First off, despite being wished the best of luck by so many (which was very much appreciated), I must regretfully report that I am back early from training, having developed bone spurs in the backs of both my heels which prevent me from wearing my combat boots… in addition to having a dislocated shoulder, hyper-extended knee, and a sprained ankle. Remember kids: when your officers and NCO’s tell you that its perfectly safe to waltz around a foxhole-pocked land navigation course at night, don’t believe them!*
So I suddenly have a lot of new time on my hands, and have spent part of it perusing the new summer shows. In short, Aoi Hana, Umi Monogatari, Crying Sea Kittens Umineko no naku koro ni, and Taishou Yakyuu Musume, all of which went down fairly easily, ranging somewhere between ‘okay’ and ‘intriguing’. But the one with the crying sea kittens is that which has prompted this particular post… specifically, the ‘uu, uu!’ trademark noise of one Maria Uro-something-something.
Generally, trademark moé noises are intended to further endear the viewer to a character. Yes, they do have the potential to be irritating, but fans of those sorts of shows for the most part do find that these noises hit the proper target (innuendos on that point are not welcome). Even those who are not terribly large fans of moé can be found to grudgingly admit that the trademark moé noise is somewhat cute. So then why the hell is Maria’s trademark moé noise (heretofor to be known as ‘TMN’) making so many of us run shrieking for the hills?
The fact is, the ‘uu, uu’ utterance is not actually annoying in and of itself – or, at the very least, not as annoying as many viewers have found it to be. The first time she uttered it, I noticed its existence, but of course, but didn’t feel any sort of negative emotion toward it. My high irritation, truly, only came with repeated exposure, and worsened with the crying/slapping scene in the rose garden. After finishing up the episode, I found myself baffled – why love ‘uguu’, ‘hoe’, and ‘gao’ when I couldn’t stand ‘uu, uu’?
Duh, overexposure. Think about it – did Ayu use uguu every three seconds? Misuzu’s ‘gao’ was even less utilized. The TMN, then, worked because it was actually used sparingly, as surprising as that may sound. Sakura may’ve hoe’d every single episode, but not every other sentence. Maria, on the other day, sprinkles the uu, uu’s as liberally as a seven year old sprinkles sugar on cereal.
However, in a way this is excusable, since Maria’s TMN serves a larger purpose than mere endearment – her TMN acts to heighten the tense atmosphere of Umineko no naku koro ni. Consider the rose garden scene, with Maria’s escalating usage of the ‘uu, uu’ noise, and her mother’s reaction to it. We, as the viewer, are having a similar feeling regarding the noise as her mother, as evidenced by the fact that a whole lot of bloggers are guiltily admitting that they were kind of glad Rosa smacked Maria a couple of times in response. I, too, was glad Rosa slapped her child, despite the obvious that such an act should bother me, not satisfy me. The TMN was irritating me, and increasing any stress that I was feeling, just the sort of thing that a horror-type show should do.
Mercifully, the ‘uu, uu’ ratchets down by quite a bit in episode two, although I’m sure we haven’t heard the last of it. Even if it does serve a greater purpose, I still sincerely would love to stab that child through the head with a pick-axe.
* especially when your flashlight is a crappy, Vietnam-era, red-lensed clunker