Dissecting Gintama’s Comedy

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So, my usual M.O. of watching anime as of late has been just watching whatever it is that’s either mostly fell under the radar of the anime community that I’ve been (or just not watching anime entirely *cough*Buffy the Vampire Slayer*cough*it’s pretty good*cough*). Gintama more or less fell into that M.O which is a weird thing to say considering it was one of the most successful anime and manga franchise in Japan and, to a degree, in the “mainstream” anime demographic of the west.

So short impression, I like Gintama. It has some of the most absurd out-of-left-field gag I’ve seen out of….well almost anything. Beyond that, it has a strong entertaining cast of characters, which the series utilized very well, and also surprisingly has a really heartfelt character-driven drama.

I’ve pretty much caught up to the entirety of the old series (including the second movie, which was…..good, I guess?) and are now watching to the 2015 series. Considering how much time I’ve invested, I more or less become familiar about Gintama’s consistent comedic tricks. Tricks which I am now going to share to you to introduce you to the madness that is Gintama.

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Quick Ramble: On the Word “Courage”

Growing up, there are plenty of concepts which I either never quite understand it’s significance completely or I just take for granted.  Among them are the nature of sacrifice, of doing the right thing, love and plenty more. All of them I could probably wing a post out of each concept.

So for today, I’m just going to talk about one thing, courage.

It sounds simple. And I always thought of them as just being brave at trying to do one thing. But what I don’t understand completely was that it also means trying to brave in the face of possible failure aaaaand the bravery to do it all over again.

It’s a simple process but I’m surprised how ingrained it was in the details of our everyday life. Trying to choose a club circle, trying to confess to someone that you like, trying to talk to someone about your problem etc. And to do all of that despite the possibility of the club circle you join ended up not a place where you can belong, the one you have feelings for rejected you, and the person you talked ended up having differing opinions from you.

Trying to do something, failing, and doing it all over again is suck, but there’s also a certain beauty in that cycle. Even if one thing doesn’t work out, you can always try another one. Even if , as Thomas Wolfe puts it, “You can’t go home again” you can always make a new home. If your one love doesn’t work out, you can always fell in love again and again with another one. All of those things are precious to us, but at the same time, kind of “replaceable” in one aspect. They’re fragile and impermanent, but also what makes doing those things meaningful in certain respect.

When I mentioned how I was having a bad day, a couple of friends of mine mentioned that I’m a brave person, but in my own head, I don’t register much of my action as such. Granted, it’s mostly because of my own self-depreciation, but I always I thought what I was doing are merely living, same as everybody else. But I guess that, trying to be honestly and openly express your feeling to connect someone else (and by extension, trying to engage with the world at large), and keep on living despite your shitty circumstances is a courage on it’s own.

I….don’t really know what I’m going with this. But I guess I just wanted to say, here’s trying and failing all over again.

Or I should say, here’s on living.

 

“The Thief” OR Social Unrest in the Face of a Crime

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One of the most primal fear within human mind is the fear of the unknown.

When I said fear of the unknown, it doesn’t have to be Lovecraftian fear of an existence far beyond human comprehension that makes us question our place in the universe. It can be something closer to home, that is to say, fear for our fellow man, fear for what darkness that might lurk behind the seemingly benign mask people (strangers, friends, or family alike) put on in their daily live.

Junichiro Tanizaki’s The Thief, among other things depending on your interpretation (as the unreliable nature of the narration offers variety of view), is an exploration of this theme, or to be more precise, how an act of crime can cause doubts and distrust within a certain community.

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Identity, Memory, and Social Engagement in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

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(Warning: In order to talk about ideas present within a work in a meaningful way, you more or less have to dig in to the overall plot of the work. So….Spoiler and such)

Communication is, and always will be, hard.

When it comes to social engagement with another human being, it’s fair to say we have certain expectation to a relationship. Say that you’re on a relationship with a friend. The word “friend” can mean different things to a people and with it, a certain social baggage and expectation what a friend should behave in our mind. In general, people want anybody they consider as a “friend” to behave like a perfect companion: always stays by your side, always be there for you, and never ever hurt you.

This however runs contrary to the fact all of us are not a perfect human being and sometimes we do bad things to the people we love.

The horrible things that we do doesn’t have to be out of malice intent, it can happen because we can’t always keep our emotion in check, can’t always keeping our worst impulses at bay. We also can’t always know what might offend the other person. All of us grew up in a differing circumstance and background which inevitably means all of us have their own insights about how the world “works”.  Sometimes, those different insights can clash in the worst ways possible.  Because of that, compromises of our basic desire and ego is pretty much an always necessary thing to do in a relationship.

An honest communication require us to be in a state of vulnerability. In order to truly connect with someone, you can’t help but let the other person you’re communicating  to get “inside” you, letting them know what do you feel, what are your thoughts, wants, and desires.

So when what we expect our friend or lover or parents or whathaveyou should behave inevitably clash with the fact that we’re not perfect, this leads to an inevitable hurt.

However, Eternal Sunshine with a Spotless Mind propose a question. What if we can just erase it?

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So I’ve Read Animal Farm

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Well, I suppose this is the first time that I reviewed a book before. I have been meaning to do it for a while, but I just don’t have the creative spark to do it. This third reading assignment of my Literature class however, provide me a semblance of will to do so. So well, here we go.

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My Very First Adventure: A Pokemon Fanfic

Welp, two months passed since my last post. No particular reason for this, just that I kind of lost drive to post anything here. I do still want to post, but I don’t get much inspiration (the fact that I haven’t been following the current anime season doesn’t help).

Fortunately, I haven’t stop writing because of class. In fact, I’m proud to say that my writing may have improve quite a bit over the past months. Just this week alone, I entered a fanfic competition held by the writing community in my major aaaandddd I won! Granted, some of the senpai who’s really good at writing doesn’t seem to be entering and the participant, I suspect, is not exactly a lot. But for now, winning is enough for me.

So anyway, for this post I’m going to share you my entry. I figured that the series that I have create story out of should be something that’s universal and everybody already know, so what the heck, I went with Pokemon (this decision may have been influenced by my recent obsession with Pokemon). For the story, I decided to go with something that’s simple, but emotional. Enjoy!

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Writing Contest Submission: Bullying

Yo! It’s been a while.

Due to various circumstances, mostly college related, I haven’t been able to post something recently. So rather than keep this blog empty, I might as well share something that I submitted to a writing contest in my Uni recently. It’s an “exposition” text that I wrote that covers the theme around bullying. Enjoy!

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Fiction Realm Has Entered it’s Second Year Whut Whut

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(Technically speaking I started blogging in October 2014, but I made my WordPress account on September, so….)

Welp, Fiction Realm has just (or about to, depending) entered it’s second year anniversary. I guess I really like blogging huh?

I’d say “blogging”, but as some of you has notice, I only pretty much blog for about once a month starting this year. Something that….I’d explain later.

So anyway, I feel like introspecting this blog since last year are more or less going to repeat what I’ve already said last year (I think my writing has gone better, I’ll keep improving etc.), so I’ve decided for this occasion to just inform you guys about what’s been happening to me in the past year.

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Concrete Revolutio and The Courage to Change the World

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“I’m weak, that’s why I wanted to grow stronger”

Katararezu Tomo

Those words always rang in my mind every day of my life.

Highschool are probably still one of the most shaky times of my life in terms of my identity and belief. It’s also the first time where I’d become more aware about current political climate and various issues in the world, particularly surrounding the Islamic world, where I was previously ignorant of it.

To this day, I still think what a blissful ignorant that was. All of the revelation became too much for my poor mind, which resulted in me trying the best I can to be always in the dark regarding discussion on Islamic politics.

One of my former classmate however, whom I shall only refer to on this post as R, embrace that revelation. R was intelligent, driven, sociable and probably one-of-the kind person that I’ve ever met in my life. Much like the superhumans in Conrevo, he’s passionate to change world. At the same time however, he also held belief that, in my mind, both naive and extreme which always makes me uneasy. I never tried to voice my disagreement whenever he spouted his belief, which to my annoyance he often does whenever opportunity present itself, because I can’t ever get the correct words right and frankly, I’m too cowardly.

Nonetheless, his passion are undeniable. He even managed to inspire many of my own friends to agree with him. Despite my disagreement of his view, being socially inept for most of the time, I’m always jealous over his boldness and his ability to influence other people around him, often for positive effect. And so, despite my unwillingness to engage in discussion, my jealousy did became my drive to learn more and think critically about narrative, fiction or otherwise, which helped me to learn more about human condition, and to some extension, how various system came to be. I wanted to be able to voice my concern about R’s belief or anyone else sharing his belief and discuss it with them.

I wanted to grow stronger.

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