Here’s a battle between two lovely ladies for your reading pleasure. What do Leia Organa and Turanga Leela have in common, you ask?
Leela and Leia kind of sound alike, that’s what.
On to the battle!
Physicality. One is a young Carrie Fisher with either really long hair or a late 20th-century weave. The other is a Cyclops that is also a cartoon. Winner? Hey, who doesn’t find cartoons attractive? … Seriously, though, it’s a tie.
Is an interstellar space princess? Again with the redundancy, but I really enjoy saying “interstellar space.” Anywho, you know who’s an interstellar space princess? Princess Leia! Princess Leia is an interstellar space princess. Winner? Princess Leia!
Is a sewer-dwelling mutant? Hey, Leela doesn’t live in the sewers! But her parents do, and sometimes she visits, so we’ll call it “close enough.” Winner? Turanga Leela!
Has a ray gun? Everybody in the future has ray guns! Also, people living long, long ago, in a galaxy far, far away. They also have ray guns. Winner? Everybody wins when they’ve got ray guns!
Has a better romantic interest? Princess Leia’s romantic interest is Han Solo. They’ve got a will-they-or-won’t-they thing going on, and it turns out they totally will, and everybody went squeeeeee! Han Solo is an interstellar space pirate who looks like a young Harrison Ford. Turanga Leela’s romantic is Philip J. Fry, a sweet-natured, slightly dim 20th century boy who ended up in the future through a wacky series of misadventures. Well, okay, just the one misadventure, really. Winner? As with Kara Thrace before him, anybody who goes up against a young Harrison Ford is going to come up just a wee bit short. Princess Leia.
Travels through space? In the future and also, apparently, in the past, everybody travels through space.
Winner? It’s a tie.
Looks good in a Slave Leia costume? If you’d think the winner would be obvious, then you haven’t see this image before:
Winner? Another tie!
Fights an epic evil? If by “fights an epic evil,” you mean “delivers packages to other planets,” then, yes, Turanga Leela fights an epic evil. But you don’t mean that, so: Winner? Princess Leia.
Pilots an interstellar delivery ship? Man, if there’s one thing Star Wars fans would love to see, it would be Princess Leia piloting an interstellar delivery ship. Unfortunately, she doesn’t, so they can’t. Winner? Turanga Leela.
Overall winner? Princess Leia coasts in to the finish line with a slight lead by having the good fortune to fall in love with Han Solo. (I’m not sure why I went with the finish line metaphor, because then these would be fictional character races, not fictional character battles, but we’ll just chalk that one up to creative license, eh?)
Dear The Future,
I love you!
You don’t realize how awful it is, living here in the 1990s, and liking things like Japanese cartoons and indie rock bands and Sherlock Holmes and nobody in Britain is making a brilliant series starring my perfect man about him! I mean, every store I go to has (at most) three anime titles and they’re on a shelf marked “Japanamation” because someone once thought that would be a clever portmanteau, little realizing how absolutely wrong they were.
And don’t get me started, The Future, on how hard it is to find decent music in the 1990s. It’s like if I don’t like (insert popular song from the 1990s), then I have to go to the local record store, special order The Wrens newest album and then wait 15 years for them to record another!
It’s hard living in the 1990s, The Future! And that’s why I love you.
Because you’re coming in to save me, with your iTunes and your Amazon and your eBay and your YouTube. Everything I could possibly want or care about is right at my fingertips! Also, that thing I said earlier about Sherlock Holmes!
You have everything, The Future, except for hoverboards and flying cars, and I want you to know that’s OK. It’s not true love without a bit of disappointment here and there. And it’s not like I want you to change, but if you want to change (and get me some hoverboards and flying cars), then that would be OK too.
Thanks for everything, The Future. I mean it.
Dear future boyfriend,
First off, I just want to say that you are such a catch! I mean, here you are: a guy who puts up with me! I am so lucky to have you, future boyfriend, and I just want you to know that. I love your (insert adjective here) and the way you (verb). (Note to self: add descriptors once you actually meet future boyfriend.)
But there’s a few things you need to know, and I have incorporated them here into this handy list. It’s a list of things that I will always love more than you.
1. Elijah Snow. No matter how awesome you are, future boyfriend, unless you were trained in the art of detecting at the knee of the best fictional detective ever (Sherlock Holmes), you cannot compare to Elijah Snow.
Ooooh, and also, you would have to never, ever age, and have the power to freeze stuff and then shatter the hell out of it.
2. Speaking of the best fictional detective ever: Sherlock Holmes. It’s true, future boyfriend, that there are not many things in this world that I love more than Sherlock Holmes, and I would have to include you on the list (of things that I do not).
3. Chuck. That show is so cute and I love it (more than you). I hope, if there is a fifth season, it doesn’t suck as bad as the fifth seasons of other shows I used to love, House, I’m looking at you.
4. Eric Elbogen. Unless future boyfriend and Eric Elbogen are one in the same (pardon me while I laugh at my audacity!), there is just no measuring up to a guy who has written a song about playing Ms. Pac-man.
5. Lone Wolf and Cub. No, future boyfriend, you will never be as awesome as one of the best manga series ever, and I hope you don’t mind if I ask to be alone while I read my copies.
6. Spike Spiegel. I shouldn’t have to explain why Spike Spiegel is more awesome than you, should I? Fine: he’s tall, thin, tragic yet always has a snappy comeback, and practices jeet kune do. Also, he has a spaceship and is a bounty hunter. In space. He’s a bounty hunter in space.
7. Cowboy Bebop. Spike Spiegel is a character in the best anime ever, and I will always, always love that anime more than you.
8. “Roslin and Adama.” Bear McCreary wrote one of the world’s most beautiful pieces of music for the re-imagined Battlestar Galactica, and I just can’t imagine that you could possibly make me feel the way it does.
9. Bulkogi. Man, bulkogi is good. I wish we had a decent Korean joint around here.
10. Japan. Japan is crazy and awesome. You, future boyfriend, might be crazy and awesome too, but are you the birthplace of the ninja? No. No, you are not.
When fabulous poet/wit Dorothy Parker feared her husband Alan Campbell was having a homosexual affair, she was quoted as saying: “I can compete with the girls, you know, but not with the boys.”
She had a point.
Thus, for your reading pleasure, here’s a list of 10 things that I can’t compete with:
1. Ziyi Zhang. Put me up against the talented Chinese actress and, for some reason, I always come up lacking.
2. The boys. Again, Ms. Parker had a point here. It’s hard to compete against the boys when the boys have bits that the girls don’t.
3. Your body pillow girlfriend/wife. There are many things body pillows can do that I can’t, and one of those things includes tolerating someone who would marry a body pillow.
4. Cylons. Cylons look like Tricia Helfer and Grace Park. I don’t so much.
5. Your awesome CIA girlfriend. In every category, I come up short when compared to your awesome CIA girlfriend.
6. That anime character you have a crush on. It’s true. I don’t have perky anime boobs, and I’m not charmingly clumsy, so when I fall, I don’t land with my lacy panties slightly exposed, I end up scraping most of the skin off my face and bleeding all over.
7. Dorothy Parker. She was witty, she wrote great poetry and short stories, and she could hold her liquor waaaaaay better than I can. She could also come up with witty retorts on the spot, and I just can’t do that.
8. Your ex, Julia. I just can’t wear a full-body leather suit with that panache. I wish I could, but I can’t.
9. Lady superheroes. I was just going to say “superheroes,” but I specifically mean the ones who keep their superhero costumes up with a bit of spirit gum and luck.
10. Your 1985 Crown Victoria. I can’t compete with a car like that. I won’t even try.
Hi, Mr. Spiegel. I just wanted to let you know that if things don’t work out between myself and Elijah Snow that I am totally and utterly willing to wed you. (It’s not that I don’t think that things will work out between me and my boy Elijah, it’s just that the whole fictional character thing.)
It’s not that I think you’re second best, by the way. I think you’re great. I mean, the way you get shot and stabbed and exploded and don’t die? That’s awesome. The way you fly through outer space (occasionally) nabbing bad guys for bounty money? Also awesome. Your knowledge of Jeet Kune Do, which I can’t actually spell and have to google? So incredibly awesome. Your hair? Holy cow awesome!!
What’s much less awesome, though, is the way you just can’t get over your ex.
That’s just … that’s gonna be tough for us to work around. But I think we can do it, Spike Spiegel! I think we can.
Here’s why: I have incredibly low self-esteem.
You could compare me to Julia, like, constantly, and I would just sit quietly and nod and think to myself, yes, I deserve that, because I’m not as awesome as Julia and we all know it. Like, do I look that good in full body leather? No! Because I sweat! I sweat and I’m disgusting. I’m so lucky that Spike Spiegel even talks to me when Julia is so much better.
See? See how well things would work out?
Not to mention, I’m perfectly willing to sit quietly on Mars or wherever, waiting for you. And if you ask me to quietly assassinate a few interstellar Mafia members while I’m waiting, well, who am I to say no? Who am I? Well, not someone who hasn’t dreamed of quietly assassinating a few interstellar Mafia members for my whole life, that’s who I’m not. Wait, did that make sense? What I’m saying, Spike Spiegel, is that I’m perfectly willing to kill a few low-ranking interstellar Mafia members for you, if that is what you ask of me as your bride. (I’m assuming you want me to leave the high-ranking interstellar Mafia members for you, Spike Spiegel, because that is how you roll.)
(I hope people still say “how you roll” or Spike is going to think I’m so lame.)
Also, Spike Spiegel, and I think this is my winning argument here: I can cook up a great dish on a budget. Instant rice and bell peppers? That’s right, baby, you’ve got bell pepper and beef (without the beef). I have a variety of seasonings on hand, so you’d never be able to tell. This, and I don’t think I have to tell you, Spike Spiegel, would come in really handy as you usually don’t nab the criminals and don’t get a bounty and you’re kind of starving to death in outer space.
I wouldn’t let that happen, Spike Spiegel.
Please consider my proposal.
It’s only seven issues long (and, as far as I can tell, hasn’t even finished a story arc yet)! And there’s hardly any pages in those issues. In fact, according to the movie’s Wikipedia page (which we all know is totally reliable and hardly ever wrong), there will only be 12 issues of Kick-Ass out when the movie is released. That seems like an overestimate to me, since it’s, like, three or four months between issues now and the movie is supposed to be released in 2010.
Which, of course, begs the question:
Are they making every comic book into movies now?
I mean, in the past decade alone, we’ve had Bulletproof Monk, Watchmen, the Dark Knight, Iron Man, Whiteout, League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, From Hell, Hellboy, V for Vendetta, Spiderman, Daredevil, Elektra, Ghost Rider, Ghost World, Wanted, 30 Days of Night, Et Frakkin’ Cetera!!!!
Now, I’m not saying it’s wrong to make comic books into films. In fact, it’s a great idea! Comic books are basically movies that you have to read, and your acquaintances will laugh at you less if you go to the movies than if you talk about the latest issue of Planetary (which is awesome, by the way).
No, the real problem is: most of these movies suck.
Also, a lot of the stars are embarrassed to say they’re in a comic book movie, so they call them “graphic novels,” which bugs hell out of me. (So much that I decided to omit the word “the.”)
Also, Kick-Ass is going to feature Nic Cage, who stopped acting somewhere in the ’90s. Seriously, I know the guy loves comic books, but I’ll bet there’s some people out there who also love comic books who have tried playing a character lately. Find them! Hire them! Have one of them play Bigby in the upcoming Fables movie (Note: There may not actually be an upcoming Fables movie, but I just assume there is. Also Scalped, Fell and Gen 13.)
In conclusion (thanks, junior high English!), please, Hollywood, don’t make a Cowboy Bebop movie.
Because you are getting two Top Ten lists in a day! Possibly more, if you went to some other blog and read one of their top 10 lists, but why would you do that?
Now, Hollywood might hate me (and does, as evidenced by consistently putting Keanu Reeves in films that might not have otherwise sucked), but Japan is still my friend.
I know this because of Alien vs. Ninja. God bless you, Japan. God bless your tentacle-loving hearts.
The basic plot of Alien vs. Ninja is that aliens land and are fought by Iga Ninja, the best ninja of all (go to hell, Kouga ninja!). Why, yes, I am a shinobi otaku and have several books on the subject, why do you … ? Oh, you were asking sarcastically. I get it. I do! I get it.
At any rate, what could be better than ninja (especially Iga ninja) fighting aliens?
Only about ten things, that’s what! (But, really, only marginally better, because, damn! Alien vs. Ninja!)
1. Zombies vs. Ninja. Yes, I had to. You knew it was coming, so isn’t it best I got it out of the way right off the bat?
2. Androids vs. Ninja. Y’all do know a picture of the hot cylon Samuel Anders will be used to illustrate this point, don’t you?
3. Zombies vs. Ninja androids. I’m just sayin’, someone needs to build a ninja android. They could call it “The Stealthbot.” Or perhaps something less lame, I don’t know.
4. Kouga Ninja vs. Iga Ninja. Oops, they already did that. It was called “Basilisk.” (Or the Kouga Ninja Scrolls, if you’re talking the novel.)
5. Vampires vs. Ninja. Especially if it’s those pussy Twilight vampires, and we get to spend two hours watching ninja whale on them utterly.
6. The cast of Cowboy Bebop vs. Ninja. I don’t remember a ninja episode. There was a crazy samurai episode. There should’ve been a ninja episode.
7. Ninja Assassin vs. Ninja. Went rogue, did ya? Face your former ninja teammates in some sort of, I don’t know, death battle! Actually, this is probably the plot of Ninja Assassin. (No, I don’t know what the plot of Ninja Assassin will be. I want to see it because it is called Ninja Assassin. I don’t care what it’s about. It has a ninja who is also an assassin.)
8. Samurai vs. Ninja. There’s probably tons of movies about this, but you know what? There could be more.
9. Jet Li vs. Jackie Chan, and one of them is a ninja. Wouldn’t the just be the bestest movie ever?
10. Gunslinging android priests vs. Ninja zombies. O.M.G. Guys! What could possibly be cooler than zombies, androids and ninja in one movie? Nothing! Nothing could possibly be cooler! Best movie ever.
In an earlier post, I mentioned that I didn’t think there was anyone else who possessed as much awesome as Kaneda to go up against him in a death battle. (Note: These aren’t actually death battles, because this blog is just not that cool.)
But then I remembered there was Spike Spiegel, who is even more awesome than Kaneda.
Or is he?
Only a death battle will decide!!
(Note: Seriously, this isn’t a death battle. Do I have any friends who are good with photoshop??? Or actual death battles?)
On to the (not actually a) death battle!
Physicality. You know what I hate the most about the physicality category? The way I always try to spell it psychality. I mean, what the hell is that? Why did I even make a category I can’t spell? And how can one cartoon character be hotter than another? Am I going to turn into one of those Japanese men who dates his body pillow? Do they even make Spike Spiegel body pillows? In conclusion, Kaneda is certainly awesome, but Spike Spiegel is drawn better. Plus, he’s got that lanky thing going, which is my kryptonite. Winner? Spike Spiegel. The real winner? Lokifire, if she can find a Spike Spiegel body pillow.
General bad-assedness. Here’s where the battle really begins. Sadly, it’s not a battle to the death because one of these characters is already dead. By the way, I appreciate my friends who try to console me by saying (spoiler alert) that Spike could just be resting at the end of the Bebop series, but he’s dead. Thanks anyway. I mean it. *sniff* Errr, moving right along. Spike Spiegel studies Jun Fan Jeet Kune Do, which was the martial art created by Bruce Lee, who is a god among action movie stars and also everyone else. He gets stabbed, tossed out a church window, exploded, bit by dogs, punched, shot, etc., etc., and doesn’t die. You know, until he does. (Personally, I think his body was just like, damn it, stop putting me in these situations! That’s it, if I’m going down, I’m taking you with me!) He goes up against more serial killers than the entire cast of Criminal Minds (that show’s about serial killers, right?)! And he always comes out OK! Until he doesn’t. But what of Kaneda? Man, Kaneda faced off against two powerful psychics with only a laser gun and some chutzpah. And if you’re like: “Powerful psychics, schmowerful schmychics,” then, 1) I’m impressed with your abillity to pronounce that; 2) Apparently, you didn’t see Tetsuo punch a hole in the godsdamned moon. Winner? I’m sorry, Spike, but we’re going on Kaneda with this one. 1) Those were some powerful psychics; and 2) he’s not dead.
Better first name? Spike’s first name is Spike. I don’t know if he was born with that name or what. Kaneda’s first name is Shotaro. There’s a couple of ways to write the kanji for Shotaro and I can’t read kanji so I don’t know for sure how Kaneda’s first name is spelled, but the traditional way is Sho = Pine and Taro = boy. So Kaneda’s first name is probably Pine Boy. Winner? Spike.
Better friends? Spike Spiegel hung out with the crew of the interstellar craft Bebop, which includes the following: 1) Jet Black, a guy with a robot arm who used to be an interstellar cop and is now a bounty hunter; 2) Faye Valentine, a con artist from who was woken from cyrogenic sleep and also wears hardly any clothing; 3) Ed, the young computer genius; and 4) Ein, the really cute data-dog who is also a genius in addition to being a Welsh Corgi.
Kaneda hangs out with the survivors of Tokyo, who include: 1) Kei, his love interest who is a powerful conduit for psychic power and also pretty handy with a gun; 2) Chiyoko, Kei’s aunt, who is roughly the size of a water buffalo and just as deadly; 3) Kaisuke, some little short dude who was in Kaneda’s gang before Tokyo was destroyed (the second time), and is totally loyal and good in a fight; 4) The Colonel, who isn’t really Kaneda’s friend at all, but does control some sort of satellite super-beam. The winner? Holy cats! These guys have awesome friends. This is totally a draw.
Lives in a dystopia? Both Cowboy Bebop and Akira are set in futures where Tokyo has been destroyed at least once. However, in Cowboy Bebop, it’s not just Tokyo taking the brunt of the destruction, it’s the whole earth. However, people have colonized Mars and Venus and some other places, and they have interstellar space travel, so it’s cool. In Akira, though, Tokyo gets destroyed a couple more times and also, Tetsuo punches a hole in the moon. Tetsuo’s a bit of a prick. Winner? Um, I guess Kaneda, if the winner of this category is the one who lives in the worst future/society. If not, then it’s Spike, because he has a spaceship.
Ran with a gang? Kaneda and Tetsuo used to be juvenile delinquents in some sort of motorcycle gang. Before Tokyo was destroyed (for the second time). Spike used to be in the interstellar Mafia. Why, yes, I do enjoy using the word “interstellar.” How did you know? Winner? Spike, because “Interstellar Mafia” sounds waaaay more badass than “Motorcycle gang.”
Cooler vehicle? They’re both red. They’re both fast. But between Kaneda’s motorcycle and Spike’s Swordfish, only one is up for interstellar travel. (It’s the Swordfish.) Winner? Spike “Interstellar Traveler” Spiegel.
Gets the girl? Kaneda and Kei end up being the rulers of Neo-Tokyo (which has been destroyed three times at this point, so good luck with that, kids). Spike dies. Also, he was mean to Faye up until the end, when they! would! have! made! such! a! cute! couple!! Winner? Kaneda. (Gods, Spike, you should’ve just hooked up with Faye already.)
Lives to fight another day? Winner? Kanedaaaaaa!
Overall winner? Spike Spiegel. But only barely. Mostly because of his spaceship.
So, apparently, there’s a rumor going around the internets that Zac Efron will be cast as Light Yagami aka Kira aka that guy I hate ’cause he killed L in the Hollywood adaptation of Death Note. Yeah, because Hollywood is so good at remaking Japanese movies/anime/manga.
Anyway, that rumor is almost certainly load of hooey (seriously? Zac Efron? I mean, you know they’re going to cast Keanu Reeves as … oh, god, they’ll probably cast him as L, won’t they), but here’s some images why maybe it should be considered.