manga

Slam Dunk fans get a little too enthusiastic, trespass on Kanawaga school property

Fandom is a double-edged sword, we suppose. On the one hand, it helps move massive amounts of money to the people and companies that create awesome things we love, thus allowing them to make more of them. On the other hand, fandom can sometimes make people do kind of crazy things.

From sobbing, screaming audience members at Beatles concerts to obsessive stalkers, being a hit with the general public isn’t all sunshine and roses. This is a fact that a school in Japan’s Kanagawa Prefecture is learning about first-hand thanks to die-hard Slam Dunk fans.

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New Attack on Titan Real Escape Game coming to Tokyo and Osaka this summer

Escape games, where people work in teams to solve puzzles to free themselves from confined spaces, have become hugely popular in Japan and around the world. When combined with a role-play theme, these events become even more exciting, as participants get to dress up and live out their fantasies in cleverly constructed worlds filled with props, sound and oodles of atmosphere.

As luck would have it, the escape concept is an idea that fits in perfectly with the narrative of the hugely popular Attack on Titan franchise, where members of the human race live in the confines of a walled city and spend a large chunk of time running away from flesh-eating giants. If you ever wanted to experience the thrill of being chased by a hungry Titan while also dealing with the stress of solving a puzzle within a time limit to save your life, it’s time to dress like a member of the Survey Corps and head out to Tokyo or Osaka this summer.

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10 train faux-pas in Japan that some men are willing to let slide, from smooching to manga

Taking the train is by far the most common way to get around urban and suburban Japan. By its very nature, though, using public transportation means being out in public, which in Japan means following social norms about proper manners and not bothering your fellow passengers.

The average Tokyo commuter spends an hour each way on the train, though. It can be hard to follow all of the implicit rules of train etiquette during such a lengthy ride, and here are 10 minor breaches of etiquette that some Japanese men are willing to turn a blind eye to.

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Hayao Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises manga to be published in collected form for the first time

As the last feature-length anime from Hayao Miyazaki, we’re sure The Wind Rises is going to be watched over and over by anime enthusiasts hoping to squeeze one last drop of mana from the celebrated director’s final film. But even if those repeated viewings won’t wear out your The Wind Rises Blu-ray like a fifth-generation Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind VHS fansub, you can only watch it so many times before diminishing returns start to set in.

But soon enough, there’ll be another piece of Miyazaki’s legacy for fans to pore over, as the manga version of The Wind Rises, drawn by the legend himself, is finally being published in a collected volume.

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Macho Pokemon cosplay leaves Japanese netizens amused and confused

They say anything is possible in the world of cosplay. While some cosplayers have started getting creative when it comes to background photo effects, others have branched out into recreating renditions of popular fan art. So, it shouldn’t be a surprise that a group of particularly ripped guys decided to make a costume of the Dugtrio Pokémon masterpiece above that hit the web in response to the question “What exactly does Diglett look like underground?”

Although the trio original debuted their cosplay at last year’s Fanime convention in California, they revived it again at Anime Expo 2015, which was held at the beginning of the month. Following this year’s convention, pictures of the famous cosplay started appearing on Japanese sites, leaving netizens both laughing and scratching their heads at what they deemed a uniquely “American” style of cosplay.
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Hold on to your straw hats, kids! One Piece to hit the kabuki stage this winter

Last December, we here at RocketNews24 gave you the scoop on manga and anime smash One Piece being adapted into a fully-fledged kabuki play. With the performance dates coming up within a few short months, the official kabuki website Kabukibito has released a Laboon-sized amount of new details.

Although a warning before you click ahead: if you have not read or watched One Piece up until the time skip, be aware that thar be spoilers ahead!

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New action manga stars… anthropomorphized blood cells?

If there’s anything we learned from the 1980s sci-fi classic Innerspace, other than that young Dennis Quaid was super dreamy, it’s that there is tons and tons of untold drama taking place amidst the complicated inner workings of our bodies. Also, it taught us that probably you shouldn’t sign up for mysterious medical experiments, lest you end up shrunk down to the size of a microbe and find yourself hurtling around someone’s rectal cavity at breakneck speeds.

Recognizing that there’s a lot of potential for action and adventure in a story set inside the human body, a Japanese manga artist has introduced a new manga series which follows a team of red and white blood cells trying to protect the human body they call home.

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New Attack on Titan Tsutaya point card looks awesome, offers special members-only merchandise

If there’s anyone who should be celebrating the upcoming Attack on Titan live-action movie release, it would have to be Japan’s largest DVD, CD and bookstore rental chain, Tsutaya.

Specialising in multimedia, and with a huge selection of anime and manga titles to choose from, the company is anticipating increased interest in all things Titan-related and is marking the occasion with a special point card we can’t wait to get our hands on.

Not only does the card feature a stunning image of our beloved Survey Corps, it can also be used to accrue points at various stores around the country. And with accrued points comes the chance to receive a variety of special, limited-edition merchandise!

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Watching the Death Note TV drama? Then death god Ryuk just might be watching you

The brand-new Death Note TV drama just made its debut, and it left us feeling a little lukewarm, what with its rushed pacing and less-than-compelling changes from the manga and anime source material. Still, we probably shouldn’t be too harsh in our criticisms. After all, at just one episode in, there’s still plenty of time for the newest live-action adaptation to turn it around and deliver a portion of the thrills the original Death Note did.

Plus, we’d like to stay on the good side of the series’ death gods, since this creepy photo has us worried that maybe they can manifest in real life, and might even be watching us right now.

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New Yokai Watch movie’s spoof infomercial claims miraculous benefits 【Video】

Whether you’re Team Youkai Watch or Team Pokémon, there’s no denying that the Youkai Watch phenomenon is currently taking Japan by storm, and looks like it’s here to stay. That said, Pokémon managed to find its niche among a wide range of age groups, however Youkai Watch’s popularity appears to mainly be with Japanese youth.

Naturally this is something that producers of the series’ second movie would like to remedy, so in order to appeal to older audiences, this Youkai Watch infomercial was uploaded last weekend to the movie’s official YouTube channel, and has been making waves across the internet since. A promotional ad for Youkai Watch Enma Daiou to Itsutsu no Monogatari da Nyan!, it features a handful of respondents championing the benefits they’ve received since getting their hands on pre-sale tickets, which are slated to go on sale July 25.

Are these claims all they’re cracked up to be? You’ll have to watch and see!

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Titans Attack on Kyushu with the upcoming re-opening of Attack on Titan Exhibit

Following the success of the Attack on Titan Exhibit at the Ueno Royal Museum last winter, the exhibit and the Titans are moving down to Kyushu just in time for summer vacation.

Although it mostly remains the same as the one shown earlier in Tokyo, this time around the exhibit includes extra shots of the Titans out and about exploring some of the southern island’s most famous tourist spots. Apparently even Titans need a break from attacking and devouring mankind every now and then!
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New Sailor Moon Prism necklaces to include chocolate, retail for 98 cents!

Team spirit is everything in Japan. Whether it’s your workmates agreeing to a nomikai with the boss for the umpteenth time or a troupe of Sailor Moon schoolgirls fighting undercover to save the planet, group mentality is always at work, with everyone striving for success under pressure and looking for ways to please everybody else whenever they can.

Now that the Sailor Moon crew are turning 20, they’re reaching out to a number of teams to help share in the celebrations. The latest group to join them is a company known for combining two of our favourite things: pendants and sweet, sweet chocolate. Add Sailor Moon to the mix and you’ve got the release of the millennium: 10 senshi-inspired designs in five different colours that will retail for 120 yen each (US$0.98)!

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Kyoto Gakuen University entices students with TV ads featuring official anime character

Thinking of applying for higher education in Japan but don’t know where to start? We’re sending our applications off to Kyoto Gakuen University, the education providers with an official anime character called Sono Uzumasa, who features in TV commercials, billboard advertising and even on city transport cards.

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Wait, just what exactly have they done with the new Death Note drama? 【Impressions】

We think Death Note is a pretty cool manga and anime series. The delicate artwork is beautiful to look at (you have to admit, the protagonist Light is one fine-looking character, even if he turns out to be, well … seriously psychotic), the Death Gods look creepy in an awesome way and the story expertly combines a fierce battle of the minds with elements of the supernatural to create an engaging and entertaining plot.

Judging from the hit the franchise has become, including two successful live action movies, we’re apparently not the only ones who feel this way, and it’s understandable that  fans were excited when it was announced back in April that Death Note was going to become a TV drama. However, just last week, newly released information about the drama caused concern among fans about what exactly the creators of the TV version were doing with the well-loved series. And so, when the drama’s very first episode aired this past Sunday, we checked it out to see for ourselves whether fans’ worries were unfounded or not.

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Gintama themed cafe coming to Ikebukuro! Get ready for some wacky Edo hijinks

Gintama fans are in for a special treat as a cafe in Ikebukuro is re-working its image and re-opening as Yorozuya, the “we do everything” office from the Gintama manga.

While this cafe won’t be able to help you with all your life problems, they will be able to satisfy your need to eat, dine and be merry surrounded by Gintama characters and decor. This special theme cafe will finally make a Yorozuya store a reality and you only have to wait until this August.

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Want thousands of dollars for your manga fan art? Rose of Versailles creator judging contest now

It’s been made into an anime TV series, live-action film, and Takarazuka stage musical, but more than anything else, it’s the original manga that’s captured the hearts of Rose of Versailles fans. Set against the backdrop of the French Revolution, the series’ themes of desperate love, self-sacrifice, and challenging gender norms have been striking a chord with readers for over four decades.

Unlike last year, there’s no new volume of Rose of Versailles coming out this summer. However, there is still going to be a ton of new illustrations in the form of entries to a Rose of Versailles fan art competition that’s accepting submissions online right now, awarding impressive cash prizes, and being judged by the manga’s creator, Riyoko Ikeda herself.

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No, we didn’t stutter. New Sailor Moon gachapon toys really are compact compacts

Gachapon, the capsule toys sold by vending machines in Japan, are always released in a series, usually with five or six different versions that are dispensed at random. But while that element of chance adds a moment of excitement, sometimes it’s a little hard to imagine anyone really needs a half-dozen different styles of miniature folding chair, sausage/isopod hybrid, or crow chowing down on some delicious garbage.

Every now and again, though, we can easily see how someone would keep coming back for each and every model in the lineup, such as with these compact Sailor Moon compacts.

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Attack on Titan hot dogs! Because the best way to celebrate is with an extra-large sausage

The only thing better than the upcoming live-action Attack on Titan movie is all the related merchandise that’s slowly being pumped out ahead of its release.

The latest offering from the giants is coming to us from Aeon cinemas, who’ll be bringing us two gigantic hot dogs as part of the celebrations. Netizens, however, are pondering why they’ve chosen to use extra-long sausages to promote the film when a similar-looking appendage is so obviously missing from between the Titans’ legs.

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Classic shojo manga Kodomo no Omocha getting first new chapter in 17 years

We recently found out that the upcoming Dragon Ball Super is getting a manga version to go along with the new anime, but it’s not just the classic Japanese comic for boys that’s back in the spotlight. Kodomo no Omocha (also known as Kodocha and Child’s Toy) was one of the early shojo manga franchises to score a hit with English-reading audiences, and 17 years after the series wrapped up, it’s getting a new chapter next month.

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Popular manga artist’s shockingly great doodles from school prove he’s always had talent

I’m sure we all remember that one kid from our grade school days that was scarily good at drawing. The kid that would hastily – and incorrectly – finish up his math problems so he could back to sketching in his notebook. The one that could caricature Mr. Goetz’s sort of goofily small head from memory on request (no offense, Mr. Goetz).

If you were to dip back in to your long-forgotten box of grade school stuff – you know, the one mom keeps around specifically to embarrass you when you bring a new woman home to meet the family – and found one of that kid’s sketches, though, they probably aren’t going to look as good as you remember them. Hell, that kid’s probably not even a Disney animator like he always said he’d be, either. He probably works in the cafeteria at your old middle school because he never paid attention in math class.

On the other hand, there’s at least one insanely talented manga artist whose grade school/high school doodles hold up just as well today. In fact, they might even be better than the stuff he’s drawing now.

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