Monthly Archive for March, 2007

Page 2 of 13

Little Spontaneous Mini-Communities On Riuva

This is a very interesting phenomenon that I’m sure also happens to most other anime blogs. When a blog builds up a decent archive of old posts, all of them can be found through google, particularly those with keywords of the uncommon kind. Fans of certain anime series who fervently google about their favourite shows will no doubt stumble upon these old posts and sometimes leave comments.

While the content of the original post could be very outdated, the follow up comments from random passers-by gradually builds up into a mini-notice board or forum. For example, when School Rumble Season 2 ended, I did a quick post claiming that there would be a season 3 for sure since the ending scene of S2 explicitly said so. It’s the top search for School Rumble Season 3 on google and hence quite a fair bit of SR fans are finding it. These are the same fans who generally do not go to forums and anime blogs and thus lack the latest news and basic knowledge of how the anime industry works.

I generally do not reply to comments on old posts as I don’t think they will check back anyway. So the mini-thread just goes on. An example of the exchanges in the school rumble thread:

  1. didier 2 comments

    cmon jin… release it,will ya?

  2. lithuanian-pig 1 comment 

    I love school rumble.. come soon pls :) ~~~

  3. Angel_from_Hell 3 comments 

    there are 60 people in 500 m radius from me that are w8ing for 3rd season. and there are angry

  4. filmjolk 1 comment 

    Is there sufficient manga? if there isn’t, no point to hope for lots of new seasons.

    I watched the first seasoon in 1 day. Then I watched the 2nd season in 1 day as well. So, do realease a third one so that i can spend hopefully several days watching sr :)

    I didn’t see that many of yakumos famous mindreadings in the second season though, that was a shocker.

    Harima only likes ten.. tsukamoto b/c of his previous experience. He also perceives tenmas behaviour in a different way. This can be easily spotted by looking at his day dreaming.

    ok, enough analyzing, it’s a manga/anime for christ sake. GOGO! Season three!!

First, it’s laughable to think that Kobayashi Jin has any stake in the anime version of School Rumble. For a full season, we need to have enough manga material and the Jin is churning them out at full speed already. SR manga is also starting to deterioriate in quality too sadly. Contrary to popular belief, there is a lot of relationship advancement. Like how Eri is officially in love with Harima and has admitted it.

This Angel_from_Hell character is very funny because he’s like a DRMchrso in disguise. Why are we getting angry when season 2 just ended?

Filmjolk sounded decent in his comment until the last sentence, when he claimed that the previous 4 was some kind of scientific analysis and ill-fitting of mere Japanese CARTOON. The thread has reached 101 comments and will probably continue to grow from google searches. I hope these newbies stay and learn more about the anime world and fandom rather than just stay ignorant.

Another pet peeve I have are commenters who look at old posts and then criticise them for inaccuracies without checking the TIME STAMP. I have people saying "Wow…. I just love how people post stuff without knowing squat. Kiba has an ending, its 51 episodes. In fact, it ended two days ago. Seriously, almost any search would have told you this. Animes arent limited to 13, 26, or any number to be considered ending. Hikaru no Go has 75 I think, and Shaman King 64. Also I completely agree with Reki that Kiba is awesome and so is .hack." on a Kiba song lyrics post that was done 3 months ago. Ah the power of hindsight. Damn why did the Americans not fortify Pearl Habour? I knew the Japanese would attack!

Another commenter on one of my very first posts, Top 10 J-songs, also suggested that I add the Code Geass OP COLOURS and I was a n00b cos I didn’t have that in my list or something. That post was written a year before Code Geass was even created. While his tone was polite, I still feel insulted that he thought I didn’t know Code Geass. LOL. Code Geass 22 was a shocker though.

On my Gakuen Alice post, I have teenage shoujo fans gushing over Natsume and posting messages on where to get free manga downloads. LOL, this group is pretty harmless and are not unlike a creeper plant which grows using a thicker woody stem as support. But on my Ouran post, I have the more grown up FYGs insisting that whoever pairing they support are the win and everyone else is an idiot. The sad part is, no fan girl seems to realise that the Bones’ version of Ouran is so good precisely because it’s intended to shame fangirls with an over the top satire. The original manga is a fangirly work though and hence inferior.

Finally, there are lots of Eureka seveN fans who discovered the show through Adult Swim and back when there weren’t much information in English about it, found my post. Most of them were arguing about whether there would be a sequel. This predominantly teenage male group just showed the Ouran fangirls that there are male fanboys too who are just as bad. Nevertheless, some of them actually put forth pretty sound interpretations of the ending episode.

It’s very interesting how the net and google is similar to real life forces of Water and Wind, the former giving life to the many websites out there and the latter spreading seeds and pollen. So if you have a site as well, what are some of the weirder sub communities you inadvertently host?

TMNT is Better than Kanon

I just couldn’t resist yet another dig at the Kanonards. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2007 is officially superior to Kanon 2007.

Lol. Anyway I saw the film last night and it was truly an epic in the Gatekeepers mould. I’ve quite a bit to say about the show so read on.

When we were kids, TMNT was the bible. It’s funny how we (generally the Gen Y batch) all pretty much just enjoyed the 1987 TV series that was pretty much a clever 30 minute toy commercial. We never knew that TMNT was the spark that ignited the American indie comic industry. We never knew it was a parody of X-men and Daredevil combined. We never knew that the original comic series was dark, gritty and violent compared to the light-hearted kids TV show.

I had tonnes of turtle toys back in the good old days. I had Leo’s ninjatou (nope, they were not katana as they were straight and short), Raphael’s sai, a wearable turtle shell and lots of mask, on top of the countless action figures of the turtles. Sadly, these were all discarded when I grew out of them. Nobody realised the sentimental and ebay value these would soon have.

The biggest side-effect of the TMNT toy boom was the corresponding demand for pet turtles by young kids. Millions of red-eared sliders were sold and when kids realised these tiny hatchlings either could not fight crime, promptly lost interest. You see RES everywhere there’s a body of water nowadays and this was a global phenomenon which damaged ecosystems. My own interest in reptiles was a direct result of TMNT brainwashing, I have to admit. But my Green Cyclone of Scaly Death is now 15 years old!

I currently volunteer at the local zoo’s reptile sector on certain weekends and have a more than decent knowledge of zoology and conservation. All these were pretty much sparked by TMNT and its peers such as Transformers and Captain Planet. With excellent role models such as the nerd Donatello and, erm, the Dinobots, lots of kids like me grew up understanding the importance of science and Mother Nature.

In other words, TMNT is better than Kanon because the latter spreads the message that casual sex is good therefore aggravates the already problematic STD epidemic, while the former has nothing but good messages like JUSTICE and BROTHERHOOD.

But let’s just talk about TMNT 2007 shall we?

The movie may feel a bit different for most of us who have not been following the series. There was another TMNT TV series which began in 2003 which advanced the plot a lot further than the original cartoon. But the 2007 movie is basically set after the 3 live-action movies.

I’ve noted some major differences that pure cartoon viewers will need to adjust to.

First, Raphael. The Raph is a major character in most of the movies but he’s at best a side character in the cartoon. That’s because he’s the ANTI-HERO. With enough angst and sulkiness to best even the likes of Shinn Asuka, Raphael gets the most character development of all the four turtles. He’s also the most powerful fighter out of the four. He enjoys a turbulent relationship with Leonardo, but the sweet candy nature of the cartoon didn’t really show the family rivalry aspect.

April O’Neale no longer wears her banana jumpsuit. The original April O’Neale was Baxtor Stockman (remember the flyguy?)’s lab assistant but the cartoon made her a journalist. In the movie, she’s now a whatever-doer just like the Get Backers and Gintama guys apparently. She’s cohabitating with Casey, the vigilante. I didn’t remember who Casey was at first but after a bit of revision, it all came back.

Casey is the guy with the hockey mask who’s a really violent vigilante. Armed with an assortment of sporting equipment, he beats thugs and criminals up violently. He fought a 1 v 1 with Raphael and the two become best friends due to their really similar personalities and ideals.

Karai is a major character in the comics. In some versions, she was Shredder’s adopted daughter and in others, she was from the Japan HQ of the foot clan. But in no version did she have the voice of a mentally retarded Chinese woman, so Zhang Ziyi must fuck off. What a bad voice job she did. In one scene where she signalled for every footie to move out, she said some "Japanese". It was like "issha ching chiang wing chong" or whatever.

Michelangelo and Donatello are bit part at best. The latter especially, his quarterstaff does no damage at all it seems.

I really liked the show though. It was probably the best movie I’ve seen in over a year, ousting even Letters from Iwo Jima. The sense of nostalgia, mixed with the addition of darker and grittier visuals and more mature character interactions, is totally similar to what I felt when I saw Gatekeepers 21. The CGI was fantastic – smooth, stylish and PIXAR should hang their head in shame and weep at their overratedness.

The revamped character designs may look a bit strange on a static screenshot but they work out very well on screen. Looking back at the 1987 designs which were very much hampered by budget and technological constraints, it’s impossible not to love the new look our favourite ninjas have gotten.

The action is brilliant. The rooftop hopping is like SPIDERMAN. All the fight scenes are excitingly choreographed without any silly Naruto powerups. The highlight of the movie was no doubt the Leo vs Raphael duel. I can’t even think of an anime equivalent to it. Probably Sasuke vs Naruto but without the wishy washy gay yaoi and the attack moves.

I loved the tributes too. TMNT featured several references to popular culture. One of them was Karai mimicking NONO aka Buster Machine no. 7 from Diebuster. It was the scene where Nono summoned the Buster Corps and issued commands for them to attack and Karai did the same actions with the same camera angle, with footies instead.

Another reference was to Koei’s popular game series, Dynasty Warriors aka Musou. The whole gang of good guys basically enacted scenes from the video games and it was really awesome. Will we see a TMNT Musou now?

In the final scene where Splinter was placing the helm of Winters onto his rack (lol), you can see Shredder’s helm, the time sceptre from TMNT 3, samurai body armour from the same movie and the mutagen canister.

It seems there would be a sequel likely as Karai dropped explicit hints of Shredder’s revival. Also the director, Kevin Munroe, has stated of his desire to make one.

The plot is quite decent too. Not Last Exile or Planetes standard surely, but better than Hulk and X men movies at the very least. I wish the movie could’ve been longer though with more action scenes with the 13 monsters. The four generals also should’ve had longer fighting scenes to befit their status as tough nuts.

I now want to buy some turtle action figures. Can’t wait for Spiderman 3 and Transformers now!