With 15 simulcasts exploding on CR every week, monthly contests and new K-drama releases, there's just a lot of things going on to keep you cool throughout the summer season! So stay tuned with Crunchyroll all summer long as there are more new anime episodes to see, more artist to check out, more hilarity on the Pulse to laugh at and ton of exclusive prizes to win! Don't miss out on all the great things going on.
She is everywhere. When you carefully listen to the voices in anime, never mind, you don’t actually listen that carefully, because if you watch enough anime, there is no way you’d miss her voice. Her voice is all over anime.
With her “super cute”, high tone anime voice, Rie Kugimiya is arguably one of the most prolific voice actresses in anime industry, hailed as the Queen of Tsundere. Some of her past roles include Louise Françoise Le Blanc de La Vallière from The Familiar of Zero, Shana from Shakugan no Shana, Taiga Aisaka from Toradora, Nagi Sanzen’in from Hayate no Gotoku!, et cetera, et cetera are invariably all tsundere heroines. For those of you who are not familiar with the term tsundere, it is “a Japanese concept of a character archetype which describes a person with a conceited, irritable, and/or violent personality (which is the tsun portion of tsun-dere) that suddenly becomes modest and loving (dere portion of tsun-dere) when triggered by some sort of cause (such as being alone with someone),” according to Wikipedia.
While she has established her status as the absolute “Queen” of that genre, she is also known for her virtuosity, which can thoroughly be enjoyed here at Crunchyroll. As I mentioned above, she is in the marvelous Hayate no Gotoku!!, a very entertaining series about a very self-righteous but very loving (the exact tsundere in question) heir of the very rich Sanzen’in estate, and her very unlucky but very multi-talented butler. The reason I used the word very so redundantly is because I thought I needed an adverb, not just an adverb but an overabundance of adverbs to match the overabundant extremity of this series. I hope you’d understand what I sort of meant, after watching the series. It is ridiculous, thus hilarious, and very cleverly quotes references from all sorts of media, from Star Wars to Evangelion. And of course, Rie Kugimiya plays the role of this super rich tsundere heir; Ojo-sama, they call her in Japanese.
Another anime she is in is the currently running Gintama, where she plays the role of Kagura, one of the three main characters and a member of Odd Jobs Gin. Here she is a gluttonous alien girl with a Herculean strength and an acidic tongue, calling her colleague “Damegane” (lame-four eyes), or a jobless grown up a “Madao” (it will be too long to explain this one so if you are interested, please watch the series ♥). Although you still get to enjoy Kugimiya’s super sweet anime voice, the connotation here is quite different from Nagi Sanzen’in. As I briefly suggested above, in Gintama you will get to witness more of tsun if I had to categorize Kugimiya’s performance along the line of tsundere, but Gintama is rather about the absurd but somewhat relatable situation comedy of sort, and Kugimiya’s role here is not so much an object of “moe,” but more like a suitable gimmick for this splendid comedic extravaganza. Although it has many episodes, don’t let that scare you and just watch from wherever you feel like. Most of the episodes are not continuous, and quite hilarious.
Fairy Tail is another anime featuring Kugimiya for a prominent role. She performs a flying cat sorcerer, Happy, in this one, who is the partner and the best friend to the main character Natsu. This time she has gone far from her usual tsundere heroine roles, and she now became a cat. She is now a comic relief here, yet when I rethink about her past roles, unless the role was specifically designed to be serious, she has always been somehow comedic. When I watch her typical tsundere anime, I watch it for a good laugh more than anything else. Same with Gintama, Hayate, and another recent anime Saki, where she performs Yuki Kataoka, a baby-like mahjong player who is obsessed with tacos, when I think about her roles, of course there is a tremendous cuteness about her voice and her characters, but all of them are at the same time very funny. Perhaps this is the secret to her addictive charm; she has the perfect balance of cuteness and funniness. And her cuteness is not just a feminine cuteness, but the combination of babyish cuteness and puppyish cuteness.
There is an interesting episode that shows Kugimiya’s presence as an extremely influential voice talent. Recently she appeared in Taiwan, causing fans to go frenzy. One report says two of her fans who were at the event got suffocated and fainted. The others caused havoc, giving the reporters an impression of a political riot, or something similarly violent. Her popularity is even greater in places like Akihabara or Ponbashi (Nihonbashi, Osaka) and her fans are often ridiculed as suffering from the Kugimiya Disease. One great thing about Crunchyroll is that they only put subtitles and omit Hannah Montana, or whoever from overdubbing the anime into English, thus allowing this pandemic to prevail here in the United States. This is good news. And there is no return, no vaccine, once you get caught, Kugimiya’s voice will echo inside your brain eternally, “…baka…baka…baka…suki…”
A seemingly shojo-centric piece, Neo Angelique jumps beyond the simple storytelling and archetypes that epitomize the very basis of what a shojo anime is supposed to be, and flawlessly interweaves spiritual symbolism throughout. What seems like random usage and placement of names adn themes is actually deliberate and essential the progression of the story. Ranging from a myriad of subjects like Greek mythology, theology and alchemy, Neo Angelique purposely incorporates in these themes to enhance the story.
Starting with the characters, we immediately see a heavy Greek mythology influence. Thanatos is Greek for the personification of death and destruction, the son of Nyx, goddess of night. In Neo Angelique, Thanatos are our life-draining monsters that plague the populace, and Nyx is the ultra gentleman who tries to protect Angelique from the Thanatos. Our heroine, Angelique portrays a sense of purity, patience and modesty symbolizing Eros, and visually signifying love on golden wings. This fight for the balance of love versus destruction, evil versus good is conveyed in the first four episodes, as Angelique prays bathing in the light of love in order to protect mankind. And because one of the leading purifiers is called Nyx, one can’t help but suspect an ulterior motive or suspect that something is just not right.
Angelique possesses celestial powers (and I rarely get a chance to say this) that cleanses evil. Given the many commentaries of the characters in the series provided from the never ending websites, I thought it best to stick with the essence behind the four important personalities.
The Aube Hunters are four handsome companions accompanying and protecting our heroine and whom I might add, are endowed with great cooking skills (lucky Angelique!). The word "aube" in French has three meanings along with several interpretations.
The first of which is the dawn, symbolizing genesis, for instance the birth of the Queen’s Egg. Second, it also has religious connotations like the long white robe or dress worn over the soutane, the outer garment of a priest celebrating mass. Neo Angelique incorporates this definition within the story as Nyx provides Angelique with her own robe and Angelique instigates her prayer (or mass) to purify Thanotos. Lastly, aube also refers to a weather vane with arrows pointing in four different directions, indicating our Aube Hunters. The vane also has a rooster above them pointing to the sky.
What binds spiritual symbolism with science is the discovery of the spatial vessel, a sort of Noah’s ark in the sky. In Alchemy, the vessel is the recipient that holds the philosopher’s stone, hence the Queen’s Egg. It seems to be somewhat of a beautiful hybrid of the two as a spiritual entity born during a sudden burst of the Aurora Borealis in the northern skies. Like the three wise men at the birth of Christ, the colorful lights of the Borealis alert the cat Erwin, the silver knight, Hyuuga and then Jade. On the scientific end of the spectrum, the philosopher's stone may also personify man’s desire to create the perfect being for the purpose of manipulation, such as Jet and his prototype Jade, two genetic experiments.
As you can see, Neo Angelique does not just scrape the surface of these more cerebral topics, but delves deep into it meshing it together with a fantastic story to captivate audiences without coming off as too pretentious. This of course, is only the tip of the iceberg. What lies beneath the surface is for you to explore and discover and you join Angelique on her adventure to battle Thanatos!
The second BluRay/DVD volume of Occult Academy will be shipping out on October 27, and it was recently revealed that in addition to the third and fourth episodes of the TV series this volume will include the first of four spinoff episodes. The limited edition of the 2nd volume will include a single CD by Mikaze Nakagawa, one of the characters of Occult Academy voiced by Minori Chihara. The preceding volume of the series is set for release on
September 22, and currently Occult Academy can be streamed on Crunchyroll.
* * *
Square Announces Digital Manga Store
On Wednesday July 21, Square Enix announced that it will launch a new digital manga store in North America and France by fall of this year. The first chapters of Fullmetal Alchemist, Soul Eater, Black Butler, and O-Parts Hunter are already available for download on their official site as an advance for the premium service that’s to come in the future. Square Enix will be displaying their new service at Comic Con, which will be held in San Diego later this week.
On July 15, William Winckler informed Anime News Network about the passing of veteran voice actor Peter Fernandez, who’s most well known role was the title character in the anime Speed Racer. In addition to playing the main role in Speed Racer, Fernandez was the vocal director of the show, the lyricist to the American version of the iconic theme, and the voice of Racer X. Other notable roles include Lupin III, Daisuke Jigen, and Jimmy Carter in the film Lupin III: Secret of Mamo as well as various other roles in much earlier anime series such as Astro Boy, Gigantor, Marine Boy, Star Blazers, and Superbook. He made a cameo appearance in the 2008 live action adaptation of Speed Racer and was the second to last surviving member of the original Speed Racer voice cast. The remaining original voice actress of the cast Corrine Orr (Trixie and Sprittle) remembers Fernandez as having a great passion for all of the fans that enjoyed his work throughout his lifetime. A memorial will be held for Peter Fernandez in September at his hometown of Pomona, New York.
* * *
OneManga to Stop Scanlations
On Thursday July 22, One Manga announced to a surprised userbase that they will be completely shutting down, removing any and all manga on their site in response to the disapproval of scanlations by official manga publishers. Though the future of the site is uncertain, the forum of One Manga's site will remain active to allow its large community to stay in contact. Other scanlation sites such as Manga Traders shut down in mid June while MangaFox has removed their Viz-related titles in response to the manga industry's stance against illegal scanlations. MangaHelpers announced that it will be shutting down its scanlation service in order to start up OpenManga, an online manga site that would allow manga artists to distribute their work digitally and legally.
* * *
Gatchaman Film Still in Production
On July 15, IMAGI had posted a one minute teaser video for the computer animated Gatchaman film. Despite the massive restructuring it had to undergo in early June, the studio claims that the project is still in pre-production. There is no word yet on a release date for the new Gatchaman movie, though the teaser shows that the project will be finished in due time.
* * *
Life Size Evangelion Unveiling Streamed
As of this writing, the unveiling of the much anticipated life size EVA-01 bust will be streamed on Friday July 23 on Japan's Fuji-Q HighLand Ustream website. The attraction will be a life size recreation of the scene from Neon Genesis Evangelion where Shinji sees EVA-01 in NERV’s 7th Cage hangar for the first time. In addition to the life size bust of EVA-01, the attraction will have a life size Entry Plug for visitors to interact with, life size figures of Kaworu Nagisa and the Seele monoliths, a video theater, a museum, two studio galleries, and a gift shop. Fuji-Q Highland is located near the foot of Mt. Fuji and had previously hosted two Gundam attractions which involved a life size Gundam model.
ぱねー (pronounced: pah-neh) This word is short for "hanpa nai", meaning "not (at all) halfway". When you encounter something extraordinary, you say this (naturally, if you are yutori, I suppose).
Example: マジぱねーんだけど(maji pane-ndakedo) meaning "that's really extraordinary!"
Hisagi joins Komamura to battle Tosen in hopes of bringing his former captain back to his senses. Meanwhile the other Soul Reapers form an uneasy alliance with the Visoreds: Lisa, Hiyori, and Hitsugaya take on Halibel. Love and Rose take on Stark. Hachi, Omaeda, and Soi Fon take on Barragan. The battle against the Espada resumes!
Maya and Kozue have vanished. The whole town starts searching for them; Smile and JK with dowsing, and Fumiaki and Mikaze on their own. Fumiaki and Mikaze follow a witness's lead and search Minakamiyama; a power spot known as Japan's pyramid. As they enter a temple in the center of the mountain, they find a cave that leads deeper in...
1) Giant Killing - For more information, please click here!
Prize: Japanese Soccer Jersey and an Anime Membership!
All you have to do is watch Giant Killing and collect as many "made goal" badges as possible!