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16 July 2007 @ 18:21
All the stuff I forgot to mention yesterday...

On Wednesday, I went out with kurayamihimitsu who very kindly tried to show me to the Shibuya Animate. Let's just say the map on their website does not reflect reality at all. In the end, we managed to get there by going to a completely different station exit than suggested by the map.

If you want to preorder something at Animate, you just take a small card off the wall to the till. However, they didn't have one for the Velvet Under World single! I managed to preorder it anyway. Yeah, that was my sole reason for going.

After that we did some karaoke (and I was forcibly lent the first three Harry Potter books). I haven't sung in ages though and I was terrible.

Today I went to Kichijouji and bought some trousers and some boxers. The designs are crap though... I got three of one design just because that was the only decent one available.

kuroe and I rented some DVDs this week. We got a third of the latest Wrestlemania, the extended DVD of Lord of the Rings, Cutie Honey TV volume one, Ghost In The Shell: Innocence, Gintama volume two and Tennis no Oujisama: Futari no Samurai.

However, after watching the first Wrestlemania DVD (it had to go back the next day), we started to watch Cutie Honey and Lord of the Rings. Before we knew it, it was the day to return them! kuroe has ripped them though and I'm sure we'll watch them eventually.

Cutie Honey was interesting, although I thought the film was better since it got fairly repetitive after a while. Every week she encounters a new demon, changes outfits a lot and then kills it with her sword. The backgrounds are bizarrely dream-like and the fights pretty cool with her theme music playing in the background. I didn't know that in canon she's a Catholic schoolgirl whose teacher has a crush on her. Good to know!

I also finished reading another one of the books I "rescued" from my workplace.

"Along Came A Spider" is a book of mixed quality. kuroe asked me how it was about a third of the way in and I told him that the woman the main character was seeing either did it or was going to get killed. That's the level of the portrayal of female characters. Oh, the book TRIES more than most, talking about how she has to work harder than her male colleagues. What it does with her still reveals the basic sexism behind the plot. The most disturbing scene is when the main character waves goodbye to her as she's given the lethal injection while an epilogue reveals that the real murderer has an escape plan. Yes, she was part of the kidnapping plot, but you can't help but feel that her real crime to the intended reader was cheating on her man.

The book also tries a little too hard to keep the action going. For example, there's a scene where the main character is on the beach and the murderer leaps out to attack him... except he's just dreaming.

And, of course, I also finished the first Harry Potter (in English this time). Wow, the Japanese translation is RUBBISH! Anyway, I liked it a lot. I'd tell you whether I would read the second book based on this, but no one's giving me any choice in the matter! What I liked about it was that it glorified my experiences of school life rather than life in an American or Japanese school. The nearest I've seen up until now is Grange Hill(!). So, it's shamelessly British and I love it for that.

I was getting a bit tired of hearing about Dudley though. He's fat, he looks like a pig, he's fat, he's spoilt and did I mention fat? I think it was Hagrid that said that Harry didn't stand a chance with the Dursleys, but I think that may have been better said about Dudley. At least Harry's a glorious wizard that gets "saved" when he's eleven.

Oh, and the man at Diagon Alley who's obsessed with "wand" sizes. I'm not the only one snickering at that point, right? Right?

...Voldemort's is thirteen and a half inches.

One thing that bothered me was the disdain for the muggle world. I mean, anyone over eleven who's reading the book is going to be part of that world and it makes you feel just a little left out. With most media, you can imagine yourself fitting in somewhere. In Weiss Kreuz, if my life is bad enough, I could always join the team. In Tennis no Oujisama, all I have to do is play tennis. Harry Potter rules out participation, since you get one chance only at the age of ten-point-nine. I can certainly see why people would write Mary Sues.

My favourite line?

"Where's the cannon?" he said stupidly.

I feel a mixture of idiocy and gleefulness at writing a spoiler post for the first book when everyone is talking very, very seriously about the final book.
Current Music: The Clash - London Calling
Hi-chan (火ちゃん): Nana - Hachi yellow-greenhinoai on 16th July 2007 06:46 (UTC)
I'll show you to the Shibuya animate sometime. It's only 5 minutes from the station, it's really easy to find when you know what you're looking for (though maybe the map on the website is outdated, since they moved last year?). ^^ The Kichijoji one is closer to you, so you might want to consider preordering things through them too. ^^

くらやみひみつ: Takumi Bedkurayamihimitsu on 16th July 2007 06:49 (UTC)
we found the one in animate. XD it just took us a while.. I've been before, but the map was outdated so we were outside the wrong exit.
くらやみひみつkurayamihimitsu on 16th July 2007 06:50 (UTC)
er... i meant *one in shibuya... *sweatdrop* its been a long day...
Williamgenkischuldich on 16th July 2007 06:50 (UTC)
It's okay, we found it! I just hope I can find it again, because the Velvet Under World CD will be waiting there for me next week.

The Kichijoji one may be closer, but I usually change stations at Shibuya, so I don't think it will slow me down as much. I'm not sure how big the Kichijoji one is...
くらやみひみつ: Rabu Rabukurayamihimitsu on 16th July 2007 06:48 (UTC)
*cackles* wait until you get to Ron's dad... Then the muggle world will come in a little more. :3 i'm so glad you're reading them... YOU MUST READ THEM ALL DAMMIT. X3 and then watch the movies with meeeeee <3333

We must hang out more. X3 and work on our secret club.. *nodnod* my friend might be able to get us some music and such.. maybe. o.o
Williamgenkischuldich on 16th July 2007 06:52 (UTC)
If kurayamihimitsu says I must read them, then I must read them. *nods*

Yes!! Secret clubbbb!!
Linstarrbeam on 16th July 2007 09:04 (UTC)
yea harry potter
Williamgenkischuldich on 19th July 2007 01:48 (UTC)
reichsfreiherr on 16th July 2007 10:47 (UTC)
It may just be me but the potential fitting in aspect didn’t bother me with the Harry Potter books. The selection procedure certainly is like the 11 Plus exam though it’s obviously more exclusive but I just found the books so unrepentantly public school that I could find that engaging enough. The books do work quite well as public school fantasy since the separation and implied ‘special’ nature of the students entirely by virtue of chance and bloodline really hits the nail on the head as far as I’m concerned. As one of my friends put it “It’s just like school!” which earned them an “Except with magic and without the fact that you were a day scholar” on my part.
Williamgenkischuldich on 19th July 2007 02:26 (UTC)
Yeah, I can certainly understand it on that level. Although if you don't go to the school (or even if you do and you get expelled), then no magic for you! Doesn't seem very fair. I wonder what they do in countries other than Britain though?
reichsfreiherr on 19th July 2007 08:15 (UTC)
This may be my own bias but I’d worry about anybody who managed to get themselves expelled being able to cast Unforgivable Curses anyway. I suppose there’d be some other system in place for ‘late blooming’ witches and wizards possibly but then seeing as the regular school system tends to lock you into being one way the minute they start putting you into sets in second year and thus determining which papers you can sit and what grades you can achieve, I suppose the emphasis might be on that. I’m sure the mark cap on the foundation paper for anything was a ‘C’ even if you did do extremely well, which meant that you certainly couldn’t get onto the A-level for the subject, at least at the 6th form I went to, etc.
Goblet of Fire introduces two other wizarding schools in Europe and I’m sure there’s a Salem Witches Academy mentioned somewhere too. So presumably the rest of the world has its own specialist schools too.
Williamgenkischuldich on 21st July 2007 09:24 (UTC)
Then there's only one logical conclusion... Harry Potter and the Adult Education Centre.
reichsfreiherr on 21st July 2007 14:07 (UTC)
And that’s how the last book ends.
Hal: [madagascar] penguins - jig's upbleu on 16th July 2007 14:08 (UTC)
You know, I have to say, it has always confused me whenever someone says, "more British," in terms of schooling and Harry Potter. Even having grown up in an American school, in California (we're like the 47th dumbest state (XD), how American schools are portrayed in films and tv and books are totally foreign to me too--a lot of people I know (having grown up in the same conditions, that is) are more familiar with Harry Potter school life than we are with what the rest of the world regards as our own... we don't even know what our own is suppose to be. XD

Would it be okay to ask what you think the differences are? It's always been a fascinating subject to me, and, sadly, I've never really had the chance to ask someone who actually knows what they're talking about...
Williamgenkischuldich on 19th July 2007 02:29 (UTC)
I recognise the reading lists, the list of equipment, the ridiculously specific uniform requirements, the talk of the schools they were meant to be going to... even the descriptions of the characters seem more familiar to me.

*Is almost certain that in Deathly Hallows they'll have the very British school disco. :P*