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Shelf Life - Do You Believe in Magica


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Agent355



Joined: 12 Dec 2008
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Location: Crackberry in hand, thumbs at the ready...
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 5:24 pm Reply with quote
I'm too lazy to read through 5 pages of posts, but let's get our Gintama facts straight here!

First of all, Gintama means "Silver Soul" and is the title of the manga and anime. The main character's name is Gintoki Sakata.

2. The story does *not* take place in the modern era. It's main conceit is that it's an "alternative-universe Edo" (quoth Viz), 20 years after aliens landed in Japan and decided to make Edo their main Earth space-port, sparking a huge war between Japanese Samurai and Alien Invaders. The aliens modernized life on Earth to modern levels and beyond, but the fashion, law, Shinsengumi, etc. All suggest a Meiji-era time period.

3. Gin Tama gets major props from me for being chock-full of female characters that not only hold their own in a fight, but are rarely used as flighty romantic interests, damsels in distress, or fanservice bate. That doesn't mean that the gals never wear revealing clothes, but strangely, the guys are more likely to take off their shirts or crossdress than the girls are to walking around in bikinis. It's fanservice is definately designed more for its female fans Razz (not that I mind...)

4. Kagura is a member of the Yato, an alien race known for its superstrength, bloodlust, and sensitivity to sunlight (I think of sunlight as her Kryptonite, just not as damaging). Therefore, she carries around an umbrella and wouldn't get into a bathing suit.

5. Gin Tama is a series that makes fun of nearly everything. It's quotient of potty humor, puns, and parodies of everything from it's fellow Shonen Jump manga to modern otaku culture and zombie movies certainly satisfies the 12-year-old kid in me (best example of potty humor? Episode 113. Requires no prior knowledge of the characters to "get". Check it out if you aren't grossed out easily Laughing), but it plays the consequence of war on its participants completely straight. Gintoki, Katsura and Takasugi were thoroughly changed by their experiences as soldiers and comrades-in-arms, which lends a very strong note to its serious arcs and character moments. I'm sure that Gintoki was somewhat inspired by Kenshin...anyway, fair warning that this show can make you laugh through tears if you get too attached to the characters. I wouldn't want it any other way! Wink

Oh, and Moribito rocks in every way. Leave it to an anthropologist to develop a fantasy story that doesn't need a backdrop of "good-vs-evil" to delve deep into character's psyches, relationships, and even bad-arse action. Cool
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erinfinnegan
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 5:34 pm Reply with quote
YotaruVegeta wrote:
I think if you are committed to watching it, get some coffee, an energy drink, or whatever you need to stay awake, because this ain't no Naruto, buddy.

That's so funny, because I had to stop watching Shippuden because I was sleeping through it.

It didn't help that I was watching it at like 3:00 AM on weekends after watching all the Shelf Life titles. (My Shelf Life "quota" I like to call it.)

Agent355 wrote:
First of all, Gintama means "Silver Soul" and is the title of the manga and anime. The main character's name is Gintoki Sakata.

AUUGHHH It's so obvious I didn't even notice. That's an egregious mistake, but some of the other stuff you've mentioned I'm less worried about.
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Beatdigga



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PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 6:16 pm Reply with quote
Bingal wrote:
If anything, it is your tone that needs to change the most, and not that of others. Learn to grow up, really.


Rolling Eyes Rolling Eyes

That's really all I can say to that. Yeah, I went off topic, going on about the show's success as opposed to the actual show, but I stand by my criticisms. Namely, the show looks nice and has a unique lead, but falls into the arthouse dillema. It does very little, but tries to act in such a way where if you choose to dislike it, you're called lowbrow and crass for doing so. It's not enough to have a setting. You have to do something in the setting that will move a strong narrative forward. This show quite simply does not do that. It sputters out in dozens of non-action scenes because the show is more worried about looking pretty than moving the plot.

Mushi-shi, I have no opinion on, because I've never seen it. A slower paced story isn't necessarily a bad thing BTW. Problems arise when you have a clear-cut narrative and choose to go out of your way to avoid it, ignore it, or just plain defy it.
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enurtsol



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PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 6:37 pm Reply with quote
erinfinnegan wrote:

enurtsol wrote:
Is that the same A,A' from my old Manga Vizion anthologies? Confused

(And Wizards, Warriors, & You over Choose Your Own Adventures.)

I am not familiar with these anthologies of which you speak. Nor have I ever even seen a single volume of Wizards, Warriors, & You.
I have never read a Manga Vizion anthology! Nor have I ever seen a Wizards, Warriors, & You gaming book...! But I feel like I should have, that's the kind of thing I'm into.


Manga Vizion - the first manga anthology in America (1995-1999). A,A' is the cover of the very first issue.

Wizards, Warriors, & You lets you choose your weapons or spells! Laughing
The story is a serial, of which one writer R. L. Stine would later do Goosebumps.
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Shenl742



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PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 6:48 pm Reply with quote
Beatdigga wrote:
Bingal wrote:
If anything, it is your tone that needs to change the most, and not that of others. Learn to grow up, really.


Rolling Eyes Rolling Eyes

That's really all I can say to that. Yeah, I went off topic, going on about the show's success as opposed to the actual show, but I stand by my criticisms. Namely, the show looks nice and has a unique lead, but falls into the arthouse dillema. It does very little, but tries to act in such a way where if you choose to dislike it, you're called lowbrow and crass for doing so. It's not enough to have a setting. You have to do something in the setting that will move a strong narrative forward. This show quite simply does not do that. It sputters out in dozens of non-action scenes because the show is more worried about looking pretty than moving the plot.

Mushi-shi, I have no opinion on, because I've never seen it. A slower paced story isn't necessarily a bad thing BTW. Problems arise when you have a clear-cut narrative and choose to go out of your way to avoid it, ignore it, or just plain defy it.


I don't know. Everything you say just makes it sounds like we watched too entirely differant series. And you keep pulling stuff out like "arthouse" around, and I really don't understand what you could be referring too. The somewhat trippy spirit world scenes?

Also the phrase "not moving the strong narative forward" just sounds way too...vague to me. Are you talking about the episodes that Erin mentioned around the half-way mark that seem kind of fillerish? Lots of anime have those, and hell, most of those episodes in Moribito's case end up being important later on (the one with centering on those sleep-causing flowers especially). Were you just disappointed that despite the fact that Balsa was a great warrior, there just wasn't enough action? Were you expecting the series to end with Balsa taking on the entire imperial army singe-handidly or something?

I think one of the issues here is that you're just being way too vague with you're complaints. Maybe people would respond better if you were more precise?
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agila61



Joined: 22 Feb 2009
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 7:27 pm Reply with quote
Beatdigga wrote:
Actually I made the point that we were going off topic with the ratings/quality correlation. I just wanted to point out that I wasn't an idiot for finding the show overly pretentious. That's all.


Since its a bit silly to think that the size of an audience is a direct measure of pretentiousness, that seems to have kind of backfired.

Certainly pretentious films end up in arthouses, but arthouses also get very good quality, completely unpretentious films that just happen to have a smaller audience than the big summer blockbusters.

I'm only halfway through it, but so far, Moribito does not pretend to be more sophisticated, richer storytelling than the run of the mil anime: it accomplishes it.
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Princess_Irene
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2010 8:14 am Reply with quote
erinfinnegan wrote:

I did watch it in Broadcast order... But I don't see how it would conclude differently if I watched it in Chronological Order...? Does that make sense?


It does make sense and I wasn't trying to troll you or anything. I just meant that the episodes are different in Chronological Order - the set in C.O. instead of, no, never mind, I won't use that abbreviation, instead of Broadcast Order, ends with the introduction of the main villain and the Christmas episode hasn't happened yet. (It must be on the second set.) It doesn't really matter, but I thought it was worth a mention.
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CCSYueh



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PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2010 11:07 am Reply with quote
I watched the first dvd of Rental Magica in broadcast order & wasn't getting anywhere so I tried Chronological & it is more coherent. Not a lot greater--still has that anime-characters created on demand to appeal to the audience, but there seems to be some reason for their actions. It made buying set 2 for the kittyguy more excusable.
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Chrno2



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PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2010 1:57 pm Reply with quote
I bought my sets a good while back for Moribito. It's definitely shelf worthy in my opinion. Even at 26 episodes for some reason when I felt like we had reached the end what's left, somehow they managed to fill it in a way that didn't feel labored. Everything ended right on time. Good story, and of course great fight scenes and a strong female protagonist. Now if I can put my plan in motion and get all my anime on the shelves.

As for Gintama, I've seen a few clips. I've heard folks talk much about this show, however I've never really cared for it. I like comedy but I don't know if I could take 100+ episodes before it starts to fizzle.
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Kougeru



Joined: 13 May 2008
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2010 9:06 pm Reply with quote
i actually found rental magica to be pretty memorable for some reason...havnt seen it since 2007 but i always find myself thinking back to it or making references to do it....i think it did magic better than most anime do.

instead of just spitting lasers and crap out of their hands they actually go into history of magic based on "real" magic history.

and moribito is god tear for anyone with real tastes
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maaya



Joined: 14 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 30, 2010 1:24 am Reply with quote
As for the success of Moribito. It may not have been so successful with western otakus, but the DVDs seem to be selling well to a general audience (just like 12 Kingdoms).
It was also successful in Japan, getting at least one re-run on NHK during daytime (usually animes are aired at night, apart from the big hits like Naruto, Bleach etc.).
The novels are best sellers, and a second novel series by Nahoko Uehashi was animated afterwards (Erin) and also quite successfully.

I won't be too surprised if some more adaptions of her novels come out. Be it Moribito 2 or something else, it'll be worth watching anyway.

Btw, Erin is going to become less of a children show later on (as Erin grows up), but it has the (typical of Nahoko Uehashi) slice of life fantasy-style as seen in Moribito. It has political intrigue and a very detailed world, again with different people and cultures and beliefs. And animals. Erin is for animal lovers.

But I suppose it will be boring for people who didn't enjoy the slice of life / culture / politics parts of Moribito, which were anything but fillers imho.
They explained the "culture of the people" and "the worlds Nayug and Sagu", which is relevant to the story and setting.
Unless of course you consider the whole "slice of life" genre to be "filler" xD
Character development imho can never be "filler". As "fillers" are supposed to not develop anything relevant, else they would not be "fillers". And seriously, real fillers do not have this level of quality and content (Bleach fillers are pure torture).

Agent355 wrote:
First of all, Gintama means "Silver Soul"


And actually it's a big pun on the word "Kintama" ^^;;
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erinfinnegan
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 30, 2010 6:51 pm Reply with quote
maaya wrote:
Btw, Erin is going to become less of a children show later on (as Erin grows up) ...And animals. Erin is for animal lovers.

This is so confusing for me, since my name is Erin...! I mean, Virginia is for Lovers but Erin is for animal lovers? Yikes!

Princess_Irene wrote:
It does make sense and I wasn't trying to troll you or anything. I just meant that the episodes are different in Chronological Order...instead of Broadcast Order, ends with the introduction of the main villain and the Christmas episode hasn't happened yet. (It must be on the second set.) It doesn't really matter, but I thought it was worth a mention.

Oh! I didn't think you were trolling at all, I was just confused. I thought spoiler[they took care of that villain - but maybe he'll be back in Part 2?] I mean, I haven't watched Part Two yet. I don't mind being spoiled.
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Princess_Irene
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 01, 2010 7:43 am Reply with quote
Nope in Chronological he just got introduced. My best guess is that his defeat will be the end of set two. I guess that's why we were both confused! Smile
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belvadeer





PostPosted: Fri Oct 01, 2010 5:16 pm Reply with quote
Wow just checked back on this topic now; a lot of posts got thrown around over Moribito. I'm surprised someone would even call it tripe.

It would have been tripe if it focused on Balsa as some sort of Mary Sue doing nothing but flashy moves or it if was full of stupid lines like "I'll beat you because I'm a special elite!" and "Wrong, I'll beat you because I'm superior to you!". I know the argument is over, but come on. If a show like Moribito is tripe to you, I'd hate to see your opinion on a novel that focuses on world-building first. Twelve Kingdoms used a similar approach, in both the anime and the original novels Fuyumi Ono wrote.
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