What can you say about Madoka Kaname? She’s obviously the central character of Puella Magi Madoka Magica, so much so that the show is named after her. But for eleven episodes she doesn’t really DO anything. That makes it kind of difficult to describe her as the hero or the protagonist of the series. The […]Read more "Character Analysis: Madoka Kaname"
You know what? I think I may have discovered a whole new trope. Okay, let’s start with this fundamental fact: Anime is a medium largely created by Japanese men for Japanese boys. That’s doesn’t stop the rest of us from liking it, and it’s not completely, 100% true. There are some terrific women working in […]Read more "Oh, So Tropical: The Look-at-Me Woman"
I’ll just say it: the neat thing about Strike Witches is that it’s like a good stew, a whole bunch of things thrown together that work together to make a cute little show. It’s HUGELY formulaic, which makes dissecting it fairly easy, but also shows us that formulas are formulas because they WORK. Oh, yeah. […]Read more "How to Build a Series: Strike Witches"
Welcome to the NHK is one of those things I like a lot in part because it’s about grownups with real problems instead of kids with robot suits or magic wands. Not that there is anything wrong with robot suits or magic wands. They can make for good stories, too. They just usually aren’t my […]Read more "The Power of Two: Tatsuhiro and Misaki"
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: tropes exist because they work. If you’re a writer like I am, tropes is your friend. Here’s a question for you: WHY do they work? Well, in certain ways a trope is the equivalent to a symbol in the linguistic (as opposed to the artistic) sense. […]Read more "Oh, So Tropical: The Nose Bleed"
I’m relatively new to anime/manga fandom, and School-Live! is the first series I’ve managed to follow “traditionally.” You know: waiting for weeks or months for the next issue, knowing the last one was coming and anticipating what was coming next. And it’s been known for a while that School-Live! was ending with volume 12. And […]Read more "How Not to End a Series: School-Live!"
Okay, Neon Genesis Evangelion is too cool for words and everyone knows it. This is not news. One of the ways it’s cool is that it has multiple structures that are all to be treated as canon. There’s the original anime. There’s the new denouement outlined by the End of Evangelion OVA. There’s the manga. […]Read more "The Power of Two: Rei and Shinji"
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)"
Okay, so last time we looked at how manga and anime differ. Anime is an action medium while manga has more depth; the anime business is higher financial risk/reward proposition while manga can be riskier in content because of the lower costs involved. Right. I just summarized a thousand-plus word post in one compound sentence. […]Read more "Medium Matters: School-Live! II"