Sunday, February 6, 2011

More Thoughts on Blue Friend (and Marimite), and How Strike Witches Almost Ruined a Party

Have you ever had a series that you began reading or watching with ambivalent, or even antipathetic, feelings, but it eventually grew on you more than you expected?

When I first started watching Marimite, I had an irrational "Ahhh!!" reaction to it because I had just transferred out of a Catholic school I loathed. (Don't get me started on the mandatory praying at the beginning of every class and homeroom, lame attempts to get students to make purity pledges, the nutty religion teacher who told a student to kiss a Bible after he dropped it on the floor....) Seeing a bunch of characters being like, "Let us pray to Maria-sama; we take pride in our school's traditions" made me twitch, but they grew on me and by the time I finished the first season of Marimite, I thought that it was a beautiful story filled with loveable, relatable characters. (The Lillian student body's pervasive acceptance of very close bonds among themselves completely divorced it from my image of my old school.)

That's an extreme example, but it illustrates my point.

I have still only read (and re-visited) volume 1 of Eban Fumi's Blue Friend, and I'm dying to see what happens in volume 2. Will Ayumu and Misuzu's friendship be repaired quickly? Or has Ayumu's concern for Misuzu already mended, on her side, the alienation caused by Misuzu's panicked possessiveness? Will Misuzu's broken spirit completely heal? Why does Satsuki hate her when anyone with an iota of sense would realize that it isn't possible for an elementary schooler to seduce an adult? That there's this thing called rape, and that's what happened. (Or maybe she does know, and is using the doctor incident as a pretext for tormenting Misuzu for a different reason.) How will Ayumu and Misuzu construct a viable romantic relationship out of what they have? How will these characters develop?

It's tense, it's upsetting, it rings very true in some moments, it's sad and heart-tugging and sweet and dark and melodramatic (caveat: I have uneasy feelings about using the term "melodramatic" in some cases because what some people consider melodramatic is just life for other people) and I want to see what happens next. I must sound like I'm foaming at the mouth over this series now. I don't really care. Right now, I'm unwittingly hooked on Blue Friend and invested in following what happens, however I ultimately feel about the answers to my questions. We'll see how it goes.

Our two leads:
Satsuki cornering Ayumu and trying to turn her against Misuzu:

On a lighter note, this past Friday someone in my dorm threw a No Pants Party. (Which means that you can wear a skirt, dress, or shorts, pervs. Even though the title was obviously supposed to be titillating.) It was for residents of our dorm only, so there were no sketchy douche-characters who were like, "So you wanted no pants, ladies? Untz untz untz." (That's what I imagine might have happened if it were open to anyone.) Anyway- when partygoers were like, "No pants!! It's a no pants party!! Whoo-hoo no pants!!" it reminded me of the "war on pants" slogan that Funimation used to market Strike Witches, which made my brain implode a little. So thanks, Funimation. :P

I'll review volume 1 of Shirasawa Marimo's Nobara no Mori no Otome-tachi after I get a copy. It's been sold out for a while, but hopefully a re-print will be out soon.

...what was the point of this post?

Edit: Added pics.


Anonymous said...

I should give this a try!

Katherine Hanson said...

@ ¡ɥsoſ-*thumbs up*