Kitsune of Kitsune’s Thoughts: A Thinking Fans Interview

Posted by Linda Yau on Jun 13, 2011 in Animation, Comic Books, Fandom |

sakurabannertitle

A few years back when I began my first blog another blogger commented on a post I wrote. I followed back, and I became a reader of his own blog. Kitsune of Kitsune Thought’s, what I always appreciate are intelligent content, and comments, so to my knowledge Kitsune has been a great person to talk to via blog comments. Here’s my interview:

candy candy

What was your first anime title? Was it the same as your first manga title?

I don’t recall my first anime and manga titles because my first encounters happened at a very young age. Candy Candy, Speed Racer, Saint Seiya, and Maison Ikkoku are some of the series that come to mind, but I have not watched them systematically. The first anime series that I followed regularly was Sailor Moon. I noticed that my taste changed over the years from fire to water element. Tonari no Totoro was the first anime movie that left a significant and lasting impression on me because it felt very different compared to other animated films of the 80s – it remains one of my favorites to this day.

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What’s your favorite title and why?

I tend to like anime with strong female characters, such as Nausicaa and Nakiami. My favorite anime series is Kemono no Souja Erin. Most people have not seen this anime, and it is certainly not for everyone, but I enjoyed it very much due to excellent directing, editing, background art, music, and characters, among other things. If you are an empathic person, the anime will take you through a kaleidoscope of emotions: you’ll laugh in one episode and cry in another, as you witness Erin grow through the years.

The show is primarily directed at children, but it is for the whole family, and even adults may have difficulty noticing some nuances (based on the forum and blog posts at the time of airing, most people couldn’t read subtle hints in dialog and carefully crafted visual narration in the beginning of the series).

The anime is based on books by Nahoko Uehashi Ph.D., a professor of cultural anthropology, who also wrote Seirei no Moribito. Uehashi skillfully weaved some social and political commentary in the story, but the anime is based only on the first two books. I hope one day they will animate the last two books as well.

kuragehime

Has there been a recent series that you would recommend people to check out?

Ah, recommendations… That’s one of the topics I can talk about for hours… Recommendations should be highly personalized. A simple statistic based on whatever measure of central tendency or variability you choose may not predict your enjoyment of an anime well (a more complex algorithm might do better). If I know what anime you like and why you like them, I can suggest an anime and explain why I like it. Then you can choose whether you want to invest time in trying that anime. Thus, it is not easy to make one good overall suggestion (Ghibli films is a good choice in most cases though). Nevertheless, if I had to recommend one recent anime, it would be Kuragehime [Princess Jellyfish], a fun comedy with nice music and eccentric characters πŸ™‚

Although the question is about a recent anime, I feel compelled to warn people about one old anime, an anime killer – Legend of the Galactic Heroes. Be very careful, for after watching this anime you might loose desire to watch any new anime because nothing may come even close.

madoka

Is there any fandom(s) that you would be an avid follower for?

Recently, I joined the Church of Madoka ( just kidding πŸ˜› ). What is this morbid fascination with that girl with a scary pet? The other Madoka who played a saxophone was much better! :)I enjoy Ghibli films very much, and eagerly await every new release. Also, I have to confess that I love one 17 year old… Yes, I know it is bad, but I just can’t help it – she has a voice of a first class goddess πŸ˜‰

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Are there any issues in the trend of anime and manga that you feel passionate about?
  • 3D animation: Over the years things improved, but some anime that try to incorporate 3D still fail miserably. Ristorante Paradiso is a good recent example of 3D done right.
  • Excessive Fanservice: Too many shows pander specific audience.
  • Advances in Technology: Nowadays, given enough time and talent, you can create a short anime yourself. Shinkai is a great example, but not everyone can achieve the same results.
  • Simultaneous Casting: There should be a system for easy and affordable payment for content.
Why did you decide to start social media/blogging?A long time ago, I wanted to create a website for publishing my anime reviews. The Anime Cafe was one of my inspirations. I sketched a general layout, set architecture, learned some database stuff, etc., but it never came to fruition because I realized that I don’t have enough time to write reviews, and, when I actually started writing, it took a long time because I am a perfectionist – it felt like writing an academic rhetorical analysis paper. Nevertheless, I started a blog because I wanted to share some of the pictures I took and my favorite anime music videos, as well as some aspects of Japanese culture.
What is your favorite part in the blogging experience?

We often take things for granted, but, sometimes, I take a step back and think how wonderful it really is to be able to communicate with people all over the world whom I would have probably never met otherwise. Over the years, I corresponded with some very interesting individuals, and learned a great deal. I am addicted to learning. If I post something that is interesting to me, other people with similar interests may offer their perspective, provide suggestions and further resources. Conversely, I may read an engaging post and write a post or a comment as a response on an issue. Thus, learning and communication with a wide variety of people are my favorite parts.

Other than your own blogging site, has there been any other social media projects/site that you have been involved with?

I started working on some projects, but have not finished them due to time constraints. I post of forums occasionally and more active on my twitter than my blog. Recent projects that seem promising are Melative and that joint anime viewing group.

What are tips you can offer for other people looking into getting into the hobby that you are in?
  • Don’t turn your hobby into work. Many a blogger feels too much pressure to produce regular posts and may burn out eventually. Post when you feel like it and enjoy the process.
  • Think carefully about episodic coverage. It’s a trap. Assess how much time you’ll spend on screencapping, writing, editing, and then decide if it is really worth it. Alternatively, you can just comment on key aspects of an episode that kindled your interest, rather than making a full write up or write a review at the end of a season.
  • Write for the internet. Unless you are publishing a copy of your academic work, write in a format appropriate for the web. Avoid text walls – paragraphs and highlights are your friends. This guy can teach how to do it right.
  • Don’t measure your worth with statistics. Almost everyone falls for this one, especially in the beginning, but you’ll attain enlightenment eventually. It’s kind of like altruism: you help someone and don’t care about their response, don’t expect anything in return. Similarly, with blogging, just post something you really enjoy and don’t expect anything. If many people visit and comment – good, if not, that’s fine too. If you write about something you are passionate about and participate in the blogging community, visits to your blog and comments will increase naturally overtime. Also note that number of comments is a poor indicator of post quality: more controversial posts will get more comments. If you are one of those who are too desperate for an audience and response, you could try forums or writing for well-established team blogs with large stable following.

Do you picture yourself as an anime/manga fan/blogger, ten years from now?

If I am alive and well, I’ll keep blogging. The flame might diminish, but it will never extinguish.

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