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Philip Brasor

For Philip Brasor's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

Japan baffled by the intricacies of LGBT issues

/ | Jun 4, 2016

Japan baffled by the intricacies of LGBT issues

A middle-aged woman I know never wears makeup or skirts and keeps her hair short. Sometimes she receives concerned glances when she enters the women’s locker room at the gym she patronizes and, while no one has ever questioned her gender (for the record, ...

There's no hiding in Japan's toilets

| Jun 4, 2016

There's no hiding in Japan's toilets

When it comes to toilets, Japan presents several paradoxes. On the one hand, public toilets are ubiquitous, easy to access and, for the most part, quite clean. On the other hand, they can also be primitive, or at least to a Western sensibility. Though ...

| Jun 3, 2016

'Legal Advice Office With a Line Outside the Door';

Before he became a firebrand politician, Toru Hashimoto was a lawyer and TV personality, and one of the variety shows he often appeared on was Nippon TV’s “Gyoretsu no Dekiru Horitsu Sodanjo” (“Legal Advice Office With a Line Outside the Door”; Sun., 9 p.m.). ...

The vagina on trial: more absurd than obscene

/ | May 28, 2016

The vagina on trial: more absurd than obscene

Though the obscenity trial of the artist known as Rokudenashiko — real name Megumi Igarashi — ended earlier this month with a conviction on one of her charges, we haven’t heard the last of her. She plans to appeal the verdict, which is good ...

| May 27, 2016

'Historical Unknowns: Historia'; 'Morning Comes'; DHC

Kumamoto Castle, which was seriously damaged in last month’s earthquake, is one of Japan’s most beloved and iconic landmarks. Originally built in the 15th century, the structure is one of the largest fortifications in Japan and covers a big piece of land. It is ...

May 20, 2016

'Evening Smoke Bus Tour'; 'Gold Woman'; Suntory

It seems any kind of professional can be a detective in Japan. The latest vocation is tour bus guide, as exemplified by Sayaka Sakuraniwa (Hisako Manda) in the two-hour mystery “Yukemuri Bus Tour” (“Evening Smoke Bus Tour”; TBS, Mon., 9 p.m.). Sayaka and her ...

Cracks appear in media's view of disasters

/ | May 14, 2016

Cracks appear in media's view of disasters

The Great East Japan Earthquake was Japan’s first major natural disaster since the rise of social media, and emergency planning outfits have been studying the data from March 11, 2011, in order better use SNS to save lives and help survivors. Online activities related ...

| May 13, 2016

'Angel or Devil,' 'Cambrian Palace," Y!mobile

Recently, an artificial intelligence program developed by Google defeated several champions of the Asian board game go. The program’s achievement made headlines all over the world since go is considered a very complex game. The programmers, in fact, thought it would take much longer ...