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Sunday, August 31, 2014

30 Schools Threatened With Kidnapping

On August 27 and 29th, 2014,  30 Japanese elementary schools in Kurashiki-shi (倉敷市), a city in western Okayama-ken (Okayama Prefecture) in the western region of Japan's main island, received a postcard in the mail where the sender threatened to kidnap a child.

According to Kurashiki police, these postcard were all sent from Kanto post offices, an area in the eastern part of Japan's main island encompassing: seven prefectures: Gunma, Tochigi, Ibaraki, Saitama, Tokyo, Chiba, and Kanagawa.

The threat is being taken seriously.

Back in July, an 11-year-old girl was kidnapped while on her way home from school in Kurashiki and kept confined for six days before being rescued unharmed from the house of her kidnapper, 49-year-old Fujiwara Takeshi (surname first).

But 30 kids? Or just an attempt to mess up the police? The person responsible for this is going through enough trouble of at least traveling around the country to mail the postcards to the Kurashiki destinations.

City police have increased patrols around the schools starting on August 29, 2014. As well, parents were warned to not let their kids walk to and from school alone... which seems like a good plan unless some parents take a shortcut and have two kids walking to school together... which I assume is NOT what the police meant.

I'm pretty sure it would be preferable if the kids were walked to school and back home by a known adult.

-30-
Andrew Joseph

Saturday, August 30, 2014

420 Japanese B2 At eMoviePoster

I'm going to just come right out an admit I have no idea what the hell this blog article below is all about, suffice to say that for any collectors of movie posters and Japan-related stuff, perhaps you want to check out what's going on on this piece from Scoop, one of the few newsletters I actually scour on a weekly basis.

I just don't get the lingo for movie posters...

See HERE to read it on the Scoop site, or see below, if you are one of those people who doesn't like being led all over the place...


The Bob Peak-illustrated insert for Robert Wise’s Star Trek: The Motion Picture (William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy), the Japanese B2 for Lee H. Katzin’s Le Mans (Steve McQueen), the insert for Henry Hathaway’s The Sons Of Katie Elder (John Wayne and Dean Martin), the insert and the Japanese B2 for John Landis’ Blues Brothers (John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd), and the insert for Bud Abbott and Lou Costello in Keep 'Em Flying lead off eMoviePoster.com’s current Tuesday-closing auctions.
In the spotlight are 420 Japanese B2 posters and 430 inserts.
Among the Japanese B2 offerings are Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now (Marlon Brando and Martin Sheen), Federico Fellini’s 8 1/2 (Marcello Mastroianni and Claudia Cardinale), Dennis Hopper’s Easy Rider (Peter Fonda), Francois Truffaut’s Stolen Kisses, Jean-Luc Godard's A Married Woman (1997 reissue) and Pierrot Le Fou (Jean-Paul Belmondo), the 1973 reissue of Fred Zinnemann’s From Here To Eternity (Burt Lancaster and Deborah Kerr), the 1978 reissue of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey (art by Bob McCall), and the 1973 reissue of Peter Yates’ Bullitt (Steve McQueen).
The selection of B2s also features Katsuhiro Otomo’s Akira, the 1965 reissue of Sabrina (Audrey Hepburn), King Kong (Berkey art of Kong climbing the Twin Towers), Return Of The Dragon (Bruce Lee and Chuck Norris), Eclipse (Alain Delon and Monica Vitti), Going Places (Gerard Depardieu and Miou-Miou), Mystery Train, the 1990s reissue of Jean-Luc Godard’s La Chinoise, Big Trouble In Little China (Kurt Russell and Kim Cattrall), and Concert For Bangladesh (George Harrison, Bob Dylan and more), among others.
The roster of inserts includes Bowery Bombshell (Bowery Boys Leo Gorcey and Huntz Hall), Le Mans (Tom Jung art of Steve McQueen), The Lemon Drop Kid (Bob Hope and Marilyn Maxwell), The Shakiest Gun In The West (Don Knotts and Barbara Rhoades), Up In Smoke style B (Cheech & Chong), Whistling In Brooklyn (Red Skelton and the Brooklyn Dodgers), The Maze (William Cameron Menzies), Private Worlds (Claudette Colbert and Charles Boyer), Teresa (Pier Angeli), Savage Seven, More Dead Than Alive (Clint Walker, Vincent Price and Anne Francis), Exorcist II: The Heretic (Linda Blair), Pearl Of The South Pacific (Virginia Mayo and Dennis Morgan), and Black Samson (Charles Bail and Rockne Tarkinton).
In the most recent Tuesday closing sessions, there were numerous noteworthy sales, among them the international six-sheet for Dirty Harry sold for $2,527, the international three-sheet for Dirty Harry closed at $1,065, and the three-sheet for The Sound Of Music realized $438.
“We would like Scoop readers to know that we only take consignments, and do not purchase items,” said eMoviePoster.com’s Bruce Hershenson, “so all of them items we auction each year come to us from 1,532 collectors and dealers all over the world.”
Despite their name, they don't just auction movie posters.
“We also auction tens of thousands of vintage stills and lobby cards, original travel and war posters, signed items of all types, and much, much more. Go to our Consign Page to learn about consigning to us for our regular weekly auctions or for our next two major auctions, which will be held in October and December (consigning to our September auction, which begins on Sunday September 7, is already closed),” he said.

- 30-
Happy bidding!

Keep up the great work on the comic book industry, Scoop!

Andrew Joseph

Friday, August 29, 2014

Uncle Scrooge Goes To Japan

Here's a wee bit of comic book homage that will whet your appetite until midnight tonight when by then I will have hopefully come up with an interesting topic.

I know I said I was working on a couple of lists, but truthfully, to do them justice it takes more than a few hours apiece... and I have other duties that require my attention.

Having said that, the above image is taken from issue #116 of Donald Duck published by Western Publishing's Gold Key comic book division in 1967 in a story called "The Case Of The Super Secret Mission." It's NOT drawn and written by master Duck artist Carl Barks, so while I'll read it, I already know after three pages that it is nowhere on the same par as his stuff. I knew it as an eight-year-old, too.

Regardless... I always look for a Japan or aviation reference for use in one of the two blogs I do on a regular basis, and oh my stars and garters, but there was one on page 2 of this Donald Duck issue.

Featuring a pair of nasty Beagle Boys mugging Donald's poor old man of a Uncle Scrooge who is the richest person on the planet with an estimated: Five multiplujillion, nine impossibidillion, seven fantasticatrillion dollars and sixteen cents.

The crime or rather near-crime takes place with one Beagle Boy leaping from the upturned corner of a Japanese roof (the upturned corner may have had something to do with controlling rainwater runoff since there were no gutters), with the iconic and poorly drawn Mt. Fuji in the background.

Like I said... NOT Unca Carl Barks... just someone else who gets the headshapes and more all wrong.

Later,
Andrew Joseph

Edible Japanese Mushrooms

If you've ever been to Japan, chances are better than average that someone there would have come up and asked you if you wanted some mushrooms that they had just picked.(see image above - photo by FotoosVanRobin from Netherlands).

The answer to such a question, however, should be "No."

The Japanese seem to have a fascination for mushrooms—in that they love to go out and commune with nature on a Sunday, and pick some wild mushrooms from some forested area.

The thing is... along with some of the most amazing and aromatic mushrooms one could devour, there are a quite a few that will either cause you to trip, to be ill, or to die. Even for many a so-called expert, determining good mushrooms from bad is tricky.

I recall one teacher coming back with a huge basket of various mushrooms... offering them to the teachers - myself included... but luckily the science teacher and avid mushroomer was there and aside from four out of about 250 mushrooms, they were all toxic.

Needless to say, no one took any of those four remaining mushrooms - just in case, and a couple of other teachers had to be chased down and warned about the mushrooms they had taken earlier from the generous but lucky(?) teacher.

As a public service in anticipation of mushroom picking in Japan at some future date, and for your own well-being, I'm going to present lists... because of everyone loves lists... starting with this one: Edible Japanese Mushrooms that won't do anything except spruce up a meal and tantalize the taste buds or maybe cure what ails you.

First of, mushrooms, when written in Japanese, will have the suffix - words ending with - "take" (tah-kay). The kanji for it is: 茸 - which literally means 'mushroom'.

But, being Japanese, the common word for mushroom is 'kinoko' (きのこ).

When you see the name of the mushroom, the prefix, if you will, it usually denotes the name of the tree on which that particular mushroom grows. Usually.

As for why the Japanese love to go out and pick their own mushrooms, well, aside from some tribalistic hunter-gather thing, it is said that because 'kinoko' literally translates as 'tree's child', so maybe the old parenting instinct kicks in.

Edible Japanese Mushrooms


Bunapi Shimeji
Bunapi Shimeji - White Beech - mushroom.
The Bunapi Shimeji (ブナピーシメジ) or Hypsizygus tessellatus is a mushroom that is a newcomer to the Japanese market, meaning that everyone knew it was edible, but sufficient quantities of it weren't around to warrant it having a 'thing'.

Perhaps better known as the Japanese White Beech mushroom, it originated in Japan, but is now grown and farmed in the good old U.S of A., Australia and Europe.

Also known as the White Clamshell Mushroom, the Bunapi Shimeji was selected from the Buna Shimeji (see below), and bred to have more white in it, and then registered by the Hokto Corporation, a Japanese company focusing on mushroom production.

Growing in clusters, this mushroom has a nutty, even butter-like flavor while possessing a firm, crunchy texture. If you feel lucky and want to taste it when raw, it is bitter, so why would you?

The Bunapi Shimeji mushrooms have a much longer shelf life of about two weeks, if refrigerated properly.

Since it doesn't turn soggy with age (after picking), you can tell that it is past its prime if it actually has mold growing on it....

For you health fiends, the Bunapi Shimeji contains beta-glucan polysaccharides, which are supposed to boost immune-modulation and help prevent tumors.

It can be used in soups, nabe and takikomi gohan as well as sauces... but this ain't no cooking show. I'll leave that to those who like to cook. I like to eat.

Buna Shimeji
Buna Shimeji - Brown Beech - mushroom - photo by Apple2000
Buna Shimeji (ブナシメジ) (still the Hypsizygus tessellatus) is very similar to the Bunapi Shimeji mushroom, except that it is called the Japanese Brown Beech mushroom. It is also known as: Beech Mushroom and Beech Brown Clamshell Mushroom.

It is a grayish-white mushroom with curves, and a brown cap that is supple and round.

Growing in clusters, this mushroom has a nutty, even butter-like flavor while possessing a firm, crunchy texture. Eaten raw, it tastes bitter.

The Buna Shimeji mushrooms have a much longer shelf life of about two weeks, if refrigerated properly.

Since it doesn't turn soggy with age (after picking), you can tell that it is past its prime if it actually has mold growing on it....

Like the Bunapi Shimeji, the Buna Shimeji contains beta-glucan polysaccharides, which are supposed to boost immune-modulation and help prevent tumors.

The Buna Shimeji is used in soups, nabe and takikomi gohan as well as sauces.

Enokitake
Enokitake mushroom
The Enokitake (榎, エノキ) or Flammulina populicola, also known as the Winter Mushroom in the U.S., is a fungi with long, thin, white stems in a tight bundle, with tiny white caps.

It apparently does NOT have much of a flavor, so its claim to culinary fame is that it has a crunchy texture, and one that is maintained even after cooking.

Enokitake is perfect for miso soup and hot pot meals.

Enokitake when it is old, goes yellowish in color, and becomes wet-looking. So, for eating purposes find Enokitake that are white, firm and dry. That also mans no humidity (water vapor) in the packaging.

Eringi
Eringi mushroom - photo by Lemon-s
The Eringi (エリンギ) or King Trumpet Mushroom (Pleurotus eryngii) is basically a large Oyster mushroom, that has been described as the size of a toilet paper inner core with a thick and meaty white stem and a small tan cap that looks like it has been smashed flat the way a stake is smashed by a sledgehammer.

Other names for it include: French Horn Mushroom, King Oyster Mushroom, King Brown Mushroom, Boletus of the Steppes, Trumpet Royale Mushroom—which, if you think about is far too many monikers.

It grows natively in parts of Europe, the Middle East, North Africa and NOT in Japan... so why is it here? Well, the Japanese and Americans do grow it commercially.

So you are only likely to find this at restaurants or grocery stores - not in the areas near the Japanese mountains.

Depending on whom you ask, it either lacks a lot of flavor or it has a lot of flavor.

Still, what chefs like about this one, is that it has a very chewy and meat-like texture and has the ability to absorb other flavors.

The Eringi is no longer fresh when it has speckles of brown spots, and looks wet, and grows a fungus on itself called hyphae. As well, if the mushroom's cap is beginning to flare up, it's getting old.

The Eringi contains high amounts of ergothioneine, a naturally occurring antioxidant amino acid, and supposedly may help reduce the risk of chronic disease by providing cellular protection against free radical damage in the liver and kidneys - at least that what a few happy mice have found out.

Lucky rats have also had their cholesterol levels lowered thanks to the lovastatin in the Eringi.

For us humans who need more antioxidant selenium in our diet, this mushroom has the ability to extract and concentrate high levels of selenium from its environment.

Hiratake
Hiratake - Oyster mushroom - photograph by Aaron Sherman
Hiratake is the Japanese name for Oyster mushrooms (Pleurotus ostreatus), though its name in Japanese translates to "Flat mushroom".

There are many cultivated varieties of Hiratake, some of which look quite differently from each other: Oyster Shelf; Tree Oyster; Straw Mushroom; and Tamogitake, which I assume is Japanese, and is a ply on the flat shape relative to a fried egg.

All hiratake varieties have a broad, fan or oyster-shaped cap spanning five to 25-centimeters. Colors in the wild are white to gray or tan to dark-brown.

The flesh on the hiratake mushrooms white, firm, and varies in thickness due to stipe arrangement. The gills of the mushroom are white to cream, and descend on the stalk if present. If so, the stipe is off-center with a lateral attachment to wood.

The whole hiratake mushroom variety has a toxic lookalike in Japan and Australia, the Omphalotus nidiformis known as the Ghost Fungus which only makes you vomit anywhere between 30 minutes to 120 minutes after eating, and will last for several hours... but you won't die, and you won't poop your pants. But... I'll have more on this and other nasty mushroom types on another list - yes, a list!

Maitake
Maitake mushroom - Photograph by Gargoyle888
The Maitake Mushroom (舞茸) or Grifola frondosa is also known as the Dancing Mushroom, Hen of the Woods, Ram's Head and Sheep's Head and is a cluster fug of yummyness. Dancing Mushroom? Sure... that's what the Japanese word Maitake means in English.

The Maitake mushroom grows in clusters at the base of trees - usually oaks - and is a native mushroom species in northeastern Japan and North America, though in Japan, it is usually found under the matsu (pine) trees, which too me suggest it likes acidy soil..

In Japan, Maitake is prized for its unique, earthy aroma and pleasing, moist but crunchy texture, yet tender with lots fragrance and flavor.

When choosing Maitake, pay attention to the moisture level. If the mushroom looks soggy, it's not all that fresh -- look for one that appears dry (but not dried out, you see), especially on the top brown part. Even when refrigerated, Maitake doesn't last very long. Try to eat it within a few days.

Maitake is especially high in antioxidants such as ascorbic acid, tocopherols, phenolic compounds, carotenoids, and L-ergothioneine. It contains complex polysaccharides, which act as immunomodulators and possess anti-tumor activity. Studies also point that the Maitake could be preventative and or part of a treatment for cancer and possibly HIV.

Matsutake
Natsutake Mushrooms - photo found: http://hillslearning.wordpress.com/2009/10/13/fall-foods-in-japan/
The Matsutake (松茸) mushroom or Tricholoma matsutake is also known as the Pine Mushroom, because that's what 'matsutake' means in English.

It is a highly sought-after fungi that is prized by the Japanese and Chinese for its distinct spicy-aromatic odor.

Really... it's the smell... even though it is a tasty mushroom. Some people call the smell fruity, other spicy with a hint of cinnamon, a flavor I enjoy on my lips, and others still, say it smells, well, stinky. Basically, the best way to describe its smell is to say it smells like a Matsutake Mushroom.

Matsutake Mushrooms grow under trees, found under fallen leaves and duff on the forest floor and are known to grow in China, Japan, Korea, Laos, Canada, Finland, the United States, Sweden and a few others.

In Japan it is most commonly associated with Japanese Red Pine tree.

Despite the fact that these mushrooms have been a part of the Japanese diet for about 1,000 years, no one has figured out how to grow them commercially. That and the fact that some new insect has been introduced to Japan that kills the red pine, destroying possible growing areas.

It's one of the reasons why they can sell for as much as $1,000 a pound in Japan for some top quality Matsutake.

The Matsutake is one of those many things that the Japanese relate to as a symbol of who they are. It's a symbol of autumn, because that's when it seems to pop up, and is a symbol of seasonal change.

The mushroom is best when it is about 15.24-centimeters (six-inches) long, but apparently what really counts is to make sure the cap has not opened up yet.

Japanese folk say it should look like a penis, not an umbrella, and I think we can all agree on that, especially if it's six-inches long.

The value of the Matsutake decreases dramatically if the cap opens and the gills are visible.

Of course, WHERE it is grown is important, too, as someone has determined that the best Matsutake Mushrooms can only be found at the bottom of red pines in the Tamba region outside of Kyoto. Probably determined by someone from that area.

Now because there's only about 1,000 tons of Matsutake harvested a year - which sounds like a lot - and because lots of big company executives like to suck up to the bosses by giving away expensive mushroom baskets of the damn things - the Matsutake has to be shipped in from other countries, like the Koreas, China and even the U.S. Naturally, even though there is no discernible difference in the mushroom, the fact that it isn't Japanese drives the price down to about 1/10th the Japanese ones.

Matsutake are enjoyed in various ways such as grilled or cooked with rice, put in soup, steamed, fried in tempura and more, but for the price of the things, someone else better cook'em for me.

Nameko
Nameko mushrooms
The Nameko mushroom (ナメコ) or Pholiota nameko, can be one disgusting mushroom when cooked.

Fresh, however, it is a small, amber-brown mushroom with a slightly gelatinous coating.

It is slightly nutty in flavor and is used in stir fry and, God help us, in miso soup.

When cooked in a liquid (such as the soup) the Nameko mushroom develops a mucous slime on the surface, which is what Nameko means - "little slimy bit". I know I've dropped the damn things many a time whilst using my chopsticks. They do taste really good, however.

This being Japan, it's this slimy grossness that is prized as much as the actual taste.

Reishi
Reishi mushroom
The Reishi (霊) mushroom is a purple-brown in color, featuring a long stalk and shiny red kidney-shaped cap that looks like a fan.  It does not have gills on the underside, and I am thinking, that if I saw this mushroom there is no way in Hell I would ever consider eating it. Red is usually a warning color in the wild.

Seriously... can you imagine the first time someone tried to eat this? "Hey Groggg - bet two rocks you can't eat that?" "Do I have to live to win bet?" "No."

The mushroom is of the genus Ganoderma, but has several species, such as the Ganoderma lucidum, Ganoderma tsugae and Ganoderma sichuanense.

Native to Japan, China and North America, comes in six different colors - usually red - and grows on plum and oak trees, though I have also heard that it grows on maples.

Other Japanese names include:
  • Mannentake (万年茸) - the 10,000-year mushroom; 
  • Kadodetake (門出茸) - the Departure mushroom; 
  • Hijiridake (聖茸) - the Sage mushroom;
  • Magoshakushi (孫杓子) - the Grandchild Ladle,
What does it taste like? It's a strong flavor... bitter even. Basically, you don't want to eat it as part of a meal.

As such, its claim to fame is based on Chinese medicines, specifically for enhancing the immune system, and working on hypertension, hyperlipidemia, cardiovascular disease, asthma and bronchial diseases.

Shiitake
Shiitake mushrooms
The Shiitake Mushroom (椎茸) or Lentinula edodes is well known, and is commonly used in any style of East Asian cooking as it is native to Japan, China and Korea, Taiwan and Indonesia, and is the second-most cultivated mushroom in the world.

Also known as the Sawtooth Oak Mushroom, Black Forest mushroom, Black Mushroom, Golden Mushroom and Oakwood Mushroom, it sounds like it has a couple of color varieties.

The Japanese name - Shii - is related to the Japanese name of the evergreen tree Castanopsis cuspidata that, when it dies, provides the growing area for the mushroom.

There are a few high grade varieties of the Shiitake mushroom, such as the the Donko (Winter mushroom) with closed caps, the huāgū in Chinese (Flower mushroom) - and there are less expensive Japanese varieties called Koshin (Spring season variety) with open caps.

The Shiitake has a medium-sized, umbrella-shaped cap that is tan to brown in color, with the caps edges rolling inwards. Both the underside of the cap and the stem are white.

Eaten both fresh and dried, the Shiitake mushrooms will enhance the flavor of most foods, and is a mushroom I can eat everyday because it's just that good.

As for freshness, the word is that you should look for Shiitake mushrooms with a thick cap that curves slightly inward around the edge. If your Shiitake has a cap that flares outward or upward it could be one that was harvested too late or been too long on the shelf.

To the touch, fresh Shiitake should feel moist but not wet or slimy. The gills should be white or very pale beige and uniform in pattern.

Is it healthy? Sure - mushrooms are. The Shiitake contain lentinan which might have some anticancer effect... but only when the mushrooms start going for $100 a 'shroom will it be because it has been proven effective.

-30-

If anyone knows of other Japanese mushrooms that are safe and edible, please pass the information along.

I'll be looking at mushrooms that make you ill and mushrooms that kill and even some mushrooms that are fun...

Yes...  I have mushrooms on the brain.. because once you start asking questions, the more you learn.

Kanpai,
Andrew Joseph, celebrated 13 years of wedded bliss on the 28th.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Squeezing Boobs For Charity

Where do I line up?

If you are in Tokyo on Saturday, August 30 beginning at 8PM - where? listen for the grunts - perhaps you can be a pervert and do some charitable work at the same time.

In what I can only call Japan's own Ohhhed to Joy, nine Japanese AV (adult video) stars want you to squeeze their breasts during "Boob Aid" to generate awareness and funds for the "Stop! AIDS" campaign.

I have no idea why there's an exclamation mark after the word "Stop!"

AIDS, of course doesn't kill you. It is the Acquired ImmunoDeficiency Syndrome that weakens your immune system where a cold cold kill you. A better reference term is HIV (human immunodeficiency virus), as part of the term HIV/AIDS, which represents the entire range of disease caused by the human immunodeficiency virus from early infection to late stage symptoms. It is primarily transmitted via unprotected sexual intercourse (including anal and oral sex), contaminated blood transfusions, hypodermic needles, and from mother to child during pregnancy, delivery and even breastfeeding.

During the press conference for the event earlier this week, a very naive AV star named Rina Serina says: "I never thought my boobs could contribute to society."

Now, in an effort to ensure she had the goods to be a participant in this charity, I searched long and hard for an image of this young woman, but could not find one, as I suspect that either that isn't her real name, she has multiple AV names, or she's new to the whole scene. Sorry.

The nine AV idols are excited to be parts of this event, but have asked the charitable public to "please be gentle."

"I’m really looking forward to lots of people fondling my boobs," expressed Rina Serina - no idea which is her last name because it's a fake one anyway - in a conversation to the Tokyo Sports newspaper. "But I would be very happy if you would please be delicate."

Keep in mind that this is a 24-hour event... the 12th such event since 2003, and it will be broadcast on adult cable television - so there will be evidence.

To cop a feel, men and women are asked to make a donation to the charity.

The 21-year-old Iku Sakuragi (come again?) says she doesn't mind her boobs being manhandled. "It’s for charity,” said the 21-year-old. “Squeeze them, donate money—let’s be happy."

That's her in the image above, and was the only photo of her I could find where she was clothed AND looked like she more that 14-years-old. Yeesh.

The event is sponsored or at least okayed by the Japan Foundation for AIDS Prevention.

Guys... I would suggest that you ensure your hands aren't sticky, aren't wet with sweat, and have no open sores on them. You may develop carpal tunnel syndrome some 30 minutes later.  

And - NO - regardless of the size of your donation, there will be no happy ending - except perhaps for those with AIDS.

Cheers
Andrew Joseph
Thank-you Vince for the head's up on this worthy event.  

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Model Kit: Mitsubishi A6M5c Zero

Here's something different and cool.

Some of you - a few, anyway - are aware that I like aviation stuff, so much so that I have a blog on it called Pioneers of Aviation, which when I am done will be the de facto information guide on WWI and earlier aviation-related materials... yeah, right.

I can dream.

Anyhow, I also do some writing on some modern events, and important aircraft as I become interested in them.

Anyhow, I used to build models (and have even dated a few of the two-legged kind)—everything from seacraft, to automobiles, and of course, aviation-related subjects.

So... it should come as no surprise that I follow a fellow blogger who puts out the Amateur Airplanes' blog that shows off his skills as a model kit builder.

To top it off, he also provides a bit of background on his model kits, and provides great photos of his kit building progress.

Check out his model of the Japanese aircraft the Mitsubishi A6M5c Zero HERE.

He's quite the good model kit builder, provides great tips and advice, and like myself, if you ask a question, he will respond. 

Cheers,
Andrew Joseph

Real Japanese Hoaxes

Here's a list of five Japanese hoaxes - good ones, as described by me because they really did fool a whole lotto people while bringing fame and eventually notoriety upon the perpetrator…  when they could be found.

For the purpose of wagering (kidding), I am placing these stories in the order of interest to myself, which means that I have one story I am saving for last, and the rest may be placed where they may.

AKB48  - The Great Pop & Droll Scandal

A-ha! Many of you are thinking, I knew that AKB48 must be a scam on the whole music industry. Well, it was… just as the Monkees and Sex Pistols were pre-fab groups, so too are AKB48 - but that's not the great rock and roll swindle.

No… it involves Eguchi Aikmi (surname first)… a member of the Japanese pop group AKB48… except that she's not.

I mean, she was part of the group, but she's just not a real person.

Eeeeeeeeeiiiiiiiii? So da ne.

She is a CGI (computer-generated image) made up of a total of six REAL AKB48 members:
    •    Atsuko Maeda (eyes)
    •    Tomomi Itano (nose)
    •    Mariko Shinoda (mouth)
    •    Yuko Oshima (hair/body)
    •    Minami Takahashi (facial outline)
    •    Mayu Watanabe (eyebrows)

I have no idea what is meant by 'outline' and am guessing at 'facial outline' but I wasn't impressed by the nose choice, but give two tongues up for the choice of body… er, I mean hair.

She is cute, ne? So much so that she actually appeared in the Japanese magazine Weekly Playboy.

Now… I'm not sure when that happened, but I would imagine that PhotoShop rather than Photographers were used - making this the first time photos were doctored in a men's adult magazine.

Sorry, I couldn't even write that with a straight face.

She also appeared in a Japanese commercial for the candy company Ezaki Glico... that's her in a still from the ad... with altered features showing her family tree.

Anyhow...Eguchi Aikmi was announced as the group's newest member in June 2011, with her official profile saying she was born on February 11, 1995 - and was 16-years-old and was from Saitama-ken...

Naturally, if she was in Playboy Weekly and a TV commercial... people knew she was only a CGI-image... and as such... it eventually came to light.

In fact, it was Glico that spilled the beans on June 19, 2011... saying she was actually constructed by the candy company and placed with the knowledge of the AKB48 management.

And... while it took nearly an additional two years, Eguchi Aikmi is no longer listed as a trainee on the AKB48 website... probably because she's too old at the age of 18.

Kato Sogen - The Oldest Trick In The Book

Here's the sad story of Kato Sogen (surname first), who wasn't even around when the story ended - or even when it began.

Born on July 22, 1899, Kato was thought to have been the oldest man alive in Tokyo - right up until July 2010… when he would have celebrated his 111th birthday.

In 2010 when Tokyo city officials wanted to meet Kato as part of the Respect For The Aged Day (敬老の日 Keirō no Hi) on the third Monday of September (this year, 2014, it's September 15), none of his relatives would let him be seen, saying he was akin to a 'human vegetable' or simply too sick.

Turns out he was dead… and had been since sometime in November 1978… when he was only 79 years old.

Seems like someone either had too much respect for the aged, or too much respect for Kato's pension cheque/check that someone had been cashing for nearly 32 years, taking in about ¥ 9.5-million (US $91,200)… which seems like a a real piddling amount of money to helps sustain anyone over that length of time had he been alive…

That would be about ¥296,875 a year…  that's US $2,850 a year!!!!

Makes one wonder who the real crooks are and on whom the hoax is being pulled on.

Fujimura Shinichi - Can You Dig It?

Is it better to be lucky than good?

Well, one Japanese amateur archaeologist seemed to think so. Fujimura Shinichi (藤村 新 and surname first) his discoveries helped push back the Japanese Paleolithic period by another 30,000 years…

Born in 1950, in Kami, Miyagi-ken, he was a high school graduate who worked in a manufacturing job, doing some prospecting for archaeological goods  on his holidays.

As an amateur digger, he did have legitimate success digging WITH OTHERS a paleolithic site in 1975, 1981, 1983 and 1984, finding stone tools thought to be 50,000 years old.   

But… then he got fame crazy.

Going on 180 digs across Japan, he kept finding artifacts that kept getting older and older and older… like a certain corpse in Tokyo.

His success garnered him a job as the deputy director of the non-government organization Tohoku Paleolithic Institute.

Suspicion did fall upon Fujimura as what he always seemed to find was much different from other pieces in the same area… his were always older. 

After Fujimura and his team announced on October 23, 2000 that he and his team found some stuff estimated to be 570,000-years-old at the Kamitakamori site near Tsukidate-machi in Miyagi-ken, everyone was amazed.

But… on November 5, 2000, the Mainichi Shimbun newspaper published photos of Fujimura digging holes and burying the same artifacts that he and his team later found. The photos were taken one day before the objects were found (see the image in this part of the blog).

Fujimura admitted his deceit, saying he planted objects from his own collection so that the fresh sites would appear to be older.

In this last site, he apparently planted 61 of the 65 objects found there.

He says he also planted all the objects at the Soshin Fudozaka site in Hokkaido - saying these were the only two time he had ever done so.

A special investigation by the Japanese Archaeological Association later determined that almost everything he had found had been planted by Fujimura.

Except for the plants… the vegetation was always there.

Obokata Haruko - STAP the madness

Our first female (real) perpetrator on the list, and one from 2014 to boot!

Obokata Haruki (surname first) (小保方 晴子) is a mere waif of a lass… born on June 29, 1983 in Matsudo, Chiba-ken, Japan.

A smart cookie, Obokata was a stem-cell biologist and the leader of the Laboratory for Cellular Reprogramming at the RIKEN Center for Developing Biology, a research institute with over 3,000 scientists situated in seven campuses across Japan.

She is credited with designing STAP (Stimulus-Triggered Acquisition of Pluripotency) cells - a new and easy way to grow any tissue in the body.

Sounds like something people would really be interested in! And it's easy to do, too?

After the research was published in Nature magazine (an excellent publication, by the way!), question arose to the veracity of her claims, as it seems as though no one else could reproduce her results.

Apparently, the images Obokata used in her published paper were the same ones she had used in her doctoral thesis in 2011 - for a completely different project. D'oh!

I guess she wasn't that smart after all.

According to the RIKEN investigators into this case (click HERE):

In manipulating the image data of two different gels and using data from two different experiments, Dr. Obokata acted in a manner that can by no means be permitted. This cannot be explained solely by her immaturity as a researcher. Given the poor quality of her laboratory notes it has become clearly evident that it will be extremely difficult for anyone else to accurately trace or understand her experiments, and this, too, is considered a serious obstacle to healthy information exchange. Dr. Obokata’s actions and sloppy data management lead us to the conclusion that she sorely lacks, not only a sense of research ethics, but also integrity and humility as a scientific researcher.

Stem cells, which was what STAP cells were supposed to create, are a real type of cell that is supposed to acts a repair system within the body… to help fix damaged tissue, as well as help regulate the creation of new blood, skin and intestinal tissues.

Yup, your guts regenerate - so perhaps one day Obokata will develop the intestinal fortitude to actually do some good in this world, rather than present false hope.

She's the worst Japanese hoaxer yet!  

But there's still one more Japanese hoax… but it involves an action, rather than a person per se.

Oculolinctus - Fuge'm If You Can't Lick'em

Lastly, here's a hoax that even I got in on… Oculolinctus… eyeball licking.

Now… for the record… when I wrote about this back on June 16, 2013 I did state this:

"I'm still not convinced of its veracity, but a newspaper - no less the UK's The Guardian - recently ran an article on the latest fetish or fad that is sweeping the nation like a bad case of STDs (sexually-transmitted diseases)."

See? Even when a known entity like The Guardian says something, I still question it.

I'm not saying I'm smarter than anyone, as I still wrote about it nonetheless, as though it was real.

What is it? Well, read about it HERE, and then come back:

So… it appears that the whole eyeball licking sex fad was based on a made-up story in a Japanese tabloid… you know, one of those newspapers or magazines that you are reluctant to place on the bottom of your birdcage in case it upsets the feng shui of the universe…

Now… it appears as though such eyeball licking did indeed come into vogue - just a little bit - as the increase in infections suddenly increased, as kids suddenly wanted to be cooler than cool and needed to do what everyone else was doing.

"You're all individuals!"
"I'm not!"

Yup - people - no one I know, of course, (because I'm not cool, which makes me cool, right?) but people started licking eyeballs... it became a fad... and all it took was one fake story and some publicity... the originally reported story, however, was still a hoax.

Anyhow… I wrote about all of the dangers of actually participating in such a fad, and urged people not to do it… because hoax or not, I knew it wasn't worth following.

-30-

And that's all I could find... real, genuine hoaxes perpetrated by the Japanese upon the public, both Japanese and global...

Kanpai,
Andrew Joseph

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Fukushima Radiation Causes 104 Cases of Cancer In Kids - Maybe

Mutherfugger….

That was my initial reaction when I first heard about the 104 cases (and growing, I am sure) of kids in Fukushima-ken (Fukushima Prefecture) developing thyroid gland cancer, a sure-sign finger-pointing development from exposure to hazardous radiation.

Or is it?

These kids, or young people, if you prefer, were all under 18 years of age at the time of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster - amongst an estimated 300,000 such youngsters - though these 104 victims had an average age of 14.8 when the nuclear snafu at the Dai-Ichi nuclear power generating facility began. 

So no… the number isn't huge, but it is still 104 too many.

Facts of the afflicted:
Male = 36
Female = 68

I am unsure if gender plays a role in this, but perhaps that is something researchers are looking at.

Reports of tumor size vary from five to 41-millimeters, though the average appears to be 14-mm.

Now… of the 104, Fukushima-ken government officials note that 57 cases are definitive… which does NOT mean that people think this was caused by exposure to radiation…

In fact, the Fukushima government says they don't believe these cancer cases in the 104 are actually linked to the Dai-Ichi nuclear accident.

So… let's see… 104 people out of 300,000 youth…  well… number one… that's an estimated number of total youth, isn't it?

Okay, so people more adept than my self (I once had 19% over all in Grade 9 math - for the year - though I will say that I did get better after puberty was complete and was no longer propping up my school desk, taking away valuable blood flow to the brain ) say that the numbers work out to MORE than 30 people sick out of 100,000…

Again, this is 104 people (or now 30 out of 100,000) who are SUSPECTED of having cancer (recall only 57 are definitive at this time).

Now… if we look at Miyagi-ken, which wasn't affected by the nuclear disaster, the number thread gland cancer suffers based on a population of 100,000 is only 1.7 people.

Miyagi-ken's capital city of Sendai is only about 67-kilometers northeast of Fukushima city.

That's 30 people in Fukushima-ken where there was a nuclear accident(s) versus 1.7 people in Miyagi-ken.

And yet, the government of Fukushima says  - 'hey, waitaminute… this is apples and oranges, and you can't compare the two figures.' That was me putting their thoughts into words, by the way. I'm sure more bowing and sucking of air through the teeth would have been involved.

That sounds convenient. Of course the Fukushima-ken government would believe that, because it is obviously looking to cover its own ass financially and morally.

They have experts that say the figures cannot be compared because the test in Fukushima-ken  covers a large number of people who have no symptoms.

Radiation experts are also divided over whether the cases of thyroid gland cancer diagnosed or suspected in the 104 young people should be linked to the 2011 nuclear accident.

What?

Precedence following the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear meltdown shows that the instances of thyroid cancer in youth ONLY increased AFTER four years… as it takes its sweet time to develop.

No matter how you look at it, we are only Year 3.

Others defending the higher-than-expected instances of thyroid cancer in Fukushima-ken claim that now, almost 30 years later, better, more-precise cancer tests are finding the cancer sooner.

That makes sense… also…

the Fukushima tests for thyroid cancer were not done at the insistence of people feeling ill, but rather because the government actually provided for such testing in advance… to make sure people weren't going to be sick or too sick before the cancer developed.

So… the Fukushima government can be commended for having the foresight to set up the testing for its citizenry, but critiqued for not having the balls to acknowledge the results.

Cheers,
Andrew Joseph

Monday, August 25, 2014

Hiroshima Landslide Kills 50

Fifty people are confirmed dead and another 38 people still unaccounted for after a landslide in Hiroshima-ken caused by heavy rains on August 19, 2014 triggered the disaster.

Apparently dozens of houses were either buried or swept off foundations as water, rock and mud flowed down hillsides into heavily-populated valleys in the northern part of Hiroshima-city.

Police and rescue workers continue the task of looking for people, but after four days, the outlook appears grim. Plus... heavy rainfall in the area continues to worry searchers about the possibility of further landslides.

The heavy rainfall even stymied Japan prime minster Abe Shinzo (surname first) from his planed tour of the devastation by helicopter.

In a situation highly reminiscent of US President George W. Bush continuing to read to an elementary class after first being informed of the 9/11 terrorist plot with planes flying into the World Trade Center in New York, so too has prime minister Abe come under for fire by his political opposition a(and the media) for continuing his golf game for an hour after being informed of the disaster.

Despite having a degree in political science, I don't cotton much to American, Japanese or even Canadian politics. I have too many skeletons myself.

Regardless... before everyone condemns Abe (and Bush), we need to know exactly what was told to him when he was informed during the golf game. Was the severity of the situation explained? I doubt that. But maybe it was. Perhaps he was also told to not worry about anything, and if the situation becomes more dire, then he can act.

All I'm saying is you can't judge his actions until you find out exactly what he was told.

Right now, there are about 1,700 people in emergency shelters, and for some 164,000 residents, the city government of Hiroshima has issued evacuation orders and warning to residents about possible landslide activity.

Landslides have killed many people in Japan over the years--as recently as 1999, some 31 people were killed in Hiroshima alone.

-30-
Andrew Joseph

Sunday, August 24, 2014

List: Japanese Manga Made Into Live-Action Movies

Man... this took a while to do, put in order and then fix the damn coding behind the scenes of this blog!

I'm just finished watching Sin City right now… an interesting film noir set in god knows what era, but filmed in black and white with splashes of color where the applicable. It was surprisingly good - mostly because I wasn't enraptured by the comic book when it came out many years ago. 

It's an American live-action movie based faithfully on Frank Miller's comic book series' appropriately called Sin City…and even though I didn't care for the comic book, it is fair to say that the movie industry did.

Comic books have recently (again) become the force de rigueur in the American film industry of where one should look when trying to decide what movie they should make next.

You'll notice I said 'again'.

This is kind of the third or fourth generation of comic books being turned into movies.

Generation one: back in the 1940s, movie serials featuring comic book characters were pumped out with fair regularity, and as such, were not all that good.There are plenty I want to see just to say I saw them, but the rareness of their availability implies I might not be impressed by them.

Generation 2: The 1960s saw a Batman movie - which while pretty trashy was pretty damn funny and thus highly memorable, because, it wasn't trying to be anything other than campy.

Generation 3 or the continuation of 2: the 1970s had us look to Flash Gordon and believe a man could fly in Superman.

And, I'm not even talking about television or animated programs here at all.

Generation 4 (or 3):  The 1980 and 1990s gave us some well-received Batman movies, which aside from the second one involving the Penguin were all crap in my opinion, Swamp Thing (ugh), while Marvel finally got off their ass and gave us some better flicks, such as Blade, Howard The Duck (nice try) and Spider-man and The X-Men… two franchises it insists on rebooting with more films, as well as Elektra and Daredevil (meh), The Fantastic Four (meh - and you should see the one they did in 1994 before Jessica Alba - it was never released for good reason - though I do have a copy on videotape… it really was horrible!, Punisher, Conan, Red Sonja, Richie Rich (I have over 800 of his comics - I know, I know), The Rocketeer, Road To Perdition, Scot Pilgrim Vs The World, Spawn, Sheena, Dick Tracy, The Spirit.

Of course, there were also such smaller comic book company adaptions such as Tank Girl, Judge Dredd, The Mask, Men In Black, 30 Days of Night, 300 (also from Frank Miller), Barb Wire, Conan (a decent version!), Cowboys And Aliens, The Crow, Hell Boy, From Hell, League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Josie And The Pussycats (long tails and ears for hats!), Kick-Ass, Mysterymen (I liked it a lot!), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Tales From The Crypt (movies), Timecop, V for Vendetta, Watchmen… and there's many more… that's just off the top of my head.

Generation 5 (or 4): Now we also have Iron Man, The Hulk, Captain America, The Avengers, Thor, and my personal favorite from Marvel, The Guardians of the Galaxy

DC offered my favorite character Green Lantern in a so-so movie, Jonah Hex (not bad), The Losers (not bad), Catwoman (woof, as in I'd chase her, but the movie is a dog), but has fallen behind Marvel in the movie genre - and this is with a Superman/Batman movie coming up. (On TV, however, DC has Gotham, The Flash, Arrow (Green) and had The Human Target... Marvel only has Agents of S.HI.E.L.D.

Along with a new Sin City movie out now, it got me wondering just what Japanese manga (comic books) had been made into live-action movies!

Many of us are far-too familiar with the animated Japanese flicks - nothing wrong with that - I saw Akira in Japanese-language and some animated porno videos back in 1990 before I left for Japan - and the art was spectacular - though even then I did not understand tentacle porn. I still don't. I mean, I get it, but I don't get why.

As for the Live-Action flicks…

Smokey Hokes, but there are a lot of Japanese comic books made into live-action movies - even more than Bollywood (which has a few India-constructed comic books cum film) and Hollywoodland (that famous sign used to read Hollywoodland, but was shortened in 1949 to plain old Hollywood).

I have placed them in alphabetical order based on the main Movie Title... and if the movie title was different from the manga/comic book, I have listed that - otherwise the same. Then I listed the movie's date.

I have placed (in brackets) the year the manga series ran when I could find it, and then placed at the end, the name and date of the movie.

If there are several movies based on a manga, then they are placed in chronological order of movie release.

Movie - Release Date             Manga - Publication Date

  • 009-1: The End of the Beginning - 2013, based on 009-1 (manga 1969-1970 & 1974);
  • 20th Century Boys Dai 1 Shoh Owari no Hajimari - 2008, from the manga 20th Century Boys (manga 1999-2006); 
  • 20th Century Boys Dai 2 Shoh Saigo no Kiboh - 2009, from the manga 20th Century Boys (manga 1999-2006); 
  • 20th Century Boys Saishu Shoh Bokura no Hata - 2009, from the manga 20th Century Boys (manga 1999-2006);  

  • Afro Tanaka, 2012 (manga 2004-2007);
  • A Homansu - 1986 (manga - not sure of publishing dates);
  • Ai Ore! - 2012 (manga 2006-2009);
  • Ai to Makoto - 1974 (manga 1973-1976);
  • Zoku: Ai to Makoto - 1975, from the manga Ai to Makoto (manga 1973-1976);
  • Ai to Makoto: Kanketshuen 1976, from the manga Ai to Makoto (manga 1973-1976);
  • Ai to Makoto  - 2012 (manga 1973-1976);
  • Tamami: The Baby's Curse - 2008 from the manga Akanbo Shojo (not sure of publishing dates);
  • Akira (manga 1982-1990) - 2013 - yup, live action - just wait, it's coming in English;
  • Akira No. 2 - 2014 from the manga Akira (manga 1982-1990);
  • Tenshi - 2006, from the manga Angel Nest (manga 2001);
  • Arcana - 2013 (manga 2000-2001);
  • Attack On Titan - 2015 (manga 2009-present);
  • Azumi - 2003 (manga 1994-2009);
  • Azumi 2: Death or Love - 2005, from the manga Azumi (manga 1994-2009);

  • Bad Boys - 2011 (manga 1996-2003);
  • Bakugyaku Familia - 2012 (manga 1994-2004);
  • Bakuman - 2015 (manga 2008-2012);
  • Batashi Kingyo - 1990 (manga 1986-1988);
  • The Guyver - 1991, based on the manga Big Booster Armor Guyver (manga 1985-1987);
  • Guyver: Dark Hero - 1994, from the manga Bio Booster Armor Guyver (manga 1985-1987);
  • Black Butler - 2014 (manga 2006-present);
  • Bleach - TBA, based on the manga BLEACH (manga 2001-present);
  • Boku no Hatsukoi o Kimi ni Sasagu - 2007, based on the manga Boku wa Imōto ni Koi o Suru  (manga 2003-2005);
  • Boys on the Run - 2010 (manga 2005-2008);

  • The Torture Club - 2014, based on the manga Chotto Kawaii Aian Meiden (manga - not sure of publishing dates);
  • Circuit no Ohkami - 1977 (manga 1975-1979);
  • City Hunter - 1993 (manga 1985-1991; Cowboy Bebop - TBA (manga 1997-1998);
  • Crows Zero - 2007, based on the manga Crows (manga 1990-1998);
  • Crows Zero 2 - 2009, based on the manga Crows (manga 1990-1998);
  • Crows Explode - 2014, based on the manga Crows (manga 1990-1998);
  • Dragons from Russia 1990, from the manga Crying Freeman (manga 1986-1988);
  • Killer's Romance - 1990, from the manga Crying Freeman (manga 1986-1988);
  • Crying Freeman - 1995, from the manga Crying Freeman (manga 1986-1988);
  • Cutie Honey - 2004 (manga 1973-1974);

  • Death Note - 2006 (manga 2003-2006);
  • Death Note: The Last Name - 2006 based on the manga Death Note (manga 2003-2006);
  • L Changed The World - 2008, based on the manga Death Note (manga 2003-2006);
  • Death Note - TBA (manga 2003-2006);
  • Dororo - 2007 (manga 1967-1968);
  • Dragon Ball: The Magic Begins - 1989, based on the manga Dragon Ball (manga 1984-1995);
  • Dragon Ball Evolution - 2009, based on the manga Dragon Ball (manga 1984-1995);
  • Dragon Ball: Ssawors Son Goku, Igyeora Son Goku - 1990 based on the manga Dragon Ball (manga 1984-1995);

  • Fist of the North Star - 1995 (manga 1983-1988);
  • From Kobe - 2015 (manga 1998-2006);
  • A Boy and His Samurai - 2010, based on the manga Fushihi no Kuni no Yasubei (not sure of publishing dates);
  • Futari Ecchi - 2011 (manga 1997-present);
  • Futari H: Second Kiss - 2011, based on the manga Futari Ecchi (manga 1997-present);
  • Futari Ecchi: Triple Love - 2012, based on the manga Futari Ecchi (manga 1997-present);
  • Futari Ecchi: Love Forever - 2012, based on the manga Futari Ecchi (manga 1997-present);

  • Gaki Rock - TBA (manga 2003);
  • Gantz - 2011, based on the manga Gantz (manga 2000-2013);
  • Gantz: Perfect Answer - 2011, based on the manga Gantz (manga 2000-2013);
  • Gegege no Kitaro - 2007, (manga 1960-1969);
  • Tsuge Yoshiharu World: Gensenkan Shujin - 1993, based on the manga Gensenkan Shujin (not sure of publishing dates);
  • Ghost in the Shell - TBA (manga 1989-1997);
  • Yakuza Weapon - 2011, from the manga Gokudoh Heiki (manga 1996);
  • Gokudoh Meshi - 2011 (manga 2006-present);

  • Haikara-san ga Tohru - 1987 (manga 1975-1977);
  • Hana no Asuka-gumi! - 1988 (manga 1985-1995);
  • Hana no Asuka-gumi! Neo - 2009, based on the manga Hana no Asuka-gumi! (manga 1985-1995);
  • Harenchi Gakuen - 2009 (manga 1968-1972);
  • Harenchi Gakuen: Shintain Kensa no Maki 1970, based on the manga Harenchi Gakuen (manga 1968-1972);
  • Harenchi Gakuen: Tackle Kiss no Maki - 1970, based on the manga Harenchi Gakuen (manga 1968-1972);
  • Shin Harenchi Gakuen - 1971, based on the manga Harenchi Gakuen (manga 1968-1972);
  • Heisei Harenchi Gakuen - 1996, based on the manga Harenchi Gakuen (manga 1968-1972);
  • Higanjima - 2010 (manga 2002-2010);
  • High School Debut - 2011 (manga 2003-2013);
  • Himitsu no Akko-chan - 2011 (manga 1962-1965);
  • Himizu - 2011 (not sure of publishing dates);
  • Honey and Clover - 2006 (manga 2000-2006);
  • Hoshi no Furumachi - 2011 (manga 2006-2008);
  • Hotaru no Hikari - 2012 (manga 2004-2009);
  • Hot Road - 2014 (manga 1986-1987);
  • Hozuki-san Chi no Aneki - 2014 (manga 2009 2011);

  • Ibitsu - 2013 (manga 2010-present);
  • Ichi the Killer - 2001 (manga 1998-2001);
  • I'll Give It My All… Tomorrow - 2013 (manga 2007-2012);
  • Initial D - 2005 (manga 1995-2013);
  • Ecchi o Nerae! Inu-Neko - 2009, based on the manga Inu Neko (manga 2004);
  • Ikigami - 2008, based on the manga Ikigami: The Ultimate Limit (manga 2005-2012);

  • Happily Ever After - 2007, based on the manga Jigyaku no Uta (manga 1985-1990);
  • Johkyoh Monogatari - 2013 (not sure of publishing date);

  • Kagen no Tsuki - 2004 (manga 1998-1998);
  • Kaiji - 2009 (manga 1996-2009);
  • Kaiji 2 - 2011, based on the manga Kaiji (manga 1996 - 2009);
  • Kakashi - 2001 (manga 1998 - ?);
  • Gekijouban Kamen Teacher - 2014, based on the manga Kamen Teacher (manga 2006 - 2007);
  • God's Left Hand, Devil's Right Hand - 2006, based on the manga Kami no Hidarite, Akuma no Migite (manga 1986 - ?);
  • Kami-sama no lu Toori - 2014 (manga 2011);
  • Kami Voice - 2011 (manga 2011-present);
  • Kanojo wa Uso o Aishisugiteru - 2013 (manga 2009-present);
  • Karate Baka Ichidai - 1977, (manga 1971-1977);
  • Kekko Kamen - 1991 (manga 1974-1978);
  • Kekko Kamen 2: We'll Be Back - 1992, based on the manga Kekko Kamen (manga 1974-1978);
  • Kekko Kammen 3 - 1993, based on the manga Kekko Kamen (manga 1974-1978);
  • Mask of Kekko - 2004, based on the manga Kekko Kamen (manga 1974-1978);
  • Kekko Kamen: The MGF Strikes Back - 2004, based on the manga Kekko Kamen (manga 1974-1978);
  • Kekko Kamen Returns - 2004, based on the manga Kekko Kamen (manga 1974-1978);
  • Kekko Kamen Surprise - 2004, based on the manga Kekko Kamen (manga 1974-1978);
  • Kekko Kamen Royale - 2007, based on the manga Kekko Kamen (manga 1974-1978);
  • Kekko Kamen Premium - 2007, based on the manga Kekko Kamen (manga 1974-1978);
  • Kekko Kamen Forever - 2007, bbased on the manga Kekko Kamen (manga 1974-1978);
  • Kiimi ni Todoke - 2010 (manga 2007-present);
  • Shanghai Mermaid Legend Murder Case - 1997 based on the manga Kindaichi Shounen no Jikenbo (1992-present);
  • Kin Kyori Renai - 2014 (manga 2008-2011);
  • Kirin - 2011 (manga 1987-present);
  • Kisei Juui Suzune - 2011 (manga not sure of publishing date);
  • Kiyoku Yawaku - 2013 (manga 2004-2010);
  • Kochira Katsushika-ku Kameari Kōen Mae Hashutsujo - 1977 (manga 1976-present);
  • Kochikame - The Movie: Save The Kachidiki Bridge! - 2011, based on the manga Kochira Katsushika-ku Kameari Kōen Mae Hashutsujo (manga 1976-present);
  • Koibumi Biyori - 2004 (manga 2001-?);
  • Otakus in Love - 2004, based on the manga Koi no Mon (manga 1998-2001);
  • Air Doll - 2009, based on the manga Kuki Ningyo (not sure of publishing dates);
  • Kyō, Koi o Hajimemasu - 2012 (manga 2007-2014);
  • Big Tits Zombie based on the manga Kyonyu Dragon - 2010 (manga 2005-?);
  • Hentai Kamen - 2013, based on the manga Kyukyoku!! Hentai Kamen (manga 1992-1993);

  • Lady Snowblood - 1973 (manga 1972-1973);
  • Lady Snowblood: Love Song of Vengeance - 1974, based on the manga Lady Snowblood (manga 1972-1973);
  • Kamui Gaiden - 2009, based on the manga The Legend of Kamui: The Island of Sugaru (manga 1964-1971);
  • L DK - 2014 (manga 2009-present);
  • Liar Game: The Final Stage - 2010, based on the manga Liar Game (2005-present);
  • Liar Game: Reborn based on the manga Liar Game (2005-present);
  • Life is Dead - 2012 (manga 2007-?);
  • Lone Wolf and Cub: Sword of Vengeance - 1972, based on the manga Lone Wolf and Cub (manga 1970-1976);
  • Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart at the River Styx - 1972, based on the manga Lone Wolf and Cub (manga 1970-1976);
  • Lone Wold and Cub: Baby Cart to Hades - 1972, based on the manga Lone Wolf and Cub (manga 1970-1976);
  • Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart Peril- 1972, based on the manga Lone Wolf and Cub (manga 1970-1976);
  • Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart in the Land of Demons - 1973, based on the manga Lone Wolf and Cub (manga 1970-1976);
  • Lone Wolf and Cub: White Heaven in Hell - 1974, based on the manga Lone Wolf and Cub (manga 1970-1976);
  • Shogun Assassin 1980, based on the manga Lone Wolf and Cub (manga 1970-1976);
  • Lovely Complex - 2006 (manga 2001-2006);
  • Lover's Kiss - 2003 (manga 1995-1996);
  • Kakera: A Piece of Our Life - 2003, based on the manga Love Vibes (manga 1996);
  • Lupin III - 2014 (manga 1967-1969);
  • Strange Psychokinetic Strategy - 1974, based on the manga Lupin III (manga 1967-1969);

  • Mai Chan's Daily Life: The Movie - TBA, based on the manga Mai-Chan's Daily Life (manga 2003);
  • Maison Ikkoku - 1986 (manga 1980-1987);
  • The Mole Song: Undercover Ageny Reiji - 2013 based on the manga Mogura no Uta (manga 2005-2008);
  • Moteki - 2011 (manga 2008-2010);
  • Mushishi - 2007 (manga 1999-2008);

  • Nana - 2005 (manga 2000-2009);
  • Nana 2 - 2006, based on the manga Nana (manga 2000-2009);
  • Nodame Cantabile Saishu Gakushoh Zen-Pen - 2009, based on the manga Nodame Cantabile (manga 2001-2009);
  • Nodame Cantabile Saishu Gakushoh Kou-Hen - 2010, based on the manga Nodame Cantabile (manga 2001-2009);
  • Nonchan Noriben - 2009 (manga 1995-1998);
  • Nozoki Ana - 2014 (manga 2009-2013);
  • Nozomi Witches - 1990 (manga 1986-1996);

  • Oldboy - 2013 (manga 1996-1998);
  • Ohokuu: The Inner Chambers - 2010 (manga 2005-present);
  • Orochi - 2008, from the manga Orochi: Blood (manga 1969-1970);
  • Ouran High School Host Club - 2012 (manga 2002-2010);

  • Paradise Kiss - 2011 (manga 1999-2003); 
  • Parasyte Part 1 - 2014, from the manga Parasyte (manga 1990-1995);
  • Parasyte Part 2 - 2015, from the manga Parasyte (manga 1990-1995);
  • Pecross' Mother and Her Days - 2013, from the manga Pekorosu no Haha ni Ai ni Iku (manga 2012);
  • The Prince of Tennis - 2006 (manga 1999-2008);

  • Ranma 1/2: Live Action Special - 2011, from the manga Ranma 1/2 (manga 1987-1996);
  • Riki-Oh: The Story of Ricky - 1991, from the manga Riki-Oh (manga 1988-1990);
  • Lady Oscar - 1979, from the manga The Rose of Versailles (manga 1972-1973);
  • Rurouni Kenshin - 2012 (manga 1994-1999);
  • Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Taika-hen - 2014, from the manga Rurouni Kenshin (manga 1994-1999);
  • Rurouni Kenshin: Densetsu no Saigo-hen - 2014, from the manga Rurouni Kenshin (manga 1994-1999);

  • Shark Skin Man and Peach Hip Girl - 2009 (manga 1993);
  • Shinjuku Swan - TBA (manga 2005-present);
  • Saikin, Imohto no Yohsu ga Chotto Okaishiin Da Ga - 2014 (manga 2010-present);
  • Sakura no Sono - 1990 (manga 1985-1986);
  • Sakura no Sono - 2008 (manga 1985-1986);
  • Sakuran - 2007 (manga 2001-2003);
  • Salaryman Kinaroh - 1999 (manga 1994-2002);
  • Say "I love you" - 2014 (manga 2008-present);
  • Saru Lock - 2010 (manga 2004-2009);
  • Shindo - 2007 (manga 1998);
  • Sky High - 2003 (manga 2001-2003);
  • Smuggler - 2011 (manga 2000);
  • SS - 2008 (manga 2000-2003);
  • Speed Racer - 2008 (manga 1966-1968);
  • Hoshi Mamoru Inu - 2011, based on the manga Stargazing Dog (manga 2008-2009);
  • Sukeban Deka The Movie - 1987, from the manga Sukeban Deka (manga 1976-1982);
  • Sukeban Deka the Movie 2: Counter-Attack from the Kazama Sisters - 1988, from the manga Sukeban Deka (manga 1976-1982);
  • Yo-Yo Girl Cop - 2006, from the manga Sukeban Deka (manga 1976-1982);
  • Sundome - 2007 (manga 2008-2009);
  • Sundome 2 - 2008, from the manga Sundome (manga 2008-2009);
  • Sundome 3 - 2008, from the manga Sundome (manga 2008-2009);
  • Sundome 4: The Final - 2009, from the manga Sundome (manga 2008-2009);
  • Sweet Poolside - 2014 (manga 2004 & 2011);

  • Angel Guts: High School Co-Ed - 1978, based on the manga Tenshi no Harawata (not sure of publishing dates);
  • Angel Guts: Red Classroom - 1979, based on the manga Tenshi no Harawata (not sure of publishing dates);
  • Angel Guts: Nami - 1979, based on the manga Tenshi no Harawata (not sure of publishing dates);
  • Angel Guts: Red Porno - 1981, based on the manga Tenshi no Harawata (not sure of publishing dates);
  • Angel Guts: Red Rope - "Until I Expire" - 1987, based on the manga Tenshi no Harawata (not sure of publishing dates);
  • Angel Guts: Red Vertigo - 1988, based on the manga Tenshi no Harawata (not sure of publishing dates);
  • Angel Guts: Red Lightning - 1994, based on the manga Tenshi no Harawata (not sure of publishing dates);
  • Angel Guts: Night is Falling Again - 1994, based on the manga Tenshi no Harawata (not sure of publishing dates);
  • Tetsujin 28: The Movie - 2005, from the manga Tetsujin 28-go (manga 1956-1966);
  • Thermae Romae - 2012 (manga 2008-2013) (see image above);
  • Thermae Romae II - 2014, from the manga Thermae Romae (manga 2008-2013);
  • Tokyo Babylon 1999 - 1993, from the manga Tokyo Babylon (manga 1990-1993);
  • Tokyo Daigaku Monogatari - 2006 (manga 1992-2001);
  • Tokyo Zombie - 2005 (manga 1999);
  • Tomie - 1999, from the manga Tomie (manga 1987-2000);
  • Tomie: Another Face - 1999, from the manga Tomie (manga 1987-2000);
  • Tomie: Replay - 2000, from the manga Tomie (manga 1987-2000);
  • Tomie: Re-birth - 2001, from the manga Tomie (manga 1987-2000);
  • Tomie: Forbidden Fruit - 2001, from the manga Tomie (manga 1987-2000);
  • Tomie: Beginning - 2005, from the manga Tomie (manga 1987-2000);
  • Tomie: Revenge - 2005, from the manga Tomie (manga 1987-2000);
  • Tomie vs Tomie - 2007, from the manga Tomie (manga 1987-2000);
  • Tomie Unlimited - 2011, from the manga Tomie (manga 1987-2000);
  • You're My Pet - 2011, from the manga Tramps Like Us (manga 2000-2005);
  • Tsukuroi Tatsu Hito - TBA (manga 2010-present);
  • Tsure ga Utsu ni Narimashite - 2011 (manga 2006);

  • Umizaru - 2004 (manga 1998-2001);
  • Limit of Love: Umizaru - 2006, from the manga Umizaru (manga 1998-2001);
  • Brave Hearts: Umizaru - 2012, from the manga Umizaru (manga 1998-2001);
  • Uchu Kyohdai - 2012 (manga 2007-present);
  • Usagi Drop - 2011 (manga 2005-2011);
  • Ushijima the Loan Shark - 2012 (manga 2004-present);
  • Ushijima the Loan Shark 2 - 2014, from the manga Ushijima the Loan Shark (manga 2004-present);
  • Usotsuki Paradox - 2013 (manga 2009-2012);
  • Uzumaki - 2000 (manga 1998-1999);

  • Wangan Midnight - 1991 (manga 1990-2008);
  • Wangan Midnight II - 1993, from the manga Wangan Midnight (manga 1990-2008);
  • Wangan Midnight III 1993, from the manga Wangan Midnight (manga 1990-2008);
  • Wangan Midnight 4 - 1993 from the manga Wangan Midnight (manga 1990-2008);
  • Wangan Midnight Special Director's Cut Complete Edition - 1994, from the manga Wangan Midnight (manga 1990-2008);
  • Wangan Midnight Final: GT-R Legend Act 1 - 1994, from the manga Wangan Midnight (manga 1990-2008);
  • Wangan Midnight Final: GT-R Legend Act - 1994, from the manga Wangan Midnight (manga 1990-2008);
  • Devil GT-R Full Tuning - 1994, from the manga Wangan Midnight (manga 1990-2008);
  • Showdown! Devil GT-R - 1994, from the manga Wangan Midnight (manga 1990-2008);
  • Wangan Midnight S30 vs Gold GT-R - Part I - 1998, from the manga Wangan Midnight (manga 1990-2008);
  • Wangan Midnight S30 vs Gold GT-R - Part II - 1998, from the manga Wangan Midnight (manga 1990-2008);
  • Wangan Midnight Return - 2001, from the manga Wangan Midnight (manga 1990-2008);
  • Watching Fuckin' Tv All Time Makes a Fool - 2006, a 1-shot erotic manga (manga 2000);
  • Bokura ga Ita - 2012, based on the manga We Were There (manga 2002-2012);
  • Wild 7 - 2011 (manga 1969-1979);

  • Yawara! - 1989, from the manga Yawara! A Fashioable Judo Girl (manga 1986-1993);
  • Yakyu-kyoh no Uta - 1979 (manga 1972-1976);
  • Yunagi City, Sakura Country - 2007, from the manga Town of Evening Calm, Country of Cherry Blossoms (manga 2003-2004);

  • Zekkyoh Gakkyu - 2013 (manga 2008-present).


Buddha help me but that's all of them as of August 19, 2014 according to Wikipedia and a couple of other sources. Every Live action movie made from a Japanese manga.

Hey - I'm not a huge fan of most Japanese manga - I find the art style to similar to each other - and the the short turnaround on the movies...

If you glance at some of the manga with multiple movies… you'll notice that there is very little time delay between movies… sometimes multiples coming out in the same year.

Consider that in Hollywood, a decent sequel can take three years to produce - such as the original Star Wars trilogy or the Indiana Jones trilogy… which came out in 1985, 1989 and 1990…

… so just how good are these Japanese movies? Not very, I'd suspect.

If I have left off any manga turned into Live Action movies (not TV, and NOT animation), please let me know.

Kanpai
Andrew Joseph

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Japanese Man Fathers 16 Babies - Wants 100s More

For those of you who want children and are having a tough go of it for whatever reason, you may want to skip this story, as I fear it may disgust you.

Look… at some point in time in one's life, an adult and consenting partner come to the conclusion that they would like to have a family involving the pitter-patter of little feet.

Some people, like myself, get a dog first to ensure that if the dog survives, there is less of a chance of screwing things up with a real baby.

And then there's Japan's Shigeta Mitsutoki (surname first) a 24-year-old business man who apparently knows he wants a large family - a battalion of kids even - but not the "annoying" prospect of a wife/mother. That's him in the image above.

He apparently has 16 children, and wants hundreds more.

First - while I am sure there are many Japanese men who are better fathers than me, and I do my best, but Japanese men in recent (and past) tradition are generally known for merely bringing home the bacon - for working and working and working… and generally never having the time or the wherewithal to actually do much fathering except on Sunday - when folks in Japan typically don't go into their salaryman workplace.

Second - Shigeta is 24-years-old. Now, I might not have even slept with a woman by that age, not through lack of trying, mind you, but I did have it in mind that someday I would hope to find the right woman and have a kid or two.

I'm not sure why I thought that was important, but I do know that deep inside my mind I wanted my genetic lineage to continue… it's an innate trait amongst creatures on this planet to ensure survival, and perhaps, in humans, even memory… to ensure that this life must be worth something.

That's also why I write. I"m just covering the angles.

Third - Shigeta has fathered 16 surrogate babies.

Fourth - He says he wants hundreds of babies.

This is either an immature, but rich young man, or someone with delusions of grandeur but still very rich, or someone with a whole lot of mental illness.

There's nothing wrong with wanting a large family… though I think we can all agree that 'hundreds of babies' is just plain nuts… but apparently Shigeta has stated that he has the means to look after them… not that he wants a family… he just wants or needs kids.

"We are looking into two motives. One is human trafficking and the other is exploitation of children," says Thailand police Lt. Gen. Kokiat Wongvorachart, who is Thailand’s lead investigator in the case.

He said Shigeta made 41 trips to Thailand since 2010. On many occasions he traveled to nearby Cambodia, where he brought four of his babies.

Thailand Interpol director Maj. Gen. Apichart Suribunya says said regional Interpol offices in Japan, Cambodia, Hong Kong and India have been asked to probe Shigeta’s background, beginning last week. Police say he appears to have registered businesses or apartments in those countries and has frequently traveled there.

Earlier this August 2014, police raided a Bangkok, Thailand condominium earlier this month and found nine babies and nine nannies living in a few unfurnished rooms filled with baby bottles, bouncy chairs, play pens and diapers. They have since identified Mitsutoki Shigeta as the father of those babies — and seven others.

I think that's 16 babies.

Now called the "Baby Factory" case, it is important to note that Shigeta has not been charged with any crime - which is odd, but not odd.

Shigata has already proven that he is the father of the children through DNA samples sent from Japan, that he is indeed the father of the children… and now, after that Bangkok raid, he is trying to get his children back. The kids are now with Thai social services.

Shigeta WAS in Thailand, but after the August 5, 2014 raid, he left the country and responded to inquiries via a lawyer.

According to Kokiat Wongvorachart, Shigeta had hired 11 Thai surrogate mothers to carry his children…. including four sets of twins.

That would imply he either hasn't had sex with these women OR that he has and these women are incredibly potent.

Let's go with the former.

Apparently a multinational fertility clinic called New Life in Thailand (and six other countries) had supplied Shigeta with two surrogate mothers for his baby needs, but that the founder, Mariam Kukunashvili actually warned Interpol about Shigeta before the first baby was born in June of 2013.

Kukunashvili is based in the company's headquarters in Georgia… and had never met Shigeta but had heard about him from staff in Thailand.

She says that as soon as the two surrogate mothers became pregnant, he told her he wanted more.

Kukunashvili said Shigeta claimed he wanted 10 to 15 babies a year, and that he wanted to continue the baby-making process until death claims him.

She says he also asked her about getting a hold of some equipment that would allow him to freeze his sperm in case he was no longer able to do so when older.

Kukunashvili adds that when Shigeta was asked why he wanted so many kids, she learned that he 'wanted to win elections and could use his big family for voting. Shigeta also added that 'the best thing I can do for the world is to leave many children.'

When Kukunashvili expressed concerns to Shigeta via an e-mail, about the possibly suspicions greed back on August 31, 2013, Shigeta, via an attorney, Ratpratan Tulatorn, says that he was involved in "no dishonesty, no illegal activities."

Tulatorn the lawyer failed to add that Shigeta's money looks pretty real, though he must be kicking himself as he has apparently been replaced with another lawyer.

There are, however, very visible reasons to suggest that Shigeta is telling the truth about his reasons for a large family.

"These are legal babies, they all have birth certificates,” Ratpratan told Thailand’s Channel 3 television station when he appeared on site during the August . “There are assets purchased under these babies’ names. There are savings accounts for these babies, and investments. If he were to sell these babies, why would he give them these benefits?”

Why indeed?

Tax write-offs, to be sure… but at some point in time it must stop being a an advantage, and must cost more in family benefits and family planning than what he is saving.

What I want to know is just how a 24-year-old is rich enough to do all of this? Money from the family line? Maybe. Probably.

But doesn't anyone around him feel the compassion to tell him to slow down… or maybe to actually find a woman.

Nowhere or at no time, I should point out, has Shigeta actually said he wants a wife or a mother for his kids… the paid surrogate would suffice… but aside from finances, there is hardly that emotional vested interest any mom would have in their child or children. I assume.

But what about Shigeta… has no one told him 'no'?

What political election does he have in mind to win?

How can hundreds of mini-shi's get him elected? Look at me! I'm so rich that I'm using my motherless children to get me elected!"

Well… I suppose stranger politicians have been elected into office.

As for the stunning police work done or not done by Interpol… Kukunashvili that fertility clinic owner says she sent faxes in both English and French to Interpol's headquarters in Lyon, France sometime in April 2013.

I would imagine that she would have kept those records, seeing as how she was trying to do the right thing and was dealing with Interpol…

Interpol hasn't said anything about why the claims weren't taken seriously at that time…

Anyhow… as for Shigeta… this guy might have provided the sperm to father these kids, but he sure ain't no dad.

Cheers,
Andrew Joseph