Friday, February 26, 2010

Planetes: Boundary Line

Boundary Line is the 11th episode of Planetes, and the first episode of an anime I've ever seen that deals with migration in a serious manner. This review has spoilers for the episode. The plotline that I am interested in involves a man from a fictional South American country. He is shopping around a spacesuit created in his country, and every company, and most of the departments at Technora[the company that our heroes work at] turn him down. In one exchange, Claire, who is revealed to have been born in that same fictional country, notes that the Space Equal Opportunity Act or whatever, says that companies should at least consider things made in fictional South American countries, but her coworker says 'We considered it. We looked at the brochure'.

Tied into this storyline is Claire's discomfort with her heritage. The man [Tamara is his name] seems to remind her of the poverty and lack of gloss of her old country. She cringes at his less than beautiful eating habits, and reminds him that she's an America, and was only born in El Tanika. However, at the end, she asks him if she is 'running away'. She can't read her native language, and remembers how far behind she was, starting school in America- 'at age 8, I knew less than a kindergartner'. However, the man reassures her, saying that just knowing that one of them is one of Technora's elite is enough, although even though his family fled to China, he returned in hopes of starting a space industry in El Tanika.

And yes, his spacesuit meets all the international requirements, with the help of our heroes providing space testing. Everything would be beautiful, except for the Space UN has now invaded for peacekeeping purposes[don't ask me!] and all El Tanikans outside of the country are to be detained. Also, their spaceship factory is blown up in the war. But, tearfully, this man looks down at earth, and says, from up here, I see no boundaries, I see only earth. And it's a beautiful episode of anime.


Man, I'm so disappointed!

For reasons unknown[I must have preordered it], Skip Beat volume 20 showed up at my door today. Sadly, it was more about the Maria storyline, and I'm not interested in Maria at all. She's a cute side character, but she's more of the type to get a whole chapter devoted to her than a whole book.

The storylines in Skip Beat I am interested in are Sho/Kyoko- will Sho realize he loves her? Will Kyoko realize this and laugh because his dreams are crushed, crushed into gravel? Kyoko's type casting is also a storyline I'm interested in- will she take Ren's dad's advice and triumph? And what about her mom? Why does her mom hate her so much? Why did she practically abandon her? Does Kyoko even have a dad?

The mangaka has some good visual metaphors and there's some Moko and her friendship with Kyoko, but I'm sighing for more of the good stuff.


Tuesday, February 23, 2010

More about Black Bird

I agree with this reviewer somewhat, especially about the covers. I think it can still be redeemed if the author remembers that Misao needs characterization. Volumes 2 and 3 were about how dangerous the demon world is, and we need to get back to the focus on our supposedly main character. We know that she tends to trust evil people too easily, yes, but we need some more... She's been living on earth 16 years, I'm sure she has a personality somewhere.

Notice that the masterful Nana never lets the setting overpower the characters. Setting is very important for comics, that's a hook, but good characterization is the key. We all know that Kyo is a loveable sex maniac, but what drives him besides that? Misao needs more interests besides mooning over Kyo. Get with it, author!


Writing The Unmapped Fantasy...

Beautiful essay. To make fantasy truly a universal genre, we'll have to break it down to the bottom, the very beginning and build again. That will be very difficult.

I started to play Diner Dash 5. I'd like to note that I don't want to connect with facebook- no one cares. But I see new character types, which is promising, and upgrades that actually affect game play. Sadly, they decided to make the customizing the restaurant thing even larger. I'd like the game to be more difficult, and I don't care about being an interior designer or whatever.


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Moe Moe Crap

There's a bottom that even Japanator won't go to with moe crap. Apparently watching some boring 2d girl sleep is just too boring even for the moe connoisseur.

I am watching Planetes. Strangely, this quiet tale of people doing unglamorous jobs in space, and the many problems that come with space exploration has managed to keep my attention despite the fact that no young girls show their panties! What a shock!


Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Black Bird Volume 3- The mangaka realizes that merely providing shocking porn might not be enough, so she decides to write some plot hinting about the backstory of this maiden of legend thing, and brings some other demon clans in. But don't worry- in this volume, Misao is tied up twice, and licked once. She of course is crying on the cover. Kyo also is shirtless for no reason in one scene.

All My Darling Daughters- Reminded me of the sort of American comics I like. Even though I'm sure this is not actually autobiographical. Good sparse artwork.

Bride of the Water God- But maybe I should have gotten the second volume of this again. Strong mythology with interesting costume porn.

Planetes- Watched volume 1. It's growing on me. I like office comedies.

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Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Roll Through the Ages

Roll Through the Ages has an annoying design. The dice are way too big. When you have 7 of these huge dice to roll, sometimes it's physically impossible to roll them all at the same time. And the board design reminds me of some game I played as a kid in restaurant, like Chinese checkers with pegs or something.

The mechanics are OK, and it could get fairly deep for a game that is so short.


Friday, February 05, 2010

Wild Mass Guessing!

Today I plan to tell you all some terrible theroeis I have made up-

Black Bird- Misao is just going along with the whole marry a tengu plan as she thinks being sexually abused by some guy she has vague childhood memories of is better than being raped and then killed. After Kyo rescues her in vol 1, he notes that things will get a lot worse without his protection.

Fruits Basket- Shigure executed a successful Hikaru Genji plan. Shigure is depicted in flashbacks as comforting Akito, and kissing and giving a flower to little Akito in a slightly inappropriate way. Akito is depicted as saying that Shigure was kind, like her father. Could Shigure have been playing on her warm feelings from her childhood crush to get them together? Probably.

Code Geass- Lelouch and C.C. have had sex. No evidence. Just wishful thinking


Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Oh God!

I cheerfully bought Black Bird volume 2 innocently wondering "I wonder if Kyo and Misao will ever have sex". I read it and ended up going D: D: D: literally. Kyo's brother is too horrible to seal away forever- I can see him doing horrible traumatizing things to everyone for many volumes to come. And I'll be buying just to go OH MY GOD! THEY DIDN'T JUST PRINT THAT IN A BOOK WHERE OLD PEOPLE AND CHURCH LADIES CAN READ IT!!!!


Monday, February 01, 2010


Disney will start making 2d films again because of the Princess and The Frog? Awesome. There's just something about 2d animation... maybe a 'warmth' to it that you can't get with even amazing 3d animation such as Kung Fu Panda.