Tagged: action

Short Story – Delicacy of Touch

This is another story focused heavily on action, in an indistinct fantasy setting. There are elements of wuxia here, and elements of Japanese culture, and certainly elements of European nobility. I did not want this to be clearly identifiable as any one culture transplanted into another world, because what interests me in writing fantasy is trying to remove the social and cultural signifieds from signifiers; fantasy is at its best when recognisable things are not quite so recognisable.

So in a world where there are spiritual, manicured courtyard gardens, one of hiding behind screens and long sleeves, there is also fencing and theories of swordsmanship that feel intensely European.

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NaNoWriMo Short Story – On-Site Procurement


I have not written action, pure, enjoyable action – not a deconstruction or a subversion or any such thing – for a very long time. Whenever I try I find I want to subvert expectations – and so, in this season of writing short stories against my grain I thought I would write a simple cyberpunk-esque fight scene. There is not much to comment on – my intent was to simply try and write an exciting vignette rather than an in-depth dissection of a genre.

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Stardust Memory – Wrong in Interesting Ways


The side story OVAs to the main Universal Century timeline of Gundam are, perhaps by virtue of a shorter running time, more focused in their approach to using the setting; each tells a single story seated within the world created that tries to be different in some way to other stories in the same world. The 08th MS Team makes aesthetic efforts at a kind of military-SF realism by attention to mechanical detail and at the same time is basically a love story about soldiers from opposing factions. War in the Pocket is even more personal and anti-action in its close focus on Al and Bernie, a soldier and the civilian who helps him try and carry out his mission against all odds – and its child’s viewpoint is specifically used to play with expectations of what this kind of story entails.

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The Action of Captain Earth

[HorribleSubs] Captain Earth - 08 [480p].mkv_snapshot_20.59_[2014.06.07_14.45.03]

By episodes 7-8 of Captain Earth, the return of action – the clashes of robots that the opening credits and past episodes have hinted at – is welcome. A more human focus must be balanced with action, and the further the balance tips away from the action the better the human stories must be. While Captain Earth has hinted at interesting, sufficiently developed human aspects to suit a more conceptual science-fiction series – with nods to traditional super-robot aesthetics that serve more as pop-cultural touchstones via Akari and Daichi than a defining concept – episodes such as 6, which spend significant time setting up a core conflict that must, necessarily, be fought with super-robots work strongly against this.

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Collateral Damage in Gundam F91


The opening sequence of Gundam F91 is an assault on a space colony much like many other within the franchise; it could be thematically the attack on Heliopolis from Gundam SEED, the initial mayhem of Mobile Suit Gundam or the carnage wreaked by the Kshatriya in Unicorn. Yet what sets it apart is how uncinematic the action is; the focus visually is on showing people trying to avoid the fighting, chasing one group of civilians who are not a part of the conflict and simply want to avoid it. The conflict is foreshadowed from the title card intro, in which a number of enemy machines begin attacking a shipyard with casual ease, but its first appearance to the main cast is sudden as a destroyed defense unit crashes into a building, crushing those within.

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Words and Deeds – Dewey vs Holland in Episode 35 of Eureka Seven


There is more action in the first half of episode 35 of Eureka Seven than there has been in much of the series previously; it is an episode about acting, about taking responsibility for what must be done and doing it. Holland claims the Gekkostate’s mantra is “do it yourself or you won’t get anything,” while Dewey claims that “the only thing I ever wanted was to win, using my own words as a human being.” So much of the series has been about people trying to avoid action, or refusing to accept what must be done – on all sides – but now there has been a sea-change. Dewey’s actions have motivated all the characters to act, because there is now a quantifiable, known threat. If anything this vindicates Renton; all along his resistance to acting has been whenever he has felt he does not know why he should act, and his impetuous actions have come from what he perceives as a proper understanding of a situation. Dewey’s wanton slaughter, and his realisation of his feelings for Eureka, have given him the reason he needs.

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The Christmas Blog Series 2 (I) – Kill la Kill

[HorribleSubs] Kill la Kill - 03 [480p].mkv_snapshot_17.17_[2013.10.17_20.49.26]

The 2013 animé Kill la Kill has invited a wide range of comparisons to past series as a result of how widespread its references to other fiction are. Its story – and indeed its aesthetic – are very strongly reminiscent at first of Revolutionary Girl Utena – a black-clothed girl defies tradition and enters a surreal school to fight its white-clothed elite one-on-one both to protect a close friend and reveal some greater mystery. Yet Kill la Kill has taken this idea in a different direction; Utena explored matters of sexuality and love via exaggerated versions of the sorts of dramas seen in shoujo animé and school stories, with characters like Nanami and her friends fitting exactly the archetypes also illustrated in a series like Dear Brother.

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Action and Expectations in “Majestic Prince”

[HorribleSubs] Majestic Prince - 08 [480p].mkv_snapshot_14.00_[2013.05.24_11.29.56]

From the start, Majestic Prince has established itself as sitting somewhere between homage and parody; it is a comedy aware of the genre it is mocking but not specifically referential, instead relying on the viewer’s familiarity with how it differs from expectations. Throughout its opening episodes this came from its apparent rejection of combat; the protagonists were set out as being inept but eager to improve, and the emphasis has been on their aim to become competent pilots and be the “heroes” they are framed as.

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Battle of Wits – Episode 27 of Eureka Seven (B-Part)

Ray and Charles' battle with Holland is a fight of equals, quite unlike Amuro fighting Ramba Ral.

Ray and Charles’ battle with Holland is a fight of equals, quite unlike Amuro fighting Ramba Ral.

Note: This article is also available at Super Fanicom HERE

The “A-Part” of episode 27 of Eureka Seven was dense with worldbuilding, using the moments of peace immediately prior to Ray and Charles’ apparent suicide attack to build tension while also – through snatched conversations – lay down the groundwork for the conflicts that will define the second half of the series. As Holland continually moved to shut himself off from distractions and turn the Gekko into a battlefield, the other characters looked forwards to the future – calling into question the Gekkostate’s future relevance.

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