Well, my dear readers, it’s time for me to take another break from blogging here. Also, my column “Examining Light Novels” on Beneath the Tangles will be put on hold for the time being; though, I intend to write one article for their “Twelve Days of Christmas” series. It’s a shame that this hiatus comes before the end of National Blog Posting Month, but so be it. Medieval Otaku will return at some point in January. In the meantime, I might write some articles on my two other blogs which I have neglected in favor of this one in order to keep the writing muscles in shape.
Saraba ja or Saraba da is an antiquated Japanese term for good-bye which I learned recently. The closest expression in English is “Godspeed!” and the Spanish “Adios!” might be even closer in meaning. Apparently, the samurai used to wish each other good-bye with Saraba ja, and, if blogs are to be believed, it’s Buddhist in derivation and wishes “eternal wisdom” on the addressee. (Kodansha’s Essential Kanji Dictionary gives the kanji in the valediction two meanings “yes” for zen pronunciation and “nature” for nen, but I am certain this is not exhaustive.)
Happy Thanksgiving and saraba ja!
Yuri on Ice is one of those shows which I can never see myself watching, but I applaud MRNewman’s discussion of the concepts of Agape, Philia, and Eros within the context of the show and the Bible, in which these three loves appear. Click on the link below!
Yesterday, in reponse to my latest reblog, a few of my friends brought up that Perfect Blue has some scenes that are plain hard to watch. Another said that I should warn people about the nudity, sexual violence, bloody violence, and vulgarity contained therein. That last request I hesitated to meet, but here is my content warning for Perfect Blue: it has bloody and brutal murders, a lingerie/swimsuit photoshoot which turns pornographic, a rather disturbing simulated rape scene, and an infamous masturbation scene. (N. B. The last is non-explicit enough that one might not realize what’s going on–if memory serves me right–in that five second scene.) There you have the worst content in the movie. The question now occurs to me of why was I so loath to write about these details and even angry that they were brought up in regard to Perfect Blue?
We all got into anime because of the unique stories and scenarios offered by the medium. Still, moments of originality become harder to come across the more anime one watches. I just came across one of these moments of originality while watching Heavy Object of all things. This is the series that nearly drove iblessall mad with how ridiculous it was. The first five episodes are terrible, and the fanservice often becomes uncomfortable. Why did I stick with it beyond those first five episodes of stupidity? I liked the man vs. machine and buddy soldiers facets of the story, and it certainly made me laugh as it provided a good dose of action.
The fun factor counts as the most important reason behind me never actually dropping the anime. (My watching of it has frequently stalled.) Last night, my decision to continue watching the show felt completely vindicated when I turned to a friend and said:
Here is a great post about vampires and fighting evil. Josh W explorers Christian themes within video games for Beneath the Tangles. The articles on his personal blog, Res Studiorum et Ludorum, contains posts on many subjects ranging from anime and movies to science fiction and religion. Please check out the post linked to below!
A little detail caught my attention in Princess Tutu: Drosselmeyer favors a blend of tea he apparently made himself. It consists of three parts Darjeeling and one part Assam. Those of you who’ve followed this blog a long time know me for a tea connoisseur–at least, I am when I can afford to be. One of the earliest posts on this blog was on Kakuzo Okakura’s The Book of Tea. I’m a big fan of tea varietals but will drink blends also, especially English, Scotch, or Irish Breakfast tea. English Breakfast tea is formed by Assam, Ceylon, and Kenyan teas, Irish is stronger because it uses teas from Assam almost exclusively, and Scottish the strongest with the strongest varieties from Asia–even sometimes adding the pine-fired Lapsang Souchong.
While reading through some posts on Beneath the Tangles, I found this excellent article by Kaze on how many people view religion as outdated. It was inspired by the visual novel Harmonia, which sounds like a very introspective work. Click on the link below.
Harmonia and Outdated Religion
As you can tell from the title, one of the five shows below got a rare five stars from me. Keen readers of my anime posts might have an inkling of which anime made it to my top fifty. Let me start from the bottom and work my way up.
This show is not on the bottom because I don’t like it, but because I haven’t finished it. One never knows whether the second half of the show will ruin a promising start.
As of episode ten, the show appears to shine in three areas: the fight scenes, the animation, and the comedy. I greatly enjoy the samurai’s cultural shock as he experiences modern life in Japan. The sword fights surprise me with their realism: both within and without the mecha. (I think that I caught a glissade during one bout.) And the animation draws one in by sharp details and beautiful backgrounds.
Looking at my list of anime to write about, I noticed that five of them are series and the other three shorter works. And so, I am writing about Patema Inverted, Psycho-Pass the Movie, and Vampire Princess Miyu here and the other five tomorrow. Two anime yesterday, three today, and five tomorrow: you can see that I’m trying to ease myself into National Blog Posting Month. As usual, let’s see how long I last without resorting to a reblog.
1) Vampire Princess Miyu OVA – ★★★ 1/2
Watching this OVA reminded me of the good old days when anime DVDs included only two or three episodes a disc. This four part OVA came on two discs, and I was scratching my head as to why they could not fit all four episodes on the same disc. I loved the old cell animation employed in this series, which has been lauded for the traditional style of the artwork. Everything from the dark scenes to the music to the creepy characters worked to envelop the viewer into the mood of this eldritch tale.
Our titular character, Miyu, happens to be tasked with the goal of sending Shinma–creatures half-god and half-demon (all demon, if you want my opinion)–back into the netherworld from which they came. A female exorcist named Himiko becomes involved with Miyu during the failed exorcism of a fox demon from a comatose young girl. Will Himiko survive her acquaintance with Miyu and her henchman Larva, and what is the mysterious link between the vampire and this young exorcist?
Happy All Saints’ Day and first day of NaNoWriMo or NaBloPoMo–whichever you prefer to undertake. I’ll be undertaking the latter. The challenge for National Blog Posting Month is to post once per diem for the month of November. Usually, I get through with a combination of original articles and reblogs. So, you just might see a post of yours up on Medieval Otaku this month. 🙂 At the same time, my reading challenge on Goodreads shows that I need to finish fifteen more books, i.e. I need to read about two books a week until the end of the year–sounds doable.
It occurred to me that I never linked my summer anime reviews on Beneath the Tangles to this blog. That was remiss of me, and here they are: Alderamin on the Sky, Active Raid, Berserk, and Sweetness and Lightning. That season, I also had the pleasure of finishing 91 Days and ReLife, which went unremarked upon. Below, I hope to correct my overlooking of them.