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Starcastic's Blog

September 5th, 2008
I'd finally coordinated the perfect theme for both my anime and manga list:

the Blue Tint with Black BG style for the anime list,
the default Black BG with Red Links style for my manga list,
both with the same wallpaper and opacity settings.

It was so perfect I wish I'd thought of it from the beginning.

Suddenly it's ruined with my wallpaper repeating with no opacity!

And now I find that I have to customize a list style from scratch in order to get my wallpaper and opacity settings back. ARGH.

I mean, okay, so now I can customize a list style without coding style, whoopdee-doo, but, like, they made list design both harder and easier at the same time
Posted by Starcastic | 09-05-08, 11:33 AM | 0 comments
September 2nd, 2008
Anime Relations: Lovely★Complex
I knew I'd love this anime! I knew it'd be awesome!

OMG I love Otani so much! Risa's cool! And OMG they're like the cutest couple awww! Yay for tall chicks! Yay for tall chicks and short guys! Nobuko rocks as a best friend character! Haruka's hilarious! He deserved more screen time! So did Seiko! And I kinda have mixed feelings about the vaguely molesterish Maity-sensei, but I like him for the most part. And I'm glad Chiharu and Suzuki hardly got any screen time because I couldn't forgive their rude comments about height in the first episode.

So much lmao! So much win!

Maybe I'll buy the live-action movie.
Posted by Starcastic | 09-02-08, 10:39 PM | 1 comments
August 9th, 2008
I need to watch/read more shoujo like this. Like Peach Girl, this was another exciting series that had me rushing through to its completion, overcoming my usual habit of putting things off. But I ended up putting off this rant for months after I finished reading ^^;;;

Hatsumi seems pretty unpopular with readers, and I can't blame them much. She's a spineless wuss, a crybaby, a complete doormat. At the beginning of the manga I was quite annoyed at how she let her sister and Ryouki take advantage of her so easily, establishing the initial premise of the story. But I don't really hate her, in fact, I like her and kind of sympathize with her. I hate to admit it, but I identify with her personality. But I envy how despite this, she's VERY lucky in the guy department. Though not completely lucky, as I shall elaborate on below.

I didn't know anything about the series before I started reading, and I really hated how Ryouki was treating Hatsumi. I thought he was evil when I first read that he pushed her down a flight of stairs when they were kids. I was rooting for Azusa as her boyfriend, because unlike Ryouki, Azusa was not a jerk. Azusa was nice.

But then Azusa showed himself as an even more rotten bastard when he set her up to be gang raped. Disturbing and unforgivable. >:(

Ryouki is a total selfish jerk, a pain in the ass. He doesn't seem to care about Hatsumi as a person, but only as his possession. His own words say it all: "If she won't be mine, then she should just die." I guess he could be considered refreshing compared to the typical loving, devoted bishie boyfriends in other shoujo series who always put their girlfriends' happiness before their own (like in the aforementioned Peach Girl). But he's too much of a jerk for me to really like him, and I don't have a problem with those typical boyfriends at all. XP

I did appreciate that he was a virgin and was absolutely uninterested in other women besides Hatsumi, that he wanted to marry her, even when he thought she had lost her virginity to someone else, and that he didn't need anyone or anything else but her. I appreciated that at least he was 100% faithful to her in his obsession.

And his parents are complete jerks too. I especially hated his father. I really hated him for telling Ryouki when he was a little kid that he couldn't love him. I really hated him for telling Azusa that he wasn't going to apologize for what happened to Azusa's mother, blaming him instead.

To make matters worse, after this confrontation, Azusa decides to get revenge on him by breaking up Hatsumi and Ryouki. First of all, that plan is totally ineffective for two reasons, #1: you can't break them up, they'll just get back together again, as they've already done, #2: even if you break them up the father won't give a shit, he doesn't give a shit about his only son. Worst of all, that plan is NOTHING compared to the revenge he mistakenly tried to exact on Hatsumi's father by having her GANG-RAPED! Azusa you bastard, after doing such a despicable thing to Hatsumi, who didn't deserve it, to hurt her father, who didn't deserve it, after now discovering your true enemy, a rotten jerk who is actually DESERVING of your revenge, you can't even plot a revenge that'll hurt him in the slightest bit?! WTF kind of bullshit is that!?

As for Shinogu I was troubled by his feelings for Hatsumi. Not because of the pseudo-incest (in fact I tend to like that kind of forbidden love in fiction, as I enthusiastically declared in my Ayashi no Ceres rant ^^;;;) but because of how one-sided it was, what with how Hatsumi was kept completely in the dark for years, even since he became her brother. I was bothered by how she had always believed him to be her biological brother and only ever loved him accordingly, while he knew otherwise and kept everything to himself, and his feelings just festered inside for years, only to finally come out at the wrong time when Hatsumi has a serious boyfriend! I grew to like them as a pairing later on, however. Especially when she tried to seduce him. ^_^;;;

But here is my biggest problem with Shinogu: Ryouki slapped Hatsumi right in front of him...and Shinogu doesn't punch him. He didn't even respond violently at all. All he does is clutch Hatsumi and say "omg how could you hit a girl?" GRRR. In my book, that makes him a FAILURE as a big brother, and a DOUBLE FAILURE as a lover.

So, yeah, I like him but he's kind of a loser. It's kinda cute and kinda sad that he joins a monastery when Hatsumi rejects him.

I read Hot Gimmick S after finishing Hot Gimmick and it sucked. Learning Shinogu's backstory was okay but that should not have been the main event. The main event should have been Hatsumi and Shinogu as lovers, which I was eagerly anticipating. But nothing really happens between them in what's meant to be their alternate ending, which is a freaking travesty of a letdown compared to all the hot makeout action between Hatsumi and Ryouki in the main series! "Oh, I'll tell him my true feelings very soon. The End." A crappy ending to an alternate ending. -_-;
Posted by Starcastic | 08-09-08, 10:22 PM | 2 comments
August 7th, 2008
Anime Relations: Papa to Kiss in the Dark, Kirepapa
I didn't know anything about Kirepapa when I first watched it in the yaoi room at Anime North 2008 and I ended up falling in love with every second of it. I've watched it over and over again ever since. From the way it began, with a pretty dad jealously chasing away admirers from his pretty son, I assumed it was a setup for father-son incest, which I wasn't thrilled about...but. BUT!!! But unexpectedly, it pretty much went in the opposite direction: a "Stacey's Mom" situation! Not parental incest, but a similar taboo pairing that appeals to me VERY MUCH! Best of all, the dad's the uke and the younger's the seme! Not to mention they are both HAWT as hell! *__*

Shunsuke x Chisato = smex all the way <333333

I read the manga afterwards and even though it has more smutty bits I absolutely prefer the anime. The anime is sweeter and more romantic on the whole, and its one smut scene more than makes up for all the smutty bits in the manga :9 Disturbingly, Chisato gets raped more in the manga, including once by Shunsuke o_O In the anime, he is almost raped only once, and he escapes. AND in the anime the guy who almost raped him explains himself and basically apologizes in the end. In the manga, the guy actually rapes him, and all he basically says about it in the end is that he won't do it again. >_< I also prefer how Riju is cuter (i.e. a bit less perverted) in the anime. Plus, I found the soundtrack very amusing, with the funky/porn music XD

A smexy pairing, a small but likeable cast, lots of comedy, just the right dash of angst, ironic plot twists, a satisfying smut scene and lots of fluff. Perfect for me ^_____^

I think the title ought to be translated as "Pretty Daddy" if it's licensed for English adaptation.

Oh, and I also saw Papa to Kiss in the Dark later that night in the yaoi room. Ugh. Not my thing. >_< To quote one person in the audience when it was over: "That...was horrifying." Yeah, horrifyingly f*cked up.

I mean, for one thing, Mira is an annoying little whore. Like, 'Boo hoo, I'm gonna get all depressed because I just found out that the guy I've been f*cking is NOT my biological dad!' WTF!? Like, how f*cked up is that!?

I feel sorry for Mira's mom: she trusted her sibling to care for her baby and they end up screwing behind her back without a care.

(Maybe I'd enjoy the incest more if the father was the uke ^^;)

And how funny that the father-uke and son-uke in both anime were voiced by the same guy!
Posted by Starcastic | 08-07-08, 1:04 AM | 0 comments
July 25th, 2008
Anime Relations: Junjou Romantica
Woooow. I had an extremely rare stroke of luck last night: I had a hot yaoi dream. *____*

All because, before going to bed, I watched Episodes 10 and 11 of Junjou Romantica and read a couple of comments afterwards in the Episode 10 Discussion here at MAL about a certain omitted scene in that was in the manga.

Unexpectedly, I ended up imagining that scene in my sleep. Quite vividly.

Very rarely does my dirty mind work so well in my favour. ^_^;;;;;;

Thank you, MAL.
Posted by Starcastic | 07-25-08, 9:24 AM | 0 comments
May 1st, 2008
Anime Relations: Ayashi no Ceres
This is exactly the kind of dark fantasy-romance I've been wanting to see, something that's not as bleak and tragic as Ai no Kusabi. Yes, I know the two have little in common (besides the obvious fact that the latter is yaoi, lol), but that makes it all the more clear where my tastes lie in dark romance.

I realized later on while watching that the series was actually more comparable to X, so similar that I'll write a recommendation for the two, which no one else has done. But I preferred Ceres.

I was captivated from the first episode and stayed that way through till the end. I loved it. I found it very satisfying to my tastes. I'd even call it one of my favourites.

I instantly fell in love the first ending song "One ~ Kono Yo ga Hatete mo Hanarenai~" by Day-break as soon as it started playing! So catchy! It was an instant classic for me. At first I was disappointed when the ending song changed to "Cross my Heart" by the same artist, but I grew to love it pretty quickly after hearing it a few times. Its opening notes left the strongest impression during
And now I'll always associate it with that moment. The background music throughout the series rocked too.

Ceres marks the fifth Watase Yuu series I've completed. The previous ones were, in order, Alice 19th, Fushigi Yuugi, Absolute Boyfriend and Imadoki!. Of these works, I noticed they share the following themes in common:
  • Love triangles (all of them, all two-guys-for-one-girl, and only Absolute Boyfriend doesn't have two-girls-for-one-guy as well)
  • Close siblings or friends turning on one another (all except Imadoki!)
  • The threat of rape--attempted and/or assumed rape but no actual rape (all of them--hmm, on second thought, there was marital rape in Ceres)
  • Early pregnancy (Imadoki!, Ceres, Fushigi Yuugi--I haven't watched all of the Fushigi Yuugi OVAs yet but I got spoiled >_<)

Ceres also shares the final resolution of the love triangle in common with Absolute Boyfriend, which I'll touch on later.

And now for my favourite topic: characters and relationships! ^^;

Aya was alright as the lead female, kinda cool, actually, and pretty too. She looked better with long hair, though (shallow comment, huh).

Ceres was interesting and cool.

As for Touya, the lead male/bishie...he was undeniably hot and had a cool, mysterious, aloof kind of personality, and his voice wasn't bad either--all in all, I normally go for that type but he was just kind of okay for me. I dunno, it might have been the outfit...I found it kind of laughable, especially the crop top. >_> And I found him weirder and weirder as the show went on. But still, it's not like I'd say no to him. ^^;;;

I actually preferred, Yuuhi, his rival for Aya. Funny, brash, a good cook, fights with chopsticks, with the same awesome voice of my beloved Abarai Renji from Bleach ^____^ I supported his pursuit of Aya, and of course it was hopeless from the start, but as the story progressed his unrequited love became pretty much irrelevant. :/ Too bad. There's hope for the two at the end, but it's bittersweet, hardly a victory, more like a consolation prize. Again, more on that final resolution later.

But the one character who totally snuck up on me to become my favourite of the series and one of my all-time favourites, was MIKAGE AKI! (Hmm, writing his full name like that kind of reflects his split-personality!) I'd always liked him, but he really grabbed my attention when his evil alter-ego started to emerge
He completely stole my heart at the end of Episode 13
I was like "hot daaaaaaamn." *___*

And with the emergence of Aki's alter-ego, the show took a slight foray into twincest territory, which I shamelessly enjoyed. As I've already mentioned, I loved the first sign of Mikagi's emergence, and there was even an open discussion of twincest between Aki and Kagami right afterwards, when Aki was feeling confused and afraid about the new, inappropriate feelings he was having for Ceres--which meant Aya by proxy. I loved how his innocent love for his sister was getting twisted into something perverse. And then...when Mikagi-Aki forcefully kissed Aya in Episode 14...OMG SO HOT, infinitely hotter than any of Aya's scenes with Touya! YES, I admit I tend to like that kind of forbidden love in fiction! And Aki x Aya is my Ceres OTP (though never meant to be) next to Yuuhi x Aya! As for the attempted rape scene...*ahem* I'll refrain from commenting on that, except to say that it was wrong, of course. ^^;;; Oh look, a magical rape shield just like in Fushigi Yuugi!

But as I've also mentioned, I've liked Aki from the start, and I liked his relationship with with Aya before Mikagi even came into the picture. I adored their closeness as twin siblings. And I especially loved Aki's complete devotion to Aya, since after the end of the first episode Aki was basically alone, and Aya remained the one and only important person in his life--Aya was all he had. On the other hand, although Aya also loved him and never gave up on him, not only did she fall in love and gain a lover,
she also came to cherish Yuuhi, Suzumi, and Chidori as something of a second family to her, not to mention certain other people she briefly crossed paths with who left an impression on her heart.

Hmm, I've only just realized how very weak Aki was compared to Touya, Aya, and even Yuuhi. And of course, his weakness was most obvious and most fatal the moment Mikagi took over. That's probably another trait of his that unconsciously endeared him to me. He couldn't help his weakness, but he was alone, as I'd mentioned, and he tried his best to protect Aya, even choosing not to reunite with Aya for her own safety.

There was a period, I can't remember exactly when, during which it seemed like Aki was kind of slipping under the radar in the show. It might have been during this period that I started worrying about his fate.

Which brings me to the end of the series...


Also, I liked the reveal near the end that the initial, seemingly simple premise of the series was actually misleading from the more complex true story--especially the key players' motivations behind their actions. It's the exact same thing that happened in my favourite series, Revolutionary Girl Utena, both even use a fairy tale as an initial premise. <3

I wish Aki got a bit more action--and I don't necessarily mean that in a dirty way. I should go look for some Aki fanart. I'm rewatching some clips as I type and I'm falling in love with him all over again. <3333333

Oh, and I plan to read the manga, eventually. I hear there's a lot of differences.

And I knew this post would be long, but not this damn long. I'd already had a lot to say about Aki in particular, but new thoughts kept popping up as I typed. o_O After all this, I guess it's only fitting that I bump someone off my current Top 10 Favourite Character List to get him on there.
Posted by Starcastic | 05-01-08, 1:31 AM | 0 comments
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