VA-11 HALL-A photo
VA-11 HALL-A

Drown away your sorrows with a new VA-11 HALL-A trailer


Just what the bartender ordered
Jun 26
// Salvador GRodiles
Back when Japanator Managing Editor Josh Tolentino wrote about VA-11 HALL-A, the bartending game that's set in a cyberpunk setting, my interest for the title was at a normal level. While I didn't get to play the project's pr...
Idol of the Week photo
Idol of the Week

Idol of the Week: Ai Shinozaki


Beach time!
Jun 26
// Hiroko Yamamura
Name: Ai ShinozakiBirthdate: February 26, 1992 Hometown: Tokyo, Japan Measurements: 87/60/88 cm  You know the drill. When there's a new photoset by our main waifu Ai Shinkozaki, you know I'm going to be all about it. The lovely and talented queen of gravure is back with a jaw dropping visit to the beach, complete with an adorable yukata! Ahhh summer!
Love Live!! photo
Love Live!!

Love Live!! Movie US theater listings are here!


Your waifu idols hit the big screen
Jun 26
// Red Veron
Your favorite pop idol waifus from the anime Love Live!! μ's (pronounced 'Muse') arrive at theaters across the US this September and we now have dates for the showings. So what is Love Live!!? Love Live!! is mixed media fr...
WTF photo
WTF

WTF Fridays: Oh deer


Where's Santa?
Jun 26
// Hiroko Yamamura
When your squad just wants to chill.
Music photo
Music

A Daily Dose of Music: Maaya Sakamoto


It's almost the weekend
Jun 26
// Hiroko Yamamura
Closing out these hectic weekdays is a track from the lovely Maaya Sakamoto. The Tokyo native is no stranger to anime music, contributing to huge series like Macross Frontier. She's also an acomplished voice actress, known b...
Mario photo
Mario

Live in Los Angeles? Q Pop is hosting a Mushroom Kingdom Tribute Art Show


A.k.a. Mario Paint Live
Jun 26
// Salvador GRodiles
I may not be a big Mario fan like I used to be, but I still enjoy playing his games when they grab my attention. Nonetheless, my love for Yoshi and the Mushroom Kingdom's other inhabitants remains unchanged since they helped ...
Charlotte photo
Charlotte

New Charlotte trailer is here to change your destiny


Get ready for the feels
Jun 25
// Red Veron
It has been five years since the anime Angel Beats!! hit the airwaves and reduced many grown men like myself to tears with all the feelings of sadness. Now the people behind that Angel Beats!! have now reunited to bring us an...
Persona 5 photo
Persona 5

But of course Lelouch is in Persona 5 trailer!


Also, dancing!
Jun 25
// Josh Tolentino
[Update: Courtesy of Gematsu, an alternate link to the trailer has been found. Check it out below!] Much to some fans' disappointment, Persona 5 didn't make a huge splash at E3 this year. Rather than put Atlus' lat...
Nichijou photo
Nichijou

Nichijou's HUGE announcement is pretty normal


Oh Mai-chan that was a good joke~
Jun 24
// Anthony Redgrave
Nichijou (My Ordinary Life) is a lot like Cartoon Network's Regular Show, it's anything but. It takes the tried and true school girl slice of life comedy formula and treats every punch line as a road down to ludicrous-ville. ...
Boruto photo
Boruto

Boruto: Naruto the Movie Trailer reveals lots


New Generation, Old Moves, New Boruto
Jun 24
// Anthony Redgrave
The follow-up to the massively popular Naruto series is Boruto: Naruto the Movie. Apart from the title having a massive identity crisis, the feature film will follow on from the last chapter of the manga series that ended la...
Japanator Party photo
Let's party hard!
If you happen to be in Chicago this weekend, make sure you swing by Mitsuwa Marketplace at 1PM CST, as Japanator is hosting a cosplay party, in preparation for Japan Day Chicago next month! We are official sponsors of the eve...

Maguro wedding photo
Maguro wedding

Chop the head off a tuna on your wedding day


This dude has some sweet hair
Jun 24
// Hiroko Yamamura
Slicing a wedding cake together is so passé nowadays. Why not be hip and butcher a giant sea creature with your 3D waifu? With hair like this guy, you know there's no way his wedding is going to be less than awesome! ...

OP Up! Military Edition

Jun 24 // Red Veron
[embed]33991:4853:0[/embed]"Tough Intention"Anime: Silver Will ArgevollenA more realistic military take on the mecha genre where the show follows a mechanized platoon that is right in the battlefield during a war between two fictional nations.[embed]33991:4854:0[/embed]"Atashi no Machi, Ashita no Machi"Anime: Library WarThis one is set in an alternate history where a government group is formed to censor books in libraries and a local militias are formed to protect libraries. A very interesting setting that more people need to check out.[embed]33991:4855:0[/embed]"The Door of Truth"Anime: Gunparade MarchOne of those "Humanity on the brink of extinction" stories, this one has militaries resorting to training small groups of young people to fight against an alien enemy. No overpowered robots or magical weapons in this one, prepare for the worst.[embed]33991:4856:0[/embed]"Tomorrow"Anime: Full Metal PanicSet in a world where the Cold War isn't over and technology is available to create giant piloted robots for warfare, this show follows a young man who grows up in the battlefield and is then placed in a Japanese High School setting. Equal parts of comedy and action make this show a fun time.Did I not include your favorite military themed anime opening in this week's selection? Right that wrong and SHARE IN THE COMMENTS BELOW! I want to know!
OP Up! photo
You are voluntold to enjoy this list
This week's selection of anime openings for OP Up! is all about military themed anime. The military has been a theme ripe for action and anime has always found it to be a good source of great entertainment. From the military ...

Yo-kai Watch photo
This is your warning
This is a fair warning to your wallet in advance now. Yo-kai Watch is on its way, prepare your wallet. The anime and video game phenomena that has swept through Japan and emptied the wallets of many Japanese parents is set t...

Music photo
Music

A Daily Dose of Music: Kindan no Tasuketsu


Take a breather
Jun 24
// Hiroko Yamamura
I have to tell you, it's been a hell of a week. While there's been a plethora of amazing new songs hitting Japanese charts and new acts coming out of the woodwork, I think we deserve a bit of a relaxing tune. Yes, I have you...
Texas Toku Taisen photo
Texas Toku Taisen

Here's the Texas Toku Taisen '15's screening schedule for San Japan


Texas is about to get its Henshin on
Jun 24
// Salvador GRodiles
As we get ready to finish off the month of June, the screening schedule for this year's Texas Toku Taisen has hit the Web. This time around, they're showing their stuff at San Japan 8 on July 31 through Aug. 2, whic...
Yakuza play photo
Yakuza play

Yakuza stage play heads to video


Hard looks included
Jun 24
// Hiroko Yamamura
Stage plays and live musicals aren't really my thing. However, seeing the footage of the Yakuza theatre run makes me think I might have been missing out on some serious fun. The show isn't running at this time, but they've c...
2020 Tokyo Olympics photo
2020 Tokyo Olympics

New sports may debut at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics


Baseball, bowling, Wushu on the list
Jun 24
// Soul Tsukino
The International Olympic committee (IOC) announced that it has narrowed down the list of proposed sports to be added to the 2020 Olympic Games, held in Tokyo. The Tokyo 2020 Additional Event Programme Panel was tasked with l...
Japanese commercials photo
Japanese commercials

It's awesome Japanese commercial time!


The return!
Jun 23
// Hiroko Yamamura
Yes, I know it's been forever since I've shared Japan's finest commercial offerings. Well, fret no more my friends, let's see all that is for sale across the pond! Of course JPCMHD has lovingly collected these in beautiful H...
Music photo
Music

A Daily Dose of Music: MAN WITH A MISSION X Zebrahead


Getting mad!
Jun 23
// Hiroko Yamamura
This Tuesday we check back in with one of our favorite recent rocks bands out of Japan, Shibuya's MAN WITH A MISSION. This time they team up with the American band Zebrahead, based out of Los Angeles. Their new collaboration...

Annotated Anime: One Piece Episode 698

Jun 23 // Anthony Redgrave
Wow what an episode. When One Piece wants to turn on the action valve, it gushes not drips. I've been waiting a whole year for some more excellent One Piece fights and this episode was just the hor d'oeuvres. But first we had to sit through one of the most bizarre and badly done transition shots I've seen in recent years. After some badass close ups of Robin, Bartolomeo, and Cabbage Cavendish, it then jump cuts to a close up of Doflamingo's glasses, Law and ends with Trebol laughing. The whole thing lasts less than 3 seconds, but it's absolutely jarring to see. It's as if they accidently added in frames of Doflamingo and Law when they were finalising the scene transition. As I mentioned before this episode is about action, action, action! We are treated to literally all the fights occurring at this very moment; Franky vs. Senor Pink, the gladiators vs. Doflamingo family, and even Law and Luffy begin their final battle with the Heavenly Demon. Confusingly they completely forgot about Zoro's fight, unless he got lost on Pica. Since Sanji is AWOL, Zoro's fight is the one I'm looking forward to most so I was disappointed I didn't see him do some badass santoryu.  An alternative title for this episode should have been 'flashbacks, shadows of the past' as they recount many previous events leading up to now. It was especially offsetting seeing the old art style One Piece had back in the Jaya arc. Looking back on old One Piece episodes makes me question whether my rose tinted glasses are a bit too powerful as they look dated. The ending is one of the most satisfying I have seen in One Piece. All the frustrations I have had with the arc has all been soothed in the last 10 minutes of the episode. It also brings up a lot of mysteries that I want answering concerning the past relationship with Law and Doflamingo. My body is ready for the next week's One Piece episode #olde3joke.  hor d'oeuvres bartolomeo
One Piece photo
Action! Action! Action Jackson!
Readers that cross-pollinate to other anime sites like Anime News Network may know that they have started doing One Piece recaps as well. The writer of these, Sam Leach disagrees with me almost every week. When I li...

Attack on Titan photo
Convinced yet?
I'm still not ready to say wether I'm excited for the live action adaptation of Hajime Isayama's ridiculously popular Attack on Titan series yet. The film has a lot going for it, a decent budget and good actors should help m...

Tales of Berseria photo
Tales of Berseria

Anchors Aweigh: Tales of Berseria enters the high seas


Let's set sail for adventure!
Jun 22
// Salvador GRodiles
There's something nice about sailing to places in video games. Whether it's Wind Waker's open seas or Skies of Arcadia's vast skies, the idea of exploring vast areas on a ship has always been a thing that I've enjo...
Evangelion Day photo
Evangelion Day

It's officially the start of Third Impact


The LCL will flow!
Jun 22
// Hiroko Yamamura
Hardcore Neon Genesis Evangelion fans have been waiting for today for some time. That's right, synchronize watches... Today June 22, 2015 is the day that the events of Evangelion take place. Today is the day you get in the damn robot.
Ultraman X photo
Ultraman X

Ultraman X gets a new trailer


Nice gear
Jun 22
// Hiroko Yamamura
I'm way behind (like decades) on my Tokusatsu selection, but this new Ultraman X trailer is looking pretty good! He's looking like he's got some new gear in his arsenal, and can deliver a pretty sweet side kick. The scene with the ship doesn't look so hot, but who knows.. could be a great romp! The show hits the airways on July 14th, and will be the 41st Ultraman on the lineup!
Music photo
Music

A Daily Dose of Music: Suiyoubi no Campanella


Now that's a demo
Jun 22
// Hiroko Yamamura
The hot new group Suiyoubi no Campanella have been causing quite a stir with their latest track aptly named Suiyoubi no Campanell demo 6. The track was only available at the Hokkaido Tower Records location, and the onli...

Annotated Anime: The Disappearance of Nagato Yuki-Chan episode 4

Jun 22 // Anthony Redgrave
An eastern tradition that is swapped over here in the west is; girls will give chocolates to the guy they fancy on Valentine's day, so this episode is mainly Nagato trying to make and give chocolates to Kyon. A side story is Kyon hanging out with Haruhi and doing what Haruhi likes doing best; looking for weird shit around town and bantering with the nonchalant high schooler. In the side story especially there are a lot of visual references to the old series that are sure to please the fans. Kyon's only male friends make an appearance too although their role can be best described as cameos. Leading up to the finale of the episode, each of Nagato's friends gives her a bit of advice when it comes to confessing. Each one of them is unique to their personality and doesn't feel like the generic "just be yourself" BS that you hear waay too many times in contemporary romances. Mikuru also has a really nice scene with Nagato in this episode that encompasses the series's romantic comedy style; high school sweet with just the right amount of wacky playfulness. The ending does add some spicy drama into the mix but will probably be due to an unfortunate misunderstanding that plague so many anime high schoolers when it comes to romance. 
Nagato Yuki photo
Love in the air
So we're hitting the Valentine's day episode early in this rom-com anime. Usually, I'd expect these episodes to be in the second half of the season at least after we have gotten to know the characters a bit more. But since th...

Review: Kantai Collection - Kancolle - Season 1

Jun 21 // Anthony Redgrave
Kantai Collection Studio: Diomedea/ Doga KoboRelease Date: January 7, 2015Format: Streamed via Crunchyroll Story-wise, Kantai Collection has had a lot of breathing room when drawing from its game counterpart. The game's main draw were the fleet girls, each one unique in their appearance, personality, and often drawing from anime stereotypes. The game had little to no story but had lots of different fleet girls that needed to be managed and micro-managed. So the anime focuses on the little destroyer that could, Fubuki. She is a new recruit to join the fight against the Abyssal fleet that had mysteriously surfaced. Even though it was advertised as a light-hearted slice of life moe school girl anime, Kancolle mixes in drama, suspense, and action moments that can satisfy the manlier viewer's palette. This title is also a period piece making many references to the Pacific Theatre; from Battle of W island (Battle of Wake Island) to all the fleet girls being based off real world battle ships e.g. Fubuki is based off a Japanese Destroyer Fubuki. However, history buffs may scoff at the inaccuracies depicted in Kancolle but for the average viewer it may provide a rabbit hole of interest into the naval campaigns of WWII. Attention to detail is one of Kancolle's greatest strength though they do blur the lines in this regard.  The mood is never confusing because of its superb pacing. Each episode allows viewers to revel in the banter and gags at the naval base, watch as the battle unfurls from plan to operation, and grow closer to each character as the episode concludes. It follows this formula so the mood flows cleanly between each scene. This cycle is toned down during the middle of the season to give way for a beach episode and a curry cook-off. The latter isn't necessary for viewing but provides the moe fan service that many viewers would be expecting. This formula wouldn't work as well if the fleet girls weren't all charming in their own way. Partly because of their visuals making them all look attractive but also their amplified personalities. Kongou is the loud big sister type with an obsession for the unseen admiral and verbal English tics. Her brash head-strong personality coupled with random linguistic interchanges would come off as annoying, but the latter is a delightful reference to her real world British roots. The fleet girls even wear their personalities in the heart of battle, I really liked how Naka (self-proclaimed idol of the fleet) would exclaim "Please no more autographs" when she was getting attacked. It's these little character points that make all the fleet girls endearing.  The visuals in Kantai Collection are excellent. Like with most school girl anime, all the characters look beautiful and cater to a variety of moe subgenres. Although they do go overboard when there are girls that are battleships and act like animals!? On the animation side, they do a wonderful job converting static 2D portraits from the game into moving anime characters, and then pulling those characters into CG for the battle scenes. I only realized they went CG once the stereoscopic shots of girls firing the cannons made it abundantly clear. The designs are kept wonderfully consistent so nothing looked out of place when they switch between animation styles.  The whole premise of Kantai Collection is interesting as it brings novel ideas to the table. Turning girls into battle ships or vice-versa seemed like a strange concept but they fleshed out the details to make it more than just a throwaway slice of life in disguise. It doesn't copy the game but draws elements from it. For example; in every school girl anime there has to be a bath scene because fan service. But Kancolle makes it a prerequisite as each girl has to take a bath to repair the damages they have sustained. Instant repairs (a rare item in the game) comes in the form of specialized water making the link to the game subtle and not shamelessly promotional. Even the "excessive eater" gag has its place as the larger ships require more energy to run so have to eat more than smaller ships. They never don't explain why they have to exercise though... I went into Kancolle because it looked like a fun dumb slice-of-life about girls that happened to be ships. When I finished the short 12 episode season I was surprised by how good it was for a school girl anime. It didn't overstay its welcome with excessive fan service so the 12 -episode length was just the right on the money. Viewers that have a tolerance or preference towards anime school girls should definitely give this one a run through on Crunchy Roll.  [This review is based on a streaming version of the series viewed by the reviewer at personal expense] Battle of W island
Kantai Collection Review photo
Anchors A-moe
Kantai Collection, often shortened down to Kancolle for the more efficient speaker, has a bizarre premise. It's strange that a veteran anime viewer like myself had to double-take on Kancolle's premise; battle ships that live ...

Attack on Titan photo
Attack on Titan

Japan announces an Attack on Drugs


More dangerous than titans
Jun 21
// Anthony Redgrave
I think anime has been very quiet when it comes to drug culture. For the amount of series' that are based in a high school, none of them has an arc where they are tempted to smoke a reefer behind the bike shed. Although...
Japanator Live photo
Japanator Live

Japanator Live: Chroma Squad Season 5


The true Penultimate Stream begins
Jun 20
// Salvador GRodiles
[Update: The stream has ended; however, you can watch the recorded footage from the most recent segment here.] It looks like I owe you folks an apology, since I was wrong about my last Chroma Squad stream being the Pen...

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