Mount Fuji is magic
Mount Fuji is no stranger to us. We have seen the majestic mountain in anime, in Japanese movies as well as in Western movies. In this bento we share some lore on Mount Fuji, look at a yummy recipe that is best eaten on top of a mountain we also enjoy a super sugoi AMV and look at anime news from the past month.
This anime season some great anime series was released. The Dragon Ball Heroes special episodes were a treat. It was fun to watch a few versions of Goku fight each other and the Prison World is quite interesting! In the anime Island, we were pulled into a time travel mystery as Setsuna tries to unravel why he time travelled to the island of Urashima and in Yami Shibai’s season 6 we saw enough horrors to let some of us decide to watch the series in the day and not at night. Other series that we must not forget is the return of Attack on Titan and Overlord, and Overlord is having its best season yet!!!
A Certain Magical Index
If you have been craving for a third season of A Certain Magical Index, then circle October on your calendar because the epic anime franchise is returning! The anime’s first season aired for 24 episodes from October 2008 to April 2009, followed by the second 24 episode season which aired from October 2010 to April 2011. The director for both seasons Hiroshi Nishikiori, the character designer Yuichi Tanaka and the composer Maiko Iuchi are confirmed to return which means the third season is bound to ‘feel’ the same as the first season. The main voice cast is also set to reprise their roles. As far as we know the only change of staff is Hiroyuki Yoshino who is taking over from the series composition slot that Masanao Akahoshi filled in season one and two.
The anime, based on a light novel series, plays off in Academy City, Japan where most of the city’s students have psychic abilities and are called espers. One such individual is Touma Kamijou, who in season one took it upon himself to protect a young girl who is Index Librorum Prohibitorum. She has memorized the entire forbidden grimoires and was hunted by a sinister organization. The anime is filled with action, amazing supernatural abilities and memorable characters.
Bungo Stray Dogs
It had been confirmed that Bungo Stray Dogs is getting a third season. In the series, we met Nakajima Atsushi, just kicked out of his orphanage, standing by a river, on the brink of starvation, and there he rescued a man who was attempting suicide. That man was Dazai Osamu and a member of a special detective agency that deals with cases that are too dangerous for the police or the military. The series’ first season ran from April to June in 2016, followed by a second season from October to December 2016. This was followed by an all-new feature film Bungo Stray Dog: Dead Apple which was released in Japan earlier this year.
The anime’s official website, as well as Twitter account, announced on July 21st that the third season is in the works. More details will be revealed at a later date so watch this space for updates!
This October we are all returning to Castlevania. The dark fantasy animated series, based on the game Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse (1989) will once again feature the Belmont hero, Trevor who will face-off against Vlad Dracula Tepe, the dark lord of blood again! This series is from Frederator Studios and written by comic book legend Warren Ellis, who is producing the series with Kevin Kolde, Fred Seibert and Adi Shankar.
If you are an old school gamer, you will remember the Konami game Castlevania where you were playing the role of a vampire slayer that is part of the Belmont family of supernatural beast hunters. The Castlevania animated series’ first season was just a kick start to introduce us all to the plight of Vlad Dracula Tepe’s victims and to make us familiar with Trevor Belmont. This new season will be double the action and teeth marks and stakes are definitely high. It will also be eight episodes, doubling the episodes of the first season, and rumour has it there is already the third season in the works, so do not put your stakes and crucifixes away!
Netflix describes the second season:
Returning to Netflix for a second season, Castlevania, inspired by the classic video game series, is a dark medieval fantasy following the last surviving member of the disgraced Belmont clan, trying to save Eastern Europe from extinction at the hand of Vlad Dracula Tepes himself. Trevor Belmont, the last survivor of his house, is no longer alone, and he and his misfit comrades race to find a way to save humanity from extinction at the hands of the grief-maddened Dracula and his sinister vampire war council.
That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime
This October the ‘That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime’ will debut In Japan. It tells the story of Satoru Mikami, a thirty-seven-year-old mundane man in a dead end job that dies after a robbery gone bad. He gets a second chance in life by being reincarnated as, we kid you not, a low-level slime in a fantasy world. (Some people really have weird karma!). He has to deal with his new oozing existence by being a monster, and like a rock thrown into a pond, his life will cause ripples that will change that fantasy world forever.
That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime is directed by Yasuhito Kikuchi (Macros Frontier) and anime production is done by 8-bit. Atsushi Nakayama (Absolute Duo) is the assistant director; Kazuyuki Fudeyasu (Recovery of an MMO Junkie) is on series composition while Ryouma Ebata (Magical Warfare) is on character designs. The monster design is done by Takahiro Kishida (Serial Experiments Lain) and Elements Garden is composing the music. Takuma Terashima is performing the anime’s opening theme song “Nameless story.” And True is performing the ending theme “Another Colony.” The series is based on the That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime (Tensei Shitara Slime Datta Ken or Regarding Reincarnated to Slime) light novel series by author Fuse and artist Mitz Vah. The series has also been adapted to manga.
Interesting tidbits from the realms of Anime
Thunderbolt Fantasy: Toriken Yuki 2
Kawaii Kulture – Mount Fuji
It towers in all its majestic beauty over Japan and can be seen for hundreds of Kilometers in each direction. Mount Fuji is a volcano with its prominent peak reaching at 3,776.24 meters (that is 12,389 feet) in height. It is the highest mountain in Japan and the 7th-highest peak of an island in the world. Its cone is exceptionally symmetrical and snow-capped for 5 months a year. Mount Fuji last erupted in 1707/1708. It is one of the best-known symbols for Japan and is a star in its own right since the mountain has appeared in various photographs, movies, anime, poems, novels and other art media. It is even part of many legends. It is also well visited as tourists from Japan as well as the rest of the world visit Mount Fuji for sightseeing and for climbing. It is also part of Japan’s Three Holy Mountains (Sanreizan), the other two mountains being Mount Tate and Mount Haku. Mount Fuji was also added to the World Heritage List as a Cultural Site on June 22, 2013.
Approximately 300,000 people climb Mount Fuji every year in the summer climbing season (July to August). In October to May, climbing Mount Fuji is strongly discouraged due to severe cold weather. The mountain has 5 different routes, of which each has stations where services such as food and lodging are provided. The majority of the climbers that visit the Mountain prefer to start climbing at the 5th station, instead of climbing from the bottom. At the 5th station, there are public transportation as well as parking lots. Climbing the mountain from the 5th station takes about 12 hours. Climbers love to climb at night to be near the summit of Mount Fuji in the morning at sunrise in order to experience goraikō, “the arrival of light”, a perfect thing to do for romantic climbers, to bask in the view, at morning first light, from a beautiful mountain…
There are interesting places of note around Mount Fuji, such as shrines and also the well-known forest at the north-west base of Mount Fuji, which is called Aokigahara. The forest is one of the most beautiful forests in the world, but everything that is beautiful has its dark side. You see, this place of beauty, also known as The Sea of Trees has a darker name: Suicide Forest. For some, it is the forest of the last moment of their lives… Aokigahara is the world’s second most popular suicide location. (The first being San Francisco’s Golden Bridge).
Spread the Word
Since most of Japan is covered by mountains and forests, and in honour of Mount Fuji, we look at a few words that go with mountains and forests.
Shizen – Nature
Yuki – Snow
Ishi – Stone
Iwa – Rock / Crag
Tsuchi – Earth / Soil
Yama – Mountain
Kazan – Volcano
Hayashi – Wood / Grove
Mori – Forest (Bigger than hayashi)
Word of the Month
Our word of the month is Yama, which means mountain. It is interesting to note that if you translate Mount Fuji as Fujiyama it is actually a mistake that quite a few Westerners make. The Japanese name for Mount Fuji is Fujisan!
Recipe of the month: Tonjiru
According to certain sources, the top 3 meals of Mount Fuji include Curry, Ramen and Tonjiru. This time we focus on Tonjiru, also known as Butajiru, depending on which part of Japan you come from. Tonjiru literally means ‘pig or pork soup’ and is a Japanese miso flavoured soup consisting of pork and vegetables. It is more substantial than miso soup and the ingredients added have a larger quantity and variety.
Thinly sliced pork is stewed with vegetables in dashi stock and flavoured with miso. Additional ingredients may include burdock root, konjac, seaweed, spring onions, carrot, tofu potatoes, sweet potatoes and mushrooms. Sometimes bacon (degreased and not crispy) is substituted for pork.
Here is a yummy video where our narrator, Francis the French Poodle will explain the process of making Tonjiru. We advise you watch the video on closed caption setting as Francis has a heavy accent. Enjoy the video. Itadakimasu!
August Anime Challenge: Brynhildr in the Darkness
Every month we choose an anime and as a challenge, we only watch 3 episodes of it a week and try to finish that series in a month. Last month we all watched the Outbreak Company. To all who joined us in the challenge last month, we hope you enjoyed it as much as we did. This month’s anime is Brynhildr in the Darkness; shout out to Kirito who suggested the anime for our August Challenge.
Brynhildr in the Darkness (Gokukoku no Brynhildr) is based on the manga Gokukoku no Brynhildr written and illustrated by Lynn Okamoto, which began its serialization in Shueisha’s Weekly Young Jump in 2012. The manga series ended in 2016. The 13-episode anime series premiered between April and June 2014.
Let see what this Dark fantasy, mystery, science fiction anime is all about.
The plot starts ten years ago when childhood friends Ryouta Murakami and Kuroneko set out to prove the existence of alien life. But a tragedy strikes; there is an accident which gravely injured Ryouta and kills Kuroneko. In memory of his dear friend, Ryouta now searches the night sky every night in the hope that his friend was right about the existence of aliens.
Back to the present, we find that Ryouta is a top student at his school and currently the only member of the schools Astronomy Club. Everything he believes in gets challenged one day when a new transfer student joins his class, a girl named Neko Kuroha. She is a dead ringer for his old friend Kuroneko, and even her name sounds similar and there is something strange about her… She has superhuman strength and predicts death. He becomes entwined in a world of magic and witchery; his life will change in a new direction forever.
This challenge sounds intriguing, doesn’t it? We hope you all will join us this August as we explore Brynhildr in the Darkness!
AMV of the Month: Seether
To whet your appetite for this month’s anime challenge it is only fitting that we share a super sugoi Brynhildr in the Darkness AMV with all of our readers. The song is ‘Broken’ by the talented band Seether featuring the siren voice of Amy Lee (lead singer of Evanescence).
To our readers that are part of the alternative community, especially the South African alternative scene Seether needs no introduction. It is a rock band that was formed in May 1999 in Pretoria, South Africa. They used to perform under the name Saron Gas. The staff of AnimeFanatika fondly remember when they used to perform in clubs like Shaft and Zeplin’s, matter of fact Ookami was actually at their first performance in a club ever, when they were the opening band for the Goth Rock musical legends The Mission UK, and he remembers Saron Gas as a talented and very friendly group of people. They were killing the stages in the clubs and became quite popular in the alternative scene of South Africa. Their first album, Fragile, was released in 2000 under an indie record label Musketeer Records. They were destined to go far and did. They went to America and changed their name to Seether, and thus the legend was born.
Amy Lee (born Amy Lynn Hartzler) is an American singer, pianist, songwriter and record producer best known as c0-founder and lead vocalist for the rock band Evanescence. She is also known for her collaborations with bands such as Korn and Seether, to name a few. She possesses a mezzo-soprano vocal range.
“Broken” was performed and recorded in 2004 back when Shaun Morgan, lead singer of Seether and Amy Lee were an item and it was part of Seether’s album Disclaimer II. The song is hauntingly beautiful and its lyrics are a perfect fit for the anime Brynhildr in the Darkness’ backstory. “’Cause I’m broken when I’m lonesome/ And I don’t feel right when you’ve gone away/ You’ve gone away/ You don’t feel me here anymore…”
Enjoy the music video!
Birthday of the Month – Faye Valentine
Faye Valentine is a wanted lady and she has a bounty on her head, but, she is also a bounty hunter and part of the motley crew of the spaceship Bebop. She was born on August 14, 1994, on Earth, and not much is known about her past but it seems this space beauty is originally from Singapore, daughter of well-off parents. What makes her unusual is that she had a happy childhood, had many friends and was a cheerleader, rather strange past for a female bounty hunter. In 2014 (This is the Cowboy Bebop universe) she traveled into space with her parents on their private spacecraft. An accident killed her parents and Faye was severely injured. As her injuries were too severe to treat at the time, she was cryogenically frozen until such a time a cure for her condition was possible.
After fifty-four years she woke up from suspended animation at a clinic called Cold Sleep and found out that she was now deep in debt, 300,028,000 woolongs deep. All she could remember after her long sleep was her name, Faye and the doctor that woke her gave her the surname ‘Valentine.
A lawyer named Whitney Hagas Matsumoto takes pity for her and out of compassion tries to help her, and Faye falls in love with him. When the creditors start looking for her because of her medical debts, he sacrificed himself to make sure she inherits his fortune, sadly and ironically she receives Whitney’s debt on top of her own. As she is a rebel and an anti-heroine she refuses to pay her debts and chooses a life on the run. She becomes a scam artist and if she gets a nice payout from a scam she tries to make a dent in her financial problem, but because of her illegal activities, she soon gets a bounty of 6,000,000 woolongs placed on her pretty head.
How she became part of the crew with Spike Spiegel and Jet Black is amazing, but you will have to watch the anime Cowboy Bebop yourself to find out!
This year marks the Cowboy Bebop anime’s 20th Anniversary since it first aired on television, to Faye Valentine and the Cowboy Bebop crew we express our thanks for entertaining us for 20 years and for putting the bar high for other space western anime, movies, books and series. This epic 26-episode-series ran from April to June 1998 on TV Tokyo Broadcast and from October 1998 to April 1999 on WOWOW Broadcast.
Faye Valentine shares her birthday with epic characters in anime like Tsunade (Naruto) on August 2nd, Eikichi Onizuka (Great Teacher Onizuka) on August 3rd, and Leopold Vermilion (Black Clover) on August 13. Another notable birthday in August is that of Ikue Ootani, the voice actor that is the voice behind Pikachu, from the Pokémon franchise, who celebrates her 53rd birthday 18th of August.
Anime Meetup: BIKINI TIME! Summer Season 2018 Anime Review
Time for bikinis and summer fun, just don’t forget to bring a warm jacket and some mittens when we screen the summer anime releases and decide which series will be going on our summer watch list. We are definitely adding Shingeki no Kyojin Season 3, Satsuriku no Tenshi and Cells at Work! to ours! The meetup will be on 18 August and will run from 12:00 to 21:00. Entrance is free, so grab a friend or two, and get some popcorn and join us at Cool Runnings in Centurion (120 Ivan Str, Hennops Park Centurion, Gauteng · Pretoria) for a super sugoi screening. There will be tons of food and drink specials to order as well to add to your comfort and enhance your fun. Who says we can’t have a little summer sun in our winter?! Be sure to visit the meetup group or our FB Event Page for more detail.