Storytelling is subjective

November 7, 2014

I was talking to Kairi and Enzo on twitter about Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso, and how I was enjoying it so much. I was surprised to learn they weren’t so keen on it.

To me, it’s all about art. Kaori—when she’s not acting like a blonde ogre—speaks to my creative soul. Speaks for it … I find myself cheering as she says many of the things I would say myself. I love seeing the stuffed shirts freak out, I love seeing her flout the rules, and I love seeing her play for herself and the audience, not for the prize. It’s not about the music, it’s about the art, and it calls to my artist’s soul even if my art (writing) is different.

But Kairi and Enzo focus more on Arima’s trauma, and when I went back and read their posts, I immediately saw the truth in their points. Where I saw Arima’s trauma as a little too unbelievable—losing the ability to hear one’s own music seemed like something made up for TV, though I admit it’s certainly possible—they saw others bullying Arima into confronting a deep-seated psychological issue that he wasn’t ready to deal with.

I’m not arguing that they’re right, or that I am. We both are, to the extent it matters. What it reminded me of is how subjective the storytelling experience is. Where I see an uplifting story about young artists, they see something deeply troubling, and both are valid.

We all bring our own worldview to every story we experience, and you better believe that includes the stories that are “true” (politics, world events, business, social lives). That’s how someone can despise what you absolutely love. For truth is, to some degree, negotiable.

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By Stephen W. Gee

Author of Wage Slave Rebellion, Freelance Heroics, and about two good blog posts out of a hundred.


  1. Reply


    I haven’t been watching Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso, but I’ve been reading the manga. I’m still trying to figure out where the story is going, but I was surprised when Kairi dropped it.

    1. Reply


      I understand where she was coming from, because while I didn’t notice it at first, it all clicked when she pointed it out. Thus our worldviews are expanded, and that’s not a bad thing.

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