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Tsukasa is a Gary Stu? 
29th-May-2009 11:59 pm
EDIT EDIT: There are some spoilers for both Decade and Kabuto in the comments. Sorry, I guess readers just have to be careful, or just read the post (I like the comments, though; thanks to everyone who has contributed).

EDIT: Spoilers for Decade episodes 2-3 in the comments, though I imagine if you click on the cut, most likely you have already watched past that.

(Found over at TV-Nihon forum)

Nope, nope, nope. It might be because I adore the character, but I'm usually not so lost. If he has such traits that make him a Gary Stu, fine, I would accept that, and probably would have liked him anyway.

Popular opinions seem to be Tsukasa isn't perfect, which I agree. He needs Yuusuke and/or Natsumi to keep him in check. Personally, I'm not too sure about that. I like to pretend he's just indulging them (man, I contradict myself*); I must admit I might be a bit irrational, after all, in my liking.

*Or perhaps not. When someone doesn't need help but pretends otherwise, that is deceit to me (therefore he's not perfect). Though it (the act of indulging) can also be seen as a form of tough-love kindness I like to attribute to Tsukasa.

In any case, he is the main character. Whether I like it or not (I do), the series is going to spend a lot of time on him. The show is called Kamen Rider Decade, after all.

At a time like this, I'm so glad I'm a main character fan. I would rather see plenty of the character I like in a show where I know he will get plenty of attention, rather than be a secondary (or other less focused) character fan and have to wait for a story (or a whim of the writer(s)) to get some focus of the character I like. (Well, maybe the rarer appearances might make the experience (the wait) all the better, I don't know. I still would rather go with a sure thing, though.)
Kamen Rider Decade; In A Bottle
29th-May-2009 06:18 pm (UTC)
I think Tsukasa has a bit of both: he is kind of an ass and does indulge Yusuke and Natsumi and lets them think they're in control sometimes, mostly when he can take advantage of the situation, but at the same time he has had scenes when seemed legitimately surprised to be scolded or put back in his place, when he stopped and realized he'd probably overdone it because Yusuke or Natsumi sounded like they meant business this time. He obviously felt guilty over Yashiro's death, and the whole thing about protecting Yusuke's smile in Agito world was pretty much him trying to redeem himself a little bit for his epic screw-up in Yusuke's world.

I don't know how much of this is tied to his amnesia; how much of this Tsukasa we see is the real Tsukasa before he forgot himself, and how much of him is the person he's shaped into through the molding of his relationship with Natsumi, Yusuke and the other riders. But there's more to Tsukasa than just one layer of "I'm basically awesome" like there was to, say, Tendou, and if these layers weren't there before, Yusuke and Natsumi have definitely put them there - so even if the "real" Tsukasa turns out to have been some jerkface in the past, he's changed too much by now.

Other than that, people throw the term Mary Sue/Gary Stu around a lot these days, not knowing it doesn't really mean what they think it does. Tsukasa is not a Gary Stu by any stretch of the imagination. He's kind of an arrogant douche, but in a very human way that everyone would be a bit if they were suddenly told "oh by the way, you have the power to either destroy or save worlds". And he's far from perfect or universally loved. He makes mistakes and screws up left and right, makes people dislike him everywhere he goes before he's able to gain their trust, gets his ass handed to him quite a bit before he brings out the rides (which is pretty much like saying I can't beat this guy on my own so I'll lend someone else's power), and isn't actually able to beat any world's boss without the help of that world's main rider. His flaws, including his faily arrogance that promises a lot but doesn't always deliver, make him more human than a lot of past riders have been.
29th-May-2009 07:13 pm (UTC)
True, Tsukasa let Yusuke and Natsumi do their own things, mostly when it suits his purpose. But yes, sometimes he does look genuinely surprised that he has messed up and needs either of those two to remind him to not step over the line.

I do think Yashiro's death is one of the most powerful scenes that show how very human Tsukasa is. I really like that (as I think you said in your journal--I'm going by my memory here) as a consequence of Tsukasa's "screw-up", people stay death and not come back to make things happy in the end. And while the "protecting Yusuke's smile" might be him trying to redeem himself, I like to think that underneath all the arrogance Tsukasa is basically a nice guy, and would have done so anyway even without his epic screw-up eating at his conscience.

You bring up a very good point about Tsukasa's amnesia. I have mostly forgotten he doesn't remember who he is, probably because he doesn't act like it bothers him. Maybe it is true that Tsukasa we see now is not the same Tsukasa as the one before, but I would believe (naively, perhaps) that a person cannot change all that much. If his innate, true personality is a "jerkface", I don't think he could have been the same character that I like. Still, I'm not denying Natsumi and Yusuke's roles in helping Tsukasa to become more likable and more tolerant (although I think he's likable from the start).

I agree with you. And now that I think more on this, there are really not a lot of instances where things really go as Tsukasa plans. So it seems to me he actually fails more than he delivers. While I think I understand the reason some people would think him a Gary Stu (equating (larger than life?)arrogance/confidence to being perfect), it bothered me enough that I had to just post something about it. Yes, exactly, if he's so powerful, he wouldn't need to borrow someone's else power (the rides) at all, or need to work with the main rider of each world to beat its final boss.
30th-May-2009 01:30 pm (UTC) - hahaha in the end I reposted this XD

Nowadays people just love to throw the Sues and Stus labels without knowing what they truly means. (just like the occ label- it's Out of Character orz so it should have been OOC instead~)

I used to think that Tendou Souji kinda like a Stu at first before his character started to show more and he doesn't appear Stu anymore. Yeah... I probably had bias on loving most of the main riders... but hey, as long as the characters are written well, I'll love them.

At least not as bad as some of the fan OC riders that I sometimes stumble to...
30th-May-2009 04:16 pm (UTC) - Re: hahaha in the end I reposted this XD
(Oh, now that I'm reading your comment again when I'm more awake, I'm going to jump in.)

I must have been lucky to never seen occ label in the fics I read. ^^;

Tendou--hmm...I'm actually pretty conflicted about this character. He does seem like a Stu, who, I think, ends up with only one real weakness--his sisters. But I like him in spite of how super human he is. (Or maybe I just like Hiro Mizushima. ^^) On the other hand, I have only recently admitted to myself how unlikable Tendou is when I see someone plays him in a roleplay, quoting his non-existent grandma and making life miserable for everyone, which is just so scarily in character.

Anyway, I suppose I'm glad I never really try to read OC riders. ^^;

(Edited to hide spoiler.)

Edited at 2009-05-30 04:25 pm (UTC)
3rd-Jun-2009 07:29 am (UTC)
I think actions wise he's perfect. He's a wandering Kamen Riderpediea; made for the job of dealing with each world. I think social wise, he's less than perfect. In the same tree as Tendou Souji but definitely a different branch.
3rd-Jun-2009 11:37 am (UTC)
You're right about Tsukasa just seems to know things without (obvious) explanation, but I never really thought of that. Probably because I tend to suspend disbelief with this kind of thing. Back in episode 1, the show had him acknowledged that he remembered how to fight but nothing else associated with it , but that's probably the most vulnerability he's willing to admit.

I agree that Tsukasa is so not perfect, social wise, in that he just can't seem to act nice for people who put up with him, even though he probably does know how. And yes, he is different from Tendou (other than the (nearly) non-existent people skill, which, imo, leads to boasting about his power and about his ability to fix other people's lives). This is just my opinion, of course, but to me, Tsukasa says/does things with (most of the time) intention to provoke, knowing full well he's being a jerk, but either doesn't care or hides it well, whereas Tendou is so larger than life that he seems to not really be aware that he's rubbing most everyone the wrong way.
4th-Jun-2009 02:26 am (UTC)
I believe it *does* bother him that he can't remember his past. But, I think he acts so calmly about it because he doesn't care about his past as much as the present and future. "As long as I can take pictures..."

Tsukasa...can't help but pick on certain types of people in a friendly-bully type of way. Tendou was the same way. (Except for him it was mostly just Kagami). And for at least half of the time, both are more...immersed in doing what they do to be aware of certain social etiquette. Tendou was better at pulling this off becuase he had that unearthly charm about him. Tsukasa is...well Tsukasa. XD He comes off as more arrogant than omnipotent. And even then he seems more comical than annoying.
4th-Jun-2009 01:48 pm (UTC)
(Long comment, sorry. Still, I have already shortened it some.)

Even though I like both, I find that I'm more gravitated toward Tsukasa than Tendou. (Not identify with, though. I don't like arrogant people in real life, whether or not they themselves realize that they are being one.) Tendou is a little too god-like for me, despite the fact that I think it's refreshing that we have a character who can actually back up what he says rather than boasters who don't seem to be at all aware of their own limits (which might sound like I'm criticizing Tsukasa, but Tsukasa doesn't fail all the time, so...not him at least). Still, you're right that Tendou seems to have that "unearthly charm" which probably is supposed to make him more likable, and which most of his enemies/rivals wouldn't agree (or they wouldn't admit he has any charm because they are just in denial XD).

Looking back, I think I might be a bit wrong on Tendou. He tends to not bother people beneath his notice (not his intellectual equal, for instance), unless they threaten him (or rather, threaten those he holds dear). In other words, he probably finds a particular person boring if he leaves that person alone (and I think he/she should count him/herself lucky rather than being miffed at being ignored ^^;). And that might sometimes explain why he seems more successful in pulling off what he wants: he's not in everyone's face all the time, so (I think) they are more awed and persuaded (against their better judgment, probably) than be annoyed by him. Tsukasa, on the other hand, will pick on practically everyone. This is probably part of the reason I like Tsukasa more: he's not a snob (well...most of the time). He treats almost everyone the same way. Albeit in his bullying way, and even lacking Tendou's "unearthly charm", Tsukasa seems to be genuinely friendlier than Tendou, but maybe that's just me. Outside of his family, Tendou just seems to have time only for Kagami.

For some reason, I don't find Tsukasa very comical--unless it's his reaction at the result of unintentional backfire of one of his great plans, but even then I'd feel more sympathetic than having any inclination to laugh. I actually find Tendou more comical (or more like the reactions of the people on the receiving end of his nonsenses), with him repeating his grandma's words like he's a robot or something. Of course, he isn't intentionally being comical either. But I don't think he can unbent enough to be funny in a way that makes people (both of his world, and the audience watching) laugh with him rather than at him. Tsukasa, at least, doesn't seem to take life so seriously all the time, so maybe he could have pulled off a real funny routine, though people would still laugh at him anyway because they remember how he treats them. (And sorry, I think you only talk about Tsukasa unintentionally being comical, but I go off on my own anyway.)

And that reminds me, I still think Tendou really lacks an awareness of the ridiculousness of some of the things he says and/or does. I would go back again to that probably being the main reason people would just rather do what he...asks than arguing with him, which is just useless anyway. He doesn't seem to be willing to listen to their explanation, that his actions sometimes are nonsensical. Outwardly, yes, he easily gets what he want, but I think most people are rolling their eyes and probably pity him behind his back for having such a grand delusion. That's not to say people never treat Tsukasa that way, but at least Tsukasa can admit when he is wrong, and (most of the time) learns from his mistakes.

In short, I believe Tsukasa can be reasoned with (to some degree), so people don't always do as he asks, but don't anyone dare suggest that Tendou is less than perfect...
5th-Jun-2009 05:27 am (UTC)
Tendou's not a purposeful bully. He doesn't bother with people unless he needs them for something, wants to punish them or has formed an emotional bond with them (in which case he can't help but bother them XD )

Tsukasa enjoys interacting a bit more with people. However, he still is unable to fully express his good intentions. Luckily, Yuusuke interprets for him sometimes XD Though, it seems suspicious sometimes

Tendou is actual very aware of how people react to things. And admittedly, most of the ridiculous things turn out to work. He just doesn't have time to explain. Or doesn't feel the desire to. Tsukasa...well he doesn't really need anyone's help to do what he needs to do. He's a loner. Which is why he was perfect to play the Tendou role. He so secretly wanted a cute little sister lD
5th-Jun-2009 05:07 pm (UTC)
(Don't remember if I'd ever told you, but I like that icon. :)

I don't recall saying Tendou is a bully, purposefully or otherwise, but then I was (and probably still am) being rather harsh on him. Anyway, I was well aware of how he chooses friends and enemies: don't bother, use, fight, punish, protect, love, etc. While I think it is kind of cold-hearted of him to neatly categorize people, it is certainly within his right to do so. He alone decides who worths his time and energy. (And even among the people he considers "friends", I think there are times he just doesn't want to deal with a particular someone.)

Whether they are correct or not, Yuusuke's interpretations of Tsukasa's good intentions often make me laugh. ^^

To me, they are both loners to some degree. I don't remember seeing much effort from Tendou to connect with anyone (other than a selected few) either. And I think Tsukasa needs help aplenty, but for whatever reason, he doesn't always ask for it. (Things usually end up badly for him then.)

Leaving my subjective opinion aside, if Tendou actually is aware of people's reactions, I wonder why he continues with the ridiculous things. Because doing so gets the job done? Or because he doesn't know how to properly ask for help? Or because he just can't help it (it's who he is and ingrained in his personality)? (Personally, I think it's the last reason, and maybe sometimes the first one.)
6th-Jun-2009 12:05 am (UTC)
XD I was meaning in comparison to how Tsukasa bullied a couple riders for no apparent reason. Though Yuusuke would say otherwise. I still wonder if Tsukasa's "...Yeah" moments are meaning "Yes, that's what I meant" or "..Oh, is that why I'm doing it??" Half the time I think it's the latter since he just pops out these inspired Rider class spiels on why the bad guy is wrong XD From no-where. Making all the impressionable younger riders fall for him.

As for Tendou...he knows. XD He just doesn't deal with it. He's an efficient type of guy. And in the case of select individuals, he obviously enjoys getting their goat XD Poor lucky Kagami.
6th-Jun-2009 02:08 pm (UTC)
For me, that's just who Tsukasa is (not good at interpersonal relationship, catch flies with honey thing), and it's not like those who get picked on don't deserve it. (It kind of irks me that those people usually are made to be innocent victims and Tsukasa is the bad guy. Yes, Tsukasa is far from being flawless, but those riders have their own faults, too.)

Given the evidence in the show, I think you're right about Tsukasa's "...Yeah" moments. Nevertheless, I like to pretend that sometimes he's agreeing with Yuusuke's explanation just because, for whatever reason, he doesn't want to embarrass Yuusuke for getting it totally wrong. (It's like 'it's too soon to mind-read me, but since I can make him pay later, I'll spare him here'.)
7th-Jun-2009 01:13 am (UTC)
Oh, I'm not saying that most of the people he bullied deserved a bit, and in the end, the Blade guy needed it XD It was just weird for him to pick on the poor guy when he got downsized because he did the Right thing

XD Well, I don't think Yuusuke is wrong on his guesses so much as Tsukasa just *does* thing without any personal reason XD Like he's programmed to be like that.
7th-Jun-2009 09:18 am (UTC)
Oh, that was just something I keep seeing, not that I thought you had said anything about it. I should have made that more clear.

As for Kazuma, I think Tsukasa picked on him, not because he got demoted for doing the right thing (though with Tsukasa, I can't be completely sure either ^^;), but rather because of his defeatist--I'm no good, everything is gone--attitude. Kazuma's self-pity was something Tsukasa probably couldn't stand seeing (or maybe, going with the detached, impersonal angle, he simply thought it would interfere with Kazuma's ability to defeat the big boss).

:) Tsukasa seems to enjoy tripping up Yuusuke on purpose. And this is probably more in the realm of fanfic, but Tsukasa might be a little envious that Yuusuke could be so passionate about what he (Yuusuke, but I'm not sure if I don't mean Tsukasa, too) believes to be right. Anyway, if Tsukasa is programmed (interesting idea), I think it's little weird for him to not have any real plan and simply does things as he goes along. (Robots usually come with specific set of instructions, I mean. And perhaps you didn't mean he's a robot, but my mind sure made that connection.)
7th-Jun-2009 06:42 pm (UTC)
I don't mean like a robot as much as...ah. Like he was "born for it" he's a natural rider. Unlike his predecessors, he never does any training...or struggles to learn a new technique. I'm not saying he has it easy, I'm saying he's either already gone through with it before he forgot, or he doesn't need to. A Rider savant.

And speaking of Yuusuke...I don't understand that boy. I've never seen a Rider who had such a lack of wanting to henshin before O.o I've seen the reverse but...for a long time, I just as well assumed Yuusuke could no longer henshin!;; And then in Agito...what the heck, Yuusuke?! Wouldn't, you know, ALL THE TIMES YOU GOT ATTACKED BY MONSTERS have been a good time to use your rider gifts?! So then I thought "maybe there is a problem using it, or he has such reliance on Tsu doing the job" XD;;
8th-Jun-2009 07:45 am (UTC)
I did think Tsukasa being a "natural rider" was more of what you meant, but I still like to pretend he's a preprogrammed robot. XD In fact, the idea fascinates me so much I might have to do something with it.

That aside, it's not clear to me either whether Tsukasa is naturally gifted, or he had prior trainings he has forgotten he had, though I want it to be the latter. In any case, whether he had done so in the past or not, he'll eventually struggle and learn from the experience in the current time, or at least I hope he would. (Even Tendou had to learn something new, after all.)

I first watched Decade in batch of episodes, so I never felt it was such a long time with Yuusuke not transforming. When he is attacked by monsters (or anything else), someone (not necessarily Tsukasa) would eventually comes to his rescue. Or he himself gets out of it without reaching the point he needs to transform. Some of those 'no opportunity to transform' moments might be forced, true, but they can't have Kuuga, a not main rider, in almost every episode. Personally, I just don't feel very bothered if there isn't something like a tease (with Kaito) in the Agito arc, and simply let me look at Yuusuke as (most of the time) a non-transforming sidekick. (It helps that this Yuusuke is AU. I'd probably be more upset with the original not transforming regularly.)
9th-Jun-2009 04:41 am (UTC)
Half the time, I felt the vague impression that Tendou somewhat *knew* what was going to happen XD Like he was either a genius at visualizing the obstacles that might occur or maybe he had a little help from the future XD Well, even if Tsu was born to be a Rider, he'd have had to at least gotten some training. I mean, even if he was made (didn't they have a robot power ranger? XD ) they'd have had to test him out a bit XD

Well, I am mostly bothered because I assumed it XD I mean the main reason why I thought it was that way was because Yusuuke's actions in Blade. Why did you need to borrow a suit?! I mean, the only reason I can see is either he wasn't able to...or he felt it was inferior to the Blade systems...or that whole scene was just to show how the company was greedy XD

See, even if he could only transform in Agito that'd make sense. Since they're related series. But he's henshined in Den-o aaaand Hibiki. Maybe he's been doing the henshin gesture and I've just been missing it XD I know I almost missed it the first time in Agito when he was going to put the smack down on Daiki. And it's not a quiet henshin either
9th-Jun-2009 02:07 pm (UTC)
Only half the time? Regardless of what shortcomings I think he had, I always think Tendou could change the future, let alone knowing what was going to happen. He just didn't seem particularly care to exert himself if it didn't concern either his family or Kagami.

Oh, yes, since Tsukasa seemed to have more failings than not, I suppose he couldn't know how to fight (and be good at it) without any training. (And testing Tsukasa out if he's a robot, wow. You're giving me such good ideas--I almost feel guilty to take them. ^^;)

Yuusuke wanting to borrow a suit in Blade world completely slipped my mind. I'd rewatch, except I'm not really in the mood for that company and most of the people in it. (And please leave the food to the original Kabuto. Or at least, to the original Blade.)

Yuusuke did transform in Kiva world, so I think that already ruled out the related stories theory. And I could probably rant a lot about that 'almost henshin' in Agito world. But it all comes down to I want either Toei to make up their mind and let Yuusuke transform all the way or simply omit the scene of him about to do so altogether (i.e. don't be a tease).

I have to admit I'm surprised. The thought of Yuusuke not being able to transform did not cross my mind even once. I only know about it because I read posts (and you mentioned it). Maybe only the Decade writers can answer that conclusively. I don't know. Sometimes, I feel like the writers might not have a very clear idea of what they intend with the stories, with the characters either.
9th-Jun-2009 11:29 pm (UTC)
Well, if he wanted to change the world to suit his needs, he'd be the villain XD As it is, I kept thinking his Obaachan was some retired super villainess from a couple of her quotes. I think he only had a natural sense for how things might turn out. A sort of genius. Tsukasa kind of has that too.

Yuusuke didn't transform in Kiva world. That was Tsukasa, right? Yuusuke was all surprised XD That's why I started thinking he couldn't. I mean, for a while, I was guessing that "destroy" was meant that after using them in the final ride, they'd lose their powers. I mean, he certainly left the worlds in a condition that they probably wouldn't need to use the suit anymore.

I don't mind if Yuusuke didn't transform. I just wanted an explanation for it XD I mean, as it is, it's coming off as he doesn't want to do it. Now, perhaps a scene explaining that might have been cut. Like he may have had a problem similar to Hibiki with controlling that dark side.

And as for the robot thing. Go ahead and take it XD If I wrote anyone it'd be Yuusuke. I haven't fully grasped Tsukasa's way of thinking...I think. I mean, when I try to "get into his head" I end up feeling pretty nonchalant XD Like he is just passing through and tries not to think of the negative things. Yusuuke's more easy to read. Kind of reminds me of Kagami (Arata) *wonders what the Arata's name was in DCD Kabuto*

I had actually hoped, following the theory he couldn't transform anymore, that Yuusuke would become Agito or Gattack XD; At least he became G3 Well, maybe his reasons was that he wasn't sure if his world's suit would work with that world's monsters.
10th-Jun-2009 12:37 pm (UTC)
I never really thought much about Tendou's grandmother, because she was not around (well, she was in the quotes, but that was just not the same as having her actually be present). Interesting, though, if a few of her lines can give an impression that she might use to be a super villain (^^;) since Tendou (the real one, not the dark one) probably could have been the greatest villain if he so chose.

I only saw the episode once, so I was wavering a bit when you said he didn't transform. But I was still pretty sure that happened in ep 5, so I went back to rewatch. And yes, about 4-5 minutes in, Yuusuke did transform to help out Wataru in Castle Dran.

Oh, I always thought of "destroying the world" in the most literal sense. I never really considered other meanings, but now I'm beginning to think they might be possible. It helps to discuss things like this with you. :)

Yes, thanks for the robot idea! Actually, I've already written Tsukasa once (mainly spoilers for ep 17). And even made the same point you did, that Yuusuke and Arata (the Decade version, since that's apparently the only one Tsukasa knows) are kind of alike. Yuusuke...I'm not sure. It's not that he's hard to read, but I think others can probably write him better than I can (and, probably unlike with Tsukasa, there seems to be no lack of people wanting to write Yuusuke).

(They don't use Arata's last name anywhere, not even in the credits. Come to think of it, I don't know Souji's either. That's a little strange since the only other series that primarily uses last names (Blade) has them all written out (in English) in the first episode of the arc.)

I don't know his reason (or whether he even has any), but I don't think Yuusuke does not want to transform. He would not willingly
try to place himself or others in danger, which 'not transforming when needed' would do. Except in Agito world. He used G3 because he wanted Yashiro to know that the suit worked. If he went into Kuuga there when G3 was around for him to use, he'd show Yashiro that he never thought much of her creation.

I guess I can see why having no explanation is a problem, but I'm mostly satisfied with the way things are. It's unlikely we'll ever get the official confirmation either way, so might as well have fun making up our own explanations. ^^
6th-Jun-2009 12:06 am (UTC)
(Oh, and thanks XD I went crazy making icons from Deno O.o; )
6th-Jun-2009 02:13 pm (UTC)
Oh, I meant the Tendou pointing, 'I'm better than you' icon (not sure if it used to be your default icon, maybe that was another Tendou icon). The Den-O icon you are using is nice, too. ^^ (I kind of wish I know how to make animated icons...)
7th-Jun-2009 01:15 am (UTC)
Ooooh. XD

Well, if you have a recent-ish version of Photoshop, it's quite easy :o
7th-Jun-2009 09:22 am (UTC)
Yes, I have Photoshop (though I'm not sure if it's recent), but I'm still a novice in making icons (or using Photoshop in general). ^^;; If I'm not too lazy, I'd go look for some guides somewhere that would teach me a lot more cool things to do with Photoshop.
7th-Jun-2009 06:38 pm (UTC)
Well, it depends. The newest version has an animation thing already in it. The previous version had something called "Image Ready" where you can import your layers to there via "File".

I usually animate it traditionally, with cels of action in the form of the layers. However, you can use a shortcuts to in Image Ready. Just go to the help part in the program and look up animated gifs :o That's how I learned, I think.
8th-Jun-2009 07:29 am (UTC)
Thank you very much. :) I think I do have ImageReady so I'll go check that program out.
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