The Netflix series "House of Ninjas" partially succeeds in elevating its subject, but there is still room in Hollywood to give ninja the "samurai" treatment.
CULTURE / TV & Streaming
May 8, 2024
Shine and shadow: Unpacking favoritism in ‘Shogun’ and ‘House of Ninjas’
When it comes to Japanese archetypes in Hollywood, samurai are like rock stars compared to the less-considered ninja. It's time ninja took the spotlight.
In the new Disney+ series “House of the Owl,” Min Tanaka (left) plays a powerful political fixer, or “kuromaku,” who has a troubled relationship with his adult children, particularly his idealistic son, played by Mackenyu.
CULTURE / TV & Streaming
Apr 18, 2024
'House of the Owl' brings Hollywood values to Japanese TV
Min Tanaka plays a powerful political fixer in the 10-episode show, which centers on the behind-the-scenes machinations of "kuromaku."
“Extremely Inappropriate!” centers on Ichiro Ogawa (played by Sadao Abe), a crude high school teacher who is chain-smoking his way through 1986. He accidentally ends up on a bus that turns out to be a time machine, which drives him to 2024.
‘Extremely Inappropriate!’ took a big swing. TV is better for it.
The drama — which features a fish-out-of-water protagonist and satirizes social issues — is the most divisive Japanese TV show of the year so far.
People exit the platform at a train station along the Yamanote Line in Tokyo in 1986. A time-traveling TV comedy with a bawdy middle-aged hero from the era has become a big hit in Japan, juxtaposing brash 1980s attitudes with the more politically correct present day.
CULTURE / TV & Streaming
Mar 29, 2024
Satire TV show strikes a generation-spanning chord in Japan
"Extremely Inappropriate" uses a time-traveling protagonist to humorously highlight the gap between attitudes of the 1980s and the 2020s.
A statue of "Dragon Ball" character Goku stands outside the offices of Bandai Namco in Tokyo. The figure is now as recognizable as such characters as Mickey Mouse and Spider-Man.
CULTURE / TV & Streaming / Longform
Mar 15, 2024
Akira Toriyama's gift to the world
The artist's impact was such that he should be considered alongside greats such as Walt Disney and Stan Lee when it comes to cultural contributions.
CULTURE / TV & Streaming
Mar 9, 2024
Tarako, voice of popular anime girl Chibi Maruko, dies at 63
Tarako, who had been battling illness since the start of the year, died Monday of undisclosed causes.
New series "Shogun" focuses on power struggles during Japan's samurai era, with warlord Toranaga (Hiroyuki Sanada) finding himself in danger of being bested — and perhaps beheaded — by rival Lord Ishido and his allies.
CULTURE / TV & Streaming
Mar 9, 2024
New ‘Shogun’ series is a cut above the original
From the 1980 original to ‘Last Samurai’ to now, Hollywood is getting better at depicting Japan.


Akiko Trush says her experience with the neurological disorder dystonia left her feeling like she wanted to chop her own hand off.
The neurological disorder that 'kills culture'