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Discuss all topics related to anime.
561

Steampunk Anime
Topic by: qutzibaby
Posted: June 6, 2008 - 10:09 PM PDT
Last Reply: June 10, 2008 - 8:50 PM PDT

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author topic: Steampunk Anime
qutzibaby
post #1  on June 6, 2008 - 10:09 PM PDT  
so doozer is building some neat looking stuff in our garage for a movie she's doing prop work on, and she said she's making steampunk looking stuff. i'd never heard of this before so she loaded me up with movies, comics, video games, and anime to get an idea. the movies are fine but i don't read comics or play video games but the anime she gave me are "nadia: the secret of blue water", "samurai 7", and "fullmetal alchemist".

do you guys know of any other steampunk type anime that would be good to watch? she said this would be the place to ask.
Catullus
post #2  on June 7, 2008 - 2:04 PM PDT  
well if it were games it would be easy as bioshock is definitely steam punk

as for anime off the top of my head
Last Exile is the first that comes to mind
steamboy the movie is oh so obvious
Gin`iro no Kami no Agito has some steampunk elements
Metropolis (the animated 2k1 version does as well)

If i can remember any others ill post back
doozer
post #3  on June 7, 2008 - 2:25 PM PDT  
I tried BioShock..then -I- ended up staying up too late playing it and not getting anything done.

I gave her the Metropolises...Metropoli? (silent and animated version).
Catullus
post #4  on June 7, 2008 - 2:33 PM PDT  
> On June 7, 2008 - 2:25 PM PDT doozer wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> I tried BioShock..then -I- ended up staying up too late playing it and not getting anything done.
>
> I gave her the Metropolises...Metropoli? (silent and animated version).
> ---------------------------------

well some miyazaki films have it, laputa is a good start
Secret of Cerulean Sand is very similar to nadia with probably more steampunkish creations, pretty sure its not licensed

would help if you were a little more specific of what you were going for and trying to do.
doozer
post #5  on June 7, 2008 - 2:59 PM PDT  
> On June 7, 2008 - 2:33 PM PDT Catullus wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> > ---------------------------------
>
> well some miyazaki films have it, laputa is a good start
> Secret of Cerulean Sand is very similar to nadia with probably more steampunkish creations, pretty sure its not licensed
>
> would help if you were a little more specific of what you were going for and trying to do.
> ---------------------------------

It really is non-specified. She never heard of the genre before, so I was showing examples. Not really focusing on any sub genre.
hamano
post #6  on June 7, 2008 - 3:06 PM PDT  
Last Exile has a lot of cool steampunk designs in it. There's an early scene inside one of the floating command ships and taking up a big part of the bridge and chugging away on calculating trajectories and what not is a difference engine, a steam-powered mechanical computer. They don't say anything about it, it's just in the background, but it was a great touch for steampunk fans.
hamano
post #7  on June 7, 2008 - 3:18 PM PDT  
Sakura Wars (both the game and TV anime) and Sherlock Hound (an early series by Hayao Miyazaki) both have lots of steampunk tech. Oh, and there was that film from a while back, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. Most Jules Verne and HG Wells-related movies are steampunky by their very nature. Captain Nemo must be the most copied character trope in anime aside from the Cat Girl....
hamano
post #8  on June 7, 2008 - 3:23 PM PDT  
Oh, and David Lynch's Dune had awesome steampunk designs. You wouldn't usually classify the Dune franchise as steampunk, but the designs for that film, definitely worth a look.
Catullus
post #9  on June 7, 2008 - 3:23 PM PDT  
well if she is going to watch it i definitely recommend skipping some of my suggestions and watching last exile, steamboy and secret of cerulean sand

as those are the most watchable... Miyazaki films work too but I have to admit im not much of a fan outside nausicaa.

The problem with steam punk is that the genre is too closely related to cyber punk so its hard to make a big distinction between the two when they are so similar. I think I prefer cyber punk but I do like them both.
doozer
post #10  on June 7, 2008 - 3:28 PM PDT  
> On June 7, 2008 - 3:23 PM PDT Catullus wrote:
> ---------------------------------
>
>
> as those are the most watchable... Miyazaki films work too but I have to admit im not much of a fan outside nausicaa.
>
> The problem with steam punk is that the genre is too closely related to cyber punk so its hard to make a big distinction between the two when they are so similar. I think I prefer cyber punk but I do like them both.
> ---------------------------------


I like them both...a lot. Steampunk came up because I'm getting paid too little to make some props. But who doesn't want an airship?
hamano
post #11  on June 7, 2008 - 3:31 PM PDT  
Too bad GreenCine doesn't have Master of the World, a 1961 Vincent Price film based on a Jules Verne story. I bet it inspired a lot of anime artists...Look at this model of the airship from the film! I guess in retrospect the film was really cheesy, but when I was a kid I was AWED by the production design... to me it was like Star Wars was for kids a generation later.
doozer
post #12  on June 7, 2008 - 3:41 PM PDT  
> On June 7, 2008 - 3:31 PM PDT hamano wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> Too bad GreenCine doesn't have Master of the World, a 1961 Vincent Price film based on a Jules Verne story. I bet it inspired a lot of anime artists...Look at this model of the airship from the film! I guess in retrospect the film was really cheesy, but when I was a kid I was AWED by the production design... to me it was like Star Wars was for kids a generation later.
> ---------------------------------


I LOVE THAT MOVIE!! I saw it as a kid with my grandpa on saturday or sunday movie thing on basic TV. Cheesy as all get out I'm sure but the art direction was awesome and I loved the music.
hamano
post #13  on June 7, 2008 - 3:51 PM PDT  
> On June 7, 2008 - 3:23 PM PDT Catullus wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> well if she is going to watch it i definitely recommend skipping some of my suggestions and watching last exile, steamboy and secret of cerulean sand

Yeah, I'd say if you were interested in production design Last Exile is pretty definitive. Gankutsuou is also very beautifully designed but it mixes elements from too many different eras to be truly "steampunk"

> The problem with steam punk is that the genre is too closely related to cyber punk so its hard to make a big distinction between the two

Oh, I don't think they're THAT similar at all... It can be confusing because so many of the great cyberpunk authors also worked on steampunk novels... William Gibson co-authored The Difference Engine, one of the seminal steampunk books, but most of his other works, like Neuromancer and Count Zero, are clearly not steampunk. Neal Stephenson got famous with Snow Crash, which was definitely cyberpunk, and followed that up with The Diamond Age, which was very heavily Victorian (and therefore steampunkish) in style and the way the society was structured, but otherwise (in terms of technology) not steampunk at all. Most of the really popular cyberpunk works (The Matrix, Blade Runner) don't have "Victorian" or "Steam Power" elements in them at all.
Catullus
post #14  on June 7, 2008 - 4:14 PM PDT  
> On June 7, 2008 - 3:51 PM PDT hamano wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> > On June 7, 2008 - 3:23 PM PDT Catullus wrote:
> > ---------------------------------
> > well if she is going to watch it i definitely recommend skipping some of my suggestions and watching last exile, steamboy and secret of cerulean sand
>
> Yeah, I'd say if you were interested in production design Last Exile is pretty definitive. Gankutsuou is also very beautifully designed but it mixes elements from too many different eras to be truly "steampunk"
>
> > The problem with steam punk is that the genre is too closely related to cyber punk so its hard to make a big distinction between the two
>
> Oh, I don't think they're THAT similar at all... It can be confusing because so many of the great cyberpunk authors also worked on steampunk novels... William Gibson co-authored The Difference Engine, one of the seminal steampunk books, but most of his other works, like Neuromancer and Count Zero, are clearly not steampunk. Neal Stephenson got famous with Snow Crash, which was definitely cyberpunk, and followed that up with The Diamond Age, which was very heavily Victorian (and therefore steampunkish) in style and the way the society was structured, but otherwise (in terms of technology) not steampunk at all. Most of the really popular cyberpunk works (The Matrix, Blade Runner) don't have "Victorian" or "Steam Power" elements in them at all.
>
> ---------------------------------

well your opinion on the definitions differ from my own then. If you are going to deny they share a lot of common characteristics then your opinion is flat out wrong but I dont need to be the one to tell you that.

In any case it really is a matter of defining what technology makes the difference between calling it cyberpunk and steampunk and that can be left open to interpretation when some mediums contain instances where items could be considered of both such as blade runner.

In my mind when you start discussing robots and androids it starts getting into cyberpunk territory, but then you have the animated metropolis which clearly crosses over back and forth between steampunk tech and cyberpunk and it becomes a lot less clear.

As I my previous post I maintain that some of them can be hard to distinguish and can be left open to interpretation.

doozer
post #15  on June 7, 2008 - 4:20 PM PDT  
Just a perspective:

I've read that steampunk -is- cyberpunk....1000 years ago.

I think they have a lot of parallels, and they make for a magnificent cross genre.
hamano
post #16  on June 7, 2008 - 5:09 PM PDT  
> On June 7, 2008 - 4:14 PM PDT Catullus wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> well your opinion on the definitions differ from my own then. If you are going to deny they share a lot of common characteristics then your opinion is flat out wrong but I dont need to be the one to tell you that.

I'm just going by the generally accepted and understood definitions.

According to SF critic Lawrence Person,

Classic cyberpunk characters were marginalized, alienated loners who lived on the edge of society in generally dystopic futures where daily life was impacted by rapid technological change, an ubiquitous datasphere of computerized information, and invasive modification of the human body.

Generally cyberpunk is set in the present, near-future or future, and revolves around low-lifes and information technology. Nothing "steam" or "pre-20th century industrial" about it, except the fact that the protrayal of society's underbelly reflects the themes and characters explored by authors like Charles Dickens.

Steampunk is an "alternate history" genre that is set in an alternate past or in an alternate world where the primacy of steam power and 18th-19th century industry and technology has been preserved. They're CLEARLY two different genres although a few works show some overlap.

There's a big overlap in authors who have written for both genres, and a big overlap in fans (including me) and a definite overlap in themes (dystopian, Dickensian societies) but from a PRODUCTION DESIGN point of view they're very distinct from each other, and this thread is about production design and aesthetics, if I'm not mistaken. It doesn't do anyone any good to jumble the two genres together as if it didn't matter.
Vanamonde
post #17  on June 8, 2008 - 3:47 PM PDT  
> On June 7, 2008 - 3:31 PM PDT hamano wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> Too bad GreenCine doesn't have Master of the World, a 1961 Vincent Price film based on a Jules Verne story. I bet it inspired a lot of anime artists...Look at this model of the airship from the film! I guess in retrospect the film was really cheesy, but when I was a kid I was AWED by the production design... to me it was like Star Wars was for kids a generation later.
> ---------------------------------

For once, you and I agreed completely! "Master of the World" was wonderful back when I saw it in the early sixties. I would go to the local Saturday matinee and pay 25 cents and see two films and a couple of cartoons. Bliss. I see this film, cold, not even realizing what was coming.

Thank you for that great memory. Have some Wensleydale cheese with cranberries!
Vanamonde
post #18  on June 8, 2008 - 4:04 PM PDT  
> On June 7, 2008 - 4:20 PM PDT doozer wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> Just a perspective:
>
> I've read that steampunk -is- cyberpunk....1000 years ago.
> ---------------------------------

That is a bit too far in the past. James Watt invented the first really workable steam engine from 1763 to 1775.

As usual, Wikipedia has a great article:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steampunk

I like many of the above examples are stretching it a bit.

While, Fritz Lang's "Metropolis" may have helped inspire steampunk, the genre was not invented until the 90's, with William Gibson and Bruce Sterling's 1990 novel, "The Difference Engine". And Osamu Tezuka's Metropolis does not have the steampunk nature at all, nor does any of Miyazaki's works, except in a superficial way. And certainly not, "Full Metal Alchemist".

For the life of me, I cannot think of any anime that is steampunk except for "Steamboy". And it is WONDERFUL!!! Highly recommended and required for all otaku.

Even the Wiki disagrees with me. But man, I would love to have this steampunk computer!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Steamtop.jpg
doozer
post #19  on June 8, 2008 - 4:43 PM PDT  
> On June 8, 2008 - 4:04 PM PDT Vanamonde wrote:
> ---------------------------------
>
>
> That is a bit too far in the past. James Watt invented the first really workable steam engine from 1763 to 1775.
>
> As usual, Wikipedia has a great article:
>
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steampunk
>
> I like many of the above examples are stretching it a bit.
>
> While, Fritz Lang's "Metropolis" may have helped inspire steampunk, the genre was not invented until the 90's, with William Gibson and Bruce Sterling's 1990 novel, "The Difference Engine". And Osamu Tezuka's Metropolis does not have the steampunk nature at all, nor does any of Miyazaki's works, except in a superficial way. And certainly not, "Full Metal Alchemist".
>
> For the life of me, I cannot think of any anime that is steampunk except for "Steamboy". And it is WONDERFUL!!! Highly recommended and required for all otaku.
>
> Even the Wiki disagrees with me. But man, I would love to have this steampunk computer!
>
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Steamtop.jpg
> ---------------------------------


I really don't think that quote I provided is in reference to when it was actually created so much as a comparison of the two styles.
hamano
post #20  on June 9, 2008 - 4:02 AM PDT  
> On June 8, 2008 - 4:43 PM PDT doozer wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> I really don't think that quote I provided is in reference to when it was actually created so much as a comparison of the two styles.

I'd say most steampunk would have to be set between US independence and WW1 to qualify, OR in an alternate history where the reign of steam-powered tech extended beyond WW1, OR in an alternate world that exists in a historical age that is the equivalent of this "Victorian" time period on Earth.

Cyberpunk is set in the near future, or in some alternate history/world that mirrors what we usually think of as the "near future"...

So I would say Steampunk=Cyberpunk-300years at most, not 1000 years. The genres together cover the 19th through 21st centuries of human history.
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