Ryan S

 movie coverI'd rather be watching TV![IMDB link] [Netflix link] [Ryan S’s excellent review] Time to watch an anime series again. It’s been awhile.

PLOT SUMMARY: Space garbage is a problem in the future, requiring full-time garbage collection of debris in Earth orbit. Meanwhile, selfish capitalist corporations are trying a land-grab at claiming all the space resources as the property of whoever invests (rich get richer), while terrorist groups pit innumerable lives against their desire to have space resources divided up for the benefit of all humanity. But that’s just the back story: This series, like most anime, is quite character driven, and about the relationships between the various characters. But again, I direct the reader to Ryan S’s excellent review of this series, as I am too lazy to write full reviews, because I try to review EVERYTHING I watch. It’s too much :)

UNCOMFORTABLE PLOT SUMMARY (inspired by this): [highlight for spoilers] Corporations selfishly grab space resources; terrorists do good things.

https://i0.wp.com/ideonexus.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/planetes01.jpgQUIRKS: Based on a comic. Space. Politics. Terrorism. Capitalism. Smoking. Personal relationships. Love. Loss. It’s a 26 episode series, so there are many different kinds of episodes… Depressing ones, funny ones, dramatic ones, etc.

This is often heralded as the most realistic space-based anime ever made. They consulted with the Japanese equivalent of NASA to make sure things were accurate. Also, for example, space is dead silent. If they show a ship exploding — there will be no sound. Finally, paste-eating nerds won’t have to complain in a Comic Book Guy voice: “You can’t really hear explosions in space.”

VISUALS: Nothing special, but anime visuals are almost always superior to their American-animated counterparts.

POLITICS: Tons of politics in this movie. They don’t take the central stage; Most anime is about a guy and a girl falling in love, with the characters in the foreground, and the plot in the background. But politics permeate many of the episodes, as well as the series’s climax. This improves the show by making it more thought-provoking than a non-political show would be. Also, they amazingly don’t take sides. One could argue that the terrorists in this series are the good guys, making sure that space exploration benefits ALL of humanity, not just the rich capitalists. You could also argue that the terrorists are the bad guys, threatening to set space travel back decades by killing innumerable people. This moral ambiguity makes the series that much more enjoyable.

BAD STUFF: The one issue I had with smoking was the smoking booth: If they’d really done their research, they would probably have been able to more accurately depict smoking in the future by having Fee use an e-cigarette to vaporize nicotine, instead of smoking cigarettes with fire. Since no combustion occurs with vaporization, no precious oxygen is wasted. Though I’m not sure what the byproduct of that is like, and what its effects on space instrumentation would be, I would assume for purposes of space vehicle safety, that vapor > smoke.

CONCLUSION: An excellent anime series that doesn’t fall into the boring tropes that most anime series fall into.

Clint: Netflix: 4/5 stars. IMDB: 8/10.
Carolyn: Netflix: 4/5 stars. IMDB: 8/10.
The native public rating for this movie is: IMDB: 8.8/10, Netflix: 3.8/5 stars (Netflix‘s predicted rating for us was 3.6/5 stars. It’s true, we don’t like anime as much as “true” anime fans do).

https://i0.wp.com/ideonexus.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/planetes02.jpgRECOMMENDATION: Even if you hate anime, this is a very “non-anime” anime series worth checking out. Again, read Ryan S’s excellent review of this series. It says more than I will ever bother to.

COINCIDENCES: (The Time Traveler’s Wife, Planetes #24) 2 videos in 2 days where someone had to *temporarily* be in a wheelchair due to hypothermia. Space or time travel’ll do that to ya.

FRIENDS’ RATINGS: I’m going to assume, based on Ryan S’s excellent review, that he loved it. Ben W also chimed in on Facebook, with good things to say about it.

Our 10 year marriage / 18 year dating anniversary actually happened 2 days ago, on the 10th. But our wedding reception happened on 2/12/2000 — 10 years ago. It was a pretty big reception, and was followed by an equally big party at our house that night. (There were a few hours in between the events for everyone to change, eat dinner, etc.)

A good hour of video was taken by our friend Tony T! I managed to get it converted to VHS, and later to AVI on the computer, and later to YouTube postings with YouTube’s stupid 10 minute limit requiring me to break it up into 20 parts of various sizes. Here are the videos — most of them peppered with youngest-cousin Todd being extremely annoying. Go past the jump to see the pics & vid! (more…)

Dear Babyboomers: The National Debt is a Grandchild Tax. Thanks for less than nothing!  Ryan Somma has captured exactly how I feel once again, with his sarcastic congratulatory letter to babyboomers are are about to retire. So long, and thanks for all the fish debt! My dad predictably quipped “Every generation thinks the last screwed up the world for him”. Of course, he grew up during the 1950s — the most prosperous generation in American history. And inherited ~$1M from his parents. So… It’s quite easy for anyone to cynically quip “every generation had it this bad” while sitting atop an ivory tower. As Ian so profoundly said: “Not caring — the privilege of the rich.”

    And: Remember when Iran’s president said they have no gays in Iran? Perhaps this explains why people get free sex changes in Iran. “in traditional societies there is more pressure to conform to standard gender roles”. Odd indeed. And in some ways, more progressive than America. In other ways, it’s ass-backwards, because you can’t be both gay and have a dick. But on the other hand, hey: Free surgery. (I’m thinking of “Deep Thoughts” where Jack Handy says “Hey, free dummy!”) And, they let people be who they want to be without standing in the way with such excuses as, say, money. In many ways, that is superior to how America handles it (only the rich get what they want). Of course, Iran is a sucky shithole of a country, but still.

    Heavy cell phone use tied to poorer sperm quality. Of course, correlation is not causation. However, it’s also good to be cautious. Me? I will now be buying a cellphone just to put it into my pants as birth control.

    And an interesting short story, “The Reluctant Transhumanist”, written by my buddy Ryan. I like it because I could see myself in that situation, if I really put my mind to it. (I’m glad I don’t.) Read on for how you can end up in jail for 10 years for refusing a date with the wrong person, and of course, how much data is in a load of cum. This is important stuff! (more…)

    Ryan reviewed Robo-Rally on his blog. This is a great game! So great that it used to be $300 on Ebay! Fortunately, it is now back in print for about $50, with some slightly improved rules. I have played this game with people who have played it for 20+ years (Jason), people who like board games, and even with complete non-gamers (Tabbitha won!) — and it has always been liked. It hurts the brain a bit, too. Actually, it hurts the brain a LOT. (more…)

    But my favorite link today is TV Tropes – it’s an incredible site that classifies all the “tropes” each TV show has. It is addictive, and each trope is a link explaining what it is… I got instantly hooked by reading the page on Gargoyles… And my friend Ryan S’s HOW TO FLY article, now published, is quite funny! And education! Yes, it’s possible. (more…)