anime & manga

Life-sized Anime Figure Draws Criticism for Price, Creepy Face

A life-sized figure of manga and anime character Fujiko
Mine has been drawing criticism from fans on the Web.
Comments have ranged from “Why did they make her like that?” to the more succinct, “Who the hell is that?” Apparently, she’s looking a bit off-color. Read More

It’s a perfect match! Amazing trick of the eye lets you substitute a part of Mona Lisa’s face with manga drawing – and still see her face!

Have you seen the picture of Einstein that looks like Marylin Monroe if you’re near-sighted or if you look at it from a distance? We posted a story on it on our Japanese site in the past. Well, there’s another fun piece of trick art that is being shared on the internet in Japan recently. It’s quite a simple picture really – just the Mona Lisa with a manga drawing covering a part of her face. (Well, her face has actually been inverted, but it’s still the image of her familiar face.) But look what happens when you see a smaller version of the picture! Read More

“Procrastinate”? “Calm Under Pressure?” Take a Page from the Pros

Time limit, cutoff, due date. AKA “deadline”. Of course the concept applies to any number of jobs. But let it be said that the real experts on the subject are cartoonists / comic book artists.

These professionals truly know the possibilities of pre-deadline behavior. Today, we present to you 99 ways comic book artists find themselves approaching, or avoiding, their day of reckoning. See if you compare… Read More

Japan Self Defense Force Recruitment Posters Kill with Cute

In recent years, the Tokushima Provincial Cooperation Office of the Japan Self Defense Force has created recruitment advertising posters featuring cute, adorable illustrations, and it wasted little time in releasing this year’s version.

The posters depict a girl texting her Self Defense Force member boyfriend after she sees him on a news show, in uniform and providing natural disaster relief. “That uniform made you look twice as dashing as you usually do,” she texts lovingly. Read More

Free Umbrellas With A Purpose

Since March 8, you may have been seeing umbrellas around Tokyo printed with graphics for a new Xbox 360 and PS3 mahjong game.

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Spiderman-Themed Dumplings Set to Please,May Lead to a Surge in Bad Puns

Readers of this website are likely to be familiar with nikuman, the steamed rice pastry often made with meat filling.  In the past we have reported on the delicious slime shaped nikuman and Puyo Puyo themed nikuman. One thing to note about nikuman is that their name is made up of two parts niku (meat) and man (steamed bread) so that if you change the filling the suffix remains the same giving you pizzaman or curryman.

Universal Studios Japan took notice of how this is linguistically similar to the suffixes often used for superheroes in English and developed Spiderman (here the man would be pronounced kind of like a Jamacian accented mon).

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Pikachu Shoes: The Only Way to Get Your Boyfriend to Notice Them

Ladies, are you looking for something to liven up your wardrobe but not go overboard? Are you tired of the man in your life not paying attention to your new shoes that you spent hours choosing?

If so, then visit etsy.com for your next pair.  Here you can find sparkly and eye-catching designs that are too far over the edge of good-taste.  I guarantee your husband or boyfriend will compliment you on your 1-UP designed shoes faster than you could imagine.
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Traditional Japanese Sword Makers Commissioned to Create Real-Life Evangelion Weapons

Museums always struggle to find ways to attract younger visitors, so it’s not unusual to see a museum tie in an exhibition to some pop-culture trend.  Even the Bizen Japanese Sword Museum which you’d think is one of the “cooler” museums for the kids has had to come up with new ideas recently.

As a result anime fans may want to take a trip to Setouchi City in Okayama Prefecture this summer to check out the “Neo Japanese Sword Evangelion” exhibition.  This exhibition is a fusion of the hit anime series Neon Genesis Evangelion and the works of Japan’s finest traditional sword makers. Read More

Hello Kitty Hotel Rooms Ensure Sweet Dreams on the Road

So you’re taking a vacation to Japan via the Hello Kitty Jet to buy some Hello Kitty stationary, knick knacks, clothing, and accessories, but you don’t have a place to stay?  The Shinhankyu Hotel in Osaka has got you covered!

Starting March first they are making Hello Kitty themed Prince Kitty Rooms available, each decorated wall-to-wall with the infamous kitten along with her childhood companion Dear Daniel.  Everything in the room from the curtains to the sheets to the cushions is touched with the pink and white essence of Japan cutest cultural icon, all of which are exclusive designs for this hotel.

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Saint Seiya to Restart With New Episodes After 23 Years

Saint Seiya, the anime smash hit that ran during the 80’s in Japan and Europe is making a comeback to TV in April 2012. Originally created as a manga series by Masami Kurumada, it ran on TV from 1986-89 and in Eastern European countries under the title Knights of the Zodiac. This new chapter is announced by Toei Animation to be an original story rather than an adaption of Kurumada’s manga.

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Although he has rarely been seen in Western countries, Doraemon is an animated cat whose popularity rivals that of Mickey Mouse in Japan. From his beginnings in manga in the 70s, Doraemon has made the leap to TV and film animations and was appointed Japan’s first animated cultural ambassador. Now the Doraemon story lives on in a series of TV commercials for Toyota.

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Otomo Exhibition Features Original Drawings from Akira, Domu and More

This is an exhibition you won’t want to miss, particularly if you have even the slightest artistic inclination. 3331 Arts Chiyoda is hosting a collection of renowned manga artist Katsuhiro Otomo’s original drawings. Read More

Taiwanese Students’ Live-Action Recreation of Popular Anime is a Slam Dunk

Basketball’s popularity in Japan today can largely be credited to the mega-hit manga and anime series Slam Dunk. Since its beginnings in the 90s, its popularity had spread beyond the borders of Japan and even to this day it continues to hold a world-wide fan base.

Now, thanks to the National Taiwan University of Arts’ Department of Broadcasting’s Class of 2010, Slam Dunk has been lovingly recreated as a live action video. A hit on YouTube, the video is a rather meticulous reenactment of the opening sequence of the animated version.

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The Kissing App for People Who Love Their iPhones a Little Too Much

Sometimes we all need a little lovin’. Now you can get a kiss anywhere, at any time, with the saucy new iPhone app Choi Kiss, loosely translated as Kisses on the Go. This little piece of heaven won’t even cost you a penny.
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Trouble Unhooking Bras? There’s an App for That.

The App Store, which is famous for prohibiting applications of a sexual nature, doesn’t have any porn, but now they’ve at least got an app that will be amusing for you dirty-minded guys. With Putti!, you can practice unhooking a brassiere on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch and if you succeed, you’ll be rewarded with a “marvel of unsurpassed glory”! But first you’ve got to beat that little hook.

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The Most Kick-Ass Cosplay of Comic Market 81!

Comiket 81, the world’s largest self-published comic book fair, was held 29 December, 2011 at Big Sight in Tokyo. Like Comikets before it, the cosplayers came out this year in full force. Yet, among the standard cosplay fair was one who stood out in the crowd like no other.

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Need a Last Minute Christmas Present? How About a “Whale Sword”?

On Yahoo Shopping, a site famous for its oodles of unique merchandise, an ornamental sword is attracting a lot of attention. It’s called the “Whale Sword” and it’s a model of a style of ornamental sword used in the pre-war days, with a blade close to a meter long. Who wouldn’t want that in their stocking?

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Toyota Introduces Increasingly Impressive Cast for Live-Action Doraemon Commercials

Toyota made waves by casting Japanese heartthrob Satoshi Tsumabuki as Nobita-kun in its live-action Doraemon commercials two weeks ago, but fans of the adapation of the popular cartoon were in for an even bigger shock the following week.

Toyota rolled its second wave of live-action Doraemon commercials off the line on November 18 with film star Jean Reno playing the role of Doraemon.

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Ensky Co., Ltd. has fashioned a set of playing cards based on the famous lines of Takeshi “Gian” Goda, a bully character from the hit anime and manga “Doraemon.” In the series, Gian spends most of his time making outrageous demands of other children and bullying main character Nobita, but there are times when he shows his courage and displays true friendship.

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A Day in the Life of a Cosplay Photo Buff

I slung my camera over my shoulder, ready to invade the world of cosplay for the first time at this year’s summer Comic Market 80 at Tokyo Big Sight.

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