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Anime News: Code Geass season two confirmed (maybe)

Via Misu: Random Curiosity reported yesterday that the latest issue of TVstation magazine states in passing that a second season of Geass will be airing beginning this October. Omni cautions in his post that this mention shouldn’t be construed as final absolute proof of what most of us have taken on faith for awhile now, and I agree, but it’s nice to see that if we’re wrong there will be egg on the face of a major Japanese magazine, too. Visual evidence of the listing can be found in a photograph linked at the bottom of the Random Curiosity post. (no more)

Figure News: Battle Angel Alita action figure to be included with Gunnm side story volume set for release this fall

Ultra Jump, the manga serial in which Gunnm (Battle Angel Alita) Last Order is currently running, announced on their website today plans to produce a special edition Gunnm Gaiden (“side stories”) manga volume complete with Masaki Apsy-sculpted Gally (Alita) action figure. Price, release date, and preorder availability have not yet been announced, but as a fan of action figures of characters that move like action figures (with a special weakness for kickass female cyborgs) this is an item I’ll be watching very, very closely. Pictures below:

Figure News: Max Factory announces a PVC version of Sakaki Mizuki from Lovedol

A post on Max Factory’s staff blog today announces the production of a Sakaki Mizuki figure based on the Nishimata Aoi-designed character from Avex / Magikyuu’s Lovedol ~ Lovely Idol. The sculpt is by Tokunaga Hironori and the finished item is due to street in November; close-up shots can be found here. (no more)

[ERO] Doujin News: English textbook parody to see Comiket release

Via Pink Company and Canned Dogs: The third day of Comic Market 72 (Sunday, August 19th) will see the sale of Shin Iyarashii Kyoukasho (“New Lewd Textbook” – click on the lower white text link for samples), a parody of the New Crown junior high school English textbook series known and loved hated by legions of English students and teachers throughout Japan, myself included. Whether on the giving or receiving end of these books they have many tempestuous and morbid fantasies attached to them already, so they’re a welcome target for a quality bit of ero parody… This new release from circle Tsukinowa / Iyarashii Kyoukasho wo Tsukuru Kai (“Let’s make a dirty textbook group”) comes after the online release several years ago of an initial twelve page New Crown parody that made the rounds of image boards as a cult classic; I was unaware of the source until Zepy unearthed it, kudos to him for that. It turns out that a Google search for “NEW CROWN 教科書” turns up the parody as its first result, though; I’d imagine Sanseido wouldn’t be too happy if they knew. The new book will be on sale in block katakana “Pi”, space 15-a for those able to make the event. (no more)

Anime News: Code Geass ep. 24-25 promo up at Biglobe

Via Moon Phase: the official Code Geass site has updated with a promotional video for the upcoming theatrical / online / televised broadcast of episodes 24 and 25 of the series. It’s hosted by Biglobe, so some dastardly combination of Internet Explorer, Windows Media Player and Flash is required to view; it’s worth it though, as it seems there’s a whole lot they’ll be packing into these two “final” episodes… after poking around a bit it seems that the only confirmation regarding a sequel is that there will be one, though there is still no official news as to what form it will take or when it will be broadcast (if at all). Here’s hoping the rumors of another 25 episode season airing in the fall are true. (no more)

Figure News: Wonder Festival Summer 2007 limited edition offerings unveiled

Many of the major figure makers have begun taking the wraps off plans for their presence at this summer’s Wonder Festival, with some of the heaviest hitters weighing in already. We report on the event activities of Goodsmile, Max Factory, Yamato, Toys Planning, Toranoana, Orchid Seed, and New Line in this installment:

Figure News: new Replicant blog launches with an Alter, Yamato announcement blitz

A new source of figure news emerged today in the form of a “maker blog” under the auspices of long running garage kit and figure magazine Replicant. They started things off with a bang, featuring several entirely new scoops from makers Alter and Yamato. New offerings from Alter include a Numakura Toshiaki-sculpted Tsuruya-san from Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuuutsu, produced in conjunction with Chara-Ani and scheduled for release in November, a Yagyuu Satoshi-sculpted KOS-MOS Ver. 4 figure from Xenosaga, produced in conjunction with Beagle and also due out in November (with an official page up at Alter as well), a Tsumatsuka Hiroyuki-sculpted Exelica from Trigger Heart Exelica due out in December (this one’s been in development for awhile), and a Death-sensei from Peace@Pieces and sculptor Morikawa Hiroaki that’s due out in November. On the Yamato side, we have news of a Yoshizawa Mitsumasa-sculpted Poison from Final Fight coming in November, and an F-Face Fiana action figure from Votoms coming in September. Pictures below:

Site News: Summer 2007 event coverage begins!

Heisei Democracy will be out in force through the coming weeks, bringing you the latest news from the twin Meccas around which the otakudom of Japan circumambulate in the hot month of August: Comic Market and Wonder Festival. We will have multiple pairs of boots on the ground at both events, so coverage will be more thorough than ever! Watch this space for further developments coming very soon. :3

Figure News: Goodsmile presents Corticarte Apa Lagranges, in PVC, from Shinkyoku Soukai Polyphonica

GA Graphic has just posted a thorough visual preview of an upcoming Corticarte figure announced from the wizards at Goodsmile. Based on the incorrigibly named heroine of the Polyphonica visual novel and anime (etc.), she’s due out in November at 19 cm (1/8 scale) with price yet determined. Arakawa Hiroshi of circle Almight (Happyhobby) (Amiami search) is on sculpting duty, with original designs from Kannatsuki Noboru (Wikipedia). Bit of a boring item in my opinion, but I’m sure there are Polyphonica fans out there who would beg to differ… (no more)

Anime News: Maria-sama ga Miteru season 4 announced

Via Cobalt, via the AnimeSuki forums, via Densetsu Shoujo: The August 2007 issue of Cobalt (the magazine in which the Marimite novels are serialized) is reporting that the popular yuri-themed Catholic girls’ school slice of life story will be seeing continued anime adaptation beyond the current “third season” OVAs. The format for this fourth season has yet to be announced, but this is superb news for those of us who suffered through the desert between the second and third seasons, and fans of delicious yuri romance everywhere are now dancing sipping tea quietly in the streets. Gokigenyou! (no more)

Figure News: Utawarerumono’s Kamyu coming from Kotobukiya

Kotobukiya put up a press kit earlier today that was subsequently picked up by Hobby Stock, among others, detailing the October release of a Kamyu PVC figure from Leaf’s bishoujo game / anime Utawarerumono. Original design by Amazuyu Tatsuki, with sculpting duty from Ibuki (that’s one hot [ERO] Tama-nee he has in the works for Wonder Festival!), she’ll retail for 6,090 yen at 1/8 scale (22 cm tall). Pictures below:

[ERO] Figure News: Taki Corporation’s battle-damaged school uniform Kanu Unchou from Ikkitousen up for preorder

About a month ago we reported that Taki Corporation would be coming out with an astoundingly sexy though rather expensive Kanu Unchou PVC from Ikkitousen. It is with considerable zeal that we now report her availability for preorder at Amiami, though I’m not seeing her available from international distributors yet. She’s due out in August at a robust 25 cm tall (1/7 scale) and is fully castoffable, not that it matters much given the pose… a no-brainer for the Kanu fans if she were a bit less expensive (9,240 yen retail), still a very attractive offering regardless. Pictures below:

Figure News: Orchid Seed presents heat-packing, dress-clad Fumie from Inspire’s Edelweiss

Those who have been following HD for awhile may remember our coverage of Edelweiss, the late ’06 eroge release from maker Inspire. Since its announcement I was particularly taken by the distinctive artistic style of character designer Jinguuji Rio and her protagonist Fumie; I was therefore overjoyed at the news that Orchid Seed would be producing a three dimensional version of her to compliment the 2D cutout that was released at Comiket 70. Orchid’s Fumie is set for November release at 6,800 yen, 21 cm tall (1/7 scale), is sculpted by veteran Ishinaga Sakurako (who deserves a post of adulation in her own right) and will be available for preorder soon. Pictures below:

Sendai Toranoana Opening

Joining the already popular Animate, Melon Books, Gamers & Volks, Toranoana have opened a Sendai store. Yesterday was the big day – alas I was indisposed on a island buffeted by a typhoon (note : car ferries are not fun in heavy seas), but when the weather cleared this morning I went in to check it out.

Bishoujo Goods News: Gurren Lagann Yoko hug pillow up for preorder from Cospa

Cospa announced over the weekend the preorder availability of a hug pillow featuring Yoko, the feisty, well-endowed heroine of Gainax’s latest giant robot anime, Gurren Lagann. It’s standard Cospa pillow dimensions (150 cm x 50 cm), and will retail at 9,450 yen with release set for late August. Preorders should be up soon at Hobby Search and other sites that carry Cospa goods. Sniper rifle not included, but insert obligatory phallic reference here… orz (no more)

Figure News: Art Storm Cerberus Project Sengoku Cannon Mizuka PVC kitaaaaaaaaaa~!!

Goodsmile has just updated their official site with the news that Sengoku Cannon‘s Mizuka as sculpted by Sunny Day of circle Cerberus Project (original kit) is coming in PVC from Art Storm in November. While some of Sunny Day’s other work hasn’t quite done it for me, the sheer exuberance of this figure radiating away from her face in a glow of excitement that would set off a Geiger counter at fifty paces has me hook, line and sinker. While 1/6 scale seems a bit generous for a figure they’re billing at 20 cm tall, donmai! Time to go preorder sniping… (no more)

Figure News: Max Factory piles on to the “Saber Zero” bandwagon with a PVC in December

Nearly simultaneously with Alter’s announcement of a pair of figures based on the Fate/Zero novels, Hobby Channel brings the news that Max Factory is is developing its own “Saber Zero” PVC kit set for release in December. Pricing details are unknown, but the combination of a fresh look and sculptor Kuroda Makoto’s solid credentials are sure to attract interest in the kit despite one of the most boring poses known to man. She comes with a retrofittable Excalibur, but I have a feeling that addition would only serve to make her more still-life in the Napoleonic sense… She just needs to stick her hand between those buttons. (no more)

Figure News: Alter announces limited edition business suit Saber, Irisviel PVCs for August release

Alter has a page up on their official site today for a limited edition pair of figures from Type-Moon’s Fate franchise (the new Fate/Zero novels, specifically), including a smartly dressed corporate Saber and the first figure incarnation of Iriya’s mother, Irisviel. The set is limited to a production run of 5,000 units, half of which will retail at Wonder Festival Summer 2007 on August 12th with the other 2,500 to be made available via general sales outlets. Sets will street for 3,000 yen for the pair of ~14 cm figures, with sculpting duty handled by Adachi Akatsuki (Saber) and Numakura Toshiaki (Irisfiel). I’m glad Alter is going the sensible route here and releasing half of the batch via online stores, as this will allow those of us unable to make it to the event a fighting chance at scoring the set for a reasonable price, and hopefully place downward pressure on the secondary auction market in the process. Edit: further info on Fate/Zero can be found at its Wikipedia entry. (no more)

[ERO] Figure News: Alter’s Donne Anonime (Namae no Nai Onna) from Satsuriku no Jango up for preorder

On June 25th we reported on Alter’s production of a Donne Anonime (Namae no Nai Onna) figure based on Niθ’s superlative designs from the upcoming Nitro+ eroge Satsuriku no Jango, and today Alter has updated their official site with full color pictures of the bounty hunter in question. With the benefit of these new images her upper half now seems suspiciously castoffable, a most welcome development indeed… She’s due out in November at a price of 7,140 yen (tax included) and is available for preorder now (or soon) from most of the usual suspects. In other Alter news, their official staff blog reports today that in addition to Donne Anonime the other two Jango heroines (Franco il Nero and Lily Salvatana) and are slated for PVC incarnation as well, superb news for the rabid Niθ fans out there (I know I’m not alone… right?). Despite the high price and 1/8 scale shared with Max Factory’s recently announced Megachu! Fauna, the purchasing decision here seems crystal clear… Pictures below:

Anime News (?): Code Geass chichikurabe

Via Moeyo: Japanese blog Nijigen Kuukan (二次元空間) has posted a thorough treatise on the bust sizes of virtually the entire female cast of Code Geass. After analyzing screen shots of from as many official sources as possible they come up with the following order: Millay > Marianne > Inoue > Karen > Cornelia > Viletta > Cecil > Chiba > Rakshata > Euphemia > Shirley > C.C. > Sayoko > Nina > Nanalie > Kaguya. I was sure that Cornelia would come out on top, but this is incontrovertible evidence otherwise… Millay has risen in my esteem considerably. In other random Geass ponderings, I finally made it through ep. 23 on the plane back from AX. Does anyone think they’ll be able to reach a satisfactory conclusion in the two remaining episodes? And why did I think for the longest time that a full second season was coming? (no more) Edit: Geass character designer Kimura Takahiro (Wikipedia) presented his own take on comparative bust sizes of a selection of the cast in the June issue of Animage, as shown here. The Nijigen Kuukan post displays these characters first, with the remaining unmentioned characters below. The Nijigen Kuukan list is a hybrid integration of both groups.

[ERO] Figure News: C-Works Bible Black Saeki Kaori PVC in color, preorder coming soon

We reported on this figure when it was announced on Hobby Channel nearly a month ago, and today we have a followup on that scoop with the release of the first color image of C-WorksSaeki Kaori PVC to grace the internets (that we know of). It came attached to a preorder form, so those interested in this offering despite her alarmingly deformed jawline and the mediocre precedent set by Imari can keep an eye out for her availability online later today or tomorrow. As a reminder, she’s due out in September at 5,460 yen retail. Photographic evidence below:

[ERO] Figure News: Max Factory announces Polo System Fauna PVC from Front Wing’s Megachu!

The Goodsmile collective updated its official site today with Max Factory’s latest entry in their line of Polo System castoffable figures, a delicious Fauna PVC from Front Wing’s 2006 eroge Megachu!. Sculpting duty is being handled by Kawabata Kazuo (Amiami page) of Max Factory, and she’s slated for November release at 1/8 scale (approx. 20 cm tall). At 7,200 yen retail it seems Max has learned the value of the nekkidness and is ramping up the price to suit; given the figure’s pedigree and other specifications I’m guessing this will prove to be too rich for some tastes. Regardless, more Polo in any flavor is a Good Thing. (no more)

Anime News: “The Five Killers” trailer up at Clockwork Machina

CMWilly has just posted a trailer for one of Gonzo‘s newest projects, an American / Japanese coproduction entitled The Five Killers. Designs are by Maeshima Shigeki, a brilliant but frustrating artist who abandoned his website and lives on only in the pages of Robot and on the covers of a few light novels. Production is being helmed by Eric Calderon, with the pilot animated by Hirata Tomohiro and script from George Krstic and Mark Waid. While I haven’t experienced any of these creators’ past works, the prospect of a brilliantly animated badass Gonzo tour de force is a compelling one. The first step out of mourning the loss of Mardock Scramble? Perhaps… we’ll be keeping an eye on the project as it develops, and watching the trailer several more times in the interim. (no more)

Figure News: Max Factory Shana, Griffon Etna on the horizon

A couple bits of figure news scrounged from the past week of eventing: the Goodsmile collective updated last week with a page for an upcoming Max Factory Shana PVC figure from Shakugan no Shana. It’s due out in November from the hand of sculptor Hashimoto Takakimi (Amiami search), a release well timed to coincide with the middle of the second Shana TV series scheduled to air this fall. In other red-headed figure news, Akiba Hobby has posted a review of a production model of Griffon‘s upcoming Etna PVC from Disgaea. No word on a release date or pricing yet, but this is one that fans are likely to pounce on regardless… (no more)

Haruhi Update: 20 minutes of video, no new information

On 7/7/7 at 9pm Tokyo Time (guess they thought that 7/7/7/7 would just be silly) a video was posted to haruhi.tv which appeared to show Haruhi and Kyon, err, I mean John Smith vandalizing a school field. This had previously announced in a full-page ad in the Asahi Shinbun, rendering the site site badly borked at the appointed time, and the video was only available for about an hour. Nonetheless, frantic refreshing of the site eventually paid off. Diego managed to get in just before I did, and has a thorough write-up available. My take: It’s certainly a very interesting video, and it’s nice to know that they’re going to this kind of trouble to drum up interest in the second incarnation of Haruhi, but boy it sure would be nice if they actually gave us some kind of information with this. Full video available inside.

BREAKING NEWS: Haruhi Second Season (for real this time(we think))

Ok, I know you’ve all heard this one before, which ended in disappointment, but this time it really appears to be legit.

Site News: Otsukaresama Deshita

Just a quick note to the effect that I’m still alive, AX was positively smashing, and I’m looking forward to Japanese repatriation on the 6th and subsequent exhaustive reportage of what has gone down over the past several days. /me continues to bask in the afterglow of Momoi

BREAKING NEWS: Akiba Liberation Demonstration

The revolution may not be televised, but in this case, it certainly will be blogged. Saturday’s Akihabara Kaihou Demo (Akihabara Liberation Demonstration, previously covered here) appears to have been a remarkable success. Our man Animaestro had this to report from the field:

Today Akihabara had the rare treat of experiencing the first ever Revolutionary Otaku Demonstration. Headed up by representatives of Revolutionary Otakuist Union, Revolutionary Moeist Union, and the Revolutionary Himote Union, a motley of cosplayers and otaku of various stripes marched through Akiba chanting revolutionary slogans and waving banners.

Full photo and video coverage inside.