16-30 APRIL 2004 NEWS
30 April 2004 (second early update)
- Bandai has a page up for the Steam
Boy Starter Kit DVD which I
mentioned on 23 April 2004. The "48 x 61"
anime is 6 minutes long - Otomo Katsuhiro is 48
years old, Rintaro is 61 years old. The message(s)
from Rintaro to Otomo are 8 minutes long. The
"making of" Steam Boy clip will be 20
minutes long and will include staff interviews,
explanation of the digital work, etc. The promo
video for Steam Boy will be 6 minutes long. You
can get an idea of the T-shirt design from the
pic at the bottom of the page. The T-shirt is
stated to be L-size, not the M-size mentioned on
CD Japan's page.
has announced that volume 2 of the Medaka
no Gakkou anime went on sale on 28
April 2004. The DVD is 10 minutes long and is
available only from the company's website, price
1,100 yen including tax and shipping (presumably
only within Japan). The Medaka no Gakkou anime is
based on the shoujo manga of the same name by
Mori Yukie. Source: Moon Phase.
The first volume of the anime was released in
2001. It's also available from the company's
website, price 3,600 yen including tax (duration
- On 28 March 2004 I wrote about the upcoming TV
anime Uta ~ Kata. Moon Phase
states that it's a story about Ichika (?), who's
a second year junior high school girl, and a
mysterious girl Maika. Set in Kamakura in summer.
The source is presumably Megami Magazine. Last
report was that the anime is to be broadcast in
- Megami Magazine has also given additional staff
details for the anime of Kujibiki
Unbalance: director Ikehata Takashi,
series composition Yokote Michiko and Mizushima
Mangetsu (?) (the latter will also do the
storyboards). Whereas Yagumo Kengou was
originally stated to be responsible for character
designs, Megami Magazine states that he'll create
the draft designs on which the final designs by
Ogawara Haruo will be based. Source: Moon Phase.
- To add staff details about Ryuusei Sentai
MusuMET: original work by Mutsuki Juzo,
director Kimiya Shigeru (?), series composition
Taki Kouichi, draft character designs by Hasegawa
Kouji (?), chief animation director Hara Shouji,
animation production TNK. A manga version is also
planned. Source: Moon Phase.
Lots of question marks there. The names have a
number of possible readings.
29 April 2004 (second update)
- News (presumably from tomorrow's issue of Megami
Magazine) that a new Raimu (Lime)
iro Senkitan anime is to be
produced. Tentative title at present is
"Raimu (Lime) iro Senkitan 2". Source: Moon Phase.
- TV Tokyo's website for the Monkey
Turn TV anime has updated with the
opening credit sequence available for download.
- On 2 November 2003, I wrote about MusuMET
RGB. The June 2004 issue of Megami
Magazine (on sale tomorrow) has an article on
a "Ryuusei Sentai MusuMET"
(Meteor Squad MusuMET), which will presumably be
the official title of the anime. Source: Moon Phase. I
assume the katakana "musumetto" should
be rendered "MusuMET".
Candy Toys. What I find particularly
interesting are the 11cm tall Pretty
Guardian Sailormoon figures, which
are a (pretty good) attempt at realistic
faces. Also available are Neon
Genesis Evangelion 2 figures and 11cm tall Futari
wa Pretty Cure figures. Source: Rakuga
- Volume 1 of the sequel manga Mahou Tsukai
ni Taisetsu na Koto: Taiyou to Kaze no Sakamichi
by Yamada Norie and Yoshizuki Kimuchi will be
published by Kadokawa Shoten on 1 June 2004,
price 609 yen (including tax). Source: Comic
Toranoana. That is, the sequel to the manga
on which the anime Someday's Dreamers was based
Toranoana also states that Shirow Masamune's Intron
Depot volume 4 Bullets is to be released
by Seishinsha in mid-June 2004, price 2,940 yen (including
- Once again sorry, I've been keeping strange hours
lately, resulting in my not updating further
28 April 2004 (third early update)
- The official website for the upcoming anime Sengoku
Eiyuu Densetsu Shinshaku Sanada Jyuu Yuushi
has updated with a second (29 second) TV
commercial to download. Source: Moon Phase.
Slightly more animation this time. For a bit more
info, see my 4 April 2004 entry.
website states that it's third short TV
anime series Love Love? will commence
broadcast on TVK on 3 May 2004 at 24.35, with free
distribution over the internet to
commence on 4 May 2004. Nine episodes.
- Sorry, I think I stuffed up my 26 April 2004
entry regarding Hit wo Nerae! (Smash hit!). That
should've referred to episode 7. The final (TV
broadcast) episode 8 of Hit
wo Nerae! (Smash hit!) is
now available for download
from the official website, and will be available
until 3 May 2004. Source: Moon Phase.
For details on how to view the show, see my 10
March 2004 entry. I've corrected my 26 April 2004
- Fuji TV's website for the Gantz
TV anime has updated with a fourth
trailer, again in two parts. Source: Moon Phase.
You should know the drill by now.
- This Hotwired
Japan report cites a market research report
that, with North America's movie and TV prodution
companies continuing to outsource work to Pacific
Rim nations, the structure of the world
animation industry is changing. With
over 4,000 companies in nations all around the
world providing CG animation, companies in North
America and Europe are outsourcing to companies
in Pacific Rim nations where the labour costs are
lower - the cost CG animation from South Korea is
said to be approximately 50% of that from
developed nations. India and the Phillipines are
even cheaper with costs an estimated 25-30% of
developed nations. However, India has a developed
IT industry with many engineers who speak English
and a flourishing film industry able to provide
studio equipment, suggesting that India
will challenge the current leaders of outsourced
work South Korea, the Phillipines and Taiwan.
- It's been announced that there'll be a W
~ Wish ~ (Double Wish) TV anime
commencing broadcast in October 2004. Source: alternative-live.
~ Wish ~ is a Playstation 2 game to be
released by Princess Soft later this year. An
adventure game, but seems to be a bishoujo
adventure game to me. Moon Phase
states that the voice cast for the anime will be
same as for the game.
- There's always a lot of anime and manga events in
Japan and therefore a lot of event reports.
Here's one that's a bit different. Aniradi Network
has a "companion
report" - a photo report on the female "companions"
who worked at the booths of various companies at
the Tokyo International Anime Fair in late March
2004. Source: alternative-live.
I think the second and third Avex companions are
supposed to be Natsume Aya and Natsume Maya
- When I typed up the info about the CLAMP
mook series on 25 April 2004, I gave the
title of the magazines as "CLAMP Nokiseki"
- with Kodansha setting
up a page on the release, I wonder
whether the title should instead be "CLAMP
no Kiseki". That would mean the
title would translate as "CLAMP's Miracles".
I don't know whether "nokiseki" is a
word anyway ^_^;; Anyway, Kodansha's page has a
list of the chess pieces which will come with
each of the 12 issues - I won't bother to set
them out here. Further, the page has news that those
who purchase all 12 issues will be able to apply
for Kero and Suppi chess pieces and a box to hold
all the chess pieces. Finally, a binder
for the issues will be sold separately.
I've changed "spelling" of the title my
- KSS' website for the Guardian
Hearts anime has updated with news
of the second OVA series. The
same staff will oversee the production of the
second series and there'll be a new character (a
pretty standard device in sequels). Source: ultimatum.
- The Re:
Cutie Honey website now has a 73
clip available for download.
It's the bottom one of the three clips currently
available for download. DVD release will commence
in September 2004. For broadcast details, see my
27 March 2004 entry.
- Sunrise's website for its upcoming TV anime Mai
- HiME has updated with a 15 second promo
video. Source: Magicalantique.com.
Probably nothing new if you have the DVD which
came with the April 2004 issue of Animage
magazine. The series will commence broadcast in
27 April 2004
- Once again I must apologise - I wanted to update
more yesterday, but fell asleep. Wanted to update
more today, but too busy...
5 of Sakigake!! Cromartie Koukou
will be released on 25 June 2004, catalogue
number BCBA-1846, price 5,040 yen (including tax),
containing the final six episodes of the TV anime.
First pressing will come with a Mechazawa
carrying bag to hold all five volumes of the DVD
release. The bag has a diametre of
approximately 17cm and is approximately 20cm tall.
You can see a pic of the bag here,
under the 2004.4.26 entry.
- Anyway, the July 2004 issue of monthly
manga magazine Afternoon
(on sale 25 May 2004) will come with a
Kaiyodo figure of Banpei-kun from Oh! My Goddess.
You'll see a pic of the figure if the visit the
- Mainichi Shimbun English
language article on another man
arrested for stealing thousands of women's
26 April 2004 (fourth early update)
- Fuji TV's website for the Gantz
TV anime has updated with a third
trailer, this time in two parts. Click on the
"Play-A" and "Play-B" buttons
on the right hand side of the homepage. Source: Moon Phase.
Again, I can't view the trailer myself because my
internet connection is too slow >_<
- Episode 7
wo Nerae! (Smash hit!) is
available for download
from the official website, and will be available
until... today ^_^;; Source: Moon Phase.
Sorry, been too busy to type up this news ,
or even a reminder of when episode 7 was
available. For details on how to view
the show, see my 10 March 2004 entry. (Updated 26
- Avex's website for Yami
to Boushi to Hon no Tabibito states
that a visual fan book for the
series will be released by Gakken in June 2004.
- The official Yumeria
website (for the computer game) has a papercraft
figure of Neneko available for download
to commemmorate the first anniversary of sale of
the game. You'll need to download the 4,030Kb LZH
file, decompress it, then view the PDF file. I
haven't downloaded the file myself, but it may be
necessary for your PDF reader to be able to deal
with Japanese text. The site also has a special
version of the OP movie for the game
available for download
(until 23 May 2004) to commemmorate the first
anniversary. There's no sound in the clip, though.
reports that the limited edition version
of volume 1 of the OVA Aoi
Umi no Tristia (Tristia of the Deep Blue Sea),
released on 23 April 2004, will be
limited to 10,000 units and in production for six
months only. When sale period ends (or the 10,000
units are sold), only regular edition copies will
be available. Volume 2 will be released on 23
July 2004. Source: Moon Phase.
The main feature of the limited edition version
would be the soundtrack CD, I think.
- Following on from my 24 April 2004 post, this 2
channel post refers to an advance copy of
Monthly Shonen Ace-A magazine announcing the second
OVA series of Guardian
Hearts. Tentative title is
Shin Guardian Hearts. As I mentioned
earlier, there'll be a digest volume for the
first OVA series - it'll also contain the opening
credits sequence for the new series and a trailer.
This volume 0 will be released
in September 2004. Source: Moon Phase.
- Xebec has a second
webpage up for Soukyuu no Fafnir -
Dead Aggressor, with descriptions and
designs for the main characters and glossary.
Phase. Note that the URL spells the third
word as "Fafnir", whereas Starchild's
website uses "Fafner".
Japan cites a Mainichi Shimbun report that Tsuji
Naoyuki's independent anime "Yami wo
Mitsumeru Hane" (A Feather Stare at the Dark)
will be screened at the 57th Cannes International
Film Festival (which starts 12 May 2004)
as part of the "director's week"
section. This 17 minute "charcoal art anime"
creation tale was completed in 2003 and shot on
35mm film. What's interesting about Tsuji's original
"charcoal art anime" technique
is that he drew the one picture, photographed it,
then erased part of the picture and changed it
for it the next frame, took a photograph of the
changed image, and apparently repeated this
process to the picture approximately 13,500 times
(instead of creating the same number of cels) to
create the black and white anime over eight years.
Tsuji created the experimental anime at a cost of
400,000 yen while working part-time (three
midnight shifts a week). Director Ishii
Katsuhito's live action movie "Cha
no Aji" (The Taste of Tea)
will also be screened during "director's
week". Ishii has worked on live-action as
well as anime productions (eg Trava, the CG anime
Hal and Bons). Source: Ma-ten.
- In 2002, they created a pic of the Space
Battleship Yamato, in 2003 it was Astroboy. Now
Shimbun reports that for the 2004 Tanto Tulip
Matsuri (Festival), approximately 100,000
tulips of five colours have been used to create a
70 metre by 30 metre pic of Ampan-man.
See the linked report for a pic of the artwork.
- The Sankei
Shimbun reports that Bandai Visual
announced results for the period ending February
2004: sales were 23,934 million yen (up
12.1% from the previous period, presumably
boosted by sales of Gundam Seed DVDs), net
ordinary profit of 3,364 million yen (up 38.3%
from the previous period), and the bottom line
was 1,929 million yen profit (up 35.5% from the
previous period). For the present period
sales are expected to increase 3.6% to 24,800
million yen, net ordinary profit to increase 7.0%
to 3,600 million yen and net income to increase 6.3%
to 2,050 million yen. Source: Ma-ten.
Sports News reports that for the 2005
World Expo in Aichi, Japan a two hectare
(roughly five acres) Pokemon theme park
will be created near Nagoya JR train station -
the first Pokemon theme park in the world.
The park will be open from 18 March 2005 (a week
before the Expo starts) until 25 September 2005.
Pokemon is broadcast in 68 countries in 25
languages. Source: alternative-live.
- The Hakata Dontaku Minato Matsuri
(Hakata Dontaku Habour Festival), which features
a big parade, takes place in early May 2004 in
Fukuoka, Kyushu. The Nishi-Nippon
Railroad Co. Ltd has announced
its six floats for this year's parade, two of
which will have themes of popular anime
characters (Gekijou-ban Pocket Monster AG and
Futari wa Pretty Cure). Check out the
page linked to see the profiles of the floats.
You can see the floats from 2 to 4 May 2004.
Further, for the parade on 3 and 4 May 2004, the
company is seeking 18 "chibikko" ^_^ (they
limit this to kids in school grades 3 to 6) to
take part with the floats. See the page linked
for more details. Source: alternative-live.
- Old news, but WOWOW has some screenshots
up of the TV anime series Monkey Punch
Manga Katsudou Dai Shashin, which it
will be broadcasting commencing July 2004. Based
on the original work of Monkey Punch of course.
- Volume 1 of the OVA Aoi
Umi no Tristia (Tristia of the Deep Blue Sea)
was released on DVD on 23 April 2004. You can
download a 40 second streaming promo
movie from the official website here.
- Kadokawa Shoten has put up the Keroro
Island website: an official
website up for Keroro Gunso (Sgt Frog).
Much of the website is still under construction,
- Mainichi Shimbun English
language article on a manga about a
juvenile medical treatment facility.
- Yomiuri Shimbun English
language article on Vertical
Inc., which is publishing English
translations of novels and manga in the US.
- A Nurse Angel Ririka SOS DVD Box
will be released on 28 July 2004, price 46,095
yen (including tax). Seven DVDs containing 38
episodes. A pre-order only limited
edition item. Comes with original figure.
catalog. The old shoujo anime, subbed by
Tomodachi Anime all those years back. Natsukashii...
- The Makasete Iruka! (Grrl Power)
DVD will be released in Japan on 10 June 2004,
price 3,990 yen (including tax). Source: dvd
- The DVD for the Atashi'n chi movie
will be released on 25 June 2004, price 3,990 yen
(including tax). Source: dvd
- Yesterday I fell asleep yet again before I could
update further. Sorry about that... ^_^;;
25 April 2004 (fourth update)
- On 11 February 2004 I wrote about the Yamagiwa
Soft building in Akihabara catching fire.
Corporation reports that on 23 April 2004,
Sofmap (which effectively owns the store which
sells DVDs, CDs etc) announced that the building will
re-open in August 2004. At 1.55am on 10
February 2004 a fire broke out near the escalator
on the first floor, the first and second floors
and part of the third floor were destroyed. The
cause it still unknown. The fire was put out in
the evening of the same day, but in the meantime
had caused 468 million yen damage (457 million
yen to goods, 11 million to fittings). Luckily
for the company, this will all be covered by
insurance. Source: Rakuga
- Mangazoo has a pilot film for the independent
CG fantasy Hanare
Toride no Yonna created by
Takeuchi Kengo. You can download it here
(roughly 12Mb, roughly 90 seconds IIRC). Click on
the grey/yellow button at the bottom of the page.
The trailer certainly shows Takeuchi's background
in computer game FMVs. Yonna and Stan live in a
solitary fortress in the corner of a kingdom,
away from public eyes. But forces conspire to
make use of their abilities. To be released by
CoMix Wave. Source: alternative-live.
I don't know whether it was intentional or not,
but personally I find the characters' heads
disproportionately (and disconcertingly) large.
CoMix Wave's past releases like Hoshi no Koe and
Grrl Power have been licensed by ADV Films; I
wonder if the same company will secure (or has
already secured) the rights to Hanare Toride no
- Not sure whether it's worth writing about this,
but Lantis has announced
Saeko's second album "everything"
will be released in June 2004, catalogue number
LACA-5290, price 3,000 yen (including tax). First
pressing will come with special packaging. The album
will be produced by Kajiura Yuuki.
Chiba sings the ED to Chrno Crusade and voices
Azmaria in the series.
- On 28 March 2004 (and earlier), I wrote about the
anime movie Mind Game
to be released in the (northern) summer. This Web
Anime Style report states that prior to the
theatrical release, a Mind Game Remix DVD
will be released on 25 June 2004, containing
"making of" clip and music clip(s).
"Spelling" of the name seems to vary:
at times it's rendered "Mind Game", at
other times, there's no space - "Mindgame".
Corporation has a report on the release of
DVD volume 1 of Mezzo
TV. Apart from a pic of the box (click
for an enlargement), the DVD version will
have re-take scenes compared to the TV broadcast
version. In relation to episode 3,
director Umetsu Yasuomi states that the karaoke
scene will have about ten cuts will have things
added or re-drawn. There'll also be a slight
change to the tempo and other aspects of the
opening credits sequence. As to the live
action Hollywood version of A Kite,
Umetsu (who directed the OVA) is reported as
stating that he doesn't know details about the
characters, scenario etc because they have been
left to director Rob Cohen. However, he believes
it'll be a film noir with lots of gun action.
Kidou. For release details for volume 1 of
Mezzo TV, see my 20 February 2004 entry. Remember
also that those who purchase all seven volumes
will be able to apply for some bonus good(s).
- I haven't watched any of Mezzo TV, but I'm
tempted to get the first DVD, which contains just
the first episode, to see what the quality of the
first episode is like. A standard half hour
episode of TV anime will contain 200 cuts, if OVA
300 cuts. Episode 1 of Mezzo TV had 458
cuts. I guess the number of cuts should
be taken as an indication of the production
quality, but curiously, when Takami Yoshio,
director of Toei Animation and Laterna, visited
Australia (first Perth, then Brisbane) in late
March, he suggested that the lower
funding which Japanese animators had (compared to
US animators) in the early days of animation lead
to Japanese animators using an increased
number of cuts. I wasn't quite sure how
an increased number of cuts could be cheaper, but
I (unfortunately) didn't query Takami on this.
However, he did go on to refer to the fact that
Japanese cartoons had less actual animation than
US cartoons - for example, Japanese animation had
less shots showing the full body of characters
but rather employed close-ups so that there would
be less changes from cel to cel (ie less to
animate). So perhaps this is what Takami meant:
by employing more cuts which showed a close-up,
the animators would have less to animate. I've
always considered the use of close-ups etc in
Japanese animation as one of its more artistic
and dramatic elements differentiating it from US
animation (at least in the earlier days). It's
interesting to find out that this could actually
be a result of funding restrictions ^_^
Certainly, certain scenes in anime which I love
have very little actual movement (eg the elevator
scene with Rei and Asuka in Evangelion), but on
the other hand, in other series the lack of
animation appears more due to lack of funds
rather than artistic decision (eg certain scenes
- Anyway, this seems a good a time as any to write
about Takami Yoshio's visit to Australia.
I haven't seen much reporting on the visit save
for one pararaph in a local Japanese language
magazine... (Maybe I don't visit enough
Australian websites.) Anyway, I attended one of
his talks, but I didn't think of taking notes (I
hadn't approached the talk as a reporter). So
bear in mind that what I write in this section is
from memory - the numbers which I quote may well
be wrong. If anyone reading this also attended
one of his talks and can confirm or refute the
numbers, I'd be interested in feedback. Anyway,
some of the stuff Takami mentioned:
Japanese animation uses 3,000 to 3,500 cels
or frames on average, whereas US animation may
use 4,000 to 6,000 cels. (I presume this relates
to TV animation of a standard half hour duration.
Takami mentioned this in the context of the early
days of the animation industry, so I don't know
if the numbers are still apt, although I do
recall him saying that the numbers were still
about the same at least in relation to Japanese
animation. Then again, I've read other articles
stating that the average number of cels for TV
anime in Japan nowadays is about 5,000. Then
again, bear in mind that Takami may be referring
only to animation by Toei Animation, not the
anime industry in general.)
An anime movie needs to attract an audience of
about 1.5 million to break even, while DVD
releases require sales of 35,000(?). (Again, bear
in mind that Takami may be drawing solely from
his experiences with Toei Animation since he's
been working for that company for about 40 years.)
Toei Animation no longer animates using
traditional cels. Takami expects more use of 3D
technology and computers in the anime industry in
future, although not necessarily to create anime
which is 3D in look and feel, but also simply as
an aid in animation (presumably to help with the
more labour-intensive aspects etc). He also
pointed out that with computers and the internet,
it's not always necessary for the animators to
work at the same office building, city etc.
Toei Animation is looking to creators in other
countries, such as the Phillipines, South Korea,
China etc. Takami screened a pilot clip for a
proposed work "Fusui Guardian" by a
On the other hand, Takami said that Toei
Animation was not interested in direct investment
by US companies in the creation of anime. I'd
asked him about this because of the increasing
number of anime being co-produced by companies
like Geneon USA or ADV Films. He said he'd heard
more of this in the computer game industry and
that he'd also heard of some US companies trying
to buy Japanese animation companies in the past.
(Though later, I thought, by "direct
investment" did he perhaps think I meant a
US company taking an interest in Toei Animation
Since Takami is director of both Toei Animation
and Laterna, I asked him about the differences in
the anime of those two companies (Re: Cutie Honey
is Laterna's first anime production). He said
that Toei Animation tends to focus on TV anime
series and (northern) spring and summer movies,
and animates using its in-house staff. Whereas
Laterna is not restricted to any in-house staff
but may contract with other animators and its
funding options are more open. I guess that's why
the Re: Cutie Honey OVA includes GAiNAX staff
among its credits.
Lastly, in an interview with the Perth
Express magazine, when asked about TV anime
in Australia, Takami stated that he didn't think
Japanese anime had fully expanded - currently,
anime is distributed from Japan to the US and
then Australia, whereas he'd like to see direct
distribution from Japan to Australia. (I guess
Toei Animation would retain more of the profit
that way ^_^ )
Sports News reports that a ninth
Detective Conan movie will be produced
next year. The eighth movie "Meitantei Conan
Ginyoku no Kijyutsushi/Magician" (Magician
of the Silver Sky) was released theatrically on
17 April 2004. Source: Rakuga
- On 28 March 2004 I wrote about the Eiken
OVA Eikenbu yori Ai wo Komete but I
stuffed up the details. To clarify, volume 1 of
the OVA was released in 2003. There will be two
Eiken DVDs released on 23 June 2004, but the
first will be the concluding volume 2 and the
second will contain both volumes 1 and 2 (I'm not
sure whether the latter will contain both
episodes in their entirety or be a digest volume,
but I believe it'll contain both episodes in
their entirety). Furthermore, there'll be a
Special Box version of the combined release,
which comes with music CD. CD Japan has the
details up for volume
2 and the Special
Box version of the combined release. In
addition, Starchild's Eiken
website has details
on the regular edition of the combined release:
price 7,140 yen (including tax) (I'm not sure if
the catalogue number quoted is correct). Source: Rakuga
Kidou. I've not updated my 28 March 2004
entry. Sorry about the error.
- On 20 April 2004 I wrote about the 14cm
Yujin PVC figure of Michelle Cheung from
R.O.D - The TV - to be released in late
June 2004. The store Hobby
Net states that each of the three Paper
Sisters will be released over three months
intervals. Here's pic of Michelle,
being the first release. Source: Asu
Manga Gekijo. (Updated 11 May 2004.)
- The latest report
on the official KaleidoStar
website confirms rumours of a KaleidoStar
OVA. It'll be directed by Sato Junichi,
with storyboards, technical direction and
animation direction by Wada Takaaki. Source: Rakuga
Phase states that the OVA is to be released
in the (northern) summer.
- The Real
Koikaze Project, dedicated to
realising scenes from the Koikaze
TV anime as real life photos. Source: Rakuga
has a website up for its 15th
the features on the website are details on its
upcoming magazine. The original tentative name of
that magazine had been "Monthly CLAMP Part
Work" (see my 3 and 17 February 2004 entries)
but now it looks like the group has settled on
the name "CLAMP
no Kiseki" (Title updated 28
April 2004). Twelve monthly issues in total, the
cover of each featuring a new CLAMP illustration.
Issue 1 will be published on 22 September 2004,
price 1,600 yen (including tax). Each issue of
this mook will feature a particular CLAMP work,
with character illustrations, highlight scenes,
character introductions etc. Further, the
magazine will have info on new CLAMP manga,
essays, interviews etc. The official website also
confirms the earlier 2 channel post that each
issue will come with three CLAMP chess pieces.
Here's a pic
of the three pieces to come with volume 1.
The site also lists the works which will be
featured with each issue:
Volume 1: Card Captor Sakura
Volume 2: Card Captor Sakura, Clover, Watashi no
Suki na Hito (The One I Love)
Volume 3: Tokyo Bablyon
Volume 4: Magic Knights Rayearth, Angelic Layer
Volume 5: CLAMP School Detectives, 20 Mensou ni
Onegai!! (Man of Many Faces), Gakuen Tokkei
Volume 6: RG Veda
Volume 7: Chobits, Wish, Suki. Dakara Suki
Volume 8: X
Volume 9: X, Miyuki-chan in Wonderland, Shira-hime
Volume 10: xxxHOLIC, Gouhou Drug
Volume 11: Tsubasa, Shin Shunka-den
Volume 12: Tsubasa
- The CLAMP 15th anniversary website also states
that a Souryuu-den artbook (titled
Souryuu-den Gashuu) will be published on 29 May
2004, price 2,100 yen (including tax). Source: ultimatum.
- On 23 February 2004, I wrote about the limited
edition version of volume 4 of the manga Saint
Seiya Episode G (by Kurumada Masami/Okada
Megumu) Akita Shoten has a page
up for the volume and clarifies that it'll
come with four character badges (together with
the metal "Pandora's Box" card folder
and "Gold Saint" postcard). Source: ultimatum.
- Back on 26 February 2004 I wrote that the June
2004 issue of Dengeki Hobby Magazine (on
sale 24 April 2004) would come with a Lacus
Clyne figure. The publisher Media Works
how has a webpage
up on the issue, together with pics of the 13cm
tall figure. Source: ultimatum.
- Media Works has also started a new manga
Dengeki Teioh - the first issue is
on sale tomorrow, price 500 yen. Presumably a
shonen magazine. Source: ultimatum.
- Sorry I didn't update further yesterday. Fell
24 April 2004 (second update)
- The company Chuosha
states that the otaku manga Genshiken by
Kio Shimoku (serialised in monthly Afternoon
manga magazine) is to be made into a TV
anime. To be directed by Ikehata
Takashi, with series composition by Yokote
Michiko, character design by Hirotaka Kinoshita,
production by Genco
and animation production by Palm Studio.
Further, the (fictional) manga Kujibiki
Unbalance, which is featured in Genshiken, will
be animated as an anime within the Genshiken TV
anime. Character designs for Kujibiki
Unbalance will be done by Yagumo
Kengou. Source: Moon Phase.
also states further news:
A new Kakugo no Susume manga
will appear in the July 2004 issue of Champion
Red magazine (on sale 19 May 2004). The OVA
adaptation of Kakugo no Susume is known in the
West as Apocalypse Zero.
There'll be a second OVA series of Guardian
Hearts (which was originally based
on the manga by Amatsu Sae). Two volumes together
with a digest volume for the first OVA series.
The cast from the first OVA series will reprise
their roles. Release is tentatively set for this
(northern) autumn. (If you recall, the June 2004
issue of Monthly Shonen Ace-A - on sale on 26
April 2004 - is to contain a big announcement
relating to Guardian Hearts; I guess this is it.)
Furthermore, the Girls Bravo anime
(based on the manga serialised in Monthly Shonen
Ace-A manga magazine) will be a TV anime.
There's to be a big announcement
in issue number 24 of Weekly Shonen Jump (on sale
10 May 2004) regarding the baseball manga
Mr Fullswing (by Suzuki Shinya). Could
this be news of an anime? Or something else?
- The combined issue numbers 21 and 22 of Weekly
Young Sunday manga magazine
(released on 22 April 2004) comes with a "visual
and comic" DVD. While the main
feature of the DVD appears to be clips of nine
idols who grace the colour pages of Young Sunday
magazine, there's also a bit of manga related
stuff, and a trailer for the Umizaru live action
movie (which movie is based on the manga). Source:
IIRC the price of the issue is 290 yen (including
- An Area 88 Complete Book Anime Design
Works Collection was published on 19
April 2004 by Media Factory. The company has the
details up here:
A4 size, ISBN 4-8401-1040-9, price 2,100 yen (including
tax). Contains poster and art gallery, story
summary, analysis of characters, details on
mecha, seiyuu discussions etc. Source: ultimatum.
- On 20 April 2004 I wrote about the first
limited edition version of volume 1 of Utatane
Hiroyuki's manga Tengoku ~ Heaven's Prison ~
with Saki action figure.
Shueisha has a webpage
up for the volume and figure. Source: ultimatum.
23 April 2004 (second update)
- Starchild's website for the TV anime of
Futatsu no Spica (Twin Spica) is now
open. Source: ultimatum.
- Combined issue numbers 22 and 23 of Young
Magazine manga magazine (on sale 26 April
2004) will see the start of Katsu Aki's
new manga Love
Lucky. There was a short three
chapter Love Lucky story in Young Magazine back
in November 2003. Source: ultimatum.
Katsu Aki would be known for manga such as the
shonen Escaflowne and more recently Futari Ecchi.
Another love comedy, Love Lucky is about an
unfortunate but good natured guy who marries an
idol. (BTW, volume 25 of the Futari Ecchi manga
will be published by Hakusensha on 29 June 2004,
price 530 yen including tax.)
- The first issue of Elle Staff's new manga
magazine Puchi Pafe (Petit Parfait) will
be published tomorrow. Puchi Pafe will be
published on the 25th of every even-numbered
month, price 480 yen (including tax). The
magazine is part of Elle Staff's Pinky
Teens line of magazines aimed at teenage
girls with heterosexual love & H themes.
- On 27 March 2004, I pointed out that the Koikaze
TV anime website stated that TV
Asahi would broadcast 12 episodes while Kids
Station would broadcast 13. At the time I queried
whether this was a typo. Now the same
page on the website has updated - and it
confirms that TV Asahi will not be
broadcasting episode 8. Source: ultimatum.
I wonder why that's so?
- I like the "Haruka no Hibi"
illustration on Initial
G's website ^_^;; (I mean the illustration
for 22 April 2004.) Mature readers only, please.
- My Oh! great manga collection is now complete!
\^_^/ Okay, some of the latest volumes (for Air
Gear and Tenjou Tenge) are waiting to ship from a
store in Japan, and the hentai manga is en route
(I got those for completeness' sake), but I now
effectively have all the manga which Oh! great
has ever published ^_^
- Shinkon Gattai Godannar!! Second Season
DVD volume 1 will be released on 25 June 2004. CD
Japan has the details here.
Furthermore, its Japanese language sister site
that the DVD will come with booklet and paper
- The Steam Boy movie will be released theatrically
on 17 July 2004. Prior to this is the release of
the Steam Boy Starter Kit on 25
June 2004. This will be a first pressing
limited edition item. The DVD includes
the anime "48 x 61". CD Japan has the
but note that specifications are subject to
change. Note also that the Starter Kit comes with
an M size T-shirt. Hmm, useless to most Western
anime fans in that case :P
you thought anime fans could be fat :P
- D.C ~ Da Capo ~ Side Episode DVD volume 1
will be released on 23 June 2004. This DVD
release will collect together the side episodes
from the TV anime - presumably the short anime
within the normal TV series episodes (if you know
what I mean). This perfect version will include
opening sequence and a new clip. CD Japan has the
release details here.
- DVD volume 1 of the Tenjou Tenge anime
will be released on 28 July 2004. Source: Sa-i.
- A limited edition version of volume 4 of
the manga Saint Seiya Episode G (by
Kurumada Masami/Okada Megumu) will be published
on 29 July 2004 by Akita Shoten, price 1,050 yen
(including tax). It'll come with metal card
folder, character badge and postcard. Source: Mangaoh Club.
- DVD volume 1 of Jungle SCS' three volume tokusatsu
is now available for preorder from the store's
website. Volume 1 will be released on 25 June
2004, price 4,800 yen (excluding tax). Region
free, English subtitles,
duration 50 minutes plus bonus material.
- On 28 March 2004 I wrote about the first
pressing limited edition Space Pirate Captain
Harlock DVD Box. dvdcatalog
states that the box will come with seven discs
containing the 42 episodes plus a bonus disc.
Further, the discs will be picture-labelled and
the mobile phone strap will be of the Arcadia.
For more details, see my 28 March 2004 entry.
- Animate has posted up more details
on the DVD release of Boukyaku no
Senritsu (The Melody of Oblivion). To
set things out again, volume 1 will be released
on 23 July 2004. There'll be a limited
edition version (price 8,190 yen
including tax) - it will come with drama CD and
booklet. As to the regular edition, there appears
to be two prices - the first pressing version of
the regular edition will cost 3,990 yen including
tax, while subsequent pressings will cost 6,090
yen including tax. Weird. This series will have
12 volumes in total, one volume released per
- There's been other news over the past week that's
been widely reported. No point me wasting time to
- Sorry for no update yesterday. Too tired...
21 April 2004 (fourth update)
- Starchild's website for upcoming Soukyuu
no Fafnir has updated with the news
that the TV anime will commence broadcast on TV
Tokyo at 25.30am on 4 July 2004 (1.30am on 5 July
2004). Source: TA
Group BBS. Click on the "preview"
button and you'll see rows of orange buttons. The
top row is a promo video for the
anime. Next, a TV commercial (basically
a shorter version of the promo video), next a
sample of the image single "Fly me to the
sky". Furthermore, note that the anime has
an English subtitle "Dead Aggressor". I
note also that the URL for the website spells the
last word in the title as "Fafner"
rather than "Fafnir".
- DVD volume 1 of Boukyaku no Senritsu (The
Melody of Oblivion) will be released on
23 July 2004. There'll be a limited
edition version (price 8,190 yen
including tax) and a regular edition (price 3,990
yen including tax). Source: Animate and Reinbo
- A limited edition version of volume 1 of
the manga Twinkle Sabre Nova by Fujieda Miyabi
will be released by Studio DNA on 25 June, price
1,890 yen (including tax). This limited edition
version will come with drama CD.
Voice cast seems pretty impressive: Kouda Mariko,
Mizuki Nana, Yukino Satsuki, Orikasa Fumiko,
Hisakawa Aya, Touma Yumi, etc. Source: Mangaoh Club.
- Bandai will release a Top wo Nerae!
Perfect Guide DVD on 27 August 2004,
price 5,040 yen (including tax). Source: Bandai
Digital Beat. I presume this will be like the
DVD and book guides previously released for
Patlabor, only this time for Gunbuster.
- As I previously wrote, the live
action dorama series Ace wo Nerae! (Aim
for the Ace!) will be released
on DVD on 23 July 2004. There'll be a DVD Box
of five volumes (catalogue number GNBD-7110,
price 19,950 yen including tax) but the volumes
also available individually (catalogue numbers
GNBD-7111 to 7115, price 3,990 yen including tax
each). Features of the DVD release (as compared
to broadcast) include a "making of"
clip and a director's cut final episode which is
12 minutes longer than the broadcast version.
- Further to what I wrote on 11 April 2004, DVD
volume 1 of Midori no Hibi will cost
12,600 yen (including tax), catalogue number BCBA-1882.
To consolidate the earlier info, this volume will
be released 23 July 2004 and will be a three disc
boxed digipak, with two DVDs containing five
episodes and the third disc being a special CD
containing the insert song.
1 of the new OVA series Shin Getta Robo
will be released on 23 July 2004, catalogue
number BCBA-1885, price 4,725 yen (including tax).
It'll contain two episodes and first
pressing will come with a CD single.
- An Ao
no 6-go (Blue Submarine No. 6) Blue Fleet Box
will be released by Bandai on 27 August 2004.
This will be a first pressing limited
edition item. The box contains three
DVDs (in a three disk digipak) and three CDs (also
in a three disc digipak). As to the DVDs, the
first two DVDs contain the four episodes of the
OVA (with Japanese audio track, English
audio track and commentary track -
presumably in Japanese - and Japanese and English
subtitles) while the third DVD is a
special disc (containing movie clip from the
Playstation game based on the anime, staff
discussion, interview, promo video etc). Two of
the CDs are OSTs while the third is the
soundtrack to the Playstation game. The box also
comes with 36 page colour booklet and 1/1000
scale models of Blue Submarine No. 6 and the
Grampus. (You can attach one of Takara
Toy's motors to the Blue Submarine No. 6 model
for use in the water, however the motor is not
included in this box set.) Price 20,790 yen (including
- Warner Home Video in Japan will re-release Grave
of the Fireflies on DVD at the low price
1,575 yen for a limited time from 18 June 2004 (original
price was 2,980 yen IIRC). Source: dvdcatalog.
- Yomiuri Shimbun English
language report on a manga script by
novelist Nakagami Kenji. Nakagami died
in 1992, the script was found last month at his
- Sorry I didn't update further yesterday. Updates
will be sporadic and perhaps limited for at least
the rest of the week.
- Shueisha's special website for Tenjou
Tenge is now up.
Among the features is a digest movie for the
manga to download (there are four white "buttons"
on the right hand side of the main page - click
on the top left one). In future, there'll be a
wallpaper to download as well.
- In addition, the company has webpage
up for the limited edition version of
volume 12 of Tenjou Tenge with Natsume Aya figure.
The figure will be 171mm tall. Book ISBN 4-08-908029-0.
For more release details, see my 20 April 2004
- VAP's website for the TV
anime of Elfen Lied is now
officially open, though it's mainly just staff
and cast details at present. Character design by
Kishimoto Seiji (Cyber Team in Akihabara) who
will also be chief animation director, music by
MOCA (Konishi Kayo and Kondo Yukio), animation
production by Arms (Mezzo TV). The anime will
commence broadcast in July 2004. For more staff
details, see my 18 March 2004 entry.
- VAP also has a website
up for the live action Cutie Honey
movie, though there's just the one page
to see. The site does mention that a Sato Eriko
photo book (she plays Cutie Honey) and some Cutie
Honey figures will be released in May. The movie
will be released on 29 May 2004.
- A limited edition of 12
inch analog records
containing three tracks from the Appleseed movie
soundtrack go on sale today. This is a limited
edition of 2,000 copies. The records are picture
labelled (on both sides apparently). Source: Animate.
20 April 2004 (second early update)
- Kodansha has published its list of June
manga releases. Among those items are:
Limited edition version of volume 5 of
School Rumble by Kobayashi Jin, to be
published 17 June 2004, price undetermined (regular
edition price 410 yen). I don't know what the
limited edition item(s) will be.
Limited edition version of volume 27
of Samurai Deeper Kyo by Kamijyo Akimine,
to be published 17 June 2004, price undetermined
(regular edition price 410 yen). I don't know
what the limited edition item(s) will be.
Limited edition version of volume 19 of
Beck by Harold Sakuishi which comes with T-shirt
(either black or white), to be published 17 June
2004, price undetermined (regular edition price
- The Yujin PVC figure of Michelle Cheung
(apparently it should be Cheung, not Chan) from
R.O.D - The TV - will be released in
late June 2004, price 2,625 yen (including tax).
Search. There's a Yamato figure of Michelle
due out this month.
- As I wrote on 14 April 2004, animate.tv
is distributing episode 1 of Hanaukyo
Maid Tai La Verite free over
the internet until 13 May 2004. To view
the episode, visit this
page and click on the dark blue "play"
button. Umm, however, my Media Player couldn't
seem to find the appropriate license. Perhaps
because I'm outside Japan, or simply because I
have a (slow) dial up connection...?
- Pic of the alternative
version cover for volume 11
of the Tenjou Tenge manga, which was
published yesterday. The alternative version
cover was included with the May 2004 issue of
Ultrajump magazine, on sale yesterday.
- Volume 12 of Tenjou Tenge will
be published on 19 August 2004. The first limited
edition version with Natsume Aya figure
will cost 2,980 yen (including tax) while the
regular edition will cost 530 yen (including tax).
Pre-order cutoff date for the limited edition
version is 1 June 2004. To have a look at the
figure by Miyagawa Takeshi, download this Quicktime
movie - basically a pic which you can rotate
left and right and up and down. I think
Miyagawa's done better with the Aya figure than
the Maya one. So the dragon was included.
magazine has announced that a special
Tenjou Tenge issue of Ultrajump will be published
on 21 May 2004 containing the entire
Dark Side Story (past arc) of Tenjou Tenge as
well as info on the anime, character data, "secrets"
of the 12 families. The cover will be a new
illustration by Oh!great. The issue will come
with a TenTen (anime version) clear file. 796
pages, B5 size, 700 yen (including tax).
- The June 2004 issue of Ultrajump magazine
(on sale 19 May 2004) will come with a
special version cover for volume 23 of the
Bastard!! manga by Hagiwara Kazushi.
That manga will be published on 30 April 2004 and
there'll be a limited edition version. For
release details on the Bastard!! manga, see my 26
January 2004 and 17 and 19 February 2004 entries.
- Volume 1 of Utatane Hiroyuki's manga
Tengoku ~ Heaven's Prison ~ (published
in Ultrajump magazine) will be published on 16
June 2004. There'll be a first limited
edition version which comes with a 15cm tall PVC
Saki action figure (prototype by Masaki
Apsy, manufacture by Yujin), with 23 movable
parts. This first edition will be limited to 10,000
units, price 3,360 yen (including tax) - pre-order
cutoff date is 24 May 2004. See pics of the
action figure in different poses here,
Regular edition will be 620 yen (including tax).
- DVD volume 1 of Hanaukyo
Maid Tai La Verite will be released
on 25 June 2004, containing two episodes.
There'll be a first pressing limited
edition version which comes with box to
hold all six volumes of the release. CD Japan has
the details here.
- Received my Haibane Renmei doujin image
soundtrack "Hananone" (not to
be confused with the official OST Hanenone) by Azel
Head. Six tracks, of which two are simply
different (but enjoyable) arrangements of "Ailes
Grises" and "Refrain of Memory"
from the OST. The original music is fine, if
unspectacular, but nothing particularly evocative
of Haibane Renmei IMO, having a more modern sound
than the OST. Listen to a digest of the first
five tracks here,
though in my opinion it perhaps doesn't do the
- Also received my doujin PC emblems
of the Boutons and their petite soeurs from Maria-sama
ga Miteru - one for each of the five
girls. Produced by Action. The
emblems are adhesive, I think (haven't checked).
Haven't been able to find the other three emblems
for the three Roses though ;_;
- I finished reading The Last Light of the Sun.
This book didn't touch me as Kay's previous books
have and by the high standard which I've come to
expect of his writing, this story was
disappointing. Not that I'm saying the book was
bad, only that it was a standard fantasty novel,
whereas Kay's books are usually something more.
Perhaps I'm getting too used to his style, but
none of the characters really connected with me.
- Sorry for the lack of updates on Sunday and
Monday. Not feeling too well...
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