Tokyo Fashion Now at LIVEJ
Bringing you KERA Magazine's popular "Street Snap" corner, with snapshots of fashion from the streets of Harajuku.
Right: Sarome (Aichi)19 yrs old, Blood Type O
Today's fashion theme: Radioactive contamination
"This country is rotten and I don’t want to breathe in the air, so I carry a gasmask with me at all times. Yohane and I are working on rebuilding a new world, so we’d appreciate your cooperation! Member No. 666" Maruione.jp
From the "we didn't see this coming" department: Nobuhiko Obayashi's astonishing debut film HOUSE, one of the lost jewels of the Toho school of '77, will be airing twice this weekend w/ subs on the Independent Film Channel for the very first time. I think you should probably watch it. Links to the showtimes here.
I dug up the review that appeared in issue 15 of the Japanese Fantasy Film Journal (1983) by Greg Shoemaker which I still think does the best job of trying to get to the bottom of the immense "what-the-fuck" quality that pervades every barking mad hook and crook of HOUSE.
"Formerly a director of television commercials, Obayahshi in his first
film assignment, led seven young women on summer holiday to a mansion
where the guests disappear one by one via living, devouring, home
"Many points of the production are striking: an actress with a slow,
exaggerated stride, her hair and scarf blown about by a breeze which
affects no one but her; mass produced food names used as nicknames for
several of the victims; the coordination of color between the costumes
of the players and the definitely unnatural pastel tinted environment."
"In viewing these moments and others, Bail in Variety offers the
possibility that HOUSE might be Obayashi's indictment of the excesses
of Japanese commercialization. The director's tack is to draw attention
to his cleverness, but is he kidding? Is the dialog banal purposely
like so much ad copy? Is the intrusive music performed by the pop rock
group Godiego calculated or accidental? Obayashi's debut is a puzzling
one to which Bail adds, 'Obayashi is either a brilliant conscious
satirist or a brilliant unconscious satirist.'"
For your flower and gift deliveries with impact and style in the Shinjuku Kabukicho area the ONLY sane choice is LOVE'S CLOVER...in fact, as the slogan points out rightfully, "It is only one flower in the word". So there.
In addition to really fucking expensive bouquets and floral arrangements sure to impress a true Top Dandy, LOVE'S CLOVER also delivers festive champagne towers, holiday decorations, even columns and archways to the host club or okama bar of your choice.
LOVE'S CLOVER can also create copyright-violating character floral arrangements, bouquets with encrypted messages, or indeed any animal in the bestiarum vocabulum (small dogs seem to be popular for some reason...).
While hostesses must be content to snack on Sno-balls and Ding-Dongs, LOVE'S CLOVER also offers a skull-fucking assortment of HOST CAKES made to order for special occasions (I'm going to go with "birthday") and those spontaneous celebrations when only "homemade" will do...like at 4am when you can't taste anything because you've become a human ashtray who feels like puking in the back but you'll get fired if you do.
FAX your orders 24 hours at day to LOVE'S CLOVER of Kabukicho, and always remember "It is only one flower in the word". The others are just symptoms of secondary psychosis with predominant hallucinations.
Published by Leedsha of Koenji, SPIDER is being positioned as the all-male version of their gyaru magazine proper ES POSHH! And if you think I’m the only guy dumb enough to mix up otaku junk and Shibuya small change, now hear this: Leedsha is owned and operated by Saito Pro., which means that Men’s SPIDER comes from the very same house that Golgo 13 built!
Flip a few pages and it’s pretty clear that Men’s SPIDER is shorn of the “American casual” clothes and bright colors found in egg and co. What they really want to do is eat Men’s Knuckle’s lunch to the tune of nearly identical fonts, layouts, paper stock, free anime sampler DVD (kidding). They’ve even managed to up the confusion by getting top Knuckle model Ryoma on board (above, hawking the glory of this season's offerings of shiny outerwear).
And like, Men’s Knuckle, SPIDER really wants you to stop whatever else you might be doing and give it all up to work in a host club. Like, NOW. You’ll make lots of money, which is all that really matters, so what are you waiting for? For more information, see the half a dozen pages of recruitment ads in the back and envy inspiring photo features like “Look How Big My Car Is” and “Look How Much Manga I’m Able to Actually Own Instead of Just Reading It at the Manga Kissa.”
With so much of this admittedly fascinating scene already covered by other well established and respected periodicals, what can Men’s SPIDER ever possibly hope to offer a nation full of aspiring “King of Dandy”? How about an entirely new and terrifying fashion style? The cover story for issue 1 reveals the results of their infernal experiments: V-HOST KEI; a diabolical perversion of both Visual-kei and host club chic proper worthy of the devil himself!
I’ll admit the mash-up doesn’t sit well with me, for reasons too numerous to mention, but as Izumi Nishimura-Evers once said, “That’s really the strength of Japanese culture: you can combine whatever you want, even two things that are extremely different. And the more different the extremes are; the more interesting the resulting mash up culture is.”
Yeah, try saying that to a guy in eyeliner, a leather vest, and a leopard print shirt, wearing fingerless skull gloves. Still, someone wearing a florecent track suit in darkest Psytama is bound to think “Hey, as long as the ladies like it..."
And they do! Dress the part and try some basic Nampa 101 (AKA "Onesan, doko kara kimashita?") on Aoi, this month's hardworking kyabakura SPIDER-woman. She likes guys who wear suits. Presumably even gay-looking ones with big furry collars. She also likes Louis Vuitton and...
Just like the on-going saga of Golgo 13, there’s really never going to be any closure here, because the globe is ever full of potential flashpoints; and each one a potential story, another magazine on the rack. Will V-Host Kei stick? Should it stick? Will the merging of Visual-kei and host style save the world of trashy Japanese fashion mags…or destroy it? (Stan Lee voice) Find out, in the next amazing issue of MEN’S SPIDER!!!
I just got my comp copy of the new Shogun Assassin 5-film Collector's Set in the mail today from AnimEigo. I contributed a slightly revised version of my "Samurai & Son" chapter from my book TokyoScope along with a brand new essay concerning 'Three Decades of Shogun Assassin'. Popped the first disc in the player, and it's looking and sounding pretty nice. I don't have all the individual releases of the Lone Wolf films, so I can't tell you what's in here that's not elsewhere, but you can count on the usual allotment of (as the AnimEigo spin machine puts it) VIOLENCE, NUDITY, & RIVERS OF BLOOD.
Ok. Here’s the new issue of OTAKU USA, our 9th and
Vol. 2, No. 3 for those of you who can count like that. You know the drill:
should be on sale now, and subscribers should have them soon-ish. We've all been busy beavers grinding out the next one...
The killer contents are pretty much all right there on the
cover, but here are some things I like about this one: The big old school
Macross flashback with the contribs firing on all cylinders, Daryl Surat on Gundam
101, scans from various host club magazines, reviews of Golion and Dai Majin, a
whole page on Super Robot Red Baron, pics of the hot chicks from Thee ’50s High
Teens, fan letters from Malta and Danny Tanner, using “the war in space” on the
The heroes who made it
happen: Matt Alt, Brian Ashcraft,Yunmao Ayakawa, Emily Balistrieri, Zac Bentz,
Casey Brienza, Austell Callwood, J.L. Carrozza, Paul Thomas Chapman, Ed Chavez,
Mike Dent, Caleb Dunaway, Tim Eldred, Erin Finnegan, Shaenon Garrity, Clarissa
Graffeo, Heidi Kemps. Gilles Poitras, August Ragone, Dave Riley, Daryl Surat,
and Darius Washington.
It's a long story, but somehow I managed to sneak onto the set of tonight's episode of Tokyo Kawaii TV (NHK, 12:10 am). You can find me lingering in the background like a messy stain on the wall during the 6%DOKIDOKI shop girl auditions segment.
The drama was pretty dramatic. At least two girls broke down sobbing during the Q&A portion. Competition was fierce. After all, the stalwart 6%DOKIDOKI posse (Sebastian, Yuka, and Rieko) have set the standards for Harajuku madness pretty high. I still don't know who won the grand prize, but I'm sorta rooting for the girl in the fuzzy pink hat. This is my idea of election day...
Who is that man, what is the unspeakable power he wields in his hands, and how did he ever manage to escape from Cyber City Oedo 808? Turns out, he's just another A-boy carefully following the instructions in the 11/11 issue of Weekly ASCII magazine on how to “jack into the mainframe” using a canny combination of HMD, USB receiver, battery pack, wireless keyboard, fit-PC slim, flannel shirt, and bad jeans. Follow these instructions, and you too can trash talk Koreans @ 2chan while on the go, peruse the latest issue of Dengeki Moe-oh while actual women waltz by, and just generally help the Neo-Human Army to finally triumph over everyone you hated in high school.
The article also suggests using the set-up in what looks alarmingly like the crapper at the Akihabara UDX center or maybe on an idol stakeout or grassy knoll in conjunction with Google Maps. Either way, FUTURE WAR FOUR HAS ALREADY BEGUN!