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Sushi and Beyond TV Anime Gets New Year's Special

posted on by Rafael Antonio Pineda
Original 24-episode anime is inspired by book about British family's trip to Japan

NHK's Anime World + Blog website announced last Thursday that the Sushi and Beyond (Eikoku Ikke, Nihon o Taberu) television anime series based on Michael Booth's book will air a 49-minute New Year's special episode titled "Eikoku Ikke, Shōgatsu o Taberu" (English Family, Eats New Year's) on January 1 at 10:15 a.m. to 11:04 a.m on NHK.

The episode is set after Michael and his family return to Britain. When he sees pictures of Japan's New Year's food, he wants to visit Japan again. His friend Toshi gives him a call and tells him to "Learn about rice first before learning about New Year's food!" Michael heads to Koriyama, Fukushima in its rice harvesting season to learn about rice. Although it seems to have nothing to do with New Year's delicacy at first, Michael learns about rice cakes, osechi (traditional food served at New Year's), and toso (a spiced sake served at New Year's).

The real-life Michael Booth will also make an appearance in the episode.

Booth's original book follows Booth, his wife Lissen, and two kids Ansger (6) and Emil (4), on their 100-day trip to Japan as they try a wide variety of Japanese foods. Booth was inspired to make the trip by Shizuo Tsuji's book, Japanese Cooking, A Simple Art.

The 24-episode show premiered in Japan on April 12. Rareko (Chi-Sui Maru, Gakkatsu!, Medamayaki no Kimi Itsu Tsubusu?) directed the anime at Fanworks (Gakkatsu!, Medamayaki no Kimi Itsu Tsubusu?, Ganbare! Lulu Lolo - Tiny Twin Bears). Viewster streamed the anime on its website with the English dub.

Booth released the Sushi and Beyond book in 2009, and Akishobo published part of the book in Japan under the title Eikoku Ikke, Nihon o Taberu in 2013. Akishobo published the rest, along with a newly written epilogue for Japanese readers, in the sequel titled Eikoku Ikke, Masumasu Nihon o Taberu in 2014. The books have over 100 thousand copies in print in Japan.

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