NeoAnge, Saiyuki and other bits and pieces

NeoAngelique revisited

So, recently, I have been brainwashing introducing a friend to the wonders of Neoroma. Well, no, that's not strictly true. He was curious, and he now regrets his curiosity, but I gave him Neoange to watch because, aside from being full of things to laugh at, it's also probably the one which is least likely to send him running for the hills. I was reminded of my theory on evil tea, which still holds good, but I also realised a few other new amusing observations which I didn't see before. Here are ten new Neoange meanderings...

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The thing with Neoroma - and I really realised this in clear detail once again not so long ago - is that part of the beauty of it is in the humour. It's not in the stock romance phrases or the hot shiny guys (Hyuuga still sparkles!), not really. It;s in the characters, yes, and their bonds, yes - but also in the huge amount of amusement, crack and plain fun that goes along with the whole concept. The seiyuu, the shows, the jokes, the ability to laugh at itself - I think that's why I haven't tired of it. It suits my weird sense of humour. Watching and playing bits of Hiiro no Kakera made me see this in clear detail - I didn't feel the humour or the crack in the same way from those games as I do from the true Neoroma.

Saiyuki Reload Blast

The new Saiyuki chapter is out this week, I believe, in Japan. The irony of that is I only just found the raws to the previous chapter, and so only read it tonight.

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I'm currently reading through Genpei Jousuiki, which is a (very long) version of the Heike Monogatari. I like to call it the tabloid version, since it's full of scandal. But even reading a modern Japanese version is time consuming alongside work. I have some free time this week, though hopefully I won't be spending all of it reading about Japanese warriors.

I did skim back over some past entries of mine on the Genpei period...and I've realised how much more actual history I've learned since I first started writing about it and my interest in it. I think it must be about five years in total since it first grabbed my interest, and there's still SO MUCH that I haven't even touched on.

Thank you, Haruka, for giving me something so precious.


Harukanaru Toki no Naka De 6....

I don't post in here as often as I used to, which is a shame, and entirely because I'm a lazy person (or busy person, depending on which way you look at it). But this merits a post at the very least.

I'm sure that by now all hardcore intelligent Haruka fans will already know about this, but I felt the need to babble a bit anyhow.

Haruka 6.

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The Rabbit, the Raven, the Sun, the Moon and the Night Sky

So I have been rereading Even A Worm recently, because mostly I have been indoctrinating a friend to the Saiyuki manga (since he liked the anime and I needed to show him how many more levels of awesome the manga was, especially this arc).

I got to thinking about some of the symbolism in the characters - specifically Sanzou, Ukoku and Koumyou.

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Just food for thought, anyhow. There are so many questions still surrounding Ukoku, that I wonder if we will ever have all the answers before this story closes...

Saiyuki Reload Blast...New Chapter

So I am slowly getting used to the idea of Saiyuki updating regularly. Sigh. It's such a luxury.

Thanks to awesome peoples sekaiseifuku and baka_kusuri, I have found the raw to the newest chapter. I haven't done a manga translation for a while, so I had a go at this one because it had lots of lovely Buddhist Six Realms references in, and because I am totally on a Saiyuki kick at the moment. I did it just now and haven't gone over it with a fine tooth comb so it may have errors, but I've done my best to keep the nuances as the characters have them where possible.

Translation below spoilers. Link to scan can be found here, on this stellar person's LJ.

Need a Saiyuki avatar now. Time to go hunting Hakkai demon images...

Looking to order the tankoubon now...

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If any wants to use this translation anywhere, can you let me know and make sure you credit?

The King in the Car Park: Richard III

This makes me happy.

It has nothing to do with the stuff I normally post here, but I couldn't let it pass without making some mention.

Richard III and the story and controversy surrounding him was my first inspiration to study history, and my first proper researched paper (aged 17) was written about Richard and the Princes in the Tower. My UG Dissertation was on the Kingship of the Wars of the Roses, again, inspired by my ongoing curiosity of Richard.

To know that the King who inspired my curiosity and my academic interests - yes, even to the Heike Monogatari and the Taira samurai - will now have a proper resting place is awesome.

And, at long last...some justice.

Richard did not have a withered arm. That was a lie.

Richard was not a hunchback. That was a lie.

He had scoliosis, but it would not have shown in his outer appearance, except in slight unevenness of the shoulders, and did not prevent him from wearing armour or distinguishing himself as a highly proficient and successful warrior.

With all the research I've done over the years for this paper or that, I have always believed that the Tudor accounts of Richard's life, reign, death and activities are largely suspect and his name was globally blackened by Shakespeare's flare for the melodramatic. There is just too much that doesn't add up, too much that doesn't make sense, too many skipped facts and unfounded assumptions where the truth is, "we just don't know."

Shakespeare wrote a play, but that's what it was - a play. It has influenced historical accounts for too long. This is, maybe, the first step on a new path to reopen old investigations about Richard's life and the events of 1483-5. Maybe this time all the bits of facts that don't fit comfortably into the typical accounts will be able to be explained, eventually...and perhaps we might even get DNA tests on the bones from the tower, which have been labelled "The Princes" since 1600, but which have not been scientifically examined since the 1960s, and never definitively proven to be Edward V and Richard, Duke of York.

Back to the fangirling now, but you know, this makes me very happy. :)

Edit to add: A brief Ricardian History outline from an academic source.
The fight to bury the King. I am not from York or from Leicester, but I personally believe he should be buried in the city he loved - York. And, even though it would create outcry, that he ought to have a Catholic funeral, because he lived before the schism and would've understood that faith. He didn't choose to die near Leicester, nor does it seem right to give him a Church of England funeral. But these are issues for the bigwigs to debate. So long as he has a tomb, somewhere, I guess it's all good.


Taiga Drama: Taira no Kiyomori

So I got my hands on this a while back, at least, the first half of the series (I think it's still airing, so will have to wait for part two), but have only recently got around to beginning to watch it. Since I have still not formally finished the last two Taiga drama I began - Yoshitsune (on account of not wanting to see Yoshitsune or Munemori die), and Taiheiki (on account of not really being in the mood to watch any further after the whole Kamakura mass suicide scene), but I really hope I will finish this one, even if it takes a while.

Because of studying the Taira and the Heike Monogatari, I know the main points of Kiyomori's life, but obviously the bit I'm more familiar with is the later period, particularly the 1170s and 1180s. Things like the rumours about his birth and stuff are in the Heike, so I was expecting them to play on that. However, so far this series is giving me such a completely different and highly amusing view of the Taira's greatest ever member.

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Ten or so episodes in, definitely recommend it ;)

Is this who Isshin is...?

So I could begin this post with a long discussion on this week's chapter of Bleach and why the entirety of the fandom has gone mad, but I am just so sick of it I'm really not going to bother. What is done is done, can't be changed, and I actually like 515 better than the rest of this arc so far, because it has some nice character buildup and it shows Shunsui being pwn. If other people have issues with it or want to fixate on tiny currently unimportant details, I'm gonna just let them. It's their fail, and instead...

I want to talk about Isshin.

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On the subject of 515, a few people have poked me about Shinji and whether or not he really operated on Renji and Rukia. I don't know what all the scanlation versions say, but I've seen some pretty scary translations for this Chapter (someone linked me earlier to a translation of Shunsui's speech that was barely recogniseable from the raw) and I'm starting to wonder if scanlators are actually working from Japanese raws or Chinese scanlations. I can't imagine they'd make so many mistakes otherwise.

In any case, the question of Shinji the surgeon and other queried translation points from Bleach 515 under the cut.

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So no Koruda to report on today. Back to torturing them playing with them soon though.

Kiniro no Koruda 3: Kanade vs The Guys (part 1): Kyouya and Shirou

So I've been playing Koruda 3. I decided to begin over after my last post, and actually focus on trying to nail one or two character paths instead of just flitting around characters and not getting anywhere too meaningful with any. Playing just for one character is a bit dull, though, so I'm playing the paths for two. They don't seem to be clashing so far, which is awesome...

Here are Kanade's adventures in Seisou-world so far...[below the cut contains spoilers and random comments on various characters for the Kiniro no Koruda game 3.]

Scene: Kohinata Kanade has entered Seisou Gakuin as a transfer student, along with her old friend Kisaragi Kyouya, after receiving a mysterious unsigned note asking her whether she was "done at that point"? (ie not going to take her music to the next level). Arriving at Seisou, she immediately finds herself in amidst the Orchestra Club, which just (coiiincidentally) happens to be run by Kyouya's brother and Kanade's friend and senpai, Ritsu. She moves into the dorm, meeting the cheeky Hasekura Nia, a student from the school press club.

Ritsu is very serious about his music, and refuses to take them at face value, so they become involved in a contest to prove themselves. The vice captain of the Orchestra Club, a [raging pervert] guy who likes to wink alot called Daichi takes her side, and with Kyouya they form a trio to compete in the school's Ensemble contest. Ritsu competes with a small, blond haired chibi-clone of himself called Haruto (Haru) who, despite the fact he looks like he's about twelve and is far too "cute" for his own good, has a pretty intolerantly strict attitude towards anyone who doesn't spend the entire day attached to their instrument. On the day of the contest, Kanade and her companions manage to beat Ritsu and Haru on score, and the five of them become the Ensemble entering to go to the national championships...

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To sum up:

THIS conceptualises my amusement at Koruda 3 at present. I am officially a convert.

I especially love the one of Shirou smacking Arata for being silly...

Full credit to the creator o.o


Quiet birthday = proof of old age??

Okay, so today I turned *cringe* 29.

This is the first birthday in some years where I've not gone anywhere or done anything specific. I was working till 8 last night, and am up early again tomorrow for work, so I seriously just wanted a break, but maybe I'm just getting old and to the point when "birthday" becomes blurred in with "a day that happens in the midst of all the crap RL throws at you."

...At least we won't know now till next week whether or not we have jobs after April. I was dreading that being today, but thank goodness, no.

This week has been quite insane.

Monday was the Bus User's Group. I am not going to bore people here with the details of this, or my reasons for suddenly getting militant on the bus front, just suffice it to say that the situation here has got to an untenable point. Monday was an attempt to begin rectifying that. All we can do is keep our collective fingers crossed that it works out. I really hate when people who never use buses decide what makes a good route.

Tuesday was the discussions over the job gaps at the other library - they might be called interviews, I suppose...and I had a late night shift on top of that, which was absolutely charming.

Today, therefore, was a flop day, interspersed with birthday messages and to be concluded with a chinese meal. Maybe it is a sign of old age, but that's actually fine with me this time around xD.

It also turned out to be a "play HT4" morning, since I did buy the game ostensibly as my present to myself >.>

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Back to the world of the living. As you were...

Owarinaki Unmei...

O.o Anyone else think that it's slightly ironic that an OVA called Owarinaki Unmei is probably the last we're gonna ever get of animated HT3?

I've heard people talk about a TV series but it's really not going to happen. They've covered way too much of the game plot so if they did one it would be completely from scratch. And that's not going to we are.


If we only ever get 2 hours or so total of HT3 animation, let me just say that it's a pretty damn good two hours...

If Kurenai no Tsuki was very much a Masaomi-centric story, Owarinaki Unmei is far more a Kurou-centric one. After seeing Kurenai no Tsuki I assumed that Masaomi was the best pair for Nozomi - having played the game and several of the paths I'm not so sure, and after seeing this, I want to slap Masaomi around a little bit and send Nozomi off into the sunset with Kurou. 

This picks up after the battle where Nozomi and Masaomi face each other - which is of course in the game, so in the anime we don't find out who won. It can be greatly assumed that it was Nozomi, though, because Kurou's lot claimed victory at Ichi no Tani and the Heike are rather thin on the ground and preparing to make their escape with the Emperor to pastures new. 

When I say the Heike, I mean Masaomi, Tsunemasa and Tomomori. Kiyomori was nowhere to be seen - and as for Koremori? Well, he showed up later.

I'm not going to write out the whole plot here since everyone who wants to watch it will watch it and there's just no point. However, a few things...

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Overall I liked it. Lots of onryou and stuffs, lots of action and stuffs. Not much of Shirogane and Yasuhira but actually I think if they'd have warped the plot to fit them in it would've made it wonky. The way it was done was probably the best. The ending is a little dissatisfying thanks to Masaomi's continued gittish maleness, but aside from that it was good.

The final ending theme made me fangirl again, just like 2 years ago when Kurenai no Tsuki came out. This time it's a Kurou and Masaomi duet and it's really nice - effect added by the Minamoto and Taira crests and silhouettes from the closing titles.

The opening theme is quite pretty too - and the one that's played when Kagetoki has his angsty gun moment is I assume Kagetoki's character song from this. It too sounds like another great HaruToki track so I'm hoping that they all three come out on the CD that's due in march, but knowing them they'll be mean and put them on separate disks.

I am hoping for a live performance of the ending theme at the HaruToki anniversary festa however. If Seki's there too, maybe Miki will be convinced...??