fishpatrol: (leadersshi~)
I just spent the past half hour flailing a sponge-on-a-mop-handle thingie with one of my housemates. She came knocking on my door at a while ago, asking if I was afraid of bugs. I hate creepy crawly things that have more than four legs (crustaceans aside because I can eat those -- don't tell me about stir-fried cockroaches. I don't want to hear about it. >__o). But I followed her to the bathroom anyway, to see the big millipede. Akdlafsdljf. It was disgusting and I didn't want to go near it, even with the sponge-on-a-mop-handle. So we stood there, flailing at each other for ten minutes. None of the other two girls on our floor were home, but fortunately, the man who lives on the second floor came in with some friends and we implored him to help us.

After that problem was resolved, my housemate started pointing out all the spiders that apparently reside along our kitchen wall. She would hit one with the corner of the sponge-on-a-mop-handle and as soon as the spider started running, she would scream and toss me the sponge-on-a-mop-handle, and then I would smush it with the sponge-on-a-mop-handle. One of them was extremely difficult to get because it was cleverer than us and we screamed and flailed and slammed the sponge-on-a-mop-handle against the wall. I think we got it in the end. We're not sure though. :| So now I am completely paranoid and am compulsively looking up and checking out corners in fear of more spiders.

(Oh man, I even have a tag just for bug-related entries. *FAILS*)

--
In other news, I was watching 非常大明星 on Tudou.com today, but this scene was not shown. D: Maybe it'll be in next week's segment?

--
Yunho's Spokesman feat. Donghae is all kinds of ;dajfsdkl awesome. *___* Junsu should have more songs (Junsu's little dolphin scream at the end, lol♥!)featuring Eunhyuk's rapping. And I'll bet Changmin and Kyuhyun and also Jaejoong and Yesung would sound fantastic if they did ballad duets together (speaking of Jaejoong, he sounds amazing in Crying. I wish there were HQ MP3 versions of these solos. :x:x) But what I would really like to hear is Yoochun and Kibum rapping together in Engrish about bling-bling balls.

--
I can't wait to see Junjo Romantica anime subbed! I bought the fourth volume the other day, and ;akjfdsl, Misaki is such a cute spazz and Usami is oblivious as always and Hiroki is going to get an ulcer if he keeps getting so worked up. Personally, I like Misaki and Usami's storyline more than Hiroki and Nowaki's. Both Misaki and Usami are so damned clueless, and their relationship is so dysfunctional, but in an awesome way. <3<3
fishpatrol: (leadersshi~)
I just spent the past half hour flailing a sponge-on-a-mop-handle thingie with one of my housemates. She came knocking on my door at a while ago, asking if I was afraid of bugs. I hate creepy crawly things that have more than four legs (crustaceans aside because I can eat those -- don't tell me about stir-fried cockroaches. I don't want to hear about it. >__o). But I followed her to the bathroom anyway, to see the big millipede. Akdlafsdljf. It was disgusting and I didn't want to go near it, even with the sponge-on-a-mop-handle. So we stood there, flailing at each other for ten minutes. None of the other two girls on our floor were home, but fortunately, the man who lives on the second floor came in with some friends and we implored him to help us.

After that problem was resolved, my housemate started pointing out all the spiders that apparently reside along our kitchen wall. She would hit one with the corner of the sponge-on-a-mop-handle and as soon as the spider started running, she would scream and toss me the sponge-on-a-mop-handle, and then I would smush it with the sponge-on-a-mop-handle. One of them was extremely difficult to get because it was cleverer than us and we screamed and flailed and slammed the sponge-on-a-mop-handle against the wall. I think we got it in the end. We're not sure though. :| So now I am completely paranoid and am compulsively looking up and checking out corners in fear of more spiders.

(Oh man, I even have a tag just for bug-related entries. *FAILS*)

--
In other news, I was watching 非常大明星 on Tudou.com today, but this scene was not shown. D: Maybe it'll be in next week's segment?

--
Yunho's Spokesman feat. Donghae is all kinds of ;dajfsdkl awesome. *___* Junsu should have more songs (Junsu's little dolphin scream at the end, lol♥!)featuring Eunhyuk's rapping. And I'll bet Changmin and Kyuhyun and also Jaejoong and Yesung would sound fantastic if they did ballad duets together (speaking of Jaejoong, he sounds amazing in Crying. I wish there were HQ MP3 versions of these solos. :x:x) But what I would really like to hear is Yoochun and Kibum rapping together in Engrish about bling-bling balls.

--
I can't wait to see Junjo Romantica anime subbed! I bought the fourth volume the other day, and ;akjfdsl, Misaki is such a cute spazz and Usami is oblivious as always and Hiroki is going to get an ulcer if he keeps getting so worked up. Personally, I like Misaki and Usami's storyline more than Hiroki and Nowaki's. Both Misaki and Usami are so damned clueless, and their relationship is so dysfunctional, but in an awesome way. <3<3
fishpatrol: (Default)
Whenever I read shoujo manga, I have this irritating, but mostly involuntary, habit of comparing myself with the female protagonist. The problem is when the character acts in such a way that I start thinking: omg, I would never in a million years do that, what is wrong with you, woman -- I have to remind myself to stop waving my fist at the computer screen because it makes me look like a lunatic. There's something about shoujo that repels me yet attracts me at the same time (though with many titles, it's mostly, *repelrepelrepel*).

I was reading Lovely Complex yesterday (I went through all of the scanlated manga in one go -- I had an awful headache afterwards XD;) -- it was a really fun and cute manga. The issues I had with it were the same as the issues I have with most other shoujo titles: at first the main character acts against the traditional female role (in the case of LoveCom, Risa is taller than most girls, she's loud and generally unfeminine in terms of her actions), but when she realizes she's in love, she immediately reverts to tradition (again, with LoveCom, Risa starts mooning after the guy, she cries all the time, she wishes she were "cute and quiet").

cut for length )
--
Some other random things I have been thinking about include the following (they cannot be considered to be full rants intellectual discussions because I have run out of gas. Need to work on that stamina, Meemo.)

-If there's one thing that all those sociology classes have pounded into my head it is the notion that just about everything is socially constructed. If such is the case, human nature is neither fundamentally good nor evil because these are socially constructed concepts and the meanings of such terms are thus susceptible to the change of time and space.

-On the subject of human nature...it occurs in predictable ways at times. In a given situation, not everyone will act in the same way, but the same pattern of interaction will occur each time. There are several recent incidents (confined to my little corner of Livejournal) that come to mind. Let's take that anonymous (a.k.a. "honesty") PoT meme thing for example. I don't remember how many times variations of that have cropped up, but if you look at the comments from each one of them, they're really along the same vein. Fics, characters, people...anything bash-able gets bashed. I think this illustrates a certain side of human nature: when the opportunity to vent without the risk of having one's identity revealed arises, many people will take that opportunity. I'm a big advocate of the yin-yang concept (y'know, a bit of light in every darkness, and all that). In this case, in every group of ass-kickers there will be ass-lickers. You can probably come up with a list of categories that you'd place each commenter in these honesty memes, and this list would be consistent for every meme. In other words, it's just one big cycle (that can rival the Energizer Bunny in its "goes on and on"-ness).

--
Okay, my fuel meter is pointing to empty now. *ran out of coherence* Perhaps it's time to get off my soap-box and rejuvenate through sleeping.

--
One last note though: in the case of both rants (I will admit it! They were simply rants and not much else ;__;), I cannot stop myself from reading shoujo manga or stop myself from skimming those damn honesty memes (sometimes I agree with the hate -- it's just another weakness, don't judge me!) -- the same way that I can't stop my teeth from grinding from seeing traditional gender roles in all its glory and feeling disgust at some people's behaviour. Maybe it's analogous to car crashes -- in all reason, they're awful things, but as a spectacle, they're quite spectacular.
fishpatrol: (Default)
Whenever I read shoujo manga, I have this irritating, but mostly involuntary, habit of comparing myself with the female protagonist. The problem is when the character acts in such a way that I start thinking: omg, I would never in a million years do that, what is wrong with you, woman -- I have to remind myself to stop waving my fist at the computer screen because it makes me look like a lunatic. There's something about shoujo that repels me yet attracts me at the same time (though with many titles, it's mostly, *repelrepelrepel*).

I was reading Lovely Complex yesterday (I went through all of the scanlated manga in one go -- I had an awful headache afterwards XD;) -- it was a really fun and cute manga. The issues I had with it were the same as the issues I have with most other shoujo titles: at first the main character acts against the traditional female role (in the case of LoveCom, Risa is taller than most girls, she's loud and generally unfeminine in terms of her actions), but when she realizes she's in love, she immediately reverts to tradition (again, with LoveCom, Risa starts mooning after the guy, she cries all the time, she wishes she were "cute and quiet").

cut for length )
--
Some other random things I have been thinking about include the following (they cannot be considered to be full rants intellectual discussions because I have run out of gas. Need to work on that stamina, Meemo.)

-If there's one thing that all those sociology classes have pounded into my head it is the notion that just about everything is socially constructed. If such is the case, human nature is neither fundamentally good nor evil because these are socially constructed concepts and the meanings of such terms are thus susceptible to the change of time and space.

-On the subject of human nature...it occurs in predictable ways at times. In a given situation, not everyone will act in the same way, but the same pattern of interaction will occur each time. There are several recent incidents (confined to my little corner of Livejournal) that come to mind. Let's take that anonymous (a.k.a. "honesty") PoT meme thing for example. I don't remember how many times variations of that have cropped up, but if you look at the comments from each one of them, they're really along the same vein. Fics, characters, people...anything bash-able gets bashed. I think this illustrates a certain side of human nature: when the opportunity to vent without the risk of having one's identity revealed arises, many people will take that opportunity. I'm a big advocate of the yin-yang concept (y'know, a bit of light in every darkness, and all that). In this case, in every group of ass-kickers there will be ass-lickers. You can probably come up with a list of categories that you'd place each commenter in these honesty memes, and this list would be consistent for every meme. In other words, it's just one big cycle (that can rival the Energizer Bunny in its "goes on and on"-ness).

--
Okay, my fuel meter is pointing to empty now. *ran out of coherence* Perhaps it's time to get off my soap-box and rejuvenate through sleeping.

--
One last note though: in the case of both rants (I will admit it! They were simply rants and not much else ;__;), I cannot stop myself from reading shoujo manga or stop myself from skimming those damn honesty memes (sometimes I agree with the hate -- it's just another weakness, don't judge me!) -- the same way that I can't stop my teeth from grinding from seeing traditional gender roles in all its glory and feeling disgust at some people's behaviour. Maybe it's analogous to car crashes -- in all reason, they're awful things, but as a spectacle, they're quite spectacular.
fishpatrol: (Default)
I remember watching a few episodes of the Xxxholic anime and not being very impressed (I found it very much on the dull side), but the manga has me going *__*♥. I've read up to the latest chapter (134) and I can't wait for more.

There isn't really an over-arching plot (nothing like "working to win the Nationals" or "finding One Piece" or "playing the hand of god", etc). In a way, each part is self-contained, but there are certain characters that show up at the beginning and then come back. There are also parts that mentioned in passing in one volume and then is brought up again in more detail several volumes later. It's a wee bit irritating when certain questions are never answered, and when Yuuko alludes to certain things and the reader is kept in the dark for a long time. I guess it creates a feeling of slight dissatisfaction.

I can't really say that I love all the characters either. They're a little too...bipolar for my taste. XD; I don't have much fondness for characters like Yuuko -- ones that are practically omnipotent, but only reveals the amount of information that they think is "convenient" for the main character to know (and Yuuko's mood goes from flippant to somber so quickly that it could cause whiplash!). watanuki has a kind streak so wide that it puts the most hero-complex infected shounen protagonist at shame. except watanuki's "kind attitude" doesn't seem to extend to the people he is the most close to. XD

The characters all have their cute/endearing moments though: like when Watanuki slips up and shows how much he really does care for Yuuko and Doumeki (despite his loud complaints and denials), Himawari and her imagined comparison of Watanuki to a wild cat, Mokona~ (the most adorable...thing ever), and the list goes on.

So what makes this manga great? The art is amazing. CLAMP has really improved over time, and the art for Xxxholic is just gorgeous. It's mostly clean and simple -- a lot of solid black tones -- but there are parts where there is careful (and beautiful) detail, like Yuuko's clothes and the splash pages (asdlfkajds the splash pages <333 *___*). Another aspect about the manga I really enjoy are the themes and concepts it raises. The idea of wishes being fulfilled for a price (I've always the concept of equivalent exchange to explain "magic", which I first came across in FMA), the idea of dreams within dreams, and the general mystical, supernatural atmosphere that is created in the manga. I think the manga doesn't translate very well into anime form because it's more about thoughts and ideas rather than action. The appeal of the art is also kind of lost in the anime, IMO.

It looks like Xxxholic is approaching the end and I hope it'll be a good one (hopefully it'll be satisfying and not a cop-out :x -- ooh, and I sure hope CLAMP won't put it on infinite hiatus *cough X/1999 and Legal Drug cough* -- mmm, Legal Drug is another one that I would like to see more of -- the main characters are so similar to Watanuki and Doumeki XD).

And a just few random things:
*It's strange just how much Doumeki's grandfather resembles him (only more...smug than stoic ;))
*Parents don't exist. At least not for the main characters. The parents that do show up all seem to have some sort of dysfunctional relationship with their children -- either the parent or the child is a spirit, or there is some sort of negative tension between them, etc.
*Everyone is very much into the be-kind-to-others and self-sacrificing thing (even Yuuko, in her own profit-gaining way ;)). Except for the evil spirits who will steal souls and/or eat body parts without a second thought.

Anyways, in short, I think everyone should read Xxxholic because it's pretty. :)

Scanlations can be found here.
Raws (+ translations) can be found here.

[Other manga I have read recently - instead of studying - include One Piece, Samurai Champloo, and Yellow. Manga-reading sure beats studying any day. :D]
fishpatrol: (Default)
I remember watching a few episodes of the Xxxholic anime and not being very impressed (I found it very much on the dull side), but the manga has me going *__*♥. I've read up to the latest chapter (134) and I can't wait for more.

There isn't really an over-arching plot (nothing like "working to win the Nationals" or "finding One Piece" or "playing the hand of god", etc). In a way, each part is self-contained, but there are certain characters that show up at the beginning and then come back. There are also parts that mentioned in passing in one volume and then is brought up again in more detail several volumes later. It's a wee bit irritating when certain questions are never answered, and when Yuuko alludes to certain things and the reader is kept in the dark for a long time. I guess it creates a feeling of slight dissatisfaction.

I can't really say that I love all the characters either. They're a little too...bipolar for my taste. XD; I don't have much fondness for characters like Yuuko -- ones that are practically omnipotent, but only reveals the amount of information that they think is "convenient" for the main character to know (and Yuuko's mood goes from flippant to somber so quickly that it could cause whiplash!). watanuki has a kind streak so wide that it puts the most hero-complex infected shounen protagonist at shame. except watanuki's "kind attitude" doesn't seem to extend to the people he is the most close to. XD

The characters all have their cute/endearing moments though: like when Watanuki slips up and shows how much he really does care for Yuuko and Doumeki (despite his loud complaints and denials), Himawari and her imagined comparison of Watanuki to a wild cat, Mokona~ (the most adorable...thing ever), and the list goes on.

So what makes this manga great? The art is amazing. CLAMP has really improved over time, and the art for Xxxholic is just gorgeous. It's mostly clean and simple -- a lot of solid black tones -- but there are parts where there is careful (and beautiful) detail, like Yuuko's clothes and the splash pages (asdlfkajds the splash pages <333 *___*). Another aspect about the manga I really enjoy are the themes and concepts it raises. The idea of wishes being fulfilled for a price (I've always the concept of equivalent exchange to explain "magic", which I first came across in FMA), the idea of dreams within dreams, and the general mystical, supernatural atmosphere that is created in the manga. I think the manga doesn't translate very well into anime form because it's more about thoughts and ideas rather than action. The appeal of the art is also kind of lost in the anime, IMO.

It looks like Xxxholic is approaching the end and I hope it'll be a good one (hopefully it'll be satisfying and not a cop-out :x -- ooh, and I sure hope CLAMP won't put it on infinite hiatus *cough X/1999 and Legal Drug cough* -- mmm, Legal Drug is another one that I would like to see more of -- the main characters are so similar to Watanuki and Doumeki XD).

And a just few random things:
*It's strange just how much Doumeki's grandfather resembles him (only more...smug than stoic ;))
*Parents don't exist. At least not for the main characters. The parents that do show up all seem to have some sort of dysfunctional relationship with their children -- either the parent or the child is a spirit, or there is some sort of negative tension between them, etc.
*Everyone is very much into the be-kind-to-others and self-sacrificing thing (even Yuuko, in her own profit-gaining way ;)). Except for the evil spirits who will steal souls and/or eat body parts without a second thought.

Anyways, in short, I think everyone should read Xxxholic because it's pretty. :)

Scanlations can be found here.
Raws (+ translations) can be found here.

[Other manga I have read recently - instead of studying - include One Piece, Samurai Champloo, and Yellow. Manga-reading sure beats studying any day. :D]

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