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Friday, November 21, 2014

Interesting Japanese Photo

What's wrong with this picture?

No... there is nothing showing anything 'upskirt'. I'm no dirty old man. Or so I claim.

Anyhow, the girls are all wisely keeping their legs crossed or pressed together.

Skirts all seem to be of a regulation length - I have no idea, actually as my pleas to volunteer at the local high school were met with derision and catcalls by my Board of Education office that seemed to me to be overly protective of their assistant English teacher.

Well... perhaps it's the fact that these Japanese high school girls are all flashing the 'peace sign', or for
any of you older folks - the "Vee" for 'Victory over Japan' sign circa WWII.

The Japanese don't apparently know of the whole WWII thing, or if they do, they choose to ignore it.(owtch).

Naw - that's not it.

Could it be that some of the students are carrying plastic bags? No - nothing wrong with that... how about the fact that one of them clearly has two school bags? No... nothing wrong with that... I mean there is, but in this case - not really.

Look closer - not harder, because that might just be too gross for this blog.

I also love that there is no reaction in the far background... like it's no big deal to see something like this on a daily basis in Japan.

Kanpai,
Andrew Joseph

Slow As A Turtle Taxi Service

The taxi stopped with a jerk and I got out.

Have you ever got into a taxi - anywhere in the world - and you were sure that the driver was going slow on purpose to try and milk a few extra coins out of you?

It happens sometimes, but my very good friend Doug is a hack (a taxi driver now working alongside Uber in Toronto and a fellow writer) and I can tell you that there are people out there who will treat you fairly and honestly and will get you to the place on time - and safely without having to break any land speed records in the process.

The same is true in Japan.

The drivers there can be insane buggers who will break every known driving law to speedily get you to your destination, but despite getting into many cab in many a country I will say that without a doubt - car to car - Japanese taxis at least the ones I took were always spotlessly clean.

The cars there - and I'm talking 20 years ago, had automatic car door openers for you when you got in and had to get out. The fact that the door could also be automatically closed was a bonus.

As well, taxi drivers in japan all wore ultra white and clean gloves - which not only kept things clean for the next shift driver, but also shows the customer/fare that they put on white kid gloves to transport you…

Now lest you think that the driver never leaves the sanctity of his driver's seat, when they spot you with luggage, they hop out of the car and that automatic trunk opener goes to work as they lift your luggage in and out as required. White gloves very evidently at work.

The other thing that is cool about taxi rides in Japan is that that the driver does not expect or want a tip. There is no tipping for personal services in Japan.

You pay for a ride or a meal - and that's it.

Now, having placed the Japanese taxi driver up upon an ivory pedestal - just what the heck could I say next that would make it seem even better?

Well… as mentioned, some Japanese cab drivers can drive excessively quick, brake heavily, weave in and out of traffic and can sometimes provide the rider with a ride that can be quite hairy - it's probably a good thing I was hammered out of my gourd and horny with whatever woman I was with whenever I got into a cab in Japan - invariably in Tokyo or Osaka - the two big cities.

So… imagine my surprise when I learned about a Japanese taxi service that relishes in its leisurely pace in such a matter that it dares call itself tah-toe ta-ku-she.

Okay, that's the Japanese katakana phonetic pronunciation for Turtle Taxi, a Japanese taxi service that with a big green turtle logo on it actually has a button in the back seat area that a rider can press informing the driver to slow down.

Again, I'm not saying the Turtle Taxi drivers are driving too fast, but rather the 'turtle slow' button can be pushed if the rider really does wan to take their time before arriving at their destination.

Being a man and a man who has, in the past, driven excessively quick (though no swerving in and out of traffic - ever!), I have no idea why anyone would want to take a slow ride.

I like to get where I'm going so I can hate where I'm at.

But according to a wonderful article by writer Laura Secorun Palet in the on-line magazine OZY, a mother traveling with a sleeping child may not want a taxi ride to flush with sudden stops and starts - and neither would someone attempting to apply make-up to their unnaturally pale facial areas (I'm an ardent supporter of make-up minimalism - I don't want to be in the boudoir licking someone's face and tasting 'foundation').

For Turtle Taxi, the company likes that they can save fuel by driving slower.

Anyhow, read the OZY article: Turtle Taxi: Bye-Bye, Fast Lane: HERE

My only critique is the use of a comma in the headline… not a fan of stuff like that in a headline. The colon is fine. Always have your colon checked regularly.

If you are looking for a taxi in Japan, why not try Turtle Taxi. Website HERE.

Kanpai,
Andrew Joseph

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Cool Japanese White Van Kaido Racer

It can't be just me, but regardless of the fact that someone think the Japanese van pictured above is weird enough to be part of a 'Japan is weird' website - I think it's effing cool!

Obviously the person who thought it was weird has never seen a hot rod before.

The van is typically Japanese - white in color.

While it is slowly changing, one could pretty much look to a road anywhere in Japan and spot 95% of the vehicles as white.

I once asked a Japanese fellow who had a souped up car - jacked up rear, excessive dials inside and outside of the car, an under-body lighting system (back in 1990), and a chopped top with a powerful non-factory tuned engine: and he told me, while I sat in his white car with excessively large and loud speakers with a heavy base that made the high-pitched Japanese singer sound almost normal, that the Japanese believe the color white is a representation of 'purity', and the Japanese want to be 'pure'.

Sure. There's nothing wrong with looking pure in a hot rod.

Of course, the Japanese call these excessively altered body vehicles: Kaido… or Kaido Racer… which is cool enough seeing as how the Japanese word for 'road' is 'kaido', as in Tokaido, as an example.

So… a weird Japanese thing? Well… I've seen some Japanese kaido race cars - and yeah, they are effing weird-looking… but this one... this white van… it's like something out of Batman or maybe Metropolis (no, not Superman's city - the one in the 1927 movie!), with its dynamic sculpting. You know… like what the Chrysler Building looks like (my favorite building that LEGO needs to make a model of!).


Granted this white van is limited as to where it can travel. Unless those upper fins can be lowered, I'm thinking it might not make it under many a bridge.

It's also a wide vehicle, well, wide for those so-called goat paths that the Japanese call roads in rural Japan and in the inner city… but it looks cool enough to me to drive on the highways.

I bet it gets great mileage, too. Not.

One thing that isn't mentioned is just what the view is staring at the butt of the white van... does it resemble some sort of anime/manga character, or is it just a Japanese white van? 

I place the odds at 50:50 each way. It is Japan, after all.

Kanpai,
Andrew Joseph

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

2014 Suzuki All-Star Series: MLB Vs Samurai Japan

Perhaps it was "jet-lag" after all.


The MLB All-Stars are actually scheduled to play a total of seven games in Japan - it gets weird here.

1) Game 1 - or 1st Exhibition Game. On November 11, 2014, the MLB All-Star team played a joint team of Hanshin Tigers/Yomiuri Giants team - in an exhibition game at Hanshin Koshien Stadium - a game won 8-7 by the MLBers.

Hmmm… what happened to the jet-lag?

I should note that this game was also considered the Japanese Professional Baseball 80th Anniversary game. This game has no bearing on the 2014 Suzuki All-Star Series.

2) Game 2, or Game 1 of the 2014 Suzuki All-Star Series was played November 12, 2014 at Kyocera Dome Osaka, with the Japanese emerging victorious 2-0. This is the first game of the official 2014 Suzuki All-Star Series. Japan leads the series 1-0.

3) Game 3, or Game 2 of the 2014 Suzuki All-Star Series was played November 14, 2014 at Tokyo Dome, between the Samurai Japan and MLB All-Stars. Japan won 8-4. Japan leads the series 2-0.

4) Game 4, or Game 3 of the 2014 Suzuki All-Star Series was played November 15, 2014 at Tokyo Dome, between the Samurai Japan and MLB All-Stars. Japan won 4-0. It was a no-hitter for the Samurai Japan. Japan leads the series 3-0.

5) Game 5, or Game 4 of the 2014 Suzuki All-Star Series was played November 16, 2014 at Tokyo Dome, between the Samurai Japan and MLB All-Stars. MLB won 6-1. Japan leads the series 3-1.

6) Game 6, or Game 5 of the 2014 Suzuki All-Star Series was played November 18, 2014 at Tokyo Dome, between the Samurai Japan and MLB All-Stars. MLB won again! WTF Japan? MLB 3 - Japan 1. Japan leads the series 3-2.

7) Game 7, or 2nd Exhibition Game… to be played at Okinawa Cellular Stadium in Naha on November 20, 2014. It's still the Samurai Japan Japan versus MLB All-Stars… unlike that first exhibition game… but this one IS an exhibition. It does not count in the over all battle for the 2014 Suzuki All-Star Series… which, if you were keeping track, the MLB All-Stars have already lost… in fact… they lost it after the first three games of the series…

Sigh.

(L-R): Los Angeles Dodgers OF Yasiel Puig; Boston Red Sox (boo!) manager John Farrell, 2B Robinson Cano of the Seattle Mariners; and Mariners P Iwakuma Hisashi (surname first) took part in the 2014 Suzuki All-Star Series welcome party ceremony.
Hmmm...you can tell from the caption above that I seem to have some distaste for the Boston Red Sox. As a Toronto sports fan, perhaps it would help if you knew that I have a lot of distaste for all Boston teams (New England Patriots and Celtics and Bruins and Red Sox). You guys need to trade Babe Ruth again. And Bobby Orr.

Anyhow… the series did have some interesting rules: 28-man roster, Designated Hitter allowed; four umpires - two from MLB, to from NPB (Japan).

Pitcher use limitations:
A pitcher may not throw more than 80 pitches per game. However, if the pitcher exceeds the limits while facing a batter, he (or she) is able to complete the batter's plate appearance. If a pitcher throws more than 50 pitches, he (I know there's no she) must have four days of rest before being able to throw in another game. If a pitcher throws more than 30 pitches or throws for two consecutive games, he must have one day of rest before being able to throw in another game. This rule does not apply for the anniversary game or the exhibition game - and pitchers are available to blow their arms out as required.

Extra Innings: If the game is tied after the 10th inning, the game will go into a tiebreak in which the inning will begin with runners on first and second base.

Okay... this sounds cool....

The next batter up continuing from the previous inning shall bat and the two preceding batters from the previous inning will be on first and second. The game will end as a draw if both teams are tied after the 12th inning (the prize money will be halved). The anniversary game and exhibition game will not go into extra innings and end as a draw if tied after the 9th inning. That means it's nine-inning or bust for those two games.

Ball used: Rawlings Baseball - the same as the one used in the 2013 WBC. Leftovers? Or is it the same tattered ball?

The Rawlings baseballs are a safe bet... a far better choice than the Japanese balls - see HERE for an article on Japan's recent baseball scandal! And HERE for another! It's about baseBALLS! 

During the anniversary game on November 11, while the joint team of Hanshin Tigers/Yomiuri Giants are fielding, the official NPB ball was used. But apparently not while the Japanese were hitting. I'm unsure if that was just a misinterpretation of the original Japanese... perhaps this official NPB ball was used for the entire game.

Total prize money: ¥100-million (US$856,000 or domo arigato, Japan) - which is divided up as ¥50-million (US$428,000) to the winner of the series and ¥10 million (US$85,000) to the winner of each game between game 1 to game 5).

Ahhh… so it was worthwhile for MLB to have won the past two games. They got ¥20-million for their two wins. That's about $171,000 - when divided up between the 28 players - that's $6,1000 (¥712,756.90)
each - which pays for a night out with the prostitutes - plus sake! Good sake! - Oh yeah… we might have to divide that amongst the coaches… and maybe the umpires… do they get a cut? Nobody ever invites the bench coach out for booze and prostitutes.

Kidding. I'm sure everyone gets all the prostitutes they want.

Kidding.

Anyhow… the 2014 Suzuki All-Star Series marks the first time since 2006 that MLB players have played in Japan. It is also the 36th time a team of MLB players has toured Japan dating back to 1908. I'm pretty sure there aren't any of the original Japanese prostitutes left alive from that tour… but it is Japan where there are a lot of centurions.

Sorry… kidding… Hopefully everyone had a great time in Japan - and everyone donated the money to charity. Hopefully. Hey… it's not like the salaries were in 1908.

Check your listings if you get MLB.TV or MLB Network - you can at least see the last game.

Kanpai,
Andrew Joseph

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Japanese Actor Ken Takakura Dead At 83

Japanese movie actor Takakura Ken (surname first) has died at the age of 83 of lymphoma at a hospital in Tokyo on Nov 10, 2014 - meaning it took bloody eight days for us to find out.

Where are the Japanese paparazzi when you want them? Probably trying to shoot up someone's skirt.

Born as Oda Goichi on February 16, 1931 in Kita-Kyushu-shi in Japan, Takakura would probably most familiar to western audiences as the gruff coach of the Dragons baseball team in the Tom Sellick movie, Mr. Baseball.

Other western movies he might be familiar from include: Too Late the Hero (1970); The Yakuza (1975); and Black Rain (1989).

Of course, that is all just a drop in the bucket, as Takakura made a total of 205 screen appearances - his last coming in Dearest (2012).

Takakura was given the Order of Culture by Emperor Akihito in 2013 for his contribution to Japan’s arts.

Standing an imposing 1.9-meters (5'-10¾") tall  - which is my height (I stand above you all - bwa-ha-ha-ha) (LOL!), Takakura was known as the Clint Eastwood of Japan thanks to his brooding but honorable characterization he world bring to his roles.
The Drifting Avenger - 1968.
He came by this swagger honestly, as he grew up in post-WWII Fukuoka, watching the yakuza battle each other for territory and the (still) lucrative black market and racketeering industries of the underworld.

Takakura got his start as an actor in 1955, when after graduating from Meiji University in Tokyo, he heard there was an audition over at Toei Film Company, and decided to check it out.

Does anyone else think that sometimes it really was easier to get discovered in the 'old days'?

He got the role, debuting in the flick Denko Karate Uchi (Lightning Karate Blow) in 1956.

Just as America had experienced a BOOM in gangster flicks back in the 1930s when the mobster ruled the real news thanks to the hardships of the Depression, so too did Japan experience a BOOM in yakuza flicks in the 1960s, as it experienced hardships of post WWII.

Takakura's forte was being such a person who saw Japan before the yakuza era, and during its early stages and as such his characters played off both sides… a tough guy with a conscience.

Hell… you can see that even in Mr. Baseball!   
Ken Takakura in Mr. Baseball. I wouldn't mess with him.
If you think that Batman: The Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller in 1986 was the beginning of the anti-hero… or maybe Wolverine in the late 1970s… Japan was already doing it in the movies… and Takakura exploited that when he played an ex-convict anti-hero in the 1965 flick Abashiri Bangaichi.

In the ensuing 11 years when he left Toei Films in 1976, he had appeared in over 180 films. Ho-ly Smokes that's a lot of celluloid!

I've seen him in plenty of movies and TV commercials and… well… he will be missed. Fortunately, in my opinion, he lives on and on and on in movies.

The king is dead. Long live the king.
Andrew Joseph

Sake Confidential - A Book Review

This is actually a book review for a book I enjoyed very much.

I'm the type of guy/gaijin/foreigner (regardless of country) who likes to immerse himself in information.

I have done and continue to do the same with regards to Japan, somehow without learning much of its language I have managed to pick up quite a bit of its history, social customs and well… lots of other stuff.

I have managed to sip at the table of learning, drowning whatever real or imagined sorrows I had at my local bar in Japan, often toasting with Japanese locals… pretty much just enjoying life.

(Sorry Vince)

One of the easiest ways to enjoy one's self in Japan - and by that I mean immersing oneself in Japanese culture - is to share a beverage with a like-minded Nihonjin, regards of their adult age or sex. 

I'm not talking about o-cha (green tea), though that is a huge part of Japanese culture, but rather I am talking about alcohol.

While the Japanese like to think of themselves as being internationally cultured when they have some fine whiskey straight up, or perhaps consider themselves fun-loving when they imbibe huge quantities of beer, when they truly want to show off or impress, especially to an honored guest - let's say you and I - that is when they break out the sake - fermented rice wine, if I may be so common.

Prior to leaving Toronto for one (soon to be three years) in Japan on the JET (Japan Exchange & Teaching) Programme, my father warned me about the power of sake (pronounced 'sah-kay'), noting that it went down like water but had the kick of a tsunami.

I first met sake at my first coming-out party in Ohtawara-shi, Tochigi-ken - the place I called home - during a festival in early August… when it was hot and very humid - still in the mid 30C-range by 10PM.

A shunga "pornographic" ukiyo-e sake set of mine.

I was parched. When a local sake salesman saw we walking by towed by my Board of Education bosses, he proudly offered up his wares to the city's new assistant English teacher.

I sipped the glass of sake at first. Mmmmm. Warm, flavorful, fruity-even, and very aromatic - alcohol was what I smelled… but I couldn't determine anything more than that.

It tasted like nothing I had ever tasted before…

Sake… this isn't booze… to me sake was my first real exposure to Japanese culture.

Encouraged by all the Japanese men around me watching me pussyfoot around this miniature Japanese atomic bomb - they began chanting "Iki! Iki!" while miming the chug-chug hand gesture - so I downed it in one gulp. Yeah… I can open up the throat… a skill on a heterosexual man that only lends itself to drinking.

The Japanese men were impressed, as I tapped the upturned glass a few times to ensure I had every single drop of the clear liquid ambrosia.

Junmai Ginjo - some of the good stuff I enjoy drinking!

Cheers - and Kanpai abounded! As did another 15 glasses. My dad was wrong. It was sweet and did not pack the kick of a mule. Or maybe I had truly inherited my alcoholic uncle's genes and could out drink a sailor. Or maybe - just maybe - it was hot, and I was thirsty. Whatever. I only got a small buzz… my comrades who had initially joined me were staggering around drunk off their gourd.

Japanese culture. Nothing brings people together better than drinking (unless you are drinking while watching sports with rival fans).

That was my first experience with sake.

I suppose it could be used for sauces, but this is a lacquered sake sipping set of cups. Mine.

Another memorable time was when I won a sake drinking contest (tied really), where the Japanese JET leader and I powered down 47 glasses of sake apiece - two others passed out some 30+ glasses earlier.

Since then, I have actually been able to taste sake - much like that first sip I had on my lips… you never forget your first taste on your lips…

I could now sense the thickness or thinness… different smells, colors and even tastes in my sake… but I'm not so cultured that I could actually tell you what all those flavors or smells were.

In fact… all I knew about sake was that it was fermented rice… and I didn't even know what that meant.

My Mashiko pottery sake set. The  cups have never been used - because I tend to drink more than what each cup holds.
 I assumed it had standard Japanese fermented rice flavor. Rice tastes like rice… what's the big deal.

And then I read the most eye-opening book on Japanese culture (IE alcohol) that I have ever read: Sake Confidential, a "beyond the basics guide to Understanding, Tasting, Selection & Enjoyment' of sake.

Written by John Gauntner, and published by the fine folks over at Stone Bridge Press (who sent me a copy to review), I learned more about my favorite alcohol-based drink in three hours than in the previous 25 years of imbibing.

Sake Confidential - where have you been half my life?

Gauntner writes in a simple manner - as though he is talking just to you… I try to do the same.

I used to live two floors up from a sake shop, and when I stopped in to say hello every day, I would always marvel at the fantastic selection of sake bottles perched above and behind the shopkeeper.

I probably could have learned a lot from him about sake, but he spoke NO English, and I spoke next to NO Japanese. We always tried to communicate with each other (the fault is mine… I'm in Japan, and he was a WWII Japanese war vet)… but what always brought us closer was when he would close down the shop for the evening and drink with me.

He bade his wife to bring out Japanese nibble food, while he cracked open a bottle of three of the good sake… and for him, it wasn't the clear stuff… it was cloudy, and I didn't even know if it was expensive or not, but it tasted great!

Junmai sake - another pottery set of mine.

But now thanks to Sake Confidential, I have learned more about Japanese culture than I even knew existed.

Actually.. I knew it existed… I just thought it was information that wouldn't be privy to a non-Japanese!

What I found surprising, is that the whole industry of sake brewing doesn't appear to be very profitable! Breweries that make money have other businesses that do make money…

I also learned that there are very important distinctions between sake - two main ones, but it still allows for a thousand or more different flavors of sake. Who knew?

I also learned about how various ingredients and processes affect a sake's flavor, aroma and quality.

Rice. I really didn't know anything about rice - and now I do and want to learn more. I just thought that there was Japanese rice and that was it. Ignorant ol' me.

How the rice is milled, the yeast types, how the yeast is manipulated… temperature, storage… I didn't know sake could go bad in my cabinet! Apparently it does! I guess I should get rid of that bottle that's been open for six months or more… I just thought that alcohol would kill anything… Who knew?

Grades of sake?! Who knew?

What I did (past tense) know about sake could fit into a thimble. But no longer! Thanks to Sake Confidential - I know.

For anyone who is interested in learning all of sake's secrets; how the industry really works, as well as some history, well… let me just heartily recommend Sake Confidential (from Stone Bridge Press).

Now… Sake Confidential does use Japanese words, but author and sake connoisseur Gauntner does provide initial great explanations for each word.

There's even a glossary.

But that's where my complaint comes in - the glossary is at the back of the book, tucked between the last chapter and the Index. I never saw it until I finished the book!

I know sommmmme Japanese, but not a lot. I just wish I had found the glossary earlier.

Stone Bridge Press - I know the glossary is first listed in the Table of Contents page, but I didn't look at it. I'm unsure how many people do. Many, I suppose, so take my complaint with a grain of rice.

Me - why do I need the table of contents - I'm reading the book in order regardless of what you or the author has planned for me.

Still… for every Japanese-related book, I would humbly suggest a Glossary placed before Chapter 1. People will find it and use it. It's like the old Perry Mason books I used to read from Triangle (from the 30s and 40s)… a list of players in advance of the story. One knew it was there and could easily refer to it when confused about who which character was.

Issue Number 2 - and not a major one, I think. The author has included some sake labels within the chapters, and provides descriptions of what each of those sake's taste like.

Great, I suppose, because the Japanese brand name is given in English… but what I would have liked was perhaps arrows or something with English descriptions of what exactly the KANJI was on the label - to better help know just what we are looking for on the shelf.

It's a minor complaint(s), but hopefully my suggestions of correction are at least valid for the next printing.

Yet another sake cup I own. Geez,  do you think I like sake?
 To Michael of Stone Bridge Press - I understand why you believed this to be a great book.

Perhaps you do understand that I am the type of person who likes to know everything about a topic.

In my opinion, blogs, articles and news stories that only present part of the story are a waste of everyone's time. Give me as much information as possible. It's why you will rarely every get a short article from me.

I spend hours and hours researching an article that maybe only 100 people will read because I don't have the phrase "big boobs" in it - but whatever… I'd rather have someone - even one person read my blog for a full story - knowing I did it right.

I certainly hope many more of you loyal readers will consider purchasing the book - visit Stone Bridge Press for ordering of this and other great books on Japan: www.stonebridge.com.

Thanks to John Gauntner and his wonderful Sake Confidential book, I now know everything one gaijin could possibly know about the world of sake - at least on paper.

Now all I have to do is go and sample some quality sake. Thanks to Sake Confidential, I'm pretty sure I at least know what to look for.

Kanpai,
Andrew Joseph

Monday, November 17, 2014

Marvel Comics Crossover with Japanese Manga


I took this from the weekly SCOOP! newsletter, my choice for keeping up-to-date on things relating to comic books, anime, movie monsters, auctions, conventions - heck, the collectibles market on everything I collect - except tobacco cards (c'mon guys, help me out). You can check it out at http://scoop.diamondgalleries.com.

When Marvel Comics announced that they would be doing an official crossover with the Japanese manga (comic book) Attack on Titan there were two main reactions: excited and confused. The former group of people has been waiting on the edge of their seats ever since, while the latter is probably still wondering “what is Attack on Titan”?

The post-apocalyptic fantasy manga began serialization in September of 2009 and follows the story of Eren Jaeger, his adopted sister Mikasa Ackerman, and their friend Armin Arlert. 

About 100 years prior to the start of the story, giant humanoid creatures called Titans appeared and devoured humans without reason, nearly wiping out humanity entirely. The Titans are generally anywhere between 3-15 meters tall and are almost always masculine in appearance, though they lack reproductive organs. They attack and eat humans on sight and the only way to kill one is by attacking the weak spot at the nape of their necks.

Humanity resigned themselves to living within massive circular walls. Three walls create three districts: Wall Maria, Wall Rose, and Wall Shina. 

The story begins when a giant, 200-foot tall Titan (known as the “Colossal Titan”), along with another unique “Armored” Titan, appear and break through a part of Wall Maria, allowing their smaller brethren to totally invade and destroy the human settlement.

Eren, Mikasa and Armin enlist in the Survey Corps, a branch of the military dedicated to fighting and destroying the Titans in an effort to reclaim the territory lost in the Wall Maria attack. When Eren appears to have a unique and dangerous ability, he becomes the key to humanity’s hope in their fight against the Titan threat.

Attack on Titan has become an incredible success, with multiple manga spin-offs (Before the Fall, Junior High, and No Regrets), light novels, video games, and an anime. 

The first season of the anime (animated cartoon) concluded in 2013, though the English dubbed version currently airs on the Cartoon Network in the U.S.. 

A miniseries based on the No Regrets manga will be released between December 2014 and April 2015, and a series of films is in production that will recap the first season.

The Avengers might be the World’s Mightiest Heroes (the Avengers by Marvel Comics), but they’re going to have a tall challenge ahead of them when they take on Attack on Titan’s monsters in the upcoming crossover.

Bravo Scoop! But the image above shows Spider-Man... and even though he was first offered membership back in 1966 (turned it down) and was part of the New Avengers Volume 1, I'm pretty sure he isn't an Avenger - at this point in time. 

Kanpai,
Andrew Joseph