The Fantasy Epic Reinterpreted as Eighties Rock

Somebody drew my attention to this the other day, and … well, it’s just too good not to post. For a certain definition of good.

There is a plot buried somewhere under all the rapid takes. I can’t for the life of me tell you what it is, but I saw a chainmail bikini, and that’s good enough for me. Who doesn’t love chainmail bikinis?

I mean besides the SFWA, which fires people for chainmail bikinis.

I’ve never before heard of this Chris Dane Owens, but with his huge eyes and his bleached blond hair, he looks like a hero out of a shoujo manga. Apparently, there may be a film based on his music video at some point. Let us hope it’s coherent.

For some reason, I’m reminded of this:

Continuing both Jake and the Dynamo and R&M

Featured image: “Study Time” by lujus.

I’m spending the day working on fourteenth chapter of Jake and the Dynamo, which for some reason I decided needed to contain a lot of statistics puns. I don’t know why I did this to myself.

Chapter 3, of course, will post on Monday. Are you ready to see Pretty Dynamo fight Godzilla? I know I am.

Also going to see if I can finish up a Rag & Muffin novella while I’m at it.

Sugawa Akiko’s ‘Children of Sailor Moon’: It’s Because Men

Featured image: “Evolution of the Magical Girl” by Shattered-Earth.

I direct your attention to the essay, “Children of Sailor Moon: The Evolution of Magical Girls in Japanese Anime” by Sugawa Akiko, published on nippon.com.

The essay promises to be interpretive, though in the end it is mostly an overview of the history of the genre from its origins in Sally the Witch to darker and more violent recent entries such as Day Break Illusion. Although not a bad overview per se, it misses some major milestones and does not appear to have a particularly in-depth knowledge.

Sugawa Akiko’s attempt to fit her discussion into a certain sort of feminist framework compels her to talk nonsense, as evident in these two paragraphs:

Female superheroes, meanwhile, were almost invariably adults. The heroines of such comic-based TV shows as Wonder Woman and Xena: Warrior Princess and the video game–based movie Lara Croft, Tomb Raider were endowed with male strength but also a mature sex appeal targeted primarily at heterosexual men.

An attribute virtually nonexistent in Western witches or female superheroes is the maternal or nurturing behavior that has become such a common feature of mahō shōjo anime since the advent of Sailor Moon. While powerful, Japan’s magical girl warriors also preserve attributes associated with traditional gender roles—including cuteness and maternal affection—that make them less threatening to men.

Got that? So when the characters are vampy and busty, it’s because men. And when they’re cute or maternal, it’s because men. Dammit, those men got us every way we turn.

Why not just say, “It turns out that dudes like chicks”? That would cover all the bases, except then it would be obvious that she’s stating the obvious.

In any case, she’s correct that magical girls are typically more overtly feminine, even hyper-feminine, than Western superheroines.

The essay also contains some flat-out BS: she suggests that the “yuri” (read: lesbian) hints in 2011’s Puella Magi Madoka Magicawhich are not unambiguous or inarguable—are something new to the genre, when in fact they’ve been around since Sailor Moon at least and have been present in anime more broadly speaking for longer than that.

The essay ends abruptly after the overview with very little of the promised interpretation, but not before this:

Some of them seem to be turning back toward the fairy princesses of an earlier era. The heroines of Happiness Charge Pretty Cure, for example, combine the “girl power” and appeal of Sailor soldiers with the traits of the nostalgic princess archetype.

My response: I hope so. The dark and depressing magical girls of the Madoka mold are beginning to wear out their welcome.

The Jake and the Dynamo Messenger Code

… I don’t even know what that is.  But it kind of looks cool:

I like the circly thingy.
I like the circle thingy.

This is in some mysterious fashion linked with the new Facebook page for Jake and the Dynamo. I think you can scan it with your phone using the Messenger app. You might have to print it first.

Back in my day, things you scan with your phone were square and looked like mazes. You kids these days have it easy, what with your pictures and circle thingies.

As an added note, Chapter 2, of Jake and the Dynamo, “Enter the Dynamo,” will appear this coming Monday, just in time for Mother’s Day … at least if you like to get your mom things like free ebook chapters because you’re some kind of cheapskate tightwad who doesn’t appreciate his parents.

Chocolate and flowers, dammit. That’s what your mother wants, not magical girl ebook chapters! Believe me, I know this.

Because she told me last night.

Zing.

Oh, by the way, like our Facebook page. I promise not to talk about your mom.

Meet Your Magical Girls! JAKE AND THE DYNAMO Bio 5: Sword Seamstress

CODENAME: Magical Girl Sword Seamstress
ALTER EGO: [redacted]
FAMILIAR: Stitches the Ragdoll cat
CURRENT AGE: 13
THREAT LEVEL COMPETENCY: 8.3
MAGITECH: Sewing-based

“A stitch in time stops crime!”

The haughty yet superbly fashionable Sword Seamstress is one of the most admired and effective magical girls in all of Urbanopolis. Some maintain that she is second only to Pretty Dynamo herself.

She slays monsters by the dozens. More importantly, she does it with class. Continue reading “Meet Your Magical Girls! JAKE AND THE DYNAMO Bio 5: Sword Seamstress”