Tag Archive for anime

April is going to be exhaustingly busy

I know plenty of people in the area make fun of tourists’ desire to go look at some flowering trees, but it’s nearly cherry blossom season, which is one of my favorite periods of the year. And that means the National Cherry Blossom Festival.

This weekend is the kickoff (yes, I realize that’s not quite April) — and the Family Day is always entertaining and cute.

The next weekend is the Freer’s annual anime marathon. They only have three movies this year, one of which I’ve seen, but I’ll still get up early, head into the city and get in line to see Chocolate Underground. Also that day is Silver Spring’s Big Cherry Block Party, which will be my substitute for the next weekend’s Sakura Matsuri, which I’m missing because …

That’s also the weekend of MoCCA Festival, with Drink & Draw Like a Lady that Friday. I’m still finalizing my travel plans, but I will try to be there Friday night for that. (And there’s also the Tim Burton exhibit at MoMA and Japan Society’s j-CATION – A Taste of Japan event with a show by Asobi Sesku if I thoroughly want to exhaust myself that weekend).

The next weekend I’m going to go see my mom for some downtime and to go to Richmond Craft Mafia’s Spring Bada-Bing.

Then, wrapping up the month is the final weekend of Festival Imagé at MICA. This is tentative because it depends on how dead I feel once the month is over.

Also occurring in April are two events I won’t (or can’t) be going to: Wondercon and Stumptown. One of these years, I swear, I’m going to make it to Stumptown. MoCCA shifting to April prevented me from going this year.

Thus far, May is wide open. And I’m thinking that’s good because I’m likely going to want to sleep through the entire thing.

Today’s trio of links

  • Anne Billson at the Guardian wants a real cartoon heroine. She objects to Wybie in the movie adaptation of Coraline (as we all did) and evokes the great Hayao Miyazaki’s young heroines (among others). Do boys really not want to watch girls, or are they just not given the opportunity?

    Link via When Fangirls Attack

  • I was a little young for the Riot Grrrl movement so I totally missed out on Bratmobile. But I do think it’s really awesome Allison Wolfe is the English-language writer for Nana (my feelings on Partyline notwithstanding). Wolfe was selected personally for the job, which is really cool. She’s a great fit — she understands the rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle as well as the feminist undercurrent of the title.

    I feel quite inspired to include a Bratmobile video:

    Link via Journalista

  • Joe Quesada makes some insane comments about Marvel Divas in this week’s MyCup o’ Joe. Here’s the relevant bits:

    The cold hard reality of publishing and trying to sell our books to as many people as possible, so here’s an example of what happens more often than you may think here at Marvel. From time to time, we’ll be launching a title that doesn’t focus very heavily on the super heroic. From time to time I’ll get a cover sketch and it doesn’t have a costumed hero or villain on the cover, what we internally refer to as a “quiet cover.” On those occasions, more often than not, I ask my editors to direct their cover artist to give me at least a first issue cover with the characters in costume. Why? Because it will help launch a book that will most likely have trouble latching onto a large audience. We want to give every title the best possible chance to be successful. Marvel Divas is no different and that’s why you’re seeing our strong female leads in their super hero personas.

    What Quesada doesn’t seem to understand that the “quiet” cover would’ve gone over much better. After all, like I pointed out, Tonci Zonjic’s art is more appealing that the cover. I understand trying to appeal to a wide range of people, but by picking that cover, Quesada gave people — especially women, who would be likely to read this title — the wrong idea about what it could be. To me, Roberto Aquirre-Sacasa’s words said one thing and the cover said the complete opposite.

    I am still going to give Marvel Divas a chance and I do hope other people do too. But Quesada seems pretty clueless as to why people reacted to the way they did.

    Link via io9

  • Associated Press on Krazy!

    The Associated Press writes up the exhibit currently on display in New York (why they didn’t think it was important two weeks ago, when it opened, I don’t know). Unlike the Vancouver Art Gallery’s version, this one focuses exclusively on Japan’s contributions in pop culture.

    I am going to try to get up to New York and see this exhibit, even if it’s just for the day. It runs through June 14 at The Japan Society. Yeah, because of the National Cherry Blossom Festival currently going on, I kind of have Japan on the brain, but I’m pretty excited for this. We have the catalog from the Vancouver version here and while I haven’t looked at a lot, it’s neat.

    I tend to get annoyed with statements like this from the AP article:

    What’s also clear is that in Japan, manga and anime — unlike, say, Marvel comics — are not just for kids. Many of the images are violent and sexually graphic, such as Satoshi Kon’s 2006 animated film “Paprika.”

    Because, you know, some people think Marvel isn’t exactly for kids either and while Kon’s Paprika is definitely for grown-ups (and I mean that in the best way — it’s a story for mature people, not just those who still giggle when they can see “boobies” on screen), it’s a pretty tame example as far as anime goes, if you ask me.

    But I’m not going to grumble too much about it because apparently, some people have yet to get this message. At the Freer’s Cherry Blossom Anime Festival this Saturday, there was a family with a couple of 8- to 9-year-olds at the screening of Evangelion 1.0. Don’t do that! (Mind you, the Freer had this listed as PG for some reason, and it’s not.)

    Image of a Junko Mizuno figure, taken from the Associated Press article.

    I love you, Satoshi Kon

    Not so much comics, but:

    For me, creating female characters really isn’t my strong suit. The image of women that appears in Japanese animation, on the whole, is something that should be approached as a pre-existing stereotype. Women like the ones in anime don’t really exist in reality. I don’t appeal to realism as if my life depended on it, but with visuals, characters and the story, there’s a reality amongst all that. The characters that appear in that reality – anime fans, stories, male characters – it’s not like I present those in a purely realistic way either. Women are women, and women characters also have their own intentions and personalities, so I set the story in a way that it lets those personalities come out.

    From Anime News Network

    He’s being silly if he thinks creating female characters isn’t his strong suit. He’s created some excellent ones.