Blog Archive

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Melody and Afterglow of Grisaia:

Two more short stories released to steam now have piratable versions ready to play for free.  I'm not sure how much these short stories are worth, since they were made long after the original games as just a cash grab (and thus were never part of the original vision/continuity of the story), but it wouldn't hurt to try them and find out.  The same for the upcoming Grisaia spinoff sequel.

Meanwhile, I've finished Durara Ketsu, and thus all of Durara.  My rewatch of this vast series can now be checked off the to do list.  I can't say much in praise of Durara.  The plot points feel forced and confusing, rather than flowing naturally from one to the next.  Orihara Izaya should have been killed Shizuo like he promised when he said 'abeyo,' and then turned off the phone.  Any ending short of Izaya or Shizuo's death in that circumstance is totally unnatural and contrived.  Ryuugamine Mikado started changing his mind about what he wanted so quickly it was like he had gone totally insane, no rational person changes his ways that quickly that often.  Celty deciding to leave town and then changing her mind just because Shinra flew into the air makes no sense either.

Everyone in this show is either crazy or acts crazy despite supposedly being sane.  Seiji is crazy.  The girl who loves him, Mika, is crazy.  The Slasher is crazy.  Takashi, the guy she loves, has no discernible reason behind any of his actions so he may as well be crazy too.  Aoba acts crazy, and his brother Izumii seems straight-out crazy.  Izaya's two younger sisters are clearly crazy.  Hollywood is crazy.  So is the stalker hunting her.  At a certain point, when every single character and every single plot point can be described as 'well the guy/girl was crazy so that's why x happened.'  You just shut down.  As a viewer, it's just a bunch of nonsense piled on top of each other like a garbage pile.  It's no longer a structure representing anything.  The only reason Durara is ranked is because it's paired with Baccano, a much better story.  It's possible to watch all of Durara twice, I did it after all, but I wouldn't recommend it to anyone else.

I finished God Emperor of Dune, which was a good book, though confusing, and started up on Heretics of Dune, which is just bad.  It has no relation to any of the previous books.  In fact, so much has changed between Heretics and God-Emperor that it may as well have been set in a completely different franchise.  There are no characters from the first four books in book five.  It's just like, 'hey, meet some new guys in this new world 10,000 years after everything else that's happened.'  Why should I care about them?  They have nothing to do with Paul or Alia, Ghanima or Leto II.  Why are they bothering me with their pointless random lives?  I never fell in love with them, so why would I care whatever the hell they're doing or up to?

Oh well, I still have to finish the series, just for completion's sake.  Just Heretics and Chapter House left to go.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Once More, Into the Breach:

The reason why diversity/immigration is bad is complicated.  It rests upon a set of independent principles/data/findings which, when all put together, adds up to a utilitarian slant towards white homogeneity.  So let's just go through the steps one by one, so that everyone can follow the reasoning until the inevitable conclusion emerges.

1)  People's traits and tendencies at the macroscale are immutable.  This is proven by hundreds of years of consistent IQ testing all across the world, by the Minnesota Trans-racial Adoption Study, by Rushton's Race, Evolution and Behavior, as well as every other study ever done by mankind.  North Koreans, despite living in poverty, have not suddenly grown dumb.  Nor have black children of rich black parents scored as well on the SAT as white children of poor white parents.  When you zoom out and look at any race or ethnicity or nationality, the results always stay the same across any length of time, regardless of their circumstances.

2)  People from every race, ethnicity or nationality can be well-behaved, nice, productive people.  Let us even say the majority of every group is like that.  Nevertheless, due to the fact that it is easier to tear down than to build up (look at the one single truck driver in Nice who killed 76 Frenchmen in a few seconds who had spent their whole lives building themselves up), if any group has even a small minority of destructive individuals, all of the benefits of the nice majority are wiped out, and you in fact end up in the negative.  This is why El Salvador, Haiti, Syria, Somalia and the like are all shitholes, because the influence of the destructive minority far exceeds the influence of the productive majority.

3)  It is impossible to distinguish the good from the bad ahead of time.  If there were some magical test that could tell what was in people's hearts, there wouldn't be any crime or adultery or lies in the first place.  Humans have evolved to deceive incredibly well, to the point that there's simply no way to separate the wheat from the tares.  Often times, 'wheat' from a foreign group spontaneously mutates into 'tares', which they themselves had no plan on doing until the moment it actually happens.  If they can't even see the darkness in their own hearts waiting to pulse upwards and seize control of the sentience throne, then how the hell are a few bureaucrats going through checklists at immigration and customs sites going to manage it?  The only data we can have on an individual is his statistical likelihood of being good or bad based on the group he belongs to.  If you belong to a net-destructive group, odds are you're a net-destructive individual, and that's the best assessment we can possibly do as to your utility beforehand.  Afterwards it's already too late, any assessment is pointless, because both the costs and the benefits have already accrued.  So waiting and seeing is also obviously out of the question.  Once America or Sweden or whatever has been reduced to El Salvador, Syria or Somalia, it's too late to say "Oops, I guess our screening process was wrong."

4)  Not only must immigrants make up for all the duds in their midst if they wish to contribute to their new homeland, they must be so much better that their net benefit exceeds the natives just having another white child in the normal manner instead.  The marginal gain of an immigrant must at least exceed the expected value of a normal Swede, German, Frenchman, white American, etc, to even start discussing why we should be letting immigrants from abroad into our country.

5)  Many harmful traits of foreign cultures/nationalities are hard to even conceptualize or describe, and yet they obviously exist.  For instance, Chinese and Vietnamese seem like smart, hard working, law abiding fellows, and yet somehow when you put them together, in aggregate, you get China and Vietnam.  These countries are terrible, a huge step down from the countries white people make for themselves when left alone, like Switzerland and Australia.  I may not even be able to pinpoint what I find objectionable about a Chinese immigrant, but the lived-experiment of mainland China speaks for itself.  Why would we want another China overseas when we already saw what the first one did with itself?  Why would we want to become more Chinese when we're already better than them?

6)  There's value in diversity.  Even if prospective immigrants really are superior to the natives, so long as they aren't strictly superior, there's no reason to invade and repopulate a country with a new breed.  Japanese, for instance, should not replace Europe and America, despite being better than Europe and America, because there are strengths white people have that Japanese lack.  If nothing else, our looks and athleticism.  But I also feel our rebelliousness, creativity, ingenuity, martial prowess and other traits clearly stack up favorably to Japanese.  I prefer Japan over anywhere else on Earth, but I prefer a world that includes both Japan and Europe to a world of just pure Japan.

7)  This logic extends outside the field of immigration.  It's the same reason all children shouldn't just be made into women, despite women on average having higher utility than men.  It's also the reason why we don't have to put up with gays, despite some gays being swell people.  And so on.  So long as a group is net-destructive, or at least net-not-more-productive than just a normal additional straight person being born, that group can be rightfully banished/shunned/eliminated for the health of the community.

8)  Once you allow diversity into your country, you must treat it fairly, because people are repulsed and revolted at the idea of doing injustice to others in their midst.  Imagine a girl who has fallen in love and wishes to miscegenate.  No matter how many statistics you pull up showing her black partner is likely to abuse her, abandon her, go to jail, or give her an STD, she'll just say 'this one is different' and insist on following her heart.  Tearing that couple apart by force would be a crime against the sanctity of love, which is just impermissible from a moral standpoint.  And yet most of these lovers will quickly find out we were right and they were wrong, and suffer horribly due to their decision.  Once that black fellow was in our midst, the entire train wreck was unavoidable.  For the same reason, our  revulsion against injustice means we can't have segregation, apartheid, second class citizenship, slavery, or any other setup that may ameliorate the bad consequences of diversity.  Once they're in they're in, till death do us part.

9)  For thousands of years, whites have shown that they are the sole sources of artistic, philosophical and technological breakthroughs in the world.  We have a divine mission to continue this legacy in order to safeguard and advance mankind.  We can't stay on this world forever.  A nuclear war, asteroid, or the sun going red giant will inevitably happen.  Therefore, as the stewards of all life in the universe, we must first and foremost preserve ourselves, so that the spark of creation, the future, and hope can live on.  If anyone is going to develop the tools necessary to spread throughout the galaxy and the universe in a form that is both resplendent and sustainable, it obviously has to be us.  Which means we can't be bogged down, or even pulled under, by all these third worlders with their third world concerns like crime, poverty, health care or whatever.

10)  Even if it were possible with the perfect law code and the perfect set of behavior and the perfect institutions and so on to uplift under-performing groups, it isn't worth risking the cradle of civilization and progress, which means risking all life in the universe for the rest of time, on such a pointless and petty mission.  Trillions of people will be living in the future, or not, based on the decisions we make right now.  Mankind is at the crux of an immeasurably important moment.  We can either extend to the stars or destroy ourselves, and it is immeasurably important that we get this see-saw teetering in the right direction.  The idea that we should take a break and devote half our budget to helping out El Salvador and saving it from itself, even if this were possible, is patently absurd.  Talk about missing the forest for the trees.  If the world runs out of carbon and we all starve to death because plants can no longer grow, it won't matter whether we provided AIDS relief to the starving children in Africa beforehand.  But if we're an intergalactic empire, we could solve such problems with the wave of our hands.  Investment in the future, not frittering our time away on backwards cultures, is the only solution to anything and everything.

Cowboys Lose, but not all is lost:

The Cowboys lost against one of the finest quarterback performances I've ever seen in Aaron Rodgers.  I knew he was good, but not that good.  Poor clock management was our undoing in the end.  We would have taken it to overtime except for that.

Now I'm officially neutral on the four remaining teams, I'm cheering for them all.  Whoever wins I'll be equally happy.  Except for the Steelers.  I want the Steelers, at least, to lose.  They have a habit of doing dirty, violent hits on defenseless players for no damn reason, but just because they're mean.  Plus they've already won the super bowl a record 6 times, the last thing they need is another trophy when four NFL teams haven't even played in the super bowl yet.  (Browns, Lions, Jaguars and Texans)

Meanwhile, I'm no longer enamored with Idol Jihen.  The latest episode wasn't nearly as good as the first episode, and it looks like this show's highest potential will merely be good, not great.  That leaves Seiren as my only remaining greatness candidate for the winter season.  Even if Seiren is great, it won't get a separate listing, though.  Like Baccano/Durara, Seiren is in the same world as Amagami SS, with characters who are connected to Amagami SS, with a plot and method very similar to Amagami SS, made by the same people who made Amagami SS.  All Seiren can do, then, is burnish the legacy of Amagami by joining it on the top stage.  My rankings will remain at 187.

I finished listening to Tales of Xillia's music.  Next up is Tales of Zestiria's.  It's kind of fun that I'll be listening to the music and watching the anime at the same time now.  Xillia's music is my favorite out of all the Tales games.  It's probably just my favorite Tales game straight out.

I'll listen to Berseria's soundtrack after I beat the game.  The same for FF XV's soundtrack.

I'm reading God Emperor of Dune (a fitting book for Trump's inauguration.)  The fourth book out of Frank Herbert's original six, so I'm over halfway finished.

I read Index's latest book in a single day, but it wasn't actually any good.  Oh well.  In such long series, it tends to have ups and downs.  The previous novel was very good, so you just never know.

Looking ahead to the spring anime season, 2.5 months from now, things are going to get really crazy.  If you thought this winter season was good, you ain't seen nuttin yet.

Continuing Series:

Naruto (in the form of Bolt)
One Piece
Kira Kira a la mode Precure
Dragon Ball Super
Seiren(?)

Sequel Series:

Berserk 2
Danmachi Sword Oratoria
Kyoukai no Rinne 3
Shingeki no Kyojin 2

Known Good new Series:

eromanga Sensei

Probably Good new Series:

Clockwork Planet
Rokudenashi Majutsu

Possibly good new series:

Busou Shoujo Machiavellianism
Granblue Fantasy the Animation
Hinako Note
Kabukibu
Re:CREATORS
Renai Bouken
Sagrada Reset
Sakura Quest
Shuumatsu Nani Shitemasu ka? blah blah
Tsugumomo
Zero Kara Hajimeru Mahou no Sho

In the next couple months, there will likely be more announcements for more spring shows as well.  There's a lot of good anime coming out this winter, but there will be a lot of well known great anime coming out this spring.  All the big guns are going to be unleashed at once.

In the slightly shorter term, the end of January/beginning of February will include Da Capo 3, Tales of Berseria, the remainder of the NFL season, and the resumption of The Flash, Supergirl, Legends of Tomorrow and Arrow.  Reading the Dune series is great and all, but things are going to steadily amp up towards true excitement starting from next week and then going forward all the way into the summer (when Game of Thrones returns!)

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Durarara Ketsu Subtitled in Blu-ray:

Durarara Ketsu, the third and final part of the second season of Durarara, is now out in blu-ray subtitled.  I've watched the blu-ray versions of part 1 and 2, so now after rewatching this I'll have rewatched Durarara in its entirety.  Another series I can remove from my checklist.  Schwarzesmarken and Yuru Yuri Season 3 bit the dust last week, so this whole blu-ray anime stuff is suddenly going quite smoothly in the fansub community.  I wonder what will come out next?  Working Season 3?

Meanwhile, I'm dropping Chain Chronicle.  I don't actually like the characters, the plot, or the setting.  It's all just too random and thrown together.  Healers stand next to mortally injured knights and don't even bother to heal their wounds.  That's just inexcusably dumb.  It feels like I'm playing a video game when they do their obvious game mechanic inspired chain attacks, and it breaks immersion.  You realize that none of this is real and it's all so silly.  I could just be actually playing Disgaea or Tears to Tiara 2 instead, so what possible benefit does this 'game-based show' bring to the table?  Rewrite has joined the party though, so the winter season is still at 20 shows.

The Texans lost, but I can still cheer for the Cowboys.  My football spirit will never falter.


Friday, January 13, 2017

Youjo Senki Promoted, Fuuka Dropped:

Youjo Senki has everything I want in a story.  A logical refutation of God.  A manly man who you can actually admire (even if he happens to be reborn as a cute blonde haired blue-eyed girl).  A historical revisionist war fought from the perspective of the German side as the good guys.  Killing like it's nothing and to be expected  (no dainty lectures on morality here!).  Like, I'm pretty sure this is heaven.  This is the most hard core alt-right anime I've ever seen.  This show would have never been made outside of Japan.  This show is pretty much samizdat contraband anywhere else on Earth, and they're just merrily throwing millions of dollars of production money at it over there.  God bless Japan, and God bless Carlos Zen for writing such a thrilling tale that this anime actually saw the light of day.

It's like the reverse side of the coin of Shuumatsu no Izetta.  Instead of optimism you get cynicism.  Instead of the Allies you get the Axis.  Obviously if Izetta is great then this show must be great too.  As such, Youjo Senki begins its ranked life at #187 on my top anime rankings list.  When the season is over I'll be able to place it more accurately, but just being ranked is good enough for now.

Since the anime is based on a light novel series (already 7 volumes in length), this also gets into my good books hall of fame.  Carlos Zen will be 33rd in the light novel authors' rankings until the end of the season where I get a better bead on just how good he is.

Incidentally, this now perfects my good books hall of fame.  Previously I had authors who were just doing spinoffs of other people's works which weren't originally light novels, but that's all gone now.  All thirty-three light novel categorized authors are original authors of their own original, light novel stories.  It took years for enough great light novel authors to show up, but now the final jigsaw piece has been placed.  I just hope there aren't any further good light novel authors for the rest of time, because I'd have to start excluding worthy people from here on if there are.

Meanwhile, Fuuka is dropped.  I think it's ridiculous that they would drown so quickly and so easily.  I think it's an unbelievable coincidence that Fuuka would track down our hero the very moment a gust of wind blows away his childhood friend's umbrella, forcing her to seek cover under their last remaining umbrella, thus making Fuuka think the protagonist is cheating on her.  It's all so pat.  So forced.  There's no inherent truth to this story, it just does whatever it wants to create fake drama.  It's like fake news.

That puts the current anime watchlist at 20 shows, with Yojo Senki proudly at the top.  Tomorrow the long-awaited resumption of Rewrite will join that list~

Thursday, January 12, 2017

World Cup Expands to 48 Teams:

Maybe the USA will be able to qualify in 2026?  Now that all the continents are being given larger quotas to fill in the 16 new slots, one would hope that the farce that is 2018 US men's qualifying will never be repeated again.  The USA is competing against tiny, low population banana republics in central America and the Caribbean, and we still can't hack it.  But once we lower the bar!  Once we lower the bar we'll definitely get to play with the big boys!

I'm a big fan of this expansion, though.  It's the World Cup, so getting larger representation from the whole world is always a thematic plus.  In addition, teams won't have to play any more games than they previously did, we're just shrinking the group stage (which is boring anyway) and expanding the elimination stage (which is where all the fun is).  Before we worry about a World Cup that's nine years away, though, I'd like to be given some assurance that Russia's 2018 World Cup is not yanked from under them via new sanctions or boycotts.  The amount of hate that's been piled on Russia recently has to be unprecedented, which is all the more amazing considering how much their human rights record has improved since any previous time in their history.  Talk about moving goalposts.  But perhaps the crest of the tide will be the 2018 World Cup, after which everyone will get tired of beating on Russia and we can go back to peaceful, friendly relations again.  If Russia can keep its hosting of the World Cup, that will be a sign that the anti-Russia frenzy has finally worn itself out.

Meanwhile, the San Diego Chargers are moving back to their ancestral home of L.A. (their birthplace in 1960) I'm totally in favor of this decision.  The most spectacular stadium of all time is being built for L.A. pro football.  The question wasn't whether it would host two teams (and thus have a home game every weekend), it was only what two teams they would be.  The Chargers would be foolhardy to pass on the golden ticket the owners gave them last year to be the #2 team after the Rams.  If they waited any longer it would have gone to the Raiders, and then the Chargers would have been stuck in their crumbling stadium for the rest of eternity.  This way the Chargers get a shiny new stadium in a shiny new home (which has over twice the population of San Diego and thus deserves two teams more than San Diego ever deserved one), and the Raiders will still get the same when they move to Las Vegas.  Nobody in Vegas wanted the Chargers, so only this particular arrangement would have gotten all three teams into new, world-class stadiums.  As far as the overall NFL's health goes, this is just a no-brainer.

San Diego and Oakland had a chance to finance new stadiums and they turned it down, so to hell with them.  NFL teams are a rare commodity and there's no point putting pearls before swine.  I'm still waiting for an NFL team to move to San Antonio, and these people are actively thumbing their noses at their own teams.  Boy will they miss 'em when they're gone.  It's not like Oakland or San Diego have anything else to be proud about.

Meanwhile, Index's latest volume has been translated, New Testament #17, so now's your chance to catch up on Touma's latest misfortunes.

I finished Kokoro's route in Majikoi S.  Only a million more to go.

The Labyrinth of Grisaia's 18+ version has been released.  I think the anime covered the VN well enough that it's not really necessary to have for any but the most die-hard fans though.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Winter 2017 Anime First Impressions: Part 2

Gabriel Dropout:  The very beginning scene, where her angelic nature was hooked by the need to help all the hurt people in the online game, to the point of sacrificing herself, was genius.  Everything after that has been done before many times and isn't that funny to begin with.  It's just a gathering of jerks and losers at this point, there's nothing funny about that.  Just a lot of misery.  Fail.

Onihei:  For a historical drama, what's with the jazz music?  Totally out of place.  The show is way too vulgar, gruesome and nasty.  On top of it, it's a totally lifeless and pointless show where cops fight evil criminals.  That's like doing an anime about garbage men collecting the trash.  Or janitors cleaning up messes on the floor.  There are no interesting decisions, characters, or dialogue to be found anywhere.  The art style is hyper realistic and thus annoying in its own right.  And what was with that ridiculous sword fight where he took out twenty robbers on his own when at the start of the fight he was in a giant army of cops at his side?  So stupid.  Fail. 

ACCA 13:  A completely boring and pointless show.  At best its a smoking commercial.  Fail.

Hand Shakers:  A weird futuristic CG series that delights in being CG instead of actually telling its story.  In addition, in order to keep the audience's attention, half the time it's just a hentai instead of an actual story.  However, the other half of the time is genuinely interesting.  A boy has lost his little sister, but meets an artificial being that resembles her and gives him a chance to redeem himself by protecting her this time around.  I can get behind that.  Plus the girl is beautiful.  Pass.

Kemono Friends:  This is the perfect anime for five year olds.  Like, move over Pretty Cure, this is God's own children's show.  I may be a little older, but not to the point where I can't recognize enchantment when it arrives.  This show may also be the best CG anime I've ever seen.  They use the tools subtly and correctly, instead of the in your face nonsense of Hand Shakers and the like.  Kemono Friends is breaking ground in lots of new ways.  Is it a zoo tour?  A monster hunter type game?  A classic tale of friendship overcoming adversity?  Who knows!  The important thing is to tune in next week!  Pass. 

Piacce no Italian:  Short.  Fail.

One Room:  Short and creepy.  Fail.

Kobayashi-san Chi no Maid Dragon:  The animation is fine, though I dislike the art style.  It's not Kyoto Animation that's to blame.  The problem is that Kyoto Animation felt this was worth animating in the first place.  It isn't.  Not even remotely.  For a story with no plot, you absolutely need appealing characters (like Urara Meirochou.)  These characters aren't appealing.  A lying drunk.  A violent, stupid, gross dragon.  There's just nothing to work with here.  No reason to watch this show.  No plot, no characters worth paying any attention to, nothing.  This is the first truly bad Kyoto Animation show.  Even Kyoukai no Kanata was mediocre.  This is just plain bad.  Fail.

Kuzu no Honkai:   A show about a slutty girl who couldn't have love so substituted sexual gratification for it instead.  Now she's in a relationship sworn to never have feelings over, which is pretty much the perfect definition of a slut.  I don't see how this is any different from substituting any other chemical rush in its place, like alcohol, drugs, or cigarettes.  Anyone relying on chemicals to get through life is a loser, and I'm not interested in wasting time watching the life of losers.  Also the guy is such a coward for not going all the way.  I'm sure that's just to abide by the censorship laws though, so really it's Japan that's a coward for not letting true sluts exist in their fiction.  Fail.

Bang Dream apparently airs in nine days, but otherwise this is the full winter lineup.  This second half did not live up to the first half's quality. As a result, Winter 2017's lineup is still a surprising number of watchable shows, but it's not record breaking or anything.

Currently I'd rate the worthwhile airing shows in this order:

1.  Tales of Zestiria the X 
2.  Youjo Senki
3.  Idol Jihen
4.  Seiren
5.  Dragon Ball Super 
6.  Naruto Shippuuden
7.  Urara Meirochou
8.  Demi-chan wa Kataritai
9.  Kemono Friends
10.  Chain Chronicle
11.  Mahoutsukai Precure
12.  Konosuba 2
13.  One Piece
14.  Koro-sensei Quest
15.  Fuuka
16.  Masamune-kun no Revenge
17.  Eidlive
18.  Minami Kamakura Koukou Joshi Jitensha-bu
19.  Schoolgirl Strikers
20.  Hand Shakers

I'm sure to drop more series as the season progresses and I run out of patience with them, but I'm also sure to add Chaos;Child and Rewrite to the lineup once they start airing, so staying around 20 shows all season long is eminently plausible.