Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Anime-zing Incest and Computer-people (Wait WTF?)

People online claim that if you only like 1-5 anime titles, that somehow you are not a "true" anime fan. 

These are the same snobs that actually believe that every story on the planet needs to be revised as a cold, lifeless flick with fake drama added in for no reason. (Such as Superman Returns.) 

They permeate websites with endless chatter about how everything should be dubbed and hacked to death "for the kids" and then once they get their wish, they complain like crazy about how it needs to be restored to the way it was in Japan.

They also leave negative comments for any of us that likes a show that has a toy line, accusing successful series of being 30 minute commercials, while championing obscure titles that are Yandere in nature. 
(See blog.)

In short, most anime snobs are just never happy, which is why I've dropped a few of them from my Facebook. It actually prompted me to make this:

But I do try to keep up. My favorite anime is Sailormoon, but I do watch a few other titles like Slayers, Lupin III and Dragonball Z. I avoid titles I brought up in an earlier Anime blog, and I seek out whatever looks interesting.

Popped on Hulu so I could get caught up on InuYasha: Final Act. Since getting a Roku, I've been able to see tons and tons of anime, so on Facebook, I've been asking around for some anime suggestions, and if you have any of your own, the comment section is open. ^.^
I was tempted to just watch the final episode again, since I'd already seen it on the online version of Hulu, but then I thought "Nah, why not start at the beginning, really make that last episode feel rewarding."

So I watched the first episode, which is written in a really jumpy style, just to get you caught up from where they dropped the last series.

.... And I felt... icky. Did I really just spend the last few years following this series, just to feel icky??? What's wrong with me?? I'm all about anime, and the animation is really great. WTF is going on here?

The first issue I had was with the shock value. Good grief, I had no idea how much of InuYasha was just shock value. Let me give you an example:

Kohaku (tween who was killed but ends up completely alive at the end of the series) is outside, chatting with Kagura. (Demon who really just wants her freedom.) Little back and forth squabbling, nothing really that interesting.

Kohaku turns around to start walking. It's a really pretty and sunny day. Birds are chirping, dew is on the le-BURST OF BLOOD DEMON THE SIZE OF TEXAS SHOWS UP RIPPING FLESH!!

O_O; WTF??

But this is a repeat happening in InuYasha. You'll be fine, and then all of a sudden, the most gory thing will run across the screen.

And then there's the complication issue. One day, I'm going to fly to Japan and ask Rumiko Takahashi and ask her what she has against teenagers, because outside of Fire Tripper, I have yet to see ONE, happy series that is devoid of a love triangle. ENOUGH WOMAN let these kids have a SANE relationship for once!

The story should be simple enough. Put the jewel back together, keep it out of evil hands, kill Naraku. Very cut and dry. But along the way, we have so... much... DRAMA!! We have sibling issues, dead vs. living issues, added characters with their own drama, most episodes I end up forgetting that there even is a Shikon jewel, because everyone else is focused on who's kissing ~ or not kissing ~ who.

So it made me take a good, hard look at what I have been watching this week. And boy are there some issues in anime-land.

Chobits is one of many titles from CLAMP. Now CLAMP's writers used to be fanfic writers. They made a business by selling their fan-made products in Japan ~ where that's considered a form of flattery. (Over here it's copyright infringement.) After their Star Wars doujinshi became popular, they began making up their own manga titles, and Chobits is just one of many.

In this world, guys don't usually have girlfriends, they have living computers, which come in many sizes and are often human-like in form. (Oh sure, no worries about the population here.) Their on off switch is hidden in animal-like ears, and they can access Google just by twitching their creepy, dead looking eyes.

... Except Chi. (Pictured) Chi is more than a persocom (personal computer in human form) she's a Chobit, an alleged upgrade from persocom, since "a higher power" created her. Unfortunately, she's also a reject.

A dude named Hideki finds Chi in the garbage, and discovers that her on/off switch is actually in her crotch. BUT when you hit the switch, it erases her entire brain! (I guess she's a Windows 98 model.) So he winds up with this girl, who literally has to be taught everything.

Episode nine, he has to teach her how to smile, what a smile is, and oh yes, how to bathe herself too. All the while, she speaks in third person, just like Elmo, world famous Sesame Street Muppet. "Chi does not know what smile is. Chi likes when Hideki happy!" The dub gives her a pretty high pitched voice too.

If you catch the end of the manga, you learn that she has an older sister ~ who falls in love with their dad ~ EW!!! And her sister's "death" caused Chi to try and save all of her sister's data/memories, but in doing so, she wiped out her own. Also, because she is a reject model, Hideki can never sleep with her, because doing so would erase her mind AGAIN, and bring her back at square one with "Chi does not know how to sit up."

That is messed up. Much like another title from CLAMP. Click to enlarge, you'll see what I mean:

One title I used to watch like crazy is Tenchi Muyo. Hulu has added the entire series in it's original, uncensored, subbed form, so right away I went on a Tenchi binge, re-watching the OVAs and the first two TV series.

.... And ew.

Tenchi is a meta-series, where every so often, they change out the back-story a little bit, but many of the elements are still in place.

Tenchi is a 17-18 year old boy, who suddenly gets saddled with a house full of women ~ all of them aliens ~ and for reasons I don't understand ~ all of them WANT Tenchi.

But Tenchi doesn't want to date any of them.

He also doesn't want his school "friends" knowing about them.

He wants to live a "normal" life. But Heaven forbid should these girls up and leave, he goes bananas without them. What the hell, Tenchi?? Do you want them or not?? Do you even LIKE girls?

But then, maybe he thinks there isn't much to pick from.

Ayeka is actually his great-aunt. And has a giant, purple mullet and rat-red eyes. Ayeka was betrothed to Tenchi's grandfather (Ayeka's brother), but when he ran away and presumed dead, those plans fell through. So now she thinks she's entitled to banging Tenchi. EWWWWW!!

Sasami is Ayeka's little sister, making her Tenchi's great-aunt. In one off-shoot manga, she ends up having his daughter, Izumi, but dies young in that timeline. It's been said that events in the main Tenchi series will somehow prevent her from dying after having her great-nephew's daughter, and oh, I forgot to mention, she has a goddess named Tsunami living inside of her, and at some point, the two will merge into being one person. And did I mention EWWWW????

Washu is body-age wise 30, but chronologically a few hundred years old. She can also make herself appear 12. She's a mad scientist, camped out in Tenchi's home, and is Tsunami's sister, by proxy making her Sasami's sister as well. She is also Ryoko's mother, Ryo-Ohki's mother, and great-grandmother to Mihoshi.

Much of the cast is from the planet Jurai, which is heavy on incest.

WHYEEE???? What is it with anime and incest?? And how did this ever wind up on Cartoon Network?

Lucky Star is the Japanese schoolgirl equivalent to Seinfeld. It is quite literally a show about nothing.

The Easter egg colors and sailor suits snookered me in, but it's the first anime that is completely plot-free.

No monsters to chase, no sacred items to hunt down, no magic powers, none of the staples you'd expect in an anime. Just a bunch of hyper girls that talk about the protocol behind everything in life, from whether or not you can go swimming during "that" time of the month, hangnails and whether to clip them or peel them, to how to eat your cake and whether or not maid cafes and role-playing are "safe" things to get into. It's an acquired taste, but there's something mesmerizing about watching Konata eat a Choco Coronet. 

Although, it is creepy that all of the women look like five year olds. ><

One thing going for the latter two titles is color. Lots of bright colors and characters drawn with hope in their eyes.

But what makes titles like Slayers and Sailormoon stand out from this bunch are more straight-forward plots. Plots that have a reduction in the drama, and offer hopeful and happy endings to each season. I'd love to see another series like that imported.

And hold the incest, please.

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