Ink-Fusion Bento Buffet

Ink-Fusion Bento Buffet

An Ink-fusion of Anime and Japanese Culture

In this bento we learn more about Japan and it’s outlook on the tattoo culture, we also share an ink-inspired recipe and AMV and more surprises, We take a look at anime popular in 2012 and our anime challenge is also an anime from 2012. Add to our menu our anime news and other content and we have a big yummy bento for you to nibble on. We are YOUR Monthly source of anime news and Japanese Culture. Itadakimasu!!

Anime News This Past Month

The 2019 Crunchyroll Anime Awards

To us anime fanatiks anime awards are as magical as the Oscar and Emmy Awards. Last month we looked at the winners of the South African Anime Awards. Let’s see which anime or character won the 2019 Crunchyroll Anime Awards.

Anime of the Year – Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba

Best Protagonist – Senku, Dr. STONE

Best Antagonist – Isabella, The Promised Neverland

Best Boy – Tanjiro Kamado, Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba

Best Girl – Raphtalia, The Rising of the Shield Hero

Best Director – Tetsuro Araki, Attack on Titan Season 3

Best Character Design – Satoshi Iwataki, Original Character Design by Hiroyuki Asada, Dororo

Best Animation – Mob Psycho 100 II

Best Score – Mocky, Carole & Tuesday

Best Fight Scene – Tanjiro & Nezuko vs. Rui, Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba

Best Couple – Kaguya Shinomiya & Miyuki Shirogane, KAGUYA-SAMA: LOVE IS WAR

Best VA Performance (JP) – Yuichi Nakamura as Bruno Bucciarati, JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Golden Wind

Best VA Performance (EN) – Billy Kametz as Naofumi, The Rising of the Shield Hero


Best Fantasy – The Promised Neverland

Best Drama – Vinland Saga

Best Opening Sequence – ♪ 99.9 by MOB CHOIR feat. sajou no hana, Mob Psycho 100 II

Best Ending Sequence – ♪ Chikatto Chika Chikaa♡ by Konami Kohara, KAGUYA-SAMA: LOVE IS WAR

Batman Ninja: The Stage production!!!

A while back Warner Bros. Animation released a movie so daring and so sugoi that we could not stop talking about it; Batman Ninja. Now in 2020 Via Heroic Hollywood, Tokyo theater company Office Endless is producing a stage show based on the film to wow the Japanese audiences with this epic tale once more.

The movie itself had an impressive crew. Junpei Mizusaki (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure) directed the movie, while Kazuki Nakashima (Kill la Kill) did the screenwriting. Takashi Okazaki (Afro Samurai manga) did character designing and Yuugo Kanno (Psycho-Pass) was the music composer for Batman Ninja. The English cast members were: Roger Craig Smith as Batman, Tony Hale as the Joker, Grey Griffin as Catwoman, Tara Strong as Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy, Fred Tatasciore as Gorilla Grodd and Deathstroke, Yuri Lowenthal as Robin, Adam Croasdell as Nightwing and Alfred, Will Friedle as Red Robin and Red Hood, Tom Kenny as Penguin and Eric Bauza as Two-Face. The Japanese cast included Kouichi Yamadera as Batman, Wataru Takagi as Joker, Ai Kakuma as Catwoman and Rie Kugimiya as Harley Quinn.

Warner Bros. released the following synopsis of the story:

“Batman Ninja takes a journey across the ages as Gorilla Grodd’s time displacement machine transports many of Batman’s worst enemies to feudal Japan – along with the Dark Knight and a few of his allies. The villains take over the forms of the feudal lords that rule the divided land, with the Joker taking the lead among the warring factions. As his traditional high-tech weaponry is exhausted almost immediately, Batman must rely on his intellect and his allies – including Catwoman and the extended Bat-family – to restore order to the land, and return to present-day Gotham City.”

The upcoming Batman Ninja stage production will run from October 10 to December 31 at Tokyo’s Theatre Moliere Shinjuku and we hope it is so successful that they consider touring other countries with what must be an epic show.

Netflix's One-Piece Live-Action Project

Netflix must be saluted for getting into the anime scene. The company has produced anime such as Devilman: Crybaby, Aggretsuko, and B: The Beginning, which was received very well. On the other hand their live-action treatment of Death Note made a very negative uproar in both the anime community as well as in general. After the Death Note fail, they did not give up because they are busy producing a live-action of the humongously popular anime, One Piece. Question is: Will they rise from Death Note’s ashes or will the One Piece Live-action burn up like it’s Netflix live-action predecessor?

As One Piece fanatics know the anime tells the tale of Monkey D. Luffy, a young man blessed with a rubberised body after eating the Gum Gum devil fruit. He uses his ‘Elongated Man-like powers’ the soar the oceans with his Straw Hat pirate crew, looking for the fabled One Piece in order to become the Pirate King. The anime has a massive global audience, bigger than Death Note’s so this Netflix project aims high.

According to Netflix the adaptation has been in the work for quite some time and ten episodes has been commissioned. No release date has been confirmed as of yet but it is likely that we will see this series only in 2021. The series’ show-runner is Steven Maeda (Lost) and Tomorrow Studios is helping to produce the show. We wish Netflix good luck and hope they succeed.

Here is an inspirational One Piece live-action commercial video to wet our appetites

Kawaii Kulture: Tattoos and Japan

Anime characters love their tattoos. Think of characters good and bad like Trafaglar Law (One Piece), Greed (Full Metal Alchemist), Lucy Heartfilia (Fairy Tail) and Kiyomaa Senji (Deadman Wonderland). Anime Fanatiks also love having anime characters such as Ryuk of Deathnote or pokemon like Bulbasaur or Pikachu tattooed on their bodies. Tattoos are a huge element in the anime scene, but strangely not in anime’s motherland. 

Japan’s relationship with tattoos is a very interesting subject as its history is far deeper than non-Japanese realise. Tattoos in Japan date as far back a the Jomon period (14,000 – 300 BCE). Infact the first records of tattooing in Japan were discovered as early as 5000 BC and historians found clay figures from that era, their faces and bodies adorned with what seem to be tattoo imprints. An old text titled History of the Chinese Dynasties (300 AD) reported that Japanese men covered their faces and bodies with tattoos.

The earliest records of tattoos being used in Japan as part of a punishment was in 720 AD. One can imagine seeing a criminal with serious offences walking about, the shame of his crime inked on his forehead, a good way to keep honest people far away from criminals. In the Edo Period (1603 – 1868) tattoos also started to be a fashion statement, partially inspired by the Chinese novel Suikoden, which featured characters covered in tattoos. Some consider this era the golden age of tattoos in Japan. The rulers in the Edo period was not impressed and tried to ban tattoos since the characters in the Suikoden story were underdogs, tattooed men who challenged the oppressive rule of authority. This may have started part of the stigma Japanese citizens developed against tattoos, but there are more factors involved.

With the influence of Western culture in 19th century Japan the next step of the banishment of tattoos started, the Japanese government outlawed tattoos, fearing that it would make the Japanese nation seem barbaric and backwater to the Westerners. These laws remained until the ban on tattooing was lifted by U.S occupation forces in 1948. But then another ‘bullet’ strikes against tattooing – the popularity of Yakuza films, especially in the 1960s.

Tattooed yakuza in movies inspired young wannabes, aspiring mobsters and bad boys, who of course wanted to be just as cool as their silver screened heroes. This caused the believe in the general public that tattoos are bad news and many still believe it today. But Japan is slowly warming up to tattoos and becoming more tattoo-friendly, especially towards tourists. Question is: do we have to cover our tattoos in Japan? Well, sometimes.

Many onsen still prefer that their patrons use their facilities with their tattoos covered. Smaller tattoos are covered with a bandage or plaster. If you have bigger tattoos, it is best to look for an explicitly tattoo-friendly onsen. One of our sources in Japan Timothy also stated that “When you work in Japan with customers or the public and you have a tattoo, then you must sign a waver that it will never be visible.” We must respect their views, in our country tattoos may simply be seen as fashion statements by most. Maybe by being polite and friendly we can help build a bridge over the stigma and more people will warm up to tattoo enthusiasts.

What The Japanese Think Of Tattoos

So You Want A Japanese Tebori Tattoo

Word of the month - Irezumi

Our Japanese word for this month to learn is Irezumi. It is the Japanese word for the word ‘Tattoo’

Japanese Recipe of The Month – Squid

Tattoos are made with ink and squid use ink to get away from threats, so going with our theme this month we visit a down-to-earth tattooed chef who is catching and preparing squid for us, Osaka-style. His channel, Outdoor Chef Life caters for foodies in a unique way, and is worth checking out!

Top 5 anime recommendations: 2012

Last month we looked at 2011 and we continue this blast from the past as we look at the top anime that the AnimeFanatika staff enjoyed in 2012. From gamers facing their mortality while helplessly stuck in a game, to gamers stuck in a battle royale after being abducted, to a haunted school and time-traveling adventures, there are freaky story-lines and freaks to discover. To some of us these titles are anime we grew up on and to others gems that hardened anime fanatiks remember from a decade ago. Here are some of the series and movies we loved in 2012!

Disclaimer: Please be advised that some of the videos depict scenes of gore and violence. Viewer’s discretion is advised.



JoJo's Bizarre Adventure


Sword Art Online

Special Mentions

We also recommend that you give the anime Rock Lee no Seishun Full-Power Ninden a try if you love everything Naruto especially the funnier side of the anime. If you are a romantic and mad about Yokai, then you must give Kamisama Kiss a watch. If you love sports and is crazy about tennis, The Prince of Tennis is perfect. We even know of anime fanatiks who are not into sport or tennis but are totally addicted to this anime. Our final recommendation is Accel World, which happens to be our Anime Challenge this month!

March 2020 Anime Challenge: Accel World

Our challenge anime this month is Accel World. Accel World is a light novel series by Reki Kawahara, who also penned Sword Art Online. The light novel was adapted into an anime series in 2012 as a 24-episode anime by Sunrise.It is a suspenseful science fiction anime that is part of an anime genre called game, just like anime like Sword Art Online and Btooom! It plays off in the game world and the real world. Some people think that it is an Isekai (in Isekai anime people are spirited away to another world) and anime like this may ‘feel’ it is, but really, Isekai, is in the eye of the beholder.

Accel World tells the tale of Haruyuki Arita, an overweight middle schooler who is often bullied about his weight. He finds sanctuary in playing online games and he is the best there, it is the place where he truly shines. One day he discovers that all his high scores have been topped by Kuroyukihime, who just happens to be the vice-president of the student council and the most beautiful girl in the school. He is invited by her to the student council and she introduces him to the game ‘Brain Burst’ (The game allows gamers to accelerate their brain waves to a point where time seems to stop. It functions as an augmented reality game, and to help yourself to accelerate more you must win duels against other players to get more points. The catch: if you lose all your points you lose access to Brain Burst forever.)

AMV of the month – Taboo Tattoo

Our AMV of the month shows footage from the anime Taboo Tattoo. It features the band Broach and their song, Failure to Rise. 

Birthday of the month – Vinsmoke Sanji

Vinsmoke Sanji is a pirate and the cook of the Straw Hat Pirates of the anime One Piece. He is known as ‘Black Leg’ Sanji. He is the former sous Chef of Baratie, a restaurant on the ocean, a prince of the Germa Kingdom! He is the fifth member of Luffy’s crew, the fourth member to join. Born in North Blue, he was the first Straw Hat member not to originate from East Blue. As with all Straw Hat Pirates he has a dream: He wants to find the legendary All Blue, a piece of the ocean where East Blue, West Blue, North Blue and South Blue meet, a place that is a chef’s paradise because of the ingredients you can catch there. He also has a bounty of 77,000,000 Beli on his head, only valid if Sanji is captured alive, due to his father’s request.

He is one of the top three fighters of the Straw Hat Crew, the other two being Luffy and Zoro. Sanji is the only member that does not use weapons or devil fruit abilities in combat; he rather relies on the martial arts combat style that centre on his leg. Even if he was trained in Martial arts as a prince of the Germa Kingdom, his fighting technique he learned under the tutelage of his mentor Zeff, the head chef and owner of Baratie. He has incredible physical strength, immense endurance, almost superhuman speed, agility and reflexes. His speed rivals Chopper’s Jump Point and Luffy’s Second Gear.

The true gem of his abilities is his ‘Black Leg Style’ martial arts. With his legs and feet able to smash boulders and defeat enemies larger than himself he is someone most people would not want to take on. In the Enies Lobby Arc, he revealed a new ability, Diable Jambe, which is the power to heat his lower legs to a temperature so high that they glow bright red, by spinning rapidly In place, and this causes his attack to be a great deal more powerful. Diable means Devil in French, definitely proving in the name that Sanji has one hell of a kick.

Sanji celebrates his birthday on the 2nd of March and shares his birth month with his shipmate Franky, whose birthday is on the ninth and Luffy’s brother Sabo, whose birthday is on the 20th.

21 March - Movie Madness Fire Noodle Anime Day!

Join us this coming anime day at Cool Runnings as we sit back, relax and watch some epic anime movies. We will be screening the virtual worlds of Sword Art Online Ordinal Scale, Yobi The Five Tailed Fox, Summer Wars, Spriggan and a surprise movie which you get to choose.

For the first time at an anime day we will have a fire noodle eating challenge and see who breathes flames. If you think you are sugoi enough to handle this hot treat, let us know and we will include you in the challenge. See the hilarious video below of people who were brave enough to try to best this spicy treat.

Entrance is free and there are loads of in-house food and drink specials to enjoy at Cool Runnings on the day.

When : Saturday, 21 March, 2020, 12:00 PM to 8:00 PM

Where: Cool Runnings, Centurion (120 Ivan Str, Hennops Park Centurion, Gauteng · Pretoria) The anime day is at the back of the club in the anime screening room.

Be sure to look at our event page on our website as we may update with more news on events.

Brooklyn's Japanese Cultural Expo

The Brooklyn Mall and the Embassy of Japan will host a Japan Cultural Expo in March 2018. Allowing the people of Pretoria to understand the Japanese culture and their significant traditional symbols. It is the perfect event for an anime fanatik to experience some of the Japanese culture they see in anime first hand. Some of the featured events at the expo include:

The event will run from March 5th to the 8th at Brooklyn Mall, Cnr Veale & Fehrsen Street, New Muckleneuk, Pretoria. Free Admission and free entrance. 

For more information please view the event’s Facebook Page.