Monday, March 13, 2017

Red SF/F, Japan Has Your Back

Japan's popular culture industries, in particular animation and comics, doesn't have the same SocJus convergence affliction that we in the West contend with, and so--while they have big problems--publishing stories that the Superversives and Pulp Revolution crowd want to restore to prominence here.

As with Star Wars, Japan's long-running pop-culture SF/F franchises are built on pulpy and superversive foundations- despite significant differences in mood, theme, tone, and subject matter. Mobile Suit Gundam, as much as it gets the billing for making "Real Robot" a viable subgenre, has protagonists and antagonists motivated by passion and desire beyond all material drives- something that persists across the franchise. Space Battleship Yamato is a Space Opera that E.E. Smith would approve of, as is Super-Dimensional Fortress Macross. The Dragon Ball franchise is full of this stuff; for all the jokes about a five-minute move taking 30 episodes to execute, the heroes hero because it's right and the villains (for the most part) are evil and don't apologize for it.

We've got allies abroad, and Japan in particular is resistant to this bullshit. Thanks to some folks (Hi Mombot!) who've been good at cluing in Japan on this particular Western madness, the attempts to spread this memetic disease across the Pacific hasn't gone as well as the SocJus Death Cult would like. They just want to make a living telling stories (and pushing associated merch, but so long as that means awesome games and snap-fit model kits, I'm okay with that), and so do we. We like it when their good stuff comes over here; they like it when our good stuff gets over there. SJWs lose, and everyone else wins.

So, let's piss off some death cultists and engage in some mutual cultural appropriation.

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