I always like a nice case of Stealth Storytelling. Look, in a lot of ways, when you have a really basic story what you’re really exploring is character development, right? Like there’s this novel I’ve been working on. It’s just a Comedy: Girl meets Boy, Girl loses Boy, Girl gets Boy. Like, it’s that simple. […]Read more "How To Build a Series: Toradora"
Okay, the Saiki K. series is a whole franchise built around a gag manga, and like any gag-based show, as long as the jokes keep coming, so do the manga volumes and anime episodes. Right? Just like Lucky Star, it’s good as long as it stays funny. The six-episode Reawakened arc is up there on […]Read more "How To Build a Series: The Disastrous Life of Saiki K. Reawakened"
I know there’s a Descending Stories anime. I think it’s on Tootsieroll, or whatever that service that Sony just bought is called, but I haven’t seen it. But I just finished the manga, all ten volumes, and as a story it works for me despite the fact that there’s no more than a minimum of […]Read more "How To Build a Story: Descending Stories"
A while back I posted about anime I’d stopped watching, and someone, Irina maybe, said, “You know, it would be instructive if you could tell us why you stopped watching.” Point. That fits into what I do here, looking at anime and manga from my twin perspectives as a writer and animator. Part of telling […]Read more "Stopped Reading This: Golden Kamuy"
Everyone thinks writers start with a plot and write. I don’t. I think about what I want to write about, and then cook up whatever other pieces I need. The last story I wrote was to a prompt: Frozen wasteland. From there I decided I wanted to write about a snow woman, and from there […]Read more "How to Cook a Series: Demon Slayer"
Okay, let’s throw something on the floor here: You got this high school student named Natsuo. He’s got a heavy crush on this girl named Hina. In the mean time, this other cute girl named Rui is hot for him. That’s either an Eternal Triangle or a broken triangle depending on how Hina feels about […]Read more "How to Cook a Series: Domestic Girlfriend"
Satoshi Kon was the original flim-flam man. Well, probably not. The original flim-flam man probably dates back to about five minutes after the invention of portable currency. If the money can move, there are always folks who can figure ways to move it into their own pockets. He wasn’t even the original cinematic flim-flam man. […]Read more "The Power of Three: Millennium Actress"
Okay, last week we left the Flowers of Evil kids in the pits, as Acts I and II of the five that comprise the story resolve the first of the two back-to-back meta plots that drive the story. Basically, we have loser girl Nakamura who wants geek boy Kasuga who moons over cute girl Saeki. […]Read more "How to Build a Story: The Flowers of Evil (Part II)"
I waited until the complete The Flowers of Evil manga set went on sale before picking it up. I won’t say that was a mistake; it’s been around for years and isn’t going anywhere. But I got it, and it was one of those things, like A Silent Voice, that I simply could not put […]Read more "How to Build a Story: The Flowers of Evil (Part I)"
There are a lot of stories out there where you engage with the characters, especially the main character, and so you want to see more about them. That’s a good thing. Remember, people make these things to make money. If you like the character and want to see more of them, that’s what we call […]Read more "The Spin-Off Movie: Violet Evergarden"