Bananice: September ’18 Roundup

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Seasonal anime is an efficient, yet deeply frightening, method of measuring time. Suddenly all these shows are up to their tenth and eleventh episodes when, you swear, you were reading all the premiere reviews only last week. Don’t get me wrong, I love being a part of seasonal discussions and having my finger on the pop cultural pulse (I’m now the most in-the-know and up-to-date about what’s coming out and what the goss around it is in my friendship circle, which is a strange but powerful feeling), but it also gives me cause to lie down and curl up in a little cosy exisential crisis now and then. What do you mean the swashbuckling time-travel theatre anime is finishing in a minute? And, ergo, what do you mean I’m one month closer to having to present my Confirmation Seminar??

September comes to a close, and it’s time to see what I, and others, have been writing about this month:

On the blog:

The Palace Job: A High Fantasy Heist Fantasy (a review of a rollicking fantasy novel with a lovable and diverse cast)

Once More, With Feeling: Teens and Time Loops in Revue Starlight (a bonus post, because I had an unreasonable amount of emotions about Nana “Banana” Daiba, unexpectedly the most relatable character in Revue Starlight, and wanted to get them out while they were timely)

Hyouka and the Jerk-Genius Detective Trope (an analysis of my favourite arc of the high school mystery series, and what it says about the genre overall and about its main character)

Cool web content:

Free! is airing again, which means it’s time to dust off the discussions of “manservice” and “pandering” that have followed it since it was announced. So Free! panders to women, and maybe even panders to slash fans, does it? Does that make it bad simply on that merit? A certain chunk of the population thinks so, and Zeria makes an attempt here to unpack the tricky boundary between personal taste and dudes writing something off just because it’s obviously aimed at women. With the ever-important fact reiterated that everything panders to someone, because that’s how marketing works–you’re probably just not used to things not pandering to you, and so it stands out. The video transcript can also be found here!

Fantasies and Nightmares in the Reverse Harem Genre — a post which nicely sums up the ups and downs of the “reverse harem” (female protagonist surrounded by male love interests) genre, and how it can equally offer icky disasters full of romanticised abuse or stories of female empowerment and true love, depending on what you pick up.

The Expendable Disabled Heroes of Marvel’s Infinity War — adding to the long list of things Infinity War didn’t do great at is this perspective on the way the disabled characters–Bucky, Nebula, Thor, and Rhodey–are treated in the film, and how this shines light on the various unhappy tropes that disabled characters fall into into media.

Hope, Change, and Monsters: The Legacy of Digimon Adventure — you know what was my absolute jam as a kid? Digimon. This article explores some of the reasons the series was so resonant and has stuck so powerfully in the minds of so many people.

Demons at the Dinner Table: How Today’s Menu for the Emiya Family Glosses Over Domestic Abuse — I have recently sung the praises of The Fate Cooking Show, but it’s also important to acknowledge that there have been some issues with transferring the franchise to a slice-of-life setting. Namely, as examined here, how Sakura and Shinji’s canonically abusive relationship is given the fluffy “everything is fine” treatment. It was something that bothered me about their episode, and it’s articulated very well here.

Don’t Let Telltale Milk Your Fandom Until They Pay the Workers They Screwed — so… Telltale Games is shutting down. This has been big news this month, and this article sums up the whole kerfuffle pretty neatly, from the sudden layoff of nearly all of the company’s staff to the fandom reaction, which has been, in some places, not in good taste. Fandom entitlement is a hell of a thing. I’m sad that Telltale won’t be making any more games too, but the mentality that fans are “owed” a satisfying ending to their favourite story, and that receiving that is more important than the livelihoods of the people who made it, is all kinds of awful.

And to finish, the Revue Starlight analysis on Atelier Emily continues to be top notch, so I’m linking it again!

And that’s a wrap. Take care everyone!

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