Failure and Oink

 My Blog  Comments Off on Failure and Oink
Mar 122012
 
This may be one of the greatest character arcs I’ve ever seen in an anime. The evolution of Pig Guy from Tantei Opera Milky Holmes.

We all figured this guy was just a joke. One of those hateful “fat” jokes we think anime is above or whatever. How dare they make such a lowly, adolescent joke? Isn’t this what those nasty Hollywood movies and Nicktoons resort to because they’re decadent assholes who don’t care about storytelling and shit?

Nope. All of those jokes about lard and mocking Pig Guy’s weight problem have turned into one of the most gratifying turn of events in recent anime history.

It all ties into the failure that’s at the heart of Milky Holmes. Pig Guy returns from his overseas exile. Apparently he’s incapable of eating the lard of the foreign country he was sent to after the school was closed, and he’s wasted away to nothing but (lots and lots and lots of) skin and bones. He’s near death, having evolved to the point where lard is his only sustenance. He wants nothing more than to taste the sweet saltiness of Japanese lard.

And then Milky Holmes happens. Namely Sherlock herself. In her quest to find this week’s MacGuffin, she trips into Pig Guy, ruining his lardy treat. And she does it again. And again. And again. Every attempt to partake in his glorious lard is lardblocked by the Milky Holmes girls. Even his secret stash of school lard, carefully hidden in the catacombs below the ruins of the school, is accidentally destroyed by Milky Holmes chaotic, destructive, blissful ignorance.

But it isn’t just these mishaps that contribute to Pig Guy’s story arc. In almost every episode prior to this one, the girls have accused him of being the culprit. He’s been like that Red Herring kid from that shitty Scooby Doo show that aped off of the Muppet Babies trend of the late 80s– always accused but never guilty.

Pig Guy has been the butt of every joke, accusation, and sadistic punishment seen in the series. He’s suffered more than Milky Holmes themselves, because he’s truly unworthy of the torture. He’s a seemingly good student, and he merely wants to wallow away his days being a detective and feasting on the lard that makes him so happy. But the Milky Holmes girls hate him. He’s their exact opposite. While they’re cute and moerific, he’s slovenly and doesn’t adhere to modern otaku sensibilities of beauty. And because of this, they’ve subconsciously directed their powers of failure towards Pig Guy, making him fall along with them.

Pig Guy is a true tragic hero, and it comes to a climax when the Pandora Pot releases its evil sealed Toys and said Toys use Pig Guy as their new vessel. All of his frustration and angsty– all of which is due to Milky Holmes’ pathetic actions– is channeled into villainous fury. Pig Guy has fallen, and he’s become the villain that the Milky Holmes girls need.

Arsène isn’t Milky Holmes’ true nemesis. Arsène needs Milky Holmes, but Milky Holmes doesn’t need Arsène. If anything, they’re happier without the other Gentlemen Thieves getting in the way of their metaphorical cake-eating. But Pig Guy represents everything the Milky Holmes girls aren’t. He’s the light side to their stupid side.

If Arsène represents the audience, then Pig Guy represents the sort of anime we love– mistreated and chastised by the moe trend into submission, but no more. It will harness the juicy bits buried within all of anime– the lard Pig Guy extracts from every other character– and use it to defeat the Milky Holmes menace.

Or will he?

No. We’ve already lost this battle. Pig Guy harnesses the power of failure, hoping that he can bring about the end of the moeocracy by causing it to collapse from within. But this is impossible, since this trend is the personification of failure. It has already defeated itself and it relishes that failure. It thrives on destroying that which came before.

This is a hopeless battle, but it’s a battle that must be fought none the less. And Pig Guy is our avatar in this fateful encounter.

Rock on, Pig Guy. Our cholesterol-clogged hearts are with you.