The New Creature Canon: Monster Rancher


The success of Pokémon of course led to a host of imitators and coattail riders, producing a Japanese “monster boom” in the late nineties to early 2000s similar to the one from the mid-sixties, when Godzilla, Gamera, Ultra Q, and several others were all very popular. The big difference between those two eras, though, was that the Pokémon generation was all about the kid fans controlling the monsters rather than just watching them smash things, basically taking the “Friend to all children” aspect of Gamera to its logical conclusion, and so those particularly series were all about partnering, training, and battling the monsters like they were martial artists. Having a superpowered creature as your friend and partner was and is, I think, a fantasy of kids just about anywhere, and this stuff tapped into that fantasy in such a way that even decades(!) after that peak popularity, a lot of these games and franchises still have fans.

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All My Life is Drawing From The Eye: The Reads of 2018


Phew, that’s another year gone; I think I’ve written more this year than I have in quite a long time (and about a larger variety of topics than ever before, covering all the essentials: music, video games, bad cartoons, monsters, shark movie trailers, and other stuff I’ve forgotten about.) In between all my other projects, though, I did have time to read books, and just like last year, I wanted to write one hundred words about each one. I’m pretty sure I actually hit the mark for them all this time!

(But also, this isn’t technically every book I read, as I left off the four that I wrote about a few months ago.)

Check it out below.

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Super Smash Bros.: Everyone is Here! – The Index


I hope you’ve enjoyed the past three months worth of posts. For easy access, beneath the cut is a big table linking you to every entry of my Super Smash Bros. character countdown. Use it if you want to learn more about your potential new main character in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, as it provides absolutely no useful information on that front (unless you choose characters based on aesthetic philosophy and history.)

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Week 12-2: The man has a family for god’s sake!


Featured in this issue:

We’ve finally reached the end, with time to spare. That’s all 74 characters from the base game accounted for, which—the more I look at it—the crazier it seems that we now have a Smash Bros. game with that many characters. If you told me that would happen ten years ago, I wouldn’t have believed you; if you told me that four years ago I wouldn’t have believed you. Yet here we are, and I wrote about every last one of them.

So here’s the last batch from this series, ready and raring—if anything new pops up in the future, well, I’m just gonna wait and see what happens before I get back to it.

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