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Doujin Event News: Futaket 4 confirmed for this spring

According to the official site for futanari-themed doujin convention Futaket the date and location for the fourth iteration of the event have been confirmed: Futaket 4 will take place on May 4th, 2008, at the Tokyo Toritsu Sangyou Boueki Center Hamamatsu-cho building. This building is operated by the same management that instituted a reactionary anti-doujin policy last October, so it’s encouraging to see that an arrangement has been reached that will allow the event to go forward. The future of ABC (the event that sparked the furor last fall) is still in question, and given the lingering climate of unease surrounding erotic doujinshi I don’t think this announcement from Futaket can be taken for granted either, but it’s definitely positive news after a solid year of doujin bashing. We’ll be tracking further details on Futaket 4 as they emerge. (no more)

[ERO] Figure News: preorders open at Toranoana for Keumaya’s Violet and Axia

Those interested in procuring the latest work from [ERO] doujin figure circle Keumaya are urged to act quickly with their proxy of choice, as preorders are now open at Toranoana for both Axia (“A” ver.) and Violet (purple ver.). Further information on the figures can be found here and here, and a list of proxy services can be found in the lower left corner of the main HD page. Good luck to anyone going for these, as they’re likely to be quite popular… (no more)

Mainichi Junk: C73 roundup, anime news, etc.

It’s a general roundup of news from the past few days in another installment of the increasingly inaccurately named Mainichi Junk! We’ve got stuff from all corners of the otakuverse today, starting with a heaping helping of Comic Market 73 (the latest on Momoi’s AX DVD, Keumaya’s new doujin figure project, and hug pillows galore), new moves on the anime scene (trailers for Mnemosyne, Code Geass season 2, and Kite Liberator), eroanime news (featuring a new Pixy title in the “valkyrie vs. orc” genre), a few bits of figure gossip (Orchid’s Erika shipping for reals, Donne Anonime too, and Shuraki mangafication) and a new MOSAIC.WAV eroge movie that is certainly worth your viewing time.

[ERO] Goods News: Toranoana’s Shinzui doujin compilations up for preorder

We first reported on the production of this set of [ERO] Toranoana limited doujin compilations back in October when they were still just a glimmer in the eye of a hard working Tora staff member and a stack of loose paper. Turn away for a couple of weeks and lo – the box set set is already sold out, and the first printing of the first two books is gone as well. The four books are B5 size, 124 pages each, 1,050 yen a piece and feature an amazing array of famous artists (samples and links available here). Those who got in on the first wave of preorders will be seeing the first two volumes on November 9th and the second two on the 16th; those like myself who just realized the darn thing was available are left to weep bitter tears and accept our shipments at a later date. Those looking to purchase what seems like a legendary set in the making will have to go proxy diving, because Toranoana sucks. (no more)

Event News: Comic Market 73 circle application results are in

While the hype for Comiket 73 officially began a week ago when Frontier Works announced they’d be hosting Hatsune Miku goods in their industry booth, the real pay dirt hit over the weekend with the release of doujin circle selection results for the event. For those planning on attending (or subsequently obtaining the fallout via other means), now is the time to start checking your favorite circles’ websites and sketching out your preliminary map routes! We’ll continue to provide regular updates as the winter convention season roars into full swing, though if things are a bit sparse around here for the next several weeks it’s because I seem to have made it into the event as a circle myself… more on that as it develops. For more information on Comiket (and doujin acquisition in particular) I recommend checking out the excellent and super awesome incomplete Heisei Democracy How to Comiket guide, linked below:

[ERO] Goods News: Toranoana plans “Shinzui” doujin compilations; first volume to feature Mogudan

Toranoana representative AYUZAWA penned a column yesterday for Akiba Blog in which he announced the production of four 120-page [ERO] doujin compilation volumes in a series dubbed shinzui (“lifeblood”). The project is in commemoration for the recent opening of the new Toranoana shop in Sendai, and features a wide selection of famous artists (the first volume alone contains Mogudan, Sumeragi Kohaku, Amano Ameno, and Tsukino Jougi among others). While price and release dates are yet forthcoming we are informed that the volumes will only be available for purchase at Toranoana brick-and-mortar locations as well as via their online shop, so international buyers are advised to head to their proxy services. (no more)

[ERO] Doujin News: obscenity arrest aftershocks still felt

Since the arrest (and subsequent fining and release) of a doujin artist in August the amateur creators’ community in Japan has been tightening regulation of doujin content. A recent example of the self-censorship occurring as a result of the crackdown can be found in the newest [ERO] Umemaro 3D work set to go on sale later this month, a demo of which was made available a few days ago on his site; the mosaic censorship in the demo is considerably more pronounced than that found in his previous works. He justifies this on his BBS as an action taken in direct response to the doujin arrest. This seems to be a typical response among artists, and we’ll be watching closely in the coming months for any further change both in the degree of censorship and any qualitative change in doujin content. (no more)

Protoculture News: the doujin crackdown continues

Word came in on Friday from the organizational committee of Sunshine Creation (one of the largest Japanese doujinshi conventions after Comiket) that beginning with the 37th iteration of the event on October 8th staff will be checking the contents of each new book to go on sale there. This has long been standard practice at Comiket and other smaller doujin conventions, but the fact that in their official statement announcing the change Sankuri is tying the decision directly to the recent doujin arrest and other stifling developments on the 2D free speech scene is alarming. The statement refers multiple times to the changing environment surrounding doujinshi and a shifting definition of obscenity – this is the canary in the mine shaft of democracy, and if Japanese artists and responsible adult consumers don’t start standing up for their rights soon they’ll wake up one day to find they don’t have any. Further discussion of the urgent state of free speech in Japan can be found in this recent HD editorial. A translation of the September 7th statement from the Sunshine Creation executive office is below:

Event Report: Comic Market 72, day 3

I was able to participate with a circle ticket on the third day of Comic Market 72 under the auspices of Xiarobo, and together with eima we traversed what has become a well-worn path to the Big Sight on the morning of the 19th. I never thought I’d reach this point, but with my tenth Comiket the thing is almost starting to feel habitual… – just when it shouldn’t, as the potential for the entire doujin scene to disappear in an instant lurks menacingly on the horizon. Reflections below:

Event News: Genshiken-only doujin convention planned for spring ’08

According to this post by pape over at Emo-teki na Hibi plans are in the works for the first ever Genshiken-only doujin convention! It’s scheduled to take place on May 5th, 2008 at the Taitou Kumin Kaikan building in Asakusa, and while there’s no official event page yet the level of detail in the announcement leads me to believe the space has already been reserved. I’m definitely going to be applying for great justice and OHNO LOVE – but May is so far away… ;_; Thanks to SDS for the heads up! (no more)

Pure Love Renaissance : Comic Market 72

Shipon deals out on his Comiket 72 experience covering sunburn, long lines, cosplay, an HD meetup, record numbers and how a good night’s sleep can make a BIG difference when a 5 hour lineup awaits.

Comiket 72 Goods Roundup, Part I

A survey of some of the random items up for grabs at August’s upcoming Comic Market 72, including a fleet of hug pillows, a brace of doujin figures, a pair of plushes, a sausage, and a folding fan. Mero~n!

Event News: Comic Market 73 dates set

The paper version of the Comic Market 72 catalog went on sale yesterday, and Zepy over at Canned Dogs relays the scoop from its innards: Comiket 73 will run from December 29th through the 31st, 2007. This is the second consecutive three-day winter Comiket, and the second with the third day on New Year’s Eve day. In Japanese culture this is roughly the equivalent of Christmas Eve day in the United States, creating the awkward situation of having to figure out where you’re going to stash your [ERO] day-three loot before going home for the holidays… For those such as myself who lend no particular significance to the Japanese new year this is splendid news, as it seems this will finally be the first Comiket I manage to apply to as a circle, and having the third day increases the chances of the lottery coming up favorably. :3 Going to be at fuyukomi this year? Drop us a line! (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)

Event News: Comiket 72 circle notifications coming online

Via Tana‘s blog: doujin watchers everywhere take note! As of yesterday (June 3rd) circles who applied to participate in Comic Market 72 are being notified of the acceptance (or rejection) of their applications. Other doujin artists should be updating their sites with pertinent information soon, so anticipatory list-making can begin! Only 74 days until the event opens, but we’re not counting… yet. (no more)

Figure News: Sol International presents Ciel and Shion PVCs from Melty Blood

Various hobby sites put preorder listings up yesterday for a pair of Ciel and Shion PVC figures from Melty Blood. Both are in production by Sol International and set for release in August (Ciel) and September (Shion); sculpting duty handled by Inada Masaki of circle Heavy Gauge. ‘Tis the age of doujin fighters indeed… (no more)

Doujin News: Comic Market 72 event catalog available for preorder, sale dates set

Online book shop Mangaoh has put up a preorder listing for the Comiket 72 event catalogs. The book version will go on sale July 21st, with the CD-ROM following a week later on the 28th; the event itself takes place August 17th, 18th, and 19th. Cover illustration duty will be handled by Amemiya Yuki and Ichihara Yukino of circle Yukimachiya.

It’s never too early for the Comiket hype to begin! HD will be there as usual, and we’re thinking of organizing some sort of shindig following the first day of the event to make merry and gird our loins for two more days of battle in the trenches – more info on this “HD meet” as it develops, but feel free to mark your calendars now if you’ll be in Tokyo in mid-August. (no more)

Doujin News: Touhou gets a multimedia blitz from Ichijinsha

Via Moon Phase: publishing house Ichijinsha has put up a special Touhou feature page today with details on three new media projects in the works, all produced with the cooperation of the multi-talented Zun. The first is a manga that will appear in Comic Rex, the second is a (light?) novel that will appear in Chara Mel, and the third is a four-panel manga that will appear in Manga 4-Koma Kings Palette. All three will debut in June, and according to Zepy’s coverage are part of the same story, dubbed Touhou Bougetsushou. Given these new items in addition to the manga already running in Comp Ace an eventual Touhou anime is seeming even more inevitable, though given Zun’s (rumored) quixotic temperament it may be that he’s the one holding things up. I wouldn’t be surprised if he wanted to produce, direct, score, draw keyframes, and voice act the whole thing… (no more)

Event Report: Spring M3 2007

KOF 2000 embarked solo upon a thoroughly wallet-emptying M3 adventure last weekend in pursuit of nearly unhealthy quantities of doujin music CDs. Confusion, merriment, claustrophobic pathways, and gaijin representation ensue. Read all about his inexperienced experiences, a first-timer’s opinion of the event, general commentary, and more!

HDTV Episode 02: the Comic1 experience

In between hunting down doujinshi and documenting the avian wildlife of the Tokyo subway system Shipon unleashed his camera fu at the first ever Comic1 last Monday, April 30th. He brings us a rare look inside the halls of doujindom tonight in our second installment of HDTV: a man, a camera, and the burning spirit it takes to spend a day blurring out faces.

Event Report: Comic1 doujinshi convention

Shipon spent a pre-Golden Week 5 days in Tokyo, taking in the sights, collecting photos and content for HD and, oh yeah, getting along to April 30th’s Comic1 – the touted replacement for the now-defunct Comic Revolution convention. Tales of recognition, doujin and a mysterious loss of cash ensue. Also, pigeons!

Event Notes: Sunshine Creation 35

Sunshine Creation is an all-genre doujin convention held multiple times a year in Ikebukuro’s Sunshine City shopping complex / convention center. The 35th iteration of the event was held yesterday, and my friend and sometime doujin collaborator Animaestro was there. He sent the following notes from the field:

Creator Spotlight: Happoubi Jin

It takes time and effort to contact creators, correspond with them and eventually pin them down for an interview, which is why this column has languished in the sorry state it’s in. I’ve decided therefore to ditch the high production value in favor of making this an “appreciation” corner of sorts, where I gush about arbitrarily chosen artists and hope they don’t find out and get mad at me. The first target for this dubious affection is Happobi Jin, an illustrator and character designer perhaps best known for his recent series of Boin games from Crossnet Pie. What else has he done, and why should you care? I can’t answer the second question, but for the first, read on:

Ero Odds and Ends, Hanami Edition

A roundup of various ero items that have crossed the newsdesk recently, including the unexpected reincarnation of Comic Revolution, a Linda hug pillow, more Djibril anime, site updates of several of the games we’re tracking, a major maker’s first move into the doujin download price bracket, speculation on Hadashi Shoujo’s upcoming title, and a plush Haniwa from Sengoku Rance. Haniiiiiiii!

Otaku Trendspotting: The Printer-shi

HD presents the first installment in a what may or may not become a series of hard-hitting investigative journalism pieces, in which we take you behind the lines of the Japanese otaku front to discover bits of cultural flak that haven’t yet penetrated the collective kevlar jacket of the international fan community. Today’s topic: To Print or to Photocopy, That is the Question! aka The Gutenberg Doujinshi. Featuring a real live interview with a real live doujin artist!*

Queen’s Blade Goods Roundup

We look ahead at the next few months in the life of the biggest “image character” boom of the decade: Hobby Japan’s game book series, Queen’s Blade. What is in store as the franchise branches out into multimedia with audio, manga, and full-color comic incarnations in store (as well as even more figures)? Also: what the heck is this Queen’s Blade thing, anyway?

Doujin Music Scene: Rance Love, Hard Rock Style

For lovers of the music in Alice Soft’s Rance series (nay, for lovers of good music in general), hoist your mainsail and navigate on over to Human BBQ and get ready to rock out to their arrangements of the music from various Rance games. My recommendation from the melange? Drive Back the Enemy! (scroll down) from Sengoku Rance. Such raw aggression can only be described as a provocation to “hear me live.” (no more)

Comiket Eve

I tried to turn this post into a parody of A Visit From St. Nicholas, to no avail. At any rate – the list has been compiled, the requisite energy drinks and granola bars purchased, and tomorrow I sally forth at 4:30 AM for the brave new world that is the third day of Comiket 71. Wish me luck. A report will be forthcoming…

Back from Akihabara, Loot in Tow

In today’s update: A barebones loot report, pending further explication and review over the coming days. In other news: the Comiket 71 catalog is now up for preorder (going on sale December 2nd in print format and 9th as a CD-ROM), and Daiki Kougyou’s Koyori PVC is fucking huge.

Event Report: Sunshine Creation 33

A hard-hitting first-person account of the many-hyphenated adventures surrounding one man’s participation, as a circle, at a doujinshi convention. First installment: just the facts, ma’am.