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The List - 7 Eras of Japanese History via Anime

Travel back in time (and maybe have your gender swapped) to seven different periods of Japanese history, all from the comfort of your couch. ― The history of Japanese civilization is expansive, predating the Common Era by 10,000 years (the Jomon period). There's much more ground to cover compared to what kids get in U.S. history classes in high school, which rarely cover anything before the Boston T...
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ANNCast - Podcastoes O'Brien

Voice actor/director/professional Dungeons & Dragons player Liam O'Brien returns to the podcast after a 5-year hiatus to discuss his roles in Fate/Zero and Sailor Moon, along with the landscape for anime voice acting now and what it's like to be Gollum. ― ANNCast Episode 234: Podcastoes O'Brien Get the Flash Player to see this player. Voice actor/director/professional Dungeons & Dragons player Liam ...
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Answerman - What Needs To Be Approved By A Licensor?

Names, marketing, merchandise, key art - what aspects of an American home video release need direct approval from the Japanese company that owns the show? ― Hey guys, I could really use some new questions! It's the dog days of summer, so people are kind of checked out... and not sending in questions for me to answer. So come on, send me something! [email protected] Thanks!! Julian asks...
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Answerman - Why Did So Many OVA Series End Prematurely?

So many of those classic OVA series from the 80s and 90s ended after only one or two episodes. Justin investigates why. ― Hey guys, I could really use some new questions! It's the dog days of summer, so people are kind of checked out... and not sending in questions for me to answer. So come on, send me something! [email protected] Thanks!! Parker asks: I recently purchased Discotek's D...
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The X Button - Heaven Sense

This week: a chat with Final Fantasy XIV producer Naoki Yoshida! Plus Exist Archive, Red Ash, Dragon Quest, and a classic wonder-world! ― Some loyal readers may be tired of hearing about Red Ash, Keiji Inafune's Kickstarter attempt to relaunch Mega Man Legends in just about everything but name and storyline. You must forgive me, as I really enjoy the Legends games and want to see more in their gener...
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Shelf Life - Sporty Spice

This week we get athletic with Ping Pong the Animation and Wanna Be the Strongest in the World. ― Jump to this week's reviews: Ping Pong the AnimationWanna Be the Strongest in the World! On Shelves This Week 009 Re: Cyborg BD+DVD Funimation - 104 min - Hyb - MSRP $34.98Currently cheapest at: $20.14 Amazon Synopsis: Long ago, nine humans were captured and weaponized into cyborgs. However, they rebell...
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Answerman - Why Do Older Shows Go Unstreamed?

Every season there are a handful of shows that don't get licensed for simulcasting, and frequently they're never heard from again. What's up with that? ― Chris asks: So, I have noticed over the past few years or so that certain series that have a following already have gotten passed up for streaming rights (i.e., Nanoha ViVid, Dog Days", Milky Holmes, etc. just to name a few) for other properties th...
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The Mike Toole Show -The Worst Anime of All Time

Fresh from his panel at Otakon, Mike runs down the absolute worst anime he's ever seen, and wonders what you might consider to be worse. ― Goku and Superman tangle furiously, then get caught up in a tender embrace; bystanders swarm them, holding up mobile phones to capture the moment. A massive line of kids, teenagers, and adults in an assortment of wigs, hats, and other odd clothes starts moving, it...
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The List - 6 Deadly Maids

These six maids will wait on you hand and foot, but are also quite capable of wasting some fools. PLUS: results from last week's Love Live poll and a new Pokemon poll! ― Maids, like catgirls, are an anime staple. Heck, some characters are even both. There's something alluring about the frilly dresses and sworn dedication to their "Master," even if that dedication involves killing a tavern full of gr...
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Answerman - Why Can't Idol Singers Have Lives Of Their Own?

Idol singers in Japan are held to some pretty strict and unrealistic standards of conduct by their fans. Is the Idol economy unfair? Justin takes a look. ― Chris asks: Singer Minami Kuribayashi — known for a number of anime OP and ED songs and as a voice actress for the Rumbling Hearts and Muv-Luv visual novels — recently admitted in a blog entry that she had a son, and that she expected that “becau...
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ANNCast - ¡Kamui Caliente!

Zac and special guest Eryn head back to the 20th century for a double feature of two lavishly animated, terminally convoluted classics, X/1999 and Akira, and try not to lose their heads. ― ANNCast Episode 233: Kamui Caliente! Get the Flash Player to see this player. Zac and special guest Eryn head back to the 20th century for a double feature of two lavishly animated, terminally convoluted classics,...
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Answerman - Why Doesn't Anime Have Deleted Scenes?

Ever wonder why American cartoons always have a ton of deleted scenes, but anime rarely ever does? Justin's on the case. ― Adam asks: For several American TV shows and movies, the home video releases tend to come with deleted scenes, which were edited out of the final version. Family Guy and Robot Chicken do this all the time. But I next to never see any deleted scenes for anime. And it's not just t...
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The X Button - How Suda is Now

This week: further talk with Goichi “Suda51” Suda about Killer7, No More Heroes, and in-jokes! Plus new Street Fighters, Odin Sphere’s return, and the only election that matters! ― I was on the way home from Comic-Con when I heard the news: Satoru Iwata, the President and CEO of Nintendo since 2002, passed away at the age of 55. Iwata's time at Nintendo saw many momentous things: the DS replacing th...
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The Top 10 Final Fantasy VII Themes

The FFVII remake can't come soon enough, but you can still enjoy that epic soundtrack while you wait! Hope Chapman counts down some of the best pieces from this legendary JRPG. ― At long last, Final Fantasy fanatics can look forward to a next-gen remake of the series' most popular entry: FFVII! There could be a long wait ahead of us before a shiny new version of this JRPG classic graces our PS4's, b...
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Shelf Life - No Pain No Game

This week, characters go head-to-head in culinary and card game match-ups:
- No Game, No Life
- Yakitate!! Japan Pt 2
― Jump to this week's reviews: No Game, No LifeYakitate!! Japan Pt. 2 On Shelves This Week .hack//G.U. Trilogy DVD Funimation - 94 min - Sub - MSRP $29.98Currently cheapest at: $17.26 Rakuten Synopsis: Things in "The World" are once again slipping into chaos. Haseo and his friend Ato...
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Answerman - What's with all the school uniforms in anime?

Nearly every student in nearly every anime (which is an enormous percentage of anime characters) wears a school uniform. But WHY? ― James asks: I have noticed that a large percentage of Japanese anime and manga series that I have followed feature schools, and almost invariably, the students at those schools wear uniforms (with Dragon Ball being the only series that I can recall where students do not...
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The List - 7 of Anime's Friendliest Ghosts

Not all of the wailing spirits of the dead are here to cause trouble - some of them just want to lend a spectral hand. PLUS: the user poll to end all user polls! ― They haunt our homes, slam our doors, and break our best china. Poltergeists, vengeful spirits, and the residual energy of the wrongfully killed wreck all kinds of havoc. But what if all ghosts aren't creeping out of abandoned wells or hi...
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Answerman - When Will Americans Stop Hating and Love the Maid Café?

A local overreaction to a maid cafe popping up in the midwest has one writer asking Justin when America will just accept otaku interests and habits as normal. ― Michael asks: I live in Ohio and recently a small group of people scheduled a maid cafe to be held in a suburb here. They rented out a cafe to use during its off hours and sold tickets, got everything setup, etc. On the day of the event, the...
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ANNCast - A Midsummer Night's Podcast

Zac and Hope get Attacked by Titans, pull apart the summer season, get confronted by Fire Emblem Fates and take your questions both taped and live. ― ANNCast Episode 232: A Midsummer Night's Podcast Get the Flash Player to see this player. Zac and Hope get Attacked by Titans, pull apart the summer season, get confronted by Fire Emblem Fates and take your questions both taped and live. You can listen...
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Answerman - Why Isn't More Anime Shown in US Theaters?

If you've ever wondered why there aren't more anime movies showing at your local cineplex, Justin has the reason why. ― Before we get started, a quick correction. Some time ago, I wrote about how back in the bad old days, many American editions of manga were literally photocopied from a Japanese tankoubon. None other than Carl Horn emailed me to let me know that, while that was true, it was really o...
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Answerman - Why Hasn't Anyone Licensed Miyazaki's Future Boy Conan?

Hayao Miyazaki made only one TV series, and it's nowhere to be found on American shores. Why hasn't it gotten released here? ― Hey, it's not Friday, is it? Nope, it's our first "Main Feed" Answerman! From now on, we'll be answering questions one at a time, several days a week. It'll be much easier to search Answerman by topic this way, and hopefully the column will be more accessible as a result. En...
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Answerman - Why Hasn't Anyone Licensed Miyazaki's Future Boy Conan?

Hayao Miyazaki made only one TV series, and it's nowhere to be found on American shores. Why hasn't it gotten released here? ― Hey, it's not Friday, is it? Nope, it's our first "Main Feed" Answerman! From now on, we'll be answering questions one at a time, several days a week. It'll be much easier to search Answerman by topic this way, and hopefully the column will be more accessible as a result. En...
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Tales Of The Industry - Big Apple Anime Fest

Tales of the Industry is switching to a feature article format, but not before Justin shares the thrilling behind-the-scenes tale of the first Big Apple Anime Fest. ― This will be the last regularly published Tales of the Industry, as we are switching to an occasional schedule. We will still continue to bring you new stories as we get them, but padding it out with my own stories is proving to be a l...
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Shelf Life - Don't You Forget About Me

This week, a slice-of-life about friendship and relationships, and an action show about historical figures with giant guns:
- Nobunagun
- One Week Friends
― Jump to this week's reviews: One Week FriendsNobunagun On Shelves This Week A Lull in the Sea Vol. 1 DVD, Vol. 2 NIS America - 308 min - Hyb - MSRP $49.99|$49.99Currently cheapest at: $37.99 Right Stuf|$37.99 Right Stuf Synopsis: Humans used to ...
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The Mike Toole Show - Need for Seed

Appleseed never seems to fade away, after a manga, an old OVA and a series of CG films. Mike investigates just what it is that has made the series endure. ― Some anime series are wildly popular, spanning decades in the form of TV series, movies, OVAs, and an ocean of tie-in projects. Others burn bright, but wrap up after a single TV series or film. But there are a few - just a handful, really - that ...
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The List - 7 1990s OVAs to Revive After Ushio & Tora

Dragon Ball, Sailor Moon - everything old is new again. Here are seven OVAs from the 90s that deserve another shot. ― The gritty aesthetic of late 80s and early 90s anime is experiencing a small renaissance right now. Companies are reaching back into the vault and dusting off the action and sci-fi series, dated character designs and all, and giving them the anime treatment they missed out on during ...
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Answerman - Being A Member of a Production Committee

Funimation just announced that they'll be a member of a production committee, but what does that mean? Also, Media Blasters sells anime on DVD-R, anime conventions just keep on growing, and nobody can explain the business behind Netflix. ― Hey guys! I have some news to share! As we announced at our Anime Expo panel, Answerman will be changing its format slightly. Starting next week, instead of posti...
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The X Button - Wii U Ready

This week: Is the Wii U a failure or just misunderstood and cranky? Plus the pseudo-return of Mega Man Legends, more Digimon, and an amazing video-game relic! ― There'll be no X Button next week, due to my covering the San Diego Comic Con in all its crowded, blisteringly hot glory this weekend. If you're there, you can see me host a panel for Goichi “Suda51” Suda, creator of delightfully weird games...
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Shelf Life - Woman Power

This week, a timely look at the energetic Michiko & Hatchin, and a dive into the past with Bubblegum Crisis: Tokyo 2040. ― Jump to this week's reviews: Michiko & HatchinBubblegum Crisis: Tokyo 2040 On Shelves This Week Atelier, Escha & Logy: Alchemists of the Dusk Sky Complete Collection BD, DVD Sentai - Sub - MSRP $59.98|$49.98Currently cheapest at: $34.49 Amazon|$29.20 Rakuten Synopsis: Escha has ...
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The List - 7 of the Worst Sore Losers

Some people just don't take defeat very well. These seven folks could use a lesson in being a good sport. ― Losing gracefully and admitting defeat is a skill and some characters, especially villains, aren't particularly good at it. It's never the losers fault that they didn't succeed. Blame is either passed around to the nearest person, or worse, the loser seeks revenge against whomever bested them....
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Answerman - Why Are All The Parents Dead?

Why does anime delight in making its young heroes parent-less? Plus, how long does an episode take to animate? Does Funimation have DVD rights for the shows they're simul-dubbing? And what was ADV Kidz? ― Mitsuki asks: I was having a discussion (and by "discussion" I meant Tumblr post) about truly godawful cartoons, and someone brought up "Super Duper Sumos", and posted an image. Thing is, I noticed...
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House of 1000 Manga Finale: Part II

In the final installment of House of 1000 Manga, Jason both looks back at some of his favorites from the last 5 years and looks forward at what's to come! ― House of 1000 Manga: The End If this column was a horror movie, like the one it's named after (I've actually never even seen it), this is the part when the House of 1000 Manga burns down and the traumatized survivors tell the sheriff about how t...
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The X Button - Inner Stella

Have some imports this week with Tatsunoko tributes, Rhythm Heaven, and an RPG developer’s final days! And there’s Fire Emblem debate, Ace Attorney history, and Todd’s revelation of his favorite King of Fighters character! ― The Fire Emblem series has a few controversies, but you'll have to dig to find them. Those games with the more disturbing plot twists, such as Fire Emblem: Genealogy of the Holy...
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ANNCast - Criticulous

Zac and Hope are joined by two of our newest writers, Nick Creamer and Gabriella Ekens, to chat about writing anime reviews and what it's like to write about anime online. ― ANNCast Episode 231: Criticulous Get the Flash Player to see this player. Zac and Hope are joined by two of our newest writers, Nick Creamer and Gabriella Ekens, to chat about writing anime reviews and what it's like to write ab...
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Tales Of The Industry - How To Torpedo Your Own License

A cautionary tale of a would-be licensee who spoke too soon, learning the hard way how business is done in Japan. ― Welcome to “Tales of the Industry,” a column where we will share stories from real working professionals in the anime business. This week, we have a story contributed by a long time industry member who acts as a consultant for companies looking to get into the anime business. We've rem...
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Shelf Life - Alien HQ

This week, scrappy volleyball players and a sinister race of sex aliens.
- Captain Earth
- Haikyu!!
― Jump to this week's reviews: Captain Earth Collection 1Haikyu!! Collection 1 On Shelves This Week A Lull in the Sea - Complete Collection BD [Premium] NIS America - Hyb - MSRP $179.99Currently cheapest at: $134.99 Right Stuf Synopsis: Humans used to inhabit the seas, until one day, a group of humans...
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The List - 7 Government Organizations That Would Make the CIA Blush

This rundown of shadowy cabals that perform their insidious machinations behind the scenes, secretly controlling everything, will get your SEELE of approval. ― America's Central Intelligence Agency has fueled numerous conspiracy theories and espionage plots in films, books, and real life. Anime is no exception, with many protagonists uncovering all the dirt their utopian governments swept under the ...
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ANNCastle of Cagliostro

Discotek representatives Brady Hartel and Reed Nelson stop by to talk about their most recent prestige release, The Castle of Cagliostro on Bluray. PLUS: An announcement! ― ANNCast Episode 230: ANNCastle of Cagliostro Get the Flash Player to see this player. Discotek representatives Brady Hartel and Reed Nelson stop by to talk about their most recent prestige release, The Castle of Cagliostro on Blu...
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Answerman - What's With The Bootlegs On Amazon?

Why are bootlegged anime products still such a problem on Amazon? Plus, the scoop on the new Funimation/Universal Studios deal, anime on Amazon Prime, and when anime will come out on 4K Blu-ray. ― Daniel asks: Who will produce the first anime Super Duper Blu-Ray when players start shipping at the end of the year? Sony via AniPlex? Do you think supporting three simultaneous disc formats will be beyon...
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House of 1000 Manga Finale: Part I

The House of 1000 Manga is closing its doors after 5 years of excavation and discovery. Co-author Shaenon Garrity counts down her favorite manga from the column. ― Shaenon's Ten Favorite 'House' Manga It falls upon my bowed shoulders to announce the news: House of 1,000 Manga is ending. After five years of weekly columns, the time has come to move on. Among other things, we're kind of running out of...
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The X Button - Chapter Plays

This week: Kickstarters bring tactical comedy, haunted echoes, and something called Shenmue. And we spy new Nier, celebrate Sonic’s birthday, and get all mushy about a giant puppy. ― You might've missed me during last week's E3 nonsense, when I came down with food poisoning. Fortunately, I wasn't at E3, so I just rode out the extravaganza by watching trailers and making feeble Twitter posts from my ...
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The Set List - Top 10 EDs of 2009

Hope rounds out the year of 2009 with the best ending themes! Did your favorite song make the cut? Plus: vote for your number one pick in the poll! ― This week on the Set List, we continue our journey through the final year of the 00's with the top ten ending theme songs of 2009! As always, only shows that debuted in 2009 qualified for the list, and the same is true of this week's poll, so keep that...
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Shelf Life - Star Power

This week's releases, a pint-size girl bent on world domination and a particularly lethargic entry in the .hack franchise.
-World Conquest Zvezda Plot
-.hack//Roots
― Jump to this week's reviews: World Conquest Zvezda Plot.hack//Roots On Shelves This Week Bleach - Season 25 Uncut Box Set DVD Viz - Hyb - MSRP $44.82Currently cheapest at: $27.58 Amazon Synopsis: Ichigo has been without powers for a ye...
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The List - 7 of Hello Kitty's Most Expensive Accessories

Almost no other mascot in the world gets merchandise as expensive as Hello Kitty. Here's a collection of some of the most outrageously-priced luxury Kitty items. ― Hello Kitty is a cat, or a girl, or both that wants for nothing. She has her own pet cat and friends of all shapes and sizes. She's been to outer space and to countries all over the world. Collectors of Sanrio's popular mascot will quickl...
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ANNCast - Game Show: Crass Materia-lism

It's a packed, enormous E3 edition of Game Show where our 90s teenage nerd dreams have all come true! Final Fantasy VII, Shenmue, The Last Guardian and much more! ― ANNCast Episode 229: Game Show: Crass Materia-lism Get the Flash Player to see this player. Todd Ciolek, Dave Reily, Joel White and Heidi Kemps join us for a packed, enormous E3 edition of Game Show where our 90s teenage nerd dreams have...
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Answerman - Will Manga Go Public Domain?

Plus, what is digipaint, exactly? What ever happened to Record of Lodoss War? And what does it take to get a long-running show green-lit these days? ― No time for an intro today, let's get to it! Cyrus asks: The Mangaka of a popular series called say hello to black jack did what would surely give Alan Moore nightmares. He revealed that the series was now 100 percent public domain per his own wishes....
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House of 1000 Manga - Kekkaishi

Jason exorcises some demons with the teenage spirit-banishing crew of Kekkaishi, a 35-volume action adventure hit. ― Kekkaishi Manga years are like dog years; a popular shonen or shojo manga lives for 10 or so years, it has a rich, full life (or not), and after it's gone you remember it fondly. (Unless it's a manga that keeps dragging on forever on life support, getting worse and worse and draining ...
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Tales Of The Industry - Wanna Go To Tokyo In 3 Days?

One might think that being suddenly asked last-minute to go to Japan with a video game news crew for 10 days would be a fun thing. It is not. ― Welcome to “Tales of the Industry,” a column where we will share stories from real working professionals in the anime business. This week, we have a story contributed by a long time marketing consultant and freelancer who no longer works on anime full-time, ...
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Shelf Life - Act A Fool

This week, people with superpowers, and a gathering of historical figures in a world very much unlike our own.
- Darker than Black s2
- Nobunaga the Fool collection 1
― Jump to this week's reviews: Darker Than Black - Season 2 + OVAsNobunaga the Fool - Collection 1 On Shelves This Week Captain Earth - Collection 1 BD, DVD Sentai - 325 min - Sub - MSRP $59.98|49.98Currently cheapest at: $34.46 Amazon...
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The Mike Toole Show - A Low-Down Dirty Pair

Mike's memory of the classic sci-fi fan favorite Dirty Pair is triggered by a couple of outstanding cosplayers, and so a look back at the sexy action franchise is in order! ― Once again, I'm spending the weekend surrounded by the riotous color and noise of an anime convention. This one's Anime Next, taking place in central New Jersey, not far from the weird, unsettled beauty of the Pine Barrens. It's...
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The List - 7 Useless Magic Attacks

These seven magic users have decidedly un-phenomenal, less-than-cosmic supernatural abilities. ― In a creative medium where more shows than average are full of magic users, it's hard to come up with unique abilities that haven't been done before. The classic elements and standard psychic abilities like telekinesis are done to death. The alternatives become super-specialized magic that has little to ...
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The Sixty Billion Double Dollar ANNcast

Zac and Hope draw guns at high noon over the smash hit late 90s sci-fi western Trigun! Is it a masterpiece or a mess? The answer will blow your Vash coat off! ― ANNCast Episode 228: The Sixty Billion Double Dollar ANNCast Get the Flash Player to see this player. Zac and Hope draw guns at high noon over the smash hit late 90s sci-fi western Trigun! Is it a masterpiece or a mess? The answer will blow ...
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Answerman - Can Webcomic Artists Get Anime Made?

A fan wonders if Kickstarter can help webcomics get made into anime pilot films. Plus, why anime is often about aiming for the top, and how theme songs get picked. ― I've decided I'm bad at these introduction thingies. Most of what I'm really doing is working, most of what I'm working on I can't talk about, and most of my private life is either not interesting or is, ahem, private. I guess I could t...
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House of 1000 Manga - Five Amazing Untranslated Manga

Shaenon uncovers five incredible manga that, for whatever silly reason, haven't been made legally available in English yet, including one by the author of Fullmetal Alchemist. ― Five Amazing Untranslated Manga When I tell people I work as a manga editor, one of the first and most reasonable questions I get is, “Oh, you read Japanese?” Sadly, no. All I bring to the job are my Seven Sisters-honed writ...
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The X Button - Awful Great

This week: how bad games can be good! Plus new Tales titles, more Mega Man, localized Legends, and a comeback that you really can’t call a comeback. ― The Valkyrie Profile series isn't completely dormant, folks. Trust me. Square Enix hasn't made a new game since 2008, but people still remember it! I have it on good authority that the second Neptunia game's equipment screen alludes to three Valkyries...
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The Set List - Top 10 OPs of 2009

Hope travels back in time and unearths the best anime openings of 2009! Spice and Wolf, Haruhi Suzumiya, Eden of the East and much more! ― Hooray, the ANN time machine has taken us back to 2009! America is in a recession! The swine flu is causing everyone to freak out! Transformers 2 is in theaters! Is it too late to go back to 2015? Not to worry, there was plenty of great anime music to discover in...
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Shelf Life - Fight to Survive

This week, two shelf-worthy sci-fi titles: Knights of Sidonia and the Mardock Scramble trilogy. Plus, a look at this week's new releases. ― Jump to this week's reviews: Mardock Scramble: The TrilogyKnights of Sidonia - Season 1 On Shelves This Week Tsubasa RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE & xxxHOLiC DVD (S.A.V.E.) Funimation - 100 min - Hyb - MSRP $9.98Currently cheapest at: $5.99 Rakuten Synopsis: A double-feat...
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The List - 7 Pieces of Anime Technology We Wish We Had Right Now

From persocoms to capsule corps, anime features a wealth of technological advances that would come in very handy in real life. ― Technology is constantly moving in directions only thought possible in the likes of our favorite sci-fi shows. The launch of Google Glass brought comparisons to Vegeta's power visor or the glasses used in Denno Coil. Sharon Apple now enthralls sold out shows in the form of...
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Answerman - Universal Appeal

What's with the Universal logo at the beginning of some Funimation shows? Also, questions about the 70s show Karate Master, how shows get licensed for TV, and why manga companies don't archive American versions. ― This is the first week in a very long time that I have not ingested any sushi. This is a problem. I have reservations for good, fancy sushi tomorrow night with family, but I am worried tha...
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House of 1000 Manga - Meteor Prince

In a mad scramble to find a manga to review this week, Jason rolls the dice and winds up with a magic space boyfriend falling right on his head. ― Meteor Prince 10 a.m., Wednesday. House of 1000 Manga is due in four hours, and I've read everything in the house. Drinking coffee is just making me more nervous and jittery, and making me think, when will someone translate a coffee-themed manga? Is Rei H...
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The X Button - Psycho Power

May’s imports are all about Cross Ange, Psycho-Pass, and an old NES classic! Also discussed: Fire Emblem, Guilty Gear, and a true test of Nintendo prowess! ― Well, the preliminary round of the Nintendo World Championships is over. As most people expected, it wasn't a gaudy spectacle like the 1990 Championships. How could it be? The original Nintendo World Championships came at the height of Nintendo...
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Tales Of The Industry - Anime Colony

A young Justin Sevakis goes to work for an ill-fated anime website that explodes in slow-motion in the hallowed halls of the Sci-Fi Channel. ― Welcome to “Tales of the Industry,” a column where we will share stories from real working professionals in the anime business. This week, we return to an autobiographical story by the author. Are you a current or former member of the anime business or conven...
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Shelf Life - Space Invaders

This week, monsters that you can vanquish with your smartphone, and the next wave of space pioneers.
- Devil Survivor 2
- Space Brothers v.2
― Jump to this week's reviews: Devil Survivor 2: The AnimationSpace Brothers Collection 2 On Shelves This Week 5 Centimeters Per Second DVD Eastern Star - 63 min - Hyb - MSRP $24.95Currently cheapest at: $15.22 Rakuten Synopsis: Named for the speed at which che...
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The Mike Toole Show - Nintendo Power

Hey, Paisanos! Mike finds the secret warp zone to a world full of anime based on classic Nintendo games, for better and worse. ― It's been a Nintendo kind of month for me. My brother surprised me with a Wii U for my birthday, but see, my birthday was in March. Being a perpetually distracted person, I let the damn console sit in the corner of my living room, unopened, for a good six weeks. But May is ...
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The List - 7 Characters That Can't Resist Cats

These seven folks just can't get enough feline companionship; meow might be the time for an intervention. ― Dogs may be man's best friend, but it's cats that rule the internet. Scientists have gone so far as trying to classifying the key qualities that make up "cat people" and "dog people." Male cat owners are perceived as "nicer" than those who don't own a cat, but also lean more "neurotic." Regard...
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ANNCast - Nostalgia Thighs

Friend of the show Brady Hartel joins Zac and Hope for a round of Twitter and live chat questions! Mad Max, Turn A Gundam, Sound! Euphonium and much more! ― ANNCast Episode 227: Nostalgia Thighs Get the Flash Player to see this player. Friend of the show Brady Hartel joins Zac and Hope for a round of Twitter and live chat questions! Mad Max, Turn A Gundam, Sound! Euphonium and much more! You can lis...
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Answerman - Brave Mew World

This week, why people STILL go on about 4Kids even though they haven't been a thing in years, whether anime companies change their mind about releases, where anohana went on Crunchyroll, and just what it takes to blow a successful career in anime. ― It's graduation season! Congratulations to everyone who's checking out of their school for a last time. It's a wonderful feeling, isn't it? When I gradu...
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House of 1000 Manga - Sunny

The acclaimed author of Gogo Monster turns in a highly personal series of vignettes that offer a peek into his life. ― Sunny In my House column on Taiyo Matsumoto's GoGo Monster, I mentioned how the alt-manga master's career has drifted from fantasy to realism, toward work that feels increasingly drawn from life. Best known in the U.S. for Tekkon Kinkreet (also published as Black and White), a sci-f...
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The X Button - Score Attacks

This week: arcades, high scores, and the cruel tides of fate! Plus yet more visual novels, even more Guilty Gear, and still more horrors from ancient times! ― On tap this week: old games and how their trends died off. This reminds me that I don't discuss the days of Atari and arcades that often. I was too young to really remember them now, so they're just a dim Nintendo-less prehistory where I might...
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The Set List - Top 10 Fullmetal Alchemist Theme Songs

Hope counts down the best theme songs from across everyone's favorite action-fantasy franchise, Fullmetal Alchemist. Did your favorite make the list? ― With over 100 episodes, two movies, and two separate continuities, Fullmetal Alchemist is a mighty franchise, formative for anime fans both old and new and packed with memorable music. Today, I'm counting down the top ten best theme songs from the Fu...
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Shelf Life - Killer Instinct

This week, a celebrated classic from someone's who's never seen it before, and an alien dud.
- Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse v2
- Ninja Scroll
― Jump to this week's reviews: Ninja ScrollMuv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse collection 2 On Shelves This Week Ceres, Celestial Legend Complete TV Series DVD Eastern Star - 580 min - Hyb - MSRP $44.95Currently cheapest at: $27.44 Rakuten Synopsis: Frate...
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The List - 7 Deadly Games of Survival

An evil organization, a crowd of unwilling contestants, a bloody battle to see who will survive; it's a familiar setup, but these stories find new ways to keep it fresh. ― When Resident Evil was released for PlayStation in 1996, many video game fans caught their first taste of survival horror. The game, and the many that would follow, places players in deadly situations where they have to be fast on...
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Answerman - Categorization Is Death

This week, Justin takes on the old shojo/shonen categories, whether Section23 should still keep doing their own dubs, whether the Japanese will ever get on Spotify, and why anime based on American stuff so rarely shows up here. ― It's Memorial Day Weekend, the unofficial start of summer! I hope you all have something fun planned. I try not to go anywhere this weekend, because everyone inevitably tri...
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ANNCast - The Porn Ultimatum

Founder and owner of FAKKU.net, Jacob Grady, stops by to discuss the one subject we've never broached on ANNCast: porn. FAKKU is going legitimate; we discuss that transition, porn's place in anime fandom and pop culture, and much more. ― ANNCast Episode 226: The Porn Ultimatum Get the Flash Player to see this player. Founder and owner of FAKKU.net, Jacob Grady, stops by to discuss the one subject we...
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House of 1000 Manga - Inuyashiki

An old man becomes a cybernetic killing machine courtesy of the author of Gantz. Just don't get between him and the early bird special. ― Inuyashiki “When I see old men eating beef bowls alone, late at night…lonely old salarymen…I wonder what their joy in life is. Why are they eating alone? Don’t they have families to be with?” I almost read a YA shojo manga for this week, but instead, somehow, I'm ...
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The X Button - Core Conceptions

This month, crowdfunding tales of flashy brawls, undersea dangers, and helpful bats! Plus Nintendo’s new competition, more of The Last Story, and the best video-game gun ever. ― I mentioned Data East's arcade library a while ago. I tried to recall truly amazing Data East games, and I couldn't come up with any besides Boogie Wings. This past week I noticed one more great neglected Data East game. It'...
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Tales Of The Industry - Getting a Foot in the Door

Justin makes the transition from fan to professional in the only way he could: subtitling Japanese softcore on VHS. ― Welcome to “Tales of the Industry,” a column where we will share stories from real working professionals in the anime business. This week, we return to an autobiographical story by the author. Are you a current or former member of the anime business or convention staff? Do you have a...
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Shelf Life - Springtime for Panties

We're chasing away the rainy-day blues with two comedies this week: Denki-Gai vol. 2 and D-Frag. Plus, a rundown of this week's new releases. ― Jump to this week's reviews: Denki-gai volume 2D-Frag On Shelves This Week .hack//Roots Complete Series DVD Funimation - 650 min - Hyb - MSRP $39.98Currently cheapest at: $23.28 Rakuten Synopsis: A new version of The World is out, and Haseo and his new guild...
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The Mike Toole Show -The Astro Boy Next Door

Mike fires up the jet engines in his behind and goes on a journey through all the different anime versions of everyone's favorite superhero from the 50's, Astro Boy. ― I've been watching that new Heroic Legend of Arslan TV series lately. The show was an easy sell for me-- I like the works of original creator Yoshiki Tanaka, who gave us Legend of the Galactic Heroes. I like the Arslan OVA series from ...
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The List - 7 Mad Re-Imaginings of Alice in Wonderland

Almost no other classic story has been twisted by manga and anime as much as Alice in Wonderland. We're through the looking glass, people. ― There might be no other example of Western literature whose themes, plot line, and characters appear in more anime than Lewis Carroll's The Adventures of Alice in Wonderland. Quin Rose's PC game is one example that has inspired an ever growing series of manga b...
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Answerman - Heads Exploding... WITH KNOWLEDGE!

Justin rumbles with the many versions of Fist of the North Star, ponders why long-running anime are awkwardly cut into "seasons", and wistfully remembers the HD format wars of 2007. ― I went a little too nuts with the research this week and ended up with a few really long answers, so let's get right to it. Kira asks: Years ago, most of anime I saw were long-runners like Naruto or Bleach. When lookin...
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ANNCast - Chewing the Fate

Zac, Hope and fan guest Aidan summon their own Heroic Spirits and battle it out over the real meaning of Gen Urobuchiand Nasu Kinoko's giant smash hit fantasy action drama Fate/Zero. ― ANNCast Episode 225: Chewing the Fate Get the Flash Player to see this player. Zac, Hope and fan guest Aidan summon their own Heroic Spirits and battle it out over the real meaning of Gen Urobuchi and Nasu Kinoko's gi...
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House of 1000 Manga - The Earl and the Fairy

A plucky redheaded fairy expert gets more than she bargained for, along with a magical boyfriend. Shaenon investigates. ― The Earl and the Fairy I admit it: I feel like I'm behind on the shojo manga these days. The most popular shonen series make enough noise in fandom that even an old Dirty Pair-reading fart like myself knows more or less what's up, and anyway right now it's mostly Attack on Titan ...
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The X Button - Harsh Harvest

This week, The Lost Valley meets Story of Seasons in a knock-down drag-out take-no-prisoners cow-milking egg-picking crop-tending Harvest Moon fight of the century! Plus good Sega news, bad Sega news, and the return of Castlevania. ― This week we'll face some sad news about Sega, so I think it best to start with some good news about Sega. That good news comes from the Sega 3D Classics, a series of 3...
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The Set List - Top 10 Legend of Zelda Tunes

Hope channels the Hero of Time and counts down the best melodies from the beloved Legend of Zelda series. ― It's dangerous to go alone! The Set List is back with everyone's favorite pointy-eared elf hero, and my top ten favorite Legend of Zelda tunes, as defined by soundtrack picks from the franchise's almost thirty-year history. There's a lot of music to choose from, so I limited myself to one sele...
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Shelf Life - That's So Ravens

This week's heap of new releases. Plus, a trip back in time, and a magical high school, with reviews of Rose of Versailles part 2, and the first part of Tokyo Ravens. ― Jump to this week's reviews: Rose of Versailles Part 2Tokyo Ravens Part 1 On Shelves This Week Denki-Gai Volume 2 BD+DVD (Collector's Edition + CD) Ponycan USA - 100 min - Sub - MSRP $89.98Currently cheapest at: $71.98 Right Stuf Syn...
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The List - 6 Real-Life Japanese Robots Moving into the Marketplace

Hold on to your job for dear life: these automatons are coming for you, and they're impossible to resist. ― Technology is a constant presence in modern lives. Most of us carry a "phone" that contains more capabilities than what we used to land man on the moon. What once was a technological dream is slowly becoming reality as developers introduce more intricate, accurate, and personable robots. Each ...
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Answerman - Might Makes Rights

This week, what it takes to get an anime on retail store shelves. Plus, whether anyone really needs a dub these days, the legality of cosplay videos, and what ever happened to DVD inserts? ― Some days, it just feels like there's so much good stuff out there, and you just can't wait to be done with the work you have to do so that you can get to the pile of great stuff waiting for you. For example, af...
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House of 1000 Manga - Poverty, Princesses and Zombies

Jason checks out three prose novels about the life and challenges of working as a mangaka. ― The Poverty, The Princess and the Zombies The way reading about food makes you hungry, reading about manga makes me want to read manga. In our ongoing exploration of “What is it like to be a manga artist?”, this week we check out three very different prose ebooks about the life of a mangaka… Manga Poverty Sh...
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The X Button - Super-Connected

This week: we talk with CyberConnect2’s Hiroshi Matsuyama about Naruto, future projects, and the best place to put a game company! Plus Terra Battle, Tron Bonne, and something that’s totally not Castlevania. ― Most agree that Rare isn't what it used to be. The developer rode merrily through the 1990s thanks to a partnership with Nintendo, one that saw them make hits like Donkey Kong Country, Banjo-K...
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Tales Of The Industry - Oyaji-san Leaves A Gift

Bringing guests from Japan to conventions is an exciting and satisfying experience most of the time. Sometimes, though, you handle your convention guests, and sometimes they handle you. ― Welcome to “Tales of the Industry,” a column where we will share stories from real working professionals in the anime business. This week, we have another anonymous tale contributed by a current or former members o...
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Shelf Life - The Sound and the Fuuri

A list of this week's new releases. Plus, gravure idols and espers abound in this week's reviews of Super Sonico and Unlimited Psychic Squad! ― Jump to this week's reviews: Super Sonico the AnimationUnlimited Psychic Squad On Shelves This Week Free! Season 1 DVD Eastern Star - 280 min - Sub - MSRP $39.95Currently cheapest at: $24.38 Rakuten Synopsis: Four boys from Iwatobi High School have their eye...
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The Mike Toole Show - SNK-Hole

Mike dons his red trucker cap and takes a journey through all the various shlocky and unique OVAs based on old SNK fighting games. ― It took me ages to track it down. I'd been after this particular OVA for something like eight years, and for a long time, the hunt just didn't go well. First of all, the show wasn't a “true” OVA, it was an ONA that was briefly broadcast online, but region locked to Japa...
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The List - 7 Manga Banned Around the Globe

Seven manga that were just too hot or otherwise objectionable for a variety of countries all over the world. ― Censorship of anime and manga is often met with derision by fans for its alteration of the source material. Anime targeted towards children or racy manga series have gotten their share of script changes, painted on bathing suits, and Christian imagery cut. It takes another level of parental...
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ANNCast - Meat Popsicles

Zac and Justin get terminally sidetracked by your Twitter questions for a conversation that swerves dangerously between off-topic and on. Shirobako, Ghost in the Shell and more are tackled. ― ANNCast Episode 224: Meat Popsicles Get the Flash Player to see this player. Zac and Justin get terminally sidetracked by your Twitter questions for a conversation that swerves dangerously between off-topic and...
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Answerman - Can You Feel The Music?

Why the songs in Love Live! won't be dubbed, how to write to your favorite seiyuu, and why we will never learn actual sales numbers. Plus, the REAL reason why we can't have legal hentai streaming sites. ― You never know when you're going to accidentally find out something you didn't know about the anime business. A few months ago I got asked why we don't have something like Crunchyroll for hentai an...

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