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A Seiyuu isn’t just a person with a voice; it’s your waifu.

Bakaramon (Mandom)

Feels good to be back. Mandom.

*Little note: This post is slightly different from the one posted on OASG due to a few added paragraphs and one rather troublesome source I didn’t add in the final version.

The brilliant idea to fangirl about Seiyuu in a post came to me one night while listening to a very special drama CD recommended to me by a fellow friend of mine. While I will avoid mentioning the content of the drama CD as a pathetic and useless way of preserving what little dignity I have, I’ll just…move along and start with the basics.

Just what the heck is a Seiyuu? A Seiyuu is a living and breathing person partly responsible (and is well aware of this) for turning you either into fanboy/girl of a certain character voiced by them, or for those who have gone in too deep, into an otaku (yeah I just went there). Continue reading

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Yet Another Aniblog Tourney Related Post

As the title says, my post is far from being the first one regarding the Aniblog tourney. But as a fellow aniblog-blogger of some kind, I repeatedly kept telling myself that I should release a post about it sooner it later to explain it to those who are a bit unaware of what’s going on in the aniblogosphere (I’ve taken a liking to that word recently).

  • What is the Aniblog tourney?

The Aniblog tourney is a tournament held once a year where anime bloggers fight against themselves to the death. The strongest one becomes the Aniblog master and as a reward, takes control of the aniblogs that have lost against the winner. This sad cycle has yet to be stopped, but alas no-one has the courage to stand up against the powerful and cruel judges who were once aniblog masters a long time ago.

I’m too kawaii to die!!

One thing that I would like to add is that only the judges are allowed to decide who competes in the Aniblog tourney. If you are unfortunate as an aniblogger, you will receive a letter that states that you are forced to participate in this brutal game.

  • No seriously…What is it about?
But what I said was true, silly! …Okay, so I joked a bit there.
The aniblog tourney is a completion for fun where anibloggers virtually-in-some-way fight against each other to see who’s the most popular and appreciated aniblog of them all. The participants will be judged by the following criteria: The content of the blog, the writer’s style, the layout of the blog, etc. So in an easy way to put it, every two days which is the equivalent of a round, you vote for the blog you appreciate the most. This continues until the 19th of June if I’m correct and the winner…well, gets a lot of exposure and new readers. Easy to understand, huh?
Tourney bracket!
  • Why isn’t Naru on here?
Simple to answer: I’m not a regular blog updater. If I had updated more between January and March, I would have possibly been on the list. But it doesn’t bother me at all. Truth is, I’m not a big fan of the aniblog tourney and I cringe whenever I hear the word “competition”.
ALRIGHT SO MAYBE AT FIRST I WAS A LITTLE

 

“I’LL KILL YOU! I’LL KILL YOU ALLLL!!!!”

THEN,

“I wasn’t chosen…”

Until finally,

“Eh, I don’t care anymore.”

While more than one reader is speechless at the public and bizarre rage I virtually displayed, I want to say: Honestly, it’s all right take a joke and there’s always next year! I prefer continuing to work on my blog, make a few adjustments and changes over time before showing it off to the world.

Oh, and good news! I’m now an author over at Organisation ASG and will be reviewing some new spring anime in a few weeks, so finally…I’m kinda in the Aniblog tourney…

…Um, wow.

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Just Who Is Haruhi Suzumiya?

A crying Botan for your convenience.

If only I wrote my posts in advance I wouldn’t be in this dreadful situation. I’m very sorry that I haven’t updated the blog with recent posts. School has been…lovely since I’m getting ready to pass my big exams in two months in order to see if I’ll graduate this year. Certes, I’ve been awfully busy.

Just who is Haruhi Suzumiya? Is officially the first post of my new –A Guide To Otaku– category that I expect I’ll be filling with several great posts in the near future. Considering this blog is about explaining these types of things to those who have been wondering what this and that is in the Japanese pop culture, I am sure that this is be a good, yet short post to publish with the purpose of being more or less essential to the person reading it.

From now on, I am your master!

Haruhi Suzumiya is the heroine of Haruhi Suzumiya, a Light novel series written by a certain Nagaru Tanigawa that received many positive reviews and is now renowned around the globe. The book’s success lead to an anime adaptation known by many anime appreciators -fans or not of the book series- , to a manga series, countless video games and a movie that recently came out in theatres in Japan, of course.

  • The Story

Haruhi, unexpectedly, isn’t the protagonist. Your average Japanese school boy, Kyon, is the protagonist and the narrator of the series who likes to remind the reader/viewer that he hardly believes in bizarre things such as aliens and espers. Sorry to say for him, he gets dragged in the trouble that is Haruhi Suzumiya: A cute but peculiar girl who wishes to be in contact with espers, time travelers, and aliens. What’s even more unfortunate for Kyon is that he himself enters in contact with said people (time traveler Mikuru, esper Koizumi, and Yuki the alien) who have been sent with the aim of keeping Haruhi’s powers from being unleashed. Why? Find out below.

The SOS Brigade. Kyon is the one just behind Haruhi.

  • What made Haruhi –the character– popular?

In fact, I still have yet to find out why myself. In my opinion,  Haruhi can be appreciated for being  the bossy and cruel leader of the SOS Brigade (her school club that has the goal of investigating mysterious events) or for being a really complex and eccentric character due to the fact that she’s God -you’ve read it right- and has yet to show us what she has in store for us. Depending on her feelings, she can unconsciously change history, destroy reality as we know it, or even repeat the same day over and over again– A power we get to witness in the first arc of the second season of the series, named the Endless Eight in which the characters of the series find themselves in an endless loop of the last day of summer vacation. I can painfully recall most of the repetitive dialogues shared by the characters when I was catching up with the anime years ago… A period in my life I wouldn’t want to repeat.

  • The result?

From what I’ve seen on Wikipedia, the reason Haruhi Suzumiya is an anime idol is due to an Internet phenomenon (Youtube and Nico Nico dance videos from Japan for example), which is partially right. Partially, since the story of Haruhi was sure to become a success (or a terrible failure): You don’t see stories with God, aliens and time travellers so often. However, Tanigawa has managed to create a solid story that is far from over, since the light novel series is still continuing.

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Why is anime everywhere these days ?

Why is anime everywhere these days? is a question I’ve been asked before repeatedly in the past. And I’m sure everyone who likes anime more or less has been confronted with this question before by people around them.

This question is one of the main reasons why I’ve named my blog: “What is this “Culture” you speak of?” to explain the best as I can everything regarding the Japanese Culture to people who are curious to it or to people such as me who are deeply into this culture, but have yet to hear of or understand this or that part of their passion. In order to respond to this pretty large question, I’ll respond to one little inquiry at a time that relate to this question, those who  have also been asked repeatedly by curious people.

Question number one! How did anime get popular overseas, aru?

I guess it’s thanks to those who were watching anime when it first showed on their screen, over twenty years ago? The more something gets known and appreciated, the more it appears you know.

Even if that’s the most obvious answer to such a question, I’ll give you my opinion on it: Yes and No. It’s true that thanks to the ever-known Dragonball anime it has become widely spread everywhere, but that isn’t the only reason. Anime such as Golderak and Akira have already made their popularity in the west before Dragonball even arrived in the little screens overseas.

But then on the other hand, Golderak and Akira who both were made for different audiences didn’t seem to attract a big number of fans compared to the success Dragonball made. Perhaps it’s for the reason that Dragonball contained bits and pieces of all the genres people liked made a lot of fans, from kids to adults. At the time when Dragonball was first aired, my older sisters used to watch it after school with my mother, for example.

  • Kagura: The art didn’t have anything to do about it?

The art is a very important element, but not the most important one. Anime is very appreciated for its visual art that varies from one anime to the other, depending on the studio producing it or the original creator. The hard-to-miss details such as the large eyes and small mouth you see on most anime nowadays has become very popular and are now recognized everywhere by everyone. In brief words you could say anime made the artwork popular, but not the opposite.

  • But isn’t there supposed to be a cultural barrier?

When we first watched anime in our tender ages, we had no idea it originally came from another country that spoke another language, huh? Sure, there exists a cultural barrier that keeps us from fully understanding references shown in anime, but honestly, that doesn’t keep people from enjoying them. For example, the anime/manga Gintama holds a lot of references that may or not be clear to anyone, regardless of being Japanese or not. Besides, we can always learn sooner or later what the references mean. Almost every person that watches anime knows what sensei means, right?

  • I understand that anime is popular and liked, but what does it have that… I don’t know…Disney or other cartoons don’t have?

A very interesting question that I’ll cut into two different views:

From a commercial point of view, anime holds the key to making successful business by selling a lot of derived products: Soundtrack and drama CDs (audio books, if you prefer)CDs, Figurines, movies that act as spin-offs, trading cards and the list goes on and on. Disney is very triumphant in this territory, but not other cartoons.

And from a normal (and very open) point of view, anime is simply mysterious and captivating. Most anime hold deep plots, mature storylines, realistic characters; In short, it has elements that people can’t find in most animation works. Cartoons can be for kids, but anime can be for everyone.