with all its no plot and nonsense i still loved this manga a lot

So, that first episode, huh? With the kidnapping an old man, and the not bothering to call an ambulance when he has a heart attack, and the ripping his prized possession in half right in front of him, and the challenging his panicked and crying grandson to a card game for no reason, and the general mweh heh heh-ing and villain vibes…it feels pretty damn out of left field compared with the sympathetic anti-hero characterization that the show goes with for the entire rest of the series.

And sure, the simple explanation is that the writers tried to cram two manga arcs into 20 minutes while cutting the actual plot and all the explicitly axe-murdery bits and then skipping directly to his lighter and softer post-coma personality, so of course the result was a nonsensical mess. But is there any way to reconcile Pilot Kaiba with rest-of-the-series Kaiba?

Maybe the key is his lack of pupils. 

No, seriously.

Keep reading

anonymous asked:

what was the trainwreck anime from Bee Train that Clamp refuses to acknowledge?

Ho boy, let me tell you a thing.

But first, I want to mention that the musical score composed by Kujiura Yuki for the anime was boooomb. I still love it even to this day, it’s so beautiful.  

That aside, the anime adaptation for TRC was a bust. It only had two seasons and in that time, they dedicated half of it to prolonged scene-changes and fillers. Seriously, you’d sit there for the last 60 seconds of the episode just staring at a zoom out. Plus, they didn’t even follow the story in chronological order which is so unnecessary and only adds to the overall confusion.

With the exception of a couple entertaining fillers (aka the chibi-fied episode), the rest of them were nonsense and it diverged from the plot so much that someone only watching the anime would be confused and/or bored to death. There was also a very strong sense that they were trying to say no homo by leaving out a lot of stuff that happened in the manga and inserting some stuff for the sake of heteronormativity. Because God forbid that a main character can be integral to the plot, know thousands of ways to kill you, and happens to be attracted to the same sex all at the same time. I know, very mindblowing stuff. 

For example, they dedicated an entire episode to a ‘date’ between Fai and a double of Chii from another world. WHICH. SPOILERS. If you read the manga, you’d know that Fai created Chii in the image of his late mother, not as a potential romantic interest. But of course, someone only watching the episodes is more inclined to think that there’s something between them and it makes the rest of us quite uncomfortable. For obvious reasons. 

In the world of LeCourt (Recourt?), as we all know, a dramatic transition happens when Fai uses his magic in order to get them to teleport into Acid Tokyo. In the anime, they skip over this entirely and put them in several more worlds with sub-par plot ideas (eg. Sakura’s feathers manifesting into a person who’s jealous of Syaoran) before ending season two on a very ambiguous note. There was no sense of closure, they just abruptly ended it with them running gallantly into an open field. No, I’m not kidding. This basically follows the frustrating trend of ‘guess you gotta go read the manga for more ~!’ that a lot of anime adaptations seem to do. But what’s the fucking point of creating the anime if you don’t intend on giving it a good story? It just muddies the reputation of the entire series and it could even turn people away from reading the manga.

The quality of the animation is standard at best and godawful at its laziest. Although to this point, if an anime has poor animation, I’m always at odds because I know for a fact that the anime industry pays their artists squat. They have to work long hours every day for very little pay, but that’s a side-note and I won’t diverge into that can of worms.

And yes, I understand that CLAMP’s style for these characters is supposed to elongate the limbs and torsos, but even in the manga, especially the splash pages, you can at least see Kurogane’s muscles and you’re like: oh yes, that’s definitely a warrior. In the anime though, he just looks like he has sticks for arms and absolutely no core strength. 

Bonus points to the movie for bringing Kurogane’s muscles home from the war.

But, there are some OVAs made by Production I.G. which are better quality and remains true to the story, those being Tokyo Revelations and Spring Thunder Chronicles. I’d definitely recommend watching those if you haven’t yet.

There are probably more things that I’m forgetting so anyone is more than welcome to add to the list!

I need to talk about Kid a bit

Yes movie 19 inspired me but like, I’m constantly trying to rationalize why he’s just so damn popular. I mean, what makes me so excited to see him appear, to defy reality and interact with the cast?

I’ve mused on it for a while and came up with a few personal, meta reasons why he’s a recipe for success.

Keep reading

Getting to “Noh” Cosplay, and how it helps society at large.

So, time for a few POSITIVE words about cosplay:

A Fireman, a Gynecologist, A movie Star, and a Schizophrenic all walk into a bar.  Bartender says “What’ll it be?” and each one in turn orders a drink… they all sit down at a table, and have a lovely evening…….

Oh… wait… that wasn’t funny… I was supposed to open with something funny.  What would make that funny? ah, yes, it would be the conflict you would expect from this group of very different people meeting together.  

But what would make these people from very different walks of life come together?  What could transcend age, race, gender, social class, education, occupation, in order to bring all these starkly different individuals together to share a few drinks, and a few laughs? Is is some kind of Illuminati-style-secret-society?  Some 1980’s “Cannonball Run” movie plot? No!  Its Cosplay!

Cosplay?  What’s cosplay?  Isn’t  that some kind of weird fetish?  “Oh kids these days!” … Well, you may know someone who is a cosplayer…that unassumingly normal person standing in front of you on line at 711 might be a cosplayer, and you would never even know it!  

Cosplay is a portmanteau for costume-play, and it is a growing subculture.  It can be defined, quite simply, as putting on a costume in an effort to embody that specific character. Some define Cosplay as a subculture that began in Japan, with the popularity of Manga and Anime, and made it over to the US at the turn of the century. Now, you may be thinking: “ We have a name for that: Halloween.  We have one day, set aside, for all this childish nonsense.  I don’t need to see batman buying milk at the gas station on a random Thursday night.”

However, I beg to differ.  Cosplay is not new.  It is something that has been a part of every culture, in every corner of the globe, since the time of the caveman.  Without it, there would be Anarchy. Anarchy?!  Surely I must be joking! What does a caveman have to do with this green woman standing before you?  Furthermore, how could my cousin dressing up like Harry Potter and embarrassing the whole family possibly keep anarchy at bay?

When you think of a caveman… you can envision them sitting around the fire, putting skulls of animals on their heads and reenacting the hunt.  Tribesmen of  Native Americans created elaborate costumes and danced out the stories of their Gods.  The Ancient Greeks defined what we know as modern theater, building amphitheaters where people could gather and experience the stories that were acted out before them.  In Japan, Noh theater, with its elaborate masks and costumes was born out of the Buddhist concept of Noh, which translates to: the connection of the audience with the actor.  Then we had Shakespeare…and oh, a few hundred years of live theater where people would come together as groups, and become enthralled with the story as the experienced the emotions, the drama, the fantasy…right along with the actors before them. … But then, something changed.

Movies came along… and then television…eventually, the internet.  And although sometimes we still gathered as an audience to witness these stories…they were now on a screen, and not in our physical presence.  With the advent of special effects and CGI the visuals became more dazzling and “realistic”.  To top it all off, reality TV became a staple.  Now anyone can be a star!!!  You do not need any training, talent, or even human decency to be famous!!!

But that Japanese Buddhist concept of “Noh”, of the connection between the audience and the actor…. was lost.

That little spark of magic, that “Noh”  is so important to me!  I remember my first Trick or Treating. I was about 3 years old.  My mom painted a clown face on me with greasepaint…which I promptly smeared all around!  When we finally got outside, my mom kept having to chase after me, because every time I saw another child in costume I’d yell “It’s Batman!!!”  "Theres Spiderman!!!“ "Oh mom look!!! a real Vampire!!!” I don’t remember one other little detail about being 3 years old, but that feeling has stayed with me for the rest of my life. It is that magic that I still feel when I see one of my favorite characters in the flesh at a convention.  

If you haven’t had that experience, I would say that it is similar to the feeling you get when your favorite song unexpectedly is playing on a radio, and all of the lyrics seem to eerily synchronize with the events that are going on at that very moment of your life. Or the thrill of your underdog sports team gaining a seemingly impossibly victory!  But we all know that it is a very different experience in between watching your favorite sports team playing on TV, and going to watch the game in person, maybe even getting the chance to snap a picture with your favorite player?

Cosplay is actually a lot like sports, just for a different set of individuals.  Just like in sports, there are players, and there is an audience.  The players spend time and dedication honing their skills in practice, so when the big day comes, everything is on point, ready for the game- which is much like a performance. The audience cheers, boos, and is engaged mentally and emotionally with the players… here again is that Japanese concept of “Noh” !  

Just like in sports, there are levels to cosplay.  Some people just like to get together with friends and shoot some hoops. Others spend every waking moment of their lives trying to make it to the top.  

So we can see that cosplay is something that engages people socially; in a time when few of us can be bothered too look up from our phones and experience the world around us. Cosplay forces us to look, to pay attention to what is happening in this very moment.  To have an experience, however brief, with another real, live, person.   My failed joke at the beginning of this talk was actually loosely based on real life experience (and now you are wondering  "Is she the Gynecologist or the schizophrenic?“…and I’ll just let you keep wondering about that!!) But the moral of the story is that through cosplay I have had the ability to connect with oodles of people I would have never interacted with based on my lifestyle, my skin color, my education…and <mumbles> my credit score.  

In fact, one of my favorite things about cosplay is how it transcends race. (Yes, I just hit the hot button issue!!!) I can remember going to the buffet after a convention with some friends, no time to shower, so I am still the green woman you see before you.  There was a family of many people having a LOUD debate about what my true skin color was under the paint.  For some people, its the first thing that they ask me..because…when you are green, its actually difficult to discern it otherwise. People think I’m Indian, South American, all kinds of lovely exotic things.  But more often, people say to me, "you know, its so strange to see you without bodypaint!  I guess I always just assumed green was you natural skin color!” Its these people, these individuals, that give me hope for the future of humanity.  

I am a geek, a nerd, whatever you want to call it…I grew up with my nose in a book, Avoiding gross human contact at all costs! This caused me to be a socially awkward individual.  I didn’t really know how to relate to my peers who I  had nothing in common with, so I just pushed people away. I’m sure all of us, at some point have felt this way.  Now, attending a crowded convention hall full of people is the direct opposite of what you would assume socially awkward person would want to do. Yet we come in droves! We travel for days and spend exorbitant amounts of money just to be there.  One of the reasons for this is that cosplay is empowering!…. Billy might get bullied at school… but he can put on a Thor costume and be a god at the convention!  People marvel at his costume, take his picture, and he meets other Thors, who share his interests, and may share his problems with bulling at school. Sarah has poor self esteem about her looks and her body…she clearly has not kept up with the Kardashians. No girls want to be her friend, and no boys will even look at her in school.  But Sarah can put on a Wonder Woman costume for one weekend, and feel like she can conquer the world!!!  People are complimenting her, snapping pictures, just like she is on the red carpet…and when she goes back to school on Monday, she stands a little straighter, walks with more confidence, and feels better about the girl who she sees in the mirror every day.  

But where there are heroes…there dwell villains..and <feigns shock> anti-heroes!?  Why?  Why would someone, especially a child, want to dress up like something bad, something unsavory, something eeevvviiillll? Since the dawn of man, we have used our imaginations to safely explore our darker sides.  The writer who created the villain certainly had to do so.  So inherently, there must be human parts of these darker characters that everyone can relate to.  Would you prefer that Paul be that weird kid who likes to dress up like the Punisher; or would you think it better that he keeps such ideas to himself?  Forcing himself into conformity, shoving down the weird, the bad, the ugly… until these unreleased urges boil over in an actual real life destructive, or self destructive act? So there you go! A very good example of how cosplay helps to keep anarchy at bay!!!  Now lets take a look at how cosplay can benefit individual’s brains.

Sure, there are more superhero movies and Anime coming out all the time…but superhero movies are based on comics, and Anime is derived from Manga.  So you might be surprised to find out that cosplayers are smarter then the average bear.  And not just because they read, but many of them are becoming the next generation of skilled craftsmen.  I can not stress the importance of this enough! Both reading and crafting strengthen your prefrontal cortex: the part of your brain responsible for organizing, strategizing, controlling impulsive and addictive behaviors.  A strong prefrontal cortex give you a better attention span, helps you deal with stress, and makes you more successful in life in general.


When people take your picture at a convention, or you have the thrill of seeing one of your favs in the flesh, the excitement of seeing another person who shares your passion, that connection, that “Noh” experience causes your brain to flood your body with dopamine and serotonin- your body’s natural happiness drug!  this makes you feel good, and then while you are on your own, crafting and reading, you connect those experiences with the real life experiences and wham-bam-thankyou mam! more happiness drug is released into your system!  

Research psychologist Amy Cuddy proved that holding “power poses” or Alpha stance (and yes, the classic wonder woman pose is included in these) holding these poses, for as little as two minutes lowers your cortozol: (that’s the stress hormone that makes you sad and fat) and raises your testosterone (that the “take the bull by the horns” hormone) Where as holding  shy or withdrawn pose has the opposite effect!  So grandpa telling you to stand up straight isn’t just being old fashioned…he’s trying to make you a happier person! Now, what do we do when we cosplay?  We power pose!!  All day long!!!!  If just two minutes can have an actual physiological effect… imagine what an entire day of power posing can do for you?!!!

Another “take my breath away moment” that happens at conventions is this:  last weekend, I had an entire conversation with Mario.   Yes, Mario the plumber, known for kicking koopa’s butts and saving princess'  yeah, that Mario.  An absolute stranger came up to me an interacted with me as his character .  I didn’t ask him to…I wasn’t even dressed in a costume from the same universe.  But we went on for a good 5 minutes, just bantering back and forth about the treachery  of warp zones, where the next castles where the princess might be found, etc. For five brief minutes….we were playing pretend….just like children!  

There are plenty of experiments done on rats, and “studies” done on children that prove that interactive plat has a plethora of benefits .  Its another activity helps to strengthen our prefrontal cortex that as we explored earlier helps you to problem-solve creatively, reduce impulse behavior, and helps you to be happier and less frustrated with the world around you.  Psychiatrist  Stuart Brown shows in his book Play  that adult play can foster harmony between adults, in families, in the workplace, and even in relationships. The importance of play time for children can not be understated . During playtime  children learn social and physical  boundaries  with their peers, They learn the essence of cooperation, develop stronger language and communication skills then children who play less.  Remember Our Thor, Wonder Woman, and Punisher from earlier?  All these kids have a bright, happy, and social future ahead of them!

So its easy to conclude that cosplay is a great way to play with your kids!!!  In a busy world, why sit staring at your phone agonizingly  waiting for your child’s play-date to be over, when you could be fulfilling your childhood fantasy of being Green Lantern? I’m sure most of you have seen the viral “bat-dad” videos…you can’t deny that they make you smile!  And if you don’t have children…play with each other !!!  Be that dad, that mom, that brother, sister or friend!  It doesn’t matter if you have an expensive costume, or you wrapped a towel around your neck imbue your old class ring with power!  

I hope that I have shown you that cosplay is not “dangerous”, “antisocial” or “frivolous ”.  Hopefully you understand why its important not to shun your weirdo cousin who dressed up Like Harry potter….Because if you stripped Humanity of all its technology, its electricity, its fossil fuels … we would still be left with our imaginations.  And fortunately , all we need to create the magic of “Noh”, this sacred connection that has existed since time before time….. is me, you, and a little imagination!!!