When you were a kid, you probably owned (or knew someone who owned) a model train set, or Scalextric-style slot car racing track. You probably also watched Back to The Future and lusted after Marty McFly’s hoverboard. But I bet you never thought that when you grew up, you’d be able to buy your very own hovering high-speed train set! And now you can, courtesy of toy company Takara Tomy!
Have you ever wondered what life as one of the “pretty guardians” in the hit manga/anime series Sailor Moon might be like? Well, the lovely Sailor Soldiers may be fictional creations, but toy maker Bandai is coming out with a line of delightful miniatures that give us a glimpse into their everyday lives. Yes, from the precious transformation pens to more mundane school items, objects from the Sailor Soldiers’ world will be recreated in miniature, and judging from the pictures, the miniatures are incredibly detailed, not to mention utterly adorable!
While a masterfully crafted plot twist or genre shift can be a satisfying thing for sophisticated media consumers, doing either of those things poorly can leave the audience feeling unsatisfied or even downright cheated. As such, you really can’t blame anime producers if they decide to play things safe and let viewers know exactly what a show has in store for viewers.
That’s why the team behind the upcoming Bikini Warriors is laying its cards on the table. Oh, and its cards are breasts. As a matter of fact, even the show’s official website says that there’s really no point in watching for anything other than a mono-faceted mammary motivation.
We’re super excited for the impending release of the new Digimon. Fans and artists are all speculating about the story and design for this new six-part movie series. Details suggest the original cast of “digi-destined” will be back, which means our favorite original Digimon will be back too.
Toy makers are fueling the hype machine, too, as Mega House is releasing a set of figures of your favorite season-one Digimon. These little guys are so cute, you won’t be able to stop yourself from singing that catchy theme song!
Last week, we took a look at a set of fluffy Sailor Moon pajamas. But no matter how comfortable they may look, eventually you’re going to run out of food, manga, or some other class of household essentials and need to leave your home. But when you do, you can still keep the theme going with these Sailor Moon-themed tote bags to carry your supplies home in, plus sailor suit-style pouches and T-shirts.
When I stop and think about it, I’ve actually got a couple of things in common in Shinji, the protagonist of hit anime Evangelion. We both live in Kanagawa Prefecture. In our teen years, we were both entrusted by our fathers with pieces of fantastic machinery (although Shinji’s Eva Unit 01 combat robot is more technologically advanced than the Mazda I drove through my student years). And for both of us, our mental images of said fathers are strongly linked with their facial hair.
But while I’ve never seen my dad entirely clean-shaven, Shinji’s old man, Gendo, occasionally gets rid of his signature Abe Lincoln beard as part of his sporadic spokesman role for razor manufacturer Schick. He’s once again answered the U.S.-based company’s call, and as part of his anime’s latest endorsement deal, the stoically mad scientist is appearing in a new animated ad and giving away some cool Evangelion goodies, including a motorized razor stand shaped like the mecha his son pilots.
Up until now, you could say that Black Butler has followed the standard trajectory for a major hit in the anime world. It began as a manga about a suave and sophisticated demon entering into a pact to serve his master in return for the chance to eat his soul once his work is done. Next came an animated TV series, video game, stage musical, and live-action film. Really, pretty standard stuff for a mixed media franchise in today’s integrated otaku entertainment industry.
However, Black Butler is about to branch off into something very few anime, but almost all butlers, are involved with: keeping your home clean, as you can now order an official Black Butler cleaning robot that’ll vacuum your floors and even engage in flirtatious banter when you call out to it.
We recently took a look at some Star Wars-themed gogatsu ningyo, the decorative dolls families with young sons place in their homes on May 5. But what if you don’t have kids? Is there still a way to combine your love of Star Wars with some high-end Japanese traditional craftwork?
There sure is, in the form of traditional Japanese gold coins bearing the mark of the Imperial Military and the silhouette of its most famous commander, Darth Vader himself.
Despite the Attack on Titan franchise being massively popular on an international scale, why is it that the toy companies just can’t seem to get the darn character figurines right?
We’ve already seen the shoddy Levi figure that surfaced last year, and now there appears to be another disappointing officially licensed Eren model on the market, too. And we have to say, we really can’t blame one fan for lamenting the poor quality of her new toy at all…
In general, anime merchandise tends to be full of wonder and whimsy. Much like how the medium of animation allows creators to escape the restrictions of reality, many of the trinkets that are pitched to anime fans are supposed to be approximations of items they’re not likely to come across in their daily life, such as a mystical chalice or magic wand.
But hey, if you’re Studio Ghibli, Japan’s most venerated animation house, you can make anything seem magical, even an officially licensed broom.
With its crowdfunding project falling short of its goal, Evangelion’s Spear of Longinus won’t be hitching a ride to the moon after all. That doesn’t mean the iconic weapon isn’t still going places, though.
As part of the influential anime’s 20th anniversary celebration, 500 lucky fans will be receiving handmade glass replicas of the spear, just the right size for equipping their Eva models with. The talented craftsman responsible for the high-class anime goodies recently spoke about the experience of making them, and one of them could be yours as long as you remember that you mustn’t run away from your daily glass of vegetable juice.
A long, long time ago, in a country far, far away (from English-speaking territories, anyway), Yoshitoku Taiko made its first doll. Founded in 1711, the company’s history goes back to a time when Japan was ruled by a shogun, and the country sealed off from the rest of the world.
More than three centuries later, Yoshitoku Taiko is still in business, but Japan is now part of the global community. That’s why the company’s latest offerings are two exquisitely crafted dolls of Darth Vader in samurai armor.
Out of the many magical artifacts Sailor Moon comes across during the course of her adventures, few can match the power of the Illusory Silver Crystal. Maybe that’s why when merchandiser Bandai offers some new anime trinket that includes the gem, it seemingly feels that the replica Silver Crystal also needs to have some sort of innate power.
Previously, fans could use the Illusory Silver Crystal to keep their homes smelling nice. Now, the crystal that helped Queen Serenity maintain order in the Moon Kingdom will help you maintain order on your desk, with this Rainbow Moon Chalice Sailor Moon paper clip case.
Seeing as how 17 years passed between the final TV episode of Sailor Moon and its reboot, Sailor Moon Crystal, it’s no surprise that the latter makes far more use of digital animation production. But while the newer anime’s designs have sharper line work, some traditionalists still prefer the old school look of the original series.
However, if you’d rather have your Sailor Senshi not just rough around the edges, but downright rectangular, merchandiser Bandai is ready to fill that need with this line of Sailor Moon merchandise done in the style of eight-bit pixel art.
Anyone who knows me well will tell you that, as well as being a huge video game nerd, I’m also a bit of a tree-hugger at heart, albeit one that possess neither a tie-dyed t-shirt nor the coordination required to play hacky sack. So as much as I like the idea of surrounding myself with dozens of Nintendo’s cute little Amiibo figurines, I just can’t bring myself to add yet more mass-produced plastic junk to my home when I know that it’ll only end up in a landfill someday (come on, Amiibo can be hard to find, but they’re hardly collector’s items).
But this woolly Yoshi Amiibo announced by Nintendo of America last night is not only much kinder to the environment, it’s one of the most adorable things ever, so I don’t think I’ll be able to resist getting one of my own.
We’ve talked before about some of the cool extras that’ve come bundled with girls’ manga anthologies in Japan, but they’re not the only publications that dangle the offer of freebies to help drum up sales. In Japan, fashion magazines for adults also occasionally come with promotional items, such as day planners, scrunchies, or other goodies they think their readers might be interested in.
Women’s fashion magazine CanCam recently ran a special feature on Pokémon-related apparel and accessories, so the publishers thought it’d be the perfect opportunity to package the issue with a Pikachu-shaped fuzzy cloth pouch. To make it seem extra special, they decided to pass on his usual vibrant canary yellow and instead produce a chic monochrome version of the series mascot.
But “unique” doesn’t always mean “good,” at least according to one reader who came up with a morbid interpretation of Pikachu’s lack of color.
With the release of the new Dragon Ball movie now less than a month away, the popular manga/anime series has had quite bit of exposure on the Japanese Internet recently. One related product that’s getting a lot of attention is a figure of Yamcha, one of Goku’s rivals- turned-friends.
But this particular figure doesn’t have the look of your typical toy. As a matter of fact, it shows Yamcha in quite a pitiful state. Nonetheless, fans seems to be getting a huge kick out of it, and one fan has even tweeted an easy way to create a realistic diorama scene with the figure using quite an unexpected item — apple pie!
Publisher Shogakukan’s monthly girls’ manga magazine Ciao always comes packed with bonus goodies that are designed to appeal to its targer market of girls aged 9-15. For the April edition, Ciao‘s publishers really seem to have outdone themselves, though, since everyone from young girls to adult men are snapping up the latest issue with its supplemental goodies which are collectively being advertised as “the ultimate manga creator set.” Keep in mind that this is all for a very reasonable price of 570 yen (US $4.78).
However, a recent trend on social media has shown that many purchasers of the April issue aren’t using the extra items to hone their manga-making skills at all, but are instead buying it with a very different idea in mind.
Despite his cherubic good looks and smooth, unlined face, Pikachu isn’t as young as he used to be. The first Pokémon video game was released in Japan in 1996, and considering that the franchise’s most famous pocket monster was ready to go into battle right away, theoretically he must have already been a few years old by that time.
What we’re saying is, Pikachu isn’t a kid anymore. It’s time he entered the workforce and became an economically self-sufficient member of society, which is just what he’s poised to do in his new, suit-wearing plushie form.