timepiececlock: (Faye Valentine)
Brief interview with the screenwriter for the upcoming live action Cowboy Bebop film.

Reading the comments from the novelist-turned-screenwriter who's assigned the job of adapting the series to movie status, I'm feeling hopeful. He certainly sounds like he appreciates the spirit of the work, though I haven't read Peter Craig's books so I don't know if his actual writing is something to get crazy over. But enthusiasm is a good start. It also sounds like Watanabe and Studio Sunrise are involved with the development of the film--so far, at least--and that's also a positive sign.

Side note: I'm still ragingly skeptical about Reeves as a casting choice, because even though I actually like the guy he's not how I picture a live action Spike at all. He's ten years too old (movie Spike should be mid-30s, while anime Spike was jaded at 27), and he doesn't project the irreverent charm. Spike's a huge asshole for much of the series, but the reason we love him is that he's got this sarcastic slacker charm to balance it. Something to brighten the shadows and soften the edges of a mob-employed street thug turned self-employed space thug. Reeves is so deadpan serious in most of his movies that it's hard for me to imagine him bitching about bell-peppers-and-beef-without-the-beef one minute and getting into a name-calling exchange with Cowboy Andy the next. That being said, I do appreciate that KR is apparently driving the project with an eye that includes the original production studio, even if its only in consulting. Casting will matter a lot for this movie, because the only way it will ever 'succeed' as a part of CB media canon rather than as any generic spaceship action movie is if the characters have the right chemistry. Bebop was just as much about the pathetic daily lives of its crew as it was about catching bounties and shooting stuff (hence my unshakeable secret belief that CB and Firefly are literally part of the same verse.)

Casting poential blunders aside, I've always thought that Bebop was one of the most--if not still THE most--easily translateable anime series for Western audiences. And deliberately so, thematically and visually. More to the point, the bounty-of-the-week format makes it easily translatable to film, or a franchise of films. The could not have found a better source anime with which to make an Americanized/Westernized live action adaptation. However, Bebop was not without its problems. Pacing is the biggest flaw of the series, and underdeveloped supporting characters is another. A live action film could smooth these problems out, or exacerbate them. In that sense, I think it's better if the original studio is brought on for style choices more than for the actual storywriting.
timepiececlock: (Between the Bars)
The live action Blood: The Last Vampire movie looks pretty cool! I was delighted by all the female characters, and the multinational cast. I watched 3/4 of the tv anime series and enjoyed it, although this looks more like the 40 minute movie pilot than the tv show. I didn't see any Chevalier hanging around, that's for sure.

The clip of the badass Japanese schoolgirl holding hands with and protecting the frightened European girl in the middle of a mob of bloodsucking vampires was kind of an amusing visual trope reversal. I do love the way Asian movies embrace female action heroes as a solid and reliable way to sell movie tickets. If only that were more embraced over here.


On a separate note, I'm trying to get excited about the new Pixar film Up, but my issues with Pixar and gender keep getting in the way. A buddy adventure with a little boy scout and an old man exploring the planet from a floating house, discovering new scenery and having fun adventure? Whatever. I feel distinctly disinvited, which is a shame, because I wanted all that adventure as a little girl scout. And then, if you see the trailers...There's only three speaking characters introduced in any of these trailers: boy, old man, talking dog.

The dog's voice is heard, and what do you think? Male. We don't even get the freaking pet this time. Not too mention how white they all look.

Anyway, blah blah, yes for the twentieth time this issue is still bothering me. I just hope that when it eventually comes out on video, I'll have moved onto other frustrations and be able to enjoy it. I'm getting really tired of saying "Pixar is so good, but..."


And switching topics again: I can't wait for The Brothers Bloom. After I see ST this weekend, that will be the movie I'm anticipating for the summer! Three actors I love, one new actress who looks fun to watch, and it's an adventure caper movie. I do <3 caper movies!
timepiececlock: (Bite me. -Toph)
I remember reading reactions from the comics fans on my flist when the cover for Marvel's new potential series Divas was leaked. It seemed pretty offensive, but I was prepared to dismiss it as used-to-it-whatever stuff from media entertainment, but today I saw a quote that prompted me to make login accounts with a bunch of different websites just so I could shout back at the stupidity. And I'm not even a comics reader! But the sad thing is, I'm so close to being one. I even considered it after watching the Wolverine movie. And yet, every time I almost jump in, something sends me running in the opposite direction. Like this.


"If you're [a] Marvel reader and truly feel we're sexist, then why are you reading our books? Now, perhaps you're not a Marvel reader, then if that's the case, I'm not quite sure what you're criticizing if you don't read our books?" - Joe Quesada


I could go on about Quesada’s dispiritingly poor use of hypothetical "logic" to make his point, or I could talk about the sexism *in* the argument he advocates. Or wait, I could do both! Read more... )

Yeah, nothing sexist there. ^eyeroll^ You can read the full statement here, scroll down near the bottom. It actually gets worse with context.

The thing is, here, I am the perfect candidate for Marvel to build their female audience up. I'm a nerd girl with long fangirl history. I love geek stuff. I watch the movies. I read the books. I watch anime and read manga. I go to conventions. I talk and talk and talk about the geeky media that I love. I harp on continuity and I applaud characterization. I will spend money. I'll by junk just because it has a character's face on it. I'm a freaking dream to these companies. Why aren't they courting me? Courting us?

I was discussing with [livejournal.com profile] irrel why both of us like manga (well, I like anime, and I sort of like manga in conjunction with that) but neither of us can really get into American comics or comic-based cartoons. And what we both agreed on was that we just don't feel welcome. Just looking at the art, it screams "FOR BOYS FOR BOYS FOR BOYS." At least with manga, even with all the sexism I complain about, I still can tell that manga exists for both male and female audiences. It has both male and female creators. It sells, and sells well, to male and female readers. There's gender divisions in the material, but there's still manga writers and artists who cross those divisions. Women who write shonen series like FMA and Ranma. Even if the communication is rough, I feel that at least they know female readers exist.

I have had a limited amount of exposure to American comics. It's all what seeps in through pop culture and shows like I Love The 80s. I know the big characters, the ones on t-shirts or in the movies, and the ones from occasional viewings of tv cartoons. That's where I come from when I say that I look at Marvel and DC comics in the bookstores and all I see is "Not for you! Not for you!"

So instead, I watch anime, and sometimes, if I buy anything in a drawn format, I buy manga. There's a few titles I'm very loyal to. Some of them are overtly for girls (Furuba) and some of them aren't (Blade of the Immortal), but both types invite me in rather than pushing me out.

This is just a question, but... are the American comics industry even bothering to ask themselves why girls and women are latching onto Asian comics, cartoons, and fetishist stuff? Is that discussion happening?

Because I can see the reality of it in comic stores and book stores. And I can promise you that it's not the submissive-clumsy female leads or the influence of a sexist culture that's attracting me, because I can find that in American entertainment media just as easily. It's something more. And if the comics industry in America could convince me that I'd find that something in American comics, and if the art wasn't quite so off-putting with the asses and the boobs, I'd probably try picking up a comic book. But I'm not feeling the love from Marvel and DC, not really. And that's their loss.


ETA: I have read one Western comic series--I read several volumes of Elfquest in middle school because my local library had it on the shelf. Loved it. Whatever the "something" was, they had it.
timepiececlock: (Default)
Any mouth-frothing anime fans on your flist may have heard of a little innocuous title (re: raging monster of awesomeness) called Fullmetal Alchemist.

http://blog.funimation.com/2009/04/simulcast-and-acquisition-of-fullmetal-alchemist-brotherhood/
"Not only is FUNimation announcing the acquisition of ‘the most anticipated series of 2009′, we’re also going to be streaming the subtitled episodes within days of the Japanese Television Debut. Crazy, huh?! The fans wanted more FMA - the fans got more FMA. What’s not to like?"

On April 9th, about as many days as one might wait anyway for a crappy-ass, poorly spelled amateur fansub, salivating American FMA fans can watch a professionally translated version of the new show for free, on FUNimation's website. I've suffered the dregs of bad fansubs enough to treasure this gesture for the good fortune it is. FUNimation is not only winning future consumers who will want to by the DVDs, but they're acknowledging that the vast majority of the same people who will buy an anime series on DVD have already seen fan-made subtitled versions of it as much as a year or two in advance. They're honing in on the fansub market, and good for them to think of it. That's using the fluidity of digital media transfer as a marketing tool instead of prosecuting it as a threat.

I'd happily sit through a 15 second commercial or two if it meant that the subtitles I watched were translated correctly and could be trusted to [mostly] accurately convey the Japanese dialogue. I suspect a lot of other people would, too. I have no idea if FUNimation's web content is available to folks outside the US, but I suspect these things get around somehow.

In the last few years, FUNimation has become my favorite dubbing studio. I loved the dubs for FMA, and Fruits Basket. They've come a long way since the craptastic DBZ dubbing of the 90s. I've always enjoyed the extras they put on the DVDs, and the verve and sense of fun they bring to fans at cons and such. I thought they put a lot of effort into the first FMA dub, and I expect them to treat this new FMA with the same quality.


Spread the good cheer!
timepiececlock: (Rashaka is my name)
Gankutsuou

#01

Just when I was starting to wish that dub script writers took a little more freedom with their translations so as to avoid having reasonable statements in Japanese sound ill-worded, dumbed-down, or childishly expressed in English (this happens in almost every dub) because our habits of verbally expressing sentiment are very different than the Japanese, the anime totally changed its tone and, suddenly, people were getting executed, two best friends were bickering in the street, and I was interested at last.

Characters, Plot, Art, etc )

I'll update again after I watch a few eps. [livejournal.com profile] donna_c_punk, you gave me this series years ago but it's taken until now for me to start watching it. I can see it has a lot of potential, and it's definitely not boring. Here's hoping it lives up to the hype everyone's given it.
timepiececlock: (Between the Bars)
Television Streaming Sites

1. http://www.Hulu.com - If you've never heard of Hulu, you a) didn't watch Doctor Horrible online last year, or b) haven't seen the laughable Alien Alec Baldwin commercial from the superbowl. Hulu is great, though you may be asked to watch the same car commercial six times in one episode. Unfortunately, it's difficult to predict what episodes or seasons will be available, and what won't. Note: only available in the U.S.

2. http://www.surfthechannel.com/ - SurfTheChannel doesn't host episodes; it lists shows and, by individual episode, links you to an array of different streaming websites. I watched the entire first three seasons of How I Met Your Mother on this website, linked to funky Japanese and Korean servers that sometimes had Chinese subs, but I was a happy cat.

Websites with Direct Download Resources/Archives

Anime

1. http://www.cyber12.com/ - [Anime Download Resource Archive] - TONS! mostly linked via MegaUpload and similar file sending websites, and you don't need to register for it. Mostly recent stuff and some old stuff.

2. http://www.narutoengdub.co.nr/ - [JustDubs] - download complete dubbed series!

3. http://www.anime-eden.com/ - [Anime Eden] - huge archive of many series, usually complete, download from servers two at a time, also music, free registration necessary. They have a lot of older series as well as new ones, and anime movies.

4. http://www.boontan.net/ - [Boontan] - several series, download from servers, free registration necessary, lots of recent obscure series.

6. http://mesmerisz.livejournal.com/3570.html - a livejournal masterpost list with a few hundred series linked through megaupload, well organized. Only recent stuff from the last two years.

[from [livejournal.com profile] hakeber]
7. http://www.anikat.com - Large archive, linked via MegaUpload and similar sites, no registration necessary.

8. http://www.lolipower.org/


Manga

1. http://www.onemanga.com/directory/ - [OneManga] - This is where I get my Naruto updates; there's a huge database, no sign-up necessary. I view online.

2. http://stoptazmo.com/ - [StopTazmo] - Another large database, direct downloading of zip files. This site was created as a hate-letter to another download site [NarutFan], apparently.


Here's the updated list. If it weren't for these websites, I'd probably have more friends. They will corrupt your fannish soul...
timepiececlock: (Bite me. -Toph)
Slowly, it grows on you. )

It's taking me a while to get through the eps, but I'm making my way.
timepiececlock: (Bite me. -Toph)
http://www.hagaren.jp/

It premiers in April, 2009.

Holy shit dudes!

The teaser looks like old footage from the series, but I'm not sure. I am amazed at how tightly clamped the anime industry is about spoilers compared to US television industry. It airs in two months and even now nobody knows if it will be a continuation of the movie storyline or a total AU version that follows the manga. I hope it follows the manga, for two reasons.

1) I feel strongly that the story of the Elrics and alchemy was concluded in the movie. The story of their lives is just beginning (gypsies! world war! whee!) but as far as what we need to see in terms of their quest, the journey is done. They have their lives ahead of them, and they don't need alchemy any more.

2) I haven't read the manga, and I'm almost totally unspoiled for it, so it would be a completely new storyline for me. I also get a little squealy at the idea of a totally separate adventure that's got all the characters I love... an AU fanfic version of my favorite anime. Except, of course, that "AU" is a term to be used judiciously when discussing anime canon or things get very confusing very fast, and in a way the original anime series is already more like the AU fanfic of the manga. Sort of? It's confusing. But either way I'd love to have two separate but parallel anime series both featuring my favorite anime cast, with different versions of the same quest. Like giving two authors the same bookjacket paragraph to work from, and the result is two unique novels filled with the same flavors of awesome.
timepiececlock: (Bite me. -Toph)
I'm 130 pages into LW&C, which is about halfway. It's on my bathroom shelf-- about every other time I go in there to sit down, I read a few pages. I can say with total candor that this is the only graphic novel I've owned, borrowed, or read that was demoted to toilet reading status.

I bought volume 1 at Comic Con 2008, and still haven't finished it. I heard so much about it--that it was exciting storytelling, that it was more original and a million times better than Blade of the Immortal. Lots of hype.

Guys, I've read fourteen volumes of Blade of the Immortal (a unrelentingly bloody and misogynistic ronin story in its own sphere) which makes it one of less than 8 manga titles I've read more than ten volumes for. I can't even get up the interest to finish one volume of LW&C. It's so unbelievably boring. I get that it's old and should be read by a different standard, but if I can watch 70s episodes of Lupin III and not be bored, then being old doesn't excuse crappy writing. Every three pages the exact same thing happens over again. I can't tell you how irritating it is to have a god-mode character this extreme. He never gets injured, nor does his child. His plans always work and he's always thought things out far ahead of his enemies--who are uniformly weak, cowardly, stupid, or unskilled in his presence despite being fearless tyrants to everyone else. Even the art is just alright---nothing to write home about.

I can't even get up the energy to be mad at the manga for sucking, because I'm just too disinterested. Maybe it gets better three volumes from now. But if it hasn't gotten my attention after 130 pages, that's just too bad.
timepiececlock: (Ahiru & Fakir text)
It baffles me that a school, even a school that exists in purgatory, which has teenagers doing dangerous magical/spiritual battles with the risk of grevious injury and death wouldn't have an on-campus psychological counselor.

Shibusen has....a nurse. Yeah, totally listen to a school nurse who advises that you simply ignore your psychologically horrific PTSD dreams. Great environment for the students right there, dudes.

In other news, the show had a rough start, but it's growing on me. )
timepiececlock: (Bite me. -Toph)
my specific reactions to episode 1, never posted them until now. )

General Thoughts: I'm a little confused about what the distinction is between a human, a meister, and a weapon. In episode 1 Soul says that he's not a human, he's a weapon who happens to have human form. But Maka is human, albeit a meister, and her father is a weapon. So... are they human or not?

When I started the show, I was assuming that when Soul Eater said he was a weapon, that it meant that his "self" is a device, a tool, not unlike a cyborg (or a demon), and that the human form is just a convenience, as I might wear a wool coat but no one would ever assume that I was a sheep. As I've gone another several episodes, it looks to me like rather than being a weapon that transforms into a human, Soul is more like a human that transforms into a weapon. Important linguistic distinction.

This makes the whole concept slightly less cool, in my opinion. I rather like the idea of the weapons as being a separate "species" if one could call them that, something fundamentally distinct and not human, especially if they're forged, or created, like the name 'weapon' implies. But if Death Scythe is Maka's father then clearly being a weapon or being a meister is more like having a talent than actually defining what you are in the physical sense. That seems a little lame, a little to easy, because it takes away the alienness and the menace of what Soul Eater is/does. Right now it just looks like another generic kind of shapeshifting, only he's able to turn into a giant scythe instead of something cool like a falcon. I hope the show elaborates on this more in the future.

Characters: I could do with less of the almost-pornographic fanservice, especially since it's in a series that's otherwise very teenybopper and shonen in its presentation, like something for the 10-15 age range. But when the show moves away from that and focuses on the partnership between Maka and Soul, it gets more interesting. I like that they're partners in the work that they do. Equal partners mostly, but if anyone is in charge it's clearly the meister, in this case Maka. I was watching this episode and trying to think of another anime series where there's an ongoing job to do and the male and female character share an equal, co-dependent partnership like we see here. I've seen tv shows that have it (Bones, X Files, even Sanctuary in a way), but I don't know if I've ever seen a partnership presented like this in an anime before. Usually we get teams or one person and his/her sidekicks.

Side rant: Will someone explain to me why Death Kid and Black Star's weapon partners appear naked when reflected in their weapon form, but Soul Eater has all of his clothes on? That's so nonsensical that it's past annoying fanservice and into rage-inducing pointlessness.

Music: I like the opening song, but the closing song follows the same irritating pattern of rock bands of the last decade of having singing/screaming in alternating choruses/verses with no original composition style whatsoever.
timepiececlock: (Bite me. -Toph)
Dear world,

Please explain to me why a live action Spike Spiegel is not being played by this guy, who has an Oscar, is in his 30s instead of his 40s, and by the way looks exactly. like. Spike. Not to mention having the right body type and a sexy voice. And having been a name-actor and leading man in other films before. WHERE DID IT ALL GO WRONG?????

Sincerely bothered by this news,

Rashaka


p.s. I wonder how I can get a hold of Adrien Brody's agent to tell him that the part he was aesthetically born to play is going to get butchered by Keanu Reeves...



Edit: Well, this makes a nice distraction.
timepiececlock: (Origin of Love)
Anime I need to finish:
Seirei no Moribito
Soul Eater
Haibane Renmei
Tweeny Witches / Mahou Shoujotai Alice
Monster

Anime I need to watch:
Toradora
Bakano!
Fantastic Children
Last Exile
Gankutsuou
Denno Coil
Hikaru no Go
Now And Then, Here And There
Bakumatsu Kikansetsu Irohanihoheto
Akagi
Ergo Proxy
Yukikaze
Code Geass
Kino's Travels
Petite Cossette
Read Or Die (TV)
Romeo x Juliet
Lupin III (movies!)


Some of these shows I've actually owned for three years and still haven't watched! It's positively ridiculous that I haven't finished Monster yet. I stopped in the middle because of some RL stuff and never picked it back up until now...
timepiececlock: (Between the Bars)
anime websites with direct download resources/archives

1. http://www.cyber12.com/ - TONS! mostly linked via megaupload and similar file sending websites, and I don't think you need to register for it.

2. http://www.anime-eden.com/ - huge archive of many series, usually complete, download from servers two at a time, also music, free registration necessary. They have a lot of older series as well as new ones.

3. http://www.boontan.net/ - several series, download from servers, free registration necessary, lots of recent series.

4. http://chauthanh.info/animeDownload/?ami - several series, a lot of the more obscure ones that other sites miss, download from servers, no registration necessary, but a limited number of downloads per 24 hours.

5. http://mesmerisz.livejournal.com/3570.html - a livejournal masterpost list with a few hundred series linked through megaupload, well organized.


For newer fansubbed anime, this has become the preferred way of distribution. Bittorrent is becoming a thing of the past. I hesitate to wonder what would happen to all of the anime fans (and all of the television fans too) if one day all the file sending sites on the internet collapsed and vanished?
timepiececlock: (Between the Bars)
Oh, god. First day back living with my rents (temporarily!) and I'm suddenly re-sucked in to Cowboy Bebop fanfiction. Goddamnit! Why must there be so many talented writers in that fandom? Who are STILL writing epic fics ten years after the show ended! Why can't I steal some of your talent for Princess Tutu or How I Met Your Mother or Fruits Basket? But then you wouldn't be writing Spike/Faye fics if I did that, and I'd miss them terribly...
timepiececlock: (Ahiru & Fakir text)
I found a Doctor Who / Sailor Moon Crossover. GOD I LOVE THE INTERNET.

Ten Times The Doctor Met Sailor Pluto
timepiececlock: (Default)
Super Spoilers for, like, a ton of fandoms: (Doctor Who, Farscape, Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, How I Met Your Mother, etc.)

Top Ten TV Kisses )
timepiececlock: (Between the Bars)
[livejournal.com profile] redbrunja mentioned it in her journal, and I thought I'd just outright ask in mine. For shits and giggles.

Of the people who are either on my flist or follow my journal, raise your hand if you happen to like Katara/Zuko [zutara] shipping for Avatar: The Last Airbender and also like Kakashi/Sakura [kakasaku] for Naruto.*



*with Kakashi/Sakura I generally mean in a future hypothetical sense, since, obviously, pedophilia is not cool.
** Out of curiosity: Dragonball Z ships? Because if a number of you that raise your hands below also shipped the same pairing I did for DBZ, that would be too weird. If you're not sure, think and I'm sure you'll figure it out. I kind of have a pattern.
***I'm also just going to assume everyone who ever comments on my journal liked Spuffy. If that's somehow not the case, don't shatter my bubble of happiness! It's a good bubble.

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