Nikki's Corner (sennetari) wrote,
Nikki's Corner

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[Meme] Fandoms of 2012

(Well, it's almost a month into 2013 already, so might as well put this up. I'm probably not going to be able to improve it even if I let it stay on my computer any longer.)

Ah, I did this meme two years ago. No longer remember where from the f-list I stole the meme from. ^^;

And I know I can simply list the name for each category without elaborating. But I like giving some reasons for (or at least my feelings toward) my choices. So wall of text ahead, probably.

First Fandom of 2012:
Yamada-kun and the Seven Witches. From the creator of Yankee-kun and Megane-chan (which I still never get around to checking out (either the drama or the manga)). I read Yamada since it came out in February, but I'm occasionally on and off on the series (like to read it more in batches rather than to wait week by week), so maybe I shouldn't really list it. But in that case I have no idea what I should put here...

Favorite Main Character of 2012:
Haruto from Kamen Rider Wizard. I really shouldn't be hasty and say this when there are only 16 episodes out (as of the end of 2012), but I'll be optimistic that the writers are not going to mess up his characterization -- which is rather complex, imho. It's not that he is anti-social/aloof precisely. He seems friendly enough on the surface, but I don't feel like he shares much of himself with anyone. (It is almost like it doesn't matter to him what could happen to him personally -- physically and mentally -- as long as people are saved.) I don't know. He just seems different from the past three years' main riders, who were more or less 'what-you-see-is-what-you-get' nice guys with practically no shade of dark side.

And that was a very pleasant surprise, that Haruto does not outwardly appear as 'hero-ish' as his predecessors, and seems more mysterious and darker. Not that I dislike those past riders (scroll down and see me listing two of those as my favorites), but a variation* once in a while for the main rider would be nice.

And, if nothing else (there are plenty else, but it's too embarrassing to write them out), how can I not love a character whose name is almost literally made of heart? Yes, I think heart is usually rendered as haato, but let me have my illusion.

*(I don't know how true this is, but I heard that Eiji (from Kamen Rider OOO) was originally supposed to be a darker character. Not sure if that would be a good idea actually. Kind of glad with the characterization he ended up getting...)

Favorite Villain of 2012:
I don't tend to like villains all that much. No matter if they are villains with tragic past/backstory, or pure villains with no shade of anything good, or the types of villains I haven't thought about. For no particular reason other than I am shallow and like cheering more for the good guys.

So the answer to this one is more like the villains who don't annoy me. Who make me glad that they are there to foil the good guys' plans. Who are intelligent and use the heroes (and everyone else) to their advantages. Who (preferably) do not change sides (bad to good, or good to bad (though this one sounds more like a backstabbing character on the good guy side)). I want the villains to believe in and stick with what they are doing and don't turn good just because the heroes manage to sweet talk them into it.

I admit, that is a very generic description that would fit many villains. My deal breaker is the annoyance part. If I'm annoyed with a character (for whatever reason -- could be non-rational sometimes), I wouldn't care to check if he/she fits the rest of that description.

So, from a purely subjective point of view, my answer is Enter from Go-Busters. I don't think he's the greatest villain there is or anything even close to that, but he manages to entertain me. Watching him is really a refreshing experience. I don't want him to win, of course, but sometimes I can't help thinking he is too competent for the Go-Busters.

And, bonus, Hayami from Kamen Rider Fourze. I dislike most of the villains there (imho, they become villains for childishly selfish reasons), so Hayami is definitely a surprise (in a good way, if that's even possible for a villain). I actually don't remember his reasons for his turn toward darkness, but obviously whatever they are, they don't bother me.

Favorite Character of 2012:
Isn't this already covered by the second (or third) question? But I guess I shouldn't waste an opportunity to list more people.

So, if not counting anything not airing in 2012, I've settled on Kamen Rider Fourze. While I've warmed up to most of the Kamen Rider club, Gentarou remains my favorite. I'm not even sure I can explain exactly what I like about him (maybe because he easily believes (and easily forgives) people and will most likely never learn to be less trusting). Perhaps it's his ordinary-ness. He is a normal person who asks to be put into extraordinary circumstances. Everything (stuff, events, people) seems to revolve around him (well, he would not be the main character otherwise). Or more correctly, he goes and reaches out to people, and when faced with that kind of boundless enthusiasm, how many people could have resisted him? I mean, if Gentarou wanted to be friends with the sun, I guess nothing could possibly stop him. ^^;;

And I think Gentarou is one of those easy to read people. Normally I prefer characters to have at least a secret or two (i.e. be more mysterious like Kengo), yet in this case I actually prefer an almost complete open book. Wearing his heart on his sleeves is probably his weakness, yet at the same time I believe it is also his strength. I mean, people are probably more likely to trust (and sometimes betray, but that goes with the territory) someone like him, who seems like he has virtually nothing to hide, than someone whose intention is obscure or unknown. And he needs the trust, since he intends to be friends with everyone. Yes, it's rather a naive worldview, to think that everyone would want to be his friend, but I don't think he is all talk -- he is doing all he can to prove that it is worth it to be his friend.

Gentarou is the type of character no one could possibly doubt is a hero. Even someone who finds him annoying (or whatever other problem they might have with him) probably would have a hard time denying that he is a good guy who really does want to help people.

(Ah, I'm lazy and just mostly cut and paste what I wrote about Shoutarou. It works so well I'm a bit scared by how alike I find Shoutarou and Gentarou to be. Their series share a writer, though, so perhaps their similarities are not entirely coincidental.)

Favorite Het Couple of 2012:
I really really can't think of any. So have Tokiko and Kintoki from Mantama. ^^;; This anime did air in 2012, after all. (And, yes, they are het.) As for why them, I guess I have my weird humor. Silver and gold are not cute at all? Oh, but they totally are.

More serious answer, I would say Kouga and Kaoru (GARO: Makai Senki), but they have been together since way back in the original series, so I'm not sure they count. But I don't care either way. Maybe it's slow, but I like their courtship, which I find really fit the tone of the series (good guys have pure innocent romance; bad guys have more graphic ways to express desire). (And I may be one of those rare people who like Kaoru.) In any case, everyone that matters in the series knows they love each other and supports them, and that's good enough for me. (And this only works in English, but they share four out of five letters in their names.)

Favorite Yuri Couple of 2012:
None. There are probably some in series I read/watch, but I don't tend to look for Yuri all that much.

Favorite Slash Couple of 2012:
Kaitou and Tsukasa (Kamen Rider Decade)

...Wait a minute. 2012. Not 2009.

I know, I know. But I saw them in Super Hero Taisen, and since the movie came out in 2012, that should count.

But are they really a couple? I don't know. Kaitou stalks Tsukasa all the time, though, so that might even be a bit creepy, but somehow I find it comforting that, after all these years, Kaitou still hasn't succeeded in his romantic endeavor (nor made much progress for that matter ^^;;)...

Favorite RPS Couple of 2012:
N/A I only pair up fictional people.

Fandom That You Never Expected To Get Into:
None. I only seemed to watch standard tokusatsu stuff (sentai, kamen rider, ultraman) last year, so no real surprise. GARO isn't standard, but, well, I've known it since back in 2006.

Fandom You THOUGHT You'd Get Into But Didn't:
Gankutsuou. This is a series from around 2004-2005, iirc, but I only came across it last year. I guess the anime is too different and not really what I expected, so I dropped it after two episodes in. (Naively I thought it would be more similar to the book it is based on.) My problem is mostly with the anime's style, though. I think some fans of the book enjoyed the anime just fine. Still, this might be picked back up later since I dislike leaving things unfinished.

Fandom That Crashed and Burned:
In general, it is difficult to crash and burn an on-going series for me unless the writing has undergone a drastic change (or writer is changed and new writer can't write something passingly similar to the original style). (Retools are fine with me most of the time.) And if we are talking about a series that is already finished, I wouldn't change my opinion about it so drastically (sure, I might have slightly different feelings toward a particular series as time goes on, but to do a 180 degree turn on a series I already love would have been almost impossible).

Fandom That Made An Unexpected Comeback:
Detective Conan. Maybe not exactly an unexpected comeback (since I've never really left it to begin with), but I've watched more episodes this year than I had during the past few years.

Fandom That Inspired The Most Crack:
Toss up between Yamada-kun and the Seven Witches and Kamen Rider Fourze.

On a second thought, I think Yamada would have won. This is really a manga I read when I just want crazy hijinks in my entertainment. Fourze seems almost tame in comparison. But yet I find them kind of similar, since each is about a group of high school students in a (rather underground) club doing/investigating supernatural-related activities/events (usually caused by some other students -- who then may or may not end up joining their club). Yes, probably many other anime/manga series also fit this broad description, but I can't really think of any now. I don't watch much anime/read much manga either.

Last Fandom of 2012:
AkibaRanger. Yes, it aired earlier in the year, but I only got around to watching it after I am more or less caught up with other regular toku series. I knew practically nothing about it before I went in except that it's probably some kind of parody on sentai.

Turns out that I wasn't exactly wrong about that. There are many references on past sentai shows, kind of like Gokaiger. But it seems to break more fourth wall, sort of similar to what Gintama does for anime. (I'm not exactly lost (have seen most of the sentai series from the past twelve years (except Gaoranger and Hurricaneger), but I imagine people with no knowledge of sentai might not enjoy it all that much.)

And for some reason, I don't seem to learn a single thing new on Akiba culture. It's possible that I haven't paid enough attention when they reference Akihabara specifically (as opposed to a sentai reference), though. ^^;

That said, I don't think I'm even in an AkibaRanger fandom. So the above is just an excuse to talk about it a little, since I'm probably too lazy to devote a new entry for it.

Whether I'm in the fandom or not, it's cool that apparently there will be a new season. An unofficial sentai getting a second season whereas most official sentai series never do seems kind of ironic, I think. Wonder if they will add more characters...

So what's in store for me this year? More toku (or at least live-action), probably. Specifically, I'd like to watch more Ultraman, preferably newer stuff, but there seems to be no current TV series, as far as I know, other than Ultraman Retsuden. Either way, I'm still not up to date on the Ultras.
Tags: akibaranger, anime, garo, kaizoku sentai gokaiger, kamen rider decade, kamen rider fourze, kamen rider wizard, manga, meme, series: detective conan, series: gintama, series: yamada-kun, tokumei sentai go-busters, tokusatsu
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