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Re-cap episodes: General bitching, and also how to score them?

#1
Mar 14, 11:23 PM
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What's the point of re-cap episodes?

And howcome sometimes they're counted (on MAL) as part of the series, but sometimes not?

And between the in-series re-cap eps, the ovas that are just re-cap eps, and the "movies" that are just 70 minute re-caps, why is Japan/anime so fixated with re-packaging the same story over and over again? (seems to be something specific to anime- I don't remember ever seeing Western shows/cartoons doing this- The closest Western comparison is the 'flashback episode', but that's different; it's normally a shitty-but-new narrative, collaging "funny" or "exciting" moments from past shows, not just repeating the same narrative as past shows in a condensed form like they think audiences are goldfish)

I never know how to score separate re-cap ovas/movies, especially if I've seen the full, original series? (like, say 'Death note: Relight', or the Armitage III' films) Should I give it a good score because the original series had a good story, and the re-cap is the same story, same animation, etc therefore it must be good, too? Or should I give it a shit score because it's annoying to re-watch the same thing a second time, only in a crappier version, and full series' are always > re-caps?

[best eg of the stupidity and pointlessness of re-cap eps is 'Wolf's Rain'; After just 14 normal ep's the studio felt the need to insert *4 re-cap eps in a row*- with EACH of those 4 episodes re-capping the full 14 episodes, but from the perspective of a different character (which made it marginally less agonizingly boring, but added basically nothing in terms of story, character development, etc). THEN, at the end of the planned, standard 26-ep run, they couldn't finish the actual story because they were short 4 episodes worth of story-telling time for some mysterious reason... (Hmmm, I wonder why???) So in the end they had to charge viewers extra for an additional 4 episode ova, in order to complete the story...

Honestly that 'Wolf's Rain' shitshow was the stupidest, most pointless waste of time since the Suzumiya Haruhi 'Endless Eight' debacle. But at least the Endless Eight was planned, and didn't mean viewers had to shell out extra cash.]

TL;DR Re-caps = poopy
 
#2
Mar 14, 11:43 PM

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Apollo18 said:

TL;DR Re-caps = poopy


Not necesserily true in all cases. I remember when I enjoyed the recap of the first season of 3-gatsu no Lion a lot more and gave it even a higher score than to the season itself it summarized because it had omitted all the irritating and tiresome antics of the most idiotic side characters that had ruined the mood of the anime for me and the re-cap was focused more on the story. The re-cap in that case was actually what the anime ought to have been from the start.
Modified by Anhesenaton, Mar 15, 12:04 AM
 
#3
Mar 15, 12:04 AM

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I'd say just rate them on how much you enjoyed them.
 
#4
Mar 15, 12:08 AM

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My guess is due to shortage of time in japan due to work, recap movies are introduced so that they don't have to spend much time to watch original work which is really long.
I think recap episodes aren't meant for binge watchers.


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#5
Mar 15, 12:29 AM
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Do they still make re-cap episodes with new anime? Or are they a throwback to the tv era?

I guess recaps made sense back in the age of tv, when you had to watch stuff on the tv station's schedule. But now that anyone can watch/re-watch any episode, and time they want, it just seems weird.
 
#6
Mar 15, 12:48 AM

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Japan still relies heaviy on anime being on tv (unlike the west) so they make sense for because if there is a production issue or they are behind they make a recap with minimal effort so the tv station is happy.
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#7
Mar 15, 12:53 AM

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I score them if I have a specific opinion on the recaps themselves.

If I don't, I usually just leave it blank, or give it the same score as the rest of the series.
 
#8
Mar 15, 1:06 AM

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i skip them because why would i watch it <.<
 
#9
Mar 15, 1:08 AM

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Don't watch them if you don't like them
 
Mar 15, 1:14 AM

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recap episodes are honestly becoming out of date.

back in the day recap episodes use to be useful.

this was before the internet became what it was today.

ideally recap episodes are suppose to catch up people who missed a bunch of episodes.

However, now with the internet they can just rewatch the episode. so honestly i can't wait for recaps to end.

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Mar 15, 1:24 AM

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Easy option, rate them the same as the anime since they're often basically just episode "X.5" of the series.

Otherwise rate them on an individual basis, rate it based on the function of the episode if you watched it. Was it a good recap? Did it cover everything important? How about the style of the recap itself was it just a clip show or did they get creative with it?

Movie recaps since that was a larger focus are usually to catch people up between seasons or as a refresher. Since there's almost always years between seasons if somebody wants a refresher it's easier to watch an hour than say like 10 hours for a 24 episode series.

Looking at wolf's rain as someone who's never watched it, from my perspective if the OVA is like the true ending then maybe giving them an extra 6 months to work on the finale is a good thing and worth the cost of OVAs?

Edit: Side note I personally really enjoyed Endless eight
Modified by GamerDLM, Mar 15, 1:38 AM
 
Mar 15, 1:27 AM

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FWIW, I think sometimes recaps are nice. For example, I really liked the air of symbolism that at least three of the Beatless recaps had. (The fourth one was odd since it wasn't properly previewed by the prior episode, I think? Not sure.)

Then again, I was also very entertained by Endless Eight.

I think something can be said that I'm less interested in "what happens next" and more interested in simply being taken on the ride.
 
Mar 15, 1:33 AM

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Sometimes people want to recall the emotions they got from the show but they don't want to rewatch the full season. And watching some kind of summary clip would be a good variant.
Ongoing anime sometimes get recap episodes just to get some additional time to work on following episodes. And sometimes they produce big recap OVAs or even movies just to earn a bit of extra money.
As for me, I do watch recaps but never rate them
Modified by Nemo_Niemand, Mar 15, 1:36 AM
 
Mar 15, 2:10 AM

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I don't watch them, so I don't really care, but it's annoying when you have to wait one more week for a new ep because they decided to make a recap. I don't mind recap movies though, they're usually reminders between seasons and not random fillers in the middle of the show.
 
Mar 15, 2:08 PM
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Very few series actually do a recap like that, and to say western shows never do is wrong, I'm a bit young to know but I'm sure the age of the sitcom had a few clip shows, mainly when they were going to end, possibly to kick up fan nostalgia.

Any Simpsons fan could tell you that western shows do clip reels, sometime around season 9 - the point where some fans now refer to "zombie Simpsons" where it is thought the quality of plot and humour has declined, they had a clip show nearly every year, almost as regular as the treehouse episodes, The Legend of Korra also had a clip show in book 4, it was revealed before it aired that the studio had to lay off a chunk of its staff before finishing book 4, Kind of worth it to hear Varick's version of the series though, where Korra is a damsel and Bo Lin does everything, I do like some of the "spin off" episodes like in the Simpsons though, they haven't come up with a plot for the main cast so they'll just make up random stories that give the supporting cast the spotlight.

Clip shows/recaps aren't really lazy, it's more of a sign that the studio is falling behind to release something new so they just use old clips in the case that they feel they need to release something instead of a delay
 
Mar 15, 2:08 PM

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All recaps deserve 1/10.
Recaps suck.
 
Mar 15, 2:34 PM

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How to score them: you don't.

You should consider them ghost episodes. They "don't count".
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Mar 15, 2:40 PM
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Yeah the purpose is there still I'm not going too watch them.
 
Mar 15, 7:19 PM

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If it's only one recap episode in a selection of one cour length (10-13 episodes) and it's the same entry as the TV series, that won't impact the score negatively. I'll give them a "fair chance" . Basically 1-cour = 1 recap allowed. 2-cour = 2 nonconsecutive recaps allowed with a difference of 1-cour length between the two recaps
If it's a separate entry and only one recap episode, then it won't be rated.
If it's consecutive recap episodes, the next recap episode gets an automatic 1 in a series of weighted episodes, unless it can convince me otherwise. The next consecutive ones get 0. Rinse and repeat
If it's two recap episodes within 13 episodes but not consecutive AND it's the same entry, then it can get no higher than half the score of the previous recap factored into the weight
If it's two recap episodes within 13 episodes but not consecutive AND it's a different MAL entry BUT it happened to be the next episode in the stream, then there aren't episodes that are going to soften the impact of a lower score and will get rated. This also will factor into the franchise's overall weighted score
If there is an entry (lengthier than a typical 22-24 minute episode ie movie or OVA) that is a direct sequel and has recap, then depending on the length of the recap (some can span from 10 minutes to almost the entire part only to have a few additional scenes added on to it), then the weighted number of minutes with the recap is a 1 and the rest of the content is graded differently. This score will also factor into franchise's overall weighted score.
Modified by MechKingKillbot, Mar 15, 7:26 PM
 
Mar 16, 5:05 AM

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Apollo18 said:
Do they still make re-cap episodes with new anime? Or are they a throwback to the tv era?

I guess recaps made sense back in the age of tv, when you had to watch stuff on the tv station's schedule. But now that anyone can watch/re-watch any episode, and time they want, it just seems weird.

JoJo Part 5 is currently airing (22 episodes aired so far) and it has had 2 recap episodes so far.

OT: I hate most recap episodes, and I usually score them about 2-3 points lower than the main series. I think the only one I like is the Kodomo no Jikan Recap OVA because it removes the flashback scenes and focuses on all the present day events.
Modified by wildhood, Mar 16, 5:09 AM
 
Mar 16, 5:21 AM

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I hate them, though I have an issue to watch episodes by order without skipping. They ruin it all...


 
Mar 16, 6:01 AM

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They are pretty useful when a second season comes up after 3-5 years and you don't remember a thing about the first season and don't want to watch it all.
You know those romantic comedies where it's obvious the two characters are going to get together at the end, but instead they drag out the story with a bunch of lukewarm twists and turns while they're more than friends but not quite lovers? I hate those.
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Mar 16, 9:20 AM

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Apollo18 said:

[best eg of the stupidity and pointlessness of re-cap eps is 'Wolf's Rain'; After just 14 normal ep's the studio felt the need to insert *4 re-cap eps in a row*- with EACH of those 4 episodes re-capping the full 14 episodes, but from the perspective of a different character (which made it marginally less agonizingly boring, but added basically nothing in terms of story, character development, etc). THEN, at the end of the planned, standard 26-ep run, they couldn't finish the actual story because they were short 4 episodes worth of story-telling time for some mysterious reason... (Hmmm, I wonder why???) So in the end they had to charge viewers extra for an additional 4 episode ova, in order to complete the story...

Honestly that 'Wolf's Rain' shitshow was the stupidest, most pointless waste of time since the Suzumiya Haruhi 'Endless Eight' debacle. But at least the Endless Eight was planned, and didn't mean viewers had to shell out extra cash.]

TL;DR Re-caps = poopy

First of all I have no idea why recaps would make a show worse, they just exist on top of whatever else the show does and doesn't really change the quality of the story or character or writing at all. Wolf's Rain is a fantastic show, if you don't like the recaps just skip them and watch the rest. It's not like you're watching it while it's airing and you have no other choice. Calling it trash because there were circumstances leading to it having a bunch of recap eps is just stupid, it's still the same show it would be without the recaps. Plus, as you said, the recaps weren't even bad, in fact they're among the more interesting and well done recaps I've ever seen.

Secondly, it's not like the Wolf's Rain recaps were 'pointless', they happened because of a reason. The show aired back during the SARS outbreak which made people very jumpy and panicky and on top of that the main sponsor of the show just bailed in the middle of it and so they had no other choice than to stall until things went back to normal and they found a new sponsor to take over. Since they only had 26 TV weeks available they had to put out the last 4 episodes as OVAs. The alternative would have been it getting completely cancelled after 13 eps when the sponsor jumped ship during the SARS panic, and never getting to finish its story. Would that really have been better?


The same goes in general. There is no harm done in a recap movie or episode. If you take them away, the plot wouldn't be any better, there would simply be one episode or movie less to watch. Why does that matter so much that people literally have mental breakdowns over it? Noone makes you watch the recap eps. I always skip them when I binge a show. And recap Movies can be a nice way to rewatch a show you liked without having to spend the full amount of time while also often getting the benefit of improved animation or a few additional scenes. It's literally only upside since anyone who doesn't like them can just ignore them or skip them. Nothing would be gained from removing them, there'd just be overall less to watch.

Idk if people think that recap episodes or movies are 'taking away' other, 'normal' episodes, but if they do that's just stupid. Recaps either get made because of:
1. Production issues and them literally being unable to present a normal episode on schedule. The alternative is just that show not airing at all in that week.

2. Planned from the start as part of a series to give the viewers memory a refreshment, or maybe because there wasn't enough material to fill 26 episodes. If you take them away they would simply be on episode shorter and nothing would be gained either.

3. recap Movies that are made for popular franchises as a bonus, as a way to experience them in theaters (in Japan at least). They get made because it doesn't cost much when most scenes were already animated during the TV run. They don't get made instead of anything, but on top of everything else from that franchise.

So not having recaps would not benefit anyone, it would just be annoying for those who us who don't mind them, enjoy them or even sometimes need them to refresh our memories. For example, I wish Full Metal Panic had a recap movie or Special because then I could have watched the third season that came out 15 years later. But as it is I barely remember anything about the show and don't feel like rewatching a whole 25+ episodes just to be able to watch the new season. And I've been in similar situations countless times before. I'm very happy Mob Psycho made a recap episode that I can watch before I binge season 2 since it's been 3 years already.

So yeah, recaps are awesome because they have functionality, can be enjoyable and if you don't require them can be easily skipped and ignored. Everyone 'hating' something that has no downside for them and a lot of upside for other people is just kinda toxic imo. You wouldn't benefit in any way from recaps being removed from shows, while people like me would definitely miss them.


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Mar 16, 9:23 AM
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I watch recaps. i mark off as complete but don't score them anymore, I just leave it blank.
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Mar 16, 9:29 AM

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I Don't score them when they're fully recap.

Utility ? mostly done when the anime need most time due to bad animation/or specifical period ( like 1st january ).
Ccould be used too when a film or a sequel came after many years ( which is sometime included directly, as often use in "introduction" of film ).


Most of the time it's boring but could be useful to reminds story when you have seen it a long time ago, or when the point of view is different ( cf the first movoe of sora no otoshimono for instance ).
 
Mar 16, 10:34 AM

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Generally it makes sense.
If it's contained within a season/show that's 12+ episodes, you shouldn't pay any mind to it score-wise.
If it's a recap movie for a series that has multiple seasons (ex. Attack on Titan), I generally rate it one number lower than the season it's recapping.
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Pullman said:
Apollo18 said:

[best eg of the stupidity and pointlessness of re-cap eps is 'Wolf's Rain'; After just 14 normal ep's the studio felt the need to insert *4 re-cap eps in a row*- with EACH of those 4 episodes re-capping the full 14 episodes, but from the perspective of a different character (which made it marginally less agonizingly boring, but added basically nothing in terms of story, character development, etc). THEN, at the end of the planned, standard 26-ep run, they couldn't finish the actual story because they were short 4 episodes worth of story-telling time for some mysterious reason... (Hmmm, I wonder why???) So in the end they had to charge viewers extra for an additional 4 episode ova, in order to complete the story...

Honestly that 'Wolf's Rain' shitshow was the stupidest, most pointless waste of time since the Suzumiya Haruhi 'Endless Eight' debacle. But at least the Endless Eight was planned, and didn't mean viewers had to shell out extra cash.]

TL;DR Re-caps = poopy

First of all I have no idea why recaps would make a show worse, they just exist on top of whatever else the show does and doesn't really change the quality of the story or character or writing at all. Wolf's Rain is a fantastic show, if you don't like the recaps just skip them and watch the rest. It's not like you're watching it while it's airing and you have no other choice. Calling it trash because there were circumstances leading to it having a bunch of recap eps is just stupid, it's still the same show it would be without the recaps. Plus, as you said, the recaps weren't even bad, in fact they're among the more interesting and well done recaps I've ever seen.

Secondly, it's not like the Wolf's Rain recaps were 'pointless', they happened because of a reason. The show aired back during the SARS outbreak which made people very jumpy and panicky and on top of that the main sponsor of the show just bailed in the middle of it and so they had no other choice than to stall until things went back to normal and they found a new sponsor to take over. Since they only had 26 TV weeks available they had to put out the last 4 episodes as OVAs. The alternative would have been it getting completely cancelled after 13 eps when the sponsor jumped ship during the SARS panic, and never getting to finish its story. Would that really have been better?


The same goes in general. There is no harm done in a recap movie or episode. If you take them away, the plot wouldn't be any better, there would simply be one episode or movie less to watch. Why does that matter so much that people literally have mental breakdowns over it? Noone makes you watch the recap eps. I always skip them when I binge a show. And recap Movies can be a nice way to rewatch a show you liked without having to spend the full amount of time while also often getting the benefit of improved animation or a few additional scenes. It's literally only upside since anyone who doesn't like them can just ignore them or skip them. Nothing would be gained from removing them, there'd just be overall less to watch.

Idk if people think that recap episodes or movies are 'taking away' other, 'normal' episodes, but if they do that's just stupid. Recaps either get made because of:
1. Production issues and them literally being unable to present a normal episode on schedule. The alternative is just that show not airing at all in that week.

2. Planned from the start as part of a series to give the viewers memory a refreshment, or maybe because there wasn't enough material to fill 26 episodes. If you take them away they would simply be on episode shorter and nothing would be gained either.

3. recap Movies that are made for popular franchises as a bonus, as a way to experience them in theaters (in Japan at least). They get made because it doesn't cost much when most scenes were already animated during the TV run. They don't get made instead of anything, but on top of everything else from that franchise.

So not having recaps would not benefit anyone, it would just be annoying for those who us who don't mind them, enjoy them or even sometimes need them to refresh our memories. For example, I wish Full Metal Panic had a recap movie or Special because then I could have watched the third season that came out 15 years later. But as it is I barely remember anything about the show and don't feel like rewatching a whole 25+ episodes just to be able to watch the new season. And I've been in similar situations countless times before. I'm very happy Mob Psycho made a recap episode that I can watch before I binge season 2 since it's been 3 years already.

So yeah, recaps are awesome because they have functionality, can be enjoyable and if you don't require them can be easily skipped and ignored. Everyone 'hating' something that has no downside for them and a lot of upside for other people is just kinda toxic imo. You wouldn't benefit in any way from recaps being removed from shows, while people like me would definitely miss them.


Yeah, "if you don't like them, don't watch them" is a fair call. And I had no idea about the SARS stuff in connection with wolfs Rain- like others have said, the "recap" thing made some sense back in the tv era, and your info about those days is interesting, and definitely helped me understand why those eps were made in the first place.

But it's still annoying to sit down expecting a normal, new episode, then 90 seconds in you realise "wait, this is shit that happened 7 episodes back" Which was what was especially annoying with Wolfs Rain- I had no idea there were *any* recaps coming, then for 4 eps in a row I'm expecting something new... but nope- another recap. So you try the next one... nope- another recap, etc. etc. If i knew they were recaps ahead of time I would have just skipped them all, but I didn't- Same kind of frustration as watching the Suzumiya Haruhi 'Endless Eight' blind. I guess I should just start doing some homework before i start a series, and pre-emptively weed out all the recap eps or something.

Or even with movies- I guess I'm still kinda new to anime (esp older, pre-internet era anime. Or maybe I'm just a slow learner, idk...), so when I see a movie, I tend to just assume it's going to be a new, original story in the same franchise (and often it is), so it's annoying when the penny drops that "oh shit- this is just the first cour editted into a 70minute highlight reel".

idk, I understand more of *why* they made recaps, with some of the context yourself and others have given in this thread (which was just confusing before)- but they're still annoying to run into. I guess I'll just do more research ahead of time, so I can just avoid them like you say.
 
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