've only ever watched this dubbed (as you might imagine) and I think it's incredible. Everyone is so good in it.

Iggy isnt especially camp or anything but is also not super macho. Like he gets Iggys excitement at planning a shopping trip but also does the drier more sinister moments really well as well.

Hes voiced by Travis Willingham who's been in the game a long time, most famously as Roy Mustang in both versions of Fullmetal Alchemist. Hes a very good actor.
 
Something I can't remember if I'd realised previously about episode 2 is that the first time Raul sees his son is seeing him die.
That's absolutely correct, yeah. And that's before we even get into the whole subject of the couple having been "given" the baby by Romdeau's authorities.

Let's also not forget a piece of dialogue from episode 1:
"You needn't worry about the loss of a few citizens. If we run low, all we need to do is increase production."

Hmmm...
 

João Gomes

Thousand Master
@Neil.T nah, you're good! It was definitely on me for not noticing. I'd already seen Dai's post but yeah, it flew by me.

Episode 3 or Pino is adorable

Yeah, there's probably a lot to Vincent and I'm looking forward to how his relationship with Pino and even Re-l evolves.

Proxys are made to be sympathetic from the get go, so I'm eager to get the backstory on all of that. Smelling something like not a whole lot of actual humans left?

At first when Pino opened the airlock I was like "omg they're in space yass" and even though that's not the case, it doesn't seem like it's much better than that outside. Still, I wonder if the so called immigrants (sorry if that's not the term in English, my subtitles are in French) come from the city itself (the (even MORE) miserable part of it) or they actually come from outside.

So many questions 🤤
 

WMD

Railgun
Episode 3

I love how intense this episode feels. We spend more time with Vincent on the run and you really feel his world implode around him. It just goes from terrible to worse really.

Re-l is in the hunt while also trying to evade the powers that be and almost pulls it off!

And little adorable Pino is now with us! With someone whose trying to comprehend her own existence she remarkably resourceful and quick witted! Swiping Vincent's phone, collecting the bag, getting the gate open and lets not forget the style of going outside in a onesie before it was cool!

The music is on point in this episode especially when Vincent is on the run. And theres a nice swipe cut when the camera pans up from Vincent and Pino and lands on Re-l even though shes not actually above them. But it works well to exemplify the depths of despair Vincent is in and also the lofty position Re-l holds over him: in class/status, her physical home being high up and looking down on everyone, and that she feels she holds his life in her hands or at least could do. For like a second of blurry animation it's very good visual storytelling.
 
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