Check Out the Pulp Archivist

Deus ex magical girl recently got a mention Nathan Housley’s blog, The Pulp Archivist. Glancing at his blogroll, it appears that he runs in the same circles I do. Check him out.

He has this to say:

D. G. D. Davidson has been discussing Revolutionary Girl Utena, a shoujo series aimed at teenaged girls, bringing a more balanced and thoughtful analysis of the anime and themes than the gloss of surface-level feminism that normally passes for shoujo criticism.

I’m glad to hear it. That is, in fact, one raison d’être for this blog, because I thought it was high time for an alternate interpretation of shoujo anime.

Pulp Archivist is part of a movement Housley calls “PulpRev,” which stands for “Pulp Revival” (or sometimes “Pulp Revolution”), an attempt to recapture some of the fun and grandeur of early sf and adventure stories. It’s certainly a movement I can support, even though I’ve moved from sf fandom to weeaboo in my personal interests. Housley has no great interest in magical girls, but he does from time to time discuss anime. Check him out.

We find a quick definition of the Pulp Revival from Misha Burnett, who summarizes it in “five pillars.” Although I may not be a formal part of this movement, I think I could argue that Jake and the Dynamo embraces all five of the pillars and could in that sense be called a pulp novel.

‘Jake and the Dynamo’ Update

Although I’m way behind where I’d like to be in producing volume 2, things are moving along in the process of formally publishing volume 1 of Jake and the Dynamo.

I recently got back in contact with Roffles Lowell, our illustrator, who’s busy producing the internal illustrations.

I also squared things away with my editor. I didn’t want to mention it in a post before things were definite, but I can now say that the editor is L. Jagi Lamplighter. She’s the author of the Prospero’s Children series and the YA Books of Unexpected Enlightenment. Her editing services come highly recommended by writers in the circles I run in, and she’s edited several respected books including Brian Niemeier’s bestselling and Dragon Award-winning Soul Cycle.

So far, she has this to say:

I finished all the previous projects and have started on yours.  I cannot tell you how hard I laughed when I got to the dark queen questioning the lighting.

And the fifth grade thing is so horrible and funny!

A few chapters in but really enjoying it so far.

Although my original plan was simply to self-publish, there are some small-press efforts I wouldn’t mind being a part of, so exactly what I’m doing once the editing process is complete is still up in the air, but I’ll keep you informed.

‘Sailor Moon S’ Part 2 Released

I hope Uranus is ready for this, because Viz Media has released the second half of the uncensored sub of Sailor Moon S.

I’ve been looking forward to this for months and months. Now, in spite of my busy schedule, I’m planning to spend some quality time with Uranus. I will of course be talking about it here on the blog—because I want to make you feel the way Uranus makes me feel.

There are several ways to approach Uranus, but I’m planning to use iTunes.

I am prepared.

Did Not See That Coming: The ‘Revolutionary Girl Utena’ Rewatch, Part 7

The bird is fighting its way out of the egg. The egg is the world. Whoever wishes to be born must destroy a world. The bird is flying to God. The god is named Abraxas.

—Herman Hesse, Demian

Revolutionary Girl Utena, episode 7: “Unfulfilled Jury.” Directed by Kunihiko Ikuhara. Character designs by Chiho Saito. Be-Papas, 1997 (Nozomi Entertainment, 2011). Approx. 24 minutes. Rated “16+.”

Watch for free here.

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Actually, I’m kidding. I don’t think this show ever managed to do anything I didn’t see coming, but that’s mostly because I’d already watched a number of its successors by the time I saw it.

By the way, the image at the top of this post is official artwork. While I was searching for an eyecatch for this post, I happened to run into the blog Fairy Princess Witch, which features a group of girls who try to replicate the image. They don’t have the poses quite right, but it’s some dang fine cosplaying:

Juri, lean forward, and use your other hand. Shiori, grab her waist. Her waist, darn it.

Episode 7 is, hands down, one of the best episodes in Revolutionary Girl Utena. The first two episodes were very tight, but episode 3 was blah, and after that the show dinked around for a while. With episode 7, “Unfulfilled Jury,” it gets its game face back on. In addition to being one of the best paced and plotted episodes, it has one of the best sword duels. It also begins in earnest the use of bizarre and symbolic imagery that will become the show’s hallmark. Continue reading “Did Not See That Coming: The ‘Revolutionary Girl Utena’ Rewatch, Part 7”

Happy Independence Day from Urbanopolis

Roffles Lowell, the official illustrator of Jake and the Dynamo, sends us this delightful image of Magical Girl Grease Pencil Marionette cosplaying as the Statue of Liberty to remind us that imagination is freedom … whatever that means.

I doubt it if mankind’s last refuge, the megacity of Urbanopolis, has a Statue of Liberty. Instead of some colossus welcoming visitors to its harbor, it more likely has some kind of warning. Like a big sign saying, “Screw with humanity and we’ll kill you. We’re serious.”

In fact, while poking around the Internet, I think I found the city’s official flag:

I suppose, in addition to warning away mankind’s uncountable enemies, a statue in the harbor could potentially serve as a beacon to human survivors. Instead of “give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses,” it would probably say something like, “Get in the city if you want to live.”

It might be a statue of the Terminator.

“Hasta la vista, universe.”

‘Sailor Moon Crystal’ Season 4 Confirmed

Moonkitty recently tweeted the news: the struggling and embattled Sailor Moon Crystal is set to see a fourth season, which will be in the form of a two-part movie.

“The same director” means Chiaki Kon, who did a lot to rescue season 3 from the problems that plagued seasons 1 and 2, by ordering revamped character designs and improving the animation.

Otherwise, I don’t know if this is good news or bad. My opinion of Crystal has been mixed, as you can see here. A two-part movie for the Dream arc, however, might be a good idea. If they’re not working to put out an episode on a bi-weekly basis, they might have the time they need to produce something more polished.

There was confirmation as far back as late January that this was going to happen, but there’s been little other news since then that anything was in the works.

Sailor Moon’s official birthday is June 30th, so that is apparently the reason for the announcement of the fourth season, which took place at a live event as Sailor Moon News explains. I chastise myself for having forgotten such an important date. I’ll send her a “belated birthday” card.

The live event also featured some info about the new stage musical, which is unfortunately irrelevant to us over here as the musicals never make it across the Pacific, not even in a subbed video.

Magical Girl Mixed Drinks!

See? I’m not the only one doing it.

A few days ago, I amused myself by inventing magical girl-themed mixed drinks (all are untested, so create at your own risk), except the Madoka is basically a ripoff of a standard Baby Guinness, only with Cannon Shot.

But I’m not alone. Kyla M. Covert beat me to it by creating the Magical Girl, a cocktail involving viniq, prosecco, and cranberry juice. I don’t even know what those are. Well, except for the cranberry juice … okay, viniq is apparently moscato with vodka. That sounds appropriately disgusting. Maybe not as disgusting as what I suggested for the Utena, but still.

Unlike me, Covert actually tested her creation. Here’s the result:

Reasonably classy.

It looks okay. It’s probably pretty sweet, but it really shouldn’t be called “the Magical Girl” unless it’s cloying and gross.

Speaking of which, if you really want outrageous girly drinks that will cause heart palpitations or possibly fits of rage in anyone with a Y-chromosome or a modicum of respect for alcohol, you totally have to check out the abomination known as a “unicorn.” As described on a blog inappropriately called Kidspot, a unicorn is an alcoholic beverage made with such ingredients as ice cream, milk, and cotton candy. And there’s booze in there someplace.

So, do you eat the cotton candy first, or do you push it into the drink, or … ?

This is apparently something of a trend, as Kidspot reports several bars with several variations on this diabetes-inducing creation.

Eww.

So there you go. Now we know what magical girls drink on their down time. As for me? I’m gonna go crack open a beer.