ANIME TODAY #86: Previewing KRAZY! The Delirious World of Anime + Manga + Video Games With Joe Earle of the Japan Society of New YorkPosted on: Friday, February 13, 2009
Episode run down:
The Japan Society of New York was established in 1907, and has long focused on exposing Americans to Japanese culture. On March 13th, KRAZY! The Delirious World of Anime + Manga + Video Games will open in their New York gallery. Later in this episode, we’re going to speak with the Japan Society Gallery director, Joe Earle. We’ll talk about the different forms of media that are being presented in the show, as well as highlight a number of the artists included. We’ll also find out how attendees of the show are able to interact with with the exhibits, and about opportunities they’ll have to screen anime.
The music for this episode is from JapanFiles.com’s CDs Planet Rita and Plutonium EP by tokyo pinsalocks. We’d like to thank JapanFiles.com for letting us feature music from their CDs, a full list with the times each song was played will be posted at the bottom of this episode’s show notes at AnimeToday.com.
We’re going to kick off this episode with Chad and with What’s Hot in the World of Anime, followed by Shawne with a rundown of the Soulful Savings sale on DVDs, Manga and Books from Viz Media. And then Alison, Nick and Rich will have the first portion of our interview with Mr. Joe Earle.
Our Year of the Otaku Contest is officially in full gear along with another great Death Note Contest kicking off today. Then catch up with Christy in an all new If.../Then segment on Gurren Lagann and then Kris and Judy indulge our collective sweet tooth with some of Japan's latest Valentine's Day confections. Rich and Nick return with a short AnimeCons.com conventions update and then jump back into the final part of our interview with Mr. Earle as we explore the exhibit space, discuss some of the featured events, and look forward to a few upcoming exhibits. We'll wrap things up with some of the latest customer reviews from RightStuf.com.
Summer has arrived, and the students of Lillian Girls' Academy are on break! Yumi and Sachiko head out to the Ogasawara family's summer home, but what was supposed to be a relaxing vacation takes a turn for the worse when some of Sachiko's old acquaintances drop by for tea. These rich, snobby debutantes don't think Yumi is worthy of Sachiko's affection, and they're out to make this summer one she'll regret.
Find out if Yumi prevails when the Maria Watches Over Us Season 3 DVD Collection celebrates summer break early on March 24.
Faced with a wave of mysterious deaths, re-animated corpses and monstrous creatures, the fate of Tokyo and the entire world hangs on five unlikely saviors: the students of Tokyo Majin.
Armed with incredible powers, they must battle an unholy swarm of evil beings - from dark alchemists to zombies! It's a deadly war fought in shadows, and the young heroes are completely outmatched except for one thing: they never learned when to quit!
Get ready to rumble when Tokyo Majin Season 1 DVD Part 2 makes a stand on March 24!
Seven years have passed since the final battle against the Beastmen, and mankind is now thriving on the surface of the planet. Simon and the other members of Team Dai-Gurren watch over humanity’s new capital, Kamina City, and the suffering of the people forced to live underground seems like a distant memory.
Instead of struggling to survive day after day, Simon now finds himself dealing with civic duties and keeping the residents of the metropolis happy. However, a threat even greater than the Beastmen suddenly falls upon mankind. Now, up against an unknown enemy and obstacles in every direction he turns, Simon must fight against destiny to save the woman he loves and all of mankind once again in the process!
Iori Hazuki is a beautiful high schooler with ambitions of becoming an actress. Ichitaka Seto is an indecisive youth with a crush on Iori from afar. Itsuki Akiba is Ichitaka's cute childhood friend who has returned from abroad. Put all three "I"s together and you have a tale of love, comedy, and dreams.
Get wrapped up in their story when the I''s/I''s Pure DVD Box Set streets on March 24th.
After the death of his parents, Hiro Hiyorimi and his sister Sawawa are forced to separate. When Sawawa manages to get hired as caretaker to a creepy, old mansion, though, she immediately sends for Hiro to join her. He arrives to find everything boarded up and seemingly empty and begins to explore the surrounding town in search of his sister. Instead, he ends up running into the new owner of the house.
The wheels of fate never stop spinning, and after an unexpected death and resurrection, Hiro finds himself in the service of the young landowner – who just happens to be a princess of the monster kingdom.
Find out what else fate has in store for Hiro when the Princess Resurrection DVD Collection 1 hits shelves on March 17th.
Shawne's Specials and Soulful Savings!
Joe Earle, Vice President & Director, Japan Society Gallery
[ Photo by Miho Fang ]
Takashi Okazaki /Afro Samurai [cover] / Published in NOU NOU HAU vol.00, 1998
© TAKASHI OKAZAKI
Japan Society: http://www.japansociety.org/
Japan Society, New York – Visitor Information: http://www.japansociety.org/content.cfm/visitor_information
Japan Society Gallery Info and Hours: http://www.japansociety.org/gallery
Japan Society KRAZY! Sweepstakes and Video Preview: http://www.japansociety.org/krazy/index.cfm
Right Stuf Contests and Updates
Congratulations to the winners of our FUNimation Gunslinger Girl contest! The following five winners will each soon be receiving cloth banners featuring the series’ cast: Anna E. of Hickory, North Carolina; Sven S. of Topeka, Kansas; Erin W. of Jacksonville, Texas; Kim B. of Berea, Kentucky; and Peter S. of Fox Point, Wisconsin.
Are you a Death Note fan? To gear up for this month’s release of the live-action movie Death Note II: The Last Name, we’re teaming up with Viz Pictures to give away three gift packages that include a copy of the movie on DVD plus a movie poster! To enter – and find out more about the films – check out our Contest page in the “What’s Hot” bar at RightStuf.com – before February 26th. We’ll announce the winners during the next episode of Anime Today!
And finally, Right Stuf has proclaimed 2009 through 2010 the “Year of the Otaku!” We’re kicking of this celebration of anime fans with the unveiling of a new mini-site at otaku.rightstuf.com AND a NEW CONTEST! Go to this page, follow the links and answer the question “What kinds of Otaku are you?” and you will be entered in a contest to win gift certificates to RightStuf.com. (The grand prize winner will receive a $100 gift certificate and four runners up will each receive a $25 gift certificate!)
If…/then with Christy
It might just be my rather contentious nature, but whenever I hear about a series that is practically universally praised with glowing superlatives, I tend to be a little bit skeptical. I don’t necessarily go into watching those shows looking to be disappointed, but I also try not to let my expectations get raised too high, either.
So when I finally got around to watching my Gurren Lagann volumes, which had been languishing on my shelves for months, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that what I had thought might end up being a fanservice-heavy, mecha-action-centric, somewhat overhyped series was actually thoroughly engrossing with an excellent blend of comedy, action and some seriously gut-wrenching drama.
The story begins centered around Simon, a young, somewhat cowardly youth, and his best friend Kamina, a brash and charismatic man who tends to act first and think later. As we follow the duo, they journey from a sheltered, limited and literally underground existence, to a much wider world filled with dangers and adventure. As their quest continues, they gather around them a family of sorts, made up of the skilled, zany, loyal and fascinating characters they meet along the way.
If you’ve recently finished Gurren Lagann or you’re awaiting the last volumes of the dub, and you’re looking to further feed your love of epic, mecha coming-of-age tales, you may want to give Gainax’s earlier, classic OVA Gunbuster a try. The story follows the young Noriko as she struggles to become a successful mecha pilot against the Earth’s latest threat – a race of aliens bent on destroying the human race.
With those heightened circumstances serving as the story’s backdrop, Noriko must not only face the alien enemy, but her own feelings of self-doubt. The daughter of a famously revered and skilled admiral, she must come to grips with the high expectations of others along with her seeming lack of innate ability. As with Simon, Noriko is sometimes her own worst enemy, but with the help of those close to her who have unshakable faith in her potential, she evolves into a true heroine.
More than the mecha, though, what appealed to me most about Gurren Lagann was the formation of the team Simon and Kamina gathered around them. All of the characters were distinct, served a purpose and were ready to die for one another. While that’s not a particularly rare element to come across in anime, it seemed to really resonate for me in Gurren Lagann.
Gene Starwind and Jim Hawking of Outlaw Star end up banding together with a similarly ragtag group of misfits who also eventually form a family of their own. While, in the beginning, everyone has his or her own motives for being on board the Outlaw Star, by the end, they all find that by being together they have a real sense of purpose.
This space adventure blends sci-fi, action, comedy and drama with a hint of romance, but it never feels forced. Like Gurren Lagann, even when the mood turns dark, you never get the sense that the show is trying too hard.
If my suggestions haven’t quite struck your fancy, as always, our Anime Today forums are full of recommendations for other series to follow for Gurren Lagann fans.
For those who “absolutely must have giant mechs causing massive destruction,” Otaku Review recommends Gravion as a solid alternative. In addition to the crazy mecha action, there’s a driving force of “drama and political intrigue” that allows the characters plenty of time to develop.
A number of people thought Gurren fans might also enjoy Godannar. Joelgundam01, thinks those who like a healthy dose of fanservice in their mecha shows, in particular, should give it a chance.
Finally, DavidS recommends that fans who enjoy their mecha series a little more subdued give Genesis Climber Mospeada a watch. It, too, follows a steadily growing band of people as they travel across a now desolate Earth on a quest to defeat “morally ambiguous alien invaders.”
All of these titles, as well as a number of other recs made on the forums, are available now in North America.
To view all of the recommendations, or provide some of your own, head to our Anime Today discussion forums on AnimeToday.com, and make a post in the Gurren Lagann If…/then thread. You’ll also find rec threads for potential If…/then segments along with our If…/then suggestion thread where you can let us know what recent series you’d like to see featured in upcoming episodes.
We love getting feedback, and you never know -- you just might hear your recommendations on a future episode.
- Find More Gurren Lagann Stuf!
LOVE VALENTINE'S DAY 09.02.14 Loft: http://www.loft.co.jp/topics/090113_valentine/
What our customers are saying
This episode features music from:
0:00:00 --- 03. cosmic groove
0:02:29 --- 06. ideal cosmos
0:08:08 --- 01. Antenna
0:42:24 --- 04. Ajito Rita
0:49:40 --- 01. Antenna
1:04:06 --- 07. Airport
1:07:16 --- 02. Circle
0:06:12 --- 05. SAUCE OF LUNCH
0:34:29 --- 01. Plutonium 07
0:36:25 --- 03. so far so fine
0:47:53 --- 02. Quiet