My blogging gears have been oiled, are spiralling full speed ahead. To get myself back into the writing game. It seems the idea of my new feature, has been received well. Which is fantastic news, as last time I introduced to Lit Jen. This Friday, a fresh blogger face with much fun factor.
Get To Know Your Feature/Blogger
Pleased introduce you to quirky blogger, Zainou. Like Jen, Zainou joined the blogging scene late last year. You’ll come to know Zainou for his interesting discussions, being only given his honest approach. That has incite me every time, to leave a comment always, giving my two cents. Zainou is a curious fellow in the opinions of others and has been surprised the civil nature of the blogging community. For the record Zainou is great to have a mecha discussion, sound knowledge, especially 80s, 90s era.
You’ll quickly learn in Zainou anime tastes are very varied. Lupin the third to K-on, it’s always interesting to see what his next analysis piece will be about. When it comes to anime Zainou likes good characterisation, deep themes and something that will reel him in. It’s refreshing reading his posts exampling his tastes in anime and just sharing his thoughts. One thing is clear, Lupin the Third is one he holds dearly, maybe I’ll have to give try now.
Posts To Check Out:
You Don’t Need To Relate To Shinji Ikari – In this short piece, Zainou expresses his love of Evangelion. Others who have seen this series, do not need to relate to main character Shinji. In order to like this series, as Shinji goes through a lot physiological toll. Which people relate with easily.
Mech n’s Stuff – Old Video Animation – Zainou discusses his mecha love, spotlighting 80, 90’s OVAs. That are hardly brought up and personal connection with them.
Time to get to know Zainou even better!!
Introduce yourself – what brought you to the blogging game? Why anime?
Hi, I’m Zainou. I got into anime blogging about two years ago. I started blogging because I watched anime YouTube a lot, specifically guys like Digibro and Best Guy Ever and I thought, hey, I can write about anime too, but I don’t want to have to edit a video, so I’ll just start a blog over on Blogger. Then I realized that I didn’t like Blogger very much and moved it to WordPress. As for why anime, really it’s just because that’s what I consume the most of. I haven’t really read or seen enough of much.
Zainou, you have quite the varied taste in anime like Neon Evangelion, K-on. Among your specific favourites, what was among these series that made you love them so much?
Yeah, there are a few things that get a show into my favourites list. Most importantly is, of course, my enjoyment. But there are certain things I look for that influence my enjoyment (seeing as how it’s impossible for me to watch something without over-analyzing every aspect of its production).
The thing that I care about more than anything in a piece of media is the characters. And specifically character chemistry/ interactions. That’s a major reason why stuff like K-On, Lupin and Hidamari Sketch rank among my favourites because they have some of the best character chemistry in anime. I could watch the casts of those shows in any situation and have fun. If I don’t enjoy watching the characters interacting with one another I’m not going to enjoy the show.
The other really big thing that I look for is the visual presentation. Now, when I say that I’m not just talking about the animation, although that does obviously play a big part. I’m also talking about the directing, shot composition, colour palette and so on. All of the shows on my favourites list appeal to me aesthetically. Like, Casshern Sins has the best character designs, Evangelion has the best directing, FLCL has the best animation and Gurren Lagann is, well, just good at everything. Other than that, I also like shows to be thematically dense, or if not portray their themes in an interesting way that I haven’t seen before. So if a show can check all those boxes then I’m pretty much guaranteed to give it a 9.5 or higher.
How have you found the blogging community thus far in your blogging journey?
To be honest, I probably haven’t interacted with the community as much as I should. I really need to go out and comment on other’s posts more. But from the few bloggers that I have had interactions with, and what I’ve seen in the comments of both mine and other’s posts, it seems like a pretty great community. For the most part, I’ve gotten nothing but interesting, thoughtful comments and even when someone disagrees with me they’re always very respectful. All in all, I’ve really enjoyed the experiences I’ve had in the community so far.
On your blog you have talked 80s and 90s various series, particularly a soft spot for robot. What appeals to you such titles as Giant Robo?
I’ve been a fan of mecha for a long time, specifically super robot anime. I think it goes back to when I was a little kid and watched Star Wars for the first time. I was enthralled by the idea of a world where so much was done by mechanical creatures. That love of robots was strengthened later on when I watched, and forced my parents to spend a ludicrous amount of money on, Transformers.
But on the topic of what actually draws me to shows like Giant Robo, I guess it would be just the concept of seeing these mechanical marvels beat the crap out of each other. I’ve also found that mecha anime tend to have some of the best animation, like the aforementioned Giant Robo as well as stuff like Gurren Lagann and Macross DYRL which is always a plus. However, even though the robots are what gets me watching, it tends to be the pilots and their struggles that keeps me watching.
Is there anything during your blogging time, you have learnt that you didn’t know before?
Yeah, I’ve learned a lot during my time blogging. Specifically, I’ve learned a lot more about the people who actually make the anime I enjoy so much. Before I didn’t really give much thought to who was making the shows, I just thought of them as studios, not people. Sure I knew who Hideaki Anno and Hiroyuki Imaishi were but I didn’t really know what it was that they were doing. That’s probably the biggest thing.
Currently you are taking the salty anime challenge, What’s the saltiest anime you have come across?
Okay, I have two answers for this. One is the show that has the most “salty” viewpoint, and the other is the one that made me the most “salty.” As for the first that would probably be Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru. I’m not going to comment on the quality since I haven’t finished it, but man is this ever the most cynical thing ever. It’s a rom-com that follows all the tropes that everyone hates but says “hey we know we just did that thing you all hate,” right after it does the thing. It feels like its salty over romcoms but is just another rom-com. I don’t get it.
As for my second answer, the anime that made me the saltiest is probably Sword Art Online. And, it’s not even the worst anime I’ve ever seen, but certainly the worst I’ve completed, seeing as I drop everything. This was a show that I loved when it came out, and it got me back into anime after a year-long hiatus from the medium. Then just this last year I had a friend over, and I said, “Hey, let’s watch this show, I remember it being really good.” So then the first episode happens, and there’s like 10 minutes of straight exposition and I slowly realise how bad it really is. That was a massive disappointment.
You have a regular Manga Monday, I was curious what are some of your favourite manga? Ones you like to re-read perhaps?
That’s kind of a hard question, I have so many manga that I really like. If I were to give an all-time favourite, (this is kind of a weird answer) Boku Girl would probably be my number one. I’m actually in the middle of a reread right now and I’m really enjoying it. Lucifer and the Biscuit Hammer is probably my number two, and aside from that, I really like Captain Harlock (the original), FLCL, Oyaji, Solanin, Getter Robo, Devilman and Ashizuri Suizokukan.
What are your current thoughts of how far anime has come, since 90s, 2000’s?’
I think that in the 90s we had a lot of the best anime coming out. The industry was experimenting on TV with interesting original series like Eva, Bebop and Lain. There were tons of great OVAs coming out like Change!! Getter Robo and Legend of the Galactic Heroes. And in movies, people like Satoshi Kon and Hayao Miyazaki were pushing the envelope constantly. Then we hit kind of a rough spot in the early 2000s when everyone switched over to digital animation. The character designs got weird, there was a lot of really bad CG, and KEY adaptations flooded the market.
But then in the mid-2000s, I think everything started looking up when everyone realized how to use computer animation to the fullest with 2007 being an all-time high point. And I think the 2010s for the early part, up until I’d say, 2015 anime was doing super well in terms of releasing great show after great show. We had Tatami Galaxy, K-On 2, Shirobako, Durarara, Panty and Stocking, Wandering Son, Kill la Kill. Looking through the MAL charts for the early part of the 2010s there was an overabundance of amazing anime coming out. But after 2014, in the last 4 years and especially the last two there hasn’t been a ton that appeals to me. This year has been pretty abysmal so far, and so was 2017.
I mean, there’s still obviously good stuff coming out. Little Witch Academia last year was like, a 9.6/10 and Lupin is good this year, but there’s not many anime right now that appeal to my sensibilities. Although I’m hopeful for the future. Maybe Trigger will save anime for the fourth time with Promare.
If you weren’t blogging anime, what do you think you’d be writing about?
I think if I weren’t blogging anime I’d probably be writing about comic books. Maybe movies.
What are some future blogging ideas, you’d like to give a go?
Well, there’s one idea in particular that I’ve been procrastinating working on for about 4 months now that I want to start working on in the near future. “The Serial Experiment” it would be a serialized Lain analysis, probably in six parts, that would be kind of an experiment in the ways that I can structure a post. So along with text, it would include audio, long stretches of screencaps, video and colour formatting. But aside from that, I don’t really tend to plan forward that much. Once I finally get Drop Watch Hold 2017 (a series where I watch every 2017 anime) done I may try it again with a past year (maybe 1997) but aside from that I don’t really have any big plans.
What’s one tip you would like to pass on to other bloggers ?
Don’t be precious about your writing is probably the best tip I can give.You may be really early on and not the best at constructing a post, but have a really great idea that you want to do justice too. Don’t worry about doing it perfectly. You can always rewrite the post later on, just get out as much work as you can to grow as a writer as quickly as you can. The only way to get better is to write, so write as much as possible. Make sure what you’re putting out isn’t totally trite and uninteresting of course, but don’t worry too much about it being perfect.
I would like to thankyou Zainou for being apart of this Friday Feature. Also, I wish Zainou luck on his new podcast venture, you will do great.
Hope you guys go follow Zainou and show him even more the spirit of this blogging community. Apologise, the layout of the last two features has been different. This feature finally the layout I was going for, has been finalised. Curious now, who I’ll have next week? Never know whom I’ll be introducing you too.
I’ll see you all next week and post!!