Posts tagged link
Posts tagged link
Like many middle-class suburbanites, I have a mall near my house. It’s an absolute waste of space, and unless you’re a junior high student or a mall-walker there is literally no reason to go there. There used to be a bookstore there that I would hide out in for hours on end. That place is now gone because America hates books. Now I’m left with smelly Hollister stores and a food court that is trying desperately (and failing) to be healthy.
So what could’ve possibly pulled me out of my air-conditioned The First 48 marathon and into this toilet?
Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you…China Capital Arts.
Every single mall in the world needs a store like this. A store where nerds from all walks of life and stroll in and gaze upon the merchandise from a culture far more bizarre than our own. A store where underage children can purchase a katana with their birthday money, because why the hell not? A store where college kids with long, greasy hair and pathetic-looking goatees can browse body pillows with scantily-clad Officer Jennys on them. Yes, this place goes beyond being a store: it’s a sanctuary.
It came out of nowhere. Trust me, had I known this store was being brought to my sad excuse for a mall, I would’ve camped out in anticipation for opening day. And, honestly, I really don’t know why. I’m not huge into Japanese culture; I’m not even the world’s biggest anime fan. So why do I love this store so much?
Well, first off, because the front window proudly displayed Mario, Pokemon, and Dragonball Z stuff. And an R2-D2, for reasons that intrigue me.
Secondly, just look at the inside!
It’s filled to the brim with stuff! It felt more like a museum than a store. I literally spent two hours there today, just browsing around the various things that was crammed into this tiny little outlet-sized store. Granted, they didn’t have everything an Asian-themed store could offer, but they were pretty damn close.
You’ve been reading my blog for a while (maybe). You know I love Kingdom Hearts. It’s one of my favorite games of all time. And CCA had this absolutely-orgasmic collection of Kingdom Hearts memorabilia that caused me to unintentionally drool all over the glass. I just wanted everything.
…I actually think that should be the subtitle of this article.
Steve Goes to China Capital Arts: “I Just Wanted Everything”
It’s insanely accurate.
And there’s Pokemon! A ton of Pokemon stuff! Like, a Pokepalooza! It’s making my inner 8-year-old jump up and down with glee.
And Mario and Zelda and DBZ and Totoro…
It’s actually really weird, because outside of CCA I have very little interest in this kinda stuff. I mean, it’ll always be knocking around the back of my mind. I do run a nostalgia blog, after all, and Sonic games are pretty nostalgic for me.
But once I enter the walls of CCA, any and all shame I have vanishes in a puff of animated smoke, complete with a “POOF!” effect. The store is hypnotic, y’all. It’s so hypnotic that I just typed the wordphrase “y’all” for the first time in my life. It makes no sense!
Of course, every store like this one needs a wall of extremely dangerous weapons.
Most of these are katanas (I think…?), but they also have throwing stars, nunchucks, brass knuckles, comically-oversized knives…if those Florida zombies ever make their way to Michigan, I know where I’m building my shelter.
Oh, and they have Keyblades.
And they’re so beautiful and I want one to the point where I’m actually on a black market website right now, putting my kidney up for sale.
Of course, there are other things adorning the store that aren’t as nerdy. They still sell more traditional souvenirs for tourists, including little Buddha statues, waving “good luck cats”, and pots of bamboo. And dragons with swords. You’d be surprised how many nerds love dragons with swords.
What kind of place would CCA be if they didn’t sell the entire Asian food section of Meijer right next to their register? None of it looks particularly appetizing, with the obvious exception of Pocky. Don’t label me, internet people, I love me some Pocky!
After two hours of looking around and taking random pictures, I got the feeling that I was frightening the Japanese manager girl. So I sadly to leave this land of magic and wonder and dragged myself back into the gross insides of the mall.
I’m poor (fun fact: Steve is always poor), but one day I’ll go back to China Capital Arts and buy a sword. And some Pokemon toys. And a Kingdom Hearts statue. And a Sonic keychain. And a Trunks figurine. And this Sackboy pillow…
Because WHY NOT?!
I’m gonna be Frank with you.
The Zelda games are a hit-or-miss for me. Don’t get me wrong, I seriously don’t think there’s a single title in the series that I dislike. They all have their strengths, it’s just that some have more than others, like any game (movie, book, TV show, entree at Olive Garden).
The thing about the Zelda titles is that they’re each so different. You can’t look me in the eye and say “Oh, Wind Waker and Twilight Princess are both Zelda games, so they’re both similar”, because that’s stupid. Aside from the obvious:
Wind Waker is a much more light-hearted adventure that’s heavy on puzzles and has you sailing on a talking boat. Twilight Princess obviously tries to be darker and grittier, while you spend half the game running around on all fours. Of course, the Triforce is in both games, as are familiar characters and staple items. They’re similar in many respects, but also insanely different.
But we’re not really here to talk about the games as a whole. Nah, this article (I guess you would call it) it dedicated to one person and one person only: Zelda.
Zelda’s role in Link’s adventures varies in each game. She could be anything from someone who you simply need to rescue to one-half of the final boss fight. She also has a taste for the theatrics and likes to disguise herself as someone more badass than she is. I mean, let’s face it, guys: Zelda ain’t Princess Peach. She’s not sitting around in a castle waiting to be saved. She’s all up in Ganon’s shit, ready to strike at the opportune moment.
Except in the original games. She was basically your stereotypical damsel in distress in those.
(Literally, all that picture is missing is a giant Koopa and some lava.)
I have two favorite versions of Zelda, and a lot of you might be pissed off by them. If there’s one thing I’ve learned about Zelda fans, it’s that they get pissed off at a lot. However, this is my blog, and there’s a wonderful little button in the right hand corner of your screen that will make all of your problems go away if you want.
(WARNING: I’m not the most avid Zelda player. I mean, I love (most of) the games, but I can’t say I’m a die-hard fanatic. So if you are a crazy huge Zelda fan and get offended if people make small mistakes, just know that…I will probably make some mistakes in this article. Yup. That’s all. Move along.)
Guys, I love Tetra.
She’s Zelda’s most awesome disguise…OK, maybe a deadly member of the Sheikah clan is more badass, but Tetra is my favorite. She’s like the Raphael of the Zelda world: rude, crude, and hilariously more awesome than Link. She knows what’s up. She doesn’t want to have to save Link’s sorry ass. But they have a hilarious and occasionally heartfelt chemistry that really works within the context of the game.
Plus, here’s the deal: Tetra is a pirate captain. Tetra. I mean, geeze, she’s a little girl for crying out loud! You know what pirates do to little girls? If you don’t know, you don’t wanna know (hint: it rhymes with “tape” and “coal-test”). Yet, all of the pirates on the ship not only respect her, but they’re scared of her. This little girl who ran away from home and changed her name became the most badass pirate captain whatever planet the Zelda world takes place on has ever seen!
(This is the last thing misbehaving pirates see before they suffer a fate worse than death…)
The other Zelda I love is the adorable one from Skyward Sword.
Just look at her! Don’t you just wanna give her a big ol’ hug?
People without long-term memory loss will remember this little article right here: http://djcblog.tumblr.com/post/19591132218/steves-quest-for-a-gamecube , which obviously means that I don’t have a working Wii anymore, so I’ve been tragically unable to play most of Skyward Sword. In other news, try saying “A Working Wii” with a straight face.
However, I’ve watched my friends play it. Friends who I have trouble calling my friends because they would always hog the controller and never once let me play. But I’ve seen the relationship this new incarnation of Zelda has with the new, and very full-lipped, incarnation of Link. And it’s just so damn cute. Like, look at this:
She’s a Zelda you want to save, a Zelda you are willing to go on this epic quest for. As opposed to, say, this version:
Stoic, cold, vague, aloof, void of life…yeah. Don’t be a Twilight Princess Zelda. Be a fun-loving, caring, girl-next-door-who-playfully-pushes-you-off-a-floating-island Zelda.
So leave an answer below or in my Ask Box: which version of Princess Zelda is your favorite?