THE LAND OF THE RISING SUN HAS BLESSED ME WITH ITS TREASURES – By @JacobDeFig
By Jacob de Figueiredo
THE LAND OF THE RISING SUN HAS BLESSED ME WITH ITS TREASURES
Hello friends, family and people who follow the SCA Facebook page / Marc on twitter.
I have spent the entirety of my Christmas holiday swanning about in the far eastern paradise that is Japan.
I ate some noodles.
I ate some fish.
I saw some tall buildings.
I accidently stumbled into a café where the waitresses dress up as schoolgirls and was instantly greeted by an older gentleman who locked eyes with me, slurped his warm milk and mouthed, “It’s good.” Only for me to glance down at the menu, discover they served human breast milk, do an instantaneous 180 spin and leave that clammy, milky nightmare. Each to their own, I guess.
I walked in some parks.
Aaaaanndddd I bought a book.
A book that I wouldn’t normally read.
Which I am going to write about now, the funk soul brother.
So I picked this bad boy up whilst trying to consume myself in the Japanese culture. I’ll admit it, I’d just been to a British inspired pub earlier that day in order to calm down from the breast milk incident, so I felt that I pretty much owed it to myself to dive head first into their culture.
Mmmm, I love me some culture.
You’ve caught me; I can’t read Japanese. So finding a book to read was becoming quite the challenge.
I wanted to read a manga. For those who are unfamiliar with what a manga is it’s basically the Japanese equivalent of a comic apart from it reads right to left and is usually not in colour.
Also, our comics are normally associated around super heroes, most of the manga’s that I saw were based in some perverted high school or focused around the life of a riskily dressed borderline under aged pop band and their struggles with boys and growing up.
Manga is a cultural phenomenon in Japan and a huge part of their day-to-day existence, so I had to sink my teeth into one.
Luckily for me, they had an ‘English’ section for a western pig like myself, I was super surprised at the range of the manga’s they had available in English if I’m being honest. I asked the shop worker which one he recommends, he looked at me as if I’d just spoken English to him, I responded the only way I knew how, with an aggressive apology and giving him some money.
I choose a manga called: ONE PUNCH MAN.
Did it change my life?
Short answer: Yes.
Here’s a lil’ breakdown of the story.
It’s a dude, a bald dude, who became the strongest hero in the world and now can defeat any enemy… with one punch.
Yep. One punch.
I’ll put a Japanese twist on the story breakdown for you:
A SINGLE MAN AROSE TO FACE THE EVIL THREATENING HUMANKIND! HIS NAME WAS SATIMA. HE BECAME A HERO FOR FUN!
WITH ONE PUNCH, HE HAS RESOLVED EVERY CRISIS SO FAR, BUT NO ONE BELIEVES HE COULD BE SO EXTRAORDINARILY STRONG!!
ONE DAY, THE SEER SHIBABAWA PREDICGS A GREAT DANGER TO EARTH AND DIES. SOON AFTER, A GROUP OF INTERSTELLAR BANDITS LED BY AN ALIEN CALLED BOROS ATTACK THE EARTH.
CAN CLASS – S HEROES AND SATIMA DEFEAT THE ALIEN INVASION?!?!!?!!?
This blew me away, where’s the build up? Where’s the tension? Where are the moments where I’m on the edge of my seat screaming “you can doooo itttttttttt” with tears in my eyes as my hero battles for his life in order to save his people?
How can any of this happen if this guy is defeating his enemies with one punch?
This manga blows every superhero stereotype out of the water, nothing about Satima (one punch man) says he’s a superhero. He’s bald, his expression is lifeless and his physique is unimpressive and his problem is that he can’t find an opponent strong enough to take him on.
I was honestly hooked; I’ve never read something that completely flips everything I knew about a subject on its head. It breaks the rules, mocks and destroys the superhero genre of comics after just the first page.
It’s just so entertaining.
Like, seriously guilty pleasure raw entertainment, watching a guy destroy these incredibly overzealous enemies with a single punch is immensely satisfying and hilarious.
After finishing the manga, I read about the series online and found out some pretty inspiring information.
It originated as a poorly draw web comic, but built so much momentum and popularity due to it’s unorthodox story, became an official manga series and in turn a multimillion dollar anime franchise.
Web series > Manga > Anime
It just goes to show that any artist/ storyteller with the desire to draw can have an anime series made about their work, you’ve just got to get it out there.
I love you Satima. I love you Manga. I love you Japan.