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16 January 2010 @ 10:18 am
Fanart recs and an essay rec  

I recently pimped two Deviant Art artists who were taking commissions and wanted to share some of their recent work with you.

I'm in LOVE with this chibi take on Kubo's New Year's spread: Six Hearts As One by Rusky-Boz That little chibi!pimp!Renji slays me! <3

This was a personal commission and I plan to write a Valentine's fic around this pic: IshiHime by Cacodaemonia

Now an essay rec. yulieana is known for not mincing words and not pulling punches. Be warned that this essay contains an inflammatory introduction that criticizes a part of the Bleach fandom to the point of bashing. I'm recommending the essay, though, because the main body of it is a clear, comprehensive answer to the argument that Ulquiorra was not a redeemed character and that his being killed after being downed, disabled and conquered by Ichigo/Whatever Ichigo became on the dome/IchiThing was justified. I'm always appalled when that sort of argument glorifying IchiThing comes up, and it's not unique to a shipping faction. For me the obvious message of the lust chapters was that Ulquiorra gained a heart while Ichigo lost his, and attempts to read the story otherwise (outside of fanfic) boggle me.

HERE is Yulie's essay.

For those who would prefer to not read the whole thing, here's a tiny excerpt and the gist of it:

You know why Ulquiorra was redeemed ? Because despite everything that he's done before, he did some good at the end. He saved lives, while Ichigo went on a killing spree.
Whether Ulquiorra wanted to save Orihime or just defeat Ichigo does not really matter here. If he did not jump behind Hollow Ichigo and stopped his cero, Orihime and Ishida would've been dust, and Ichigo wouldn't have become human again. Ulquiorra saved lives and gave Ichigo back his humanity, or what was left of it. Then, Ulquiorra asked for forgiveness by extending his hand to Orihime and finding his heart there. THAT is redemption. Yet, you and your ilk have to shit all over it by claiming that Kubo destroyed a perfectly GOOD VILLAIN only because you can't understand Kubo's message beyond the inane "IchiHime" panels.

oh gallant piglet,: chibi chadaizome on January 16th, 2010 06:58 pm (UTC)
That chibi art is the cutest thing I've seen this year. SO needed that. CHAD SMILING AAAAAAAH!
_debbiechan__debbiechan_ on January 17th, 2010 12:39 am (UTC)

Pimp Renji has my heart forever. He's got one hand in the air like he's walking the sidewalk strutting his stuff.
lookoutsunshine: I smile cause I have no idea what's goinshynishyshallow on January 17th, 2010 12:23 am (UTC)
I don't see the point of bashing someone's bad - or even clearly wrong - interpretation of manga/movie/book/whatever/Bleach generally. Bleach, as far as I know, is not a philosophical novel and Kubo is no Locke/Voltaire/Goethe/WHOEVER YOU LIKE. It's for fun. While I mostly agree with yulieana and the points s/he made in her/his essay, I got confused at what caused it to be written and the slightly bashing manner. I mean, so what if someone's seeing the general sense in the scene/arc/whole manga the wrong way? If they enjoy it, I couldn't care less. If they're writing a ship manifesto basing on their point of view, I couldn't care less. And if it was about my pairing the manifesto was written about, I'd just read it with a smile and say 'hey, yo, I agree' or 'man, I disagree, but thanks for writing'.

So the main point of my comment: why getting so angry over someone else's view on things in the manga? I've been greatly confused ever since the Lust arc, when fans got divided into 3-4 groups. I still haven't figured that out, though.
_debbiechan__debbiechan_ on January 17th, 2010 12:37 am (UTC)
The situation is probably like competitive ice skating and makes no sense to someone who isn't passionate about it. Why follow a bunch of people spinning around on the ice and rate one over the other?

I don't condone malicious personal bashing (e.g. "You are an idiot for believing this." Not only is that not going to win you any popularity contests--it tends to weaken the presentation for an argument). But arguing about text is a whole other matter. It doesn't matter whether it's Goethe or Doonesbury or Voltaire or your kid's ABC primer, arguing over what a text represents is sometimes some people's idea of fun. I happen to know a few philosophers who don't think that arguing is work--it's their life's passion.

Why people get angry about stuff? Who knows. Calling my favorite character a fag doesn't bother me, but apparently my saying Orihime made a mistake on the dome infuriates some people. I get pissed off when people glorify IchiThing--it's my personal hot button. As far as people being divided into groups, I'm not sure I know what you're talking about except maybe some of the distinctions I made in my Orihime's Reactions on the Dome piece, those were generalizations--useful for an overview but by no means meant to apply to each and every Bleach fan in a diminishing, put-down sort of way.

Edited at 2010-01-17 12:40 am (UTC)
lookoutsunshineshynishyshallow on January 17th, 2010 12:46 am (UTC)
No, no, I wholly understand what triggers discussions/essays and whatnot, and I even consider partaking fun - otherwise I wouldn't be a member of blechness.

I just don't get being furious over someone else's point of view. It makes no sense. If the fandom makes you angry instead of bringing you joy, just leave it. It's pretty simple to me.

Groups, yeah. What I've noticed so far, the Lust arc drama goes between IchiHime shippers - UlquiHime shippers - IchiRuki shippers - those who just like discussions. There's the 5th party too, People Who Just Don't Give a Flying Fuck. Like me. ^^;;
oh gallant piglet,aizome on January 17th, 2010 12:51 am (UTC)
*butts in*
I can't speak for Yulie, but she didn't seem "furious" to me.

And as for there being groups spawned by the Lust arc, I have to say I don't fit any of those five you mentioned, so there's likely just as many opinions as people. (I for one don't ship any of those pairings, but I do Give a Flying Fuck about authorial intent and character assassination.)
lookoutsunshineshynishyshallow on January 17th, 2010 12:59 am (UTC)
The furious part wasn't meant to describe yukieana's stance in the essay, just a thought applied to general being in a fandom thing. Sorry if I didn't make myself clear enough.

Yeah, sure, but it seems to me just the way I described. Great deal of discussions and essays written by do count under those categories. This is how I see it, regardless of it being any harm to anyone.

The Lust arc is pretty controvesial which proves all those dramas over interpretation and I suppose we won't know who's completely right until much later, from a greater distance than it is now and with more things explained. *shrugs*
oh gallant piglet,aizome on January 17th, 2010 01:06 am (UTC)
No problem. :)

For me personally, putting people into categories runs the risk of judging them without first reading what they have to say. Which is not to say we don't all categorize and judge to a certain degree, just that being aware of it is good.
lookoutsunshineshynishyshallow on January 17th, 2010 01:21 am (UTC)
We do it all the time, putting people into categories. I don't know each one of the fans, so I simplify things as much as I can. And seriously, maybe it's me being a complete bitch, but I don't really care if someone feels offended by me doing so. ^^;; It's all about making sure I don't unnecessarily complicate my life, even if it's just a fandom life! ;)
oh gallant piglet,aizome on January 17th, 2010 01:25 am (UTC)
It's all about making sure I don't unnecessarily complicate my life, even if it's just a fandom life!

Yeah, we all have to live our own lives as best we can. And if that works for you, ok then.
_debbiechan__debbiechan_ on January 17th, 2010 01:06 am (UTC)

Nah, there were non-shipper fanbois who were all hot and bothered over Ichigo's transformation in the lust arc too... haven't heard much from them lately because they're onto other battles but there really were non-shippers in fandom who thought IchiThing was A GOOD THING and that Ishida deserved to be stabbed because he got in between a beast and his prey. Something like that. I got bothered by that argument then and I get bothered by the shipper variations of it now--such as the one that IchiThing is morally justified because it meant Ichigo was secretly in love with Orihime and sacrificing his humanity to keep her safe from the (lying defeated on the ground) Ulquiorra.

Some people do get furious in fandom. I believe Yulie admits to feeling this way time to time. Some people get off on the excitement of that. Some people get worn out by it. I've been there so I know the feeling of wanting to walk away when something isn't fun, but so far, I'm having a blast with Bleach. The day I stop loving it might be the day I stop loving popcorn, pad thai, and playing with kittens, but you never know. LOL, if I ever do, I'll leave this comm in good hands, I promise.
lookoutsunshineshynishyshallow on January 17th, 2010 01:18 am (UTC)
There were? All I can say is "wow". But then again, it is a good thing people care to keep others entertained. :D For example, I get a great deal of joy and laugh from Bleach drama. It used to annoy me, then I was like "pshh, whatevs" and now I just laugh, because hey, they say laghing is healthy. So yeah. This is how I see fandom. Fun.

Whatever suits them. *shrugs* Not my circus, not my monkeys, right?
Lol, I suppose. Even despite all my talk, I must admit that, as I said, I'm kept entertained by the fandom thanks to people who get worked up over petty things too, so it's not like I can complain! ;) Nonetheless, it gets confusing at times.
manonlechat: Ulquiorra_Cifermanonlechat on January 17th, 2010 03:44 am (UTC)
I don't condone malicious personal bashing (e.g. "You are an idiot for believing this." Not only is that not going to win you any popularity contests--it tends to weaken the presentation for an argument). But arguing about text is a whole other matter. It doesn't matter whether it's Goethe or Doonesbury or Voltaire or your kid's ABC primer, arguing over what a text represents is sometimes some people's idea of fun.

But the linked essay is chock full of malicious personal bashing. I appreciate that you warned for it above though to the "point" of bashing was an understatement.

Heated arguments to the nth degree over the interpretation over the sixth word of the bottom panel of page 12 and how it relates to the future wedded bliss of Characters X and Y? Bring it. I love that stuff. Ship/Character bashing? Whatever. Pen and ink characters don't have feelings. But accusations of idiocy and throwing around the word retarded? Is there some bad blood backstory of which I am unaware? Because I felt like wringing the spittle out of my clothes when I finished reading.

It's a coherent, well argued essay, but I'm sadly disappointed no one's calling her out on her shit.

I say this respectfully, because bleachness is far and away the most intelligent Bleach discussion site I've found and on the whole I love this com.
oh gallant piglet,aizome on January 17th, 2010 03:54 am (UTC)
*butting in again*

"Malicious personal bashing" would be if Yulie went on about something in Siix's personal life, completely unrelated to fandom and fandom opinions, and made a spectacle of it. I saw none of that, just Yulie making judgments based entirely on fandom opinions. Yeah, some of that was insulting to an overall ship, but I didn't see any of it as "personal".

Is there some bad blood backstory of which I am unaware?

Maybe. If so, I'm probably unaware of it too. Not everyone sugar-coats their arguments though.
manonlechat: SnarkInuyashamanonlechat on January 17th, 2010 04:08 am (UTC)
I consider calling a specific individual who disagrees with one's interpretation of a manga panel either retarded, an idiot, or a liar malicious and personal.

There's sugarcoating, there's blunt honesty, and then there's behaving like an asshole.
oh gallant piglet,aizome on January 17th, 2010 04:11 am (UTC)
Fair enough.
yulieana on January 17th, 2010 04:25 am (UTC)
I suppose I would've been an asshole if I pretended to be above it all and used passive aggression and malicious sarcasm to "disagree" with the fandom. (If it was just about the difference of opinions, I wouldn't have written that essay.)

I always wonder why such behavior is overlooked, but direct insults are so ebil and degrading.

But then again, if you disagree with the name calling, should you be calling others "asshole"?
manonlechat: Nobody Dies in BLEACHmanonlechat on January 17th, 2010 09:59 am (UTC)
Maliciousness is maliciousness (in my book) whether it's direct and open or passive aggressive. You get points for being honest and self-aware, but that doesn't give you a pass on the behaviour itself.

But then again, if you disagree with the name calling, should you be calling others "asshole"?

Honestly, I don't know you. I don't know whether you're an asshole or not. I think in the post that I read you are behaving badly (like an asshole) and I stated why (malicious personal bashing of someone for the offense of disagreeing with your interpretation of a manga). To continue with the honesty and bluntness, I was less upset by your post than I was surprised and disappointed by the fact your nastiness was cheered and overwhelmingly accepted. I'm a true believer in bash the ship (or the argument), not the shipper, and this comm had always struck me as remarkably sane in that regard.

I'm curious as to why you did write the essay--was it to change the mind of someone who thinks that IchiThing was a Good Thing? Because if that was your intention, nothing's going to turn someone off of an argument rebutting theirs quicker than invective sarcasm and an opening that labels them an idiot, a retard, a liar, etc. Human nature being what it is, your essay will probably just calcify and entrench their original position.

tl;dr: I don't want to cause more wank, I'm clearly in the minority opinion, and I've preached quite enough. I really do like this comm (most of the time I have a blast) and I don't want to feel uncomfortable about posting here. I'm happy to drop the discussion, if you are.

Edited at 2010-01-17 10:05 am (UTC)
jenny_jadejenny_jade on January 17th, 2010 12:36 pm (UTC)
Well, it's just from her journal, the place where she could express all of her feeling after a day lurking/posting on some others bleach ship community. I think she just wrote whatever she thought honestly in her journal after reading some shitnasty things on the computer screen. And just some of her LJ friends come in and out and read and enjoy for all the lulz she found. They like it and they recommend.

I don't think she would feel concern for any snowflakes lurking and read her post. Internet is free. So is the pronz. If they know the warning yet still read and feel offense later, then they would rebuke back at her journal if they want. That's a matter of opinion.

I guess, it's more likely a ritual to her now to return normal life after encountering some incredible immoral things on the net, but Yulie, because stupidity would never stop so you would not help getting yourself some cookie any time.
yulieana on January 17th, 2010 05:27 pm (UTC)
I sincerely doubt that I can change the minds of those who read the manga upside down and with their eyes closed. This is not about my opinion vs. their opinions. If it was, I wouldn't have written it.

I wrote this for my own entertainment because the annoying minority with the holier-than-thou attitude is, well, annoying. They pretend they know Bleach, they pretend they have the most canon, they pretend to be above the flaming and trolling, when they are the nastiest FC in the Bleach fandom.

Siix is not a child. An adult who spews sarcasm and condescension under the mask of politeness is not more polite than me calling someone an "idiot". Fake politeness is not politeness. I would rather someone call me a "bitch" then say something like this:

"There is a very specific fan who thinks Ulquiorra was a redeemed character. And for the sake of politeness, I won't say which kind".

It wasn't Siix who said that, someone else did. But thinking that avoiding name calling and using nastiness like this instead is being polite, then that person is a hypocrite.
_debbiechan__debbiechan_ on January 17th, 2010 05:41 pm (UTC)
Yeah, well, I believe that most of us know that there's passive aggressive hostility and there's out and out open hostility in fandom but I'd like to avoid as much of BOTH as I can in this community. I don't mind talking about fandom every now and then--a little self-awareness is good for the soul--but the whole "he said, she said" drama is like pulling out a plant every five minutes to evaluate how its roots are growing and all that stuff does is kill relationships and everyone's fun.

bleachness is mostly for talking about ideas. I guess right now we're talking about the idea that some people are hypocrites but that's really nothing new--like manonlechat said above, two wrongs don't make a right. I personally have gotten blasted for calling out people on their bad behavior in fandom before (hoo yeah, I'm malicious because I call out someone who calls my friend a nutjob and a biased interviewer because she didn't ask Kubo certain questions in her interview with him...) but that sort of stuff just derails the really interesting talk--like, how much more interesting is the idea of Ulquiorra's redemption and how he may behave as a redeemed character if he comes back (I don't dare to dream--I wouldn't want him to lose his edge--I'd like him to stay sorta mean and alienated like Vegeta even if a good guy) than discussing Yulie's insulting other fan members?

I'd rather talk about Bleach.

Edited at 2010-01-17 05:48 pm (UTC)
_debbiechan__debbiechan_ on January 17th, 2010 02:19 pm (UTC)
I consider calling a specific individual who disagrees with one's interpretation of a manga panel either retarded, an idiot, or a liar malicious and personal.

There's sugarcoating, there's blunt honesty, and then there's behaving like an asshole.

Just for the record, I agree. This stuff is cool for Yulie's personal LJ but it wouldn't fly on this public community. It's like--I don't tell Yulie how to behave in her space, but I can tell her how to behave in mine.

Also for the record, I don't honestly believe the writer of the screencap Yulie posted is any of these things, but I seriously question her ability to read and understand Kubo's manga. There have been cases of others in fandom when sometimes I wonder aloud, to friends, about if these people are lying, trolling, or are just crazy or intelligence-challenged. But yeah, these points are never relevant to actual Bleach discussion.

Edited at 2010-01-17 05:25 pm (UTC)
tamzin: thatboyisamonsterconquistadora on January 17th, 2010 03:51 am (UTC)
lol I always love seeing Yulie sink her teeth into the IchiBeast=Hime'sWetDream philosophy. Though I'm still not a fan of personal attacks, the essay does a good job of pointing out everything that is wrong with that train of thought. Still, I don't think it will matter how many essays declaring IchiBeast is bad. If people wanted to live in denial for personal satisfaction, then so they shall.
_debbiechan__debbiechan_ on January 17th, 2010 02:27 pm (UTC)

You have to consider Yulie's audience--it was written in her personal LJ mostly for those who share her passion and her opinion. It was an emotional bonding moment for a smaller group. The essay was only in part written in public to answer the original screencap--no one really knows if that person would bother to read Yulie's LJ entry (I know that if I were an author of an arguments being perpetually trashed, I'd tune in one time maybe but not the second time) I linked the essay because I liked the argument. If I were to ask her to actually post it here, I'd ask her to rewrite it but I wasn't going to go to all that trouble so I just warned for the person bashing and hoped there wouldn't be too much wank. I appreciate people noting the bashing, though, as well as distinguishing it from the points made in the essay.
Linda: Smile Girl 02umihimeko on January 17th, 2010 08:09 am (UTC)
I love reading Yulieana's essay thanks so much for the link debbie-chan, I usuallylike to lurk her journal because her essay is not a sugarcoating, Yulieana is a honey person, brave and straight forward! In my opinion, we don't need to hide anything in this life, say it directly and loudly what you like and dislike, what you think good and bad, we need more honest peple without hide anything even you will lose some of your friends but there are a few people who will still stick with you and share the same way of thinkings..

Rusky_Boz is one of my favorite artists on D.A, Ishida is so cute when he blushes, and the ishihime fanart making me to start to like this pairing, Ishida and Orihime make a good couple, both are geeks and smart!

I'm questioning this to myself, why some people are still in denial about Ulquiorra's redemption, I totally believe that Ulquiorra saved Orihime and Ishida from Ichithings, and in hsi final moment he finally acknowledges what the heart is, reaching out his hand and asking Orihime if she scares? Even without essay, an elementary school kid who doesn't support any Bleach pairings knows that Ulquiorra has been redeemed . Just my 2 cent
_debbiechan__debbiechan_ on January 17th, 2010 02:42 pm (UTC)

I always hear of fanart making people start to like a pairing but it's never happened to me! I wish there were more IshiHime art like there is UlquiHime art--that fandom just blows me away with its splendor.
r0ck3tsci3ntist - sorry, kidding: yoruichir0ck3tsci3ntist on January 17th, 2010 06:46 pm (UTC)
Personally, I enjoyed the essay. It was somewhat refreshing and obviously one person's point of view. As anyone who's ever written a serious essay knows there are essay's meant to persuade and there are essays meant to convey an opinion. This one was clearly the latter. Amusing ridicule has long been a tool used in certain types of opinion based essays, Mark Twain being perhaps the most successful wielder of the written tongue lashing.

Not that I'm comparing this writer to Mr Twain but I do find a well written, no holds barred rebuttal entertaining. That and being sick of idiots trying to rewrite one of the most interesting dynamics in the whole manga makes me more than happy to excuse her.

Though I do agree with you Deb, this comm needs to remain strictly politic.
K.: Excessively Pinkpolina_slosvau on January 18th, 2010 01:41 pm (UTC)
I'm glad you warned for the tone of voice since stuff like that really puts me off and I like to avoid it in fandom whenever possible.

The chibi art is so, so cute!