Yuri Kuma Arashi 03 — The Invisible Storm

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I’m… not entirely sure what’s going on with the main two bears. Now they’re actually trying to save Kureha? Or are they saving her so they can eat her themselves? Their testimony at the trial didn’t make any sense. Which I can only assume is intentional.

Otherwise, though, the symbolism seems to be playing out as I speculated last week.

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As I had suggested, the invisible people thrive on exclusion and scapegoating.

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The invisible people have forgotten love. Or perhaps they have never known it.

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And perhaps the bears have too?

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But I don’t think that’s quite it. The bears are still able to feel love, but they only feel the love of the present. That is why they are able to devour someone and then forget about them.

As I speculated last week, invisible person, bear, and people who don’t back down on love don’t seem to be mutually exclusive categories. The two lead bears also don’t back down on love. The president is both a bear and is invisible. But I suspect not backing down on love and being invisible are mutually exclusive.

Sadly, I’m not enjoying this nearly as much as I enjoyed Penguindrum. The symbolism is great and all, but that’s pretty much all there is to it. I don’t care about the characters much, which leads to the twists (such as there are) not being all that exciting. At this point in Penguindrum Ringo had completely stolen my heart. With these characters, I can’t even remember their names.

5 thoughts on “Yuri Kuma Arashi 03 — The Invisible Storm

  1. I now think bear isn’t destructive form love but it really is one of two side of love: Feel (represent by human) and Lust (represent by bear)…
    The Yuri Trial is there for those that have both feel and lust which is called true love (owned by Ginko, Lulu, and Kureha) that is why they are the only people in the trial while those who doesn’t have true love (strictly only on one side) they have Invisible Storm…

    Now, I think this show is really about lesbian relationship in Japan and not about love in general (though I think it is possible to draw some parallelism, afterall love is general)…
    To understand it a bit, we need to understand how lesbian is viewed by Japan society…
    There are two kind of lesbian relationship, Class-S (which is accepted) and Rezu (which isn’t) and the main difference is this: Class-S implied the relationship to be transitory and one day both person in love will find male while Rezu is permanent…
    So Class-S strictly about feeling, or a training to know what and how to feel when they have husband, with both female reserve sex and other sexual interaction for their husband…
    Rezu on the other hand is your normal lesbian relationship with sex and all…

    And this is why Human is Class-S (the show don’t have fanservice scene without bear in it) and Bear is Rezu (every single fanservice has bear in it) but more of how people see Rezu as deprived girl wanting to ruin other girl’s purity (much like how people think bisexual as want to have sex every single chance)…
    With exception of Kureha and Sumika where both appear with only their underwear at one scene and this because Kureha and Sumika are different than other human, they aren’t Class-S, they are the real deal…

    Now for some story bit without sumbolism:
    Ginko and Lulu don’t eat Kureha (they never mention the person they want to eat by name), in trial they eat other human who endanger Kureha and Sumika by initiating Invisible Storm…
    So Yurizono (the president) and Yurikawa (racoon bear) eat Sumika after someone initiate Invisible Storm and determine Sumika as evil…
    Ginko and Lulu then initiate Yuri Trial to eat the person who I assume initiate this Invisible Storm (maybe Katyusha)…
    Second episode they initiate Yuri Trial but this time to save Kureha as it appears the Yuri Trial power up Kureha so Kureha can shoot the bear as episode three shown, but Yurizono appear before Kureha can shoot the bear…
    Third episode they initiate Yuri Trial to both allow Kureha to shoot Yurizono and to eat the person responsible for Invisible Storm against Kureha…

    I think Ginko doesn’t want to eat Kureha because only Lulu so far who said wanting to eat Kureha and that because Lulu don’t really know Ginko plan to protect Kureha (Lulu only follow Ginko because Ginko is Lulu’s true love) while Ginko only said delicious smell because this is the sign of person with true love like her…

    After several nights since episode 2, thinking about Yuri Kuma, I think that the core of Yuri Kuma isn’t love in general, it is love presented by Yuri medium which divided to people who strictly love subtext (represent by Human) who think fanservice is there to satisfy horny male viewer (thus destroy the ‘purity’ of the show) and people who strictly love explicit content (represent by Bear) who think without sexual intention, the show is just yuri-baiting and the characters interaction isn’t genuine…

    This means the symbolization so far are:
    Human shoot bear represent destroying impure thought about the character, it is done from a far to keep the character pure, untarnished by it
    Bear eat human because a show cease from being subtext when sex or something like it (some places or people think kiss is enough, other not) happen in the show

    Bear can disguise as human represent how an explicit work can trick its consumer by hiding its sexual content deep within the work (last pages, last chapters, or something similar), making consumer think it is a subtext work

    Human seems to show their attraction through handholding (Kureha and Sumika in episode one, Yurizono and Oniyama in episode three) much like how far a subtext work can goes while still be called subtext
    Bear on the other hand do it by licking, groping, and other fanservicy interaction, very explicit

    But in the end, I think Ikuhara want to say that both kind of work is yuri (because in place of ‘human’ tag, he use yuri, and for every bear character he use yuri-something as name) and a true yuri work/fan is the one that balance things out between the two side of love, hence the Yuri Trial, represent whether a fanservice scene in a yuri work is necessary (maybe important for plot point or to make statement) or not…

    1. I’m not sure about the lust / feeling idea. The class president seemed to have lust for Kureha? But the bears as destructive love has holes in it as well so I’m not sure.

      The two kinds of lesbian relationships in Japan are interesting, I wasn’t aware of that. Am surprised that transitory lesbian relationships are accepted while permanent ones aren’t.

      I think you may be onto something about the bears as well, and how they have actually been helping Kureha. The two of them very well may not be on the same page here.

      I’d guess that the symbolism functions on multiple levels. So while things could be interpreted as involving yuri, I think there’s another underlying meaning as well. Kind of like the penguindrum.

  2. Right now I’m just watching this series to find out what this series is trying to say. All the human elements of the whole thing: The drama, the characters and so on. That stuff doesn’t seem very interesting. You would think that having a heroine whose first love is a forbidden love is something dramatic. But with all that bear-stuff and those allegories going on, focusing on the emotions doesn’t seem to be a priority.

    I like how having that class-president as a sort-of villain in the third episode had given that episode more focus in its presentation. Even when the class started proclaiming this “witchhunt” you could at least associate that with this villain-character since she had manipulated that other girl to go that far. That worked better than just throwing those allegorical concepts at the audience without doing any build-up which would form a context for the whole thing.

    1. Yeah, the human elements of the show are not very interesting so far. Hopefully that might change if the bears (who are presumably the main characters?) are more fully developed. But who knows.

      And yeah, the third episode with the president was indeed an improvement on the human front.

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