Anime, Uncategorized 6 comments on 5 Strong Women in Anime

5 Strong Women in Anime

(Amazing fanart above by pearsfears)

I don’t think it’s an unknown fact that I, Ashley Glenn, am a huge women’s rights activist. I mean, one of my majors is Gender and Sexuality, it’s the most cliche thing I can do. So I’m sure you were assuming that this article would be about how women are misrepresented in anime and how horrible anime is for drawing girls as sex objects with unrealistic figures. While I can agree with some of those statements to an extent, I figured it was time to showcase some of the anime women that have really done it right!

There are plenty of women in anime who haven’t played self conscious school girls or fought to win over affections. So, in honor of Women’s History Month and in no particular order, here are my top five strong women in anime.

1. Olivier Mira Armstrong from Full Metal Alchemist 

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#goals (Image from myanimelist)

Seriously, “strong” is literally her name. Who doesn’t love Olivier? Every time I think of a strong woman, I think of her. Now, you may be asking yourself, “Ashley, why do you think of an anime woman before other historical icons in women’s history?” and to that I say, “Eh.” and shrug with no emotion. Olivier is tough and the way she handles situations and just gets things done has always been a quality I admire a lot. I mean even her buff brother is terrified of her and the amount of respect she gains is just… Whew. I wanna be that chick! She’s constantly being herself and not afraid to take matters into her own hands or even step back when necessary . The thing about Olivier is that she isn’t trying to be a likable character. She has qualities about her that our society often condemns about women, but you can tell she’s not there to make friends. She’s there to do her job and ultimately save lives; as long as everyone under her command respects her, she could care less. I can’t describe the sort of crush I have on Olivier, but I can assure you it’s a major one.

2. Erza Scarlet from Fairy Tail

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#bae (Image from Wikia)

Erza is something else altogether and there are very serious reasons I like her. Joking aside, the reality Erza faced during her childhood and the emotional trauma she’s had to overcome is a testament to variety in anime characters. I like that she has a very dark past and still struggles with fears while being one of the toughest girls in the guild. And while she’s often put in roles of leadership or given the task of saving her guild mate’s hides, at the end of the day Erza still sees herself as just a normal member with no extra baggage. Sure, she wants to protect the people she loves and she often demonstrates her strength, but when she does this there’s never any additional weight to her words. She simply does what any other member in the guild would do. I don’t know how someone couldn’t admire Erza. I believe what the kids would call her these days is referred to as, ehem, “bae”.

3. Madoka Kaname from Magi Madoka

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#justgirlythings (Image from Wiki

You guys had to see this one coming, I mean… The amount of love I have for Magi Madoka is borderline obsession. But there’s something I like about Madoka that we don’t really talk about in the anime community (or even just the community in general) as much as we should, in my humble opinion. You see, lil Kaname isn’t your typical thought when you think of  a “tough” or “strong” girl. She’s so young, soft-spoken and kind. I think we often refer to women like Olivier or Erza who have a certain edge to them. But that doesn’t always make you strong, just like being considered “feminine” or “gentle” makes you weak! In fact, it’s these silly terms that can make a strong woman. Madoka is a very selfless person who makes sacrifices for the people she loves and is willing to do whatever it takes to resolve conflict (no wonder Homura wants to wife her). I think it’s these qualities that I admire most about her character and I think should be celebrated more as a sign of strength.

4. Diane from The Seven Deadly Sins

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#bodypositive (Image from hugenerdproblems)

Oh goodness, I cannot wait to write my thoughts on The Seven Deadly Sins, but for now let’s just talk about this gorgeous giant with a hammer. Diane reflects what I think a lot of women feel about themselves; they want the same thing that every girl does even if it’s unrealistic. For those of you who don’t know, Diane is a giant. With a major crush on the captain of their group, we often see Diane question if he isn’t attracted to her because of her size. I really do believe Diane embodies the insecurities modern girls feel about themselves, even if that wasn’t her intent. She overcomes things, and it’s not really ever for the guy she likes either, despite her major crush on the captain. Usually she just does it because she wants to. And eventually, I think we see that she really comes around to see her size will never be an issue and, in fact, it’s an awesome advantage. Even though she’s very overly affectionate and jealous (hence her sin) I love that she can have these “flaws” and still be an independent person when it comes down to it. Her spirit is really what gets me.

5. Bellemere from One Piece 

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#livestrong (Image from myanimelist)

You should have also seen this one coming! How can I live without something One Piece related in this post? Honestly, I admire all of the women in One Piece as much as I admire all the girls in Magi Madoka, however I think Bellemere takes the cake. She not only was a tough marine, she saved two girls and chose to raise them as a single parent despite living in poverty herself. That my friends is something to admire. Not to mention, raising Nami is enough for any mother to get a gold star in my book (’cause what a handful that was #amiright?). I can’t express how important this character is and I think it’s obvious why. But other than the things she did in her life, Bellemere stood for a lot too. A lot of terrible things happened to her but she never backed down and fought until the very end. That fighting spirit is something we see a lot of in anime, but when I saw Bellemere show just how far a mother goes for her children, I cried. If you don’t see the reason why she’s important… Well… I don’t know what to say to you.

 

There are a lot of women to admire in anime. People always talk about the nervous school girl stereotype with boobs that seem to defy the laws of physics when it comes to women in these shows. But I think the women I’ve talked about today are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to all the really realistic, female characters we can find in amazing anime that aren’t made purely for fan service. I agree that I think women could be a lot more, don’t get me wrong, but at the end of the day I still love the characters I’ve seen myself or other women I admire in.

Tell me which women you admire in the comment section! Come on, we can make this list longer!

 

Anime, Manga 0 comments on Check This Out!

Check This Out!

I promise I have a slew of fantastic, funny articles coming out in the next couple of weeks, but for now, here, have some cool links to articles I think you’ll like! Why do I think you’ll like them? Because I like them. Duh.

  • Japanator had a really nice article on different adaptations that I think you guys will really like. I personally have never been fond of live action adaptations from animes for some reason, but this article may have shown me the light… Okay I may have lied. I probably won’t watch a live action adaptation again for another… Uh… When do the cicadas come out from the ground again? Eighteen years? Okay, maybe around then.
  • Japanator also had yet another article that I totally agree with! In honor of International Women’s day, here’s a reflection of women in anime! I actually have an article similar to this in the freezer just waiting to be cooked, so… Hold up. And again it’s similar so that means the triangle looks alike but it’s not the same size, area or perimeter. Geology people. Learn some.
  • This morning I woke up thinking, “Gosh, I need more One Piece.” I looked at my wallet with Luffy screaming on it, I looked at my phone case which was covered in the crew’s wanted posters, I looked over at my figure stand which has an entire section dedicated to One Piece figures, and I snuggled up with my One Piece pillow, Tony and Sanji stuffies and mumbled, “Yes… More One Piece…” So you can imagine what’s next on Ashley’s list to buy when I saw this on Anime News Network!
  • Wanna take a quiz to prove what a real noob to anime you are? Yeah, well… Anime News Network also provided that this week. I failed, just so you know. Don’t judge, I can hardly recognize my own face in the morning as I stare at my soulless, soulless eyes. There is no Ashley. Only Zuel.
  • Moving on, I have a pretty cool article for you guys from one of my (school girl sigh) idols in journalism. I write nothing like this woman, but I still find her blog to be amazing. Plus, it’s not every day an American weeb such as ourselves gets to travel to the land of yaoi and tentacles galore! Check out Lauren Orsini’s second day in Japan! I’d also advise following this travelogue as she continues onward through the holy land of… Weeb.
  • Last but not least, I found something amazing on Etsy that I think you all can appreciate. I won’t say much about it, because I think you should seriously click on that link, but you can thank me later!

Okay, that’s all the news I felt like reading because I’m traveling and tired. If you want more get a Twitter or look for it yourself; I’m not your mamma bird here to regurgitate anime media into your still developing stomachs (literally the definition of blogs/news in general most of the time). Moving on! Read other people’s writing because my writing is not completely finished yet.

Have other cool news you want me to look at? Too bad. I want to commit the sin of Sloth and not look at news like I’m being taught to do in my media studies class. Go home. (Or post your news in the comments!) 

Anime 0 comments on Why Did I Watch This Anime? School Days

Why Did I Watch This Anime? School Days

Here’s the premiere of a new segment that begs the question, “Why did I watch this
anime?” And I think we can all agree that School Days is the perfect start to such a segment, because after I finished it I had serious doubts about my own sanity.

For those of you who’ve never even heard of School Days, consider yourself not only a pure human being of eternal youth and innocence, but also  a very rare breed of anime fans. Congrats. I will admit, I’ve been putting off watching this anime for the last two years, mostly  because a friend of mine wanted to watch it with me. No, it was not because they themselves had not seen such an anime before, but rather that they’d watched the anime and now wanted to see my witnessing of the madness that is School Days.

Witnessed I did.

I wish I could say that my eye sockets have healed from the assault, but alas, this is not that kind of story. I haven’t even been able to pick up another anime to sooth my blistering wounds. I can’t express the agony I went through watching this misleading animation of lies. Let me tell you a little bit about School Days.

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Every hero needs to ride the bus.

School Days is about a strapping young man, Mokoto Ito. Mokoto does what we all expect him to do as a young, male protagonist; he rides the train to school. As a young high school boy, he has wants just like anyone else. And for him, Kotonoha Katsura as his girlfriend is the only thing on his mind… For like an episode. Her friend, Sekai Saionji, also befriends Mokoto and decides she’ll help the two get together.

Now, advice for all of you gorgeous people out there; if some random girl tells you that she wants to help you get a girlfriend? Run. Don’t question it, just run. If I were sitting in class and some girl I’ve never even talked to came up to me and didn’t really ask, but told me she was going to help me get the booty, I’d not only be scared but I’d wonder how many cats she skinned as a child. Of course, I probably wouldn’t have thought that had it not been for my experience with Sekai. Do you see what this anime has one to my perception of people?

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Foreshadow at its finest.

For those of you innocent souls who had the unfortunate luck of finding my blog or coming back on the day that I decided to ruin lives, I won’t ruin this anime for you with spoilers. Yes, yes I have decided that I am going to torture other human beings out of a lack of love for myself. Go watch School Days, I triple dog dare ya!

So instead I’m going to focus on something I’ve never focused on in an anime before; the opening. I’m like any other weeb with wants and needs, and a good opening has always been on my list. But I have never felt so out of place with an opening before. School Days managed to do that with both grace and elegance.

I implore you to go look up the opening. Not just the music; the video and all. Because that will tell you exactly where this is going. Hint: literally everyone is naked except for Mokoto. If that doesn’t tell you something about this show, I don’t know what will.

As I’ve said before, this animation will put you through a loop and feed you nothing but lies. Regardless of whether or not you’ve heard of School Days, I think I speak for everyone who’s seen the anime when I say the beginning really threw you off. Everything looks so innocent, but you know this isn’t that kind of anime. Well, the opening is the same way. And later on in the show, it feels so out of place. I would be sitting on my friend’s couch, practically traumatized, and then suddenly… Music! And not just any music, oh no, I’m talking about the happiest soundtrack with girls all dressed in white on the screen. I don’t know what traumatized me more, the story line itself, or the fact that there was such a cheery opening for this anime.

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There is nothing innocent about this.

So why did I watch this anime? Because, from what the anime community has made it, it’s a rite of passage in its own twisted sense. Yeah, I said it; School Days is a tradition amongst this community, our community! It’s the one thing you can refer back to when something is just downright wrong or when you’re out at the beach and you see a nice boat (for those of you who’ve watched this anime you know exactly what I’m talking about). And, to be honest, it was something on my bucket list. Hey, don’t judge I have way more exciting things on there too, believe me.

If you’re looking to watch something truly wrong, watch School Days. If you want to prank your friend who’s never seen anime before, recommend School Days. If you’re younger brother just came home from bible study and wants to watch a show that will really reinforce his faith, show him School Days because I can assure you it will do the exact opposite. Oh yes, I am questioning the almighty after watching that one. But you gotta see School Days, if only to get the popular memes and terrible references. So, I ask again, why did I watch this anime? I don’t know. I truly don’t. But maybe you do! Tell me why you watched School Days in the comment section below, or why you think others should watch it!

May God have mercy on our souls…

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Me too, Mokoto, me freakin’ too…

Have an anime you think I should consider watching? Submit one and give me one good reason why I should trust you. No other requirements necessary; it can be old or new, bad or good, a chicken or an egg. 

Uncategorized 0 comments on Redo!

Redo!

I think in all of Geekery Gears’s existence, there have been way too many make overs. I think, now that I’ve been tampering with this blog for a few years, I finally realize that this is partially because I’m still growing as a writer. But that doesn’t exactly excuse me from taking down the previous posts and revamping the site… Again.

I owe, at the very least, an explanation as to why this is happening. Over the summer, I thought I’d finally found a good schedule and a good amount of material to work with to make this blog its best. But really, it was a lot more work than I could handle with my current schedule, as Geekery Gears is not my only project and I have to put completing my two degrees at the top of my list.

As understandable as that is, the biggest reason I was put off the blog’s initial purpose was because I wasn’t happy with the layout of the site and not all of the content I was posting made me feel accomplished as a writer and amateur journalist.  I adored writing reviews for anime even if I thought they were bad. In fact, I was happy to write about anime that I didn’t like because I was able to make the posts more humorous, as is my hopeful signature on this blog. The issue wasn’t really writing reviews so much as it was writing reviews all the time.

Geekery Gears was never intended to be solely a review site. I wanted it to have a combination of different articles and topics, but over the summer I realized that it wasn’t going in that direction. In particular, I realized that I had picked too many anime to review. It didn’t seem like a lot at first, but as I tried to stick to the schedule, I realized just how much time I would have to spend. Don’t get me wrong, for those of you who want to not only blog and report, but want to be good at it, you’ll have to spend a good amount of time working on your blog to produce quality content. And what matters to me most is quality, not quantity. I don’t want to consider doing what I did over the summer by creating posts that I hadn’t spent as much time on and hadn’t put enough heart into.

But we all have limits on how much we can take. Which is why I had to revamp the site, yet again. But look! We have a fancy new logo, courtesy of Make it Weird Entertainment’s owner, and one of my bosses, Adam Barba! And that makes Geekery Gears a little more official huh? A fresh start really should come with a new look!

So what can you expect from the new Geekery Gears since I’m starting completely from scratch? Well, for one I will be keeping my sassy commentary and humor, as is my trade for most the things I do. However, I will be doing less reviews and they will be seasonal; no more episodic ones! I know I won’t make it on time and I can’t lie to my waifus (ya’ll). But does that mean there will be less content? No. I’m going to start posting some fun articles to keep you guys entertained as well as some new segments I think you’ll enjoy. And, here’s the exciting thing, some of those articles are going to have (drum roll please) a podcast component!

Yup, your eyes aren’t tricking you like your mother did; you read that right. You’re going to actually have to listen to my voice! Geekery Gears is going to become a part of Black Moor Productions via podcast. I’m hoping to have a podcast out every other month at the least. No official schedule has been made for this yet, but any changes will be posted on this site.

Anyways, that’s basically the past and present for Geekery Gears, so let’s get to the future! I’m hoping that from here on out it will start working smoother even though there are still a few thing I have to work out.

I hope I still have your loyalty as viewers and thank you for sticking with this site! And for those of you just checking it out, thank you very much for stopping by! I hope you chill with this weird and wonderful anime blog, enjoying all that you see!

Thank you for you support,

Ashley Glenn