Welcome, all! I have now been on MAL for over a year and a half. I honestly never expected to stay for that long, considering how many other sites I've visited, signed up for, and never frequented. I've still made little progress in my life, but I'd like to think I'm getting there. (Where exactly? Somewhere other than where I am now would be nice...) Japanese is becoming a bit easier to understand, which is exhilarating at the beginning of the TV seasons. (No sub-group love = no problem :D) While I would like to contribute more to the forum here, the very fact that new posts are made every minute is overwhelming; I haven't devoted enough of my life to The Nets yet.
There aren't many series that I outright hate, except for those that were horribly adapted (.hack//DUSK) or are overly clichéd (Daphne in the Brilliant Blue). I can get into most series fairly easily because I've seen at least a little something from every genre and enjoy making comparisons. I guess that's why my favorite series tend to be original. Also, even though I gravitated toward sci-fi/fantasy shows when I first "started out", I now enjoy slice-of-life series more. To be fair, there seem to be more of that type coming out now than back in 1999 or so. EDIT: I'm getting back to my sci-fi roots. I'm finding that I prefer shows with a dark underbelly and some sense of humor (Soul Eater, Basquash).
I tend to watch anime by myself (not because I watch ecchi shows [which isn't to say I don't] but because it's easier to marathon by myself) but I still find myself searching for groups in my area with which to watch stuff and discuss my favorite series. I guess there's a part of me trying to remain social offline. I recently found a local club that actually has varied interests! Shounen action, shoujo rom-coms, psycho thrillers... Here's hoping it works out better than the last few groups I attended!
Now that I've been here long enough, I'll add some favorites. Let's start off small.
EDITED MAY 31, 2008
1. Kasuga Ayumu/Osaka – Azumanga Daioh
She wasn't my favorite of the AzuDai girls while I was watching the series (#1 was Kagura, #2 was Sakaki, #3 was Tomo). It wasn't until a couple of years ago that I became a fan. My top favorites have changed a couple of times recently but after rewatching AzuDai, she jumped back up. Why do I like her? She's quirky, cute, and adds a strange level of comedy to any situation. And who could deny the utter awesomeness that is her voice?! That's the main reason Matsuoka Yuki is one of my favorite seiyuu, and the only reason I liked Tsuruya-san.
2. Ayase Yue/Yuecchi – Mahou Sensei Negima!
Once again, not my favorite at the beginning of Negima. I felt a twinge of moe the first time she gave her non-smile, but I don't think it was until her big scene at the school festival that she really caught my interest. It can't just be because she was brought into the spotlight and had her character fleshed out; the same has been done for most of the characters and only one other (Eva) could ever possibly make the list. Yue is unbelievably intelligent for a normal junior-high student, and is also the most philosophical character I can recall in any series. Oh, and she pulls off the moeblob archetype well. Her signature "weird trait" amongst the Negima characters is that she drinks unusually named juice boxes. I can't remember many of them though, since she hasn't had one for at least 5 volumes now. Smile for us, Yuecchi~! 'Mou waratteimasu.'
3. Tendou Nabiki – Ranma ½
Wow, this one takes me back. Back when I first started reading manga, I enjoyed it but I couldn't understand people's obsession with 2-D characters. After all, what kind of idiot would have any kind of feelings for a fictional girl?! *facepalm* I was stupid back then; forgive me. Anyway, I eventually got around to reading Ranma 1/2. A short while into it, I realized that the main character’s sister, who I used to overlook, was likely the smartest and hawtest character in the series. I went back through previous volume and noted that she was also cute and funny. From then on, I cheered for every one of her extortion schemes, despising Kuno as much as she did. (I defy anyone who says she and Kuno are meant to be together) And the second movie was pure love. Those geniuses in the production team treated my Nabiki like the queen she was. And there was swimsuit action! X3 … At one point, I joined a site that made a marriage certificate for me, with a picture and date. As you can see above, I have rekindled my long-forgotten feelings for her with the help of MAL’s Marriage Club! Between all my favorite characters, Nabiki is by far the one I could stay with forever. She’s such an evil genius! <3
4. Maehara Shinobu – Love Hina
For the fourth time, this character didn’t grab me when I started reading Love Hina. In fact, I couldn’t see what kind of writer would have a junior-high student chasing after a college-age guy. (Since reading Negima, that “kind of writer” has been completely revealed to me :P) It was the penultimate scene that got to me; seeing her give up her first love to her rival, just because he wanted to be with Naru more, really struck a chord in me. It was strange to have that kind of feeling toward a girl so young, and I tried to reflect that with all my being by trying to forget her. The final two chapters really changed my mindset, as shy little Shinobu had aged three years. She was wiser. She was calmer. “She grew up. She filled out.” Yes, my favorite character had been secured in mental, emotional, and physical form. Seeing as Love Hina ended up becoming the first series on my all-time favorites list, my crush on Shinobu has still not been forgotten. Why couldn’t Production I.G. have made the last two chapters of LH into an OVA?! I want my legal-Shinobu screencaps!
After-thought: It’s strange for me to have considered Shinobu an under-age character back when I first read LH, seeing as how I was only a year or two older than her at the time. Perhaps it was a thought put into my head by Akamatsu; after all, his main characters were over 18, so his readers were given that perspective (despite it having been serialized in Shonen Magazine). Who knows… In any case, I try not to think about her age as much anymore. Does that make me a sick person?
5. Ibuki Fuuko – Clannad
This is obviously a more recent favorite. As such, she may not be an all-time favorite. HOWEVER!!! She is one of the only girls on my short-term or long-term favorites list that I knew I would like immediately. From the moment I saw her in a promo video (a stand-alone version of the OP), I could tell she would be a fun character to follow. (Ignore the fact that she was the youngest-looking character shown in that video. Please.) The moe started kicking in when I saw that she was working on those starfish sculptures with no thought of her own well-being. Her cute scenes and unusual version of common sense made her even more likeable. By the time the emotional part of her story came around, I was already a diehard Fuko fan! I guess that made those next few episodes even harder for me. What really got me later on was that even though she was destined to be removed from the story and forgotten by her peers, she twirled her way back into as many scenes as she could manage. She just wanted to help the man she cared for in any way possible, even through physically impossible means. I guess that’s part of my moe… I look forward to the day Fuko wakes up and gets her true “good end”.
6. Mutou Aoi – Moyashimon
Another temporary favorite! I try not to change my favorites around much, especially since it takes quite a character to catch my attention. HOWEVER!!! That is also why Mutou needs to be mentioned here. From the moment she entered that sake bar and drenched herself in Haruhi-knows-what, she became my favorite character in the series. Every little thing she did after that only added to her appeal: the off-hand way she reacted to the other members' opinion of her, her unusual travels around the globe, and (of course) her heart-wrenching back-story. For some reason, her appearance also struck a chord in me; I think my favorites list, along with mental notes I've made regarding the characters I pay attention to most, are proof enough that I have a thing for girls with long, dark hair. Why didn't I like Ohno then...? Anyway, all this adds up to a surprise favorite in a series I honestly never expected to enjoy so much. Three more things! 1) Episode 8 was awesome! Why hasn't this manga been licensed?! 2) There must be a second season of Moyashimon! I demand it!!! 3) Have you watched Moyashimon yet? Why not?! Go do so now!
7. Morino Ichigo – Onegai Teacher
"Onegai" was one of the first series I got into alone. I didn't see it at a gaming con, my friends didn't mention it to me, it was never on TV... I just saw the manga on a rack at my local comics store and decided to pick it up. In fact, that was also the first time I ever read the word "lolicon". (Obviously, the ending was far different from the anime in many ways.) That, and the utter lack of character development on her part, kept Ichigo from liking Ichigo at all. That being said, her story in the anime was heart-wrenching. "These two characters have the same problem! They're destined to be together! ... What? The boy's alien-teacher-wife is feeling dejected? Why didn't you say so? This minor character can sit the rest of the series out." >.> I guess I shouldn't be surprised; the first episode of a romcom always indicates who the love-interest will be in the end, no matter how many character arcs are included. Anyway, getting back on topic, I was only reminded of my interest in Ichigo recently. Her character model seems to have been copied many times since "Onegai" aired (see: Taiga, Chiaki, etc.) but there's only one original in my mind. Now to correct the problem of never having watched Twins.
My favorite visual novel so far:
Aruku = <3
I married Nabiki Tendo! <3 Thanks to Mhia-chan for the lower banner (the good one; the top, crappy one was created by yours truly), and to Kaiserpingvin for officiating the wedding.
Thanks to Vertago and melancholy for helping me claim Ayumu-chan! And thanks to Ariana for writing up the ol' adoption papers!
(Neither Nabiki-chan nor I have any problems, per se; she just wanted to have a child without going through child-birth. Or something like that.)
Thanks also to the "Claim an Anime/Manga Club" (especially Kohikki) for helping me get my hands on what may be the greatest part of the Genshiken franchise (so far): Season 2!
<If you ask nicely, I might let you watch it>
Yue Ayase took the bronze medal in the 2nd ever MAL Cutie Pageant! She has the looks for it, doesn't she? Congrats Yue! You have finally overtaken Nodoka! ^^
View Kawada's BlogLast Blog Entries
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