I have been binge watching since before it was something cool to do. I love me some Game of Thrones, but nothing like some Initial D. That emotional connection that you form with fictional characters formed at an early age for me and it is still going strong.
Let’s start from the beginning. Ninja Turtles on VHS (only the first one, we were too broke to get the rest of the Ninja Turtle Movies), I wore that movie out, literally I watched it so often the tape was no longer playable. The very same thing happened with my Austin Powers VHS with Felicity Shagwell, honestly not too sure why I watched that movie so often, but something must have been speaking to me.
Then came the DVD. Oh damn, LOOK OUT. Infinite replay-ability, the only thing that will wear out is the DVD player. Being 15 years old and DVD’s very existence created the perfect storm for ultimate fan boy-ism for Initial D and the Fast and the Furious. Naturally, being 15 years old, cars become a peak interest for me. Especially since I had no idea how to approach girls at the time.
Pre-Fast and Furious my friends were into Camaros, Mustangs, and mullets. Then came the Fast and the Furious, and my American muscle friends refused to shave their mullets off and trade their 80’s hair band CD’s for some new age “Techno.” This lead me to diversify.
Then I met one of my best friends in a math class (fitting place for a nerd like myself). Who happened to be into all the things I was into. Video games, listening to Moloko Sing it Back (which I am listening to while I write this for inspiration) and ATB the Launch. Then one day he takes me home from school and asked, “have you ever been drifting before?”
Holy shit! One of the scariest days of my life in a car ever. Never been exposed to anything such as drifting. 80MPH entry speed in a Honda Prelude SH into a 90 degree left turn followed by a right-handed sweeper. Then I notice while I’m holding on for dear life a clanking sound to the left of me. I look down and he is pulling the E-BRAKE. OMG mind blown at this moment. After the intense ride, we decide to go back to his house and my nerves are shot yet a deep love for drifting is etched into my soul, from having one of the biggest adrenaline rushes ever. Something that winning a house league ice hockey championship couldn’t hold a candle to.
I wanted to learn everything from him, how did you that? How do I do that? What do I need to do? What do I need to buy? This is when it all starts, he pops in a DVD of some anime that he had to order from Japan called Initial D. I have never longed for a new season (Initial D calls them stages) of anything quite like Initial D, not even Game of Thrones compares.
For those unfortunate many that don’t know what Initial D is, it is a Manga (Japanese comic book) based anime (Japanese cartoon) about a boy (Takumi) who delivers tofu for his father (Bunta) who happens to be a legendary drifter in the anime, while driving an outdated Hachi-Roku (1986 Corolla GTS). Where Takumi develops amazing drifting skills from Bunta’s subtle teachings and eventually races high-powered modern cars. The show is loaded with actual racing/drifting techniques since one of the executive producers is the drift king himself Keiichi Tsuchiya who happened to be the person to quote unquote invent drifting.
I have watched every stage (season) a minimum of 20 times (my wife says at lease 20 times in the last 5 years). We also would watch the first Fast and the Furious multiple times (over 56 times) for a few reasons. Part excitement, part mocking the drag racing, part mocking the poor editing, and also to memorize every damn line in the movie. This repeated binge watching has resulted in a lifetime of love for cars. I have actually owned three different 86s and the last one I sold in February of 2009 because I wanted to have a motorcycle for a while. I miss that car. A goal is to own one more 86 that I can rebuild with my son.
For many years I would tandem drift with friends while walking down stairwells while imitating tire screeches, turbos, and blow off valves. It even went as far as simulating heel toe’s, left foot braking, and clutch kicks while walking down stairs (do not attempt at home all participants in this blog are trained professionals). I would mention some of the stuff we did in cars, but that would be self incriminating.
Now I get to enjoy watching my son fall in love with story lines and imitate them in his play. He also has a knack for watching something over many many times. So embrace your binge watching it may develop a new love for something you never thought you would have. Watch hard and play hard my friends.
What is your favorite movie to binge watch?