Chirin no Suzu which is “Ringing Bell in English” is an 47 minute Anime from 1978 produced by the one and only Sanrio. It’s a dark tale about revenge for children that begins with the super cuteness that sanrio brings with its name. Think Unico and Hello Kitty. Chirin is a lamb whose mother is killed by a wolf. He then seeks out the wolf in order to become strong and seek revenge. Along the way he must learn about the unfairness of life and how hard it can be.
For one, Chirin was so set on becoming a wolf that he showed his detication by following the wolf. One example in Claymore, Clare follows Theresa and in turn Raki follows Clare with gratitude. In both cases neither Clare or Thersa wanted the child tagging along, the same as with the wolf. Eventually they develop a sort of respect for the strength, stamina, and spirit it shows to follow them around. They then accept the follower.
Another commonality is attacking with the head. Granted, Chirin is a sheep and has either hooves or his head to attack with, he was charging through trees. How hard can a head be? It’s like Goku in Dragonball who defeated enemies with his hard head. Also, like in Dragonball Z, the wolf is a strict master very much like Piccolo.
I wonder if Sanrio came out with anything nearly as dark or sad as this again. This was truly a tragedy. Revenge is a dangerous thing that hurts the avenger, possibly more than they were hurt at first. Another tone in this short movie is the danger of non-conformity. Chirin is not and never has been like the other sheep and look what happens to him. He seeks strength (as they seem to do in every anime) and gets it but at what cost?
I’m not a Hannah Montana fan, but I think I get the lure of the show. Look at all those crazy preteen girls going crazy over her. There has to be a reason right? I wondered about this while shopping in Wal-mart one day. There were tons of her products everywhere and her face was on the box of the frost mini-wheat cereal box that I bought. What brought this girl, Miley Cyrus to stardom?
That answer lies in this. If you could be famous without the hassle of the paparazzi wouldn’t you want to be? And to do that you would need an alter ego that the world would know while you were able to hide your true self. On the show Hannah Montana, she is able to keep her identity hidden, but to do so often leads to funny situations.
This theme occurs very often in manga, anime, and comics but to see this in live action must be very exciting to the young crowd. Secret identities are exciting and can be funny. They appear in various mangas and comics. Look at Superman, Batman, and Spider man. A superhero needs a secret identity. For manga/manwha, look at Karin (Chibi Vampire), My Girl, Charisma Doll, Claymore, Gokusen, and the list goes on.
People want a hidden identity that is exciting and special, something they know only they can do or something that can allow them to protect themselves when necessary. I suppose its why I like writing on this blog as well. I can say what I want without people knowing who I am.
Miley as Hannah Montana.
Miley as herself?
I’ve noticed that a lot of people confuse manga categories all the time. They can’t tell the difference between shoujo, shounen, seinen, and josei. I admit its rather difficult at times because there are crossover mangas and etc., but there are differences. Genre such as fighting, sci-fi, school drama etc. is not what determines which category a manga fits in. Although admitedly there are more school drama shoujo mangas than shounen and more “hero” type shounen than shoujo. There is a difference in drawing style. Also Seinen and Josei are not commonly published in the United States, because they target older audiences.
For starters shounen manga is target towards boys (although from what I hear more girls than boys read shounen jump). Manga like Dragonball Z, Naruto, and Claymore are shounen. Shounen is more restrained than shoujo in the flow of movement. The flow is easier to read and the characters are more likely to stay in the boxes. Also, the background is either drawn out or is full of sound effects and/or speedlines.
Shoujo manga is targeted toward girls and is most often about romance. The backgrounds are more flowery (not all the time of course) and the people are more beautiful. Examples of shoujo manga include Fruits Basket, Ayashi no Ceres, and Ouran High School Host Club.
Ouran Host Club
Seinen is basically men’s manga. Examples include such various titles as Elfen Lied, xxxHolic, and Monster. This is the hardest category to determine. Clamp has drawn beautifully in xxxholic which is seinen. Seinen also includes manga with a lot of nudity and panty shots, but that is not in all seinen. In general seinen is more mature than Shounen.
Josei is essentially women’s manga. Emma, Paradise Kiss, and Nodame Cantabile. The romance is not as as “romantic” as shoujo and tends to be more realistic. Also Yoai mostly falls under this category.
Remember you are not restricted by you sex from reading manga from different categories. These are just who they are targeted to. In general Seinen and Josei are about more mature themes that usually wouldn’t interest younger people. Shoujo is more about things that girls think about and Shounen is more about what boys think about or at least are thought to think and dream about.