I first ran into Cross Ange when my husband tried to hide that he was watching it. Knowing I’m a feminist, he assumed I would be scandalized by the cheapness and frequency of the show’s fanservice. He wasn’t exactly wrong. The fanservice in Cross Ange begins before the opening credits on the first episode, and doesn’t stop until the main character spends most of the final episode completely nude. In between, she fights dragons on a giant robot. What’s not to love?
Discussing gender roles in Japan, Re:ZERO, 90s anime trends, yuri anime, and more!
Last week Funimation started a new marketing campaign for yaoi anime Sekai Ichi Hatsukoi by asking BL fans in their staff to talk about their “#FujoshiLife mishaps.”
Two weeks ago we brought you a retrospective on Revolutionary Girl Utena with some of the most dedicated Utena analysts out there. This week we’re talking about a show very dear to my heart: my problematic favourite of 2016 and the reason I became friends with Peter and Frog-kun, Re:ZERO. As I say in the intro, we will definitely talk about Re:ZERO again, but this episode focuses on the main characters of the central love triangle: Subaru, Rem and Emilia.
Magical Girl Raising Project finished airing a few months ago, drawing its Battle Royale-esque death game to a close with most of its young, frill-clad, magical girl cast dead. It’s the expected outcome of anything that comes with that formula, but it’s an incredibly grim way to describe a magical girl show—shows that are, traditionally, at their hearts all about girls banding together to support each other and saving the world with the power of love and friendship. Murder and despair are normally nowhere near the magical girl archetype, but that’s changing in some recent and disturbing developments.
This week: Ghost in the Shell, gender-bending, Naoko Yamada, and more!
This Wednesday is International Women’s Day, and this year’s theme is #BeBoldForChange. This theme covers pledges in several categories including “I’ll celebrate women’s achievement” – so that’s exactly what we’ll do.
Earlier this week we invited you to showcase the contributions of black fans, and initial response was disheartening. It looks like our community just isn’t too aware of the work black fans and creators are doing in anime and manga fandom. To begin addressing that, let’s take a look at a 2013 post by Chaka, a.k.a. @princessology, creator of February’s #28DaysofBlackCosplay.
SPOILERS: minor spoilers for K-On!, Yuri!!! on ICE and Food Wars! A wide-eyed innocent is staring at you through the screen, her lashline shimmering with tears. “Take care of me”, she appeals without words, to a hero on screen, perhaps you as her hero. Or maybe even to the part of you that’s fragile, which you protect from a world of strangers. Many of us would recognise this as moe, what some would suppose a ‘moeblob’; a character that exists only to be vulnerable and sweet, an empty sugar shell we long to keep safe. But many of us will find something deeper to relate to in this trembling dear, kind to all, yet afraid of some imagined danger.
In this week’s links: Evangelion, female AniTubers, Gabriel DropOut, and fandom diversity.
As we reach the end of Black History Month in the US and Canada, let’s celebrate and signal-boost the contributions of black fans in English-speaking Japanese pop culture fandom. Which are your favorite images from #28DaysofBlackCosplay? Which black creators do you think everyone should be following on social media? Which black artists create fanart and/or anime/manga-influenced art you love? Which black writers in western fandom create articles you want to see read more widely? Which posts about the experience of being black in Japan and/or in western fandom do you recommend? Are you a black fan who wants to promote your work, recommend resources for other black fans, or simply share your experience in the comments? (Shout out to Minami Sakai, an independent manga artist who gave us an interview shortly after we launched!) Please credit all creators and link to their own sites and/or social media accounts! Image from Crunchyroll co-production Children of Ether from creator LeSean Thomas Comments are open! Please read our comments policy before joining the conversation and contact us if you have any problems. Thanks to our generous patrons we are now able to pay all writers! Next we need to be able to pay members of the team for their work behind the scenes, especially their time spent editing the work of paid contributors. If you appreciate our work, believe in paying people fairly and can spare just $1 a month please become a patron today!
I’m very pleased to announce that our trial podcast episode received such positive feedback that we’ve decided to make it a regular feature! Podcasts will be fortnightly to begin with, and will increase to weekly as soon as we can pay our editor, currently a volunteer, $15 an hour. Editing a podcast twice a month is already a big favour; doing it weekly becomes a job and deserves to be compensated just as our writers and administrators already are. We can justify a weekly podcast once we reach $900 in Patreon pledges and can spare at least $120 a month in editing fees. We are, at the time of writing, just $52 away from this goal.
This Throwback Thursday we’re celebrating the 20th anniversary of iconic, seminal classic Revolutionary Girl Utena. There are hundreds of articles out there about Utena, so we’re showcasing those written by our own team to get the ball rolling.
SPOILERS: for the Evangelion franchise Twenty-six episodes, two movies, a yet-to-be-completed remake/sequel(?) film tetralogy, and a whole lot of fan-wank later, Neon Genesis Evangelion continues to reign as one of anime’s most lucrative, most groundbreaking, and most perplexing works. There are a million-and-one ways we can interpret Evangelion, but as you’ve probably guessed, this article will be looking at it (the original series and The End of Evangelion) from a feminist standpoint. Girls, women, and female-aligned celestial beings play central roles within the series, threading issues of motherhood, female ambition, and sexuality throughout.
It’s been a quiet week here at AniFem, except behind the scenes – thanks to your positive feedback to our trial podcast episode, we have recorded two new episodes already! Each one is on a show that made a big impact on anime fandom, in very different ways, and both will be coming to your ears soon. In the meantime, let’s see what the internet’s been up to…
This week Team AniFem is thinking a lot about how to give back to our readers, and particularly our patrons. Response to our trial podcast episode has been so positive we’ve already recorded two more. We’ve also been considering ideas for panels to host at anime conventions, and asking for your ideas. Whether our panel ideas go ahead or not, we are planning to have an AniFem presence at some conventions this year, hopefully with live podcast recordings and/or meet-ups. The more we progress with activities like this, the more feasible it is for us to offer a good mix of exclusive content for patrons. We wrote our patron tiers before we had any patrons, have at times struggled to meet those obligations, and it’s about time we revised them to reflect a) what we can really offer, and b) what our patrons – and would-be patrons – really want from us. Today we would like your help to refine what we offer to make it as rewarding as possible for our supporters. If you are not a patron, what would persuade you to become one ? If you are a patron, what would persuade you to go up a patronage tier? (e.g. from $1 to $5) If you are a $20+ patron, what will convince you to stay there? What perks do other Patreons offer that you think we could adopt? Our initial ideas include: patron-only meet-ups at cons we attend, Q&A sessions through Google Hangouts or similar, mini podcast episodes, full season reviews of the anime or manga of your choice, the opportunity to listen to our podcast as we record it and ask us questions afterwards. We’re open to other ideas too though, please give your suggestions below! Comments are open! Please read our comments policy before joining the conversation and contact us if you have any problems. Thanks to our generous patrons we are now able to pay all writers! Next we need to be able to pay members of the team for their work behind the scenes, especially their time spent editing the work of paid contributors. If you appreciate our work, believe in paying people fairly and can spare just $1 a month please become a patron today!
Happy Valentine’s Day to anyone celebrating! Anyone not celebrating (or not enjoying it), maybe this 2014 account of Frog-kun’s attempts to make Valentine’s chocolate like an anime girl will help. Worth a click for the photographic evidence alone.
It’s Valentine’s Day tomorrow! To celebrate, we want to hear about your favorite ships, including the most progressive and the most problematic romances Japanese pop culture has to offer. What is the most feminist-friendly ship you support? What is your guilty pleasure, the least feminist-friendly romance you can’t help but love? Which ship most closely represents your view of an ideal relationship? Which ship does fandom love but seems so unfeminist you can’t get behind it? What are your favorite and least favorite anime/manga romance tropes? What is your favorite Valentine’s Day episode of anime/chapter of manga? Comments are open! Please read our comments policy before joining the conversation and contact us if you have any problems. Thanks to our generous patrons we are now able to pay all writers! Next we need to be able to pay members of the team for their work behind the scenes, especially their time spent editing the work of paid contributors. If you appreciate our work, believe in paying people fairly and can spare just $1 a month please become a patron today!
We are now four months old, the winter season is well underway, and it is time we got back into the swing of things! To keep these posts regular they will be under new management effective immediately, so you can expect them every Tuesday without fail… starting next Tuesday. To give the new owner a clean slate to start from, here are the links from the first week of February only: