An Anime That I Wish Had Continued (30 Day Anime Challenge, Day 30)

Serious Blogger’s Note:

I’ve come to the end of the 30 Day Anime Challenge. My goal was to finish the challenge in exactly 30 days, posting one post each day beginning on January 1st and running through January 30th. It wasn’t always easy, to be honest. Real life doesn’t time its incidents to one’s convenience, after all. There were some days when I really thought that I might not have the time or energy to keep my resolution, days when the sewer backed up or work went a little crazy, when I was sick or tired or just plain lazy. But now, looking back at the work that went into it and my own dedication, looking at the response that the 30 Day Anime Challenge garnered, I’m so glad that I stuck to my goal.

To you, the anime fans reading my blog, I have to say “thank you!” To be honest, your likes, comments, and follows have been so incredibly encouraging. Finding a group of people as passionate about the media as I am, a group who may have different tastes but has accepted my shoujo-self without reservation, has been heartening. Knowing that people out there, whether large or small in number, care about my ramblings and actually read them… that you all took the time in passing or made the conscious effort to wonder, “What did that ridiculous sparkly fangirl post today?” and checked it out… Truly, that means the world. Thank you so much.

When I love something, it is into that area that I throw myself. I’m an avid fan of books and writing, and I’ve dedicated myself to my job, but this…

…when I found anime, true to form I fell in love, and now I have a community to share that with. I can fangirl here in the anonymity of the internet, and tweet out my random “squee!” moments knowing that there are others who take as much joy from anime as I do. I don’t take that for granted.

I have a blessed and fulfilling life out here in the real world, but I look forward to reading up on other’s post and sharing the experiences of doing what we love with all of you. Keep being awesome, guys. Please keep being accepting of other newbies like me; it’s such fun to fangirl(boy) together.

I don’t plan to post every single day now, but I do plan to regiment myself more strictly than in the past, to write more than I was under the bi-monthly posting schedule that I was roughly keeping. I think I’ll set the goal of posting at least twice per week. It’s a little stressful, as I’m sure fellow bloggers are aware, but the increased involvement in the community is something that I don’t want to give up, and I love the reprieve that this blog gives me from my “real world responsibilities.” My husband said, “You’re more dedicated to this than you are to your actual job!” I’d say that I’m dedicated to my real job for sure, but this is my own rambling space. People read what I have to say, and I can say whatever I want without consequence. I can be my sparkly self*, and that’s a pretty special thing.

*I plan to write a post about the impact that anime has had on my self-image at a later date, but please note that—though I don’t change who I am no matter what others think— I do appreciate how shoujo anime makes girly, sparkly girls like me seem capable or desirable. I’ve often been underestimated because of my cheerful demeanor, my bows and skirts, or my absentmindedness (ADHD is a thing, yo), but in anime, cute doesn’t mean stupid, and I appreciate that.


 

ON TO THE (SPOILER FREE) POST!! *TRUMPETS BLAIR*

On this, the final day of the 30 Day Anime Challenge, I’ve been asked to name an anime that I wish would have continued after it’s finale! A better question is, “What anime that I watched did I ever want to end?” No, no, I jest, I promise. In reality, there are those shows that have such perfect endings that continuing them would seem forced or inappropriate.

There are several shows that I could name, but today I’ll write on one that MAN ALIVE needs to GET ITSELF TOGETHER ALREADY and MAKE SEASON 2 FOR GOODNESS SAKE.

That show is…

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SKIP BEAT!

While at this point I highly doubt we’ll see a season 2 (considering the show came out in ’08-09), I do so wish that it had never ended. The plot synopsis and my impressions of Skip Beat! are a post for another day, but having read the manga, there is SO MUCH MORE MATERIAL that could be animated. The show ended JUST BEFORE MY FAVORITE ARC! Can you say “beagle??” (Readers of the manga will get this and the rest of you will just think I’m insane but ohhh well~~~!)

HOWEVER, I did just discover that there is to be a DUB of season 1 released sometime soon due to a successful Kickstarter campaign. Kyoko is going to be voiced by Caitlyn Glass of HARUHI (Ouran) FAME, I KID YOU NOT!!

Don’t believe me? Tired of unsubstantiated internet claims regarding anime releases? Check it:

So, you know, don’t mind me, I’ll just be dying of excitement over here. Do you think this will spark enough interest to launch a season 2?!?!

No, probably not. 。゚(*´□`)゚。

 

 

Catch you on the flip side,

Shoujothoughts

An Anime That I Wished was Real (30 Day Anime Challenge, Day 29)

Stunning visuals, moving music, twisting plots, one-of-a-kind characters: anime.

Uproarious comedy, heartrending tragedy, touching romance: anime.

Cause for introspection, time for reflection, an underrated media: anime.


Human beings have been given the power to create, and we do so regularly. On a smaller scale, we have been granted a power otherwise unique only to God. Some live by the creative impulse. When we write poetry, therein lies power. When we compose a score, therein lies power.

I relate strongly to the quote below.

“The truly creative mind in any field is no more than this: A human creature born abnormally, inhumanly sensitive. To him… a touch is a blow, a sound is a noise, a misfortune is a tragedy, a joy is an ecstasy, a friend is a lover, a lover is a god, and failure is death. Add to this cruelly delicate organism the overpowering necessity to create, create, create — so that without the creating of music or poetry or books or buildings or something of meaning, his very breath is cut off from him. He must create, must pour out creation. By some strange, unknown, inward urgency he is not really alive unless he is creating.”

-Pearl S. Buck

I create every day; I can’t live to the fullest without artistic expression, without being able to feel and experience the creation of others. Through anime as through other media, people create worlds and characters of their own design; they create emotions, they create consequence, and the impact of of said creation is enormous to me.

Each medium of creation allows for a different experience. As such, though there are various outlets and means of experience, anime is truly something special. It’s unique. It allows for storytelling far outside the realms of reality and yet has the refreshing capability to maintain relatability. It gives different voices to situations and allows viewers to experience a breadth of emotion without consequence, yet holds the power to irrevocably move or motivate. Things that don’t happen in real life—that don’t even seem plausible—can happen in an anime title, and it seems perfectly appropriate to a viewer, a fan.

In any case, there is no anime that I wish was real. Do you know why?

The beauty in such creation is that is already real. As Albus Dumbledore says when meeting Harry at the crossroads:

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?”

-from Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

I don’t WANT any show or universe to exist in the same physical confines as my own. I don’t want to meet Okita in person, or play kick the can with Tamaki, or travel with Yona in my own space. I want to continue journeying with them in theirs.

Anime doesn’t have to be real to be real.

This is what I think.

Shoujothoughts ❤

My Favorite Quote from Any Anime Character (30 Day Anime Challenge, Day 28)

Much like when I was prompted to pick my favorite male anime character, there is no way that I am picking a singular favorite, so I’ll just start listing again. Some quotes that I like are moving or profound. Others are simply bad@$$ or cute, etc. Some I connect with more than others, and so many of my favorite quotes come from Fruits Baskets.

Some lines speak for themselves, and with others I will include a brief explanation.

I can’t guarantee I’ll get to them all, but I will be able to hit a few. In no particular order, here we go!


1.

“If I am to choose a rose in this garden of romance, maybe we can take this chance; maybe you’re my love.”

– Op. of Ouran High School Host Club, song: Sakura Kiss

There is something special about this line because a) Ouran sparked my journey into anime and will always hold a special place for me, and b) come one, it’s a rose in a garden of romance. The composition is so fitting. I love that!

2.

“The name fury that belongs to those fakes is no match for your life and the way you’ve chosen to live it. You have transcended, and you are already a devil. And, as such, you deserve a devil’s name. You are… Hakuouki.”

– Kazama, Hakuouki: Warrior Spirit of the Blue Sky

This is the line from which the title of the franchise is derived. The scene in which it’s found compounds all of Hijikata’s struggles and trials. This is his moment of ultimate recognition, the validation of his tribulation. He has truly transcended.

3.

“But you know, there’s something I believe. I want to try and live my life carrying all my memories with me. And even if those memories are painful, even if they do nothing but hurt me, I want to keep them, even those memories I sometimes wish I could forget. As long as I carry them with me, as long as I can keep holding on, then someday, someday I’ll be strong enough that those memories don’t hurt me anymore, and I’ll be glad that I have them. That’s what I believe, with all my heart.”

– Momiji, Fruits Basket, ep. 15

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4.

“Next door are the screams of my naked heart. Next door: where does it lead? (to the next paradise)”

– Otoya and Eiichi, Uta no Prince Sama Maji Love Legend Star, song: Next Door

This line seems more simple at first glance than truly it is. Otoya has finally confronted some painful memories and allusions. This line implies something much darker than is usually touched upon in a show such as UtaPri. It reflects a tortured state of being. Without getting into too many spoilers, Otoya blames himself. He believes he will ultimately loose everyone he loves. “Next door” is the placement of his pain. It’s a place specifically “other,” a place close but not within; Otoya has pushed the agony from himself for so long, and yet it lingers. He cannot escape it once the floodgates have been opened. He asks himself what will happen now that he feels that pain, exposes the hurt that Eiichi has pulled from his very core. Where will it lead? Consider the dark implications of the “next paradise.” Without risking a potentially audience-alienating change in genre, I don’t see how the implication could be made any clearer. Otoya is struggling.

5.

“As we sit and wait on our throne, we only acknowledge those who come to us.”

– Quartet Night, Uta no Prince Sama Maji Love Legend Star, song: God’s Star

There is such confidence in this line. Quartet Night are Starish and Heavens’ senpais in the music business; they’ve been around the block a few times, have finely honed their skills, and they set the standard to which others thrive. Hoping to be legendary? Pppfftt. Quartet Night is aiming for god status, and this song is a celebration of them. My favorite band in the series, these young adults are MEN, not boys, and they’re going to show you up. Bow, peasants. ❤

6.

“My point is that it takes just as much training to get along with people, although training by yourself in the mountains won’t do you any good. You need to surround yourself with others. If you get to know them of course you take the chance that you’ll end up hurting them, or they’ll end up hurting you, and those things might very well happen. That’s the only way we learn… about others… and about ourselves.”

-Shigure, Fruits Basket, ep. 3

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7.

“No one really starts out kind. All we know how to do at first is want: we want food, we want attention. It’s just natural survival instinct, I guess. But kindness is something we all have to learn as we go. It’s something that grows and develops slowly over time, the same way our bodies do, so kindness can come in all sorts of shapes and sizes.”

-Tohru, Fruits Basket, ep. 3

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8.

“True kindness isn’t something we’re born with. It’s something we have to work at. We have to mold it and shape it for ourselves. Not everyone has it, but I think everyone has the potential. Sometimes you just have to look really close before you can tell it’s there.”

-Kyoko, Fruits Basket, ep. 3

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What is your favorite quote from an anime character?

 

-Shoujothoughts

Most Bad@$$ Scene From Any Anime Character (30 Day Anime Challenge, Day 27)

Blogger’s Note: This post became much more of a discussion on what makes a moment bad@$$ than I had originally intended, rather than being a description of a single incident. Also, you may get tired of me writing the word as “bad@$$,” but I don’t say it excessively (especially after a point), so I think we’ll be alright.


I am going to choose to believe that bad@$$ doesn’t need to mean visually stunning so that I don’t end up writing about Hakuouki AGAIN (because you know I would, dear readers, you know I would). In selecting a scene, I have to ask myself, “in what way should I digest the prompt?” What does it truly mean to be bad@$$, and in which cases should I validate one character’s bad@$$ery as more intense than that of another? Sebastian (of Black Butler notoriety) killing the mob responsible for kidnapping Ciel by using the family dinning silver is bad@$$. The same can be said of when he literally SPITS OUT BULLETS and then THROWS THEM AT HIS WOULD-BE ASSASSINS with enough speed to KILL THEM OUTRIGHT. Like…what is that??

Other such incidents of bad@$$ery are less physical and more verbal. (DON’T DO IT SELF, DON’T DO IT.) In Hakuouki (YOU DID IT.), Okita Souji (NO, STOP IT. STOP IT.)…

Okay, I stopped myself. Anyway, some bad@$$ery is more verbal. It’s isn’t based in anime, but there was a character in an otome game that I played who said, “Roast in the flames of perdition,” as his vigilante catch phrase, and I maintain that the aforementioned line is one of the most bad@$$ lines every spoken in an otome, the end-good day-that’s all.

In my opinion, to be considered bad@$$ rather than intense, a scene must have little other pull than the “cool” factor. Impressed must be the primary emotion, rather than respectful, heartbroken, or in stitches. There is no room for being conflicted while witnessing a bad@$$ moment. When Saito (I’M USING HAKUOUKI AGAIN FOR A MOMENT BUT I WON’T RAMBLE, I PROMISE) drinks the water of life in Warrior Spirit of the Blue Sky, I feel a cornucopia of emotions. Thus, even though his next actions are physically impressive, this is much more than a bad@$$ moment. When Ren (Dance with Devils) breaks into song while murdering (i.e.-defending himself and Ritsuka) a hoard of vampires in a deserted house’s well-kept kitchen, I feel only that “cool” factor stemming primarily from Ren’s confidence (as manifested in his actions, words, and appearance). Thus, this IS one such moment. 

In fact, though there are a few moments that readily come to mind, I think that this is the one that I shall pick for today.

Without reveling spoilers (seriously, guys, it’s a dark, romantic, unintentionally comedic, bad@$$ musical with an epic and seamless DUB and you should WATCH IT), Ren Arlond, basically the heir of Hell, takes out cronies of the vampire faction with skill, ease, and unassailable confidence. And those lyrics! And those blue flames! That doll and marionette imagery!

Learn your lesson well.

Dance until the hour of your doom.


Thoughts? Bet you didn’t expect me to pick a scene from a musical. (^_~) ♪♬

And perhaps musicals aren’t your thing. Tell me, what anime scene do you find the most bad@$$? Do you agree with my qualifications assessment?

Bye for now!

Shoujothoughts

 

♬ Hark, my name is Ren Arlond:

the prince of despair to whom even the darkness grovels!

The Moment that Shocked Me the Most (20 Day Anime Challenge, Day 24)

Tamaki: Haruhi?

Haruhi: Yeah?

Soooo, you’re a girl?

Biologically speaking, yeah.

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-Ouran HS Host Club, Ep. 1

Truly, I had no idea what Ouran High School Host Club was about when my friend had me watch it, and going into it without any sort of plot synopsis had me fully convinced that Haruhi was a boy until the last possible moment. My friend Ginger had her suspicions right away, and yet…

Yes, I discovered this fact with Tama-chan.

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I already told you that I was basically Tamaki, right? That Haruhi was a girl had me shocked! I’m pretty sure my friend found it highly amusing.

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“Pay attention to the light bulbs,” he tells me. Jeez.


 

Be honest, guys. Were you shocked by the revelation, too?

What anime moment shocked you the most?

 

 

Peace and Geese,

Shoujothoughts

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My Favorite Armor, Gear, or Weapon Used in Any Anime (30 Day Anime Challenge, Day 22)

Generally, I’m not overly absorbed by weapons, gear, or armor. These are not usual shoujo staples. I could easily pick the iconic Shinsengumi uniform (and Yamaki’s ninja apparel, as well, because that’s pretty sweet if basic, something I’m totally okay with), but that would seem redundant given how much I clearly love Hakuouki and how terribly likely I am to repeatedly reference the title again during this challenge period. I’ve seen all these things, of course, but I rapidly recall nothing that stands out to me particularly for it’s awesome design. I could go on about transformations, but I don’t think those necessarily count when considering the prompt. What’s a shoujo fanatic to do?

I’ve watched Sword Art Online, of course. (I kind of feel like asking who hasn’t at this point, but I suppose that some would say the same about Naruto or Inyuasha—and don’t even get me started on those as the first I’ve never seen and the latter thew me off anime for years. I tired to watch it again recently because they suddenly took my favorite anime titles off Netflix, but I got two episodes in and went NOPE NOPE NOPE, so there’s that.)

But I’ve digressed. So, back to my thought, I’ve watched SAO, and I suppose I could pick Kirito’s look just because it first came to mind, but, again, the fact that he’s clearly a kid took away from the overall bad@$$-ery of his appearance and I was never OVERLY in love with it to begin with (not saying the trench-look isn’t decently cool or anything–so many people hated SAO, but I honestly enjoyed that first season quite a bit at the time).

If I’m picking a weapon, I could pick Son Hak’s glaive as depicted in Yona of the Dawn. I would do so because HAK IS AWESOME, and that’s a fact. Again however, we run into the situation in which my feelings about armor, gear, or a weapon are contingent upon my feelings about the wielder or wearer, because I care about characters more than their equipment.

I suppose there’s no escaping it, so I might as well give in:

 

My Favorite Armor/Gear

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My Favorite Weapon

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But here’s a question for you; wouldn’t a moon wand be considered a weapon? 😛

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Of course! It’s not my favorite, but it is a thought! Clearly a shoujo staple, that.

 

Well, how would you answer this prompt? I bet those with broader anime tastes have a great deal of examples to choose from!

Let me know, if you would.

 

Shoujothoughts

My Favorite Goofy Anime Character (30 Day Anime Challenge, Day 21)

What does the question mean by “goofy?” I’m sitting here listening to Chōzetsu☆Dynamic! as I consider what character I should choose to wax on for the prompt today. Does Goku count as a goofy character because the original of DBZ and Super (read: not the dub) makes him seem like a total idiot? If not, perhaps someone like Sunohara Youhei from Clannad would suffice, because he is–at least for the most part–definitely a total goof.

And as I ponder the relevancy of my own personal tastes as I struggle to respond accordingly with so few characters that readily come to mind, I remember that BLACK BUTLER: BOOK OF THE ATLANTIC comes out in Japan today, and that I have no idea when it will be released as a dub—thus, I cannot relish the news. (⌣_⌣”)

Moving on, my favorite goofy anime character, huh? It seems difficult, given that my favorite characters are often those in possession of more serious persuasions…

Sakura Chiyo of Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun renown can be a but silly at times, but I’d hesistate to call her goofy. It is in this show, however, that I’ve found my pick for today.

BEHOLD, THE CROWN PRINCE OF THE HIGH SCHOOL! 

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girlsfreakingout

☆☆Kashima ☆☆

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Charismatic Kashima sends all the school girls swooning, practically oozing charm and pulsing sprays of rose petals while traversing the campus hallways in avoidance of a certain drama club president determined to see Kashima responsibly show up on time for club functions. There is only one thing unexpected about this shoujo manga bishie model princely type… Any idea what it is?











crownprince2

Yes! You guessed it! Prince Kashima is a girl!

She’s also ridiculous, but that’s besides the point. (Well, I suppose I should say that’s the entire point considering the title of the prompt.)

Kashima is good friends with the red-headed Mikoshiba, and a credit to the drama department. She takes the staring male roles in all the productions directed by her secret crush, Hori (who is also an amazing actor, but considers himself too short to play male leads and yet can’t  risk outshining the other actors on stage by taking a supporting role).  Aside from this, she constantly gets on Hori’s nerves in various ways, including running late for practice so that he’s forced to seek her out and drag her forcibly to the theatre. The hilarious bit is that she doesn’t even realize that she loves him, and yet her actions always scream “SENPAI, NOTICE ME!!!!!!”

*spoiler alert* There’s even an episode where she treats him like a shoujo princess because she thinks that’s what he wants, and all the while she’s offending his masculine sensibilities.

I’m smiling just thinking about her character, and now I want to skip off to watch Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun again, even though I have considerable other responsibilities (FOCUS SHOUJO, FOCUS).

 

Until next time!

Shoujothoughts