Gainax’s latest TV show, the unwieldy-named Stella Women’s Academy, High School Division C3, focuses on the adventures of a survival game club at a prestigious girl’s boarding school. Ingeniously tapping into both the popular “little girls doing things” genre and the wide-scale marketability of the expensive toy guns industry, Stella Women’s Academy replaces the toy robots of yesteryear with toy guns — pretty much the same thing, really, except instead of being marketed to children a la Gundam, they’re marketing to manchildren a la every other anime of the last decade.
(We’re going to spoil Pacific Rim all the way through in this post, so if you’re averse to that kind of thing, just read the title. If you read Colony Drop, you should see this movie. And in 3D.)
We can only effectively express how anime Pacific Rim is by telling you exactly what happens. In the film’s most anime moment, our hero robot is helpless, beaten, being carried thousands of feet above the ground by a winged Rodan-like beast. Pilot A says they’re out of weapons to use. Pilot B, the girl with blue hair, corrects him. There is one. The control panel’s display lights up with SWORD, and from the body of the robot emerges a segmented whip-blade. Our blue-haired heroine takes that sword and screams “For my family!” The robot’s body twists upward from Rodan’s grasp and slices the monster magnificently in half. Pacific Rim is very, very anime.
I’ll be taking part in a panel called Writing About Anime: Anime Journalism and the Web on Friday @ 5pm, in LP 4. It’s organized by Evin Jones (formerly of Ani.me) and will also feature cool dudes like Mike Toole, David Keith Riddick (formerly of U.S. Renditions) and perhaps others! I presume we’ll be talking about writing about anime.
Bigger and badder than our first effort, The Last American Fanzine 2: The Quickening features over 70 perfect-bound pages of full-color anime content. Contributing writers to this issue include notable Internet anime fans like Benjamin Ettinger (Anipages), Patrick Macias (Otaku USA, Crunchyroll News), David Merrill (Let’s Anime and the first Colony Drop fanzine), Mike Toole (Anime News Network), and Daryl Surat (Anime World Order and Otaku USA).
Articles cover a variety of anime-related topics. Here’s a rough rundown:
• The seminal Cream Lemon episode Pop Chaser.
• Patlabor’s real-life influences.
• A discussion with two Japanese journalists about anime publishing.
• The VHS-based lifestyle of fans during the Reagan administration.
• The underbelly of the U.S. anime convention scene.
• Fandom during the dial-up era.
• 1980s basic cable programming and To-Y.
There’s also a heap of original fanart and photography, a couple comics and the subtle reminder that anime fans can, on occasion, be productive individuals.
As with the first issue, we’re releasing it via the print-on-demand website MagCloud. It’s also more expensive than the first issue, due to the larger size, rising costs and binding. Currently there are no plans to release it via PDF.
We’ve been gone for a while now, haven’t we? Between work, school, trying to collect payment for work, videogames, moving, travelling to Japan, videogames, and general depression, Colony Drop’s output has come to a complete halt for the past year or so. I think we were supposed to print a fanzine or something, too? Well, it might take us a bit to get back in the swing of things, to summon up the proper bile to confront the state of Japanese cartoons for children and nerds in 2013. So, let’s warm up by discussing My Little Sister Can’t Be This Cute.
Oh, don’t give me that look.
Hey, idiots, why don’t you watch short anime? I mean, really, what are we all doing here giving cartoons three-episode tests, or suffering in the long term with long series that may or may not deliver, or dealing with done-on-the-fly series that are perpetually subject to implode in their final moments if a deadline looms or a model kit doesn’t sell enough? And what the hell are we doing watching Sword Art Online?
Once again, Colony Drop (well, one of us, anyway) will be presenting/moderating/crashing a buncha panels at southern California’s realest anime con, Anime Los Angeles. We’ll also be running round II of our Most Dangerous video room, Not Kids’ Stuff, so please drop by.
Here’s the schedule as it stands now:
The Other Ghibli - Friday, 3 - 4 PM
Directed By… The Art of ADR - Friday, 4:30 - 6 PM
Not Kids’ Stuff II - Saturday, 12:45 AM (18+)
Anime Fandom Before the Internet - Saturday, 11:15 AM - 12:15 PM
Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex - 10 Years and Counting - Saturday, 3 - 4:30 PM
The Legacy of Satoshi Kon - Saturday, 9:45 - 10:45 PM