Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Malicious Comment on Veoh

To Our Readers:

A couple of hours ago, a user posted a link on one of our commercials that contained potentially harmful information and/or malware. Luckily, I caught it as soon as I could and disabled the comments for that particular commercial as Veoh's interface was once again not allowing me to delete comments. We are currently looking for a new place to host our videos and we are going to be reuploading them over the holiday season. For now though please bear with Veoh, there really isn't much else that we can do about it at this moment.

While we are doing our best to combat these spammers, we can't catch them instantaneously. Unfortunately our staff members cannot be around a computer 24/7 to catch these things as soon as it happens. As I have mentioned before, our comments policy states that users don't post links to their own sites when commenting on commercials. If you see a link on a comment on one of our commercials please let us know and we will get to it as soon as we can, but for your own safety please do not visit these sites as many may not likely be safe. We have done all we possibly could short of disabling comments for everyone, which is really unfair to the rest of you. We live in a Web 2.0 world and everyone has the right to interact in a safe environment. The Me and I have contacted Veoh about this several times about this problem and it seems that they are unwilling to do anything about it, so until we can find a new host and have the time to move all the videos over, the best we can do is tell you all to be careful.

Apologies for any inconveniences this may have caused,
Moon Chase! Staff.

News From The Other Side of The Pond #9

Keiko Kitagawa’s Movie Career is Booming!

Keiko Kitagawa (PGSM Sailor Mars) seems to be everywhere these days. Aside from her new success with the dramedy Mop Girl, she has two movies out this month, Southbound and Heat Island. Both films have gotten rave reviews, and have hailed Keiko’s performances as superb.

Southbound was released on October 6th and failed to do well in the theaters, but received glowing reviews from the press. This is based on an award winning novel by Hideo Okuda and is a heartwarming coming of age story. Junichiro Uehara, an activist, decides to relocate his family to rural Okinawa from the high-paced city life of Tokyo. The children have a hard time adjusting to their new life, and especially adjusting to personal changes in their father’s life. These include a mistress on the side. The mother plays a key role in bringing the family back together. Keiko Kitagawa plays Yoko Uehara, the oldest daughter in this family who is a graphics designer. Mika Nakashima sings the theme song, Eternal Poem.

Heat Island is about Shibuya’s underground fight clubs. Some fight as a way to support their families during tough times, or for their own survival. The underground is also responsible for running the casinos much like the Yakuza, after a robbery from a Latin American Mafia. Keiko plays Nao,the model girlfriend of gang leader Aki. Aki is the main character in this movie and definitely someone you do not want to mess with. Keiko enjoyed playing this underground "ghetto" character. We have heard rumors that this film is currently seeking worldwide distribution and we will keep you posted as soon as we hear more about it. The movie just came out last week and though the few reviews that have started to trickle in have been great, we are hoping that this movie will be a hit in Japan.

Keiko Han and Toru Furuya Appear at Namco Wonderpark Hero’s Base!

In Kanagawa Perfecture, just south of Tokyo, there is a giant arcade that Namco has opened known as the Wonderpark. Two weeks ago, there was a tournament for arcade players (coinciding with the first anniversary of their Hero’s Base part of the park), and three stars of various Gundam series came to the championship. Keiko Han (Luna in both anime and PGSM, Queen Beryl in the anime) and Toru Furuya (Tuxedo Kamen) were among them! Keiko played Lalah Sune in many of the series’ incarnations, and Toru is best known for playing Ray Amuro. Toru actually helped some of the players and played along, and from the pictures we have seen, it looked like he had fun! Afterwards they held a Q&A session with the players and talked about their experiences recording the series. They all agreed that it was fun, and they had very fond memories of it. They also said they would play these characters again if they were given the opportunity, as well as humoring the fans by asking them to keep them as their favorite Seiyuu because their work relies on it :).

Masaya Kikawada Continues to Ride On!

Masaya Kikawada (PGSM Motoki Furuhata) is currently on a Japan road tour in support of the new Kamen Rider Movie, Kamen Rider The Next which was just released on October 27th. We also got our paws on an interview he did a little over a week ago. He reveals that while the suit is tight and hard to move in, it makes him want to look his best just like the people who played the character before him - almost like straightening his tie and setting his hair. He feels hot when he puts on the suit! During his wire stunts, he admits that he was a bit of a baby, afraid and a little wimpy when he was first learning them, but after a lot of practice they became a second nature to him. He also agreed with the PG-12 rating because he thought some of the violence in the movie was too intense for television. He thinks that a true hero must not only be strong but also be humble and gentle. When he was younger he aspired to be just like Goku from DragonBall because he was not only good-looking but a hero that everyone could look up to - but he also wanted to be a responsible adult. The movie that precluded this, Kamen Rider the First, was released by Media Blasters’ Tokyo Shock division earlier this year, and we anticipate hearing news of this being released here in the future.

And Finally, For All You Hunter X Hunter Fans:


We came across yet another article that brings in a new theory for why Yoshihiro Togashi took his hiatus. This one cites discord with the editing department at Shonen Jump, and Togashi wanting to redo everything by himself. The editors might have put too much pressure on him in the beginning, and though Yoshihiro says he is ready to start drawing again, the writer of this article has his doubts. He finds this sudden need for perfectionism unusual. The writer also thinks that Yoshihiro didn’t want to write because his son is seven years old now and that he wanted to be a part of his happy childhood. *shrugs* We may never know all of the reasons why the hiatus happened, but it seems that while some writers in Japan have harsh words for Yoshihiro, they seem to forget that the manga is back now and that it will be finished. Isn’t that the most important thing of all?

Sunday, October 28, 2007

CBC's Geminis Update! (They Really Sucked)

Hey Moonies, sadly Maria Vacratsis and the rest of the cast from Showcase's Rent-a-Goalie didn't win the award for Best Ensemble Performance in a Comedy Program or Series. The award went to local favorite, Corner Gas. The show just made it's debut on WGN and for those of you south of the border who haven't seen it yet, you should definitely catch an episode or two. The show even has a connection to Sailor Moon, David Huband (Serena's Dad) played a kid's Dad in the Season 3 episode, Men in Trees.

We need to step aside for a second and comment on the awards show itself. While it definitely turned Regina's humdrum Conexus Arts Centre theatre into something wonderful, this was one of the poorest structured awards shows we have ever seen. We're not sure whose brilliant decision it was to cram 10 awards into a 1 hour show, especially when it was complete with skits for entertainment. The winners weren't even allowed to make speeches, instead a co-host met up with the winners on stage, asked them a question, and then they left the stage. CBC we know you were trying to make the awards more hip to attract more viewers, but come on. Some things should have been censored - even if a fifth grader giving the host the finger was done in jest. Some of the jokes were also a little crude, and the hap-hazardness and rushing after half an hour quickly sent the show down the hill. Some awards were even awarded off-camera. This was supposed to be a celebration of an especially good year in Canadian Television, and it seemed anything but - sorry to offend any of you CBCers who could be reading this, but it's the truth. Or perhaps Regina should just be grateful that they got a new electronic billboard, new seats, and stage enhancements. We know Regina is capable of much more than this and we are truly disappointed with the production and handling of this event. We truly feel sorry for everything viewers and nominees had to experience tonight.

Mop Girl Episode #3 in a Nutshell!

Hey Moonies! In last week's episode of Mop Girl we saw Momoko (played by Keiko Kitagawa AKA PGSM Sailor Mars) have a nightmare in which she was stuck in a shrine with a pervy Kannushi who gave her a lot of money. We wanted to show you all this scene because of Keiko’s priceless reaction but we figured it was too mature even for our "For Older Readers Only" tag so we decided against it. Momoko had to clean up the scene where a Member of the Assembly had died of a mysterious fall. Sayuri Negishi was stuck in a whirlpool of corruption allegations regarding nursing homes and is especially under fire from another Member of the Assembly, Ruuhira Fuji. Momoko later connects two and two together and discovers that it was a pre-meditated homicide - Sayuri died of some sort of remote-controlled electrocution! Momoko does find a way to save Sayuri’s life, but not without getting embroiled in the complicated world of politics and blackmail. It turns out that another one of Sayuri’s friends, Kayo was also involved in planning and executing this homicide. Momoko leaves the scene happy she saved Sayuri’s life, but sad that she watched a friendship fall apart the way it did.

This week’s scene comes as her day is replaying over again , and she attempts to visit a shrine and blend in with some tourists so that she can catch Sayuri. We’re so used to seeing Keiko play fierce characters and to see her whine at the end of this is too funny for words!


Online Videos by Veoh.com

Saturday, October 27, 2007

New Miyuu Sawaii Commercial!

Hey Moonies - we came across this sighting of a brand new commercial with Miyuu Sawaii (PGSM Sailor Moon) and we almost didn't recognize her! She is promoting some kind of healthy Green Tea drink but yes that is her in the short wig! We were unable to find a copy of the commercial to include in our weekly commercial posts as of this writing, but we will link you to the one on the site (click the white arrow in a green circle on the left). You may need to upgrade your version of Windows Media Player to watch it.

More VA Sightings for October 2007!

Hey Moonies, The Negaforce is On A Roll!

To remind you all, Maria Vacratsis (Negaforce) has been nominated as part of the cast of Showcase’s Rent a Goalie in this year's Gemini Awards. She plays the politician Firstman, who is more of a hindrance than a help in the hit show. Maria was also seen playing a pawnshop owner in the recent action-thriller Shoot 'Em Up starring Clive Owen, Paul Giamatti, and Monica Bellucci. This one was about a former soldier who is thrown into a conspiracy when he offers to protect the child of a mother being targeted by a hitman. The winners for certain awards have already been announced, but this one is part of the big awards show taking place in Regina, Saskatchewan. The host of the event is popular Canadian TV personality George Stroumboulopoulos. The awards will be airing live from Regina, Saskatchewan this Sunday on CBC. Check you local listings - good luck Maria! The show starts it’s second season on Canada’s Showcase on Monday.


Lyon Smith Continues Sound Design!

Until this Tuesday, Lyon Smith’s (Sapphire) work can be heard during the Tarragon Theatre’s production of Generous. Generous is a comedy that asks the question "What happens when members of society not known for their generosity become overwhelmed with the desire to help?" This is reflected when the major political party loses a non-confidence vote. We have a feeling this is based on recent events in Canada’s Parliament. After this, Lyon barely gets a break before he has to get to work doing sound design for Theatre & Company’s production of A Christmas Story, which runs from December 6th - 23rd. This one is a stage adaptation based on the film of the same name from 1983. Both productions are in Toronto and we would love to hear from fans who attend either of them!


Finally, a Trailer for Alice Blue!

This sighting takes us all way back. The Death of Alice Blue: Part 1: the Bloodsucking Vampires of Advertising finally has a trailer out! Unfortunately, a revamped website and the trailer still hasn’t given any word of a release date for this movie. Barbara Radecki (Sailor Neptune, Serena’s Mom) plays Sherry, and Katie Griffin (Sailor Mars #1) plays the role of Katie. We seriously don’t know any more than that - it’s been four years since this movie has been on the Sailor Moon VA radar and there is still no word on a release date. And we’re not the only ones who are wondering where this movie is. We inquired to Michael Kulas (Katie Griffin’s husband) earlier this week and he also has no idea when this movie is out. We’re also sad that whoever put the trailer together didn’t use any of Michael’s music in it. We have a feeling the blonde with the shorter hair might be Barbara, but we watched it over and over and could not spot Katie in it at all. Considering this is supposed to be the first film of many, we have to wonder what’s going on to delay the release for this long and if/when the sequels will be shot.

Friday, October 26, 2007

New Thai Animated Film Has A Connection to Sailor Moon

An Unexpected One Too!

While everyone knows major companies like Disney, Fox, Miramax, et al. commit a good portion of their animation work to be done by countries overseas, you almost never hear of animated films from those countries in North America. As we were making our weekly news run this week, we came across a story from Thailand that caught our attention in more ways than one. In the interest of preserving this article as it looks like it will be taken down in a few days, we are going to paste it after this article. We're not going to clog up the front page, so if you'd like to read it, click the permalink or the link at the end of this article to read it.

The Life Of Buddha is a 100 minute animated film that stays true to the Tipitaka, the Holy Scriptures of Theravada Buddhism. The film shows the life of the Lord Buddha from His birth as Siddhartha Gautama, to enlightenment, to pilgrimages, and to his passing to nirvana. The film actually has some interesting history behind itself. It is produced by a Thai businesswoman named Wallapa Phimtong. It started out as a personal project for her in 2004. The film was constantly delayed due to funding issues, and Wallapa sold many of her assets including cars and her own home to finance this 108 million Baht (3.4 million USD) film. We've seen some stills and though the style is definitely distinct from Anime, we really think this traditional animated film is worth seeing. The film was made with the purpose of making this Legend more accessible to children. And since Buddhism's popularity is rising in the west, it will be dubbed into at least five languages. Moreover, this is a gift to the current reigning monarch King Bhumibol's 80th Birthday and will be released on the special day, December 5th.

What surprised us to read this was the fact that this is Thailand's second cel-shaded animated film EVER! The first one was 1979's The Adventure of Sudsakorn which was directed by Payut Ngaokrachang. Thailand had its first foray into computer animation with 2006's Khan Kluay and looks so incredibly cute!

And finally, the other shocking thing that we read was that an animator who had worked for many years on many Toei Productions such as Galaxy Express 999, Saint Seiya, and Sailor Moon worked on this movie and had the following to say about Thai animators. "Thai cartoonists and animators excel at such work and are among the first choices for foreign animation companies." This was something that we at least (and probably most of you) probably didn't know about as it's probably a known assumption that since all anime is animated in Japan, the animators are usually hired locally. All of Sailor Moon was inked and painted in Thailand, whereas all the directors, layout artists, and timers were in Japan.

This film is currently looking for a distribution deal in Los Angeles, and we will keep you posted once we hear news about it. Fans can watch a trailer here, but be warned. The 8mb WMV downloads at a snail's pace so you may have to wait a few hours before you can actually watch the trailer.


From the Bangkok Post - October 23rd, 2007:

'Life of the Buddha'

A new cartoon aims to adhere strictly to the Tipitaka while telling the story of Prince Siddhartha

PICHAYA SVASTI

At his birth, Prince Siddhartha was able to walk on magic lotus flowers. The prince grew up in a big, beautiful city, surrounded with luxuries. Married with one son, he started to question the meaning of life before fleeing the palace to find the ultimate truth.

During the moments leading to his enlightenment, the prince sat under a tree, facing an army of devils in various manifestations, attempting to seduce and distract him from his spiritual goals.

These scenes are from a new animation film, Life of the Buddha, to be screened across the country on December 5 to celebrate His Majesty the King's 80th birthday.

While certain scenes, such as walking on lotus flowers, may be questioned by modern minds, the animation project's president, Wallapa Pimtong, said the story is true to the Tipitaka and the Buddhist canon.

The cartoon runs for 100 minutes, and depicts the life of the Lord Buddha from his birth, ordination, enlightenment and pilgrimages to his passing to nirvana. It will be dubbed into at least five languages - English, Mandarin, Korean, Japanese and German.

The 108 million baht project, mostly funded by Wallapa's Media Standard Company, was started in late 2003 by the firm and the Dharma Cartoon Group, with advice from Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya University.

According to Wallapa, the only sponsorship the project has received is in the form of public relations support from six state agencies and financial support to the tune of five million baht from the Young Buddhists' Association of Thailand. The company is also hoping the film will be broadcast as a series on Channel 7.

Hoping to distribute the cartoon in the West, where interest in Buddhism is on the rise, Wallapa said they were seeking a distribution deal in Los Angeles.

The project, she said, had its fair share of obstacles. After almost two years in pre-production, for example, the team had to revise the screenplay when it was found that certain segments were not true to the Tipitaka.

For example, the old script said that Mara dwells in a cave, but Mara is described in the Tipitaka as living in the top level of heaven, called Poranimmittavatsavati.

To prevent similar mistakes, the whole script has been reviewed by experts at Mahachulalongkorn- rajavidyalaya University, said Wallapa.

According to her, this is Thailand's first full-length animated movie since Sudsakorn, produced by Payut Ngao-krajang in 1979. The team making the movie consisted of some 50 to 60 cartoonists and animators, many with over 10 years of experience in Hollywood and foreign animation companies.

Anusorn Rodsook, an experienced animator who had been part of Toei Animation's production of Galaxy Express, Saint Seiya and Sailor Moon, said Thai cartoonists and animators excel at such work and are among the first choices for foreign animation companies.

Wallapa added that difficulties for this production involved not only the creation of characters, scenes and movements, but also the need to ensure the reliability of geographical facts that required analysis of every scene by experts.

Fortunately, there was no need for the production team to survey locations in India and Nepal themselves - they could check photos, provided by Wallapa, who studied at Magadh University, India.

"The entire movie consists of over one million drawings. Each minute on the screen took months of production. There was a lot to do, from scriptwriting, storyboarding, layouts, characterisation and background animation to computerisation," she said.

To ensure the contents were correct, a special committee of experts and monks, appointed by Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya University president Phra Dhammakosajarn, held monthly meetings.

"The monks, especially committee chairman Phra Sudhivoryarn and deputy chairman Phra Srithawatmaythee, would check everything, from the screenplay to characters and movements. Everything had to be approved by them," Wallapa recalled.

According to her, the screenplay, written by Ampira Wongdhamma, begins when a deity is born as the prince who will become the Lord Buddha.

It also depicts miracles described in the Tipitaka. Audiences, she said, will be treated to dazzling scenes of miracles, such as when the Three Worlds reveal themselves when the Lord Buddha descends from heaven to visit his mother, Queen Sirimahamaya.

In this film, the Lord Buddha's sayings are direct quotes from the Buddhist canon while conversations have been simplified.

To make it easier for children to understand the Lord Buddha's battles with the Devil (evils and lusts) in his mind, Mara is portrayed in this film as a frightening character.

Fun scenes have been included after serious scenes to give younger viewers a break. One example is the Indian-style dancing scene, where Sujata and other women are preparing a special meal (called Khao Mathupayas) for the Lord Buddha, before his enlightenment.

One of the themes in the movie is the law of karma. For example, Phra Devadatta, a Buddhist monk who had plotted to disunite the Sangha community and kill the Lord Buddha several times, finally dies.

This law is inevitable even for arahants, or enlightened ones. For example, Phra Moggallana, one of the Lord Buddha's closest disciples, faces a violent death despite his arahantship because he had killed his parents in a previous life.

"Although every detail is according to the Tipitaka, the characters are portrayed as human, with joys, disappointments and sorrows," Wallapa said.

For director Assoc Prof Dr Krismant Whattananarong, this is a great challenge.

For example, portraying Phra Moggallana as strong and muscular, and Phra Sariputra as physically weak, does not come out thin air. It comes from the Buddhist canon.

The banks of the Anoma River, where Prince Siddhartha left the secular world, is also a white sandy beach, not rocky. The tree under which the Lord Buddha lay before passing to parinirvana, is tall and slim, not full of branches and leaves.

"We are confident that every detail is true to the Tipitaka. So, teachers can use this animation as a teaching tool," he said.

One of the people waiting anxiously for the completion of this animation is Phra Sudhivoryarn, chairman of the content review committee. "It will certainly help make the Lord Buddha's life more accessible to children," he said.

Those wishing to support this film may donate 1,500 baht to buy a copy of a book entitled 'The Making of the Life of Buddha' for a needy school of their choice. The book is illustrated with scenes from the cartoon as well as providing readers with cartoon drawing techniques. For more information, call 02-556-1366/7 or email wallapa28@ yahoo.com.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Junichi Sato Didn't Talk About Sailor Moon :(

We were unable to get our own copy of the Anime Giga episode we told you all about last night. But we were able to watch it thanks to the user Iris4d so we bit the bullet and watched it using Veoh's horrible TV client. There was one small mention of Sailor Moon in the beginning when they were introducing his creds, but other than that it seemed like they talked about every anime that he had ever worked on except for Sailor Moon. The series was huge in Japan and did influence a lot of series after it and we really questioned this decision. They profiled anime that he has worked on such as Sargent Keroro, Ojamajo Doremi, and Kaleido Star, and he cooked for the hosts of the show. If you want to watch it , click here. Unfortunately Veoh has imposed a five minute limit on their streamed videos, but if you want to watch it all you're pretty much forced to download the client. We really don't recommend fans go to such lengths to watch this unless they are hardcore Junichi Sato fans. While it was good to hear his thoughts on his works of paths, we honestly thought the show could have been a lot better.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

News Tidbits From the Other Side of the Pond!


☼ Junichi Sato (Director of the first two seasons) is going to appear on Anime Giga later today in Japan. Anime Giga is a monthly TV program which features important personalities from the anime industry and they are interviewed. Junichi is best known for his work on several children's series, not just Sailor Moon! He has worked on series like Sargent Keroro, and Ojamajo Doremi. He is currently at work on the next installment of the Evangelion Movie Series, Evangelion 2,0. We are currently working on getting a clip for this episode, at the very least we will link you where you can watch it as soon as we can.


JAniCA is the newly created union for animators in Japan. Kazuko Tadano was one of the animators who worked on the first two seasons, the R Movie, and Make Up! Sailor Senshi!.Kazuko was one of the founding members of this union, and they held an inaugural meeting on the 13th. The animators in attendance all signed a flag, which you can see at the link above. How many characters can you name?

Industry Bits and Convention Appearance!

This is update night, and since there’s a lot to get to we’re going to keep things short! So a while ago, Toei’s Animated Cartoon * Comic service won an award at MIPCOM , an audiovisual media content market in Cannes. This service is unique, though a mobile subscription service, subscribers get sent a comic from one of Toei’s famous titles with comic bubbles over the characters head to tell the story of those episodic moments! For fans who were wondering, yes Sailor Moon is included!

Toei has just begun a promotion for the brand new Pretty Cure movie, as well as season 5 of the show. They are giving away 50 free parent-and-child movie passes, and they have also just added the last season, Splash Star, to their Ani BB service. Splash Star has a lot of connections to Sailor Moon, and even some Sailor Sightings have appeared in the past! They are: Kappei Yamaguchi (PGSM Artemis) as Floppy , Isshin Chiba (Kitakata - SS 137) as Currihan, Keiichi Nanba (Alan, Umino) as Moreunba, Mika Doi (Queen Serenity) as Saori Hyuga, Taeko Kawata (Momoko Momohara) as Princess Filia, Toshiyuki Morikawa (Yuu Kazama - S 115) , Yoko Soumi (PGSM Book Narrator - Ep. 5) as Asuka Suzuki, and Yuriko Fuchizaki (Cyprine) as Michiru Kiryu.

And today Anime News Network reported that Japan issued a formal statement of requests to the United States on regulatory reform and market competition a few days ago. They ask the government in "response to the network digitalization, the popularization of the Internet, advances in digital technology caused by the problem of copyright infringement,"to help them stop the illegal reproduction and distribution of anime online through peer-to-peer networks and video sharing sites. The Japanese Government finds the paths to litigation of these things too cumbersome and expensive, and they can’t keep up with all of them. In recent months we have noticed that most of the major studios now have anonymous forms that users can submit links to potentially infringing websites in an effort to make it easier for the studios.

And, this leaves Sailor Moon in a kind of odd situation. The series is popular, but we don’t think that everyone that would have liked to have owned a piece of it does. Secondly, it’s no longer easily available on DVD and we know of a lot of fans’ projects to upload the episodes onto video sharing sites or by other means to keep this series alive. It’s not licensed anywhere outside of Japan either, so it’s a gray area really. Aside from that though, we believe that fansubs are a good measure of what is popular with anime these days - and is probably a good indicator for distributors around the world to use when they are licensing series. Without it, you might think twice about picking up a DVD you might see at a store without having much exposure to it. We really admire sites like AnimeSuki which keep track of what’s been licensed and what hasn’t and that they step up to the plate to remove the links once a series has been picked up. A more realistic policy might be to stop (a little harder) the distribution of licensed series, which would mean that both Japan and the United States would have to be on the ball about these things. Popular video streaming sites that are Japan-exclusive, such as Nico Nico Douga, have a large amount of anime episodes that are streamed. We’ve even seen a few episodes of various dubs of Sailor Moon pop up on there. We do understand their concerns, because people in Japan have lots of different ways to obtain their anime and they really shouldn’t be streaming. We have a feeling that this is the real reason why they are asking for cooperation to control anime online.

And on a happier note, Anza Oyama(Sailor Moon in many Sera Myu Musicals) will be performing a concert with her Japanese Nu-Metal band Head Phones President at the 4th Annual Pacific Media Expo! The event is being held at the Hilton Los Angeles Airport and is America’s first major trade show dedicated to Asian-Pacific popular culture and entertainment media. If any fans are planning to attend this we would love to hear from you! The festival takes place from November 9th-11th.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Robot Chicken Strikes Again!

Hey Moonies, I'm sure you all remember the last time Robot Chicken did a Sailor Moon parody back in season 1 (If not, you can read about it in this post.) The latest episode contains another throwback to season 1. In the same vein as the sketch starring Michael Moore reporting on the whereabouts of action figures such as the Thundercats, He-man and Cobra Command from GI-Joe; this sketch sees the return of Michael Moore reporting on dolls from the same era. Jem, Rainbow Brite, Strawberry Shortcake and yes, Sailor Moon! Her time in the spotlight is much shorter this time around, but it is still nice to see her included in such a group of American cartoons.

Due to the nature of the sketch, it should only be viewed by our older readers.


Sunday, October 21, 2007

Breaking News: Keiko Kitagawa in New Drama!

Hey Moonies! We’ve been so busy behind the scenes that we almost completely missed this one that we became aware about only a few days ago, completely by accident. We heard of an interesting Japanese TV show called Mop Girl and thought "instant hilarity!”" But later, we learned that it is not about a genki girl’s misadventures with a magical mop, and it most certainly isn’t the lighthearted comedy we expected. Now can you all see why we need another writer ;) ? It’s hard chasing everything all the actors are up to!
‹ end shameless plug and terrible pun ›

Now that we’ve gone off tangent, back to the headline! Keiko Kitagawa (PGSM Sailor Mars) is now playing the role of funeral servicewoman Momoko Hasegawa, who has special powers. If she touches something that was connected to a dead person with unfinished business, she will travel back in time to save that person from their dismal fate. Momoko is one of the lower ranked employees of the Little Angels company , and carries a mop as part of her job cleaning up these scenes. Sound familiar all of you Tru Calling fans? Let’s hope that this one doesn’t end abruptly with a cliffhanger. Yes, some of us are STILL wondering what would have transpired between Tru and Jack. Maybe there’s someone more considerate than Gail Berman calling the shots! Mop Girl is based on the popular novel series of the same name by Miaki Kato

We’ve gotten the chance to see the first two episodes, as well as a special promoting the show where they interviewed the cast and showed a few previews. We’ve uploaded a few clips of it.

Online Videos by Veoh.com
Keiko Interview Part 1.
Keiko Interview Part 2.
Introduction to the show's plot.

The first episode begins with Momoko as a child, who crosses the street in the rain under a large umbrella. She doesn’t see a motorcycle zooming up towards her, and her mother pushes her out of the way, saving her life. As her mother is dying, she holds Momoko’s hand, and Momoko feels something surge through her, though she doesn’t quite know what it is. 12 years later, Momoko is working as a wedding planner, and she is waiting in a corridor with a wedding cake about to be presented. A maid carrying a large stack of towels drops them behind Momoko, and she helps her to pick them up. As she is standing up, the maid bumps into her, and pushes Momoko face first into the cake! The doors open, and there is Momoko, an embarrassed mess of icing and cake decor. As she comiserates by a bridge, she meets a handsome guy who wants her to take a picture of him and his girlfriend. She spends the rest of the night drinking at a bar with some friends, and prepares for work in the morning. Momoko finds out she has been fired from her job, since she has had quite a history of these accidents. Her boss suggests that she works for a funeral planning and services company, Little Angels. As she is making her way there, elsewhere in the city a man robs a bank, and is shot to death as he is running by police. Momoko first job is to clean up the blood stains from this, and it is then that she comes into contact with something that was connected to the robber. At the morgue, she sees the robber’s body, and later holds a picture of the robber’s family. It is then that something strange happens to her, and her day rewinds to the morning and she spends the rest of this episode trying to find the robber and save his life. We’re not going to spoil why the robber’s life was spared, but we’ll tell you all this show is a lot deeper than it looks. In the second one, she saves a model at a bridal show from eating poisoned chocolate given to her from one of her assistants. We’ve got one clip from this episode where Momoko stamps several certificates in the wrong place.

Momoko's Morning (Episode 1)

Momoko's Mis-stamping (Episode 2)

This series is looking to be huge in Japan, and we wish Keiko the best of luck! This is her first ever starring role in a drama, and though she finds it a bit of a challenge compared to her DoCoMo 2.0 Commercials and Shorts, she isn’t afraid! Keiko can also be seen playing Nao in the movie Heat Island which just opened in theaters yesterday. This movie is about gangs fighting over money in Shibuya. For those of you who enjoyed the theme song of Mop Girl, the name of the song is Destination Nowhere and it’s sung by Erika. Fans may also be interested to know that DoCoMo is one of the show's sponsors!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Commercials Corner #17

Sentai, Columbo and lots of food!

Although this will be the second time I've posted commercials, it's the first time for me as the official commercial guy. So, I bring you Japanese commercials, The Me style! (Any similarity to the original style is purely coincidental.)

Picks of the Week:

My first pick is the new DoCoMo commercial. This Sentai daydream goes horribly, comedically wrong.

Online Videos by Veoh.com

Next up is an oldie, Columbo on DVD!

Online Videos by Veoh.com

Finally, a pair of commercials for Roots coffee drink. This would be embarrassing to do in front of a prospective employer:

Online Videos by Veoh.com
But, it looks like he got the job, however unqualified.

Online Videos by Veoh.com

And now for the rest!
The BMB Pandas go to the movies, sort of.
Trailer for Good Shepherd!
Choushoku Yogurt and a very sleepy girl!
Epson Printer Speed Run!
Sony Ericsson and some odd fashion statements!
Colgen IB, cold, cough and headache relief with a side of caffeine!
Air Arrange hairspray!
Häagen-Dazs! :3
Clorets XP!
Lotte Spash gum! (I'm not missing the 'l', they are. :P)
Schick Quattro 4 Titanium!
Hey ANA!
Rohto wants to protect your skin!
Bike is life!
Cakonal 2!
E2 Sports Network!
Asahi Kasei Engineers!
Gatsby Moving Rubber!
J-Hair!
JP Bank Farming!
Lux Shampoo!
Menard Beauty Products!
Pocky Ninjas!
Indestructible Panahome!
PASCO Restaurant!
Pirate Pachinko!
Japanese Rimmel Commercial!
Seaman 2!
More Rohto Skincare!
Shinsen!
Shirokirin!
SoyJoy Snack Bar!
Suntory Cocktail!
A couple of home products!
Toyota Mark-X and T-Up!
Halloween themed Toyota Netz Commercial!
West Side Story!

Friday, October 19, 2007

A Few Quick, Yet Interesting Sailor Moon News References!

Sometimes, we run across small references in news stories that are best described in one sentence. And though in the past we've stretched these references and done full posts on them, it's a little time consuming, especially if the reader is going to go ahead and read the article anyway. So, we're going to post these stories in a different format and try this out for a few weeks. This is only going to be done for articles in English - but those in Japanese (or if in rare instances, French), will be summarized and/or translated. If our readers have any suggestions or comments about this new format, please let us know by sending us an email - our address is posted at the bottom of this page.

Without Further Ado...

In Prince George, British Columbia ,Rebecca Conway, an independent artist and entrepreneur of Blue Hair Manga cited Sailor Moon as one of her top influences!
This blog has a commentary on the evolution of Mixx to Tokyopop and argues that Tokyopop tends to forget it's roots in Mixx.
This Analytical Essay looks at the recent rise of Japanese Cartoon characters, and asks the question "who deserves the credit?"
A woman soccer player in Kentucky has been given a nickname just because she loves Sailor Moon!
Some fans at a college campus cosplay year round - even if there isn't a con! Their costumes are part of their regular wardrobe!
☼While we're talking about cosplay, check out these qualifiers from Germany for the 2008 World Cosplay Summit in Japan!
And behold this new fashion trend. Wearing brightly colored makeup that is influenced by Sailor Moon is in this season! We'd still rather wear Versach though (yes, Versach, not Versace).

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Staff Shuffling, and Looking for Writers!

Hey everyone, things are getting very busy these days around Moon Chase and it's getting tougher week after week to keep up with everything - especially considering the big newsbreakers of recent. So The Me is going to be taking over the commercials, and the best part is he will be doing them weekly :). Inevitably, this will mean I will have more time to work on written articles and occasionally the eBay sightings will start to appear again.

We are still looking for one or two more freelance writers, and weeks ago we said that we were going to make a formal announcement, so here it is. The commitment wouldn't be huge, no more than two articles per week at most. The only thing that we do require is that you do know something about Sailor Moon, you have seen most of the series and the movies (in both Japanese and English), and you are a little aware of the stars and culture. You should also be over 17. If you are considering a major in English or Journalism, freelancing is a great way to build sample pieces for a portfolio and looks good when you are applying for a job. And plus, we've got exclusives that you won't find anywhere else. And there are always interesting opportunities to learn about the industry. If you know a little bit of html and/or know how to work with graphics, that would be an asset as some of your entries may need formatting. You do not need to know Japanese, but if you do it would put you at an advantage as we only have one translator and sometimes it takes time to get a news article translated. There's no monetary benefit. However, the biggest benefit of all is reaching Sailor Moon fans in all corners of the globe to bring them news largely unreported anywhere else!

If you are interested, please send us two, short, sample pieces of writing (no more than 100 words each). At least one sample should be of relevance to Sailor Moon fans, and we'll leave this open to you. You can report on the performance of a VA you might have seen in another production, a piece on culture and Sailor Moon, or recent happenings in the anime industry that relate to Sailor Moon (such as Toei's expansion of their popular AniBB service or the recent downfall of Geneon). You may write your own piece based on something that we have reported if you are stuck for ideas. The second piece can be about whatever you would like to write about. The samples do not need to have graphics. Please be clear and concise in your samples, and should you discuss politics, try to stay as neutral as possible. There will be up to two positions available, so please send us your samples and a little about yourself to moonchasers@NOSPAMPLZKTHXgmail.com.

Now we do report on sightings that are relevant to the Japanese and English versions, however we have noticed quite an increase of readers from other regions in the past few months. They come from places like South Korea, Italy, Germany, and various places in South America. We always welcome guest articles if you have a sighting that you would like to report. For example, if you spotted the Italian voice actress of Sailor Moon in a movie recently, and you feel that you need to share the news, don't be afraid to write us up a small blurb, because chances are there are a lot more fans of that actress!

There's no deadline, but we'd like to have at least one before December. We look forward to hearing from you soon!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Sailor Moon Culture Bits in the News

There's been a few stories this week with a few neat cultural mentions of Sailor Moon. The first comes from a blog on Progressive U about a girl who immigrated to the US from Vietnam, and she shares her experiences on trying to get the first Sailor Moon comic as a child. The second comes from a store in Victoria, BC who rents out Sailor Moon costumes? We'd love to see a picture of what these costumes look like so if anyone lives in the Victoria area and is planning on renting a Sailor Moon costume from this place, please let us know! The third is about cosplay but we learned of a new phrase, "Closet Moonie". A fan of Sailor Moon who is unable to express their love for the show. We don't think otaku should be ashamed of any anime that they like - are we going to have to organize some kind of "Moonie Pride" Day? And lastly, (and a special dedication to all my astronomy buddies out there) Japan's Moon Probe Kaguya has begun it's research survey of the Moon. It was formerly known as SELENE. Kaguya is named after a famous Moon Princess of Japanese Folklore, and there are shades of this tale in Sailor Moon. Moreover, Kaguya was used extensively as a theme in the S-Movie. It's interesting that you can connect Sailor Moon to almost anything these days!

Friday, October 12, 2007

VA Updates for October 2007!

Naz Edwards Appears in The Clean House!

Naz Edwards (Queen Beryl) has been quite busy in the theater circuit of Ann Arbor, Michigan these days. She currently plays the riveting role of Ana , a 60 year old woman who is stricken by cancer in The Clean House. It's a play about a dirty house which is meticulously cleaned. This represents more than just disorganization, but the mess that is the lives of each of the characters in the play. Sara Ruhl's hit play is also a mess in the roller coaster of emotions in the play which show that life's happenings are never consistent in nature. It's received rave reviews from the local play critics! The play runs at the Performance Network until October 21st, and fans who plan to catch this play, we would love to hear from you!

Kevin Lund Writes For New Film Based on Free-Running!

This is turning out to be a very big year for Kevin Lund (Neflite). Earlier we broke news that he had started a new career as a writer for film and television, most notably the new Rambo movie John Rambo. We have just learned that his pitch has been given a greenlight from New Line Pictures. Tentatively titled Parkour, the film is a drama about a New York city cop who goes undercover to investigate an illegal parkour (or free-running) ring. He wants to stop the gang of thieves who use their artistic skills for evil rather than good. It will be produced by Marty Bowen and Wyck Godfrey , who also bought The Nativity Story to theaters last Christmas. The movie will star Channing Tatum, and some of our readers may recognize that name from the Amanda Bynes film She's the Man.

Katie Griffin Joins Cast of Bakugan!

Katie Griffin (Sailor Mars #1) seems to almost be back to the grind of cartoon voices after having her first child, her son Jett, this year. In addition to appearing in the new seasons of Team Galaxy as Koko and Totally Spies as Alex, she now plays Julie in the latest hit among the kid generation, Bakugan Battle Brawlers. She is joining many other former stars of Sailor Moon on this action anime. Fans can watch clips of the English dub at the official site here.

Emilie-Claire Barlow is Going to Japan!

Three days ago, Emilie-Claire Barlow (Sailor Mars#2, Sailor Venus #2) announced that she would be spending Christmas in Tokyo this year, as she is going to be playing for three nights at the Cotton Club. The club in Japan caters specifically to showcasing influential foreign jazz talent, and is a likeness of the famous club of 1920's New York. Guests there enjoy an elegant and serene interior, exceptional hospitality, and a menu with a wide variety of delicacies. This is a relatively new club having opened on November 22nd, 2005. The Club has given a very impressive introduction to her Special Christmas Nights performances."A new, female, professional singer from Canada, the same country which gave the world Diana Krall. Christmas Eve is elegantly colored by the singing voice within which gentleness overflows." This is coinciding with the Japanese release of Winter Wonderland on November 7th. We reviewed this wonderful album earlier this year. It is already available in North America through iTunes, Snocap, and HMV. She sounds excited to be going to Japan and as far as we can tell, she will be the second VA to travel to Japan. The first one that we know of is Stephanie Beard, who traveled there in 2001. Some of her visit was televised on YTV. Tickets cost between $170-$197 and include a Christmas dinner and a glass of Dom Perignon Champagne. They go on sale on October 20th.

For Our Readers Looking For Things to Do...

We'll have a few stories in the next couple days for you, but if you get bored, go try a link under our Points of Interest sidebar on the right side of this page. We've posted links from supporters of Moon Chase! and other neat sites on the internet that we think you'd all enjoy. If you are looking for a quick casual game to kill a few moments, we suggest you go try Game Socks - run by a longtime friend of one of our staff members. TV in Japan has also been a key supporter of media we post on Veoh, but they have a lot of clips from Japanese Television that we don't have the means of bringing to you!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Commercials Corner #16!

They Return With a Vengeance!

Despite our problems with Veoh, we are going to continue to bring these to you as much as we can. To our fans still having problems viewing the videos, please bear with us until the end of the year, that's when we plan to do a massive overhaul and find a new video streaming site. Again, if you see any problems we haven't addressed before, please let us know by sending us an email at moonchasers@NOSPAMPLZKTHXgmail.com.

Picks of the Week:

Shoko Nakagawa is co-host of a new show in Japan, Cinderella's Holiday. It's basically a travel show where the "bullet traveler" goes to see different companies. The show began last Saturday, and the first place they traveled to was France. You'll see her at the end of this commercial.

Online Videos by Veoh.com

And who knew chocolate and potatoes could make such an appetizing snack?

Online Videos by Veoh.com

This guy's karaoke is worthy of a Grammy (*sarcasm*). Apparently men like listening to sappy love songs too in Japan!

Online Videos by Veoh.com


And lastly, this wins the award for cutest commercial this week!

Online Videos by Veoh.com.

And now for the rest!
AU 1/2 Price Cell Phone Plans!
Canada Dry Commercial!
Kitchen Magic Clean!
Contact Lens Solution!
Daikin wants to be Environmentally Friendly!
Docomo Phones on Sale!
Doraemon for Nexco!
Double Header of Honda Commercials!
☼ Dydo Dynamic Coffee 1 + 2.
Shinoha Life!
Fabric Softener Commercial!
Pachinko Commercial!
Collagen Elastin Drink!
Amacha Green Tea!
Cute Housing Commercial!
Inside the Kingdom Movie Trailer!
Another KFC Commercial!
Listerine!
Lucido Style-Up Foam!
Ebi-O-Filet!
Minaqua!
Archaic Sealed Heat for Nintendo DS!
Lipton Chiffon featuring Namie Amuro!
Suntory Natchan Raspberry Soda!
Nikon Coolpix!
Nissin Donbei!
Kaunet Office Supplies!
Oronamin-C with Jackie Chan!
Parco Sale!
Kikkoman Pork Ramen!
Pringles Gourmet!
Weider Power Bar!
Saison Card!
Schoolgirls heart Pocky!
Secom!
Senko Logistics!
Shiho X Human!
Silver PSP!
Another Sobagen Pachinko Commercial!
New Softbank Commercial!
Sony Cybershot!
Spooky Tokyo Disney Halloween!
Boyband Ramen Commercial!
Trailer for War/Rogue Assassin!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

News From The Other Side Of The Pond #8!

Megumi Ogata Shares Her Love of Macs With Japan!


Broadband Watch is a website in Japan that caters to the technological crowd kind of like what CNET is to us. They are currently running a special where they are featuring 100 desktops of celebrities in Japan, and #38 comes from Megumi Ogata, who we all know as Sailor Uranus. Broadband Watch conducted an interview with her and here are the highlights! Megumi has been a loyal Mac user for 20 years, since the days of the Classic II (our older readers may remember those computers!). At home she uses the 17-inch model and she doesn't change her desktop frequently (pictured here, with a censored sticky). She does use the stickies on her Mac a lot though, from writing simple memos, to reminding her of passwords for sites she likes to use. Her husband 20 years ago was a programmer and that's how she got started on first the black and white Mac Classic II, and then moved on to the color model. Her first game was called Makigame and she played it when she wasn't doing housework, and remembers a screensaver with a flying toaster. Her private office uses a Windows Machine but she is happy that she can use Word and Excel on her Mac. She hates Internet Explorer and Netscape, but uses Safari on her Mac, and her only gripe with it is that it deletes her browsing history quickly. She uses Microsoft Entourage along with a memory stick for her email, and she is currently learning how to use Garage Band. We would have expected Toru Furuya to give this kind of interview as he is often seen at many tech events, and never expected to see Megumi Ogata for something like this! It's an interesting read, and fnas should definitely go check it out. She also likes to blog, and fans can read her blog here.

Mitsuishi Kotono Narrates Commercial for Popular Tour

We found a tiny mention of Mitsuishi Kotono (Sailor Moon) with regards to a tour. Mitsuhiro Oikawa is a current heartthrob in Japan, having appeared in many dramas and live action movies. Starting in December, he is going to tour Japan singing on his very own tour, Ichaicha: Cherie, Tu Es Moi (Honey, You Have Me). Kotono Mitsuishi is doing the narration for the TV spots advertising the tour, and she is also impressed by Mitsuhiro. The article also mentions that many of his fans call him "Chest-Kun" because he is often shirtless.


Paprika Wins Another Award!


In 1996, the Animation Kobe awards were created for the promotion of anime and other Japanese visual media. This year marked the 12th anniversary of the awards, and critically acclaimed director Satoshi Kon has another reason to smile as Paprika won the Feature Film Award! The interesting thing is that last year's winner(Mamoru Hosoda's The Girl Who Lept Through Time), was released just a few months ahead of Paprika, but both of these exceptional films were able to win this award because of a technicality in the rules. The Girl Who Lept Through Time was released in July of 2006, and Paprika that November. August was the cutoff date for the 2006 awards. This is Satoshi Kon's second win in this category, his film Millennium Actress won the same award in 2003. On November 12th, there will be an event showcasing the works of all the winners in Kobe, and other winners this year included one of Moon Chase's favorite directors, Isao Takahata, and one of this years hottest OVAs, Ghost in the Shell: S.A.C. Solid State Society.

Paprika will be coming out on DVD November 27th, so only a month and a bit before all our readers can finally see this film! On a side note, we'd really like to thank Mongrel Media for the terrible job they have done with the distribution of this movie in Canada. The movie spent most of it's summer run in a single theater in Toronto, and is now being shown for barely a few nights in theaters all over the country. Considering how popular this movie was among the critics and how it was hailed to be a hit, unfortunately the distributor thought it would be better to let the movie sit for a long time in one theater and skip across the country. Even Ghibli films don't get this kind of treatment. We know of several fans all over who were waiting in anticipation to see this movie on the big screen and have heard too many stories of disappointment, and that the United States did not experience these kinds of problems in most states.

Glass Rabbit Is Up For Grabs!

During the beginning of November, the American Film Market(AFM) is set to take place in Santa Monica, California. We told you not too long ago about The Glass Rabbit, which is currently making it's way through Canada through special features from the Japanese Consulate. The Glass Rabbit is now going to be included as part of the AFM, where companies showcase films in the hopes that they will be picked up for production and/or distribution. We're really hoping that it gets picked up - this movie did remind me a lot of the epicGrave of the Fireflies and it does hold potential to be a hit of close to that magnitude. We have since learned that this heartbreaking film is actually based on the real story of the author Toshiko Takagi. All of the performances were very good in this movie - especially of the young girl who played Toshiko, Rina Mogami. Taeko Kawata (Momoko Momohara) played the innocent role of Mitsuko, one of the younger sisters of the main characters. It was an exceptional film and we recommend fans go see this one if they can!

This film is making it's way across Eastern Canada, and we recommend fans keep checking these links below for information when these films will be playing near them. Side Note: They were all good, but Hotel Hibiscus was a little mediocre.

For Ottawa, click here.

For Toronto, click here or here.

For Montreal, click here.

Quick Sailor Moon Industry Tidbits

☼ Geneon sent a letter to all the members of their fan club , Geneon Spot. A copy of the official statement is here at ANN. In it, Geneon thanked fans over the last 20 years for their support, and that they are internally looking at options to continue distribution of Geneon titles. The good news is that some titles will finish production, however it is unknown if they will ever be released. A shop owner we spoke to recently had noted to us that Geneon didn't seem to have as many big titles as everyone else, but they did have a lot of hits for niche audiences. And it is those hits that are currently causing the freak-outs among Otaku, who are now going to great lengths to find them. We recommend checking out HMV stores if you are in Canada - we spotted a few Geneon titles going for the 2 for $20 or $30 deal in stores only. No word yet on what is going to happen to Geneon's music division or their current television agreements.

☼ We have read several reports on the internet that there was no mention of the rumored Sailor Moon video game for the Nintendo Wii at the Tokyo Game Show by Namco. Yesasia.com is still maintaining that the release will happen so we will wait and see. We are going to try to see if we can find out something that makes this rumor's validity a little concrete very soon. Though this one has remained on our backburner for a while now, we have not forgotten about it. There was a theory that since Yoshihiro Togashi had not put out anything new in a long time that the rumor might have been true as fans thought it was likely for Naoko to return to work. But given the news of the return of Hunter X Hunter, that theory doesn't look very likely to happen. However, given the recent success of Toei's AniBB service in Japan and a recent poll from Toei wondering what series they might like to see in North America, perhaps there is a light at the end of the tunnel as Sailor Moon was the top wanted series by a longshot. Toei would still have to work out an agreement with Naoko Takeuchi/PNP for international rights to distribution.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

On the Return of the Hunter x Hunter Manga...

Considering how huge this news is - the Hunter X Hunter manga is returning after quite a lengthy and mysterious hiatus - we were surprised to only encounter three articles. We expected to see a whole bunch of news outlets respond to this. But we're not that surprised considering when the petition broke none of the news media really cared. Two of them are about the manga's return and what fans can expect, but the one we were really surprised to read revealed a few hints for why the hiatus may have happened. It turns out Yoshihiro Togashi may not have been ill the whole time after all?! Fans may recall how when PGSM came to the airwaves, the manga was re-released and some frames were redrawn and all of the comics were rearranged differently. This article says that when Hunter X Hunter first came out , the art was often drawn very roughly and quickly and sometimes there were squiggles and ommisions and other cover-ups. Of course, this was widely criticized. So Yoshihiro decided to fix every imperfection in the manga, and this took time. The article also acknowledges and confirms that he was also ill , but not for how long. A lot of the comics had to be fixed, and it was getting to be too much to correct the comics and put out new material, so this is the reason why the hiatus was so long. The serialization resumed today, but a few days ago all of the previous volumes were re-released in their new and corrected form. At the end it makes a small mention of his marriage to Naoko Takeuchi in 1999 and of the collaboration that was published by Kodansha in 2005, Ooboomee and Chiboomee. Jay Navok has written a review of this here. Of course though the writer of this article couldn't be bothered to put in another small mention of what Naoko is up to for all us wondering fans all over the world! But we're not complaining.

The other article we found is here. This one talks about how long the manga was on hiatus for and talks a bit about volume 24, the "Chapter of Chimera Ants". Yoshihiro has also written a message to fans saying that he is well now in the book's introduction. He is happy that he has no more worries of his illness and that he is excited about the restart. There are a few pictures of the new volume in this article too. The third one comes from shady Japanese pop culture site New Akiba - and we warn readers that the ads on this site are definitely NSFW. This one reveals that the serialization in Jump vol.45 has 17 full color pages, and that the manga will be serialized for the next ten issues - leaving many fans wondering what is going to happen at the end. Yoshihiro said that he was troubled and anxious during the hiatus, and he gave thanks to everyone who waited in this issue. It also links to several blogs at the end of the article which show the the different changes just for all you die-hard fans of the series. From the blogs we have read so far, fans generally approve of the restart and the new manga. Viz currently holds the rights to the Hunter X Hunter manga, but as of this writing we do not know whether they will be releasing the new version of the manga, or any newer volumes.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Video Problems

Hey readers, Veoh recently changed their video length cap from ten minutes down to only five. As a result, some of the videos may not work properly. We're working to find a solution. Since Veoh has had problems off and on, we're asking that if any of our readers know of a stable video hosting site other than YouTube, Veoh or Google Video, that they send us an email at moonchasers@NOSPAMPLZKTHXgmail.com

Thanks for your patience yet again.

EDIT: Sailordees here everyone - the commercials and clips will also be on a hiatus as we are currently working on making a backup of everything this weekend. We've heard reports of fans not being able to watch anything on Veoh without downloading the Veoh TV client. The interface is terrible and it doesn't use bandwidth efficiently, and it has problems with loading some videos as well. We don't recommend getting it at all. Apologies to all our fans, we had no idea Veoh was going to turn out this bad.