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One of the best anime/manga memes that reminds you of how valuable friendship is and how it shouldn’t be taken for granted.
Just seeing this gives me chills since I’m grateful for meeting those that I care about and want to protect. Imagine what life would be like if your best friends never existed.
Who said all memes have to be funny?
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Just a heads up to everyone, I am now a writer for GoBoiano, an anime social platform site that’s focused on helping to promote anime culture all over the world. Be sure to check them out as they have daily news blurbs on Asian culture and have plans for interesting, original content!
I just posted my first article on the site called, “Move Over, Onigiri! Is Toast the Superfood of Anime/Manga?”
Don’t worry, entries will still be up on Manga Therapy. Can’t forget about those who have made the journey fun. Let’s keep riding the waves together, shall we?
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At least this is 1000 times cuter than Kyubey nuzzling it up with either one of them.
Looks like MadokaxHomura ship train just keeps chugging along in full speed. This extremely memorable piece of art from the trailer for the 2nd Puella Magi Madoka Magica movie captures Madoka Kaname and Homura Akemi nuzzling each other. You know that fans got a kick out of it when so much fanart of the Madoka/Homura scene starts popping up all over the Net. Kinda makes you think about how nuzzling is important for one’s mindset.
Nuzzling/cuddling helps reduce stress by increasing the oxytocin hormone (which is known as the “cuddle chemical”). That hormone helps to relieve stress and makes you feel good. You want to know why we get excited and giddy after physical contact with someone we like? That’s oxytocin working its magic on you.
The fan reaction to the Madoka/Homura nuzzle is just a firm reminder of how powerful the sense of “touch” is for everyone. As much as we can get inspired by words, they don’t always go through. A person of important value to you who physically shows his/her affection has the ability to unlock many emotions inside you. An intense snuggle from someone says more than a speech would. Actions speak louder than words, right?
The scary part is that there are people out there that never had physical affection and it has led to cuddle therapy practices. You might think that it sounds crazy, but there are those who just want to cuddle. The world we’re living in is making us more and more isolated these days.
Man, that Madoka sure is providing more intriguing critique, isn’t she?
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Ever thought about how Dragon Ball Z can play a huge role in growing personally as an individual? Here’s the e-book that you are looking for. Derek Padula, author of The Dao of Dragon Ball, has released a quirky read in “It’s Over 9000! When Worldviews Collide”. He takes a look at the overwhelming popularity of the “It’s Over 9000!” meme, its origins, how it has transcended boundaries to stay relevant, and what we can learn from the series-long conflict between Son Goku and Vegeta.
The first thing I will say is that I am amazed at the detailed recap of the lives of both Goku and Vegeta. Derek provides an extensive look at how both individuals grew while being in direct conflict with each other. He brings out some great comparisons between the two Saiyans using the “nature vs. nurture” argument and “East vs. West” in terms of thinking. Another interesting insight is how Derek suggests that Vegeta had his mind opened after his first battle with Goku. If you think about it, Vegeta does go through a huge mental growth spurt afterwards and it heavily influenced his rebellious actions against Freeza. Derek also talks about Vegeta’s inner struggles with his ego and his constant need for attention, which was pretty enlightening.
Perhaps my favorite part of the book was Derek’s emphasis on the Scouters. After all, the Scouters are the reason the meme exists. Derek points out that the Scouters reflect society’s tendency to view things by appearances. In real life, it’s not even funny how people continue to underestimate others and how the school system forces adolescents to go by appearances (similar to how Freeza teaches his warriors) as if they are the answer to everything.
I think the Scouters also reflect how society is so consumed with technology to the point of overload. People are worried that excessive technology use stagnates personal growth and it does to a certain degree. Derek talks about how Freeza and his men were obsessed with technology to the point that it led to their downfall. It made me think of Goku opening up Vegeta’s eyes as someone with an spiritual/outdoor nature telling an Internet addict, “Hey, get off your smartphone/laptop/tablet/desktop/video game console for an hour or two and go outside! You’ll feel healthier and learn a few things about yourself along the way!
As someone who works in marketing, I was also impressed with Derek focusing on what the meme popular in the first place. You can’t get anywhere without a visually engaging story and that’s what makes DBZ the juggernaut it is. He talks about how the combination of both visual content and Internet culture has made “It’s Over 9000!” the pop-culture phenomenon it is today. We are living in a world where images and video are dominating eyeballs everywhere and more companies have to understand that for future success, like how FUNimation responded to fans who loved “It’s Over 9000!” by using the phrase in their marketing (which Derek mentions as well).
One minor flaw I found were the lack of images. Maybe it’s just me, but a e-book about one of the most popular anime/manga series of all time should have a few notable images to compliment chapters of the book. Though I do understand that there might be copyright concerns. Another thing was when Derek mentions Vegeta’s growth throughout the series, he didn’t really mention Vegeta’s rage against Cell for killing Trunks. I felt this was a really important moment as Vegeta truly showed the first sign of how much living on Earth changed him. Hell, he even apologized to Son Gohan for being an idiot and was the real hero by distracting Cell for Gohan!
If you are a huge Dragon Ball fan, you owe it to yourself to read “It’s Over 9000! When Worldviews Collide”. It’s very well-written and will definitely get you thinking about how to apply Dragon Ball into your life. Ryo Horikawa, a man we should all thank for being the voice of Vegeta in Japan before DBZ’s rise in America, said that DBZ is like the Bible. If that’s the case, hallelujah and praise Kami-sama (or perhaps Shenron) for giving us Derek Padula and his amazing-thorough knowledge of what will always be THE “world-class” anime/manga series.
Review copy and cover image provided by Derek Padula. You can buy “It’s Over 9000! When Worldviews Collide” and his other book, “The Dao of Dragon Ball” at http://thedaoofdragonball.com/buy.php.
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Looks like catching a re-airing of your favorite anime episode can do wonders for your brain. Two recent studies reported that watching reruns of your favorite TV shows can give you the strength to stay persistent and perform tough tasks. Since the viewer already knows what’s going to happen while watching, he/she will remain relaxed while watching their favorite episodes refreshes their minds. The same can also be applied to someone who rereads their favorite books.
With that said, I know I’m extremely guilty of this with watching reruns of Gintama and/or re-reading the manga constantly. One of my favorite story arcs in Gintama was the Screwdriver/Monkey Hunter arc (Volume 22/Episodes 121-123). I repeatedly watched various scenes of that arc over and over because of Shimura Shinpachi’s outbursts over some of the characters’ antics, most particularly one gag involving Kotaro Katsura and a “quite revealing” secret about himself (which was gross and completely random). Reliving my favorite humorous moments in Gintama has kept me going and reassures me that even in dark times, things will be quite alright. I also heavily re-read manga scenes featuring Vegeta (of Dragon Ball) and Saitou Hajime (of Rurouni Kenshin). Both of those characters have had a huge influence in my life and remind me to be confident in fighting the good fight. Right now, Fullmetal Alchemist, Blue Exorcist, Flowers of Evil, and Attack on Titan are on my “Definitely Read Again” list.
I always believe that anime and manga can be refreshing and beneficial to one’s life. What series do you guys revisit when you need that extra bit of motivation? Bet you all have some interesting stories to tell!
It’s always good to visit an old friend, isn’t it?
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When you think about August, it’s usually a month that represents getting away from the normal routine of your lives. It’s a time of rest and vacation. For the students of Class 3-3 of Yomiyama North Middle School, their normal routine revolves around a curse that haunts them every year. It is one that is filled with constant death. To break the curse, the class would go on a summer trip in August to find a solution. What they didn’t expect were some shocking revelations, drama, and a multitude of deaths. Welcome to the world of Yukito Ayatsuji’s much-hyped horror series, Another, where non-existence and death continuously impose an iron will on a community. Do the events of the summer trip necessarily imply August is not a month viewed highly by a majority of people? Let’s find out, shall we?
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There’s a belief that the more you’re attached to someone of the opposite sex, the more you start to let romantic feelings get in the way. What if you are a 29-year-old woman who is secretly frustrated with life? What if the person who can help ease your pain is possibly a 14-year-old boy? When you look at the relationship between Shinji Ikari and Misato Katsuragi, it is probably one of the wackiest relationships in Neon Genesis Evangelion. What happens between the two poses interesting debates on gender stereotypes and empathy towards good people that commit unethical acts.
The relationship between the two all started with an interesting photograph of Misato posing and arrows pointing to her breasts. Misato sends the photo as an “invitation letter” to entice Shinji into joining NERV. They would eventually meet in person and live together under one roof. Both shared a common issue as they have conflicted thoughts about their fathers. An interesting development was that Misato had feelings for a man named Ryoji Kaji, who was on-and-off with her. Although she was interested in Kaji, Misato jokingly flirted around with Shinji from time-to-time. A key moment in the Shinji/Misato relationship occurs after Kaji dies. Misato decides to offer herself to Shinji to comfort him. He refuses her advances as he sees Misato as a “mother”. In one of the most memorable scenes near the end of EVA, Misato would kiss Shinji and tell him “That’s an adult kiss. Let’s do the rest when you come back.” before she ends up dying.Theories and speculation have been thrown around about Misato’s true desires. To this day, what to make of the Shinji/Misato relationship is still somewhat subjective.
You know, the Shinji/Misato relationship is similar to a problem that just seems to be growing by the minute: female teachers getting into relationships with their male students. Most of you may have heard recent stories about female teachers being extremely aggressive with underage boys. This leads to a question that should be asked: are there boys like Shinji who don’t see “getting with an older woman” a turn-on?
Although it doesn’t seem like it, there are boys who do feel vulnerable. The problem lies in the gender stereotype that men are supposed to be invincible and dominant. There are times where boys may not see themselves as the victims. I mean, getting with an older woman is a dream come true for a younger guy, right? That’s what society encourages them to seek. However, psychologists have argued that young boys tend to become emotionally unstable when an adult interferes with their sexual curiosity.
Would you argue that Misato is a pedophile (abuse) or a very caring person (love)? It is noted Misato uses sex as a way to solve emotional problems. She does possess a few of the traits of a pedophile. Misato once admitted that she wanted Shinji to be around her because she was lonely. Pedophiles usually think of only satisfying their own needs. They also have a history of emotional (usually sexual-related) issues. However, Misato does recognize she’s not the best person to be a role model for Shinji.
A couple of questions to ponder: what if Shinji didn’t refuse Misato’s offer back in Episode 23? If Misato survived, would a relationship have materialized a la many various fanfiction covering the two? It depends on how much Misato would be willing to further push the boundaries. After all, she’s the older individual and technically has a superiority advantage over Shinji. Though you also have to consider the idea that Misato may have kissed Shinji to give him a sense of hope and confidence. In real life, Misato would be branded a criminal because of the kiss and any reasoning she gives for her actions will go unheard. Depending on the circumstances, should we be a bit more empathetic towards perpetrators of certain acts and not just the victims? They’re victims too and some probably want to change their ways for the better.
Perhaps the moral of all this is to never put two emotionally insecure people of different age gaps together without proper supervision. You know how people tell you to get along with people who are just like you? This is one of the few exceptions to the rule. A big, costly exception that can blow up in someone’s face and becomes a slippery slope to potential ruin.
But, boy, those relationships sure do get juicy and enticing to gossip about….
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Yeah, please tell me how reality shows about people dumber than us are going to enhance ourselves intellectually and emotionally. Maybe we should shove titles like Vagabond and REAL into their faces.
All of us have been motivated by anime and manga at some point. We shouldn’t let anyone judge us otherwise. I wouldn’t know where I would be if it weren’t for both anime and manga.
To reference a trope in anime and manga, let’s keep on shining through the darkness.
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“My hero lives in the TV. But he appeared before me, wearing his red cap, totally uncool, dripping in sweat…I’m a demon, but my hero came to rescue me…”
With Kenta Shinohara’s Sket Dance being a popular series about high school, you would imagine certain aspects of teen drama being covered at some point despite it being a comedy. One issue of teen drama that’s of great concern right now is bullying. Sket Dance tackled it in Volume 7 (Episodes 36-37 in the anime) with regards to the past of Onizuka “Himeko” Hime, the main female lead. Everyone knows Himeko as the tough and friendly girl, but she wasn’t always cheerful in her younger days. She once suffered at the hands of bullies and their actions upon her reflect the bullying epidemic that affects too many teenagers worldwide.
Three years prior to joining the Sket-Dan, 14-year-old Himeko was just a regular tomboy who enjoyed playing hockey. She also enjoyed watching Poppman, a cartoon hero who wore a funky red hat with goggles. Himeko used to live in Osaka before moving to Tokyo to attend an all-girls middle school. She felt left out at the start, but meets a girl named Arisa Kano and befriends her. Arisa was supposedly picked on by bullies. Himeko decides to defend Arisa by going after them. The end result, however, was not what Himeko had in mind. Arisa is revealed to be the leader of the bullies and that she willingly pays money to them in order to not get bullied. She criticizes Himeko for thinking that she was “weak” and stated that she only became her friend out of pity. Distraught by Arisa’s words, Himeko beats up all the bullies in a state of emotionless rage and began to be known as “Onihime (The Demon Princess)” to many. She fought random bullies that picked on her frequently until she isolated herself from everyone. Her solitude came to an end when she transferred to Kaimei High School and met Yusuke “Bossun” Fujisaki (who wore the same hat and goggles as her hero, Poppman)and Chiaki Takahashi. Himeko credits Bossun for saving her life and being her “Poppman”.
Before Himeko moved to Tokyo, she saved a young boy from two bullies. She then questioned the bullies on why they picked on him. They replied that the boy was “weak and pathetic”. You can say that bullies are bullies because of low self-esteem issues, but this is part of the issue. Perhaps another big cause is the amount of information being presented to young people’s minds. Think about it. Look at what goes on when kids are outside of their homes. They constantly see and hear things that are being done by others with no repercussions. You can heavily argue that bullying is “learned” with society as its teacher.
Kids don’t have the mental capabilities to process everything and will usually take things by face value about 99% of the time. Himeko was a victim because she couldn’t handle the overwhelming stress of being betrayed by someone who she thought was a close friend. An interesting note about Arisa was that she called Himeko a “bully” for looking down on her despite becoming a bully herself. You can also say she was a victim as well. Experiencing negative emotions as a teenager would make you want to hate everything without proper understanding. Bullies are victims just like the ones they picked on.
Himeko’s past also highlights the fact that bullies will continue to exist and be persistent. Even if folks try to intervene, bullying still happens. You know things will take a while to change when you have bullies being catered by people who are supposed to be stopping them. Certain folks believe that bullying builds character and perseverance and is a necessary part of adolescence. What if they can’t toughen up? Does that mean they will tell teens to either be with the in-crowd or face constant rejection? No teen should be put under that dilemma.
As much as we can blame bad parenting for creating bullies, society needs to be blamed as well. The problem is that history has been dictated by picking on others for a sense of power. Hatred breeds more hatred. There are other meaningful ways to gain power and we need to emphasize more positive means to coming generations. And besides, like Bossun said to Himeko about her past, not everyone wants or has the time to betray others.
Since people are still being slow in anti-bullying measures, then maybe we need a real-life Sket Dan to pave their way for adults. Wouldn’t it be nice if a wacky trio of teens were there to help solve teen problems?
If only reality wasn’t such a omnipresent bully…
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