Status report

I bought myself some belated Christmas presents. I’ll eventually get to the anime, but for now the item in the foreground takes priority. Incidentally, although I have a computer full of soft synths, this is the first hardware synthesizer I’ve ever owned. ((Unless you want to count my old, very plastic Yamaha keyboard, but that’s essentially a large toy, unsuitable for gigs.))

Instead of following any current series, I have indeed been rewatching Shingu. I probably will check out a couple of upcoming shows, though. Yojo-han Shinwa Taikei is yet another blasted high school college story, but Masaaki Yuasa (Mind Game, Kaiba) is directing. Haiyoru! Nyaru-Ani features Nyarlathotep in the form of a cute little girl. It sounds like she might be a candidate to replace Pyun and Potaru if I redesign my site.

Friday linkdump

The website for Satoshi Kon’s current project is active. Yume-Miru Kikai looks like a significant departure from Kon’s previous work, at least visually, and unlike Paranoia Agent and Paprika, this “future folklore story” might be suitable for all ages.

An appreciation of the background art of Oh! Edo Rocket.

For anyone who’s ever said “Huh?” at a renaissance faire.

If you’re in the Minneapolis area, you can catch a performance of “A Christmas Carol” in Klingon. (Via Maureen the Suburban Banshee.)

A three-dimensional Mandelbrot set? (also via Maureen.)

Bored with caricaturing Roman Catholicism, manga artists have discovered the Eastern Orthodox.

An old interview with the late John Sladek I came across recently. Sladek, discoverer of the thirteenth sign of the zodiac (Arachne, May 13 to June 9), ((For the morbidly curious, my own sign is “No parking — violators will be towed at owner expense.”)) was one of the last century’s best satirists and is of my favorite writers.


Thinking about large numbers.

Keep an eye on those ducks:

[audio: Thus Quacked Zarathustra.mp3]

Public service announcement: the complete Dirty Pair TV is out there, subtitled, if you know where to look.


Anime Expo has come and gone. What got licensed?

Denno Coil?
Mind Game?

Uh-uh. There was no mention of anything I’ve been waiting for. The titles that were announced all look like drivel. ((Well, maybe the remainder of Aria isn’t drivel, but I’m one of the few who didn’t find Aria the Animation a life-changing experience.)) Steven has a different list, but he, too, was disappointed.

I’m particularly annoyed that Denno Coil still hasn’t been picked up for region one. Number three of my top five, ((The other four are Haibane Renmei, Serial Experiments Lain, Cardcaptor Sakura and Shingu.)) it is the outstanding first-rate series I’ve seen that remains unlicensed. There are a number of older series on my to-buy list, but there seems to be less and less to look forward to nowadays. Oh, well; I finally got a new pair of glasses and can read all evening long again. Running out of anime won’t be a disaster.

There is a bit of good news regarding licensing: Kino International will release a compilation of Osamu Tezuka’s short films later this month. These date from 1962 to 1988 and are obviously essential for anyone interested in the history of animation. I wrote a little bit about some of them here.

Coming attractions

Kadokawa has posted the trailer for Mamoru Hosada’s Summer Wars that Fellini 8.5 found earlier:

How long will we have to wait for an American release?

Below the fold are Kadokawa’s notes with the Google translation. I would welcome a more intelligible summarization or translation, should any bilingual reader have the time.

Continue reading “Coming attractions”

A couple of quick notes

Funimation has been dropping hints about the licenses they’re about to announce. Most of the series guessed are of little interest to me, but a couple of possibilities might be worth my money. What I’ve seen of Soul Eater has been fun, and Oh! Edo Rocket was the second-best show of 2007.


That other dealer is offering a bunch of cheap boxed sets for Christmas. Most of the titles are junk — Princess Princess, anyone? — but several are worth your time: Shingu, Angelic Layer, Fantastic Children, Divergence Eve. Possibly also Witch Hunter Robin (I haven’t seen it, but I’ve heard good things about it from reliable sources) and Kodocha.

Count five and Miss Michiko

Astro is counting down his top five endings. It looks like fun, so I’ll probably post my own list, though it will have to wait until next week. Astro’s fourth choice, incidentally, almost made my list. It will be interesting to see if there is something we both pick.

As Astro notes, it’s harder to find good endings than good openings. Openings are intended to sell the show; often the trailer for a show is the opening. Consequently, producers typically lavish great care and expense on the opening. In contrast, the ending usually just serves to list the necessary credits, and the production is consequently perfunctory. Sometimes the ending tune might be worth hearing, but the visuals are rarely interesting. Nevertheless, I managed to come up with five that are worth both hearing and seeing.


Here’s something I forgot to post back in October. It’s from the ninth episode of Denno Coil.

[flv width=”704″ height=”400″] stories.flv[/flv]


I’m going to be busy not watching anime for the next few weeks. There may be an occasional trivial post, but don’t expect anything more. I’ll probably be back around the middle of December. Until then, here are a few links of interest.

I would have thought that this was obviously true, but apparently it isn’t clear to some people. Further discussion here.

Fred Kiesche discovers Ghost in the Shell. His reaction reminds me of mine to Serial Experiments Lain the first time I watched it. (Lain, by the way, was first broadcast ten years ago this summer, so I think it’s old enough to officially call a classic.)

Back in February, I had other things on my mind than following the otakusphere. Consequently, I missed Martin’s survey of the worst anime has to offer.

Here’s a preview of this winter’s new series. A couple might be worth checking out. Zoku Natsume Yuujinchou is a continuation of what was probably the best show of the summer, and Kemeno no Sou-ja Erin is based on novels by Nahoko Uehashi, who wrote the books Seirei no Moribito was based on. Update: Here are a couple of additional surveys covering more shows, here and here.

Has the internet indeed gone too far?

Ken the Brickmuppet writes about his uncle.

I’d been considering whether to look at Tytania, but Pixy points out a serious defect.


This week’s frightening search term: “life sized anime bishounen cutouts.” For target practice, I presume.

Small-scale needlework

Not anime, but worth a look for anyone with an interest in Neil Gaiman or knitting. (The key is “sweaterxxs.”)

Update: Here are some more keys. “moustachio,” an example of live-action stop-motion animation, is my favorite of the bunch, though it has nothing directly to do with the movie.


And now for something almost, but not quite, completely unrelated: Snape paper dolls.

Update II: And now for something that is completely different: a WordPress plugin that I might install late in the evening next March 31.

Update III: Here’s the trailer for Coraline.