Let's rock those AMVs
Konnichiwa Minna. This month we decided to party out with an AMV themed bento. We talk about the history of AMVs, what food is best to eat on an AMV binge, learn the Japanese word for music and we have a huge choice of AMVs to listen to. We also look at the anime challenge for February and reveal our next Anime Day topic, but that is not all! We look at January’s anime and Japanese news and we also see what can happen Only In Japan. Our bento is fresh and filled to the brim with yummy content. We are YOUR source of monthly anime News and Japanese Culture. Enjoy the Bento! Itadakimasu!!
Anime short introduces new Metro Line 15 in Shanghai
Set to open on Saturday, the 30th of January Line 15 in a metro line in the city of Shanghai that begins at Gucun Park in Baoshan District, at its northern end and terminated at Zizhu Hi-tech Park at its southern end in Minhang district. It is 42.3 kilometres in length and has 30 stations. China Railway Construction launched an anime movie which provides a deeper look at the project.
Banned again: Death Note banned from another country
Russia banned ‘Death Note‘ as well as other violent anime. A district court banned anime like Death Note, Tokyo Ghoul and Inuyashiki on certain streaming sites in fear that teens all over Russia would enact and recreate violent acts from said anime, According to the St. Petersburg courts every episode contains cruelty, violence and murder’. Last December five lawsuits were brought to over 45 sites that stream anime. Other anime included in this ban are anime like Elfen Lied, Naruto and Interspecies Reviewers.
Russia’s issue against Death Note stems from back in 2013 after a 15-year-old girl committed suicide and she happened to have a lot of Death Note manga. This year it was reported by St. Petersburg media that a teenaged Death Note fan fell out of a window and she happened to wear clothes styled after a Death Note character.
Death Note carries a legacy of being banned. It has been banned in China, and even almost in the state of New Mexico, USA. Other anime which has been banned over the world includes Attack on Titan (banned in China) and Pokemon (banned in Saudi Arabia to name a few.
Evangelion drafted in the fight against COVID-19
It is a sad fact that the final instalment of the Rebuild of Evangelion movies, Thrice Upon a Time, Evangelion’s theatrical release has been pushed back indefinitely, delayed due to COVID-19. It is only fair that Evangelion decided to fight back, Evangelion-style.
Picture this. Fukuoka, Japan. The Tenjin area. Everywhere there are warnings relating to the coronavirus pandemic that looks like something straight out of Evangelion. The warnings remind people that they are in a state of emergency, that they must wear masks, wash their hands and practise social distancing. All these warnings are in the style and fonts straight out of Evangelion.
We are sure that the eye-catching warnings gave Evangelion a chuckle or endearing smile. It feels so Neon Genesis Evangelion, almost as if NERV is broadcasting the messages. Ganbatte Evangelion!
Gary Oak Returns to Pokemon
Ash’s first rival returns to the Pokemon anime according to what we can observe in the new opening sequence for Pokemon Journeys that aired in Japan during January. As you know Pokemon Journeys have Ash and his companion Goh travelling all the memorable regions such as Kanto and Johto as well as the newer regions such as Galar, which is the region set in the game Pokemon Sword and Shield. The new anime opening features a montage of characters Ash and Goh is set to meet in upcoming episodes, one of them is Gary Oak, his very first rival.
The official Pokemon Anime Twitter account confirms this observation and translated it hints at the childhood friend of Satoshi (Ash). True blue fanatiks of the Pokemon anime might recall that Gary is the grandson of Professor Oak, the very Professor who help them to start out their Pokemon journeys. We wonder what Gary is up to this time. We will have to wait and see.
Gundam fanatiks will be overjoyed to learn that ASUS and Gundam collaborated on a series of Gundam-themed gear. The first of these devices to debut is the ASUS x Gundam RT-AX82U and RT-AX86U routers. The ASUS x Gundam RT-AX82U is a dual-band AX5400-class Wi-Fi 6 router that delivers speeds of up to 574Mbps on its 2.4GHz network and 4,804Mbps on its 5GHz network. This Asus RT-AX82U Gundam Edition is a four-antennaed piece of art offering a tailored ‘Mobile Game Mode’ as well as dedicated gaming port.
Don’t salivate yet because there is also the ASUS x Gundam RT-AX86U, a dual-band AX5700-class Wi-Fi 6 router that delivers speeds of up to 861Mbps on its 2.4GHz network and 4,804Mbps on its 5GHz network. This router is also known as the Asus RT-AX86U Zaku II Edition and sports four standard Ethernet ports, a single WAN port and a 2.5Gigabit connector enabling for higher input. And yes it too has a ‘Mobile Game Mode’ promising ‘low-latency mobile gaming experience.
These bad boys will be released on February 5 in Japan, other ASUS x Gundam products including motherboards, headphones, monitors, keyboards and mice will debut in February as well.
Only in Japan
Only in Japan the lines between virtual reality and reality can blur, opening new worlds, ascending our understanding. This edition of Only in Japan we virtually left no stone unturned to bring you more of Japan’s weirdness, sugoiness and uniqueness.
Counter Fight Ichiran
Love Ramen? Perhaps you have been to an Ichiran ramen chain restaurant or heard from a friend about the ramen chain and wish to know more. Well, who says you need to be only in Japan to be part of the experience. Ichiran released a VR experience, a game that allows you to live that experience, to go behind into the kitchen and well, be the cooking game’s chef.
Counter Fight Ichiran may sound like a food-related anime fighting game, but this game developed by Tricol actually allows you to be an Ichiran employee and cook ramen, making this the closest way you can experience the atmosphere and spirit of an Ichiran chain. The games description states that it allows you to reproduce in-game the particulars of Ichiran such as the beauty of presentation and maintaining their promise of 15-second freshness. The game is very accurate and has everything: the order sheet, Kaedama plates and even the original spicy red sauce! Only in Japan they will come up to the idea of teleporting you to you favourite ramen joint and living the ramen chef experience, from the cooking to the bowing, watch the gameplay video below to learn more.
Virtual YouTuber lashes out angily at rumours
On January 21, 2021 the world’s first virtual YouTuber Kizuna Ai had enough of rumours that her voice had been changed. Tired of these speculations she streamed a video to these rumour showing her nails as she proved that behind her ‘kawaiiness’ is a lioness. She listed a few popular conspiracy theories that she has read in her comments section on previous videos, from “I’m sad they replaced Kizuna Ai.” to “Her voice is so different now LOL.”
She was adamant to prove these rumours false insisting that it is the same voice since the beginning and to prove her point she even recreated her original self-introduction video from 2016, as evidence that she is still that same person, vocally. She virtually poured her soul out to her fans and we hope that people will give the poor girl a break. Creating content and expressing it vocally is hard work.
Disclaimer: The following video may consist of an angry cute girl lashing out and using a swear word. Viewer discression is advised.
Kawaii Kulture – The History of the AMV
In Kawaii Kulture, we talk a lot about Japanese culture, but the anime scene has its own culture as well, such as the AMV. AMVs, for you who may be our first visit and never knew the term, stand for Anime Music Video. These videos are usually either collages of scenes from various anime weaved together with a song from a band or artist or scenes from one anime series edit together also with said music. It is a form of ‘fanvids’. Artistic expressions by anime fanatiks. In the past the reputation of AMVs may have seemed cringeworthy and shameful, to some, picture videos filled with teen-angst music anthems with scenes from Dragonball Z. But then there’s also AMVs that rocked your socks of with System of a Down or chillin’ Evanescence.
According to AMV lore, the first Western AMV has been made by Jim Kaposztas in 1982. He was 21 years old. He mixed battle scenes from Star Blazers with ‘All You Need Is Love’ by The Beetles. He used 80s tech – two VCRs, to create his masterpiece. No version of this AMV is available online but it exists out there in the world, on videotapes.
Many early AMVs in the 1990s to 2001s were added to VHS tapes of ‘fansubs’ of anime, especially if they could not fit another episode on the video, but wanted to fill the video up. Especially DIY translations of anime that has not been licenced for releases in North America. Face it, fan anime music videos have been great promoters of anime for decades. It is possible you found an AMV on Youtube yourself featuring an anime you did not know off which you then hunted down to watch. AMV-mazing, yes?
In the 2000s an AMV boom hits the anime scene, some jokingly refer it to the ‘LinkinBall Z’ Era as there were millions of Dragonball Z AMVs mostly accompanied by music by the nu-metal hybrid band Linkin Park. There were so many of these ‘LinkinBall Z’ AMVs it was on the verge of being sickening, to some anime enthusiasts. Every AMV editor wanted to have his version of a favourite song and DBZ scenes immortalized. This LinkinBall Z trend stood strong for better than a decade. Linkin Park themselves were so touched and inspired by the anime community’s AMV homages to their music that they teamed up with Studio Gonzo (Kill Bill, Hellsing) and Bandai and created an original anime Music video (let’s call it an OAMV) to create the stunning Breaking The Habit music video.
AMVs are here to stay and every day it evolves thanks to new technology and fresh creative minds wanting to share in the hobby. There is an AMV on the net for every emotion and situation, all you need is to use those fingers and type in AMV in a search engine, to find something beautiful or appropriate for your musical and visual cravings. And a reminder to those who want to make their own AMVs. Be sure to respect the law, do not use copyrighted music or video footage as you may find yourself dealing with a lawsuit that you definitely cannot win.
HOW TO MAKE AN AMV WITH PREMIERE PRO AND AFTER EFFECTS! (Beginner Tutorial)
How to Make Better AMVs + Get More Views
Spread the Word & Word of the Month: Music
Music is always a great way to start a conversation. If you feel a little shy a few words on music in Japanese can go a long way to fight shyness. It can open doors. Chances are if you ask a person ‘Donna ongaku o kikimasu ka.’ (What kind of music do you listen to?) his/her/they’s face(s) will light up because we all love to talk about music.
Our word for this month thus is Ongaku, which translates to music. Here are a few words and sentences to start you off with.
Ongaku 音楽 – Music The most popular word for music)
Myūjikku ミュージック Music (Romanji version of the word, less popular)
Fumen 管弦 – Music (Rare term but also a word for music)
Gakki 楽器 – Musical instrument
Donna ongaku o kikimasu ka. どんな音楽を聴きますか。– “What kind of music do you listen to?”
Fudan, ongaku o kikimasu ka. 普段、音楽を聴きますか。– “Do you usually listen to music?”
Anata wa gakki o ensō shimasu ka. – あなたは楽器を演奏しますか。– “Do you play a musical instrument?”
As ‘homework’ why not find out what the Japanese names are for different music instruments like Piano, Guitar and so forth. Challenge yourself and have fun. Ganbatta. Here is a video going more in-depth into Japanese words for music.
Recipe of the month: Quick food to eat while watching AMV's
On an AMV binge and hungry? We have you covered with a few ideas of quick yummy dishes you can make and enjoy while bingeing on super sugoi AMVs. This time, we don’t just focus on Japan but look at sugoi noodle recipes over the world.
4 X Spicy FIRE RAMEN Challenge EXTRA THAI CHILIES
8 Ways to Eat Instant Noodles
BEST & WORST INSTANT NOODLES! Trying EVERY Instant Noodle Quest
Korean NOODLE TOUR!
February 2021 Anime Challenge: BECK: Mongolian Chop Squad
Keeping us with our music theme this month, our anime challenge is the anime Beck, also known as BECK: Mongolian Chop Squad in some parts of the world. In the anime we meet 14-year old Koyuki, a boy going through life without goals which change after he meets a weird-looking dog named Beck, saving it for being harassed by a group of kids. He then meets the dog’s owner, 16-year-old guitar slinger Ryuusuke ‘Ryu’ Minami, the former member of a popular rock band, and Koyuki’s life changes forever.
BECK: Mongolian Chop Squad is an anime adaptation of the Japanese manga series BECK, written and illustrated by Harold Sakuishi. This 26-episode anime series ran from October 2004 to March 2005 under the name Beck. To not get confused with the band Beck, the anime’s name was changed to BECK: Mongolian Chop Squad for the Western world. Be sure to watch our weekly anime challenge updates to learn more about the anime as well as see anime recommendations and easter eggs.
Anime Birthday of the month: Mylene Flare Jenius (Macross 7)
Our birthday girl is Mylene Flare Jenius from Macross 7, and her birthday is February 2, 2031, yes her birthday is ten years from now, our facts are that sugoi. Maylene is one of the main characters from the Macross 7 anime and Dynamite: 7 Mylene Beat manga. She is the seventh and youngest daughter of Maximilian Jenius (The same Max from the old Robotech anime from the 80s). Mylene is known as the bassist and additional vocalist for the rock group Fire Bomber and would later pilot the VF-11MAXL Thunderbolt Custom for Sound Force. She has an alien furball-like pet, Gubaba. She is also known for the fact that she crossed space and time to perform with Lynn Minmay (Robotech).
AMV of the month: Quadrupal AMV Overload
Since this bento is the AMV-themed one, we went a little crazy and watched way more AMV than usual to bring you something special, our shortlist is a long list, but we managed to get four great AMV gems that we bring to you, so welcome to our first Quadrupal AMV Overload. Enjoy the AMVs, minna
Do you know how I spent these five years?
Yuve Yuve Yu
Anime Meetup: Best of 2020 Anime day.
Last month due to the lockdown we held our first Discord Anime Day and it was a roaring success. It did not feel like social distancing as we all felt the same connection as if we were teleported to our usual Anime Day. We had the usual crowd and some members that usually did not have transport to go to the anime day joined us and we all had tremendous fun watching the winter seasonal openers. Some of us even played GuildWars2 together, later that night after the anime day!
Since we are all still under a lockdown, and most venues closed because the ban of alcohol, for now, we have to brave it out and luckily we have discord to help us have our anime day. The next one will be on February 20th 2021 and we will look at the best anime of 2020. Grab your headphones and join us. If you don’t have our Discord yet, you can join up by clicking below.
(Remember to accept the rules to gain access to the full channel)
Grab a friend and join us for a super sugoi online event.