This is The Yuki Half-Time Report, sponsored by Crunchyroll!* We’re halfway through Cells At Work with only seven episodes reminding. How does Cells At Work! stand right now?
Cells at Work is still going strong despite some minor issues I have with its progression. While I do like the show, it’s clear that the show is following a formulated plot guideline: Introduce the monster-of-the-week (bacteria, infection, virus, etc.), break down how they attack the body, let them do their business, good guys defeat them. Done. Next.
I am not a fan of this: it’s boring and a bit played out in my eyes. With episode 6 being set up as a two-parter or story arc where our heroes are facing off against a cancerous cell it seems that the formula is taking a break (for now).
I’m disappointed that the Type A Influenza enemy problem from episode 3 wasn’t resolved in episode 4. This left me wondering what happened and why this was skipped. The writers went to another storyline and I’m not too happy with that – especially since it was set up as if it was going to be a two-parter episode. If you’re going to set something up, resolve it, It looks goofy when you don’t and you got people wondering what happened.
.Cells At Work retains its cute charm which continues to work in synergy with the educational and action sides of the show The art and animation remain consistent (although I admit that I’m not trained in spotting animation errors) and there haven’t been any major changes to the art.
Storywise, there hasn’t been any changes to its simple manner. Again, bad guys show up, good guys win. There are some slice-of-life scenes here and there but nothing to write home about. Episode 6 featured a flashback story for the first half with how Red Blood Cell-Chan came to life, got assigned to her job, and meeting White Blood Cell-Kun. She was a clumsy, goofy, and cheerful in her childhood as she is now as an adult.
With the cancerous cell making its appearance in episode 6 going into episode 7 it appears that the show will be taking a serious, drama-driven approach. My predictions going into the future of the show? There will be a few character deaths on and off screens from the cancer cells. Things will be dark and painful but I can’t wait for it.
With that said I hope you enjoy this halftime report. I’ll catch you guys in the next one.
*Legal disclaimer: I am not sponsored by Crunchyroll lmfao I pirate most of their shows. (And there goes any chances of me being sponsored by them ever)
I hate romantic comedy in any form of media – especially in anime; as most romcom anime are unrealistic and littered with cheap, perverted jokes. From my reviews on My Girlfriend is a Shobitch and Hajimate no Gal, it’s clear I detest this genre. These shows were clearly written by otaku virgins who never had a relationship with the opposite sex and are living out their weird, lonely otaku fantasies through anime. So, when I discovered that J.C. Staff’s latest project, Hi Score Girl, was not only a (loose) history piece of the second arcade boom in Japan, but a romantic comedy as well, I was I amazed by how they show a realistic portray of a relationship blooming and evolving over time.
May I dare say that this romcom anime has even charmed me by how pure the relationship between main characters Akira and Harou is? You take two characters who’re seemly “opposite” of each other but somehow, they click. Akira’s the popular, high-class rich girl who excels in every subject – performance arts included. She’s the type of girl that every boy in school wants to date and every girl wish to be. Harou, however, is “hopeless”. His scholarly performance is a joke. Artistic skills? None. He gets teased often by his peers for his bad grades. He rather wastes his day ruling over at his castle: the local arcade, installing fear in peasants with his mastery in Street Fighter II: The World Warrior (SF2).
Harou believes that Akira is out of his league. Can’t blame him for his wrong line of thinking.
Akira, despite her academic achievements and financial background, loves playing video games. In reality, she’s socially awkward, can’t make friends, doesn’t express herself verbally, and hates that her family controls her life. She visits the arcades often to escape her rigid lifestyle, blow off steam, and be her true self. Funny enough, like Harou, Akira is an SF2 player – except she’s the top player in their scene – as Harou will learn the hard way.
After witnessing Akira’s 30 win-streak performance against other players in SF2 Harou challenges her. He loses to her Zangief – badly. To save his pride, Harou defeats Akira by using Guile’s defensive “Turtle” style and “cheap” throws tactics. Akira gets pissed and starts attacking him; it’s the start of their rivalry that will bloom into friendship and eventually, the two having feelings for one another. During their summer vacation, the two hang out at various arcades, testing their skills against each other and thus deepening their bond.
For Harou, he’s happy he has an equal. For Akira, she’s happy that she finally made a friend.
Right from the start, Hi Score Girl destroys the bullshit idea that opposite attracts we see in romance-based media by having our main characters falling for each other over a mutual interest: competitive video gaming. Let me ask you people who have a mate a question: How did you guys fall for each other? Surely it wasn’t the fact you guys were opposite of each other. It was because you and your mate had things that click with each other and that turned you on towards them. Sure, there are some differences, but overall, you were drawn to them through your similarities (and other factors of course).
Social and scholar level wise, Harou and Akira can’t even compare. Akira shouldn’t be hanging around with a “stupid” kid like Harou. Harou shouldn’t have the chance to be with Akira. Still, they were able to overcome those minor differences. They grew close through their powerful love for competitive gaming, relentless desire to win, and mending their after-school loneliness. Who cares for social status differences when you and your friend vibe over a powerful passion? What’s good are having excellent grades, popularity, and cash flow when you’re lonely and your parents dictate your life?
Those superficial ideas don’t matter when they’re outweighed by shared attractiveness on a deeper level beyond mere opposites.
Continuing from where I left off, I was able to obtain the CGs for Sayori’s route in order to unlock the true ending. Re-playing her route gave me a new insight into her accurate portrayal of people suffering from depression (such as feeling numb, hopelessness, lack of desire, etc.) made me appreciate her character. I want to see more educated takes of characters struggling with mental health in fiction –because done right, it can hit hard.
Since I’ve “completed ” Sayori’s route, I’m going after Natsuki’s next. I haven’t done her route since my first run through, which is perfect given I need to go through her route before replaying Yuri’s. Going through Yuri’s route in Act 1 requires me to witness Sayori’s death scene; therefore ruining my plans to get the game’s true ending.
For cut down on time, any previous read dialogues are being skipped unless I find something interesting and worthy of being talked about.
I like Natsuki. She’s slowly becoming a favorite character of mines. I’ve said this many times, but I hate the tsundere trope in anime – unless a writer puts realism to the trope (as we see with Natsuki). She’s a “tsundere” but her aggressive, angry nature is a resulted of her being physically and emotionally abused by her father. It’s common for victims of child abuse to struggle with anger issues and develop an inferiority complex. Obviously, Natsuki hides her insecure nature (from the abuse) by acting tough and hard-hearted (but of course, she secretly cares about other people and don’t wanna see them down or hurt).
Playing Act 1 again, I couldn’t help but laugh at MC’s awareness of overused anime archetypes as Natsuki did her little “tsundere” bullshit such as “It’s isn’t like I did this for you” and hiding her love for cute things through acting hard and tough. It almost made me forget that DDLC was a psychological horror VN. Almost. With that said, I can’t help but find some parts of my personality in her (as weird as it might sound). There are some things I do enjoy that I’m kinda shy to admit (some moe’ blob anime like Lucky Star, classical music, reading about heart-warming stories , and shedding a tear or two at emotional scenes in anime to name a few).
…that’s as far as my softer side y’all gonna get from me.
The first night of the poem homework for Natsuki went smoothly. And by smoothly, I cheated and save scummed because I accidentally got a few reactons from Yuri and Sayori that completely override my goal to have MC romance Natsuki. Eh. I dunno what cute shit fictional girls like. Or real ones at that. I suck at the romance thing.
After starting over I got MC to interact with Natsuki,. There’s a hint for shadowing/mockery here as Natsuki talks about her favorite manga,“Parfait Girl” MC makes fun of the cover, which offends Natsuki telling him the old adage of never judging a book by its cover and how things may have more layers than it appears. A subtle jab at the true nature of the game.
I can’t help to think how Natsuki’s character mirrors that of the otaku. Otakus are quick to defend their passions – may they be anime, manga, gaming, etc.. Sometimes, they find inspiration in them (such as with Natsuki becoming a baker and a cook from reading her manga) and opening up to those who also share their passion. Natsuki struggles to share her love of manga with her friends. Every attempt has been met with ridicule by them (since they believe she’s still childish for not growing out of her manga phase).
I’m sure you guys had to deal with this in the past (maybe even today as adults for the older people reading this). With nerd culture growing ever popular by the day the stereotype of nerds and anime fans being childish and immature is dying. The stigma is still there, but it wasn’t as bad as it was decades ago.
I was able to have MC make Natsuki fluttered with the poem with him writing something that matches her style. Guess she’s not used to people appreciating and sharing her passion. I know that feeling. Doesn’t excuse her from acting goofy about it but I get it. As Natsuki share her poem with Monika Monika tells MC how Natsuki’s writing style is similar to late author Shel Silverstein: “childish”, but with adult themes and straight to the point by using fewer words than necessary. I like that lowkey. I believe that you can say more by saying less and the more you talk and ramble, the less interesting you are to people.
Make people think about what you say and keep them in wonder by saying less.
Everything goes per normal so let’s skip ahead to Natsuki and Yuri’s fight. Stated in an earlier post (I think, it’s been a while and I don’t feel like searching for it), I went to Yuri because she’s my favorite character and I like her character archetype, but for this one, I went for Natsuki. She gets happy, proud that somebody like her childish, but blunt writing style. Real shit, I get her. It gets annoying when people talk down about your style (without any advice to improve it, mind you). When somebody sees the beauty of your style, it reminds you that it is not bad.
You do get a little egotistical, however.
Following the second poem writing, there’s a funny scene where Natsuki is struggling to get her manga collection from the top shelf of the clubroom’s closet. Natsuki, dealing with her short complex, tries to reach for them but fails. MC tries to help out, but couldn’t, as he was put in an awkward situation – either hold the step ladder that Natsuki had (while innocently looking up her skirt), or let her fall in which she hits head hard against something, crack it open, bleed out and die; thus ending her route and the game . The two fall down and shit scatters, with one of her manga being damaged.
(…okay so she didn’t fall to her death.)
Natsuki gets upset, snaps off on MC, but then starts to cry, saying things like “I’m just having bad day” and “every day, it just gets harder”. Subtle hints to Natsuki’s homelife and being abused by her dad. Of course, you won’t catch it on your first run (unless you read the spoilers). You assume that Natsuki acting childish or overreacting, not knowing that her acting out is a result of her stressful home life. Over time, it’s going to take a toll on any child dealing with abuse.
There was an interesting theory I came across on a DDLC Facebook group months back that not only Natsuki’s dad belittles her for reading manga, it’s possible that he may have destroyed a few from her collections. It’s not uncommon for abusive parents to destroy their children’s personal items. I have friends who during childhood, their parents would break their things as a form of “punishment”.
Natsuki could be hiding her manga at the clubroom to avoid any further damage from her dad. Monika fucking with her collection adding to how horrible her home life is only fueled by Natsuki’s paranoia that she may lose her manga – her way out of reality for a little bit. Really wish Dan did more with Natsuki character. There are layers about her that need to be explored.
Continued in Round 2 Part 2.
(before I go I gotta say some of you Natsuki fans need Jesus)
You’re a science teacher in Japan. You’re passionate about teaching children about cells and how they work. Yet, your students don’t give a damn about that shit. They’re some stupid ass, Bebe Kids ass, hopeless ass children who don’t wanna learn anything in life. No matter how hard you try to make learning interesting, they refuse (to learn).
You decide to fail them all – you have no hope for their future.
You head home after a stressful day of dealing with those dumb ass kids. You kick back with a can of beer in one hand while having a blunt in another as you watch TV. Bill Nye The Science Guy – an American educational classic showing kids how much science rules – comes on. A smile appears on your drunken, stoned face as you remember how much Bill Nye inspired you to become a science teacher with his down-to-earth, caring, and loving approach to science education.
Bill Nye ends and it’s followed by a classic cult movie: Osmosis Jones – a comedy movie about Ozzy, a disgraced white blood cell cop who, with the help of his partner Drix, defends the sickly body of some depressed zookeeper with unhealthy grief coping skills. After watching both the movie and Bill Nye you get inspired to come up with your own manga series to entertain children while also valuing their education by teaching them about cells and the human body. You down another beer, roll up another blunt, and relentlessly get to work on this new project for the next few months.
You retain the White Blood Cell character from Osmosis Jones; making him a stoic killer of germs instead of a street-smart cop. Drix? You replaced him with a cute yet clumsy girl, giving her the role of a red blood cell. As you brainstorm ideas for different cells, you come up with cool designs that will appeal to both children and adults. The children of Japan need this. It may be too late for your slow ass students to learn anything but future children will appreciate your efforts. Once you finish the first draft you pitch it to Kodansha.
They love it.
Over time, this manga becomes a sleeper hit – mostly because you made the Red Blood Cell a waifu character that everyone will look up ero doujins of her getting a train ran on her by the Killer T cells troops along with Macrophage-Chan – but because of how innovating your manga was in terms of teaching people about how cells work. And that’s how Cells At Work became to be.
Trust me: My father’s brother’s nephew’s cousin’s former roommate used to be drinking buddies with Akane Shimzu and he told me this on the phone last night.
Bullshit aside, I’m impressed by Cells At Work. It’s secretly adorable and I admire how the creative forces behind it use Shounen style action to sell its educational value to fans. Furthermore, the roles of the cells and how they interact with each other are explained in a down-to-earth manner. If you’re a complete idiot like when it comes to science, you won’t be lost, confused, or feeling even dumber than you already are.
(And trust me: You’re probably just as dumb as I am thanks to the American education system.)
Cells At Work is a simple anime (which is good because it doesn’t need to be complex or deep for the show to share its message). Each episode, there’s a situation with the human’s body is attacked by a variety of ailments such as basic germs attacking the city in episode one, an invading army of infections in episode two, and the world battling against invasive bacteria in episode 3. They win of course, but in that classic rule of three (episodes) style, they get fucked up and ROFLstomp by the series’ first major enemy. In this case, it’s Type A Influenza.
Granted, the heroes will win through some asspull bullshit by episode four.
Main character Red Blood Cell-chan (RBC-Chan) is a clumsy girl trying her best on her first day at her new delivery job. During a delivery run, she (along with the citizens of the “world” of the human body) are attacked by monsters – germs attacking the body. They’re about to be killed when supporting hero White Blood Cell comes to save them by mercilessly butchering and slaughtering the germs with combat knives.
As with any Shounen series, Cells At Work uses violent action to keep fans engaged. We are first hinted at this fact during the OP; which features a squad of White Blood Cells, armed with knives, hunting down a germ. This is followed up by an elegant maid walking around gracefully in a flower field…and she’s carrying a giant ax while her hands and face are covered in blood.
What makes Cells At Work works (besides the violence) is the usage of implanting classic anime tropes and personality with each cell. The Killer T Cells are personified as merciless, battle harden combat vets, the Helper T cell becomes a military commander, Macrophage cells are portrayed as elegant, classy maids who like to chop up their victims with their giant axes and blades.
Do you remember those educational “entertaining” science films back in school? You know what I mean – they’re cheesy, boring, trying too hard to have style but it’s so dry. Cells At Work throws that shit away while still retaining the knowledge. Knowledge at a simple level but still knowledge regardless. That’s why famous personalities – may they be fictional or not, such as Bill Nye, Carl Sagen, Miss Frizzle, and Ozzy (Ozzy and Drix) are beloved. They taught us the knowledge of science through their unique personalities. Of course, I’m not saying you’re going to get layered, in-depth personalities for each character compared to story-driven anime series such as Durarara or Monogatari but when you’re selling an anime centered around science and the human body you better make it entertaining.
As of this writing, I’m caught up to episode four (somehow that Influenza enemy thing didn’t get resolved) of the anime and from my positive reaction, I’m going to stick around with the anime until either the series end or something utter bullshit makes me turn away from it. While I do believe it’s going to be one of the best shows of the seasons, I can’t confidently say it’s anime of the year material but we will see once the series end.
If you’re looking for a different anime series that still share the familiar style of your shounen shows while also learning why you should take care of your body and the cells in it, then Cells At Work is right for you. If not, you’re the reason why the education system is such a failure today.
(Before I go, Let me go on record that Red Blod Cell-Chan and White Blood Cell are those two co-workers that you know have a thing for each other and they’re gonna get caught fucking in the employee bathroom by the janitor when they thought everyone left the office building that night)
At the beginning of the Dragon Ball Super Movie: Brolytrailer, Whis asks Goku why he seeks further power (than he already has). Goku replies that battling in the Tournament of Power has opened his eyes; understanding that there’s no way he can remind at his current level. This is typical of Goku. Every time he encounters powerful warriors on his journey, he gets inspired to better himself. Despite having marvelous power, Goku realizes that it’s not enough.
He must always seek to improve himself.
I’m not a Goku fan. He’s a bland, average Shounen battle anime/manga main character. Yet, I can’t help but admire his drive to better himself. He loves to fight against those who are stronger than him. He’s willing to learn from those who may not have much strength, but are masters at techniques he’s curious about (the Kaioken from King Kai, The Mafuba from Master Roshi, and Instant Transmission from the Yardrats). Goku is always learning. Always improving.
Listening to Goku’s response, I couldn’t help but feel a relation to his words. ‘No way I can’t stay at the same level I am now.’. I’m all for self-improvement and bettering yourself (beyond your current talents and levels). You should always work your ass off to reach new heights no matter what. Life isn’t fun if you remain where you at. If you want the best things for yourself, you have to level up no matter what; may it be learning a new skill, working on your purpose/passion, or traveling to a new city you have yet to explore.
In early July of 2018, I was in Los Angeles for Anime Expo (AX) and to see what the city has to offer to travelers wishing to explore it. As I scoured the city soaking in the culture, I fell in love instantly. The blend of multi-cultural natives and travelers speaking in their native tongue. Fashion heads donning their outlandish appeals without fear of (too much) judgment. Massive, striving businesses bringing income for the city. The ocean breeze cooling down the warm city. People minding their own business and not mean mugging (like in my hometown). Entertainment surrounding the area at each turn. World level cosplayers showcasing their talents. The crowded convention venue filled up by passionate otakus. Witnessing all of inspired me to do better in life. I want more from it.
There’s no way I can stay at the same level I’m at now.
My visit to Los Angeles changed my life. Extreme? Yep. But, you something extreme to happen to you if you want to change. I spoke about this in a previous post, but seeing that gigantic Fate/Grand Order poster towering over the Wells Fargo bank in Downtown L.A. sparked an inspiration fire within me. It brought a huge smile to my face. Not because I’m a Fate fan, but because it served a reminder to me that even the most popular, beloved series had to start from the bottom( to reach the top).
The Fate series started out as a bit of a niche yet popular visual novel in Japan. While beloved in Japan, it took years for the love to reach Western fanbases (sans the small circle of Western fans who love the visual novel) to the heights we are seeing today. Type-Moon (the creative force behind the fate series) had to put in the years of hard and smart work to reach their current levels in the otaku world. And it paid off.
If they can put in that hard work to reach the top, so can I.
Since I’m on the topic of visual novels, I was at a Doki Doki Literature Club (DDLC) cosplay meet up during AX (cosplaying as a last minute genderswap version of Monika) on Days 2 and 4. As the meetups were wrapping up, Dan Salvato (creator of DDLC), came through and chat it up with the fans. The fans (including myself) show nothing but love and support for the dude.
I was able to talk to him about how the character Yuri have impacted me the most out of the four characters (as I used to shut myself out from others and not talk about my love due to being teased and bullied for them like Yuri herself). He brought up how Yuri (as well as Natsuki) was based off his childhood experiences which made me appreciate both characters more (since I got a little deeper understanding on how they came to life).
Again, I was inspired by the love he was receiving and how he showed the love back. Like with the Fate/Grad Order poster, that experience showed me why I must get on my grind to produce content that people will love. If I can create something that can inspire others and want to better their lives, then I have finally done my job for the world.
Hard work pays off.
Outside the convention, my friend and I were invited to an Anime Expo Discord chat meetup at an outdoor bar (forgot the name of it). As we drank and chop it up with everyone, one of the guys brought up how it’s goofy that some weeaboos will spend thousands and thousands of dollars to fly out to L.A., buy a convention badge, and hotel costs just to go to the convention and not explore the city to see what it has to offer. Our (my friend and I) faces lit up and nodded in agreement, as we had a talk about this while we were smoking hours earlier. While the main goal was to attend Anime Expo, we were more excited to explore the city. If you’re going to a city for an anime conventions and nothing else, you’re an idiot.
After the meetup, my friend and I went to be some little degenerates and smoke some legal weed. As we smoke, we reflect on our new friend’s words and how we’re truly making it; as we met like-minded people who understand why we can’t be around those who put limits on themselves.
A sign of progress.
(Below: Spoils from Little Tokyo)
Spoils from Little Tokyo
Spoils from Little Tokyo
Spoils from Little Tokyo
Exploring L.A. outside the con gave me the chance to talk to people from not only L.A. but from all over the world. One gentleman whom I spoke with was a dude born in China who moved to the New Jersey area in his youth and then to L.A. when he got older. We spoke about our home cities and compared it to L.A. He didn’t like living out there as, in his words “people in L.A. are rude assholes and there’s always some nonsense going on compared to New Jersey.”. I told him St. Louis was the same but couldn’t see how L.A. was that bad (granted I was only a visitor and not somebody who was living in the city,).
A day before I left L.A., I spoke with a rather liberal Middle Eastern women for a bit. She was an L.A. native who guessed that my friend and I weren’t locals due to our mannerism. Apparently, those who are native to the L.A. area tend to be assholes, but (depending on where they from), travelers and tourists are kind and aren’t on any bullshit. I had to agree with her on that. It felt that those who weren’t locals or born in L.A. seem chill and laid back while the rest were niggas who clearly didn’t get whoop by somebody when they got out of line.
During a weed run, my boy and I ran into a street rapper, Chase, who wanted us to give him a topic to freestyle about. After his freestyle, we started talking about where we from. Come to find out, Chase was a fellow Mid-Western from Chicago who visited St. Louis from time to time. He came to Califorina to connect with other rappers to network with other rappers and build his brand. I am not that much of a spiritual person, but I can’t help to think that meeting was the universe telling me something about even if I try to leave home for a while, home will find me. But this was a positive experience. Three Midwestern’s finding each other on the West Coast and speaking about our journeys and what we want out of it.
As time passed on and I traveled, I wanted more out of not only L.A. itself, but for me as a person. There’s something magical about that city. I can’t put my finger on it, but it brought out something in me that I knew was there – I just needed something to draw it out. Maybe it was that Fate/Grand Order that was the trigger. Perhaps talking to a creator and seeing the love he got brought it out. Could it be that me getting out of my hometown caused all of this? I dunno.
What I do know is that if I want this again, then I can’t stay at the same level I am now.
I love my trip to Los Angeles and attending Anime Expo. It was a life-changing experience of consuming and getting involved in local and global cultures that I’ll never experience in my hometown. While I foolhardy limited my travels to Downtown L.A. and Little Tokyo, the drive to go back to the West Coast is eating me up (in fact, limiting myself is the reason why I must go back because there’s more of L.A. I want to see). The trip sparked a fire within me to better myself finically (through having multiple sources of incomes) and improve my creative talents so I can justify visiting L.A. in order to growth (or better yet – if I decide to live in L.A. for a few years)
While wandering around the Downtown area searching for a CVS, I encounter a massive fate/grand order towering above the Wells Frago bank in the area. A huge smile came across my face for two reasons. One, because I am a bit of a casual fan of the series and that I’m happy on how the series has come this far. Two, it served as a reminder (to me) that even the titans of the industry I am a consumer of had to start at the bottom to reach the top. The creators behind the fate series were just people like you and me who had the vision to breathe life into something they felt could change their industry, the world, and their lives.
As my eyes focused and analyzed the mighty fate poster, I started reflecting on my own goals and dreams in life (and how I want to create something that will be loved by many). My mind brought up the struggles it took me to get to not only Los Angeles and Anime Expo, but my current level of life and how I persevere to push forward with my goals despite the pitfalls, doubters, haters, etc..
‘I wonder what sacrifices these fate dudes had to make to get to where they at today? How hard and smart did they work in order to become icons in the otaku niche.’ I asked myself. The poster spawned endless questions in my mind. Questions of hard work, sacrifice, brand building. I became a curious child who was given a brand new toy and was obsessed with what the toy can do. At that moment, I started planning on what should I do with my own goals and desires and how in order to bring them to life.
The people who created the fate series were given the same two hands, two eyes, two feet, two legs, and a similar creative brain like me at birth. The difference between those guys and me is that they got off their asses and bust them to bring their vision to the world. Yeah, they were met with problems, haters, doubters, and people telling them to give up on their dreams. Yet they push through the noise. That’s the struggle every creative person will face. I am no exception to this law.
If we wanna reach the real shit, we must go through the bullshit. That’s the only way our dreams can come true.
As per my April 2018 article, I don’t get post-con blues. I never got the idea behind it. If you get depressed after attending a weeaboo festival (and aren’t willing to do anything about it), you’re a loser. There are conventions held almost every weekend in major cities in America and across the globe that offers the same shit (for the most part). As a result, conventions get boring after a while. The passion behind them get lost and you’re (well, I) are left wondering “well, what’s next for this little otaku hobby of mines?”. After attending Anime Expo in Los Angles however, I must admit I’m feeling the blues.
Am I’m upset that Anime Expo has come and go? Nah. Too many rude, smelly ass weeaboos I had to deal with that won’t make me miss the con (still going back though). I had to stop myself from losing my temper and beating the shit out of a disrespectful, shut-in nerd who almost bumped me into a wall; all because he wanted a picture of some Ichigo and 02 cosplayers from Darling in the Franxx that he’ll never get to fuck in his lifetime. Having to walk twenty minutes to Kenta Hall when it normally would have taken me five minutes wasn’t that fun – especially since it the crowds created a fire hazard (risk our safety for the all mighty dollar, huh). Trying to find a panel room for twenty minutes only to find out I needed a wristband to prove I was over the age of 18 ain’t fun. I’m not blue over those factors. What I’m feeling blue about is the fact I am not in Los Angles anymore.
I have Post Cali Blues.
I miss California. For the short week I was there, I felt at peace. I felt that I could be myself despite not being within my comfort zone. The fantastic, 80-degree weather that felt like it was 60 degrees thanks to the ocean breeze. The luscious women from all over the world. Bruh, they were bad! People who mind their own business and who didn’t mean mug you. The welcoming and acceptance of those from different cultures. Being surrounded by striving businesses at every corner. This what sold me on California…expect for the high taxes and cost of living you guys can miss me with that bullshit.
I gotta go back to Cali again.
If you guys don’t know, I’m from St. Louis, Misery (or Missouri) – a small Midwestern city that hasn’t seen progress in nearly 60 years. St. Louis isn’t shit when it comes to wanting to better oneself in growth, business, career, etc. The hopeless, passionless idiots who never left this city think it’s great and there’s nothing absolutely wrong with it (despite the high murder rates, extreme poverty, racism, right-wing politics, etc.). These people love to bring down anyone with a dream or desire to expand their lives beyond St. Louis.
As a result, there are many haters and jealous niggas in the ‘Lou. California has its shares of crimes, haters, and hopeless idiots, sure. but I rather be stuck in a state that has legal weed, a chance for me to grow as a person, and network with those within my industry as opposed to continuing living in a city where I feel that I have no chance to do anything with my passion. What did that little dude say in FLCL? “Nothing amazing ever happens here”. Yep. That’s St. Louis.
St. Louis sucks.
During downtime at Anime Expo, I went decided to explore L.A. for a bit. It felt magical. Every turn, my eyes here treated to blooming, striving business helping bring L.A. income. Downtown St. Louis? Every other business building is abandoned. Downtown L.A. featured a fashion district. Not a fashion store, mall, or outlet. A fashion fucking district. Did I mention legal, safe weed? Kush mind you, not no reggie or unknown kush with bug spray on it.
Legal. Fucking. Weed.
Besides my degenerate lust towards weed, I’m a man of culture. Given that L.A. is a large city with over 3.7 million living in it, you’re going to get people from many cultural backgrounds telling them your experience. As one Lyft driver told me, L.A. is made up of people from all over the world – not just native people. With that, you get to talk to people from Asia, The Middle East, Africa, Europe, etc. and learn why they came ot America and how are they dealing with things here as their cultural experience clashes with the ones in America (as that adage goes; you can take the man out of the hood but you can’t take the hood out of the man). St. Louis is cultural as well (we have strong Middle Eastern, Chinesse Mexican, and Bosnian, communites) don’t get me wrong, but there aren’t as many international people here compared to the West Coast. I personally that shit is cool.
To conclude, the post Cali blues is hitting hard for me right now. To be honest, I am a little disappoint that I didn’t explore much of L.A. beyond Little Tokyo and Downtown. If ther ewasnt’ a convention in between my exploration, I feel like I could had gotten much more done in a week. I’m kicking myself for not hitting up Hollywodo (Despite the latter being a tourist trap). Venice Beach and Santa Monica are beautiful beach spots. I low-key wanna explore Compton and study one ofhte major parts of hip-hop history before it gets completely gentriflied by the liberals. I am going back to L.A. for my homeboy’s birthday and Anime’ L.A., so that will grant me a second chance to do the thigns I couldn’t do on my first trip.
I’m going back to Cali.
DRUNK AFTERWORD: To those on my Facebook friend’s list who were mad about my post-con blues post: the fuck ya were gonna do besides be mad and not fuck with me anymore cuz I spoke that shit about post-con depression?
FLCL: Progressive is weird. I don’t mean that it matches the original FLCL weirdness that fans celebrate and praise it for. It’s awkwardly weird. It doesn’t have the fluid, bold experimental animation, the zany characters, and the upbeat music as its predecessor. The story’s a bit of a rehash (with the main character not seeing anything exciting about life until Haruko comes along) but with new elements. There are only two episodes left of Progressive and it’s unfair to judge and compare, but it’s hard to wait – especially with the internet buzzing on how Progressive isn’t as glamorous as the first series.
Why is this? Surely Production I.G. and Studio TRIGGER could have delivered the same excitement from the classic with Progressive (as the original team members are all on board). The thing is, FLCL classic was an experiment for Gainax to test new animation software at the time. The team was allowed to go off the rails with the software, art, and story writing to push the limits of their new toy and their artistic talents. That’s it.
That’s why FLCL classic was charming…well that’s my theory.
With FLCL: Progressive, the production team isn’t using new technology (to my knowledge). They already proved themselves to the industry (serval times mind you). There’s no need to reproduce the charm from FLCL Classic with fancy new software. From the four episodes I’ve watched, I’m assuming that Production I.G. and Studio TRIGGER are focused on delivering a solid story than just being silly with animation software. There’s FLCL: Alternate coming out in later this year. Perhaps it’ll recapture the outlandish feeling that the original gave us so we can only wait and see.
What’s a name? Obviously, it’s a set word(s) to identify a person, place, or thing. Some names are linked to a famous brand (Nike, Nordstrom, or Nintendo for example). Others are associated with a person in your life ( brother, sister, cousin, etc.) There are names famous throughout the world — regardless of culture, race, etc (Micheal Jackson, Bill Gates, Shigeru Miyamoto). Depending on the person, whenever we hear their name, we either react with disgust or with love. Names are important as they are the basis of who we are as a person. Some fight to preserve their name in history — even after death.
In episode 2 of the Spring 2018 boxing anime Megalo Box the Junk Dog Gearless Joe squares off with Megalo Boxing champion Yuri. Before their fight, Yuri requests Joe’s real name, as he states that “I can’t imagine you want a ring name on your tombstone” in which Joe replies “They don’t make tombstones for stray dogs.”
Regardless if Joe wants to use his real or ring name, he wants his legecy to be known. He refuses to die without anyone knowing who he was in life. The line is simple, yet powerful. Joe is right: they do not make tombstones for no names.
Question: Do we recognize people who never done anything in history?
No, we don’t. Those who achieved greatness have their names embedded in history. The ones who don’t are forgotten. The story of the Gearless Joe is one of the classic underdog story. Joe is a young man of lower class status yearning to escape the strife and trap of poverty through boxing. With his boxing skills, he believes that if he becomes the Megalo Boxing champion, his name will live forever. Joe refuses to die as a nobody. That’s not his fate in this world. There’s no glory in being another unknown background character in a world of billions and billions of people.
Nobody gives a shit about a stray dog.
People fight until their final breaths to keep their name and brand relevant. We may not understand why, but there are many in this world who do not want to die as a nobody. Utliziing their skillsets and talents, they put themselves out there in hopes that one day, their legacy will be celebrated. Deep inside them, there’s that drive for certain humans to make their mark on this world by any means. If they don’t, they will die with the regret of not becoming the icon in their niche or even the world. That’s why they fight.
What’s the best way to generate an increase in sales and downloads for your product? It’s simple: controversy. This effective yet infamous trick has worked well for the video game industry for 30+ years. Mortal Kombat came under fire by the U.S. Government for its high level of gore and violence (at the time). Middle-Class suburban parent groups demanded that the game should be removed from arcades and stores; as they believed children would become influenced by the game’s brutally Their anger and protests only generated more support and sales for Mortal Kombat.
Rockstar used this trick as well with the Grand Theft Auto series. As with Mortal Kombat before it, parents and government groups were horrified by the pixeled violence and sexual acts displayed in Rockstar’s landmark series. They demanded the video game company to cease production. Guess what? Their crusade against it only helped increase sales, support, and popularity for the series. Rockstar knew the controversy would work in their favor.
On June 25th, 2018, the Manchester Coroner’s office issued a warning to school officials in the United Kingdom after the suicide of 15-year-old child back in February 2018. Prior to the suicide, the child was playing the popular free-to-play visual novel Doki Doki Literature Club (DDLC). The coroner and the child’s father suspected that the mental health themes of DDLC played a part in the death.
I gotta say: history is repeating itself.
It’s unfortunate that the child killed himself. He needed therapy. However, it’s funny to blame DDLC (for triggering the child’s death). Are we really going to do that again (blamming video games)? Shit’s played out. Then again, it’s easy to play the blame game as opposed to be more open to the struggles of mental health illnesses and finding support for those suffering from. We are quick to shun anyone with it. We are quick to shun video games. But we aren’t quick to help people. We only use people with mental health issues for selfish gains.
Take that as you will.
DDLC being linked to this latest video game controversy will only generate more popularity, support, and downloads. People love negativity. Humans are a curious lot. That warning will make can children curcious about the game, share it with their peers, and of course, produce an expansion of its populairty and downloads. History is repeating itself.
To the Manchester Coroner’s office: Congrulations on helping Team Salvato net furhter attention and support. Ya did well.
Just imagine: You’re a normal schoolgirl living a normal life in Japan, America, or whatever the fuck you’re from. You do normal schoolgirl things like homework, talk about boys, join clubs, and worrying about if the beta incel loser who think women owes him pussy will finally snap and shoot up the school. You live an average life with you and your friends having fun and thinking about the future after high school.
One day, you have an epiphany: Everything you know about your life was a complete lie.
You’re not a real person – you’re a computer game character trapped in a visual novel made by some computer nerd who used to make mods for a children party game that was ruined by a bunch of sad, loser ass manchildren who turned it into a “fighting” game. Your peers are nothing more but data. The school you love? It’s a simulation. Your friends? Programmed to fall in love with some sad virgin weeaboo jacking off to hentai of said friends after the finished playing the game while you sit on the sidelines questioning your existence. So what you going to do with your new Godlike self-aware powers?
Brainwash and Kill your friends, disrupt the game and force the player to fall in love with you of course!
Monika gets a lot of shit in the DDLC fandom. People claim that she’s a sociopath. People hate on her because she killed their cliche’ waifu. Fans of Monika (like myself) are accused of being morally bankrupt and corrupt. Me personally? I think Monika is a power player and was a G for taking advantage of her situation. If you had absolute power, or seek it, wouldn’t you do anything by any means to get what you want?
Monika was simply playing the game of power to her advantage. She understood that her friends were nothing more but lines of data. She wasn’t killing anyone real. Besides, what would have happened if one of them became self-aware? Surely they would have tried to take out Monika and anyone else in their way. Knowing this, I can’t fault Monika for her actions.
She had to do everything within her power to ensure victory.
What are the goals for dealing with rivals in sports, business, the workplace, what have you? Take out anyone in your way, dominate and intimidate them all. You take them out by sheer force and superior skills. You dominate by being better, maintaining your number spot, and being innovating. Finally, you intimidate through brutal, savage actions – making sure nobody else tries to step up to you and knock you out of first place. Monika did all three. Screwing with the game’s programming was intimidation. She made Sayori hang herself, Natsuki snap her neck, and Yuri stab herself to death: taking out the competition. And finally, she dominated the system. Simple power plays if you ask me.
Don’t hate the player or the game. Be the player and take advantage of the game.
Disclaimer: This freewrite was written under the influence of alcohol. It may not make logical sense.
Dragon Ball isn’t deep. There are deep themes, but it isn’t that deep than other anime. Dragon Ball is a goofy, battle action manga and anime series created by some crazy Japanese dude who bread and butter is gag comedy manga (Dr. Slump). Expecting Dragon Ball to be meaningful and insightful is like trying to find one’s dignity at a drunken, drug-fueled anime con orgy:
It ain’t gonna happen.
This doesn’t mean that Dragon Ball can’t teach us lessons about life. After all, Goku’s journey is a lesson that if you want to better yourself, you must go out and travel; putting in the hard (and smart) work to and learning under those better than you to obtain whatever you want in life. Baby from Dragon Ball GT teaches us that people who were treated unfairly (through oppression) will come back to take revenge against those who oppressed them – even going as far as hunting down and killing innocent people if they have to.
Dragon Ball Super with the Tournament of Power arc is no different. There are valuable lessons to be taught about that arc, one that is obvious and yet – it’s the most important lesson. In order to achieve what you want, emotions need to be put aside.
In episode whatever it was in Super (I’m drunk: I don’t feel like looking it up), Majin Buu succumb to his deep sleeping habits; putting him out of action for two months. Thing is, it would have been okay for Majin Buu to take a two months break from combat…if he wasn’t a team member of Universe 7, and the existence of their universe was at risk of being destroyed by Zeno-Sama. With their ranks shorten, Team Universe 7 had two options:
Find a replacement for Majin Buu
Operate at a loss and/or risk destruction
Logically, Team Universe 7 should have put Majin Buu in the Time Chamber (Room of Spirit and Time for your purist elitist weeaboos) but logic doesn’ work in anime. While everyone else was in a panic, Goku came up with an ideal replacement for Majin Buu: Lord Frieza – mortal enemy of the Z Warriors.
The Z Warrirors weren’t happy with Goku’s suggestion. They had every right to. Krillin and Vegeta were murdered by him. Piccolo’s race and home planet was destroyed by the cruel tyrant. Plus, Frieza’s a snake. Who knows what kinda of shit Frieza would pull on the Z Warrriors if given the chance. If he wanted to, Frieza could had kill members of Unvierse 7 for shits and giggles. (Un)forutnetly for Team Universe 7, Freiza’s an asset to their surivivial. Yes, Frieza did horrible things to Z Warrrios and caused suffering to the unviersse. But what’s worse; Having a powerful, yet psychopathic warrior on your side who can get the job done with ease or losing your exsitance because you got emotional over somebody you don’t like?
I thought so.
In dire situtaitons, you have to put aside your emotions and focus on the ultimate goal. Emotions are great. They make us humans. They drive us to do amazing things. But emotions can fuck you up if you can’t control them. Let’s look at what happen to Lerbron James during the 2018 NBA Finals. Game 1. He got in his feelings over a teammate’s mistake. He gave into them and got swept by The Golden State Warriors.
What would had happen to Universe 7 if they gotten emotional over Frieza’s includcion to their team? You might say “But Ben, they could had went with Yamcha instead or maybe even Cell!” You’re right. They could had went with Yamcha or Cell. But Yamcha would had gotten slaughter within the first five seconds of the tournament. And Cell doesn’t give Toei Animation enough money like Frieza in terms of product sales.
Don’t get emotional when trying to hit your targets.
“Competition” is a dirty word in the world of cosplay. It scares and angers some; as they dread the idea of “elitists” approaching cosplay with such a mindset. Recently, I came across a tweet by @0Becki expressing concern towards those with this mentality. They felt that cosplay is a hobby and not a competition, that they should share tips with others, and they should hang out with cosplayers (who are cosplaying as the same character).
I’ve mixed feelings about this. I agree; cosplay is a hobby. People should share tips, be friendly, and help others. But they aren’t entitled to do such things. People have the right to be competitive with their passion. Competition is natural in any field. Competitive cosplayers enjoy it as it pushes them to work hard on their skills and talent to become the best. As long as it’s not toxic, competition isn’t bad.
We need competitive cosplayers.
Competitive cosplayers have the driving need to win and outperform everyone else in the niche. To them, every little detail matters to ensure victory. The perfect wig. Professional grade makeup. The exact color contact lens. Superior craftsmanship. They have no tolerance for error. It’s the difference between being just a cosplayer and becoming the cosplayer. First place or second place in a cosplay contest. And trust me: nobody remembers the second place winner. For the hobbyist cosplayer, this might be hard to understand. That’s okay: you lack the competitor’s spirit. Unless they attack you, don’t hate on these people.
It’s who they are – they can’t help it.
It’s funny how hobbyist cosplayers get angry at the “elitists” for their competitiveness. Yet, they love these high-performing manga artists, ruthless anime directors, passionate game designers, what have you. Why it’s okay to praise those people for their high levels of desire and drive but it’s wrong for cosplayers to act the same?
You’re a hypocrite if you praise one group but shame another for the same thing.
Competition is great. It drives others to better themselves. It forces you to become innovating. It encourages change. If a cosplayer above your skill level trashes your cosplay, instead of being mad and pissed, use that as inspiration to prove them wrong and better your cosplay.
They talk shit about your wig (or lack of)? Buy a high-quality wig. A snobby cosplayer thinks your skirt for your cosplay is trash? Hire the best seamstress in your community to make you one better to prove that asshole wrong. Better yet, study the best cosplayers in your community and learn how they won rewards, got their fame, and so forth. Use that anger, the power of the dark side as you will, to better your cosplay game so that one day, nobody will ever talk shit about your cosplay again.
Yes, be competitive but only compete with those at or above your skill level. Simply acting arrogant and prideful towards those below your skill level will only stir up hatred and anxiety against you. Nobody will want to work or be around you if your attitude is nasty.
If you know a group of cosplayers are having fun, don’t ruin it for them. Suggest ways to help them improve their cosplay skills in a friendly, loving tone. Don’t mock a cosplayer for something they can’t control (such as race, color tone, gender, disabilities, etc.). Remember: you too were once a hobbyist cosplayer who didn’t know any better. So spread the knowledge (but not too much of it)
Sometimes, it’s better to feared than loved. Sometimes, it’s better to be loved than hated.
30 days. 30 days until I need to get my shit together for Anime Expo. 30 days to structure my perfect battle plan. 30 days to mentally prep for the largest convention I have attended yet. 30 days of disciplining myself when it comes to money management. 30 days to get things right or lose everything I desired for my brand and personal growth – for at least a year. 30 days isn’t enough time when you’re planning out big moves. But you best use those days wisely.
I’m on death grounds.
What is death grounds? Death Grounds is a warfare strategy use as a reaction to desperation tactics in the face of not defeat – but death. It’s based on Sun Tzu (author of The Art of War) desperate ground, which he defines as follows:
‘When you have the enemy’s strongholds on your rare, and narrow passes in front, it is hemmed-in ground. When there is no place of refuge at all, it is desperate ground.’
In short, when pushed against a corner, an army must go all out to survive. If they don’t, they’ll be slaughtered by the opposition. Failure isn’t an option.
It’s kill or be killed.
I know I’m coming off as dramatic over plans for a nerd convention, but put yourself in my shoes. Since Fall of 2017, I’ve been planning and going around telling my peers that I’m going to Anime Expo. I’ve invested $350 on a plane ticket. I saved up $440 for my share of the hotel cost. I invested $475 on an AX Premier Fan pass (a fancy way of saying VIP pass to avoid the long lines). I’m ordering pieces for my Monika cosplay this week (only because I made a drunken post on social media stating that I’m doing a genderswap cosplay of her) which will run me around $150. Too much money has gone towards this trip for me not to go.
When you invested money into something, you better fucking make sure it happens.
I must gather my resources, wits, tools, and wisdom together to make it out to AX. I either get to kill it at Anime Expo and achieve a milestone for my brand or die. Of course, there’s next year, but let’s say if I miss out on this year’s AX. I run the risk of losing opportunities this year I will never get next year. There’s an influential guest or person at this year’s AX I could have met who could help me get to the next level. He or she won’t be at any conventions again in their career. I missed out on that network. Death. Worse, I miss out on AX this year and a few weeks after the event, I die. Death.
Here’s something scarier: Allowing myself to be on Death Grounds is fun. It’s a lot of pressure, but it’s fun. I guess it’s my borderline masochist nature, but I find it motivating. Why? Because I want to see the end results of this 10 months of planning. . All my shit talking, planning, and performing massive action must pay off. I can’t fuck up now. In fact, there are no fuck ups allowed on death grounds.
Yuki’s Note: This is unorganized and I probably got a few things wrong about nerd culture in the mainstream. Whoops.
I love scrolling through my Facebook feed and seeing ads from companies such as Sugoi Shirts and Kaomoji. Seeing their flamboyant Japanese street fashion inspired clothing makes me smile at the expense of my wallet. But who cares as long as it could make me look good. I just wanna rock a fuckin’ shirt with an anime girl with a censor bar across her eyes in public! It just makes me feel good about myself and feeds my ever growing ego. But man, who would imagine vendors online selling stylish and fashionable weeaboo shirts on Facebook?
Nerds have come a long way since the darker days of our passion when we were shamed for simply enjoying our nerd culture. If I were to wear my weeaboo attire 20 years ago, people would mock me. Today? People (for the most part) tend to mind their business. Shit, just the other day, when I went to my local head shop the store clerk saw my shirt and we started talking about Fate series for a few minutes (he thought my sunglasses were something based off Fate). It was a lovely chat until he said that Rin was the worse girl in the Fate series and that Saber was the best.
I ain’t never going back to that headshop.
Anyway, you wanted to catch a superhero movie in full cosplay back in 1996 and you were over the age of 13? You got roasted! Now it’s the norm for people to cosplay as their favorite Marvel or DC superhero at opening night. If there was a nerd in a TV show, they were the laughing stock loser who never get the woman. They never got anywhere. But shows such as Silicon Valley has ended the stereotype that nerds are losers and that their hobbies won’t get them anywhere. I gotta say, this is the golden era of the nerd.
Everything that I’ve mentioned above now leads me to this question: Are nerds trendsetters?
The obvious question is yes, of course. In fact, I even answered the question my self. So leave my page. I want to say that, but I do enjoy going deeper with my theories and exploring them. We (well, I) have come up with the conclusion that nerds are trendsetters. But why? Why are us nerds trendsetters, and how can we take advantage of this before the inevitable nerd bubble breaks and we’re back to being shoved into lockers and having our lunch money stolen by the jocks (well, you weak nerds are getting shoved into the lockers, I’m knocking anyone out who tries to do that to me).
This is my theory:
People were tired of the old shit and wanted something new. Everyone and their moms love reality TV, watching sports, drinking at the local bar, what have you. Meanwhile, the nerds were in the background; creating and working on their passion. We spent our time inside, communicating with our peers, showcasing our talent online. As time went on and technology advance bringing the advent of social media people were started to take notice of the group they once shunned away: The Nerd.
Social media lead the way for nerds to showcase their creative talent (although we’ve been doing this shit years and years before that came along through online forums, blogs, etc.) As more people gain access to the internet, the more nerds were given exposure. Yes, there were TV channels such as the Sci-Fi Channel, Tech TV, and g4, but they were only viewed by their niche target market.
Now? Well, I mean they’re still being watched by their niche market, but the normies are getting into them as well. Oh and g4 is dead. So perhaps that doesn’t count. Shows that were once for nerds with cahs (meaning they could afford internet and cable packages) are available through streaming services such as Hulu, Crunchyroll, Netflix, etc.. The video game industry makes more than the movie industry. Anime is…catching up. It still has a some catching up to do, but with anime (slowly) creeping into the mainstream, I say it won’t be long until anime in the West is treated like film.
It’s funny to think about how nerds are shaping things up. We’re like rockstars (almost). Seriously. Go on YouTube right now and you see that some of the top YouTubers are people talking about video games or streaming themselves playing games. Two decades ago folks would scream at nerds that playing games isn’t a real career. Today? Playing video games and screaming at a game for hours on end is considered a real job. Of course, you have those normies who think that isn’t a real career, but they’re just mad that they’re slaving away at some corporate or labor gig they hate while the nerds they used to bully are making hunder of thousands of dollars playing video games.
So, to anwser my own question: Yes. Nerds are trendsetters.
“You still watching Dragon Ball Z, nigga? Grow up!” “Stop acting white! You’re too old to watch cartoons!” “Go get some pussy and stop playing video games!”
Growing up as a (black) nerd in a backward ass Midwestern city was rough (in the early 2000s). Throughout middle and high school if you had nerdy interests, you were deemed a loser amongst your peers. Nobody (outside your fellow outcasted nerds) wanted to fuck with you. You were bullied, teased, and taunted for your nerdy passion. I too dealt with my fair share of bullshit from normies who didn’t have the balls to step out of their comfort zone; unlike us nerds who didn’t fuck with that fitting in shit.
I still remember how my normie peers would tell me how being a nerd was uncool and that I need to grow up. They claimed that video games and anime would never get me pussy, popularity, or money. Of course, they were wrong. Hell, even with my near grandiose levels of ego, I knew they were wrong. Mainly because I spent my free-time shit posting and trolling gaming and anime forums communicating with older nerds who went through the same shit I was going through back then. Many of them had wives, families, money, and status at their jobs. Some even talked about how they hooked up with an equally nerdy chick or a dude at comic and anime conventions.
I mean shit, I looked up to Bill Gates when I in middle and high school. Here was a nigga that was a total nerd in his school days. Was bullied for being a nerd, spent his weekends working on computers for 40 hours while everyone else was partying and doing stupid, unproductive shit. He played the long game with his brand and within a few decades, he became the richest men in the world.
So much for nerds being losers.
Reading about Bill Gates’s success (as well as the success of older nerds online) made me realize this at a young age: If I’m going to dedicate my life to being a nerd and building something for myself off it, then I better play the long game. I just knew deep down that nerd culture was going to be popular. I just had this gut feeling that nerds and geeks in America will stop being bullied. That we were going to be trendsetters. Game changers. The dominant culture in entertainment (The Big Bang Theory doesn’t fuckin’ count).
At the turn of this decade (the 2010s), my vision was coming true (for the nerd community). Blockbuster superhero movies were the norm. Video games were treated as a respectful, valued form of entertainment. Anime (and otaku culture) was accepted. Anime and video game clubs were poppin’ up in high schools across America. While nerds were still being bullied, it was happening far less often then decades past. Kids were free to wear their favorite anime or superhero shirt without fear of being teased or mock. Conventions were getting mainstream attention. Being a nerd was now consider cool.
Playing my first long game paid off.
Playing the long game with your passion isn’t easy. Do not think you won’t face difficulties as a player of the long game. You are fuckin’ stupid and clueless if you think there no errors or hardships with the long game. You will have people talk to out of your passion (as they do not see nor understand your vision). You will get called weird, mad, goofy, insane, whatever your hopeless, average, bottom feeders peers will throw up in your face. As a player of the long game, you need to block those people out. Cut them out of your lives even. Link up with other people who share your passion and understand that success takes years to achieve instead.
How do you play the long game as a nerd? Simple: Pick something you’re passionate about. You love vlogging about the latest episodes of mainstream anime? Good. Stick with it for a few years. Do you find joy in making others happy when you play video game music on your violin? Perfect. Keep it up for years and years on end. Don’t expect success to come overnight. If you do, quit right now. You ain’t cut out for the long game.
To those still bitter about the past and how nerd culture is now popular: Good. Stay mad. I need bitter ass suckers like you so I don’t have to worry about fighting other nerds to get that number one spot and dominate and intimidate everyone in the culture one day. Keep being miserable.
For the normies who made fun of nerds and are only on the nerd train cuz it’s popular: Thanks for being suckers! I look forward to making money and build my brand off yall niggas.
For the rest of us nerds who are taking advantage of this trend: Play hard. Work hard. Success is ours for the taking.