This week: a study of fan gatherings in the Greater Jakarta Area, the initial pitch for SARAZANMAI, and 25 years of Pride in Tokyo.
Morgana Santilli spotlights an artist known for mixing the cute and grotesque to explore the conflicting expectations placed on women.
Misty Schultz explores what drew queer viewers to Euphonium’s first season, how its second season failed, and what makes its spinoff film a beautiful love story.
Caitlin, Peter, and Gabriella bid a fond farewell to the
shoujo adventure series.
[AniFemTalk] How long should a romance anime or manga be?
When is a love story satisfying and when has it dragged on too long?
Sarazanmai Anime’s Pitch Did Not Mention Butts (Anime News Network, Kim Morrissy)
Ikuhara hid the more outlandish elements of his pitch to get the initial concept greenlit.
“To be fair, it’s also a matter of whether it’s possible to express crazy ideas through a pitch. A pitch that looks nice on paper will never be anywhere near as convincing as a Jump anime adaptation. The Jump manga has already done well in the rankings, while the pitch for an original anime has no track record. That’s why I think my job is all about to what extent I can keep getting away with cheap, illegal moves like playing my hand after seeing everyone else’s cards. (laughs) It always causes a load of trouble! If Sarazanmai‘s pitch had included any details about extracting shirikodama from zombie butts, then it wouldn’t have gotten approved.”
Ikuhara also mentioned with a laugh that he was surprised that nobody in the staff stopped him. “Even as I was telling people, ‘This is how we’re doing this,’ I was thinking, ‘Okay, somebody is definitely going to call me out on this.’ But nobody did.”
Don’t Come To Japan To Make Anime, Says Japanese Animator (Kotaku, Brian Ashcroft)
Freelance artist Terumi Nishii lays out the continuing abysmal working conditions of the anime industry in tweet form.
Freelance character designer Terumi Nishii is a talent artist (see above) and has an impressive list of anime credits. She’s worked on Saint Seiya: Knights of the Zodiac and Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure: Diamond Is Unbreakable, among others. She has lots experience and some frank advice.
Via Game New Flash, here is some real talk for those dreaming of moving to Japan and making anime.
Japan Will Enthrone a New Emperor. His Wife Won’t Be Allowed to Watch. (The Asahi Shimbun, Motoko Rich)
Women are barred from being considered for emperor, and cannot even watch the succession ceremony.
“The idea that succession is limited to males is a modern invention,” said Kathryn Tanaka, an associate professor of cultural and historical studies at Otemae University in Nishinomiya, Japan. She added, “This is not about ‘tradition,’ but rather reflects specific political and patriarchal world views.”
The Japanese stipulation that the throne must pass through the male line dates back only to the Meiji era in the 19th century. Japanese myth traces the emperor’s lineage back 2,700 years, and in the 125 generations of recorded monarchs, eight women were allowed to rule as empresses when no adult men were eligible at the time.
Public opinion also strongly favors allowing women to sit on the throne. In a poll conducted by The Asahi Shimbun, Japan’s second largest daily newspaper, more than three-quarters of those surveyed said they would support a female emperor.
Bullying of Kurdish students at Kawaguchi schools a growing problem (The Mainichi, Tetsuo Tokizawa)
Kawaguchi is home to the largest Kurdish population in Japan; many Kurdish students are so badly affected they have begun avoiding school.
Currently stateless, many of the Kurdish people living in Japan are of Turkish nationality. Of the around 2,000 living in the country, about 1,500 reside in Kawaguchi, Saitama Prefecture, north of Tokyo, and its surroundings. Over 300 of those are of junior high school age and under, with schools and locals called upon to address their difficulties in the area.
A Kurdish girl, 12, at an elementary school in the northwestern part of the city was bullied to the point that she stopped attending classes and chose a junior high school in a different area after graduating.
According to a local support group, students subjected her to maltreatment including an incident last year when classmates locked her in a school toilet. In another case this year she was knocked over by a boy while playing soccer during a P.E. class and kicked in the back in a classroom, which led her to stop attending school from February. Families of students who committed the acts offered apologies and money for medical treatment, but amid disagreements about the proposals a settlement was not reached.
Fan Event Culture in Indonesia: Findings and Insight from Greater Jakarta Area (The Indonesian Anime Times, Halimun Muhammad)
A snapshot of one facet of Indonesian fan culture in and around its capital city. The research, taken three years ago, covers a number of factors like venue, community, and transportation factors.
Next, cost of tickets is undeniably another contributing factor in deternining the choice of event to attend. From the survey I did, 79.5% of respondents said they were reluctant to come to an event if the ticket cost was quite expensive. About 20.5% others claimed that they had no problems with expensive ticket cost, and they would still come to the event. This is certainly closely related to the respondents’ economic background and plans for shopping at the event. Most of my respondents claimed to prefer to come to events with lower-priced tickets so that they could spare money to shop at the event. If the ticket cost is expensive, they might just come to the event to look around without shopping for either merchandise or food and drinks at the event.
In Jakarta alone, there is a lot of variety of ticket prices for popular culture events. They range from free admission at many school/campus/mall events to events which charge up to hundreds of thousands to millions of rupiah for tickets. Regarding this, 84.1% of my research respondents claimed to prefer to come to events with free admission. Some events with free admission which are often attended by respondents in my research include Ennichisai Blok M held in South Jakarta.
More South Koreans sue Japanese firms over wartime labor (The Japan Times)
54 individuals, those forced to work for Japanese companies during World War II or their family members, are seeking compensation.
The suits were filed at the district court in Gwangju. They follow a similar move earlier in April by 31 South Korean plaintiffs at a Seoul court against four Japanese companies, including Nippon Coke & Engineering, which was formerly Mitsui Mining Co.
The Gwangju court is likely to rule in favor of the plaintiffs, as the country’s courts have consistently ruled in favor of Korean plaintiffs since its top court in October ordered a Japanese company to compensate victims of forced labor during the war.
A Gwangju-based citizens group helping wartime laborers get compensation from Japanese companies solicited potential plaintiffs between March 25 and April 5, and processed paperwork for 537 cases, the lawyers said at a news conference in Gwangju on Monday.
“For the remaining people who could not participate this time, we plan to conduct thorough investigations for official proof of wartime labor” so there could be a second and third wave of suits, one of the lawyers said.
I WANT TO [㋐] BUT I DON’T WANT TO [B] — SARAZANMAI EPISODE 3 (Atelier Emily)
An analysis of the themes of desire versus love/connection in the series to date.
Enta Jinai shows more brotherly affection for Haruka in a few Episode 3 scenes than Kazuki has within the scope of the series. It’s also revealed that Haruka is disabled, and needs to use a wheelchair to get around. This adds fuel to the theory that something serious happened with both Haruka and Kazuki — most likely depicted in the opening sequence of the series premiere — and Kazuki is trying to make up for it by assuming the image of Sara and texting Haruka as Sara daily. Here, Kazuki gets the “desire” part of the equation, but he doesn’t understand that he truly needs to open up to receive the “love” part. His instant gratification from Haruka’s responses hints at how toxic this relationship could (or already has) become. He gives up everything to capture these lucky selfies as Sara, so he isn’t the one spending time with Haruka in the park. There’s an underlying sense of guilt in Kazuki’s actions, as if he feels responsible for whatever happened to Haruka and therefore is keeping himself at a large distance while indulging himself in a concurrent obsession in the name of making Haruka happy.
Calls for more gov’t action after redress law passed for forced sterilization victims (The Asahi Shimbun; Asako Kamihigashi, Yujiro Futamura, Ayuko Nomura, Hiroshi Endo)
The redress would grant 3.2 million yen to each victim (a little under $29,000), but many find that insufficient for the amount of damage done.
In western Japan’s Fukuoka Prefecture, there are no fewer than 364 individuals known to have undergone surgery under the eugenic protection law, but until now none have applied for state redress. The head of the secretariat to a legal team representing plaintiffs in the region praised the speedy resolution, but also criticized the government’s failure to make more victims aware they were affected by the law. “Even when they have records of the surgeries, if information about them hasn’t been passed to those who received the operations then the chances they won’t receive compensation are high.”
Hiroshi Sugita of Peer Support Mie, an incorporated nonprofit organization in Mie Prefecture, central Japan, wants more clarity. “The government’s responsibility on the issue should be put into writing.” He also queried the lump-sum amount offered by the government, saying that it shows “they have little respect for the rights of those affected.”
“Even with the relief measures, it won’t give me my life back. The government should do the right thing and apologize,” said a Miyagi Prefecture resident in her 70s at a press conference for claimants held in Tokyo after the announcement. Forced to accept surgery at age 16, for more than 20 years she has gone under the alias “Junko Iizuka” to fight the government for recognition of individuals sterilized by the state.
With spirits high, the LGBT community and supporters marks Tokyo’s 25th pride march (The Japan Times, Chisato Tanaka)
10,000 were part of the march and 180,000 took part in the festival overall, but not everyone feels safe to come out in their daily life.
However, for a 48-year-old gay man who attended the festival in Yoyogi Park, Japan is not yet at a place where he feels he can proudly express his sexuality.
“My company presents itself as a gender-open organization that supports LGBT communities, but I still cannot come out as a gay man in the office because I have heard so many of my colleagues say mocking things about gay people,” said Kazu — who would only provide his first name.
“It’s a similar situation for women who want to take maternity leave,” he explained. “Companies provide such a benefit, but if a mother uses it and then comes back to her office, she will not really be welcomed back by her colleagues.”
He said it’s a matter of introspection and people needing to change their attitudes about such minorities.
Thread: Short thread about transphobia in Nichome.
BONUS: Zombieland Saga is outselling Rising of the Shield Hero. So there’s a tiny bit of faith in humanity restored.
This one has prompted some good discussion. Nice work, AniFam.