Smooch Month 2020

Ah, February. February, the month with Valentines’ Day in it. February, the shortest month. February, the worst month, the hottest part of summer, the month of my grandmother’s birthday, the month in which romantically themed candies and sexcapade based romps will abound and people will share their definitely not bothersome jokes about marriage. February.

It is a month for smooches, a month for media about smooches, or about conspicuously choosing not to have smooches. During this month you can expect the game pile to look at romance games, which… probably means more visual novels, like, actual visual novels about finding and making relationships, and the story pile to talk about media that wants to talk to the experience of havin’ a smooch or not having a smooch.

I’m being very ambiguous here because the reality is that it’s hard to define what ‘romantic’ media even is any more in a useful way, and last year’s experiment of playing visual novels and writing about them was a deeply alienating experience of finding games that literally had no space for someone like me while doing things that made me feel guilty. I skirted the topic at the time, because heaven forfend I be honest about how a videogame makes me feel if it’s anything but positive!

This is gunna be a month where I talk about games and media where interpersonal romance is focal; where I look at works I normally avoid and try to bring them to bear on ideas that do mean something to me; and who knows, I may even talk a little bit about romance, building relationships, and things I’ve learned after losing my entire friend network leaving the church.

It’s gunna be fun and hopefully I’ll find some other romcoms to goof around with, because they’re more fun than  thought.

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