2020 challenges, Challenges

2020 Challenges: May Recap

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May signifies two entire months in lockdown, two months of not leaving the house, not seeing anyone but my parents and my nan. It’s really starting to grate now, but there isn’t much to do about it (other than complain).

Watch 40 anime

May end total: 14

I didn’t get any new shows watched in May. The Fairy Tail game comes out soon, so I’ve been spending all of my anime watching time on catching up with the Fairy Tail anime so I’m at the right point for that. I’ve only got about 100 more episodes to go (…) before I’m up to the arc that the game is set in.

Watch 40 movies in the cinema

May end total: 5

This is still an impossibility, so no movement here!

Platinum 20 games

May end total: 3

By May end I had got the platinum in Persona 5 Royal and The Nonary Games! Both quite different games, but I enjoyed playing both.

Read 15 books

May end total: 4

I managed to read a couple of books by the end of May, including one I beta-read for my friend. I said on Twitter, but I hope everyone gets to read it some day because it was incredible.

Finish 100 best movies

May end total: 2

Finish Naruto

May end total: 3 episodes

 

30 Days Of, 30 Days Of: Film

30 Days Of: Film, Day 2

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Day 2: The last movie you watched

I had to really wrack my brain for this one as time in lockdown does not exist and feels non-linear, so I’m forgetting a lot of what happened when as a result! Having checked my Twitter feed, I can see the last film I watched was I Want To Eat Your Pancreas, which I bought on blu-ray on its release back in March.

I’m hoping to write up a proper review of the film in due course (late again, what’s new?), so for now I’ll say I really loved it a lot. I had been warned that I was going to cry prior to watching, and oh boy, I sure did.

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To loosely explain what the film is about without spoiling too much, it centres on the story of the male protagonist and a girl, Sakura, whom he meets by chance. Our protagonist finds Sakura’s diary and discovers she has terminal cancer. Sakura forbids him from telling anyone else, and enlists his help in living her life to the full before her prognosis is up. I’m sure from that description alone, you can see why I was prewarned that I’d cry!

2020 challenges, Challenges

2020 Challenges: April Recap

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I’ve spent the entirety of April in lockdown, had a birthday, and the only people I’ve seen in person are my parents and my nan (and on the occassion I’m allowed to open the door, I get a brief glimpse of a deliveryman!). Life is pretty weird at the moment.

Watch 40 anime

April end total: 14

Things really ramped up in April, as predicted, with the end of the seasonal shows I had been watching. I’ve been a little slow at watching anime since, focussing a lot of time on gaming instead, so I’m not sure how well I’ll do at adding to this total this month!

The shows I finished were: Haikyuu!! season 4, My Hero Academia season 4, ARP Backstage Pass, In/Spectre, number 24, Darwin’s Game, and Toilet-bound Hanako-kun. I’m in the process of getting some reviews written for these shows, so keep an eye out!

Watch 40 movies in the cinema

April end total: 5

Obviously I still can’t leave the house, so I’m stuck at 5 movies for this. The longer that lockdown goes on, the less likely it is that I’ll be achieving this challenge by the end of the year.

Platinum 20 games

April end total: 1

At the end of April, my total was still 1. I’ve been playing a lot of games since though, so come my May end update, things will be veeeery different.

Read 15 books

April end total: 2

It’s weird to think how reading habits change. 10 years ago, I’d have read 15 books in a month, now I’m not even reading one a month. It’s so hard to find the time to read when all my hobbies are so time consuming. Things have improved on the reading front lately, and I’m starting to find it easier to set it aside time to read, so things should be improving here!

Finish 100 best movies

April end total: 2

Finish Naruto

April end total: 3 episodes

30 Days Of, 30 Days Of: Anime

30 Days Of: Anime, Day 30

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Day 30: Which anime has your heart?

There are a lot of anime that I love, but the one that will always be special to me is undoubtedly Haikyuu!!, which is probably evident from how many times it appeared during this challenge.

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I’ve mentioned before that it took me a few attempts to get into it, and I’m so glad I gave it those chances. I’ve met some really good friends through Haikyuu!!, and I can’t wait to see where it goes in the future.

This question wraps up the 30 Days Of: Anime (which took way longer than 30 days, but what are you gonna do?). I’ll leave it a little longer before I do the next 30 Days Of challenge, as I need to find one and I think I need a little break from it.

30 Days Of, 30 Days Of: Anime

30 Days Of: Anime, Day 29

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Day 29: Your favourite character

I asked some friends how they would describe the type of characters I usually pick as my favourite. Some answers I got were psychotic, villainsunstablemisunderstood, dark, and mysterious. I would probably agree with these descriptors on a whole. I do think villains tend to be more interesting characters, and have more interesting stories, and certainly a lot of my favourite characters are villains or have villanous tendencies.

Having said all of that, my absolute favourite character from anything is Haikyuu!!‘s Bokuto Koutarou, who could not be further from any of those words if he tried.

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What I really love about Bokuto is that despite pretty much being a side character, and not really having too much screen time, is that he really makes an impact, not least of all because of his loud personality. Bokuto really demands attention any time he’s on screen, whether that’s because he’s yelling, or because he’s smashing a service ace.

Bokuto has so many facets to his personality and so many emotions which are often displayed across his expressive. His ’emo-mode’ shows off a vulnerable side, and proves that things aren’t even easy when you have as much talent and skill as him. Bokuto is brought out of his depressive states but his excellent support network bring him out of it, showing that we’re nothing without our friends.

Bokuto’s boundless energy makes him a joy to watch, and I love him very much.

30 Days Of, 30 Days Of: Anime

30 Days Of: Anime, Days 25 and 26

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Day 25: Character you are most like

Up until fairly recently, I would have said Yamaguchi from Haikyuu!! for the answer to this question, but then I watched Love Stage, and the similarities between me and Sena Izumi are quite obvious. So obvious, in fact, that Chelsie made this comparison chart to show the similarities:

Izumi and I would both much rather stay in, and we’re both obsessed with anime and manga. We also both love Ryouma!

Day 26: A scene that made you cry

Here’s the thing… I cry a lot. Like, way too much. I’m very easily brought to tears, it turns out. If I listed even a fraction of scenes that made me cry, I’d be here all day. I’ll go for the scene that made me cry the most, which is easily the library scene in Banana Fish. I’ll say no more, and just leave you with the second OP, which is a banger.

30 Days Of, 30 Days Of: Anime

30 Days Of: Anime, Days 23 and 24

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Day 23: Favourite Studio Ghibli

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I’ve shared my Howl’s Moving Castle cosplay before, but I’m damn well going to do it again. Howl’s is my favourite Ghibli movie and definitely the one I’ve rewatched the most. I also really love Ponyo!

 

 

 

Day 24: Ever been bullied for liking anime?

I think if I had been into anime when I was younger then I think I probably would have been bullied for watching it – the school I went to was an all-girls school, and if you had a hobby or interest that was outside of the traditional ‘girl hobbies’ then they tended to make fun of you, see also: me liking video games. As it is, I got into anime after my uni years, so I’m well past the stage where people bully you for interests (or so I’d hope), and also past the stage of caring. My non-anime friends and my family do rib me for liking anime a bit, but it’s all just good-natured fun and I’ve never felt upset or anything by it.

30 Days Of, 30 Days Of: Anime

30 Days Of: Anime, Days 21 and 22

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Day 21: Favourite harem/reverse harem

At the risk of talking only about Ouran High School Host Club throughout this challenge, I do just have to give it a quick mention. It’s undoubtedly one of the best reverse harem I’ve seen and deserves at least a brief shoutout. It’s funny, heartwarming, and all of the boys are actually really good characters.

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I’ll talk a little more about something that’s not Ouran, and go for something I’ve watched fairly recently; Dance With Devils. This is another reverse harem, and honestly, I started watching it as a joke with Chelsie, as it said it was a musical anime, and we both instantly thought that nothing good could ever come of that. We were pretty wrong, and the songs are actually really decent. The plot is a bit contrived; a girl, Ritsuka, has a secret power buried within her and also happens to be in a school where some demons also go, and they want her secret power. There’s the standard power struggle as the boys all go for her, and some outside forces too, and although Ritsuka is your standard dumbass female protagonist, all of the boys are really interesting characters who are fun to watch. I’d definitely recommend this anime to others!

Day 22: Subs or dubs

I have watched some dubs in my time (Fairy Tail and Ouran are two shows I will only watch the dubs of), but generally speaking I prefer subs. I like to think I’m picking up some language skills as it goes, but that in itself is doubtful!

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Unboxing: April SoKawaii

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I’ve previously mentioned that I wasn’t going to buy any subscription boxes prior to my trip to Japan, and then the subsequent cancellation of the trip led to March “sad-time spending”. I decided during this period that I would buy myself a subscription box, which I felt would either cheer me up, or depress me further as it would remind me of what I was supposed to be experiencing. Just to double down on any potential pitfalls, I also opted for the SoKawaii box, as it had a theme of “Sakura”, and I was due to see the sakura blossoms during my trip.

The first thing that struck me was how cutely the box was packaged. My previous Yumetwins box was just the items in a box, which is totally fine, I didn’t have any packaging expections, but the SoKawaii box was cutely laid out with pink tissue paper and just had a more visual impact when I opened it. It instantly made me happy, and I was excited to unpack and see what I got.

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Item number 1 was this really cute Rilakkuma blanket. I’m not the biggest Rilakkuma fan, but this blanket is super soft. It’s so hard to take a photo of these blankets, I also struggled in my Christmas box, but this is it on my double bed, so it’s quite large! It also fits my colour scheme in my bedroom, albeit it’s a slightly darker shade of pink.

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The next item was a Cardcaptor Sakura keychain. I knew in advance that the box was coming with a CCS item, and to be honest, it almost stopped me from buying it because I’ve never seen CCS before. I went ahead as I have lots of friends who like it, so I figured I could gift the item to one of them, which is exactly what I’ve done (or will do once lockdown is over!). Still, it’s a really cute item, and it’s a shame I can’t appreciate it fully, but I’m sure its new owner will!

IMG_6758Next up was some sakura chocolate. The packaging is so cute, and totally my aesthetic. I’ve yet to try the chocolate, because I haven’t got round to translating the ingredients yet, and I have a lot of allergies and dietary requirements, so I can’t just trust that chocolate will be okay for me to eat and there’s no translation label. I’m also super fussy with food, so I’m not sure whether I’m looking forward to trying this or not! I guess it’s in keeping with my Japan trip, as I was going to force myself to try some new foods just for the experience!

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Item number four was this really cute bowl! It’s the perfect size for me to put little trinkets in, or little sweets and keep on my coffee table for guests.

 

 

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I also got this cute Pokémon figure with Plusle and Minun! It’s a stackable figure, so there are others to collect with different Pokémon on, and then they make up a larger tree. I’m glad I got Plusle and Minun, they’re probably up there with my favourite Pokémon, and there are plenty of worse options I could have got.

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And last but definitely not least, we have my favourite item this month – the sakura Cinnamoroll! He’s just so cute, and so soft! He matches the colour of my bedroom perfectly, so I have him in there hanging off my wardrobe door so I can see him every day, and every time I do he just makes me so happy!

 

 

I’m really happy with my SoKawaii box! It did the job of dulling the void I felt by having to cancel my trip to Japan, and I’m mostly happy with everything that I got (and have found a good home for the one item that I didn’t want to keep). I’d definitely get a SoKawaii box again, in fact I forgot to cancel the subscription, so I am getting a box this month too!

30 Days Of, 30 Days Of: Anime

30 Days Of: Anime, Day 15 and 16

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Day 15: Most epic or shocking scene

I’m going to try and keep this as spoiler free as possible…

A few scenes jump to mind here, so I’ll talk a little about each one.

The end of Banana Fish in the library was the most shocking scene I’ve seen in a while. It really got to me, and I was sobbing from basically the moment that happened to about half an hour after the end credits rolled. I don’t want to talk on it any further as I don’t trust myself to not spoil it, and I think it’s one of those things that really needs to be experienced unspoilt.

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Day 16: Favourite anime couple (canon)

I could write an entire essay here on why Bokuto and Akaashi are, in fact, canon but I’ll refrain and give you something that’s explicitly canon instead.

My favourite anime couple are Ryouma and Izumi from Love Stage. They’re just so cute together, and Ryouma loves Izumi so much. I’m also… very similar to Izumi, so it’s nice to see that someone loves him!

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Another anime couple I love are Narumi and Hirotaka from Wotakoi: Love is Hard for an Otaku.  They fit together so well and really compliment each other’s characters. I really hope it gets another season, as I’d love to see them together a bit more.

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