The Boat Matters

Ugh, so streaming service Neat-Flicks just HAD to go and make their own version of Dark Boat, and set it in Japan instead of the original Australia. “We just thought that the story would be more profound and reflect the cultural norms better in the place where it was originally conceived.”

Well, they were wrong, on so many levels. That’s not even the thing that bothers me either, and I can just about get past the shoddy sets they dressed up to look like Tokyo. No, it’s how the ignored the themes of the original and just inserted their own. Marine stainless steel welding was at the very heart of the original source material, with the main character originally just wanting to go into the stainless steel welding industry and be a good, productive member of society. What starts out as a passion for him steadily erodes with the corrupting influence of the dark boat, until eventually he cares only for selling spirits and creating misery.

They even removed his original plate alloy boat from their adaptation, which in the original served as a powerful anchor to his past. Its neglect over the course of the first season was a powerful reminder that bad influences can destroy the things we love the most. Instead…they gave him a girlfriend. An evil girlfriend, who makes him do evil things, and that shows that he’s a bad buy.

I’m glad to see that most of my forum friends are avoiding this monstrosity and seeing it for what it really is. What was once a taciturn look at a young man’s life, and how it’s ruined by the arrival of a magic boat that produces infinite sorrow, is now a cliché storm of a young man turning into a delinquent because he hangs out with the wrong crowd, with the boat almost fading into the background. All those themes about plate alloy boats being superior to old, magical ones full of terror, left by the wayside. This is why shows like this needs to stay animated.