Wednesday, 17 June 2009

The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya & Manga update

Well this was going to happen sooner but I got waylaid so here goes...

The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya.

I wanted this so much when it came out around November time last year but if ya hadn't noticed there's a recession on and one consequence of this was threat Beez's UK distributor went into receivership but I managed to get this reissue.

The story revolves around Haruhi Suzumiya, a high school girl obsessed with finding all forms of the extraordinary and supernatural, and Kyon, a cynical classmate who proclaims his non-belief in such matters and narrates the series. After being displeased with the mundane happenings at school and the lack of interesting after-school clubs, she forms her own, the SOS Brigade, to investigate any mysterious happenings, with Kyon forcibly drafted as its second member.

She drafts in additional members into the SOS club and in time they are revealed to be the extraordinary characters she is seeking (Yuki, an artificial human created by the extraterrestrial Integrated Data Entity; Mikuru, Time Traveller; and Itsuki, esper), sent by their various organizations to observe Haruhi. All see Haruhi as possessing a superhuman control over the universe, capable even of recreating the entire universe in a state of dissatisfaction and attempt to prevent this by keeping her entertained, holding her powers in check, and maintaining the illusion of a normal life.

The series became an Internet phenomenon and in the absence had to make do with a subbed import with so-so quality but have now gotten the UK R2 Re-issue 4 dvd set

Also on June 8th Slayers Next Vol 2 DVD arrived here - you wouldn't believe the trouble wanting Dragon dishes can cause! - and that was fun to watch.

I am presently reading Otomen 1 by Aya Kanno
The plot revolves around a conundrum.
Asuka Masamune loves girly things such as knitting, sewing making cute animals and reading shojo comics. Ryo Miyakozuka can't sow or bake cakes but is draw to Asuka!
Asuka inhabiting a world that calls upon boys such as him to act manly must hide his real identity in order to play the Jock which is what attracts Ryo as a girl.
Can they ever get it together? What really happened to Askura's father???
In many respects it's a story about sexual politics in Japan, the function of sexual identities in society and how that applies to those who don't fit in them.

I quite like shojo beats' titles and this published by Viz in the States is a great thought provoking manga.

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