Commentary 6

O-hisashiburi de arimasu. And a random thoughts post.
  • Binbôgami ga! is finally getting an anime; it's about this girl who's too lucky (and is sucking up the luck of everyone around her), so the gods send a misfortune/poverty god to take some of her luck. Hijinks ensue.

    I'm curious to know how the hell the editors (it runs in one of the Jump family of magazines, average age of the readership is 17) let them get away with that many menstruation jokes. I don't really mind—I have two sisters and my mother teaches NFP—but I don't come from a culture with a gigantic blood-taboo.
  • I recently read two of the New 52 comics (in collected form), and, uh, apparently we were misled. They've barely touched their continuity. Admittedly I read the GL and Red Lantern ones, the little bit of a Batman one I also read did have some more significant changes, but honestly, people were making a mountain out of a molehill.

    I suppose Ganthet returning to the Guardians' quasi-hivemind is something, but then again, I was always surprised they let him get away with founding the Blues in the first place. When half the stuff the Guardians ever did was designed to prevent the proliferation of spectrum-powers—i.e. stave off the War of Light—one of their number who personally creates a battery for one of the other powers is lucky to get off with just having his emotions stripped.
  • Also, it's too bad the animated GL series made Atrocitus so one-dimensional; I like him better as the tortured anti-villain he is in the comics. And I suppose it's too much to ask that he be allowed to use his divination (drinking someone's blood, spitting it on the ground, and using the shapes as omens); there goes their TVY7 rating.

    Is that "hematemesiomancy"?
  • Am I the only one who thinks they should've held off another year on making a second Avatar series? Korra isn't bad, but it ain't nearly up to the original's standard (and the original wasn't, I regret to inform its fans, near as good as it might've been). Plus, personally, I much preferred the first series' tech-level; going to the Taisho/early-post-Qing era was a bit too much of a skip.

    Personally I think I would've gone with a prequel, not a sequel—maybe explore one of those other avatars. And I don't know if I mentioned it here, but being the Avatar is, from a Buddhist standpoint, one of the calamitous rebirths that halts one's progress toward salvation. Then again, the hanzi around the title (降世神通) mean "world-descending god-passage"...because the Avatar is a god. So (if I mentioned it), I was wrong; being the Avatar isn't the eleventh calamity, because "being reborn as a god" was already listed as one of the ten.
  • Incidentally, though the "there goes our TVY7 rating" issue would come up, I think Azula should've done Eagle Claw. It's a variant of Northern Shaolin, and it's always used by villains in wuxia films. Plus, their trademark eye-plucking becomes awesome (from a certain point of view) when you combine it with firebending. Just ask Envy (then again, "snap of the fingers" is an even cooler way to get fireballs than throwing Northern Shaolin kicks).

    One of the characters in something I wrote does Shaolin Eagle Claw, and, at one point, she and her brother combine "attempting eye gouge only to have it blocked by a palm-sweep" with the Three Stooges "attempting eye-jab, catch it on the blade of the hand" bit. Because, as Jackie Chan has demonstrated, kung fu and classic slapstick is like chocolate and peanut butter. Or oil and vinegar.
  • Also—I speak with the authority of one whose total time reading shonen manga probably reaches multiple weeks—in that last fight, Zuko should've achieved lightning-bending. He should've redirected Azula's lightning, she mock him for throwing away his one chance, and then he throw lightning of his own at her. It could come from the serene ferocity he learned from the dragons.

    Then again, I admit that my version does partly stem from my preference that Katara have no screen-time nor story-role, since she's sorta the worst character ever, and all. And yes, I am including Batmite in my calculations when I say that.
  • So, this comment, quoted on Superversive. The quote being criticized actually contains a truth, but states it poorly. The fact of the matter is that anyone who isn't committed to their dreams (or what they say are their dreams), is just going to go about it halfheartedly, and the world doesn't need more halfassed halfhearted half-work.

    Also? We've tried it the other way, it gives you the self-esteem movement, participant trophies, and Occupy Wall Street. Far be it from a Shonen Jump fan to diss dreams, but the other two themes that magazine is built around are friends and hard work (yes, even Binbôgami ga!). A dream you don't have to work for isn't much of a dream.
  • Finally: there is an article (I'm not gonna link it) by some feminist blogger or other, about the creepy prevalence of rape-tropes in geek culture. Which is a criticism I myself have frequently made, and something that really needs addressing. Anyway she made a number of good points, but ended with a footnote to the effect that the "cultural assumption" that "all women have vaginas" is "problematic". Which, uh...someone plainly needs to watch Kindergarten Cop again.

    I have a refutation, by the way. People always try to cite various Native cultures, where there are men who live as women, in support of this idea. But...when First Man and First Woman quarreled (because First Woman thanked her vagina for the food First Man had caught, since she said he only did it so he could sleep with her), and the sexes separated, the men who lived as women went with the men. That is, not having vaginas, they were not women.

    As in all things, reading up on Navajo mythology prevents a great deal of stupidity.

No comments: