Category: Articles

#TheAnimangaFestival – Set Sailing: Why I Love KuroTsuki

Hey Hey Guys, as many of you know, The Animanga Festival is in full swing! But, if this is your first time hearing about the festival, here’s the cliffnotes explanation: Auri and Nairne over at Manga Toritsukareru Koto doing it big for their third (second) Bloggiversary, by hosting the Animanga Festival. This month long celebration will feature themed posts, events, and games that the entire Aniblogger community is encouraged to participate in throughout the month of October. I just happen to be one of the many bloggers participating in the event and everyone has been putting out a lot of great content and it’s only the second week. I’m a bit behind with my Animanga Festival posts, but I just couldn’t pass up on writing something for the October 9th prompt: Set Sailing!

Ever shipped two characters that were non canon but would actually make a great pair? Well, now’s your chance to shine. Head out, explain your stance to support your ship and set sailing!

-Set Sailing Prompt

And of course anyone that knows me knows that I am a huge fan of one particular Haikyu ship…. KuroTsuki is my OTP Haikyu ship! You can keep your TsukiYama and I don’t wanna hear about KuroKen, for me, Kuroo Tetsuro and Tsukishima Kei are a match made in heaven. So of course, it only made sense that I’d write about KuroTsuki for the Set Sailing prompt, it’d be criminal not to share my love for the BEST SHIP IN THE SERIES!!


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Is It Me Or Do Otome Games Have An Unhealthy Relationship With Brothers?

I love otome games, and I’ll sing their praises to anyone willing to sit still long enough, but even I can admit that they have their flaws. The portrayal of the MCs is one of the biggest complaints folks have about otome games, since most are little more than blank slate self insert characters. But, fans and critics alike have been beating that dead horse for years now and I’ve said my piece about otome heroines quite a few times in the past, so I wanted to talk about something different: brothers. 

I’ve been sitting on this for awhile now, but I never really knew how to go about talking about otome games and their complicated relationship with siblings, specifically brothers. Now, otome games aren’t the only medium to toe the incest line, especially when there are anime like Oreimo floating around… But, over the years I’ve noticed that there are quite a few otome games that either flat out focus on romancing siblings or slip it in as a “secret” ending and I haven’t really seen many people talking about it.

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Wanna Chat With Other Otome Fans? Here Are Some Places You Should Check Out

This post is in response to a lot of things, but recently, I’ve been seeing a lot of otome fans lamenting that they don’t have people IRL that they can talk to about their hobbies. Which I can kind of relate to. I have friends that are into Japanese culture, anime, manga, comics, and other nerdy media, but none of them seem to be interested in otome games. Sure, I’ve convinced one or two to play a game on my laptop when we’ve hung out, but they don’t really play them on their own. And my bestie, bless her has sat by and listened to countless hours of my rampant fangirling about my newest otome crush.

Fangirl.gif

But, aside from that, I don’t really have any IRL otome friends. In fact, I’ve met all of my really good otome buddies online, but with that said most of my online friends are more into anime than they are otome games (though, I have managed to convert a few). So, it got me thinking, where exactly do all the cool otome fans hang out? I mean, we are living in a “social media” age, so there are plenty of ways to connect with people that have similar interests as you. But, it can be a bit intimidating when you first start out, especially since most communities are fairly well established. So, I thought it would be helpful to compile a list of places I lurk check out when I want to chat it up with my fellow otome fans online…

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Fangirl Moment: Wistful Summer (Webcomic)

TGIF!! This has been a long time coming, but I’m finally bringing back Fangirl Friday!! I’ve been slowly getting back into my blogging stride and I’m going to be honest, these are my favorite posts to write since I’m really just fangirling about random stuff I’ve come across be they movies, webcomics, anime, books, dramas… I even wrote one about Barack Obama. So, this is one segment I’m excited to bring back from the dead! Since this is the first post in a while, I wanted to make this one really special, so I decided to go with something that combines two of my loves: Boys Love and Webcomics… Don’t believe me? See for yourself, most of my previous Fangirl Moment posts are either BL related, Webcomics, or BL Webcomics… I have my vices and BL is at the top of the list most days.

Wistful Summer.jpeg

So, for this week’s post I wanted to cover MunZi’s ongoing BL webcomic Wistful Summer. It’s a drama filled comic about a guy who spent most of his life crushing on his best friend, but just when he starts to get over his crush a handsome stranger appears. Things only get more complicated when the best friend divorces his wife and starts hinting that maybe he’s been harboring some unrequited feelings of his own… O_O

First. First lie, first kiss, first love. When Henry and Sam first met that summer long ago, Henry learned the power of first love. But…time goes on, people part, summer ends and so too did their blink of a relationship. All but a distant memory now, when Henry and Sam gradually become close again, Henry finds himself feeling those fiery emotions for the first time since that wistful summer.

-Synopsis

The comic was first published online in 2018 by Kakao, a Korean webcomic site, but you can read the comic in English over on Tapas. This is a paid release, but you can read the first couple of chapters for free. In order to read the non-free chapters you’ll need to use Ink, which is just Tapas’s internal currency. Tapas also has weekly free episode rotations, so if you plan accordingly, you can read the whole thing for free. I am not that patient, so I broke down and bought enough Ink to binge the available chapters… and it was worth every damn penny! 

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D.N. Angel is the Reason I have Commitment Issues with Ongoing Series

So, it was recently brought to my attention that Yukiru Sugisaki would start reviving her long running fantasy romance manga series D.N. Angel this year. This is the first mention of anything new from the series since the author went on hiatus 8 YEARS AGO! Yes, you read that right, it has been 8 years since the release of volume 15 back in 2011 and what’s worse, this isn’t even the first time the series has been on hiatus and I’m pretty damn sure it won’t be the last… so, forgive me if I’m not shouting from the rooftops at the announcement that the series is finally back from the dead.

Some context… 

D.N. Angel follows Daisuke Niwa a 13 year old boy who is descended from a long line of phantom thieves. Daisuke is kinda shy and pretty average, despite having been put through a rigorous training regimen by his mother and grandfather. Other than that life is pretty normal! On his 14th birthday he finally plucks up the courage to confess to the girl of his dreams, Risa Harada, but homegirl turns him down hard! Full of teen angst and fueld by his broken heart, Daisuke goes home to mope a bit, thats when he gets hit with magical puberty. His body transforms into that of the handsome phantom thief Dark Mousy (my first anime crush). Daisuke freaks the fuck out, thankfully his mom is around to explain that the transformation is completely normal, having affected all of the Niwa men for generations. The change she explains is triggered by the host’s romantic feelings of love, and will keep happening until Daisuke finds someone who can love him and Dark. The rest of the story focuses on Daisuke’s attempts to balance his normal life with that of his secret phantom thief alter ego. To make matters worse, Dark has his own consciousness within Daisuke which often gets him into trouble as they both struggle to coexist. Then Daisuke goes and falls in love with Risa’s twin sister, Riku who absolutely hates Dark after he stole her first kiss… yeah, and I thought I had problems…

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A Beginners Guide to Otome Games: Part 3 – Common Character Archetypes

Hey Hey Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, its been a while since the last ‘A Beginners Guide to Otome Games’ post. I’ve been slowly working on bringing this blog back where it was before I took a break, so expect more of my post segments to start cropping back up… eventually. Since its been so long since the last post, I figured this is as good a time as any to explain what these posts are…

A Beginners Guide to Otome Games post series is a crash course on all things otome games, but in a way that’s easy to understand for newbies and folks unfamiliar with the genre. When I started playing otome games I pretty much just spent most of my time figuring things out as I went along and even then I had a lot of questions. So, I wanted to create a series of posts that answers some of the basic otome question to kind of give you guys a feel for different aspects of otome games. This series is for you guys, so at the end of each A Beginners Guide post I’ll have a poll where you, the reader, can vote on the next topic I cover! Last post, you guys voted and I listened, so for Part 3, I’m going to cover  Common Character Archetypes!

*Also, if there is something in this post that you think should be expanded or needs more clarification, please let me know and I will update this post accordingly!


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Otome Games I Wish Had an Anime Adaptation

On the heels of the Collar X Malice Unlimited fandisk announcement, Idea Factory and Otomate revealed through their twitter account that Collar X Malice is also getting an anime adaptation in the near future. This is not the first otome game to get an anime adaptation, with Hakuoki, Amnesia Memories, OZMAFIA, and Code Realize to name a few all getting the anime treatment.

For those of you not familiar with Collar X Malice, it’s a mystery, suspense, thriller otome game originally developed by Idea Factory under their Otomate brand in 2016 for PS Vita. The game was later localized by Aksys Games in 2017 for an English language release. The game follows Ichika Hoshino a young police officer in Shinjuku, Tokyo after she becomes the unwitting victim of a mysterious terrorist organization that have been terrorizing the city with several large scale attacks. Ichika is captured by the organization and fitted with a collar set to dispense poison into her neck unless she uncovers the truth behind the attacks. With her life on the line and the fate of the city hanging in the balance, Ichika is approached by five mysterious strangers who offer to help her get to the bottom of the crimes and hopefully save the people of Shinjuku and herself in the process.

The premise alone has everything you need for a great story; action, suspense, mystery, romance… I can’t wait to see what the anime has in store for us (and I sincerely hope they do the story justice). But, that got me thinking, what other otome games would I like to see get an anime adaptation? I mean, really, everyone assumes that otome games are just a lot of romance and that’s it. But, the truth is, otome games have some of the best stories that cover a wide range of subjects and genres that would make for amazing anime series. So, I wracked my brain a bit and came up with a list of otome games I think really deserve to have an anime adaptation.


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[Melanin Monday] Why Blackface in Cosplay is NOT Okay

With con season in full swing in most places, anime fans across the country are gearing up for weekends full of otaku fellowship. But, for many one of the highlights of any con are the cosplayers, who dedicate months, sometimes years into carefully crafting their costumes and props in order to pay homage to the media and characters they love.

Cosplay 

noun

A portmanteau of the words ‘costume play’, is the practice of dressing up as a character from a movie, book, or video game, especially characters from Japanese media.

Amateurs and professionals alike flock to these otaku meccas in hopes of showing off their hard work, strutting their stuff among the throngs of anime fans eager to share in their love of Japanese culture. Cosplay is a way for fans to express their creativity while also showing their appreciation for the media they love. Some cosplayers strive for accuracy, with carefully constructed costumes that perfectly capture the original source material, while others let their imaginations fly with unique alternative takes on popular characters.


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[Melanin Monday] Diversity in Otome Games

Hey Hey Heroes, Travelers, and NPCs, out there it’s Monday, and that means another Melanin Monday post!! I know its been awhile since my last Melanin Monday post (I’ve been slacking off), but, for those of you just joining the party, here’s a little refresher. Melanin Monday is a bi-weekly post series that I started for Black History Month, where I talk about Black and Brown skinned characters in anime, manga, video games, etc., but you guys loved it so much I decided to continue it! This week, I’m looking at diversity in otome games!

Otome games promise a player driven gaming experience, giving players the opportunity to romance a diverse group of characters. But, really how diverse are otome games? Sure they feature characters from a wide range of character archetypes, but when it comes to their appearance, they all seem to fall into the same generic bishounen category. What’s more, mainstream otome games tend to have a distinct lack of racial diversity among their romance options. Western otome games have been more successful at integrating more diverse romance options in their games, with characters from a wide range of backgrounds and ethnicity, but, Japanese otome games are much more restrictive in the types of romance options they offer. But, given that otome games are created with a Japanese audience in mind, this is not wholly unexpected.

However, with an increasing number of Western gamers playing otome games, this lack of diversity could alienate individuals looking for games featuring characters that share similar characteristics to themselves. In recent years, Western otome games and Original English Language Visual Novels (OELVNs) have stepped up to provide a solution by offering games with more diverse romance options that are more reflective of their target audiences. As a woman of color, I appreciate the efforts of Western developers to incorporate diverse characters into their narratives, because it creates an opportunity for representation that may have otherwise not existed.

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Melanin Monday: Black Folks Killin’ It in the Oscars

Hey Hey Heroes, Travelers, and NPCs, out there it’s Monday, and that means another Melanin Monday post!! I know its been awhile since my last Melanin Monday post (I’ve been slacking off), but, for those of you just joining the party, here’s a little refresher. Melanin Monday is a bi-weekly post series that I started for Black History Month, where I talk about Black and Brown skinned characters in anime, manga, video games, etc., but you guys loved it so much I decided to continue it!

So, in this week’s Melanin Monday post, I wanted to talk about the Oscars… Yeah, I know, I’m not the only one talking about the Oscars, everybody is talking about the Oscars right now. But, after not one but two Black-led superhero films managed to not only snag quite a few Oscar nominations, but, also WIN awards… well, let’s just say that is grounds for celebration. But, that wasn’t all, the 2019 Oscars was a triumph for women and people of color as well, with films like Roma and BlackKklansman snagging quite a few awards last night.


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