How Hetalia describe a country vs how you would see it

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How Hetalia describe a country vs how you would see it

Post by Inunobaka on Thu 8 Sep - 19:38

This subject is to discuss how you would have imagined a country to be like(if personified) before hetalia and compare it to its Hetalia counterpart.
Note that it isn't made to be offensive so use common sense when dealing with it; if you think it's a really mean or racist statement, don't say it.
I'd like you to not look to be offended either; if you talk here, you know we're dealing with stereotypes that aren't an accurate description of any ethnicity/culture/country.
To sum it all up; Play nice.




To start, I'd like to use my own country; before Hetalia, I imagined France to be closer to Marianne, one of our National symbols; it's a woman wearing a phrygian hat, often wearing a toga, and who usually is strong and defend her democratic values. I'd imagine France to be quite fancy, appreciate good food and wine and like fashion so Hetalia often hits the spot for this much; However I wasn't raised being told my country was weak (actually from what we learned in school we did a good job, and I still believe it given our geographic location; we're not an island like England, it's harder to defend so invasions aren't that odd, and we did pretty well in my opinion...) Nor was I aware we were all perverts.
I can understand why in Hetalia the character is really touchy feely, since from what I know Japanese people don't go around kissing people to greet them; beside it's true we don't have much problems showing affection in public. While we don't go around groping each others (with a few exceptions, some friends are close enough to allow it but that's personal preferences and not a behavior displayed by everyone), We are more opens when it comes to touching.
I can also somehow see why the character is kind of flamboyant, since it seems like we're really passionate about some things (understand food, our rights, putting out nose in other people's business, fashion for a lot of girls); I think we are because of how often we'll strike for something we think is right, or how we had along history moments when our nation went all out to get something (the revolution is an example,but you could mention the resistance and Charles de Gaulle, even if it wasn't that much people they still were brave and fighting for an ideal); this whole thing shows we'll make ourselves heard, even when it's not welcomed. We also are big on fashion here and men tend to take care of themselves and follow fashion too (they're not all gay like some may think, it's just a slightly different mentality; Suite a few girls would rather have a guy who knows how to put himself out and doesn't look or smell like a bear. It seems like a few Frenchmen understood this.).

If I had to add some "faults" I'd mention the fact France would most likely be really egoistical, and think of himself before others, basing this on our news which seems to be mainly about our country and not really about other things, or the fact a lot of people seem to really like our country (even if we're the first to criticize it; nothing can be better than France. It's something I saw quite a few time with people, so probably not everyone but still.) I've seen him depicted as some sort of narcissist in the fandom as an example, and that'd be pretty spot on in my opinion.
I'd also put the fact he'd be really catholic as a fault; not that being christian is a bad thing as it is (it's a nice religion from all I know) but we had persecutions going on during middle age, or that famous St Bathelemy night. The crusades are a nice example too, and still now there are prejudices against some religious minorities. So I'd believe France wouldn't have been so open when it comes to religion, though he'd accept their existences (we are a secular country now after all, separating the church and the government.)

So overall I'd say France in hetalia could be a bit braver, but overall hits the spot given it's an exaggeration of stereotypes. I'd love him not to be considered a serial rapist in fandom, but well. Of course all of this is my own opinion based on some observations made by living there, and I'm a little biased for I might be a little patriotic (though if I had to be honest France would also do a few random really stupid things...).

I'd really like to see other people's input on this subject, just remember the opinions expressed here belong to their authors only!
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Re: How Hetalia describe a country vs how you would see it

Post by Eima on Thu 8 Sep - 20:25

When talking about perverseness I'd love to remind about your ability to talk about sex aloud in public and with friends. Something as a Lithuanian I find absolutely difficult to comprehend. xD

Also about being bad at wars, well my thought it's more or less British propaganda that got way too mainstream. That and the Simpsons sealed it in with "cheese eating surrender monkeys". I myself do not remember hearing any remarks about the French loosing from any of my teachers.

All in all, France in my opinion is one of the most accurate portrail of their country or at least how other people see it.
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Re: How Hetalia describe a country vs how you would see it

Post by Inunobaka on Thu 8 Sep - 20:43

You mean, the teletubbies thing?
But yeah, that didn't sound like something too out of the ordinary to me so I didn't think of mentionning it but it's true people talk about sex pretty openly there...and we have condom distributors in the open.

I do think France is pretty good overall in Hetalia, I just have higher standards for him I think. I really like the character though!
And I admit I think America was quite good too in my opinion, as well as Germany. The whole eating burgers thing and being slightly stupid fits well with the image we have of them here... as for Germany, I know a few Germans, they're more laid back but it also fits the stereotypes from here so. Then again for never going to America I can't talk much about it; as for Germany it's sometime hard for me since I mostly know family there, and not a lot of Germans I met who weren't raised in a way similar to the way I was etc.
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Re: How Hetalia describe a country vs how you would see it

Post by asari on Fri 9 Sep - 20:34

Let's see....
Hmm....
FINLAND.
YES, FINLAND.
One of the most STEREOTYPICALLY failed characters in the series, after characters such as Poland, I imagined Finland to be scary, tough and knife-carrying. Well, that was just in my imagination anyway.
But cute, sweet and vulnerable around Sweden?
I guess Sweden and Finland had a personality swap. I don't know how Himuraya messed this up.
Shocked


Last edited by asari on Fri 16 Sep - 20:22; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Cleared up my opinion, just to make it clearer what I meant :^D)
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Re: How Hetalia describe a country vs how you would see it

Post by Carmina on Sat 10 Sep - 14:06

@asari- If you read the Scandanavi and the World comics it sounds like your perception of Sweden and Finland is much more like they're shown there.
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Re: How Hetalia describe a country vs how you would see it

Post by Eima on Sat 10 Sep - 16:16

I remember not really giving much care about stereotypes or countries before hetalia so I can't really say much about anyone. xD Though, now that I think back the stereotype of Lithuanians I had was quite far from today's Liet. It was pretty much a blond blue eyed girl, with braided hair and in a traditional dress (okay maybe it was less than a stereotype and more of a personification, still that's the image was such).

But today I believe Liet is a far better version. xD It surprises me how a Japanese man, without having visited the country got the people down so well. I especially love the little details such as "his car is always second-hand"( this is so true and sad at the same time. We even make jokes like "Lithuanians are interested in what cars the Germans are buying now, cause they know they will buy them in 10 years") Some details are somewhat inaccurate *cougPoland/Lithuaniachough* but that's forgivable.



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Re: How Hetalia describe a country vs how you would see it

Post by asari on Mon 12 Sep - 17:32

Carmina wrote:@asari- If you read the Scandanavi and the World comics it sounds like your perception of Sweden and Finland is much more like they're shown there.

I guess most of the world sees Finland like this. I think. I might be wrong....but then again, I'm not good with stereotypes. XD And yes, I read SATW and I agree that Finland and Sweden are portrayed better there then in Hetalia. (But that's what I think, anyway.) I imagined Swedes to be intelligent, like to have fun and chill out, but at the same time try to have a calm life, if you get what I mean.
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Re: How Hetalia describe a country vs how you would see it

Post by Eima on Mon 12 Sep - 17:48

I dunno. The prevalent stereotype over here is of blond, blue eyed friendly and very very slow people, who love their saunas. Hetalia's Finland seems pretty accurate to me (except again Sweden/Finland? I thought the Finnish didn't like the Swedes)

Sweden is a little off though. We do not see them that gruff at all xD
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Re: How Hetalia describe a country vs how you would see it

Post by asari on Mon 12 Sep - 19:18

Eima wrote:

Sweden is a little off though. We do not see them that gruff at all xD

Same here. Who said all Swedes are all that...stiff? *couldn't find a better word*
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Re: How Hetalia describe a country vs how you would see it

Post by Coqui Froggy on Fri 16 Sep - 11:11

asari wrote:Let's see....
Hmm....
FINLAND.
YES, FINLAND.
One of the most failed characters in the series, after characters such as Poland, I imagined Finland to be scary, tough and knife-carrying. Well, that was just in my imagination anyway.
But cute, sweet and vulnerable around Sweden?
I guess Sweden and Finland had a personality swap. I don't know how Himuraya messed this up.
Shocked

I wouldn't call Finland "vulnerable". He's more excited for battle than Sweden. I think he can be cute and bamf at once. <3
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Re: How Hetalia describe a country vs how you would see it

Post by asari on Fri 16 Sep - 20:21

Coqui Froggy wrote:
asari wrote:Let's see....
Hmm....
FINLAND.
YES, FINLAND.
One of the most failed characters in the series, after characters such as Poland, I imagined Finland to be scary, tough and knife-carrying. Well, that was just in my imagination anyway.
But cute, sweet and vulnerable around Sweden?
I guess Sweden and Finland had a personality swap. I don't know how Himuraya messed this up.
Shocked

I wouldn't call Finland "vulnerable". He's more excited for battle than Sweden. I think he can be cute and bamf at once. <3

Well, I didn't mean "vulnerable...." but....heh, "strange" around Sweden. I must admit Finland IS cute, though. I REGRET NOTHING.
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Re: How Hetalia describe a country vs how you would see it

Post by chibicavan on Thu 22 Sep - 3:12

Things I will admit about Americans, being one...
~We do have amazingly stupid people in this country (including our politicians, holy gods... I can name a good few where I'll start calling myself Canadian if I see them in the white house, and where I'm surprised people give them support, but I won't name names)
~Fast good chains are everywhere, and there's not a town out there (that I've seen) that won't have at least one burger joint
~We're a rather exuberant group of people if we think there's something we can take a stand on, no matter if we've got a valid opinion or not
~We are a strong nation, and did "grow up" very quickly as far as industry/production goes

So I can see where Himaruya gets some of his opinions when he designed America. For the most part, I like how America was portrayed, and I feel able to laugh at my own country because I know the above statements can be true about us. However... there's times especially in the anime/strips/fandom where I feel this is a bit overdone. America pulling out his "world map" in the recent episode, funny as it is, made me want to bang my head up against someplace hard because a good bunch of us know at least the major-league countries of our world map by the time we're out of high school (if we payed attention). Reading the atmosphere... some of our presidents have done it superbly, some unfortunately have failed (and miserably *coughcough*). But it doesn't mean that Americans as a whole fail at doing so. But that depends on if you want to see America as a personification of his government, his people, or a mix of both.

Anyways... if Coqui Froggy wants to chip in on this...
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