This is the most appropriate use of my cockatiel parakeet of D00M icon since I posted about the Bleach episode where it first appeared, for this series prominently features a cockatoo. And not just any cockatoo! A cockatoo with a secret.

Karasu is a scruffy blonde agnostic angel with glasses and a soul-patch. As seems to be usual in manga, Heaven is some cross between a totalitarian dictatorship and an uptight beaureaucracy. Karasu has been sent down to Earth to retrieve a devil who's been living with humans. This is forbidden, as is devil-angel sex and other fun stuff.

The devil, Shirasagi, is really cute, incredibly sweet, loves God, wants to do good, and is currently helping small children as a pastor. With a cockatoo. He has black hair and wears a cross.

Sparks fly. Karasu gets in trouble with Heaven. Shirasagi is kidnapped by Beelzebub, who used to keep him as a sex slave in a giant birdcage in Hell. Karasu gets knocked out trying to protect Shirasagi, and the cockatoo flutters around his unconscious body looking both mournful and strangely fierce.

Two miscellaneous notes of interest:

1. If you look closely at the last panel of the first page of chapter three, you will see that some anonymous dude is giving Beelzebub a blow-job.

2. Beelzebub is the Archduke of Hell. The typeface made me repeatedly read this as "Artichoke," ie, "The Artichoke is waiting for you underground."

Most hilarious spoilery reveal ever )
This is the most appropriate use of my cockatiel parakeet of D00M icon since I posted about the Bleach episode where it first appeared, for this series prominently features a cockatoo. And not just any cockatoo! A cockatoo with a secret.

Karasu is a scruffy blonde agnostic angel with glasses and a soul-patch. As seems to be usual in manga, Heaven is some cross between a totalitarian dictatorship and an uptight beaureaucracy. Karasu has been sent down to Earth to retrieve a devil who's been living with humans. This is forbidden, as is devil-angel sex and other fun stuff.

The devil, Shirasagi, is really cute, incredibly sweet, loves God, wants to do good, and is currently helping small children as a pastor. With a cockatoo. He has black hair and wears a cross.

Sparks fly. Karasu gets in trouble with Heaven. Shirasagi is kidnapped by Beelzebub, who used to keep him as a sex slave in a giant birdcage in Hell. Karasu gets knocked out trying to protect Shirasagi, and the cockatoo flutters around his unconscious body looking both mournful and strangely fierce.

Two miscellaneous notes of interest:

1. If you look closely at the last panel of the first page of chapter three, you will see that some anonymous dude is giving Beelzebub a blow-job.

2. Beelzebub is the Archduke of Hell. The typeface made me repeatedly read this as "Artichoke," ie, "The Artichoke is waiting for you underground."

Most hilarious spoilery reveal ever )
From the creator of the surprisingly undistinguished manga which inspired the brilliant anime Revolutionary Girl Utena comes this strikingly incoherent manga.

Opening narration: Once upon a time, the source of the devil R's invincible powers was The Book of S&M. But one day a young man stole the book without knowing what it was, cut it into strips, and used it to create a girl doll named S and a boy doll named M out of papier-mache. With that act, the unimaginable power that the devil held from the book was divided between the two dolls!

Cut to Sekai, a Japanese schoolgirl, confessing her love to her classmate Midou. Her turns her down. The train crashes, and Sekai falls through time and space, and lands on a creepy boy, Sovieul, who looks about six years old but proclaims that she is his bride. And that they're now in 17th century France. And her soul is bound to a doll he has, because they both have jewels glued to their chests. She tries to take a photo, and is attacked by a mob who think she's a witch. Creepy Boy protects her, she runs, and a guy who looks just like a more swashbuckling Mudou appears and proclaims that she is his bride. He goes away and Creepy Boy returns and explains that the doll, S, gives him the power to travel through space and time.

Then they get arrested. Then there's random court intrigue. Then they're in court and she's sentenced to death. Not!Midou appears, identified by Creepy Boy as Machiavello. They squabble over some incomprehensible backstory. Machiavello also has a gem in his chest! He disappears and Sekai is tied to a stake to be burned. Creepy Boy offers to duel for her. Aramis appears and takes him up on it. This is Aramis:

Look at his rose-like face. Aramis castrated himself as a youth when he vowed to join the church.

Machiavello appears and demands her body. There's something about Louis XIV and poison. Sekai falls through time. Machiavello gets stabbed and dies. Then he's OK again. Some of that was probably a vision, I'm not sure whose. Something explodes. Creepy Boy wins the duel with Eunuch Musketeer. More intrigue with poisoned wine. Creepy Boy and Sekai ride off together in a cart.

That, my friends, is the end of Part I! In Part II, the second half of this slim manga volume, there are random sheep, Joan of Arc, Gilles de Rais, and much, much, much more random appearing and disappearing.

Has anyone read more of this? Does it ever make more sense? Does it ever make less?
From the creator of the surprisingly undistinguished manga which inspired the brilliant anime Revolutionary Girl Utena comes this strikingly incoherent manga.

Opening narration: Once upon a time, the source of the devil R's invincible powers was The Book of S&M. But one day a young man stole the book without knowing what it was, cut it into strips, and used it to create a girl doll named S and a boy doll named M out of papier-mache. With that act, the unimaginable power that the devil held from the book was divided between the two dolls!

Cut to Sekai, a Japanese schoolgirl, confessing her love to her classmate Midou. Her turns her down. The train crashes, and Sekai falls through time and space, and lands on a creepy boy, Sovieul, who looks about six years old but proclaims that she is his bride. And that they're now in 17th century France. And her soul is bound to a doll he has, because they both have jewels glued to their chests. She tries to take a photo, and is attacked by a mob who think she's a witch. Creepy Boy protects her, she runs, and a guy who looks just like a more swashbuckling Mudou appears and proclaims that she is his bride. He goes away and Creepy Boy returns and explains that the doll, S, gives him the power to travel through space and time.

Then they get arrested. Then there's random court intrigue. Then they're in court and she's sentenced to death. Not!Midou appears, identified by Creepy Boy as Machiavello. They squabble over some incomprehensible backstory. Machiavello also has a gem in his chest! He disappears and Sekai is tied to a stake to be burned. Creepy Boy offers to duel for her. Aramis appears and takes him up on it. This is Aramis:

Look at his rose-like face. Aramis castrated himself as a youth when he vowed to join the church.

Machiavello appears and demands her body. There's something about Louis XIV and poison. Sekai falls through time. Machiavello gets stabbed and dies. Then he's OK again. Some of that was probably a vision, I'm not sure whose. Something explodes. Creepy Boy wins the duel with Eunuch Musketeer. More intrigue with poisoned wine. Creepy Boy and Sekai ride off together in a cart.

That, my friends, is the end of Part I! In Part II, the second half of this slim manga volume, there are random sheep, Joan of Arc, Gilles de Rais, and much, much, much more random appearing and disappearing.

Has anyone read more of this? Does it ever make more sense? Does it ever make less?
rachelmanija: (Fowl of DOOM)
( Feb. 17th, 2008 10:28 am)
Last night I dreamed that my Dad had a career writing Firefly AU tie-in novels in which Mal and Zoe solved cozy mysteries. The main recurring villain was an evil chicken.

In related news, I am amazed that I completely forgot that the very first few episodes of Fullmetal Alchemist contain a flock of zombie parrots, a giant attack parrot, and a giant zombie attack human-parrot chimera.
rachelmanija: (Fowl of DOOM)
( Feb. 17th, 2008 10:28 am)
Last night I dreamed that my Dad had a career writing Firefly AU tie-in novels in which Mal and Zoe solved cozy mysteries. The main recurring villain was an evil chicken.

In related news, I am amazed that I completely forgot that the very first few episodes of Fullmetal Alchemist contain a flock of zombie parrots, a giant attack parrot, and a giant zombie attack human-parrot chimera.
The poll is funny, but the comments are funnier. Particularly the bits about the egg and the windchimes, Krycek as a mute mermaid, and the surprising plot twist which occurs when I inquire about a notorious X-Files fic, "Oklahoma."

http://eruthros.livejournal.com/225150.html
The poll is funny, but the comments are funnier. Particularly the bits about the egg and the windchimes, Krycek as a mute mermaid, and the surprising plot twist which occurs when I inquire about a notorious X-Files fic, "Oklahoma."

http://eruthros.livejournal.com/225150.html
It's pre-Revolution France. A cult of evil poets are sacrificing female virgins because when they write poems in their blood, they become possessed and turn into monstrous dragons! Who you gonna call?

The Sphynx, dead sister and sometimes possessor of her brother, the Chevalier d'Eon. She is a busty blonde who wields the sword of Thor and says things like, "I shall destroy the poet of the evil psalms who feasts at the table of blood and gore!"

When not possessed, the Chevalier holds lengthy and erudite conversations over the possible meanings of the words psalms, palms, and palmss-- all of which appear repeatedly in the manga, written in blood or magically appearing mirror-reversed ("Like a printing press!" someone exclaims helpfully) on the body of a girl who can thereafter only speak anagrams of the word "palmss."

I swear I'm not making this up. The effect is only enhanced by the careful research and learned footnotes at the back explaining the historical Chevalier d'Eon (transsexual swordighter and spy) and the association of pilgrims with palm leaves. And also psalms. Probably palmss too. Possibly Gollum could explain the latter.

Not actually good, but memorably insane.
It's pre-Revolution France. A cult of evil poets are sacrificing female virgins because when they write poems in their blood, they become possessed and turn into monstrous dragons! Who you gonna call?

The Sphynx, dead sister and sometimes possessor of her brother, the Chevalier d'Eon. She is a busty blonde who wields the sword of Thor and says things like, "I shall destroy the poet of the evil psalms who feasts at the table of blood and gore!"

When not possessed, the Chevalier holds lengthy and erudite conversations over the possible meanings of the words psalms, palms, and palmss-- all of which appear repeatedly in the manga, written in blood or magically appearing mirror-reversed ("Like a printing press!" someone exclaims helpfully) on the body of a girl who can thereafter only speak anagrams of the word "palmss."

I swear I'm not making this up. The effect is only enhanced by the careful research and learned footnotes at the back explaining the historical Chevalier d'Eon (transsexual swordighter and spy) and the association of pilgrims with palm leaves. And also psalms. Probably palmss too. Possibly Gollum could explain the latter.

Not actually good, but memorably insane.
One of the characters, a whore/assassin, is named Surreal. This is never commented upon. Her sister is named Dada and her baby brother is Hallucinatory.

And yes, I did get to the magical child abuse and magic virginity loss/extra-special Witch Hymen (it bleeds an extra-special amount.)

The worldbuilding is unusually bad. I mean, even for the type of book it is. Characters drink coffee and eat sandwiches. No setting is ever described at all, so the book seems to be floating in a formless haze, except occasionally when there's a wish-fulfillment moment, like Mary Sue's extra-special bedroom with the sand-colored plush carpet and ocean-colored wallpaper, and then it's described in great detail. By the way, the bedroom is in Hell.

The Black Jewels: Trilogy: Daughter of the Blood / Heir to the Shadows / Queen of the Darkness
One of the characters, a whore/assassin, is named Surreal. This is never commented upon. Her sister is named Dada and her baby brother is Hallucinatory.

And yes, I did get to the magical child abuse and magic virginity loss/extra-special Witch Hymen (it bleeds an extra-special amount.)

The worldbuilding is unusually bad. I mean, even for the type of book it is. Characters drink coffee and eat sandwiches. No setting is ever described at all, so the book seems to be floating in a formless haze, except occasionally when there's a wish-fulfillment moment, like Mary Sue's extra-special bedroom with the sand-colored plush carpet and ocean-colored wallpaper, and then it's described in great detail. By the way, the bedroom is in Hell.
Stephanie kindly gave me this to read on the plane, explaining, "You said that if I gave you the magic cock ring book you would read it."

How do I even describe this...? I abandoned it on the plane, so I shall merely share the fragments I recall, which now have the air of a very bad trip.

There are magic cock rings. They are controlled by witches to enslave the wearers, who often magically zap them with pain. This makes many of the male characters perform actions like, "Moaning and clutching his groin, he staggered up the stairs," or "Carefully holding his crotch, he pursued her."

On page two, someone gets his balls eaten by rats. He has a tragic death scene, in which he says tragically, "The rats ate my balls!"

There is a character named Saetan. (Pronounced, perhaps, like the vegan meat substiitute?) He is the lord of Hell. There is also a kingdom called Hayll. I found this rather confusing.

There is another castration somewhere later in the book. I think Anne Bishop has some issues.

One guy has membraneous bat wings, which Bishop forgets exist for chapters on end, but which come into play when he:s particularly Byronic and crotch-clutchy.

The hero is impotent because he can only get it up for his Twoo Wuv. She is the world"s biggest Mary Sue-- golden ringlets, frequently compared to a cat, called names like "hoyden" and "snippet," and ten times more powerful than anyone ever. She has a Destiny and Very Special Magic Rocks. There is a whole system of color-coded magic rocks-- Mary Sue has the best set of anyone ever.

When the hero meets her, she is twelve, and he feels a strange pull toward her, but freaks out because she's a kid and he:d be a perv if he got a hard-on from a kid. So he rushes upstairs and puts his hands down his pants to see if he got one or not. Um, I'm not a guy, but you don"t actually have to touch it to tell, right?

View on Amazon: The Black Jewels: Trilogy: Daughter of the Blood / Heir to the Shadows / Queen of the Darkness
Stephanie kindly gave me this to read on the plane, explaining, "You said that if I gave you the magic cock ring book you would read it."

How do I even describe this...? I abandoned it on the plane, so I shall merely share the fragments I recall, which now have the air of a very bad trip.

There are magic cock rings. They are controlled by witches to enslave the wearers, who often magically zap them with pain. This makes many of the male characters perform actions like, "Moaning and clutching his groin, he staggered up the stairs," or "Carefully holding his crotch, he pursued her."

On page two, someone gets his balls eaten by rats. He has a tragic death scene, in which he says tragically, "The rats ate my balls!"

There is a character named Saetan. (Pronounced, perhaps, like the vegan meat substiitute?) He is the lord of Hell. There is also a kingdom called Hayll. I found this rather confusing.

There is another castration somewhere later in the book. I think Anne Bishop has some issues.

One guy has membraneous bat wings, which Bishop forgets exist for chapters on end, but which come into play when he:s particularly Byronic and crotch-clutchy.

The hero is impotent because he can only get it up for his Twoo Wuv. She is the world"s biggest Mary Sue-- golden ringlets, frequently compared to a cat, called names like "hoyden" and "snippet," and ten times more powerful than anyone ever. She has a Destiny and Very Special Magic Rocks. There is a whole system of color-coded magic rocks-- Mary Sue has the best set of anyone ever.

When the hero meets her, she is twelve, and he feels a strange pull toward her, but freaks out because she]s a kid and he:d be a perv if he got a hard-on from a kid. So he rushes upstairs and puts his hands down his pants to see if he got one or not. Um, I:m not a guy, but you don"t actually have to touch it to tell, right?
I read this manga a while ago, but while culling my bookshelves recently I re-read it to see if it was as insane and incoherent as I remembered. Indeed, it was! I will now recount the plot for posterity before placing it on Book Mooch.

ETA: I forgot about the incest. See comments.

The manga begins with this narration: “My older brother was a kind, generous man. One day, he said, ‘I want to be like Cain.’ Later I realized he was talking about Cain, the model.”

Splash page of Shun, our hero and narrator, looking at a poster of blonde, beautiful CAIN.

One page later, Shun randomly blunders into a Satanic Mass. “Our Dark Lord, Lucifer, will join us tonight!”

The hysterical Shun, who is about to get sacrificed as a virgin, muses, “I can feel Lucifer taking over my body to accept his gift!”

But who should rescue him but… Cain! The golden beast! He leaps in and says, “I am the devil,” before carrying Shun away. "Jesus!" exclaims a Satanist. Shun flashes back to his brother giving him an expository lump regarding the Biblical Cain. This is followed by an expository lump on the mysterious model Cain. (“Three years ago, he appeared in a cosmetics ad…")

Cain explains that he is half Japanese but was raised in Vietnam, which explains why he will periodically murmur endearments in Vietnamese. “My income provides medicine and education for the poor,” he adds, lest Shun think him a worthless parasite. Then he gives Shun a blow job and vanishes.

Cain then appears as a student at Shun’s high school. This contradicts the note at the beginning of the manga informing us that all characters depicted in sexual situations are at least nineteen. Uh-huh. Shun flashes back to his brother’s horrible death in a car crash, which he feels very guilty about—so guilty that he must have more sex with Cain! “Shred me with your fangs,” says Shun. “Em yeu qui cua anh,” says Cain.

From foreign lands, he has come… to wield the sword of revenge )
I read this manga a while ago, but while culling my bookshelves recently I re-read it to see if it was as insane and incoherent as I remembered. Indeed, it was! I will now recount the plot for posterity before placing it on Book Mooch.

ETA: I forgot about the incest. See comments.

The manga begins with this narration: “My older brother was a kind, generous man. One day, he said, ‘I want to be like Cain.’ Later I realized he was talking about Cain, the model.”

Splash page of Shun, our hero and narrator, looking at a poster of blonde, beautiful CAIN.

One page later, Shun randomly blunders into a Satanic Mass. “Our Dark Lord, Lucifer, will join us tonight!”

The hysterical Shun, who is about to get sacrificed as a virgin, muses, “I can feel Lucifer taking over my body to accept his gift!”

But who should rescue him but… Cain! The golden beast! He leaps in and says, “I am the devil,” before carrying Shun away. "Jesus!" exclaims a Satanist. Shun flashes back to his brother giving him an expository lump regarding the Biblical Cain. This is followed by an expository lump on the mysterious model Cain. (“Three years ago, he appeared in a cosmetics ad…")

Cain explains that he is half Japanese but was raised in Vietnam, which explains why he will periodically murmur endearments in Vietnamese. “My income provides medicine and education for the poor,” he adds, lest Shun think him a worthless parasite. Then he gives Shun a blow job and vanishes.

Cain then appears as a student at Shun’s high school. This contradicts the note at the beginning of the manga informing us that all characters depicted in sexual situations are at least nineteen. Uh-huh. Shun flashes back to his brother’s horrible death in a car crash, which he feels very guilty about—so guilty that he must have more sex with Cain! “Shred me with your fangs,” says Shun. “Em yeu qui cua anh,” says Cain.

From foreign lands, he has come… to wield the sword of revenge )
Kallista is a naitan (magic user) of the North school of magic. She can control lightning, and has a hot bodyguard named Torchay who is secretly madly in love with her and carries a lot of knives. Since her magic is only useful for warfare, she's in the army. Her country is invaded, she's in trouble on the front lines, she calls out to God for help, and ZAP!

She gets tons of uncontrollable power poured into her, and is now chosen by the Gods and can do basically anything, since she now has the powers of all the cardinal directions. She also has a Significant Mark, and must find all these other people with Significant Marks. And marry them. All of them. And give them no-touch orgasms. Except mostly she doesn't actively seek them, they just show up, or she randomly runs into them, and marries them the next day. And then there are many no-touch magical orgasms. You think I am making this up, but I am not.

This book had enough elements that I like in the abstract-- unconventional romances (in this case, polyamory), hot bodyguards who carry a lot of knives, complex magic systems, romances between soldier comrades, female soldiers, and a group of mis-matched heroes from different cultures and backgrounds who must work together-- that I did finish it, and yet I cannot recommend it.

It was clunkily written, poorly constucted ("This happened and then this happened," rather than "This happened, and so this happened,") read as if it was a first draft, and the succession of events is often comically abrupt. One guy shows up, displays his mark, and is married to all the other main characters in something like fifteen pages. Kallista is way overpowered, and also rather unlikable. Things keep happening more-or-less of their own accord, or because destiny or God made them happen, rather than because the characters made a decision.

Orgasm is the least interesting part of a sex scene, because one earthshaking orgasm is pretty much the same as the next earthshaking orgasm. Taking out the mechanics of sex and leaving only the orgasm is dead boring, and also un-erotic. And-- this keeps coming up, as it were-- unintentionally humorous. In a non-orgasmic instance of this problem, I dissolved into giggles every time one character very solemnly addressed a senior member of the Barbed Rose School (or some such) as "Master Barb."

Read Diane Duane's The Door Into Fire or Jacqueline Carey's Kushiel series for a much better take on some similar themes and plot points.
Kallista is a naitan (magic user) of the North school of magic. She can control lightning, and has a hot bodyguard named Torchay who is secretly madly in love with her and carries a lot of knives. Since her magic is only useful for warfare, she's in the army. Her country is invaded, she's in trouble on the front lines, she calls out to God for help, and ZAP!

She gets tons of uncontrollable power poured into her, and is now chosen by the Gods and can do basically anything, since she now has the powers of all the cardinal directions. She also has a Significant Mark, and must find all these other people with Significant Marks. And marry them. All of them. And give them no-touch orgasms. Except mostly she doesn't actively seek them, they just show up, or she randomly runs into them, and marries them the next day. And then there are many no-touch magical orgasms. You think I am making this up, but I am not.

This book had enough elements that I like in the abstract-- unconventional romances (in this case, polyamory), hot bodyguards who carry a lot of knives, complex magic systems, romances between soldier comrades, female soldiers, and a group of mis-matched heroes from different cultures and backgrounds who must work together-- that I did finish it, and yet I cannot recommend it.

It was clunkily written, poorly constucted ("This happened and then this happened," rather than "This happened, and so this happened,") read as if it was a first draft, and the succession of events is often comically abrupt. One guy shows up, displays his mark, and is married to all the other main characters in something like fifteen pages. Kallista is way overpowered, and also rather unlikable. Things keep happening more-or-less of their own accord, or because destiny or God made them happen, rather than because the characters made a decision.

Orgasm is the least interesting part of a sex scene, because one earthshaking orgasm is pretty much the same as the next earthshaking orgasm. Taking out the mechanics of sex and leaving only the orgasm is dead boring, and also un-erotic. And-- this keeps coming up, as it were-- unintentionally humorous. In a non-orgasmic instance of this problem, I dissolved into giggles every time one character very solemnly addressed a senior member of the Barbed Rose School (or some such) as "Master Barb."

Read Diane Duane's The Door Into Fire or Jacqueline Carey's Kushiel series for a much better take on some similar themes and plot points.
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