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Rainy season is a great time to binge-watch anime

by Matt Schley

The anime season that began in April is winding down, meaning that those who prefer to wait and ingest their anime in one flat-out, high-speed burn are starting to look around for series to binge. This season saw several classic franchises get a high-tech makeover, including the boxing classic "Ashita no ...

'Ainori' teaches lessons in love ... and soft power

Feb 8, 2018

'Ainori' teaches lessons in love ... and soft power

by Patrick ST. Michel

Netflix Japan's reboot of the reality show "Ainori" features plenty of drama — most of it interpersonal, but some geopolitical. The streaming-era version of the show, a joint effort between Fuji TV and Netflix, debuted last fall. Like the original incarnation that ran from 1999 ...

'Home Sweet Tokyo': Fresh-off-the-boat narrative has room to grow

Nov 23, 2017

'Home Sweet Tokyo': Fresh-off-the-boat narrative has room to grow

by Shaun McKenna

Among the English-speaking community in Japan there has been a long-running debate over whether to use the word "foreigner." Personally, I prefer using "non-Japanese." The word "foreigner," I feel, implies difference, exclusion and an inability to assimilate. Having said that, Bryan Jenkins is a foreigner. ...

This woman's work is never dull

Oct 11, 2017

This woman's work is never dull

by Kaori Shoji

Hidetomo Masuno says he thinks too much. The 41-year-old comedian who goes by the name Bakarhythm says he spends most of his waking hours deep in thought — "but first," he stresses, "I observe." Observation is what led him to create the blog, book and, ...

Winter has finally come for Isaac Hempstead Wright

Aug 2, 2017

Winter has finally come for Isaac Hempstead Wright

by Jordan Bremer

It's Monday night and the newly opened Brew La La craft beer bar in Tokyo's Shinbashi neighborhood is hopping. As the clock strikes 8 p.m., however, the 60 or so people gathered there fall silent. "Game of Thrones" is on. It's the seventh season premiere ...

In a tale of two Akiras, let's see more Ai

Jun 29, 2017

In a tale of two Akiras, let's see more Ai

by Kaori Shoji

For fans of the ikemen (handsome dude), Wowow's new mini-series "Akira and Akira" is like manna from heaven. Kicking off July 9, it stars actors Osamu Mukai and Takumi Saito, and the hype at this point may as well be soundtracked by The Weather ...

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