31 October 2011

Happy Halloween!!

Once again, I am still not fully in the dark, creepy spirit of Halloween. (It doesn't help that we got over five inches of snow on Saturday...) Call me lazy, but after I tried with movies, I simply said "screw it!" and gave up. Oh well. :P

However I decided to provide some stuff slightly related to things spooky. Enjoy the trick or ignore the treat. Pick your poison. :)

And, you know what, MM? Sadie's cover blows yours out the water. Sorry! >:)

23 October 2011

'Rabbit Doubt'

The Birthday Massacre should totally sponsor this!
Rabbit Doubt is a game where among a group of "rabbits" hides one "wolf," who deceives and "eats" everyone until someone can identify and stop him/her. Six people, Yuu, Mitsuki, Rei, Eiji, Haruka, and Haijime, decide to play the game for fun until they are abducted and the game comes to life. There is a wolf among them killing everyone off one by one...

Man! That sounds like great fun! So, who wants to play Rabbit Doubt?

Too bad the experience of reading it was nowhere near as fun as it should have been.
Hope y'all got your rabies shots!

As far as psychological horror goes, this sure hits rock bottom. Maybe the manga is only twenty chapters long and not much content can be covered in four volumes, but there are short stories that can be described as epic poems of old compared to this. The characters are pictures of stereotypes plastered on some cardboard: it may be thicker than before, but it's still flat. And as I mentioned with Paranoia Agent: if your characters are dull as crap, why should we care about their problems? Why care if they are dancing on the razor's edge and at the point of falling into the abyss of death? If a pile of roses can't make a pile of feces look nice, then no intellectual theory from a college psychology textbook can make Mr. John McBland Smith likable.
Smart. Peppy. Normal. Spoiled. Jerk. Slut.
Name all the horror films of late that have such characters.

Let's see... Yuu is the normal and kind young man. Mitsuki is the cheerful straight-laced good girl seen in far too many anime. Eiji is a delinquent asshole. Haruka is a slut. Rei is the lolita with a sweet, sad soul asking for love and attention. Haijime is the smart one with black hair and glasses. I'm sorry, did I spoil too much? Guess which one is a hypnotist and how relevant they will be. Now THAT is a spoiler!

That's the problem with most horror stories and films to date. The characters and plot are absolute crap.

On a less cynical note, the art style is really good. The character designs are nothing too noteworthy, but their clothes and hair are fairly realistic and nicely drawn. The environment of the abandoned building is very detailed, dark, and eerie. The rabbit masks are especially creepy, often seen worn, torn, or bloody. At the very least the manga does have an okay atmosphere with several relatively creepy images of the murders that occur.

Pretty darn detailed. Mangaka earns a cookie.
Despite the premise sounding interesting, it is definitely not a slasher or torture porn unlike some films. *cSoAuWgShEcRoIuEgSh* Rabbit Doubt is bloody, but not gory (the most graphic is a severed hand holding a cellphone.) That being said however, the horror is handled very weakly. There is an amazing lack of suspense from start to finish. No "scare" is built up in any way and the end result might look good, but only out of context. The scariest panel will be so bland that you can go to bed and sleep like a baby. I did.

Predictable plot with a bullshit twist ending. Boring characters with no likability. Terrible executions of horror. This manga is pretty darn pretentious to have the "psychological" label slapped on its bloody head. At least the art is pretty.

You're better off with Higurashi or Paranoia Agent, both of which are far more intriguing and not as predictable. Yes, Satoshi Kon's "masterpiece" is better than this premature shonen one shot. Avoid unless you have nothing else to read.

Final Verdict: 0.8 out of 5

18 October 2011

Yet Another Update

Holy crap, I almost forgot my blog exists! I have little to no ideas...

For the past few days my stress levels have been a little higher than I had wanted. Currently I'm in the middle of finishing up some essays for a college application that I have panicked over for months. Even though school continues to destroy every chance I have to harvest positive energy, thankfully almost everything else in that process is finished. Hopefully I get in. Or I'll cry.

As far as being possessed by some spirit, so far Halloween has not phased me! I really do want to watch some scary stuff, but so far the one "horror" film I watched was mediocre to the point I laughed at the climax. (Me smells a potential review? o_O) However, thanks to thatguywiththeglasses.com, a few attempts to bring Halloween to my stubborn soul have found some success.

The best example was Lanipator's Let's Play of Amnesia: The Dark Descent. Roaming around a decaying castle, creepy Silent Hill-esque monsters stalking the halls. Sanity meters. Lovecraftian horror elements. Pretty freaky stuff. If I played it, I might wet myself and have nightmares for months. Thankfully Lani's cynical remarks and jokes lightened the tension... but not enough to take away too much of the rich atmosphere.

So what mood could possibly be taking over the wonderfully spooky and dark spirit that is hypocritically accepted more often during this time of year?

See the next post... :P

09 October 2011


Another new album I can proudly say I thoroughly enjoy.
I hate pop. Wait, that has been established a long time ago... yet I still mention it. This introduction is pointless.

Like a preppy girl is jealous of another girl's pricey skirt, bag, or outfit, I am madly envious of anyone who can speak more than one language. My green jealousy is nearly at the level of deep, pure, black resentment for the lucky ducks. Or maybe I just hate my laziness and impantience...

Back in 2008, Bentley Jones released TRANS//LATION, his bilingual debut album featuring covers of Japanese pop songs. Ben-chan sang most of them in their original language, but he got permission to translate some into English. It was only released in Japan and is yet to officially set foot further west. But that's where TRANS//LATION 2 comes in. This album has a handful of new tracks and re-recorded versions of two songs on TRANS//LATION: "Sunao ni Naretara" (or "FINAL NIGHT") and "GLAMOROUS SKY."

There will be plenty of Japanese for the English-speakers and English to the Japanese-speakers. Consider this a "no duh" warning for the clueless. Moving on.

Anyone who is a fan of the Shakugan no Shana anime might be happy or enraged by this special cover of "JOINT," which is much a more aggressive rock track than the original. After hearing this and the original, Ben-chan's version creates a more epic four minute track of badassness without spilling into unlistenable noise territory. Also, fans of Naruto Shippuden might recognize one of the ending themes: "Michi~to you all." I know I didn't; but my stance on Naruto as a whole is completely irrelevant.

As for English covers, Bentley gives us a hilariously catchy song, "Word Up," which is tolerable for one who dislikes dance music. Despite the somewhat creepy lyrics, "Stay" is very melodic and epic track despite the chorus having only three words repeated over and over. Meanwhile "Running Up That Hill" is a pleasant surprise by not being soft and mellow like Placebo's cover. Oh, no. It gets intense here too.

But probably the most memorable track is "GLAMOROUS SKY." In TRANS//LATION, it was a weak. Now, it is a symphonic, heartbreaking pop rock track whether you listen to it in English or Japanese.

So, take a step back from the information overload and let the nitpicking begin.

On one hand, I praise Ben-chan for singing in Japanese very well. When I first discovered his music a few months ago, I had no clue he was British. Props to anyone who can sing in another language pretty darn convincingly and clearly. Also, each individual song stands on its own enough so not one track sounds exactly the same, even if one cannot understand a lick of Japanese.

Best of all, even though this is considered pop and autotune is used, Bentley Jones's voice is emotional and genuine, giving very beautiful performances when he wants. Even when he jokes around in "Word Up," he doesn't come off as an overconfident party animal desperate to get attention. Unlike some obnoxious artists in the mainstream...

However, releasing a new album with nothing but covers is a bit of a let-down after blowing off steam with Finally Free. In a way the release TRANS//LATION 2 says "Yeah, Bentley Jones can make his own music now that he can do what he wants, but let's stick to the debut album shtick." Sure, now he releases singles and other small goodies, but it would be nice to hear another full album with his own material. Maybe that's what's in store next.

TRANS//LATION 2 is not as good as Finally Free, but this is definitely worth checking out. Like Escape the Fate, this is yet another newly released album that I can proudly love.

FINAL VERDICT: 4 out of 5

08 October 2011

I Won't Die THAT Easily!!

Last Halloween, there was an ongoing joke with my friends that I would be one of the first people to be attacked or die in a horror film. Sure, I was bouncing off the walls with all the chocolate and cookies that refused to leave my field of vision, but how dare they compare me to the cliched blond being the first to go!

To those jerks, I shall shove this in their faces:

Thanks, Tenebris for teh link! :)

Halloween Fails

Way back when I used to have a monthly theme just so I can better organize my thoughts. And just like any other new thing I try, it fell apart as the remains crawled in every which way. October MIGHT be different this time, I swear! Just give me another twenty three days and then I'll have something planned out!

Just so I can have a new post in nearly a week, here are some Halloween items that made me chuckle a bit too loudly. With the laughs and the snide remarks, I'm shocked no one kicked me out of the store.

This is so hilariously bad, it might as well be the staple for the obvious Hot Topic I-wannabe-badass-emo shoppers. With green mohawks.  Or something like that.

A "Steampunk Victorian Vampiress Costume"... On paper, sounds ok-ish. In reality, this is fake. The top is cheap as hell and the shoes are unfitting, especially when nothing else is as white.
But this isn't a real steampunk or Victorian outfit anyway...

It looks magnificent does it not? Hot, steamy pizza served just for you at any time and any place. Literally.
It's a pillow.
It is the pinnacle of creepy when you wake up from a nightmare and your bedroom accessories look like food.

I can hear the cries of thousands of men and women killed for hundreds of years because they were "witches".

Forget the pig. This is as f***ing low as the "content" in Elfen Lied.

Halloween's gonna suck...

03 October 2011

October 2011

Yet another make-over!

Since it's getting colder, I've been in a much better mood than during the hot, sticky, humid awfulness called summer. Now I can walk anywhere I want without anyone giving me looks for wearing dark clothes! That happened many times in DC while I had a black top and black cargo pants. More comfy than those flip-flops for sure...

Yesterday I went to the Renaissance Faire in the cloudy, freezing cold. But I loved every minute of it. I always found that time period and theme to be very interesting... especially the music. (Silly simple-minded, Fangirl.) If only I did not forget my stupid camera I would have uploaded them. Though on the bright side, I was not under pressure to capture everything on sight. I could walk around and enjoy the food, costumes, antics, and jousting to my hearts content.

And I bought my first corset! Once I got it on and paid for it (with mom's help), I wore it all day. Surprisingly, I was really warm and comfortable! Too bad it was so pricy that everything I'll get for Christmas will be super cheap... T-T

Everything else in life is just fine and dandy. School has become rather interesting since I seemed to have acquainted my self with a few transfer students. My friend from China returned this year and she's helping a bit with the Mandarin I'm learning via Rosetta Stone. Who'd think "bike" would be such a long and hard thing to say in Chinese?!

Anticipate the usual unusual posting schedule I adapt very often. See you later this month!


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