This blog is my personal blog where I usually rant about things that bother me. Most of which are scanlation-related. Due to the nature of my posts being rants I want to warn any reader that my language is NSFW and can be offensive. I do not intend to offend anyone but I can't avoid it either. I may be writing in English here but we are probably from all over the world and have our cultural differences and differing mindsets.
Please keep this in mind if you read my blog.
P.S.: While my actual blog posts are NSFW, I'm usually polite replying to your comments. At no time will I ever offend or insult somebody here. So please feel free to comment. I'm a nice person really ^^ (and I'm probably lacking a partner for scanlation-related discussions, lol)
And it is. It's authentic and looks real. With such complex moves the animation quality has to be top-notch. What should definitely be mentioned is that the female director (yes, female) is a fan of figure skating and therefore knows her stuff. It should be noted, too, that this is an original story. Most anime these days are adaptations of manga, novels or games. So seeing an original property getting this much love in its production is very refreshing and exciting.
The story is pretty simple (it is sports after all). Katsuki Yuuri is a 23-year-old figure skater who suffered a crushing defeat at the Gran Prix Finale. He returns home to Kyushu, Japan after a year abroad wanting to retire. One last effort to show his childhood friend what he had been practising despite his depression, he shows the award-winning routine of his idol and world championship ice skater Victor Nikiforov, which his friend's kids promptly record and put online. The video becomes viral and reaches Victor who decides to come to Japan to meet him.
The characters are very likeable, their chemistry is really good. I'm surprised how much I like Yuuri. He seems a bit drab at first but he has many surprising sides to his personality. The anime is fun without diluting the drama and it also doesn't throw around technical jargon all the time. They mention enough that you know what you're watching without becoming an exposition.
So if you're interested, I highly recommend checking it out. It's still ongoing but 6 episodes are out already.
I've come to hate the term "badass female character" because kicking everybody's ass is all good and well, but what else is there to her? I hate the notion that a woman in movies, especially in the action/adventure/superhero genre, can only be her own person, strong and independent, when she is perfect at everything.
Which is why I don't want to see a Black Widow solo movie. I have seen no flaw and no weakeness to her character that could be explored in a solo film. Her only "issue" so far was shown in a flashback in AoU and was later a little bit more explored in her scene with Banner. But there has to be more to her than what is - or actually, is not in this case - literally between her legs! Why not delve deeper into the impact of her decisions on her friendship with the other Avengers? For god's sake, she switches sides in Civil War!! How is backstabbing others not a character flaw that's explored more? As a former solo assassin, the avengers (except for Hawkeye) are probably her first real experience of friendship and close camaraderie. So why not show how her "highest-bidder" decision-making from her assassin days impacts her relationship with the others? She's more than a love interest and a pretty body to look at.
So now I'm really worried about Rey in Star Wars VIII. I like her in TFA but so far she's just nice and... pleasant, and most of all, she's perfect at everything. EVERYTHING. She resists force torture, she can apparently fly any big spaceship without actual practice, and she knows how to use the force not only to defend but also fight and mind control with it. WTF does she need Luke Skywalker to train her??? What I need from her in VIII now is for her to make a big mistake that has nothing to do with outside circumstances, she has to make a wrong decision with severe consequences. Just like Luke in Empire. And it's even more urgent with her than with Luke because when she's already so perfect, what character development would be left to explore?
What's most important about this whole "badass female character" issue is that being perfect isn't what's interesting about a character. It's their flaws and weaknesses that contrasts their strengths and skills. We as an audience don't relate to perfect characters. We respond to their struggles with their own flaws. Take Saitama from the anime One Punch Man. He's a parody of the whole shounen genre by defeating every opponent with one single punch. He IS the strongest person in the manga. But he isn't boring, far from it. He wants to be a famous, recognized hero but you could say that his powers are so unbelievable that people would rather explain away how he defeats such strong villains than actually acknowledge that he is that powerful. He's also incredibly unremarkable and leads a very simple and boring life, which is a nice contrast to his otherwise unmatched strength.
The other thing that annoys me about this, too, is that asking for help or getting help is seen as weak for a "badass" character. No, it's not. She doesn't suddenly become a damsel in distress because she needs help. Knowing and accepting help is not a sign of weakness. Realizing when one is out of their depth and in need of help is a way for the character to grow as a person. Sometimes asking for help is the bravest thing you can do.
What else can i say... The badass female character is as much of a trope as the damsel in distress. It's unrealistic, unrelatable and boring as fuck. No wonder I hate female characters in media so much.
As I write this post, I'm watching a tumblr artist draw in a live stream. What I've learnt from watching is that I personally am a very impatient drawer. I'm not a bad drawer, I have an eye for detail, I'd also like to say that I have some base skill. But I could be better. Much better if only I actually practised. However, I don't. Why? I ask that myself all the time, and I keep telling myself I will start drawing something every day starting the next day. Just ten minutes every day. That's not too much to ask, is it?
It is... at least for me. I want instant success, I want it to look good but I don't have the patience. In my head, I know that I won't turn out masterpieces on the first try. Not even on the second or the third. But when it doesn't look good, I stop and re-doing isn't an option because I'm frustrated and fed up with my own drawing. I really have no endurance to look at my own work.
Now that I'm watching this artist though, I should keep at drawing even when I hate the drawing. I watched her redraw a hand for a good 5-10 minutes until she was satisfied with it. And she also erases and redraws lines quite often. It really shouldn't come as a surprise but actually seeing other people struggling with the same problems is extremely different from just hearing it said. And that goes for a lot of things.
I guess I feel inspired. Hopefully this inspiration will continue at least until tomorrow because it's really late and I'm tired.
I jumped on the hype train. Wait, no. It's not a fucking hype train. It's an ode to nostalgia, to my child--- teenhood (is that a word?). I remember watching Pokémon season 1 on TV with my younger brother, and it was probably one of the most impressive things I had seen since Star Wars (and all the other anime like Dragonball, Sailormoon, etc. ... so not really impressive compared to them... but it was unique!). You go on an adventure, catch quasi-animals, train them, do battle with them and become their very best friends: a true calling for the hunter-gatherer in us humans.
So here I am. Catching pokémon at home because I don't have a mobile data plan (the only reason I'm not addicted yet). Funny enough though, in the first 24 hours since I started playing I caught 9 pokémon basically from my bed XD But bless my city, they have free wifi downtown, so I will try and go there after work and when it's less hot outside. Because remember, kids: work before play and don't forget sunscreen. Also watch out for cars o_ô
Happy hunting for those who do, and those who don't, just let them have fun. What's better than seeing people looking this happy when they catch a pokémon:
For the last two weeks I've been working non-stop, through weekends, too. It's a never-ending cycle. A bit repetitive, too, like that Rihanna song "Work". (Lyrics nowadays are stupid dumb shit.) Today I also got my first official employment contract which I've only skimmed so far. But from what I can see, I'm not liking it.
You might wonder why it's only my first contract. Haven't I been working for a few years? I have, but it is more of a pseudo-freelance half-employed thing? I get paid by the hour and I also get the benefits of health insurance, pension scheme, unemployment insurance etc., however, no paid vacation or sick leave. Basically, if I don't work, I don't get paid (whether it's because there is no work, or because I'm sick or I'm gone on vacation), but at least I don't have to pay health insurance and I can put a (very) little something into my pension.
So this contract is making me think very hard about my current work and, consequently, my financial situation. At first, it sounds really nice to have a fixed salary every month even when there's not much work but what made me pause is this tidbit about working through weekends, holidays and other overtime work - unpaid. (It happens a lot.) Obviously, I need to dust off my maths skills and calculate the difference but the thought of working without getting paid sounds like, well, bullshit to me. Who wants that?
My work philosophy is (or has been?) to work as little as possible and to keep as much free time for myself and for the things that I WANT to do. However, am I wrong to think like that? To want to have time for myself? Working all the time even with getting paid for it, I don't know if that's the life I want to live. Living to work =/= working to live. I would very welcome the unconditional basic income. (And don't we need that at some point when robots and machines take over almost all work from humans?) That would actually allow me to work by my philosophy. But right now, that is not feasible. And it brings me to this point: money.
At the moment - and I'm not ashamed to say this - I still live (or rather again, since I did move out for a prolonged time for my studies) with my parents, rent-free. Mostly because I still had to pay off my student loan debts and also, because I don't like big cities with the constant sounds of cars and people, and too many people. But my loans are now finally paid off (YAY) and I was thinking of moving out. But moving costs money, my own flat would cost a lot of money. Not only the rent, but also furniture, electricity, water, internet, TV license (no kidding, fucking useless fee imo) and other stuff. The thing is, I don't think either work situations (my current or with the contract) would be able to support me living on my own comfortably, especially anywhere in the close vicinity to my workplace. It reminds me of my sister's friend who showed us her place in LA where she was studying. A bare mattress on the floor, her suitcase as a desk and cardboard boxes for storage. Nothing else in the flat. That's how I would possibly live if I moved out...
It's always about money and that's something I don't always like to think about. I feel like if I had a definite purpose or goal in my life, it would be easier for me not to feel overwhelmed by this. I could just work towards that goal. But I've also learnt that you don't need a goal in life, especially when you're trying to be happy.
Being an adult is so hard =( and I've been adulting for many years already... I still don't feel ready .___. But then again, most people just wing it =/
Not sure what happened but my LJ got hacked or sth? If you see/saw dozens of Russian posts, sorry about that. I deleted them all except for one because I wasn't sure if LJ needs it to check what happened. I filed a help request, so let's hope they can tell me what happened because strangely, all of the posts were dated 10th March 2016, and as I'm writing this, that date is tomorrow. Another thing is that none of these spam posts were listed under "Recent entries" or "Scheduled entries" in my own dashboard o_O;
Sorry again for the spam, and thanks to jukebox_csi for sending me a msg about it.
It's been a while since I posted anything regarding original fics. Unfortunately, I'm not going to add any new this time. Just letting you know that I updated the links since AFF moved domains. Also, a few fics have been removed but my reviews are still on there in case they get reposted somewhere else. If you find more dead links, please let me know.
I've been neglecting my LJ for a while =/ But I've been busy and my life has been mostly uninteresting lol. Well, I did go on vacation to California (and a side trip to Nevada and Arizona to see Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon respectively) in October with my bro and sis. Other than that I got back into knitting, this time socks. My first try but they turned out pretty well XD
Lately, I've been listening to more kpop because I find western pop music to be very boring nowadays. Both structure and melody of the songs aren't as complex as kpop songs. I don't feel challenged =/ Add to that, their dance music videos are amazing. Like how can they move their bodies like that?! Unreal. FYI I'm referring to the boy bands because all the girls do is shake their ass, gyrating their bodies and looking seductive and/or cute >_>;
The horrible thing about getting into kpop is learning about the industry itself. I know that the entertainment industry as a whole is really shitty but at least in the west you have unions to protect the artists. In SKorea that's nonexistent - and so is their health and breaks and vacations and love life and perhaps their sanity. They get worked to the bone without breaks and sleep, constantly moving, constantly being entertaining to the public. If you're interested in hearing more and in more detail, check out the youtube channel "eatyourkimchi". The youtubers live in SKorea and have worked in the entertainment industry for a bit and have friends there.
But even just looking up one band and watching their interviews and bts stuff, you can see how fucked up they live. You see them constantly sleeping/napping somewhere because they're just so exhausted. One band casually tells the viewers how they were basically starved when they were 13/14-year-old trainees and had to live in a rat-infested apartment together. That's child abuse FFS!! Another band is shown living in a 2-room apartment - all 7 of them sleeping in one room, 3 bunk beds and 1 single futon on the floor, 1 bathroom for them all and the other room was basically a storage for their clothes and also laundry. That's what I could make out from the video but JFC that's no way to live! I watched another video of a third band. I think the episode was part of their own show, and at the beginning of it, they were told they would get to go on vacation. The look of surprise, astonishment, utter glee and disbelief was plastered on all of their faces (and that should tell you sth already). But of course there was a catch: They could each choose their destination but a camera team would go with them to film........................... They were still happy about it of course because otherwise, they wouldn't get a vacation, ever.
I admire their talents and skills, their music and works but mostly I feel sorry for them. Being able to follow your dreams and to live out your passion is one thing but working oneself to death for it can't be worth it.
One short note about the Korean fans: I'm sure not all of them are like that but from what I could gather, they are fanatics, like completely crazy fans who will go to any lengths to get the attention of their beloved idol. Stalkers seem to be absolutely common but what really baffles me is how they treat their idols when they aren't "working hard". There's a story about an actress who was so exhausted from filming non-stop that she couldn't stand it anymore, booked a flight to the US for the weekend just to get a break. And the fans attacked her, railed at her for daring to take a break. It's apparently also really common to get an IV drip if an idol faints or collapses during work. They get the drip and are back on set right away. I watched a video of one calling his band member during a show. He asked the other one what he was doing, and the other guy just casually says that he's getting a drip. The reply was sth along the lines of "Ah, I see." How is that not a big deal??
Anyway, somehow this turned into a kpop rant. Well deserved to be honest though.
I hope you all had a good start into the new year.