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you know, shounen
11th-Jul-2010 03:15 am - re: one piece 582 - 590+
I have been pondering this post for a while now – trying to decide when to write it, trying to decide how much to write, trying to decide if I could even bring myself to do so, etc. After ten years of waiting for this specific mini-arc, Oda has finally delivered and eventually I decided, “Hell, I’ve been sobbing every chapter for a year now, why don’t I keep that to myself a bit longer and spare everyone the burden of weekly OMFGWHY?! posts.”

And here we are.

Luffy’s journey over the last year has been an arduous one. He has suffered in ways that can’t even be accurately described and he has lost someone incredibly precious to him. He is struggling, he is hampered, and he is in the midst of self-defeat.

We are with him.

Just as Luffy anguishes over the loss of Ace, so too do we recall that steady, painful thumping in our chests – a constant reminder of our hero’s most important person and the impact he had on all of us. Now, finally, Oda graces us with their back-story and we, at long last, have actions that demonstrate just what that deep, unyielding brotherhood was founded on. We have specific instances that show us why their relationship was so strong, even though we already knew it was unbreakable.

I have been waiting for this – hoping for this – for a decade. Or, to be more accurate, since the moment Ace first arrived and Luffy proudly declared, “Ace is my brother!” For a person like me, who lives and breathes for Luffy, and who loved Ace before the rest of the world realized how amazing he is, these chapters are my Holy Grail; they are what I have been holding my breath for since Oda first introduced the best siblings in the history of literature.

And this is my fair warning to you that this entire post will be ridiculously lengthy.

Points that don’t warrant a whole factCollapse )

FACT: One Piece 582 – 590 define family
cinders and a scorched heart – luffy’s reactionCollapse )
talking is a brick wall – first impressionsCollapse )
and the third rose – the turning pointCollapse )
we started a war and – growing togetherCollapse )
hello, goodbye, good day – beginning of the endCollapse )
and so there was – the aftermathCollapse )

Fuck, I love these brothers.

I'm sorry, guys. I'm sorry for writing on and on and on about a relationship that probably no one else cares about to this extent, but I can't help it. Ten years of waiting and I finally get to see the background of my two favorite characters. And it was perfect. Just absolutely, beautifully perfect, as to be expected from Oda. I have never been so happy over a mini-arc or how depressed it made me.

And the crew? The crew will be reuniting in 600. I'd bed money on it. Epic does not even begin to describe it.
[one piece: brothers d] comfort
In a recent issue of Weekly Shounen Jump! (V. 20), the Editorial Department included a statement to all their readers addressing their stance on illegal scans, and almost instantly, the popular site Raw Paradise, which had provided early RAW scans of every JUMP! series, became a redirect to Shueisha Inc., the publishing company behind WSJ. WSJ’s statement reads as follows, translation courtesy of bleachness:

To all our readers:

There are now many people unjustly posting copies of manga on the internet. These unjust copies are inconsistent with mangakas' feelings. They are also distorting the authors' intentions of "I want the work to be read this way". The actions of posting these unjust copies on the net, into which the mangakas have poured their hearts, are not only hurting mangakas in real life but are also against the law, even if done in a light-hearted manner. Every time we discover such "unjust copies", we talk to the mangaka and consider every possible countermeasure. But the number of inconsiderate people is great, and at present we cannot deal with all of them. We have a request for all our readers. The unjust internet copies are deeply hurting the manga culture, mangakas' rights, and even mangakas' souls. Please understand once again that all of that is against the law. Also, the mangakas and Shueisha will severely deal with any unjust copies found on the internet. We ask that our readers please continue to support us.

Weekly Shounen Jump editorial department

This message was published in the WSJ issue that went on sale Monday, April 19th, in Japan. However, it was up on the Internet a week prior, when the early RAW scans and spoilers for the chapters came out. Naturally, on the same day that the scanlations came out, people on Twitter were congratulating Kubo Tite for the release of chapter 400 of Bleach, which hadn’t yet even been officially published in Japan.

And therein lies the problem.

NOTE: If you do not understand the spoiler process, please do yourself a favor and view an explanation here. Basically, thanks to sites like Raw-Paradise.com, Internet fans get RAW chapters and scanlations almost an entire week before most Japanese fans can physically purchase the WSJ magazine.

WSJ isn’t upset with scanlations so much as they are upset with the early RAWs, and really, who can blame them for that? What this has also highlighted, though, is that there is a general misunderstanding prevalent in fandom about what is, and what is not, appropriate to discuss with manga-ka via social networking tools like Twitter. This is most prominently highlighted by fan interaction with the author of Bleach. Whether this announcement by WSJ was a long-time coming, or whether it was prompted by Kubo himself, remains to be seen, but the fact of the matter is that fans didn’t help by making assumptions about what was appropriate to tweet to Kubo and then posting whatever they liked. Kubo’s Twitter account is public, and it would be foolish for us to assume that someone from WSJ was not monitoring the goings-on of said account. More to the point, Kubo himself has stated several times that there is one thing that he absolutely will not stand for from fandom:

His fans being spoiled by other people.

This has been brought up several times and in several places – basically any forum that discusses Bleach to some extent probably discusses Kubo’s Twitter, too, and by now, I would hope it was common knowledge that Kubo attempted to block Twitter users who were posting Bleach spoilers because those spoilers upset him. Common sense would then dictate that people not repeat this same process, correct?

But there seems to be a general lack of common sense present in some fans. And even more fans just don’t have the language or cultural knowledge to determine what is appropriate on their own. Bearing that in mind, this post is meant to serve as a “How-To” guide for communicating with Kubo Tite (and, in some respects, any celebrity, really) via Twitter. It is my hope that this guide not only helps fans have a more enjoyable experience interacting with Kubo, but that it also lessons the frustration that Kubo himself must feel every time he comes across one of those well-intentioned-albeit-inappropriate tweets.

PART 01: Things to RememberCollapse )

PART 02: Fandom DiscussionsCollapse )

PART 03: Getting StartedCollapse )

It’s my hope that with this post we can avoid repetition of some of the more frustrating situations that have popped up recently with more and more people discovering Kubo’s Twitter account and foolishly messaging him something rash in their excitement. Don’t get me wrong – we, as fans of Bleach, are truly very lucky to have the opportunity to interact with such a great man and such a famous manga-ka. To be honest, I’m thrilled that Kubo decided to get Twitter, because it has really endeared me towards him and given me a greater appreciation of Bleach - very evident when you compare recent posts in this community with earlier ones. “Knowing” Kubo as a person gives you a greater understanding of his work as an author, and I definitely encourage any and all fans to follow him.

But we also have to realize that Kubo is a professional that will defend his work with everything in him, and that he is also a human being with feelings and thoughts of his own. He can get frustrated; he can get annoyed; he can get upset. But what I want to avoid here is all of those negative feelings growing for his foreign fans at large. In almost every “warning” tweet Kubo has released, he references foreign fans, and foreign fans specifically. I don’t want to think of Kubo gaining a negative impression of us just because of a few bad apples, nor should he be subjected to annoyances just because of unruly fans.

Let’s use common sense. Let’s be polite. Let’s show Kubo that we love Bleach and we appreciate him, but we can act like rational human beings when we do so.

(Thank you very much to qwirky and suzukaze for all the betas!)
[bleach: ichigo] drowning
14th-Apr-2010 09:52 pm - re: naruto 490 & bleach 398-399
No One Piece last week to cleanse the fail makes me very sad and full of pirate!withdrawal. Surprisingly, when I reference fail, I’m actually only talking about NARUTO but then that’s probably not that surprising. Instead, I reread old chapters of One Piece and squee the hell out of Bleach and it’s continuing (very appreciated) focus on Ichigo. Really, you had to be crazy to think I wouldn’t (inevitably) talk about 398.

FACT: Kishimoto should be beaten with a stick.
there is never an end so we cycleCollapse )

FACT: Kubo is a shipper.
making up with déjà vuCollapse )

Far too long of a post, I agree. I can’t even promise the next one won’t be, since it’s going to be massive, massive, massive One Piece squee. DID YOU GUYS READ 581 YET? DID YOU, DID YOU, DID YOU? OMG.
[bleach: ichigo] forward
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