Must-read Monthly Monday (inaugural ed.)

If you paid close attention to the intro post, you might’ve seen something new…

…this segment!

If you haven’t read the intro post on what it entails, it’ll launch the Monday before the next Ode to Anime Studios is due (i.e. last Monday of the month, hence “monthly Monday”), and it’s a roundup post for the month.

Plus, even though it’s Christmas, I made good on what I said, there isn’t anything remotely Christmas-related here.

If it’s not specified, the time period covered in this post is from when I started the Spellbook (November 21st 2017) to today (Christmas Day 2017).

Other People’s Reads

It wouldn’t be a round-up post without them. However, since I scour people’s archives on a regular basis, these may not even be from the right time period…

  • The Most Underrated Jump Manga by Nicholas Dupree for Anime News Network – Finding both volumes of Barrage at a library one time was like I’d struck gold, so this article made me bask in some nice nostalgia.
  • Transformation by Natasha (illegenes) for Shibireru Darou – Some interesting musings on what it means to change, as seen through the lens of Land of the Lustrous episodes 2 – 3.
  • Why Believing in Yourself is Easy to Say But Hard to Do by Karandi at 100 Word Anime – This is one of the main catalysts why the Animanga Spellbook exists, so even though it missed the cutoff on the date by a few days, I believe it deserves a position in the inaugural round-up.
  • The Women of Yuri on Ice by Caitlin at I Have a Heroine Problem – Can you believe it’s been over a year – 4 seasons – since Yuri!!! on Ice? While you wait for more news on the YoI movie, you can read this. Or read it again, I don’t care.
  • Recovery of an MMO Junkie Series Review by John Samuel of Pirates of the Burley Griffin – This is a nice draw-in if you’re on the fence about this show and a nice meditation if you’ve finished it.
  • Wonder and Terror in The Ancient Magus’ Bride by Nick Creamer for Crunchyroll – Time and time again, I’ve found myself nodding my head at Nick’s work, regardless of where I see it, and this is no exception. Pretty much any blog writer for Crunchyroll who talks about Ancient Magus’ Bride really has a way with words, but the connections drawn out about how the show elicits these two emotions in conjunction with each other is something I’d like to aspire to.
  • Mob Psycho 100 Has a Con Artist You Can Really Root For by Richard Eisenbeis for Anime Now – Reigen is a good chunk of Mob Psycho 100‘s charm, but this article makes you wonder whether he’s pulling the same shtick on Mob as he does with his clients, and warms your heart in doing so.
  • Land of the Lustrous is the Most Visually Interesting Show in Ages by Carol Grant for Medium – This post draws together many parallels from different mediums to examine how Land of the Lustrous handles body horror, self-purpose, 3D and (briefly) mise en scene to create something truly wondrous. I don’t get all the parallels myself since I’m not a movie buff, but regardless of your movie knowledge level you can still enjoy this.
  • Do Anime Fans Care About Whether Their Favourites Have Long-Lasting Appeal? by Mr. Flawfinder at Standing on My Neck – An interesting idea to ponder. (On a short note about a point made within the post: I separate “timeless classics” like SGRS from “favourites I’d recommend to someone who knows something about anime/manga” like Noragami.)
  • Day 3 – Lustrous and Jewelry by Clarity-rence at Part-Time Scribbling  Part of the 12 Days of Anime (more on that if you scroll a bit further) and the third time Houseki no Kuni makes its presence known here out of 10 links. This post made me think again about what appears to be an innocuous piece of Land of the Lustrous merchandise.

Spellbook Offerings

Also known as “posts in your orbit”.

I just completed the 12 Days of Anime with my winter 2018 shows. Make sure to check the category for the posts I did (there should be navigation links on the bottom of each post, but there’s no particular order to them) and the spreadsheet for a backlog of interesting reading material from a variety of bloggers. This is my self-promo section so here’s my favourites from my own pickings (with the topic mentioned for each because I counted the days in reverse):

  • Day 12 (about Wanna Be the Strongest in the World!/Sekai de Ichiban Tsuyoku Naritai!) – I think my points came across very clearly in this one. This show’s not the worst thing I’ve seen, period – that award (?) would go to Vampire Holmes – but it’s a good start to the 12 Days.
  • Day 7 (about CGI in 2017) – With a smattering of shows containing both visually impressive and visually clunky CGI, it’s the right time to talk about it. Then again, I might just like this post because my penchant for bad puns is showing in this post’s title…
  • Day 6 (about Houseki no Kuni/Land of the Lustrous) – It’s only about 300 words, but it cuts to the heart of the issue and gives a new perspective on one of the show’s central topics. This is arguably the best piece I’ve done for the entire 12 days, if I do say so myself.
  • Day 2 (about Boku no Hero Academia: Vigilantes) – A post I’ve been working on since the blog began, so of course it makes the cut. You can feel my enthusiasm in every word of this post, I think.
  • Day 1 (see above for link) – I always give a lot of thought to my predictions, regardless of whether I consult them later or not. It’s fun to predict and then look back at your show lineup, because then you can analyse your choices and what works with you as a viewer.

Coming up next…

  • This coming Wednesday and Thursday, I’ll be capping off my 2017 with a bumper double feature! Check back for the yearly rankings and a whole bunch of categorical awards, both usual and strange. Then, the next of Irina’s blogwarming parties will happen around the time we return to regularly-scheduled programming.
  • I’ve got a lot of half-finished posts from the 12 Days of Anime, so you might get some of them once I manage to complete them. I’ve already got posts lined up for most of January, so I’ve got enough time to finsh them.
  • The fall 2017 season isn’t over just yet for me, but the winter 2018 season’s first lot of hot takes should drop in about 1 – 2 weeks. I’ll announce my lineup here once it’s solidified and on the simulcast commentary spreadsheet (which may take another week or two) on the next edition of Must-read Monthly Monday.
  • As of this post, I’m currently halfway through Madoka Magica and I started Evangelion recently. I can’t promise you that I’ll have anything on those two, but there might be something. They’re just tough to get through, because…y’know…
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