Friday, January 6, 2017

Me on Some Favourite Things (1)

Hi there. :)

Today, instead of the standard Friday review, here's a quick list of some things I've enjoyed recently. Basically, the pop culture and other things I consume on a regular basis when I'm not reading.

First, some webcomics. Check Please! is a wonderful webcomic created by Ngozi Ukazu. It follows the college life of Eric 'Bitty' Bittle, a sweet Southern boy who loves to cook and has headed up to the northeast to play some college hockey. Things don't go quite to plan, mostly because Bitty's a bit (read: VERY) scared of being hit, but it's okay. His teammates, while looking like idiots, are actually the best. This comic does so much, talks about anxiety and expectations, fears and hopes. Friendship. I won't say too much about what happens plot-wise, some big things have happened during Bitty's first few years at Samwell, but when you read it you might know why I'm being a little hush-hush.

Gunnerkrigg Court is epic. Done by Tom Siddell, it follows the adventures and events that happen to Antimony Carver when she's sent to school at a place called Gunnerkrigg Court. What follows is an enchanting and sometimes heartbreaking story, rich with fantasy and science. The characters are deeply flawed and human, the settings are lush and dark and extremely dangerous. The current chapter is making me very very nervous.

Now to anime. I could recommend Yuri!!! on Ice, which has wonderful charm and deals with performance and aging and anxiety so well, but I won't. Instead, I'll recommend Haikyu!!, which is smart and so much fun. It follows the antics and matches of the boys volleyball club of Karasuno High School, particularly first year members Hinata and Kageyama. I like this series because there's no magic here, not really. Maybe some players' skill levels are a little impossible, but this is all about hard work and practice, about confidence, about victory and defeat and how you can never let one define you. Just play your game. It's free to watch over at Crunchyroll, region permitting (first person click here for a quick trial). The manga is also currently being published in English, for those looking to get into sports manga.

It feels strange to rec something called Assassination Classroom, but I will. It's about the class of rejects, Class 3-E at Kunugigaoka Junior High, and their mission to kill their teacher, the super dangerous and super powerful super-creature Koro-Sensei that just blasted the moon into a crescent. This show is like a weird punch to the heart. It's a murder fantasy comedy, yes, but the things it says about teaching, about learning and developing skill, about sharpening those skills and making sure you can make good use of all that you're good at, can get you hard and fast. The manga, again, is currently being published in English.

As for TV, I don't watch much anymore! Because it's been Christmas and New Year's, I've watched a lot of hockey recently, and a bunch of Food Network shows, but then I just end up hungry when I'm about to go to bed. I've been meaning to watch some things on Netflix, things like Stranger Things and The OA and the Sense 8 Christmas episode, but I just haven't yet. Soon.

Hopefully you enjoyed this, were interested in a couple of things. I'm not sure when I'll do another of these, maybe once a month when I'm struggling to get through a book or I have a sudden gap. And add in the comments something you've been enjoying recently, a new TV show or some new music that's come out. What are you interested in right now?

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