the_sun_is_up: Person with a fan for a head excitedly typing the word "OMG" over and over. (zero p - eeeeeeeeee)
So the other day, [personal profile] nenena posted about this new-ish shonen manga called Shingeki no Kyojin aka Attack on Titan that recently got licensed, and she was especially focusing on all the gender-related stuff that this series does really well.

And I was like, "Hmm, ladies. Ladies and shonen."

>.>

<.<

Oh come on, you guys know me by now. The best way to grab my undivided attention is to put the words "shonen" and "awesome ladies" in close proximity. It was basically inevitable that I was going to read this thing.

Anyway, I wanted to record my first impressions of this manga for posterity. I flipped through the most recent two chapters (34-35 I think) and two things jumped out at me:

Thing 1: A badass ninja-looking chick with dual-weilded swords flipping out and fighting a giant building-size woman who is naked in a non-fanservicey way.

Thing 2: Some bishie-looking dude with glasses interrogating another guy by dangling him over the edge of the city walls and basically going "I'm tired of your bullshit, either tell us what you know or learn to fly."

Oh wait, except that bishie-looking dude is actually a woman.

I only found this out by going to the character's tag on Pixiv and being like "Wait, why is everyone drawing this character genderflipped? ... OH WAIT"

You know why I couldn't figure this out from the manga itself? Because a) the military outfits worn by the main characters are unisex and are loose-fitting enough that boobs are not easily visible, b) this character's facial features aren't drawn with any kind of feminine coding like doe eyes, prominent eyelashes, or accentuated lips — her face just looks like a regular person's face, and c) her personality (in that scene at least) comes across as your typical shonen dude — direct, tough, favoring force over diplomacy, and not taking crap from people.

Okay, Attack on Titan: YOU GOT ME. You pushed all the right buttons. I'm yours. <3
the_sun_is_up: Person with a fan for a head excitedly typing the word "OMG" over and over. (zero p - eeeeeeeeee)
So I was browsing ANN's list of Spring 2012 anime premieres and um.

Lupin III - The Woman Called Fujiko Mine

UM.

Director: Sayo Yamamoto (Michiko to Hatchin)
Animation Director / Character Designer: Takeshi Koike (Redline)
Series Composition: Mari Okada (AnoHana, Simoun)


... IJUSTCAME

And the woman voicing Fujiko also did the voice of Celty from Durarara. GHH.

Also in the service of the MG Project, I took a look at the Magical Girl shows coming out this season, and dear god is it a depressing sight. Jewelpet season 4 and Pretty Rhythm Aurora Dream season 2. That's it. BARF.
the_sun_is_up: Panty and Stocking looking confused, with the text "What?" (psg - wut)
So the Hunger Games movie has come out! I haven't read the books, and I'm not planning to see the film, but I have to say: it warms the cockles of my dried up cynical little heart to see so much buzz and excitement over a major motion picture whose protagonist is a strong competent badass three-dimensional young woman. Every time I overhear some random person IRL start squeeing over the series, which has been happening constantly in the past few days, it gives me the warm fuzzies. I even heard one of my straight male college-age friends getting on his fanboy soapbox about how the film was okay but the books were way better. Take note, producers of fiction: boys are capable of liking stories with sensibly-dressed three-dimensional female protagonists!

That said: There has been some absolutely mind-boggling levels of stupidity on the internet amongst Hunger Games "fans" who were shocked and horrified to discover that the movie had cast a pair of black actors in the roles of Rue and Thresh. Even though these two characters were clearly described in the books as having "dark brown skin and eyes."

I don't know which is making me headdesk more: that people are so horrendously racist that they'll go from liking a character to disliking her and will be unmoved by the tragic death of a 12-year-old girl simply because she turned out to be black, or that people have such terrible reading comprehension. Okay, the first one is obviously worse, but I'm still amazed at the people getting up on their high horse about how the film should STAY FAITHFUL TO THE BOOKS, YOU GUYZ, even though this shit was clearly stated in the books. Is our school system really that broken? Apparently what tripped some people up was Katniss observing that Rue was "very like Prim in size and demeanor." Since Prim is pale and blonde, some readers assumed that Rue must be pale and blonde too, even though in the same sentence Katniss pointed out Rue's "dark brown skin and eyes" and even though "size and demeanor" have nothing to do with a person's race or coloring. Some other people are going "Well sure Rue has dark skin and eyes, but I didn't think she'd be black." What the hell did you think she'd be, Italian? And ugggh shade-ism, treating medium-dark/non-African skintone as acceptable but dark/African-descended skintone as bad, get the fuck oooouuuut.

I think the most revealing comment I read was this one:

Awkward moment when Rue is some black girl and not the little blonde innocent girl you picture.

The mod of the @hungergamestweets tumblr said this in response:

Remember that word ‘innocent’? This is why Trayvon Martin is dead.

I can't really add anything to that, except maybe to point at The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison and the Missing White Woman Syndrome page on TV Tropes. But that one word, "innocent," really says it all. This stuff makes me wanna barf.

But yes, still cheered by the whole "Hollywood blockbuster written by a woman and starring a dangerous lady" thing. And I am glad that the filmmakers didn't whitewash Rue and Thresh, unlike some film adaptations I could name. *cough*Failbender*cough*

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