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kamomesan

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kamomesan last won the day on February 12 2021

kamomesan had the most liked content!

Anime

  • Favourite Anime
    Kino's Journey, Gurren Lagann, Mushishi, Neon Genesis Evangelion, Hi no Tori
  • Favourite Genres
    Adventure
    Mecha
    Psychological
    Slice of Life
  • Favourite Characters
    Rei Ayanami, Alpha, Kino, Eikichi Onizuka, Kamina
  • Favourite Character Type
    Neko

Waifu/Husbando

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  • This is my
    Waifu

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  1. @Ohayotaku coming in clutch with all the catgirls I missed. Bless your heart
  2. Please Teacher! I've just checked and it appears there still exists a dubbed version on YouTube. I have no idea how it holds up after all these years, so be warned
  3. Just curious, who’s the character you’re using as an avatar/profile picture?

    1. kamomesan

      kamomesan

      Aha, that would be Pandemonica from the game Helltaker

    2. Ohayotaku

      Ohayotaku

      glasses girl + demon girl + office girl = 😍

  4. Pretty sure it was brought on by finally getting unsupervised internet time as a kid. I got to finally explore YouTube on my own and I ended up finding a pirated anime that had been uploaded in horrible, horrible resolution. It was a short 13 episode rom-com. I can't remember how I found it, but I liked it because the protagonist's tragic love life felt relatable to an angsty teenager. Once you get hooked on the FEELS, becoming a weeb is inevitable.
  5. Glad to see that catgirl enjoyers are still out there. Stay cultured, my friend. Funny you should specifically mention oni for this. I've been watching Urusei Yatsura and it seems they did a decent job of adding humor to the oni characters while still preserving their folklore aspects. I'm totally on board with you about how gimmicky these types of characters can be though.
  6. INTRODUCTION Hello, and welcome to a rather ridiculous blog post. As an enjoyer of nekomimi – that is cat-eared characters – in anime, I’ve chosen to review how the trope has developed throughout 2021. This is intended as a bit of a parody of similar annual reviews in academia. I’m not taking this writing very seriously, and you probably shouldn’t either. That being said, let’s take a look at what happened to cat characters in 2021! GENERAL TRENDS Of the many terms to describe cat-eared characters (“nekomimi”, “catgirl”, “catboy”, “catperson”, “nekomusume”), the most popular one by far is “catgirl”, according to Google. For that reason, I’m using the term as a proxy for more general interest in nekomimi, at least in the English speaking world. [Google Trend data for "catgirl" for the last 5 years. The spike in Oct '21 is off the chart, peaking at 100 points higher than expected] Google Trends shows that searches for the term has generally increased over the past 5 years, growing at an average rate of 1.17 points per year. The graph above shows that for most of 2019 and 2020, searches for "catgirl" grew slower than expected. However in 2021 it seems we've gotten out of this slump. In October of this year, especially there was an extreme spike in the number of searches. Initially, I suspected that this increase was the result of people preparing cat-themed costumes for Halloween, but a comparison to previous years’ data indicates that searches for “catgirls” should remain fairly constant the entire year. That is to say: We do not expect to see a Halloween spike. So why was this year different? As far as I can tell, this attention was due to two things: [1] The release of a catgirl themed cryptocurrency on October 21st [2] Notorious meme man Elon Musk tweeting about catgirls 3 times that same week (possibly to influence prices of [1]) While it is unfortunate that this interest in catgirls had not much to do with actual nekomimi in anime, I’m hoping that it nonetheless kicks off demand for new neko-style content. Because, as we’ll see in the next sections, we’re in desperate need of it. [Musk tweeting about catgirls in October 2021] ANIME Nekomimi representation in anime has been absolutely dreadful for 2021. In preparation for this blogpost, I’ve combed Google, Reddit, Twitter and quite a few anime databases in order to figure out what cat-eared characters made their debut this year. After many hours, I’ve come up with a disappointingly small list. Here is quick summary of what I could find. Don’t Toy With Me, Miss Nagatoro features the titular character dressing up as ‘Nekotoro’ and her friends donning the ‘Torocat’ mascot costumes. As a recurring gag, Komi-san occasionally grows cat ears in Komi Can’t Communicate. Though originally played as one of Komi’s reactions, other characters in-universe are able to see them too, for some reason. And for fall anime, The Fruit of Evolution featured Origa Calmeria sportting nekomimi as well. [Komi's cat ears pop up throughout the series] Although not strictly a cat, I consider Jahy’s hairstyle “cat-like” enough to mention The Great Jahy Will Not Be Defeated on this list as well. Outside of Japanese animation, we found a few neko characters as well. Mao Ling Xiangce features an entire island of them doing standard moe things. And Crunchyroll introduced Olive as a villanous catgirl for their original High Guardian Spice series. What is there to say about the catpeople of 2021? Unfortunately, not much. Anime nekomimi appear to have fallen by the wayside. We may glimpse a cat ear here and there, but they are all too brief. Their moments in these series are typically meant to augment a character’s humorous quirks rather than be a key element of their identity. Adendum: The following characters were graciously mentioned by Ohayotaku after this article was originally written. Thank you for the input! Mushoku Tensei's Ghislane Platinum End's Saki Rumble Garanndoll's Misa Kuroki + cat mech MANGA I’m horribly out of touch with the manga scene. If I figure out any cat characters that appeared in new manga this year, this section will be edited to include them. VTUBERS With the continued rise of virtual youtubers this year, it is worth examining this aspect of internet culture for cat aesthetics as well. Hololive, saw idols Lamy, Rushia, Flare, Luna, Gura and Kiara all debut versions of their avatars with cat ears. Searches on the Virtual Youtuber Wiki and Twitter reveal that neko-inspired outfits remain popular choices in freshening up vtuber wardrobes. The addition of cat ears to established outfits is often nothing more than superficial change, but in a nekomimi-starved world, it is a welcome sight. For the sake of brevity and relevance, I cannot list all of the smaller personalities I’ve found here, but be assured, they’re out there if you take a minute to look. And it is also worth mentioning that there seemed to be more neko-tuber activity in 2020. Had I done this review a year earlier, this section could have been a lot more interesting. [HololiveEN member Kiara showing off nekomimi avatar] CONCLUSION Looking ahead, I am hoping for a nekomimi revival in 2022. Over the years, the archetype has lost popularity to other kemononomimi such as kitsune, as well as fully anthropomorphized characters. But the appreciation for cat ears is still out there. And if the Catgirl Re-NYA-ssaince doesn’t happen this year, I will be happy if there are just one or two good cat characters to enjoy. As 2022 rolls around, I hope to acquire a better sense of where to find nekomimi related content. That alone will greatly improve the quality of future reviews. If you have any such resources or know of characters I didn’t cover, I would be extremely appreciative if you shared them. I’m looking forward to writing another one of these in a year. Thank you for reading!
  7. For me, one of the most poignant aspects of slice-of-life is how the genre treats the concept of time. The chain of moments that make up the series slowly advances, but there are rarely consequences to the flow of time itself. This is a necessary thing. The environment and situation remain relatively static in order to highlight the development of their characters. The removal of “real time” from slice-of-life is what makes the characters (and their interactions with one another) endure as charming and heartwarming. One of my favorite examples of this is from Nichijou. There are little transitions that occasionally follow a scene, what the folks at the Nichijou wiki refer to as interstitials. They’re only a few seconds long, displaying the title of the anime and usually some sort of small animation. While they contribute next to nothing to our understanding of the story, I love them immensely. To me, they’re slice-ier and life-ier than Nichijou’s already slice-of-life plot. Major respect for Kyoto Animation for how they implemented these scenes. And enough talking, here are a few interstitials that I thought were really fun: Episode 3 Interstitial 3 Episode 6 Interstitial 2 Episode 10 Interstitial 2 Episode 13 Interstitial 1 Episode 15 Interstitial 5
  8. Catgirls/catboys (catpeople?) are beyond elite. I'm kinda disappointed that there haven't been any notable neko characters this year. Hopefully we'll get some more soon.
  9. Dipping my toes into short-episode series with Space Patrol Luluco. The urge to binge it all in one afternoon is strong, but I think I'm going to spread it out over a week or so so it doesn't get repetitive
  10. Now that things are somewhat returning to normal, my Dungeons and Dragons group has been starting up again. My improvisation is dreadfully out of practice, but its been great to physically sit around a table with people again and have an adventure. Speaking of tabletop roleplaying games(TTRPG), did you know there was a Sailor Moon RPG? Released in 1999, the game guide is impressively detailed from the barebones RPG “starter kits” I’m used to seeing today. There are full length character pages describing the attributes and abilities of the main cast, villains and supporting characters. And they’re not just generalized rpg encoutremont, these are things that actually appeared in the show and each description cites episode numbers to look to for examples. The booklet is full of still frames from the series, and little interjections of things appropriate to the characters. It includes example adventures to play, summaries of the first 82 episodes and a timeline of the Sailor Moon universe. In general, way more immersive information than I could digest without knowing the series already. In terms of actual game mechanics, the Sailor Moon TTRPG is fairly standard. It retains familiar systems of stats, rolling dice to determine performance, magic/weapon based combat, and roleplaying between characters and GM. Anyone who has played D&D could be plopped into a game without the need to learn much more. Compared to the depth of the lore, there is not much that’s special about the actual gaming component. But that’s perfectly fine: if you’ve gotten this game, its because you liked Sailor Moon, not because you wanted a completely novel system to play with. Its at this point that I’d like to disclosure that I’ve never watched Sailor Moon before. Beyond funny moments from the dub (viz. the usage of “cousins”) and other memery, I have no real idea of the plot. If I had, I might have been able to say more about the accuracy or effectiveness of making a RPG about the series. This was just an anime-related game that I found while looking for unusual TTRPGs to goad my friends into trying. And though we won’t end up playing the Sailor Moon game, I think that I could have been a half-decent magical girl if I had just been given a chance and a skirt. But fear not, more anime TTRPG are on the way! It appears a Konosuba themed game is being released this fall. If I wanted, I could be everybody’s favorite Blue Thing at my friends’ weekly gaming session… What a horrifying thought. Thanks for reading!
  11. Seacliff already put in a good word for the Pokemon Adventures manga above, but it really is a great series. The author, Kusaka, keeps it rooted in the gen I games, but aren't afraid to re-imagine a more detailed version of events and characters. In terms of art, Mato's emphasizes the story's childhood charm without resorting to moeblob cuteness, which is a plus. Every time I reread the series, its incredibly nostalgic.
  12. Bit of an error that I noticed when browsing through the anime database today. Sections where reviews would normally be displayed shows the following text: The message seems to be consitent across available site themes and the web browswers I have access to. Idk if this is a known issue, but today has been the first time I've seen it.
  13. Its perfectly reasonable, as an independent artist, to break the one week release schedule. There's too many creators that burn themselves out like that, trying to meet arbitrary expectations. Engaging with fan communities seems more effective at retaining audiences than keeping up with rigid release schedules, so its unfortunate that this is still standard practice.
  14. IIRC Tezuka did something like this with his manga. He treated characters like actual Hollywood stars, so they 'played' different roles for different series he produced. Its fun little way to add personality to his fictional universe. I guess it could get confusing if you're not expecting it though?
  15. In Praise of Shadows by Junichiro Tanizaki is an odd essay about traditional Japanese aesthetics. It is haphazardly composed, switching between discussions as disparate as sushi recipes and Noh actors. But amid the stream-of-conciousness-like writing, there is a central theme: in the Japanese sense of beauty, the presence of shadows is the key influence around which any artistic situation should be desiged. For example, the author reasons that miso soup is best served in earthy laquerware rather than white china because the broth takes on a murky, obscuring quality. Although Tanizaki’s writing concerns the period in which basic Western technology – such as electric lighting – is being introduced to Japan, I was curious to see what insight the essay might provide to more modern forms of technology. In particular, I wanted to examine Serial Experiments Lain as the best known anime concerning this particular topic. Does the series demonstrate the same traditional appreciation of shadow that Tanizaki writes about? Or has the influence of technology created a disposition towards different sensory compositions? These are the central questions I wish to answer here today. I am not foolish enough to claim I understand the plot of Lain but I hope that in understanding the work’s relationship with shadows, some new understanding can be gleamed from the series. The first scene in SEL shows the sillouhuette of powerlines before cutting to a couple walking down a street at night. We see neon signs and faint reflections off of urban architecture, but not much else. Besides the few lights, their surroundings are entirely black. If we go by the strictest interpretation of Tanizaki, we might say that the glow of electric lights immediately disqualifies the work since he thinks them to be too harsh. However, if not to the letter, the scene certainly adheres to the spirit of In Praise of Shadows: We’re given an impression of the location while the details hidden in the darkness are left up to the imagination. I mention the above alley scene because it was the first to occur, but the same things can be said virtually any time that the background is obscured in shadow. For example, the first time we see Lain’s room, we see only a small circle of light from the window and Lain at her desk. The majority of the screen – and the room – are invisible to us. Even when the camera angle changes, half of the space is in darkness. Logically, we suppose that there must be another half to the room, but given the surreal nature of the show, even this conclusion should be questioned. For audiences returning to Lain, every aspect of the show should be treated with scrutiny, but it is scenes like this, when shadows create large ambiguities, this is when we should be at our most attentive to what Lain is experiencing. So we know to pay attention to shadows, but do they change over the course of the series? Perhaps the most prominent evolution of shadows concerns Lain’s room. What in episode 1 is merely the absence of sunlight quickly evolves into shadows of a muted blue, made that way by the Navi screens she accumulates. Though her world is still shrouded in obscurity, it has taken on an unnatural quality. In these dim corners of the show where reality seems to be uncertain, the digital, electronic world begins to play at ambiguity. Here, I can say for certain that Tanizaki’s sense of shadow is lost completely. Instead, the traditional sense of shadow must give way to a modern, computerized shadow – one in which anonymous Knights, men in strange equipment, and god-like entities can slip through with ease. The other main difference in shadows that reccurs over the course of the show is that not all of the them are dark. A second type of shadow occurs, and occurs often in the show. They are most often potrayed as cloudy lumps of purple and black, with splotches of red that reminiscent of blood splatters. What do these shadows mean? It seems as though the characters are not aware of their strange appearances – we might then hypothesize that they have been designed that way as part of the art style, solely for the appreciation of the audience. I’m unsure of what to say about them. For me, the odd appearance added a surreal element to the series. They tend to occur in otherwise brightly lit scenes (though not always), so they tended to stand out. “These shadows don’t look right. Is this really reality?” was what I thought whenever they appeared. They are perhaps not aesthetically murky like Tanizaki’s conception of shadows, but for me, they created a sense of murkiness to the plot, by making me question why the world would produce these strangely-patterned shadows. Technology and shadow might be opposite things to Tanizaki, but Japan has advanced tremendously since he wrote In Praise of Shadows. I think in the time since then, the two have found a new, modern relationship with one another, one that is demonstrated in Lain. The series without its shadowy elements simply wouldn’t have been quite as impactful as it is. It is an anime that is appreciated best when the aesthetics and plot can be just barely discerned from deliberate obscurity. If I can give some cliched words of advice to appreciate the anime, I’d have to say: “Live in praise of shadows. And, let’s all love Lain.”
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