nenena: (KKM - She blinded me with science!)
http://papermoon2.tumblr.com/tagged/jello-soul/chrono

There's a lot of truth to that old joke about Tumblr users having LOL NO LIFE SKILLZ, and the 6800 people (and counting!) who reblogged the "jello soul" post are living proof of that.

I can't believe that anybody who looked at that photograph would believe that the candy pictured was actually molded jello.

I can't believe that anybody who read those "instructions" could actually think that it would work.

Then again the Soul Eater fanbase on Tumblr seems to have a majority in the 13-to-16-year-old age range, so maybe they haven't had that much experience in the kitchen or have never made jello before, I dunno. (*shrug*)

Anywhoo, the original "jello soul" post (complete with "instructions" that are made-up and actually QUITE DANGEROUS) has now gone explosively viral. If you can, please reblog plushabilities's post with the correct, SAFE instructions for making soul candy along with a small bit of text along the lines of "reblogging for safer, corrected instructions!" or something. Adding the text will make your reblog stick out amongst the notes (at least for a few minutes) and the extra text will also function as a clickable link (especially important in crappy layouts!) so that more people can see the corrected instructions.

I messaged foreveranimeobsessed with a polite request to edit her original post with a link to plushabilities's instructions, but instead she did this (warning: music autoplays at link) so, argh. Not that editing her post would have helped much anyway since edits don't show up in reblogs (goddammit Tumblr), but it would have helped somewhat. Some people do like to go back to the original source for any cool stuff on their dash that they want to reblog, so there's that at least.

The moral to this story is: Never post "instructions" for something that you haven't actually tried, done, or accomplished. Because your followers might very well have LOL NO LIFE SKILLZ and reblog your post trusting that you know what you're doing. And the next thing you know, your post has gone viral and you're in deep shit.

Somehow I am reminded of the King of the Hill episode in which Peggy wrote a newspaper "home tips and tricks" column, and decided that it would be a good idea to tell her readers to mix bleach and ammonia because THAT WILL MAKE A SUPER-DUPER CLEANING SOLUTION. Whoops. Thankfully, telling Tumblr users to pour jello into glued-together pieces of plastic isn't nearly as high on the scale of Dangerously Bad Ideas To Do In Your Home Kitchen as mixing bleach and ammonia would be. But it's clearly a stupid idea, since not all types of plastic are safe to be used as molds, and it definitely would never result in the lovely candy pictured in [profile] plushabilities's photographs anyway. Anywhoo, the moral of the story is the same: Don't tell people about this totally awesome how-to idea you've had until you've actually tried it yourself. Unless your idea is to mix bleach and ammonia. DON'T TRY THAT.

Or, you know what... I think the moral of this story is even simpler than that. Don't post pictures of other people's food with a bullshit "recipe" that you made up yourself. If you see a picture of something that you want to make, find the recipe used by the person who took that photograph and actually made the food, and post it. Common sense, people. Common sense.

But then again this is Tumblr. I probably shouldn't expect common sense.

ETA: foreveranimeobsessed's post and all resulting reblogs have been bahleeted off Tumblr. I guess somebody must have reported the post for a TOS violation, because that's the only reason I can think of why all of the reblogs would have vanished as well, although I cannot for the life of me figure out what part of Tumblr's famously laissez-faire TOS the post violated. Anyway, Plushabilities now has her own post about the Soul Eater candies that you can reblog here: http://plushabilities.tumblr.com/post/26609277975/recipe-for-gummy-souls-2-pkg-jello-flavor-of
nenena: (Default)
As soon as scanslations for the latest SE chapter are available, [livejournal.com profile] repelsteeltju shows up to troll my journal.

Here he is.

And here he is again.

Public post because, again, Creeps likes to play the innocent martyr whenever he's called out on his bullshit. The public record shows otherwise, though.

(Wooooooooooow he actually thinks that I post on 4chan? Although even more telling is the fact that apparently posters on 4chan are calling him out for his entitlement and misogyny, too. 4chan. When freakin' 4chan is calling somebody out on misogyny and fandom entitlement, then you know that it's bad.)

Edited to add: All right flist, you win. Although I am loathe to break my personal no-banning rule that I have upheld in this journal for six years, I can recognize a continued mistake when I'm making it. Congratulations, [livejournal.com profile] repelsteeltju, you are officially the first ever person to be banned from my livejournal.

Consider this an act of mercy. Since you keep showing up here every month to tie your own noose and hang yourself, I figured that I should probably take that rope away from you. As amusing as your stupidity was, this journal will definitely be a better place without you.

And to my flist: You guys are awesome and you will never stop being awesome. Thank you for verbally smacking me upside the head, because I know that I'm a stubborn bitch and sometimes I do need it. ;)
nenena: (Devi - Is it stupid in here)
Instead of studying for the PLT tonight, I instead stayed up reading this wank, as I was completely absorbed by the utterly amazing linguistic bullshitting going on in this thread. It's... It's utterly fascinating, that's what it is.

And it hits all of my personal squicks about how non-Japanese fans sometimes interact with Japanese fandom. I'm just freakin' amazed at the amount of bullshit that [livejournal.com profile] proglution constructs her "argument" with, and how she positions herself as some sort of expert on Japanese language and culture (sooooo much more knowledgeable than the original translator, amirite?) while twisting, fabricating, or outright lying ("'Yappari' does not mean 'Of course', nor is it any kind of assertion or agreement, in this context" - OMG SERIOUSLY?!) about the translation issues involved.

I can't help but be reminded of Pretendians, particularly in the way that they can take a little bit of cultural knowledge and suddenly position themselves as "experts" on all things Native American, twisting NDN beliefs to fit with their own New Age-y beliefs and agendas, then re-packaging said BS to peddle to fellow New Agers. Actually, I see a lot of the same in English-speaking Japanese fandoms, too: Fans with only a tiny amount of Japanese knowledge will position themselves as "experts" on the language and culture, and then twist their little bit of genuine knowledge into overblown expertise to support their own personal agendas, whether it be shipping, or justifying manga piracy, or armchair quarterbacking about the manga industry, or whatever. My personal favorite is when they make blanket statements like "OMG fan translations are so much more accurate than the official version!" because they have an anti-industry stance or whatever, even though they may not actually be qualified to comment on the quality of a translation at all beyond an obvious point like "Damn, I wish they had kept the honorifics here" or "WTF is up with this flipped artwork, yo?" Now, to be fair, pointing out a lack of honorifics or the practice of flipping artwork are both fair criticisms of any professionally translated work, regardless of one's Japanese linguistic ability. But a blanket "this sucks, the fan translations were better!" statement is NOT fair unless you really, really know what you're talking about. I'm amazed at how often I see and hear people who admit that they can't speak Japanese praising fan translations for being more accurate/authentic/whatever than the professional translations. WTF. If you can't actually speak the language, how the hell do you feel entitled to make blanket statements like that?!

And it's not just fan-versus-professional translation wank where I see the Pretendian (Wapanese?) dynamic come into play in Japanese fandoms, either: There's a lot of posturing and BS-ing about nearly every aspect of fandom that I can think of, whether it's posting long screeds on ffrants about What Japanese Schools Are Really Like (usually posted by someone who has never been to Japan), or making authoritative statements about the Japanese manga/anime/television/movie industry without having any actual facts to back oneself up. I see it all the time. Or, for another glorious example from Bleach fandom: Remember this one? (Read beneath where it says "Strawman #1".) I know, linking to old wanks is bad form, but still, that post is a perfect example of what I'm talking about, especially the part where she goes off on the Japanese ideal of femininity, as if there's only one popular concept of idealized femininity in Japanese culture.

And before anyone accuses me of throwing stones in a glass house: Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know. I've been guilty of bullshitting like this in the past, too. But I'm older and wiser now, and trying harder to suck less, yes? And again, I think it's totally fair game for any fan, regardless of Japanese ability, to discuss issues of translation and Japanese culture in fandom - you just have to be careful how you frame those discussions, and be aware that a lot of us (myself included) sometimes feel entitled to say a lot more about translation and/or cultural issues than we really have the knowledge to back up.

But I actually do happen to be fluent in Japanese, which actually does qualify me to make the following statement: [livejournal.com profile] proglution is full of shit. Seriously, totally full of shit.

BTW, for the record, I ship Ichigo/Rukia. ;) And I don't understand why it even matters which ship Ichigo's voice actor prefers. He said that he likes Ichigo/Orihime, so what? Why does anybody even need to parse his statement for hidden meanings and mysterious, mystical Japanese doublespeak? It's not only bullshit, it's completely unnecessary bullshit. (*eyeroll*) I mean, really.

Edited to add: Oi vey, that Pretendian comparison might not have been a very good idea, as I somewhat belatedly realize in this comment. So, er. I apologize for showing my ass in a post where I was calling out other people for showing their asses. What I was trying to get at is that I think that there are a lot of similar beliefs and attitudes that lead to both Pretendianism in real life and Wapanese posturing in fandom. But the end results are somewhat radically different in terms of their impact on the target cultures, and I definitely failed to consider that when I wrote this post.

Edited again: Post-mortem.
nenena: (Devi - Is it stupid in here)
From here:

So here we are at Otome Road. Alright, it's more like Otome Cul-De-Sac. Or Otome Stoop. In any case it's a tiny little area.

How the hell did he manage to miss nearly eighty percent of Otome Road? Hint: It's waaaay bigger than just the Mandarake, the Animate, and the first of four (yes, four) K-Books shops.

More fail: I sort of wish I'd been taking video just so you could see the reactions we got. We were extremely out of place and clearly Did Not Belong. I wasn't kidding when I said the clientele was 100 percent female and looked upon us as usurpers. I'd feel bad about invading their bubble (not to mention taking photos in a clearly prohibited area), but hey, someone needs to soberly and seriously document these important social trends!

Failboat ahoy: Then there is this, THE WORLD'S MOST CROWDED AND CRAMPED ANIMATE STORE. It is wall-to-effing-wall teenagers and squealing girls in this joint. ABANDON ALL HOPE. [...] Alright so this is a crappy blurry photo in an area where photography was probably restricted but this gives you an idea of how crowded it was inside this place and it was like 8 solid floors like this. Hellacious.

Awesome. So you're agressively invading stores where you're clearly not welcome, taking photographs in areas where photography is clearly prohibited just so that you can post said photos on an anime news site and point and laugh at the silly fangirls and their freaky fetishes, then breathlessly gushing to your fanboy audience about how "hellacious" it was for you to have to spend time in a store filled with "squealing" (WTF has anybody EVER actually squealed inside an Animate?!) fangirls, but it's okay because you were doing it all in the same of science journalism!

The photography thing really pisses me off. Because clearly the need to take photographs pretty much solely for the purpose of pointing and laughing at them is far more important than, you know, respecting the rules of the store that you're visiting. Hello, white privilege!

And now let me repeat this part again: I sort of wish I'd been taking video just so you could see the reactions we got.

Journalism: UR DOIN IT WRONG.

(Countdown to "But it's okay because Zac snarks at male otaku too!" Please don't make me do Feminism 101 or Racism 101 in the comments here. Please please don't.)

Note: Outside of being, you know, a male, being a white person and shopping on Otome Road is a potential minefield of racism and white privilege. I'm saying this because I am a white person who loves to shop on Otome Road. But I know that there are certain stores where I'm not welcome as a foreigner, and hey, I have to fucking respect that. These are (for the most part) indie comic stores set up to cater to a very marginalized clientele - stores by women, for women, and spaces where women can express and explore all sorts of forbidden/marginalized/taboo aspects of sexuality - and these are NOT spaces where outsiders should barge in just because they feel like their curiosity, their journalism assignment, or their need to point and laugh is somehow more important than the fact that they are making Japanese women feel uncomfortable in their own space. Granted, there are the big megastores - like the Animate and the Mandarake that Zac visited - where foreign *women* are clearly welcome, provided that they don't comport themselves like assholes. (Men are another story, for obvious reasons. I mean, it's a porn shop for women! Men are not welcome - especially not if they're clearly there just to point and laugh! And to take photographs where they're not supposed to! Jesus!) But outside of the big megastores, most of Otome Road is composed of much smaller doujin stores - the type of little local stores where the owner knows the name of every customer and probably most of the artists who sell their books there, too - and it's a mixed bag whether those places welcome foreigners or not. As a foreigner, you have to respect the boundaries set within those spaces. As a man, you have to understand that there are definitely places where you're not going to be welcome, places like Otome Road. And if you decide to barge in anyway just so that you can take prohibited photographs and snark at the silly fangirls all in the name of ~*journalism~*, then congratulations, you're an asshole.

The fact that Zac apparently wasn't aware that he actually only saw a tiny portion of Otome Road pretty much confirms the journalism failure anyway.
nenena: (Devi - WTF?!)
Do not use my recap posts to make scanslations.

Do not use my recap posts to make scanslations.

Do not use my recap posts to make scanslations.

Do not use my recap posts to make scanslations.

Do not use my recap posts to make scanslations.

Do not use my recap posts to make scanslations.

Do not use my recap posts to make scanslations.

Do not use my recap posts to make scanslations.

Reasons explained here but really I shouldn't have to be explaining this. It should be obvious on so many levels. 1. Don't take other people's work without asking them first. No, asking them after the fact ("I already did this, I hope you don't mind!") doesn't count. 2. Recap post = mocking = not a direct translation of the chapter. What, the part where I quoted Noah talking about rolling around naked in his comic book collection didn't tip you off?!

Goddamn freakin' entitled fandom. This is not okay.

Arrrrrgh so much entitlement in this fandom. I know that y'all can't stand to wait more than a few days for your beloved FREE, PIRATED manga chapter to be posted online, but seriously, get over yourselves. I know that some of y'all want to be fandom heroes, but this is not the way to do it. P.S. - If you can't read Japanese, then maaaaaaaybe you shouldn't be trying to make a scanslation in the first place! Or at least, you shouldn't be trying to do it alone.

Edited to add: OH NO YOU DIDN'T. Okay, I'm trying to contact the mangafox admins to get this shit taken down. Hopefully it works. Nevermind, it's gone now. The OlbaP scanslation has replaced it. Yay!
nenena: (Soul Eater REVENGE)
From this comment, in this thread, via this glorious, glorious fandom wank:

I can’t remember the last time I saw so much logical fallacy in one place, and that’s saying something because I used to coach Lincoln-Douglas Debate.


I am totally stealing that to use as my new smackdown response to all internet wanks.
nenena: (Default)
RE: RaceFail, Enrique in Soul Eater, and basically any type of gender/sex/ability/ANYTHING Fail in media, and criticism thereof:

The FedEx Arrow

The FedEx Arrow and How to Deal With It


Extremely timely linkspam is extremely timely.



(To make up for all of this recent srs bzns, I promise that the upcoming Soul Eater scanspam post is going to be seriously, seriously epic. If I can ever actually finish scanning this shizbit for it.)
nenena: (Devi - Is it stupid in here)
Blah blah blah, scans_daily is kaput, with few exceptions every reaction to this from both sides has been completely stupid, and yes, Peter David actually does deserve some of that internet scorn, not because he shut down the comm (he didn't), but because of the icky racism that keeps showing up in his books.

But then again, anybody who read Supergirl already knew that.

(I will say this, though - I am now more curious than ever about the skeevy "coloring correction" on Elijah Cross during the X-Cell storyline in X-Factor, and whether PAD had any part in that, or whether some editor was responsible, or what. But I digress.)

Here, though, is something that I kind of DO want to point out.

Lisa Fortuner wrote a post arguing that the s_d shutdown, and the subsequent reaction in more traditionally male-dominated fandom spaces, was NOT a gender issue.

Heidi MacDonald linked to Lisa's post.

First comment on Heidi's blog: I had no idea that this was, at its core, a grrl power issue.

Second comment: Eh, I wouldn’t take Lisa Fortuner’s comments too seriously. Frankly, it never occurred to me that scans_daily was a girl-dominated site. Heck, there was plenty of fanservice for the guys stored up there, too. Frankly, that whole rant, which doesn’t seem all that well-thought out, isn’t all that different from some of the less cohesive anti-RIAA rants back when they were killing Napster.

Next, a non sequitur about sentient penises, a linkback, snark about Tom Spurgeon, and then we get to the sixth comment: When it comes to Lisa Fortuner, everything somehow turns into a grrl power issue.

That one's from Mark Engblom, though, so never mind.

It gets worse, though. Somebody else in the comments shows up to defend the idea that the s_d shutdown really is an issue of female fandom and female fandom space/activities being targeted because they are female, but she... kinda-sorta attributes that argument to Lisa, again.

(*headdesk*)

Okay, look. I've got my own opinions as to what the reaction to the s_d shutdown says about male and female fandom spaces on the comics internet, whether it says anything at all, or whether looking at this thing through a gendered lens is at all useful when the much bigger issue of copyright and creator's rights is exerting enough gravity to distort all of your gender analysis past the point of uselessness. Sexist? Not sexist? Those probably aren't the right questions to be asking here.

But I think that there IS something pointedly sexist about the way that a few commenters over at The Beat attributed an argument to Lisa that was the exact opposite of what she actually wrote in her post. Did they make knee-jerk assumptions about her position on the matter because she's got a rep as a feminist? Did they feel that because she was a) a woman and b) commenting on the s_d shutdown, they already knew what she was going to say, without even having to read her post? Or at least, I'm hoping they didn't actually read her post. I'm really hoping that they didn't. I don't understand how anyone could have read Lisa's post and walked away with that interpretation of it, unless anti-feminist allergies are capable of clouding people's sinuses, brains, and reading comprehension abilities to a greater extent than I had previously suspected.

I know that this is a very minor thing, especially compared to the broader scope of the whole internet debate about copyright violation, Peter David's skanky race issues, etc. And to be fair, it's only four commenters on one blog post who are seriously failboating on this one. And one of the four already has a reputation for being special, so there's that, too.

But, tiny in scope though this particular dribble of spooge may be, I was still completely floored when I read those comments.

ETA after some more reading on The Internets this evening: WTF, universe?! RaceFail09 is still going?! Now my entire post seems especially petty in comparison.
nenena: (Default)
Grad school applications: 2.5 out of four complete and submitted. The .5 would be the NKU app, which unfortunately is a two-part process. Yes, that's two steps in paper submission before you even get to the interview stage. Thank goodness they have a final application deadline in freakin' June for the fall semester.

Reading: Tsubasa (this week's chapter actually made me cry!!!), Ah! My Goddess (HOLY CRAP you guys this story arc is getting awesomer by the minute), and catching up on the past two years' worth of X-Factor. Oh, X-Factor. You are so, so good. Even with your insistence on revolving entire storylines around Sparklepunk Mary Sue Layla Miller, you're still so, so good.

Linky-links: Derek Kim on the Avatar movie. Read it. NOW. Derek Kim is an amazing writer, and if his words can't convince you that "racist" is exactly the right word for this shit, then nothing can. Also: It just keeps getting worse. However, there may be a way to make lemonade from all those lemons.

Doing: Yes, I am scanning stuff. Hold yer horses.
nenena: (W.I.T.C.H. - Irma rocks)
Went to the bookstore today. Hooray!

I picked up Ah! My Goddess volume 38, with Chrono on the cover. In the manga canon, I guess she's officially strawberry blonde, now.

So I guess Crono is important enough to rank among Rind, Chihiro, and other supporting characters who have gotten their own volume covers. I'm... not sure how I feel about that. I mean, Crono is just so... stupid. But oh well. There are enough better characters in the cast that I really don't care whether Crono deserves her moment in the sun, or not.

The big surprise was an announcement in the back of the book: the Ah! My Goddess "Total Illustration Artbook 1998 ~ 2008" hits the shelves on Christmas Day! Holy crap!! I can't believe that date wasn't announced in last month's Afternoon. Uh, way to advertise your release dates well in advance, guys. Or not.

Speaking of release dates... How to Make Deathscythe was supposed to hit the shelves today, too. But of course, Squeenix has yet to ship any copies to any bookstores in the southern Nagano area. Of course. This always happens, argh! But that's what I get for living in a backwater.

Oh hey, and since I do live in a backwater, today was the first day that I found a copy of Mutuality on the bookstore shelf. Of course I immediately bought it. ;) Yes, yes, I know, the book has been out for three weeks already. But hey, backwater living! Gotta love it.

Anyway, for those of you unfamiliar, Mutuality is the big giant artbook collection of all of CLAMP's illustrations for Code Geass. And it is, absolutely, in a word, stunning. Worth every single penny. Say what you will about Code Geass - and you know I'm not shy about repeatedly stating that I think that it's utter shite, albeit extremely entertaining shite - but it's impossible to deny that CLAMP's artwork for the series, both production designs and promotional materials, really do represent the pinnacle of modern manga artistry. (If you can stand how overwrought they are, that is.)

Anyway, the book is gorgeous, almost mind-blowingly so, and contains many paintings so visually complicated that I could stare at them for hours and still not be able to appreciate every single detail. The best part of the book, however, is an extensive section of all of the early, rejected character designs that CLAMP churned out. Some of them are outright LOLarious. And some of them are extremely... telling. I know that I've written about this phenomenon before, when the original Lelouch and Suzaku character designs were first revealed in an issue of Newtype. But it still *fascinates* me to observe the process that CLAMP applied to evolving those two character designs from their rough versions to their final versions.

Really long entry in which I ramble about anime character designs, racial coding, and yes, I actually tie Code Geass to Avatar and all of the ugly racewank it's generating. )

Edited to add: Now with visuals! Hooray!

Edit again: Another thing just occurred to me. I originally wrote this post with the intent to debunk the "Aang looks white" meme, but there's a more insidious meme out there that can be addressed here as well. That would be the "Avatar characters are raceless" meme. The most common justification for which seems to be the idea that because the main Avatar characters have such varied facial features, they aren't meant to all be of the same race! Mai and Ty Lee look so completely different, that they couldn't possibly both be of the same race, right? WRONG! This is a stupid idea, because it assumes that there's never any physical variations between people of the same race. It is an insidious packaging of the same old racist belief that a) only white people have varied facial features and b) all Asian people look exactly the same. Oh, barf. The character designs in most anime series, as well as in Avatar, directly defy that idea. But, you know. Viewers are still people, and people are still stupid.

Edit the Third: Just added a bunch more images, including scans of CLAMP's original character designs for Lelouch and Suzaku.

Edit the Fourth: Ampersand links an old essay by Matt Thorn about the same dealio, and a fascinating discussion ensues in the comments.
nenena: (Devi - Is it stupid in here)
What the hell, M. Night Shyamalan?

What. The. Hell.

See also: 21, Wanted, The Prince of Persia, the Dragonball movie, and Speed Racer. Just off the top of my head and in the last year alone.

What the hell, world?

What. The. Hell.

Edit: Letter-Writing Campaign, GO!!!
nenena: (Devi - WTF?!)
Tarō Asō is a racist, sexist, anti-Semitic ultra-nationalist xenophobic fuckwit.

If I see one more blog or livejournal post about how AWESOME it is that Asō is slated to become Japan's next Prime Minister, I am going to scream.

And no, I am not surprised that the Akibakei and pretty much all of Japan's otaku culture support Asō in droves. We're talking about a demographic group that tends to be either a) extremely ill-informed about politics or b) also leaning toward being enormously racist, sexist, ultra-nationalistic xenophobic fuckwits. All you have to do is spend more than a minute surfing 2ch to see the sad, sad truth of that.

Wealthy housebound nerds harbor sheltered, ignorant views about how the real world works? Color me shocked!

I'm waiting for the inevitable television special where some intrepid reporter from NHK ventures out into the streets of Akihabara, rounds up a bunch of otaku sporting pro-Asō paraphanelia, and asks them if any of them have any clue what sort of actual policies Asō supports. I'd bet money that most of them don't know anything about Asō beyond the fact that he likes manga a lot. Hell, a cursory glance at some of the Japanese blogs on my feed are showing me exactly that right now.

Oh well. At the very least, we should all take comfort in the fact that Asō probably won't last long as the Prime Minister. Lately, nobody has. Especially nobody that supports abolishing Article 9 and re-militarizing Japan. TPTB in Japan have rallied that cause for a long time, but (at least for now) the voters will still have none of it.

Okay, enough about stupid Japanese politics. Here is a brilliant NSFW comic with what is quite possibly the greatest editorial caption every written:

I’ve never understood how a wonderfully muscular, resilient organ could be a euphemism for weakness, while having delicate, dangly bits indicated strength. Subconscious sexism much?
nenena: (Devi - Is it stupid in here)
In case you missed the travesty: My 2008 Harvey Award Nominations, let me show you them.

Scroll down to the "Best American Edition of Foreign Material" category. Go ahead, let your jaw drop. It's okay, I'll understand. Because this and this were the two manga nominated.

A lot of people are laughing about that, but as for me, I'm angry. I mean, I feel freakin' insulted. Out of all of the manga released in the States in 2007, they had to pick Witchblade to nominate for an award? Witchblade is bad on about every level that a manga can be bad - shit art, crap writing, huge heaping doses of sexism and misogyny, exploitative, stupid, and overall insulting on every level. It's the perfect ambassador for the worst of everything that manga has not offer, not the best.

The Witchblade manga is supposed to be a guilty pleasure, fanboy-pandering series: graphically violent softcore porn, for readers who like graphically violent softcore porn. Now there's nothing wrong with that, actually. Everybody likes a bit of brain-killing guilty pleasure manga, every now and then. But to take a manga like that and laud it at "the comic book industry's premier award show"?! I don't know what to say to that. Either the nominators just don't care about the sexism and misogyny in the Witchblade manga, or they think that the sexism/misogyny in the Witchblade manga is representative of all manga so it doesn't matter if they nominate it, or... Well, I don't know. I just don't know what they were thinking. I do not understand how anybody could read more than a single page of the Witchblade manga and think that it deserved any sort of recognition for "excellence."

Unless somebody has a hate-on for manga and was trying to slip in a saboteur nominee. That's the only good reason I can think of why somebody would take a series that is the perfect representation of the worst of everything that manga has to offer, and nominate it for a major award. You know, like Ann Coulter telling people that she was going to vote for Hillary Clinton. But that's just a conspiracy theory, and conspiracy theories are silly.

Either way, whether you believe it's a conspiracy or just plain stupidity, the Witchblade nomination is fairly enraging.

Look, here's a handy list of EVERY SINGLE MANGA VOLUME released in 2007 in the English-speaking world. There's a lot of great stuff on that list, including:

Banana Fish
Blame
Buddha
Claymore
Death Note
The Drifting Classroom
Emma
Fullmetal Alchemist
Fruits Basket
Genshiken
Kekkaishi
Kitchen Princess
The Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service
Monster
Mushishi
Nana
Nodame Cantible
Ouran High School Host Club
Parasyte
Please Save My Earth
Sugar Sugar Rune
Swan
Tekkonkinkreet
To Terra
Yakitate!! Japan
Yotsuba!&


Heck, even the megahit series like Bleach, Naruto, One Piece, and Inu-Yasha. Those series are popular for a reason. They have mass appeal because they're fun and good reads.

And hey, I don't know what the Harvey rules about reprints are, but Uzumaki, Akira, and Magic Knight Rayearth all got gorgeous re-releases in 2007, too.

Compared to all of the above, I am flabbergasted - and more than a little bit angry - that the godawful Takeru Witchblade manga is getting recognized by a Harvey nomination. As opposed to, you know, any of the above.

Edit: David Walsh's much better post on the subject.
nenena: (Default)
Follow-up to this:

The Foreign Ministry of Japan has formally apologized (Japanese link).

Anime News Network does an English write-up that includes the phrase "Muslims' feelings that were hurt by images deemed inappropriate."

Muslim's feelings that were hurt. Wow. Just wow. Could that phrasing be any more dismissive and juvenile?

Meanwhile, the previously quite progressive and open-minded denizens of the ANN forums smear xenophobic, anti-Muslim, and outright bigoted fecal matter all over the board and call it a "discussion." I read the thread, my jaw dropped, and I am never going to look at certain posters the same way again.

Nothing like Islam to bring all of the closeted bigots out in all of their arm-flailing, mouth-frothing glory. Farewell, ANN discussion boards. I hardly knew ye.

Edited to add: And this just showed up in my blog reader. How timely.

Edit the second: In the interest of fairness, a link to Jeffkun's post.
nenena: (Devi - Is it stupid in here)
Via Mangablog:

This.


Apparently it's PR for Final Crisis that was sent to some bloggers... including, for some baffling reason, Mangablog. (Edit: Or maybe Brigid re-posted it from [livejournal.com profile] scans_daily, I'm not sure.)

Tell me, what's wrong with his picture?

I'll start. )

Edit: The rest of Grant Morrison's Japanese superheroes. Yeah wow holy shit. Where to even begin? First there's this gem:

Japan has embraced every aspect of the superhero culture, chewed it up, spliced it together, and incorporated the result into its own hyper-accelerated pop media landscape.


1. Same as the quote that I deconstructed behind the cut. Wow.

2. Obviously "the superhero culture" means exclusively American comics, since all of the superheroes listed are "hilariously" derivative of American superheroes.

And again with the assuming that "superhero culture" is foreign to Japan to begin with. Hint: Cutie Honey is older than Wolverine. She also rocked the boob window for years before Power Girl was even created.

3. "Hyper-accelerated pop media landscape"? Seriously? From a country that produces more iyashikei and slice-of-life anime per quarter than it does science-fiction or giant robot shows? Really?! Oh no, that's not a dumbass stereotype of Japan at all.

Western motifs are chopped up, collided and spliced with manga fetish wear, Sailor Moon meets Batman, Mecha-Wonder-Woman, Lolita Undertaker Zatanna girls.


What in the world is manga fetish wear?!

And again with the only listing American superheroes as examples of "superheroes" in the first place.

Let's [...] take a look at the original Japanese superhero team.


AW HELL NO. Okay, granted, the leader of the "original Japanese superhero team" is an Ultraman rip-off homage, so at least we're finally getting some recognition of iconic Japanese superheroes. But then he's immediately followed by a Silver Surfer, a Human Torch, an Aquaman, and then (thankfully) a Patlabor homage. Look, I'm not just saying that these are Silver Surfer/Human Torch rip-offs, it's actually stated in Morrison's notes. With the exception of the Ultraman dude and the Patlabor thing, I suppose we're left to believe, then, that "the original Japanese superhero team" is almost completely derivative of American superheroes because of course the Japanese don't have enough superhero icons of their own! At least, not in the fictional DC universe they don't. Nope, this whole "superhero" thing is something that they had to "co-opt" from Americans.

And I'm not even touching the parts of the descriptions that read "just like Pokemon!" and "just like the emo boys in Akira!". Ugh.

Finally, there's this jaw-dropping shit. I cannot even touch that. I'm not even going to try. Luckily Filby already analyzed it six ways to Sunday, so you can go read that post.

Wow. Grant Morrison, is this how you research another culture before you portray it in your works? Suddenly I'm starting to feel nervous about your Mahabharata project. Very, very nervous.

Edited to add: One more link of interest, The Sooz versus a hyperventilating Morrison fangirl. Popcorn is on the house. Also, [livejournal.com profile] arionhunter schools you on Japanese superhero aesthetics. Morrison got so much wrong, it's not even funny.

Edit on June 20th OMG I know BUT: THIS IS HOW YOU DO IT. Grant Morrison, are you taking notes?
nenena: (Default)
What went down at the "Girls Who Kick Ass" panel:

Steve Bunche writes.

Four Color Heroines and Colleen Doran speak.

People who were there, and people who weren't there, in the comments at The Beat.

David Brothers takes Buche to task for his panel write-up. You know, I hate to toot my own horn, but it's nice to see someone else calling out the sexist anti-Jameson bullshit, for once.

(Not that I'm trying to wave my feminist martyr flag, or anything.)

ETA: Oh, for fuck's sake. I'm glad I missed that interview when it was published in February. Christina Z, Mariah Huehner, and Mukesh Singh handled it well, but that interviewer asked some pretty cringe-inducing questions.

ETA TWO: Kevin Huxford posts video of the panel. Misogyny flies in the comments. The guys all pat themselves on the back and share some hyuks, while I go over into a corner and vomit.

EDIT THREE: Somewhat belatedly, Virgin Comics posts video of the panel on their website.
nenena: (Default)

(Click for a larger version!)


So this Adam Hughes poster, subtitled "The Real Power of the DC Universe," has been making the rounds. And there's some debate on whether it's sexist or not.

My reactions:

1. Holy God that's GORGEOUS.
2. The women may be dressed similarly, but their individual personalities really shine through.
3. Are those... individualized... faces?! Why yes, they are!
4. Mary Marvel looks about ten years too old.
5. Oh wait, that's not Mary Marvel... it's Kate Kane?!
6. So why is the lesbian the only one wearing a pantsuit? (*headdesk*)
7. You'd think that with all of Bab's money and connections she would be able to afford a wheelchair that doesn't look so wretchedly behind the times.
8. Kara. Oh my God. Kara. She's sixteen years old, for crying out loud!
9. I can imagine both Selina and Poison Ivy taking Kara aside, either before or after the photoshoot, and giving her a good tongue-lashing. "Oh honey. That's not how you do a seductive come-hither face. That's not how you do it at all. And really, would it kill you to add an extra inch or two on your hem? You're supposed to leave a little something to their imaginations!"
10. Okay, I'll admit, the fact that EVERY SINGLE WOMAN* is wearing three-inch spike heels is pretty effing sexist. The gowns are varied and gorgeous; why can't we have a little more variety in the footwear, too?

* Granted, as was pointed out in comments, we can only see the shoes on five women, and it's kind of hard to tell what Barbara's wearing. If you ask me, though, her visible foot definitely looks pointed, so either she's resting with her foot en pointe, or she's wearing freakin' heels.

ETA: You know what this entry needs? Beefcake.

Here, let me ruin your childhood for you.

Disclaimer: Many of those characters are from Disney movies that are NOT from my childhood, actually.
nenena: (Default)
[54] Devi icons.

Nothing fancy, because the artwork speaks for itself.

I has a flaming sword. )


Scans that I used to make these, because I feel like sharing: Part One | Part Two

That's a bunch of random - but totally awesome - pages from Devi #1 through #17.

It was really, really hard to find icon-able panels of some characters, particularly Kratha and Avni.

...Why yes, I did order the first issue of the Devi/Witchblade crossover. As it combines something that I love (Devi) with something that I absolutely can't stand (Witchblade), I'm more curious that ever to see how this is going to turn out.

Edited to add: Oh, hell. Virgin, you suck. :( Way to go with the terrible PR there. Here's a hint, Mr. Lieberman: You want prominent comics bloggers at your party. You want to schmooze with them and impress them, especially if they've said critical things about your business model. A party is a chance for you to win over the bloggers and journalists, yes, even those who have criticized you. I mean, holy hell. How much dumber can a "Chief Marketing Officer" get?!



Edited again, many moons after the fact: I have a folder full of high-res scans from the final issues of Devi, and from the Devi/Witchblade crossover, that I had intended to turn into icons eventually. I don't think that I'll ever get around to making said icons, however, but I don't want the pretty scans to go to waste, either! Hence I am releasing my folder o'scans into the wild, just in case anybody else wants to use them as fodder for icons or whatever.

Here is a preview of the scans available:

Preview Image.

Click here to download these scans in a zip file.


Enjoy!
nenena: (She blinded me with science!)
Further evidence that Code Geass is the best worst anime ever:

This.
nenena: (Default)
Yes, yes, I know. The panel description is shockingly bass-ackwards and sexist. So is the grouping of the women. Louise Simonson, Amanda Conner, and Colleen Doran are seasoned veterans who worked damn hard to get where they are; Jenna Jameson, on the other hand, has fun ideas for comics, but she:
A) is a n00b,
B) doesn't handle the writing or art herself, and
C) to be honest, the fourth panel slot should probably have gone to someone else who has had to work harder, faster, better, and longer in order to be successful in the comics business.

Does Jenna Jameson have interesting things to say about science fiction, horror tropes, and the art of making comics? She does. Yes, she really does. You can read the things that she has to say in her editorials in Shadow Hunter. She's a smart and fun person. That still doesn't mean that she has anything else in common with the other three women on that panel. Let's be honest here: Jameson got an opportunity to make a comic because of her celebrity status. So far, it's a good comic. But that panel slot probably should have gone to a hard-working and under-appreciated female industry veteran. That's kind of the point of the panel, isn't it?

Panel seats are rewards. They're recognition for people that have been making long-time contributions to a field, in this case comics. Louise Simonson, Colleen Doran, and Amanda Conner have been contributing to the industry for decades. Jenna Jameson? It's not that she doesn't have anything to contribute, because she does. But there are others who have been working longer who have contributed more. And Jameson doesn't even write or draw her own comic book. That's the most damning strike against her in this situation. I'd be a lot more willing to defend her seat on that panel if she actually rolled up her sleeves and did the hard work of making a comic, either writing the script or drawing the artwork or doing the lettering or something. As it stands now, she's more of a creative director than anything else. She comes up with the ideas; other people bring them to life. That's great, but it also means that she only gets to do the fun part. The panel seat should have gone to someone who can do the hard work, too.

Having said that, however, I'm still disappointed at the misogynistic poo that's already being flung at Jameson, in the comments at two certain blog posts.

FFS, people. Don't make me bust out the Wall of Shame again.

As usual, Rachel hits the nail on the head, and I tried to be a little more coherent in the comments there, but I'm still just reeling from all the general stupidity and wrongness surrounding this. And I mean general stupidity and wrongness coming from all sides, including those who are using this as an opportunity to crack cheap sexist jokes at Jameson's expense.

Also, "outrageous and provocative"? Are you effing kidding me?!

Power Pack. New Mutants. Birds of Prey. X-Factor. Superman. Heck, even Shadow Hunter. What exactly is outrageous or provocative about ANY of these titles? Why does a comic have to be "outrageous and provocative" in order to to be considered good? Why are "outrageous and provocative" the ONLY adjectives chosen to describe these women's works and presumably to excite potential panel-goers? Why?!

(And yeah, I know what you're thinking, and no, I still say that Shadow Hunter is not particularly outrageous or provocative. Look, I like the series, but come on, there's nothing new about a scantily-clad woman slaying demons and spraying lots of blood and gore anywhere. Obviously Jameson's name associated with the title is outrageous and provocative, but I'd say that's more a result of the fact that a lot of comics readers - and a lot of the the general public - are mouth-breathing idiots who can't wrap their tiny trogolodyte brains around the concept of a pornographer actually having thoughts and talents, rather than a characteristic of the comic itself.)

I think it's a sad, sad reflection on the mainstream comic industry if things like good writing, nice artwork, and strong women characters can be described as "outrageous" and "provocative."

EDIT: Oh good God. Is it Comics Book Fans Flash Their Assholes Week, or what? There's so much stupid in the comments here that I don't even know where to start.

EDIT TWO: What actually happened at the panel.