Back to news recapping…

SDCC is upon us, with G-Fest before that and Anime Expo before that, well… there’s a lot to talk about. Let’s start with the Godzilla-sized Godzilla in the room.

That’s certainly better than the initially-posted teaser, which had a continuity goof (bandages). A lot of people complain about the cameraman being visible in the frame, but he’s matted out from the video as initially posted on social media.

The movie should also feature some Ifukube tracks, and more monsters. Hopefully that doesn’t wind up in a memory hole next to Akira Takarada’s 2014 cameo.

  • Also on the Godzilla front, City on the Edge of Battle is finally up on Netflix. I enjoyed it, but there are plenty who didn’t… what would a Godzilla film be if it weren’t incredibly divisive?

  • The Neca/Bandai Godzilla toy arms race continues, as both have announced Godzilla 1962 figures. Given the fragility of MonsterArts and the price point, I think I’m going with Neca on this. They told Toho Kingdom recently that they’re now working with Toho directly, and should have a lot more options than when they were working through Warner, which is also encouraging.

  • We in the US are getting the My Hero Academia movie on September 25.

I was already going to watch it, but since they announced that one of the featured heroes would be named Godzillo and have the power of a certain legendary monster, it’s an extra slam dunk.

  • Moving off of Godzilla, Legendary is working on a Gundam movie, making all that service in Pacific Rim Uprising make a lot more sense.

  • John Layman (who did my favorite IDW Godzilla comic) has a new kaiju comic coming from Image next month: Leviathan!

  • Speaking of kaiju comics, a new free one is being offered by Amazon: Goliath Girls.

  • Voltron: Legendary Defender‘s sixth season ended with a bang, and the final 26 episodes are due to drop by the end of the year. Easily the best version of the franchise, we’re all looking forward to seeing how it ends (and if they’ll bring in Vehicle Voltron).

  • A trailer attached to Mirai of the Future claims that the fourth Evangelion rebuild movie will be out in 2020. I wonder if Khara will finally be free after that. The trailer’s been taken offline, so here’s some art from Twitter:

  • The CGI Ultraman anime based on the Shimizu/Shimoguchi manga got picked up by Netflix, but also, it won’t be a movie. A series makes more sense for that story, so good call.

  • On the flip side, Kaiju Girls Black will be a movie. They upped the ante from the cheap-looking TV animation quite a bit.

  • Magical Girl Spec Ops Asuka is getting an anime. The brutal magical girl manga is pretty great, so it’s good that it’ll find a broader audience this way.

  • The original PreCure duo had a guest spot on Huggto PreCure for the franchise’s 15th anniversary. It was pretty much on point.

  • The new Dragon Ball movie is going back to the Broly well. At least it looks better than Dragon Ball Heroes.

  • Viz has re-re-licensed Urusei Yatsura! Takahashi’s first and funniest work has had some prior goes in English, but the manga still has not been released here in its entirety. Now seems an opportune time; with all the magical monster girlfriend manga flooding the market, this series could be seen as a parody of the very things that it inspired.

  • Another manga that didn’t live up to its all stateside was Baki the Grappler, one of the very best tournament fighting manga, which has also been re-licensed. Fun fact: both Urusei Yatsura‘s Takahashi and Baki‘s Keisuke Itagaki were trained by Kazuo Koike.

  • You know what hasn’t been licensed? Ultraman R/B. Crunchyroll kept fans in suspense for X, Orb, and Geed, but it seems like this time around they simply passed on the show or something. They’ve slowed down on licensing the titles since Toku burst onto the scene, but that could be a coincidence. Either way, sort of a shame, since Ultraman’s never caught on with the simulcast fansub crowd.

  • Funimation acquired the Gridman anime. Not sure if that will have any impact on the original’s prospects for Crunchyroll, but at least it’s up on Toku.

  • Speaking of Toku, they just started airing Mirrorman.

  • Viz got the license to Takashi Miike’s Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure, which is both surprising since they’re pretty much out of the live-action game, but also not so surprising, since Jojo is one of their big hits.

  • Shout Factory is doing a complete set of Digimon Tri, so perhaps hold off on buying the individual volumes for now… or, rather, do buy some; I need to get rid of a few.
  • I applaud Anime Midstream for continuing to rescue licenses that nobody cares about, even if it doesn’t seem great for their longevity. However, I take some umbrage with the assumption that nobody’s seen Bt’X before.
  • Dark Horse licensed the Elfen Lied manga. Again, this seems like one that should have come over 15 years ago. Maybe the cute cover art threw some people off?

  • I thought that Maiden Japan was the Section 23 branch that would license female-centric shows, but I guess after Patlabor, Dominion, and the Gunbuster movie, they figured “screw it, we’re a mecha label now.” They recently grabbed a whole bunch of titles, including Votoms (which is getting a little hard to track down all the parts to), Ideon (about dang time), Xabungle, and Basquash.

  • Funimation licensed Zillion, in a move I would never have expected. I have no intuition what’s going on in the industry anymore, but if cool surprises like this continue, being in the dark is okay.

  • Kiyotaka Taguchi’s short Female Weapon 701 is hitting Blu Ray in August. The short was part of the Tetsudon anthology, so I wonder what that means for the other shorts.

  • Cast is always making figures of Toho stuff about three levels of nerdiness beyond the competition, but I was floored to see that they just did the maser cannons from Gransazer. That deserves an award for attention to obscure detail!

  • Hisone & Masotan‘s title dragon got its own plushies uncharacteristically fast for a Japanese show. By the way, the whole thing drops on Netflix Sept 21.

  • Cospa has a new line of Gunbuster stuff. This glow-in-the-dark shirt is one of the greatest ideas I’ve ever seen.

Oh, and lest I forget, a Kindle version of Kaiju for Hipsters is now up. If you previously got the physical release through Amazon, this is a free download; otherwise now you can check out a sample and see what you think. On that note, I’ll call this a recap; seeya next time!

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Maser Patrol podcast episode 37: “When Kaiju Meet Samurai” at G-Fest XXV

For those who missed the “When Kaiju Meet Samurai” panel at G-Fest, I can’t blame you; there was a lot of cool stuff going on at the time. Luckily, it’s recorded and up for your viewing pleasure!

This is part history lesson, part list of movie recommendations, so it might be a little more high-brow than my usual panels.

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Status update

Howdy all! Sorry for the long no-posting delay; I’ve had a bunch of travel and other commitments eating up a fair chunk of time. Well, at least nothing major’s happened, right? It’s not like Matt Frank’s Gamera: Last Hope doujinshi got an official publication as part of a Japanese collection of Dark Horse’s Gamera comics, or we got the title for the last part of the Godzilla anime trilogy, or a new Dragon Ball show premiered, or new Evangelion animation, or a trailer dropped for the Korean adaptation of Jin-Roh, or Shout Factory announced freaking Jetman for a DVD release, right? That’d be mental.

Yeah, so….I need to get more on top of this stuff. At least that weird Magical Girl Ore cosplay shoot that Twitter demanded, right?

Anyway, as some housekeeping, G-Fest is next week. I’ve got two presentations! Come check out “When Kaiju Meet Samurai” on Friday at noon, and “Giant Robot Movies” on Saturday at 4. Also, stop me and ask about the book, because I should have copies!

That’s right, another thing that’s kept me off the web for a while is putting some finishing touches on this sucker. It’s two pounds; seventy cubic inches of obscure kaiju nerd pontification. With that done, we can get back to the more-or-less regular blogging schedule.

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Maser Patrol podcast episode 36: “Neon Reference Evangelion” at ACen 2018

I did a short panel presentation at Anime Central, running through some of the pop culture influences on the Evangelion TV franchise. Enjoy, and apologies in advance for the low energy (it was the first panel of the morning)!

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Maser Patrol podcast episode 35: Unstructured Ultraman

Windows updates were the Zetton to my computer’s Ultraman this Sunday, so I didn’t have any of my slides for the Ultraman panel at Anime Central. Fortunately, the crowd was great, and we were able to improvise something audio-only, even if it wasn’t exactly as advertised. On the plus side, this being a single audio file with no video, I could slap together something really quickly to put up as a podcast, so you’re actually getting this faster than if it was on YouTube like originally intended. (I’ll still probably do something for video down the road with the original presentation.)


Download link

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Only news recap this May

Another two-week recap this week, and unfortunately due to travel it looks like this will be the only one this month. (Awkward timing with the new Godzilla flick coming out, I know.) I’ve been busy putting together the weekend’s panels for ACen, as well as checking out some of the recent Japanese (and related) releases:

  • Lu Over the Wall is well worth seeing; even if it’s a bit predictable, Masaki Yuasa’s presentation is a hoot.
  • The New Legends of Monkey is more entertaining than I was anticipating.
  • Not remotely SF/horror/fantasy, but Aggrestsuko is great, too. There was even a Daimajin reference.

On to the news, though there’s not all that much.

  • Funimation is releasing Takashi Miike’s As the Gods Will next month.

  • Third Window Films is putting Osamu Tezuka’s Cleopatra and 1001 Nights on UK BD. (NSFW trailer)

That’s a wrap! Back to panel prep; hope to see some folks at the con!

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Weekend news recap, plus panel announcements!

Before diving into the happenings of the week, here’s a breakdown of conventions I’ll be talking at over the summer!

Anime Central:

  • Neon Reference Evangelion – Saturday May 19th @ 10:45 AM (it’s at the same time as another Evangelion panel that’s covering the same stuff…yeah, I don’t know how that happened, either)
  • Ultraman for Anime Fans – Sunday May 20th @ noon

G-Fest: The schedule isn’t posted yet, so I shall refrain from giving away too much, but I should be doing a giant robot movie panel and one on kaiju jidai geki. Times will be posted when the final program is up.

Anyway, on to the news of the week!

  • To start things off, a trailer for Ultraman R/B. Between that and the announcement of another big win in the Chaiyo case, it’s a good week for Tsuburaya.

  • Section 23 surprised us with two tokusatsu releases on the horizon: the second season of Garo (which they’re calling Makai Senkyu instead of Makai Senki for some reason) and Minoru Kawasaki’s kaiju wrestling picture Dai-kaiju Mono! It’s great news to see that film licensed, since Kawasaki’s filmography has slipped out of western attention in recent years. Oddly, Daikaiju Mono is being handled by Sentai Filmworks instead of Kraken Releasing, but Garo is still with that label, but with some of the way 23 have divied up anime in the past it can be hard to understand.
  • A trailer is up for Attack on Titan season 3.

  • Pacific Rim had another anime collaboration poster, this time with Mazinger Z: Infinity. Non-scale, obviously.

  • The Mob Psycho 100 drama finally hits US Netflix on May 22.

  • Also in May… Kong: King of the Apes Season 2. (I might make myself watch this one too.)

  • Anyone wondering about the Mechagodzilla design in Ready Player One should read this post on Astounding Beyond Belief’s new blog.
  • Akira Takarada has joined the cast of The Great Buddha Arrival, giving the project some extra kaiju cred.
  • Finally, this Fist of the North Star shower gel commercial will make you a Tough Boy.

Well…. maybe one more randomly inexplicable thing.

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