Review: Cheshire Cat Bus (Menโ€™s) T-shirt

large_15770_catBUSfaceStudio Ghibli has long been regarded as the Disney of the East and now one of their most lovable characters can be yours in the form of the Cheshire Cat Bus from My Neighbour Totoro. This is one of those t-shirts that has reached cult status with a lot of Otakus wearing them at conventions and any kind of fan meet ups! Great quality cotton not flimsy with the graphic taking up pretty much the whole front of the t-shirt. That cheesy, big grin that the Cat is known for is instantly recognisabe and the large teeth along with the huge yellow eyes, nose and ears make this one, a must have. The t-shirt comes in a very neutral light brown/tan colour so you know it’s going to go well with anything in your collection. The graphic itself doesn’t feel too rough nor does it feel thick like some other tops do but this only makes it feel lighter not less durable if anything. Great material, awesome artwork with nice colours and a very popular J-Pop culture character on the front, nothing else needs to be said. Pick yours up today from Otaku Fuel.

Otaku goodness and AKB48 shock!

First off, a big shout out to my extended Otaku “family”, Otaku Fuel. I received the excellent products to review in 6 days from the States, 6 days?!? Must have been sent on the new NBN (National Broadband Network). Then again…maybe not ๐Ÿ™‚ Anyways, pics of the goodness as well as the ever important reviews will be forthcoming very soon ๐Ÿ™‚ But in other news important to me today I found out that my favourite J-Pop girl group, AKB48 actually had a new member that wasn’t real! So what I mean is that they composited different features from other members to make one new member that existed only in a computer (probably Windoze) ๐Ÿ˜ฆ Vid below of how this was accomplished, the end result was actually very subtle and very well done. Under the vid, there’s a link to where you can make your own pop star…and don’t tell me the song in the background isn’t catchy as all hell!!


Link to make your own pop star!ย 

Japandaman’s goodies, Otaku happenings and light bikes

Wow…it’s been a while since my last post, I’ve just been so into my new duties over at Otaku Fuel. First up, in case you don’t know, I’m now writing product reviews for them and am also their blog contributor, two things that are keeping me very busy and very happily so I must add! Otaku Fuel are a US based site that specialise in anime, manga, cosplay accessories, in fact anything and everything J-pop culture related…they’re a superior site with an excellent product range. Look up their site and Facebook page and while you’re there, check out their merch, links are above ๐Ÿ™‚

I’ve also decided to take some pics of my small but growing Otaku collection for everyone to see, pics below with some descriptions ๐Ÿ™‚

A peek at my manga, Bleach and Vampire Knight and the Death Note Collection Vol. 1, Ryu from a gatcha machine, Mario and Spider-Bear!

My 3DS and Psp Go living peacefully together, my CD collection (J-Pop and OST’s), my magazines are just showing.

My Japanese magazines collection. Dengeki Games on the left which unfortunately has been discontinued. The Playstation and Famitsu Weekly magazines were purchased in Japan when we were there. The Dengeki’s and other magazines were purchased from Kanga Kanga, a Japanese magazine/book importer based in downtown Melbourne. Taka-san runs the place and is very friendly and extremely knowledgeable so pay him a visit and have a look at what he has on offer, there’s heaps for everyone!! The Kanga Kanga site has address details, keep up to date with his blog, Twitter and Facebook page ๐Ÿ™‚

Ryu, Mario and a Nintendog!

Spider-Man 2 bobble head which was a present from my stepsons quite a few birthdays ago.

And one of my most prized possessions, the Premium Package of Metal Gear Solid which I purchased when we were in Japan from Super Potato Akihabara. Great site here which has a walk through the store which is extremely rare and shows you what to expect. Having been there twice I can vouch for the store and say that as far as retro goes, it’s the best in the land. Great place to find rare items or gaming goodies that were never released in Australia.

That’s all for now but I will take some pics of my figures and post them up soon as well. Final Fantasy and Death Note figures only for now but am hoping to change that soon when I have my coins in my pocket!! ๐Ÿ™‚

And lastly,the vid below is what awaited me when I left work this evening. Riders on light bikes performing tricks, how cool, right?

See you all soon and thanks for sticking around! ๐Ÿ™‚

Review: Appleseed Movie DVD (2004)

Appleseed Movie DVD supplied by Otaku Fuel

Shirow Masamune is a name that reverberates around the Otaku world. He singlehandedly kept the industry alive with a cult classic in the form of Ghost In the Shell. This was followed closely by another classic, Appleseed which was faithfully brought to the anime world by director, Shinji Aramaki. Appleseed was a huge smash in 2004 and even more so when it was released onto home DVD which brings me to this review. Just a brief background about the story first in case you haven’t had a chance to experience it yet.

Deunan Knute is a feisty and highly trained operative who fought in the last Global War and is one of the last human survivors who is teamed up with a technologically advanced cyborg called Briareos as part of the ESWAT organisation. The Appleseed of the title refers to highly sensitive and critical information Deunan must track down and recover before the new world, Olympus, is destroyed. The movie used a new technique instead of traditional cel animation. It combined animation, CGI and motion captured actors to bring incredible movement and a sense of realism to the characters as never seen before in an anime. This really has to be seen to be believed as the fluidity conveyed on the screen is really beautiful and a sight to behold. The transfer to DVD is absolutely faultless and is breathtaking to watch no matter how many times you may have watched it before.

The DVD itself is a two disc presentation with the first disc being the movie with your choice of English or Japanese dub, a commentary track from the director (amazing), soundtrack chapters, Appleseed trailers and the now obligatory trailers promoting other releases. The second disc is where more magic comes alive as it’s jam packed with special features ranging from a special called, “Birth of 3D Live Anime”, which is the making of Appleseed which is a must view, an archive of extensive design galleries, a music video from the Boom Boom Satellites, a commercial for the Appleseed soundtrack (which is another review), characters and mecha image gallery, staff profiles and profiles of the Appleseed characters and mecha info. All in all, a sublime collection of anime goodness worth viewing more than once and compliments the movie and overall presentation beautifully. And of course everything is presented in an impressive 16:9 ratio preserving the original format of the movie.

I think it’s obvious that I’m a fan and it may be a biased review but this is one title that if you don’t own, you must own or at the very least have watched it in Japanese with English subtitles as a true Otaku. This is a title that stands head and shoulders above all else along with some other gems that have deservedly earnt a place in your collection. I can’t praise Appleseed enough, amazing story told at a cracking pace, amazing technology utilised, great soundtrack and characters in a race against time that you will love all bundled in a double disc Special Edition which will look great in any collection.

Enough said, buy this now, it’s that simple ๐Ÿ™‚

Game Bar A Button, Akihabara – An Otaku Experience

>One of the more cooler things I got to experience in Japan was a bar that I had heard about but had no idea where it was. Called the Game Bar A Button in Akihabara, the pics I had seen of it looked cool and very much my kind of bar. I was lucky enough to hook up with a friend of mine in Japan who was going there to film an event and asked if I wanted to tag along…as if I was going to say no?!?!? Pics below…




Tons and tons of controllers from all generations…
Some controllers and consoles I had never seen or heard of ๐Ÿ™‚


These were not nailed or glued down and no one steals them!! Try doing that in Melbourne before some console geek makes a break for it ๐Ÿ˜ฆ





Manga that you can help yourself to as long as you can the local tongue ๐Ÿ™‚


Hmm…Panasonic Q…sexy…


You had me at Dreamcast…




And the reason why we were all there…for Kikuta San! For the uninitiated, Kikuta San is responsible for the score to Secret of Mana on SNES amongst mnay others, one of the most highly revered RPG’s ever. He’s one of the most in demand and constantly busy composers in Japan and he makes time for his fans by posting where he’s making his announcements on his blog! Who else, big name musician, connects with their fans in such an intimate, and without fanfare, setting??


What I was dying over though was to the right of Kikuta San…that’s right…that’s a development Dreamcast. Looks like a PC probably because it ran Windows CE but that, along with Kikuta San, was a MASSIVE highlight. Shout outs to Hiroaki Yura, Director of the Eminence Symphony Orchestra, whi made time to hang with me…the best trip so far ๐Ÿ™‚



I think I might end up posting more of my pics from Japan now that I have the posting bug…there’s tons in interesting pics I have in my collection ๐Ÿ™‚