Watching Netflix’s Death Note

Given the hardcore fandom phase I went through in high school over this series (I was in it to win it, people), it was inevitable that I’d wind up watching the terribly conceived, terribly executed Netflix movie.

Spoilers: it’s not that it’s stupid. It’s that it isn’t stupid enough.

Also, like, spoilers for the decade old anime.

Show notes over at Anime Feminist!

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The Consulting Analyst – The Vampire Lestat (Part 9)

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Summer is turning to fall, and so we return to those garbage vampires of my heart doing….actually, remember the World Tour part of Interview with the Vampire that was wisely cut from the film? Yeah, this is that again; except that Lestat is the Dashing Hero who actually knows a single scrap of something that he refused to tell Louis and…no. No, no. I can’t get into this yet. Now is not the time. But soon, dear readers. Very soon.

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Hustle Cat is for Dream Daddy Fans Who Like Magic and Cats

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As Dream Daddy continues to enjoy considerable well-deserved acclaim as well as a booming fandom, I found myself thinking of other western dating sims that flew a bit more under the radar. It’s certainly no crime that DD’s young writing staff garnered the producorial support of the Game Grumps, allowing their sweet, sincere game further reach. But there are also other, earlier western dating sims who’ve tried to write more inclusively—going at least as far back as Hanako Games’ Magical Diary in 2011. Today I want to spotlight Date Nighto’s 2016 game Hustle Cat, which won my heart with its low-key but empathetic romances and fantasy elements. And also, its literal cat people.

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Wandering Son Retrospective

I hosted an analysis of Wandering Son, one of the very few anime and manga to focus on the experience of growing up trans in Japan, and was joined by some special guests: including ANN’s Jacob Chapman; Rachel “Matt” Thorn, who translated the WS manga, and Youtuber Cayla Coats. I’m very proud to have been able to facilitate and take part in the conversation that ensued.

Show notes over at Anime Feminist!

 

[Link] How Clean Freak! Aoyama-kun compassionately handles mental illness

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When this season started out, Clean Freak! Aoyama kun had a huge uphill battle to win my respect. I can count the number of sports anime that have really grabbed me on one hand, and even if that weren’t the case… well, look at the title.

While admittedly that “Clean Freak” is more of a poor translation choice than authorial intent (the Japanese title, 潔癖男子, is more literally “Cleanliness Boy,” as seen on-screen during the opening theme, and can directly refer to the more clinical germaphobia), a series that chooses to focus on a germaphobic prodigy is still a gimmick that practically screams future exploitation. But, as I said when I reviewed the premiere, it won me over. Aoyama-kun is good. And it’s stayed good, mostly due to the compassion it shows for its ever-expanding ensemble cast.

Fujimi High’s soccer team is a tight-knit bunch of weirdos, each with their own quirks and conflicts, and the show works to endear us to them by showing how those oddities bring happiness to others (in the case of class clown Tsukamoto) or by validating a character’s emotional wants rather than mocking them (as with sweet yandere manager Moka). As successive episodes turn the spotlight to different members of the cast, it proves its determination to laugh with rather than at its characters. But nothing surprised me more than ”Narita-kun Keeps It a Secret,” which shines a light on both a new character and Aoyama himself.

Read the rest at Anime Feminist!