Netflix’s Live Action version of Cowboy Bebop is clearly trying to be respectful to the source material

Cowboy Bebop | Netflix Official Site

 

More so given the overwhelmingly negative reception it’s received so far from fans of the Anime. I get it, everyone remembers the disaster that was Netflix’s Death Note. Clearly tthis time will be different though.

 

Here’s a side by side comparison with the opening title sequence for both the Anime and the Live Action Version:

 

 

As of now, we know that there will be at least two seasons.

One noticable omission from the first season is seems to be Edward. The interesting thing about Edward is contrary to the name, Edward is actually a girl. If you pay attention, Edward’s gender isn’t mentioned or clarified until the episode explaining her backstory near the end of the series. My guess is the producers were either not sure how to write her story for the first season or they may be planning to make her genderless.

 

Netflix dropped this almost 3-minute teaser I assume to convince fans of the anime to check it out. Given they kept Tank! (the song from the opening sequence), which is one of Anime’s most iconic tracks ever that should be enough for people to know this project is worth checking out at least. I plan to watch along with a few other stuff whenever it is I renew my Netfix subscription. Netflix’s Cowboy Bebop premieres on November 19.

If you’ve read this far and havent watched the anime before–what the hell is wrong with you if that’s true–you have quite a few options:

  1. Toonami/Adult Swim (Cartoon Network)
  2. DVD/Blu Ray
  3. YouTube

…Pick one.

I have it on Blu Ray but first watched it on Toonami/Adult Swim when it was first released way, WAY back in 1998. Toonami has been airing it in reruns ever since.

 

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Future Blog Plans

First things first, I want to repeat what I said at the end of my previous article. Please consider supporting me financially via the PayPal Links above and below. If you’re sharing my articles on Twitter and other platforms, please ask your people to consider giving me financial support as well. I do all this for free but the financial support would be greatly appreciated.

 

This is one of my first blogs and since it’s been a while, I figure I would take the time to explain the direction I plan to move with this blog moving forward. One thing I plan to continue is give analysis of various Anime and Asian Dramas I watch. I also plan to continue giving an analyis of various Dramas and Webtoons I read. Of course, I’ll also talk about Anime Boston as I have been for almost 10 years now.

Something I’ve noticably been making an effort to do more of is delve into current events in Japan outside Pop Culture. I have also been expanding things outside strictly Japan especially when I talk about Manwa (Korean Manga) and Manhua (Chinese Manga), more so because of their increased international popularity in recent years.

It goes without saying Japan won the Cultural War it declared on the West in the Mid to late 90s. Western Cultures scoffed at what they viewed to be a “niche” subculture in the early 2000s but by the early 2010s, it really started to take off. Now, it’s more or less considered mainstream. To say Western society is obsessed with Japanese and Asian/Pacific Culture(s) now goes without saying. A lot of that has to do with the fact let’s be honest, Western Moral Values have become virtually non-existent over the last 20 years. Of course, much of that is because of our own doing–violence, sexual immorality, profanity and crime glorified in our entertainment–so the results of that on our society shouldn’t surprise anyone.

People are looking for decent entertainment that has a lot of the good morals that used to be be all over TV’s first few decades. Until about 30 years ago, parents in America didn’t need to worry about what their kids watched on TV. Obviously, now parents do and then some. I’ll spare you the history lesson but basically, people are just tired of the garbage that is today’s American TV. This is also what makes Asian Programming in general so attractive to Western Audiences. People are seeing things in the vein of what they saw when they were young or in the case of younger viewers, they’re seeing something wholesome.

China and to a lesser extent Korea are known for producing Period dramas alongside Dramas set in the modern age. The Period dramas set in the past give Western audiences a look into life in either country’s history even when there are historical inaccuracies or a hard lean into Fantasy elements. After all, Anicent China was the home of both Buddhism and Confucianism though there are also elements of Taoism as well.

Most of the modern shows I watch highlight the cultural struggles in China and Korea with the influences of Capitalism and other Western influences with established longtime cultural values. When the 2018 American movie Bohemian Rhapsody was released in China, the Chinese government agreed to allow the movie to be shown in the country but there was a catch: The movie had to be edited to remove references to the lead character being Bisexual. The Chinese government does censor international movies, literature and TV shows not just on moral grounds but for political reasons. Of course, the will also censor anything that mocks or goes against or threatens Chinese cultural beliefs as a whole. Yes, really.

While just the idea of government censorship is enough to trigger well…everyone in the U.S., you won’t find a lot of people who oppose the idea of the American Media Industry getting cleaned up. The problem is the industry has made it clear it has no interest or will to police itself so…yeah. I’ll stop there since it’s a topic for another blog though.

All that said, I am WELL aware of the Sexually Explicit and graphic violence in some Japanese Anime and Manga. I hate it personally and more so when I feel a lot of it is unncessary. I also hate the fact Sexually Lewd content in particular has seeped into video games from Japanese developers being localized in the West. Why do they do it? Because in Japan, those types of games are deliberately marketed to adults. Same for “Girls/Boys Love” Ecchi and Harem genre games.

Don’t even get me started on charcters regardless of medium featured that are physically “child-like” but are actually 18+ AND teenagers under 18 with exaggerated physical proportions being put in sexually suggestive situations or scenes. All that said, the Japanese goverment finally stepped in a few years ago and more so because of Anime like Higehiro where unfortunately concerns someone would try to replicate what they see depicted actually did. This was never a concern for Japanese society in the past but that was before so much of their mass media was as saturated with Sexual Content as it is now.

What I was pleasantly surprised to learn in recent years is there are people on both sides of the Pacific who are basically saying “Enough. All this [Fan Service] isn’t necessary”. It’s commonly known as Fan Service which in Anime/Manga is almost always females being sexually suggestive or Lewd, usually in an over the top or deliberate way. Those in Japan are tired of being stereotyped over it first and its not as socially accepted in Japan as people might think second. Even more so these days. Those outside Japan are pushing back hard against those who oppose content makers who edit out or change sexually explicit content. When you’re older, you realize “less is more” anyways.

 

Moving on. I snuck this in at the end of the last article but I set up a Discord Server! I started using Discord for the first time ever this year and I see it as a potential alternative to some social media platforms. I have Discord on my iPad as well so I’ll be able to follow conversations anytime and anywhere. I’ll add more channels to the server over time as well so it’s not a bad idea to drop in at least.

 

Things You Probably Didn't Know About Instant Ramen Noodles

Instant Pot Ramen Noodles | Gluten Free Ramen Noodles - Confessions of a Fit Foodie

 

I do plan to add a section for Japanese Foods with complete recipes.

Instant Ramen and Cup Ramen have been around for over 50 years but did you know you can and it’s reccommended you spice it up to look like it does in Anime? Instant Ramen and Cup Ramen imfamously got a bad reputation in the late 1990s to mid-2000s in the U.S. but that changed after the Naruto Manga and later Anime were released. Anime Fans in particular began to realize they were mostly eating it wrong their whole lives: The Flavor packet was for the broth BUT it was assumed you would add the protein and veggies yourself. If this isn’t a reason to learn how to cook, I don’t know what is!

I’ll add a new section for Japanese foods before the end of this year. Of that you can be certain. I’ll announce in posts when content is added as well, don’t worry. I won’t just post recipes but more importantly, how you can make certain things without access to an Asian Grocery Store like Super 88. Most Supermarkets in the U.S. do have an aisle or two lined with Sauces, Spices, Seasonings and other Asian ingredients or food products. Those will cover everything I plan to feature over time but if live near an Asian Grocery store, you can ask staff about specifics.

If you’ve never seen the Produce section of your local supermarket, most do sell Daikon–it’s a type of Radish for those who don’t know–as well as Shitake Mushrooms as well as Leeks (Green Onions). If you want Kobe Beef, you would have to go to either go to an Asian grocery store or a Butcher Shop though it won’t be cheap. Alternatively, you can use other cuts of beef instead. Oh and I won’t just feature Japanese food. I also plan to feature foods from South Korea, The Philippines and China to name a few places.

I also plan to add a section for the Idol Industry in Japan and South Korea as a whole to explain some things many of those outside South Korea and Japan may not understand culturally. The Western World knows who BTS is now but until very recently, they were only known in South Korea. The Dark Side of K-Pop and J-Pop Fandoms is touched on in other media but I’m gonna make a section to show folks what could have been the U.S. Pop Scene about 25 years ago. I feel it’s important for folks to be aware at least.

 

…Whew.

Yeah, I know this is quite a lot of big things I have planned moving forward. Your continued support will be greatly appreciated moving forward. Really, I mean it. Thank you ^_^

 

 

If you have enjoyed this post or other posts I have made on this blog, please consider making a monetary donation via PayPal by clicking here. Whatever amount you can provide would be greatly appreciated.

Also, I now have a Discord Server! You can find it here. My Discord name is mraurabolt.

Crunchyroll and Rakuten Viki are clearly gearing up to attract viewers for the Fall and Winter

…That’s probably the best way I can think of to put it right now. Before I preview what’s new, I first want to give a recap on some ongoing anime and one legendary reboot that wrapped up over the summer.

 

Ok here we go:

Digimon Adventure: (2020) Episodio 44 Online Sub Español HD - Pepeliculas

Digimon Adventure, which was a reboot of the original Anime series wrapped up over the summer. The reboot cut out all of the bloat so prevalent from the original series and a lot of that was because unlike the original series, the reboot only aired new episodes once a week. For those who are either too old to remember or didn’t exist at the time, look up Dragonball Z’s original episode count and compare it to Dragonball Z Kai’s.

Anywho, Digimon Adventure basically cuts right to the point. If you watched the original series, you’ll notice a few changes made to the reboot with certain characters. Most notably with Patomon having a split evolution. Aside from evolving into Angemon, Patomon gets an alternate evolution to Pegasmon. Another interesting change is the kids stay in the digital world until the end. In the original series, they are able to return to the real world after a certain point and this is how we originally meet Tai’s sister Hikari. What happens instead is she is introduced at the beginning and is later pulled into the Digital World.

For those who never saw the original series, you can just watch this instead. Prepare to binge though. At the time the original series was released, yes it was compared to the Pokemon Anime. Digimon are different from Pokemon in two ways. One is Digimon with human partners only Digivolve Temporarily in the Anime. Aside from Mega Evolution, Pokemon permanently evolve. In the case of Pokemon like Eevee that had multiple evolutions, you would need a LOT of Eevee to get all of its evolutions.

The other difference is Digimon can speak human language while almost all Pokemon can only say their name. Team Rocket’s Meowth explains he gave up learning PayDay to learn the human language as well as learn to walk on two legs (Meowth usually walk on all fours). Meowth is able to translate the Pokemon Language though. That aside, any other Pokemon that can speak to humans are almost always a Legendary Pokemon or highly intelligent. You also almost always see such a Pokemon in a movie.

Taichi Mukai Performs New Opening Theme for Dragon Quest: The Adventure of Dai Anime - News - Anime News Network

 

As a reminder, the Manga turned Anime is not based on any existing game from the legendary Dragon Quest/Warrior video game series. With the new OP that debuted a few weeks ago, it seems we are fast heading towards the series finale at this point. Dai reluctantly teams up with his estranged father Baran to take on a common enemy. While the two are fighting Hadlar, Baran notices a danger that may make beating Hadlar lethally impossible. King Vearn is confident Dai and Baran will not survive their encounter with  Hadlar, who is already planning to fight to the death. It will be interesting to see how things unfold.

Hyunckel, who was nearly killed in the previous fight was considered too injured to fight anymore. That doesn’t stop him from dragging himself to the Field of Death to join Popp, Maam and Crocodine on the battlefield. Even without Dai, the unlikely friends are prepared to overcome the odds stacked against them.

 

Is Kurama dead? Kurama's death in Boruto: Naruto Next Generations Chapter 55 manga shocks fans

If you passed on watching Boruto up to now because you felt the story should’ve ended with Shippuden, hopefully a major character death and a second one teased at the end of the Kara Arc will change your mind. This is a major spoiler but given the fact it’s all over the internet since the episode first aired two weeks ago, I won’t give a spoiler warning.

During the final battle with Isshinki, Kurama offered Naruto a deal that would give him a massive power boost but it would require a sacrifice. Naruto assumed it would mean death and he was right. Just not his. After the battle, Kurama reveals he only told Naruto half the story: The only one who would die would be him, not Naruto. He didn’t tell him the truth up front because he knew Naruto wouldn’t have agreed to it otherwise. Before disappearing, Kurama explains normally a Jinchuriki would die with their Tailed Beast but because of what Kurama did, Nauto’s life would be spared. The loss of Kurama means Naruto no longer has Superhuman strength and Chakra but he’s still really powerful.

Kawaki, who suffered extreme abuse and torture for most of his life gets the final victory over Isshinki by making a Shadow Clone and using it to fool his former benefactor. It was a great fist-pump moment and closure for him to say the least. Naruto offered to make Kawaki a Genin and he simply replied “I’ll think about it”. Amado defecting to the Leaf was what made that victory possible. Seeing him get a happy ending was also satisfying all things considered. Some might not agree with the fact he was able to easily neutralize the threat of Momoshinki taking over Boruto again after the emotional build to that point but all things considered, I’m totally fine with it. Both Boruto and Naruto have been through enough to that point.

Everyone in the Kara has been eliminated except for Code though based on the preview for the next episode, that loose end appears to be on the shelf for now. The next episode takes us back to the Chunin Exams which were interrupted and put on hold quite a while back. Ninja exams tend to get put on hold quite a lot in the world of Naruto, don’t they? Based on the preview, Sasuke and/or Orochimaru may be involved in the Chunin exams so we’ll see. It’s sure to be quite interesting to say the least!

 

Inuyasha x Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon Exhibition to Begin in Ikebukuro This Summer | MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON | もしもしにっぽん

The Second Season of Yasha-Hime: Princess Half-Demon recently started and out the gate, we get a bit more story development regarding Sesshomaru, Rin and Setsuna in particular. As was revealed in the first season, Sesshomaru pretended to ally himself with Kirinmaru to protect his family as well as Inuyasha and Kagome. We find out why Sesshomaru stopped the girls rom killing Zero in the latest episode and why she said “If I die, she dies too!”

In this case, “She” is Rin. In the latest episode, it’s revealed Zero–She’s Kirinmaru’s sister as a reminder–put a curse on Rin shortly after Jaken hid the girls. She then linked herself to Rin so that if one dies, the other would too. This basically ensures Sesshomaru or anyone who knows about the link can’t kill her. This is also why he stopped the girls from killing Zero at the end of Season 1. The reason Rin was placed in the Tree of Ages was to stop the curse placed on her from spreading. Time for her has stopped biologically. Presumably she will remain there until Sesshomaru can figure out how to sever Zero’s link with her as well as break the curse on her.

One interesting development was the revealation Riku, who turned on Kirinmaru was actually born from one of his horns. Everything Riku sees and hears, Kirinmaru can see and hear. Zero is actually the one who tells him what he really is and you can tell after he learns this, it’s likely Kirinmaru knows his every move to now. Riku turned on Kirinmaru and had been secretly helping Towa for the last few episodes. Now that he knows Kirinmaru knows everything, that makes things more complicated for him. We’ll have to wait and see how things unfold moving forward.

 

The Lariat | Rakuten Viki

…Moving over to Asian Dramas on Viki.

I neglected to comment on this last year but Viki has moved more of their existing content to its Standand and Premium Subscription tiers. I was a little annoyed to see some titles that were Free for me before now being locked behind a Premium subscription though the ones I have in mind were dramas I already watched. I do have a Standard Subscription and though I do plan to upgrade to Premium at some point in the future, it would have been great if Viki at least sent an email to let people know a show they watch or have on their watch list is changing tiers.I  renewed for another year this past September. The Standard Tier is $50 a year while the Premium tier is $100 a year. I will always prefer annual subscripions–I have one for Crunchyroll also–because you save longterm. $10 a month is $120 a year but $50 a year or $100 a year means you save $70 or $20 a year.

I mean I get those who don’t want to be locked into an annual subscription and more so if they don’t watch much but that’s a good reason to do the annual sub: You don’t feel pressured to watch at least once a day. With an annual sub, you can go weeks without waching and with series still in progress, you give time for several new episodes to be released. With Viki, I’ve only watched shows with all Episodes available so far personally though.

 

 

True Beauty” Webtoon Author Shares Her Thoughts On The Drama Adaptation And Casting | Soompi

 

Anyone who’s been reading the Webtoon True Beauty probably already knows about the Live Action adaptation that was released on Viki in 2019. If you’ve only seen the Live Action Drama, get the Webtoon app and read it so you’re caught up. The TV Series ends with Suho being forced to leave for Japan to attend to his father, who suffered a stroke.

If you’ve never seen the Webtoon, here’s what’s happened since then and warning, MAJOR Spoilers:

  • There is a time skip of a few years. Everyone’s a Young Adult now.
  • Jugyeong goes to College, majoring in makeup (obviously).
  • Jugyeong and Seojun start dating (!)
  • Seojun sees Jugyeong’s bare face for the first time, he compliments her for it
  • Seojun enters the Pop Idol Business at Jugyeong’s urging
  • Jugyeong finds part-time work as a Makeup Artist
  • After rumors about their relationship spreads online, Jugyeong breaks up with Seojun (!).
  • Suho returns from Japan (!)
  • Jugyeong gets a Stalker but fortunately, Suho eventually steps in.
  • Seojun learns Suho is back, the Frenimies pick up where they left off.
  • Suho learns Jungyeong and Seojun were dating while he was away (!)
  • Jugyeong learns a friend is in an Abusive Relationship
  • Jugyeong, Seojun and Suho end up spending a weekend together
  • Suho and Seojun come clean about both having feelings for Jungyeong and settle the contest “like Men” (they get into a fistfight), Suho wins (!)
  • Jugyeong shows her two high school friends her bare face for the first time.

 

That’s where we’re at to now. If you’ve been following the Webtoon to now, this is nothing new to you. If you haven’t read it yet or haven’t read much this year, go get yourself caught up! Oh and yes, I do think there is and should be a Season 2. I would end Season 2 with Suho’s return. End with a cliffhanger for Season 3.

 

 

My ID Is Gangnam Beauty” Webtoon Artist Reacts To Casting Of ASTRO's Cha Eun Woo And Im Soo Hyang | Soompi

Speaking of.

This is another Webtoon with a Live Drama Adaptation: My ID is Gangnam Beauty. I watched the Drama in full on Viki earlier this year but only last week did I find out it’s based on the Webtoon of the same name. With True Beauty, I started reading the Webtoon first and by the time the drama came out the current story was well past where the TV Series leaves off.

…I’m gonna read the Webtoon from the beginning so I’m caught up the story. Basically, the exact opposite of where I am in regards to True Beauty. The Webtoon App is free by the way. I have it on my iPad but you can also read on your phone or computer.

 

There was more I was gonna cover but with the next post I have in mind, I decided to cut things short.

I’ll mention this on my next post but if you’ve been liking my articles to now, please consider supporting me financially via the PayPal Links above and below. If you’re sharing my articles on Twitter and other platforms, please ask your people to consider giving me financial support as well. I do all this for free but the financial support would be greatly appreciated.

 

 

If you have enjoyed this post or other posts I have made on this blog, please consider making a monetary donation via PayPal by clicking here. Whatever amount you can provide would be greatly appreciated.

Also, I now have a Discord Server! You can find it here. My Discord name is mraurabolt.

Here’s some recent Anime that I reccommend would make decent intros to the Medium

The best anime of 2019 - The Verge

 

When I say “recent”, I mean they were released in the last 2 to 3 years. Weather you’re new to the world of anime or you have someone you want to bring in, it can be pretty overwhelming picking one. The first thing you want to keep in mind either way when picking you “entry” anime is keeping personal preferences in mind. You or your friend don’t have to like something just because others do or because it’s super popular (or “mainstream”).

There is literally an anime for everyone and even with the 2 to 3 year limit I put on this list, it’s not too hard to name some. Before I continue, as usual I am only going to reccommend Anime I have seen myself. All of these Anime are on Crunchyroll which is free but if you want to watch new episodes the same day they become available in Japan (Free users have to wait an extra week) and watch episodes without ads (You have 2 or 3 rounds of Ads per episode to sit through on the Free version), you’ll want to get a subscription.

 

Ok here’s my list. Bold means the anime season is ongoing as of this writing. Bold Italics means the Anime is ongoing AND new. If you see Italics, that means a new season is planned or has been announced. Whatever is plain text either aired in its entirety or there are no known plans for a new season to my knowledge as of this writing.

 

  • The Great Jahy Will Not Be Defeated!
  • Fena: Pirate Princess
  • Fruits Basket (2019-2021 version)
  • Dr. Stone
  • That Time I Got Reincarnated As A Slime
  • I’m Standing on A Thousand Lives
  • Dragon Quest: The Adventure of Dai
  • Tonikawa: Over The Moon For You
  • Food Wars! Shokugeki no Soma
  • Rent a Girlfriend
  • Ahiru no Sora
  • Tokyo Revengers
  • Persona 5: The Animation
  • If It’s For My Daughter, I’d Even Defeat A Demon Lord
  • Somali and the Forest Spirit
  • The Rising of The Shield Hero
  • Remake Our Life!
  • 86: Eighty-Six

 

Most of these are critically acclaimed by anime fans for various reasons. I tell everyone this but don’t feel like you have to binge watch one anime before moving on to another. Feel free to jump around between a few if you want. The only listed Anime I have not actually seen yet is Tokyo Revengers and that’s because I’m planning to watch the whole season or series when it finshes, whichever happens first.

I went with a list of Anime that covers a range of genres. There’s a bit of everything in short. Take your time and just dive right into whatever looks interesting to you. Like Sports? Ahiru no Sora (Basketball) would be a good one. Slice of Life? Rent a Girlfriend is a pretty good pick. Want Isekai? I’m partial to The Rising of the Shield Hero and That Time I got Reincarnated as a Slime. Are you feelng Hungry? Get fed with Food Wars. Want something based on a video game? Persona 5’s is pretty faithful to the source material. Want to see a new type of Shonen? Dr. Stone is not only good but educational. Slice of Life? Fruits Basket. Needing Adventure? You can’t go wrong with Fena: Pirate Princess.

 

I can go on and on but…yeah. There are other anime that came out over the last 2 to 3 years of course. These are just the ones I personally reccommend. It doesn’t mean some of the others aren’t decent though. These are just my picks.

 

 

 

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I just started watching Eighty Six-86 and the moral controversy has some real world parallels that should not be ignored

86--Eighty-Six, Vol. 1 (manga) by Asato Asato, Shirabii, Paperback | Barnes  & Noble®

 

I just finished watching the seventh episode on Crunchyroll and it is now my favorite new anime of 2021. Based on the Manga of the same name, 86 is the story of a country in the near future at war with rogue autonomous drones trying to invade the country’s far eastern boarder. The government and military boast it is a bloodless war since they claim to also use autonmous drones but the truth is much darker: In reality, the drones used by the country are piloted by people not considered human because they are not the “chosen race”. Since they are not considered human, they don’t exist as far as the government is concerned and so their deaths are never officially reported or acknowledged.

Yes, really.

This goes there and it doesn’t try to shy away or gloss over the obvious moral controversy. In fact, that is the story.

Of course, the general public is ignorant of the truth and to an extent is complicit due to the racism. Only those with silver hair and blue eyes are considered “human” while everyone else is not as far as the country is concerned. The anime is called 86 because those not considered human are confined to the county’s 86th Region on the edge of the country. These people are referred to collectively as The 86 or simply 86. They have no human or civil rights and live far from the eyes and thoughts of the rest of the Albins, which is the name of the “chosen race”.

Due to the government and media propaganda boasting “zero human casualties” in the war, officially their deaths in combat are not reported or recorded. The fact the 86 are not considered human and the battlefront is far away makes it very easy to cover up what would easily be considered human rights violations of the worst kind. Since they are not recognized as human, there is no reason or need to acknowledge their deaths as far as the government is concerned.

On that note. Episode 5 confirms what viewers were probably thinking to that point: The real plan for the country is for them to use the war to kill off all the 86. Since they are not considered human, there is no reason or need to acknowledge their involvement in the war to the public. As is revealed, 86 staying in concentration camps are basically pressed into military service with the empty promise of freedom and full citizenship if they survive 5 years of meaningless fighting. Of course, they are well aware that they are being lied to from the start and the sole purpose is for them to be killed off.

This is, of course to say nothing of the severe PTSD the 86 suffer throughou. More so knowing their death can come at any time and no one would know or care. As a reminder, the general population doesn’t know the truth and for the most part wouldn’t care about the truth if it were known. Again, since the 86 are not considered people their deaths are never officially acknowledged or counted beyond the codename “Processors”. As a reminder, the public are told unmanned drones do the fighting and so there will always be zero human casualties so…yeah.

…Sorry to veer into politics with this but some countries have a long, dark history of exploiting minority populations for military purposes since ancient times. Sometimes when a kindgom annexes another kingdom, instead of their own people they will press the people of the conquered territory into forced military service.  More recently, when ISIS carved up the Middle East 10 years ago they didn’t slaughter everyone. They gave the men a choice: “Fight for us or die”.  So, the plot for this anime is right out of the pages of history to say the least.

With everything going on in the world right now, it’s not hard to imagine scenarios like this happening again. I look at the U.S., Russia, China, The Philippines, Nigeria, India and Brazil being just a few countries that are more than capable of doing something like this in the near future. That’s based on what I’ve seen in all those countries. Is it a violation of human rights? Of course. Would the public give a damn at tthe end of the day? Of course not.

I’ll put it like this: Today, 13 U.S. Troops were killed in Afghanistan but dozens if not hundreds of Afghan civilians were also killed in the same attack. The media has almost entirely been on the American soldiers killed while the Afghan victims are basically footnotes in comparison. I’ll take it a step further. No one in the U.S. outside the military and their families give a damn about the U.S. Troops killed and injured today. I’ll just put it like that. As far as most laypeople are concerned, “Soldiers know they could die when deployed to dangerous parts of the world.” Why else do you think all the keyboard warriors are sounding off and have been since the crisis in Afghanistan blew up last week?

All that said and moving back to 86. The world has rightfully become very concerned by the U.S. government starting to rely on unmanned drones for both surveilance and combat missions more and more. Don’t get the wrong idea, no one objects to the idea of not having to needlessly risk human casualties for these things. The concerns lie in governments and by extension the people of countries that use military drones becoming desensitized to the often wanton destruction their military’s drones remotely inflict on human populations in distant lands.

It’s not really a secret the U.S., Russia and China all have Cyber Corps Divisions. Their primary purpose is defense but in the case of Russia and China in particular, they also engage in offense at the discretion of their commanders and high-ranking government officials. It’s not a stretch to assume some military bases in all three countries have computer terminals from which these cyber soldiers remotely operate drones deployed to other countries (so far).

I do know in regars to the U.S., Military Drones are replacing manned military jets for recon missions and in more cases bombing missions. No longer does the U.S. Air Force have to wait until the cover of night to do bombing runs. They can simply deploy a drone as the advance force to devastate targets on the ground, then send in soldiers to clean up afterward. No longer are fighter pilots risking being shot down in enemy territory.

So far, countries that have military drones have only been using them for either surveilance or in counterterrorism operations. You’d be a fool to not know it’s only a matter of time before two countries with military drone go to war with each other. If a country with military drones goes to war with a country without drones, it goes without saying the country with drones would be at a huge advantage. They could penetrate deep behind enemy lines and even when shot down, the attacking forces have still suffered–wait for it–no human casualties.

…You get the real world connection with 86 now?

While the drones used IRL are being remotely controlled by people, that still doesn’t take away to moral concerns with using them in an actual war. The prospect alone has been quite the derrent for the world’s military superpowers to fight each other so far but it’s anyone’s guess how long that can be maintained.

 

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Breaking News: The Misfit of Demon King Academy Manga Cancelled due to Author’s Health

Weekly Review — The Misfit of Demon King Academy Episode 10 – Biggest In Japan

 

A few days after it was announced the Manga would be on hiatus, news broke over the weekend that the Manga based on the popular Light Novel series will be cancelled due to the author’s declining health. It was first announced the Manga would be on hiatus but that was later updated to Cancelled. The studio where Kaya Haruka works revealed after this shocking and sad news that they were aware the author was battling Pancreatic Cancer since 2019. Things clearly took a turn for the worst recently for the story to be put on hiatus and now be cancelled. As of July 13, Kaya Haruka has passed away.

Do note this Manga was adapted from the Light Novel series of the same name. Meaning someone else could make a new Manga adaptation of it at some point in the future. An anime adaptation was released last year. Season 2 is set to be released sometime next year. The manga’s 10th Volume is set to be released next month. While the current Manga will clearly be ending soon, that doesn’t mean that the story can’t contine in a new Manga series and chances are good that is what will likely happen.

 

 

The Rising of the Shield Hero's New Director Teases Season 2

More disappointing news: Season 2 of The Rising of the Shield Hero has been delayed to April 2021.

The most likely reasons are the surge in COVID-19 cases in Japan and recent concerns regarding overworked studio staff that’s been widely publicized in recent months. Originally planned for an October 2020 premeier, the extra 6 month delay doesn’t surprise me at all and more so given Season 2 was originally planned to premeire last summer. That was postponed due to the Pandemic.

Naofumi, Raphtalia and Filo joined Isekai Quartet’s second season, likely in response to the anime’s massive popularity. A third season and a movie were both recently announced. We’ll have to wait and see if characters from other Isekai join and there’s quite a number of popular ones to choose from.

 

Tokyo Olympics 2021 Opening Ceremony: No Spectators Allowed - The Teal Mango

The Japanese government announced most of the Tokyo Olympics events will take place without fans in attendance and the news comes almost two months after the Japanese government announced the events would be closed to foreign spectators. Many athletes that qualified have started dropping out in response to the new announcement saying they don’t see the point in participating without any fans in attendance.

Japanese citizens have been protesting the Olympics for months, citing the surge in COVID-19 cases since March. Despite this, the clearly tone-deaf International Olympic Committee still plans to hold the Olympics as scheduled. Why is the Olympics, which was postponed from last year not being postponed a second time?

It’s simple: Broadcast and Advertising obligations.

In the U.S., ESPN and NBC Sports will carry the bulk of the media coverage for the Tokyo Olympics. The fact of the matter is even without live fans in attendance, that won’t keep camera teams from doing their jobs. This is exaserbated further by the simple fact most in the U.S. have NO CLUE what has been going on in Japan since the spring and honestly most of those people have no damns to give.

This is more of a thing I would normally cover on my blog for politics but I felt since this is Japan-related, it’s fair game to inform people on this blog on what exactly is going on.

 

 

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Hunter x Hunter Manga has now gone 900 Days without a new Chapter

May be a cartoon of text that says 'AS ANIMES SENPAI HUNTER X HUNTER REACHED 900 DAYS WITHOUT NEW CHAPTER ANIME SENPAI'

 

For those who don’t know, Hunter x Hunter Manga creator Togashi Yoshihiro put the Manga on Hiatus in 2019 due to nagging back pain. With Yoshihiro’s health failing, it’s looking more and more likely the popular series will never be completed. Commenting on his nagging back pain, Yoshihiro admitted drawing aggrivates his injury.

There are growing concerns the super popular series will never be finished due to his health issues and the fact he has not allowed someone else to continue the series. Most believe it’s a pride thing in regards to Yoshihiro not allowing someone else to work on it. What that means for now is when he dies, the Manga dies with him.

 

As an aspiring author, I can respect that personally. At the same time, chronic health issues are easily the biggest reason I would consider getting someone to continue the story. More so if it has a fan following on the scale Hunter x Hunter does. At the same time I do get it. It’s your baby. Your own creation. Unlike in the U.S. where studios and companies can legally own what others created, over in Japan there is respect for content creators.

Although authors making content based on an established IP–we call it Fan Fiction–most in Japan at least get the original author’s blessing before they do something like that. They also don’t try to reinvent the wheel. Attack on Titan Junior High, which spoofs the first half of the first season of the anime is a good example of this. It’s not that unusual to see Fan Fiction next to the source IP in bookstores in Japan but that’s probably a topic better suited for my blog on Fan Fiction.

 

 

 

May be a cartoon of one or more people and text that says 'AS ANIMESENPAI ANIME HIGEHIRO AUTHOR ASK FANS TO NOT IMITATE THE ACT OF THE STORY FS'

 

The author of this Light Novel series turned Anime recently took to Twitter likely to cover himself legally. For those who may not be familiar with Higehiro, the story is about a mid-20s office worker who takes in a 17 year old girl who is a runaway. The fact that the story doesn’t dance around the fact what the lead male protagonist does actually is a crime in not just Japan but most of the world is what makes it such a gripping story.

While obviously Sayu is there willfully and Yoshida has made it clear he has zero sexual interest in her, it’s obvious their living arrangement can’t possibly last. Based on the latest episode, her older brother–a businessman–found the convenience store where she works. It’s only a matter of time before reality forces them apart at this point.

The Light Novel’s author telling people not to imitate the story should go without saying but sadly, there are those who would imitate what they see in fiction. While I haven’t heard of any copycat situations yet personally, he is saying it anyway in case someone in Japan does try it.

 

Weak Hero - White Mamba" Photographic Print by sa1x | Redbubble

Get Schooled Manga | Anime-Planet

I’d be remiss if I didn’t talk about what is arguably one of the best Manwa (basically Korean for Manga) ever made that probably won’t get an Anime adaptation. Weak Hero follows the story of rival gangs in rival high schools in Korea. It’s also got a bit of slice of life and coming of age for both the lead protagonist Gray Yeon and the main antagonist Donald Na. The graphic, visceral nature of all of the fights as well as the profanity throughout this Manwa is why we will never see it get an Anime adaptation like Tower of God did with Crunchyroll.

It’s the same for Get Schooled, the second picture above that recently came to Webtoon. Both Manwa highlight School Bullying in South Korea. Though some things are clearly exaggerated, the actual bullying situations and sub-culture depicted are in fact real. This may be quite the shock to Western readers but several South Koreans and Japanese commenters have said the sub-culture both Webtoons explore are painfully accurate.

Those who’ve read certain Manga or seen certain Anime probably already know some kids are bullied into suicide in Japan. Like South Korea, the root cause is mostly cultural and the bullies push that to the extreme. Even when teachers know for a fact a student is being bullied, most typically fall into one of two categories: Turn a blind eye for the sake of job security or give vague lip service and hope it’s enough.

Why are teachers and school administrators in Japan and South Korea so hesitant to address, let alone acknowlege bullying? Reputation, Optics, Job Security and Genuine Indifference. One or a combination of all of those things. This is especially true of older educators who never dealt with this in the past.

 

…Obviously, times have changed.

 

 

May be a cartoon of text that says 'NEWS HOW NOT TO SUMMON DEMON LORD Ω OPENING THEME EXCEEDED 1,000,000+ VIEWS ON YOUTUBE NEWS Source: YouTube animecorner.me'

 

If you watched How Not to Summon a Demon Lord Ω at all in recent months then you have no doubt heard the OP. Here is the music video:

 

It’s easily the most popular OP for an anime since Dean Fujioka’s History Maker (Yurii!! On Ice).

For those who haven’t seen the Anime itself yet, start with the first season!

 

 

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So many interesting new Anime on Crunchyroll lately

Crunchyroll (@Crunchyroll) | Twitter

 

…Which is good considering the rest of Attack on Titan’s final season is on hiatus, Black Clover’s final episode aired on my birthday (March 30) and it’s still not clear if the Quintessential Quintuplets will have a third season after the announced movie or if it will be like Demon Slayer + Mugen Train. As the saying goes, time will tell.

 

Ok let’s start with this Anime:

itz__-__D (@DhruvCh64453269) | Twitter

Honestly, I was pretty turned off by Sayu constantly trying to seduce Yoshida off the jump even after finding out where that’s “normal” to her at the end of the latest episode. Yoshida putting his foot down in the latest episode is why I’ve decided to keep watching.

The basic premise of the show is Yoshida meets Sayu, a 17-year old runaway the same night he’s dumped and decides to let her stay at his apartment until she’s ready to go back home. The Anime seems to be trying to avoid the Rom-Com route in favor of Slice of Life which is good since neither of the leads are complete idiots.

Now that Yoshida’s reaffirmed his boundaries, it looks like he’s going to do what he can to help her unlearn a lot of the bad stuff she picked up before they met. The preview for the next episode indicates Sayu will get a part time job at a convenience store. Should be interesting.

 

I've Been Killing Slimes for 300 Years and Maxed Out My Level - Home | Facebook

Here we have a new Isekai with RPG references to hold us over and no, there is no connection to That Time I Got Reincarnated As A Slime (On hiatus, likely until Winter) or its spinoff series Slime Diaries (more on this in a bit).

It’s been a pretty interesting Anime so far since like most Isekai these days, the lead is OP but doesn’t want the attention that comes with it. The supporting cast is being introduced so far which is a good way to keep the focus away from the lead too much. It’s quite interesting so far and assuming it’s 12 or 13 episodes long, it should wrap up mid-summer.

 

Let's Make A Mug Too Premieres Next Year

Let's Make a Mug Too TV Anime Reveals Promo Video, More Cast, April 2  Premiere - News - Anime News Network

 

Honestly, I like this anime because of the simple fact you get a bonus episode each week featuring the voice actresses of the four leads. A lot of care clearly went into both. You can tell from the interactions between the voice actresses that it was a labor of love.

The animed and live episodes were both obviously done during the Pandemic. It’s a nice slice of life series to say the least.

Watch Fruits Basket Sub & Dub | Comedy, Drama, Fantasy, Shoujo, Slice of  Life Anime | Funimation

The 2019 reimagining of Fruits Basket has been quite the departure from the original 2001 series to say the least. Season 2 ended with the shocking revealation Akito Soma is actually Female. It’s revealed in the opening episode of Season 3–the final season–that Akito was born Female but her mother–whom she is extranged from partly for this reason–decreed she be raised as Male.

Akito’s true gender is a closely guarded secret even within the family though clearly that might not be the case for too much longer: At the end of episode 2, Shigure reveals to Akito his and always has been madly in love with her.  Though it’s offscreen, it’s implied they then have sex. If Akito got pregnant from that, it would be very difficult to keep her true gender a secret for much longer.

We will have to wait and see how things go. The first two seasons were 25 episodes. I have no reason to believe this will not bet the case for Season 3.

Tensura Nikki: Tensei Shitara Slime Datta Ken (The Slime Diaries) · AniList

While That TIme I Got Reincarnated As A Slime‘s current season is on hiatus, we are getting a spinoff series to help pass the time. The slice of life spinoff appears to take place between Seasons 1 and 2. It’s literally filler and yes, there is also a Manga version.

Is it necessary to watch before Season 2 resumes? Obviously not but if you’re a fan of the original series, it’s sure to be entertaining at least.

Watch Dragon Quest: The Adventure of Dai Streaming Online | Hulu (Free  Trial)

Square-Enix was clearly smart to not base it on any of the mainline games released so far. That takes a lot of pressure off of it to say the least and it’s been paying off.

The recent revealation Dai is actually the son of Baran wasn’t too surprising for some given there were clues that heavily implied a connection. Like Hyunckel, Baran had an experience in his younger days as a Dragon Knight that made him turn his back on Humanity. Dai was born during that time and eventually ended up on the Monster Island where he grows up.

Having now slain Baran’s three top warriors, Hyunckel appears intent on trying to convince Baran it’s not too late to change course like he did after learning of his past. Hyunckel was initially raised by monsters and had been led to believe Avan, the man who trained him (as well as Dai, Popp and Maam) killed the skeleton who raised him. He was later tricked by Hadlar into turning his back on Humanity and became the leader of the Undead Legion in the Dark Army.

After learning the truth from Maam, Hyunckel decides to join Beast King Crocodine in aiding the Students of Avan fight the Dark Army. After the group rescues Princess Leona and slays Flazzard, Maam’s Magic Bullet Gun breaks so she decides to leave the group to train as a Martial Artist. It’s looking likely she will return after the current storyline finishes so we’ll see.

 

…Whew.

So much anime to look forward to over the next few months. I plan to do another post like this around this time next month. I may start a new job in the next week or two so I’ll need the extra time anyway.

 

 

 

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The Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami: 10 Years Later

A decade after Great East Japan Earthquake, suicide continues to take lives, Asia News - AsiaOne

 

March 11, 2011.

 

I remember following the news coverage from the day it happened to several weeks later. It was also the biggest topic of conversation at Anime Boston, which was 7 weeks later. Although only two areas of Japan was directly affected, it impacted the whole country and sparked a broader conversation on Nuclear Power and disaster preparedness globally.

The disasters claimed the lives of almost 20,000 people, another near 7,000 were injured and to this day almost 2,600 are still unaccounted for. Millions were left homeless or lost their jobs due to property damage or destruction. The initial earthquake was felt in most of the eastern half of the country but most of the destruction and casualties was concentrated in Fukushima Prefecture.

Rebuilding after Japan's tsunami | Features | Building

Japan Earthquake: Before and After - The Atlantic

 

It is worth noting most of the damaged areas were repaired or restored within 5 years. That’s astonishing if you don’t know Japan actually does experience earthquakes on a regular basis annually. Most of the rail lines in the affected areas reopened though some rail lines were so heavily damaged, they were permanently replaced with bus service where the rails used to be. Japan obviously cares a lot about its infrastructure so the speed at which they got things repaired or restored isn’t that big of a surprise. There are still several hundred thousand permanently displaced people who are living in temporary housing.

This includes many who are afraid to return to Sendai where the Fukushima-Daichi Nuclear Power Plant, which suffered a catastrophic meltdown during the disaster is located. The power plant was quickly shut down and sealed off though concerns of radiation sickness is why some are refusing to return. Since 2012, Japanese government officials and UN officials have both separately said the area is safe for people to return.

 

Your Name (Kimi No Na Wa): A Persistent Yearning of the Heart - Catholic Geeks

 

The 2016 feature film Your Name (Kimi No Na Wa) by Makoto Shinkai is loosely inspired by the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake in Tsunami. In the movie, a meteor strike wipes a small town off the map in 2013. That is where one of the two protagonists, Mitsuha Miyamizu is from. According to the story, everyone in the town who isn’t killed by the impact dies from the Tsunami that washes away the town including Mitsuha. A supernatural phenomenon links her to Taki Tachibana, a boy living in Tokyo in 2016. After doing some research, Taki realizes Mitsuha lives in the town just before it’s destroyed 3 years earlier.

The red cord of fate that connected them makes it possible for them slightly change history and most of the townspeople survive the disaster. The two meet in person for the first time in 2022 during the movie’s final scene. Both also make separate cameo appearances in Shinkai’s 2020 movie Weathering With You, which takes place in 2021. Based on this, many believe they will appear together in Shinkai’s next movie if it’s not a direct sequel to their movie.

I gave an overview of Your Name but was careful not to spoil too much. If you haven’t yet seen the movie, you definitely should. I have it on Blu Ray but apparently it’s available on Netflix.

 

 

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Cells at Work Season 2, Black Clover Updates and Tales of Smyphonia on Crunchyroll?!

Image result for Cells at work Season 2

 

Ok so Season 2 of Cells at Work started earlier this month (and somehow I didn’t know it was coming). To say it’s a nice surprise for me goes without saying.

The first half of Episode 2 was a clear reference to the ongoing Pandemic in progress with the topic of it being Acquired Immunity. The disease featured was the Mumps. For those who don’t know, if you get vaccinated from the Mumps once you are set for life. This is called Acquired Immunity. The Flu Vaccine is an annual vaccine because its effectiveness only lasts about 6 months. We know the Flu Season typically runs between October and February and this is why you normally get vaccinated in the Fall months each year.

Vaccines save lives.

End of story. There’s a LOT of aggressive Anti-Vaccine misinformation that has been spread in North America for at least the last 20 years now. It’s the reason the U.S. leads the world in COVID-19 cases and deaths since last Spring. It’s shameful to say the least but I won’t digress further. I have a separate Blog for that purpose.

 

Black Clover Is Worth The Watch - We're Still Cool

 

It was recently announced that the anime version of Black Clover will wrap up on March 30. It’s worth noting like Bleach did before it, the Manga version is going to continue.

As everyone should be aware by now, not everyone who watches Anime adaptations has access to the source medium. Black Clover is no exception. There actually was a long pause between the end of Inuyasha’s 7th Season and the release of the final arc, The Final Act. The fans demanded it and it happened. I do remember hearing a few weeks ago Bleach’s final Arc is getting an Anime adaptation so there’s that.

Time will tell if the same will happen with Black Clover. For now, the series will end on my birthday =O

 

 

Tales of Symphonia | Anime, Tales series, Tales of zestiria

 

Stop everything:

After 14 years, Tales of Symponia: The Animation has FINALLY been officially realeased outside Japan!

Crunchyroll dropped the bombshell news Wednesday morning and then released it the same afternoon along with 3 other Classic Anime. The anime initially released on Crunchyroll without subs but the problem seems to have been fixed by Thursdy morning. Horray!

For those who are not familiar with the video game Tales of Symphonia–shame on you if you’re one of them–it is only one of the greatest RPGs from a story perspective. Ever. Initially released on the Gamecube in 2003, it was since re-released first on the PS2 (Japan only), the PS3 (globally) and more recently Steam. I still have the original Gamecube version as well as the PS3 and Steam versions. The game is THAT damn good but I won’t digress further here. I have a separate blog for that purpose.

 

Anywho, the anime originally released between 2007 and 2009 across serveral arcs. The anime is 11 episodes long in total. Like Tales of Phantasia’s Anime (which I have on DVD, it’s 4 episodes long), a LOT of story content from the video game is cut mostly for time but I’ll talk about that more on my video game blog.

The fact that the anime adaptation is so short really hurt it with fans of the video game to say the least. More so given the game’s presentation is anime-like. For many people, Tales of Symphonia was the first game they played with a voiced cast. Anywho, fans were expecting a faithful retelling of the story back in 2008 but what they got instead was the same they got in Phantasia: a scaled down mish-mash with some key details cut or presented out of sequence. I will cover that on my video game blog in a separate post. Once it’s up, I will add the link to this post.

I will leave you with the lyrics to the OP for Sylverant Arc, Almateria:

 

The artist who performed the song, Eri Kawai passed away in 2008. One of the biggest mysteries surrounding this song is what language it’s in. I did some looking around and apparently three languages are used: Japanese (obviously), Latin and English.

It’s NOT a made-up language or “the language of the angels” as some people keep saying on YouTube. Anyone familiar with old Fantasy stories should already know Latin is commonly used as the “magic language” because for centuries, most of Europe knew both Latin and their native language. No way in hell would they get away with making up a language without an actual translation. I can guarantee that.

 

On that note. I do know Holy Song, which Colette sings in Episode 2 (Fiat Lux) is in Latin:

Here is the translation, pulled from YouTube:

 

~Latin~
Ne Perdatis Luces
Cantum Sanctum Nunc Accipite
Oro, Canto, Vobis
Fiat Lux

Spes, Ne Perdatis
Cantum Lucum Nunc Accipite
Dono Animam Mea
Fiat Lux

~Translation~
Don’t lose the lights
Receive the holy song now
I pray, I sing, that to you
There may be light.

Do not lose hope
Receive the song of lights
The gift of my soul
Let there be light

 

Almost the exact same 2nd and 4th lines in each verse. In general, Latin is recited or spoken slowly. That’s what the dirge sounds so otherwordly. That’s the desired effect obviously. In general, music can alter moods and your state of mind. Keep that in mind.

Getting back on topic, the anime does its job of telling you most of the major plot points. It’s still a hot mess unfortunately though. You’re better off playing the game in comparison.

 

 

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