Anime Suggestion Trail, Manga Monday

Anime Suggestion Trail: Manga March

Many Anime series are born from source material of novels, graphic novels, movies, and other inspirational outlets.

So this week, I’m putting out some recommendations for reading, not watching, because there’s just not an Anime for it quite yet.

  • Kamikaze Girls
    • Ichigo and Momoko come from two different worlds. Momoko is a Lolita, drenched in white and femininity.  Ichigo is a tomboy with a bike-gang history and an attitude problem.
      • A mild reference is made to girls in bike gangs in Fruits Basket – this really puts it in perspective
      • Best FOCUSED look at the Lolita Genre
    • Shoujou Genre, Teen Drama Genre
  • Princess Ai
    • Ai is introduced with no memory, no history, and a heart-shaped box as her only clue to her past
      • Gothic Lolita EVERYWHERE
      • Suggestion: Listen to J-pop in the background while reading. Your brain will thank you.
    • Shoujou Genre, High Fantasy, Pop Music
    • 3-volume Graphic Novel, or one-volume Omnibus
  • Juror 13
    • A graphic novel that you cannot read “for the first time” twice
      • According to recent news, this might make it to the big screen.
    • A good follow-up to watching “Perfect Blue”
    • Psychological Drama, Thriller

Looking for more one-shots to take on?

 

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Anime Primer, Anime Suggestion Trail

Anime suggestion trail: January

For January, the Beginner’s guide to anime.  Like Casablanca, they are the classics of the genre; the titles that everybody recommends, or future series borrow from.

  • Astro Boy
    • B&W
    • As classic as it gets. If you are looking for tropes of the kindly man/the bad guy, look for the shape of their noses.
    • 1960’s Science Fiction, Like Buck Rogers and Asimov in its Retro-futurism.
  • Speed Racer
    • One of the first series imported to American audiences with a Japanese translator.
    • The main cast of characters per episode is fairly small, focusing on Speed Racer/Go Mifune and his close family.  Shenanigans ensue.
    • Hero Genre. Shonen Genre. Tournament Genre.
  • Cardcaptor Sakura
    • Codified the consistent tropes of magical girl costumes with the help of the source material by CLAMP
    • The series was edited for “American Audiences” by Nelvana, but there is a full subtitled version with full episodes in their original format out there.
    • Magical Girl Genre. Shoujou Genre in its original format.
  • Sailor Moon
    • A normal high school girl is bestowed powers and fights for justice.  She is… Sailor Moon!
    • If there is a magical costume change transformation sequence, you can thank Sailor Moon.
    • Recently re-done as Sailor Moon Crystal, which changes some of the story lines and has a mild animation upgrade. (Mixed reviews, as with any re-done series).
    • Magical Girl Genre. Shoujou Genre.
  • Cowboy Bebop
    • If you’re a fan of bounty hunters, you might like this series.
    • If you’re a fan of amazing music, you might like this series.
    • If you’re a fan of episodic storylines, you might like this series.
    • Action genre – Noir / Western. Space genre.
  • Trigun
    • Less episodic/planet-hopping than Cowboy Bebop.
    • The psychological developing of the main character is echoed in multiple characters in other, later series.
    • Action genre – Western. Wasteland genre. Space Genre
  • Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind
    • In a world that is a treat to the eyes, Nausicaa walks with mountainesque critters with a desire to save the wilderness around her.
    • If the tree spirits neither move you with your cuteness or frighten you with their adorableness, then you are not suspending your disbelief enough.
    • A feature film by Studio Ghibli.  Listen for Patrick Stewart’s cameo if watching the English Dub.
    • Space Genre.  Fantasy genre.

Extra Credit:

  • Dragon Ball & Dragon Ball Z (Series: Long, but classic)
  • My Neighbor Totoro (Movie: Ghibli)
  • AMV: Tainted Doughnuts
    • Spiritual Predecessor of the “Rise of the Brave Tangled Frozen Dragons” AMVs
    • A crossover of Trigun and Cowboy Bebop. (It CAN be successfully watched without spoiling your enjoyment of both, if you don’t mind saying “Hey, I’ve seen that clip before”.)
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