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Month: February 2017

Manga Monday- Ghost in the Shell

Manga Monday- Ghost in the Shell

Ghost in the Shell, known in Japan as Mobile Armored Riot Police, is a seinen manga series written and illustrated by Masamune Shirow, which spawned the media franchise of the same name. The manga, first serialized in 1989 under the subtitle of The Ghost in the Shell, and later published as its own tankōbon volumes by Kodansha, told the story of the fictional counter-cyberterrorist organization Public Security Section 9, led by protagonist Major Motoko Kusanagi, in the mid 21st century of Japan. Ghost in the Shell 2: Man-Machine Interface was the sequel work which follows the story of Motoko after merging with the Puppeteer. The last volume, Ghost in the Shell 1.5: Human-Error Processor, contains four separate cases.

The books contain Shirow’s thoughts on design and philosophy, including sociological issues, the consequences of technological advances and themes on the nature of consciousness and identity. Several artbooks have been released to detail the concept art and the world of Ghost in the Shell. All three volumes have received mainly positive reviews.

Plot-

Ghost in the Shell begins in 2029, and features Section 9, led by Chief Daisuke Aramaki and Major Motoko Kusanagi, as they investigate the Puppeteer, a cyber-criminal wanted for committing a large number of crimes by proxy through “ghost hacking” humans with cyberbrains. As the investigation continues, Section 9 discovers that the Puppet Master is actually an advanced artificial intelligence created by a department of the Japanese government, taking up residence in a robot body. After destroying the latest host of the Puppeteer, Section 9 believes all is well, until the Major discovers the Puppet Master in her own mind. After hearing the Puppeteer’s wishes to reach its next step in evolution, Kusanagi allows it to become one with her own ghost. After this event, the Major leaves Section 9 to work as a private contractor, with the remaining members of the unit Batou, Togusa, Ishikawa, Saito, Paz, Borma, and Azuma, continuing their work as covert operatives, occasionally meeting up with the Major in her various guises. These stories were later collected under the name Ghost in the Shell 1.5: Human-Error Processor. In 2035, the Major, now known as Motoko Aramaki, works as a security expert for Poseidon Industrial, now an entity composed of multiple identities that she controls via the network in other prosthetic bodies that attack industrial spies, assassins, and cyber-hackers, solving various crimes, while still at her day job. However, a psychic investigator finds something dangerous emerging as the teachings of a professor of artificial intelligence fall into the wrong hands and attempt to intermingle with the Major’s current evolving sense of self. These stories are collected under the title Ghost in the Shell 2: Man-Machine Interface.

Setting

Primarily set in the mid-twenty-first century in the fictional Japanese city of Niihama, Niihama Prefecture, otherwise known as New Port City, the manga and the many anime adaptations follow the members of Public Security Section 9, a special-operations task-force made up of former military officers and police detectives. Political intrigue and counter-terrorism operations are standard fare for Section 9, but the various actions of corrupt officials, companies, and cyber-criminals in each scenario are unique and require the diverse skills of Section 9’s staff to prevent a series of incidents from escalating.

In this cyberpunk iteration of a possible future, computer technology has advanced to the point that many members of the public possess cyberbrains, technology that allows them to interface their biological brain with various networks. The level of cyberization varies from simple minimal interfaces to almost complete replacement of the brain with cybernetic parts, in cases of severe trauma. This can also be combined with various levels of prostheses, with a fully prosthetic body enabling a person to become a cyborg. The heroine of Ghost in the Shell, Major Motoko Kusanagi, is such a cyborg, having had a terrible accident befall her as a child that ultimately required that she use a full-body prosthesis to house her cyberbrain. This high level of cyberization, however, opens the brain up to attacks from highly skilled hackers, with the most dangerous being those who will hack a person to bend to their whims.

Film Friday- Sailor Moon

Film Friday- Sailor Moon

The 18 manga volumes have been adapted into an anime series titled Sailor Moon which was produced by Toei Animation. The series was broadcast from 1992 to 1997 in Japan over the course of five seasons along with three feature films, a television special, and three short films produced during the same period. A live-action television adaptation titled Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon aired from 2003 to 2004 and a reboot of the anime series titled Sailor Moon Crystal began simulcasting in 2014. Several companies have developed merchandising based on the series, including light novels, collectible trading card games, action figures, musical theater productions, several collections of soundtracks and a large number of video games. The manga series was licensed for an English language release by Kodansha Comics USA in North America, and in Australia and New Zealand by Random House Australia. The entire anime series has been licensed by Viz Media for an English language release in North America and by Madman Entertainment in Australia and New Zealand.

Since its release, Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon has received wide critical acclaim and has become one of the most popular manga and anime series worldwide. The entire series has sold over 35 million copies worldwide, making of it one of the highest selling shōjo series ever, and reviewers have praised the art, characterization and humor of the story. The anime is popular in several countries and is arguably one of the most influential in boosting the popularity of Japanese animation in Western culture. Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon is often cited with popularizing the concept of a team of magical girls and for revitalizing the magical girl genre. The franchise is also credited with redefining the genre, as many previous magical girls did not use their powers to fight evil and the concept is now considered one of its standard archetypes.

Sailor Moon

Toei Animation produced an anime television series based on the 52 manga chapters, also titled Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon. It was directed by Junichi Satō, Kunihiko Ikuhara and Takuya Igarashi. The series premiered in Japan on TV Asahi on March 7, 1992, and ran for 200 episodes until its conclusion on February 8, 1997. Most of the international versions, including the English adaptations, are titled Sailor Moon.

Sailor Moon Crystal

On July 6, 2012, Kodansha and Toei Animation announced that it would commence production of a new anime adaptation of Sailor Moon, called Sailor Moon Crystal, for a simultaneous worldwide release in 2013 as part of the series’ 20th anniversary celebrations. Crystal premiered on July 5, 2014, and episodes would premiere on the first and third Saturdays of each month. Kotono Mitsuishi reprised her role as Sailor Moon. The first two seasons were released together, covering their corresponding arcs of the manga (“Dark Kingdom” and “Black Moon”). A third season (subtitled “Death Busters” based on the “Infinity” arc on the manga) premiered on April 4, 2016.[48] On January 25, 2017, another sequel was announced.

Films and television specials

Three animated theatrical feature films based on the original Sailor Moon series have been released in Japan. The films are side-stories that do not correlate with the timeline of the original series. A one-hour television special was aired on TV Asahi in Japan on April 8, 1995. In 1997, an article in Variety stated that The Walt Disney Company was interested in acquiring the rights to Sailor Moon as a live action film to be directed by Stanley Tong.

Plot

In Minato, Tokyo, a middle-school student named Usagi Tsukino befriends Luna, a talking black cat that gives her a magical brooch enabling her to become Sailor Moon: a pretty guardian destined to save Earth from the forces of evil. Luna and Usagi assemble a team of fellow Sailor Guardians to find their princess and the Silver Crystal. They encounter the studious Ami Mizuno, who awakens as Sailor Mercury; Rei Hino, a local shrine maiden who awakens as Sailor Mars; Makoto Kino, a tall transfer student who awakens as Sailor Jupiter; and Minako Aino, a young aspiring idol who awakens as Sailor Venus, accompanied by her talking feline companion Artemis. Additionally, they encounter Mamoru Chiba, a high-school student who assists them on occasion as Tuxedo Mask.

In the first arc, the group battles the Dark Kingdom. Led by Queen Beryl, a team of generals—the Four Kings of Heaven —attempt to find the Silver Crystal to free an imprisoned, evil entity called Queen Metaria. Usagi and her team discover that in their previous lives they were members of the ancient moon kingdom called Silver Millennium. The Dark Kingdom waged war against them, resulting in the destruction of the moon kingdom. Its ruler Queen Serenity later sent her daughter Princess Serenity, her protectors the Sailor Guardians, their feline advisers Luna and Artemis, and the princess’s true love Prince Endymion into the future to be reborn through the power of the Silver Crystal. The team recognize Usagi as the reincarnated Serenity and Mamoru as Endymion. The Guardians kill the Four Kings, who turn out to have been Endymion’s guardians who defected in their past lives. In a final confrontation with the Dark Kingdom, Minako kills Queen Beryl; she and the other Guardians then sacrifice their lives in an attempt to destroy Queen Metaria. Using the Silver Crystal, Usagi succeeds in killing Metaria and resurrects her friends.

At the beginning of the second arc, Usagi and Mamoru’s daughter Chibiusa arrives from the future to find the Silver Crystal. As a result, the Guardians encounter Wiseman and his Black Moon Clan, who are pursuing her. Chibiusa takes the Guardians to the future city Crystal Tokyo, where her parents rule as Neo-Queen Serenity and King Endymion. During their journey they meet Sailor Pluto, guardian of the Time-Space Door. Sailor Pluto stops the Clan’s ruler Prince Demand from destroying the spacetime continuum, leading to her death. Chibiusa later awakens as a Guardian—Sailor Chibi Moon—and helps Usagi kill Wiseman’s true form, Death Phantom.

The third arc revolves around a group of lifeforms called the Death Busters, created by Professor Soichi Tomoe, who seek to transport the entity Pharaoh 90 to Earth to merge with the planet. Tomoe’s daughter Hotaru is possessed by the entity Mistress 9, who must open the dimensional gateway through which Pharaoh 90 must travel. Auto-racer Haruka Tenoh and violinist Michiru Kaioh appear as Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune, who guard the outer rim of the Solar System from external threats. Physics student Setsuna Meioh, Sailor Pluto’s reincarnation, joins the protagonists. Usagi obtains the Holy Grail, transforms into Super Sailor Moon, and attempts to use the power of the Grail and the Silver Crystal to destroy Pharaoh 90. This causes Hotaru to awaken as Sailor Saturn, whom Haruka, Michiru and Setsuna initially perceive as a threat. As the harbinger of death, Hotaru uses her power of destruction to sever Pharaoh 90 from the Earth and instructs Setsuna to use her power over time-space to close the dimensional gateway.

In the fourth arc, Usagi and her friends enter high school and fight against the Dead Moon Circus, led by Queen Nehelenia, the self-proclaimed “rightful ruler” of both Silver Millennium and Earth. Nehelenia invades Elysion, which hosts the Earth’s Golden Kingdom, capturing its High Priest Helios and instructs her followers to steal the Silver Crystal. As Prince Endymion, Mamoru is revealed to be the owner of the Golden Crystal—the sacred stone of the Golden Kingdom. Mamoru and the Guardians combine their powers with those of the Holy Grail, enabling Usagi to transform into Eternal Sailor Moon and kill Nehelenia. Four of Nehelenia’s henchmen, the Amazoness Quartet, are revealed to be Sailor Guardians called the Sailor Quartet, who are destined to become Chibiusa’s guardians. They had been awakened prematurely and corrupted by Nehelenia.

In the final arc, Usagi and her friends are drawn into a battle against Shadow Galactica, a group of false Sailor Guardians. Their leader Sailor Galaxia plans to steal the Sailor Crystals of true Guardians to take over the galaxy and kill an evil lifeform known as Chaos. After killing Mamoru and most of the Sailor Guardians, Sailor Galaxia steals their Sailor Crystals. Usagi travels to the Galaxy Cauldron to defeat Galaxia and revive her teammates. Joining Usagi are the Sailor Starlights who come from the planet Kinmoku, their ruler Princess Kakyuu and the infant Sailor Chibichibi who comes from the distant future. Later, Chibiusa and the Sailor Quartet join Usagi and company. After numerous battles and the death of Galaxia, Sailor Chibichibi reveals her true form as Sailor Cosmos. Usagi then destroys Chaos with the Silver Crystal. Mamoru and the Sailor Guardians are revived and return to Earth with Usagi. The series ends with Usagi and Mamoru’s wedding six years later.

Character Special- Sailor Moon Part Two

Character Special- Sailor Moon Part Two

Antagonists

Dark Kingdom

The Dark Kingdom (called Negaverse in the original English dub) are the main antagonists in the first arc of the manga and anime, as well as the entirety of the live-action series. Serving under its ruler Queen Beryl, members of the Dark Kingdom attempt to both gather human energy and find the Silver Crystal in order to reawaken Queen Metaria, the evil entity responsible for the destruction of the Silver Millennium.

Black Moon Clan

The Black Moon Clan (called Negamoon Family in the original English dub) are the main antagonists in the Black Moon arc of the manga and in the majority of Sailor Moon R. Members of the Black Moon Clan come from Planet Nemesis, a fictional tenth planet of the Solar System, and have the distinction of having black, upside-down crescents on their foreheads. They are led by Prince Demand, who has been manipulated by the Wiseman so that he and the Black Moon Clan members gather power for him.

Death Busters

The Death Busters (called Heart Snatchers in the original English dub) are the main antagonists in the Infinity arc of the manga and in Sailor Moon S. Led by Professor Tomoe, the Death Busters have as main goal the resurrection of Mistress 9, who in turn would bring the alien creature Pharaoh 90 to Earth to destroy it in an event known as “Silence”.

Dead Moon Circus

The Dead Moon Circus ( called Dark Moon Circus in the original English dub) are the main antagonists in the Dream arc of the manga and in Sailor Moon Super S. Led by Zirconia, members of the Dead Moon Circus are looking for the Golden Crystal, which will allow their Queen Nehelenia to break free of her entrapment within a mirror and take over the Earth.

Shadow Galactica

Shadow Galactica  are the main antagonists in the Stars arc of the manga and most of Sailor Stars. Shadow Galactica is an organization of corrupted Sailor Soldiers led by Sailor Galaxia, who devote themselves to stealing Star Seeds, the essence of sentient life, from all in the Milky Way. Their final goal is that of reorganizing the universe in the image that Chaos, the ultimate antagonist of the series, desires.

Hell Tree aliens

The Hell Tree aliens are a minor group of antagonists composed of Ail, Ann and the eponymous Hell Tree, who appear only in the first thirteen episodes of Sailor Moon R. Ail and Ann have wandered around space alone for many years before reaching Earth, where they finally find energy to collect for the Hell Tree so that they can revive it and, in turn, it can give them energy to survive. Unlike other antagonists of the series, their mission was primarily that of survival, not conquest or destruction. In some English adaptations of the anime, their name is changed to “Doom Tree aliens”.

Ail and Ann

Ail  and Ann are two humanoid aliens who pose respectively as Seijūrō Ginga (called Alan Granger in the original English dub) and Natsumi Ginga (called Ann Granger in the original English dub), two transfer students that live in the Jūban Odyssey apartments. While trying to blend in with the humans at Usagi’s school, Ail assumes the role of brother to Ann. He develops a crush on Usagi, and constantly tries to win her over, much to the dismay of Ann. He constantly denies these feelings to Ann, knowing her to have fits of jealous rage. On the other hand, Ann develops a crush on Mamoru, and constantly tries to win him over, much to the dismay of Ail and Usagi. Ail and Ann are the only two of their kind, and could be considered as siblings as well as romantic partners since they were both born from the Hell Tree so it would not be lonely on their planet with just the ocean anymore.

The Hell Tree

The Hell Tree (called the Doom Tree in the original English dub) itself is an alien tree that nourishes Ail and Ann, but it becomes weak and requires energy to stay alive. For some time they supply it with human energy to revive but eventually it stops working. In the final episode of the story arc, the aliens try to give Usagi to it as an offering, because Usagi’s energy that the Hell Tree stole caused a sapling to grow on the Tree. The Tree becomes angered and starts to injure those around it, killing Ann in the process. It stops to tell its story to Sailor Moon: the Tree once lived alone on a faraway planet on an island in a vast ocean for countless years until it began to create life (the English dub changed the story to suggest it was once called “The Tree of Life”). It gave energy to its children, but eventually they became greedy and began to fight each other until the planet was destroyed and there were only two small children left, Ail and Ann. It was now weak and needed the energy of love to survive. Sailor Moon uses her power to purify the Tree, and it disappears. Ann is resurrected and when she reunites with Ail, a small sapling appears before them; the Tree has been reborn and they are given a chance to start over, and they leave Earth to live a better life with the Tree.

Cardians

The Cardians  are monsters of the day used by Ail and Ann to obtain energy to revive the Hell Tree. The Cardians are kept in cards until they are summoned by Ail. To summon them, Ail would hold up several cards, and Ann would pick one. The card would then rise into the air and Ail would play a tune on his flute which causes the Cardian to come alive. When a Cardian is destroyed, it changes back into its card form and the picture of the cardian on the card turns black after a few seconds.

Wednesday News- February 22, 2017

Wednesday News- February 22, 2017

News-

Anime-
  • Assassination Classroom Season 2 Part 1 BD/DVD
  • The Asterisk War Volume 3 Limited Edition BD
  • The Asterisk War Volume 3 BD
  • Freezing Vibration BD/DVD Anime Classics
  • Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex BD
  • Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex 2nd GIG BD
  • Green Legend Ran DVD
  • Metropolis BD
  • Noragami Aragoto Limited Edition BD/DVD
  • Noragami Aragoto BD/DVD
  • Sailor Moon Crystal BD/DVD Set 2
  • Sailor Moon Crystal DVD Set 2
  • Ultimate Otaku Teacher Season 1 Part 2 BD/DVD
  • Unbreakable Machine-Doll BD/DVD S.A.V.E. Edition
  • Utano☆Princesama Revolutions BD
  • Utano☆Princesama Revolutions DVD
  • Yosuga no Sora – In solitude where we are least alone BD

Manga-

  • Anne-Happy GN 4
  • Aoharu X Machinegun GN 3
  • Btooom! GN 16
  • Corpse Party: Blood Covered GN 4
  • Devils’ Line GN 5
  • Dimension W GN 5
  • Erased GN 1 (Hardcover)
  • Fruits Basket Collector’s Edition GN 10
  • The Ghost in the Shell Deluxe Edition GN 1 (Hardcover)
  • The Ghost in the Shell Deluxe Edition GN 1.5 (Hardcover)
  • The Ghost in the Shell Deluxe Edition GN 2 (Hardcover)
  • Inuyashiki GN 6
  • Konosuba – God’s Blessing on This Wonderful World! GN 2
  • Magia the Ninth GN 2
  • Magical Girl Site GN 1
  • Magika Swordsman and Summoner GN 6
  • Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid GN 2
  • Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt GN 2
  • Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun GN 6
  • Puella Magi Oriko Magica: Sadness Prayer GN 2
  • Rose Guns Days Season Two GN 2
  • Smokin’ Parade GN 1
  • Spirits & Cat Ears GN 1
  • Tokyo Ghoul GN 11
  • Trinity Seven GN 8
  • Ultraman GN 7

Character Special- Sailor Moon Part One

Character Special- Sailor Moon Part One

Sailor Moon

Usagi Tsukino ( called Serena Tsukino in the original English dub) is the main protagonist of the series and leader of the Sailor Soldiers. Usagi is a careless young girl with an enormous capacity for love, compassion, and understanding. Usagi transforms into the heroine called Sailor Moon, Soldier of Love and Justice. At the beginning of the series, she is fourteen years old and portrayed as an immature crybaby who resents fighting evil and wants nothing more than to be a normal girl. As she progresses, however, she embraces the chance to use her power to protect those she cares about.

Tuxedo Mask

Mamoru Chiba (called Darien Shields in the original English dub) is a student somewhat older than Usagi. As a young child he was in a car accident that killed his parents and erased his own memories. He possesses a special psychic rapport with Usagi and can sense when she is in danger, which inspires him to take on the guise of Tuxedo Mask and fight alongside the Sailor Soldiers when needed. After an initially confrontational relationship, he and Usagi remember their past lives together and fall in love again.

Ami Mizuno (called Amy Anderson in the original English dub) is a quiet but intelligent fourteen-year-old bookworm in Usagi’s class with a rumored IQ of 300, she can transform into Sailor Mercury, Soldier of Water and Wisdom. Ami’s shy exterior masks a passion for knowledge and taking care of the people around her. She hopes to become a doctor one day, like her mother, and tends to be the practical one in the group. Secretly, she is also a fan of pop culture and romance novels, and becomes embarrassed whenever this is pointed out. Ami also uses her mini data computer, which is capable of scanning and detecting virtually anything she needs.

Rei Hino (called Raye Hino in the original English dub) is an elegant, fourteen-year-old miko (shrine maiden). Because of her work as a Shinto priestess, Rei has limited precognition and can dispel/nullify evil using special ofuda scrolls, even in her civilian form. She transforms into Sailor Mars, Soldier of Fire and Passion. She is very serious and focused, and easily gets annoyed by Usagi’s laziness, although she cares about her very much. In the anime adaptation, Rei portrayed as boy-crazy and short-tempered throughout, while in the manga and live-action series she is depicted as uninterested in romance and more self-controlled. She attends a private Catholic school separate from the other girls.

Makoto Kino (called Lita Kino in the original English dub) is a fourteen-year-old girl who is a student in Usagi Tsukino’s class and has immense physical strength and in fact was rumoured to have been kicked out of her previous school for fighting. Unusually tall and strong for a Japanese schoolgirl, she transforms into Sailor Jupiter, Soldier of Thunder and Courage. Both Makoto’s parents died in a plane crash years ago, so she lives alone and takes care of herself. She cultivates her physical strength as well as more domestic interests, including housekeeping, cooking, and gardening. Makoto is also good at hand-to-hand combat. Her dream is to marry young and to own a flower-and-cake shop.

Minako Aino (called Mina Aino in the original English dub) is a fourteen-year-old perky dreamer. Minako first appears as the main protagonist of Codename: Sailor V. She has a companion cat called Artemis who works alongside Luna in guiding the Sailor Soldiers. Minako transforms into Sailor Venus, Soldier of Love and Beauty, and leads Sailor Moon’s four inner soldiers, while acting as Sailor Moon’s bodyguard and decoy because of their near identical looks. She also dreams of becoming a famous singer and idol; she attends auditions whenever she can. In contrast, in the live-action series, she is a successful J-Pop singer (of whom Usagi, Ami, and Makoto are fans) and has a poor health condition (due to anemia), choosing to separate herself from the other Guardians as a result.

Sailor Chibi Moon

Chibiusa (called Rini in the original English dub) is the future daughter of Neo-Queen Serenity and King Endymion in the 30th century, she later trains with Sailor Moon to become a Sailor Soldier in her own right, and learns to transform into Sailor Chibi Moon (or “Sailor Mini Moon” in the English series). At times she has an adversarial relationship with her mother in the 20th century, as she is more mature than Usagi, but as the series progresses they develop a deep bond. Chibiusa wants to grow up to become a lady like her mother.

Setsuna Meioh (called Trista Meioh in the original English dub) is a mysterious woman who appears first as Sailor Pluto, Soldier of Spacetime and Change. She has the duty of guarding the Space-Time Door from unauthorized travelers. Only later does she appear on Earth, living as a college student. She has a distant personality and can be very stern, but can also be quite friendly and helps the Sailor Soldiers when she can. After so long guarding the Space-Time Door she carries a deep sense of loneliness, although she is close friends with Chibiusa. Sailor Pluto’s talisman is her Garnet Rod, which aids her with her power to freeze time and attacks.

Haruka Tenoh  called Amara Tenoh in the original English dub) is a good-natured, masculine-acting girl who is a year older than most of the other Sailor Soldiers. She is able to transform into Sailor Uranus, Soldier of Sky and Flight. Before becoming a Sailor Soldier, she dreamt of becoming a racer, and she has excellent driving skills. She tends to dress and, in the anime, speak like a man. When it comes to fighting the enemy she distrusts outside help and prefers to work solely with her girlfriend Sailor Neptune and, later, Pluto and Saturn. Sailor Uranus’s talisman, known as the Space Sword, aids her with her fighting and attacks.

Michiru Kaioh (called Michelle Kaioh in the original English dub) is an elegant and talented violinist and painter with family money of an age with her partner and lover, Haruka Tenoh. She is able to transform into Sailor Neptune, Soldier of Ocean and Embrace. She worked alone for some time before finding her partner, Sailor Uranus. Neptune has ultimately given up her own dreams for the life of a Soldier. She is fully devoted to this duty and willing to make any sacrifice for it. Sailor Neptune’s talisman is her Deep Aqua Mirror, which aids her with her intuition and revealing cloaked evil.

Hotaru Tomoe is a sweet, lonely young girl. A terrible laboratory accident in her youth significantly compromised her health in the anime adaptation and destroyed a large portion of her body (which was later rebuilt with electronic components by her father) in the manga. After overcoming the darkness that has surrounded her family, Hotaru is able to become the Soldier of Destruction and Silence, Sailor Saturn. She is often pensive, and as a human has the inexplicable power to heal others. Sailor Saturn’s weapon is her Silence Glaive, which aids her with her power to generate barriers and the power to destroy a planet. However, when she uses that power, she kills herself but is reborn afterwards by Sailor Moon.

Luna

Luna is a black cat who is a devoted servant to Princess Serenity and advisor to her mother, Queen Serenity. When the kingdom falls, she and Artemis are put into a long sleep and sent down to Earth to look after the Sailor Soldiers, who are to be reborn there. Part of Luna’s memory becomes suppressed, so that she must find the Sailor Soldiers. She first encounters Usagi Tsukino and teaches her to become Sailor Moon, unaware that it is actually the reincarnated Princess Serenity. Luna also provides the Soldiers with many of their special items. Over the course of the series, Luna develops a close bond with Usagi, though early on it is on uneasy terms, as Luna often upsets Usagi by giving her unsolicited advice. She also becomes good friends with Ami Mizuno. She and Artemis have an implied romantic relationship, which is confirmed when they meet Diana, who is their daughter from the future.

Artemis

Artemis is the white cat companion to Minako Aino, the leader of the Sailor Soldiers—he trains her to become Sailor V, and remains by her side when she takes on her proper role as Sailor Venus. He first guides Usagi Tsukino through the Sailor V video game at the Crown Game Center arcade, but not revealing his true identity. When a technical problem reveals him, Luna is greatly annoyed to learn that he has been the one guiding her all along. Later, he fills in the details of her true mission.In the Sailor V manga and the live-action series, Artemis gives special items to the Soldiers, although unlike Luna he does not seem to produce them himself. He never does this in the Sailor Moon manga or the anime. He also does not seem to mind the fact that he is named after a female goddess, even when teased about it by Minako. Artemis is more easygoing than Luna, and has a “big brother” relationship with Minako, although an attraction to her is sometimes implied. He also cares very deeply about Luna, often comforting her when she is distressed and stating his admiration of her. In addition, he is a good father to Diana as evidenced by her affection for him.

Diana

Diana is the future daughter of Luna and Artemis. She first appears when the Sailor Soldiers travel to the 30th century in the Black Moon arc. After defeating Death Phantom, the Sailor Soldiers return to the 20th century and Diana joins them. In the anime only, she appears until Sailor Moon SuperS calling Artemis her father, to Luna’s initial dismay. Only later it is revealed that Diana has come from the future and that her mother is Luna. Just as Luna and Artemis guide Usagi and Minako, Diana acts as a guardian to Chibiusa. She is very curious, eager to help, and deeply polite, always addressing Usagi and Mamoru with the Japanese honorific “-sama” and calling Chibiusa by her formal title, Small Lady. She is also able to help the Sailor Soldiers on occasion, despite her youth, and often because of the knowledge she has gained in the future.

Manga Monday- Sailor Moon

Manga Monday- Sailor Moon

Sailor Moon (originally translated as Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon and later as Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon) is a Japanese shōjo manga series written and illustrated by Naoko Takeuchi. It was originally serialized in Nakayoshi from 1991 to 1997; the 52 individual chapters were published in 18 tankōbon volumes. The series follows the adventures of a young schoolgirl named Usagi Tsukino as she transforms into the titular character to search for a magical artifact called the “Legendary Silver Crystal”. During her journey, she leads a diverse group of comrades, the Sailor Soldiers —Sailor Guardians in later editions—as they battle against villains to prevent the theft of the Silver Crystal and the destruction of the Solar System.
Since its release, Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon has received wide critical acclaim and has become one of the most popular manga and anime series worldwide. The entire series has sold over 35 million copies worldwide, making of it one of the highest selling shōjo series ever, and reviewers have praised the art, characterization and humor of the story.

Written and illustrated by Naoko Takeuchi, Sailor Moon was serialized in the monthly manga anthology Nakayoshi from December 28, 1991 to February 3, 1997. The side-stories were serialized simultaneously in RunRun—another of Kodansha’s manga magazines. The 52 individual chapters were published in 18 tankōbon volumes by Kodansha from July 6, 1992, to April 4, 1997. In 2003, the chapters were re-released in a collection of 12 shinzōban volumes to coincide with the release of the live-action series. The manga was retitled Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon and included new cover art, and revised dialogue and illustrations. The ten individual short stories were also released in 2 volumes. In 2013, the chapters were once again re-released in 10 kanzenban volumes to commemorate the manga’s 20th anniversary, which includes digitally remastered artwork, new covers and color artwork from its Nakayoshi run. The books have been enlarged from the typical Japanese manga size to A5. The short stories were republished in two volumes, with the order of the stories shuffled. Codename: Sailor V was also included in the third edition.

The Sailor Moon manga was initially licensed for an English release by Mixx (later Tokyopop) in North America. The manga was first published as a serial in MixxZine beginning in 1997, but was later removed from the magazine and made into a separate, monthly comic to finish the first, second and third arcs. At the same time, the fourth and fifth arcs were printed in a secondary magazine called Smile. The series was later collected into three-part graphic novels spanning eighteen volumes, which were published from December 1, 1998, to September 18, 2001. Tokyopop’s license expired in 2005 and its edition went out of print. Daily pages from the Tokyopop version ran in the Japanimation Station, a service accessible to users of America Online. In May 2005, Tokyopop’s license to the Sailor Moon manga expired, and its edition went out of print.

In 2011, Kodansha Comics USA announced it would publish the Sailor Moon manga and the lead-in series Codename: Sailor V in English. It would also re-publish the twelve volumes of Sailor Moon simultaneously with the two-volume edition of Codename Sailor V, from September 2011 to July 2013. The first volume of the two related short stories was published on September 10, 2013; the other was published on November 26.
The manga has also been licensed in other English-speaking countries. In the United Kingdom, the volumes are distributed by Turnaround Publisher Services. In Australia, the manga is distributed by Random House Australia.

Film Friday- Vampire Hunter D

Film Friday- Vampire Hunter D

Vampire Hunter D Movie One Plot-

While walking her guard rounds in the country, 17-year-old Doris Lang, the daughter of a deceased werewolf hunter, is attacked by Count Magnus Lee, a 10,000-year-old, long-lost vampire lord (also known as a Noble), who intends to make her his new vampire bride.

Doris later encounters a mysterious dhampir and vampire hunter, known only as D, and hires him to protect her from Count Lee. While in town with Dan, her younger brother, and D, Doris is confronted by Greco Roman, the mayor’s son, about the Count’s attack and D, and promises to help her if he has Doris for himself. When Doris refuses, Greco reveals what happened to the entire town, including Dan. D requests that the authorities, including Greco’s father, the town sheriff and Dr. Feringo (Fehring in the English dub), should hold off Doris’ incarceration at the local asylum until he kills Count Lee.

That night, D is attacked by Rei Ginsei, Count Lee’s servant and a mutant with the ability to warp the space around his body, and Lamika, Count Lee’s daughter, who is highly prejudiced against humans and dhampirs. D holds off the attack and orders the pair to return to the Count’s castle. The next day, he travels the castle and attempts to confront the Count. Aided by the symbiote in his Left Hand, D holds his own against the Count’s monstrous minions, including Rei and his companions Gimlet, Golem and Chullah. While in the castle’s catacombs, he is ensnared and captured by the Snake Women of Midwich. Doris is then kidnapped by Rei and brought to the Count. Using his vampiric powers, D kills the Snake Women, rescues Doris before she can be killed by Lamika, and escapes the castle.

In town, Greco overhears a meeting between Rei and a messenger from Count Lee, who gives the former a candle with Time-Bewitching Incense, a substance powerful enough to weaken vampires and dhampirs. Dan is taken hostage by Rei, and D comes to his rescue, cutting off Rei’s hand in the process and discovering that the candle is a fake. Meanwhile, Dr. Feringo, himself a vampire in league with Count Lee, leads Doris into a trap but is killed by Lamika when he begins requesting to share Doris with the Count. Greco then appears, using the real Time-Bewitching Incense to severely weaken Lamika, but is overpowered by Dan and D. Afterwards, Doris, who has by now fallen for D, tries to convince him to live with her and embraces him. This starts to trigger D’s vampire side, but, unwilling to bite her, he forces her away from him.

The next morning, Greco is confronted and killed by Rei, who uses the real candle to weaken D, allowing him to kill the vampire hunter with a wooden stake. Doris and Dan are then captured and taken back to the castle. Lamika tries to persuade her father not to allow a human into the family, but Lee reveals that there is no harm in doing so, as Lamika’s own mother was a human – making her a dhampir instead of a full-blooded vampire. Rei also requests that the Count give him eternal life as a member of the Nobility, but he is coldly rebuffed.

As a mutant attempts to devour D’s body, his Left Hand revives him just in time for him to kill the monster. As the processional for the Count and Doris’ wedding takes place, Dan, having escaped his cell, attempts to attack Lee, but falls into a chasm before being saved by Rei. In retaliation for not fulfilling his request, Rei attempts to weaken the Count with the Time-Bewitching Incense. However, Lee, who is too powerful to be weakened by the Incense, kills him. Before Doris can be bitten by the Count, D appears and engages in a climactic battle with Lee, and succeeds in stabbing the Noble with his sword. A weakened Lee attempts to influence Doris into killing D, but she is broken out of the trance by Dan, who arrives with Lamika. D then uses his powers to enact the destruction of the castle, and it is implied, because of these powers and their resemblance to one another, that he is the son of Count Dracula, the legendary Ancestral God of Vampires. He then tries to persuade Lamika into living as a human, but she chooses to die as a member of the Nobility with her father.

D, Doris and Dan escape the collapsing castle. The dhampir then sets off under a now clear blue sky. The Langs bid D goodbye as he looks back briefly to them and smiles.

Vampire Hunter D Movie Two Bloodlust-

Charlotte, a young woman, is abducted by Baron Meier Link, a vampire nobleman who is known not to harm humans needlessly. Charlotte’s father, Elbourne, hires D, a dhampir, to find her and rescue her, and alternatively, kill her humanely if she’s been turned into a vampire. He offers D $500,000 as a down payment, and offers him $10mil if he carries out the job. D has Elbourne double the payment, and agrees to search for Charlotte.

At the same time, Charlotte’s older brother hires another group of vampire hunters, the notorious Marcus brothers, composed of the leader Borgoff, a hulking man named Nolt, a blade master named Kyle, a physically disabled psychic named Grove and a woman named Leila who hunts vampires because of a personal grudge rather than for monetary gain. The two parties (D and the Marcus brothers) race inexorably after Meier Link. However, Meier Link hires the mutant Barbarois; a group of lethal mercenary body guards. They consist of Caroline, a shape shifter; Benge, a shadow manipulator; and Machira, a werewolf.

Throughout the course of the film, two of the Marcus brothers, Nolt and Kyle, end up being killed by the mutant Barbarois, while Leila and Borgoff continue their search for Charlotte.

As the story progresses, Meier Link’s abduction of Charlotte turns out to not be as it seemed, as it’s revealed that Charlotte willingly ran away with Meier Link as his lover. Charlotte rightfully feared that no one would understand their relationship, with her a human and Link a vampire.

Throughout their search, and after both characters save each other from seeming death at separate points, D has a conversation with Leila, where she reveals that she hunts vampires because a vampire killed her mother. D tells her that he hunts vampires as he has no other choice as a dhampir, and she can have a life that someone like him could never have; the life of a normal human. Leila, having not exactly taken the life of a normal human, instead being a monster hunter, fears that no one will mourn her death when that time comes. She make a pact with D, that if either one of them survives, the survivor will bring flowers to the other’s grave. D admits that he does not expect himself to survive the bounty hunt, after coming so close to death.

In the final act of the film, Meier Link transports Charlotte in his carriage to the Castle of Chaythe, where Countess Carmilla, Meier Link’s matron, waits for them. Carmilla, a ghost of a vampire who died long ago, reigned supreme within the Castle of Chaythe when vampires were all-powerful and unchallenged. However, her bloodlust was so strong that D’s father, an ancient, noble vampire king, killed her in disgust. Carmilla promises Meier Link and Charlotte travel to a far away city known as the City of The Night, where they can be free to love each other, which they will travel to in a large and ancient spaceship-like structure hidden beneath the Castle of Chaythe. Carmilla explains that most ancient castles had similar ships hidden within them, and that back when vampires reigned supreme, these ships weren’t an uncommon means for vampires to travel to far regions. Carmilla notes that the ship is old and hasn’t flown in a long time, and that she doesn’t know if the ship will fly safely, but that Meier Link and Charlotte are allowed to take that risk, if they so wish.

D and the remaining Marcus brothers separately trail Meier Link to the Castle of Chaythe, and as they enter the castle in their search for Charlotte, Carmilla plays psychological tricks on them. Borgoff, for example, is shown Nolt and Kyle, the dead members of the Marcus brothers, returning to life. Borgoff ends up also being killed in his surprised and ecstatic state by Carmilla’s ghost, and it turns out Nolt and Kyle never returned to life at all. This leaves Leila as the only surviving member of the Marcus brothers as she continues her search for Charlotte inside the castle.

Carmilla manipulates D’s mind, and shows him a vision of his mother, in which she apologizes to D for birthing him as a dhampir, and states that she couldn’t help it as she was a human in love with D’s vampire father, and attempts to explain that humans are capable of loving vampires. D strikes this vision of his mother down with his sword and returns to a normal state.

In a plot twist, Carmilla turns on Meier Link and Charlotte, as Carmilla had actually plotted to kill Charlotte all along, with the reasoning being that Carmilla needed the blood of a virgin to leave her ghostly, ethereal form and return to life. D destroys Carmilla’s ghost just as Carmilla is performing the ritual and draining Charlotte of her blood. D, still with a job to do in bringing Charlotte safely back home, engages Meier Link in battle, as Meier Link doesn’t want D to take his lover away from him. D stabs Meier Link through the chest with his sword, but not through his heart, injuring Meier Link but allowing him to live. During their encounter, Charlotte has died due to the ritual that Carmilla had been performing previously, and D takes the ring off of her finger as proof of her death to bring back to Elbourne, as he ceases battle with Meier Link.

D, along with Leila, make their leave of the Castle of Chaythe, and allow Meier Link to leave for the City of the Night in the Castle of Chaythe’s ship with Charlotte’s corpse on board. D and Leila agree to ride back into town together on D’s horse, as Leila jokingly tells D that the reward is rightfully hers, but this time, she’ll allow him to have it. Before riding off, they watch in the distance as the ship hidden underneath the castle takes off to the skies with Charlotte’s corpse and Meier Link inside.

In the final scene of the movie, D arrives at Leila’s funeral, watching her loved ones mourn from a distance. Many decades have passed since all of the previous events, as a little girl revealed to be Leila’s granddaughter approaches and greets D, and invites him to stay with her family for a while. D politely declines, saying that he simply came to “repay a favor to an old friend, who feared no one would mourn her death.” D admits that he was glad she was wrong. The girl thanks him, and D replies by smiling gently at her, and leaves.

Wednesday News- February 15, 2017

Wednesday News- February 15, 2017

News-

20 Years of Utena Fandom with the Ultimate Superfans- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/feature/2017-02-15/20-years-of-utena-fandom-with-the-ultimate-superfans/.112267

CLAMP-Designed Kabukibu! Anime Reveals Cast with Video- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2017-02-15/clamp-designed-kabukibu-anime-reveals-cast-with-video/.112272

Pokemon Go Game Launches 80+ Generation 2 Pokemon This Week- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2017-02-15/pokemon-go-game-launches-80-generation-2-pokemon-this-week/.112266

Live-Actio JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Film’s Visuals Show Okuyasu, Keicho- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/daily-briefs/2017-02-14/live-action-jojo-bizarre-adventure-film-visuals-show-okuyasu-keicho/.112243

Anime-

  • Busou Shinki BD
  • Comet Lucifer BD
  • Comet Lucifer DVD
  • The Mystic Archives of Dantalian DVD
  • Nobunagun BD/DVD S.A.V.E. Edition
  • One Piece Collection 18 DVD Uncut
  • Persona 5 the Animation -The Day Breakers- BD (Import)

Manga-

  • Fate/Zero GN 4
  • Happiness GN 3
  • Hayate the Combat Butler GN 29
  • The Heroic Legend of Arslan GN 6
  • Hour of the Zombie GN 4
  • Kuma Miko: Girl Meets Bear GN 3
  • Magi GN 22
  • Monster Hunter: Flash Hunter GN 6
  • Nekogahara GN 2
  • Re:Monster GN 2
  • Secret of the Princess GN
  • Ten Count GN 3
  • To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts GN 4

Other Tuesday- Vampire Hunter D Light Novels

Other Tuesday- Vampire Hunter D Light Novels

Beginning in 1983, Kikuchi has so far written 31 Vampire Hunter novels spanning 44 volumes. All of the official publications in the series were originally published by Asahi Sonorama until the Sonorama branch went out of business in September 2007. The release of D – Throng of Heretics in October 2007 under the Asahi Bunko – Sonorama Selection label marked the transition to the new publisher, Asahi Shimbun Publishing, a division of Asahi Sonorama’s parent company. From December 2007 through January 2008, Asahi Shimbun Publishing reprinted the complete Vampire Hunter catalogue under the Sonorama Selection label.
On May 11, 2005, the first official English translation was released under DH Press, translated by Kevin Leahy. As of November 2016, 21 novels have been translated into and released in English, spanning 24 volumes.
In January 2011, Hideyuki Kikuchi published the first spinoff set in the Vampire Hunter universe, a series of prequels titled Another Vampire Hunter: The Noble Greylancer, illustrated by Ayami Kojima, artist and character designer for the Castlevania series of video games. It takes place over 5,000 years before Vampire Hunter D and focuses on expanding the history of the Nobility, following the exploits of the vampire warrior Lord Greylancer.
In 2013, Viz Media’s Haikasoru imprint released the first official English translation of the prequel series, retitled Noble V: Greylancer, translated by Takami Nieda with newly commissioned cover artwork by Vincent Chong.

Plot-

D wanders through a far-future post-nuclear Earth that combines elements of pulp genres: western, science fiction, horror, high fantasy, H. P. Lovecraftian mythos, folklore and occult science. The planet, once terrified by the elegant but cruel Nobles (vampires), ancient demons, mutants and their technological creations, is now slowly returning to a semblance of order and human control — thanks in part to the decadence that brought about the downfall of the vampire race, to the continued stubbornness of frontier dwellers and, to the rise of a caste of independent hunters-for-hire who eliminate supernatural threats.

The year is approximately 12,090 AD. Some time in 1999, a nuclear war occurred. The Nobility were vampires that planned for a possible nuclear war and sequestered all that was needed to rebuild civilization in their shelters. They use their science combined with magic to restore the world in their image. Nearly all magical creatures are engineered, with a very small number being demons who survived the holocaust. Despite their technology being great enough to create a blood substitute as food, they still prefer to feed on humans. As such, they create a civilization where vampires and humans coexist, eventually developing the planet into parklands and cities. The society eventually stagnates when vampire technology perfects scientific prophecy, which determines they are at their zenith of existence and thus are doomed to fall, overthrown by humans. The human race was also transformed at this time, with fear for the vampires being woven into the genetic level, and the inability to remember vampire weaknesses such as garlic and crucifixes.

 

Manga Monday- Vampire Hunter D

Manga Monday- Vampire Hunter D

Hideyuki Kikuchi’s Vampire Hunter D, known simply as Vampire Hunter D in Japan, is a manga adaptation of the Vampire Hunter D novel series by acclaimed horror writer, Hideyuki Kikuchi.
Announced at Anime Expo 2006, the Vampire Hunter D manga project is currently underway in collaboration between Hideyuki Kikuchi and Digital Manga Publishing. Kikuchi, who has always had a close relationship with his fans, has personally selected doujinshi artist Saiko Takaki as illustrator for the project.
The first volume was published on 14 November 2007, and was subsequently nominated as the third best new seinen manga of 2007 in an About.com reader’s poll, and placed fifth in the SPJA Industry Awards in the “best action manga” category.
The plan was to adapt the entire catalogue of Vampire Hunter D novels into manga form. However, the series was officially reported to be cancelled by DMP in November 2015, with no plans to release volume 8 in the USA.

I am going to be laying out the plots of two of the manga volumes that the two Vampire Hunter D movies were based one and discussing the differences between the novels and movies.

Plot-

Movie 1 Vampire Hunter D

The year is 12,090 A.D., and what little is left of humanity has finally crawled out from the ashes of war and destruction. From the darkness of the fallout, mutants and a race of vampires known as the Nobility have spawned. They rule the weak with no remorse. Once bitten by a Nobility, one is cursed to become a member of the undead. Villagers cower in fear, hoping and praying for a savior to rid them of their undying nightmare. All they have to battle this danger is a different kind of danger – a Vampire Hunter.
Enter D – a lone, mysterious Vampire Hunter sought out by the desperate Doris Lang. Bitten by the vampire lord Count Lee, Doris is destined to her eternal fate… Can D deliver her from her curse and bring her to salvation, or will she forever be part of the unholy dead?

Differences from the Novel and film While the story remains intact, the manga takes some liberties with the narrative and character designs. Larmica returns to being blonde, but Doris is depicted with Red hair in the colored splash page after the cover. Certain events are shuffled around while others are slightly changed to take place at the same time as another. In the original Novel, Greco is killed by Larmica, but in the manga he is fatally wounded by Rei Ginsei (much like in the film). D’s fight against Golem, Gimlet and Chullah remains the same as the novel (though Chullah may have survived this time around) while his triumph over Rei is slightly different (in the novel, D exploited Rei Ginsei’s powers to finish the mutant, while in the manga he severs Rei’s other hand, causing him to be decapitated by his own shrike blade). The ending appears to take elements from both the novel and film, in which D is seen safe and sound, leaving on horse back (in the novel, he doesn’t appear after his conversation with Larmica-the film has Dorris and Dan bidding their bodyguard farewell). It is interesting to note that D left his pendant in the care of Dan, not even returning to retrieve it after he vanquishes Count Lee.

Movie 2 Vampire Hunter D- Bloodlust

The vampire hunter known only as D has been hired by a wealthy, dying man to find his daughter, who was kidnapped by the powerful vampire Lord Meier Link. Though humans speak well of Meier Link, the price on his head is too high for D to ignore and he sets out to save her before she can be turned into an undead creature of the night. In the nightmare world of 12090 A.D., finding Meier Link before he reaches the spaceport in the Clayborn States and gets off the planet will be hard enough, but D has more than just Meier Link to worry about. The dying man is taking no chances, and has also enlisted the Marcus family, a renegade clan of ruthless mercenaries who don’t care who they kill as long as they get paid!
Hideyuki Kikuchi’s Vampire Hunter D Volume 3 adapts Demon Deathchase, the third Vampire Hunter D light novel.

Differences between the original light novel and film, Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust Much like the first manga, volume 3 remains faithful to the novel with little changes within the story.

 

2016 comic book series

On June 30, 2016, a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign for a five-issue Vampire Hunter D comic book series titled Vampire Hunter D: Message from Mars was announced. To be published by Stranger Comics with supervision from series creator Hideyuki Kikuchi and support from the creative teams at Unified Pictures and Digital Frontier, Message from Mars will be an adaptation of the 2005 short story Message from Cecile and will act as a prequel to the in-development animated series. The series will be written by Brandon Easton and illustrated by Michael Broussard, with visual development by Christopher Shy. The campaign’s stretch goals also include an official Vampire Hunter D Pathfinder Roleplaying Game supplement to be written by F. Wesley Schneider. The campaign reached its $25,000 funding goal on July 1, 2016 and its initial $50,000 stretch goal on July 7, 2016. The campaign concluded on August 9, 2016, with 1,736 backers pledging a total of $107,025, reaching four out of five stretch goals.