Culture

Toei Kyoto Studio Park: Experience The Thrilling World of Japanese Hollywood (Part 1)

2017-12-13 10:39

The Uzumasa area of Kyoto is often called the Hollywood of Japan. The otherwise unremarkable neighborhood is home to the Toei Studios Kyoto (TSK), famous for jidaigeki films, historical dramas often set during the Sengoku (1467-1603) or Edo (1603-1868) periods, and often featuring samurais engaging in chambara swordfighting action. First built in 1926 by the “king of samurai dramas” Tsumasaburo Bando, TSK is both an active movie studio with multitude of indoor studios and sound stages and a huge, 5.3 hectare open set which, since 1975, became a one-of-a-kind movie-themed amusement park called Toei Kyoto Studio Park. The open set used to film jidaigeki movies and TV shows is divided…


The Japanese Festival Where Demons Beat Up Kids with Sticks

2017-12-11 05:14

In a small town in Hiroshima called Koyaura, the third weekend of every October is the autumn festival. A festival the children of the town dread. 今晩、21時よりフジテレビ系列の番組、「誰も知らないカレンダー この日世界で何かが起きる!」で小屋浦のマッカが紹介されます。祭りの日、「Why, Japanese people ?」と言いながら、某氏がマッカに追いかけれていました。https://t.co/UoRdXRQ5lu pic.twitter.com/gVhVFUJVJy — 呉のやぶ (@kureyabu) 12 November 2016 Terrifying demons known as ‘Makka’ chase the children of the town and when he catches them they get a savage hit with a stick. Sometimes the demon will also attempt to kidnap the child. The only thing that can abate the demon is if the child promises to be good from now on. Parents even willingly give their child up to be beaten and kidnapped. This tradition, native to Koyaura is over…


Japanese Stew Fused With Cheese Fondue Is The Highlight Of Gastropub’s Hearty Holiday Menu

2017-12-11 04:02

Somewhat removed from the hustle and bustle of Shibuya station, the area known as “Okushibu” continues to gain popularity for its more laid-back atmosphere, galleries and boutiques, fashionable concept restaurants and gastropubs. Outdoor Dish Grill & Wine Maruta, a trendy camping-themed gastropub which just opened this summer in the Udagawacho neighborhood with a log cabin-like interior and serving a variety of hearty Dutch oven-roasted dishes together with a full selection of beers and wine, has just announced a cheese-lover’s dream come true just in time for the holiday season. Source: © Socialwire Co. Ltd. From December 8th, 2017 to January 31st, 2018, Maruta’s special 12-dish holiday course meal with Raclette…


Scenic Kyoto Restaurant Bus Tour Puts Traditional Kyoto Restaurant On Wheels

2017-12-11 09:08

Food on the go is nothing new in Japan. Japanese train passengers, for example, have enjoyed delicious bento boxed lunches in trains from the earliest days of the railroad and there are even special trains offering an upscale Japanese dining experience such as the Kaiseki Train on the local Kominato Railway in Chiba Prefecture or, for the well-heeled traveler, even a virtual Japanese inn on rails complete with tatami-matted flooring and low tables in the Shiki-Shima ultra-luxury train suite. However, for travelers who want to explore the most beautiful destinations of a Japanese city while also enjoying fine Japanese cuisine, there haven’t been any options save renting a mobile home…


On Your Next Visit To Tokyo, You Can Get Certified in Japanese Culinary Art In Half A Day

2017-12-08 04:04

Ever since washoku, traditional Japanese cuisine, was added to UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage list in 2013, global interest in the unique culinary arts of Japan has grown. Visitors to Japan are increasingly eager to seek out authentic food experiences and, in response, services catering to their needs are springing up rapidly in major urban centers such as Tokyo and Osaka. For the most part, these services have involved restaurants translating menus or allowing visitors to make reservations in English or other languages. Some tours geared toward foreigners tourists may provide cursory explanations on culinary culture and table manners, perhaps even a word or two on the aesthetics of food presentation,…


This 77-Year-Old Japanese Man Is The Michelangelo of Microsoft Excel

2017-12-08 03:53

The Great Big Story, which has given us fascinating looks at stories in Japan such as the hypnotizing speed of the world’s fastest mochi makers and the beautiful Japanese sweets crafted by a family over six generations, is now turning their attention to an unusual, but beautiful art form. It’s practiced by 77-year-old Tatsuo Horiuchi, who creates superbly detailed pieces of beautiful art using the spreadsheets of Microsoft Excel. Horiuchi wanted to get involved with art once he retired, but became a bit apprehensive once he considered the costs of supplies such as paint and various types of brushes. He wanted to try creating art with what he already had,…


New Umami-Themed Pour-Over Style Dashi Bar Gives Rich And Relaxing Alternative To Coffee

2017-12-07 01:45

For brew-lovers, sometimes finding a quality cup of coffee in Japan requires sifting through more sensationalist options like canned Coca-Cola coffee and perhaps the prettiest Starbucks in the world, but those who commit to the search can be rewarded with a coffee culture that has boomed to provide a lot of quality options. Many cafes cater to what might be Japan’s favorite way to enjoy coffee, however, in the form of pour-over-drip-coffee, popularized by its controlled and measured expansion of flavor. The pour-over method has recently been applied outside the coffee world in Japan, even with curry rice. Now a recently opened Tokyo “cafe” is hoping to break into the…


Japan Now Has An Idol Unit For The Game of Go

2017-12-06 08:09

In the last five years, the complex and challenging game of Go (also known as igo in Japanese) has made strides internationally, with the American Go Association’s Professional System established in 2012 and the European Go Federation establishing their’s two years later in 2014. The venerable game, born in China and refined in Japan, is played by more than 40 million people around the world. Go has also entered popular culture. Game maker Atari’s name comes from a Go term. However, surely the interest in Go and the noticeable increase in the Go-playing population around the world can be partly attributed to Yumi Hotta’s award-winning manga and anime Hikaru no…


Late Night Tokyo Food Stand Sells Traditionally Wrapped “Sushi Box” Sublime Kit Kats

2017-12-06 10:00

You may be familiar with the myriad of adventurous and sometimes intimidating Kit Kat flavors of Japan (which can beautifully be re-imagined as anime characters, by the way), but it’s Nestle Japan’s high-end Chocolatory stores where you can find “luxury” flavor options made from premium ingredients. In the past they’ve offered Kit Kat sushi, liquid-nitrogen sprayed Kit Kats, and most recently, a monthly series of Kit Kats that come with a corresponding edible birthstone. Nestle Japan has been known to tap into the country’s deep gift-giving culture, however, even creating a vending machine that lets you personalize Kit Kat souvenirs for friends and family. Their latest effort continues that trend…


Last Chance ‘Koyo’, Autumn Leaf Viewing in Tokyo 2017

2017-12-05 12:55

Autumn moves pretty fast and if you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it. This is particularly true of Tokyo’s seasons, which seem to change from sweltering heat to bitter cold in the blink of an eye. But if you haven’t had time for your peaceful fall moment yet, here’s a lifeline. These autumn events have not quite finished, but you’ve got to be fast! Rikugien Garden – Komagome Station Katsuhiro Mizuno / 水野 克裕さん(@miznow)がシェアした投稿 – 2017 12月 1 11:45午後 PST This is really the last chance since December 6th is the final day to see the park lit up. Elsewhere, the winter illuminations…


Tokyo Comic Con 2017 Cosplay Roundup

2017-12-04 10:32

For the last three days, the Makuhari Messe convention center in a suburb of Tokyo was swept by a magnificent maelstrom of creativity and enthusiasm known as Tokyo Comic Con 2017. The energy was generated in large part by the participation of fans who turned out to cosplay their favorite American comics and cartoon characters, superheroes, and characters from science fiction, fantasy movies and series. As with anime and manga conventions, they were also joined in cosplaying by promotional models stationed at booths throughout the venue. Let’s take a look at the colorful cast of characters we had the good fortune to meet as we covered the event… With Star…


The Best Destinations in Japan For Each Season: Autumn

2017-12-04 04:56

People may flock to Kyoto for the awesome view from Kiyomizudera, but for a less predictable autumn, how about heading to the untamed wilderness of the North? Take a walk on the wild side in Aomori. The number one autumnal activity of Japan is leaf viewing (known as ‘koyo’ or ‘momiji’), which basically consists of finding some arresting scenery filled with dazzling fall colours and going to look at it en masse. This tradition means it may be difficult to avoid crowds around this time, but at least if you stay out of the main tourist areas you have a chance. Possibly. So what makes Aomori so great for fall?…


Live Action “Girls Und Panzer”? Girls Dance And Wash a Tank in Promotional Video For Upcoming Movie

2017-12-01 02:54

Girls und Panzer, the anime series depicting a competition between girls’ high schools practicing tank warfare as a sport, continues to enjoy popularity since it was first broadcast in 2012 to 2013. In addition to nine manga series and one light novel adaptation, an OVA came out in 2014. The first movie, GIRLS und PANZER der FILM, in 2015, was so popular that it enjoyed an extended run in theaters and was the highest earning film in Japan that year. Now, to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the series, “GIRLS Und PANZER: das FINALE” is set to open in Japanese movie theaters on December 9. This time, the creators of…


The Weird, The Creepy, The Disturbing: 8 Bizarre Japanese Mascots

2017-11-30 06:36

Japan loves a mascot. Called ‘yuruchara’, these characters help promote cities or prefectures for tourism or PR purposes. Companies, sports teams and other institutions often also have their own. Most are predictably adorable, take for instance the winner of last year’s ‘Yuru Chara Grand Prix’, Shinjo-kun. ‪ÒㅅÓ。)ノ東京女子会来てくれたみんな、ありがとー!じゃあしんじょう君は、須崎にかえるからね☆ね☆‬ しんじょう君さん(@shinjokun)がシェアした投稿 – 2017 8月 4 6:37午前 PDT Cute, right!? But in a bid to stand out, some mascots have subverted the usual kawaii-ness in favour of something a bit stranger. They are definitely memorable, but is it for the right reasons? Take a look at this list and decide for yourself! 1. Baron Ciste (Mukawa, Hokkaido) Baron Ciste, of Hokkaido's Mukawa-Cho, is an…


Marvel’s Editor-In-Chief Admits To Using Japanese Pseudonym But Many Japanese Fans Don’t Mind

2017-11-30 02:03

Japanese amecomi (American comics) fans woke up yesterday to news that C.B. Cebulski, Marvel’s newly appointed Editor-In-Chief, admitted to having used the pseudonym Akira Yoshida 13 years ago. As reported in Bleeding Cool and numerous other media sources, Cebulski wrote multiple comics under the pseudonym in the 2000s. Fans may remember the name Yoshida on the cover of popular miniseries such as Thor: Son Of Asgard, X-Men: Age of Apocalypse, Elektra: The Hand, Wolverine: Soultaker, X-Men: Kitty Pryde – Shadow & Flame as well as X-Men/Fantastic Four. Cebulski has family in Japan, has lived there on and off since he was 20, and began his professional comics career editing manga….


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