• Platitudes and Power in Juni Taisen: Zodiac War

    Today’s article is from Dr. Steve, a frequent guest contributor on our blog. After you finish reading this post, be sure to also check out his previous writings here about Restaurant to Another World and Interview with Monster Girls. In the fourth episode of Juni Taisen: Zodiac War, Nezumi, Warrior of the Rat, challenges his ally Sharyu, Warrior of the Monkey, to justify her choices: “What reason could you have to put yourself through hell trying to save our lives? … You put a lot of time and effort into negotiating peace and proposing ceasefires, but if you used your power to end the fighting in an instant, wouldn’t that save more lives, even faster? … Ideas like ‘Every...
  • Love Live! Sunshine!! Season 2 Ep. 3-4: Melancholy of the Diamond Princess

    I have been busy the last few weeks, so I will be doing a double-episode post to catch up, with a post on episodes 5 and 6 coming soon. Episode 3 Episode 3 marks the first major event of the season, as Aqours performs at both the Love Live competition qualifiers and the school open house. Of course, to make things harder for them, weather issues cause the open house to be rescheduled to the same day as the competition, forcing the group to deliberate over choosing which one to perform at and momentarily deciding to split the group to cover both events. Thankfully, they discover a way they can perform at the Love Live and still make it...
  • Kino’s Journey ~ The Beautiful World ~ Episode 7: Don’t Look Back

    Kino passes down a tale from her master this week (perhaps another tradition in this world), as Kino’s Journey takes us to na historic nation with an historic recount of an historic event. After a meal reminds her of her master (whom she seems to be seeking), Kino tells Hermes about how the old woman—then young—and her apprentice made an escape from a crooked country by grabbing the upper hand and forcing them to surrender on their terms. It’s a fun episode, one that’s more light-hearted than others, and if I’m being honest, features a pair that’s more endearing than Kino and Hermes. The setup is really nice. In Kino-esque fashion, the master decides that instead of trying to...
  • Newman’s Nook: Fool as Isaiah Figure

    We here at Beneath the Tangles seem to constantly be looking for Christ-like figures in anime. Can you blame us? We are a group of professing Christians who love anime and, frankly, you see self-sacrificing figures seeking to redeem or protect their friends, family, or people in anime on a regular basis. So, Christ-like figures are common in anime. But what of other figures from the Bible? I am doing a sermon on Sunday on Isaiah 6 and have been reading a lot from Isaiah. I am also watching Elegant Yokai Apartment Life. After watching a recent episode, it hit me that Fool is an Isaiah-like figure. Let me explain....
  • Social Media Stink: A Liar Can Smell a Liar

    ryuuji and minori fighting liar
    Throughout high school and into college, it would have been entirely accurate to describe me as a pathological liar. Lies were my truth. I had fabricated a reality and told lie upon lie upon lie to to manipulate those around me and make myself appear a certain way. I was kind of like a less-murderous version of Lelouche, but instead of geass, I used my believability to deceive friends and acquaintances into accepting things about me that were untrue. They mostly believed me, I think, and I even sometimes believed the falsehoods myself. I came out of this phase of my life—no surprise here—after I started really trying to live out my identity in Christ. But though long ago...
  • When You Don’t Yet Have Your Karuta Callouses

    I’m going to be honest with you. The other day, I got frustrated with this blog—not with you, the readers, nor with our wonderful staff, but with our numbers. Our web statistics are down from when we peaked in our readership several years ago. I had quite the big head at that time: we sometimes had thousands of unique visitors in a given day; we placed well in an aniblogger competition, surpassing really well-established blogs and ultimately losing to the one that would win the contest; and we were pretty well known among our base audience. But a lot has changed in just a few years, and sometimes I become discouraged or even upset. What can I do to...
  • Dropping Inuyashiki and the Bad Feels from Anime

    I’m a little embarrassed. I sang the praises of the first episode of Inuyashiki, both online and in real life. But two episodes in, I dropped the series. Can I just go in my hole and hide now? The thing is, Inuyashiki continues to be a show with high animation quality and one that I think is packed full of interesting content, the type of questions and ideas that we love to dig into on Beneath the Tangles. I’ve been reading Oishi’s episodic posts on the show, and it seems that the series is exactly what I thought it was, which I would personally characterize as enthralling. It’s worth the watch. But still, I dropped it. I’m not a...
  • Christian Panels, Hentai, and a Deeper Love at Aki Con

    In times past, anime conventions have always been a high of excitement and pure joy. However, with Aki Con, I was quite the ball of nerves and fear. For an otaku, an anime convention is like the equivalent of Disneyland for the preschoolers I teach gymnastics to. It’s a place where one can find acceptance for their strangeness, and friendship at every panel. I adore conventions when all I have to show others is my extreme love of anime, but this time around, I was going to take the next step and share some other parts of myself that could easily be rejected. I struggle with leadership and getting people to do things that I ask of them because...
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Beneath the Tangles is a blog that seeks to demonstrate the connection between anime (and related media) and religion from a Christian perspective. We hope to foster an open community where Christians and non-Christians alike can engage in conversation about anime, all things otaku, and belief.

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