A Lesson in Nostalgia – Rocko’s Modern Life Static Cling

We all have that one show, that we adored as a child. That one show that was our go to cartoon that no matter what kind of day we had the moment you sat down and watched that show you would instantly smile and laugh. For my siblings growing up it was Rugrats but for me it was Rocko’s Modern Life.

It was the first show I ever said to myself this is my favourite show, and it was this show that helped shaped my sense of humor as a child. It’s also one of those brilliant cartoons that if you go back and watch it as an adult, you get all the jokes you never got as a kid and wonder ‘How the fuck did they get that past the censors?’. That being said I am disappointed that the series DVD boxsets I have sitting on my shelf have certain milking scenes removed. A scene I remember seeing as a kid I might add.

Needless to say, when it was announced that there would be a movie I was beyond ecstatic. Then we waited. And waited. And waited. I was beginning to think this movie would never get released, then it was announced that both Rocko’s Modern Life and Invader Zim Enter the Florpus were coming to Netflix and I was really happy to hear this because I don’t have access to Nickelodeon to watch anymore. Friday the 8th of August 2019 at roughly 1:30 am in the morning because I had trouble sleeping that night I watched Static Cling because it was up and I absolutely loved it!

If you loved this show back in the 90’s you owe it to yourself to go watch it now before reading the rest of this post, because from this point on there will be spoilers galore for Static Cling and it is a must watch for any 90 kids for more than it being a cartoon reboot done right.

A lot of reboots of old series could learn a lot from Rocko’s Modern Life Static Cling which grew with its audience without alienating a new audience from what makes this show so great!

The main driving theme of Rocko’s Modern Life Static Cling is one of change, acceptance and nostalgia. Rocko, Heffer, Filbert and Spunky have been away from not just O-Town but the Earth since we last saw them fly away on a rocket into space.

They have been away for twenty years and thanks to cartoon logic they have survived and not aged. Though the house does look a little dilapidated. Then they finally find a way to get home only to find, the world has moved on without them and they are not in the 90’s anymore. Heffer, Filbert and Spunky all seem to embrace the new modern world, Rocko however is hit with severe culture shock with how much everything has changed and he does not like it.

Especially when he finds out he can no longer watch his favourite TV show The Fatheads anymore. Wanting to recapture the nostalgia of his past to escape from the stresses of his new modern life, Rocko and his friends go on a journey to find the creator of the show Ralph Bighead in hopes of a reboot of their favourite show.

When they find the creator of their favourite show they learn more has changed than they could have thought. After many years of soul searching and a life changing decision Ralph is now Rachel and has finally found happiness in their life and this is a beautiful and positive lesson in change that is a brilliant move for modern audiences and it is great that we now live in a day and age where LGBTQ+ stories can be told in not just media, but children’s media.

Long running fans of the show will notice that as Rachel, she smiles and is a lot more comfortable in herself than she ever was as Ralph Bighead. There was always a frustrated sadness about Ralph and now we know why, even if this character’s growth was not originally planned for this character from the start. But one could say the same for people as well.

This is a story that the creators behind the show could have never done on a kids show back in the 90’s, this is a story that could only be made in the current decade . The creators of the special went above and beyond in making this story a reality because they not only told this story but they also sought out advice from GLAAD. To those reading this post who do not know who GLAAD are they are an LGBTQ+ positive group that through helping media creators helps shape modern media into a platform that that can tackle the hard issues within the LGBTQ+ community within media and make it a more positive experience for everyone involved while tackling the tough issues with dignity and respect. And they tackle the story of Rachel and her transition in this special exceptionally well.

It’s all well and good that Rachel get’s accepted for her change from Rocko and her friends right off the bat and you see just how grateful for that she it, but if everyone had accepted this change right away it would have made the story very unrealistic. I have friends within the trans community and though although all there stories of self acceptance and discovery are different one thing they have all had in common is that one person in there life that finds it hard to accept this change. Whether it be a family member or friend they have all spoken of that one person in their lives that does not accept and I am so happy that they incorporated this part of the trans experience into the story. I am also so very happy that though they could have easily done so they do not turn the character who does not accept Rachel’s change right away into the villain of the story.

Those who are familiar with Rocko’s Modern Life will know that Ed Bighead never had the best relationship with his only child, from not accepting his career choice and seeing him as a family embarrassment it does not come as a surprise that he does not imitatively accept Rachel’s change. Coming from an older generation this change is hard for him to accept, but spoiler alert in realizing that he has not lost his child and that changing gender has not changed the person his child is Ed in the end does learn to embrace Rachel for who she is.

A final lesson is seen after all this at the end of the special that comes from Rocko which feels like a lesson to the fans watching and is worth discussing here. When Rocko does get his show back, he is unhappy with the changes Rachel brings to the reboot. Changes that allow her as a creator chose to add to the show for new story opportunities. Rocko is not happy with this change though and becomes that demanding fan who is not happy to see ‘their’ favourite show return but not be the same.

As fans sometimes we can become too demanding of the shows we love but we need to remember at the end of the day, we are not the creators of these works and it is from the wonderful minds of these creators that we get these awesome shows we love so much.

Change is a good thing. Social norms and what is socially acceptable change over time. Does this make as bad people because we enjoyed something in the past that is not socially acceptable now? Of course not, it just means that times change and we can either learn with that change or live in nostalgia. Nostalgia can be a great escape and can help us learn from our past but we do not live in the past we live in the here and now.

Rebooting an old property for either new fans or old can be a double edged sword. Sometimes we get something brilliant and special like what we have here with Rocko’s Modern Life Static Cling and Samurai Jack the final season which reunite old fans with new. Sometimes we get shows that old fans will despise because it is so different from the previous work that we end up feeling cheated even if the newer generation end up loving the new show like with Teen Titans Go and the new Powerpuff Girls series, but having these new versions of old series we use to love does not change the version we use to love it just introduces it in a new way to a new generation and there is nothing stopping us from sharing what we loved with a new generation.

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Kyoto Animation – Just Damn…

This is a big blow to the anime community and has left so many of us in a state of shock and horror to the anime community world wide. There is not an anime viewer in the world today that has not watched an anime from Kyoto Animation.

From classics from the early 2000’s like Munto and Air, to the titles that had everyone knowing who KyoAni were with titles like Lucky Star, The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya and Clannad.

To modern masterpieces of the anime genre like A Silent Voice and Violet Evergarden. This is an anime company that has made an impact on all our lives within the anime community. We all share memories of the first time we discovered anime by them and we all have our favorites and it won’t come as a surprise as to what this fujoshi’s favorite KyoAni show is.

Of course it is Free Iwatobi Swim Club! This show was more than fanservice to me though, it is a story about mending friendships and finding out just what being free can mean to someone and that sometimes what may be freeing and liberating to one person, could be a personal hell for another.

The recent attack on the Kyoto Animation Studio, has been a big blow to all of us within the anime community, the loss of so many lives is always a tragedy but when it is the creators of the world we all have loved so much, it’s like losing a part of ourselves within the chaos.

However, we are all part of one hell of an amazing community who has already rallied it’s people and started raising money to help those in need from this tragedy. You just have to look at all the money already raised over on the GoFundMe page set up by Sentai Filmworks and the countless amazing tribute videos that have already been pouring in from the community. Digibro’s video in particular, aptly titled The Damage is Coming, brought tears to my eyes.

To Kyoto Animation I give them my thanks for bringing us some of the most amazing anime I have ever watched and to the anime community I want to say thank you for giving us all a little bit of faith in the generosity of strangers and humanity.

Togainu no Chi – ANNOUNCEMENT Trailer

I was not planning on making another post this week I really was not, but then after a day out with a friend grocery shopping of all things I come home I browse my email, my social media and then I head to Youtube where I find the following trailer in my sub box…

And I am just twitching with excitement, my inner fangirl is just screaming YES YES YES! Togainu no Chi is a yaoi visual novel that I have wanted to play for over a decade and once again the lovely folks over at JastBlue have announced that this will be the next yaoi title we get from them and I am just fangirling sooo hard right now!

Though not well received by many within the yaoi community, back in 2010 there was an anime adaptation released of this game that I actually at the time really enjoyed and like a good adaptation it left me wanting more from its world and now finally after all this time I will soon be able to play the game!

I am sooo hyped for this!!!

Is Legend of Duo the Worst Boys Love Anime Ever?

In the early 21st century humanity is on the brink of extinction during an apocalyptic outbreak of a disease simply called the disease of death and the only cure seems to be the blood from a vampire. A secret to save humanity that was revealed by a vampire that in revealing this secret to mankind has betrayed his own kind and now is hunted by his own vampiric creation. Now that sounds like an interesting plot that could explore so many different themes right? Well in giving you this synopsis I have literally spoiled practically every important plot point of this anime. This is a bad anime and the worse part is, it’s not even entertainingly bad, it’s just bad.

Much like my review of Pupa so many years back now, Legend of Duo is an anime series that has a really interesting set up and it even tries to go the deep philosophical route of story telling comparing the vampire who revealed the secret cure to humanity to Prometheus from Greek mythology who was punished for bringing fire to humans. All this is lost however on rushed story telling, blase animation and character design it just comes across as the most boring anime I have ever watched.

If you are curious about this mess of an anime it is fully available to watch on Youtube, but I would not recommend it, seriously I would rather sit through a Twilight marathon than this garbage again.

Killing Stalking – My Final Thoughts

We have come a long way since this story began all the way back in 2016, but it’s official Killing Stalking’s story has come to an end, and what a disturbing journey it has been. I know I am not alone in thanking Koogi for this amazing webtoon that has dived deep into a disturbing relationship that has kept most of us hooked over there past few years. There are those who have dropped out of the fandom over the years, as does with any fandom.

And what a fandom that has been built around Killing Stalking, it has been a long time since have been part of a fandom so divided and at times toxic, but I want to state before I continue on with this post. The toxicity of this fandom and fetishisation of this relationship by the fandom is in no way the author Koogi’s fault. It has been stated countless times by her that this was never suppose to be a romance story. It is a story of emotional manipulation and abuse that at best could be considered a crime/psychological thriller first and when all it said and done with this story, I find myself hard pressed at this point to consider this story a yaoi story at all.

Over the last few years the yaoi and Boys Love genre has become to expansive and inclusive of so many different kind of stories that it has filtered into other genres as well. This is not a bad thing as I as a fan have enjoyed watching the fandom I love grow and expend with the type of stories we get to read and the exploration of darker themes through fiction has always fascinated me, after all it was this appeal to darker stories that made Killing Stalking peak my interest as much as it did others.

The final chapters and ending to the story that is Killing Stalking has left the fanbase divided. Some wanted the two leads to get their happy ending, those who were hoping this. I’m sorry but this is not the kind of story that will give you a happy ending, but does this lack of a happy ending made it an unsatisfactory one? Well that really depends.

The twists and and emotional turns throughout the final chapters and moments of the story kept me on the edge of my seat and pulled at my heartstrings, which just goes to show what an amazing story teller Koogi really is. The exploration of mental illness within this story was what kept me hooked more than anything, at the end of the day Killing Stalking was a story with no good guys, sympathetic bad people and that it can be so easy to fall into madness and that once you truly fall into it, you will never get your happy ending and that there are many things in this world far scarier than death and that even in death we don’t all find peace.

Finding the Light in the Darkness

This quote from Jim Gordon in the very first episode of Gotham to Bruce Wayne, it has resonated with me throughout these last few months. These months have been some of the toughest emotionally and mentally for me in my entire life and I know moving forward things are going to get a lot more painful and a lot harder and that nothing will ever be the same again – like how things were before my father’s diagnosis – but as cold as it might sound to write, that’s life. It can give you some of the most wonderful moments but there will always be painful moments as well. If everything was good all the time then well, those happy moments would not matter as much as they do.

There are many ways people cope with a hard situation and I will admit I am not a person without my vices. When the news hit last year I bottled everything up for a long time and for a time I was drinking at night time to ‘take the edge off’ as I was telling myself. Just a couple of drinks in the evening to help me sleep, to numb me from what was going on around me.

This only lasted a week, because all this did was make me feel miserable and I needed to be strong for those around me and when I stood back and was honest with myself I came to realize I was becoming someone I did not want to be. I needed a distraction so I chose a show I knew I liked on Netflix and I binged it once again. I was already a fan of Gotham before all this stuff with my family began, but this time upon viewing the show, I latched onto something I did not before and to put it bluntly Gotham over the last few months has become an obsession that has kept me going.

I have been part of countless fandoms over the years, some good and admittedly a lot of them bad – and I mean bad to the point where I am a fan of the show, but refuse to have anything to do with the fandom side of things (Hannibal being a big one for this), but Gotham’s fandom is one of the most welcoming and friendliest fandoms I have ever been a part of. Even the shipping side of things is very civil, heck I have even made friends within the fandom that have helped me through these past couple of months.

There is something about the world of this show that dragged me and so many others in. It’s stories though fantastical still have a grounded reality in them that has kept me hooked. So I just want to say a big thank you to the creators, cast and staff behind Gotham and and even bigger thank you to the amazing fan community around this show.

Morningdew Farms – Demo Review

Y Press Games the lovely people behind To Trust an Incubus, have just launched a Kickstarter for there upcoming title Morningdew Farms and earlier this week I got a sneak peak at the demo for this upcoming title and can I just say I had such a blast playing through the demo!

In this visual novel you play as Cody a young man who has just moved into his families old abandon farm right next door to his sister’s farm and the best part for him about moving to the farm? The town of Morningdew is filled with many different bachelors that Cody will have the chance to woo. In my play through of the Demo I got to meet three of these bachelors. A doomsday prepper obsessed store owner named Butch, a man with a mysterious and dangerous past named Rusty and an adorable wolf man named Nuzzler! Yep that furry in the banner is one of the bachelors you get to woo! I think there were a few others in the demo as well but I kinda became instantly obsessed with Butch and Nuzzler! Seriously Nuzzler is damn adorable!

Game play is divided between completely tasks such as farm work and going into town to talk to the other residence and once a week you get a visit the town bathhouse for a little fun… ok its more than a little. I played the uncensored demo and damn I loved the bathhouse time! One other thing I will praise is the humor in this demo, if you love your humor adorably cheesy and full of puns you will be smiling the whole was through like how was.

If this game sounds like something you would love to support like I will be please support the kickstarter help make this game a reality!