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I was thinking this recurring problem might be good for Special Efforts. We have a significant number of tropes where the situation is quite generic and at least potentially universal/not culturally-dependent, but they're written as if they only occur in Japan or Japanese works.
For instance, one I came across today is Transformation Trinket. Perfectly ordinary trope of general application, but the description is written with an implicit "Japan-only" assumption behind it.
What's so bad about that trope? I mean the only real Japanese reference is Henshin Hero in which one of these is absolutely required. And the fact that Magical Girl ones are more girly.
There seems to be misuse in some of the sections too Stargate is not this it's just a mini holographic disguise. And no way Iron Man is this.
And I find the trope title rather insulting.... Can we change it to something less so?
edited 16th Sep '11 8:21:36 PM by Raso
The very beginning of the description is "If you are a Japanese-style transforming superhero," and the second paragraph continues the trend by going on about magical girls and toku.
IMO, this sort of trope should be rewritten. In this case, I'd have a first paragraph with a generic description, along the lines of "This is the object necessary for the hero to change into his Superhero Alter Ego blah blah blah."
Then a later paragraph could follow, starting "In Japanese works, this trope typically has the following characteristics: blah blah blah."
The current description (and it's a recurring "description style") doesn't outright say it's a Japan-only thing, but it's heavily implied by how much of the description is about Japan-specific stuff.
The biggest issue is that the very first sentence basically says that it's a Japan only trope. If we change that and shift around some of the other order so that it's not the initial focus it will help attract examples from other media. That's a good thing.
The whole "Japanese style yada" should be just Henshin Hero no pothole and that's all that needs to be changed really.
The first two paragraphs are written assuming that it's a magical girl trope.
While a magical girl usually has a piece of jewelry or magic implement (staff, wand, etc.) as her transformation trinket, it can be anything. Belts and belt buckles are common, as are wristbands. Cellphones are also becoming popular, but moreso with Toku characters. Weapons also sometimes double as Transformation Trinkets. Sometimes swipe-cards, keys or entry-codes are used in conjunction with the item.
And that won't make it sound any less like it's a Japan only trope. It's sticking a random Japanese word in the first sentence and that also implies that the trope is Japanese only.
A "tricky" aspect is that to do a good rewrite of this kind of description, it helps to have a knowledge of the Japanese stuff. Most of what Madrugada quoted should probably be IN the description somewhere, it's just a question of emphasis and amount. (I'm certainly not proposing just taking the "this trope in Japan" material and deleting it wholesale.)
edited 16th Sep '11 8:31:17 PM by suedenim
Exactly. We just want help shifting it in the definition so that it's not the very first thing. Describe the trope in general before we move on to the bits specific to Japanese media.
the first line could be made different but it's still going to be Potholed to Henshin Hero thats what the trinkets are used for even western ones which are still Henshin Hero
And the second paragraph seems perfectly fine. Magical Girl s use crystals mostly in a locket or other things but some use perfume, cellphones, Tambourine, lip gloss, weird heartshaped flute thingies. Cellphones are extremely popular everywhere. And it's all marketable.
Crystal powered perfume bottle for a spray on transformation.
edited 16th Sep '11 8:44:54 PM by Raso
How about we just get rid of the words "Japanese-style" then and keep the pothole. That's enough to at least get rid of the culture specific bits. Transforming Superhero should probably be a redirect to Henshin Hero anyway.
The issue isn't that the Japanese stuff is wrong. The issue is that they're phrased in such a way that they ONLY talk about the Japanese versions.
edited 16th Sep '11 8:50:43 PM by shimaspawn
Transforming Hero. "Super" is strictly for Super Hero.
No I know that but it sounded like getting rid of the stuff wholesale when it's just one line.
I don't know of any western transforming hero that has a cellphone as a Transformation trinket. Belts, yes, I think that goes at least as far back as the animated "Mighty Hercules cartoons of the late 60's. Rings? Even further back. Necklaces or pendants? Yep, way back as well.
But here's what I'd suggest:
"If you are a transforming hero, then there is an extremely high probability that you have a Transformation Trinket: an object which is either the source of your powers, or the focus for them. It is vitally necessary to have your transformation trinket on your person in order to change into your Superpowered Alter Ego. They are almost always activated By the Power of Grayskull!.
Transformation Trinkets can be almost anything; jewelry or magic implements (staff, wand, etc.) are popular for female Transfoming Superheroes, but belts and belt buckles are common, as are wristbands. Weapons also sometimes double as Transformation Trinkets. For Toku characters, cellphones are also becoming popular. Sometimes swipe-cards, keys or entry-codes are used in conjunction with the item. Occasionally a team of Transformingheros will have a multi-part trinket that only works when all the parts are present."
There. All the same information, but it doesn't sound like it's unusual to find it outside of Japanese works anymore.
I added that last sentence when I remembered the Wonder Twins: they both had rings as trinkets, but the rings had to be touching to work.
edited 16th Sep '11 9:03:06 PM by Madrugada
Magical Girl needs to replace " the female transforming hero" this is an important Genre that is not japan specific anymore it's popular in Italy and they make them there too. And that's where the thing happens that the sentence talks about.
Wonder Twin Powers + Transformation Trinket leaves a lot of room to be completely powerless.
edited 16th Sep '11 9:07:53 PM by Raso
No, it doesn't. Magical Girls are female Transforming Heroes, but they aren't the only female transforming heroes. That's inserting the "But only in Japan" bias back in.
edited 16th Sep '11 9:07:50 PM by Madrugada
Jewelry is popular with Magical Girl that's what the sentence is talking about, any girl in like a Super Sentai series or such will have the same item as the rest of them. And removing all references to Magical Girl where this trope has been mandatory since the first Magical Girl Warrior is bad.
Hell some Magical Girl series have merged their Mascot Partner (Mentor Mascot?) with their Transformation Trinket into a talking trinket (that might transform itself.)
edited 16th Sep '11 9:27:06 PM by Raso
Jewellery is popular as a transformation item in general. There's no reason to single out a specific genre for it when it's one of the single most common forms this trope takes regardless of genre.
See this thread.
Tweaked the description of Transformation Trinket to de-emphasize Japan-specific elements. What's next?
Edit: How about Henshin Hero? While we're at it. Edit again: got that one too. This isn't really that hard—most of the stuff to take out is like "This is common in Toku" or "Magical Girls do this a lot" and can just be zapped completely.
edited 16th Sep '11 10:42:16 PM by troacctid
Not really most use easily marketed stuff like wristwatches, cellphones, belts yada. Only those focused on girly stuff like outfits and such use crystals, lockets, earrings and such which would be Magical Girl. And again removing every single reference to a genre that uses these as industry standard is bad.
that one does need work but its one of those wholly stereotypical Japanese tropes that it's flat out surprising to see them elsewhere so it's got to stay somewhat centric especially when you could try and shoehorn superheroes like Super Man in it which is 100% not this in any way.
And removing references to the genres that use as an aggregate the GD trope is really bad it's like saying Standard Sci-Fi Fleet without you know saying Sci Fi or removing every super heroine from Most Common Superpower.
edited 16th Sep '11 10:53:41 PM by Raso
That's because Superman doesn't transform. There are lots of western superheroes though that do transform and they work just like the Eastern version. The Blue Beetle for one.
Captain Marvel did it decades before the Magical Girl genre even existed. It is definitely not an anime-specific trope.
Who said it was "anime specific"? In no way is it that. It gets more use in live action Toku than anything.
If anything It might be a Discredited Trope in western works though besides those referencing Japanese works it's not used much. Probably too cheesy after He Man ran it into the ground.
Anyways still very much against the current Transformation Trinket description It's worse than maddy's (Which was pretty good sans one line) it makes it sound far more general than it is.
And there isnt a single pothole or wiki word anywhere to the Genres that use them. You at least want to reference the people who use the freaken trope.... I would think, They are very much related. (so we can talk about something'ss usage in a genre except when it happens to be a genre originating in japan?)
edited 16th Sep '11 11:37:40 PM by Raso
This isn't a problem with just tropes appearing to be anime when they're not. A lot of them are clearly written with something very specific in mind—a particular anime plot, an episode of Star Trek, or even just a short quote that gave the original writer a trope idea. Sure, anime is probably the most common, but not all of them by any means.
Anyway, when you see a trope like that, I guess the solution is to bring it up in trope talk and figure out if its as specific as it is written.
edited 16th Sep '11 11:18:49 PM by Discar
Shouldn't that be Trope Repair Shop, not Trope Talk?
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