Free ‘Fruits’ comes with a time limit
Some stream-of-consciousness musings on recent news from the anime and manga industry:
» Tokyopop announced late last week that it had licensed the first manga series published by "Fruits Basket" creator Natsumi Takaya to be compiled into "tankobon," or individual books. The five-volume "Phantom Dream," according to the Anime News Network, is about a man, his romance with his childhood friend, and his destiny as mankind's guardian against evil spirits.
What makes this story more fascinating, though, is that as a way of tying in this announcement with the latest volume of "Fruits Basket," the publisher offered a rather intriguing giveaway: A complete copy of "Fruits Basket" volume 19, the newest volume to be released in English, was posted to the Internet Friday for free for 19 minutes at 7:19 p.m. Eastern time. You could say it was a 19 for 19 at 19:19.
Why they didn't wait until Wednesday to make it a 3/19 19 for 19 at 19:19, I'm not quite sure. I'm writing this column before this took place, but I have a hunch: "Fruits Basket" fans will immediately swarm Tokyopop's site at the appointed time and overwhelm the servers, and only a lucky few will be able to see the pages.
That's why free stuff can be such a boon and a bane at the same time. ...
...» The latest trailer for the live-action "Speed Racer" movie is up and running on the Internet; it's available in standard and super-hyper-pretty high definitions at movies.yahoo.com.
No matter what quality video you watch it in, there's no denying that the movie looks downright spiffy. Then again, the trailers for the second and third movies in the "Matrix" trilogy looked downright spiffy, too, and we know how those turned out. ...
...» The folks at Kawaii Kon last week released the list of vendors who will be in the dealer's room at this year's event. While there are several names noticeably missing from the list -- looks like Toys 'N' Joys and Collector Maniacs are skipping the convention again this year, and MechaHawaii also appears to be out -- another vendor is rather prominent in its absence: Hendane.
Regular conventioneers know Hendane for its sales of all things related to the boy-loves-boy genre of "yaoi" ... and that one guy who always sings out, "YAAAOOOOIIIIII ... MAKES YOU HAPP-YYYYYY!" and other related jingles.
It'll be a blow to all the "fujoshi" (yaoi fangirls), to be sure. ...
Meeting roll call
» Oahu Anime Explorer: 6 to 9:30 p.m. Saturday at HMC Academy, 555 N. King St. Visit www.oahuanimeexplorer.com
for details ...
Coming up Sunday
It's Easter Sunday, and to celebrate I'll present the gospel according to manga in "Drawn & Quartered" in the Sunday Today section ... or at least several books that present the message of the Bible in manga form: "The Manga Bible," "Manga Messiah" and "Serenity" ...
Cel Shaded, a look at the world of Japanese anime and manga, appears every Monday. Reach Jason S. Yadao