Tokyo Active NEETs

Tokyo Active NEETs is a very special group of musicians. They are special for several reasons:

  1. They are NEETs,
  2. who play anime music
  3. in cosplay.

First off, please listen to my husband’s (currently) favorite arrangement:

I am sure the video enticed you to learn more about this group. Definitely better than my writing would have. Continue reading

すすめ, カロリーナ. | Susume, Karolina.

I enjoy art of all kinds and because of that follow quite a number of artists. One of them is Matheusz Urbanowicz, a polish artist who lives in Japan and draws amazing (mostly) watercolor scenery. While Mattō himself is an interesting topic, today I want to introduce you to his latest creation, Susume, Karolina.

Susume, Karolina. is a three-minute animation about Karolina Styczyńska, the first foreign (as in non-Japanese) female, who was able to become a professional shogi (Japanese chess) player.

It was written and directed by Mateusz Urbanowicz, who also did the backgrounds. The music was handled by Hanukkah Nakamura and the rest of the animation was done by Studio Colorido of Fumiko’s Confession. The sponsor is CalorieMate balanced food.

Please watch the video—preferably twice, the first time without captions to take in the beauty and the second time with the captions, in which Karolina explains the scenes.

Continue reading

Anime Adaptations 2009-15

After looking at the most recent anime adaptations, I am going to look a little bit further into the past and analyze adaptations from 2009 to 2015.

The methodology is the same as in my first article:

I’m researching only nonH TV series (no OVAs or movies) that started that season (no continuing anime, like One Piece, but I count second seasons).

As to why I chose 2009 (and not the nice round start of the decade) creating a rather lopsided interval, I have a number of reasons. For North Americans, the main milestone would be Crunchyroll going legal and thus bringing about the beginning of the legal anime streaming era. And that’s a pretty big deal.

Elsewhere around the world, we relied on less legal sources to watch anime. In 2009, a number of what will someday become classics or at least time-tried paradigms of quality came out. In Spring Season 2009, K-ON! aired. I’ve collected a number of reason why that would be a turning point in the fandom – some call K-ON! the peak of moe culture; it’s a milestone of the cute-girls-doing-cute-things genre, as well as the directorial debut of Yamada Naoko, the lady who went on to direct Tamako Market (and Tamako Love Story) and Sound! Euphonium.

And that’s not all! The second season of The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, which contains the legendary Endless Eight, came out. The first season of Bakemonogatari started airing. From movies, 2009 brought us Summer Wars (highly recommended). And if you like girls falling in love with other girls, then you can be grateful for Sweet Blue Flowers (青い花 [あおいはな, aoi hana, blue flowers] in Japanese) and Whispered Words (aka Sasameki Koto). Continue reading

Where do anime adaptations come from?

A fellow blogger was so bold as to proclaim that light novels are some of the most common sources of anime adaptations today. That got me thinking, is that really true? My husband didn’t think so. And so a new research post was born. (While researching this I found another post claiming almost every anime is adapted from manga. I’ll disprove that along the way.)

First of all, let’s look at anime from 2016 and this year. The aforementioned claim is from October 2016, which nests nicely in the middle of my interval. Regarding my methodology: I’m researching only nonH TV series (no OVAs or movies) that started that season (no continuing anime, like One Piece, but I count second seasons that started after a pause).

In total I have 393 anime series. 104 of those were not adaptations, also known as originals. In percentages, 26.5% of TV series were originals and 73.5% were adaptations. To disprove the parenthesized claim about almost every anime being a manga adaptation — 160 of 393 series were manga adaptations, which rounds to 40.7%. It is a high percentage, but nowhere near “almost every anime.”

Below I put together a graph of the adaptations, so my results excluding originals. The total is 289. As you can see manga takes up more than a half of the pie (55.4%) — this includes regular manga, yonkoma and webmanga. Orange light novels come to 13.1%. It would be the second highest percentage, if I didn’t add the two green slices – games and visual novels – together, totaling 50 series and 17.3 percent. I must concede that in either situation light novels are “some of the most common sources of anime adaptations.” Still, they do not make up a large part at all. In addition, a great number (19 out of 38) of those light novel adaptations come from 2017, that is after the claim was written.

Anime Adaptations 2016-7

To complete the circle, regular novels make up 6.6% of anime adaptations and the rest is anything that didn’t fit into my categories. For example anime adapted from pachinko machine commercials or illustration books (I’m talking about Honobono log).

That’s settled. My curiosity has been quenched, but another question arose – was it always like that? I think it’s pretty (about 100%) likely that it wasn’t. I’ll try to delve into that some other day. So look forward to that!

Touhou Fandom

This post was originally written for my friend’s CyborgCommunist’s blog and published there on September 13th, 2012. Since that blog is largely inactive by now, I’ve decided to archive the post here in its entirety. The original post:

Even if you are not a gamer, which happens to be my case as well, you should not be a stranger to Touhou. What started with a Japanese beer-loving gamer, for whom others’ shooter games weren’t enough of a challenge, has escalated into a fandom extraordinaire. For many the games aren’t important anymore, it’s more about the world, Gensokyo, and its inhabitants.

Marvel at the compact, but wondrous world of Gensokyo
(click on the image for its Pixiv page)

While I know the games and have attempted several of them, even though I’m not much of a gamer myself, that is not what this post is going to (mainly) be about. Continue reading