Welcome back! This post covers blogging, podcasting and translation activity up to 31 August, in keeping with our trial of a monthly posting schedule. If things go to plan, there should be a September post early in October!
As usual, remarks from Feez are in blue and those from Thaliarchus are in red.
Cries in Newtype has a translation of a 1999 Animage interview with Kunio Okawara and Akira Yasuda, contemporary with the broadcast of Turn A Gundam. It’s heartwarming to hear that Okawara appreciated and learned from Syd Mead, because Mead himself looked up to Okawara’s tenure with the franchise and used many of his designs as a frame of reference when working on Turn A.
There’s also been a little spate of interviews with Shoji Kawamori, in connection with an exhibition of his work. Matt Schley has a long interview in the Japan Times, in which Kawamori makes some interesting remarks on his early years in anime and his influences as well as the thinking behind some of his more modern work. At Full Frontal, Dimitri Seraki has a similarly chunky interview which touches on, among other things, Arjuna, Escaflowne and Ulysses 31. Zimmerit, meanwhile, carries a translation of an interview with Kawamori which was published around the release of the Macross Plus film in 1995, and so is focused on what we might now, looking back, think of as the first half of his career.
Another new article on Zimmerit takes the perhaps rather surprising appearance of new merchandise linked to the A.R.I.E.L. novel series (OVAs released in 1989 and 1991) as an opportunity to consider the interwoven histories of anime and garage kit models.
Ogiue Maniax has an interview with Kikuko Inoue (Aina in The 08th MS Team, Belldandy in Oh My Goddess); and an interview with Tōru Furuya (perhaps most famously, Saint Seiya‘s Seiya and Amuro in Mobile Suit Gundam). Both interviews touch on various older titles. It’s really neat that Saint Seiya‘s impact on Brazil and Latin America’s anime culture is well-known to Japanese industry people involved in the show. Sdshamshel also has a new post reflecting on Hong Kong past and present and its presentation in G Gundam (1994).
For Takarabako, Ruben’s written a lovely primer on Kenji Miyazawa, the writer of the original material behind Night on the Galactic Railroad (1985) and Gauche the Cellist (1982), and more generally a significant influence on a variety of anime (e.g. Penguindrum). Two further posts revolving around Miyazawa are planned.
The Land of Obscusion wraps up a two-part consideration of anime comparable to Evangelion, discussing Argento Soma (2000), Rahxephon (2002), Fafner (2004), Jinki: Extend (2005), the first Aquarion (2005) and Eureka Seven (2005). As George says himself at the end, I don’t think influence works in the ways fans imagine when they talk about these shows and Evangelion, but this is still a fun survey. George has also written up: the results of an amusing project to work through the various Zone of the Enders anime and games ordered by their in-universe chronology, and the end of a series of posts examining Idea Factory’s self-produced anime tie-ins—if you’ve heard of one of these, it’s probably Mars of Destruction, but the one covered here is Spectral Force Chronicle Divergence (2005).
Animehead’s Retroworld has a detailed run-down for Baoh (1989).
Finally, a new site we’ve just come across: IroIro’s Retro Emporium is partly about computer games, but also has helpful short reviews of older anime, many of the real obscurities. From August, you can find posts on Gude Crest (1990), Photon (1997), Nayuta (1986), Xanadu Dragonslayer Legend (1988) and Relic Armour Legaciam (1987).
AniFem’s podcast series on Princess Tutu concludes by discussing episodes 21–26.
Zannen, Canada has a new instalment interviewing a man who was put on Canadian television as a sample anime fan eighteen years ago, chatting about that documentary and other eddies in anime’s reception in Canada.
Podcastle in the Sky pairs Ergo Proxy (2006) for discussion with William Gibson’s Neuromancer.
The latest episode of the Anime Nostalgia Podcast examines Akira.
Akiba Renditions chat over Yoroiden Samurai Troopers (1988) and its subsequent OVAs (1989, 1991).
The Retro Mecha Podcast returns with an episode considering a trio of OVAs which had Toshiki Hirano (aka Toshihiro Hirano) on staff: Dangaioh (1987), Daimajuu Gekitou (1987) and Zeorymer (1988).
Dynamite in the Brain’s ‘The Anime That Didn’t Make Us’ series continues with episodes on Vifam, Irresponsible Captain Tylor and Escaflowne; and on Lupin III Pt 3, The Romance of the Three Kingdoms and Martian Successor Nadesico.
The Cockpit has an unusual podcast: a recording of an interview with Tōru Furuya conducted at Otakon.
Anime World Order reviews Macross II: Lovers Again (1992).
The Retro Anime Podcast turns its attention to the 1985 and 1986 TV special adaptations of the fourteenth-century Chinese epic Romance of the Three Kingdoms.
- Patalliro 37, 38 (aarinfantasy)
- Armored Police Metal Jack 9 (ARR)
- Nangoku Shounen Papuwa-kun 1 (ARR)
- SD Gundam Force 1 (ARR)
- Bonobono  36 (GANGO)
- Sabu & Ichi’s Detecive Tales 29 (HnG & TSHS)
- Galient 1, 2, 3 (InkaSubs)
- Galvion 7 (InkaSubs)
- Mobile Suit SD Gundam Mk II (InkaSubs)
- Pipopapo Patrol-kun 1 (InkaSubs)
- UFO Robo Grendizer 10 (Johnny-english)
- Jungle King Tar-chan 1 (Kinnikubusters)
- Tanken Driland 5, 6, 7, 8 (Linguistic)
- Cosmos Pink Shock (LonelyChaser)
- Royal Space Force Promo Video (LonelyChaser)
- Kasumin 12 (Naisho)
- Meiken Lassie 7, 8, 9, 10 (OldCastle & South Wind)
- Saint Tail 6-9 (OldCastle)
- Tomoe’s Run! (Orphan)
- Hamtaro 183, 189 (ParadiseHamsubs, revised releases)
- Jewelpet Sunshine 40, 41 (ParadiseHamsubs)
- GeGeGe no Kitaro- The Great Youkai War (Rat Hat)
- Minky Momo 2, 3 (senritsu)
- Chikkun Takkun 7, 8 (shiteater)
- Ninku 49, 50 (SolZen)
- Bakusou Kyoudai Let’s & Go!! WGP 9, 10 (Square)
- Red Baron 20 (SubsDeLaRosa)
- Deltora Quest 30 (toran)
- Ninja Hattori-kun  1 (yuuki-makoto)
What we’ve been up to
Feez — I recently rewatched two of my favorite anime films: Redline and The Tale of the Princess Kaguya. Redline, as always, is an exhilarating and pumping experience, and it’s a film I enjoy viewing with a group of friends. Princess Kaguya‘s one of my personal favorites; a beautiful and emotional adaptation of the Tale of the Bamboo Cutter, a Japanese folktale which I’ve grown very fond of in past years. In non-anime news, I’ve been reading through Utawarerumono: Mask of Truth, which is a difficult game to discuss as it’s very event-heavy, but I’ve been enjoying it! I think I’m at least halfway through the story, but I wouldn’t know.
Thaliarchus — I’ve recently finished watching Rayearth 2, which I felt dragged rather for a lot of its length. But some of the giant robot battles were good, and good giant robots cover a multitude of sins! I also watched Masami Obari’s 1994 Fatal Fury film, which was a giggle. However, if I’m honest, a lot of my spare time in the last week or two has been taken up with the wild goings-on in Westminster, which have this season’s anime beat for drama and tension!