Category Archives: Features

New Year’s bishojo

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Encouraging tourism (not to mention rampant consumption) with images of cute anime girls is certainly nothing new, but here’s a double whammy: Shinto shrines in rural Ibaraki Prefecture. The advertisement is for hatsumode, the customary first shrine visit of the new year. Why not add a little moe and start 2011 with warmth in your heart?… Read the rest

‘King of Thorn’ film suffers from game-like delivery

“King of Thorn” (いばらの王) was one of the films that caught my eye at TAF 2010. The visual, soundtrack and story all looked great, and so I was in line to see it opening night, May 1. While the movie delivers in the style department, it fails to be compelling due to problems with plot and character development.

****SPOILERS*****

Without getting into too much detail, “King of Thorn” is basically a sci-fi survivor story. A mortal disease called the Medusa virus is running rampant on a global scale, and the fate of humanity looks grime. Once infected, the patient … Read the rest

Haruhi gum!

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Lotte’s new ACUO gum ad campaign features the girls of “Suzumiya Haruhi.” Naturally, I snapped a picture of the sign on the train. I noticed that Nagato, who has been on my mind since I watched the Haruhi movie, is dressed as a cat. This bothered me, because I just figured that they were abusing her image and forcing cute in the advert to sell product. Then I came home and saw the CM on TV. Brilliant. Cat mystery all cleared up, and Nagato is seriously cute. I bought five packs of ACUO today…. I feel somehow dirty and … Read the rest

AKIRA: Kaneda’s Bike Model – Pictures

1268160307-FIG-IPN-0882This just showed up on the blog of the Japanese Figure & Hobby webshop Amiami: Kaneda’s Motorbike as known from AKIRA.

Release is set for the end of March and the model can already be preordered in the shop.

According to the review, the item is better than perfect. Keeping in mind they wanna sell the thing, apart from all the praise the information provided is:
* Product is still in production stage so the final look might differ from what you see in the pictures. Just as the stickers shown further down, subject to change.
* The … Read the rest

‘Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya’ near perfect film

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The wait is over. “The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya” (涼宮ハルヒの消失), the first movie in the phenomenal animated series, started its Japan run on February 6. The second season of ”The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya” caused quite a ruckus when Kyoto Animation decided to repeat the sequence of “The Endless Eight” for eight episodes. In their defense, the animation was not recycled, and they were attempting a grand experiment with viewers’ perception of time. There was a true feeling of helplessness as those episodes repeated relentlessly week after week. However, fan response was mixed. If anything is going to redeem

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Otaku academic conference in Ottawa

I will be presenting on the potential, and limits, of moe and talking about my book. Thomas LaMarre, who recently published a book on anime, will also be in attendance. I believe in addition to our presentations we will dialogue about otaku. Looking forward to seeing how the event turns out! BTW, the name of the conference is in fact “Oniichan, what does moe mean?” This was not my idea, and yes, this is a real event. Just in case there are any doubts.

2010年1月にカナダのオタワ大学で「おたく」というテーマで学術発表会が開かれます。私は「萌え」について発表する予定で、トマス・ラマール 先生はアニメについて発表するようです。それから、私と先生はおたくの社会的生態について対話します。因に、発表会のタイトルは「お兄ちゃん、萌えって 何?」になってしまいました。本当に。これはネタではありません!… Read the rest

Macross Frontier The Movie: The False Diva Review

“Macross Frontier The Movie: The False Diva” is a retelling of events that took place in the TV series executed in a slightly different way. Unlike “Macross the Movie: Do You Remember Love?” in 1983, which was all new animation and a major overhaul in terms of settings and costume design, the Frontier movie was done with far less effort. Frontier’s scattered visual aesthetic changes are fairly minor while character plots are turned upside down or just down right non-existent. Before going any further, know that there will be spoilers ahead, so if you plan on coming to Japan to

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‘Summer Wars’ review

This and the second “Evangelion” were the two films I was looking forward to this summer, but I was preoccupied with research and watched “Summer Wars” a week after it opened. Even so, the theater in Shinjuku was sold out when I tried Monday night, and again on Tuesday afternoon, a testament to the quality and wide appeal of this work. It is from Hosoda Mamoru, the director of “The Girl Who Leapt Through Time,” which won many awards, including Japan Academy Prize for Animation of the Year 2006. As with that film and “Eva,” Sadamoto Yoshiyuki did the character … Read the rest