VIVI FOR VICTORY!
Vivi himself lost against Pokemon Trainer Red (which I think is quite silly), but congratulations to the artist who sent in the “Vivi for Victory” poster! It’s cute, clever, and deserving of its victory, I think.
I’ve received two entries for the “Vote for Vivi” contest. One of these two lucky contestants is going to walk away with a copy of The Art of Final Fantasy IX! To vote, simply comment either here or on the Facebook, Tumblr, or Twitter pages (or email your vote to me) as to which one you like best!
Entry A: How do you prove that you exist?
Entry B: Black Mage
Entry C: Vote Vivi (Yeah, I added a picture past the deadline. Sue me.)
In the interest of fairness, I will not be participating, merely counting the votes. Votes will be accepted until Vivi’s next Character Battle begins, on September 8th.
Best of luck to all contestants! Let’s get this started!
If I may go off-topic for a bit, allow me to thank one of the greatest film directors of all time for his contribution to his field.
I just heard news of your retirement, and I just wanted you to know that while I’m deeply saddened by the thought of the absence of your directorship in films to come, I’m ecstatic for you to go out on your own terms and enjoy the living hell out of retirement. By gosh darn golly, you’ve earned it.
The first time I watched one of your movies was only about six, seven years ago. I had woken up early, and I had about a half hour to spare before I had to head out to the factory for another day of banal grunt work. I was randomly flipping through the channels, and I saw that “Howl’s Moving Castle” was on. I was an anime novice, but I had heard that this was supposed to be a pretty great movie. Intrigued, I checked it out.
The first thing I saw was a beautifully serene field with a flowing river in the foreground and a giant, steampunk, seemingly alive, walking robot in the back.
In an instant, I was sucked into the world that you had created.
I lost track of time, watching, mouth agape, as your movie blasted away all preconceived notions of what anime was (and, indeed, what anime could be). By the time I tore myself away to look at the clock, I was already late for work. I recorded the rest, came back to it later, and was equally in awe.
All this, of course, was before I found out that it wasn’t even your original story.
This revelation shocked me even more, and that’s exactly why Howl’s Moving Castle is still my favorite of your movies. Who else could take someone else’s story, someone else’s characters, someone else’s world, and turn it so completely into their own? Incredible.
There are still a few movies of yours I haven’t seen – Castle In The Sky and Ponyo come to mind – but rest assured, you’ve more than earned the benefit of the doubt. I’m sure I’ll think they’re amazing, as I’ve thought basically everything else you’ve done has been.
You, sir, are a director without compare. You’ve rocked the world of anime to its very foundation, and the world of film, I believe, would be vastly different without your influence, your artistry, your ineffable, undeniable directorial prowess.
So, when I say that you’ve earned your retirement, it’s absolutely genuine. You’ve done more than enough. You’re a rockstar, man. Go out and enjoy retirement!
In my efforts to receive entries for the “Vivi Campaign Poster Contest”, I have received… well, no entries (as of yet). As such, I thought I’d sweeten the deal a little bit – the winner of the contest will receive a copy of “The Art of Final Fantasy IX”, a Yoshitaka Amano art book!
In other news, one of my readers sent along some great pictures of their Vivi cosplay that they did recently. Thanks for sending the pics along – the costume is great! 😀
If only there were awesome places in Vermont where I could go cosplay Vivi, that’d be awesome… Ah well, guess I gotta go to Montreal or Boston :/
Anyway, yeah, have a super day, guys and gals! The contest is still very much alive!