Japan

Japan weird news!!

Ninja-cats are hiding in homes around the world and we have 20 photos to prove it

When lying in bed at night, have you ever heard a weird noise — a creaking floorboard or the rustling of a piece of paper? Has food ever mysteriously disappeared? While it very well could have been a ghost, it could have just as easily been a ninja-cat hiding in the nooks and crannies of your home!

Some ninja-cats are more skilled than others, living in apartments and stealing food completely undetected by the owners. Others, however, are not so stealthy and occasionally get caught on camera. Observe!

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AKB48 founder plans Japan48 idol group for Olympics, Phillipines spinoff

AKB48 founder and producer Yasushi Akimoto announced the formation of the Niigata-based idol group NGT48 at the “AKB48 Request Hour Set List Best 1035″ event in Tokyo on Sunday. His aim in creating another local group, he says, is to ultimately form an idol group called “Japan48″ by the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. Japan48 will draw its members from each of the local “48 groups.”

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Terrorists release third video of Japanese hostage, say it will be his last

More than a week has passed since terrorist organization ISIS released its first video of Japanese hostages Haruna Yukawa and Kenji Goto. Days later, in a second video, a voice believed to be Goto’s was heard stating that Yukawa had been killed by the terrorists.

Now, a third statement has been released, in which a man identifying himself as Goto says that he has only 24 hours left before he will be murdered as well.

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What do sumo wrestlers have in common with Tinker Bell?

Sumo wrestlers and Disney fairy Tinker Bell are not two things you would think have much in common. Yet their uncanny similarity is exactly what netizens in Japan have noticed, following a series of photos published recently on the Internet.

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Japanese netizens can’t stop balancing stuff on their pets, but this birdy and kitty aren’t amused

If you’ve been spending an inordinate amount of time on the internet over the past few years (haha, who are we kidding, of course you have), then you’ll probably be familiar with the trend of balancing stuff on your pets. It’s practically an old meme now, but for some reason it seems to be having a revival on Twitter in Japan. Two doting pet owners tweeted some choice snaps of their fuzzy buddies practically buried under a mountain of… stuff, and it’s totally squee-worthy! Join us after the jump for some very unamused but amusing pets!

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After the tears have dried, where is shamed politician Ryutaro Nonomura now?

You may not remember the name Ryutaro Nonomura but you’ll almost definitely recall the press conference he gave last July, which was later dubbed the “crying conference” here in Japan. The incident, which saw the then provincial politician weeping, cupping his ear cartoonishly, and wailing like a man possessed as he attempted to explain what he’d done with a significant amount of government funds turned him into a pop-culture iconporn parody and all, and ensured that he would go down as one of the most famous figures of 2014, for all the wrong reasons.

So now about half a year later, what has become of the disgraced assemblyman?

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Let’s take a tour of the best sushi in Tokyo’s Tsukiji Fish Market with Mr. Sato! (Part 1)

Obviously, if you love sushi, Tokyo is probably your number one foodie vacation destination, but Tokyo is a big place! There are plenty of excellent sushi restaurants–and plenty of great ones at that. But for seriously fresh sushi, there might be no better place than right off the boat.

And if you want sushi right off the boat, you’ll want to head to Tsukiji-shijo, also known as Tsukiji Fish Market, the “biggest wholesale fish and seafood market in the world.” While that might sound a bit daunting, worry not! Today, we’re going to visit four Tsukiji-shijo sushi restaurants with none other than our very own Mr. Sato!

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Fushigi Yugi stage adaptation gets cast and schedule as Mysterious Play becomes a real one

Over the past few months, there’s been a string of stage adaptations of hit anime and manga announced. But while we’re sure plenty of fans are psyched about the upcoming Naruto play and One Piece kabuki performance, fans of girls’ comics, or anime series with fewer than 600 episodes to wade through, might be feeling a little left out.

Luckily for them, there’s a more female-oriented, reasonably concise franchise about to become live performance theater, with the opening in March of a stage version of the Mysterious Play, or as it’s better known, Fushigi Yugi.

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Tokyo Disney Resort’s amazing customer service includes safety checks of guests’ cars

Aside from the costumed characters and colorful parades, one of the things that makes Tokyo Disneyland and Disney Sea so popular is the stellar customer service they offer. Even in a country where service is almost universally prompt and polite, the Tokyo Disney Resort goes above and beyond the norm in providing an unrivaled level of hospitality to guests.

As a matter of fact, Tokyo Disney Resort employees are so dedicated that not only will they make sure you enjoy yourself during your stay, they’ll even help ensure you have a safe trip home, as one park attendee recently found out when the parking lot staff performed a spot check of her car and alerted her to a potential safety hazard.

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ChocolaTexture offers nine flavors of chocolate… without changing the flavor at all

When it comes to food, I’ve always placed a higher emphasis on texture rather than the actual taste of it. While I love peanut butter or finely chopped almonds, for example, the nuts themselves in their natural form usually make me gag.

So it was with great excitement that I learned about ChocolaTexture, which is a range of nine chocolates all using the exact same recipe but crafted in different shapes and textures. As a result each chocolate is said to have a distinct “taste” despite being made from the exact same ingredients.

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Hamsters in sleeves are all the rage in Japan this winter 【Photos】

Japanese homes are notorious for being poorly insulated, in the wintertime often leaving you feeling just as cold indoors as you do outside.

Despite having permanent fur coats (lucky them!) our pets can still feel the chill and will do what they can to stay cozy. We’ve already shown you cats and space heaters, and dogs in kotatsu, but now we bring you some adorable hamsters in sleeves.

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The cat hairband, for when cat ears just aren’t enough

Earlier this month, the Internet was all abuzz over some awesome cat ear headphones. As creative as they may be, though, they’re really more robotic than feline in appearance, what with their glowing LED accents and external speakers.

If you’re more concerned with fashion than music, though, and you feel like you could do without all the cybernetic-style accouterments, one Japanese designer has put together an alternative form of cat-shaped headgear. Just to reiterate, that’s “cat-shaped,” not “cat ear-shaped,” since this hairband gives the illusion of an adorable kitten perched atop your head.

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Learn how to drink with Japanese people in this funny and informative YouTube series【Videos】

MOVIE LIFE KYOTO is a video series which aims to introduce Japanese culture to foreigners in a light-hearted and humorous fashion. With English narration and Japanese subtitles, they’re filled with little factoids and hilariously on-point observations that will be of interest to foreign visitors and a source of much ‘that’s so true!’ amusement for Japanese people, too!

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Bayonetta earrings a bewitching fashion statement, technically count as half a video game cosplay

Ever since her 2009 debut, debates have been swirling around video game character Bayonetta. Was her first, eponymous outing really worth the perfect score it got from notoriously strict video game magazine Famitsu? Is the character’s constantly provocative flaunting of her sexual and violent leanings empowering the character or pandering to juvenile gamers? Was making the sequel exclusive to Nintendo’s Wii U a wise choice? And does the gun-toting witch look better with her original beehive, or the shorter pixie cut she sports these days?

Just in case you’ve already decided which side of those discussions you’re on, here’s one more question to find your own personal answer to: Do you want to buy Bayonetta’s earrings?

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Italian jazz pianist unleashes inner Ghibli fanboy, releases anime theme song album

The legendary anime director Hayao Miyazaki and the Studio Ghibli films have amassed a huge following from an incredibly diverse and very loyal fan base (some more than others) around the world. Famed Italian jazz pianist Giovanni Mirabassi is one such fan and tapped into his inner Miyazaki fanboy to release an album last week featuring jazz covers of 10 popular songs from Studio Ghibli films as well as other classic Japanese anime like Cowboy Bebop and Lupin III. The album, named after the French title of Laputa: Castle in the Sky, is Mirabassi’s homage to Japanese anime and a beautiful take on the iconic songs.

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Nippon Animation’s upcoming theatrical film Sinbad set for July release

Japanese animation studio Nippon Animation is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year by releasing a theatrical film titled Sinbad: The Flying Princess and the Mysterious Island (シンドバッド 空とぶ姫と秘密の島). The studio has recently confirmed a release date of July for the film at movie theaters across Japan.

Want to know more about the upcoming movie, which is being backed by a team of some of the most illustrious names in the Japanese animation industry? We’ve got all the inside info, right after the jump!

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Dattebayo! 12 awesome cast photos from the upcoming Naruto live spectacular

Fans of Naruto, the hit manga series that graced the pages of Weekly Shonen Jump magazine every week, were dealt a heavy blow back in November 2014 when the epic series ended after 15 years.

While they may have closed the book on the manga series, thankfully it’s not the last chapter in the Naruto franchise, as all our favourite characters will be returning, this time on stage in a live action spectacular set to tour Japan from 21 March 2015.

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New Star Wars toys are rolling their way into our galaxy right, right here

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…an enormous franchise was born, and with it a clearly ludicrous amount of merchandise. Perhaps the most coveted kinds of “merch” were the Star Wars toys. Thousands of figures and collectibles were made for children, although, many were snapped up by teen and adult fans. The smartest of whom would keep them in their original packaging to preserve their mint condition and value. But what good is a toy if you can’t play with it?

With a Star Wars new movie heading to cinema screens in December 2015, hundreds of new toys will be hitting the market. Just like before, the toys are aimed, at least partly, at children, but that won’t stop the grown-up fans from wanting them too.

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Snow sculpture of anime girls with soulless eyes is bone-chilling in two different ways

The key difference between being an idol singer and a pop diva is warmth. Even if you’ve got perfect pitch and unshakable rhythm, if you want to succeed as an idol, you still need a heart-melting smile. Really, as long as you’ve got the smile, idol fans will even cut you a lot of slack on not having the other two.

So it’s a little unusual to gaze upon this trio of anime idols and feel a chill run down your spine, and not just because they’re made of snow.

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PS4 20th Anniversary edition console sells at auction for jaw-dropping price

When Sony released a special 20th Anniversary edition of the PlayStation 4, online pre-order slots were filled in minutes. Limited to a run of 12,300 consoles, gamers had to move quickly to secure a piece of gaming history.

The one thing missing from the December 2014 release, however, was the most important and prized possession of all: console number 00001/12300. That particular machine made its grand appearance at an online auction last weekend and sold for a price that is, frankly, jaw-dropping.

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