Last Week in Geekdom – Your Weekly News Round-Up (8/20 – 8/26)

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Welcome back to another installment of “Last Week in Geekdom” where I comb the internet for all the news you need to know so you don’t have to. There will be no news round-up post next weekend as it’s my birthday and I’m off to a hiking trip in Maine to celebrate. However, if you follow my twitter you may see me like or retweet some news related items if I think they’re important. Anyways, here are a few highlights for this week: Crunchyroll has announced a new anime originals project that has been met with much infighting among the anime community; new manga publishing company Denpa has been formed to bring in more of a variety of manga titles to the US; and graphic novel My Boyfriend is a Bear (previously reviewed here) is getting a movie adaptation. Be sure to check out the articles and videos down below, and I hope you all have a great rest of your Sunday! Continue reading

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Polar Bear in Love Manga Volume 1 Review

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Polar Bear in Love was a recent pick-up from one of my recent comic book runs. I’ve seen it pop up on twitter before, and apparently there’s a collection of online-only anime shorts being created for it. All the more reason for me to pick up the manga and check out what all the fuss is about. Be prepared though, if you wind up deciding to pick this up, you’ll get hit with a wave of cute as soon as you open the manga. It’s something I would consider an all-ages manga since I haven’t seen anything yet that makes me think there will be any older-level content, but it does have an undercurrent of boys love since both main characters are male. I would definitely say the manga is entertaining and does lend itself well to short-form animations, but it also may be too lacking in substance to keep me hooked in the future.

The basis of the manga centers around a young polar bear and a baby seal, both male, who meet each other while the seal is waiting for his mother to come back up through hole in the ice. Despite being natural enemies, Polar Bear falls in love with Seal. It’s love at first sight, but Seal still can’t forget that he is Polar Bear’s favorite meal. Seal can’t escape from Polar Bears advances though, and winds up staying with the amorous bear at least until his mother comes back. Written and created by Koromo and originally published on Pixiv, the English manga release was picked up by Yen Press. Continue reading

Some Short Thoughts on The Night is Short, Walk on Girl Film

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Today and yesterday mark the two-day only release of Misaaki Yuasa’s new film The Night is Short, Walk on Girl in US theaters. I almost didn’t get tickets, as the ones at the theater closest to me were selling out rather quickly, even a two weeks before the release. Now, I’m so glad I decided to buy those tickets when I did because this movie is definitely worth watching. Coming from the director of the Tatami Galaxy, Lu Over the Wall, and, most recently, the new Devilman Crybaby series, you can definitely see Yuasa’s free-form and expressive style throughout the film. I’m a sucker for unique and artistically expressive animation, and this film has it in spades. It’s honestly a feast for the eyes and wound up warming my heart in the process.

If you haven’t had a chance to look into the film, it follows the plot of the novel of the same name written by Tomihiko Morimi of a young college-age girl (Otome as she’s referred to, since she doesn’t have a name) who is enjoying a night out on the town in Tokyo, a night that doesn’t seem to end. It’s full of drinking, festivals, and the magic of used book markets. It’s also full of love, longing, and the search for romance as Otome’s senior in college (called just Sempai) searches for a way to get her to notice him and earn her love. Continue reading

Last Week in Geekdom – Your Weekly News Round-Up (8/13 – 8/19)

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Welcome back to another installment of “Last Week in Geekdom” where I comb the internet for all the news you need to know so you don’t have to. I somehow caught another cold recently so I’ve been trying to work through that as well as my backlog of manga reviews. So expect more manga and comic reviews for the future. In terms of highlights for this week: Prolific voice actor Unsho Ishizuka, Professor Oak and Jet Black, has passed away at 67; the Los Angeles Anime Film Festival will be hosting the first awards ceremony for English voice actors; and the new Watchmen HBO series is set to come out next year. Be sure to check out the articles and videos below, and have a great rest of your Sunday! Continue reading

Tokyo Tarareba Girls Manga Volume 1 Review

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Nearly 1 in 4 men and 1 in 7 women have yet to married in Japan by the age of 50 in 2015 according to the Japan Times. That’s a record 23.37% for men and 14.06% for women. It’s one of the biggest worries of the Japanese Government, the fact that young people aren’t marrying and having children, though it’s not like they have lost the desire to marry. Roughly 86% of male respondents and 89% of female respondents to a survey of 18 to 34 year-olds have reported a desire to get married at some point in life. There are a myriad of reasons why this discrepancy is there, but that isn’t what this post is about. This post is about  a manga that draws on the discontent of older unmarried women to create something akin to a Japanese Sex and the City sit-com, using an equal level of parody and drama to create something truly interesting.

Set in 2014 right after the announcement that Tokyo would be hosting the 2020 Olympics, Tokyo Tarareba GIrls follows 33-year-old screenwriter Rinko who finds herself swept up in the fervor and excitement as Tokyo begins getting ready for the games. Unhappy with the fact that her career is starting to plateau and she can’t seem to find a reliable boyfriend, Rinko spends all her free time drinking with her girl friends at a bar, lamenting the fact that none of them will have boyfriends to watch the Olympics with. Determined to change this fact, Rinko makes it a goal to find a boyfriend of quality husband material by the time the 2020 Olympics roll around. Created by Akiko Higashimura, the magaka for Princess Jellyfish, the English translation was just recently published this year through Kodansha. Continue reading

Last Week in Geekdom – Your Weekly News Round-Up (8/6 – 8/12)

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Welcome back to another installment of “Last Week in Geekdom” where I comb the internet for all the news you need to know so you don’t have to. I managed to catch a cold somehow last night, so I’ve been understandably slow in putting this post together, and some posts in the future will probably be delayed a little bit as well. But for now, here are the highlights for news this week: Mirai will be coming to theaters in the US and UK starting November; AT&T has bought out Crunchyroll’s holding company Otter media; and the 2018 Harvey Award Nominations were announced including some mangas. I hope you all have a great rest of your Sunday. I’m off to go sleep and try and recover. Continue reading

That Wolf Boy is Mine Manga Volume 1 Review

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Every Friday now I make a trip from work to the comic book store near my bus stop. I follow a bunch of manga publishers on twitter and will usually try and save the names of the ones that look interesting. So a month or two ago, this title popped up on my feed, and when I walked into the comic book store, I decided, what the heck I’ll pick up a copy for myself. The title obviously made this out to be a romance and the cover is appealing as well as the fact that it was going to have at least one shape-shifting wolf in it. I always hope that any chance I take on buying a certain manga will turn out well, and this one definitely looked at least promising enough to give the first volume a try. And I can say that after reading through it twice now that while it may not be a great romance, it is at least an entertaining one with some familiar feels to it.

That Wolf Boy is Mine follows the life of Komugi Kusunoki who is given the option of moving to Hokkaido from Tokyo to live with her dad after a particularly traumatic experience at her old school. On her first day in her new school, she happens to be placed in the seat next to one of the school’s most popular boys, Yu Ogami, whose easy-going personality and exclamation of “You smell good!” both draws her to him and makes her wary. But it’s when she finds Yu dozing under a tree that things start to get weird, because he appears to have furry ears and a tail. Once Yu realizes his secret is out, Komugi gets drawn into his world of shape-shifting animals that also means she’ll be spending time with the most popular boys in school. Continue reading

Last Week in Geekdom – Your Weekly News Round-Up (7/30 – 8/5)

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Welcome back to another installment of “Last Week in Geekdom” where I comb the internet for all the news you need to know so you don’t have to. It’s a bit later than usual for me to be posting it today, but that’s mainly because my parents just dropped off a new bookcase, and I’m dying to go reorganize all of my books and manga right now (also I didn’t get around to starting this post until yesterday…shhhhh). Anyways, it’ll be a shorter post today, but some highlights for this week are: Perfect Blue is coming back to theaters in the US, the Ghost in the Shell manga is going to be getting two new seasons, and Archie Comics is coming to Spotify. So, I hope you all are enjoying your Sunday. I’m off to reorganize my book collection! Continue reading

My Top 4 Favorite Female Prose Fantasy/Sci-Fi Writers

I’ve been reading a lot more prose lately than comics, mainly in an effort to catch up on a lot of the new books I’ve missed over the last couple years. I have a problem though. Once I find a book I love, I can’t put it down. And once I find an author I love, I obsessively look for any other books they’ve written. I’ll read their books on the train ride to work, during lunch, and sometimes be tempted to sneak a chapter or two during the slow times at work. The last couple weeks I’ve been sucked in again by this obsession, and have found myself binging through a series I’ve read three or four times already in order to get to the new book that just came out. Right now, as I’m writing this I keep glancing over to the book on my coffee table, being tempted to pick it up again even though I’ve been reading it the last couple hours.

In a way, this has started to eat into my blog writing time, so I figured I’d try and appease the book-lover in me and talk about something different this time. Tonight we’re going to talk about some of my favorite prose fantasy/sci-fi authors, the ones that have managed to suck me in and keep me coming back again and again. For the most part, my favorite authors happen to be women, so I figured I put together a short list of the women authors I love and why they keep me coming back for more. Continue reading