Archive for April, 2013

Welp

Thursday, April 25th, 2013

This was my first time applying a no-background vynil, and of course I did not know what I was doing. Behold:

The problem is, the tiny letters came off the backing improperly: they tried to stay on the paper. Thus, in parts they had paper backing under them, and elsewhere they were deformed. So, two lessons. One: pay attention to the decal size. This one is tiny. It’s possible to order a larger one, but I missed it. Two: be extraordinarily vigilant and ready to help with a knife.

Certainly, Evirus is not going to add this to his Itasha picture collection at Pinterest, but this is the first time for me to have an anime sticker on my car, and I’m taking it slowly.

P.S. I forgot to mention that I feel like this is going to be obscure enough, like the big yellow “X”, meaning of which eludes me even now. I figured out the yellow “railroad ties” in a blue square (spolier: they mean “gay”). The meaning of the “fox” logo is not so clear, but apparently it’s a snowboarder. This might as well work of “anime”. Does not have to be a cartoon face with saucer eyes.

UPDATE: Evirus humoured me, while Steven asked “what is a `speed stab’?”. Oh, you. But yes, it does kinda look like that.

Car is a mecha

Wednesday, April 24th, 2013

I built the analogy of anime mecha with a fighter airplane before, but it may be taken further. It’s not like every mecha flies (for instance, more “real” Gundams do not). Also, power multiplier and the ace factor are not the only attributes that make mecha attractive as entertainment. Surely the sheer fun of piloting a Gundam would be tremendous. Of course, nobody can afford a Gundam, but a few people have fighter airplanes, and a very large number of people own cars. Car is basically a populist mecha, which you can experience. Although I did not know it until I rode an Auto-X run.

I think the other appeal of Initial D lies in how real it is. There were series that gave attention to the mechanical side, e.g. Lotus 7 of Ex-Driver. But that one was set in a fake police force environment, while this one captured the real world subculture. Come to think of it, there’s not a whole lot of technobabble in Initial D, except the very rough outline of what layout has what capabilities, and how various forced induction setups differ. We don’t know a whole lot about functioning of Gundam either. I suppose the people reality works just as well as the otakuist reality of Garupan.

We can say that a fine balance and synthesis of visceral experience and narrative fidelity makes the series so appealing.

Nobar on Muromi’s seiyuu

Sunday, April 21st, 2013

And so:

[…] but Photokano and Muromi-san are already covering pretty much all bases when it comes to seiyuu ear porn.

I thought some of voicework in Muromi-san was vaguely familiar… Let’s see.

  • Muromi: Yukari Tamura, also the voice of everything between Akazukin and Togame. Very, very accomplished. Does a great job for Muromi.
  • Hii: Ai Nonaka. Not very familiar with her, but apparently she was Shippon? Not bad. Her Hii seems a little plain it, perhaps.
  • Levia: Mai Nakahara… Everyone here watched Mai-HiME, right? Also, Ritsuko. Appears to be largely cast for stereotypical strong women. /me approves
  • Sumita: Sumire Uesaka appears to be a complete beginner who burst into the scene and started grabbing main roles. Okay.
  • Fuji: Hitomi Harada: umm… She’s not on the scene as of ep.3 yet.

Looks like Nova may be right, and I like the performances. So yeah.

Muromi-san begins

Sunday, April 21st, 2013

When everything else fails, a simple, kind-hearted comedy comes to the rescue. And as a mark of a good one, the 2nd episode is more solid than the 1st, with what I presume is a brilliant parody of girls and their cellphones. So, I’m looking forward to the remainder of 12-minute shorts.

Unfortunately, it appears that nobody (except Aroduc) blogs this, so there’s not going to be the traditional “Bloggers on Muromi-san” type of thing, unless they start coming out of woodwork.

UPDATE: Almost forgot about Chris Beveridge, and now wish I did. Check out the writing style. I am a big fan of overlong sentences, but this is the next level. Also, he may be charles-solomoning us with the small mistakes:

Her curiosity with the cell phone has her wanting to text with him, and she sends him a ton of stuff […].

Muromi clearly was well familiar with the cellphone, just could not help herself when texting a boy.

Levia’s comical from the start as she treats Takkun like the dog at Shibuya […]

Actually it’s Muromi who treats him this way.

About Initial D Fourth Stage

Thursday, April 11th, 2013

The Initial D franchize stitched from several seasons (and a movie) that form a fairly good continuity. But they are quite different in the animation techniques and even character design. The first season had a definite feeling of something old-fashioned, like Gundam almost, if not Ranma. It also introduced and established a lot of characters, including the goofy sidekick Itsuki and notional sempai Iketani. There was quite a bit of typical cartoon violence and hijinks in the spirit of the period.

I think I liked it the most. The subsequent seasons firmly switched into the battle of the day mode. It’s not like the First Stage didn’t have those, mind. But the focus was strengthened thereafter, and it was almost boring, if you can call a fast-paced action that. The plot explored the envelope of the enemies, including the malicious corner, but I don’t even remember most of it now, with only the finale of Fourth Stage staying in memory.

Said finale comes back to the envelope’s center, meeting fairly plain opponenents, only stronger than before. And then… The two middle-aged guys turned out to be something else. One part that I rewatched several times was the battle with a pudgy gentleman in Nissan R34 aka GT-R. The director went very, very heavy on the foreshadowing in the episode, so even an ingnorant and lazy viewer like me knew that something was up… But what? I could not figure it out. By the time the dramatic BGM played, I gave it up and went with the flow of action completely. It was glorious.

Puchimasu ends

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

I sort of dropped “Petit Idolm@ster” due to the insufferable 3-minute format and lack of easy watching options, but someone started uploading 10-episode batches to Youtube with OP/ED stripped away on the boundaries. That helped enormously, so I watched all 64 micro-episodes.

The anime makes the best use of the ridiculous premise, turning to absurdist comedy. Overall, not bad. It has to be well understood that it’s a large departure from the core canon, same as Xenoglossia really. I mean the characters are changed quite a bit. Hibiki is not a wretched exhaust product of the creatively bankrupt screepwriters, here. And as they say “Takane, what are you doing”.

Of many cute moments I liked the “adult” designs standing in for SD in an inversion of conventions. Actually, I am sure I forget a lot, but this… Yukiho simply stepped out of her Puchimasu manga page.

Not sure who the best puchithing was. Piyo, I suppose, because she worked.

Okay, back to Cinderella Girls. The journey has not ended yet.

Liked: yes, after all
Rewatch: hmm…

P.S. Hibiki is wearing the same device on her top that Kaorin had on T-shirt:

Probably an Okinawian thing. It is not actually a word, although my input method thinks it’s pronounced “uminin”. TL for ADV’s Azumanga DVD v.5 says it represents “uminchu”, an Okinawian word for “fisherman”.