special 4x speed round feature!


it’s been an eventful week for codas everywhere! as in, i spent a lot of time reading and watching stuff for the first time in a while, and so i have a lot to report about! however, none of it is really anything i feel like doing a big writeup on like my usual posts, so here’s a brand new thing: a post where i just talk about all of the things of note that i finished without taking a ton of time on each! i will probably end up talking a pretty good amount anyway, because that’s just the way i am. but i’m treating this more like a little grab bag where i just throw out my most immediate thoughts with a little less care for cohesion, talking about everything, or formatting. so here’s..that! if that interests you, lol!

across the spiderverse

much like everyone else on earth, i watched this phenomenal movie last week! and much like everyone else on earth, i loved every minute of it! the original spiderverse film was a critical darling and an especially beloved fixture to animation-industry-dweebs like yours truly, and it seems to have been pretty revolutionary on a lot of levels: in perception of animation as a medium in mainstream american film, in visual style, and in tone and storytelling. i consider into the spiderverse a near perfect movie, and my main thought going into the sequel was “how on earth are they going to top that?” well, the answer was, apparently, easily – sony really outdid themselves this time. there’s really not much i could say that hasn’t already been said, but i’m not exaggerating at all when i say i feel like this across the spiderverse is a triumph on a history-making scale.

with a significantly grittier tone, a more metatexual story, and an utterly unprecedented length (and i mean that; it’s currently the longest animated film to have ever been produced by an american studio) across the spiderverse is taking a real leap of faith (wink) by honest to god actually being an animated film released on the american market that is FOR TEENAGERS. and it’s not like, exclusively specifically for teenagers or anything, but the way this thing is seems completely apathetic to the typical rules set out for mainstream american animated films – rules that pigeonhole most of these studios into creating movies mostly for kids – and much more oriented towards a specifically teenage/YA audience. and that’s ballsy stuff. they were pushing on that ceiling with into the spiderverse, but they’ve completely busted through it in the follow up. and, like, i saw this movie in a crowded theater (completely unheard of in my area) so i was able to observe the crowd it was drawing. it was all teens all the way down. some of whom were so euphoric to be watching the movie that they were rocking back and forth in their chairs and jumping up and down and cheering out loud and shit. it was so, so touching to my withered dead soul. it brought me genuine joy to see that demographic at one of the first screenings of an animated movie and like, psyched as hell to be there no less.

so like, since seeing all that and tossing the whole thing back and forth in my brain for a while, i’m pretty sure that if those kids enjoyed that movie at least half as much as i did, and if that movie ends up making a shitton of money and enjoying the same critical success as its predecessor (which it SEEMS TO BE DOING for the record) that’s gonna prove that animated films can succeed in theaters with older audiences, which is kind of a big deal. we might be seeing a major shift in the kind of films that these studios are getting greenlit as a result of that, and that’s a shift that’s been a long time coming. and personally i’m so excited about it that i’m gonna start frothing at the mouth if i talk about it for any longer.

as for the movie itself, uhhh it’s fucking good, duh. the animation is breathtaking and innovative on a scale that should not even be possible. the story is “inadvisable,” forward slash positive. much like in into the spiderverse, the film’s emotional climax is an immediate classic. at a breakneck pace, clearly fighting for its life to stuff all of its substance into a not-exactly-trim 2 and a half hour runtime, across the spiderverse endears you to its cast, introduces a shitton of compelling plot threads, closes some of them, leaves others hanging, and then sticks the landing. what else can i say? it’s not a movie that should exist. it’s quite literally too good for this world.

as for complaints: it sucks that it’s completely inaccessible to people with photosensitive epilepsy. i think the pacing is a little wonky; it’s a dense movie, so its understandable that it loses its footing a few times, but theres a 15 to 30 minute stretch near the end there with a lot of good stuff that feels like it might have been better suited for the start of the next movie and not the end of this one because it starts to really wear on you about halfway through. i wish it would have cut itself off a /little/ closer to that one legendary scene that serves as the big climax. it suffers from a couple of problems with regard to characterization and story structure that generally will show up if your feature length film is half of a movie. but man, i really can’t bring myself to get on its ass too much about that because i just can’t stop thinking about how miles is kinda gonna change the world of animation forever with his good fucking movie. love you miles.

little shop of horrors The Musical LIVE

i’m not really a live theatre guy (though i see quite a few shows now and then!) so i’m maybe not very qualified to really identify how good a stageplay is. i’m kinda always just like. haha no way, they’re dancing and singing! and telling a story as well , oh joyous day! so i “like” most of the shows that i get the privilege of watching. i /really/ liked this one though! i’d never seen any other adaptation of this story before, so i’m not sure how this specific one fares in context. my main comment of note is just that i really like audrey (NOT. the plant. I mean the woman.) even though this show’s treatment of her and like, domestic violence in general, definitely shows its age. pretty much every standout moment in the whole thing was about her in my eyes. her actress really knocked it out of the park and the somewhere that’s green reprise made me audibly gasp and put my hands over my face and shit.

the other thing i really liked about this show was the practical effects! i think i really like musicals and live theatre in general because it forces people to do practical effects for once. movies don’t ever have good ol’ talking plant puppets anymore. and there really is no greater joy than watching a show like this and trying to figure out precisely how the puppet works. i would say i want my own audrey two to live in my house, but that’s kind of the exact thing they don’t want you to think. but he’s so cute though…! i don’t have any other thoughts really. just a cool thing i got to go see!

digimon v-tamer 01

as the next initiative in my “getting really into digimon” project, i finally got around to reading v-tamer! i was pretty apprehensive about it because 1. i do not care for taichi in adventure and 2. i knew it had to do more with v-pet mechanics than any of the other elements of the franchise like the tcg or games which i’m more familiar with, so i thought i might be a bit out of my element. but nah, this comic is really accessible and just a genuinely good time. and fuckkkk dude. i really liked taichi….!! in v-tamer i ACTUALLY LIKE TAICHI!!!! >_< maybe it’s because a lot of the reasons he’s my least favorite digimon protag have to do with the way he interacts with other characters and v-tamer is largely a solitary story about him and zeromaru, but i can’t help but think it’s also just cos he’s generally nicer. he’s fun! he’s a little bit more daisuke-ish than regular old taichi and i like him more for that. (BECAUES I LOVE DAISUKE!!!)

i saw a lot of people adulating this comic as having the tamers really uniquely involved in the digimon battles, and it lived up to that praise for sure. it’s very funny coming from the v-pet based manga, because the v-pets involve a lot of just watching digimon shoot beams at eachother, but taichi really does feel like an actual tactician for most of this story, which is really fun. the “battle problems” and their solutions feel really clever and fun most of the way through (until the story starts to get a little bloated towards the end and devolves into your usual digimon powerscaling – but it’s digimon, so you have to expect a little digimon powerscaling.) it’s kind of fun to have seen how damn long v-tamer was going on for in real time with its guest comics, and think about how the story beats might compare and contrast to the stuff that was being delivered at the same time in the tv anime. it kind of feels like izawa was bouncing ideas off of them in a sense. the earliest chapters of v-tamer feel the most distinct, whereas the middling arcs have a adventure-ish tone, the parts of the story where neo becomes more prominent resemble digimon kaiser arc 02, and the final arc feels like it’s a composite of plot beats from the final arcs of both frontier and tamers. that’s really neat. you get the sense that there’s just a lot of love for digimon flowing through the whole comic.

it still definitely has its own identity though! beyond feeling much more “involved”, it has a really unique take on the relationship between tamer and digimon that i find really fun, energizing, and often earnestly touching in a way that i don’t think adventure or 02 ever were – instead of having the digimon be like, an externalized representation of their tamers’s inner self like in that continuity, it flies closer to digimon tamers with having them be literal toys and exploring the way that their tamers interact with them through that mindset (seriously, that part at the end where zero is remembering taichi taking care of him in the v-pet and that’s what gives him the power to come back from the dead is like…fuuuckk bro…clenches my fist…BRO OUR TOYS LOVE US!!!!!!! DIGIMON) zeromaru is EXCELLENT and SO lovable and i fuuucking hated veedramon’s design until i read this manga but zeromaru completely changed my opinion. i adore him endlessly and he might be one of my favoritest digimon partners in the franchise, up with your tailmons and gomamons and wormmons and uhhh (checks notes) the entire tamers cast i guess. i’m getting off track, if i talk about digimon i can’t ever stop talking these days! the point is there’s a unique vibe here that is a little hard for me to fully articulate, but that i found deeply compelling even when the story got convoluted. no matter where it takes you, the beating heart of this thing, the lovely, unique art,the mangaka’s impeccable sense for comedy, and his intricate understanding of the worldview of the franchise make this a digimon iteration that can play among the best and most classic.

my last big thought here is that i LOVED the guest chapters (except takuya’s because i don’t care about frontier i’m sorry frontierheads) so incredibly much. they were infectiously good i was kind of bouncing up and down reading them. the final push for me picking v-tamer up was actually to see the ryo guest chapter which i didn’t know existed until recently, and it definitely delivered. quite literally my favorite ryos EVER(and i was so delighted to see monodramon who i LOVE a little bit too.) daisuke’s chapter was so great too. you know i had to have really liked the ryo chapter to have that be the second thing i say in this paragraph. BECAUSE I LOVE DAISUKE!!!!!!

in conclusion, i’m just really glad i read it, and i totally get where all the praise comes from. i want to read it again another time, maybe not all in one five hour sitting this time, so that i can parse it a little better.i’m a little bit closer to being a fully fledged digimon fan…lalalla victory dance (links arms with you and runs around in a little circle)


you guys remember when tsuritama was the thing everyone on sports anime tumblr was talking about for a minute? me neither (dark ambience) but i definitely watched it way back then. and i was liiiittle then. i was 12 or so for sure. conspicuously, i only really remember the first 4 episodes well, and the rest of my recollection is incredibly foggy and conceptual. it kind of faded into obscurity for me after that single watch through, but the visuals that they use in those first episodes with yuki being submerged in metaphorical water and fighting for air whenever his social anxiety starts kicking his ass got kind of lodged in me like a thorn way back then, AS DID HARU, and i guess something tugged on that thorn recently, so i decided to rewatch. that’s me being facetious, i know what it was that tugged on it. it was because the person who did the character designs for digimon tri and did like, uh, all of cencoroll basically on his own the crazy bastard (atsuya uki is the name) was on the character designs for tsuritama. so i said like, sorry to the tsuritama guy that they used your character designs to make a bad movie. and then suddenly i was like. fuuuuuuuuuuuucl. if i don’t watch tsuritama right now something bad is going to happen to my soul.

and something bad happened to my soul anyway. this show has some kind of scary childhood grip on me. i don’t really have any super crazy thoughts other than that i’m mildly afraid of what it did to my mind and body. i actually got so overwhelmed with emotion like several times while watching it that i had to stop and lay down and try not to cry a little. it wasn’t even during the sad parts, i was just like, I”M SO PROUD OF YUKI!!! HE MADE FRIENDS, FUUUCKK!! AND THEY LOVE EACHOTHER!!! and i don’t know if that was the show or like, just me. as someone who’s way more agoraphobic than i was when i first watched tsuritama, going back and seeing it again now and seeing my problems WAY MORE in the characters just really tugged on my heartstrings in a powerful way. and more than once in the past week or so i have put on the op and just watched it on loop for like 20 minutes while crying. I’M NOT NORMALLY LIKE THIS!!!!!!

i guess the main thing is there’s an infectious “one summer’s adventure” vibe going on here that makes me just want to go fucking tie uni knots. like i’ve got to fish man. i need to live there’s nothing i love more than a show that just really wants to infodump to you about the minutia of a specific hobby. and this show doesn’t just do that. it SELLS fishing to you. it makes your ass want to FISH! and make FRIENDS!! it makes you want to go run around under the blue skies and smell the ocean air so bad. it makes you want to have a kind of gay friendship with someone so bad. and that’s wonderful.

the story’s cute, the ending’s cute. haru and yuki are cute. everythings cute. it’s one of those shows that is just kind of ambiently life affirming to me and i’m really glad i revisited it. also, haru might take the cake for “most autistic kaworu nagisa derivative in history.” which is a huge fucking accomplishment, because (stares at the camera with a stony look on my face). his voice actor needs to be given several awards for the genuine childlike whimsy that his performance is utterly infused with. just a joyful beautiful bright blue summertime show that i can tell i’ll be rewatching way more frequently now that i’ve seen it again as a grown up, in a time i apparently am much more in need of its service than ever before, lol. considering the tears i shed. dearly beloved show comes highly recommended.

that’s my huge super all-over-the-place 4x extra crazy superspecial mega feature of my story diary for now! thanks for reading this especially scattered edition if you got this far. if you check anything out from this list on my behalf, have it be tsuritama, you’ll love it. okay love you internet. until next time!!