The Swimming Anime

A teaser made by Kyoto Animation has been made about 4 swimmers which from a BL scale of 1 to Kuroko no Basugay, is probably closer to the latter. The title is not “Ore to Omae No Sa O Oshiete Yaru Yo (I’ll teach you the difference between you and I)”; it’s just a tagline.

I’m really anticipating the anime if it’s going to be released. It looks really well animated; I just hope it doesn’t have a sucky plotline like K.

 

 

Season 2 of Kuroko no Basuke confirmed!

So says JUMP Next! Winter magazine 2012. It’s pretty much confirmed and official; all the Japanese blogs and websites are going crazy over this. So fuck yeah, hello Akashi and Murasakibara!

 

Shinsekai Yori Epi 1-11: Ambitious Premises, Disappointing Execution. (Spoilers)

This. Is. Misleading.

I wonder how many people saw the above gif and decided to watch Shinsekai Yori because of it supposed yaoi themes. After marathoning 11 episodes in roughly one day, I can safely say this: Just because Shinsekai Yori contain scenes like these:

Or these:

Doesn’t mean that this is a yaoi or yuri anime. (In fact, the yaoi scenes between Shun and Satoru last barely 5 minutes and it only appears within one episode; Episode 8 to be exact.) This is because the main focus of the anime isn’t characterisation: it’s the utopia/dystopia theme that is similarly executed by No.6. The characterisation is particularly paltry and 2 dimensional: there is rarely any characterisation growth at all, the fast forward of 4 years into the future gave them entirely different characterisations without the viewer having any particular insight to why or how they changed the way they are. However, what is particularly convenient about this lack of characterisation is this: from a metanarrative perspective, the 2-dimensionality is fundamentally part of the storyline as well. All the hypnotism and memory erasing motifs are a more prominent plotline which justifies their lack of character growth. (One can’t develop as a person if you keep forgetting what person you are or used to be.) I rarely get contented with superficial personalities running the whole show but this time, the lack of characterisation is premised and required for the plot structure to work so I’ll let this one go.

Utopia/Dystopia Setting: You’ll Never Look at a Bonobo the Same Way Again.

In university, I was reprimanded by my professor for cramping too many major ideas within a 10 page, double spaced essay. Any one of these ideas, he said, who have been sufficient but by cramping in 3 major themes within an essay ended up with me not doing any justice to any of them. This analogy can be said for Shinsekai Yori: it has many ambitious themes, all of which failed to have sufficient airtime to flesh it out in its full glory. Remember the story of the molerats, their oppression and tribal communities and distrustful nature, only to be discarded by the 8th episode? Or the Huxleyian utopic control of sex and hypnotism to reduce crowd aggression and antagonistic behaviour, raised only to trigger certain fanservice moments? Or what about the themes of ethics and morality, which at the end of the day, is only an ideological system perpetuated by the people in power in order to regulate and control society as a whole? Or the psychoanalytic discourse on the subconscious and how one’s capabilities may exceed his or her own control? ANY one of these ideas will make for a brilliant 24 episode arc anime but at this moment, the pacing is too rushed for any form of elaboration or thematic developments to occur.

I will continue watching the show because the premises are at the least, interesting and there are certain moments that definitely do carry and define the anime emotionally and thematically. Too bad there arnt more of those scenes. But let’s stop calling this a yaoi anime: homosexuality is not a prevalent theme and homosexual relationships are not the main, nor the secondary focus of the anime at all.

Rating: 7/10 (Promising, I expect more to come.)

Yokozawa no Baai Anime Announced

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Nakamura’s (mangaka of Junjou Romantica) latest venture: Yokozawa no Baai, the Yokozowa arc of Sekai Ichi Hatsukoi is going to be animated ,as reported from Ciel Magazine:

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Not much news reported so far, other than it is in development so do follow this blog (the subsribe button is over to the right) for the latest news! This is amazing news for anyone who’s a fujoshi or fudanshi; Nakamura is the High Priestess of Yaoidom and any anime works in the making instantly translate to an instant rejoicing of the yaoi fandom. Not to mention, the Hybrid Child OVA is also in the workings as well. XD

Magi Episode 7 – What Would Salvoj Zizek Say?

Well hello there.

Will be starting my review of Magi from Episode 7 onwards since I’ve started blogging after watching 6 episodes of Magi so far. Since I have not read the manga, the only spoilers you’ll be receiving is the contents of this episode.

Basically I was particularly concerned about how the idea of class and struggles are depicted in the episode. It’s a proverbial story/criticism on capitalism: the rich (bourgeoisie) monopolises all the resources while the poor (proleteriat) suffers in the most desolate conditions unfavourable even for basic survival. The lower class then strikes back at the ruling powers that oppressed them, a revolution is started and a communist, classless society is formed. According to classic Marxian thought, that is the inevitable conclusion of every single capitalist society.

Let them have chicken drumsticks!

However, what we’re having within Balbadd is not a classic revolution. Rather, a group of vigilantes are taking it upon themselves to steal from the rich and redistribute to the poor; kinda like an Arabian Robin Hood with genie powers. This vigilante movement (if this happened in the States, we would call it terrorism) have attained immerse support from the subjugated classes and they are seen as an symbol of liberation for bringing hope to a caste of people who were oppressed and neglected too far and too long by the ruling rich.

What is lovely about this anime is that it does not bother making simplistic sociological resolutions as such. In an almost Zizekian twist, Ahbmad points out that:

Looks a little bit like Zizek too…

Which doesn’t really improve the situation does it? As what Zizek would argue, the problem here isn’t the fact that the people in power are corrupt; it is the system which encourages people to be corrupt in the first place. Stealing from the rich or dethroning the powerful isn’t going to helpful if there is a check-and-balance system in place to allow the powerful to recuperate their losses such as taxes, in this case. Fundamentally, there is something intrinsically wrong with the majority of wealth belonging to the top 1 percent of the population while the 99 percent starve to death, working in order to privilege the rich. This is where much of the emotional ethos of Magi is derived of, because there is something about the labour exploitation and social injustice that appeals to everyone; whether this sociological dilemma can be resolved in a tasteful manner by the mangaka Ōtaka Shinobu remains to be seen.

And of course, what is another plus point of this episode is that you already see glimpses on how the rich are not portrayed simplistic as helpless, fat bumbling fools who can only whine about being robbed. There were definitely certain clues within the episode that revealed that there’s some scheme that is brewing underneath all the apparent helplessness. Perhaps the presence of the Fog Troupe also served to their advantage in a particular insidious manner, in which case such vigilante actions did nothing put to perpetuate and reinforce capitalist social structures that oppresses them in the first place.

On a less academic note, I’m greatly intrigued to know Alibaba’s role in all of this. The suspense build-up was artful, the plot direction and pacing was impeccable and the character cast (Sinbad and his white-haired boyfriend in particular) has been nothing but charming. My favourite moment has to be when Morgiana got tired of Sinbad’s sexist bullshit and actually called him out on it, something we don’t really see very often in anime. I’m really looking forward to next week’s episode to see a more angst-ridden Alibaba and why he had reached that particular state of being (probably because he’s pissed off at being cut off from like what, 3 episodes? I know I would be. XD)

November 2012

So I just started this blog and it’s probably going to be awhile for me to build up my content and for it to even appear in google search I guess. So if this blog may seem rather dead… it’s not going to stay that way so do come back once in a while for new updates!

But just to give you a taste on what’s happening for the rest of November, these are the animes that I will be following and blogging about this season:

K: So I understand that all of yaoi-dom is mostly crying over this right now; however to be honest; I’m not as impressed with this anime as I should be. The plot direction seems rather haphazard and I’m rather turned off with the overt objectification of women in this anime (normalised in many shounen anime but that doesn’t make it tasteful). Though the plot is starting to pick up, the character developments are really starting to become intriguing and yaoiness is starting to kick in; I’m not holding my breath.

Erotic gaze + bitchslap = ヽ(;▽;)ノ

Magi:

I love this anime series probably because it appeals towards my sociological instincts and its portrayal of class-struggles and capitalist oppressions are practically begging to be analysed. Given that Magi is drawn by a female mangaka; she doesn’t really stand for all the bullshit/ 2 dimensional demeaning portrayals of females that is rather recurring in many other animes. Alibaba is really charming as the protagonist and there’s this natural and easy synergy that exist between the booby-loving magical kid, the spineless ex-prince who suddenly have a burst of character growth at the end of episode one, and the pink-haired beast-girl who kicks really really well.

And this of course, doesn’t hurt.

Shinsekai Yori: Haven’t watch it but this:

Gives this an instantaneous tick on the “must-watch” anime list.

The sensual butt-smacking/feeling doesn’t hurt either.

Looks to be a great season so far really.

Anyways, have a great November!

K Cushion

K クッション

“What could Fushimi be thinking at this moment, after taking off his uniform?”

For all you K fans out there, there’s a limited edition K Cushion that’s currently sold at this site.

The art is drawn specifically for the sale of this cushion and it’s official art so this pretty much settles it then. FUSHIMI X YATA IS NOW CANON (not that it’s not obvious from episode 3 but~) XD

Personally, not a big fan of this pairing (though the seiyuus are dreamy as hell and as talented as can be). Give me Kuroh and Isana anytime. XD