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Amigos-goku

How The Good Spirit Of Goku Influenced My Everyday Life.

We humans are very receptive creatures.  Our environment and interests influence who we are.  These influences can come from anywhere.  Our personalities are even molded by fiction.

We are influenced by movie characters.  We are swayed by those bullheaded, sarcastic outcasts on TV.  The fairytales of old can teach us how to be better people, so why shouldn’t anime or manga?  It seems like saying “I admire Monkey D. Luffy’s tenacity.  I want to be like him” isn’t quite as accepted on a social level.  Why the stigma?

The best role model in the universe.

The best role model in the universe.

When I was a bit younger, I knew a girl who didn’t exactly have the best home life.  She was always sickly, and when no one was looking, she always looked very sad.  Her parents pulled her from public schools because “she was being difficult.”

I do not remember the chain of events that led up to it, but I did get to talking to her on a regular basis.  She was always wearing a Dragon Ball Z shirt when I saw her.  That was a convenient way for me to spark up a conversation.  Her face seemed to light up when I initially brought it up.  It took a few weeks, but she really started to open up to me.  This is how I found out about her lackluster life at home and the other tribulations she faced.  One day, she outwardly told me that she often thought of – and had attempted to kill herself.

With hindsight being 20/20, maybe I should have done a bit more. I find it to be sad.  I didn’t at the time, though.  Maybe I didn’t fully realize the gravity of it all.  This girl was 14 years old.  The weight of the world was too much for her to bear.  Fourteen. Years. Old.  There was one thing that kept her from going through with her suicide:

Vegeta.

PRINCE OF ALL CRYBABIES

DON’T KILL YOURSELF LITTLE GIRL!

She related to him.  She burned with a bitterness towards her life.  Her strive for something better drove her to live her life.  Vegeta would never give up.  Neither would she.  I feel terrible for it now, but it took every ounce of my mental fortitude to keep my composure.  How silly.  Stubborn Vegeta kept her going.  I do not find it so funny now that I am older and ever-so-slightly wiser.

The more I think about it nowadays, I suppose I can admit that I, too, have been influenced by anime characters.  While we are on the subject, I will stick with Dragon Ball Z characters.  Piccolo is my favorite, but he is hardly someone whose lifestyle should be copied.  I would like to think I am pure of spirit and good-natured.  I am like Goku.

Arguably the most iconic character in the history of Anime, Goku is the embodiment of all things good.  He has an unwavering love for the people close to him.  His child-like innocence is something we all yearn to have.  He even gave the monster that killed his best friend a second chance.  When push came to shove, though, Goku could get serious and protect his loved ones.

Admittedly, the whole abstract thing isn’t my strong point.  So I will provide blunt, straightforward examples of the influence that Goku has had on me as a person.

 

Art by phanhaingan

2 + 2 = KICK TO THE FACE??????

1. We share a lot of the same philosophies, Goku and I.  Love your friends and family.  Defend your beliefs.  Adhere to your principals of discipline. ACADEMICS ARE BULLSHIT.  Yes.  I dropped out of school to pursue a lifelong devotion to martial arts.  The stint only lasted about 4 weeks, and I spent the rest of my days sitting on the couch, shoveling food into my nutrition hole, BUT C’ EST LA VIE.  That actually brings me to my next point…

 

ge

OMNOMNOMNOMNOM

2.  Yo, man.  Food is boss.  This is probably where Goku and I are the most alike.  I don’t really have the ability to lift an entire dining room table, but I can eat an entire watermelon with one gulp.  I did not really know that I had to train in 100x Earth’s gravity to counteract the disgusting intake of calories.  Now I have my own gravitational pull.

 

Soar throat?  Heck yes.

Sore throat? Heck yes.

3. I was never really bullied in school.  I followed Goku’s ideology, and I defended those who could not defend themselves.  I guess you could say I taught bullies a lesson.  If I witnessed someone being harrassed, I would channel Goku.  I would power up for around 3 hours and then PUNCH THE BULLY RIGHT INTO THE FUCKING SUN.

 

Goku halo

You know you’re my saving grace.

4. This one time I died, and then I came back to life. I just had my friends search for the Dragon Balls.  Easy.

 

Goku may be a wizard.  He arrives precisely when he means to.

Goku may be a wizard. He arrives precisely when he means to.

5.  I now make it a point to show up at convenient times.  Well, inconvenient for some.

 

This Miller is skunked.

This Miller is skunked.

6. When faced with a fridge full of beer during “rigorous training,” I will turn it down in favor of a sports drink.  Most of the time.  Probably.  I don’t know, man.  I really like beer.

 

...

7. I have taken a liking to hanging out at hot springs.

 

I accidentally punched my ex girlfriend in the face once.  True story.

I accidentally punched my ex girlfriend in the face once. True story.

8.  Finally, I am an oblivious schmuck around women.  I guess I cannot say that Goku has influenced me on this per se.  I am just terrified of women.

What anime characters have influenced you in everyday life?  Leave a comment below, and be sure to head over to our forums for further discussion!

Lich King BlizzCon cosplay

25 Cosplay Gifs to Kick Off Your Weekend

We’re less than a few weeks away from Ogeeku’s first convention stops of 2014 at WonderCon in Anaheim and Anime Conji in San Diego! We hope to see you there!

Here’s 25 cosplay gifs pulled from around the interwebs to start getting you all pumped for the awesomeness you’ll experience this year at a convention near you!

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Shingeki Saturdays-Before the Fall

I’m a bit late today. Apologies! Anyway, as always, major spoilers follow.

Before the Fall is a light novel series prequel to the Shingeki no Kyojin’ story written by Ryo Suzukaze an illustrated by Thores Shibamoto. Set around 80 years before the main story, the year 770 to 790 of AoT’s fictional alternative world, it tells the story of and follows the creator and the creation of the 3DMG, Ángel Aaltonen, a mysterious young man named Kyukuro and various other characters and their interactions with one another. Before the Fall is compiled into three original volumes. If you think SnK was Steampunky before, take a look at volume 1′s cover. Summaries of each are as follows:

BtF1

1) Ángel works at a workshop creating protective gear/weapons for the scouting legion (the story is set before the 3D maneuver gear was invented). Ángel is a first class weapons craftsman, and therefore has direct access and also is involved in the on-goings within the scouting legion. During this time, humans didn’t know about the weak points of the titans. The story is mainly about Ángel beginning to work on the ultimate weapon/gear to fight the titans. So essentially we learn about how the 3D maneuver gear came about.

BtF2

2) A baby is found crying in a mass of Titan vomit, amidst the dead titan flames. The child is then called “child of titan” and is essentially hated by the people inside the walls. He also seems to grow unnaturally fast. Named Kyukuro, he parts himself from his past/upbringing and gambles on the fate of humanity by enlisting in the Scouting Legion.

BtF3

3) Kyukuro has survived from the outside wall: in order to defeat the titans, he gets his hands on the 3D maneuver gear. Although the gear is still imperfect and causes a troublesome incident for him, he fights on. Whether it may be because he is destined to fight them, or due to his past, this is something he must do.

Here are some shots from the light novel series:

btfangel
btfky
P1940482

P1940484

btfangelma

I LOVE Isayama -san’s art but these are just so beautiful. Particularly the image of Angel working on the gear. Such details.

btfannouncement

The light novel will be be made into a monthly manga series and is scheduled to start running on Kodansha’s Monthly Shonen Sirius starting this month (a couple of days from when this article is posted) and will be drawn by Satoshi Shiki. I’ve read a translation of the first novel one and might I say, I am incredibly excited for this next installment. You can also read it here.

In Support of Shonen Jump Alpha

A while ago, I wrote an article defending scanlators – the fans who upload, clean, translate, and release manga chapters on a weekly basis. I argued that scanlation groups filled a need, providing international fans with access to content they couldn’t get any other way. I also noted that scanlations were key to building an excited, money-spending fan-base.

But even though the industry changes at a glacial pace… it does change. A year ago, in an attempt to catch up to the present, Viz Manga released Shonen Jump Alpha – an attempt to squash scanlators by providing a digital, translated release of the official Shonen Jump book. It was a smart idea, but executed poorly. The chapters you downloaded would expire after a year (making it more of a rental), and the English release lagged behind the original Japanese by a few months. As a consumer, you were presented with two choices: pay for a chapter that would show up late and disappear, or download a chapter for free the day after it was released. Needless to say, most fans turned to scanlations.

But, to Viz’s credit, they stuck with the service. Instead of scrapping it and sending out a wave of C&D letters, they focused on ways to tweak Alpha so that it would draw in the fans they knew they were losing. After a year in transition (and a name change to just Weekly Shonen Jump), the service now releases on the same day as the Japanese book. Also, they’ve eliminated expiration dates, so you’re able to keep any chapters you’ve downloaded (I don’t know why this basic recognition of consumer’s rights feels like a win, but that’s for a different article). The price for all of this is a little steep ($25.99 for a year-long subscription), but Viz is running an SDCC special, dropping the price to $19.99 until July 28th.

ShonenJumpAlpha

Twenty bucks for a year of same day access to Shonen Jump is a great deal. But, the service still has one glaring problem: nobody knows about it. I don’t know what’s up with Viz’s marketing department, but this is something they should be trumpeting from the rooftops. This goes a long way to giving the fans what they want: easy access to their favorite manga.

Now, the service isn’t perfect. Personally, I’d like that twenty-dollar price point to be the actual price, not a limited-time discount. And I’d like to see them package Shonen Jump Advanced, Bessastu Shonen, and similar manga collections into the subscription. But this is a hell of a start to closing the gap between creator and consumer – the same gap that created the need for scanlations in the first place. It’s a smart move; fans get what they want, creators get paid, and the manga industry gets a slight boost of legitimacy.

I encourage any manga reader to check out Viz’s Weekly Shonen Jump. We always said that, if this type of service existed, we’d move away from scanlations to support it. Well, now it’s time to prove we mean it. That means spreading the word, and opening our wallets.