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The Mike Toole Show - Lastman, Standing

Mike devours a few episodes of the genre-smashing French action cartoon Lastman and wonders - is this anime? ― Earlier this year I was at the Crunchyroll Expo, where I hosted a bunch of discussion panels and presented a couple of my own. The homogenous look and omnipresent Crunchyroll branding took some getting used to, but it was ultimately an energetic and well-run show, a deft mix of the stuff I l...
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ANNCast - Ecchi Sketches

Jacob Grady, FAKKU founder and freshly-minted owner of Kitty Media drops by ANNCast for another round of questions and answers about the business of ero (plus skateboards). ― ANNCast Episode 313 - Ecchi Sketches Jacob Grady, FAKKU founder and freshly-minted owner of Kitty Media drops by ANNCast for another round of questions and answers about the business of ero (plus skateboards). You can listen to...
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Answerman - What Is The Purpose Of Recap Episodes?

Recap episodes pop up in plenty of anime, retelling parts of a story you just watched. Why do these recap episodes exist in the age of streaming? Justin gets into it. ― It's the holiday season, so people are pretty busy. There's gift-buying, there's decorating, there are parties and for students, final exams. But that also means my questions tend to run dry, so if you can spare a moment, please send...
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Answerman - What Resolution Are Early Digipaint Shows Made At?

Anime from the early 2000s often look kinda blurry and a little washed-out, even in HD - why do they look that way? Justin gets in to the technical details. ― Ryan asked: As you covered before, in the early 2000s anime transitioned to being animated in a totally digital format. This locks the finished product to a set resolution. So my question is: what was the average resolution of a movie produced...
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This Week in Anime - Who's the MVP of Libra in Blood Blockade Battlefront & Beyond?

This second season has expanded the series' initial focus on Leonardo to give more love to the rest of its eccentric cast. Nick and Steve explore how this ensemble approach is working out so far. ― Blood Blockade Battlefront & Beyond has expanded its focus on Leonardo from the first season to give more love to the rest of its eccentric cast. This week in anime, Nick and Steve explore how this ensembl...
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Vice & Luna - Waiting for Netflix

A shattered future. A past full of regrets. A world we barely recognize. And then, an update from Netflix...
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Answerman - Why Are Some Anime Fans So Cynical?

Like most fandoms, anime fans can sometimes be pretty wildly cynical - where does that attitude come from, and is it justified? Justin gets into it. ― John asked: This has been a question that has been bothering me for some time. Why are most anime fans cynical? It seems as though the joy of anime has been sucked out of them and all they see is the bad. Yet they still watch. And complain. I wish thi...
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Shelf Life - Flying Witch

James takes a look at this uniquely soothing series about witches in the countryside, while Paul runs down all this week's new releases and a festive Shelf Obsessed! ― It's that time of year when putting together the new release list becomes more of an adventure than usual. There's a bunch of stuff coming out as publishers try to make it in time for the holidays, prices are all over the place as ret...
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The List - 7 Ho-Ho-Horrible Santas

'Tis the season to be happy these Kris Kringles won't be coming down your chimney! Here's a Saint Nick or seven who don't seem to have much yuletide cheer. ― The holiday season is upon us, although department stores started blaring Christmas music over the intercom well before Thanksgiving. Whether you're already over the festivities (STRESS! AWKWARD FAMILY GATHERINGS!) or will be up on Christmas mo...
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ANNCast - MMOtivation

Jacob and Zac dive back into the romcom world of Recovery of an MMO Junkie, catch up with The Ancient Magus' Bride, do a little arthouse movie roundup plus your Twitter questions! ― ANNCast Episode 312 - MMOtivation Jacob and Zac dive back into the romcom world of Recovery of an MMO Junkie, catch up with The Ancient Magus Bride, do a little arthouse movie roundup plus your Twitter questions! You can...
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Answerman - Why Does Manga Turn Yellow?

You've probably experienced it yourself: you buy a bunch of manga, and over the years, the pages slowly turn yellow. What's up with that? Justin gets in-depth. ― Ivan asked: Something i've noticed over the years is how manga (more than modern American comics) tend to yellow over time. It is so rapid that I notice brand new issues from major publishers begin to change from white to yellow within a ye...
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This Week in Anime - Is Land of the Lustrous the Best 3DCG Anime?

This sleeper hit of the season has captured fans' hearts and minds with its fantastical world and one-of-a-kind style of 3D animation. We explore what makes this series such a gem. ― Land of the Lustrous has become a sleeper hit this season, capturing fans' hearts and minds with its fantastical world and one-of-a-kind style of 3D animation. This week in anime, Micchy and Steve explore what makes this...
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This Week in Games: Apollo Justice and Animal Crossing Return

This Week in Games returns with a brand new host, plus hands-on with Apollo Justice on the 3DS and Animal Crossing on your phone! ― Hi everyone! Allow me to introduce myself. I'm Heidi Kemps, and I'm a career games writer. I manage a little site called gaming.moe where I write about all kinds of weird gaming (and occasional non-gaming) topics, mostly related to niche and retro games. I also do freela...
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Answerman - What Social Networks Are Used In Japan?

Fate/Grand Order prompts one reader to ask - which social media networks are most popular in Japan, and how does that compare to the west? Justin gets into it. ― Kimi asked: I noticed that when the NA version of Fate/Grand Order was released, a lot of the fan engagement landmarks in game were on Facebook while they were originally for Twitter during the JP release of the game and it got me thinking ...
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This Week in Anime - What the Hell is Happening in King's Game?

Survival games are still a hot genre in anime, but King's Game the Animation is just a hot mess. This week in anime, we detail what went wrong for this hilarious horrorshow. ― Survival games are still a hot genre in anime, but King's Game the Animation is just a hot syrupy mess compared to its peers. This week in anime, Nick and Jacob detail what went wrong for this hilarious horrorshow. Disclaimer: ...
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Vice & Luna - Curse of the Dowelies

Nerd culture is ubiquitous, but how much geek merch is too much geek merch? Vice is just about to find out!
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Answerman - What's With The Tiny Trucks In Japan?

You see these little pint-size trucks and cars in anime all the time - are they a real thing? Justin gets into it. ― Jake asked: I was recently watching Napping Princess and Sakura Quest and noticed that the trucks most people tend to drive do not look anything like what is made or sold here in the USA. Most tend to be this small compact truck with a white cab and a flat platform back with no side g...
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Shelf Life - Joker Game

Paul checks out this historical spy thriller on Blu-ray along with all the week's new releases and a brand new Shelf Obsessed! ― By the time you read this, the madness of Cyber Monday will probably be in full swing. I'm not really hunting for anything big this year, but best of luck to those of you who are. At least mashing the refresh button on your browser is more civilized than spending hours in ...
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The Mike Toole Show - Stream Warriors

Mike straps in to the wayback machine for a tour of the earliest days of anime streaming, with services like Toonami Jetstream and something called "Joost". ― One day a few months back, I was wandering around Boston doing some shopping, and decided to hunt for used video games. I spied the anime shelf at the local CeX store, and made my way over, because first of all, I can't resist checking out the ...
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The List - 7 Original Pokemon Rumors Unmasked

Back in the days of Red & Blue, you couldn't just Google the answers to gaming secrets like how to catch Mew. Here are seven persistent rumors that you probably fell for growing up with the original 151 Pokemon. ― Hey guys! We're all recovering from a turkey-induced sleep, early morning retail (or cyber) shopping, or being inundated with family this holiday weekend. If you happen to zone out with Ul...
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Answerman - Why Aren't Master Tape Formats Used Everywhere?

If the video quality on a production's master tape is the best it's going to get, why aren't they just reproduced on the same format? Justin explains why you don't watch "master tapes" in the comfort of your own home. ― Vandeilo asked: You say that video masters are stored on magnetic tapes, not dissimilar to VHS tapes. Why is it that such tapes aren't used for playback at the consumer level? I don'...
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This Week in Anime - How Has Love Live! Sunshine!! Changed The Idol Anime Game?

This series took a surprising left turn last week, leaving fans on the edge of their seats. This week in anime, we discuss our favorite things about Aqours' journey so far. ― Last week's Love Live! Sunshine!! took a surprising left turn, leaving fans on the edge of their seats for the season's second half. This week in anime, Nick and Steve discuss their favorite things about the girls of Aqours so f...
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Answerman - Why Does Rock-Paper-Scissors Come Up In Anime So Much?

You probably can't even count the number of times jan-ken-pon comes up in anime. Why is it so ubiquitous? Justin has an answer. ― Samuel asked: Mind explaining the history of the Japanese version of Westerners' "rock/paper/scissors" known as jan-ken-pon (and what each gesture looks like and does to another gesture)? The game of Rock-Paper-Scissors is so ancient and so pervasive across the world, the...
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This Week in Anime - Is URAHARA This Season's Hidden Gem?

URAHARA is about as cute, unassuming, and completely under-the-radar as you can get. This week in anime, we dig in to see if we've been sitting on something special. ― URAHARA is about as cute, unassuming, and completely under-the-radar as you can get. This week in anime, Michelle and Jacob dig in to see if they've been sitting on a hidden gem this season. Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed...
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ANNCast - New Dominion Thank Police

Jacob and Zac chew on Justice League for a while before digging in to your Twitter questions - Evangelion, Kino's Journey, Ancient Magus Bride and a whole lot more! ― ANNCast Episode 311 - New Dominion Thank Police Jacob and Zac chew on Justice League for a while before digging in to your Twitter questions - Evangelion, Kino's Journey, Ancient Magus Bride and a whole lot more! You can listen to the ...
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Answerman - Why Do Some Releases Of Older Movies Have Black Borders?

What's the difference between letterboxing and pillarboxing? And what are those tiny black borders you see on some old anime that don't have any of that? Justin Sevakis explains. ― Duc asked: Every once in a while, especially when I'm watching an older movie on Blu-ray, I'll see a thin border around the picture. Why is that there? Also, can you explain the difference between pillarboxing and letterb...
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Shelf Life - Persona 4: The Animation

Gabriella revisits the anime adaptation of this hit JRPG to see if it's worth watching on its own merits, while Paul runs down all this week's new releases along with a new king-sized Shelf Obsessed! ― Since in-game purchases seem to be a hot topic in the video game world these days, I figured I'd offer up a potentially obvious piece of advice as someone who's bought and collected all kinds of junk ...
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The List - Six of the Best 1980s Anime Space Operas

With Legend of the Galactic Heroes finally available streaming, it's time to dive into the incredible, sprawling and legendary world of 1980s space opera anime! ― After decades in relative obscurity in the west, HIDIVE began streaming Legend of the Galactic Heroes, a 110-episode OVA space epic that started in 1988. The series languished on shared fansubs for nearly 30 years, likely in part to its gi...
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Answerman - Quick Answers Part 6

It's time for a speed round! Netflix original anime, Japanese daylight savings time, anime spinoff justification and much more! ― Looking at the Answerman inbox, it looks like it's time for another one of these. Samuel asks: Does Japan observe Daylight Savings? Please be more broad than a simple YES or NO. No. Heh, sorry, couldn't resist. The answer is still "no, and they never have." Every once in ...
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This Week in Anime - How Does Fate/Apocrypha Compare to Other Grail Wars?

The first half of Fate/Apocrypha has finally landed on Netflix! We break down the best and worst of everything this series has to offer compared to its predecessors so far. ― The first half of Fate/Apocrypha has finally landed on Netflix! This week in anime, Jacob and Steve break down the best and worst of everything this series has to offer compared to its predecessors so far. Disclaimer: The views ...
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Answerman - How Is Christianity Regarded In Japan?

Christianity doesn't come up all that often in anime - where does it sit, culturally, in Japan? Justin breaks it down. ― Chris asked: After watching Strawberry panic and Maria sama watches over us, I was wondering how popular Christianity is in Japan. I know that the majority of the Japanese are irreligious, but how do they react to someone who is Christian? While there aren't a TON of Christians in...
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This Week in Anime - How Anime-Gataris Does Reference Humor Right

This season's slice-of-life comedy about an anime club is far more than it seems on the surface. We get into all the little details that make this series something truly special. ― Though it looks simple on the surface, Anime-Gataris is much more than just another slice-of-life comedy about an anime club. This week in anime, Nick and Micchy get into all the little details that make this series so spe...
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Vice & Luna - Down to the Last Detail

Vice has to get every last detail of his cosplay right to make sure everything appears exactly as it does in the anime. It's very important.
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Answerman - Why Don't DVDs Contain Japanese Commentary Tracks Anymore?

Once upon a time, anime DVDs occasionally came with commentary tracks from the Japanese artists who made the film. What happened? ― Tyler asked: On some of Central Park Media's DVD releases, like MD Geist and World of Narue, one of the “disc set-up” options were commentaries from a few of the original Japanese staff, which I think is really cool. However, when ADV released these titles, they scrappe...
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Shelf Life - The Amagami SS Collection

James checks out both seasons of Amagami SS plus the OVAs to see if this girlfriend-swapping romance is worth watching. Plus, Paul breaks down this week's huge load of new releases! ― I noticed something cool about the current anime season this week. I normally start falling behind on the shows in my streaming queue at around the six-week mark, but at the moment I'm still up to date on everything I'...
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The Mike Toole Show - Gothicmade in Japan

Mike digs into Mamoru Nagano's lost anime film from 2012 to ask just what was up with Gothicmade and if we'll ever get to see what it would have been. ― There's a short list of anime movies, OVAs, and TV episodes that you can't watch. The majority of them are from the 1960s, and are episodes of fare like Perman and Robotan and Big X, which were either inadvertently destroyed or intentionally tossed o...
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The List - 8 Nostalgic OVAs That Are Out of Print

Lynzee takes a stroll down memory lane with these straight-to-video oddities from yesteryear that you've probably either forgotten or never heard of at all! ― This week saw the publication of Anime News Network's Fall Manga Guide, something my peers and I have been working hard on for the last month. One of the titles featured is Battle Angel Alita, a quintessential sci-fi action manga and OVA from ...
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ANNCast - I Can't Believe I Fate The Whole Thing

Jacob and Zac saw Fate/stay night: Heaven's Feel AND Fate/Apocrypha and can't wait to argue about them. PLUS: Ancient Magus Bride, Mary and The Witch's Flower and more! ― ANNCast Episode 310 - I Can't Believe I Fate The Whole Thing Jacob and Zac saw Fate Stay Night Heaven's Feel AND Fate Apocrypha and can't wait to argue about them. PLUS: Ancient Magus Bride, Mary and the Witch's Flower and more! Yo...
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Answerman - Why Do American Actors Show Up In Japanese Commercials?

Why do Tommy Lee Jones, Charlize Theron, and even Sean Connery appear in Japanese commercials sometimes? Justin Sevakis has the answers. ― Ava asked: I stumbled upon a YouTube channel one night that plays Japanese commercials. Not just the "wacky" or "crazy" ones but it seems to be everything. I noticed a lot of familiar celebrity faces in the many many commercials for cars, women's fashion, and cel...
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This Week in Anime - Why Himōto! Umaru-chan R is Better than the Original

UMR is back for a second season, but if you haven't seen the show before, this vastly improved continuation might be the best time to jump in! ― Himōto! Umaru-chan is back for a second season, but if you haven't seen the show before, this vastly improved continuation might be the best time to jump in. This week in anime, Jacob and Steve explain what's different about UMR. Disclaimer: The views and op...
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This Week in Games - .hack//G.U. Last Recode

Dustin closes out his tenure on This Week in Games with a look at this nostalgic RPG trilogy, remastered and rereleased for the first time on PS4 and PC! ― Well, this is it. My final installment of This Week in Games. The column should be continuing shortly under new management, so this is goodbye—er, well, actually, I guess I'll save that for the end. In the meantime, you can catch me on Twitter, wh...
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Answerman - How Long Will Anime Stay Up On A Streaming Site?

So how long do you have to watch that series in your queue before it disappears off a service like Crunchyroll, Hulu, or Netflix? Justin Sevakis has the answers. ― Aakash asked: My question is in regards to license lengths. I know for DVDs and Blu-rays some licensees from publishers have expired for some older titles. My question is in regards to digital licenses. As streaming is the big trend now, ...
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This Week in Anime - What Makes The Ancient Magus' Bride's World So Magical?

The world of The Ancient Magus' Bride mesmerizes us in ways we usually don't get from TV anime. This week, we explore what makes this series so uniquely captivating. ― The world of The Ancient Magus' Bride is magical in ways we usually don't get from TV anime. This week, Nicholas and Steve explore what makes this series so uniquely captivating. Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the part...
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Vice & Luna - The Killing of a Sacred Meme

Vice has a few choice words for Luna's old Nyan Cat shirt, but he's got plenty of skeletons in his meme closet.
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Answerman - Why Does Anime Often Feature Ear Cleaning?

What's with the practice of intimate ear cleaning in so many anime? Justin Sevakis gets into the gritty details of Japanese ear wax. ― Amy asked: This is a weird question. Do you know why so many anime feature ear cleaning? (And why it's considered romantic? The intimacy of the gesture?) Is this a common Japanese cultural thing or does anime exaggerate it? Don't doctors here say it's potentially dam...
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Shelf Life - The Dragon Dentist

Gabriella takes a look at this TV movie from the artists behind Evangelion and many other Gainax classics, while Paul runs down this week's mountain of new anime releases. ― You know the overused comedy scene where a character sprints at full tilt toward a bus stop or train station, only to watch helplessly as their chosen form of transportation rolls away without them? That actually happened to me ...
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The List - 7 Fantastic Filler Episodes

Filler episodes are the bane of any anime marathon experience, but there are some enjoyable exceptions! These seven pit stops are fun enough to be worth putting the main story on hold. ― There are few things more dreaded than endless filler episodes in an otherwise tightly-paced action show. Filler usually diverts from the main plot for inane comedic adventures at hot springs, beaches, or ski trips....
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Answerman - How Are Theaters For Theatrical Releases Decided?

Anime has been showing up in movie theaters across America more and more these days - but how is it decided which theaters it plays at? Justin digs in. ― Peter asked: How do companies decide which cities these movies will play in? I've been fortunate enough that my city, Windsor, Ontario, has gotten screenings of a lot of anime so far, but I'm not sure why. There's nothing particularly noteworthy ab...
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This Week in Anime - Why is the Post-Apocalypse in Girls' Last Tour So Comforting?

Despite its bleak premise, watching Girls' Last Tour feels like snuggling up in a warm blanket on a cold winter's night. What's the secret behind this show's surprisingly soothing atmosphere? ― Girls' Last Tour takes place in a frozen wasteland where two girls struggle for survival after civilization has fallen. This week in anime, Michelle and Steve explain how this bleak premise resulted in such a ...
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This Week in Games - Super Mario Odyssey

Dustin digs into the fastest-selling Mario game in history, along with this week's other big news from Nintendo and Sony. ― Folks, I've some sad news to share. The next edition of This Week In Games will be my last. It's been a wonderful ride, but I don't have the time I once did to bring you my entirely unimpeachable views on video games every single week. I know, I know, it'll be tough—but let's be...
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Answerman - How Will Netflix Producing Anime Change the Industry?

Now that Netflix is pushing to create more original anime content for their service, how will this affect production and the industry as we know it? ― Jacob asked: Recently there was an announcement that Netflix was making an aggressive push for creating new, original content for 2018. What shocked me was that they were planning on funding and getting exclusive rights to over 30 anime series over th...
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This Week in Anime - What the Heck was ID-0 About?

This 3DCG sci fi series from last spring recently arrived on Netflix with little fanfare, but is its confusing story worth checking out? ― Netflix snapped this 3DCG sci fi adventure up last spring, only to finally release it this month to little fanfare and a lot of head-scratching. This week in anime, Nick and Jacob try to decipher what ID-0 was even about and whether it's worth anyone's time. Discl...
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Vice & Luna - The Top 5 Most Kissable Anime Skeletons

Perry doesn't understand why anyone would want to hook up with the skull-faced guy from The Ancient Magus Bride, but Blume and Luna are here to help!
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Answerman - Quick Answers Part 5

Justin's back with a lightning round of questions about sexual harassment in the industry, K-Pop, Japanese perceptions of English dubs, and the social problems posed by this season's Inuyashiki. ― It's been a while, and I've gotten some good questions lately that have pretty brief answers, so it's time for another lightning round! Branko asks: With the wave of sexual harassment reports spilling over...
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Shelf Life - Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Rikka Version

Paul finds out if this compilation film is worth watching for prior fans or Chunibyo newcomers. Plus, all this week's new anime releases and a Shelf Obsessed full of bishounen figures! ― Recovery of an MMO Junkie is one of my streaming review shows this season, and it's gotten off to a really good start over the last couple weeks. Between its charming romantic comedy and the inspired chaos of Gamers...
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The Mike Toole Show - The Anime-Ville Horror

Everyone knows there's a whole lot of horror anime out there, but what about HALLOWEEN anime, specifically? Mike's on the case! ― As the Andy Williams song goes, it's the most wonderful time of the year, because it's October and Halloween is right around the corner! Yeah, I know that the song is actually about Christmas, but tell me this: why are there thousands and thousands of Christmas songs, but ...
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The List - 13 Terrifying Anime You Can Stream for Halloween This Year

In this spooktacular edition of The List, we have a truly hellish supply of anime from every genre of horror that you can marathon all October 31st! ― I've made no attempt to hide my affection for horror fiction of every stripe. Manga, novels, anime, and live-action TV or film, whether produced in the States or abroad, horror stories are some of my favorites to sit down and watch with a bowl of popc...
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Answerman - How Tough Is It To Get Into College In Japan?

Anime often depicts the incredible stress of college entrance exams in Japan - is it really that hard to get in, and what happens when it all goes south? ― Jacob asked: I have watched many anime where there is generally a male student who is studying to take his college exam that has failed one or multiple times to get in. One of the best examples I can think of is from the dub of Shin Chan where on...
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This Week in Anime - What Does Vanishing Line Have to Offer GARO Fans and Newbies?

Garo is back for another war between Knights and Horrors in this season's retro-cool Vanishing Line. We compare the new series to its demon-slaying predecessors. ― Garo is back for another war between Knights and Horrors in this season's retro-cool Vanishing Line. This week in anime, Nick and Jacob discuss this reboot's watchability for newbies and compare the new series to its demon-slaying predeces...
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This Week in Games - Nights of Azure 2: Bride of the New Moon

Dustin take a look at the last game in Gust's "Beautiful Girl Festival" project, along with this week's big Animal Crossing news and other upcoming Japanese game releases. ― The new Switch firmware added support for Gamecube controllers through the Wii U adapter. Yes, obviously this means that a Smash Bros. announcement is incoming. But I have to wonder if this is also a step toward putting Gamecube ...
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Answerman - Where Do "Seasons" On Long-Running Anime Begin And End?

For ongoing shonen series like Naruto, Fairy Tail, and Dragon Ball Super, where does a season of TV really start and stop? Do "seasons" even exist at all? ― Kira asked: Years ago, most of anime I saw were long-runners like Naruto or Bleach. When looking up episode lists on Wikipedia, I always get confused about what they refer to as "seasons". Sometimes it corresponds to the story arc, but other tim...
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This Week in Anime - Why is Recovery of an MMO Junkie So Relatable?

If you've ever felt like your online life was actually more real than your "real" one, this nerdy romcom has your back. We get into what makes this show feel so true to virtual life. ― If you've ever felt like your life online was actually more real than your "real" one, Recovery of an MMO Junkie has your back. This week in anime, Michelle and Steve get into what makes this extremely nerdy romcom fee...
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Vice & Luna - A-Rank Cosplay

Vice has some extremely strange ideas about what constitutes a great cosplay photo.
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Answerman - Why Do Japanese-Owned Publishers Still Have To Pay For Licenses?

Kodansha USA has to pay Kodansha licensing fees for the manga it releases in the US. What? Why? Justin explains it. ― Mason asked: There's something that I've been curious about for a while. Why do manga companies, like Kodansha USA or Viz, still have to pay licensing fees to companies like Kodansha or Shueisha when they're pretty much owned by them already; they pretty much ARE them. It seems count...
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Shelf Life - Ushio & Tora

Gabriella takes a trip back in time to the '90s with a modern adaptation of a forgotten shonen gem, as Paul runs down all this week's new anime releases. ― I recently discovered that one of my coworkers at my day job plays the Fate/Grand Order mobile game, and we've been bonding over our experiences with the game's fickle character gacha system. He left me seething with envy when he picked up Franci...
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ANNCast - Danganronpa Deep Dive

Jacob, Sam, and Oren revisit this series' legacy from the first game all the way through the controversial new V3: Killing Harmony in this thrilling, chilling, killing retrospective. ― ANNCast Episode 309 - Danganronpa Deep-Dive Jacob, Sam, and Oren, who was the first fan to translate Danganronpa into English, revisit this series' legacy from the first game all the way through the controversial new ...
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The List - 7 Anime Genre Trends of 2017

Now that all the hottest shows of the year have premiered, it's time to run down what popular trends are on the rise for more series to come in 2018! ― Guys, we've survived another year of anime! It's been four seasons of 30+ premieres each vying for our unwavering attention. Last year I ran this list at the midway point, but I've decided going forward that it makes more sense to run it after the fa...
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Answerman - Are There Really Gangs In Japanese Schools?

You see delinquents and gang members of all stripes in anime high school - but are they really a thing in Japan? Justin gets into it. ― Kevin asked: Are gangs really prevalent among high schoolers (off the top of my head, gangs chasing Yusuke in YuYu, Baki, Shinici in Parasyte)? They do exist! They're not THAT prevalent, but they are definitely a prominent part of Japanese society. Every society has...
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This Week in Anime - Why You Should Watch Blood Blockade Battlefront

With the arrival of its second season, there's no better time to marathon this action-packed sci fi dramedy extravaganza! We make our case for BBB(&B) and share our hopes for its new season. ― With the arrival of its second season, Blood Blockade Battlefront & Beyond, there's no better time to marathon this action-packed NYC-themed sci fi dramedy extravaganza! This week in anime, Nick and Jacob make ...
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This Week in Games - Bad Apple Wars

This edgy otome game makes its way to English-speaking players on the PS Vita, along with more news on The Good Life and Fire Emblem Warriors. ― Yoko Taro said he hopes to someday make an adult video. Should this be surprising? I don't know. For all its existential despair, Nier: Automata kept things pretty sexy, with 2B's finely-sculpted robo-booty ready to peek out from under her skirt at any momen...
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Answerman - Why Do Westerners Make Assumptions About Japan Because of Anime?

Western anime fans sometimes carry around a lot of incorrect assumptions about Japanese society thanks to anime, but what can be done about that? ― Hiroki asked: I'm Japanese, and I'm wondering why so many Americans seem to analyze all of Japan through late-night anime that very few people watch. They get a lot of misconceptions, thinking that we won't kiss people we like because we're all shy, and ...
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This Week in Anime - How Does the Kino's Journey Remake Compare to the Original Series?

This season delivered a truly unexpected reboot in the form of a new Kino's Journey anime, so we compare notes on these two versions, what's changed, and why. ― Well over a decade has passed since Kino's Journey was first adapted into anime, but this season brought us an unexpected remake with Kino's Journey - the Beautiful World-. This week in anime, Jacob and Steve compare notes on how the characte...
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Vice & Luna - "I'm Watching It Ironically"

Luna has a solid plan to let Netflix know that her multiple repeated viewings of Death Note are not intended as an endorsement.
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Answerman - Why Does Anime Occasionally Use English Songs?

Sometimes even famous English pop singles from artists like Duran Duran or Savage Garden get used as anime theme songs, but how does this process work and why? ― Jake asked: I have noticed in a few rare instances that openings or closing songs are in English. On the other hand you have some very old song selections like in JoJo's Bizarre Adventure, which I understand has tons of music references, us...
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Shelf Life - Occultic;Nine Part 1

James Beckett gets into the most challenging spinoff of the Science Adventure Series, while Paul runs down all this week's new anime releases! ― I don't think I fully realized how much I'd missed Mr. Osomatsu until the second season started. That show really is my kind of anime comedy: wildly creative, totally bonkers, and not at all afraid to toss the viewer's expectations out the window. While I'm...
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The List - 7 Anime That Almost Were

Given how difficult it can be to produce animation, sometimes it's a miracle anything ever gets completed! Here are seven projects that never quite crossed the finish line. ― One of the first columns I wrote for The List was a rundown of six anime projects that never made it out of the studio. It includes the likes of Lupin VIIII and t.A.T.u. Paragate, the latter of which was supposed to star the tw...
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ANNCast - Fall 2017 Anime Roundup

Zac and Jacob run through as many Fall 2017 anime season premieres as they can, from Ancient Magus Bride to Inuyashiki, and have nothing but hot takes for you. Plus twitter time! ― ANNCast Episode 308 - Fall 2017 Anime Roundup Zac and Jacob run through as many Fall 2017 anime season premieres as they can, from Ancient Magus Bride to Inuyashiki, and have nothing but hot takes for you. Plus twitter ti...
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Answerman - Is Anime Streaming Consumer-Friendly?

Justin follows up Wednesday's Answerman with a conversation about competition, service and consumer friendliness in the world of anime streaming. ― On Wednesday I wrote about the current state of anime streaming to North America, and how it might be better than there being a single place to stream everything, because that would've created a monopoly. While the column was fairly well-received, there ...
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This Week in Anime - Why You Should Watch Mr. Osomatsu

The biggest anime comedy of last year has finally returned to go all-out this season. We explain why you should catch up on the Osomatsu-san phenomenon. ― The biggest anime comedy of last year has finally returned to go all-out this season. This week in anime, Micchy and Steve explain why you should catch up on the Osomatsu-san phenomenon. Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the participa...
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This Week in Games - Seven Months With Nintendo Switch

Dustin runs down the highs and lows of Nintendo's newest console over the past year, along with this week's Japanese gaming news and new releases. ― The focus of this column is definitely not the SNES Mini. That's both because Todd already did an excellent write-up, and because the past week has seen me playing games on the Switch pretty obsessively—so much so that exploring the classics has been lef...
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Answerman: Why Don't Streaming Sites Work Together?

Wouldn't it be great if every legal anime streaming company got together and made one platform where you could watch everything? It might SOUND good, but there's more to consider... ― xNightshade 22 asked: A simple question for you. Why don't they put all the anime streaming services together on one platform and charge a monthly fee for it? I believe this is a crucial reason why people use pirate si...
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This Week in Anime - Why You Should Watch Food Wars!

Food Wars! makes its grand return this fall with a third helping of culinary competition! This week in anime, we discuss what's made the show so delectable so far. ― Food Wars! makes its grand return this fall with a third helping of culinary competition! This week in anime, Nick and Jacob discuss what's made the show so delectable so far and what they hope to see from the Elite Ten this season. Disc...
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Vice & Luna - All In The Family

Your friend tells you they want you to recommend some anime. They love "Game of Thrones". What do you tell them to watch? Vice already has an answer!
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Answerman - What Is "Digipaint"?

People say the term "digipaint" all the time when discussing old anime from the early 2000s - but what do they mean? Justin breaks it down. ― George asked: What exactly is digipaint? Why was it so prevalent in anime production during the 00s, and why does it make anime made with it so hard to remaster into HD? Has this product essentially made a part of anime's existence, the 00s, relegated to DVD, ...
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Shelf Life - Shin Godzilla

Godzilla stomps his way to blu-ray this week, as Gabriella Ekens examines the footprints Hideaki Anno's version of the legendary monster left behind. Plus, all this week's new anime releases! ― My apartment building switched from air conditioning to heat this week, which would have been fine if I had been home at the time. I wasn't, of course, and so I eventually returned home to a 90-degree room wi...
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The List - 6 Unique Takes on Edogawa Ranpo

Ranpo Edogawa is a well-known mystery author in Japan, but western whodunnit fans may be less familiar with him. Here are just six anime that have taken on its legacy. ― The first week of prime spook month is over and as we edge closer to Halloween, I'm going to attempt to make every List column focus on the macabre. This week we'll take a look at mystery and horror novelist Edogawa Ranpo, a househo...
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Answerman - Where Did The Idea Of 100 Ghost Stories Come From?

It comes up in anime from time to time: telling 100 ghost stories in a single night. Is that a real thing? Justin explains. ― Ian asked: I wanted to ask if the 100 ghost story night idea from xxxHolic is a real cultural aspect of Japanese society. Or did CLAMP make it up? If not, are there any reports of events where literally 100 ghost stories are told? The idea of 100 ghost stories has made an app...
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This Week in Anime - Will Bakugo Become a Hero or a Villain?

As My Hero Academia's second season comes to a close, Bakugo's future still seems uncertain. Is there anything that could turn him over to the dark side? ― My Hero Academia's second season has come to a close, and Bakugo's future seems uncertain as the League of Villains begins to reform. This week in anime, Nick and Micchy predict what might be in store for U.A. High's most fiery student. Disclaimer...
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This Week in Games - Gundam Versus

The entire Gundam franchise gets crammed into an arena combat blender in Gundam Versus, plus Nioh on PC, Breath of the Wild production secrets and more! ― As if 2017's nonstop parade of excellent video games wasn't already enough, the past few weeks have seen the Switch's indie line-up upgrade from “good” to “positively bonkers.” Most of these games are out on other platforms, but the option of porta...
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Answerman - Why Are Sentai Titles Showing Up On Anime Strike?

Sentai Filmworks titles have been showing up on Amazon's Anime Strike service - what might we expect from this partnership? Justin considers the angles. ― Austin asked: Within the last few days/week, Sentai Filmworks has announced 4 new show licenses for the coming season (including the second season of Umaru-chan). They said in the press release that these shows will be made available through Anime...
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This Week in Anime - Made in Abyss Made Us Cry Like Little Babies

Made in Abyss' first season ended this week, leaving behind an ocean of tears for many fans. This week in anime, Nick and Steve pick up the pieces in the wake of its emotional conclusion. ― Made in Abyss' first season ended this week, leaving behind an ocean of tears for many fans. This week in anime, Nick and Steve pick up the pieces in the wake of its emotional conclusion. Disclaimer: The views and...
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Vice & Luna - "Vice Writes an Isekai Novel"

ANYONE could write one of those novels where an ordinary teen gets sucked into another world - right?
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Answerman - Why Do Dub Voice Actors Stick To The Same Studios?

Most anime studios in the US have a "stable" of regular voice actors that you'll hear in most of their dubs, without much crossover - why is that? ― Justin asked: Over the years, I've seen many voice actors stay in one circle only (Viz, Funimation, Sentai, or 4Kids). I've asked myself some questions and created scenarios in my head which gives an idea of the kind of things I've wanted to see, but ha...
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Shelf Life - The Boy and the Beast

Paul Jensen takes a look at Mamoru Hosoda's most recent film along with all this week's new anime releases, and Shelf Obsessed is officially open for submissions once more! ― I was briefly tempted to buy a model kit the other day, but then I remembered one of my favorite stories from the old Calvin and Hobbes newspaper comic. Calvin buys a model plane, struggles with the tiny parts and incomprehensi...
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The Mike Toole Show - When Anime Was "Cool"

The Blade Runner 2022 anime short sends Mike back to the early 2000s when everyone was very excited about both The Matrix and the internet, and anime was a very specific kind of "cool"... ― There was a brief period of time in the early 2000s when anime was cool. It wasn't just cool with dorks like me and you, the true tastemakers, but also cool with the general entertainment-consuming public in North...
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The List - 7 Excellent Exorcists

If you've got a demon infestation in your neighborhood, these onmyouji may be just what the doctor ordered. Plus, your rankings of the best CLAMP series! ― Something seems different about your best friend. They hardly ever sleep, they're unsettlingly flexible, their voice has changed drastically, and they have a bad habit of projecting pea soup from their face. Not to mention they keep saying really...

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