BL NC* - $29.75 // Kzka ↑4.½ - $22.0 // Nar ↑0.¾ - $37.0 // Ser NC* - $37.50 // SaiCha ↑15.0 - $45.0 // JkuSM ↓2.½ - $20.50 // GaKu ↑2.¾ - 33.0 // Eprxy ↑2.0 – $32

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Crayotic Knows Everything: Strawberry Marshmallow vol.1 (and a rant)

I picked up volume 1 of Strawberry Marshmallow today, and being an overbearing fanboy dick, naturally I decided to compare various chapters of it to the Ichigo Marshimaro scanlations.

From what I can tell, it does look like "fanservice" is still all a go, so that's one worry hopefully taken care of.

However, sadly it seems that the adaptation is less than a steller performance here. While not anywhere near early Negima levels of atrocities, it seems as though the writers haven't really "got" the characters of Nobue and more importantly, Miu—who the series really hinges on.

Nobue who was originally cool in a laid-back sorta way is now more of a "wow I'm fucking cool; James Dean is a pussy" rebel teen (and by that I obviously mean using dated collequisms. Because nothing says Fucking Cool like "let's saddle up and ride!") and in turn looses a lot of the biased affection she displays for Matsuri in the process.. not to mention everyone else, as she comes across as having much less time for these kids antics as she does in other adaptations.

And Miu just looses a lot of her weird and inappropriately direct personality by way of structure and writing her dialogue more "normal". Possible that the person responsible for this assumed the original was just typical wacky Japanese speech, and not something important to her character.

I base these character assessments not just on the scanlations but also the fansubs and DVD release of the series, so I think the odds are with me on this one. It's not a slopjob by far, but I honestly don't know if the appeal is going to be there with Miu-lite instead of the real thing.

I will also add that Tokyopop doesn't deal with honorifics, and while I can let "Mats" slide for Matsuri-chan, turning Onee-chan into "Nobby" is just straight up retarded. Find me a woman who finds the term endeering and I'm getting laid that night.

Dialogue topics also seem to differ quite frequently from the scanlations, although it seems to be for pretty minor stuff, and I'm not really willing to say the scanlators got it right in the first place anyway.

/rant +on

You see, it may seem like I'm being a whiny bitch about this (and you'd be partially right), but I've long said that creative adaptation for any old manga isn't necessarly the end of the world, but if you're doing it for a comedy series, you better know how the hell to write Funny. Knowing the punchline isn't just enough, because the wrong sentence structure or choosing of words can kill a joke dead in the water (or at least reduce it's effectiveness, which is what happens in quite a few cases here).

Least of all you have to know your audience's mindset of what's funny. I'm going to go out on a limb and say that's possibly why scanlators do tend to do a better job with comedy translations (from my experience); because they're more in touch with the fans, and most likely being internet geeks, are a part of making what's funny each day, rather than lifting some several year old puns that they saw on Animal House.*

*The above has absolutely no factual information to back this up. But c'mon, are these people in charge of adapting and translating the same kinds of people that spend all their paycheques on anime and manga and run their own fanboy blog? And even then, are they funny?

Not to mention that in many cases verbal gags and reactions work better with less complicated dialogue. The more you try to get away from the literal translation by peppering it up with cliches and extra "zing", the more likely it can detract from the actual punchline (of course there's many instances where it doesn't matter, but it's safe rule if you don't know what the hell you're doing).

/rant +off

But yeah, if you're not a huge Ichigo Mashimaro fan or just don't not really that fussed over details, then you'll probably get a lot more milage out of it. It's certainly not an atrocity like I may have made out, but that rant was something I had to get off my chest for a while.

I'm too tired and strapped for cash to be getting more entertainment out of free internet translations than the official ones, that's all.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Stock Report: OURAN delists

Free-falling in anime is the new black

You could break Ouran into three parts. The surprisingly funny beginning, the plodding middle, and the emo-fest finish. Most parties are in agreement regarding the two former, but I suspect there'll be a bit of contention over the third section of this series, as people were wondering where all the monkeys had dissapeared to.

But as with all heated debates, the only definitive answer is what a Crayotic Rockwell of Much Manlyville, NZ thought of it. And I actually really liked all that stuff at the end (yes even the Hikaru/Kaoru OMG WE R SUCH LONE REBELS angle). Of course I missed the chimps like everyone else, but I'd be lying if I didn't admit to welling up my eyes when Haruhi was in the carriage like "that's my way of the host dattebayo!" all up in this bitch.

Inner Crayotic Mind Theatre: This picture FTW

There's no way I would have said this before—even during the golden episodes—but I could really get into the idea of an Ouran movie or OVA at this point. I have no idea how it'd work, but the Host Club is practically special ops when all their talents are combined.

Perhaps moreso the A-Team. Kyouya is Hannibal of course. Shakugan no Shana movie? Pfft, give me Ouran on the silver screen!

Looking at the season as a whole however, it's hard to really call the series an out and out winner with the amount of lackadaisical episodes it did manage to pepper through it's midseason, so it looks like Ouran is cashing out a few points down.

-3¼ ($44.25)

Will 'Pumpkin Scissors' be something like this? Perhaps!

Thursday, September 07, 2006

My first figure purchase, and maintaining respect with your nizzles

As a tuff guy with a lot of people who look up to and/or fear me, I know that dabbling in this anime lark is a dangerous medium to mess with, lest it completely destroy the street cred that I fought so hard to build. With this, it's important to set boundries for oneself if you want to maintain such a precious commodity.

Such as, I'd always said to myself that watching fansubs was okay. Even if it is an absurd amount, there's still no harm there. Buying the DVDs if I really dug the series too, was also okay. Nothing wrong with wanting to rewatch something, and school your fellow thugs about the awesomeness of FLCL. But buying figurines and other indirect merchandise? That's where I drew the line.

Well the day arrived. I finally got my order from Hobby Link.

To top it off, I don't even have a clue what she's from. Something called WaGa is the extent of my knowledge. All I understand is that I crumbled when I saw this PVC loli listed:

Note: I'm told that the correct etiquette when blogging about anime figures is to discuss the seam lines and modeling detail, take photos of said figurine's panties out in public while people hide their children from you, and to then order two-hundred Rei variants.

Well that's not going to happen for a number of reasons, but I will steal some pictures from HLJ instead.

The Dirge of My Wallet

I mean look, she's wearing a pumpkin for a skirt. A FREAKIN PUMPKIN! In the words of JP Meyer, "Jailbait is orrrrsome. Ribbons is orrrsome. Walking about with a jack-o-lantern covering your pantsu is orrrsome."

Oh, don't worry, coz the pumpkin comes off so you can get all ecchi as well.

If I was to make any critical complaints it would be that I expected more shading on the pumpkin, ribbon, and wings especially (the rest are slight, but the wings are essentially one-tone). This looks to be a case of the contrast being hedged up in the commercial pictures, so I guess they suckered me with that one.

(Oh, and you can't stand her up without the pumpkin attached.. but w/o would just be kinda pervy anyway, so no skin off my back.)

She gets naked too

But aside from some minor quibbles, I can say I'm pretty happy with the purchase, which now allows me to sign a long-term contract where I end up spending stupid amounts of money on these things. Dammit.

One of my friends says that I'm now out of control, and is removing all affiliation with me, but after a quick assertation I think that I can make this new facet work for me and my rep, and come off looking well hard.

Still, I'm never touching a visual novel or galge. One has to have boundries after all.