Wings Of Honneamise Is 30


Back in late 1980’s or early 1990’s I saw an anime move in the anime room at Lunacon that blew me away.  That movie was Royal Space Force, The Wings Of Honneamise.  The animation that I did see was incredible, the story well developed and the background rich  creating a level of animation that just didn’t exist in American animation.  At the time I wasn’t able to sit for the entire movie and  didn’t catch the title, so it was a while until I was the whole thing as back in those days you either were connected to a video tape pass around group, which I wasn’t or caught the stuff at cons, which because I was going to college and looking for work was Lunacon once a year.  That changed when they opened up a Suncoast at the local mall and I could buy tapes.  I quickly discovered the movie and watched the whole. With the exception of one scene the work was the tour de force that I remembered and the film is still a favorite.

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Using The Right Tools

One of the things I like least about many movies, TV Shows and anime is that supposedly expert military or police forces will bring the wrong tools for the job they are expected to do. Here’s a case in point.  This is from the anime Bubblegum Crisis, which was produced in the late 1980’s.  The bad guys are humanoid robots loaded with advanced weaponry and armored with exotic materials.  The heroes, or heroines in this case are four ladies with heavily armored power suits.  Typical anime stuff.  Here’s the opening sequence.

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NHK Tokyo Anime Tour

NHK’s Tokyo Eye 2020 takes us on a tour of some of the anime and manga hotspots in Tokyo. As a long time anime fan it’s a nice short visit to places in Tokyo.

I’ve been around Tokyo and I’ve been to Akihabara and Ikebukuro.  I’ve posted about Akihabara before and I need to go back.’

Here’s Ikebukuro.

The Love Live wiki.!

The anime.

Tokyo is a great place to explore even if you are not an anime fan.

Watch this blog for more Tokyo stuff.



Spirited Away And How I Discovered Japanese Railroads


I’ve been a railfan and model railroader for most of my life.  I’ve been reading the railroad magazines almost constantly since I was seven years old or so if the magazines I was tossing recently were correct.  My focus was on my local railroad, the New Haven, which was merged into nonexistence in 1969 and other local to NYC railroads with some interests in American railroads in general.  I knew about things like the Shinkansen, but in a very abstract way.  I put the Shinkansen on my bucket list and left it there.

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Red Haired Motoko?

There’s been a rather large flap over the casting of Scarlett Johansen as the Motoko character in the live action Ghost In The Shell.  This may be misplaced.  Now I’m not certain that Spielberg and DreamWorks are going for the look of “Ghost In The Shell 2 man-machine interface” or not, but if that’s the case, red hair and Anglo is exactly the right casting.

Which means that Scarlett Johansen fits the suit very well.

Scarlett Johansson Suits Up as Black Widow for ‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’ Poster

The other casting choices seem to fit as well.

The thing is that by the point of Ghost In The Shell   Man-machine Interface, Motoko has blended with a powerful AI and has the ability to change prosthetic bodies, or for that matter almost any body, at will. She’s also trying to more or less hide herself from her old companions at Section 9 to a greater or lesser degree.

So rather than complaining that DreamWorks is not being true to the source material you should read the source material and look at what Dreamworks is actually doing.  Doing Man-machine Interface is going to be a challenge.  There is stuff going on all over the place and the story sometimes has several things multitasking at the same time.  The reader has to read through several times to make sure that they catch the whole puzzle.  At least I did.

All of those ladies would make fine Motoko Kusanagis, if that’s the movie DreamWorks is making.  On the other hand, Ghost In The Shell 1 and it’s characters have had an animated movie, three TV series, A follow up movie and a possible Japanese Live action coming. On the other hand, Manamachine Interface is not as well known and is essentially a new story with new intrigues and new characters as well.

From  the beginning I’ve suspected that Spielberg has been thinking about Man-machine Interface and NOT the Ghost In the shell that most people are familiar with.

I think that that’s the comic he most likely saw in the airport and as the first one he looked at, that’s what’s been where he’s been thinking. Now has Shirow been in any way involved?  I would be surprised if he wasn’t and if that’s the case, then there’s no room for complaint. In any case Shirow has never been so racially biased that he’s avoided not using Japanese characters. In fact if you read Appleseed, the main character is blond and from Europe.  If Shirow  doesn’t care about race very much why should anybody else?


People should actually read the source material and see what Masume Shirow has come up with.  Even if the movie isn’t released, people should read the manga and everything else that Shirow has done.  The man is a great artist and comes up with the most mind blowing stuff. All of his stuff is highly recommended