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Saturday, November 29, 2014

Fujoshi O'Clock (11/29/14)

What time is it? It's Fujoshi O'Clock, the biweekly feature at Nagareboshi Review, when I bring to you the latest fujoshi-related news and reviews and various shiny BL-flavored things. There is also a focus on trans and bisexual anime/manga. Why? Because rotten girls need love too!

This week on Fujoshi O'Clock:


Reviews:


Am I missing your blog? Got some awesome fujoshi-related news and reviews you think deserve a shout-out? Poke me with a link and a bit of description over at my Twitter: @theseventhl. I'm always on the look out for more BL love!

Friday, November 28, 2014

Five Reasons Why The Pupa Manga Outshines The Anime

Pupa - the anime - is terrible. My thoughts on this are no secret. It has no redeeming qualities whatsoever, despite the studio behind it trying to save what was left of it after the powers that be decided the show would be cut from full-length episodes to under five minutes per week. On such breadcrumbs, better series would have a tough time. So Pupa, a lesser series, absolutely fell apart.

Naturally, in the face of massive backlash, folks will bring out their own revisionist fan excitement over it. People ask if Pupa is really all that bad and suddenly, defenders spring out of the woodwork for a show that doesn't deserve it. And this is from someone who watched NakaImo front to back as well as the Fairy Dance arc of Sword Art Online. Pupa does not deserve your love.

Sayaka Mogi's Pupa, however, is deserving of your love. The original manga upon which the maligned anime series is based is all the things people wanted from the show but didn't get. I've only read up to the third chapter and already it has more worthwhile story content and character development than the front six episodes of the TV anime.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Manga Review: Black Butler GN 18

Black Butler volume 18
Author: Yana Toboso
Yen Press
176 pages
Their elaborate schoolroom deception at an end, Earl Ciel Phantomhive and his peerless manservant, Sebastian, finally hit upon the truth behind the incident of the vanished students at Weston College. Just what tragic steps did the elites of the school, spurred on by their overwhelming sense of justice, take to stamp out the bullying running rife in the halls of their institution?! What began as a seemingly simple case of missing persons goes round and round, spinning out of control into a great menace, one capable of perplexing even a devil...
After finishing the latest volume of Black Butler, I spent a good five minutes trying to nitpick the contents of it, looking for a major flaw or distraction. I found none. Maybe it needs more old man Tanaka? Okay, every book could use more Tanaka, so that doesn't count as a valid nitpick.
In this collection of chapters, Yana Toboso has packaged together a perfect combination of her signature stylish art, madcap action, thrilling plot twists and screwball humor for the conclusion of the Weston College story arc. Amid the eighteen volumes of Black Butler released so far in English, the newest one is truly among the top of the crop.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Novel Review: Sword Art Online - Aincrad LN 1 & 2

Sword Art Online: Aincrad 1 & 2
Author: Reki Kawahara
Yen Press/Yen On
200 pages approx. per volume
In the year 2022, gamers rejoice as Sword Art Online opens its virtual doors, allowing players to take full advantage of the ultimate in gaming technology: NerveGear, a system that allows users to completely immerse themselves in the game world by manipulating their brain waves to create a wholly realistic gaming experience. But when the game goes live, the elation of the players quickly turns to horror as they discover that, for all its amazing features, SAO is missing one of the most basic functions of any MMORPG-a log-out button. (Source: Yen Press)
Having just finished up the tepid, lackluster Sword Art Online manga adaptation of the Aincrad arc (my displeasure with this omnibus has already been spelled out on this blog), I went into the SAO original light novel duology for Aincrad with lowered expectations. Somehow, it managed to surprise me in a refreshing way, and does things in a way that the manga and anime never could.
In the translated words of Kawahara, Asuna gains depth, Kirito gains sympathy, and the world of SAO reveals a depth only prose can give it. The story still has some fundamental issues but in the realm of canon sources, the light novel series stands firmly alongside the popular anime and way ahead of its manga counterpart.

Monday, November 17, 2014

PR: Viz Brings Doraemon Products To The U.S. For The Holidays

Ayyy, look at all these Doraemon things I'm gonna buy! Although, naturally, no Missouri shops are on the list :|

VIZ Media Partners With Hot Topic To Offer Exclusive DORAEMON T-Shirts And Highlights Collectables Available Now From The Official U.S. DORAEMON Product Website

VIZ Media gives DORAEMON fans a fun way to display their love of the hit anime adventure comedy that currently airs on the Disney XD channel. The company has announced it is teaming up with pop culture and alternative apparel retailer Hot Topic to offer the first-ever officially U.S. licensed DORAEMON t-shirts.

Shirt designs offered by Hot Topic include “Many Doraemon” and “Doraemon Waving,” available in distinctive men’s and women’s styles, as well as “Doraemon Eating Dorayaki,” available exclusively in women’s sizes. Shirts are available now at 30 Hot Topic store locations nationwide as well as online at: http://search.hottopic.com/search?p=Q&ts=custom&lbc=hottopic&w=doraemon.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Initial Thoughts On Higurashi No Naku Koro Ni Episode 1 VN

The village of Hinamizawa serial murder incident... Every year on the same day in June, someone died and there was a mysterious disappearance. This death is intertwined in the conflict surrounding a gigantic dam project. The resurrection of a mysterious case hidden during the Showa era. Conspiracy, chance, or a curse... (Source: MangaGamer)

Having watched the first season of the anime and read the first story arc of the manga, I didn't think that playing the Onikakushi-hen arc of the Higurashi No Naku Koro ni/When Cicadas Cry visual novel could surprise me. Although I haven't delved far enough into it to talk about the murders that will soon plague the claustrophobic village of Hinamizawa, what I've seen so far is an interesting deparature from how Higurashi is experience through its anime and manga adaptations.

For those of you wishing to join me in exploring the Higurashi VN, the first episode is currently available for free via the Kindle Fire and MangaGamer. It seems like the game is a bit of a battery drainer and it takes approximately one hour to download the game data even after you install the app. Luckily, once all that is done, you can jump directly into the game.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Wednesday Briefs: Washed Right Out, Chapter Eleven

Here comes yet another Wednesday, which means the latest edition of Wednesday Briefs! This week, Washed Right Out continues as an unusual promise is made between our protagonist Riley and his co-worker Eren. Are dangerous deeds on the horizon for our hapless hero? Perhaps, if I have anything to say about it.

Washed Right Out, Chapter Eleven. Prompts used: biscuits and gravy, the longer you leave something the harder it is to fix.
I'm in. I'll help you get rid of him.”
Before Riley could respond, Eren stood up. "We can text about it later. Or Skype, or whatever. Just remind me before you leave for the day."
"I might not answer right away." Riley shook his head. "Uh, I have plans this weekend. Sort of."

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

For The Five People Who Still Haven't Seen Too Many Cooks

I had intended on blogging about the Higurashi visual novel today but between getting ready to go back to school and working on my writing, that post got dropped by the wayside. And I apologize for it! Darn real life, getting in the way of blogging time.

In lieu of Higurashi love, enjoy the most viral video of 2014 so far. Too Many Cooks? Yep. And now, if you've seen it already, the opening theme is stuck in your head (again).


Note: this video is severely NSFW. You should really just expect anything and everything if you haven't heard anything about Too Many Cooks yet.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Fujoshi O'Clock (11/9/14)

What time is it? It's Fujoshi O'Clock, the biweekly feature at Nagareboshi Review, when I bring to you the latest fujoshi-related news and reviews and various shiny BL-flavored things. There is also a focus on trans and bisexual anime/manga. Why? Because rotten girls need love too!

This week on Fujoshi O'Clock:

  • You Higuri will be starting up a new Gakuen Heaven manga series, adapting yet another entry in the Gakuen Heaven BL game series. Higuri's works have been published in English by multiple companies.
  • Digital Manga Publishing has announced a new manga license: Kou Yoneda's Even So, I Will Love You Tenderly, a one-shot manga of an early series by the author, also licensed by DMP.
  • Manga Bookshelf's 3 Things feature for October 30 focuses on pretty pictures and beautiful manga spreads; the post includes Heart of Thomas by Moto Hagio.
  • On a more academic note, Library Juice Press is calling for papers on library services for LGBTQ folks. Deadline is January 15, 2015.
  • ANN writes about seven anime couples who make love and war - pairings who fight together; Kurogane and Fai from CLAMP's Tsubasa series is one of the couples, as is Michiru and Haruka from Sailor Moon.

Reviews:

  • Cartoon Geek Corner reviews CLAMP's Legal Drug, recently re-released in omnibus format through Dark Horse Comics. This shonen-ai series already has a sequel series, its English publication set for next year.
  • The Manga Test Drive reviews the Petshop Of Horrors series by Matsuri Akino. It's a horror series dripping with subtext between Count D and Detective Leon (although the above reviewer seems blind to the whole thing *shrugs*).

Am I missing your blog? Got some awesome fujoshi-related news and reviews you think deserve a shout-out? Poke me with a link and a bit of description over at my Twitter: @theseventhl. I'm always on the look out for more BL love!

Friday, November 7, 2014

New PV From Miku Hatsune Dark Is Hazy

Thanks, Crunchyroll, for the heads up: there's a new Miku Hatsune PV! From VOCALOID producer Keeno and the soundback of Hatsune Miku comes "morning haze". The song actually uses Miku Hatsune Dark, one of the Append music banks meant to create different moods in Miku's songs.


You'll be able to listen to the full LP that this song comes from - "Download feat. Miku Hatsune" when it comes out next month via Warner Music Japan. The album can be pre-ordered through CDJapan, either as a regular or a limited edition.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

I Wasted Half An Hour Reading The Sword Art Online: Aincrad Manga

Pictured above: a huge waste
of time.
So you won't have to! Believe me, you don't want to. "But I'm the biggest SAO fan in my anime club!" No, you don't. "But I love Kirito and Asuna!" Then you'll hate this. "But I always read the-" NO. YOU. DON'T.

Quick summary of Sword Art Online for the cheap seats: an incredibly immersive MMORPG using virtual reality technology named Sword Art Online has just opened for regular play, only now thousands of players are locked into the game with no log out button and real, IRL death around every corner - unless they can defeat the final boss, clear every level, and beat the game.

Our protag, Kirito, is a beta tester player with a special dual wielding ability who becomes the user base's best chance at survival. He teams up with Asuna, one of the fastest and strongest users in the game, and they eventually fall in love. Video game hijinks ensue. People die. Ridiculous bosses spring up for drama. And then the final boss shows up! If you watched SAO on Toonami, you already know this familiar song and dance routine.

But if this is your first introduction to the SAO verse, you are getting a rather slapdash version of it. It's a non-linear, messy wreck of an adaptation and can be very confusing without previous knowledge of the series. And if you've already watched the Aincrad arc in anime form, you really don't need to read the manga.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Wednesday Briefs: Washed Right Out, Chapter Ten

I'm afraid I left the last installment of Wednesday Briefs on a cliffhanger. Luckily, in this chapter, that cliffhanger is resolved! The Washed Right Out series continues as a proposition is made, an argument is had, and food is stolen. I think the ending of this one will be intriguing to follow in later chapters. Hopefully, y'all keep reading on after this!

Washed Right Out, Chapter Ten. Prompts used: well that's a rough break, a snake in the grass.
"Kiss you?" Riley's brain spun in circles, like a hamster wheel on full tilt. "Dude!"
"What?" Eren gave him what could have been a harmlessly innocent look, but ended up looking more devious than he must have intended.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Manga Review: Library Wars GN 12

Library Wars volume 12
Author: Kiiro Yumi
Original Concept: Hiro Arikawa
Viz Manga/Shojo Beat
190 pages
Library Forces member Iku Kasahara has plans to go out for tea with her supervisor and secret crush, Dojo, but just figuring out what to wear puts her in a tailspin. When an urgent call comes in about an author seeking protection from the government, Iku realizes that the fight against censorship never takes a break! (Source: Viz)
One of the best things about the Library Forces manga is that even when it gets romantic and heartfelt, it never forgets what it's about: a world at violent odds with the ideas of censorship and artistic freedom, set in a society where soldiers must actively protect libraries from being destroyed and ideas from being stamped out. Unfortunately for Iku, another one of these incidents of authors vs censors comes during her first date-sort-of with Dojo, the man she's been crushing on for the entire series. Sorry, Iku-san.

Brief Blog Update: Now With 200% Spookier Stuff

Apparently, Tsukihime took more time that I'd like because now that October has come and gone, I've realized I didn't get to visit every series that was voted on by y'all even though I promised I would. So I get to spend part of November playing catch up! Yay!

Here are some of the posts you can look forward to during this month:

  • looking at the visual novel Higurashi no Naku Koro ni
  • revisiting the anime Pupa and comparing it to the manga
  • finishing the Another anime series
  • retrospective review of the Pet Shop Of Horrors manga
  • a review of the Corpse Princess anime
  • HOPEFULLY, a review of Shiki, but it's not on Crunchyroll and Netflix is being a jerk :|

Sounds fun! But y'all will have to sit through a review of the latest Library Wars manga before that happens, whoops.