Version 5.4 ~ Haruhi gave rock and roll to you.

Dated 25 October 2016: Steven Den Beste

Ani-nouto headline

I learned of Steven Den Beste's death from an anime blog. From the same blog, in fact, where I learned of him in the first place. I did not know the man, and aside from occasional e-mail exchanges, interacted with him only rarely. At most, we perused each other's anime blogs once in a while. Thus, I must sheepishly admit I was wholly ignorant of his pre-anime-blogging contributions and accomplishments—ignorant, that is, until I saw the waves of reactions that poured in after news of his passing broke. I wish I had known him better and engaged with the man more often.

Dated 11 June 2016: I don't even know how long sea slugs normally live

Sea Slug Team
Wait, what happens to the mascot? Is Kabitzin going to throw her out into the street?

Whenever some anime blog called it quits after three or four years of frantic, enthusiastic activity, I used to crack that it was just another flash in the pan. But, truth be told, four years is a really long time to maintain an active anime blog. However, ever since I found myself in the dubious position of (I'm pretty sure, at least) being the oldest currently active English language anime blog in the known universe, I haven't really kept up with all the ones that have come and gone.

Blogsuki is on the Twitter and even has an anime avatar (if you remember).

However, Sea Slug Team was one of the old old anime blogs, so it's sad to see it go. Once Kabitzin started rotating in new writers, I guess I just sort of assumed the blog could go on indefinitely by regularly seeking out new blood. Hell, I don't even remember who the original members were anymore. I'm pretty sure Kabitzin was one of them, and not just the site's current Dread Pirate Roberts.

Tokyo Jupiter
Tokyo Jupiter is also on the Twitter, but doesn't write about anime nearly as much.

So who's left among the pre-Cosprayers anime blogs? Blogsuki is still active, although perhaps not as prolific as it once was "back in the day." Speaking of which, I also can't remember what Blogsuki was called in the past. I'm pretty sure the name and URL changed at least once, though. Tokyo Jupiter is technically still around, although not on the original domain anymore, not strictly an anime blog either, and hasn't updated in more than two years. I can tell I've been doing this too long when I think "27 months without an update isn't that long."

Dated 5 January 2013: The problem with best of lists

"How can Little Busters! be #20 on the 2ch end-of-the-year poll?!"

The onset of winter brings a deluge of "best of" lists ranking shows from the past year in terms of quality and enjoyment. Let's face it, it seems every anime blogger and his kid sister puts out an annual tally come December and January. (Even I do something similar.) However, a simple perusal of these lists quickly reveals there is typically no consensus among them. And why should there be? It's all a matter of opinion. Nevertheless, some readers seem to readily take offense when Someone Is Wrong on the Internet. They will incredulously exclaim, "How can GIRLS und PANZER be the number-one show of 2012?" They'll complain their favorite show ranked too low. The jaded ones may insist that voters only picked such-and-such show because them kids don't know no better—not like Old Sport who has watched anime since he was from the womb untimely ripped.

Niconico screenshot of Little Busters!
Because 269 people voted for it, that's how.

Why does a need exist to "correct" a contrary viewpoint concerning cartoons? Perhaps there's an underlying need for vindication through third-party agreement, or maybe it's driven by desires to disassociate themselves from other anime fans. It makes me wonder how insecure people have to be to challenge the position who-knows-what anime places in this-or-that poll. After all, aren't the most vocal critics only attacking other people's taste in order to make themselves feel superior? I'm at a loss trying to identify any meaningful alternative reason. It seems to me a rational person would understand that matters of opinions are, well...purely subjective, making the instigation of such arguments rather pointless. Then again, I suppose complaining about anime is as legitimate a hobby as watching it.

Dated 12 May 2012: Eliminated from the Aniblog Tourney

Aniblog Tourney results
(I think I received the majority of the last 250 votes though.)

I've been eliminated from this year's Aniblog Tourney. Although the contest was not as lopsided as my first Aniblog Tourney loss, a contributing factor to both defeats was likely my staunch refusal to self-promote for it or for the blog in general. I have been updating this blog alone since approximately 1999. I have never included any advertising (except for the compulsory Geocities ones before I started paying for hosting. And despite moving the blog to WordPress in 2006, I've never enabled comments, an omission that perplexes some readers. As Ani-nouto can attest, some readers find blogs with disabled comments hostile and anti-social. However, I've nearly always posted contact information, and there's even a Twitter button available. Nobody ever uses the Twitter button, but I do get viewer mail on occasion.

The most recent letter comes from from Doomguin who writes:

I don't know if you've seen [Princess Princess] or heard of it or not, but the show is by Studio Deen, and it's about a boy, Toru Kouno, transfers to an all-boys high school, and after some odd treatment, is convinced to become one of the school's, now three, "Princesses". It turns out that because it is an all-boys school, it has become a tradition to select the students who are bishonen, and have them dress up a girls to keep the female-starved student body's morale up.

It has all the makings of a BL, but isn't and has a lot of fun with that fact. I recommend it if you have not seen it before, and I think it also falls into that little niche of shows that people don't generally think of (or have heard of, for that matter), and didn't get a lot of attention, but still good and enjoyable.

I have, in fact, heard of Princess Princess, but despite Doomguin's recommendation, I don't think I'll be watching it. Miracle Train aside, it doesn't sound like the sort of show I usually watch.

[Update: Yes, I'm messing with the CSS. Yes, it looks like ass. Yes, I'll probably lose interest before actually fixing anything, leaving the entire site in a terrible state, just as I've all but abandoned efforts to integrate the pre-2006 reviews on the left column into the WordPress categories on the right. No, I can't believe people still maximize browsers in this day and age. No, I haven't tested this at all in any version of Internet Explorer.]

Dated 6 April 2010: Zero Episode Test watches or doesn't watch anime so you don't have to or do have to. Wait...

Zero Episode Test updated. Go read it. There's no poop this time. Honest.

Dated 9 October 2009: Zero Episode Test begins blogging Kobato ~ L@@K

I don't normally do this, but I encourage all y'all to check out the best new anime blog to come out in the last 24 hours—possibly all week: The revolutionary Zero Episode Test is at this very moment redefining what it means to be an anime blogger in new and exciting ways.

No, I'm dead serious.

Dated 12 October 2003: Chrno Crusade

Those of you interested in knowing more about Chrno Crusade are encouraged to visit, a very comprehensive site.