This pic is of Aya, Maya's sister ^_^


1-15 MAY 2002 NEWS

14 May 2002 (updated)

  • Storyboards for the web anime Ajimu ~ Kaigan Monogatari ~ (since released on DVD) can be viewed here. Animation quality for that anime was pretty poor IMO, though...
  • The Bandai page for Patlabor WXIII has updated with information on the release of the DVD. There will be 2 versions released on 25 September 2002:
    DVD box: price 12,800 yen, comes with movie disc (Dolby Digital 5.1ch) and special disc (Dolby Digital stereo).
    Regular DVD: price 7,800 yen, Dolby Digital 5.1ch.
  • Fell asleep again yesterday... ^_^;;
  • Kodansha will be releasing a Chobits Postcard Book on 30 May 2002. 24 cards in a case. 1,000 yen (excluding tax).
  • Today's entry in on the Madhouse news page suggests that a sequel to the Hajime no Ippo TV anime is to be made.
  • I note that Jungle SCS today stocked some VHS videos of selections from the 13th and 14th DOGA CG animation contests. Shinkai Makoto (Hoshi no Koe) won the grand prix for the 12th contest two years ago for "Kanojo to Kanojo no Neko" (a few versions of which are included on the Hoshi no Koe DVD). No grand prix was awarded last year, nor this year. Another contestant in the past has been Romanov Higa (URDA).
  • Speaking of Jungle SCS, it seems their image girl Junko will have her own 3 episode dorama "JunJun Junko-chan" to be broadcast on Sky Perfect TV commencing 15 June 2002. However, it seems the actress will be idol Yoshizawa Moe, not original image girl Kanegawa Maiko. A DVD will then be released in August 2002. Hmm...
  • Upcoming releases... DVD box 1 of Oniisama E... (titled "Brother, Dear Brother" by the Techno-Girls in their fansub) will be released on 23 August 2002, price 30,000 yen (excluding tax), containing episodes 1-26.
  • Looks like a special edition of volume 4 of the Pitaden DVD will be available with a figure. To be released 25 September 2002, price 7,000 yen (excluding tax), catalogue number BCBA-1280. A regular edition will be released on the same day and will cost 6,000 yen (excluding tax), catalogue number BCBA-1159.
  • Pioneer's Ai Yori Aoshi site has updated with details of the DVD release:
    Volume 1
         To be released 25 July 2002
         Episodes 1-3, comes with booklet
         Price 6,000 yen (excluding tax)
         First pressing (catalogue number PIBA-1369) comes with Fumizuki Kou illustrated box to hold volumes the first 4 volumes (of 8), illustrated mini-fan, a photo card collection album (to hold 8 photo cards), photo card no. 1 and a picture disc DVD. The picture on the linked page will be used for the box.
         A regular edition will be released on the same day, same price, catalogue number PIBA-1371
    Volumes 2-8
         To be released one volume per month
         Each contains 3 episodes, comes with booklet
         Price 6,000 (excluding tax)
         First pressing comes with photo card and picture disc DVD. The first pressing of volume 5 will also come with a Fumizuki Kou illustrated box to hold volumes 5-8 and an original chopstick set in a pouch.
    Those who purchase the entire series will be able to apply for a special stamp set.
  • As has been reported by Anime News Service, Bandai Visual will be releasing sCRYed Fan Disc DVDs on 25 August 2002, price 2,800 yen (excluding tax). There will be 2 versions: Gold (catalogue number BCBA-1296) and Silver (catalogue number BCBA-1297).
  • Info for a few series which will see release from July onwards:
    24 July 2002, Tenchi Muyo! GXP volume 1, price 5,800 yen (excluding tax)
    24 July 2002, Rockman EXE volume 1, price 4,300 yen (excluding tax), catalogue number AVBA-14399
    26 July 2002, Futari Ecchi volume 1 (OVA), price 5,800 yen (excluding tax), volume 2 will be released on 27 September 2002
    7 August 2002, Oh Dorobou Jing (King of Bandit Jing) volumes 1 & 2, price 4,800 yen (excluding tax) each, catalogue numbers SVWB-1541, SVWB-1542
    23 August 2002, Gun Frontier volume 1, price 5,800 yen (excluding tax), volumes 2 & 3 will be released on 26 September 2002, volumes 4 & 5 will be released on 25 October 2002
    23 or 25 August 2002, Nurse Witch Komugi-chan Magical te volume 1, price 5,800 yen (excluding tax), volume 2 will be released on 25 October 2002
    25 August 2002 Vampiyan Kids volumes 1 & 2, price 3,800 yen (excluding tax) each, catalogue numbers BCBA-1290, BCBA-1291

12 May 2002

  • A couple of people have had problems extracting the URDA anime (see 7 May 2002 news) from the lzh archive. For Windows 98, I used Lhaz, a Japanese program. You can download v1.00 here. However, because the program's in Japanese, you probably won't be able to read the menu options unless you're running Japanese Windows. I haven't tried v1.00 - I'm using v0.97. *Assuming the controls for v1.00 are the same as for v0.97* (I haven't checked this myself), once you've installed Lhaz, there are 2 ways to use the program:
    1. Run Lhaz. Press Crtl-O and browse to select the archive you wish to open. Then select the file in the lzh archive you wish to extract and press Ctrl-E (or right click and press H). The selected file will then be extracted to the same folder as the archive.
    2. Drag the lzh archive onto the Lhaz shortcut icon on your desktop. A menu will appear (similar to the type you get when you right click on something). Press H to extract the files to the same folder as the archive.
  • reports that Satorare, the manga by Sato Makoto (originally serialised in Kodansha's manga magazine Morning, and now in another of its magazines Evening), will be turned into a live action dorama on TV Asahi commencing 4 July 2002. The storyline of the dorama apparently will be based on the movie version, released in October 2001 last year. For information about the movie, check out the Reel World Film Festival's summary here. For more information on the manga, see Kodansha's entry in its English website.
  • The price of the Appleseed Premium Edition DVDs with figure (the DVD containing previews of the upcoming CG Appleseed movie) appears to have dropped from 3,800 yen to 3,000 yen. 3 types of the DVD with figure will be sold commencing 25 June 2002.
  • Yahoo Japan reports that Lawson has commenced its Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi promotion. Those pre-ordering the regular edition of the DVD from the chain store will receive special Lawson/Sen playing cards. Lawson will also be selling other goods limited to its stores, including cels and wrist watches. The Lawson pages on Sen to Chihiro can be found here. From there, the Ghibli fan will find a number of subpages of information about the movie and cels, character goods, etc for sale. For pictures of the Collector's Edition goods and the Ghibli DVD Player Bundle, see this page. Note that the diorama in the Collector's Edition will weigh approximately 1.7kg, while the DVD Player bundle seems to have sold out at that store. There's also some quick interviews with staff of the upcoming Neko no Ongaeshi and Ghiblies episode 2. All in Japanese, of course.
  • The Studio 4C Collection DVD Box "Digital Juice" (now on sale) contains 6 works. One of those is Tsukiyo no Banni. A Quicktime 5 sample movie of that work can be downloaded from director Yaginuma Kazuyoshi's website. On the site, you'll also find a page with images from the anime.

11 May 2002

  • Sorry, fell asleep before posting more news yesterday... ^_^;;
  • Looks like Sony will be releasing an OVA version of the manga Submarine 707 in February 2003. The manga (6 volumes) was written by Ozawa Satoru, the mangaka of the 60s and 70s, who also wrote Ao no Rokugo (Blue Submarine No. 6).
  • Nifty Animation Online reports that the live-action version of Perfect Blue will be released in the (northern) summer, titled "Perfect Blue - Yume nara Samete..." The anime was based on the novel "Yume nara Samete..." by Takeuchi Toshikazu. The lead role will be played by Maeda Ayaka.
  • Details for the DVD release of Oshii Mamoru's Mini Pato are now out. The DVD will contain all three episodes (apparently when Patlabor WXIII was screened, a different episode was screened with the movie each week). From what I've seen of Mini Pato, it'll be lots of fun ^_^ Details:
    To be released 25 July 2002
    Price 5,000 yen (excluding tax)
    Dolby Digital sound (5.1ch and stereo)
    Comes with "making of" clip and colour booklet. First pressing will come in a digipack case.
  • More details for the Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi DVD release from Impress Corporation's report:
    Collector's Edition catalogue number VWDZ-8038
    Ghibli DVD Player Bundle catalogue number BVHE-SG1
    For more details on the DVD release, see my 5 April 2002 news entry.
  • Another fact to note from the same report is that it refers to a competition where purchasers of Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi, Mimi o Sumaseba or Tenku no Shiro Laputa can go into a draw for various electronic equipment (presumably only open to residents in Japan). The application period for Tenku no Shiro Laputa is stated to be sometime in the (northern) autumn, so I guess that means the DVD for that title will be out by then.
  • The first issue of the internet version of the Kanzen Shouri Daiteioh manga is available free at the Daiteioh Web Magazine site (the paper version of the manga is serialised in Dengeki Hobby Magazine). Note however that later months' instalments will cost 300 yen (excluding tax) to view. A short anime of Daiteioh (in three parts) can also be downloaded from the site.

10 May 2002

  • Well, it's apparently stated in issue 2 of otome X, released today, that the sequel to R.O.D will be forthcoming next year. Only preliminary work has been done to date. My copy of the magazine won't arrive until early next month ;_;

9 May 2002

  • On OVA version of the game Green Green will be released on 30 August 2002. I think that's a hentai game, but I'm not sure... Price 6,090 yen (including tax). First pressing will come with a set of stickers.
  • The official website for the anime Wild 7 another is now open. Nothing to see yet, though.
  • The website for the late night TV series Genma Taisen has updated with the preview for episode 13. Volumes 4 and 5 will also be released on 25 June 2002 (presumably containing episodes 5 & 6 and 7 & 8 respectively). As with previous volumes, the limited edition versions will comes with a telephone card (price 6,300 yen excluding tax, catalogue numbers GSTT-29030 and GSTT-29031) while the regular editions will cost 5,300 yen excluding tax (catalogue numbers GSTN-29030, GSTN-29031).
  • Those who purchase all the DVD volumes of Tennis no Oujisama can apply for a box to hold the 13 volume series.
  • There will be a limited edition version of the Happy Lesson TV series volume 1 DVD released on 26 July 2002. Among the items included will be a Ninomai Kisaragi figure and a box to hold the series. Price 8,190 yen (including tax). A regular edition will be released on the same day for 2,625 yen (including tax).
  • As indicated on the CDJapan website, the first pressing of the Chobits CD soundtrack volume 1 is to come with an LP jacket. To be released 3 July 2002, catalogue number VICL-60886, price 2,520 yen (including tax).
  • Volume 1 of Ai yori Aoshi will be released on 25 July 2002 by Pioneer. The first pressing limited edition version will cost 6,000 yen (excluding tax) and come with a box illustrated by Fumizuki Kou to hold the first 4 volumes (of a total of 8), a fan, and picture disc. Catalogue number PIBA-1369.
  • Yuki Nobuteru's 1995 artbook Phantasien is now out of print, but a new book will be released on 8 August 2002 by Kadokawa Shoten. Actually, it's a limited edition set of two books titled (edit 25 August: Senshi Bankou). Details:
    Pre-order date 18 June 2002
    Dimensions 330 x 257 x 60mm
    Approximately 400 pages containing 296 illustrations including works from Record of Lodoss Wars (36 illustrations), Vaelber Saga (25 pics), Escaflowne (28 pics), Seiken Densetsu (32 pics), X (8 pics), Dragon Force II (25 pics) and Kaizer Knuckle (13 pics).
  • Yuki Nobuteru is character designer for the new Space Captain Harlock series, and the webpage for that upcoming anime is now up, although only the title page at this point (ie a "coming soon" Flash movie).
  • An Akatsuka Fujio Manga Encyclopedia DVD-ROM is being released on 5 July 2002. Akatsuka is a well known comic mangaka with a career spanning over 40 years, whose works include Tensai Bakabon (the first few volumes of which have been released by Kodansha as a bilingual manga). The encyclopedia will comprise 4 DVD-ROMs, a video DVD and 2 booklets in a box. The DVD-ROMs contain 217 tankouban published to date and previously unpublished pages together with other features. Price 70,000 yen (excluding tax). For more information, see here.

7 May 2002

  • The DVD of Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi will be released on 19 July 2002. The new Hayashibara Megumi CD will have 16 tracks including Sakurasaku from Love Hina, with the first pressing DVD to be 70 minutes long. For a listing of most of the tracks, see here. Don't know if that's news or not...
  • The manga Nanaka 6/17 (Nanaka Junana Bun no Roku) by Yagami Ken and serialised in Monthly Shonen Champion will be animated into a TV series. Director will be Sakurai Hiroaki with production by JC Staff. Nanaka 6/17 is the story of Nanaka, who appears to be an ordinary high school girl, but is a 6 year old in spirit.
  • Another independent anime. This time it's URDA, by Romanov Higa and will be distributed via the internet. URDA is planned to be a five episode anime, to be released quarterly. Episode one (five minutes long, three months in the making) is now available for download on this page. It's November 1943 in Europe and the Nazis are developing the Urda Plan in secrecy. Agents Elna and Janet are sent to investigate and stop the plan, but they meet a mysterious girl...
  • Nikkei Net reports that the grand prix (500,000 yen) at the 31st Japan Cartoonists' Association Awards has been awarded to Saitou Takao for Golgo 13.
  • Not much news to report, so I'll write about my recently arrived book order ^_^ "Hon ga suki. Shinu hodo suki." First up is vol. 3 of the magazine Paletta and the R.O.D article. The final interview question for Kurata was about plans for a sequel. His reply was: I'll do it (laughs). The story has been considered. If it's to be made, we'll discuss it with director Masunari [I'm particularly unsure of this line...]. Like episodes 1, 2, 3 and 4, 5, 6 of "Star Wars", the story might be 5 or 10 years later (laughs). I'm very attracted to such a style. No, it's still not clear (laughs). (Yarimasu yo. Hanashi wa mattaku kangaete masen ga. Tada Masunari-kantoku to wa, moshi tsukuru toshitaratte kanji de zutto hanashite te. "Star Wars" no 1, 2, 3 to 4, 5, 6 mitai na, are kara 5 nengo toka 10 nengo toka, sonna hanashi ni naru kamoshiremasen. Souiu style ni sugoku hikarerun desu. Iya, mada wakarimasen kedo ne.) Apart from the R.O.D article, Paletta (high quality paper but pricey), which appears to focus on the bishoujo element of games, manga and anime, has articles on Onegai Teacher and Princess Tutu and interviews with character designers Chiba Yuriko (To Heart, Figure 17) and Kikuchi Yoko (Arc the Lad, Noir).
  • Got my May 2002 issue of Ultrajump with Tenjou Tenge/Natsume Maya clear file ^_^ It's only B5 size (same size as the magazine) but that's fine ^_^ There's a very teasing poster of Natsume Aya as well ^_^;; The magazine also had news about Happy World! - the manga by Takashita Kenjiro will be animated as an OVA and released this (northern) autumn. Happy World! is yet another story about a guy with an angelic girlfriend... I haven't looked at the chapter of R.O.D carefully yet, but this month we learn more of the events depicted in chapter 12, volume 3 and see how Yomiko received her glasses from Donnie. Yomiko also reads Donnie's last letter to her. Looks like June's issue will be the concluding chapter for this storyline. That should be about enough to make up a tankouban 4, but there's no news of a release date yet.
  • I got my copy of the manga Heart Sugar Town by Ohse Kohime about three catgirls Torte, Chocolat and Ricotta. Comes with a thick-ish clear plastic cover. What's interesting about this one volume manga (published in April 2001 and earlier serialised in Ultrajump) is that it was published in English (save for the final 23 page story, which is in Japanese). Each comic chapter is only 4 pages long, nor is there any continuous story arc, and the dialogue is short and simple, so there's nothing complex at all about the manga. Although not present in the original serialisation, the tankouban has a page after each chapter setting out the English dialogue with Japanese translations. For samples of the manga panels, see here.
  • The hardcover Chen Shu Fen/Common artbook "The Library" is delicious. Also got volume 1 of the manga Koikaze by Yoshida Motoi, released on 22 March 2002 (and serialised in Evening magazine). I love Yoshida's cute-ish artistic style, but he seems to have a habit of introducing storylines which I find a bit discomforting (Koushirou's hentai behaviour at the end of volume 1 here and young Hoshi's sex scene at the beginning of volume 1 in Mizu to Gin).

5 May 2002

  • Sorry for another late update. Been very busy.
  • A manga version of the Tomino Toshiyuki anime King Gainer (slated for broadcast in July 2002) is being serialised in the manga magazine Comic Flapper. The story is set in the future, where civilisation has destroyed the environment and retreated into dome cities. However, there are those who wish to return to the land.
  • A report (in Japanese) but also pictures from a recent Tokyo Mew Mew character show. Scary.
  • The June 2002 issue of Newtype (on sale 10 May 2002) includes reports on two GAiNAX anime to appear in the (northern) autumn: Mahoromatic 2nd and Puchipuri Yushii. The article for the latter seems to have the caption "The eternally 10 year old young lady!?" Also included in the report will be Abenobashi Mahou Shotengai.
  • According to the Straydog's Roost's Oshii Mamoru page, in the May 2002 issue of Nikkei Entertainment, it was reported that a TV series and game of Ghost in the Shell 2 are planned for release in 2004, with the collaboration of a major US movie company.
  • Aniradi Network reports that a PC game based on the anime Galaxy Angel is to go on sale on 23 August 2002.

4 May 2002

  • This pamphlet provides screenshots of an anime version of Kikou Busou G-Breaker (Ground-Breaker) (presumably to be a TV series). G-Breaker is a series of mecha games for the Playstation 2 by Sunrise Interactive. The first game "Daisanshi Cloudia Taisen" (Third Cloudia Battle) is a newly released 3D simulation role-playing game. The second game "Legend of Cloudia" to be released in the (northern) summer, will be a 3D robot battle action game.

3 May 2002

  • Sorry for another late update.
  • The manga I'll by Asada Hiroyuki (serialised in Shueisha's Monthly Shonen Jump) is to be animated (as an OVA). I'll is a basketball manga about two boys, Tachibana Akane and Hiiragi Hitonari, both of whom have quit playing basketball. But when the two meet up in the same highschool, they re-discover their passion for the game. Scheduled for release are a fanbook in August 2002, an anime design works artbook and image CD album in November 2002, the first volume of the DVD in December 2002, the soundtrack CD in January 2003 and the second volume of the DVD in February 2003. Sony's official website just opened this month and design works and a trailer will be available in future. The work is to be directed by Kawasaki Itsuro (Wild Arms), with script by Takahashi Miyuki (Doukyusei), character design by Sekiguchi Kanami (Hikaru no Go) and animation by MSC (FLCL, Love Hina Again, Noir, Mahoromatic, Sakura Taisen TV).

2 May 2002

  • The download page on the website for Shogakukan's shoujo manga magazine Shoujo Comic has updated with a new wallpaper. Apart from wallpapers, there's also a screensaver.
  • The TV anime Dragon Drive (based on the manga serialised in Shueisha's Monthly Shonen Jump) is to commence broadcast in July 2002. At the invitation of childhood friend Yukino Maiko, junior high school student Oozora Reiji learns of the virtual reality game Dragon Drive. Yet although he controls the weakest dragon, he's able to beat veteran players. But during special Dragon Drive training, Reiji is suddenly thrown into another world where he takes part in a tournment for dragon trainers.
  • The movie Ashita no Kaze ni Mukatte about a boy's struggle against muscular dystrophy, has been completed. The 72 minute movie by Arinomama Sha cost 60 million yen to produce. Arinomama Sha is a private organisation for promoting the independence of the disabled through means such as documentary films and anime etc. The film was partly funded by fund-raising and a grant from the Japan Arts Council. For a few storyboards, click on the first link on the webpage.
  • Over 1,000 requests for this page since I started counting a month ago. Thanks for visiting  m(_ _)m

1 May 2002

  • The homepage for the TV soccer anime Whistle is now up. A special digest trailer can be downloaded from the last item on the menu.
  • Need sleep.


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