Boston theatre puts on play about Astro Boy and Tezuka

Osamu Tezuka‘s Astro Boy, in addition to being a historically important piece of entertainment, is also widely beloved around the world. And now, some sixty-plus years after its first inception as a manga, it’s been granted additional life on the stage, thanks to the efforts of playwright and director Natsu Onoda Power, and the folks at the Company One theater company.

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Titans attack Lawson convenience stores, bring tons of anime goodies with them

Pokémon fans recently got some good news when word came that Pikachu will soon be taking over the city of Yokohama. It’s not just cute and cuddly anime icons running rampant in Japan this summer, though.

Next month, Lawson convenience stores across Japan are going to be invaded by the remorseless and/or skinless cast of Attack on Titan, and they’re bringing a staggering amount of merchandise with them..

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Are you a solo dining expert? Rank yourself with this Korean “lone diner guide”!

I personally enjoy having meals with friends and family most of the time, as I think that it’s a great way to catch up face-to-face, especially in this modern era where a large portion of our daily communication relies on instant messaging and emails. Even then, there are times when I prefer to eat alone, and times when I have no choice but to.

I’m pretty sure most of us have eaten a meal alone at some point in our lives. The question is, how hardcore a lone diner are you? Korean net users came up with a nine-level lone diner guide introducing the different levels of dining loneliness. How well can you tolerate solo dining? Gauge yourself after the break!

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New video from Wagakki Band “Hanabi” is an original, awesome song【J-Tunes】

When we introduced you to the Wagakki Band last year, we were pretty sure they might end up being a big deal. And, as it turned out, we were definitely right about that! After releasing a full album to rave reviews earlier this year, the band has been on the road touring both in Japan and at the Japan Expo in Paris. But despite their busy schedule of rehearsing and performing, they’ve had time to work on a new, original song. While they haven’t released a full video yet (you’ll have to wait a few more weeks), you can check out the short version below!

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What turned Tokyo Disneyland into the Loneliest Place on Earth last weekend?

Back in March, we took a look at a list of days when Tokyo Disneyland could be expected to be the least crowded. Most of these predictions were based on avoiding peak travel times, vacation periods, and three-day weekends, but one day last week Tokyo Disneyland was practically deserted.

This came as kind of a shock, since Japan is right in the middle of summer vacation, but ironically, that was part of the reason so few people showed up, giving those who did almost free rein of the park.

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Man in China steps into “royal rumble” to save the day, maybe goes a bit too far【Video】

What would it take for you to jump in to save the day? How bad must the odds be before you would try to put a stop to a decidedly lop-sided fight? If someone is on the ground not fighting back, isn’t it pretty clear someone should be helping?

In this video, a Chinese man shows that he’s not going to take it and leaps into action – and we mean leaps – to help a girl being beaten by a mob of five women.

As you might expect, this video is NSFW and contains scenes of violence.

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Optimus Prime to upgrade from truck form to PlayStation Classic form in 2015

So it’s the 30th anniversary of the Transformers, the 20th anniversary of the original PlayStation, and TakaraTomy Arts is the bolder, crazier cousin of the legendary Japanese toymaker TakaraTomy (who distribute Transformer toys in Japan).

What do these three things have in common? Well, TakaraTomy Arts apparently saw that the venerable console and the adored-before-a-certain-Hollywood-filmmaker-destroyed-it cartoon robot franchise were both celebrating a milestone and decided to commemorate it the only logical way: By combining the two into a new badass toy.

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Pikachus overrunning Yokohama in the cutest rodent invasion ever 【Video】

Every summer, there are certain pests you can expect the country to become briefly inundated with. First come the mosquitos that lay their eggs in the puddles of water that form during the rainy season. Next up, the whining cicadas that serve as an aural reminder of midsummer, whether you want one or not. And last, the jellyfish, buzzkills of the animal kingdom who show up at the beach and deliver their joyless message of “Everyone out of the water!” by stinging swimmers.

But this year, there’s finally some good news, as the city of Yokohama is about to be overrun by Pikachus!

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Ghost story cats or a typo? Cute overload either way!

In case no one’s mentioned it yet, Tokyo is getting a bit warm this year. In fact, the other day my phone told me that despite what the thermometer said, the temperature felt like 44 Celsius–or 111.2 Fahrenheit. Even that seemed a bit low to me, but either way, I clearly should be living inside the refrigerator. And from the looks of things, there are a few cats who’d like to join us. Though I’m not so sure I want them in there with me, since they might just be…ghosts?!

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Whiskey shaved ice: A frozen treat for adults in Kyoto

One of the most popular ways to cool yourself off during a muggy Japanese summer is with a bowl of shaved ice, known as kakigoori. However, not everyone has the sweet tooth or enduring connection to their inner child that’s necessary to enjoy the brightly colored, syrupy sweet frozen treat that’s usually flavored like strawberry, melon, or lemon.

Thankfully, if you’re looking for a chilled dessert that’s a little more adult, a restaurant in Kyoto has just the thing: shaved ice with whiskey.

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Japanese scientist predicts another major earthquake in Japan by 2017

According to Japanese scientists, Japan might be in for another big one.

Dr. Masaaki Kimura, a seismologist who reportedly predicted the 2011 Tohoku Earthquake, recently appeared on Japanese TV to share his theory about the next major earthquake to strike Japan. Based on his estimates, the quake will occur by 2017 and will be of similar magnitude to 2011’s. Similarly, astronomer Yoshio Kushida continues to insist that a big quake is not too far away. Keep reading to find out more about their respective theories and which specific areas of Japan they’ve got on the radar.

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Hello Kitty IT gadgets now capturing hearts of Japanese netizens, and we can definitely see why!

Now, we know that not all technology may be good, and there are plenty of stories out there, be they movies or novels, of technology run amok. But you have to admit there are times when you just have to love technology, like when it comes in a cute, pop form that allows you to carry around large amounts of data in style. Yes, readers,we present to you these adorable Mimobot and Sanrio collaborative flash drives from Mimoco — they’re currently generating a bit of a buzz on online here in Japan, and we dare anyone out there to say that the results of the collaboration aren’t über cute!

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Vietnamese man, angry at wife, hatches bizarre revenge scheme: Cut off his own penis

That old Internet meme about stupid business plans that goes something like, “1) _____, 2) ???, 3) Profit!” can now apparently be applied to dumb revenge schemes, as a Vietnamese man, who, after becoming so incredibly furious at his wife that he simply had to do something to get revenge, put together this brilliant scheme: 1) cut off own penis, 2) ???, 3) SATISFACTION!!!!

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Ryokan etiquette: What not to do when staying at a traditional Japanese inn

Ryokan are traditional Japanese hotels whose roots can be traced back to the Edo Period (1603–1868). Although nowhere near as ubiquitous as they once were, there still exist thousands of such establishments, which are most often associated with relaxation, hot spas and, of course, good Japanese food and drink. Even those who would ordinarily choose a bed over a futon would be wise to experience staying at a ryokan at least once during a visit to Japan, but there are a number of dos and don’ts that visitors – both Japanese and otherwise – really ought to know before setting foot inside one.

Trip Advisor Japan has helpfully published a list of tips, designed to look like set of cards teaching the characters from the Japanese syllabary, which instructs visitors on the right way to enjoy a Japanese inn. Some are as obvious as telling guests not to take stuff home with them, but there are others that really ought to be given your full attention.

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Gintama’s protagonist as envisioned by fujoshi: blushing, bare-chested, and super voluptuous!

One of the things that contributes to the hole-in-the-wallet situation many manga and anime fans experience is related merchandise. Along with official merch, fan-made doujinshi and goods are sometimes just as attractive, not to mention rare since these self-made goods are usually produced in much smaller quantities.

For fujoshi (girls who are fans of Boys Love, or homoerotic manga and anime), doujinshi and doujin goods are even more tempting since it is only in these fan-made commodities that they can enjoy the forbidden fruit that is their favorite male characters being paired together. For non-BL fans, however, this is where things tend to get a little awkward. We’re not just talking about male-on-male action here, we’re talking male boob mousepads. See for yourselves after the jump!

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Our reporter goes looking for fans at Comic-Con…in his Sailor Venus cosplay outfit

Our Japanese correspondent Yoshio recently made the trip for Tokyo to San Diego to attend Comic-Con for the first time. After seeing all the fans in costume showing their enthusiasm for their favorite series, Yoshio got bitten by the cosplay bug and decided to dress up too.

But which character to cosplay as? He knew he wanted someone Japanese, to represent his home country. Someone strong and just, with a kind heart. And while he was at it, why not add long, flowing hair and miniskirt to the checklist?

In other words, Yoshio spent a day at Comic-Con rocking a Sailor Venus outfit.

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The planned “Great Ice Wall” to contain Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear plant isn’t freezing

More than three years after the earthquake and tsunami devastated northeast Japan and left a major nuclear plant in Fukushima paralyzed, efforts to contain the nuclear disaster are still facing major hurdles as the area around it remains a ghost town. Last week, Tokyo Electric Power Co., better known as TEPCO, revealed that an ice wall that was designed to stem the flow of radioactive water seeping from the crippled reactors at the Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear power plant isn’t freezing as fast as they hoped.

In the three months since construction began, temperatures in the ground around the barrier meant to contain the contaminated water in underground trenches have only fallen to around 15 degrees (59 degrees Fahrenheit) and TEPCO announced a new plan to accelerate the freezing process—dumping 10 tons of ice every day until the wall forms.

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Two people tragically die after Chinese woman drops her cell phone into a cesspool

How far would you go to save your cell phone?

In something out of a bizarre nightmare that the parent of a three-year-old learning to potty train might have, a Chinese woman who dropped her phone into a cesspool lost not only an electronic gadget, but her husband and mother-in-law as well. More details on this tragedy after the jump.

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We apply to appear in new Yakuza game, still waiting to hear back from Sega

Since it first began on the PlayStation 2 in 2005, the violent action-adventure series Yakuza (Ryu ga Gotoku in Japan) has sold 6.5 million copies around the world. With a new edition of the series in the works, Sega is holding auditions for men who would like to appear in it.

Thinking this would be a great way to promote our humble website, we assembled a team of our manliest men to try out. It’s undoubtedly going to be tough, but to help increase our chances we sent each reporter to audition for a different character.

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16-year-old girl arrested for beheading classmate in Japan’s Nagasaki Prefecture

Police in Sasebo, Nagasaki Prefecture, said Sunday they have arrested a 16-year-old high school girl on suspicion of killing a classmate.

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