Category Archives: Fandom

I prefer to Read Fan Fiction instead of Best Selling Books – Here’s Why.

Hey all it’s Kern here, coming to you with a somewhat derisive topic, but for all of you authors out there, fan fiction authors and otherwise, put on your listening ears, because this is important.

Fan fiction can be hit and miss. It is both a messy media and a crap shoot. Some fan fiction writers have the chops to strike out on their own and write a unique best selling work of their own creation. Other fan fiction writers could never hope to attain that same quality at their current skill level. Even so, I’d rather read fan fiction over most best selling novels out there.

For all the snappy dialogue and punchy editing, most best selling books have me losing interest as soon as I turn the first few pages. It always seems so pristine to me… almost as if on occasion its just too perfect. Honestly, in a way that’s just outright off-putting.

Recently, I realized why.

I’ve come to determine that at the end of the day, it is the editing process that ruins most books for me. It’s the reek of mass media posturing and the inevitable stifling of creative energy. This ultimately destroys the vast majority of written media for me.

Most books out there are about sixty thousand words. A great many fan fictions average about one-hundred thousand words per story, and that’s not including sequels.

Yes, that means they can be clunky to read, but you can also be sure that the person writing that story put exactly what they wanted into it. That isn’t to say that books can’t be longer too. However, it is to say that they are usually streamlined in a way that feels watered down and washed out to me.

At its core, the only difference between a piece of media for sale and a piece of media given freely, is the expected return on investment.

For fan fiction that investment is generally only emotional. It’s payment for the soul, you could say. People are either using fan fiction to hone their skills, or to become part of a greater community. It’s a selfish thing by it’s nature, because fandom is selfish in general. Fans can be rabid and territorial about the things they like, because it means something to them.

We like what we like, after all. Thus, we hate what we hate, as well.

When you read a fan fiction you enjoy and then post a review, you’re feeding that creative energy. You’re harboring that love that can only be given from one fan to another while bonding over a shared piece of media.

For written media being sold, this is not the case. There’s a monetary incentive that fan fiction just doesn’t have tied to it. With that incentive in mind, the devil is in the details.

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I often have to wonder how much content get’s cut, because making a book isn’t exactly cheap. You’re limited by what the mass public will accept and at the mercy of publishing houses unless you strike out on your own.

I don’t want to read that kind of crap. I don’t want to think about what may have been yanked out, simply because an editor demanded it.

I read fan fiction because I love the flawed media. You can really see a writer’s ambition in works that don’t have an editor to scrutinize every little thing. There is no streamlined process for fan fiction, no hoops to jump through, no particular standard of quality that must be met by publishing overlords.

Does that mean that some fan fiction is absolute crap? Well, yeah! Sure, there’s some really bad fan fiction out there. However, there are also published books out there that are just as full of crap, and lacked due diligence as well…

Worst of all, you likely paid for that garbage with hard earned money in order to read it. Think about that. How many books did you buy and regret? For me, that number is well over twenty. No, I’m not kidding.

This is why I really do hate what many people hold aloft “best sellers” as though they’re God’s gift to the world. Now, in light of fairness, I don’t hate all best selling books. I keep several on my shelf. For example, Tuesdays with Morrie, written by Mitch Albom is one of the best books I have ever read in my entire life.

I have owned three copies of that book in my lifetime. I have read it so many times I broke the first one’s spine as in the ninth grade. The second one died a horrible doom in my early twenties thanks to a small child running around with a black sharpie in hand. A sad lesson was learned that day amidst all the scribbles.

Never leave beloved books on coffee tables…

Anyway, you see my point. There are books I do adore, however they are very few and far between. Fan fiction is the majority of my reading, and I usually blast through through several hundred-thousand words in a single sitting. When I sit down to read, I do so to eagerly.

For a fan, being a best seller doesn’t matter. You’re not selling the story. You’re sharing it wholeheartedly with other fans. All that matters is the writer takes a chance and puts their efforts into a creation that means something special to them.

Fan fiction are stories written by fandom, and that is ultimately what I like so much about it. It acts like a touch stone in a very particular way, unifying people with very little barrier to entry.

You can’t say the same about other types of written media, and best sellers least of all. That fact that it’s a best seller in the first place ,is the absolute complete antithesis of what a fan fiction should be.

The ethos behind writing them are fundamentally different beasts by nature.

Now, this is of course a symbiotic relationship. You need to be a fan of something to write fan fiction. That is the definition of what fan fiction is. It would be stupid to claim otherwise.

That being said, there are times that the fan fictions out there are far and away better than the original work they came from. This is simply because a fan of the series is the one writing it to begin with. Either subverting expectation, or diving deeper into the over-all narrative in a way the original creator couldn’t do, or simply chose not to do.

I hate the concept of best selling books, but I love fan fiction that gets created because of media that fans nurture and continue to hold in high regard.

Fan fiction is usually far from perfect. It cannot be perfect due to what it is, but that’s why I love it so much. That alone is the simple reason why.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time.

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Mushoku Tensei – A Grandfather of Isekai

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Mushoku Tensei is one of the 2021 anime that has a lot of people taking about it, and for good reason. It’s an interesting show, adapted from a wealth of written media. Now having not read all of the written material, I can only speak to some of it. Today though I’m going to focus on it’s anime adaptation, and the problems that are creeping to the surface because of its vast popularity.

The written media for Mushoku Tensei has been around since 2012, that’s why the series is so popular. It not exactly a huge stretch to say that this series would generally appeal to a far wider audience than most anime out there.

You see, this series contains actual full length novels, light novels, manga, an audio drama, and as of 2021 it now has an anime and a video game as well.

So, what’s the problem then? Well, you could call this series one of the grandfathers of the Isekai genre.

In these types of stories, characters will teleport into a different world in one way, shape, or form. Generally a character dies and is reincarnated, or they’re sucked into the world through some other event. Then that character lives in the newfound world after that.

The entire crux of these stories is the characters and the world they now reside in. Key plot points include living among the peoples that reside in these new lands, learning the laws and the way the world works.

Isekai anime all have a gimmick of some nature, and to be fair it’s not a genre I actively dive into regularly. This is mostly because the industry is flooded with them. Since the beginning of anime itself, we’ve all seen the series where a character goes to some mystical place, or our titular hero gets trapped in a video game. It’s standard, it’s common, and even before the term “Isekai” became part of the anime narrative, it has always been around.

Even anime that aren’t true Isekai can still feel like one. Think of anime such as Inuyasha, for prime example. I wouldn’t call it a true Isekai, but it does have many trappings of the genre.

If you want a good example of a great Isekai in the genre, look no further than “That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime“. The manga and anime are both solid, and it also has novels and light novels. That is the reason I use this example. The wealth of contented provided is very similar.

When it comes to written media, Mushoku Tensei is the modern-day juggernaut for the Isekai genre. Prior to this series, Isekai were more fluid in it’s nature. What we considered Isekai was also vastly different.

This series established most of the tropes we know today. Predominately, this includes the concept of reincarnation into a new world, our favorite murderous device often named by fans as “truck-kun”, and the asshole protagonist that requires a new lease on life.

Does any of that sound like something you’ve seen before? Well, that is the ultimate issue for us anime fans.

The series took too long to be animated. More creative Isekai anime out there are using these established tropes. Some of them are actually doing it better than Mushoku Tensei ever could. This is simply because they had the benefit of learning from their grandfathers of the genre.

Thanks to these improvements on the genre, we’re getting some decent content. “That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime” is the primary example I use. However, there are other solid choices out there if this is a genre you really enjoy. I just don’t, so it’s hard for me to really decipher what ones are best to list.

Sadly, Mushoku Tensei cannot live up to it’s competitors. If you’re a fan of the series already, it’s probably right up your ally and on your “to watch” list. For the rest of us it’s a “been there, done that, seen this before” type of show.

This doesn’t make Mushoku Tensei bad, not even in the slightest. It just means that despite the pretty visuals and decent voice acting, it feels dated. It’s hard for me to suggest this anime simply because of that, but there is a reason to watch it.

As I said before, Mushoku Tensei is one of the founding grandfathers of the genre. It would be ridiculous to overlook this series simply because any fan of this genre should watch it at least once. It is important to understand how this genre came to be what it is today, and this series allows you to do that.

The anime adaptation is still ongoing, so this isn’t a review on its quality. This is just a firmly placed suggestion. If you enjoy Isekai anime, you owe it to yourself to watch this series.

I know that I am enjoying it despite the dated feel, and I hope you will too.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time.

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Fandom: Three TIps To Combat Writer’s Block

I feel like absolute garbage today thanks to my ongoing cold that has decided to make my nose all stuffy. Therefore I wanted something easy to write about. Also, my tags aren’t click bait, I’ve linked my recently completed RWBY fan fiction at the bottom of the page for those who want to read it.

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Now, onto the reason for this post; writers block…

To put it simply, “writer’s block” is the inability to put a thought into its written form. Make no mistake about it. Writing is a craft, and it isn’t always easy. These are some of the ways I stave off writers block. They help me, hopefully they help you too.

Before we begin, a disclaimer needs to be said.

This is aimed at the writers who do so for the fun of it. Writers who love to just write. This isn’t advice aimed at creative writers who earn a living through the power of the pen and their own ambitions, though you may find some value in this post as well.

If you are a professional writer just know that number three on this list certainly won’t apply to you. It wasn’t written to apply to a career writer, and isn’t aimed at a person who does this for a living.

With that’s said, let’s begin.

#1) Respect your mental health.

I’m not kidding. This really is important. You should know where your mind is when you sit down to write a new chapter in a fan fiction, or begin your own novel. More often than not it matters beyond belief. Your emotions will fuel your writing from a creative standpoint. That is indisputable. You cannot completely remove yourself from your own written word.

Why do you write? That’s the first question you should know the answer to when figuring this out. Even if all you have to say is “I like it”, at least have that. Have something.

Anything. Any reason. Just so long as its your reason to write.

For example, some writers take to the practice so that they can vent their emotions in a safe way. Other tend to explore different parts of the human condition insofar as it applies to themselves. Others write based strictly on where their mood takes them.

A very lucky few may not have their writing changed at all by their head space. Anecdotally speaking though, I find this to be rare. Particularly in those who are not professionally inclined.

No matter your content or your style, ultimately the first key to solving writers block is to understand where your head is creatively. How does that mood impact you? That is without a doubt something you should discover and explore.

If you’re in a bad head space, it may reflect in your writing in ways you don’t want it to. If you’re in a general bad mood, it could be difficult to write a happy-go-lucky scene. If you’re in a really good mood, you may find that writing something sad or heavy just isn’t going to work at that moment.

Work with you mind creatively, not against it.

In cases where you mood just doesn’t fit the content, it may be best to begin a small side project. Use that idea to explore your capabilities as a writer, even if very little comes from it. Don’t start frustrating yourself by trying to cram the idea into a work already in progress. Especially if that idea simply doesn’t fit to begin with.

In other cases, it may just be best not to write at all for that moment. Instead, take some time to put yourself into best frame of mind for your personal goals. As a writer, it’s always important to be aware of yourself, even if you just do this for fun.

#2) Redefine your methods.

Let’s say you’ve been writing for a long time, perhaps years. Let’s also assume this is the first real rut you’ve ever been in as a writer. Lastly, let’s assume it seems to be a bad one this time.

What do you do?

You begin by looking at your creative work. Is it bringing you the emotional fulfillment you need? If not, cram that thing on the back burner and begin a new project entirely. Try a different topic to invigorate your passion for writing.

If it’s not the creative work itself that brings you discomfort, perhaps the problem can be blamed on your workspace. Does it suit you creatively at the time?

If not, fix that. No, really I mean it. Fix that as soon as you can. Sometimes it really is that stupidly simple.

People always harp on clean writing spaces, but I get the worst writer’s block when my area is too clean. I’m actually writing this post in my garage next to my space heater. No, I’m not joking, this has become a thing…

Normally I write blogs at my computer desk. However, I just recently cleaned my desk thoroughly, not a spec of dust remains. It smells of wood polish. I do that about once a month because I’m not a complete slob, but this is the downside. I just can’t write there at the moment.

My computer room is just too neat for me right now, and that’s just the way it is. In a day or two the general clutter of daily life will have sorted that out. Until then I’m sitting in a place more conducive to my own personal creativity.

I like to write in conditions that are casual, comfortable and lived in. My garage isn’t ideal, either. It’s the middle of winter. Snow is littered all over the ground outside at the moment, and I can see my breath. Still, it was the need to get out of my “too clean” location that inspired this entire ramble of a blog post.

Yes, this time the cure for my writers block really was that simple. Is it the best I can do when I’m at the peek of my writing? Most certainly not, but that brings me to my next point…

#3) Perfectionism is flat out stupid.

Spelling errors? Yep me too, we all have them. Words repeating themselves over and over and over again? That’s a thing. Run on sentences? Sure!

Does it really matter in the moment? That’s up to you. Don’t make a huge deal out of it, though.

To prove my point, i’m putting my feet to the fire on this one. I’m not even going to edit this stupid thing. It’s what I like to call a “write and toss”. Anyone who reads my fan fiction knows I make the habit of just enjoying the creative process because it’s the part I like best.

Hence the writing, and the tossing, and the no editing…and my god we have a lot of “and’s in and grammatical hullabaloo this sentence now down’t we? Yes, I’m aware I misspelled at least one word in this paragraph. Do I look like I care?

Nope don’t care! There it is, welcome to my lack of caring…

No, seriously though, to me creativity is the fun part of writing, and fan fiction to me stands out as a hobby only. I don’t get paid for fan fiction. That’s both a legal and moral grey area I won’t get into on this blog post but the point stands.

For most of us, creatively writing pieces of art won’t be a job. For those of us who use certain written media as an outlet, it might not ever be one. If earning a paycheck through writing isn’t your goal, don’t strive for perfection.

Is there a place and time for carefully edited works? Most certainly. Does it need to be every single tiny thing you write? Absolutely not.

Professionals spend years honing their craft to reach the standard of “Best seller” or other critical acclaims. Sometimes it’s just raw skill. Sometimes that raw skill mixed with pure luck. Sometimes it’s a fluke that their hard work was a best seller at all. Right time, right place, all that jazz.

Do not listen to every person out there who demands your creative process needs to be a certain way. It doesn’t to fit their mold. The only standard of quality your writing needs to fit is your own.

You can clean up and revisit your old works when you feel ready to do that. If you don’t feel like doing that, well, just don’t. Edit and revise at your own pace, but never to the point that you burn yourself out.

If you write only for the fun of it, then just have your fun. Let yourself love it, and don’t let the need for perfectionism get in the way.

I feel like I can’t say that enough, because there are a lot of mean spirited people that bully new writers and discourage them. Writing isn’t meant to be torture, and if it’s turning out to be that way due to editing, lighten up on yourself and your creative process. Don’t let yourself feel like you’re losing control of your vision.

No one likes to feel that way. Writers hate losing their creative voice. Even the best writer out there wouldn’t want to lose what makes their writing special to them. Don’t allow yours to be stifled.

In closing…

Welcome to an incredibly casual blog post that’s finally reached its end. It’s not the prettiest thing in the world. Just a wall of text really. Still, I know someone will read this thing to its conclusion and take some value from it. So long as just one person does, then that’s good enough for me.

If that wasn’t you, sorry. You’re probably just in a different place as a writer than the people I’m addressing. Maybe you’re way more advanced, or perhaps you’ve never experienced a writer’s block like the one I’m talking about. Perhaps you simply see the world differently that I do. Either way, I wish you well on your writing adventures.

So, the best advice I can give you is right here. Down at the bottom, for those who truly do love this medium. This final piece of advice is just for you.

Just… love it.

Love your writing, love yourself as a writer, and love the journey it takes you on as a person. Learn to love this writers block and what it can teach you about the craft. Let it inspire you. Let yourself discover this side of your creative mind.

If you can do that, you’ll overcome any writers block eventually. It might take some time, and it might be annoying, but inspiration comes from strange places. Embrace that, and embrace your ambition to write.

As for critics who have a bad side?

If you do decide to share written works for the world, just decide if you care about the criticism you receive. You can take it or leave it. The choice really is yours. If the criticism comes up a lot, it might be worth thinking about. In the end though, it all comes down to your goals as a writer.

When it comes to fan fiction, I certainly don’t care about any tiny nitpick that crosses my path. It’s not a job, it’s a hobby. The phrase “Don’t like? Don’t read…” may be hyperbolic, but there’s a lot of truth in it too.

I live by that truth, because in the end I’m selfish when it comes to my creative writing. It’s not meant for everyone else, it’s meant for me. If I share it, that’s on my terms. It’s not for anyone else to decide.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time.

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The Problem With N.C.I.S. Season 18…

Before I nag and complain about this long running television series, I want to state a few things first. The first is that ultimately, this is not a hate post about the show. Far from it. I grew up with the likes of J.A.G. and other such series. When I’d come home from school at least someone in my family had it playing, and therefore I grew to enjoy the crime drama myself.

My parents and I still make the habit of watching N.C.I.S. together every Tuesday night. In the era of Covid-19 when so many routines have been upended and obliterated, this one unspoken tradition was something of a boon. Something that I personally clung to, because let’s face it. The world will be upside down for everyone until the virus gets under control.

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However last night, this long running television series made a choice to do something. If you haven’t seen the episode, warning MASSIVE spoiler ahead…

I mean it, don’t scroll down if you care about spoilers…

This is your last chance…

On February 9th, 2021, the series took a turn. It decided to kill off Jimmy Palmer’s wife to Covid-19 so offhandedly that fans took to twitter and fan wiki pages to see if we somehow missed something. That’s how offhanded it was!

As fans of the show, we received a few sections of dialogue coming from a man in grief. Mourning a loss that apparently had taken place a few months back. His nearly unbeatable sunny spirits at war with how he really feels, trapped in his own denial.

I haven’t been a huge fan of season 18. It’s been a bit of a muddy one to be sure, but the true issue showed its face in spades. Season 18 is a season when hope is lost to desperation, and sacrifices come in forms so unsavory that they’re just too dark to swallow.

I don’t like most crime dramas because they’re just too gritty. The reason I enjoy N.C.I.S. is because no matter how dark it chooses to dive into the depths of cynicism, a small light of hope usually lingers upon its surface. Last night’s episode, and the episodes of most of this season lack that all too important thing.

In this season I’ve witnessed Gibbs shooting Mcgee several times to keep him down. To protect him against an explosion that would have otherwise killed him. The show’s ace sniper turning to bullets to protect a comrade… by shooting the comrade. If you’ve watched this season at all, you likely know what I’m getting at by now.

Instead of our heroes coming out on top of their struggles, and carefully laid plot lines to address their problems head on, what we’ve received is a poor attempt at best. At worst, we have character related baggage that won’t ever be healed. It’s too soon to tell if the writers can get themselves out of this mess.

I won’t sit here and complain about Breena’s apparent off-screen death. Or the fact that it has left Jimmy as a single father and deeply grieving man.

Instead, I’m just going to say this.

The virus is real. The loss of life isn’t a story or fabrication. That’s real too. I have been profoundly lucky that I have not yet personally suffered a loss at the hands of Covid 19, but my family and I have also been as sheltered in place as much as possible since the pandemic began. Taking every precaution we can in order to stay safe. While the world loses thousands by the day, I know there are others like myself out there. Families who have gotten incredibly lucky.

Not everyone was so fortunate, and a little care taken to character progression is paramount in situations like this.

You don’t just write off a character’s death to a pandemic virus this way,..a few pen strokes of dialogue unwittingly toying with the confines of reality, in a way that just doesn’t do the real truth of the matter justice.

Jimmy as a character will be a changed man by this, and sure it further’s his story line. It makes him more interesting. At what cost, though? Are the writers just that damn cynical? This choice of theirs was thought out, but it wasn’t in any way meticulous.

Like so many episodes this season, it gazes down into the abyss, but it doesn’t provide any sense of true closure. The true light of hope just wasn’t there… And you know what? We could all use a little hope right about now.

Is that really so much to ask?

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time.

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With your contributions, you make our efforts possible. Thank you for supporting our content. Patreon supporters receive access into our official Discord server, and a few other perks depending on the tier. If you don’t care for Patreon, and don’t care about perks, you can always support us through PayPal too… links below.

Those who join via Patreon get special perks, such as extra content, quicker updates, and more.

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To Our Supporters

Thank you for helping us to enrich our content.

Patreon Supporters:
($3) Little Ferrets: None
($5) Demented Minions: Francis Murphy and Andrew Wheal.
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($50) Round Table Ferret/Fluffy Ferret: Josh Sayer

Top 3 Reasons to Watch: All Out

Hello everyone, Kernook here. In honor of the Superbowl here in the states I thought that it would be nice to discuss a rugby anime today. This one happens to be called All Out.

Now typically I don’t watch many sports anime, although the ones I do watch tend to be a few of my favorites. From Yuri on Ice and Ballroom e Youkoso, to Baby Steps and Megalo Box, I’ve seen my fair share of the sports anime medium. Not only one type of sport anime, but the wide range of them, including competitive dance.

Yes… even competitive dancing is a sport, believe it.

So, why am I suggesting All Out when objectively there are far better options out there for the rugby sport? Well, here’s the thing, the better ones are only better for anime fans. I wanted to suggest something that could also apply to regular sports fans too.

Have a relative or a friend who loves rugby? Are they reluctant to watch anime? Well, that’s the demographic that’s perfect for this anime.

I don’t suggest All Out because it’s a favorite of mine. Actually, it’s far from a favorite for me. That’s because I am not a hardcore rugby fan. In general find other sports more enjoyable.

Believe it or not though, I do enjoy this anime enough to have watched it several times. That’s why I can suggest it to you now.

As a Madhouse production made in 2016, it ticks all of the basic boxes of a typical sports anime without being an eyesore. It’s old enough to have fallen out of the discussion among anime fans, without being so old as to look like crap.

This anime is a great “catch-all” of sorts. If you like sports anime, or rugby in general, you’ll probably like this. So with that let’s get into my top three reasons to watch it.

#1. It’s Great for Beginners.

For those of you who don’t typically watch anime, this is a starter for you. This anime has all the trappings of your typical school life anime with sports mixed into it.

It has a subtitled version and a dubbed version. If you don’t want to read subtitles, you don’t have to. It also lacks a lot of the maddening tropes that are in other types of sports anime. It’s perfect for a beginners to the medium.

If you like testosterone ridden victories, action, and the highs and lows that comes with sports, All Out has it in spades. The anime is bursting with everything that you’d expect from any sport such as Rugby.

This is an anime, but it doesn’t feel like it panders only to anime fans.

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#2. The Team

All Out features a large cast, as expected of sports anime. You might not get to know some characters as well as you might like, and others are perhaps hogging screen time every now and then. That being said, you’ll find someone to enjoy.

In general the characters are mostly what you’d expect of them and the struggles in the show are too. As a team, they have a strong chemistry, so that certainly helps to make them interesting.

They experience highs and lows with their ability to play the game and within their lives. That said, it’s never too dramatic, and never over the top. Personal story arcs align well with the themes of the show. All in all, there’s a good chance you’re going to find a character you like.

#3. The Plot

If you’re a huge fan of sports anime you’ve seen this sort of story countless times. Don’t believe me? Let me give you a synopsis and you can decide just how many times you’ve seen this set-up before.

Gion is a short guy. He’s the typical average anime protagonist. Due to his love of sports he watches a rugby match. When he does, finds out that you don’t have to be huge to be a good player. He’s invigorated by this and feels absolutely convinced that he finally found a sport he can be great at. Like most sport anime, he also drags a friend along for the ride. Obviously, he becomes part of the team. Once in the Rugby team, they train hard and aim to become national high school rugby champions.

See what I mean? It’s standard, it’s typical, but that also makes it a good choice to those who *don’t* typically watch this style of anime. It has just enough of its own heart and soul to stand out without deviating from the standard formula. Plus, the nods to the school life genre also make it an easy show to watch for non-sports fans.

Though, as with all sports anime, your enjoyment of several scenes will completely depends on if you like the sport in question. In this case, it’s rugby.

In Conclusion

All in all, All Out is a solid choice for the reasons above. There’s probably a fair few anime fans who haven’t seen it. It’s great for beginners to the medium. The characters are enjoyable and the animation is from Madhouse, so you know it’s quality.

It’s also fairly easy to locate. Seriously, a single google search will direct you to legal streaming sites in a matter of moments. Crunchyroll and Funimation both have the series for viewing.

So that’s where I’ll leave you for today. If you need some anime sports action, give All Out a try. It’s a solid entry to the rugby fandom and honestly it’s worth a watch at least once.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time.

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Fandom: Little Moments Matter Most


Video Production of This Script

This is the finished video regarding the script. It is written, edited, and read aloud by Kernook of “The Demented Ferrets”. You can watch the video on this blog and on YouTube. I hope you enjoy the content.

Minako and Rei from Sailor Moon are without a doubt a solid character pairing, even if they aren’t exactly cannon across all of the Sailor Moon media. Why do they stand the test of time? Simple, because their romance comes natural to those who see it within the subtext.

In popular media, when I think of reasons to sail any ship, it’s not the large cannon elements that come to mind. It’s the tiny things. Moments when characters might brush their fingers together when exchanging an object. Times when short quips and witty dialogue carrying a greater subtext within a scene.

Know what other ships sails really well because of this? Pretty much any ship containing at least two of the main four girls of RWBY. I ship nearly every combination because of how versatile they are.

Small moments make a ship, that’s a fact. It is particularly important if a series isn’t centrally focused on romance. Then the smaller moments matter even more. Long running series with advancing story arcs might not spend a whole lot of time focusing on romantic overtures. Instead, they tend to spread large romantic elements few and far between. Sometimes, the best ships don’t have any big moments at all. Sometimes they only have a series of small elements to craft a greater narrative. In this instance, subtext quickly becomes fan fodder.

I look no further than NCIS as an example. Tony and Ziva, or “Tiva” as the ship is named by the fans. These two are strong contenders in shipping because the slow burn is as hilarious as it is dramatic.

Romance between these two is the show in spades, but, it walks a fine line. The pairing never consumes the show. Instead, the fans consume the romance, looking for the little details hidden between the subtle character interactions. These two aren’t obviously a cannon couple until much later in the series. However, this didn’t stop fans from sailing that ship early on. It was only through implication and subtext that the relationship held any ground, at least, at first.

I think that personally this is sometimes the better approach. Fans have a gift for running away with subtext. Collective fans like making stories of their own. When moments are rare,it’s no surprise that fan-fiction itself becomes a selfish endeavor.

Fans meet their own desire to see character romance carried further than a series could have taken it. This is true for almost all media that has an active fan following.

Depending on the character pairing, strange ships sail fast. I think of the romantic pairing of Elsa and Anna from Frozen being a prime example of fandom running amok. Seriously, fans ship these two hard. I don’t see the draw in it personally, but it’s in the fandom for sure.

There is no conceivable way that Disney would have imagined their older fan base deciding to turn the sisters into lesbians…

Or that, even if they were on the GRSM spectrum, that they would ever be seen as romantically in love with each other. Then again, I can’t say that I’m surprised. Pairings revolving around sibling romance can be common in fandom, particularly of the animated variety.

Even without sibling romance, some stories become downright filthy as fans of a medium carefully craft and contort romantic relationships between characters. Ultimately, for better and for worse, fans have always been able to fill gaps that cannon material fails to provide. If little else, fan communities keep character romances thriving when long stretches of time pass without cannon material.

This is particularly important when large series take an extended break or the series eventually ends. At that point it’s up to fans to find a new source of entertainment. Some find this solace within the media that they already care for, writing or reading stories that reflect on certain plot elements within the series as a whole.

Deceased or retired characters in media find new life, and new stories because fan fiction and far art too. I think of characters like Pyrrha Nikos from RWBY, or Kate Todd and Ziva David from NCIS, as prime examples of characters that continue to live on in fandom because of the stories people write.

Without these stories, these characters, and their ships, they might have been left stagnant and forgotten. Within fandom, these characters will always live on. They will always be shipped, and the fandom will always triumph.

That’s what little moments do. They’re powerful, and they can’t be disregarded.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time.

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Fandom: Krysta Youngs

Hey everyone, Kernook here. I’m back again, with another artist recommendation.

As for the usual disclaimer, nobody solicited my opinion. Nobody offered me any sort of perk for writing about this musical artist. I have not met this artists personally. I have not seen her live, in concert. I just like her music, and the covers she does of popular songs. That was the only qualifier I deemed necessary for writing this post.

That said, if you’re interested in listening to her musical talents, you should check her YouTube channel down below.

Artist: Krysta Youngs – Krysta’s Channel

Have you ever heard a female singer with a smokey voice, and instantly, your ears perk up? That is what happens when I listen to this artist. My ears perk, I zone in, and I just listen. Her music is good. I can’t say why exactly. I can’t even put my finger on it.

It’s just that good.

That indescribable draw is notable, and that’s why I wanted to suggest her music. The thing is, I’d like to say that I’m a decisive person. That things need to be able to tick certain boxes for me. For whatever reason, her music doesn’t need to. It’s not something I can shove into a mold. Strangely, I don’t really want to try, either.

I just want to enjoy her music for what it is. Her vocal quality is a rarity. I wouldn’t say her lyrics are too catchy, or too edgy. They’re not ear-worms and they don’t linger around long after the song is over. Instead, they’re impact in the moment.

Her lyrics have a subtext that really draws me in. That’s why, I think, I keep going back to her music. When I think of what I would like to suggest, it would have to be “My Funeral” It’s smokey, soft, slightly sensual, and something I always come back to.

Another great song with the same qualities happens to be “Silence and the Clock“. It’s a song I often zone out to as I let the sound sweep me away. The song was actually assisted by Robin Ghosh who ghost recorded all of the guitars used in the song.

Krysta Youngs is just a prolific singer and songwriter, there’s no two ways about it.

All in all, that’s the only reason I need to keep listening. I think there’s something to be said for music that doesn’t just speak to the listener. Songs that are self-serving speak about the artist. It reflects their deepest thoughts and desires, and there will always be value in that.

Like I said, give her music a try, and you might find out you like it.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time.

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Fandom: Satoshi Kon

Hey everyone, it’s Kern here. In the future I’m going to review a lot of anime, and plenty of Kon’s works. However, it simply didn’t feel right to do that without first talking about his many accomplishments, so I’m going to do that first.

Thank you to patrons for voting on this post.

There is a lot to talk about, but I’m only going to give a brief overview here. If you want to know more beyond this blog post, you should begin by watching the anime mentioned here, and then branching off from there.

I doubt I have to say this, but Satoshi Kon was a huge influence in the anime industry. If you’ve been an anime fan for any length of time, there’s a good chance you’ve heard of him. At the very least, you’ve probably heard of at least one of the animated titles he directed.

His notable works include: Perfect Blue (1997), Millennium Actress (2001), Tokyo Godfathers (2003), Paranoia Agent (2004) and Paprika (2006).

His aspiration in life was to become an animator, but thankfully he blossomed well beyond that. In his career he was credited for being an animator, screenwriter, manga artist, and a director.

His ability as a director is what I truly want to highlight here. Though keep in mind, he had other talents too. Each of them just as prolific and noteworthy in their own way.

In the 90’s animation was striving to do new things, and reach a larger audience. Kon fit the needs of the industry well in regards to that. He was able to utilize the anime medium to its fullest potential as an art form.

In 1997, Satoshi Kon had built quite a name for himself. his reputation almost preceded him in the anime industry. His visionary skill would land him a directing role. In collaboration with studio Madhouse, Satoshi Kon was able to direct his first feature length film; Perfect Blue.

Now, let’s make no mistake about this. Kon was an absolute master in directorial design. Love or hate his works, it doesn’t much matter. The man was an influence either way. He took to his craft with a keen eye for detail. Each of the films he directed are unique. None are without depth. In my personal opinion, his productions are incredible.

I’ve done a review of Perfect Blue, and you should check that out if you want more information on that film in particular. To summarize my thoughts though, Perfect Blue is by far one of the most compelling anime movies that I have ever had the pleasure to watch.

Anime Review: Perfect Blue

The film relies heavily on its psychological drama to carry the story forward. Many scenes are purposefully unsettling, and Mima is an enigma by nature. Several questions are left unanswered and up to interpretation.

It is both hauntingly beautiful and unsettling at the same time. The themes are wrapped up nicely between reality and surrealism. Paranoia and mental unease are cornerstones to be explored here. Although the series is a bit dated by today’s standards, this is a true masterpiece in storytelling. It shouldn’t be overlooked, dispute the dated feel. There is so much to unpack about the world, Mima, and the concept of idol culture in Japan.

Even if his works aren’t exactly mainstream media, his influence impacted the anime industry unquestionably. Satoshi Kon’s films are way ahead of their time thematically. They challenge viewers, and often they require more than a single viewing.

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In order to completely catch every minor detail Kon skillfully embeds into films like Millennium Actress, it’s best to watch them at least twice.

They’re darker by their nature, and tend to require a more mature viewer. One that is able to critically think about the themes that are so prevalent in his media. His works are often saturated with several layers of metaphor to drive the stories forward.

Kon was diagnosed with terminal pancreatic cancer. 2010, leaving behind a legacy in anime that shouldn’t be forgotten. With the flood of new anime every season, there is no shortage of things to watch. In fact there’s not enough time in a day to watch them all, but to cast aside those older gems would be a disservice to anime as an art form.

I have memories of watching his works with my friends. I spent way too many nights huddled under blankets and starting popcorn fights over his anime, and I’d never be able to thank him, or the medium of anime enough for that.

So, that’s it then. I’ll leave it here for now.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time.

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Fandom: Resident Evil 3 Remake Announcement Trailer


The announcement trailer can be found above.

As you can likely guess from the disclaimer, this is an old post. That being said, when the initial hype for the game was in full swing, I was one of the many fans excited for the game.

I’m sad to say I wasn’t a huge fan of the game, but I’ll talk about why when I review the game in it’s entirety. That’s a separate post though. For now, the content below is merely a time in fandom when I was far too excited for my own good.

The official trailer for the Resident Evil 3: Remake has me so excited to see what’s in store for the survival horror genre.

Old fans of the series will easily recall the dynamic game-play of the original game, released for PlayStation back in September of 1999. I’d like to take a few moments to share my fondness of Resident Evil, and Resident Evil 3: Nemesis particularly.

Playing as Jill Valentine was one of my favorite things to do in the early days of Resident Evil. Back in the first game, I played her story over Chris’s. Getting to return to her character after the events of Resident Evil 2 was what made me beg my mom for the game. She agreed to get it as a late birthday gift. I counted the days until it hit store shelves. Unfortunately the game dropped on a Wednesday, and I had to wait until Friday after school to get it.

The wait seemed like forever. Finally the day came, and I immediately started playing as soon as we arrived home with the game disc in hand. Playing Resident Evil three was a very memorable moment in my life. While many fans call Resident Evil 2 the best game in the franchise, I have always loved Resident Evil 3: Nemesis even more.

Despite the many flaws that Resident Evil 3: Nemesis had, I fondly recall that it was the first survival horror game I was able to beat on my own. My birthday is in the middle of September. I was a child, and survival horror was something that I just couldn’t help but be enamored with. The problem was that I was very young for a mature rated game. My older brother, 7 years my senior, usually had to help me with other games in the genre.

At the time, I was too young to understand some of the puzzles. I had trouble overcoming the problems that came with having a limited supply of ammo. Other survival horror games had me stumped, or were simply too difficult at the time. Without help, I didn’t get a chance to beat the games at all.

At least, not until Resident Evil 3: Nemesis released for the PlayStation. It was the game that allowed me to fully experience survival horror, without help from anyone. Looking back as an adult, the easy mode was probably too easy.

In hindsight offering such a huge capacity of weapons and ammo allowed me to blast my way through the entire game. I didn’t need assistance, but I also didn’t learn the skills required of other survival horror games. That said, while easy mode was too easy, the normal mode and beyond provided a sufficient challenge. After playing Resident Evil 3: Nemesis on easy, I returned to it invigorated. Feeling empowered and encouraged, I beat it two more times. Once on normal and once on hard. After that, I was able to return back to the other releases in the franchise. Finally, I could play them entirely on my own.

As you can see, I owe a lot of my love for survival horror genre to Resident Evil 3. Seeing this remake come out is a dream come true for me.

The release date for Resident Evil 3: Remake is April 3, 2020, and there seems to be plenty to look forward to.

I’m honestly at the edge of my seat waiting for this game to come out. I haven’t felt this much child-like glee for a game release in years. With a burst of healthy nostalgia, and an overwhelming excitement to see what changes have been made, I sit here with a smile on my face. For me, this heartfelt elation is what it means to be a gamer.

Seeing this franchise come back to life the way that it has in recent years does my soul good. There are few things in this world as simple as sitting down to play a game. Only a handful are more rewarding than sharing that passion with others like myself. Watching the hype slowly build as the fan base grows. I can’t put a price on it. It’s too valuable to me.

In some ways, I feel like a child again. I’m eagerly waiting to have the game in my hands. I can’t help counting away the moments until I can experience Jill’s story and Raccoon City anew.

When the game comes out, I’ll be playing, will you?

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time.

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The One True Paring Fallacy

Artwork made by Rukangel, this piece is called “Asylum” and features Rei and Minako from Sailor Moon. Find more of her artwork on Deviant Art.

Hey everyone, it’s Kernook here with another post. Today I want to talk about the One True Pairing concept, and why it’s a fallacy.

When fans of a series gather to form large social groups over a specific type of media, we call this a fandom. In general, fandom tends to be a positive space, but there can be occasions when it isn’t. Discussions can get heated and when fandom takes a a nosedive into negativity people tend to slip off and form smaller cliques.

One of the ways this can happen is when a fandom is overrun with the “one true pairing” fallacy. This occurs when fans collectively agree that two characters belong together romantically, no matter the circumstances, or the outlying opinions of others. I’ve seen this problem occur mostly within anime and gaming, but I’m sure it happens elsewhere too. It’s a rare problem, but it is nearly toxic to a fandom when it does occur.

Now, many people have personal “OTP’s” or a “one true pairing” that they love to sail as a ship. On its own, that’s completely fine. There is nothing wrong with that. As long as the “one true pairing” isn’t forced on others as the only ship to sail, there is no problem at all with having them.

Romance In RWBY: Pyrrha and Jaune (Arkos)

Pyrrha Nikos and Jaune Arc comprise the pairing affectionately named “arkos” by the fan community. For the first three volumes of RWBY, Jaune and Pyrrha are teammates that grow into being vague lovers. In the end of volume three Pyrrha dies and Jaune must live on.

This problem of the “one true pairing fallacy” comes along when a large contingent of the fan base adopts the “one true paring” mindset viciously. This usually happens in less popular media and welled established, fan communities.

A lack of widespread diversity can hinder a fan base. Eventually, that will cause these echo chambers to exist. Particularly in older fandom, where die-hard fans have lingered around for years after the initial hype ended.

A fan simply has to love and enjoy the medium. Weather or not they sail any ship should be up to them. The “one true pairing” ideology shouldn’t need to apply.

I personally never wanted to sail an “OTP”, primarily because I don’t consume media that would require me to have one. I don’t believe having an “OTP” does me any good. I don’t gain anything from the media I care about by having one. In fact, I often think it does a media like anime a huge disservice by having an “OTP”.

Anime has a tenancy to leave an open ending. Several of them are just long running advertisements for its manga counter part. To see the full story you’d have to consume both pieces of media, and some fans like myself don’t have the desire to do both.

At the end of the day, “one true pairings” can be very powerful things inside of a fandom, and its our job as fans to recognize that. We need to be respectful of the ships we sail, and she ships of others. It’s the only way to keep a fan base growing, and all fans should want that. The stronger and more diverse a fan base is, the more fan based content will thrive.

Do you sail an “OTP”? Let me know in the comments below.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time.

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