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Month: February 2020

Film Friday- Puella Magi Madoka Magica

Film Friday- Puella Magi Madoka Magica

Puella Magi Madoka Magica often referred to simply as Madoka Magica, is a Japanese anime television series created by Magica Quartet, an artist collective consisting of director Akiyuki Shinbo, screenwriter Gen Urobuchi, character designer Ume Aoki, and producer Atsuhiro Iwakami. The story follows a group of female middle school students who choose to become magical girls, subsequently battling surreal enemies known as “witches.” In consequence, they learn of the anguish and peril associated with their new role.

The first ten episodes of the series aired in Japan on TBS and MBS between January and March 2011, while the final two episodes were delayed until April 2011 due to the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami. A manga adaptation of the series and various spin-off manga series have been published by Houbunsha and licensed in North America by Yen Press. A novelization by Nitroplus was released in August 2011, and a dedicated magazine titled Manga Time Kirara Magica was launched by Houbunsha in June 2012. A video game for the PlayStation Portable was released in March 2012 and another for PlayStation Vita was released in December 2013. A film series has also been produced; it consists of two films recapping the anime series and released in October 2012. A third film featuring an original story was released on October 26, 2013, and a concept film acting as a trailer for a new project was screened in December 2015. A smartphone game, Magia Record, launched in August 2017, and an anime adaptation premiered in January 2020.

Puella Magi Madoka Magica has received widespread critical acclaim; critics praised the complex narrative, visuals, artistic direction, and soundtrack of the series as well as its unconventional approach to the magical girl subgenre. It became a commercial success; each Blu-ray Disc volume sold more than 50,000 copies in Japan. The series garnered a variety of awards, such as the Television Award at the 16th Animation Kobe Awards, as well as 12 Newtype Anime Awards and the Grand Prize for animation in the 2011 Japan Media Arts awards.

Characters

Madoka Kaname 
is the titular protagonist of the 2011 anime series Puella Magi Madoka Magica and its related media. In the anime, she initially lives a normal and happy life, but is then faced with the decision of becoming a magical girl.

Madoka is a kind and gentle 14-year-old girl who comes from a loving family. A second-year at middle school, her life changes when she encounters the incubator Kyubey, who offers to transform her into a magical girl. She sees herself as a person without special qualities or talents, and after seeing her schoolmate Mami Tomoe fighting against witches, aspires to become a magical girl like her. She is a kind and gentle person that is averse to fighting. She hopes that the magical girls will support each other, sometimes even putting her own life at risk to help them. After witnessing Mami’s death, she grows uncertain about becoming a magical girl, growing ever more hesitant as the true cost of the role is revealed to her.
In previous timelines, Madoka became a magical girl in a pink dress wielding a rose branch bow and arrow. In the drama CD, “Memories of You”, it is revealed that the wish in the first timeline was to save a cat named Amy from death. However, every time, she was either killed or transformed into a witch named Kriemhild Gretchen, the Witch of Salvation, one that became ever more powerful with each time reset, as Madoka’s power also increased and if created would, by the end of that same week, consume all life on Earth in order to create a paradise where there is no free will or individuality to cause strife or conflict. In the current timeline before the final episode, Kyubey claims that Madoka has an impossibly large amount of potential for magic, going so far as to claim that she could become a god. The reason for this is unclear, since her life so far has been relatively average and free of tragedies. This is later revealed to be due to her accumulated misfortune, which was caused as a result of her classmate Homura Akemi repeatedly resetting time, with Madoka’s fate getting worse with each timeline, making her magic power grow exponentially with each reset. In the first timeline, she still possesses a high amount of power, being able to defeat Walpurgisnacht, though dying in the process. Subsequently, by the current timeline, she has the potential to be the most powerful magical girl to date. Towards the end, she learns of this and Homura’s efforts to save her.
After seeing the suffering of magical girls throughout history, Madoka decides to make her wish: to prevent all magical girls from the past, present, future and all other timelines, from ever becoming witches. The laws of the universe are rewritten such that at the moment that a soul gem becomes black with anguish, Madoka appears and purifies it before the magical girl passes on. As a result of this wish, she becomes an omnipotent being named Ultimate Madoka, that exists for all time, erasing her pre-ascension existence from the world; leaving only Homura – and to some extent her little brother – with the memory of her. Madoka becomes only a concept in the new world, one named the Law of Cycles. Magical girls absorbed into the Law of Cycles regain knowledge of their lives in previous timelines.
At the end of Rebellion, Ultimate Madoka was usurped by Homura and had her human and goddess selves split, with her role as a martyr being forced onto the Incubators. Homura places human Madoka in a new universe where she and her friends can live normal lives unaware of their pasts, though Madoka regains her memories at the last second and her final conversation with Homura implies that it is only a matter of time before Madoka merges with her goddess self once more and must face her friend in battle.

Manga Monday- Puella Magi Madoka Magica

Manga Monday- Puella Magi Madoka Magica

Puella Magi Madoka Magica often referred to simply as Madoka Magica, is a Japanese anime television series created by Magica Quartet, an artist collective consisting of director Akiyuki Shinbo, screenwriter Gen Urobuchi, character designer Ume Aoki, and producer Atsuhiro Iwakami. The story follows a group of female middle school students who choose to become magical girls, subsequently battling surreal enemies known as “witches.” In consequence, they learn of the anguish and peril associated with their new role.

The first ten episodes of the series aired in Japan on TBS and MBS between January and March 2011, while the final two episodes were delayed until April 2011 due to the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami. A manga adaptation of the series and various spin-off manga series have been published by Houbunsha and licensed in North America by Yen Press. A novelization by Nitroplus was released in August 2011, and a dedicated magazine titled Manga Time Kirara Magica was launched by Houbunsha in June 2012. A video game for the PlayStation Portable was released in March 2012 and another for PlayStation Vita was released in December 2013. A film series has also been produced; it consists of two films recapping the anime series and released in October 2012. A third film featuring an original story was released on October 26, 2013, and a concept film acting as a trailer for a new project was screened in December 2015. A smartphone game, Magia Record, launched in August 2017, and an anime adaptation premiered in January 2020.

Puella Magi Madoka Magica has received widespread critical acclaim; critics praised the complex narrative, visuals, artistic direction, and soundtrack of the series as well as its unconventional approach to the magical girl subgenre. It became a commercial success; each Blu-ray Disc volume sold more than 50,000 copies in Japan. The series garnered a variety of awards, such as the Television Award at the 16th Animation Kobe Awards, as well as 12 Newtype Anime Awards and the Grand Prize for animation in the 2011 Japan Media Arts awards.

Print media

Houbunsha has published several manga series based on Puella Magi Madoka Magica. A direct adaptation of the anime series was illustrated by Hanokage and published in three four-chapter tankōbon volumes that were released between February 12 and May 30, 2011. The manga has been licensed in North America by Yen Press. A side story manga titled Puella Magi Kazumi Magica: The Innocent Malice, which was written by Masaki Hiramatsu and illustrated by Takashi Tensugi, was serialized in Manga Time Kirara Forward between March 2011 and January 2013. A third manga titled Puella Magi Oriko Magica, which was written by Kuroe Mura, was released in two tankōbon volumes on May 12, 2011, and June 12, 2011. Both Kazumi Magica and Oriko Magica have been licensed by Yen Press in North America. The first volume of Kazumi Magica was released in May 2013. Puella Magi Madoka Magica: Wraith Arc, which was written and illustrated by Hanokage, began serialization in the 20th issue of Manga Time Kirara Magica released on June 10, 2015. The plot describes the events that happened between Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Eternal and Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion.

The first volume of an official anthology comic featuring illustrations by guest artists was released on September 12, 2011. A dedicated monthly magazine published by Houbunsha and titled Manga Time Kirara Magica was launched on June 8, 2012; it features various manga stories, including spin-off stories of Oriko Magica. A film comic adaptation of the series titled Puella Magi Madoka Magica: Film Memories went on sale on May 26, 2012. Puella Magi Madoka Magica: The Different Story, another manga by Hanokage, was published in three tankōbon volumes between October 12 and November 12, 2012, and was licensed by Yen Press in 2014. The first volume of Puella Magi Suzune Magica, which was written and illustrated by Gan, was released on November 12, 2013, before being serialized in Manga Time Kirara Magica on November 22, 2013. Puella Magi Homura Tamura, which was written and illustrated by Afro, is serialized in Manga Time Kirara Magica; its first volume was released in October 2013 and was licensed by Yen Press. Puella Magi Homura’s Revenge! , written by Kawazukuu and illustrated by Masugitsune, was serialized in Manga Time Kirara Magica and released two volumes in December 2013; Yen Press licensed the manga.

Hajime Ninomae wrote a novel adaptation of the series that was illustrated by Yūpon and published by Nitroplus on August 14, 2011. Pre-release copies were available at Comiket 80 on August 12, 2011. A book titled Puella Magi Madoka Magica: The Beginning Story, which is based on Gen Urobuchi’s original draft treatment for the anime, was released in November 2011.

Plot

In the fictional city of Mitakihara, Japan, a middle school student named Madoka Kaname and her friend Sayaka Miki encounter a small, cat-like creature named Kyubey. It offers a contract in which a girl may have any wish granted in exchange for obtaining magical powers and being tasked with fighting witches. Meanwhile, a transfer student and magical girl named Homura Akemi tries to stop Madoka from making the contract with Kyubey. Madoka and Sayaka then meet Mami Tomoe, an upperclassman at the same school who is also a magical girl. Noticing their indecisiveness on whether to become a magical girl, Mami offers to take Madoka and Sayaka along on her witch hunts so they may learn of the responsibilities that come with being a magical girl.

However, after witnessing Mami’s death at the hands of a witch, Madoka realizes the life of a magical girl is filled with danger, anguish, and suffering. This is further enforced by the appearance of Kyoko Sakura, a veteran magical girl whose wish indirectly caused the death of her family. Madoka also discovers magical girls give up their souls to form their Soul Gems, the source of their magic, and that when Soul Gems become too tainted with despair, magical girls change into witches.

Sayaka decides to become a magical girl after learning that doing so would allow her to heal a young musician who she admires. However, her classmate Hitomi Shizuki confesses to him first, causing Sayaka to become disillusioned and fall into an inescapable despair that turns her into a witch. Kyubey reveals to Madoka that he is of an alien race that has been harvesting the emotions of magical girls for centuries to use as energy to counteract the spread of entropy, and thus stave off the heat death of the universe. Madoka also learns that Homura is a magical girl from a different timeline who has repeated the same month countless times to try to save Madoka from a grisly fate.

Madoka and Kyoko attempt to reverse Sayaka’s transformation, but the plan fails and Kyoko is forced to sacrifice herself to allow Madoka to escape, leaving Homura as the only remaining magical girl. Following this, an extremely powerful witch known as Walpurgisnacht approaches the city. Homura attempts to stop it, but is defeated. She prepares to rewind time to repeat the month again, but Madoka stops her. With the past month’s events in mind, Madoka decides to become a magical girl and makes a wish to stop the creation of all witches in the past, present, and future. The scope of this wish rewrites history and the laws of the universe, and her existence as a human is erased from time. She transcends into a cosmic phenomenon called “The Law of Cycles”, which appears to all magical girls at the moment before they become witches and rescues them by taking them to a heavenly paradise. A new reality, in which Homura is the only one who remembers Madoka, is formed. Homura vows to continue fighting in honor of Madoka.

 

Film Friday- Heat Guy J

Film Friday- Heat Guy J

Heat Guy J is a Japanese anime television series created and directed by Escaflowne director Kazuki Akane and animated by Satelight.

Heat Guy J was licensed and distributed in the U.S. in 2003 by Pioneer. It was re-released by Funimation in the fall of 2009. The first 13 episodes of the show also was broadcast on the cable channel MTV2. A one volume manga was created based on the series, and was licensed and distributed by Tokyopop. The show was picked up for a UK DVD release by Manga Entertainment starting in March 2006. It was packaged in double DVD sets to make up for the long delayed release of the series.

Characters

Special Services

  • Daisuke Aurora
    – Department of Security, Central Headquarters Special Services Employee, age 21

    Nicknamed “Dais” (or “Dice”). Cool and laid back, Daisuke is one half of the Special Services Bureau’s investigative team. He prefers action to paperwork, but when he’s not out on the street fighting crime, he’s often seen in various states of in-action.
    Although he never really shows it, Daisuke is quite compassionate and has a strong sense of justice. However, he has deep and painful memories of the vanishing of his mother and his father (a politician) being murdered by an android. The only memento of his father is a bullet pendant he wears around his neck.
  • J
    – Special Services Android, 3, Appearance of a 40-year-old Man

    An android with incredible power, J was created in cooperation between a government facility and a civilian enterprise; androids are illegal in Judoh, but a special exception is made for J, much to the dismay of wary city officials. Despite his hulking size, J can run at enormous speeds and packs a powerful punch. However, after prolonged bouts of action, J must cool himself down by venting a great deal of superheated air from pipes mounted on his shoulders, making a sound like a howling wolf. J is maintained by the Civilian Enterprises Sect technician Antonia Bellucci. It is said that J is modeled after Antonia’s father. This is probably why J seems to be so human sometimes, with a noble character and strong beliefs on things like how a man should act.
  • Kyoko Milchan
    – Department of Security, Central Headquarters Special Services Auditor/Accountant, age 21

    A young auditor and accountant for Special Services, Kyoko is strait-laced and always plays by the rules. This causes her stress when dealing with Daisuke, whom she often scolds. However, she eventually develops feelings towards Daisuke, after letting go of her crush on his brother Shun.
  • Shun Aurora 
    – Government Investigative Office of Department of Security, Central Headquarters General Manager, age 27

    Daisuke’s older brother and the General Manager of Special Services, Shun prides himself on his rational and logical thinking. Shun’s logical nature is usually in conflict with Daisuke’s more impulsive personality. This causes a gap between the two brothers, despite the fact that Shun raised Daisuke after their father’s death at the hand of an android. Another point of contention between them is Shun’s inability to forgive his mother for leaving their family when Shun was 9 and Daisuke 3. Shun is responsible for the partnership of his brother with J.
  • Phia Oliveira
    – Central Headquarters, General Manager’s Secretary, age 27

    Phia is Shun’s head secretary over at the Special Services office. She is very reliable although she seems to take enjoyment in seeing Shun and Daisuke argue.

Manga Monday- Heat Guy J

Manga Monday- Heat Guy J

Heat Guy J is a Japanese anime television series created and directed by Escaflowne director Kazuki Akane and animated by Satelight.

Heat Guy J was licensed and distributed in the U.S. in 2003 by Pioneer. It was re-released by Funimation in the fall of 2009. The first 13 episodes of the show also was broadcast on the cable channel MTV2. A one volume manga was created based on the series, and was licensed and distributed by Tokyopop. The show was picked up for a UK DVD release by Manga Entertainment starting in March 2006. It was packaged in double DVD sets to make up for the long delayed release of the series.

Manga

Coinciding with the anime series in 2002, a manga version of Heat Guy J was released. It was eventually distributed in the U.S. by Tokyopop in 2005. It was written and drawn by Chiaki Ogishima. While the main characters and general setup were similar to the anime, the manga has its own unique storyline and supporting characters. There is only one volume in the series, and it includes several pages of bonus material related to the show.

Plot

Heat Guy J chronicles the adventures of a young Special Services officer named Daisuke Aurora and his android partner known simply as “J”. The pair live and work in the fictional, futuristic Metropolis of “Judoh” (Jewde), where the understaffed and underfunded Special Services Division of the Bureau of Urban Safety has its headquarters.

 

Film Friday- Ai Yori Aoshi

Film Friday- Ai Yori Aoshi

Ai Yori Aoshi is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Kou Fumizuki. The manga was serialized in Hakusensha’s Young Animal magazine from 1999 to 2005 and the chapters collected into 17 tankōbon volumes. It is a love story between two characters who have not seen each other in years, but were once childhood friends.

An anime television series adaptation was animated by J.C.Staff and directed by Masami Shimoda, with Kenichi Kanemaki handling series composition, Kazunori Iwakura designing the characters and Toshio Masuda composing the music. The anime was broadcast on Fuji TV in 2002. A second season titled Ai Yori Aoshi: Enishi was set two years later and aired in 2003. There are 37 episodes total, counting an alternate-continuity Christmas special. The anime was released in North America by Geneon and the manga was released in English by Tokyopop. Four visual novels were also released for the PlayStation 2 and Windows 98.

Anime

An anime television series adaptation animated by J.C.Staff, written by Kenichi Kanemaki, and directed by Masami Shimoda premiered on Fuji TV from April 10, 2002, to September 25, 2002, spanning twenty-four episodes. Most of the music for the series was composed by Toshio Masuda. Three pieces of theme music were used in the anime series. “Towa no Hana” performed by Yoko Ishida is the opening theme. “Na mo Shirenu Hana” performed by The Indigo is the ending theme used for all the episodes except one; “I’ll Be Home” performed by Satsuki Yukino is the ending theme for eighteenth episode. In Japan, it was released across eight Region 2 DVD compilation volumes. The anime was licensed by Geneon for an English-dubbed release in North America.

A second season titled Ai Yori Aoshi: Enishi aired from October 12, 2003, to December 28, 2003, spanning twelve episodes. The second season of anime adaptation uses three pieces of theme music. “Takaramono”performed by Yoko Ishida is the opening theme. “I Do!” is the first ending theme performed by The Indigo. “Presence” performed by The Indigo is the second ending theme. The series was released across three Region 2 DVD compilations in Japan. Geneon also licensed the second season in North America for an English-dubbed release.
A fifteen-minute OVA known variously as “Episode 00”, “Beautiful Snow”, and “Enishi Christmas Special” was released on September 26, 2003. The special was dubbed and released in English on the first North American Enishi DVD release.
At Anime Expo 2010, Funimation announced that they had licensed both seasons, and re-released them in 2011. Funimation released the complete series under the Anime Classics label in July 2012.

Video games

KID Corp. published a PlayStation 2 video game based on the series in 2003, and was released in English for Windows PCs by Hirameki International. That game was re-released in 2005 by SUCCESS Corporation with bonus footage and mini-games.

Reception

The first anime season had mixed reviews from people. It has also been described however as a “split personality” anime as half of it wants to be a serious, dramatic romance with a dash of comedy and the other half wants to be a One Guy/Lots of Girls slapstick harem show. Despite that the artwork has been labeled as “stunning” with its artwork and the theme music got a good review.

Kaoru Hanabishi

The male protagonist of the series. Kaoru is a fairly average person and he does not fit the mold of the stereotypical male protagonist in most harem anime series; for instance, he does not struggle with his studies, nor is he prone to emotional outbursts. He is generally well liked and is a member of the photography club at Meiritsu University. He resents the Hanabishi clan for their inhumane treatment of himself and his mother, which was due in turn to that clan’s disapproval of his parents’ relationship. Kaoru’s mother and father never married, and he was an illegitimate child. His back is scarred from when he was tortured with bamboo cane for trying to prevent his grandfather from burning mementos of his dead mother. After exiling himself from the Hanabishi clan, Kaoru has led an average, if not lonely, life. When Aoi arrives, he is, at first, perplexed at her visit, not remembering almost anything prior. The idea of marriage takes him aback, but very quickly likes, and even looks forward to it. Eventually, Kaoru marries Aoi.

Aoi Sakuraba

The female protagonist of the series. Aoi is a generally demure girl often seen wearing an indigo kimono, and she addresses Kaoru as “Kaoru-sama”. Due to her sharp culinary and housekeeping skills, she is seen as an ideal Japanese woman. As a Sakuraba, Aoi was forced into an arranged marriage with Kaoru and because he left the Habanashi, she (having fallen deeply in love with him), chased after him. Unlike other female leads in harem anime, she works to control her jealousy and is generally successful. She is very devoted to Kaoru, however, and will do all in her power to prevent being separated from him. In the beginning, Aoi was willing to warm him when he had a fever, becoming nude in the process (she made sure he wasn’t looking). When Aoi, Kaoru, and Miyabi moved to the Sakuraba’s summer estate the public appearance Miyabi wanted was that Aoi would be the landlady, herself the manager, and Kaoru a tenant. When Tina Foster moved in, Aoi and Miyabi became a real landlord and manager. She has a “bad” habit of clutching things in her sleep. Eventually, Kaoru’s half-brother proposes to Aoi; when Kaoru stops the engagement, Aoi decides to abandon her family to be with Kaoru.

 

Wednesday News- February 12, 2020

Wednesday News- February 12, 2020

Drifting Dragons Anime’s Video Previews New ‘Giraud Arc’https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2020-02-11/drifting-dragons-anime-video-previews-new-giraud-arc/.156335

Is Jeweler Richard This Season’s Hidden Gem?- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/this-week-in-anime/2020-02-11/.156329

Jump Edition-in-Chief Explains What’s Unusual About Demon Slayer’s Success- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/interest/2020-02-11/jump-editor-in-chief-explains-what-unusual-about-demon-slayer-success/.156186

The List:  Best Monster Girl Anime- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/the-list/2020-02-09/.156240

Crunchyroll Adds World Trigger Anime’s English Dub- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2020-02-11/crunchyroll-adds-world-trigger-anime-english-dub/.156352

Anime

  • Beyblade Burst Turbo Season 3 DVD
  • Endride Essentials BD
  • Fruits Basket Season 1 Part 2 BD/DVD
  • Fruits Basket Season 1 Part 2 Limited Edition BD/DVD
  • Grave of the Fireflies Steelbook BD
  • ReLIFE: Final Arc Classics BD
  • Unbreakable Machine-Doll Essentials BD

Manga

  • 1122: For a Happy Marriage GN 5 (Digital Only)
  • All Out!! GN 12 (Digital Only)
  • Androgynous Boyfriend Graphic Novel (GN) 1
  • APOSIMZ GN 3-4 (Digital Only)
  • Bakemonogatari GN 2 (Digital Only)
  • Beyond the Clouds GN 1
  • Citrus+ GN 1C
  • CITY GN 7 (Digital Only)
  • Cooking with Wild Game GN 1 (Digital Only)
  • Disney Manga: Descendants — Dizzy’s New Fortune GN
  • Don’t Count Your Tanukis GN 8
  • The Dorm of Love and Secrets GN 1 (Digital Only)
  • Ex-Enthusiasts: Motokare Mania GN 3 (Digital Only)
  • Farewell, My Dear Cramer GN 7 (Digital Only)
  • Fullmetal Alchemist Fullmetal Edition GN 8 (hardcover)
  • The Golden Sheep GN 2 (Digital Only)
  • Hayate the Combat Butler GN 35
  • Kase-san and… Yamada GN
  • Kino’s Journey – The Beautiful World GN 5
  • Komi Can’t Communicate GN 5
  • Legend of the Rainbow GN 4 (Digital Only)
  • A Man & His Cat GN 1
  • My Brother’s Husband Omnibus GN
  • My Youth Romantic Comedy Is Wrong, As I Expected @ comic GN 12 (Digital Only)P
  • Our Wonderful Days GN 2
  • The Prince’s Romance Gambit GN 6 (Digital Only)
  • Scarlet GN 1
  • Seirei Gensouki – Spirit Chronicles GN 3 (Digital Only)A
  • A Side Character’s Love Story GN 1
  • Teasing Master Takagi-san GN 6-7 (Digital Only)
  • That Blue Summer GN 2 (Digital Only)
  • A Tropical Fish Yearns for Snow GN 2
  • Wes Anderson’s Isle of Dogs GN (hardcover)
  • What’s Michael?: Fatcat Collection GN 1
  • World’s End Harem: Fantasia GN 2
  • Yarichin Bitch Club GN 2

Other

  • Art of Mana Artbook (hardcover)
  • Bloom Into You: Regarding Saeki Sayaka Novel 1
  • The Greatest Demon Lord is Reborn as a Typical Nobody Novel 2
  • JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Diamond Is Unbreakable Chapter 1 BD
  • Lazy Dungeon Master Novel 9 (Digital Only)
  • Snack World: The Dungeon Crawl — Gold Switch game
  • Sorcerous Stabber Orphen: The Wayward Journey Novel 6 (Digital Only)Pl
  • Street Fighter V: Champion Edition PS4, PC game
  • Teogonia Novel 2 (Digital Only)
  • Warriors Orochi 4 Ultimate PS4, Switch, Xbox One, PC game
  • Yakuza 5 Remastered (The Yakuza Remastered Collection) PS4 game

 

Manga Monday- Ai Yori Aoshi

Manga Monday- Ai Yori Aoshi

Ai Yori Aoshi is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Kou Fumizuki. The manga was serialized in Hakusensha’s Young Animal magazine from 1999 to 2005 and the chapters collected into 17 tankōbon volumes. It is a love story between two characters who have not seen each other in years, but were once childhood friends.

An anime television series adaptation was animated by J.C.Staff and directed by Masami Shimoda, with Kenichi Kanemaki handling series composition, Kazunori Iwakura designing the characters and Toshio Masuda composing the music. The anime was broadcast on Fuji TV in 2002. A second season titled Ai Yori Aoshi: Enishi was set two years later and aired in 2003. There are 37 episodes total, counting an alternate-continuity Christmas special. The anime was released in North America by Geneon and the manga was released in English by Tokyopop. Four visual novels were also released for the PlayStation 2 and Windows 98.

Manga

Ai Yori Aoshi began as a manga series written and illustrated by Kou Fumizuki. It was serialized in Hakusensha’s Young Animal magazine from 1999 to 2005 and the chapters collected into 17 tankōbon volumes. The first volume was published by Hakusensha in Japan on May 28, 1999, and the last volume was released on December 20, 2005. The manga was released in English by Tokyopop. The first book was released in January 2004 and the last book was released in October 2007.

The series has also been licensed in Europe (Non English Releases), Asia, and Middle America. In Europe, the series was licensed in French by Pika Édition, in German by EMA, and in Spanish by Norma Editorial. For Asia the series was licensed in Chinese by Jonesky, in Korean by Daiwon CI, and in Russian by Sakura Press. In North America the series has been published in Mexico by Grupo Editorial Vid.

Reception

Ai Yori Aoshi did well with its English manga release, with book one ranking number 45 on the top 50 Manga’s sold of that month. With an estimated 3,329 books sold, the series peaked at number 18 of 100 with Volume 6 but soon fell out of the top 100 list for the other releases. The last volume ended at number 66 out of 100 on the sales list.

As for reviews the manga has been described as “fun to read” and a “good solid romance story”. Adam Beck of Advanced media Network anime pointed out however that some volumes lack dialogue but a good dialogue translation was done by tokyopop.

Plot

Kaoru Hanabishi, a university student, is the eldest son of Yūji Hanabishi, the head of the Hanabishi Zaibatsu, and was set to take over the zaibatsu after his father retired. His mother, Kumi Honjō, and his father never married, making life difficult for both him and his mother. Kaoru’s father died when he was five years old. After that, Yūji’s father, Gen’ichiro Hanabishi, took Kaoru under his wing and began educating him for the eventual succession. However, Kaoru never felt at home in the Hanabishi family and exiled himself after his mother’s death. Day by day he felt alone, thinking that he was living life with no reason pushing him on.

There was, however, a person who loved Kaoru so much that she felt had to do whatever was necessary to be with him. Her name is Aoi Sakuraba. Aoi is the only daughter of the owner of the Sakuraba Dry Goods Store (later renamed to Sakuraba Department Store). Kaoru’s family and Aoi’s family had expected for Kaoru to marry Aoi, but after Kaoru left, the marriage was canceled. Both families had a friendly relationship, and unbeknownst to Kaoru, Aoi had been in love with him from the start. The Sakuraba family had already been searching for someone suitable, but Aoi was unwilling to marry someone else and walked out, chasing Kaoru.

Both were freed from their families’ affairs but did not know how to make their living. Miyabi Kagurazaki, Aoi’s caretaker, has Aoi live with her in a grand western-style summer mansion owned by the Sakuraba family, with Kaoru living in a house for servants next to it to prevent a scandal as with the previous. They are soon joined by Tina Foster, an American expatriate; Taeko Minazuki, a clumsy housekeeper; Mayu Miyuki, Kaoru’s childhood friend; and Chika Minazuki, Taeko’s cousin. The house is eventually converted to a dormitory and Aoi becomes its landlady.

Eventually, Miyabi helps Kaoru reconcile with the Hanabishis and patch up the original engagement. However, Kaoru’s half brother attempts to gain control of the Hanabishi Zaibatsu by proposing to Aoi. After Kaoru foils the proposal, Aoi abandons her family name and Kaoru gives the ownership of Hanabishi Zaibatsu to his half-brother. Five years later, Kaoru and Aoi are married.

 

Film Friday- Great Teacher Onizuka

Film Friday- Great Teacher Onizuka

Great Teacher Onizuka, officially abbreviated as GTO, is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Tooru Fujisawa. It was originally serialized in Weekly Shōnen Magazine from January 1997 to February 2002. The story focuses on 22-year-old ex-bōsōzoku member Eikichi Onizuka, who becomes a teacher at a private middle school, Holy Forest Academy, in Tokyo, Japan. It is a continuation of Tooru Fujisawa’s earlier manga series Shonan Junai Gumi and Bad Company, both of which focus on the life of Onizuka before becoming a teacher.
Due to the popularity of the manga, several adaptations of GTO were established. These adaptations include a twelve-episode Japanese television drama running from July to September 1998; a live-action film directed by Masayuki Suzuki and released in December 1999; and a 43-episode anime television series aired in Japan by Fuji Television and Animax from June 1999 to September 2000. Both the anime and manga have been licensed in North America by Tokyopop. A second live action series aired in Japan during 2012, and two more in 2014. It won the 1998 Kodansha Manga Award for shōnen category.

Anime

A 43-episode anime adaption was produced by Studio Pierrot and was broadcast from June 30, 1999 to September 24, 2000. It was directed by Noriyuki Abe and Horiyuki Ishido.[30][31] Yoshiyuki Suga provided scripts, having also written scripts for the Live Action adaption.[20]

Tokyopop licensed the series for release in North America and released it across 10 DVDs between March 22, 2002 and September 16, 2003 and for American TV broadcast on Showtime’s SHONext channel in 2004 and Comcast’s Anime Selects on Demand network in 2006.[32][33] The series was re-released in a 7-disc box set by Eastern Star Studios on September 24, 2013.[34] Crunchyroll began streaming the series in January 2015.

Live-action

A 12-episode live-action Japanese television drama adaption directed by Masayuki Suzuki was broadcast from July 7, 1998 to September 22, 1998. The series starred Takashi Sorimachi as Onizuka and had an average audience share of 28.5% with the final episode recording a rate of 35.7%. The final episode was the 8th most watched broadcast in the Kantō region during 1998. Several changes were made for the live action adaption. For example, Fuyutsuki (Nanako Matsushima) is an eager teacher who supports Onizuka in the manga, whereas in the live action adaptation she initially dislikes Onizuka and wants to leave teaching to become an Air Hostess. A television special was broadcast on June 29, 1999. This was followed by a theatrical movie in January 2000. The film was successful at the box office grossing ¥1,320,000,000 becoming the 10th highest-grossing film of the year. The movie was released in North America by Tokyo Shock on July 26, 2005.
During 2012 it was announced that a new live action series would be broadcast in Japan. Produced by KTV and Media Mix Japan, the series ran from July 3, 2012 until September 11, 2012. Originally Jin Akanishi was to play the role of Onizuka, however he was forced to withdraw by his management. Instead Akira of Japanese band Exile was selected to play Onizuka. An Autumn special was broadcast on October 2, 2012, followed by a New years special on January 2, 2013 and a Spring special on April 2, 2013.
On March 22, 2014 a 4-part mini series aired in Taiwan, before being broadcast in Japan at a later date. The mini series places Onizuka in a Taiwanese school as part of a training program and is a joint Japan/Taiwan co production that contains both Japanese and Mandarin Chinese dialogue. The series has been announced for English subtitled release via the Crunchyroll streaming service. A new series set in Japan aired from July to September 2014.

Eikichi Onizuka

A 22-year-old, blonde-haired biker, and former bōsōzoku, Eikichi Onizuka is the protagonist of GTO. He graduated from a bottom-rung university by cheating and, as such, cannot get a decent job. His primary way of spending time is peeping up girls’ skirts at a local mall. He is very athletic and has a second dan black belt in karate.
Onizuka decides to become a teacher. His initial training is in the Musashino Public High School, where he meets Nanako Mizuki. His experience taming the rowdy gangs in his assigned class hardens his convictions that teaching is the way to go, and when he learns of Mizuki’s problems, he also decides to abstain from sexual experience with schoolgirls, opting to solve their personal issues for them, instead.
Unfortunately, he forgets to take the public teachers’ civil service exam; as a result, no public high school will accept him, but he is still eligible for private school teaching. He manages to get a job at the Holy Forest Academy, despite the objections of Vice-Principal Hiroshi Uchiyamada, whom he continues to aggravate well into his tenure. One of the conditions of having the job at Holy Forest is that he must sleep at the school – in the storage room at the top floor, with roof access – and it is here that Onizuka officially starts his career in teaching, when he stops Noboru Yoshikawa from committing suicide.
Onizuka is put in charge of class 3–4, a class so bad it has driven past teachers insane and one to death. Not only does he survive their brutal, bullying tactics, but he also befriends his students, and the backbone to the story of GTO consists of his unique experiences in turning his students around and learning lessons of his own.
Onizuka is capable of great feats of strength, such as arm-wrestling over 100 men of exponential strength, (sometimes 3 at once) in a row and winning. He is also an experienced martial artist, as Onizuka is capable of fending off multiple opponents, even if they are well-armed. However, it was revealed around chapter 190 that because of all the physical damage he sustained since he started teaching, it resulted in a clotted blood vessel in his brain, and that a jolt to his head could either turn him into a vegetable, paralyze him, or kill him.
In spite of his impressive fighting skills, Onizuka is often roughed up by his students, and others, whenever he behaves badly. It could be speculated that deep down, Onizuka knows when he’s acting immature, and allows others to keep him in line. An example of this is when he forces his students to dig for buried treasure during the Okinawa trip. Urumi Kanzaki kicks Onizuka into a hole, and later forces him to wear S&M garb and has him crawl around on all fours, with Urumi riding on his back. Another example is when Vice-Principal Uchiyamada has Onizuka over for dinner and hits him on the head with a wooden bench after finding out that he was acting lecherous with his daughter at a karaoke bar.
His mode of transportation is a Kawasaki Z750RS Z2 motorcycle, and is also the protagonist in the GTO prequel, Shonan Junai Gumi.
It is shown throughout the series that Onizuka is also very lucky, as he always manages to squeeze out of tight situations. An example of this is when he must raise 8 million yen to live up to a promise he made to the 3rd year students. He received what he believed to be a winning lottery ticket, but it turned out to be false. However, he was given a raffle ticket which he kept but didn’t expect for it to help his predicament, but ended up winning a Mercedes-Benz E-Class car worth the 8 million yen. He gave away the Mercedes in an act of kindness, and while it seemed unlikely for him to get the car back, it was returned to him in the last minute.

Thursday News- February 6, 2020

Thursday News- February 6, 2020

Funimation Streams English Dub of Magia Record: Puella Magi Madoka Magica Side Story Anime- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2020-02-06/funimation-streams-english-dub-of-magia-record-puella-magi-madoka-magica-side-story-anime/.156152

Crunchyroll Adds Thermae Romae Anime’s English Dub- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2020-02-05/crunchyroll-adds-thermae-romae-anime-english-dub/.156150

Final Fantasy VII Remake Game Is Timed PS Exclusive Until April 2021- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/daily-briefs/2020-02-05/final-fantasy-vii-remake-game-is-timed-ps-exclusive-until-april-2021/.156146

Yes Press Licenses Fiancee of the Wizard Manga- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2020-02-05/yen-press-licenses-fiancee-of-the-wizard-manga/.156131

futekiya Boys-Love Manga Service Adds 21 Titles- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2020-02-06/futekiya-boys-love-manga-service-adds-21-titles/.156156

Anime

  • AD Police BD
  • FLCL Alternative DVD
  • FLCL Progressive/Alternative BDA
  • Garo the Animation Complete Series BD
  • Isekai Quartet Season 1 BD
  • Laughing Under the Clouds 3-Film Collection BD/DVD
  • The Magnificent KOTOBUKI BD
  • Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid Classics BD
  • That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime Season 1 Part 2 BD/DVD

Manga

  • Ao Haru Ride Graphic Novel (GN) 9
  • Blue Exorcist GN 23
  • Boarding School Juliet GN 10
  • A Devotion That Changes Worlds GN 2 (Digital Only)
  • Drifting Dragons GN 6 (Digital Only)
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  • Food Wars! Shokugeki no Soma GN 34
  • Granblue Fantasy GN 3
  • The Hero is Overpowered but Overly Cautious GN 1A
  • Im: Great Priest Imhotep GN 1
  • Infinite Dendrogram GN 3 (Digital Only)
  • Inside Mari GN 6
  • JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Part 4 – Diamond is Unbreakable GN 4 (hardcover)
  • Jujutsu Kaisen GN 2
  • Let’s Kiss in Secret Tomorrow GN 1 (Digital Only)
  • Maria x Maria GN 1-5 (Digital Only)
  • Masked Ambition: Death Ballade GN 1 (Digital Only)
  • My Hero Academia GN 23
  • My Hero Academia Smash!! GN 3
  • Our Precious Conversations GN 6 (Digital Only)
  • Parham Itan Tales From Beyond GN 1
  • Pleasure and Corruption GN 1
  • RePlay GN
  • Seraph of the End GN 18
  • Shortcake Cake GN 7
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  • Smile Down the Runway GN 6 (Digital Only)
  • Takane & Hana GN 13
  • The Tale of Genji: Dreams at Dawn GN 10 (Digital Only)
  • Though You May Burn to Ash GN 6
  • To Be Next to you GN 2 (Digital Only)
  • To Write Your Words GN 3 (Digital Only)
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  • We Never Learn GN 8
  • Yona of the Dawn GN 22

Other

  • An Archdemon’s Dilemma – How to Love Your Elf Bride Novel 9 (Digital Only)
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  • Full Metal Panic! Collector’s Edition Omnibus Novel 1 (hardcover)
  • How NOT to Summon a Demon Lord Novel 8
  • If It’s for My Daughter, I’d Even Defeat a Demon Lord Novel 7
  • Isekai Rebuilding Project Novel 1 (Digital Only)A
  • In Another World With My Smartphone Novel 8
  • Kingdom BD/DVD (Digital Only)
  • The Magic in this Other World is Too Far Behind! Novel 7
  • Outer Ragna Novel 1 (Digital Only)

 

Manga Monday- Great Teacher Onizuka

Manga Monday- Great Teacher Onizuka

Great Teacher Onizuka, officially abbreviated as GTO, is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Tooru Fujisawa. It was originally serialized in Weekly Shōnen Magazine from January 1997 to February 2002. The story focuses on 22-year-old ex-bōsōzoku member Eikichi Onizuka, who becomes a teacher at a private middle school, Holy Forest Academy, in Tokyo, Japan. It is a continuation of Tooru Fujisawa’s earlier manga series Shonan Junai Gumi and Bad Company, both of which focus on the life of Onizuka before becoming a teacher.

Due to the popularity of the manga, several adaptations of GTO were established. These adaptations include a twelve-episode Japanese television drama running from July to September 1998; a live-action film directed by Masayuki Suzuki and released in December 1999; and a 43-episode anime television series aired in Japan by Fuji Television and Animax from June 1999 to September 2000. Both the anime and manga have been licensed in North America by Tokyopop. A second live action series aired in Japan during 2012, and two more in 2014. It won the 1998 Kodansha Manga Award for shōnen category.

Reception

Great Teach Onizuka won the 1998 Kodansha Manga Award for the shōnen category.
In Manga: The Complete Guide, Jason Thompson refers to the series as “Shameless, frequently sexist and totally hilarious”. He adds “The rule of the manga is that every time Onizuka does something incredibly cool and heartwarming, he must immediately do something unbelievably retarded”. He praises the series for staying fresh through imagery, detailed art and pop culture dialogue even though the formula repeats itself. Lastly he states that it “approaches true social satire”. He gave the series four stars out of four.
In The Dorama Encyclopedia, Jonathan Clements and Motoko Tamamuro note that the subject and humorous approach to the series was well received by the teenage audience.
In The Anime Encyclopedia: A Guide to Japanese Animation Since 1917, Jonathan Clements and Helen McCarthy noted the use of computer cloud and water effects in the anime adaptation. While appreciating the advantages of the anime adaption allowing for more violence, they call the first live action adaption the “quintessential GTO”.

Manga

The series was published in Weekly Shōnen Magazine from January 8, 1997 to February 13, 2002. A total of 25 volumes were published between May 14, 1997 and April 15, 2002. The series was licensed in English by Tokyopop and was one of Tokyopop’s first releases in the “Authentic Manga” lineup of titles using the Japanese right to left reading style. In doing so the artwork remained unchanged from the original compared to previous publishing methods. The 25 English volumes were published between April 23, 2002 and August 9, 2005.
On 9 June 2009, a sequel to the GTO manga began releasing in Kodansha’s Weekly Shōnen Magazine, under the title GTO – Shonan 14 Days. North American publisher Vertical Inc began publishing GTO: Shonan 14 Days globally in English, as GTO: 14 Days in Shonan beginning January 2012 and has published all nine volumes. Vertical also continued and concluded the Shonan Junai Gumi manga series, from volume 11 onwards, as GTO: The Early Years in 2012.
A new manga series entitled GTO: Paradise Lost started in Kodansha’s Weekly Young Magazine on April 14, 2014. Fujisawa put the manga on hiatus in October 2017 due to a staff shortage. In May 2019, Fujisawa announced his plans to resume the series.
Kodansha USA currently publishes the manga in English in a digital format since 2017.

Production

When writing GTO, Fujisawa was influenced by the writing style of Kouhei Tsuka. The series was originally intended to run for 10 volumes, however it was extended at the request of the publisher. Fujisawa began to run out of characters as a result. When faced with writing block he would write stories without Onizuka.
Onizuka’s first name, Eikichi, was taken from musician Eikichi Yazawa. When developing Onizuka’s character for the series, Fujisawa sought to incorporate real character traits from Japanese gangs often referred to as “Yankees”. Onizuka’s look is modelled on such gang members and was not intended to convey an “American look”. Onizuka acts tough and confident but is actually shy and lacking in confidence to follow through on some of his desires. He is a simple character that stands by his own reasoning and principles and has his own conscience. Fujisawa gave him the viewpoint that you should take responsibility for your actions, something he sees as important.
Onizuka’s role in the school is to provide a bridge between the students and teachers. The character of Fuyutsuki reflects the point of view of the average teacher. Fujisawa highlights his own school experience where teachers were mostly focused only on a good performance record rather than the teaching itself. However he was able to take an interest in Mathematics because of the approach of his teacher. He used this experience to build the series.
Tatsuya Egawa has claimed that GTO plagiarized his debut manga, Be Free!.

Plot

Eikichi Onizuka is a 22-year-old ex-gang member and a virgin. While peeping up girls’ skirts at a local shopping mall, Onizuka meets a girl who agrees to go out on a date with him. Onizuka’s attempt to sleep with her fails when her current “boyfriend”, her teacher, shows up at the love hotel they are in and asks her to return to him. The teacher is old and unattractive, but has sufficient influence over her that she leaps from a second-story window and lands in his arms.
Onizuka, upon seeing this display of a teacher’s power over girls, decides to become a teacher himself. However, he earns his teaching degree, just barely, at a second-rate college. In his quest, he discovers two important things: he has a conscience and a sense of morality. This means taking advantage of impressionable schoolgirls is out of the question, but their unusually attractive mothers are a different matter. He enjoys teaching and, most of the time, he teaches life lessons rather than the routine schoolwork. He hates the systems of traditional education, especially when they have grown ignorant and condescending to students and their needs.
With these realizations, he sets out to become the greatest teacher ever, using his own brand of philosophy and the ability to do nearly anything when under enough pressure. He is hired as a long-shot teacher by a privately operated school, in Kichijōji, to tame a class that has driven one teacher to a mysterious death, another to nervous breakdown, and one other to joining a cult. He embarks on a mission of self-discovery by breaking through to each student one-by-one, and helping each student to overcome their problems and learn to genuinely enjoy life. He uses methods that would be unorthodox, against the law, and also life-threatening, yet somehow, he manages to succeed in educating and opening up his students.