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10th-Jun-2012 01:03 am - Letters for Korra
death note, matt
Well, it's that time again. You know what I'm talking about. The time when I try to revive this blog after months of disuse, because I can't give it up since I'm addicted to lurking on communities. Yup, that time.

So here we go:

Because I have been watching since the first two episodes were early released, I can't really summarize all my feelings and HOLY CRAPS and ADOUOARIJEWOIWOERUEWORI!!!s. (Or more like I'm too lazy to.) But here's what I will say:

Dear Bryke,

Please make Pema more epic.
That way I can stop shipping Lin/Tenzin and feeling like a horrible person.


(But aren't they just adorably epic together.)
<Ah! Gotta stop! Gotta stop! Gotta stop!>

Dear Fans,

Just shut up and deal with the Makorra/Masami triangle.

You brought this upon yourself during ATLA. (Yeah, I'm looking at you Zutara shippers).

You know you'd be dealing with shipping wars and love triangles in the fandom even if Bryke hadn't made it blatant.

With Less Love,


Dear Meelo, Sokka, and Bolin,

Just keep being awesome!


With great love,

6th-Oct-2011 01:12 am - Don't Forget
death note, matt
I have a vague memory of it. I'd started watching Adult Swim again very shortly after I came back from Korea. I think that was back when Toonami still existed--in it's weekend form at that point--or maybe we'd gotten to the point where with or without Toonami Saturday was CN's anime night. Either way, I had been watching regular CN I'm pretty sure and just faded into AS as usual.

And there it was, this strange thing I didn't really understand. I must've been 12 at the time it started. 8th grade. What's the word "cynic" mean? What's a "chimera?" The opening is so ambiguous. Who are they? Why the heck are they in the desert?

I don't remember most of what I thought that first time. But I do remember being very intrigued. I remember how it eventually took over a part of my life. How I downloaded a bunch of the songs. How we always talked about it at school. How we'd pretend to do alchemy across the room from each other and how I desperately wanted that alchemy book I saw in the store. I remember that there was never a time I didn't want more.

And it's funny, because I'm always looking back. I've got a sankofa mentality, so I'm searching for things that I might have left behind. And now as a college junior, I've been looking back a lot because more has changed than I could have ever imagined and it's great but absolutely insane at the same time. So I've been looking back and amidst the progression from angst to partial transcendence, from an obsession with "that little girl" to an embracing of the fire-licked emerging adult, there's this series.

And I mean, on a larger scale there's always anime in the mix of everything. All the progressions are paralleled with a fan progression of sorts--coming to terms with who I am as a committed fan of this thing that some people just don't get. Learning the lingo and ultimately what it means to be part of a fandom. But within that there are series that will always stick out.

This is one of them.

Because even though I don't remember a lot of the specifics of my first interactions, I do remember the love. The obsession. The yearning it created in me. I remember how dedicatedly I watched it. Even when I moved to Maine and thought that my anime fandom was something to be ashamed of and hide, I never let go of it.  I downloaded the music. Filled talks with alchemy. Got my first self-bought anime T-shirt of it, as well as a little Ed keychain.

I remember letting it go with the last episode and the movie (which I remember watching as soon as it came as a present from my dad I believe) and the one fanfic I ever finished for it--a poem from Winry's perspective.

Because even though I thought it was something that I couldn't hold onto because I was young and didn't remember so much, particularly of the end and newer versions upset me and I'd never have time to rewatch the first or read the manga, it came back to me. It called to me with my beautiful roommate who though not an avid anime fan was a fan of it. It grabbed my hand, my heart, my soul again but with even deeper clutches and swore that it would never let go again.

I never thought seven years ago that I would be even more amazed by FMA than I was then. I never thought that I could love the characters as much as I do. I never thought that as a college student I would be applying life lessons from the series. I never thought I'd never be able to forget again.

But, it's funny how life has a way of turning out completely differently than you expected sometimes. Who would of thought that in the pain of losing your parents, you could find hope through unexpected "family?" Who would have thought that one day you would choose to treat the wound of the man who killed your parents rather than let him suffer? Who would have thought that a bunch of teenagers could find enough courage to break past their own suffering, their own brokenness, fear, and confusion and help save an entire country (even if that countries not your own)?


It's a few days late, but this is my toast to you Fullmetal Alchemist. May we never forget all that you've taught us.
20th-Aug-2011 01:04 pm - My First Fanmix!
death note, matt

So here it is, after years of fangirling and fanwriting, I've finally made my way into fanmix creation! For my FMA OTP, a song for each major moment in their relationship from the beginning of May's crush to the end of the series (with a couple extra thrown in). The download includes an extra folder of images from the little booklet I tried to work up, which has screenshots and lyrics for all the songs.

1. Fantasy - Mariah Carey

[Al describes himself to May and her crush instantly begins]

As an upbeat song about daydreams, I thought this was perfect for the official, albeit one-sided, beginning of AlMay.

(But it's just a) sweet, sweet fantasy, baby
When I close my eyes
You come and you take me

(On and on and on)
So deep in my daydream
But it's just a sweet, sweet fantasy, baby

2. Use Somebody - Kings of Leon

[Al searches for May to learn more about her alchemy]

From this song, I learned that it's quite fun to turn generic lyrics about liking someone into lyrics about liking their alkahestry.

You know that I could use somebody
You know that I could use somebody
Someone like you

And all you know
And how you speak

3. You Picked Me - A Fine Frenzy

[May finds Al in Baschool and learns he was looking for her]

For this moment, I wanted a song that noted how May was not only ecstatic that Al was actually looking for her, but also a little surprised. I think it really touched her to know that he had been searching for her.

You got me, searched the sand and climbed the tree
And brought me back down

And all I can say
Is you blow me away

4. I Don't Think So - Priscilla Ahn

[May meets Winry]

May's jealous freak out when Winry falls out of Al is one of my favorite scenes. I feel like the light-hearted tone of this song despite the lyrics about cheating portrays this moment very well.

Girl, you've been looking at him a little too long
For me to be your friend
And boy, you've been looking at her a little too sure
For me to be yours

5. She's So High - Tal Bachman

[Al joins the expanded Team Scar in hiding out and May, on more than one occasion, shows her strong infatuation]

Despite May's zealous expressions of her feelings for him, Al never acknowledges to anyone the fact that she has a crush on him though his instant neutrality whenever the subject comes up seems to suggest that he definitely sees it. I think, he chooses to ignore it, because he can't imagine her feelings for him every amounting to anything lasting. His inability to consider that despite the fact that she's a very skilled foreign princess and he doesn't have a body, her feelings could progress to more than a fickle crush someday inspired my adding this song.

I know where I belong
And nothing's gonna happen

'Cause she's so high
High above me, she's so lovely
She's so high, like Cleopatra, Joan of Arc or Aphrodite
She's so high, high above me

6. Better With You - Five Times August

[Al and May presumably get to know each other better while hiding out]

During this part of the series, we are repeatedly shown that alkahestry (and its most adorable practitioner) makes everything better. It's May, who has the first epiphany about Scar's brother's notes which leads to Al's epiphany leading to the full deciphering, and May's alkahestry is instrumental in catching Envy. So this song is for Al's recognizing that he could grow a lot from learning with May.

So tell me where did I go wrong before you
Before you came along
Well, it seems like I was lost
You showed me how to do things right
Now I'm so glad that now you're mine

7. I Try - Macy Gray

[May gives Al a tearful embrace before heading back to her country]

This was the first goodbye song I thought of after watching that episode, and I still think it fits pretty well with May's adorable farewell.

I try to say goodbye, and I choke
I try to walk away, and I stumble
Though I try to hide it, it's clear
My world crumbles when you are not near

8. Give Until There's Nothing Left - Relient K

[Al protects May during the battle with Father]

I think this song really expresses the magnitude of Al's dedication to protect her as he really did give until there was physically nothing left that he could do.

I'll give, give, give (Until there's nothing else)
Give my all (Until it all runs out)
Give, give (And I'll have no regrets)
I'll give until there's nothing left

Fix You (Live) - Coldplay

[Together, Al and May pull off a "reverse transmutation" in order to save Ed's life]

Ever since reading this
fic, I cannot help but connect this song to that moment and everything that Al, May, and Ed thought and felt when it happened. I like to think that going through this experience together is something that forever binds Al and May.

When the tears come streaming down your face
'Cause you lose something you can't replace
When you love someone but it goes to waste
What could be worse?

10. When I Saw You - Mariah Carey

[Upon regaining his body, Al receives an emotional "welcome back" from May ]

An instantaneous choice. For the moment when Al gets his first real hug in four years, only a powerful song like this could work.

When I saw you
When I saw you
I could not breathe
I fell so deep

When I saw you
When I saw you
I'd never be
I'd never be the same

11. This Will Be - Natalie Cole

[The Elric family takes a family picture.]

A  celebratory song for all of us AlMay shippers, because despite the persistence of haters,  May being in the Elric family photo at the end does make AlMay an absolutely positively forever CANON couple. 

This will be an everlasting love
This will be the one I've waited for

12. Yellow (Coldplay Cover) - Alex Parks

[Insert fan speculations and head canon]

This bonus song paints a picture for me of Al and May sometime in the future looking back on their relationship and all they went through right after they first met and later when he goes to Xing, and still being very in love with each other. The chorus specifically makes me think of the physical changes that both of them went through in their years apart and how when Al went to Xing it was probably striking to see each other in this new more attractive way. Plus, I think, the idea of being yellow is similar to the idea of a "perfect being" being golden and Al and May are perfect together so it's an obvious choice!

Your skin
Oh yeah, your skin and bones
Turn into something beautiful


I still can hardly believe that I actually finished a fanmix! It’s kind of exhilarating! If you want to preview the mix before deciding to download, you can listen

(This is my first time uploading to an online storage site so if it doesn’t work let me know.)

Hope you enjoy!

16th-Aug-2011 11:40 am - Fan Progress
death note, matt

So back in June after coming back from an extra 3 week school term, I spent about a week marathoning through FMA: Brotherhood subs. Needless to say, it has been my fan obsession all summer (a good distraction from HP since I knew I might not get to see the movie in theaters and didn't want to get my hopes up), with a special focus on AlxMay--definitely my OTP.

I'm working on a fanmix tracking their relationship from the start of her crush to the end of the series which will hopefully be done this week. I've got most of the songs (I'm just reconsidering whether or not to keep or change one of them) but I'm kind of going crazy with little extra things like images and lyrics so we'll see. I'll definitely try to get it done before I go back to campus next week.

I'm also working on an AlxMay centric fanfic set during his time in Xing, but it's the longest fic I've ever hardcore planned out (atm, set to be 28 chapters) and a lot of the chapter ideas are still really vague so who knows when I'll be ready to put it up. It might be my stress-reliever project to come back to throughout the school year.

Beyond that, I've been bombarded by all these mini-ideas for fanfics this summer. Lots of random Brotherhood stuff. But also, an old Death Note idea I had has been resurrected though not sure if I'll finish it this time either. At least now, I have a really good start and idea of how it progresses.

That's all for now!

Edit: My new kitten, Alphonse, just walked into my lap to remind me of the other prominent way my FMA fanning has taken over my life. ;)
14th-Dec-2010 01:28 am - Rant (You Are Really Dumb)
death note, matt
You know what I hate:

Stupid fans.

And I try, I try very hard not to hate people, but when it comes to fiction and fandom I feel like the normal rules of exceptional lovingness don't apply, because deep fandom holds some of the stupidest people on earth.

Example: Glee.
For over an entire season, no one knew if Mike Chang could sing. So then finally Glee's like, "Hey, we're going to make him do a duet with Tina" and everyone's like "YAY!" But because Glee is Glee, they actually didn't give us a real duet. They had them perform the song "Sing" from A Chorus Line which is about a character who could never sing and so doesn't truthfully sing most of the song. But even if you knew nothing about A Chorus Line you should have been able to tell from the song that it wasn't a declaration of Mike's singing ability at all, it was just a fun song that in the Glee-verse was supposed to make Mike less afraid of being vocally open in front of other people.

And so after that episode during group songs, Mike started getting little solos and so the creators were like "See, he can sing!" but you know what most Glee fans I encountered noted. The stupid duet in which he wasn't supposed to sing at all anyway. "No, he can't sing," They said. Um, hello! Have you not been paying attention to the group songs. There's a reason they have his face there and his mouth moving when that nice voice is playing--it's because it's him you dimwit!

Next example of fan-stupid: Code Geass
I know. I know. Depending on where you stand with the split base, there could be a handful of things. But since I'm not completely on any side, my issue is I guess a potential foundational issue of the split.


Everyone has an opinion about Suzaku and Lelouch. And even though I don't agree with all of them, I think even the most extreme have some merits; BUT when people use Euphy's death as an indicator of Lelouch's debase nature that is just fan stupid!

Can you tell me when in the entire...two, I think, episodes that Euphy is geassed does Lelouch seem happy about killing her? Oh, those tears he cried when commanding the Black Knights to stop the Britannians, those were tears of joy right? That laying his head in C.C.'s lap, that was because he was just so proud of what he had done, right?

And of course the attempt to stop Euphy before she killed anybody, and his admittance that she was probably the first girl he ever loved, yeah that was all just part of his evil plan to hurt Suzaku, right?


Lelouch loved Euphy probably as much as Suzaku loves Nunnally, except more because he totally had a crush on her when they were kids at least. I mean, he flat out says he loves her before he kills her. And she is the one sibling he faces that he never really shows a desire to kill. Yet somehow he killed her in front of Suzaku because he wanted to screw Suzaku over? Here's a fictional reality check, the world doesn't revolve around Suzaku.

I'm rewatching R2 now, but I feel like there's at least one line in R2 in which Lelouch implies that in achieving Zero's Requiem he's atoning for what happened with Euphy, yet of course, it was all about hurting Suzaku or being the "evil super lord" that he is.

Gosh, some people are just...idiots.

And you know I didn't want to go here, but since I'm on a roll I'm just going to put it out here for the record. In light of both seasons of Code Geass and despite both acting like complete douchebags sometimes, when you put them side by side you cannot honestly say that Suzaku or Lelouch is completely evil or villainous. They're both idiots a quarter of the time, they both kill people needlessly, they both lose their humanity at points, but I mean when you get down to their last moment together. The fulfillment of Zero's Requiem. How can you not see that they're just two teenagers trying to handle adult corruption with their limited teenage means (i.e. intellect, social power, reasoning abilities, physical resources, etc.)?

And so yeah, they both screwed up royally throughout the whole deal and definitely screwed over people they shouldn't have including each other, but at the end of the day, for being teenage boys, you got to admit their goals weren't horrible. A peaceful world. Freedom from a corrupt social hierarchy. Atonement for their sins. And judgment/revenge for those who sought no atonement.

There's definitely dualistic thinking in there, but I mean, it doesn't make them evil. It just makes them dumb teenage boys with way too much chaos thrown into their lives.
death note, matt
I watched the Dark Knight for the first time this week. I never saw the first new Batman film, because I watched the Tim Burton one's as a child plus I watched the 90's animated series and so I had a special, although not as deep as a true Batman fan, relationship with the Batman universe and didn't wish to spoil it with some newfangled movie. But I'd heard the Dark Knight was phenomenal and I do have a secret affinity for superhero shows and movies, so when my friends said they were watching it I went.

As most people have seen it or heard people talk about it, I'm not going to give the usual--it was great, these are all the reasons why or it differed from the original story line here, here, and here (Though if I were a hardcore Batman fan I probably would, because that's just how I roll). Instead I'm going to point out the key things that stood out to me about the movie, about the fans of the movie, and about me.

I suppose, I'll address the title of this entry first because it's something that really upset me after I watched the movie. Even without having seen the movie, I knew the line "Why so serious?" People quote it like crazy. Plaster it on posters and the like. It's like the Joker's slogan or something.

When I actually watched the movie. Actually saw the Joker saying that line, I couldn't believe that of all the things to catch on to that's what people got. The first time the Joker says that line is during his story about how his father supposedly cut his mother and then him. The Joker's delivery plus the story itself is so powerful. Imbued with emotion through the lack of emotion. And yet people throw around the term ,"Why so serious?" lightly. They strip it of all it's power and leave it weak and meager.

To me that's not right at all. Personally, if I were to choose a Joker line to be used in mass by the audience I would choose "Do You Wanna Know How I Got These Scars?" because it's harder to strip of it's power. It's a line that's on the fence--borderline funny and serious. Exactly where the Joker is. I feel like, also, this line tells you way more about the Joker than "Why so serious?" every could.

Another thing I found interesting was the people who watched the Dark Knight. I watched it with three of my friends--two had seen both movies and one who had only seen the first. I told them I had never seen the first one, and one of my friends told me I would be confused. I wasn't sure she was right, and as my instinct dictated, I wasn't confused at all.

During most of the movie, she and my other friend were annoyingly caring on conversations. I tried to block out most of them, but one I had to interject in:

Friend A: Did you know that his[Commissioner Gordon] daughter is going to become Batgirl?
Friend B: Seriously?!
Friend A: Yeah--
Me (Turning to them stupendously): You didn't know that?!
Friend B: No!
(I think Friend A said something about how she'd looked it up online somewhere or something)
Me (almost angrily): Did you not watch Batman when you were kids?
Friend B: I wasn't really into Batman when I was kid.

Maybe, I'm an idealist. Maybe, I'm just naive. But I just never stopped to imagine that people my age who were watching the new Batman movies were going into them with less than basic knowledge of Batman.

To me, basic knowledge is knowing Batman's real name, knowing about his butler, being able to name or recognize the names of at least a handful of Batman villains (not just the Joker), recognizing Robin even if you don't know his backstory or real name, knowing about Commissioner Gordon and knowing who Batgirl really is.

That college students who grew up in the same age I did don't know that was absolutely shocking to me. I mean, I'm not a hardcore Batman fan. I've never read the comics, and I wasn't obsessed with the show; but I have a good enough foundation to be able to know those things and even a little more.
17th-Dec-2009 04:52 pm - Ambivalence
death note, matt

Heat. Warmth. Fire.

A door. A wall. Protection. Illusion.

Beyond, the fire threatens to destroy.
I don't know how long the barrier will hold

For some years now I've wanted to watch Evangelion. I probably first heard of it in 8th grade. It had a pretty name, but I didn't know anything about it. When they started playing it on Adult Swim, I didn't even consider watching it. I had other things, you know.

Then I was bored one day, and it just happened to be on. I thought it was pretty interesting, but not worth my staying up late on weeknights to watch. I think I watched the first three episodes, and then bits and pieces of random ones here and there when I happened to be awake at the time.

But there was one episode that had such a profound effect on me that it's probably a large part of the reason I added Evangelion to my want to finish list.

{The Choice of Life}
-Episode 18

I don't remember how much of the series I had seen at that point. What I knew or what I didn' t know. But I'll never forget sitting on the floor in my basement silently screaming as I watched the "Angel" get utterly destroyed. I remember I was so emotionally shaken by that episode that I could feel it in my bones. Honestly, the first time I saw it there was an unidentifiable ambivalence within me. I felt two intense emotions neither of which I could name and it was a little bit harrowing.

Today, after restarting Evangelion last week, I reached this episode. And it was...just...painful, I guess. I didn't scream, at least. I did have a sharp intake of breath at one moment, and I most certainly cried. But I wasn't immersed in emotion like I was last time. Maybe, I've just become better at blocking things.

I felt like the more intense side of those feelings was still present, but something was keeping them at bay. A wall of some type. Yet at any moment, the wall could come crashing down. That's such a scary feeling.

When I started Evangelion, there was a voice in the back of my head that said, "Part of you is going to regret finishing this."
With less than 10 episodes to go, I'm starting to think that voice might be right. I'm just waiting for this series to break me. Yet still I continue.

"I must not run away."
20th-Nov-2009 07:44 pm - Upon Seeing New Moon
death note, matt
When it comes to books based off of movies, I think there are two ways to judge them. First, one can judge the movie on how well it emulates the book. Secondly, one can judge the movie on how well it meets standard movie expectations (ex. believability, ability to grab the audience's attention, etc.).

I, unfortunately, am more inclined to judge book-based movies from the first perspective. With this in mind, I give New Moon a 3 out of 5. New Moon, the book, was mediocre in my opinion; however, there were some parts that stood out. While Stephenie Meyer does not have the greatest grammar and redundancy is definitely a problem she suffers with, I felt that she created some pretty good character dynamics (not to say that all of her character dynamics were good--just some). In New Moon, I feel like they sacrificed some of those dynamics which I think takes away the original depth of the story and completely changes how people will view what occurs.

For instance, the character dynamic between Bella and Jacob is a lot different to me than in the books. In the books, Jacob starts off far more innocent than in the movies. Example--the scene when Jacob comes to Bella's school in the movie. He gives Edward that dirty look when he and Bella hug as if trying to provoke jealousy. In the books, Jacob didn't start trying to provoke Edward until after he first phased. He also didn't start egregiously hitting on Bella until Edward was gone.

I think that changing that dynamic could result in a number of negative things. Jacob suddenly has far more potential to be seen as the "bad guy" in this love triangle especially considering things that will occur in Eclipse. He starts to come off almost as that jerk who just won't leave you alone. And that's not at all who he is.

Also, by taking away Jacob's innocence they take away some of Seth's depth. I feel like one of the reasons Seth is so lovable, at least for me, is that he reminds me of what Jacob was like before he became a werewolf.

Another big instance of sacrificed dynamic for me is Harry's death. In the movie, he dies in the forest when Victoria sees him. In the books, it is suggested that he dies at the shock of his children phasing. That is one of the major sources of depth for Leah's character--something that makes her more of a broken character then just a bitter harpie.

Admittedly, there were some parts that I really liked. The Volturi were amazing. I forgot how much I liked Aro until I saw the movie. I also felt like they added some pretty good lines. The wolves were very wonderful--both the actors and the wolf effect.

In conclusion, this was the first movie in the series that I watched after reading the book so I really didn't know what to expect as far as changes and the like. Now that I know what to expect, I want to see the movie again with more of an open mind so that I can rate it from the 2nd perspective.
3rd-Sep-2009 10:52 pm - My Twilight Facade
death note, matt
So yes, I've read the books. Each and everyone. But I do not think they're the greatest things since slice bread(or JK Rowling) nor do I think they're the worst piece of literature ever.

Honestly, I think people make too much of a deal positively and negatively about the saga. It's an average series in my opinion. Just ok. 3/5(3 1/2 for Jacob in the last three books).

 But when I talk to fans of Twilight I get into it as if I were one of them. Like I'll go, "Hey, do you remember in the second book when..." or "You know what upset me though--in Eclipse when..."

And I think anyone who doesn't know might assume that I actually am a Twilight fan.

And so I thought about that today. If I'm so neutral concerning the book, why can I get so into discussing it. Today, I finally figured it out.

I enjoy talking about books--any books--so much that it doesn't matter if I really liked it or not, I can still get really into it just for that rush. A lot of people have read the Twilight saga so it's one of the books that I'm more likely to have a conversation about with other people so I discuss it wholeheartedly even if at the end of the day, I really don't care that much about Twilight because it didn't have a very large impact on me(excluding Jacob--my love<3).
19th-Aug-2009 01:07 pm - Fail Proof!
death note, matt
Ever since I finished Fruits Basket two years ago, there is one character who no matter how many times I reference him(which is pretty frequently as far as Fruits Basket references go) I just couldn't remember his name. I loved his character, I really did, but something about his name just didn't stick.

I always remembered that it started with a "K", but besides that I was pretty lost. It always got blocked by Kureno's name even though they don't even sound similar.

But last week, I finally came up with a full proof method of remember his name!

I looked it up for the probably the 2000th time, and when I looked at it, it hit me, "It's almost like a mix between Kaoru and Hikaru." And since then, I haven't forgotten his name once.

So this entry is for Kakeru!

I promise to never forget your name again!
(Now that I've started posting images in my entries, I think I kind of like it lol. I might do this more often.)

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