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This Week in Anime - What the Hell is Happening in Conception?

This odd series combines isekai adventure with sex comedy hijinks in one of the most baffling ways possible, but is it a trainwreck worth watching? Nick and Steve find out the hard way. ― Conception combines isekai adventure with sex comedy hijinks in one of the most baffling ways possible, but is it a trainwreck worth watching? This week, Nick and Steve find out the hard way. Disclaimer: The views ...
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Answerman - When Is It OK To Adapt An Anime Dub Script?

Some English dub scripts are pretty extensively adapted, in some cases to the point where they've changed the story. When is it "okay" to adapt an English dub script this way? Justin gets into it. ― Brandon asked: When dubbing an anime, there is the matter of the script. There are some anime that are nearly identical to the original with some changes, like Attack on Titan; and there are some that sl...
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Answerman - Why Are DVDs and Blu-rays Sold As Combo Packs?

Anime DVDs and Blurays are often sold together in a combo pack that provides both formats - but what if you only wanted one or the other? Justin gets in to the reasons media is most commonly sold this way. ― Danette asked: Ever since Viz started started releasing the new Sailor Moon BD/DVD box sets I've stuck with the standard DVD editions over the BD/DVD editions because it doesn't make sense to me...
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Shelf Life - Area 88

This classic '80s OVA gets a new release, but does it still hold up over thirty years later? Paul Jensen finds out. Plus, all this week's new anime releases! ― A friend of mine is headed to Anime NYC next weekend. I'm not, which means I get the dubious pleasure of having a thoroughly normal weekend while getting bombarded with texts and pictures from the convention. If you're going, have fun! If not...
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The Mike Toole Show - Off the Grid, Man

Mike digs through Trigger's dusty reference bin to discover the influences that led to SSSS.Gridman, along with some of the studio's other most idiosyncratic works! ― A couple of years back, I was a guest at Anime Next, a fun, lively event that takes place in Atlantic City each June. Anime Next is part of a rare, kinda disappointingly small group of North American events that put the priority squarel...
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The List - 7 Fishy Tales of Merfolk in Anime

Most people might be familiar with the Disney version of The Little Mermaid, but anime has riffed on merfolk legends countless times - here are 7 of 'em! ― Before The Little Mermaid recast seafolk as tragic romantic heroes, sirens were creatures you never wanted to encounter on the open ocean. Spotting one or more appropriately hearing one meant you and your fellow shipmates earned a one-way ticket ...
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ANNCast - The Thing About My Dokes

Zac and Jacob dive back in to the controversial sequel Madoka Magica: Rebellion for its 5th anniversary and embark on a tour of the writing evolution of Gen Urobuchi through Madoka, Psycho-Pass and Thunderbolt Fantasy! ― ANNCast 340 - The Thing About My Dokes Zac and Jacob dive back in to the controversial sequel Madoka Magica: Rebellion for its 5th anniversary and embark on a tour of the writing ev...
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This Week in Anime - Thunderbolt Fantasy is Still Amazing in Season 2

It may look like a puppet show, but it's one of the Most Anime things airing this season. Micchy and Steve dig into what they love about the new Thunderbolt season and why you should check this curiosity out. ― Thunderbolt Fantasy Sword Seekers 2 may look like a puppet show, but it's one of the Most Anime things airing this season. This week, Micchy and Steve dig into what they love about the new se...
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This Week in Games - The End of Final Fantasy XV

It's an unceremonious end for Noctis and the boys as Square-Enix uses the 2nd anniversary of Final Fantasy XV to basically put the whole thing to bed. PLUS: Dragon Ball Fighterz is out of Dreamhack, this week's new releases and more! ― Hey again all! I'm on my way back from Japan as I write this. The doujin event was great, and it was an amazing experience overall. I have a whole lot to write about i...
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Answerman - Who Was Cloverway, And What Were They Doing With Anime?

In the early '90s, Cloverway Inc. was a familiar credit on shows like Sailor Moon, but who was this company and what did they have to do with licensing anime? Justin Sevakis has the answers. ― Job asked: What was the purpose of Cloverway Inc, as a licensing entity in the Americas? Why didn't Cloverway got more involved in distributing anime in North America, like in Latin America? Why did Cloverway ...
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This Week in Anime - Is Karakuri Circus a Hidden Classic or Just Dated?

Karakuri Circus brings its unique '90s shonen energy and a whole carload of clowns and puppets to the fall season. Andy and Steve dig into this adaptation of Kazuhiro Fujita's work after Ushio & Tora. ― Karakuri Circus brings its unique '90s shonen energy and a whole carload of clowns and puppets to the fall season, but is the experience nostalgic or just confounding? This week, Andy and Steve dig i...
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Answerman - Why Do Edited for TV Dubs Change An Anime's Music?

If you watch the original version of an anime that's been edited for American broadcast, you might notice some potent - and crucial - changes in the background music. Why is that? Justin gets into it. ― Denzel asked: I was wondering why some English dubs that are made to air on US TV get new music. I understand well enough they change music with Japanese vocals as to not alienate their audiences but...
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Shelf Life - Made in Abyss

Gabriella plumbs the depths of one of 2017's best anime, while Paul breaks down all this week's new blu-ray releases! ― I already sang its praises in the Preview Guide, but go check out Zombie Land Saga if you haven't already. It's a delightfully twisted little comedy, a fun send-up of both zombie and idol shows. I know that sounds insane, but it works better than it sounds. Welcome to Shelf Life. J...
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The List - 6 Examples of Futuristic Space Travel

There are countless cool and creative examples of advanced space travel in anime - here are 6 of 'em! ― Modern space travel is largely dictated by complicated math equations. Scientists have to carefully plot the trajectories of its satellite probes to utilize gravitational forces of other heavenly bodies. How else would we get the New Horizons to Pluto in only nine years? Manned spacecraft accompli...
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ANNCast - My Glamorous Vampire Dad

Zac and Jacob frantically chew their way through Mamoru Hosoda's latest movie Mirai and the second season of Netflix's ambitious and unrelenting Castlevania! ― ANNCast 339 - My Glamorous Vampire Dad Jacob's back, and this week we're all about Mamoru Hosoda's Mirai, Sam Deats and Warren Ellis' Castlevania Season 2, and of course, Smash Mouth. You can listen to the show on our player here, direct-down...
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Manga Answerman - How Do Censorship Rules Work for Hentai?

When it comes to pornography in manga, who dictates what naughty stuff can be shown and when? Deb Aoki finds out with a little help from FAKKU's Jacob Grady. ― When reading hentai manga, I notice that the censoring in some of them is just black or white bars. Those bars are sometimes used intensely, and other times very mildly that they don't actually cover anything (mostly the old ones). Whereas so...
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This Week in Games - The Last Remaining Secrets of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Heidi's in Japan, but she still has all the details from the latest Smash Bros. Nintendo Direct - along with this week's news, including Nier Automata's 2B in Soul Calibur and much more! ― Hey again, folks! It's another This Week In Games, comin’ atcha straight from Japan! ...Wait, I'm in Japan again? Yes I am, though it's a rather short trip with only one major event for me. But it's still something...
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This Week in Anime - Does Castlevania Season 2 Deliver on its Early Potential?

After well over a year of waiting, Drac is back with Netflix's second season debut of Castlevania. Nick and Andy find out if this spooktacularly gory action series was worth all the dramatic buildup. ― After well over a year of waiting, Drac is back with Netflix's second season debut of Castlevania. This week, Nick and Andy find out if this spooktacularly gory action series was worth all the dramati...
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Answerman - Why Don't Publishers Announce License Renewals?

You often hear about it when a North American publisher loses the license to an anime, but rarely do you hear about it when they renew licenses - why is that? Justin gets into it. ― Taylor asked: I noticed a variety of Section23's (Sentai Filmworks, Maiden Japan and AEsir Holdings) licensed anime came from its predecessor, ADV Films, which is technically a renewal of a previous license. Believe me, ...
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This Week in Anime - Is Zombie Land Saga Worth Watching?

This unusual anime stitches the flesh-melting fear of the undead to the saccharine sweetness of pop idols, but did this Frankenstein's monster turn out heavenly or horrific? Micchy and Steve offer their takes. ― Zombie Land Saga stitches the flesh-melting fear of the undead to the saccharine sweetness of pop idols, but did this Frankenstein's monster turn out heavenly or horrific? This week, Micchy ...
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Shelf Life - 18if

James takes on one of the very strangest anime he's ever reviewed for Shelf Life, while Paul breaks down all this week's new blu-ray releases! ― Between writing the weekly streaming reviews, writing the simuldub preview, and reading the light novel for my own amusement, I'm currently at three different points in the story of That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime. Needless to say, my mind is curren...
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Answerman - Why Do Guys In Anime Raise A Pinky Finger When Talking About Girls?

Happens all the time in anime: ask a guy if he's married, and his pinky finger goes up. What's behind it? Well, it's actually kinda sweet - as Justin explains. ― Terry asked: When asking a man whether he's in a relationship with a woman, male anime characters will make an odd finger-raised gesture, almost always accompanied by a chuckle and/or a leer. What's with that? And is it as rude a gesture as...
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The Mike Toole Show - Little Pitch Academia

A World Series-addled Mike leaves the usual spooky October stuff in the dugout - it's time to explore the rich and fascinating history of baseball anime! ― It's October, and you know what that means: time for a spooky, creepy discussion of the haunted world of… baseball, because I've spent the last two weeks staying up way too late to watch my beloved red sock-wearing Red Sox march towards a seemingl...
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This Week in Anime - Is Double Decker! Doug & Kirill Worth Watching?

This series combines the action of Tiger and Bunny with a flirtatious flavor of buddy cop comedy. Micchy and Andy find out if the end result is as entertaining as it sounds. ― Double Decker! Doug & Kirill combines the action of Tiger and Bunny with a flirtatious flavor of buddy cop comedy. This week, Micchy and Andy find out if the end result is as entertaining as it sounds. Disclaimer: The views an...
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The List - 8 Ghost Bustin' Anime to Keep Spirits Away

If there's something weird, and it don't look good, common wisdom suggests it's difficult to know who to call - unless you've seen one of these eight spirit-hunting anime! ― When there's something strange in your neighborhood and Dan Aykroyd is busy, there's plenty of competing ghost busters available to take on your ectoplasmic problems. Investigating the things that go bump in the night is a time-...
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ANNCast - Casually Spooky

Jacob's out this week, so Interest editor and monster enthusiast Lynzee Loveridge stops by for a spell to ask: what makes a truly memorable spooky anime? Plus a Fall season update, scary movie breakdown and more! ― ANNCast 338 - Casually Spooky Jacob's out this week, so Interest editor and monster enthusiast Lynzee Loveridge stops by for a spell to ask: what makes a truly memorable spooky anime? Plu...
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Manga Answerman - What Tools Does A Mangaka Use To Make Manga?

Do professional manga artists still use ink and paper to create their art, or has everything gone digital? Deb breaks down the common mangaka toolkit. ― When it comes to manga production, what's in a typical mangaka's toolkit? Are they still buying a lot of art supplies for work like this, or is literally everything digital now? Well, every artist has a different approach to drawing, and as such, th...
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This Week in Games - The Uncomfortable Crunch

Heidi considers the long shadow of terrible crunch looming over this week's inescapable Rockstar release - plus Smash Bros. rumors, Yakuza 4 news, and Dead or Alive 6 producer Yohei Shimbori stops by for a little more Q&A! ― Hey folks! It's another beautiful week of games for everyone! It's a bit of a slow news week as hype for Red Dead Redemption 2 reaches a fever pitch. I'm still plugging away at m...
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Answerman - Why Are Old People In Anime And Manga So Short?

In anime and manga, old people are frequently presented as comically short - what exactly is the reasoning behind this stereotype? Justin gets into it. ― Marie asked: I've been wondering about this for a while now: why do the elderly are often presented as really short and small in anime/manga? But if there's a flashback and we see them in their youth, they have a regular height. No one finds this a...
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This Week in Anime - Is Golden Wind the Best or Worst Jojo's Bizarre Adventure Yet?

JJBA Part 5 has a more infamous reputation with Western fans, but many Japanese fans consider it to be the best. Nick and Steve call their own shots on this radically radiant new adventure. ― Jojo's Bizarre Adventure: Golden Wind has a more infamous reputation with Western fans, but many Japanese fans consider it to be the best. This week, Nick and Steve call their own shots on this radically radian...
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Shelf Life - Convenience Store Boy Friends

Paul endures the baffling doldrums of this peculiarly titled romance anime, breaks down all this week's new home video releases, and features a manga-heavy new Shelf Obsessed! ― It sounds like Funimation and Crunchyroll are wrapping up their streaming partnership, so it might be time for some last-minute marathons if you only subscribe to one or the other. I'm just hoping this doesn't make life more...
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The List - 7 Spooky New Games to Play in October 2018

If you're a little weary of the scary games you've played, here are seven new ones that might just reawaken your sense of fright. ― The last two weeks I broke down some of the best new horror manga of the year as well as new spooky anime to stream to kick off a Halloween marathon. This week I'm delving into arguably one of my favorite genres: horror video games. Interactive horror comes in just as m...
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Manga Answerman - What Makes A Great English Translation?

Do you prefer an extremely literal translation to a more "lyrical" one? What really goes in to a truly great Japanese-to-English manga translation? Deb gets into it. ― This is more of a personal question, but what do you prefer: a “lyrical”, adaptive translation, or a no-frills one that goes for the very direct approach? Hm. That's an interesting question. Let me preface my response with a few cavea...
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This Week in Anime - Whatever Happened to FLCL Alternative?

FLCL Alternative came and went without much fanfare after the divisive results of FLCL Progressive. This week, Andy and Steve look back on what new things this conclusion to the FLCL trilogy brought to the table. ― FLCL Alternative came and went without much fanfare after the divisive results of FLCL Progressive. This week, Andy and Steve look back on what new things this conclusion to the FLCL tril...
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This Week in Games - SoulCalibur VI

Welcome back to the stage of history! It's been six years since the last Soul Calibur game - does the new one hold up? PLUS: all of this week's big news and new releases! ― The thing about writing a weekly column is that you can plan a bunch of stuff to write about far in advance… only to have all of your planning get completely scuttled by news that drops. I mean, I was going to publish my follow-up...
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Answerman - Why Do Anime Students Always Sit In The Same Seat?

Anime protagonists in high school always seem to take the same seat - second to the back, next to the window. What makes that spot so special? Justin gets into it. ― Darrel asked: Why are anime characters always sitting in the same exact spot in classrooms? Is it because it is easier to draw them isolated? Ah yes, that seat in the back next to the window. That is THE hot-spot in a surprising number ...
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This Week in Anime - Is Lost Song Worth Watching?

J-pop songstress Konomi Suzuki made her acting debut in Netflix's sweeping musical fantasy, Lost Song. Nick and Micchy find out if there's noteworthy underneath the surprisingly bland fluff on this show's surface. ― J-pop songstress Konomi Suzuki made her acting debut in Netflix's sweeping musical fantasy, Lost Song. This week, Nick and Micchy find out if there's noteworthy underneath the surprising...
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Answerman - What's The Difference Between A License And A Distribution Deal?

Funimation "licenses" Attack on Titan but Right Stuf is the "distributor" for Mobile Suit Gundam - what's the difference between these two arrangements? Justin gets into the details. ― John asked: I was wondering what is the difference between a distribution and licensing deals? What entail a distribution deal? And in case of the Sunrise's Gundam deal with Right Stuf could a another company still li...
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Shelf Life - Angel Cop

This cyberpunk '80s OVA may be nostalgic for some fans, but it's hardly angelic. Paul finds out if anything about this vintage shlock holds up and breaks down all this week's new anime releases! ― I'll be writing our streaming reviews for That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime, and I am unreasonably pumped about it. I'm not expecting it to be the best show ever made, but something about the main pr...
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The Mike Toole Show - The Shonen Jump Formula

The My Hero Academia movie prompts Mike to consider the deep and fascinating history of the "Shonen Jump Movie", the self-contained side-story theatrical events that've been around for decades. ― A couple of weeks back, I joined approximately half a million other anime dorks across the continent, who dutifully bought tickets and attended screenings of the new My Hero Academia movie. I've said several...
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The List - 6 Spooky New Anime for October 2018

Tired of the same ol' horror movie recommendations? If you're looking for something a little different to watch this Halloween, here are six great - and recent - horror (and horroresque) anime to liven up your spooky season. ― The average annual Halloween movie marathon has a tried and true list of the usual suspects. If you're going live-action, there's plenty of entries in the Halloween, Nightmare...
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ANNCast - The Fall of Man

Zac and Jacob chew their way through a monstrous pile of Fall 2018 anime premieres, from Double Decker to Sword Art Online to Thunderbolt Fantasy and yeah, even some of the bad ones. ― ANNCast 337 - The Fall of Man Zac and Jacob chew their way through as many Fall 2018 anime premieres as they can - from Double Decker to Sword Art Online to Thunderbolt Fantasy and a whole ton more. You can listen to ...
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Manga Answerman - Is the Distinction Between Manga And "Manga-Style Comics" Going Away?

With the fully-fledged anime adaptation of Tony Valente's french adventure comic Radiant on the air in Japan, it makes you wonder: is the distinction between "manga" and "manga-style" comics going away for good? Deb has some thoughts. ― Do you think the distinction between manga made in Japan and manga-style comics made elsewhere is slowly going away? Do you think it should? This is an interesting a...
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This Week in Games - Flipping the Switch

There might be a new version of the Nintendo Switch coming sooner than we think - plus: Sword Art Online Arcade, the resurrection of Suikoden, Soul Calibur VI character news and much more! ― Hello again, readers! I'm back from my brief hiatus to once again deliver my fresh takes on the gaming news that's been cooking over the last week. The reason I didn't handle last week's column was that I was att...
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This Week in Anime - Is Attack on Titan Ramping Up or Just Going Off the Rails?

AoT's third season took plenty of risks with its more low-key military coup arc, but the titular Titans' long-awaited return to the spotlight has unleashed an avalanche of shocking twists! We pick up the pieces of a story that's growing ever more complicated. ― Editor's Note: Jacob has moved on from being a TWIA contributor, but he'll still be with the crew in spirit as the editor/coordinator of thi...
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Answerman - What Are The Different Types of Ramen?

Good ramen has become much more widely available in the United States over the last decade or so, but it can still be confusing to know what you're ordering. Justin breaks it down. ― Fred asked: Where I live, there's no good ramen restaurants, so when I see anime characters ordering different types of ramen, I have no idea what they are. Can you help? First of all, that is a very tragic story. I was...
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This Week in Anime - Is Forest of Piano Worth Watching?

Forest of Piano has landed on Netflix, but this isn't the first time the classic manga has been adapted to animation. Micchy and Steve swap their classical music nerd observations about this troubled production. ― Forest of Piano has landed on Netflix, but this isn't the first time the classic manga has been adapted to animation. This week, Micchy and Steve swap their classical music nerd observatio...
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Answerman - Why Aren't Licensed Anime T-Shirts Nicer?

Your average licensed anime tee-shirt is a giant piece of key art on a Hanes Beefy-T. Where's all the fashionable stuff? Justin considers the angles. ― Anonymous asked: There are a ton of anime that I would love to buy T-shirts and other clothing for. I'm also aware that there's an absolute TON of unlicensed T-shirt websites out there, and I'd prefer to buy the official ones that support the creator...
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Shelf Life - Princess Principal

The surprisingly poignant and gorgeously animated steampunk espionage thriller Princess Principal lands on home video. PLUS: all of this week's new anime DVD & bluray releases! ― It's Preview Guide time again! We've had a couple of unexpectedly good premieres already, with the most pleasant surprise for me being Zombie Land Saga. If you have a taste for dark humor, make sure you check that one out. ...
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The List - 10 Spooky Manga for October 2018

The spookiest season has finally begun, and The List begins a month-long celebration of the best in horror with a look at 7 spine-tingling manga that will make your Halloween even more macabre. ― October is finally here. The crisp wind permeates with pumpkin spice and TNT is plugging away at its 744 hour marathon of Supernatural. It is, by and far, my favorite time of year and the perfect time to de...
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Manga Answerman - Can a "How To Draw Manga" Book Really Help You Become A Manga Artist?

"How to draw manga" books are everywhere - but how helpful are they? Deb gets into it, and offers a trove of resources for aspiring artists! ― There are a ton of “how to draw manga” books – do you think those could really teach someone how to become a manga artist? What do you recommend for someone trying to develop their own manga style? For this question, I'll start it off with a story. Maybe it w...
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This Week in Anime - The Highs and Lows of MHA's License Exam Arc

My Hero Academia finished out its third season with more of a whisper than a bang. Nick and Micchy break down the standout moments of this low-key arc. ― My Hero Academia finished out its third season with more of a whisper than a bang. This week, Nick and Micchy break down the standout moments of this low-key arc. Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the participants in this chatlog are ...
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This Week in Games: Paradise Tossed

Todd guest-hosts this week, and Fist of the North Star: Lost Paradise has him thinking about other anime that could use the Yakuza treatment. Plus Last Labyrinth, Mega Man, and more Bowsette! ― Yes, it's me again! Heidi's off this week, so Anime News Network turned on the Todd Signal and tilted it to the sky. Instead of a Batman logo, it showed the words TALK ABOUT GRAVITY RUSH. And I came running. I...
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Answerman - Why Don't Anime Companies Release Sales And Viewership Numbers?

We almost never get exact sales figures for anime DVDs and blurays, or really any other merchandise for that matter - what gives? Justin gets into it. ― Michael asked: I was wondering if you could explain the mindset behind why anime companies seem to be so secretive with their sales numbers. I could be wrong about this, but I don't see any benefit to not releasing how many units "title x" sold or h...
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This Week in Anime - Is Dragon Pilot Worth Watching?

Dragon Pilot: Hisone and Masotan has finally dropped on Netflix. Nick and Steve find out what Shinji Higuchi and Mari Okada's unconventional dramedy has to say about workplace woes. ― Dragon Pilot: Hisone and Masotan has finally dropped on Netflix. This week, Nick and Steve find out what Shinji Higuchi and Mari Okada's unconventional dramedy has to say about workplace woes. Disclaimer: The views and...
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Answerman - How Is Funimation Producing So Many Simuldubs?

It's a little unbelievable how many simulcast dubs Funimation produces - so how do they do it? Justin talks about the process. ― Anonymous asked: It's been absolutely incredible how Funimation is able to have many shows dubbed only a few weeks after it airs in Japan. How is Funimation able to pull off their simuldub schedule while other studios take months or even years to produce a dub? Surely it's...
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Shelf Life - Devilman

The legendary late 80's OVA version of Devilman goes under the microscope - plus all of this week's new anime DVD & Bluray releases! ― I visited my parents last week and made them watch Anohana, because I am an evil person who likes to make his family cry. Also, it's a really good show. Welcome to Shelf Life. Jump to this week's review: Devilman On Shelves This Week The Disastrous Life of Saiki K - ...
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The List - 7 Pairs of Long Lost Anime Twins

Were these anime characters separated at birth? Not quite. ― Were these anime characters separated at birth? Not quite. We're used to seeing certain style characteristics to easily signify which character is the tsundere, the quiet bookworm, the gung-ho fighter, or the sneaky villain. With the huge number of anime, light novels, and manga produced each year, there are bound to be some design overlap...
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ANNCast - We Just Klecked

Right Stuf co-founder and president Shawne Kleckner stops by the show to chat up his latest big kickstarter, Emma: A Victorian Romance, plus plenty of fun details about the anime retail landscape in 2018. ― ANNCast 336 - We Just Klecked Right Stuf co-founder and president Shawne Kleckner stops by the show to chat up his latest big kickstarter, Emma: A Victorian Romance, plus plenty of fun details ab...
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Manga Answerman - How Come Only Some Manga Use Honorifics?

Some official English manga translations use common Japanese honorifics like -san and -kun but some don't - what's the reason behind this inconsistency? Deb breaks it down! ― Why do some translated manga use honorifics like -san, -chan, and -kun and some don't? First, a little background: the Japanese language commonly uses honorifics, or suffixes added to names in a way that's quite unique, in that...
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This Week in Anime - Does Shoji Kawamori's Last Hope Make Any Sense?

This interdimensional action series has debuted its first half on Netflix, but is there any hope of deciphering its wacky sci fi plot? Nick and Micchy wax rhapsodic on the Macross creator's most unusual new ideas. ― Shoji Kawamori's Last Hope has debuted its first half on Netflix, but is there any hope of deciphering its wacky sci fi plot? This week, Nick and Micchy wax rhapsodic on the Macross crea...
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This Week in Games - Bowsette Bows In

Lady Bowser has stolen the Internet's heart - could Nintendo make her part of the official canon? Heidi explores the angles. PLUS: the sad tale of TellTale, fighting game news and much more! ― Heya folks! TGS sure was a fun time, huh? Rather than spent too much time chattering on about it, I think I'll just point you over to the TGS coverage that Kim Morrisy has been doing for us. It doesn't make muc...
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This Week in Anime - Is the Live-Action Bleach Movie Any Good?

The live-action Bleach movie has premiered on Netflix, but is it worth watching? Nick and Jacob find out if WB's version can please fans or stand on its own. ― The live-action Bleach movie has premiered on Netflix, but is it worth watching? This week, Nick and Jacob find out if WB's version can please fans or stand on its own. Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the participants in this ...
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Answerman - What Does It Cost To Remaster A Classic Anime?

Justin dives deep into all the fun details about exactly how much effort - and money! - goes in to remastering classic anime from the original film elements for home video release. ― Allan asked: What are the costs of doing a full-on remaster of an older show as opposed to upscaling an existing version? In a recent column you discussed how some new releases are made by upscaling, say, a DVD master f...
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Shelf Life - Twin Star Exorcists

Twin Star Exorcists is finally out on bluray, and Gabriella Ekens is here to take it for a spin. PLUS: all of this week's DVD & bluray anime releases! ― Holy crap, we have a lot of new releases this week. You'd almost think it was the beginning of the holiday rush or something. Well, no matter how many titles get shoved out the door in a single week, we'll be here to cover them. Welcome to Shelf Lif...
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Answerman - Why Doesn't Anime Record Voices Before Animating?

Western animation - particularly the big-budget mainstream kind - tend to record performances before they animate, but when it comes to anime, this is rarely the case. Why is that? Justin gets into it. ― James asked: Some time ago, you stated that one of the major differences between western animation and Japanese animation is that, in western animation, all dialogue is recorded first, and then the ...
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The List - 7 Times Western Music Invaded Anime

From Radiohead to the Backstreet Boys, here are 7 times Western music found its way into some of your favorite anime opening and closing theme songs. ― A recent article about the potential death of the 90-second anime song intro got me thinking about some of my favorite opening and ending sequences. I realized that while the vast majority of anime credit songs are in Japanese (with a few English fla...
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The Best of "This Week in Anime"

Just over a year after its creation, Nick, Micchy, Jacob, and Steve of This Week in Anime have laughed and cried over an avalanche of great and terrible anime. Here are some of our favorite memorable moments. ― Hello everyone! Our "This Week in Anime" feature will return next Tuesday to cover the newest avalanche of Netflix premieres, but in the meantime, we thought we'd put together a Best Of TWIA t...
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ANNCast - Your Eternal Reward

Kodansha Comics is releasing the Sailor Moon manga all over again, so Manga Answerman Deb Aoki joins the show for a chat with Kodansha editor Lauren Scanlan and superstar translation team Alethea and Athena Nibley for a chat about what it took to put this giant book together. ― ANNCast 335 - Your Eternal Reward Kodansha Comics is releasing the Sailor Moon manga all over again, so Manga Answerman Deb...
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Manga Answerman - Why Do So Many Manga Artists Avoid Being Photographed?

Many mangaka are notoriously camera-shy, choosing instead to only represent themselves with an illustration. What are their reasons for this? Deb gets into it. ― Editor's note: Originally published June 2018 - Manga Answerman is taking the week off, but we'll be back next week with a new column. Q: Why do a lot of manga artists prefer to not have their photos taken at events, like comic or anime con...
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This Week in Games: A Tiny Little Playstation

Heidi steels herself for Senran Kagura on Switch, Yu-Gi-Oh showing up in Jump Force, the resurrection of Resonance of Fate, a tiny little Playstation with 20 games from your 90s childhood, and much more! ― Hey hey folks, it's Tokyo Game Show week! Yeehaw! I wanted to supplement this week's column with a mini-review of Senran Kagura Reflexions on Switch, but, uh, I'm not sure it even really deserves t...
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Answerman - What Determines Whether An Older Show Should Be Released as SD-BD?

"Standard Definition Blu-ray" means you're getting a LOT of anime on a single disc - but not in HD quality. Justin Sevakis discusses exactly how - and why - a show might get released in this format. ― Jeff asked: My question gets a little technical but I was reading over the Skip Beat kickstarter campaign recently and I saw a statement from Pied Piper where you said Skip Beat was perfect candidate f...
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Shelf Life - Saiyuki Reload Blast

The Saiyuki boys haven't been on TV since 2004, but that didn't stop them from getting a 12-episode resurrection last year, and now it's out on bluray. PLUS: all of this week's new anime DVD and bluray releases! ― I spent the weekend scrolling through a list of next season's new shows, and boy do we have some odd story setups headed our way. Dude gets resurrected as a slime in a fantasy world? Check...
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Answerman - Why Do Colors Look Different In Remastered Classic Anime?

Oftentimes the "remastered" version of an old anime doesn't quite look the way you remember it - why is that? Justin gets in to all the fun technical details. ― Stanley asked: I have a technical question about new film-to-Blu-Ray video transfers. I've been starting up a Blu-Ray collection recently and was looking at some comparison screenshots from a lot of classic anime titles and films to see whic...
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The Mike Toole Show - On Your Maruko

The passing of creator Momoko Sakura prompts Mike to dive in to the charming world and incredible impact of Sakura's masterwork, Chibi Maruko-chan. ― In Japan, the Heisei era began in 1989 when Akihito, son of the Emperor Hirohito, ascended to the throne. That era is coming to an end. Now, some might say that this is because Emperor Akihito has announced his abdication of the throne, scheduled for Ap...
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The List - 6 Anime Series to Help You Relive Your Goth Phase

Bust out the black eyeliner and the London After Midnight albums, because it's time to take a sadtastic voyage through 6 anime series guaranteed to return you to your goth phase! ― In the west, the phrase "going through a goth phase" evokes a particular image - black eyeliner, fishnets, clove cigarettes, Anne Rice novels piled on top of horror DVDs, a Siouxie and the Banshees decal on the back of a ...
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Manga Answerman - How Come Some Manga Are Still Published "Flopped"?

There are still some manga in North America - like Lone Wolf & Cub and Chi's Sweet Home - that are still published "flopped", with the artwork flipped left-to-right. Why did this start happening - and why does it still happen? Deb gets into it. ― Why are some manga published in N. America flopped, while most are not? Well, let's get our definitions out of the way first: "flopped" manga refers to a p...
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This Week in Games - Judgment Day

An avalanche of news has come in before Tokyo Game Show, not the least of which was today's Nintendo Direct, which brought with it Luigi's Mansion, Katamari Damacy, NES controllers for the Switch and yes, new Animal Crossing! ― So you know how 90% of the coolest E3 announcements happen in the days and weeks before E3? Well, right now, it feels like the same thing is happening with next week's Tokyo G...
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This Week in Anime - Planet With Can't Stop Topping Itself

Planet With's plot has only kept raising the stakes, cramming enough climaxes for a 50-episode show into only one season. Nick and Steve break down their favorite moments so far in this constantly-escalating mecha series. ― Planet With's plot has only kept raising the stakes, cramming enough climaxes for a 50-episode show into only one season. This week, Nick and Steve break down their favorite mome...
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Answerman - Why Aren't There More AAA Video Game-Based Anime?

Anime and games feel like natural mates, so how come you don't see more big anime adaptations of major AAA video games? Justin considers the angles. ― Jacob asked: I was recently thinking about some of the old shows I used to watch as a kid and I remembered that Nintendo made an anime adaptation of their character Kirby called Kirby Right Back at Ya! I remember back in the 1990'sand early 2000's it ...
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This Week in Anime - Angels of Death is Surprisingly Hilarious

This series might look like a grim and gruesome piece of psychological horror, but its delightfully campy edge makes it more giggle-worthy than expected. Nick and Steve dig into the comedic kitsch buried just under the surface of this grave thriller. ― Angels of Death might look like a grim and gruesome piece of psychological horror, but its delightfully campy edge makes it more giggle-worthy than ex...
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Shelf Life - Ai Tenchi Muyo!

The venerable rom-com franchise Tenchi Muyo returns, but not in the way you might expect. PLUS: all of this week's new anime DVD & Bluray releases! ― I rarely end up revisiting any of my old streaming review shows, if only because writing about a series every week forces you to get just about everything out of it on the first viewing. However, I ended up breaking that pattern last week, and for Laid...
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Answerman - How Do Manga Based On Original Anime Get Made?

Original manga often spawn anime series, but it doesn't go the other way all that often - how exactly does an original anime get a manga adaptation? Justin gets into the details. ― Nick asked: The process of securing the rights to and then adapting a manga, light novel, etc. into an anime has been described in much detail. That being said, there are certain cases where the opposite happens--an origi...
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The List - 7 Heart-Pounding Anime Sword Fights

Are you ready to fight for your life? The List counts down seven of the most thrilling sword fights in anime, from Fate/stay night to Samurai Champloo! ― Nothing gets my blood pumping more than watching a well-choreographed sword fight. Two people squaring off in close combat with the shing! of blades slicing into one another. Will the hero manage to complete a series of faster-than-the-eye swipes a...
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ANNCast - The Crunchiest Exposition

Zac and Jacob recap their long weekend at Crunchyroll Expo 2018, digging in to Alita: Battle Angel, Ulysses, Crunchyroll Originals, Yoshitoshi ABe , and even our old pal DARLING in the FRANXX ! ― ANNCast 334 - The Crunchiest Exposition Zac and Jacob recap their long weekend at Crunchyroll Expo 2018, digging in to Alita: Battle Angel, Ulysses, High Guardian Spice, Yoshitoshi ABe, and even our old pal...
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Answerman - Since When Can Publishers Other Than Viz Publish Jump Titles?

It seemed like Viz had a monopoly on publishing Shonen Jump titles in America, but here comes Seven Seas with Yuuna and the Haunted Hot Springs. What gives? Deb's ready to explain! ― In the past, it looked like VIZ Media had an automatic license for Shonen Jump's manga. They were the only ones who released those (series). From Rurouni Kenshin, Death Note, Bleach, and others, if Viz didn't want to tr...
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This Week in Games - Delays All Around

Today's Nintendo Direct was delayed, but Heidi has the rest of this week's biggest news, including Square-Enix and Tencent, new characters for Soul Calibur and Tekken 7, the return of Umihara Kawase and a whole bunch more! ― Sometimes you get a wrench thrown in your plans not once, but twice. See, this week I'd planned to delay the column a bit, because Nintendo announced a Nintendo Direct that would...
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This Week in Anime - Phantom in the Twilight's Heroine Kicks Ass

Phantom in the Twilight has flown well under the radar this season as a Chinese co-production with an otome game premise. This week, Nick and Michelle explain why it deserves a second look. ― Phantom in the Twilight has flown well under the radar this season as a Chinese co-production with an otome game premise. This week, Nick and Michelle explain why it deserves a second look. Disclaimer: The views...
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Answerman - How Does A New Distributor Get Permission To Reuse Old Dubs?

Aniplex of America is re-releasing Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood on bluray with Funimation's original English dub intact. How do anime companies work out a deal like that? Justin gets into the details. ― Ivan asked: It's well known by now that ANIPLEX USA is distributing Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood after FUNimation did it for years, and the English version with the voice actors and actresses ...
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This Week in Anime - Is Banana Fish Trying Too Hard To Be Shocking?

Banana Fish's body count has ramped up as the story powers past new points of no return every week, but does this diminish or enhance its appeal? We discuss our complicated feelings on this crime drama's dark spiral. ― Banana Fish's body count has ramped up as the story powers past new points of no return every week, but does this diminish or enhance its appeal? This week, Michelle and Steve discuss ...
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Interview: Dead or Alive 6 director Yohei Shimbori

There are a whole lot of big changes coming to the venerable Dead or Alive fighting game franchise in the upcoming sixth installment! Game director Yohei Shimbori gets into all the fun details. ― 2018 has seen a wave of new fighting game announcements, many of which are new installments in long-running, beloved series. One such game is Dead or Alive 6, the latest in the long-running 3D fighting game ...
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Answerman - Why Isn't Idol Culture Bigger In America?

Hollywood might make a live-action Perfect Blue, but it's tough to imagine them greenlighting a live-action Love Live. Justin gets in to some of the reasons why that might be. ― Riku asked: I remembered few weeks ago I asked you about an American adaption of Love Live and you stated that it would not make sense since America does not have idol culture. Then how come Hollywood attempted to adapt Perf...
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Shelf Life - I Am A Hero

An ordinary joe faces the apocalypse in the live-action manga adaptation I AM A HERO, plus your complete guide to this week's anime DVD & bluray releases! ― I started playing Nier: Automata last week, much to the delight of one of my library coworkers. He's adamant that the story will make me feel all kinds of feelings, but right now I'm just having fun running around and hitting stuff with a sword....
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The List - 6 Dragon Girls to Set Your Heart Aflame

While they never amassed the same following as catgirls, it wasn't too long ago that dragon girls reigned supreme. Here are just six scaly favorites from the '90s anime to the present day! ― The characters of Kyoto Animation's Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid have warmed viewers' hearts this winter. At first glance, Tohru and Kanna appear to just be an extension of the "monster girlfriend" trend, but dr...
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ANNCast - Mail's Here

Zac and Jacob uncork the mailbox for another round of listener questions - this fall's big anime movies, the third season of Free! , Rumiko Takahashi , live idol events and much more! ― ANNCast 333 - Mail's Here Zac and Jacob uncork the mailbox for another round of listener questions - this fall's big anime movies, the third season of Free!, Rumiko Takahashi, live idol events and much more! You can ...
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Manga Answerman - Digital, Print or Both? How Do Manga Publishers Decide?

How do manga publishers decide whether to publish new and catalog releases as physical books, as digital copies, or in some cases, both? Deb explores the many angles publishers take on this one. ― How do publishers decide whether to release manga in print, digitally, or both? My understanding is that a digital release is cheaper, so some titles that wouldn't be profitable in print can support digita...

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